Swedish hard rockers ColdSpell are confirmed to support Michael Schenker’s Temple of Rock for the Nordic leg of their Spirit on a Mission World tour dates. Michael Schenker is a true legend and to many the greatest guitar player around, winning awards, getting rave reviews for his albums and when touring the world.

ColdSpell is a rising star on the international stages. This summer they were one of the headliners at Scotland’s premier festival, Wildfire. And was warming up a US audience as runner‐up to Judas Priest at Rock Fest in Wisconsin.

Micke Larsson, guitarist and founder of ColdSpell, says ”Michael Schenker’s guitar playing was a great inspiration growing up and listening to UFO. The ’79 live album Strangers In The Night got spin after spin on the turntable, two got so many scratches so I am now on my third copy. It is great honour to share stage with Michael Schenker for these shows.”

Michael Schenker - Coldspell

Gig dates February 2016

February 3 Amager Bio, Copenhagen (DK)
February 4 Debaser Medis, Stockholm (SE)
February 5 KB, Malmoe (SE)
February 6 Union Scene, Drammen (NO)

Official Website


Review: Queensrÿche – Condition Hüman

Century Media (2015)

Reviewer: Aaron Chatfield

A few weeks ago I reviewed the latest release from estranged Queensrÿche singer, Geoff Tate’s current band, Operation: Mindcrime, so it is only appropriate that I get my teeth into the brand new release from Queensrÿche themselves.

Condition Human has been a highly awaited release, with appetites whetted by the self titled opus in 2013. That self titled album was good, but felt a little rushed. With a little more time on their side, what can the band do?

‘Arrow of Time’ starts the album off and it’s got that recognisable twin guitar harmony that the current QR demonstrated. It’s a throw back to the first couple of QR releases, interwoven with some Mindcrime and Empire textures. A solid tempo drives it along, with Scott Rockenfield demonstrating is incredible prowess on the kit (you have to tune into the percussion to really appreciate the guys skills). Relative new boy, Todd LeTorre is in fine form and we are hearing more of his overall tone on this album, compared to his debut with the band, where he was often compared too Tate.

Guardian’ follows with an Empire-esq melody line guiding us into chunky riff and some inventive song structures. The Empire comparisons continue, with the political lyrics. I can imagine this song live, with its anthemic calling in the bridge.

The Operation Mindcrime similarities come in on ‘Hellfire’, with the intro bringing back memories of drug riddled assassins desperate for absolution in the pouring rain. As the album unfolds, it’s clear that Queensrÿche have looked back to their sound on their first 5-6 releases for inspiration, with every track having a bit of Warning, Empire of my personally favourite, Rage for Order in them. There is some fiery soloing on this track from the axe partnership of Parker Lundgren and Michael Wilton and we see LeTorre pushing his range to the max. Wonderful stuff.

‘Toxic Remedy’ and ‘Selfish Lives’ are both splendid Queensrÿche tracks. ‘Eye9′, brings the tempo down a little, a brooding, prowling track, where Eddie Jackson’s bass is the foundation to some solid work from the rest of the band.

‘Bulletproof’ is the one of the albums Silent Lucidity moments and whilst it is unlikely to have the MTV fuelled impact across the world, it’s a superb track. It’s hard to pick out key performances from the band members, with each one proving their worth.

An almost bay-area style chunky riff lets ‘Hourglass’ out of the gates, before the clean guitar chorus opens the song up into the type of mid-tempo progressive rocker that Queensrÿche do so well.

‘Just Us’ is the second Silent Lucidity moment, probably more so than Bulletproof. There is also moments that remind me of some of the off-beat solo work from former Crimson Glory vocalist, Midnight (RIP), a band that Todd has previously fronted.

If you have been waiting for something a little more ‘Needle Lies‘, then wait no longer. ‘All There Was’ is an up-tempo track, with a riff that hints at the aforementioned Operation Mindcrime track. The track segues into ‘The Aftermath’, which feels like it should end the album…. but wait, there’s more.

Queensrÿche leave the ‘Condition Hüman title track to last. At just under 8 mins, it is clearly the albums tour de force. One of the secrets to a long track of this nature, is using the time to create a number of different tempos and themes. Queensrÿche succeed in doing exactly this, with everything from chugging riffs, to epic power chords and crystal like guitar chimes. As the title track, it delivers almost an album taster, bringing all of the ideas from the previous 11 tracks together into an epic piece of prog-rock/metal.

On the Geoff Tate review, I finished off suggesting that Geoff needed to leave the Queensrÿche association behind in order to give himself the ability to grow and find new fans (but, what do I know!). When it comes to Queensrÿche, I think it is the opposite approach that has revitalised the band. With Todd acting as the catalyst and Lundgren bringing some youthful vitality, Queensrÿche have wound the clock back to their true glory days. Embracing those early albums and delivering the type of album that Queensrÿche fans have been desperate for.

There is no doubt in my mind that Queensrÿche have delivered the goods with this album. 12 tracks of fine prog-metal, with a retro-feel, but a modern edge, I can’t wait to see them on the road playing some of the highlights

Official Website




Be The Slave Or Be The Change

Shiraz Lane is an energetic, ambitious, authentic Hard Rock group formed in 2011 Helsinki, Finland. Their music wreaks of creative variety, which resonates through their double-edged guitar sound (produced by lead guitarist Jani Laine and rhythm guitarist Miki Kalske), groovy-yet-solid ground pounding (Ana Willman drums & Joel Alex bass) and unmistakenably high-soaring melodies chanted by lead singer Hannes Kett.

Despite their youth (early twenties), they are already veterans of the underground circuit in their homeland and have developed a reputation for being uncompromising, loud, but most of all the genuine article. Although wearing inspiration and paying homage to their predecessors like Aerosmith and Guns N’ Roses, the “Big Guns” of Scandinavia such as members from The 69 Eyes, Amorphis, Lordi and Sonic Syndicate have all described them as being one of the most entertaining bands they have seen in the underground music scene, bringing a fresh breeze to the table in terms of both music and live performance.
Shiraz Lane‘s debut two track online single ‘Out There Somewhere‘ and ‘Money Talks‘ was released in October 2014, which generated interest and enthusiasm in the national music market, including radio airings and music video promotion on Radio Rock’s website.
Since then, the band expanded the single release to a 5 track EP named ‘Be The Slave Or Be The Change‘ in the spring of 2015. It was very well received by both public and the press. Following these releases the band has put out three album supporting music videos, toured the biggest national summer festivals and got the chance to play in Toronto, Finland Fest in Tokyo Japan & Wacken Open Air. Currently the band is working hard on new material  for the debut album which will be released internationally via Frontiers Music Srl in spring 2016!

The Room - Beyond The Gates Of Bedlam

Bad Elephant Music is delighted to announce that ‘Beyond the Gates of Bedlam’, the new album from UK melodic rock band The Room will be released on 20th November 2015.

Pre-orders will open at the band’s headline appearance at Progtoberfest in Balham on Sunday 25th October. Keep your eyes peeled for further details.

The band have invested major time and energy in this impressive release, taking accepted AOR and melodic rock norms and ripping them up to start afresh with a more focused and intense take on the genre. Progressive rock elements – something of a hallmark for The Room – are still here in abundance, ensuring this release will appeal to old and new fans alike.

The 10-track album, including a remixed version of 2015 single ‘Carrie’, was recorded at Platform Studios in Berkshire under the auspices of Damon Sawyer, with striking artwork designed by The Room’s guitarist, Steve Anderson.

As well as their Progtoberfest appearance the band will be touring to celebrate the release of the new album – check out their website at for details.

There is a rich musical heritage at the heart of The Room’s progressive tinged rock – a combination of impressive musicianship, catchy hooks and thought-provoking lyrics. Formed late in 2010, the band performed four hugely successful launch shows including a support slot for the legendary Wishbone Ash.

The release of their acclaimed debut album, ‘Open Fire’, followed in December 2012. Steve Anderson (guitar), Steve Checkley (keyboards), Andy Rowe (bass) and Martin Wilson (vocals) were joined by drummer Chris York in 2013, who replaced original sticksman Andrew Rae.

Having joined Bad Elephant Music earlier this year and following the launch of the digital single ‘Carrie’ in June, the guys have since been hard at work on their sophomore release.

The Room

Official Website




After 25 years, seven highly critically acclaimed albums, charting and international touring, M.ILL.ION founder, main songwriter and bass guitarist B.J Laneby decided to put the band to rest. Now he’s back with a super strong, exciting new band called Major Instinct from Gothenburg, Sweden! Handpicked musicians of the greatest calibre and a BAND, not a project! We’re talking classic hard rock with inspiration from the 70’s and early 80’s, huge melodies and real instruments used, autotuners not!

The first digital single ‘High Five‘ is released on September 30th  – a positive rock´n roll song about belonging and fighting together…be it the team, the band, the couple or “just” human beings overall. Suitable in these dark times…

The first Major Instinct album ‘Roots & Wings‘ will be released on November 27 in Europe by AOR Heaven.