Category: music review

LOVEBITES Release New Video “The Crusade”

New EP Battle Against Damnation Cover Art and Tracklisting Revealed.

LOVEBITES artist picLOVEBITES (L-R: haruna (dr), midori (g), miyako (g, key), asami (vo), miho (b))

Japan’s heavy metal crusaders LOVEBITES follow up their blistering debut album Awakening From Abyss with new mini-album Battle Against Damnation, revealing its track listing, cover art and video to lead track “The Crusade” today – watch it HERE.

The band have partnered with JPU Records for the mini-album’s release on 08 June 2018in North America and Europe, and in Japan on 06 June 2018 via Victor Entertainment. The release is also available for digital pre-order now via iTunes with “The Crusade” as an instant gratification download – get it HERE.

Lead track “The Crusade” sees LOVEBITES – who are nominated “Best New Band” in Metal Hammer’s Golden Gods Awards 2018 – pay their respects to British heavy metal. Their admiration for it deepened further following the band’s appearance at a UK event and their headline performance at The Underworld in Camden in November 2017.

Watch

“Break The Wall” is the first song joint-written by miho (bass) and miyako (guitar, keyboard) and is propelled forwards at breakneck speeds through thrash metal riffs and grandiose solos, and features a change of atmosphere midway through before hurtling towards its dramatic finale.

The final two tracks “Above The Black Sea” and “Under The Red Sky” share similar names and themes. The former written by miyako, the latter by LIGHT BRINGER keyboard player Mao, both tracks see the classically trained pianists pen a metal-themed love letter to the works of Sergei Rachmaninoff, a composer from the Russian empire of the late Romantic period and inspirer of metal today.

Bass-player miho and vocalist asami comment on the themes and title of the mini-album;

“Humanity is faced with battles on a daily basis. Each person has their own fight, whether it’s illness, time, solitude, war or something else they have to face.” (miho)

“However, we consider that humanity’s most serious adversary is its own destiny. Sometimes it’s essential to defy the fate bestowed from the heavens. Battle Against Damnation depicts such a fight.” (asami).

Skilful engineers Mikko Karmila and Mika Jussila of Finland’s legendary Finnvox Studiosonce again return for mixing and mastering duties on all tracks. Similarly, the cover illustration is handled once again by David Lopez Gómez and Carlos Vicente León, the Spanish team behind LOVEBITE’s debut album cover art and German heavy metal band HELLOWEEN’s best album SWEET SEDUCTIONS.

LOVEBITES will appear at two of Europe’s biggest metal festivals this summer, appearing at Wacken Open Air on 04 August, the same day as HELLOWEEN, ARCH ENEMY and DIMMU BORGIR; and Bloodstock Open Air on 10 August alongside JUDAS PRIEST, EMPEROR and KAMELOT. The band will also tour Japan with ANTHEM as part of the Headstrong Festival 2018 and performed at the Vans Warped Tour Japan last month.

LOVEBITES – Battle Against Damnation cover art

Lovebites on Twitter

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Yoshiki chosen to headline 10-hour long Ultra Fes 2017



Backed by a live orchestra, Yoshiki was invited to perform the closing song at TV Asahi’s “Music Station Ultra Fes 2017″ on Monday, September 18th. Playing a special arrangement of the X Japan masterpiece, “Forever Love ‘Life, Death, and Love…’ Piano with Orchestra Version”, which was prepared specifically for this day, Yoshiki brought an emotional finale to the 10-hour long special program which featured a total of 57 artists.

Marking the first time an instrumental piece without vocals had ever closed the special television event, Yoshiki’s first musical performance on television since his surgery had received a lot of media attention since its announcement. He appeared on stage without his neck brace, showing the painful scars from his surgery four months ago.

As he performed on the TV Asahi stage, a powerful montage of images — Yoshiki flying around the world, his energetic drumming, the deaths of his band members, his own neck surgery, his career with X Japan, and his personal history — played in the background, triggering comments on social media such as “I have goosebumps… riveting”, “Yoshiki is so amazing!”, and “I can’t stop crying” as fans expressed their awe and praise for the elegant musical presentation which climaxed in a shower of rose petals.

Afterward, Yoshiki returned immediately to Los Angeles to work on the final touches of the soon-to-be-released X Japan album. Later, in October, he is scheduled to tour a total of 10 countries to promote the European theatrical premieres of the award-winning documentary film, We Are X.

After the television performance, Yoshiki commented: “I still have sharp pain in my neck, but as my doctor said, moving forward is a part of rehab. I’m thankful for the opportunity I was given. And I want to thank the fans who are always supporting me.”

Yoshiki European Theatrical Tour 2017

October 12 – Berlin, Germany
October 14 – Florence, Italy
October 15 – Vienna, Austria
October 16 – Amsterdam, Holland
October 17 – Oslo, Norway
October 18 – Helsinki, Finland
October 19 – Stockholm, Sweden
October 20 – London, UK
October 21 – Reykjavik, Iceland
October 24 – Paris, France

Yoshiki Official Website 

Aldious Release First Overseas Album: “Radiant A”

“These girls will rock your brains out. As metal as one can get in heels and pink bows” – Kotaku

“Groundbreaking. Japanese all-girls metal band Aldious epitomizes ‘The Female Warrior’” – NYLON

“We fell head over heels for Aldious” – Revolver Magazine

Radiant A sees Japan’s “groundbreaking” metal quintet Aldious unleash their first overseas album on 17 March, 2017, out on CD and digital formats in the UK and Europe via JPU Records.

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Tommy Emmanuel Live In Glasgow

I first came across Australian guitarist Tommy Emmanuel about four years ago learning about Travis picking (a form of fingerstyle playing). And ever since I wondered what it would be like to see the great man in person because -and this is not hyperbole- numerous Youtube videos suggest he’s something quite special.

When I remarked to my girlfriend “ooh look, Tommy Emmanuel is playing Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on Monday January 23” she was all like “I can take a hint, let’s grab some tickets and head along”. And so it came to pass I spent just over 100 minutes in the company of one of the best musicians I’ve ever had the pleasure of seeing live. Continue reading

The Greatest BABYMETAL Tracks Since The Beginning Of The Universe

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Recently Mental Hamster ran a top ten BABYMETAL tracks OF ALL TIME!!!!!!! and over here at Najinsan I was all like “Eh? That looks like they’ve cobbled together ten tracks at random as a simple exercise in clickbait” and then I was all like “I bet I can make a better list simply by putting in one extra song and suffixing with MORE HYPERBOLE!

Which I totally did. Continue reading

While Wandering Around

I ran into this album on Youtube by obscure American rockers, The Rods. The album cover features two metal monkeys and the Silver Surfer in the middle pointing a sword at a plate.

I recall enjoying this album where it was tagged onto the end of a Vow Wow bootleg my school mate brought over from Dubai. If you like Dio, AC/DC, Anvil, Cobra etc then you will enjoy this.

Additional enjoyment features include daft lyrics like “I was born to raaawk!” etc.

Amatsuki to release second album Hakoniwa Dramatic on 29 July

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Brilliant new vocal hero Amatsuki will unleash his second major album Hakoniwa Dramatic in Europe from 29 July courtesy of JPU Records. The Japanese star, who first began posting cover songs on video sharing websites a few years, has now accumulated more than half a million followers on Twitter, was awarded “Breakthrough Artist 2015” by NHK World’s English language music show J-MELO, and has already topped the charts of Japan with his first live DVD and original songs.

Outside of Japan, Amatsuki fever is already hotting up with millions of hits and comments flooding his YouTube channel from overseas. Due to popular demand, earlier this year Amatsuki was invited to perform in front of thousands of people at MCM London Comic Con, the biggest event of its kind in Europe, and third biggest globally. There, he gained many new fans and sold hundreds of CDs before running out of stock entirely.

Highly influenced by Japanese pop culture, particularly anime, video game and vocaloid – a music phenomenon that has swept Japan involving synthetic vocals and virtual pop icons – Amatsuki’s music packs a powerful dose of energy, charm and imagination that’s resulted in him winning fans the world over, regardless of language barriers.

Hakoniwa Dramatic is Amatsuki’s second full length album since joining Japan’s massive King Records, and consists of 13 original tracks. Several videos from the album have also been uploaded to YouTube and experienced more than a million hits, including latest video Nagareboshi.

Download (from 29 July):
Amazon Music 🇬🇧UK / 🇩🇪DE / 🇪🇸ES / 🇫🇷FR / 🇮🇹IT
iTunes, Google Play, Microsoft Store

Stream (from 29 July):
Spotify, Deezer, Apple Music, Tidal

Via JPU