Sometimes you just know you’re going to love a band’s new album even before your hear it, and Shakra is one of those bands. From about ten seconds into their latest album “Snakes & Ladders” I knew I wasn’t going to be disappointed. The eleventh studio album from the Swiss rockers was released through AFM Records on 10th November. “Snakes & Ladders” is the band’s second album since the return of lead vocalist Mark Fox in 2015. I included the single “Cassandra’s Curse” on the Friday NI Rocks Show on 10th November and “The End of Days” is on the Show this week.

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The Dark Element is the new band featuring former Nightwish vocalist Anette Olzon and they released their self-titled debut album through Frontiers Music on 10th November. Anette has teamed up with Finnish guitarist Jani Liimatainen who was formerly with Sonata Arctica. With that artistic backbone, you get what you’d anticipate – a great symphonic metal album! I played the track “Dead To Me” on the Friday NI Rocks Show on 3rd November.

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You never really know where you’re going to hear Jeff Scott Soto singing next – on a solo album, with his band SOTO, in W.E.T., Sons of Apollo, Trans-Siberian Orchestra (TSO) or guesting on someone else’s album. Regardless of where though, you’re always guaranteed a fantastic vocal performance. “Retribution” is his latest solo album and it was released via Frontiers Music on 10th November. I included the first single “Inside, Outside” on the Friday NI Rocks Show on 22nd September and the follow-up “Feels Like Forever” on the Show on 3rd November.

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“Unified” is the second album to come from the somewhat unexpected collaboration between Michael Sweet and George Lynch; but once again what you get when you bring together two highly talented, prolific musicians is a fantastic rock album. It was released via Frontiers Music on 10th November, almost three years after the release of the first Sweet & Lynch album “Only To Rise” in January 2015. I included the track “Promised Land” on the Friday NI Rocks Show on 11th August and the track “Afterlife” is featured on the Show this week.

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Swedish band Black Paisley released their debut album “Late Bloomer” on the Pride & Joy Music label on 27th October. The album has been a few years in the making, with recording commencing in 2014, but the final product is worth checking out. The opening track “Run Run Run” was included on the Friday NI Rocks Show on 10th November.

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“Licence 2 Rock” is the debut album from German band Licence and it was released by Metalapolis Records on 27th October. There’s not really that much information about the band on the press release or online, but they formed in 2014 and are centred around a father and daughter on guitar and vocals respectively. I included the track “Don’t Touch The Light” on the Friday NI Rocks Show this week.

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“The Key To The World” is the third album from Italian band Secret Rule and it was released on 10th November via Pride & Joy Music. This is also the third time I’ve posted a recommendation for their albums! Secret Rule are a symphonic metal band formed in 2014 and fronted by Angela Di Vincenzo. I’ve featured tracks by the band on the NI Rocks Shows many times, including most recently "The Song of the Universe" from the new album on 27th October.

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Just 33 years after the release of their only other album, Madam X released their second album “Monstrocity” through the EMP Label Group on 3rd November. The band has a somewhat iconic status even though they were only active for about six years between 1982 and 1988 and only released one album. There can be little doubt that the involvement of Vixen drummer Roxy Petrucci adds somewhat to the status of the band – as does possibly, the brief involvement of a certain Sebastian Bach. I included the track "Resurrection" from the new album on the Friday NI Rocks Show on 3rd November.

 

Last Updated (Thursday, 16 November 2017 19:55)

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“Axioms of Life” is the debut album from a band called Not Over Yet and it was self-released on 27th October. It came our direction courtesy of our friends at Rock n Growl Promotions. ‘Band’ may be the wrong term to use for Not Over Yet, as it is more of a studio project involving three core members and a range of guest vocalists and guitarists. The nine tracks were recorded over the past two years in a number of locations. Guest vocalists include Blaze Bayley, Zak Stevens and Charlie Huhn. I included the track “Will Power” on the Friday NI Rocks Show this week.

 

Last Updated (Saturday, 11 November 2017 07:32)

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British metal band Neuronspoiler formed in 2009 and released their debut EP shortly after. On 20th October they released their second album “Second Sight” through the Dissonance label. This is the follow up to the debut album “Emergence” which was released in 2013 - one of the first albums I posted a recommendation for on the Rock Radio NI website. Neuronspoiler released a video for the track “Slay The Beast” recently and that is the track that I included on the Friday NI Rocks Show on this week.

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Y & T played Limelight 1 in Belfast on 8th November 2017, returning to a venue they’ve played in several times in recent years. During this UK tour the band have been playing a couple of tracks from Dave Meniketti’s solo album “Meniketti” – “Lay Me Down” and “Storm”.

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