Tag Archives: mike festa

Music Luminaries Share Their New Year’s Metal Resolutions for 2012: Part 1

With Christmas now out of the way and Chanukah pretty close to ending as well our minds gets focused on the plans for the coming new year. We seem to always strive to change something in ourselves or do things a little differently from before when a new year begins and this got me to thinking a little bit. I wondered aloud about what the New Years Metal Resolutions for 2012 might be for some of the talented people that I have been fortunate enough to meet or communicate with in my role as founder of the PiercingMetal.com website. With that in mind I put the question out there and asked them to complete the sentence “My New Year’s Metal Resolution for 2012 Is….”

The first few responses are below and I’ll be adding a new post each day as 2011 counts down toward its close. I hope you enjoy them.

Carmine Appice (legendary drummer of Cactus, Vanilla Fudge, King Kobra, Blue Murder (whew…): My New Year’s Musical Resolution for 2012 Is to play with an even wider variety of artists and musicians.

Zak Stevens (lead vocals for Circle II Circle): My New Year’s Metal Resolution is to bring my music to as many fans in the world as possible this year. This is one of those “be careful what you asked for” years….Even though the task is daunting, it’s time to bring things to a new level in 2012! Horns up and pierce the world with metal!!

Brian Tatler (lead guitar for Diamondhead): My New Years Metal Resolution is… to keep looking out for new and interesting bands and to keep the Diamond Head flag flying for as long as possible. Thanks.
Continue reading Music Luminaries Share Their New Year’s Metal Resolutions for 2012: Part 1

“Free Admission For The Damned” by Nightmare Stage

Artist: The Nightmare Stage
Title: “Free Admission For The Damned”
Label: Independent Artist
Release Date: 4/13/2010
Genre: Melodic Power Metal
Rating: 4.5/5

Without meaning any offense I have to say that I chuckle a little bit when someone I don’t really know hands me a CD and says “if you like Iron Maiden then you will enjoy this”. With that in mind I also have to admit that such a belief in a band to compare them to the likes of the British juggernauts intrigues me a little bit more than some of the rest that I might find myself receiving. That alone made looking into and listening to The Nightmare Stage’s “Free Admission For The Damned” something that I was very much looking forward to. The album starts off with a strange little intro piece that aims on setting up the mood for the listener and while different it did not manage to snare me (but of course I approach these intros with more scrutiny than your average listener). However, when “In Contempt” begins the band showcases a bombastic level of musicianship and melodic drama that grabs you by the throat and holds you tightly from here on in. It was with this tune where I realized how the correlation between them and Maiden came from and that is with singer Scott Oliva (no relation to the famous Jon from Savatage) as he displays some Dickinson-esque pipes. I found out after the fact about his fronting the Iron Maiden tribute Live After Death so this makes perfect sense. Without stroking his ego, I had to say that the singer also displayed vocals that reminded me a little of Midnight as well as Geoff Tate on occasion. It will be interesting to hear him come more into his own on a future release. The album is laden with powerful keyboards that come care of Mark Muchnik and they are used very effectively over the crushing guitar riffs of Craig Besemer who also handles the bass on the recording and the thundering drums of Mike Festa. While it is safe to say that I enjoyed the sum total of the album, my favorites fell to “In Contempt”, “Ghost Of A Man”, “Face The Fear Inside” and “The Dark Parade” right after the first listen. The band also makes use of clever interludes between a couple of the tracks and these do well to keep the mood and vibe of the album in place. The Dickinson vibe from Oliva on tracks like “Face The Fear Inside” are almost frightening and one would think that the legendary Brit was called in for help on the tune based on the dead on inflections and register that Scott is delivering. The band in the end is tight as the proverbial drum and the CD quickly found itself being spun once again after it had completed.
Continue reading “Free Admission For The Damned” by Nightmare Stage