Extended Play: FLESH TO ASHES Self-titled

Flesh to Ashes is an up-and-coming death metal band out of Escanaba, MI! Following their most recent video release track “Hell Catcher” is their very first self-titled EP release!

This release contains three tracks of face-melting brutality! Starting with ‘Ass Casket’ (that’s not a typo, haha!); it starts with the bass setting a solid foundation for the rest of the track, and honestly the album over all. ‘Hell Catcher’ has all those nasty, teeth-grinding riffs that you love, and the classic death metal vocals bring all the brutality! Finishing out this release is ‘Impending Doom’, which is more relatable now than ever it would seem. All jokes aside, this is a hard and heavy metal slow jam, and is my personal favorite of this release. Something about it hits just right, and you’ll know what I mean when you check it our for yourself!

This EP is hard, heavy, and just what the doctor ordered for times like these! This self-titled release is available now! Follow Flesh to Ashes online HERE!

-Emily Mae
Edited by Samantha Crocker

Extended Play: LUNAR MOTH Self Titled

Lunar Moth is a three-piece doomy, garage-rock band from Madison, WI. Their latest self-titled EP release was recorded at Fuzztapes Studios and mixed and mastered to keep true to their raw but defined sound. Originally intended for cassette release only, as it’s the perfect fit for their retro sound, it was also released digitally for those of us who are missing a cassette player in our lives (which is unfortunate for those who don’t own one if we are being honest). You can purchase this release digitally HERE!

This four-track EP is packed full of sludgy riffs, spacey vocals, fuzzy bass, and hard-hitting drums. It’s been 50 years since 1969, and there seems to be a retro-revolution on the rise! Doom bands have been brining back the groove all over the globe and creating a movement far and wide! Lunar Moth is a great example of what is coming out of this movement. Combining everything we love about the 1960-1970 songs of groovy-witchcraft and bringing it to life with modern twists and turns.

Track Listing
1. Abecedarian
2. Fever Brain
3. Inner Demons
4. Red Room Mistress

I recently saw Lunar Moth perform for the first time at the Waupaca, WI. battle of the bands (held at Schueller’s Great Exspechtations, which we proudly also sponsored) competition and was captivated by the energy they brought to the stage. I knew right away that I had to include them in a line up of our own- which happened to fall perfectly in place! Be sure to catch Lunar Moth live at our upcoming Halloween show October 19th at the SV2- Moon Doom Ritual; which also includes performances by the bands Twichard, Beetlegork, and is headlined by Chicago doom band legend Black Road!

Follow Lunar Moth Online below!

-Emily Mae
Edited by Samantha Crocker

Extended Play: TOXIC RUIN- ‘Mortal Insolence’

Hello again local readers and music lovers! Oh baby, do we have a sweet ass EP Release for you this time! Sheboygan based monsters of thrash Toxic Ruin have come out with their 4 track EP Mortal Insolence which is following their first album release Subterranean Terror. This album was a breath of fresh air for the local Wisconsin scene. After adding guitarists Jake and Blake, this was a firm lineup change with Stephen stepping up with slamming vocals; a whole new rage took the vocal spot! Toxic Ruin is now on a whole new level of amazing!

Building a great anticipation with their intro, it’s just a smack in the face! The first track “Mental Atrophy” instantly assures me that I am in for a treat! There is a new subtle dynamic that they have latched onto that I am really digging.

Toxic Ruin has everything their sound had before, but there’s a sprinkle of an almost melodic death metal touch added to the inner workings of their composition, definitely held together stronger than ever by the relationship between Stephen (bass, vocals) and Dave (drums). First of all Dave, as far as I’m concerned, is one of the leaders in our scene. Some of the best drummers I have known look up to his style and professionalism. As for Stephen, his voice has added new depths of passion and reality to who they are as a band, and what it is they have to say.

Don’t worry, in the second track “Tyrannical Demise” their is no shortage of compliments for the guitarists Jake and Blake. As a lover of damn near all thrash has to offer, I can say these two bring their f*cking ‘A’-game; especially when it comes to groove, technicality, and composition of this track as a whole. The progression of this song is nothing I’ve heard come out of Toxic Ruin before, and I love it!


Now, this next track was the first released single of the EP- “Insolent Obsession.” I’ve heard this song performed live and I had the fortune of shouting along to it at the top of my lungs! This song has the catchiest hooks I have ever heard come out of a Wisconsin local band yet! Calling all 6/8 fans-pulling back into that refrain and giving me the chills!

Finally, they cover a song that I have loved since I discovered metal-Death’s “Crystal Mountain” has never been honored better! This is something you just have to jam at full blast and scream your heart out! It will make you feel like you’ve traveled back to the first time this killer tune hits your ears!

100%- these dudes are a f*cking force to be reckoned with. I honestly believe that the ones out there that truly want to ‘get to the top’ without ill-intention and without any ill-will to others will definitely reach great success. Toxic Ruin is the best testament to just that, and this release proves to us all that hard work and true passion go miles for yourself as well as others!

Thank you all for reading, and please do yourselves a favor and check out Toxic Ruin for yourselves in the links below! Be safe out there and thrash fast!

Mortal Insolence is available HERE!

Mortal Insolence track list
1.Mental Atrophy
2. Tyrannical Demise
3. Insolent Obsession
4. Crystal Mountain (Death Cover)

Line Up
Jacob Baneck: Guitar
Blake Toltzmann: Guitar
David Miller: Drums
Stephen Behrendt: Bass/Vocals

Check out TOXIC RUIN Online

Mitchel Fulcer
Edited by Samantha Crocker

Maehem News: ANIMAL DRIVE Announce Covers EP “Back To The Roots”

Croatian hard rockers Animal Drive are preparing to begin work in earnest on the follow-up album to their stunning debut, “Bite!”. To hold fans over while they wait for the band’s new album, Animal Drive jumped in the studio to record a covers EP, “Back to the Roots”. The tracklisting includes a super-heavy rendition of Roxette’s “The Look” (featuring the guest vocals of Frontiers labelmate and fellow Trans-Siberian Orchestra artist Rosa Laricchiuta), a magnificent and epic version of Whitesnake’s “Judgement Day”, Skid Row’s “Monkey Business”, and Warrant’s evergreen classic “Uncle Tom’s Cabin,”Animal Drive showcase how much musical prowess the band possesses by covering these three hard rock classics and a mainstream ’90s hit and completely making them their own. 
Hear the band’s take on the Skid Row’s classic “Monkey Business” HERE.

Stream or download “Monkey Business” on your preferred digital retailer HERE

On why the band chose to cover Skid Row’s “Monkey Business”, Dino Jelusic says “people used to, and still do sometimes, compare Animal Drive to Skid Row and their “Slave To The Grind” era. That song opens the “Slave To The Grind” album and it’s a monster jam, so it felt like a logical fit. Of the other covers on “Back To The Roots”, Jelusic continues, “the other three songs are “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” by Warrant, “Judgement Day” by Whitesnake and “The Look” by Roxette. I’ve always wanted to cover “The Look” in a heavy way, so it was cool to finally do it. We are big Whitesnake fans and had to go for one of their more epic jams. The Warrant song is one of their absolute best and shows what a great songwriters Jani and the band are, plus it’s a great fit for a heavy band to cover.” 

As for what can fans expect from the next Animal Drive album, Jelusic says, “I more or less have all the songs down. It will be epic, a lot more versatile than the first album, more pianos and orchestra, progressive, but still very heavy and melodic. Probably my finest lyrical and musical work to date.”

Animal Drive‘s debut album, “Bite!” caused quite a stir in the hard rock scene, showcasing for the first time to the world the amazing vocals of Croatian singer Dino Jelusic. Originally formed in 2012 by Jelusic, who is the primary songwriter and driving force behind the band’s sound, the band also features guitarist Ivan Keller, bassist Roko Nikolic aka Rokindja, and drummer Zvonimir Mihaljevic aka Zvone. Dino was chosen by the late, great Paul O’Neill to tour as a featured vocalist on Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s most recent U.S. tours. Often compared to the likes of David Coverdale, Russell Allen, Sebastian Bach, and Steve Lee, Jelusic’s commanding vocal presence is perfectly matched in Animal Drive’s sound by guitarist Ivan Keller’s monster riffs and screaming solos, and the thunderous rhythm section of Rokindja and Zvone. 

Overall, Animal Drive showed, on their debut album, an impressive range of styles from Whitesnake and Skid Row at their heaviest to more modern hard rock/metal like Avenged Sevenfold and Alter Bridge to touches of progressive rock and metal elements the likes of Dream Theater thrown in the mix. The final result is melodic yet always very much possessing the hard rock “in your face” attitude.

Back to the Roots” is a great chance to get accustomed with one of the hottest new hard rock bands around. Enjoy!

1. The Look (featuring Rosa Laricchiuta)
2. Judgement Day
3. Monkey Business
4. Uncle Tom’s Cabin

Dino Jelusic – vocals & keyboards
Keller – Guitar
Rokindja – bass
Zvone – Drums

Follow Animal Drive in the links below!

Published by Emily Mae

Maehem News: VALE OF PNATH Releasing ‘Accursed’ EP May 17

Denver (CO) – Tech Death Extremists VALE OF PNATH will release new EP Accursed May 17 on Willowtip Records.

The band’s second EP following two acclaimed full-lengths (2011’s The Prodigal Empire and 2016’s II), Accursed is fueled with Tech Death adrenaline and shrouded in black metal’s iniquitous aura. Those complementary qualities enhance what is unequivocally another giant step forward in penetrating songwriting dynamics. Concision with depth describes the five proper compositions, while the cold, mechanistic opening soundscape “Shadow and Agony” and chilling interlude “Audient Void,” are equally vital in completing an EP that is best absorbed as a holistic musical experience, albeit one that is the stuff of nightmares. The picture painted is a bleak one, the intensity unleashed nothing short of devastating to the nervous system and traumatic to the psyche.

VALE OF PNATH will join DARK FUNERAL, BELPHEGOR, INCANTATION, and many more extreme bands on the Devastation on the Nation North American Tour. Dates are as follows:

  • 5/17 – San Diego, CA – Brick By Brick
  • 5/18 – Oakland, CA – Oakland Metro
  • 5/19 – Portland, OR – Bossanova Ballrom
  • 5/20 – Vancouver, BC – Rickshaw Theatre
  • 5/21 – Seattle, WA – El Corazon
  • 5/23 – Salt Lake City, UT – Metro Music Hall
  • 5/24 – Denver, CO – The Roxy Theatre
  • 5/25 – Kansas City, MO – The Riot Room
  • 5/26 – Chicago, IL – Concord Music Hall
  • 5/28 – Cleveland, OH – Phantasy Nightclub
  • 5/29 – Toronto, ON – Lee’s Palace
  • 5/30 – Ottawa, ON – Mavericks
  • 5/31 – Quebec City, QC – Imperial Bell
  • 6/01 – Boston, MA – Middle East
  • 6/02 – Brooklyn, NY – Brooklyn Bazaar
  • 6/04 – Baltimore, MD – Soundstage
  • 6/05 – Asheville, NC – The Orange Peel
  • 6/06 – Atlanta, GA – The Loft
  • 6/07 – Tampa, FL – The Orpheum
  • 6/08 – Birmingham, AL – Zydeco
  • 6/09 – Houston, TX – White Oak
  • 6/10 – Austin, TX – Come And Take It Live
  • 6/11 – Dallas, TX – Gas Monkey Bar & Grill
  • 6/13 – Albuquerque, NM – Sunshine Theater
  • 6/14 – Mesa, AZ – Club Red
  • 6/15 – Los Angeles, CA – 1720

Pre-order Accursed HERE

Accursed Track Listing
1. Shadow and Agony
2. The Darkest Gate
3. Skin Turned Soil
4. Accursed
5. Audient Void
6. Obsidian Realm
7. Spectre of Bone

Recorded, Mixed and Mastered by Shane Howard at Sawn and Quartered Studios in Colorado.“Shadow and Agony” and “Audient Void” written and performed by Sean Ragan / Ritual Aesthetic.
Additional Orchestration and Electronics by Sean Ragan

Reese – Vocals
Vance Valenzuela – Guitar Harrison
Patuto- Guitar
Andy Torress – Bass

Check out the band!!

Published by Abby Niesen

Extended Play: GATEKEEPER- ‘Grey Maiden’

Gatekeeper’s epic new EP Grey Maiden plunges listeners into world of lutes, bards and dragons. Exploding out of Vancouver, Canada, Gatekeeper will find a home with fans of Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Blind Guardian, or any classic power metal.

The greatest strength of Gatekeeper is its intricate songwriting and over-the-top guitar riffage.

The epic twin lead of Geoff Blackwell and Kenny Kroecher are backed by atmospheric textures of uniquely crafted tone. Told in true Iron Maiden style power metal, “Richard III” is a great example of shining guitars. With a contrast of dirty desert rock tones and soaring atmospheric twin solos, this tune sells the richly crafted intricacies of Gatekeeper’s lute section. Track 3, “Moss,” further illustrates this individuality with Blackwell’s acoustic intro, showing strong influences of Blind Guardian and diverse musicianship.  

Gatekeeper’s lead vocals of Jean-Pierre Abboud and backing vocals of Geoff Blackwell share a similar dynamic to Jon Schaffer and Matt Barlow of Iced Earth. The projections on  “Moss” demonstrate techniques straight from Judas Priest yet tempered by classical choir-esque training. The transition between these textures demonstrates skillful control with a truly unique style. The title track “Grey Maiden” is also vocally dominant with piercing 80’s wails expertly blending with an orchestra of epic metal. Abboud sets himself apart as a vocalist with style reminiscent of obscure metal bands like Control Denied and Charred Walls of the Damned.

Intricate rhythms also set Gatekeeper apart as a power metal band, and it is especially true on their Grey Maiden EP. With a rhythm section consisting of Tommy Tro on drums and David Meddier on bass guitar. This is shown in the thundering intro to “Tale of Twins,” immediately catching and holding the listener’s attention with a powerful low end and chopping syncopation. The duo does an excellent job of holding down the fort while the twin lead guitars escalate over the fray. The second solo on “Richard III” shows this dynamic as the bass and guitar tones separate and you can really hear Messsier’s bass rise to the forefront.

If you’re a fan of uniquely expressed power metal, you’ll be right at home with Gatekeeper. Be sure to pick up Grey Maiden by Gatekeeper. Available now for digital download HERE!

Track Listing For Grey Maiden
1. Gray Maiden
2. Tale Of Twins
3. Moss
4. Richard III

Connect with Gate Keeper online!

-Jake Steinmeyer
Edited by Samantha Crocker

Maehem News: GRAVEYARD SHIFTERS Release ‘Welcome to Sherwood’ EP

Finland’s Punk ‘N Roll wildmen Graveyard Shifters are even more fired up than usual about today’s release of new EP Welcome to Sherwood. The EP is the epitome of raucous energy and introduces their new, more rock stylish tunes with catchy hooks and sweet brain-drilling melodies. It is indeed “Fucking nut cracking punk’n’roll from Finland!”

The official video for first single “Dead End Road” is available below:

Stream/Purchase Welcome to Sherwood!

Welcome to Sherwood Track Listing:
1. Back to the Grind
2. Dead End Road
3. Catfish
4. Fruit Fly Invasion
5. Welcome to Sherwood

Graveyard Shifters is:
A. Salmenoja (d)
J. Sumkin (b)
J. Matilainen (v)
H. Kansonen (g)
V. Vainionpää (g)

Connect with the band!!
Official site