My initial look at what was to come in the remainder of 2013 was based purely around albums that had confirmed release dates, that we knew would see the light of day over the next few months. But I inevitably missed a few out and in addition, I’ve been hearing a few rumours from various sources about possible releases on the horizon. So, here’s possibly a more intriguing (and potentially inaccurate) quick second part of my look at what’s to come later in the year.
For those who missed the original post, it can be found here: 2013 Is Not Finished Yet.
Fleshgod Apocalypse – “Labyrinth”
Just around the corner, Italian extreme symphonic metal band Fleshgod Apocalypse are due to release their third full-length release, “Labyrinth”. I’ve already heard this for reviewing purposes and can confirm that if you’re looking for an unrelenting and extreme metal listening experience with plenty of overblown cinematic bombast, this could be the album for you.
Iced Earth – “Plagues Of Babylon”
Where the hell is the hype for this? Maybe it is because the last album from the US power metallers was only released last year and therefore no-one expected a follow-up so soon. Whatever the reason, I only stumbled upon this by accident whilst researching something else.
“Dystopia” was the first to feature ex-Into Eternity vocalist Stu Block after the comings and goings of Matt Barlow. The guy did a great job on his debut outing with Schaffer and Co., fitting the band like a glove. The music itself was strong and so I naturally have high hopes for “Plagues Of Babylon”. Certain sources suggest an October release date, although this has yet to be confirmed.
Vanden Plas – “Chronicles Of The Immortals – Netherworld”
A new album has been written and recorded. There’s a track-listing too. However, no artwork has been unveiled and there’s no official release date according to the band themselves on their official website. Personally, I hope we see the new material sooner rather than later as the last couple of albums, “The Seraphic Clockwork” in particular, are fantastic slabs of crunchy, bombastic and epic melodic prog metal.
Pain Of Salvation – “Falling Home”
Now this is a mysterious one.I had heard definite rumours of a new album on the horizon and went off to investigate. However, any buzz seems to be muted and there is little by the way of official confirmation, aside from a small post on the band’s facebook page. Nevertheless, it appears we’re in for an acoustic album in a shared CD/DVD format.
I must admit that the last few albums from Daniel Gildenlow and Co. have left me a little cold. Pretty much abandoning their more metallic roots, Pain Of Salvation have ventured down a much lighter path, to the farthest reaches of prog rock, where inspiration has been drawn from many different genres along the way. However, the band’s earlier material is so magnificent that it is hard not to be interested when there’s talk of a new album.
Devin Townsend – “Casualties Of Cool”
The workaholic genius that is Devin Townsend inevitably features in this list. When was the last year that he didn’t I ask you?!
“Casualities Of Cool” is apparently a dark acoustic project, stylistically somewhere between “Ki” and “Ghost”, featuring vocalist Ché Aimee Dorval. As always, I’ll be interested in anything the mad Canadian produces, although my heart is set on a second instalment of “Ziltoid” and I’m hoping it sees the light of day soon.
Ayreon – “The Theory Of Everything”
Arjen Lucassen is, much like Devin above, a musical workaholic. His latest offering has been announced as being another trip into the world of Ayreon. I’m a fan of pretty much everything that Arjen has created over the years but Ayreon is arguably my favourite project.
There’s no official word yet on a release date or just as significantly, little knowledge on which other musicians are involved in the project. However, with a bit of luck, a range of some of the most talented and recognisable rock and metal vocalists will play their parts just as they did in previous episodes of Ayreon. Fingers crossed.