......Toine gives a brief run-down of other CD releases ......

[Update: October 09, 2018]

Spring 2018 - Summer 2018:

AETERNITAS - Tales Of The Grotesque (Massacre/Suburban)
This German metal band switched from gothic metal to melodic metal in the way that bands like NIGHTWISH, XANDRIA and EPICA tend to sound. (7 points)

AGRIMONIA - Awaken (Southern Lord/Konkurrent)
Swedish death metal band that presents their fourth album. You will wake up with a smile, when you hear the dynamic vocal parts of Christina on this album. (7 points)

ALCYONA - Trailblazer (Pride & Joy/Bertus)
ALCYONA is the Russian equivalent of NIGHTWISH. With female singer Olga Terentyeva and keyboard player Natalia Malei, they have two female band members. I love the artwork of their debut album very much! (7 points)

ALMANAC - Kingslayer (Nuclear Blast/PIAS)
Jeanette Marchenka is the female voice on this second album by former RAGE guitar player Victor Smolski. He also received help of David Readman (PINK CREAM 69) and Andy B. Franck (BRAINSTORM) on this power metal album. (7 points)

ALWAID - The Machine And The Beast (Valkyrie Rising/Sonic Rendezvous)
The second album by this French metal band shows that the band has made quite some progress. Marie Perrier sounds like Sharon den Adel (WITHIN TEMPTATION) at times, but there are some wild grunts here as well. A very pleasant surprise. (7 points)

AMBERIAN DAWN - Darkness To Eternity (Napalm/PIAS)
Capri is the front lady of this Finish metal band and she really makes the difference on this new release by AMBERIAN DAWN. Their music is of good quality, but her great vocals bring it to a much higher level. (7 points)

AMORPHIS - Queen Of Time (Nuclear Blast/ADA)
Anneke van Giersbergen is the guest vocalist on the new album of AMORPHIS. Her recognizable vocals are a welcome addition to their sound. (7 points)

ANGEL NATION - Aeon (Inner Wound/Sonic Rendezvous)
ENKELIANTION changed their name to ANGEL NATION. Elina Siirala became the new singer of LEAVES EYES, but before she made that move, she recorded "Aeon" with her old band. Especially because of the great vocals of Siirala, this has become a real strong album, which is very much worth checking out. (7 points)

ANGRA - OMNI (Ear Music/Edel/V2)
Alissa White Gluz is a guest vocalist on the new album of this amazing Brazilian power metal band, that features Fabio Lione (ex-RHAPSODY) on vocals. (8 points)

ARKONA - Khram (Napalm/PIAS)
The pagan metal band ARKONA has pushed away the rock level a bit and sounds much more heavy each album. The vocals of Masha have become louder on this fifth release by this Russian band. (7 points)

ATROCITY - Okkult II (Massacre/Suburban)
ATROCITY mixes raw death metal with melodic gothic metal parts for many years now. The groove is still there. This time they called in the help of Marc Grewe (MORGOTH) and L.G. Petrov (ENTMBED A.D.). Katie Halliday takes care of the slightly occult sounding atmosphere here. (7 points)

AURI - Auri (Nuclear Blast/PIAS)
Tuomas Holopainen and Troy Donockley of NIGHTWISH join forces with Johanna Kurkela (Tuomas wife) on this debut album. These rock songs could be the ultimate soundtrack for your fantasy dreams. (7 points)

AXEGRINDER - Satori (Rise Above/Suburban)
There are female vocals on this crust thrash release. This is AXEGRINDER's first album in twenty-eight years. Welcome back. (7 points)

ROBIN BECK - Love Is Coming (Frontiers/PIAS)
Pop and rock come together on the follow up of "Underneath". The songs contain more guitar and in combination with the great vocal qualities of Robin, this results in another great album. James Christian (HOUSE OF LORDS) added a helping hand on this album as well. (7 points)

BEYOND GOD - Dying To Feel Alive (Painted Bass)
This is a Dutch band, that stays true to their roots. This is their second album with female front lady Meryl Foreman. If you like a good mix of THE GATHERING and EVANESCENCE, you can't go wrong here. (7 points)

BLACK MOTH - Anatomical Venus (Candlelight/Caroline)
Frederica Gialanta is the new guitar player in BLACK MOTH, that rocks so much harder now. Harriet Hyde's vocals are the cherry on this tasteful cake. (8 points)

BLEEDING GODS - Dodekathlon (Nuclear Blast/PIAS)
Dutch thrash death metal outfit that sounds very promising on their second full-length album. Gea Mulder takes care of the all destroying bass parts, so you have been warned! (7 points)

DANIEL CAVANAGH - Monochrome (KScope/Bertus)
ANATHEMA member Daniel Cavanagh presents his solo CD, on which he called in the help of Anneke van Giersbergen on vocals and Anna Phoebe on violin. When you're in the right (read: romantic) mood, you will definitely have a good time with this one. (7 points)

CHRCH - Light Will Consume Us All (Tribes Of Neurot/Konkurrent)
CHRCH plays lengthy and complex doomy songs, topped by the beautiful vocals of Eva Rose. You'd better be warned upfront for the light, because it will consume us all. (7 points)

COLLIBUS - Trusting The Illusion (No Dust/Suburban)
This is a surprising good album with the outstanding vocals of Gemma Fox. If you never trusted illusions, you definitely will after listening to this album. (8 points)

CORONATUS - Secrets Of Nature (Massacre /Suburban)
Mareike Makoscu is one of the guest vocalists on this concept album about nature. If you like the symphonic, gothic and bombastic sound of a band like for example THERION, you are about to discover the secrets of nature with this new releases. (7 points)

CRIPPLED BLACK PHOENIX - Horrific Honorifics (Season Of Mist/Bertus)
There are six covers on this EP. They pay tribute to bands like ARBOURETUM, SWANS, MAGNOLIA ELECTRIC Co, NOMEANSNO, THE GOD MACHINE and THE SENSATIONAL ALEX HARVEY BAND. (8 points)

CRITICAL MESS - Human Praey (Metalville/PIAS)
Don't get into the claws of Britta, vocalist of CRITICAL MESS, because you will soon be her "Human Praey". The extreme brutal death metal debut album of the band sounds really vicious, so you have been warned! (7 points)

CREMATORY - Oblivion (Steamhammer/SPV/Suburban)
This is the fourth album by CREMATORY and they’re still going strong. Long term fans can buy the album blindfolded. The band has recruited two new guitarists but they didn’t change the sound of this German band in any way. (7 points)

DIAMANTE - Coming In Hot (Eleven Seven/ADA)
This precious little diamond is coming in hot with some nice pop rock tunes on her debut album. HALESTORM fans might want to check this out. She also covers HEART's "Crazy On You", which shows that she doesn't only look fancy and pretty, but she also knows her classics very well. (7 points)

DOWN 'N' OUTZ - My Regeneration, The Further Adventures Of... (Frontiers/PIAS)
Joe Elliot (DEF LEPPARD) relives the MOTT THE HOOPLE material even more on this second album by his solo project, which includes Share Ross (VIXEN) on bass guitar. The HOOPLE's legacy is brought back to life again. (7 points)

DREAM OCEAN - Lost Love Symphony (Painted bass)
This German/Turkish symphonic metal outfit, fronted by Basak Yiva, created a nice debut album. Mark Jansen (MAYAN/EPICA) and Jake E (CYHRA/ex-AMARANTHE) put some extra power on this album with their guest appearances. (7 points)

ELECTRIC WIZARD - Wizard Bloody Wizard (Spinefarm/Universal)
We don't have to tell you in which direction this album goes. If you don't know The Wizard right now, it's no use reading these lines. A safe buy for every ELECTRIC WIZARD and SABBATH adept. (8 points)

ELVENSTORM - The Conjuring (Massacre/Suburban)
Power metal band from France ELVENSTORM presents their new album, including a new drummer and bass player. Lauren Lombard is still behind the mike. On this album, the band shows a more melodic sound here and there. It feels like a new, fresh start. (7 points)

ENTHEOS - Dark Future (Spinefar /Caroline)
Chaney Grabb is the singer in this Californian metal band that puts a lot of variation in their experimental music. Sometimes less is more, but everything is performed very well. This is not just easy background music and it just represents the dark future. (7 points)

FOLLOW THE CIPHER - Follow The Cipher (Nuclear Blast/PIAS)
Swedish metal band that has a wonderful siren in their ranks, called Linda Toni Grahn. At the end of this first release from Nuclear Blast, there's a very cool tribute song of "Carolus Rex" (SABATON). (8 points)

FROZEN CROWN - The Fallen King (Scarlet/Bertus)
This melodic power metal band from Italy presents their debut album. Ten songs, worthy of forty-five minutes with some special attention for the seventeen year old guitar player Talia Bellazecca. (7 points)

GRAVESHADOW - Ambitions Price (M-Theory/Bertus)
The second album of this American band is less surprising than their debut. Heather still knows to convince though and the artwork of the CD is really beautiful. (7 points)

GRUESOME - Twisted Prayers (Relapse/PIAS)
GRUESOME released another album based on a DEATH album to pay respect to the heritage of Chuck Schuldiner. "Twisted Prayers" contains a guest appearance of James Murphy and closes with two cover songs: "Legions of Doom" (MANTAS) and "The Exorcist" (POSSESSED). A true must have for all fans of DEATH and people who like twisted prayers. (8 points)

HAEMORRHAGE - We Are The Gore (Relapse/PIAS)
Spanish gore grind formation HAEMORRHAGE present their seventh album. It contains a lot of guest appearances and with guitarist Ana Belén de López, they will spread a lot of sick goriness over Madrid. And they are damn proud of that, because they are the gore. (7 points)

HALLATOR - No Stars Upon The Bridge (Svart/Bertus)
This album is a tribute to Juka Raivin's wife Aleah Starbridge, who died of cancer at the age of thirty-nine. She's to be heard on this dark tribute. Other female vocal parts on this album are performed by Heike Langhans (DRACONIAN). (7 points)

HEXED - Netherworld (ViciSolum/Suburban)
Married couple Tina and Stellan Gunnarsson present their debut album here. The Swedish rockers called in the help of Thomas Vikstrom (THERION) for some vocal support. Let's get rocked to the sound of this very promising debut album. (7 points)

ISSA - Run With The Pack (Frontiers/PIAS)
The two biggest eye-catchers on this beautiful album are singer Issa and guitarist Simone Mularoni. The highlight here is a duet with Dean Castronovo ("Sacrifice Me"). AOR and melodic rock fans can dig in here with eyes closed. (8 points)

IZEGRIM - Beheaded By Thrust (independent)
On this four track EP. IZEGRIM proves that they really belong to one of the leading death thrash metal bands in Holland. Don't lose your head when banging to the brutal sound of these four tracks. (8 points)

KAMELOT - The Shadow Theory (Napalm/PIAS)
The last few records of KAMELOT have some female vocals. This time you can hear the vocal skills of Jennifer Haben (BEYOND THE BLACK) and Lauren Hart (ONCE HUMAN) on their brand new masterpiece "The Shadow Theory". (8 points)

KILLING GANDHI - Aspirations Of Failure (Massacre/Suburban)
There are some female vocals on the second album by this Danish melodic death metal band. Only interesting for those who want to have everything with female vocals on it. (7 points)

KINGFISHER SKY - Technicolor Eyes (KFS/Suburban)
Variation is the keyword on this new album and the vocals of Judith Rijnveld is the cherry on this tasteful cake, which has got many flavors to offer. Her mother took care of the colorful artwork on this album. (8 points)

KISSIN'DYNAMITE - Ecstacy (Metal Blade/PIAS)
Anna Brunner of EXIT EDEN plays a guest role on the title track of this southern German melodic metal outfit. (7 points)

LAST DAYS OF EDEN - Chrysalis (Pride & Joy/Bertus)
This Spanish band has NIGHTWISH as their main influence. Ladi Ani is a good singer but the band should focus more on songwriting as they lack a bit of creativity. (7 points)

LENORE S. FINGERS - All Things Lost On Earth (My Kingdom/Sonic Rendezvous)
The new album of this gothic, doom outfit sounds a bit heavier than their debut release. Thumbs up for Frederica Lenore Catalano and her guys! (7 points)

LESOIR - IV Latitude (Gentle Art Of Music/Sonic Rendezvous)
Sit down, relax and enjoy the beauty of this Dutch progressive rock outfit. The female vocals are from Maartje Meessen and Eleen Bartholomeus. Great music for a lazy Sunday afternoon. (7 points)

LIZZARD - Shift (Metalville/PIAS)
Katy Elwell is the female drummer of LIZZARD, that hails from France and present their third album here. Be prepared for an art rock experience with some soft spots and not too much musical explosions. ( 6 points)

MADAME MAYHEM - Ready For Me (Metalville/PIAS)
Hard rock band MADAME MAYHEM is fronted by Madame Mayhem herself. The impressive guest list is left behind this time and we can only write down the name of Clint Lowery (SEVENDUST) on guitar, Corey Lowery (STUCK MOJO) on bass and Troy McLawhorn (EVANESCENCE) on guitar on this solid hard rock album that has some brilliant artwork. (7 points)

MAJOR DENIAL - Duchess Of Sufferings (No Dust/Suburban)
Nektarios Ntagkas is the leading man behind this melodic metal outfit. Lisette van de Berg (AYREON) is a guest singer on this nice, melodic band. (7 points)

Female guitarist Jen Majura replaced Terry Balsamo in EVANESCENCE in 2015, but she also played on the albums of BLIND GUARDIAN and RAGE, to name but a few. On this second solo album, she plays most guitar solos and also handles the lead vocals. She also invited a few guests, namely Jeff Waters (ANNIHILATOR), Alex Skolnick (TESTAMENT) and Mattias IA Eklundh (FREAK KITCHEN). Definitely worth checking out! (7 points)

MARMOZETS - Knowing What You Know Now (Roadrunner/Warner Music)
MARMOZETS sounds less energetic and dynamic on this second brand new album. There is still a lot to enjoy though. 'Becca' Macintyre is the leading lady of this English rock band with some punky sidesteps. (7 points)

MELTED SPACE - Darkening Light (Sensory/Bertus)
On this third rock and metal opera album, we hear female guest vocals of Clementine Delauney (VISIONS OF ATLANTIS and EXIT EDEN) and Ailyn Giménez Garcia (SIRENIA). (7 points)

METALITE - Heroes In Time (Inner Wound/Sonic Rendezvous)
Emma Bensing is the front lady of this Swedish power metal band. Their energetic sound also contains electronic and pop elements at times for the variation in their sound. (7 points)

METAPRISM - Catalyst To Awakening (Graviton/PIAS)
Wild, loud riffs go very well together with the heavy grunts, while normal powerful vocals go together with some melodic hooks and power ballads. In fact, you have got all kinds of everything with METAPRISM. Theresa Snmith is the female vocalist here. (7 points)

MIDNATTSOL - The Aftermath (Napalm/PIAS)
Carmen Eline Espwnaes and Liv Kristine Espenaes are the two blonde nymphs, who share the vocal duties on 'The Aftermath". Their gothic metal is mixed with folk and if you like a more modest approach, you will surely enjoy the lovely sounds by this German based outfit. (7 points)

MISSION IN BLACK - Anthems Of A Dying Breed (El Puerto/Suburban)
Becky Gaber is the front lady of this German speed metal band , that consists of three ex-members of SPELLBOUND and one of MYSTIC PROPHECY. The Anthems of a dying breed they present here are high enjoyable. (7 points)

MY INDIGO - My Indigo (BMG)
This is the solo album of Sharon den Adel, the singer of WITHIN TEMPTATION. Don't expect any WT related tunes, because this is a very catchy album with pop songs, but still of a very high quality. (7 points)

NE OBLIVISICARIS - Uru (Season Of Mist/Bertus)
The progressive sound of this Australian band contains female vocals as well. It’s only meant for die hard collectors, that want everything with female vocals. Some real extreme stuff!! (6 points)

NIGHTWISH - Decades (Nuclear Blast/PIAS)
This is a twenty-two song double disc 'best of' CD of NIGHTWISH ranging all singers and the complete career of this Finish melodic metal band. It's a shame, that there are no interesting bonus tracks added on this good overview. (8 points)

PHANTOM ELITE - Wasteland (Painted Bass)
Sander Gommans (AFTER FOREVER and TRILLIUM) teamed up with Brazilian singer Marina La Torraca, which resulted in "Wasteland". Sander played some instrumental parts on guitar and bass on this interesting debut album. (7 points)

POWER QUEST - Sixth Dimension (Inner Wound/Sonic Rendezvous)
Anette Olzon is the guest vocalist on this new album of this English power metal band. (7 points)

PRIMAL FEAR - Best Of Fear (Frontiers/PIAS)
On this 'best of' album of PRIMAL FEAR, we hear the female input of guest singers Simone Simons (EPICA) and Liv Kristine (ex-LEAVES EYES, MIDNATTSOL). There are also three new songs here and one of them is the HEART cover "If Looks Could Kill". (8 points)

PSYCHEDELIC WITCHCRAFT - Sound Of The Wind (Listenable Records)
An Italian throwback in time is what "Sound Of The Wind" is all about. Virginia Monti is the front lady of this band, that knows to mix all these retro rock songs in a very exciting way. You won’t be disappointed. (8 points)

PUREST OF PAIN - Solipsis (independent)
This is the solo album of DELAIN, MAYAN, THE GENTLE STORM guitar player Merel Bechtold. She can be really proud of "Solipsis", which contains some melodic metal. Let it grow on you and it will take you by surprise for sure. (8 points)

QFT - Live In Space (Despotz/Suburban)
Linnea Vikstrom's band is called QFT, which stands for Quantum Field Theory. She sounds very different than with THERION. It's up to you which you like best. (7 points)

REXORIA - Queen Of Light (Pride & Joy/Bertus)
REXORIA presents a nice melodic metal album. Frida Ohlin is the female front lady of this Swedish metal outfit. (7 points)

ROLO TOMASSI - Time Will Die & Love Will Bury It (Holy Roar Music/Bertus)
It's almost impossible to categorize the music by this British outfit. So if you're looking for adventure and excitement, variation in styles, topped by the great vocal abilities of Eva Spence, then you have come to the right place. (8 points)

RSO - Radio Free America (BMG)
RSO stands for Ritchie Sambora & Orianthi), ex-guitarplayers of BON JOVI and ALICE COOPER. There is love in the air and here they like to express their emotion through poppy tunes. The cover of Sonny & Cher's "I Got You Babe" isn't a real hard rock classic either, as you would expect from these guitar wizards. (6 points)

SARKE - Viige Urh (Indie Recordings)
Doom metal band, that uses female vocals to create the right atmosphere. CELTIC FROST fans may find this an interesting release. (7 points)

SECRET RULE - The Key To The World (Pride & Joy/Bertus)
Angela Di Vincenzo is the frontlady of this DELAIN type of band. Hopefully, the band will show more of their own sound in the upcoming releases. Only then they can hold the real key to the world in their hands. (7 points)

SERENITY - Lionheart (Napalm/PIAS)
Natasja Koch takes care of the female vocal parts on a few songs of the sixth album by this metal band. (7 points)

SHADOWRISE - Shadowrise (Painted Bass)
Laura Guldermond and Jack Streat are the two vocalists of SHADOWRISE. Their melodic bombastic heavy metal sound on this album is a natural follow-up to their "Escape From Shadow Island" EP release. Nothing more and noething less. (7 points)

SINISTRO - Sague Cassia (Season Of Mist/Bertus)
Patricia Andrade is the female vocalist of this Portuguese doom metal band, that knows to build up some dark doomy atmospheres on their new album. (7 points)

Federica Lanna is the front lady of this gothic metal band, that surprised us with this nice new album. A very good second album by this Italian band. (7 points)

SOUL DRINKER - War Is Coming (El Puerto/Soulfood)
This is the debut album of MYSTIC PROPHECY guitar player Markus Pohl. Iris Boanta is the female singer of this new band, that sounds very progressive at times. Fans of MYSTIC PROPHECY can easily become SOULDRINKERS as well. (7 points)

The Duchess is the front lady of this British pop band that never gets really loud or exciting. The music is not bad at all, but just not interesting enough for Metal Maidens. (6 points)

SPIDERS - Killer Machine (Spinefarm/Caroline)
The Spiders stand with eight legs in the seventies. Ann-Sofie Hoyles is the front lady and the biggest eye-catcher of this British retro rock outfit. Old school hard rockers with a love for bluesy sidesteps will really dig this album. (8 points)

SPOTLIGHTS - Seismic (Ipecac Records/PIAS)
Sarah and Mario Quinterro from SPOTLIGHTS are hailing from Brooklyn, NY and this second album is filled with stoner rock with some exciting sidesteps. It sounds modest at times but heavy as hell on the other hand. Just try it. (7 points)

SUPERCHARGER - Real Machine (Gain/Sony Music)
Clare Cunningham (ex-THUNDERMOTHER vocalist) is a guest singer on the fourth album of this Danish hard rock outfit. Because of the powerful production this band doesn't actually sound like a real machine but more like a dynamic, well-oiled machine. (7 points)

TEMPERANCE - Of Jupiter And Moons (Scarlet/Bertus)
WITHIN TEMPTATION and NIGHTWISH can be seen as the main influences of this Italian melodic metal band. Alessia Scolletti is the new singer of the band and she really makes the difference here. (7 points)

TEMPLE - Design In Creation (Off The record Label/Clearspot)
Dutch death metal band, that presents the successor of the 2012 released "Structures In Chaos". Jessica Otten (DICTATED) is the female member of this furious death metal outfit, that likes to blast away in anger. Sometimes less is more. (7 points)

THE NIGHT FLIGHT ORCHESTRA - Sometimes The World Ain’t Enough (Nuclear Blast/ADA)
This band, including some female background singers and synths, takes back to the eighties and mixes disco, wave, punk and rock to a natural retro rock sound. (7 points)

THERION - Beloved Antichrist (Nuclear Blast/PIAS)
New magnum opus by Christofer Johnsson, who presents us a triple CD rock opera here. The story was based upon the book of Vladimir Solovyov, called "A Short Tale Of The Antichrist". We wish you a very pleasant three hour musical journey. (7 points)

THY CATAFALQUE - Geometria (Season Of Mist/Bertus)
Martina Horvath (NIBURTA) is once again the female guest vocalist on this new album of THY CATAFALQUE. On "Geometria", many music styles blend together very well. (7 points)

TRILLIUM - Tectonic (Frontiers/PIAS)
"Tectonic" sound a lot more heavy than Amanda Sommerville’s previous work. The album was recorded while she was pregnant. Both thumbs up for Amada and her husband Sander Gommans (ex-AFTER FOREVER). (7 points)

TURNSTILE- Time And Space (Roadrunner/Warner Music)
This is a hardcore band from Baltimore USA, presenting their second album, which contains many exciting sidesteps. Tina Halladay of SHEER MAGS performs some guest vocals in the song "Moon". (7 points)

TWO OF A KIND - Rise (Frontiers/PIAS)
This Dutch A.O.R. band has got two female vocalists in their ranks. This second album comes eleven years after their debut album "Two Of A Kind". Anita Craenmehr and Esther Brouns will make your thoughts go out to the magic sound of ROBIN BECK and HEART. We're glad that TWO OF A KIND has risen again. (8 points)

UNRULY CHILD - Unhinged Live From Milan (Frontiers/PIAS)
We really expected a much better live album by UNRULY CHILD. Marcie Free just hasn't got the perfect rock voice anymore and it's guitar player Bruce Gowdy that lifts this album up to an enjoyable height, as far as I'm concerned. The live show is also being captured on an enhanced DVD. (7 points)

VALENTINE - The Alliance (Valentine Music)
Robby Valentine is one of the most gifted musicians in the Dutch music scene. On his new album he presents a new mix of QUEEN, MUSE and TOTO influenced music. Maria Catharina (Schuitemaker) does the 'Ghost Of The Opera' voice on "Masters Of Our Minds". (7 points)

VAN CANTO - Trust in Rust (Nuclear Blast)
The covers "Ride The Sky" of HALLOWEEN and "Hells Bells" of AC/DC are two points of recognition, but this is still not enough to convince me of their strength. (5 points)

VENUES - Aspire (Arising Empire/ADA)
Nyves Krithindinou is the female vocalist of VENUES, who shares her skills with Robin Baumann on this new album. VENUES hails from the southern part of Germany. (7 points)

WINDS OF PLAGUE - Blood Of My Enemy (e One/SPV/Suburban)
There are some female guest vocals on this fifth album of WINDS OF PLAGUE. We only mention this one to be as complete as possible. (6 points)

WHYZDOM - As Time Turns To Dust (Scarlet/Bertus)
French symphonic metal band that puts a lot of variation in their songs. Marie MacLeod is the front lady here, who impresses very much with her vocal skills. (7 points)

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