Friday Morning Metal – Traveler – Heavy Hearts

Hooray for some great throwback metal! Making their way to Friday Morning Metal, from Calgary, Alberta, Canada, TRAVELER!

This song has it all, kickass scream to start the song, noodly guitars, a slappy bass solo for a bit, driving drums! The bass solo is pretty great, you don’t hear them in songs very often. It’s not very long but it’s still there after the shreddy dueling guitar solo. When I first heard the song, the vocals weren’t my favorite, but they’re growing on me.

Not a whole hell of a lot to the video, mostly performance clips from a basement and then the singer looking spooky and underlit while singing. It’s a good combo, gets to the point. And at 4 minutes & change the song doesn’t overstay its welcome.

Definitely adding these guys to my metal rotation going forward.

Friday Morning Metal – Girish and the Chronicles – Ride to Hell

WOOOO INDIAN METAL! Girish and the Chronicles got started in 2009, and are straight outta India. Internet claims they’re a hard rock band, but this seems pretty metal to me. They’re playing guitar on a boulder, that’s metal.

Ride to Hell is a rollicking good time, reminds me a bit of GnR or early 80s hair metal. It’s got a catchy riff, and the scream to kick off the song really sets the tone. There’s a killer solo halfway through, quite noodly, quite harmonic. And the guitarist looks non-plussed while soloing on location. Like “No big, I do this wherever.” It’s great. There’s a breakdown after the solo that gives big Riot vibes, too.

The video is a solid combo of live performance footage plus shots that look like a deserty mountain thing. Plus the guitar solo by a boulder. You can sorta tell the drummer’s bored on the location shots, he’s air drumming while everyone else is shredding/singing. The video can’t be beat. Maybe they’ll play the west coast, that’d rule.

Friday Morning Metal – Alestorm ft Patty Gurdy – Voyage of the Dead Marauder

More Alestorm! Now with a hurdy gurdy played by none other than Patty Gurdy. They say, way back in time immemorial, one’s last name was often their job. So it works out pretty well that Patty Gurdy plays a hurdy gurdy. Also it’s notable there aren’t people with family names like HedgeFund or PrivateEquity. Go figure.

The song follows pretty similar themes to all their other songs, pirates do some stuff, there might be a curse? Oh also a cat turns into a skeleton and Patty Gurdy has hand fire magic or something. I will have to listen to it fifteen more times to pick up on the lyrics, but I think Bowes sings about luring people to the horizon with piracy.

The triple vocal combo of Bowes, Patty Gurdy, and Elliot Vernon singing distinct parts in their styles is fun. They don’t really overlay but are great for adding a variety of flavor. Bobo’s solo shreds mightily, and transitions into a killer drum beat that I think is also used in… The Battle of Cape Feare River intro.

KEY CHANGE! You know it’s an Alestorm song if there’s a key change coda at the end. Otherwise it’s just sparkling pirate metal.

Friday Morning Metal – Tyr – Axes

Týr, those mighty folk metal masters of the Faroe Islands have a new song and new video out! According to Heri Joensen, “It’s a short face-melting metal song based on a single melodic idea.”

If I’m to understand the video, the dude with the axe got kicked out of his metal band by way of them ripping his black shirt off. So he decided to get vengeance on them for ruining his favorite shirt. With an axe. I’ll need to listen to the lyrics more carefully to know if that’s the case.

The song has some real balls out drumming, with melodic guitars and vocals kind of floating above it. And when the solo finally kicks in, it’s time for the final battle. Lotta hugging in that fight. But the axe man gets vengeance!

Anyway, this song shreds and is 100% Týr. So if you dig viking folk metal, you’re going to have a blast.

Friday Morning Metal – Riot – Thundersteel

Yet another shredder recommended by Bjørn Spotify, Thundersteel by Riot. I first heard these guys WAY back when Brütal Legend came out and Road Racin’ was on the soundtrack. Ripping around the countryside while that song blasts is fun. And Thundersteel keeps up the full throttle balls out metal sound that is so very 1988.

The song starts out with a killer guitar intro, then pummels you with wild double kick drums. The vocals take a little getting used to, but after the first couple verses it fits in real well. Kinda Joey Belladonna adjace? I don’t know, but it’s fun.

There’s like three separate solos about halfway through. Stacking solos like that adds a multiplier effect, and I think increases critical hit rate. All in all it’s pretty fun song. It does sound a bit older than 1988, but it shreds.

Friday Morning Metal – The End Machine – Silent Winter

Here’s some metal from The End Machine. These guys are Rokken Like Dokken, which makes sense, given most of them were in Dokken at some point.

The End Machine is apparently a super group consisting of players who’ve been in Dokken, Dio, Foreigner, and even Warrant! They got together in 2018 and are already on their second singer, which lines up with a lot of metal bands. And that’s about all I can glean from their Wiki entry.

The song’s a solid rollicking throwback, like it would’ve fit on Headbangers’ Ball in 1994 no sweat. The band is really tight, which makes sense given the bands they played in previously. Also it’s fun seeing an old dude shred on guitar, especially when he’s got a solid mane of grey going on there.

Rocking out in the wilderness is a great theme for a music video. It’s too bad they didn’t get the guitarist up on a mesa for his solo. It’s a tight solo, harkens back to guitarists taking inspiration from classical pieces but I can’t peg exactly which one here.

Friday Morning Metal – Firewind – Fallen Angel

Greek power metal! Cool synth? Perhaps some sort of demon stripper? Behold, Fallen Angel from the band Firewind!

The song starts off with just the guitar riff, but sounds like it’s piped through a radio or something, before the drummer kicks in and everything turns rollicking and power metally.

The vocals are pretty fun, growly but still singing notes & whatnot. Herbie Langhans can really belt it out. They go all-in on the closeups during the guitar solo, so you can see all the sweeps picks and advanced fast hand finger wizardry. It’s solid, noodly as hell.

So enjoy some demon stripper dancer while you get a shred fest!

Friday Morning Metal – Demolition Hammer – Infectious Hospital Waste

Yay old school thrash from NYC! Demolition Hammer got their start in 1986, and Infectious Hospital Waste sounds part and parcel of the mid-80s thrash boom.

The song comes swinging out of the gate, with frenetic drums and great chuggy guitars. The solo at the halfway point is properly noodly and closes with an uptick in tempo that would make for a great pit atmosphere, if you’re into that. I’d rather stand in the back far away from it, lost a pair of horn rims getting too close and I don’t want to lose another.

The closing solo is pretty great, adding a second solo increases a song’s awesomeness by 45%. I read that in Heavy Metal Quarterly.

Anyway, go put on your denim vest, fingerless gloves, and enjoy some thrash!

Friday Morning Metal – Nakatomi Plaza – Bloodlines

Naming a band after a fictional building is pretty wild. Especially if it’s a fictional building in Die Hard what gets exploded.

Nakatomi Plaza the band hails from Adelaide, Australia, and have this and another single out so far according to Bjørn. They also look like a bunch of uncles playing metal. The uncles who probably have a trans am in the garage they’re working on, next to a fridge full of Natty Lites. Also the bassist/singer’s Lost Boys t-shirt is pretty great.

The song doesn’t waste much time, kicking off with big drums and big chugga guitar riffs. Trying to get a handle on the lyrics, for some reason I get a bit of a Christian Shred Metal vibe to them, but they also rhyme now with now, and also now, so that’s a thing. There’s a mild gap leading into the solo that’s pretty fun, like a zero-g float before kicking back into it. All in all, it’s a pretty fun song, I look forward to more of Nakatomi Plaza’s music.

Having a video red-cast in what looks like a catacomb is pretty rad. I kept waiting for Blade to show up.

Friday Morning Metal – Ripé – Péter La Loi

Well now I know how I’ll learn French, by listening to French covers of metal classics. This time it’s the band Ripé covering Judas Priest’s Breakin the Law. Or, Péter La Loi. So now I know how to say that!

There isn’t a whole ton about the band on the internet, and there’s some fun disambiguation between them and a band called Ripe that is very much not them. But according to Bjørn, the band hails from Montreal and has a couple albums from around 2012. Their other songs are kinda AC/DC-esque, and pretty solid.

It’s a straightforward cover, which is important when learning a new language. Also I don’t know why anyone would want to take liberties with such a classic. It’d be like turning the Star Spangled Banner into elevator music or something. Don’t do it.