GIG ALERT | WACKEN METAL BATTLE KOLKATA

The much hyped Kolkata chapter of the Wacken Metal Battle is here again!

This time it will be held at VAULT Lounge Bar tomorrow, the 8th of June. The city’s heavy metal band Falcun will be headlining the event and their debut release ‘Kingdom Come’ will be played live for the first time in its full glory.
Apart from them, there will be four other bands: DeathLore, Chronic Xorn, Reciprocal and Astitva.
Be there to show your support.
RSVP here: https://www.facebook.com/events/186407672016437/

– Spirit Crusher

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+ MROME + – Noetic Collision on the Roof of Hell Review

Founded more than a decade back in 1995, +MROME+ the death/black metal project hailing from Poland came back from a hiatus in 2009 after almost a decade of silence. Playing a rhythmic style of metal experimentation that is not bound by any particular sub-genre, +MROME+ may not be your “classic” death/black metal band per se with their rhythmic style of experimentation makes them a unique listen, carving out their own style. + MROME + is all set to release their debut album Noetic Collision on the Roof of Hell. The album starts with the heavy and thundering ‘Colors’ with its rumbling bass and its insane hooks. The roughly 4 minute long song is a concoction of Death, Progressive and Sludge Metal, and the harsh vocals of Key V complements the song. The duo hailing from Poland certainly had me hooked. ‘Crush the Moon’ has more of a punkish Death Metal feel to it, with a catchy chorus. +MROME+ keeping things as different and interesting as possible may not be labeled into any strict genre and the next song proved me right. ‘Migration Cult’ has to be the most rhythmic with its groovy hooks and raspy vocals and a really catchy rock & roll vibe to the riffs. Breakdowns too. Man, they sure know how to mix things up. But I felt a certain lack of bass. The production is pretty polished but the bass I think they could have done better. The madness is followed up with a cover of Danzig’s ‘How the Gods Kill’ which an excellent cover is giving the song a whole new vibe. A dark moody guitar caresses the haunting vocals of Key V and certainly does the song justice.
Trust’ brings out more of the band’s Death n Roll side, with its heavy riffs. Whereas ‘Generation Anthem’ is punkish Black metal frenzy firing blazing riffs and pounding fierce beats. ‘Piss & Laugh’ exhibits a blacked doom guitar tune with Dark Metal influences. They go slow on this one, with throaty vocals and a low tuned dark atmosphere. At this point of the album, you’ll realize that calling +MROME+ just as Death or Black Metal with elements of Punk, Ambient Dark Metal nicely crafted in bits and pieces. More like each song is a different album, and showcases their musical range and capabilities. An unexpected but great cover of Danzig’s How the Gods Kill change things up before the middle of the album delivers hard hitting, pit-inducing metal with Trust, rocking rhythm with Generation Anthem & sombre tones with Piss & Laugh. The next song, of this 10 song album, ‘Locust Follows Word’ presents a fast paced intro followed by a groovy bass hook and is followed by ‘Magister Figurae Morte’, which is a strong concoction of energetic riffs and pounding drums. The Arsonist closes the album majestically, generating a high-end feast of hellish music with a climatic ending. ‘The Arsonist’ is the longest song of the album and the most progressive and expansive sounding track without a doubt. The Arsonist closes off an excellent debut record for the Polish duo of Key V and P, Noetic Collision on the Roof of Hell”, is a 10-track bundle of surprises that is a true amalgamation of various styles of metal that take influence from so many different places that it’s fruitless to label them to a particular genre. Few bands try that, and even fewer bands manage to put out such a record, that too a debut. Power to them, and don’t try to search them up on Facebook, they are too kvlt for that.
Written By: The Scene Kid

Knight – High On Voodoo Review | Planet Caravan

Reviewing a traditional heavy metal release in 2017 can be tricky, as the idea of NWOTHM is not to break new ground in music, but to relive/revive the glory days of classic heavy metal. So, in a way, it is only fair that a heavy metal record be reviewed in the spirit of heavy metal. Knight’s debut EP does not present us with anything that we have not heard before, but instead, makes an effort to celebrate the heavy metal spirit in all its passion and glory.

For someone who is not big on old heavy metal, it could be easy to write this off as generic and rehashed, but progressiveness is not the point of ‘High on Voodoo‘. The essence of the music that inspired these guys is strongly felt throughout the record. The intro leading to “The Ventriloquist” is somewhat reminiscent of Priest’s “The Hellion” leading to “Electric Eye”, and the influences only become more prominent as the EP progresses. The riffs, as one would come to expect, are essentially classic heavy metal worship, as are the lyrics. While some of the riffs stand out, the rest are more of vehicles for the vocals.

The vocals are a bit of an oddball here. Since I am too lazy to explain it better, let’s just say that they are more Manilla Road than Iron Maiden. Also, there isn’t any virtuosic guitar soloing. The solos are quite simplistic, with the one on “Master of Dreams” standing out just a tad bit from the others. As for the songs themselves, “Break the Chains” is the one that stands out for me. It slows things down, and has more of a heavy rock vibe. It might sound a minute too long, but is a fun song nonetheless.

All in all, it is a spirited performance by the boys from Silchar. If you are a fan of traditional heavy metal, be sure to check them out!

Lineup:
Shibam Talukdar – Guitars/Vocals
Soumyadeep Nath Barbhuiyan – Bass

Written by: Metal Police

Audio Editorial – Protect Your Hearing | Planet Caravan

Okay, so I am going to start writing audio editorials and will cover the areas I deem important. If you have questions to be answered in this forum, please send an e-mail or go to the Facebook page and ask there. I love audio and have done it for over 25 years and as this forum goes, I will share my advice, as well as experiences.

On my first column here, I want to discuss about hearing safety and how important it is to you and me. Loud volumes can ruin your ears, and you don’t want to get older and have problems that will interfere with your music. I will say it several times, YOUR HEARING CANNOT BE REPAIRED ONCE IT IS DAMAGED. Pay attention to your ears, they are what allows to play music. Wear fucking earplugs.
No matter what instrument you play, earplugs are very important. Drummers tend to lose hearing in the 1k area up to 8k from cymbals. Drummers tend to have more hearing damage than most musicians. The snare and cymbals are very abrasive especially for genres like metal; with the mix of a loud kit along with a loud monitor next to you, your hearing can be ruined for life. Wear earplugs.
Many drummers now buy headphones and get an in ear mix from house or mix their own. Singers also are at great risk of loss of hearing, and hurting their voice. As singers go, the longer they sing with a monitor, the more they will strain and hurt their voice. Earplugs help singers, and in-ear monitors make a world of difference as you hear yourself clearly and at a volume you can deal with. I strongly advise all singers to use in ears.
Guitar players tend to get damage between 600 to 6k. Loud guitar can seriously fuck your hearing up. Maybe because the amp is behind you? TRY PUTTING YOUR AMP ON THE SIDE OF YOU. I will discuss stage volume in another forum but yes you too. Wear some fucking earplugs.
Go to your phone’s app store and find an SPL meter. Don’t guess how loud you are, KNOW how loud it is, and either fix your stage volume or protect your hearing. Once it is damaged, it cannot be fixed. Don’t wait like a dumbass until you notice signs of damage, because by then you will be screwed. If you are involved in music, then your ears are the most important part of your body.
SPL METER: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.keuwl.splmeter&hl=en

PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR VOLUME LEVELS AND LOOK AT THE FOLLOWING CHART TO SEE HOW LONG IT TAKES FOR YOUR HEARING TO START TAKING DAMAGE.

I would like to add one more thing: headphone volume can be equally as bad as the speakers are an inch from your ears. Any non-musicians attending a concert should always bring earplugs.
Hopefully this will raise awareness for you and for anyone you share this with.

Jeff Fischer, an audio engineer

If you have any questions, mail us at planetcaravanmetal@gmail.com.

GIG REVIEW | Fistful Of Steel | Planet Caravan

So Fistful of Steel, the debut gig organized by Earth One Productions, took place last Saturday at Kolkata. It was a usual day in July with slight hints of rain and a group of metalheads gathered at the venue situated at Salt Lake for a day dedicated to metal.

The first band to take the stage was Vulgustrike and they kickstarted the gig with lots of energy. They did great covers like Sepultura’s “Screams Behind The Shadows” and an Exumer number that the crowd enjoyed a lot. Rest of their songs were originals. Although the band was tight as a whole, the drummer Sayak Bagchi stole the show with his killer rolls and blastbeats. Overall, I found the band giving a lot of Pantera vibes.

Up next were the death metallers Divide Torture who are already quite well-known in the scene. Denzil Davidson managed the guitar duties remarkably well in place of their old guitarist and the drummer Bob played with unbelievable speed and precision. Like in their previous gig just a few months back, this time also they covered Cancer’s “Hung, Drawn And Quartered” that sent the crowd into a headbanging spree. The band also played a few of their OCs including the new one “SNAFU”, and added a touch of humor by giving a tribute to their new guitarist in the form of playing Napalm Death’s “You Suffer.”

The next band Xplikator delivered a heavy dose of in your face old school thrash metal. Like I did for the first two bands, I have to give the drummer Chirantan a special mention here as well. Their OCs were appreciated a lot and so we’re their covers of iconic tracks like “Raining Blood”. Personally, I liked the performance of this act the most.  The death/thrash veterans Deadbolt were next in line. I have been watching Deadbolt performing since 2013 and they have indeed gotten better with time. Nilabja had been the usual great frontman that he is, and Denzil showed his mastery with the guitars here as well. They also did a splendid Sepultura cover (“Inner Self”).

Strangulate was insane as well. They were the only band who didn’t do any covers and just concentrated on their originals. They played most of the songs from their album ‘Catacombs Of Decay‘ released last year. The overall sound of the band was of very high standards. Finally the gig ended on a high note with the old timers Evil Conscience. There is performance doesn’t need much talking about. They have been putting up electrifying performances everywhere for quite a long time now. But, in this gig, their Necrophagist cover was the best among all of the songs they performed.

Overall the gig was a nice experience and the organizers did a great job with their first venture. However I did find the attendance a bit low but I guess things will be better with time.
Cheers to Earth One Productions for pulling off their debut gig so well!

– Spirit Crusher and The Scene Kid

The images used here have been provided by Arkadeep Deb and he reserves all the rights.

Steven Wilson – To The Bone Review | Planet Caravan

Steven Wilson’s solo albums are something which I have been following since ‘Insurgentes’, 2008’s masterpiece. Well, this man can do anything starting from producing and mastering iconic metal/progressive albums to composing brilliant rock/pop albums that will haunt your soul and play with your emotions. If one digs deeper, the foundation of his albums lies within his eccentric musical ideas, mind-baffling harmonies, production skills, melodies and that too delivered with an impeccable English accent-which alone can leave quite an impression on listeners.

Cutting to the chase, ‘To the Bone’ (2017) marks the departure of Guthrie Govan (Aristocrats, Hans Zimmer) and Marco Minnemann (Joe Satriani, Aristocrats), whose absence could be felt in this album. The overall feel of this album is more pop like than his previous solo records; people familiar with ‘Stupid Dreams’ would catch the drift easily. By the way, here pop does not refer to what you hear on the radio nowadays but the pop which progressive fans will embrace; To be honest, I like to call it “art-pop” and as SW says: the balance which it has maintained can only be perceived by your ears in line with the works of Peter Gabriel, Kate Bush.
This album consists of 11 tracks, out of which 4 songs have been released as singles. The first track is the title track, which is catchy as well as intelligent from a production point of view, surrounding the subject of human perspective. The percussion in this song is kind of surprising though; it’s simple and provides the pop feel. It features Mark Feltham (long term band member of blues rock legend Rory Gallagher).
The second track, ‘Nowhere Now” at first seems like it’s out of Blackfield’s catalogue, then slowly builds up into a Prince like ambience with some distortions that oozes out the melody. This song gets better with every listen.
This is followed by “Pariah, which is one of the most beautiful duets I have heard in lately with Ninet hitting the notes with all glory. I do not know how to describe her voice, I think smoky is an apt description. Previously she played a huge part in songs like “Routine”, “Ancestral” in SW’s previous albums and this composition shows that she’s the perfect artist for the job.

“The Same Asylum As Before” is the 4th track and starts off with SW’s falsetto which I am not a big fan of. But soon it builds up into a heavily distorted section, which I love and it removes all the notion of being a pop record.
The next song “Refuge” follows a bit of conventional art-pop arrangement like the vocal tone and the drums but the song writing is spectacular here aided by a haunting harmonica and guitar solo featuring Mark Feltham. This basically describes the life of a refugee in the chaos ridden city.
“Permanenting” is my least favourite track off the album. Though it is an unconventional pop song, it sounds too happy and uplifting for this album.
The seventh song, “Blank Tapes” is a beautiful and short ballad in the line of songs like “Routine” (HCE), “Lullaby” (Blackfield) featuring Ninet again. The bass line gives me an 80’s vibe, which does not cut out the current relevance of the song but rather harmonizes with it to portray a picture of hopelessness. “People Who Eat Darkness” is the next track. It starts off with a rock n’ roll vibe and gives sort of an  Arctic Monkeys and Cage the Elephant feel, but then fades into SW’s sound which is good but nothing surprising. I’m not a big fan of this track too. “Song Of I” is like a trip hop wet dream, blissfully arranged with the right amount of electronic elements. It is one of the most ambient songs off the album; it shows how SW is capable of creating a crazy soundscape with anything. It feels like a movie soundtrack when the string section kicks in; I closed my eyes and imagined a scene of Blade Runner, and the way it synched gave me goose bumps.
The tenth track is the longest and most probably the most “progressive” track in this album, considering the surprises in this track and a long instrumental section. Despite having alot of Prince Influences, it is a fun track that will keep the listeners glued. I would rather not speak a lot about this song; trust me you will be surprised to hear this after listening to the other tracks.

The ending track is perfect-a signature Wilson ballad with a memorable melody. The song is an anti-thesis of current human ambitions. It provides a perfect ending to the album by saying,” It’s not the years you pass, it’s about the moments that last” signifying the importance of the later.
In conclusion, this is a very well-balanced album which will attract more audience to explore SW as well as it’s a homage to some of the idols that SW’s has grown up listening. To prog fans, you need to be patient with the album as it will grow on you slowly; songs like “Detonation” will be a part of your prog playlist soon. I loved the album slightly less than Raven. To the Bone is a bit more accessible than SW’s previous works but it is not a bad thing; The way he blends all elements is something to experience from this album.

Overall Rating8/10

Sayandip Pahari (Guest Writer)

 

Upcoming Gigs In Kolkata

We at Planet Caravan always try to support all the local organizers of old school rock/metal gigs. So here’s three of the upcoming gigs to be held in July and August. Try to attend all of ’em!

1. Fistful Of Steel (July 29th)

Earth One Productions are a newly formed group of organizers in Kolkata aimed at betterment of the local music scene. They are about to strike there first blow with a killer lineup this Saturday at Muzik Factory, Salt Lake.

Lineup:

Strangulate (death metal)
Deadbolt (thrash metal)
Evil Conscience (death metal)
Xplikator (thrash metal)
Divide Torture (death metal)
Vulgustrike (thrash metal)

Venue: Muzic Factory. Sector 5, Salt Lake

Passes: INR 150/-
Paytm to 9051336340 to book them or you can collect your physical pass by contacting
the following numbers:
North Kolkata – 8017838486
Central Kolkata – 8017217882
South Kolkata – 9051336340

2. Fatal Attack! (5th August)

Thrash Bengal Regiment is another newly formed group in the local scene, with the intention of promoting the thrash metal acts and giving them a platform. They even managed to bring down two great bands from Bangladesh – Turn Hostile and Thrash! Be there at Mohit Mancha, Dum Dum to have a “thrash” experience.

Lineup:
Dreadhammer (thrash metal)
Armament (thrash metal)
The Neighborhood Thrashers (thrash metal)
Deadbolt (thrash metal)
Turn Hostile (thrash metal)
Thrash (thrash metal)

Venue: Mohit Mancha, Dum Dum

Passes: INR 200/-
Go to this link to book them or you can collect your physical pass by contacting the following numbers:
Aniruddha Bera: +919232475165 (Ballygunge/Gariahat/Dhakuria)
Abhirup Bhaumik: +919800152459 (Jadavpur/Tollygunge)
Subham Ghosh: +919804431339 (Behala)
Rishav Bhattacharya: +919804654870 (Dumdum)
Avishek Roy: +918017838486 (North Kolkata)
Avinaba Sengupta: +919163498962 (Jadavpur/Garia)
Argha Kamal Ganguly: +917829756552 (Bangalore)

3. Strength of Steel II (20th August)

I think there’s no need to introduce Kolkata Old School Metal Association. The flag bearers of Kolkata’s old school heavy metal are back with thier 7th gig and this time they have the death metal giants form New Delhi as the headliners. Also, an old thrash metal band from Kolkata will be reuniting in this gig.

Lineup:
Fragarak (death metal)
Infernal Diatribe (black metal)
Falcun (heavy metal)
Blakhole (punk)
Xplikator (thrash metal)
Sky Riders (hard rock)
Mortar (thrash metal)

Venue: Triguna Sen Auditorium, Jadavpur University

Passes: INR 250/-
Go to this link to book them or you can collect your physical pass by contacting the following number: 8017838486

You can also get the passes at the venues of the gigs as well!