Iron Fist Magazine

INTO BATTLE: THE DAHMERS

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“We were formed after a wild halloween party in late 2011. Karlsson [vocals/guitar] had a couple of songs recorded that I thought sounded cool and suggested that we rehearsed them to see how it all sounded with a full band. We met at a garage the next day hungover as hell and that’s it.” Tobias Augustsson is explaining how garage rock, horror punk, biker exploitation movie, booze hounds The Dahmers came into being. Last year’s debut ‘Demons’ twists The Stooges, Misfits, Thin Lizzy and Motörhead with fellow Swedes The Hellacopters.

“We have always listened to a lot of different music so we never decided that we should stick to one kind of genre or try to sound just like a specific band,” Tobias says of their pick ‘n’ mix punk rock sound. “The basic idea was to play loud and have a good time while doing so. We find inspiration in everything from old punk and ’70s rock to ’60s pop songs and much more. “There has always been bands around that aim towards sounding old school and that’s usually fine and we dig a lot of them as most of our favourite bands are old bands,” he continues of his homeland’s revolving … Read More

PLAY AND RECORD: THE HAMMERS OF MISFORTUNE MIX-TAPE

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We don’t want to make such a bold statement just past the halfway point, but Jesus H Cobbett, the latest Hammers Of Misfortune album, ‘Dead Revolution’ (via Metal Blade) will be hard to top in the end of year polls. If last album ’17th Street’ was HOM gone even more prog, ‘Dead Revolution’ is the band’s violent kneejerk reaction. It’s thrashy, it’s angry, it’s deadly – and that could be largely down to the fact that the band have been, in no particular order, involved in the Occupy movement which rightly has them mighty pissed-off, involved in a gnarly motorbike crash, losing sleep with the addition of a baby Cobbett, putting out crusty black metal under the guise of Vhöl, being kept busy with incredible death metal side-project Vastum, playing doom with The Worship Of Silence and joining Death Angel.

However all parties have regrouped for album number #6 (well, #7 if you count ‘Fields’ and ‘Church Of Broken Glass’ as two albums) and it’s amazing. Imagine Slough Feg gone even more bonkers; if Pink Floyd had a heavy metal cousin, it would be Hammers Of Misfortune. Mindblown by the layers on ‘Dead Revolution’ we just wanted to find out what the ingredients were … Read More

INTO BATTLE: SALEM’S POT

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Using an asylum as their rehearsal and recording space, and citing influences such as horror movies and Black Sabbath, you can almost imagine what Salem’s Pot are going to sound like before you even hit play. However, there is a rough charm to these Swedes that urges listeners not to dismiss them as just another trend-hopping ’70s garage rock rip-off just yet.

“It all started with just two of us watching old horror movies and listening to ’60 and ’70s music all day and night. We figured that we had to do something creative together since there wasn’t much more to do in a small, doomed town where no one wants to know you”, they explain when elaborating on how it all began. “There was only one of us who could play an instrument [that would be Knate on guitar!] and the other took care of the visuals and artwork. Along the way we stumbled over two freaks that could play bass and drums [that would be Direktörn and Peter] and then we recorded a demo [‘Sweeden’] at the asylum where we rehearse. Eventually the other one picked up an organ and some synthesizers and learned how to use them.”

A lack of … Read More

MAUSOLEUM GATE INTERVIEW: “CALL ME OLD FASHIONED BUT MUSIC FOR ME IS THE THING THAT COUNTS”

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When it comes to new bands who stand head and shoulders above the metal warrior brigade, Finland’s Mausoleum Gate are one of the first names that comes to mind. Their 2014 eponymous debut album was a shock to the system and of the best albums of that year. Now the band is back with a brand new 7” single (‘Metal And The Might’) so we took the chance to have a catch up with Count L.F. (guitars), Wicked Ischanius (bass so far, keyboards from now and on) and Oscar Razanez (drums)…

Two years after your debut album, how do you reflect back to those days and is there is something you might have changed? Count: I am very satisfied with the response. Absolutely better than we could expect. Our way of doing things is so different that one must be amazed at this response. I am also glad that we didn’t have to please anyone.We had basically a freedom to do what we like. Ischanius: I am still very very satisfied with the end product. It’s testimony of what Mausoleum Gate had been so far! Like with every release, it’s a product of its time and all the factors surrounding it. I personally always have a feeling … Read More

PLAY AND RECORD: THE GOLDEN GRASS MIXTAPE

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Providing the hazy, laid-back, psychedelic rock anthems of the summer, Brooklyn’s The Golden Grass have been on the road since the release of April’s ‘Coming Back Again’ (Listenable Records). Desperate to know what was on their stereo when recording their second full-length (they even told us which songs in particular each song inspired!) and what’s been playing in their van on those long road trips between gigs, the band made us the perfect mix-tape for summer nights.

1. The Move – ‘Lookin On’ 1970 “It’s amazing how HEAVY The Move were! They were one of our main influences when we formed the group and are a constant inspiration to us. ‘Lookin On’ is filled with monstrous riffs, killer guitar harmonies and soaring powerful vocals, not to mention the Eastern-tinged psychedelic odyssey in 5/4 that closes out the tune.” Song of relevance: See It Through

2. Jefferson Airplane – ‘Today’ 1967 “It’s just a love song – which this group was surprisingly adept at – that is both gentle and powerful, with wonderful vocal harmonies and chord passages, particularly on the chorus and at the coda. But the clincher for me is that atmospheric two-note modal flourish that Jorma Kaukonen provides – so simple … Read More

CAUCHEMAR INTERVIEW: “WE LOVE FRENCH METAL FROM THE ’80S”

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It’s no surprise that we love CAUCHEMAR here at Iron Fist. The Montreal metal machine are fronted by the one and only Annick Giroux, author of our World Downfall column. But nepotism be damned, even if Annick wasn’t part of the family we’d still be a sucker of their Sabbath meets Mercyful Fate meets Sortilege meets Blue Oyster Cult vibes. With a new album ‘Chappelle Ardente’ out now we look back to Iron Fist #6 (Summer 2013) when Dave Sherwood had a dangerous meeting with the band around the release of their Nuclear War Now! Productions debut ‘Tenebrario’

We know you as our world correspondent, but not for your own music – tell us about Cauchemar Annick: “Cauchemar started as a doom metal project between myself and the guitarist, François [Patry]. At first, I wanted to play bass, but we couldn’t find a vocalist so I decided to sing instead. We were aiming to play ‘trad’ doom but our heavy metal influences took over and it ended up being some sort of bastard mix of heavy/doom. We recorded and released our mini-album ‘La Vierge Noire’ in 2010, and did our first three gigs in Canada afterwards. In January, 2011, myself and the guitarist … Read More

OMEN INTERVIEW: “I GAVE IT EVERYTHING” KENNY POWELL PUTS THE RECORD STRAIGHT ON ‘HAMMER DAMAGE’

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While we tend to bathe in our own homeland’s glory, let’s not forget that the United States had a great history of heavy metal too. During the 1980s, legends were forged in every state, city, neighbourhood, and OMEN is one of the best bands of that era with three landmark albums (‘Battle Cry’ from 1984, ‘Warning Of Danger’ 1985 and ‘The Curse’ 1986).

Formed when Kenny Powell left Savage Grace in 1984, the band were featured that year on Metal Massacre IV and catapulted themselves into the heavy metal pantheon. The band have sporadically attempted to recapture that initial spark, playing live as much as they can in front of rabid fans who worship their early heavy metal, proto power metal mastery, but now in 2016 they’re back again with a new album ‘Hammer Damage’.

Getting a not so favourable review from our own website, Kenny got in touch to put the record straight and get a re-appraisal. We sent Andreas Andreou to beg our pardon…

Omen founder, guitarist and main songwriter, Kenny Powell, has a lot to tell us about the controversial new album Andreas, thank you for giving me a chance to maybe clear the air on the making of ‘Hammer … Read More

HEAVY MAIDEN IN CONVERSATION WITH…. DORO PESCH

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Following on from her interview with the one and only Lita Ford we unleashed our metal maiden on THE metal maiden DORO PESCH to talk about her new 2-disc DVD ‘Strong And Proud’, her fans, her soul, smoking a pack of cigarettes in an hour with Lemmy and never doing karaoke!

Doro Pesch is all she is! 30 years on she reigns ‘Strong And Proud’, weaving her metal magik throughout the lands. She rules with a very metal but kind heart! In fact, it actually felt more like we were talking through a dream catcher than a phone line. I felt captured by her warrior spirit, innate positivity and wisdom; only Doro is real!

So how in the hell does this Teutonic maiden manage to keep on doing it or ‘’rockin’ zie haus” as she calls it?!? Hot rockin’ vocals, hot rockin’ headbangin’, martial arts, her commitment as an animal activist and UBER ALLES, her fans sure as hell have something to do with! (I guess you’ll have to watch the movie to find out…)

So who RSVP’d for the extensive one year ‘Strong And Proud’ tour party and where else but Wacken would be more apt for Doro to start spreading her unholy love? … Read More

HIT THE LIGHTS: KING DIAMOND AND ANGEL WITCH GIVE LONDON A MASTERCLASS IN HEAVY METAL

Photo by Antony Roberts. Copyright Antony Roberts for Iron Fist

KING DIAMOND + ANGEL WITCH THE FORUM, LONDON JUNE 2016

It’s been a long time since since King Diamond played a theatre show in London. The last time was a sweltering night in June 2006, yet almost a decade to the day he’s back and this time he’s not some cult, underground curiosity. Years of touring the big international festivals and a surging interest in traditional heavy metal has meant the corpse-painted, baby-wielding, ghost-believing raconteur has become a Danish cultural icon on a par with moody gothic crime dramas, bacon baps and controversial doodles of religious prophets.

The King, as he’s affectionately known in Iron Fist circles, does not elicit the kind of fair-weather fan merely intrigued by his kitsch theatrics and soaring voice, they are devotees and tonight, The Forum, a grand proscenium arched arena worthy of the Mercyful Fate mainman, has gathered the familiar and the frenzied into its halls. What is so great about intimate theatre shows is that while festivals are 30,000 strong, the few – in comparison – that are here tonight are the dedicated ones and you can feel the energy brewing in the queue snaking around the venue.

In the run up to the concert the rumours of … Read More

HIT THE LIGHTS: BLITZKRIEG PLAY THEIR LOCAL

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BLITZKRIEG LIVE AT THE PENNY GILL, SPENNYMOOR JUNE 18 2016

It’s not very often you see a legendary NWOBHM band play in the back room of a small pub, in a small town, in North East England. Especially one that had such a notable and huge influence on the likes of Metallica, undeniably one of the biggest metal bands ever and even covered and recorded a cover of their self-titled classic anthem on their ‘Creeping Death’ EP way back in the early ’80s, playing it live well into the touring cycle for ‘Master Of Puppets’.

Along with bands such as Angel Witch, Diamond Head, Raven and Venom, Blitzkrieg were at the forefront of the early ’80s burgeoning heavy metal movement and have been recording albums, playing live and touring ever since. This was the second time the band played The Penny Gill, a small lively rock/biker pub in Spennymoor a small ex-mining community in County Durham. This was a no airs, no graces affair, as close and personal as you can get; no stage, barriers or security separating the band from the fans.

There was no support band either, this was merely an intimate warm-up show for the Garage Days Revisited festival in London … Read More