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Phil Kane

phil kane

Here you are then boys and girls. Get your air Strats out because you've got yourselves a real live neighbour baiter here.

astral doors jerusalem

Astral Doors should be huge and why they are not is a bit of mystery but if Jerusalem, their sixth album, does not catapult them into the mainstream Metal consciousness then nothing will. It is a quite delicious chunk of good old fashioned keyboard laced Heavy Metal that the mighty Dio pioneered.

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'Jerusalem' is one of the heaviest things Astral Doors has done. It's got a big chunky sound and a bang-up production job and opener 'Seventh Crusade' leaves you in no doubt of the album's intentions, instantly grabbing you by the grits and not letting go for the remaining fifty minutes.

Killer tracks? Well, the aforementioned 'Seventh Crusade' would certainly be a good place to start and I reckon 'Child Of Rock 'n Roll' has the accessibility to make it a future stage favourite.

Then there is the excitable gallop of 'With A Stranger's Eyes', 'Babylon Rise' and 'Operation Freedom'. In fact, there is not a bad track on here and it is quite possible that your air guitar will not be going back in it's case until the album has played itself out.

It is not perfect though. 'Jerusalem' thunders along with little variation and were it not for 'Lost Crucifix' offering a respite to the metallic charge, the album would come close to sounding a bit samey. Still bloody loud though.

The other criticism is that the band does not have the momentum of innovation and whilst not being a Dio clone 'Jerusalem' does tend to stick to the template pretty closely which could hamstring them if they are not careful.

That aside, with 'Jerusalem', Astral Doors have a damn good go at filling the huge void left by the passing of Ronnie James Dio, which in my book is no bad thing.

So if you are still grieving the loss of great man, Jerusalem should go some way to numbing the pain.

Don't bugger about, get it.




Wacken Winter Nights 2018 takes place between February 23rd and 25th 2018 and the great news is that you can now experience a full-on, top class German Metal Festival easily and affordably.

It only takes an hour to fly to Hamburg from London and we've had longer journeys than that within the capital and they were certainly more expensive than the £33 air ticket that just appeared in our 'flights to Wacken Winter Nights' search.


Wacken Winter Nights is organised by the same team who are responsible for the world's greatest Metal festival, Wacken-Open-Air and the 2018 bill includes Skyclad, Orphaned Land, Elvenking, Finntroll, Grave Digger, Aeverium, Comes Vagantes, Coppelius, Corvus Corax, Die Pressgëng, Elvellon, Heimataerde, Hell-O-Matic, Ignis Fatuu, Ingrimm, Irdorath, Johnny Deathshadow, Krayenzeit, Letzte Instanz, Mr Hurley und die Pulveraffen, Pampatut, Pat Razket, Schandmaul, Sündenrausch, The Aberlour's, The Moon And The Nightspirit, Torfrock, Visions Of Atlantis, Vroudenspil, Wind Rose and more.

Besides this rich billing of superb Metal bands, there is so much more to see in the festival area including the medieval market and also the walking acts and jugglers you will meet at the theme worlds, including Robert Blake, three-time World Cup winner of street magic.

Wacken Winter Nights is something not to be missed and you can check out the amazing ticket and accommodation prices right here.

We just priced up the whole four day trip with hotels, flights, shuttles and festival tickets for less than £300 and we don't think you will get a better value festival than that, anywhere.


MetalTalk recently sat down with Wacken founder and owner Thomas Jensen and that interview will be online next week and it's a fascinating insight into how Wacken originated from nothing to become the world's premiere Heavy Metal event.


Wacken 2018 takes place from 2nd to 4th August 20218 and as with Wacken Winter Nights, if you have never experienced all it has to offer, then you owe it to yourself to remedy that.

Already announced for Wacken 2018 are Judas Priest, Nightwish, Running Wild (exclusive), Arch Enemy, Dirkschneider, Doro (Special Anniversary Show), In Extremo, Sepultura, Amorphis, Amaranthe, Firewind, W.A.R., Belphegor, Mantar, Knorkator, Deserted Fear, Watain, Night Demon, Epica, Knorkator, Belphegor, Firewind, Deserted Fear and many more and we'll have more Wacken 2018 announcements during December.

As well as being the greatest Heavy Metal festival in the world, it is without a doubt the Mecca of Metal and the one thing that every single person who loves our music should have on their bucket list.

For 2018, MetalTalk have joined forces with Wacken-Open-Air to help you get to Wacken easily and inexpensively and you can peruse the ticket and travel options right here.

If you are interested in going to Wacken 2018 and have questions, please fill out the form below and we will contact you with answers to all your enquiries. You are under no obligation whatsoever by filling this form out. We won't add you to any mailing lists or send you loads of spam - all we will do is help you get to Wacken as easily and inexpensively as possible.



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