January 2017

Amon Amarth will be heading out on a new tour across the U.S. with support coming from Goatwhore! Check out the dates below.


4/30 – Jacksonville, Fla. @ Welcome to Rockville *
5/01 – Pensacola, Fla. @ Vinyl
5/02 – Baton Rouge, La. @ Varsity Theatre
5/04 – Memphis, Tenn. @ New Daisy Theatre
5/05 – Charlotte, N.C. @ Carolina Rebellion *
5/06 – Richmond, Va. @ The National
5/08 – Philadelphia, Pa. @ TLA
5/09 – New Haven, Ct. @ College Street Music Hall
5/10 – Huntington, N.Y. @ The Paramount
5/12 – Grand Rapids, Mich. @ 20 Monroe Live
5/13 – Chicago, Ill. @ Dark Lord Day *
5/14 – Somerset, Wis. @ Northern Invasion *
5/16 – Wichita, Kan. @ The Cotillion
5/17 – Boulder, Colo. @ Boulder Theatre
5/19 – Columbia, Mo. @ The Blue Note
5/20 – Louisville, Ky. @ Mercury Ballroom
5/21 – Columbus, Ohio @ Rock on the Range *
* festival dates

Electronic musician, visual artist, and multi-instrumentalist WVM has released his electronic pop single "Sown." Echoing both classic synth-pop masters Depeche Mode and New Order as well as the more modernized sounds of Daft Punk and The Chromatics, the Christoffer Berg (The Knife, Fever Ray) mixed single was inspired by WVM's love of 80s Pop, while still heavily infused with his unique aural styling's.

"Sown" gets a lot of its inspiration from 80s Bowie and Peter Gabriel with a lot of early Prince.... but mostly it's just the music I want to hear, a lot of my heart and soul went into it which is why it really doesn't sound like any other artist other than me." - WVM

Check it out HERE.

The soundtrack for the film WE ARE X -- the critically acclaimed music documentary about X JAPAN -- will be released worldwide on March 3, 2017, via Sony Music’s Legacy Recordings (a division of Sony Music Entertainment) and is available for pre-order now at Amazon. http://bit.ly/WeAreX_CD

Hailed as “fascinating” by the New York Times, WE ARE X is a transcendent and beautifully shot rock & roll story about the most successful rock band in Japanese history, X JAPAN. They’ve sold over 30 million albums, singles and videos combined; sold out Japan’s 55,000-seat Tokyo Dome a record 18 times; and played to tens of thousands of fans outside of Japan. Under the enigmatic direction of YOSHIKI -- composer, classically-trained pianist, drummer and the creative force behind the group -- X JAPAN has captivated a wide range of admirers as Sir George Martin, KISS, Stan Lee, and the Japanese Emperor-while pioneering a spectacle-driven style of rock music called Visual Kei, a one-of-a-kind cultural phenomenon.

VIDEO: WE ARE X Japanese Trailer (opening March 3)

In late 2016, WE ARE X was released to theaters across America after winning multiple awards at the Sundance and SXSW Film Festivals. Directed by acclaimed documentarian Stephen Kijak (Stones in Exile, Scott Walker: 30 Century Man), and produced by the Oscar-winning production team  behind  Searching for Sugar Man, WE ARE X is an astonishingly intimate portrait of a deeply haunted -- but truly unstoppable -- virtuoso and the music that has enthralled legions of the world's most devoted fans.

Up next, X JAPAN -- YOSHIKI/drums, piano; TOSHI/vocals; PATA/guitar; HEATH/bass; and SUGIZO/guitar, violin -- will perform their first major show of 2017 on #XDAY, Saturday, March 4 at SSE Arena, Wembley in London. Later in March, the WE ARE X film will premiere in London and officially open in theaters across the U.K. The film continues to expand internationally in new cities every week; and will arrive on Blu-Ray™, DVD and Digital HD on April 25 from Magnolia Home Entertainment under the Magnet label in the U.S., Bermuda and Bahamas

Tickets for X Japan's concert on #XDAY March 4th at SSE Arena, Wembley are available at: http://bit.ly/XJapanWembley

VIDEO: X Japan - Wembley Arena - March 4, 2017


1. La Venus (Acoustic Version)*
2. Kurenai (from The Last Live)
3. Forever Love
4. A Piano String in Es Dur

Japan's SOLITUDE formed in 1996, since then, the band has gone on to write, record, and release various singles, albums, as well as play shows and tour. Their latest offering "Reach For The Sky" saw a recent release via Test Your Metal Records, and see's the band expanding their horizons, ever so further than their previous releases. Frontman vocalist Akira discusses this album, and the plans that they have in the works between now and the rest of this year.

1. Who are you and what role do you play in the band and why?

I am Akira of singer of Solitude. And I am reader and organizer of this band. I'd like to be faithful to my roots and the one on which I had an influence. Therefore, I formed this band. And I love NWOBHM, Thrash Metal and a like Venom / Motorhead rock’n roll! That’s all.

2. Where does a namesake like SOLITUDE come from and even mean for the band.

That's from a simple reason. Anyway I like a ring of this word. And, of course, I like also Black Sabbath, Candlemass’s song.

3. What has influenced your sound and style?

We’re influenced from various music. Very influenced by NWOBHM, Thrash Metal and Old School Metal! My another band SACRIFICE is also same, the sounds by which this is my ideal, sound like TYGERS OF PANTANG “CRAZY NIGHTS” plus METALLICA “RIDE THE LIGHTNING” plus RIOT “FIRE DOWN UNDER”.

4.What are your songs about? (What specific themes do they cover?)

I don't sing a devil, black magic and murder on this band. I singing about Familiar social problem, quaere, contradiction, hatred and a life etc. And sound is aggressive.

5. Do you write your own songs? (Discuss the songwriting process in detail.)

Me and Shingo (guitar). We collect an idea of a song and are forming that by studio work.

6. How do you describe your music to people?

Old school Heavy metal which passed 80 's. And savor of lyrical guitar and aggressive vocal contrast.

7. What can be said about "Reach For The Sky" that hasn't already been said about it.

Pride of Japanese Heavy Metal. But a lot of people don't know SOLITUDE yet.

8. What comes to mind, when thinking that "Reach For The Sky" is your third full-length album to date.

The album which has returned to a basis and roots thoroughly.

9. Why did you want to make "Blow" a single and video, what is it about this one song, that has such meaning for you guys as a band.

Our sound can't be expressed easily in a word. Like the Virtual Image of 1st album, Brave the Storm of 2nd album and Reach for the Sky of this album tracks are our basic band sound. However, we think, more fast, more louder, more straight song is better than those songs. Therefore we chose this song.

10. What is your favorite anime and manga of all time and why?

I like Hayao Miyazaki's movie and animation. May favorite his animation is Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind. Because, his animations has the sense to touch Japanese nostalgia, warning to human society and caricature.

12. Has SOLITUDE ever had their music featured in an anime series or movie, would you like that to happen, if so which one of your songs would you pick and which anime or movie would you want it to be and why?

A zombie movie is most desirable for me. Yes, I'm George A. Romero enthusiastic fan. If possible, I want using “Blow”, the situation which escapes from a zombie.

13. How would you say you differ from other bands and artists out of Japan?

I don't express that in words. Because that's that a fan is think by oneself. I think so.

14. Has SOLITUDE ever played in the USA or plan to do so in the future?

Not yet. However, If everyone wishes for that, it would be achieved. By Test Your Metal Records cooperation.

15. What does next year hold for you guys?

We'd release this album at Europe. And I'd enter preparations of making of a new album.

16. Describe SOLITUDE in three words.

Japan, Pride and metal!

New York City is filled with quite the set up, from  movies, TV programs down to music, in the case of music though, singer/song writer Lesley Barth, has taken her musical approach with a 70's throwback feel. Using elements of folk, pop, rock, and even country into her music. How do these genres work out? Well she went on to release an EP and has been writing and recording for her newest and latest album "Green Hearts". She took time to discuss this album plus much more.

1. Why did you want to go and get involved with music, what was it about music that drew you in and had that light bulb go off?

I grew up in a very musical household – my father was an opera singer who met my mother while she was choreographing an opera of his.  So there was also music around and I was just drawn to it – to singing, to the piano, to writing songs – from as early as I could talk, I remember singing and writing songs.  I like the range of color available in expressing things through music.  I’ve always loved poetry and playing around with words and imagery, and adding that layer of melody and rhythm just excites me as a creative person.  There are so many feelings and emotions you can express through music that I wouldn’t really know how to express any other way.

2. Why did you think that naming this project after yourself Lesley Barth, was the right thing to do, what is it about artists as opposed to bands, with naming said group after themselves or as something else?

I’ve toyed around with the idea of having a band name, but for now, the music I write feels very connected to me and very personal.  I also don’t think music will ever not be a part of my life, so having my real name also be my artist name felt like a very organic choice.  I have all sorts of fun side project ideas, but haven’t gotten to that yet.  I want to establish myself as a singer and a songwriter first.  In terms of other people, I feel like it’s a very individual choice so there is no wrong or right generally speaking.  This was right for me, though.  For now!

3. Where are you based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local acts you could recommend?

I’m based in Astoria, Queens in New York City. There are definitely some great local acts, many of whom I collaborate on occasion – check out Charles Ramsey (full disclosure, my husband), Single Girl Married Girl, Shannon Soderlund, William Gruff.  Incidentally, artists from each of these projects will be joining me onstage as my band at the NYC release show at Rockwood Music Hall, Jan 26th at 7pm.  You can still get tickets here!

4. How would you describe your style? Why did you want to take the 70's era and infuse that into your style of music, what was it about that time period, that caught your attention the most.

My “style” is something I’ve only thought about recently doing some music promotion (not a lot of artists get into music to do marketing, though it’s been really interesting and fun to learn).   My music definitely has a retro feel, and I think that’s just because I listened to a lot of bands and singer/songwriters from the 70s growing up.   I like it because it’s melodic, a little confessional and poetic, and probably tied a lot of that music into my emotional maturing process, so it comes out in my writing.

5. If you had to pick one song off "Green Hearts" to introduce someone who has never heard your music, which would you pick and why?

I think I’d choose either “Song Without a Name,” or “Green Hearts,” the title track.  I think both, while very different in that “Song Without a Name” is upbeat and joyful, and “Green Hearts” is dramatic and wistful, take a very relatable feeling but put my unique spin and sensibility on it.  I think if you’re sold on either of those songs, you will probably like a lot of what I write!

6. What other songs off "Green Hearts", do you think we will see, be made into singles and or videos, or you would like to see?

I’ll be sharing a video for the title track very shortly – it’s a bit of a different take on a popular fairytale.  I’ll leave the rest to the imagination…

7. Who produced "Green Hearts" and what was it like working with them?

I recorded all but the opening track at Brooklyn’s Mission Sound, working with Oliver Straus, who engineered and co-produced with me.  It’s great working with him and at Mission – the studio is like a big play pen for musicians, and he’s an incredibly knowledgeable guy who helped me translate my vision into a sonic realty.   I learned a lot about production and pulling together a great album during this process, and so much was from working with Oli.  Mike Abiuso of SwitchBitch Records, a friend I met through friends, tracked the opening number and it was a joy working him as well.

8. Who did the cover art for "Green Hearts" and how much input did you have on it?

Chris Owyoung, a fantastic photographer who does a lot of concert photography as well, took the photo, and Alice Teeple designed it.  We worked on it together mostly in my apartment, so I had fair bit of input.  Alice is a friend, and I’ve worked with her on two music videos and a few photo shoots, so it’s very comfortable and fun to collaborate.  I think we can balance out each other’s artistic sensibilities in a good way, too.

9. Is there any story or concept behind the "Green Hearts" title?

The track “Green Hearts” is about the young loves that never were and how powerfully they can linger in our memory.  I love performing this song, because there is something about it that still feels so real and powerful for me (and for most people), and the outro is just so much damn fun to sing and play.

10. When can we expect to see "Green Hearts" be released, and what can people hear off it?

It’s coming out January 27th – I have three singles off it that you can stream now: Just Like Summer, Best Thing, and Song Without a Name.  Can’t wait to share the rest of this 11-track album with you!

11. How about playing shows and touring, have anything planned out?

I want to pull together a few mini-tours this year, no dates firm yet but be sure to follow me on the usual socials for the latest! (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, Soundcloud).

12. What plans do you have for the future?

I want to put out a quick and dirty live-tracked EP this fall.  I’ve been doing a ton of writing, and feel like I’ve just learned so much about making a project through this album, that I’m hungry to keep getting things out there and just keep getting better as a songwriter, performer, and business-person.

13. Where can we listen to your music and where can we buy your stuff?

You can pre-order “Green Hearts” on iTunes and Amazon, and listen to earlier tunes on Spotify, Google Play, Apple Music, Soundcloud, Bandcamp – all the digital spots!

14. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

The story a particular song is trying to tell or a feeling it’s trying to evoke.  I love lyrics and poetry, and have a passion for song craft, so there’s nothing that I enjoy more than someone remembering lyrics that really meant something to them from one of my songs.

From The Shores became a thing in 2008, after some mishaps along the way of creation, the band would return in full force in 2014. During this gap of time, between creation and returning, the band went into writing and recording mode, to release their new album "Of Apathy". This would have the band playing shows and touring relentlessly.  So much so in fact, that the band took some time to discuss said release, and what plans lie ahead.

1. Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.

FROM THE SHORES: The band was born in Venice in 2008 after some bands we were playing in disbanded. We got together, started writing songs and went on recording our first EP. After touring Italy relentlessly, we took a break due to some line up changes. In 2014 we came back in full force, started playing again, played Europe for the first time and set everything to go back to the studio. Our new album 'Of Apathy' was released worldwide between November and December 2016 and we are just back from an European tour with Six Feet Under.

2. What’s the origin of the band’s name?

FROM THE SHORES: It's related to the place we come from; Venice, its lagoon and its shores.

3. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

FROM THE SHORES: All the band members were from the Venice area back in the day. Right now we reside between Venice, Treviso and Udine, in northern Italy. Italy in general has loads of outstanding individual acts and a big scene.

4. How would you describe your style?

FROM THE SHORES: We embrace elements from both death and black metal, merged with a deep love for melodies recalling the classics.

5. If you had to pick one song off "Of Apathy" to introduce someone who has never heard your music, which would you pick and why?

FROM THE SHORES: I'd go for 'Weakness Of The Flesh', the last song of the album. It's the last song we wrote, and I think the most recent songs are usually the ones musicians like the most as they usually represent the latest shape of the band.

6. What other songs off "Of Apathy", do you think we will see, be made into singles and or videos, or you would like to see?

FROM THE SHORES: We have some news coming soon, so I won't tell you anything.

7. Who produced "Of Apathy" and what was it like working with them?

FROM THE SHORES: We went back to Hate Studio, the same studio where we recorded 'Until My Last Breath', our first EP. Maurizio Baggio has been even more important for us this time, both in terms of suggestions and production. We really cared about the final mix and he kept working until we were fully satisfied. 'Of Apathy' is his son as well.

8. Who did the cover art for "Of Apathy" and how much input did you have on it?

FROM THE SHORES: We luckily had the chance to find the guy surfing the web. Timur Khabirov is an amazing artist and perfectly gave life to our concept idea.

9. Is there any story or concept behind the "Of Apathy" title?

FROM THE SHORES: The album is full of our own feelings, thoughts, lives. Once they are out, and we are drained, there's only room for apathy.

10. When can we expect to see "Of Apathy" be released, and what can people hear off it?

FROM THE SHORES: The album was released last November in Italy, Ukraine and Japan, and December throughout the rest of Europe and North&South America by Metal Scrap Records. It's available on all the major digital platforms such as iTunes, Google Play and Spotify as well.

11. How about playing shows and touring, have anything planned out?

FROM THE SHORES: We toured Europe last month with Six Feet Under: an amazing experience that gave us the chance to make some amazing new friends. Other plans are in store but it will take some time.

12. What plans do you have for the future as a band?

FROM THE SHORES: Writing, recording, touring, having fun, repeat.

13. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

FROM THE SHORES: On www.facebook.com/fromtheshores you can find all of our links. Otherwise you can find our album on Spotify and listen to it for free. You can find our merch on www.fromtheshores.bigcartel.com.

14. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

FROM THE SHORES: It would be great if the music or lyrics, even better if both, could make people think 'Hey, that's cool, let's check more from these guys".

WaggakkiBand will be releasing a live DVD/Blu-ray and live album CD of their first U.S. touring run that took place last summer in 2016, known as the "Deep Impact" Tour. Scenes of the tour as well as performance footage will be included, as well as backstage footage, of a 1 hour documentary showing the members in their spiritual center towards the concerts themselves. This said, the live album CD will also be released at the same time as the live DVD. The differences of the versions of these releases are as follows,

First Press Limited Edition (2DVDs + Sumapura Music & Movie available for Smartphone)

6,480 yen (tax not included)

Bonus Item
Trading Card (One out of eight random)

【Disc 1】
「San Diego Concert」
1. Strong Fate
2. Tengaku
3. Valkyrie –Ikusa Otome-
4. Hanabi
5. Hangeki no Yaiba
6. Shigin -Koinkunwo Tazunu-
7. Furin no Utauta
8. Tonomonogatari
9. Homura
11. Shiromadara
12. Yoshiwara Lament
13. Akatsuki no Ito
14. Battle of Drums and Wadaiko
15. Hoshi tsuki yo
16. Ikusa

「Tour Documentary」

Normal Edition (DVD + Sumapura Music & Movie available for Smartphone)
3,800 yen (tax not included)


「San Diego Concert」
1. Strong Fate
2. Tengaku
3. Valkyrie –Ikusa Otome-
4. Hanabi
5. Hangeki no Yaiba
6. Shigin -Koinkunwo Tazunu-
7. Furin no Utautai
8. Tonomonogatari
9. Homura
11. Shiromadara
12. Yoshiwara Lament
13. Akatsuki no Ito
14. Battle of Drums and Wadaiko
15. Hoshi tsuki yo
16. Ikusa

mu-mo Shop・Fan Club Yaeryu Special Edition (2DVDs + Blu-ray + Limited Item (Long towel) + Booklet + Sumapura Music & Movie available for Smartphone)
12,000 yen (tax not included)

A solo based project, turned into a full on project, when the likes of guitarist/song writer Johnnie L. Fast, decided to take full reigns on this project, going on to create a band that would take the sounds of rock and metal mixed together with acoustic, yes can the trio of genres work together into something amazing, or turn out to be something of a flop? Well when it comes down to it, The Bald Dog Project, that was built into the project from guitarist/song writer Johnnie L Fast, turned out to be actually not so bad.

After some time gathering together numerous musicians known between one another from other sources and projects, The Bald Dog Project was set and ready to go, going on to play live shows then go off to write and record an EP release titled "7 from Bedlam". The EP consisting of 7-tracks, so the title sticks right along with the material presented on this release, the EP itself is filled with acoustic heavy metal rock, that grasps that heaviness with the raw emotions and screaming tones that any other metal rock release would contain. Some of the songs that stand out would have to be such as "Homeless on 90", "Thorn In My Side", "Poison Me Smack", and "Beaten and Scarred".

These song selections, contain that energy and momentum that is The Bald Dog Project, the instrumentals being very easy going, as acoustic goes, while the vocal chords, lyrical context, go right along with it, having everything just work so well together. The music just plays out heavy yet mellow, vocal chords sounding just as mellow but extra heavy at times, making it just play out smoothly and easily with no issues at all. It's just a rather enjoyable piece to listen too, no matter which track you turn too, you get a interesting experience that you would be pleased with either way.

The Bald Dog Project's EP "7 from Bedlam" is as many others have called it as well as this project, an angry acoustic act and release, which is indeed what this is. Its acoustic meets heavy duty music, that works, perhaps working out too well at times, that these guys will surely be going places no problem.