Friday, October 30, 2015

We Butter The Bread With Butter - Wieder Geil!

So a few years ago I was given a press pass for a German band called We Butter The Bread With Butter.  I, like many other people, found it to be a rather immature sounding band name and not overly interested in the group.  That is of course before I decided to listen them.

Despite the awkward notion the band name gives, they really brought me back to my day of discovering Rammstein for the first time.  Calm down, I am not making an equal comparison between the two bands.  I am using it from a lyrical, theatrical, and geographical perspective.  WBTBWB (makes it a LOT easier to abbreviate) hails from Lübben, which is approximately 85 kilometers southwest of Berlin.  Since their inception, they have grown from the original duo, to now a four piece.  They have kicked out one EP, and four LPs since 2008.  While I was keen on their 2013 Goldkinder album, their latest album, Wieder Geil!, has grown on me substantially.

Blame it on the low growl screaming, blame it on the EDM trance that gets thrown in, or blame it on overall increase in heaviness, Wieder Geil! has really made an impression with me.  I guess I am really hoping for was another group such as Rammstein who are able to give a top notch theatrical performance, with the crushing blow of German lyrics.  If you check out some of my photos when they came to Toronto in 2014, you'll see the group does a great job of working with a small stage (Hard Luck Bar), and the energy they can produce.

(Feb 15th, 2014)

So back to their latest album, Wieder Geil!  It has been on the shelves since May 22nd, 2015 and was distributed by AFM Records.  The album met some great commercial success, with landing #9 on the Billboard world charts, as well as #31 on the top 100 in Germany.  For this album, WBTBWB comprised of:

Paul Bartzsch – Vocals | Marcel Neumann – Guitar, Keyboard, Programming
Maximilian Saux – Bass | Can Özgünsür – Drums

All in all I was truly surprised at how much I enjoyed this album. Further proof that genre stereotypes shouldn’t get in the way of trying a new style of metal on for size. So, if you’re a fan of metal core or you’re looking for something new to punch the floor to, Wieder Geil! might just be what you need. -Metal Nation Radio

This marks the first album that WBTBWB has dropped with AFM Records, and hopefully a lasting relationship.  Despite the group is not on major North American touring circles, their popularity in Europe has them on some large audience festivals.

(Album artwork courtesy of WBTBWB and AFM Records)

1. Ich mach was mit Medien*
2. Exorzist*
3. Anarchy
4. Berlin, Berlin!*
5. Bang Bang Bang*
6. Gib mir Mehr
7. Rockstar
8. Thug Life
9. Warum lieben wir nicht Mehr
10. Zombiebitch

Now, make no mistake, this is a metal record through and through. WBTBWB isn’t content to just stick with one genre of metal, though. Wieder Geil! offers up a wide selection: straightforward radio metal with a chorus that will stick in your head for days on end (“Anarchy”), a combination of deathcore and hip-hop that doesn’t suck (“Bang, Bang, Bang”), and one of the bounciest riffs I’ve heard in quite some time (“Berlin Berlin”). -Skulls N Bones

This high tech Extreme Metal pulverizes with a  merciless attacks and staccato riffing with a healthy but cantilevered portion of Electro/Trance elements and mostly guttural growls of vocalist Bartzsch, granting Wieder geil! enough thoroughness to put a big smile onto the faces of fans of the early days. -Cryptic Rock

And if you feel inclined to watch, this video is both creepy, disturbing, and entrancing.  I believe the general consensus for English folks was "what the hell did I just watch?"  However, the music itself is quite talented...if deathcore/metalcore is your thing of course. Haha.

Overall Wieder Geil! is simply an entertaining album. It is light-hearted, and shows off We Butter The Bread With Butter's unique style and writing skills. The music is certainly not for everyone, especially if you take your metal very seriously. That said, if you're looking for a fun, catchy and fresh style of metal to jam to, I recommend buckling your seatbelt and delving into the decadent ride that is Wieder Geil!. -Pure Grain Audio

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Full Album Stream: TesseracT - Polaris

So one of the new[er] sections I created was "Full Album Streams".  Not only did this gave folks something to listen to when they are cruising the site (being that the original intention of this site was to acts as a hub to explore), but also a chance for people to explore new artists, new genres, and new albums before deciding to purchase them (also from links on AFGM's site).

Full album streams seem to be a new fad that a lot of internet savvy people are jumping on.  It can be in the form of a Soundcloud widget, a YouTube playlist, or even a single YouTube video.  This often gives record labels a chance to promote new artists and for people to subscribe to their social media pages.  So hopefully this provides you access to some new music, bands, and/or artists.  Cheers!

PS - Feel free to send us an email if you have any albums you think you should be on this list or a new one coming out we missed.  We're always listening!

(Artwork by AFGM.  Photo courtesy of Wikipedia)

Now TesseracT is a band we are a lil biased towards here at AFGM.  Not only because their newly re-welcomed vocalist gave us a stellar interview a few years ago, but it's been a band that continues to evolve in their sound.  They have been perfecting their craft since 2007, and continue to gain new audiences everywhere they go.  Thankfully, the group's exposure in North America ha worked in their favour, as I have been lucky enough to catch them numerous times in Canada.

As the group takes flight in a brand new North American/Australian tour, they set their sights on their latest album titled "Polaris".  Without having done an entire album play, I can say without a doubt that the album advances TesseracT in all categories.  Their technicality is exceptional and the group at times can be simply flawless.

(Photo courtesy of TesseracT via Facebook)

Choosing to return from the more ambience-driven quintet, Skyharbor, Tompkins seems to have fused his approach from both bands for an eclectic synthesis. With the complete lineup reunited for third LP, Polaris, a cohesive greatness is inevitable. It should also be noted the chosen record labels, Kscope (known for Steven Wilson and Anathema) and eOne Music (roster ranging from Black Label Society to The Contortionist), may be indicative of both the catchy, experimental prog-rock ahead. -Metal Injection

The album was recorded and produced by TesseracT guitarist Acle Kahney at his 4D Sounds in Brighton, England.  Additional production by Aidan O'Brien and Amos Williams, all three of which have long standing production with TesseracT.

(Album artwork courtesy of TesseracT and KScope Records)

1. Dystopia*
2. Hexes
3. Survival
4. Tourniquet
5. Utopia*
6. Phoenix
7. Messenger*
8. Cages
9. Seven Names

(* = AFGM Recommended)

...Polaris evolves beyond the typical conventions of the djent style in favour of a prog rock/metal hybrid, playing with a delicate balance between heavy and heavenly. While the band's interest in ambiance has always been apparent, lighter moments in "Hexes" and "Tourniquet" (which doesn't sound far removed from something by their Kscope label mates Porcupine Tree) see that interest explored with greater depth. -Exclaim

So for the latest album, TesseracT partnered with KScope Records to distribute their album.  And as luck would have it, he label decided to stream the new album "Polaris" online for free!  Be sure to pick up a copy of the album, which was released on September 18th, 2015.  Album sales go a long way for bands to keep doing what they want to do.

...Polaris is the record that Tesseract have been working toward. The evolved maturity of their writing, playing, and arranging is matched by the experience and confidence Tomkins gained while away. Reunited, they deliver not only creativity and sophistication but inspiration. They are the prog/djent unit to pay closest attention to. -All Music

Monday, October 26, 2015

Returning From The Hiatus...For Now

Alright folks,

Too long have I been away from my keyboard and not able to really think of something to write about.  Unfortunately, writer's block sunk in when moving across the country.  I guess that's a pretty decent excuse, if any.  However, the one nice factor about a long drive such as that gives me the opportunity to check out some new tunes, and scan the local radio whenever we hit major cities (Thunder Bay, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, etc.).

I found the radio at times was starting to get stale.  Not meaning to knock the local radio stations, but it just so happened that each time we turned to a new rock station, they seemed to be playing the same thing.  I guess when you're on the road for 5 days, it's bound to happen.  But luckily, my girlfriend Alli snagged an auxiliary cable at a truck stop.  Finally, some tunes we wanted to hear!

So that being said, here are a few of the artists we were driving cross country to.  Not sure if you'll enjoy the odd tastes, but it made for an enjoyable trip.  Now, looking forward to all the local shows, local bands, and the YYC music scene in general.

Sons of the Sea - Come Together:

P.O.D. - This Goes Out To You:

Nothing More - Jenny:

Wilson - Right To Rise:

Northlane - Impulse:

Silent Planet – firstwake:

We Butter The Bread With Butter - Ich mach was mit Medien:

If any of you folks are doing some long trip (first off, I hope you have more than just radio, and cruise control. haha), I suggest you get the chance to make your own playlists as well.  I know for a fact that some tracks perked me right up throughout the day, and gave me my second when on the road for 7-8+ hours.  Cheers!

PS - I doubt at this point I will be able to post on a daily basis, but I do intend to start composing some great news, sharing videos, doing more interviews, talking about the YYC music scene, and of course live performances.  Thanks again!