Tag Archives: Lamb Of God

Bullet For My Valentine Release New Single “No Way Out”

bfmv2015

Perk up metalheads, Bullet For My Valentine have just introduced the upcoming release of their fifth record, Venom, with the premiere of biting new single, “No Way Out.” The track harkens back to the glorious days of The Poisonthe monumental 2005 record that pushed BFMV into modern metal stardom–with complex overlays of vocal harmonies, ripping guitars, and versatile drumming the likes of which we haven’t seen from the giants in their more recent records. Of the new record and the new song, vocalist/guitarist Matt Tuck says the following:

“To write this track I had to put myself into a very dark place, a place I hadn’t been to for a while mentally because of how my life is now, compared to what it was before the band exploded. It is one of, if not the heaviest tracks we’ve ever recorded musically and lyrically. I’ve lived with it for a while now but still every time I hear it, it gives me chills. Hold on tight it’s a hell of a ride.”

Upon first listen the truth of Tuck’s statement is immediately recognizable. Perhaps BFMV got a little too used to the spotlight for a couple years, but reaching back to those darker periods has given them a single that their very first fans will love in 2015. Will the rest of the album match up? Let us know what you think!

Venom will be released August 14, 2015 and is available for pre-order HERE. Catch them on tour with Slipknot, Lamb of God, and Motionless In White this summer.

VENOM track listing:
1.   “V”
2.  “No Way Out”
3. ”Army of Noise”
4. “Worthless”
5. “You Want A Battle? (Heres A War)”
6. “Broken”
7. “Venom”
8. “Harder the Heart”
9.  “Skin”
10. “Hell or High Water”
11. “Pariah”
Deluxe edition also includes:
12.  “Playing God”
13. “Run For Your Life”
14. “In Loving Memory”
15.  “Raising Hell”
venom cover art
Bullet For My Valentine North/South American Tour Dates:
July 8 – Alegre, Brazil – Opiniao (w/Motionless In White)
July 10 – Curitiba, Brazil – Vanilla Music Hall (w/Motionless In White)
July 11 – Sao Paulo, Brazil – Via Marques (w/Motionless In White)
July 12 – Rio De Janeiro, Brazil – Circo Voador (w/Motionless In White)
July 14 – Buenos Aires, Argentina – Groove (w/Motionless In White)
July 16 – Santiago, Chile – Teatro Cariola (w/Motionless In White)
July 18 – Bogota, Colombia – Downtown Majestic (w/Motionless In White)
July 24, 2015 – West Palm Beach, FL – Coral Sky Amphitheatre (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
July 25, 2015 – Tampa, FL – Mid-Florida Credit Union Amphitheatre (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
July 26, 2015 – Atlanta, GA – Aaron’s Amphitheatre at Lakewood (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
July 28, 2015 – Clarkston, MI – DTE Energy Music Theatre (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
July 29, 2015 – Darien Center, NY – Darien Lake Performing Arts Center (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
July 31, 2015 – Saratoga Springs, NY – Saratoga Performing Arts Center (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 1, 2015 – Wantagh, NY – Nikon at Jones Beach Theater (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 2, 2015 – Hartford, CT – Xfinity Theatre (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 4, 2015 – Mansfield, MA – Zfinity Center (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 5, 2015 – Holmdel, NJ – PNC Bank Art Center (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 6, 2015 – Burgettstown, PA – First Niagara Pavilion (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 8, 2015 – Toronto, ON – Molson Canadian Amphitheatre (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 9, 2015 – Montreal, QC – Heavy MTL
August 11, 2015 – Bristow, VA – Jiffy Lube Live (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 12, 2015 – Virginia Beach, VA – Farm Bureau Live at Virginia Beach(w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 14, 2015 – Noblesville, IN – Klipsch Music Center (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 15, 2015 – Tinley Park, IL – First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 16, 2015 – St. Louis, MO – Hollywood Amphitheatre (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 19, 2015 – Morrison, CO – Red Rocks Amphitheatre (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 21, 2015 – West Valley City, UT – USANA Amphitheatre (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 24, 2015 – Vancouver, BC – Rogers Arena (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 26, 2015 – Concord, CA – Concord Pavilion (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 28, 2015 – Las Vegas, NV – MGM Resort Festival Lot (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 29, 2015 – Phoenix, AZ – Ak-Chin Pavilion (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
August 30, 2015 – Albuquerque, NM – Isleta Amphitheater (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
September 2, 2015 – Austin, TX – Austin 360 Amphitheater (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
September 4, 2015 – The Woodlands, TX – Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)
September 5, 2015 – Dallas, TX – Gexa Energy Pavilion (w/Slipknot, Lamb of God)

Interview with Liam O’Sullivan of Opheon

Opheon

One of the best little things that can happen to a music buff is clicking a suggested video on YouTube and being pleasantly surprised by an unsigned band, as was the case with the UK-based Opheon.  After being click-baited all over YouTube one day, I happened to stumble upon Opheon’s music video for “The Distance” and was immediately hooked.

“The Distance” pairs roaring riffs with a solid mixture of well-tuned cleans and pounding uncleans and is accompanied by a simplistic video that truly lets their complex sound round out the visuals. “It was pretty cool,” says vocalist and guitarist Liam O’Sullivan on filming for the video. “We did a photo shoot in this abandoned bomb factory from World War II and knew we had a music video coming up, and this was the best place we’d ever seen, so we ended up going back.  It was like a half hour trek from where you can park to the factory, so with all the cameras and guitars and everything it was just horrendous to get there.  Then we had to shoot for hours and take all the stuff back at like six in the morning so that was pretty long and tiring.” But the trek was definitely worth it as the video showcased a rising band with a hardcore twist on a classic metal vibe.

The quartet that makes up Opheon has only been together since the summer of 2013, and yet they’re making humongous strides with a sonic sophistication almost unheard of coming from a group of 19 and 20-year olds. Being heavily influenced by bands like Lamb of God, Killswitch Engage and Gojira, just listening to their latest EP, As I Walk With Fire, shows an appreciation for technicality so many up-and-coming bands feel they can overlook nowadays.

So how did these guys from Birmingham come together exactly? Like all great beginnings, it started randomly and unexpectedly.  “Myself and Josh [Warhurst,] the other guitarist, were in the same class at school for like a year but we didn’t realize it,” explains O’Sullivan. “When we realized that we were in the same class we started playing guitar a bit and one thing led to another. We had a school concert in like 2008 and didn’t have a singer so I just thought I’d sing for it. And it was really bad. It’s on Youtube actually. [Laughs] So yeah, that’s quite funny, but that was it really.”

Shortly after settling upon their current lineup in 2013, the band was able to release two tracks, “We Are One” and “A New Hope,” which not only gained traction on the internet, but even got label heads turning Opheon’s way.  “When we got scouted by the label they said the reason they liked us was they thought we were like a hardcore mash up of bands like Trivium and Killswitch Engage,” says the ever humble O’Sullivan still seemingly shocked by the deserving comparison.  “We’d never really thought about that personally, we just sort of wrote the two songs out of nowhere and for them to think that of us was kind of cool. So when we started working on the EP [As I Walk With Fire], it was like we wanted to just build on that foundation about us that we didn’t realize we had going.”

When it came to recording As I Walk With Fire Opheon went above and beyond expectations by tossing conventions to the wind and revamping their sound in a far more melodic and technical direction. “Track six, ‘Lost in Undertow’ is the heaviest one,” notes O’Sullivan of his favorite song on the EP. “It’s kind of a groovy, Pantera, Machine Head, Lamb of God vibe. There’s no singing as well which is cool.  It was more of a really angry song, and I thought it was sort of nice to not have a verse/chorus singing song. It’s different to the rest of the EP, so [as the EP’s last song] it’s got the heaviness fading out.”

opheon ep

Opheon always works to keep things as true to themselves as possible, even using artwork from a local artist friend of O’Sullivan’s to represent the cover of As I Walk With Fire. And when it comes to shows, Opheon is always prepared to bring the heat, whether it’s playing to five kids or an entirely booked out club show. “If it’s a pretty still, dormant crowd, we still try and give it a lot of energy,” explains O’Sullivan. “We’ve all got wireless systems now and we just try to throw some shapes and go for it. It’s a lot better when it’s tight and the crowd and everyone’s loving it, and you’re loving it.”

With several shows coming up in the spring, including their EP launch show this April, keep an eye out for Opheon on tour this summer.  When asked to describe Opheon in one word, O’Sullivan hit the nail on the head with our new favorite word: “Riffolodic.”

READ MORE: Review: Opheon — As I Walk With Fire

Review: OPHEON – ‘As I Walk With Fire’

EP Cover

While modern metalcore seems to be gravitating more to the -core side of the spectrum, budding Birmingham ensemble Opheon deliver a refreshing and much-needed take on metalcore proper, where intricate guitar work and heavy symbol usage reign bloody and supreme. Though the vocals sometimes dip into melodic hardcore textures and they even work in their own take on breakdowns in “The Distance” and “A Portrait Of Self Hate,” it is the versatility and prominence of the guitars, the intensely varied and seamless syncopations, and the sheer speed of the work that put the ‘metal’ in ‘metalcore’ on this EP.

With the exception of the one slow song on the record (“The Answer”), As I Walk With Fire is the very definition of brutal. The EP hearkens back to the glory days of acts like Trivium, Bullet For My Valentine and Lamb Of God, reaching insane heights with the last song, “Lost In Undertow.” This song is the crowning achievement of the EP in terms of showcasing the virtuosity of nearly every instrumentalist. Between the catchy yet searing chorus, the almost inhuman double bass, and the masterful oscillation between devastating squealing and shredding and the slower, chugging grooves, there is so much dimension in this one five minute track it is practically impossible to believe most of the members are only around 19 years old.

Though the bass guitar tends to get lost and the vocals need to be tightened before slow songs become their strong suit, As I Walk With Fire demonstrates incredible talent and crushing tenacity. As yet unsigned, Opheon surely won’t remain so for long.

4/5 stars.

Four Star Rating

(Anti) Valentine’s Day Playlist

anti valentines dayThe holiday with perhaps the most obvious money-making agenda, Valentine’s Day still manages to conjure up plenty of feelings. There are rumors floating around that it’s supposed to be a happy day, but the people who whispered them have been properly disposed of by now, we’re almost sure. Whether you’re single or not, it’s a day that can bring with it added, needless pressures. To help you cope with the annual annoyance, we’ve reached into the vault and created a playlist that screams, jeers, and even laughs the angst away.

Continue reading (Anti) Valentine’s Day Playlist

Response to Gene Simmons: “Rock Is Dead”

Markarian_musictat

THIS EDITORIAL WAS ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED THROUGH TAYLOR MARKARIAN’S GRIMM ROCK REVIEW AND IS RE-PUBLISHED HERE VIA THE AUTHOR’S CONSENT.

“Rock ‘n’ roll” is a heavy phrase. It carries with it sex, drugs, death, youthful rebellion, dreams made and dreams broken, all culminating in a unique spirit that has all but become synonymous with America itself. Unfortunately, folks, it’s all over.

Gene Simmons told us the bad news on September 4th in an interview with Esquire— “Rock is finally dead.” So all of you up-and-coming’s out there can pack your bags, clip on a tie, and major in finance, because none of what you’re doing matters. The kids lined up around the block hours before the show can go home. Warped Tour? Mayhem Fest? Shut ‘em down. And all of those band t-shirts in your closet can be sewn into a nice dark quilt for grandma because there’s just no arguing with Gene.

Really, who are we to point out that Warped tour garnered $23.4 million last year and is the longest running musical festival in the country (Billboard Magazine)? Or that numerous acts such as My Chemical Romance, Green Day, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Blink-182, The Foo Fighters, and The Used have become landmarks of rock and of American pop culture post-1983, the year Simmons demarcated as the last of true “musical anythings that are iconic, that seem to last beyond their time”? How can we dare to worship albums like Senses Fail’s Let It Enfold You or Taking Back Sunday’s Tell All Your Friends 10 years after their release? And what miscreant keeps plastering the words “sold out” on almost any venue hosting Asking Alexandria, Pierce the Veil, Lamb of God, or Avenged Sevenfold?

The answers to these snarky questions are multi-dimensional and interconnected. In all seriousness, Gene Simmons is partly right. That amorphous, umbrella term—“Rock”—is dead, in that its dozens of subgenres have made it relatively meaningless. No one can be just a rock band anymore, because it’s simply too broad. What are you? Metal? But what kind of metal? Thrash, Nu, Black, Death? Are you hardcore? Meaning, are you post-hardcore, hardcore punk? The lists and divisions go on and on.

Another reason Gene Simmons is right is the same reason that he is laughably, infuriatingly wrong. His definition is limited. He equates rock with acts like (what a shock) Kiss, The Beatles, The Stones, and U2. For him, rock is dead because it is no longer main stage. The arena shows are reserved for Justin Bieber. Radio time is given to endless repeats of the latest Katy Perry club mix.

Well—and let me be as professional and eloquent as possible here—DUH! It’s 2014, not 1980. (And it’s not 2008 either, by the way. The “file-sharing” argument is not news. So if Gene Simmons was going to announce the vicious murder of music, meaning all music, it should have been during the golden age of Limewire, not in 2014 during an LP revival.) The technology has changed, the entertainment market has expanded, and the media is over-saturated. Of course when we develop new electronic gadgets every five minutes the mainstream sounds of our generation are going to be pop, hip-hop, and EDM-centric. The enormous technological shift finds its echo in a shifting cultural paradigm, so it makes sense that the gritty, raw texture of Beartooth is going to be passed over for smooth, shiny, easily-digestible Deadmau5 nine times out of 10.

But does that make all rock music irrelevant and the victim of senseless slaughter? Of course not. To stand by such an assertion would be flagrant and ludicrous reductionism. All genres have their time in the spotlight, and if we’re being true to the meaning of rock, the “underground” is exactly where it should be right now anyway.

“The meaning of rock.” What’s that? It’s a question that can engender thousands of answers, but if we’re speaking historically, rock is fundamentally counterculture. Rock always needs something to resist. Whether it be The Sex Pistols or Bob Dylan, rockers of all branches have been “anti—” and controversial for decades. They even oppose each other.

On the other hand, rock is and has been one of the most uniting forces the world has ever known. It provides much needed respite for the world-weary, the angst-ridden, the broken-hearted. Kids who might otherwise have wanted out of this life decided to stick around because of that one chorus in that one A Day To Remember song.

So we pick up our guitars. We set up our kits. We plug in our amps and attempt to dial them past 10 even if we won’t ever book Madison Square Garden, because house parties and club venues and even empty basements are just as good. We don’t scream the lyrics for the money. To paraphrase a Dangerkids song, we do it because “there is something in us that won’t leave us alone.”

So, in the spirit of all that is rock ‘n’ roll: Fuck you. Rock is alive and well.