Review: Bonfire – Fistful Of Fire

AFM Records (April 3rd 2020)

Reviewer: Paul Saripo

I enjoyed this album throughout however I didn’t begin to truly absorb the album until I fired up the amps and subs to truly appreciate the composition and production. Don’t hold back on this one, play loud.

The Joker‘ is a short instrumental opening the album with a sense of mystery, anticipation and adventure which almost seamlessly leads on to ‘Gotta Get Away‘ , power rock track that has catchy riffs with heavy delivery.

The Devil Made Me Do It‘ is a classic dual lead guitar showcase with symphonic undertones and high reaching vocals and a sing a long chorus.

Ride The Blade‘ exercises the vocal dexterity of Alexx Stahl delivering operatic highs with husk lows alongside fast melody of guitar work.

When An Old Man Cries‘ changes direction and tone with more than a nod over to a New Jersey sound, this track delivers on a ballad with smoky flames.

Rock’n’Roll Survivors‘ brings everything needed for a Bonfire spectacular that underlines this new albums approach and originality.

Fire And Ice‘ is perhaps the meltwater of the album with franticly fast yet precision guitar work.

Fire Etude‘ is a short and complex instrumental that pumps high velocity Oxygen into a burning inferno.

Breaking Out‘ has energy and precision timing administered by André Hilgers delivered with a crushing beat.

Fistful Of Fire‘ is an anthem and title track of this fresh rock ‘n’ roll album, Hans Ziller remains true to a pedigree and doesn’t compromise, building intrigue with ‘The Surge‘ and ever impressive onslaught of ‘Gloryland‘, reaching up to the heavens and opening up a fuming fire of intense heat.

The album closes with a rather special acoustic version of ‘When An Old Man Cries‘.

If I had to pick some stand out tracks from this album I’d be spoiled for choices, but perhaps ‘Gloryland‘, ‘When An Old Man Cries‘ together with ‘The Devil Made Me Do It‘ are ones that resonate the most.

This is a remarkable album and deserves to be played loud to appreciate the detail and energy.

 

Bonfire release their new single/video ‘The Devil Made Me Do It‘, the second track taken from upcoming album ‘Fistful Of Fire‘, out on 3rd April on AFM Records.

Bonfire release their new album ‘Fistful Of Fire‘ on 3rd April, out on AFM Records.
Pre-order the new album: http://afmrec.de/FistfulOfFire 

It’s been exactly two years since Bonfire, following the outstanding debut of their current vocalist Alexx Stahl on ‘Byte The Bullet‘ (2017), were unanimously celebrated for their successor album ‘Temple Of Lies‘ (2018). Two years which saw the band rock countless stages at home and abroad before going on to set the bar even higher with their latest offering.

“‘Fistful Of Fire‘ is definitely one of the toughest Bonfire albums ever. “This development already became apparent the last time around,”explains guitarist and founder member Hans Ziller. “However, this time our approach was even more focused and consistent. I’ve always been the tough guy in Bonfire but haven’t always been able to implement my ideas the way I wanted. But since our tour with Judas Priest, we’ve known that toughness in combination with great melodies suits Bonfire perfectly.

Fistful Of Fire‘ features this very mix: throughout the 11 songs (plus three intros), the band from Ingolstadt, which has operated under its established logo for almost 35 years, fire on all cylinders. “Unlike previous Bonfire vocalists, Alexx oozes so much energy that you may occasionally have to hold him back rather than motivate him. We’ve been a hard rock band from the very beginning, but that has never been more apparent than in 2020.

Everything comes together perfectly on ‘Fistful Of Fire‘, which was recorded in collaboration with sound engineer Tom Müller at Ingolstadt’s Flatliners Recording Studios again: the charismatic vocals, the catchy riffs and hooks courtesy of guitarists Ziller and Frank Pané, the rich bass sound provided by their American colleague Ronnie Parkes and the driving grooves
contributed by new addition André Hilgers (ex-Rage, Axxis), who has complemented the line-up for a number of months.
This team delivers without mercy and has turned into a really tight unit,” Ziller enthuses.

In view of the album’s outstanding quality throughout, it’s not easy to highlight individual songs, but alongside the only moderate mainstream number ‘Warrior’ and the obligatory ballad ‘When An Old Man Cries’, we should perhaps take a closer look at two special tracks.
On the one hand there’s the lead single ‘Rock´n`Roll Survivors’, scheduled for release on 28
February 2020, that summarises with its programmatic title the whole career of Bonfire mastermind Ziller in one succinct phrase. “I’ve been kicked in the teeth a thousand times during my career and I often went down,” he confesses, “but I’ve always picked myself up again.

A great allegory that Bonfire have translated perfectly into a video clip featuring two female
boxers: multiple world champion Tina Schüßler and her colleague Stephanie Posch were the focus of the shoot at a boxing club in Augsburg. Talking of which: Tina Schüßler is not only an exceptional athlete, but also an accomplished rock singer. Together with her band, she will support Bonfire during their tour in April. The end of March will see the release of the second single ‘The Devil Made Me Do It’, providing another perfect foretaste of the new album.

The lyrics of ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Survivors’, in combination with its powerful rock sound, is a mix that also features on other songs on the new album. Bonfire prove that they have no problem thinking outside the box of pure musicians’ themes. The title track ‘Fistful Of Fire’, for example, warns of the reckless abuse of a world which seems to have been turned upside down in ecological terms.
Ziller demands: “We simply mustn’t leave a planet to our children that’s no longer worth living on.” In this respect, the group’s musical motto also applies: “Long-standing bands like Bonfire may be considered an endangered species, but we’ve still got a lot to say, musically as well as in terms of content.
Which is precisely what every single note on ‘Fistful Of Fire‘ proves!

Pre-order the new album: http://afmrec.de/FistfulOfFire 

Line up:

Alexx Stahl (Vocals)

Hans Ziller (Guitar),

Frank Pané (Guitar),

Ronnie Parkes (Bass),

André Hilgers (Drums)

Tracklisting:
01 – The Joker
02 – Gotta Get Away
03 – The Devil Made Me Do It
04 – Ride The Blade
05 – When An Old Man Cries
06 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Survivors
07 – Fire And Ice
08 – Warrior
09 – Fire Etude
10 – Breaking Out
11 – Fistful Of Fire
12 – The Surge
13 – Gloryland
14 – When An Old Man Cries (Acoustic Version)

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Firewind release their new single ‘Rising Fire‘, the first track to be taken from upcoming album ‘Firewind‘, out 15th May on AFM Records.

Since power metal masters Firewind announced their new line-up (which now features Herbie Langhans from Avantasia on vocals), fans and critics alike speculate how Firewind’s new incarnation might sound. Their questions find an answer now in the band’s brand new music video ‘Rising Fire‘ The song is taken from the upcoming album, simply titled ‘Firewind‘, which will be released on May 15th.

Gus G. comments:
Hey everyone! We’re finally back with some new music for you! ‘Rising Fire‘ is the first single of our upcoming self titled 9th studio album. It features our new singer Herbie Langhans, who sounds amazing! This song is about overcoming difficulties and situations that one might be stuck in. We’ve all been there at some point in our lives. We hope ‘Rising Fire‘ can be a soundtrack to a positive mindset. So play it loud!

Each time Firewind released an album over the last 20 years, it wasn’t just the brilliancy of exceptional guitarist Gus G (Ozzy Osbourne, Arch Enemy, Dream Evil) that fans were in awe of, but also the skills of every one of the band’s vocalists. Fantastic riffs, hooks and solos by the gifted hands of guitarist Gus aside, it’s the great vocal melody – an integral part of every Firewind song – that’s causing a stir. In that respect nothing has changed in their newest album, simply titled ‘Firewind‘, quite the contrary: with his charismatic voice new member Herbie Langhans (Avantasia, Radiant, Seventh Avenue, amongst others) refines each and every last one of the eleven new songs and infuses them with an expressive force that is remarkable.

With Herbie I feel like we’re doing a relaunch of the original Firewind cast, because his singing style bears a certain resemblance to that of Stephen Fredrick, our first vocalist,” comments Gus. “I’m proud and happy that we can continue with the tradition of great Firewind vocalists thanks to Herbie.

Tracklisting:
01. Welcome To The Empire
02. Devour
03. Rising Fire
04. Break away
05. Orbitual Sunrise
06. Longing To Know You
07. Perfect Stranger
08. Overdrive
09. All My Life
10. Space Cowboy
11. Kill The Pain

Pre-order link: https://shop.afm-records.de/firewind/ 

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Review: Shakra – Mad World

AFM Records (March 6th 2020)

Reviewer: Dan Mann

Shakra return with their 15th album ‘Mad World‘, which is available now via AFM Records.

For those of you already familiar with the band, ‘Mad World‘ won’t deliver any surprises, carrying on where ‘Snakes & Ladders‘ left off. Is this a bad thing? Hell no, as a long time fan of the band it means more of that heavier end of hard rock which gets you reaching to nudge the volume knob up a few more notches.

For those of you unfamiliar with the band, I guess a quick analogy would be imagine a heavier version of German rockers Bonfire.

The album itself consists of twelve tracks, no being short changed here, and with no ballad you just get twelve tracks of pounding, foot stomping rock that’ll either piss off your neighbours or entertain them, depending on their musical preferences!

I’m not going to delve into each track using a magnifying glass, I’m just going to tell you to go out and buy it, you won’t be disappointed………trust me!

Dynazty have released their new single ‘Waterfall‘, the third track to be taken from new album ‘The Dark Delight‘ out 3rd April on AFM Records.

Formed in Stockholm, Sweden in 2008, Dynazty has since released 6 albums in a mere 10 year window. Straying from their early days of 80’s influenced Hardrock, the band has developed and refined their sound into something that merges the modern metal scene with the past, crafting something wholly unique.

Today the band is comprised of highly respected and sought after musicians, active on the metal scene in more than one way. Bassist Jonathan Olsson can also be seen in both LINDEMANN and PAIN, guitarist Love Magnusson and drummer Georg Härnsten Egg frequently tours with rock legends such as Dee Snyder and Joe Lynn Turner.
Guitarist Mikael Lavér has been featured with both LINDEMANN and Joe Lynn Turner, while singer Nils Molin can be heard and seen around the globe with the ever rising star of fellow Swedish band AMARANTHE.

Dynazty are now on April 3rd set to release their biggest and most engrossing album yet – ‘THE DARK DELIGHT’. Singer Nils Molin says about the album:
”We pulled out all the stops, pulled no punches and held nothing back on this one. ‘The Dark Delight‘ is the complete vision of what this band has always wanted to be”.
Spearheaded by the first single/music video ‘Presence Of Mind‘, Dynazty enters the new decade with a bang.

Line up:

Nils Molin (vox)

Love Magnusson (guitar)

George Egg (drums)

Mikael Lavér (guitar)

Jonathan Olsson (bass)

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Ross The Boss have released a new single/video for ‘Maiden Of Shadows‘, taken from the new album ‘Born Of Fire‘ on 6th March on AFM Records.

Pre-order ‘Born Of Fire‘ here: http://afmrec.de/BornOfFire

Metal legend Ross “The Boss” Friedman has written music history as a founding member of Manowar and The Dictators and his influence in heavy metal and also punk is noticeable to this day. Manowar’s first six masterpieces which saw him significantly involved in between 1982 and 1988 are immortal classics today, and that the band wasn’t able to deliver the same quality again after his departure speaks for the New York based guitarist and songwriter.

Since 2006, Ross has been releasing traditional and raw epic metal which calls up memories of the Manowar masterpieces from the 80’s with its very own style. New album ‘Born Of Fire‘ is the fourth release from Friedman and his band which arrives not even two years after their chart breaking 2018 effort ‘By Blood Sworn‘.

While Ross The Boss used the time between these releases for extensive touring, their latest epos will excite fans worldwide, ‘Born Of Fire‘ comes pounding out of the speakers fresher and heavier than before, but contains all of the typical Ross The Boss trademarks.

Tracklist: 
01 – Glory To The Slain
02 – I Am The Sword
03 – Fight The Fight
04 – Shotgun Evolution
05 – Denied By The Cross
06 – Maiden Of Shadows
07 – Born Of Fire
08 – Demon Holiday
09 – Godkiller
10 – Waking The Moon
11 – Undying
12 – The Blackest Heart

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Dynazty have released their new melodic rock single ‘Heartless Madness‘, this is the second track taken from their upcoming album ‘The Dark Delight‘, due for release on 3rd April on AFM Records.

Formed in Stockholm, Sweden in 2008, Dynazty has since released 6 albums in a mere 10 year window. Straying from their early days of 80’s influenced Hard rock, the band has developed and refined their sound into something that merges the modern metal scene with the past, crafting something wholly unique.

Today the band is comprised of highly respected and sought after musicians, active on the metal scene in more than one way. Bassist Jonathan Olsson can also be seen in both Lindemann and Pain, guitarist Love Magnusson and drummer Georg Härnsten Egg frequently tours with rock legends such as Dee Snider and Joe Lynn Turner.
Guitarist Mikael Lavér has been featured with both Lindemann and Joe Lynn Turner, while singer Nils Molin can be heard and seen around the globe with the ever rising star of fellow Swedish band Amaranthe.

Dynazty are now on April 3rd set to release their biggest and most engrossing album yet – ‘The Dark Delight‘. Singer Nils Molin says about the album:
We pulled out all the stops, pulled no punches and held nothing back on this one. ‘The Dark Delight‘ is the complete vision of what this band has always wanted to be“.
Spearheaded by the first single/music video ‘Presence Of Mind‘, Dynazty enters the new decade with a bang.

Line up:

Nils Molin (vox)

Love Magnusson (guitar)

George Egg (drums)

Mikael Lavér (guitar)

Jonathan Olsson (bass)

Official Website

Facebook 

Twitter 

Bonfire have released their new single/video  ‘Rock ‘N’ Roll Survivors‘, the first track taken from upcoming album ‘Fistful Of Fire‘, out on 3rd April on AFM Records.

It’s been exactly two years since Bonfire, following the outstanding debut of their current vocalist Alexx Stahl on ‘Byte The Bullet‘ (2017), were unanimously celebrated for their successor album ‘Temple Of Lies‘ (2018). Two years which saw the band rock countless stages at home and abroad before going on to set the bar even higher with their latest offering.

Fistful Of Fire‘ is definitely one of the toughest Bonfire albums ever. “This development already became apparent the last time around,”explains guitarist and founder member Hans Ziller. “However, this time our approach was even more focused and consistent. I’ve always been the tough guy in Bonfire but haven’t always been able to implement my ideas the way I wanted. But since our tour with Judas Priest, we’ve known that toughness in combination with great melodies suits Bonfire perfectly.

Fistful Of Fire‘ features this very mix: throughout the 11 songs (plus three intros), the band from Ingolstadt, which has operated under its established logo for almost 35 years, fire on all cylinders. “Unlike previous Bonfire vocalists, Alexx oozes so much energy that you may occasionally have to hold him back rather than motivate him. We’ve been a hard rock band from the very beginning, but that has never been more apparent than in 2020.

Everything comes together perfectly on ‘Fistful Of Fire‘, which was recorded in collaboration with sound engineer Tom Müller at Ingolstadt’s Flatliners Recording Studios again: the charismatic vocals, the catchy riffs and hooks courtesy of guitarists Ziller and Frank Pané, the rich bass sound provided by their American colleague Ronnie Parkes and the driving grooves
contributed by new addition André Hilgers (ex-Rage, Axxis), who has complemented the line-up for a number of months.
This team delivers without mercy and has turned into a really tight unit,” Ziller enthuses.

In view of the album’s outstanding quality throughout, it’s not easy to highlight individual songs, but alongside the only moderate mainstream number ‘Warrior’ and the obligatory ballad ‘When An Old Man Cries’, we should perhaps take a closer look at two special tracks.
On the one hand there’s the lead single ‘Rock´n`Roll Survivors’, scheduled for release on 28
February 2020, that summarises with its programmatic title the whole career of Bonfire mastermind Ziller in one succinct phrase. “I’ve been kicked in the teeth a thousand times during my career and I often went down,” he confesses, “but I’ve always picked myself up again.

A great allegory that Bonfire have translated perfectly into a video clip featuring two female
boxers: multiple world champion Tina Schüßler and her colleague Stephanie Posch were the focus of the shoot at a boxing club in Augsburg. Talking of which: Tina Schüßler is not only an exceptional athlete, but also an accomplished rock singer. Together with her band, she will support Bonfire during their tour in April. The end of March will see the release of the second single ‘The Devil Made Me Do It’, providing another perfect foretaste of the new album.

The lyrics of ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Survivors’, in combination with its powerful rock sound, is a mix that also features on other songs on the new album. Bonfire prove that they have no problem thinking outside the box of pure musicians’ themes. The title track ‘Fistful Of Fire’, for example, warns of the reckless abuse of a world which seems to have been turned upside down in ecological terms.
Ziller demands: “We simply mustn’t leave a planet to our children that’s no longer worth living on.” In this respect, the group’s musical motto also applies: “Long-standing bands like Bonfire may be considered an endangered species, but we’ve stillgot a lot to say, musically as well as in terms of content.”
Which is precisely what every single note on ‘Fistful Of Fire‘ proves!

Line up:

Alexx Stahl (Vocals)

Hans Ziller (Guitar)

Frank Pané (Guitar)

Ronnie Parkes (Bass)

André Hilgers (Drums)

UK SHOW:
13th March, HRH AOR, Great Yarmouth

Tracklisting:
01 – The Joker
02 – Gotta Get Away
03 – The Devil Made Me Do It
04 – Ride The Blade
05 – When An Old Man Cries
06 – Rock ‘n’ Roll Survivors
07 – Fire And Ice
08 – Warrior
09 – Fire Etude
10 – Breaking Out
11 – Fistful Of Fire
12 – The Surge
13 – Gloryland
14 – When An Old Man Cries (Acoustic Version)

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DYNAZTY release their new single ‘Presence Of Mind’ on January 30th, this is the first track taken from their upcoming album ‘The Dark Delight‘, due for release on 3rd April on AFM Records.

Presence Of Mind‘ showcases the raw nature of our band and is just the kind of groovy and melodic onslaught of a song we always wanted to release as a first single”.

Formed in Stockholm, Sweden in 2008, DYNAZTY has since released 6 albums in a mere 10 year window.Straying from their early days of 80’s influenced Hard rock, the band has developed and refined their sound into something that merges the modern metal scene with the past, crafting something wholly unique.

Today the band is comprised of highly respected and sought after musicians, active on the metal scene in more than one way. Bassist Jonathan Olsson can also be seen in both LINDEMANN and PAIN, guitarist Love Magnusson and drummer Georg Härnsten Egg frequently tours with rock legends such as Dee Snider and Joe Lynn Turner.
Guitarist Mikael Lavér has been featured with both LINDEMANN and Joe Lynn Turner, while singer Nils Molin can be heard and seen around the globe with the ever rising star of fellow Swedish band AMARANTHE.

DYNAZTY are now on April 3rd set to release their biggest and most engrossing album yet – ‘The Dark Delight‘. Singer Nils Molin says about the album:
We pulled out all the stops, pulled no punches and held nothing back on this one. THE DARK DELIGHT is the complete vision of what this band has always wanted to be”.
Spearheaded by the first single/music video ‘Presence Of Mind‘, DYNAZTY enters the new decade with a bang.

Line up:

Nils Molin (vox)

Love Magnusson (guitar)

George Egg (drums)

Mikael Lavér (guitar)

Jonathan Olsson (bass)

Official Website

Facebook

Twitter 

Shakra have released their new single ‘Turn The Light On‘, out now on AFM Records, the second track from upcoming album ‘Mad World‘ which is set for release on 28th February.

For a quarter of a century Shakra has been part of the music circus. Only someone who’s been in a band before, knows how fragile und exhausting this kind of social fabric is. 25 years is a very long time and only a few acts can make it this far. Guitarist, Thom Blunier, points out: “I’m extremely proud and thankful, that this band is stil existing after 25 years of
Rock’n’Roll. Those of you who have a clue the difficulties of extisting as a band know, how precious and exceptional this is. I am ready for the next 25 years!

The band has experienced turbulent times with highs and lows together, but have always kept their eyes dead on target. This is also reflected in their multiple and regular chart entries in Germany and of course in Switzerland  throughout those years. Their 25th anniversary is approaching in 2020 – and the quintet is ready to celebrate with their fans, in proper style with hard, catchy and energetic rock music.

There also will be new music for the jubilee – that goes without saying. Eleven new cracking rock tracks in typical Shakra manner are going to be the new album ‘Mad World‘. This world is mad indeed. Things that used to be good yesterday, have become bad today, things that held a certain value yesterdays,have become worthless today. Not only the music business but the entire world experiences chaotic times and Shakra keep on doing what they do best: Writing songs that stick in your mind and are just made for the stage. Here’s to another 25 years!

Line up:

Mark Fox (Vocals)

Thom Blunier (Guitar)

Thomas Muster (Guitar)

Dominik Pfister (Bass)

Roger Tanner (Drums)

Album Tracklisting:
01 – Fireline
02 – Too Much Is Not Enough
03 – A Roll Of The Dice
04 – Mad World
05 – When He Comes Around
06 – Thousand Kings
07 – I Still Rock
08 – Fake News
09 – When It All Falls Down
10 – Turn The Light On
11 – Son Of Fire
12 – New Tomorrow

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