JV - Vocals / Guitar
Shaun Cowell - Bass
Andrew Welsman - Guitar
Matt Burton - Drums
"Shadow of Everest (SoE) is a Canadian progressive metal band from Halifax, Nova Scotia. Formed in 2014, the band’s line-up currently consists of JV (guitars/vocals), Shaun Cowell (bass) and Matt Burton (drums) and Andrew Welsman (guitars).
The band has been compared to such massive artists as Tool, Black Sabbath, Queens of the Stone Age and Pink Floyd. This isn’t a surprise as the members cite these bands as major influences as well as bands like Led Zeppelin, Metallica, Rush and Iron Maiden. It’s the perfect creative storm; fusing the atmospheric elements of prog with the unforgettable riffs of classic rock."
Idle Hands, the debut album from Shadow of Everest, which was released June 2017, paints such a vivid musical tapestry it feels like you are stepping into a surreal storybook adventure.
The title song, Idle Hands embodies this perfectly. There is something sinister yet seductive about this particular song. And the vocalist has a very distinct voice. While I certainly can understand why they have been compared to Pink Floyd, I can hear a bit of the influence but it is certainly more modern. It has the Pink Floyd haunting and mellow vibe but with a touch of the macabre in the lyrics. The guitar solo is executed phenomenally and brings the song to the next level. I also really respect the simplicity of Idle Hands, not saying it does not pack a punch, but it is not overdone with chaotic rhythms or melodies. With what the lyrics describe and the actual music set to it, you can almost see a woman hunting him and lurking in the darkness. Which is why I consider this almost like a storybook, the music brings you in so much, you feel like you are experiencing it along with them.
Idle Hands - Shadow of Everest
If I had to make one suggestion to everyone who is reading this, set aside 30 minutes of your day and listen to this album from start to finish. Because it really is set up like a storybook adventure and you can take away a completely different experience than if you had just listened to each song at random or had interruptions between. Not to say you can't enjoy each song individually but you just get a more profound listening experience.
I really enjoyed the song Holding On, it was a refreshing upbeat song that kept with the theme of the album. The lyrics are very relatable and make it seem as if they are singing your life story. I think what captivated me most about this particular song is how the lyrics are filled with such agony and despair, the rhythm is the silver lining, the upbeat tempo offers a ray of hope. Displaying perfectly how light and dark can walk hand in hand. Your mind is trapped within its sadness and all of the things gone wrong, while the heart maintains hope and dreams of all the things still to come.
One thing that makes Shadow of Everest unique in my opinion, is not only are they talented musicians, but extraordinary storytellers. While I have heard a plethora of songs involving the same subject matters, the way they tell it, is quite astonishing. For example with Sinner's Train, the way the guitars play with your emotions during the breakdowns, makes you feel lost in the darkness. Add the melodic vocals and it is like the ghosts of your past or mind are singing it right from your soul. It is your own dark fairy tale but there are no heroes, only you. Only you can escape this train, but you are unsure if you want to because the forest looks just as dark. Just follow that haunting voice and you will find the silver lining in life.
In closing, I can safely say that Shadow of Everest is unique with its profound otherworldly sounding music which is simplistic in nature. But do not underestimate them or think their music lacks that drama or intensity you might crave. They do it in a different way, instead of just being able to sing along with the song, you are drawn into it and feel it. They are helping you write your story, while they narrate it. I am very eager to hear more from them and hope others will take this adventure along with the band. There is always solace in suffering when in numbers.
To learn more about Shadow of Everest check out their official pages below:
Brent Stevens - Vocals
Jason Fischer - Guitar
Gentky Vang - Guitar
Chase Hagerman - Drums
"Cold Revive consists of Brent Stevens (vocals), Jason Fischer (guitar), Gentky Vang (guitar) and Chase Hagerman (drums). From former music endeavors and with similar interests, Jason searched out and found vocalist Brent Stevens and began writing together in Clovis, CA. Music interests started from the inspirations of Nirvana, Foo Fighters, Hinder, Three Days Grace, Buckcherry, Korn - honestly the list is too vast and too numerous to mention every influence that inspired who Cold Revive is today, now! Upon formulating their sound it gave birth to the band Cold Revive, and they gained Gentky, and Chase to build the atmosphere. The music development comes from the hearts of the musicians involved bringing their lives to the mix. Cold Revive is currently in studio production of their upcoming music. Stay tuned for more cold chill!"
Have you ever heard a band that has the ability to reach into the darkest part of your soul and bring your demons to light that you thought you kept locked up safely in your mind? If your answer was no, then let me introduce you to Cold Revive. While quite honestly I could hear their music being a musical score for horror movies, do not underestimate them or brush them off as a gimmick band, they are far from. Pay attention to the lyrics because they speak about those emotions that some are too scared to talk about or they fear nobody will understand them. Their music speaks to the wounded hearts and broken souls, for a moment you have solace that you are not the only one who has ever felt despair.
The song that embodies such dark emotions and is probably among my favorites, is Diary. Brent certainly has been given a gift with his vocal talent and the way he conveys such angst and sorrow is astounding. The rhythm is set perfectly and really keeps the spotlight on the vocals and lyrics, which makes it the perfect anthem for any tragic love story. The drum fills were excellent and give those moments of intensity when they needed it, while the guitars kept the cadence of a wailing of sadness.
Then we get to a song like Twisted Fright, which reminds me a bit of Alice Cooper but with a modern edge. This song is a wicked musical nightmare but you become addicted to it where you don't want to wake up. The storybook intro sets the mood perfectly for what the song has in store for you and it immediately gives you chills. The sinister vocals capture the lyrics perfectly, the guitars and drums really come through on this particular song, which is just what it needs. A balance of all the members working together like only Cold Revive can.
Sik' Hellish Us, is a song that really paramounts on Brent's vocals. It is probably what I would describe as a powerhouse song, because of the way it captivates me. Honestly I find myself singing along to it and releasing all my frustration and heartbreak in life. Not to say that every song they do is surrounded by heartbreak, but it focuses on bringing the darker aspects of love and life, to light. That you cannot escape pain, darkness, or evil, it is everywhere, but what you can control is how you survive it and learn from it. It offers a release of suffering. You blast the music, and sing your heart out, pouring out your soul just as they have when they created it. And by the time the song is done, you feel exhausted but empowered. And you keep that fire in your heart and turn it into passion to take on the world. To be a soldier and fight against the darkness and help save others that are trapped by it too.
And recently Cold Revive released a new song, titled Smell the Roses, which once again is executed extremely well. One thing I can say is even if Cold Revive has a reoccuring theme regarding what their music is about, they keep it fresh with the songs sounding different in style. Although one thing that remains the same, is the vocals are commanding yet vulnerable at the same time. The rhythm and melody are always on point when it comes to portraying a certain mood, it gives you the intensity when you need it and then turns right around and makes your heart ache with the sadness. That is what a true artist does. So while some might dismiss Cold Revive because they do not care for macabre themes, you are doing a huge disservice to yourself because their music speaks to your demons and darkness. For one brief moment they bring you the light you need and show you, you are not alone, someone out there understands you. Then if you take a step back, you will see all the other people who have been touched by their music, creating a family of broken souls, which is the beginning of rebuilding yourself. You might feel alone in your misery and sadness, but if you stop and smell the roses, you might see others in the same garden. You are never truly alone.
To find out more about Cold Revive, check out their official pages below:
Mark Regula - Vocals / Keyboards / Guitar / Bass / Percussion
Tony Novarro - Guitars / Back Vocals
"Independent recording artists: Ivory Tower Project are a new breed of old school Rockers. New music with retro sound inspired by the great Classic Rock artists of the 70s and 80s. Critically acclaimed and air play on over 600 stations in 32 countries."
**NEW RELEASE! Check out the new video from Ivory Tower Project & leave them a comment**
Ivory Tower Project has mastered the art of being eclectic yet cohesive. Which makes me respect their artistry on such a deeper level. The album is a fantastic synopsis of emotions you will experience in your lifetime, regardless of your age, gender, beliefs, etc. It taps into our sense of humanity and reminds us that we are all one in the same. Living, breathing, feeling human beings. They recently released their album "How Much More?", on June 6th, 2017, and it literally has something for everyone. I will include the links at the bottom of the review of how you can purchase the album, which I highly recommend for everyone.
Their title song, How Much More?, starts you out on a musical roller coaster which in the beginning evokes the feeling of being brokenhearted. But right before you decide to go grab that pint of ice cream and hope your bed swallows you up in despair, the breakdown hits, and you are left with a sense of empowerment, confusion, and a little anger. Which honestly, anyone who has ever been in love, can fully understand and appreciate this song. The guitars framed the clean vocals perfectly and brought the song to a whole new level. Everything about this song was executed amazingly well. The keyboard in this particular song is quite enchanting and the way the guitar plays back and forth with it, is almost like a musical dance. Mark's vocals are very empathetic and powerful, you can tell he sings from the heart, and Tony does an amazing job at enhancing the vocals when he sings back up and keeps the melody strong. Just in this one song alone you can already get a sense of their artistic caliber.
How Much More? - Ivory Tower Project
Now lets say you are wanting something a little more mellow but at the same time still has energy. Or how about, what I call a blank canvas song, which basically means its an instrumental song where your mind gets to create its own story while you listen. Then Surf Song is exactly what you are looking for. It is the perfect 1960's era surf song, where you imagine yourself lying on the beach or playing beach volleyball where the drum crashes are when you make that epic dive into the sand to save the ball. Or if you just want to break out into some old school dance moves like The Swim or The Jerk. This is a song that when you listen to it, you can't help but feel good and all of your stresses from the world fade away. So the next time you have a rough day at work, get into your car, put down the top, blast Surf Song and head to the beach.
As I said in the beginning, there is something for everyone, the mix of genres keeps this album fresh and interesting regardless of what music you are into. "Gotcha" would speak to those wanting to dance and have some high energy music to "Please Tell Me" where its the perfect song when your heart is broken and you just need music to understand you. While I could say something about each song, I honestly want everyone to listen because while we all have a heart, it feels emotions differently. This is just my humble opinions on how the music made me feel but I want you to have your own experience which is what music is all about. So don't just read this and take my word for it, listen to Ivory Tower Project and experience it for yourself, and if it lights a fire inside you, share it with others. Music is infectious but in a good way, it mends hearts, builds empires, and calms a restless mind, without it, our world is chaos.
Which is why I leave you with "Burning", and it lives up to its name. The song is all about passion and desire, You can hear the urgency in the vocals and guitars, the drums keep the cadence of a heartbeat, and the rhythm has almost a carnal lust set to music. Once again, this song will connect with anyone who has ever experienced undeniable attraction.
How Much More? shows the music world that Ivory Tower Project really captures life experiences and brings about a sense of unity with its listeners. From wanting to let go of all the anger and sadness, to going out and having a party. Their music really could be the soundtrack to anyone's life with a funky little twist, that only they can do.
To find out more about Ivory Tower Project check out their official pages:
All reviews are written by Italian Metal Queen aka @OceansStorm