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Woechanter is a blackened death metal project by Morgan Rider (Vocalist/Bassist of Vesperia).  Rider recently released the 4 song demo, and holy shit is it a banger.  Vesperia in comparison is a melodic and progressive death metal band.  Woechanter however, is more straightforward extreme metal.  It has some cool vocal choirs and acoustic guitars in the background that also give it a slightly folk metal sound at times.

It’s a very dark, groovy and melancholic trip through the 4 song effort. You can check out the 4 songs right here.


Woechanter is a furious and heavy project that has no boundaries.  It has a shit ton of groove to it, as well. I’m excited too see what’s next for Woechanter.

Woechanter’s biography states:

“WOECHANTER’s story began on a stormy winter night during January of 2017. The months of crushing cold and darkness provided ample atmosphere for the first song to be crafted. Canadian multi-instrumentalist and VESPERIA frontman Morgan Rider began to shape in those months of legendary Canadian winter what would become the first few steps of Canada’s newest extreme metal band.

As the world’s distances have shrunken in the wake of modern technology, quick was the coming of the band’s second collaborator: A German guitarist who prefers his anonymity while this project remains in session.

So will the first steps of this group be taken, so will the tread quicken pace and so will the chants and laments of this era be borne upon the primal flow of our utterings. Woechanter is a vicious display of death, black and doom metal blended without hindrance for modern trends or expectation.”


I’d say that’s pretty fucking accurate. Follow the band at their Facebook link right below here. Hails!



Axios- Erased



Chicago progressive rock quintet Axios has recently released their full length album “Erased”. It’s a very cool thing to occasionally see progressive and experimental bands focus on the song and soundscape, not always the odd timings and technicality as much as I love my face always being melted.  They have a great somber and meaningful tone….every song is a totally different trip.  Nothing sounds the same, and some growls here and there as well! There’s beautiful soaring melodies throughout “Erased” and also some chunky riffs that compliment the constant mood changes.

Axios is:

Jake Mikolas – Guitar/Vocals
Ashley Tracey – Keys/Vocals
Kevin Coppola – Drums/Vocals
Blake Schwarz – Guitar/Vocals
Jake La Bahn – Bass/Vocals

The band focuses on layering their tracks, but not going overboard……it’s very tasteful music with all sorts of vocal harmonies between the members.  It’s far from dry and uninspired…..the rhythm section is held down damn nicely between Jake and Kevin.  Its hard to believe they’re very new (2016 mind you) as the sound of Axios is very mature in it’s infancy and sound like seasoned veterans.  There’s plenty of diversity in Axios for any prog fan from melancholy tones (Steven Wilson) to keyboard/synth layers and some bright melodies (Dream Theater/Rush) and some heaviness at times (Mastodon level heaviness).  Proggers of all backgrounds and ages can appreciate the hard work of Axios and is a good start for an introduction for people not familiar with the genre.


You can buy the album “Erased” online digitally or physically through many outlets.








Wrack- Hollow Sun



Wrack is a progressive metal project by Tyler Cox.  It’s set to be released on June 15th of this year.  It’s a very heavy EP…..also, very rhythmic.  There’s some mood changes which give it more variation than your normal prog band, but for the most part it is a straight headbanger.  There’s a couple cool guitar duals that add some ear candy throughout the listening experience of Hollow Sun.




Hollow Sun is an energetic album, especially vocally. This turned out to be one of the better EP’S of 2018 so far, and a great surprise.  I’m glad I came across this when I did, it’s a release that’s definitely worth your time I can guarantee that. Preorder the album directly at the bandcamp link at the beginning of the article.

ISA- Chimera



Chimera is ISA’s debut album with a psychedelic and experimental twist on progressive death metal with a mathcore twist.  It’s a very inconsistent, chaotic and entertaining album from the band mastermind Dan Curhan.  He did all the work for Chimera and holy shit is it impressive.  If you like spontaneity and progressive music that’s not of the norm ISA is a project that is for you.

I’m noticing lately I’ve been getting into more experimental and dissonant prog bands.  Dan’s project covers so many boundaries it’s refreshing.  The songs are layered well and not overdone.  You can get Between The Buried and Me, Pink Floyd and Dillinger Escape Plan all in one song! It’s such a trip I have to say it’s a ride you need to pay to get on and be a part of this adventure.

For a newcomer, ISA has received some decent accolades in its early stages so far.  32837753_2385870768305990_3996162435487629312_n.jpg

As seen above, he has even gotten props from Metal Injection! I wish Dan nothing but the best for his band and his upcoming releases.  The more I heard Chimera, the more I wanted to listen to it in its exact order…….certain albums are best listened to in the order of the songs as they are, and that’s exactly how Chimera should be treated.

The obnoxious part of Chimera puts you in a smooth state of mind when the mellow parts kick in….and then BAM! A huge grindcore or mathcore influenced section kicks in and punches you in the balls (The transition from “Lust” to “Freedom” is a great example)!  Dan’s vocals are very energetic and straightforward.  Not to put in the background of this trip, but he also did the artwork…..he’s gained respect from a fellow artist like myself.  Dan is a multitalented musician who deserves a little bit of respect to say the least which I think is a dying thing these days.

Buy the album right now, and you’ll totally get my drift punks.





Unflesh- Savior



Unflesh’s first full length “Savior” is out this Friday May 25th.  Their debut EP “Transcendence to Eternal Obscurity” had ex Obscura drummer Hannes Grossman work with the band skyrocketing its credibility and talent.  Savior took that opportunity and then some.  The technicality and blistering fretwork on “Savior” is of a seasoned technical death metal band….but you then realize Unflesh is still very new.  The scary part of Unflesh is I don’t think Savior is their best work……they’re still very young and have lots of time ahead of them.  Unflesh can do even better and that’s bad news for the rest of the metal world to keep up with such a potent band.

Metal Injection premiered the album today and can be heard right here.  Unflesh isn’t super crazy to the point where its an unorganized mess…..they do hold some killer grooves while they’re not melting faces and messing with different rhythms.  Nothing bad can’t be said about the guys…..the material is well written and tasteful.  Maybe the world has found another great tech band to replace the Necrophagist void (Unfortunately we won’t see another album out of those legends again).   I also did an Unflesh Interview May 2018 earlier this month if you want to check it out.

Unflesh was founded by Ryan Beevers (also Solium Fatalis) in 2014. The band released an EP that was released on July 15th of 2016 called “Transcendence to Eternal Obscurity” that featured Hannes Grossmann (Alkaloid, ex-Obscura, ex-Necrophagist) on session drums. In 2016 they gained a full line up, which is now: Ryan Beevers on Guitar/Vocals, Chris Dovas on drums, Peter De Reyna on bass, and Caio Kehyayan on guitar. The band has since played their first round of shows starting in 2016 and will be touring in the summer of 2018 in support of their new album, Savior.

The band is mainly influenced by bands such as (Dissection, Emperor, Slayer, Watain, Necrophagist, Angelcorpse) to name a few. We are all in Boston, MA currently and we consider that our base at the moment. I started the band in 2014 and was composing songs for the band around that time. It was in 2016 that we got a full line up and played a lot of shows up until this point. – Ryan Beevers

I say promote the hell out of these guys.  We have too many generic and copycat bands…..they blend black metal, death metal and hints of thrash metal throughout the record.  Unflesh is one of a small group of technical/progressive bands that is helping push the boundaries of the genre and not trying to fit in.  You can preorder the album on digital outlets or physically as well.







Fire Garden May 2018 Interview


My Fire Garden homies are one of the most underrated progressive rock bands in the scene right now.  I saw the guys last summer in Niagara Falls at the Evening Star and damn, do they put on a great show.  Oh…..and they’re cool guys, to boot.  What’s not to like about Fire Garden?

As part of the monthly showcase (I tried last month for Angel Vivaldi….nobody got back to me. I at least tried!) an interview of some sorts is conducted with the featured band or artist.  I hope you get a good look into the creative minds and personalties that make Fire Garden the quality band they’ve morphed into.

Fire Garden is:

Zee Baig – Lead Vocals & Guitars

MM: Marc Malitz – Bass and Backing Vocals

Al: Allen Ladis – Lead and Rhythm Guitars

BK: Bill Kiser – Drums

TMR: How did the band come to be?

Zee: I formed this band while I was living in Kazakhstan, played few shows under the Fire Garden name and had a MySpace page as well (anyone remember?).  We wrote a few originals but there was never a serious plan to record and release music, when I moved to USA I decided to continue the journey hired few session musicians to record a 3 song EP called “The Prelude”. The response was great and people started to like it, so I decided to write a full-length record which became “Sound of Majestic Colors”.  That record caught some attention in the PROG community including Jordan Rudess of Dream Theater. So, it was obvious to do a follow-up. This time I went to find people who can play this music live as well. Luckily, I found these guys (Marc Malitz, Bill Kiser, Allen Ladis) and I am blown away with the response of Far and Near and our live shows. The good thing is whoever comes to our shows they appreciate the music. We are constantly working on our live show we try to keep things fresh and I am excited for the future ahead.


TMR: What is the meaning behind the band name? Is it a Steve vai reference? 🙂

Zee: Yes!!! I am a big fan of Steve Vai and the name represent perfectly with the style of music I enjoy. “Fire” is for aggressive side and “Garden” is for mellow side…does that make sense? 😉 … BTW do you know Steve Vai is a Bee Keeper? And, his garden is called Fire Garden.


TMR: What was it like recording the vocals for Far and Near? Did it feel more pure putting your voice on the music as Zee Baig, rather than someone else singing? Totally different sound and texture than the vocalist that sang on Sound of Majestic Colors.

Zee: It was one of the best decisions I took in my life. Sometimes you are not familiar with your own inner potential. I am a performer and I always want to play live music. When you have a different frontman with every release, it is hard for fans to relate to the band. Therefore, I decided to do vocals myself and I am happy with the results and fans loved it.

TMR: What is everyone’s favorite piece of gear past or present?


Zee: Probably my studio computer

MM: Schroeder bass cabinet

AL: My Fractal Axe Fx I XL

BK: My 20” Zildjian K Constantinople Medium Thin Low ride cymbal.

TMR: You guys finish playing a long set and are starving ….what’s the first food you’re craving?


Zee: Mediterranean food  

MM: Tacos

AL: Pizza or Burritos

BK: Pizza


TMR: How is the writing process for the latest fire garden album going?


Zee: Writing process is going well, a little slower than my expectation.  This time I am taking a slightly different approach, experimenting with different instruments and taking influences from other genres. I think the world doesn’t need another Dream Theater or Porcupine Tree. Let’s see how successful I am 🙂

TMR: What’s everyone’s favorite drink of choice at the bar?


Zee: I don’t drink alcohol so Ginger Ale or lemonade for me

MM: Beer

AL: Beer and Tequila

BK: Red wine. Always

TMR: Who is everyone’s bucket list band they’d love to see live?


Zee: Past David Bowie, Led Zeppelin, and Queen….Present Peter Gabriel, Guns n Roses (Yes I missed the last tour)  

MM: The Kinks

AL: RUSH reunion show

BK: Going to the past, early Zeppelin and Genesis 73 era.


TMR: What band would you guys want to play with that’s also on your bucket list?


Zee: So many to list..but opening for Opeth or Steven Wilson would be great.

MM: Pineapple Thief, Opeth, Steven Wilson, Haken, Steve Hackett, Peter Gabriel, Radiohead, King Crimson, and Primus

AL: Symphony X

BK: Any cool band with great energy.


TMR: You’re putting together an all day festival….what bands are you guys booking? Let’s say for conversation’s sake 10 total including you guys, so 9 other bands.

Zee: Dream Theater, Steven Wilson, Opeth, Nine Inch Nails, Roger Waters, Opeth, Coldplay, Steve Vai, Junoon (Pakistani band) and of course Fire Garden.

MM: Pineapple Thief, Opeth, Steven Wilson, Haken, Steve Hackett, Peter Gabriel, Radiohead, King Crimson, and Primus

AL: Circle of Illusion, Frost, Voyager, Moon Safari, Haken, Dream Theater , Porcupine Tree, Steve Vai, Joe Satriani

BK: Janes addiction, tool, opeth, king crimson, Syd Arthur, Radiohead, primus, marillion, bela fleck. 🙂


TMR: What’s everyone listening rotation usually consist of?

Zee: I listen to different styles and post my playlist every month on www.firegardenmusic.com/blog and my MixTapes on Spotify https://open.spotify.com/user/1235065471/playlist/7ykyYeJoJQ0ZhnH44Fa2tb?si=rEnFbP8LQgKvb4oXRjFjyg

MM: Prog, Jazz, Metal, Classic Rock

AL: Dream Theater, RUSH, repeat

BK: Constantly evolving but always includes Rush, Jellyfish, Genesis, Radiohead and Laura Marling to name but a few.


TMR: What 2018 releases are you guys looking forward to? And your favorites that have been released so far this year, as well.


Zee: Nine Inch Nails, The Sea Within, The Pineapple Thief … favorite so far don’t have one yet.

MM: Looking forward to new releases by Riverside, TesseracT, The Sea Within, Pineapple Thief, favorites so far are releases from Judas Priest, Between the Buried and Me, and Joe Satriani

AL:  Not really up on new releases.. In my bubble I guess

BK: Tool


TMR: You guitarists rock those Kiesel and music man guitars nicely….sponsorship would be cool! You guys should totally hit them up.


Zee: Would love to, but I am not a big fan of endorsements. I like to keep my options open, you might see me playing different instruments in the future.

AL: I’m a little fish in a big pond. Maybe?  

TMR: Music theory or no music theory? It’s very helpful, yet on the other end you don’t want to be so focused on music theory and not write great music….what are your opinions on it?


Zee: It helps but I don’t like to put boundaries when writing music. I am not good in theory at all. I just write what I hear in my head.

MM: Learning theory and music content is great, but should only be used as a tool.

AL: I never learned theory.  Wish I had.. Definitely helps writing.

BK: For drummers knowledge of rhythm is important.

TMR: What hobbies do you guys have outside of the band and being an artist?


Zee: I like to play sports whenever I can, cricket or tennis…. these days into tennis a lot.

MM: I collect comic books

AL: Camping, Fishing, Outdoor stuff I guess..

BK: I’m a closet guitar player and love to run, outside preferably.

TMR: What else do you guys do outside of fire garden whether it’s music related or not? Link your other endeavors and projects here for people to check out.


Zee: I run my own production company where I record/mix/produce other people’s music. Also, I love doing movie scores for short films and direct music videos. You can contact me at info@firegardenmusic.com

MM: I play in a Jazz group called, The Nascent Jazz Trio: https://www.facebook.com/NascentJazzTrio/

AL: No other projects right now. So mostly family, work, the band..  And most importantly my beard!!!!

BK: Of course family time, running, reading, wine drinking and a fun original instrumental band called Mute, as time allows.




Dischordia premieres part of upcoming EP with “Binge”



Dischordia has released part of their upcoming “Binge/Purge” EP with an excerpt of Binge.         The band’s technicality and proficiency is in the forefront on the crazy trip of this EP.  There’s all sorts of odd instrumentation throughout the ride from marimba to flute a choir even a ukulele! This progressive death metal trio is a force to be reckoned with and are one of a select few within their genre that is experimenting with less popular or unusual instruments that aren’t found in death metal.  That notion alone makes Dischordia fucking awesome. Enjoy the 4 minute excerpt and let it change your mind to preorder this raging EP.

Dischordia – Binge/Purge Line-Up
Bass, Flute, Marimba, & Vox by Josh Turner
Guitars, Ukulele, & Vox by Keeno
Drums, Guitars, & Piano by Josh Fallin
Guest choir on “Purge” by Rose State Chorus, directed by Dr. Tracey Gregg-Boothby

Grab your copy right here!