On their latest album, Opeth take a decidedly more mellow, progressive approach to their unique brand of metal, drawing more from the back catalogs of Camel and Pink Floyd than any of the band's early death metal influences. Fans of Orchid may have been a tad confused by the jazz-fusion passages that made their way onto the album in songs like "Nepenthe," but Heritage is still undoubtedly an Opeth record, and a very good one at that.
Danava is a band based out of Portland, Oregon, that has been steadily rising in the metal underground over the past eight years. Even though their music has a doom element people can compare to early Sabbath, their influences are so eclectic that an attempt to put a label on them would almost be a disservice to their abilities, so the best way to get an idea of what they sound like is to listen to them.
Kylesa is a metal band that hails from Savannah, Georgia. "Metal" is really the only accurate description I can come up with, because they incorporate an amazingly diverse range of influences and genres into their music, giving rise to a sound that's truly unique and all of their own.
He could easily be intimidated, following in the footsteps of guitarists with names like Iommi, Rhoads and Lee. But Ozzy Osbourne’s Zakk Wylde is his own man … and already proving it. Much has happened to Zakk Wylde during the past year. Besides co-writing all eight tunes on his vinyl debut and touring the world behind it, the young New Jersey hotshot established a tight bond and rapport with vocalist Ozzy Osbourne that is sure to boost his performance the next time they record.
As a guitarist, singer, musician and composer, Devin Townsend has done and seen it all. After starting out in the early 1990s as the singer in Steve Vai’s band, Townsend then went on to form the band Strapping Young Lad, releasing five albums between 1995 and 2006. After that band was dissolved, Townsend went on to form the Devin Townsend Project, releasing a series of four individual albums of different moods.
These are the sounds of a man granted a private preview of a masterpiece-in-progress by a giant of rock guitar. Open-mouthed enthusiasm hardly becomes a Jaded Journalist, but what can you do when you're blown away? I'm sitting In Joe Satriani's cozy suite in L.A.’s Le Parc Hotel. The guitarist opens a door leading to the terrace and considers unpacking his clothes. We agree to first hear “a few” of his new tunes, and discuss rock star finery later (particularly our mutual fondness for Big John black jeans).
Wayne Static entertained thoughts of a solo project during his years fronting Static-X, but the multi-platinum band’s recording and touring schedules put the idea on hold. When the group dissolved after their final tour in 2009, the opportunity presented itself to begin working on the material that became Pighammer.
Anvil may have made the saga of a promising young band toiling away on the border of obscurity before finally getting their shot part of mainstream metal lore, but that certainly doesn't mean they were the first band to live it. "I remember actually playing the bar side of a bowling alley on a Sunday afternoon," says Core Device guitarist Tony Nocera, reflecting on years between the band's two albums.
It's two days before Christmas, and at Guitar World, the atmosphere is giddy. Ax slinger extraordinaire Steve Vai is coming to town, coming to these very offices, in fact, bearing a preview tape of Skyscraper, the album he's co-produced with David Lee Roth.
“I know I’m not the kind of person who’s gonna wind up a walking jukebox, like many rock ‘n’ roll artists,” says Carlos Santana. “They just play their hits and that’s it. That doesn’t appeal to me. I don’t wanna just go out and play ‘Black Magic Woman’ and ‘Oye Como Va’ all night because that was part of the seventies, and my watch says it’s 1988. So I wanna get into ’88 and not look back.”