Tag Archives: music

Favourite Rock and Metal Albums of 2016 Vol. 2

We are now five months into 2017, where I have had the chance to listen to more albums released last year. And so I have come to realise that my list of favourite 2016 rock/metal albums was woefully incomplete. 

Thankfully, there is no hard and fast rule that forbids a very belated follow-up post. Not for me, anyway. If there is anything I’ve learnt from Marvel’s raging success, it is that a Volume 2 fixes everything. What better way to kick it off than some new noise? 

Starting with:

10. Dorothy – ROCKISDEAD

The title ROCKISDEAD is a pure fib. Not that we mind at all. From the stompin’ proclamation of Raise Hell, to the southern echoes in Gun in My Hand, Dorothy‘s debut album impresses like few others can, leaving us ravenous for more.

Goodbye naysayers. Long live rock n’ roll, thanks to this hell-raising headbanger and self-confessed snack devourer. Newcomer Dorothy Martin has reignited the rock n’ roll scene in a big way, with her fervent powerhouse vocals tailor-made for modern blues.

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Movie Review: Heavy Metal (1981)

Heavy Metal (dir. Gerald Potterton, 1981) – A glowing green orb terrorises a young girl with bizarre stories of dark fantasy, eroticism and horror.


Looking for 90 minutes of pure fun? Keep an open mind, and turn the rock n’ roll attitude up to 11.



If you want blood, you’ve got it. Heavy Metal is here for the leather-clad crowd, with its fantasy mash of virgins, vamps, and that red red kroovy. In the perceived spirit of the male-dominated genre, this sensual and violent anthology embraces the full-blown madness of Heavy Metal magazine, where the staffer’s wild imagination turns into reel reality.

A magical orb kickstarts the strange affair. Proclaimed as the sum of all evils, it sets the tone straight from the get-go. Much of the narrative looks like someone had thrown some 70s album covers, sci-fi comics, wet dreams, and some cheese into a blender, then went along with it. Out comes a slew of adolescent fantasies and erotic adventures, brought to life with charming old-school animation.

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Favourite Rock and Metal Albums of 2016

In 2016 alone, we lost Prince, David Bowie, Glenn Frey, Scotty Moore, Leonard Cohen, George Michael, and a great many music legends. For a time, this really seems like the year that music died.

Still, we look at the bright side, for the year has been good to audiophiles too. The rock releases this year have been nothing but stunning, be it from new or veteran bands. As 2016 comes to a close, I review my overworked Spotify app and list ten of my favourite new albums, out of at least a good twenty. Rock is dead? I think not, Gene Simmons.

Enjoy the read, and listen:

10. Jessikill – Metal Knights

Far from her X-Factor days, Jessica Marie Espinoza has long since traded her pop hits for heavier originals in Hessler. Yet it is in young metal quartet Jessikill, where her powerhouse vocals finds her rightful place. With echoes of Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, Metal Knights gives her talent adequate room to shine. The band does more than well to accompany.

Bassist Arturo Alvarado and drummer Alan Cisneros lay down bold notes and powerful rhythms, as guitar virtuoso Jyro Alejo leads a stunning shred fest atop like no other. That is, except perhaps for his former Immortal Guardian band mate Gabriel Guardian, who shreds on guitar and keyboards. At the same time.

What a legend.

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Download Festival: Heavy Metal Mecca

Friday, 10 June 2016

Wear wellies, alliterated advice fell on stubborn deaf ears as we lived to regret the mud that will seep into our fortunately waterproof* boots.

This was not how the day started. Earlier that morning, throngs of black-clad metalheads had happily settled on stretches of dry ground and green grass at Donington Park.

Then, torrents of rain poured in the way only British weather could. Soon, we were wading to the Lemmy stage through wet, thick soil, unprecedented in my twenty-five years of city life…

And it was worth it.

* Note: Alysa insists on clarifying that mud did not seep through our boots, but had entered from the open top, ergo, Columbia delivered on its waterproof promise. Choose Columbia.

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Movie Review: Metallica – Through The Never (2013)

Metallica: Through The Never (dir. Nimród Antal, 2013) – Young roadie Trip is on the way to deliver some cargo when he crashes his way into a surreal, alternate reality.


If you can relate to the man in the opening scene screaming “METALLICA!” in the parking lot, this one’s for you.



Two months ago, Metallica played one hell of a show right here in Singapore. I watched them through tiny gaps between waving arms of the 40,000-strong crowd. What a sweaty and glorious day.

Then came my second chance to see them live again, this time up close… All right, fine. So it was just on the silver screen this time. Seated, lip synching and not throwing our metal horns up? This feels almost illegal. All this mild nodding is nothing compared to an actual live experience. But with the awesome scale and energetic presentation, Metallica’s latest concert movie comes pretty close.

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