Sinner's Blood-The Mirror Star ©2020 Frontiers Records
To the heavier side we go with Frontiers Records artist Sinner's Blood. The band is from Chile and proves that there is a pretty good scene down in those parts of the world. Their sound is melodic metal that has elements from both traditional power metal and a bit of modern metal in places. The music is quite good. One moment it can be quite heavy and at other times very melodic. Take for instance a track like 'The Path Of Fear' which is hard driving and then goes into the very atmospheric and melodic track 'Forever'. This shows that the band has that versatility that many successful bands have. After that track we get back into the heavy groove. For the most part this album has a lot of power to it. High energy metal tracks lined with good melody throughout. Definitely worth checking out in our opinion. Easy heavy recommend!
Release Date: October 9, 2020
Armored Saint-Punching The Sky ©2020 Metal Blade Records
Not many bands have the track record of consistency that Armored Saint has. This band has been in my player off and on since the band's great debut album. One of my early favorite bands for sure. When we talk about consistency this is what we mean. You can go to most Armored Saint fans and if asked about their catalog, they will probably mention how great every album is. 'Punching The Sky' is no exception. The band's sound is intact once again. There is no doubting who it is. The songs are excellent on this new album. All of them as mentioned. The songwriting is on par with what the band has done in the past. They don't reinvent the wheel, they just do what they always do. Write complete albums with great musicianship. Hard to believe that almost 4 decades later we are still getting records of this caliber from the band. Keep 'em coming!
Release Date: October 23, 2020
Gotthard-Steve Lee: The Eyes Of A Tiger ©2020 Nuclear Blast Records
It's truly hard to believe that is has been 10 years since the passing of Gotthard's frontman Steve Lee. Definitely one of my favorite vocalists. What made this worse for me personally is that he left this life about 50 miles from where I reside. I drive through that area quite often and he always enters my mind now. This record contains the last recordings with Lee. Many fan favorites in acoustic format. There are also two versions of the Survivor mega-hit 'Eye Of The Tiger' which apparently Steve was very fond of. As much as we would love to have had many more tracks in a vault to dig out at a later date, I'm guessing this is it. This is a great way to reflect back on the life of Steve Lee and his impact on the world's music scene for so many years. For me, this was a must have. Steve is missed and there is still that hole in the music industry.
Release Date: October 2, 2020
Ocean Hills-Santa Monica ©2020 AFM Records
I am so into this album right now. Zoltán Téglás who fronted the melodic hardcore band Ignite is the frontman of Ocean Hills. This is a very vocal driven album as a result. I was hearing all kinds of different things with the music. 'Angels Wings' reminds me very much of Alice In Chains. At times I was thinking a little Freddie Mercury as well. The album grows with each listen as well. I liked it very much first listen and ended up liking it more and more with each subsequent listen. Some of my personal favorites from this album include 'A Separate Peace', 'Death Or Liberty' , 'Like A Lady' 'Budapest My Love' and 'Angels Wings'. As a whole, I do like the album a lot. It is worth mentioning that some of the songs I listed do have video versions up on YouTube for those who want to sample before buying. Once you do, I'm sure you'll be hooked!
Release Date: November 27, 2020
Pride Of Lions-Lion Heart ©2020 Frontiers Records
Jim Peterik and Toby Hitchcock return with their sixth Pride Of Lions album. Another solid AOR album written in similar fashion to other albums by the band. Pride Of Lions is another band that write with a formula that produces great results. The music never gets overly heavy but does have a bit of energy to it. They usually go for the melody first and foremost. I thought each song was strong on this album and definitely will have great appeal to fans of 80's melodic hard rock. Obviously with Jim Peterik being involved in Survivor and this band you'll know what to expect. I dig these kind of records when my mood is one of wanting to just sit back, chill, and just absorb the depth of each track. I also like the retro feel to the keyboard sound this band uses. It feels familiar and after all of these years familiar is a great thing. Superb AOR music!
Release Date: October 9, 2020