By Carl Begai
In 2006, long suffering Canadian cult favourites Eidolon released their seventh album, The Parallel Otherworld. The record unintentionally signalled the end of a decade-long career just when Eidolon had clearly hit their stride with Pagan’s Mind vocalist Nils K. Rue behind the mic, but the move to call it quits didn’t come as a surprise considering founders Glen Drover (guitars) and Shawn Drover (drums) had been devoting their time to Megadeth as of 2004. As fate and musical inpiration would have it, however, Glen and Shawn have decided to close out 2015 with a new Eidolon track, “Leave This World Behind”, featuring Rue and long time bassist Adrian Robichaud. The song marks the first Eidolon recording in 10 years.
“To be honest, we never called it quits, we basically just decided to put the band on the shelf,” says Glen. “I mean, at that point yes, Shawn and I were now half of Megadeth, and way too busy to consider anything else regardless of the fact that we had finally found an all around amazing and professional singer who couldn’t be matched. We had a lot of negative feedback in the past about some of our previous singers. All of those people were silenced when we brought Nils in.” Continue Reading
By Carl Begai
The Drover family name is well known in metal circles, associated first and foremost with Megadeth. Brothers Glen (guitars) and Shawn (drums) rose to international fame as part of Dave Mustaine’s strike force for four and 10 years respectively, but some Canadian metalheads were locked into the siblings back in the early ’90s when they launched their powerprog outfit Eidolon. Now, a third Drover has entered the fray, namely Shawn’s 23 year-old son Ryan. Working under The Calming moniker, Ryan has released his first full throttle song entitled ‘Return To Life’. One listen and it’s quite clear the proverbial apple doesn’t fall far from the trees in the Drover backyard.
“I worked really hard on it so it’s great to hear you say that. And yes, this is my first shot at recording my own music. I got my hands on a copy of Pro-Tools about six months ago and Glen was nice enough to show me a couple of beginner tips and tricks. I have loads of material that I’ve been working on and I’m really excited to share it with everyone.”
At this point of his budding career, Ryan is a solo artist lucky enough to have friends willing to help him move forward with the assorted musical madness rattling around in his brain.
“There is not an actual group,” he says. “That being said, I asked a couple of my good friends to help me out vocally and lyrically since I’m unfortunately not a vocalist myself. The screaming vocals and lyrics were done by my friend Jacob Kresak, whom I met in the local metal scene, and the clean vocals and lyrics were done by my other friend, Mike Motter, who has been one of my favorite singers/songwriters for a while now. I’m very happy with how the song turned out on their end and could not be happier that those dudes were nice enough to lend me their talents. As for the instruments, I played and recorded everything myself.” Continue Reading
By Carl Begai
Back in September, former Megadeth / King Diamond guitarist Glen Drover ended several years away from the metal scene with a new song called “Discordia”. It was an unexpected collaboration with Queensryche vocalist Todd La Torre showcasing Drover’s return from his prog fusion Metalusion band/project and the more aggressive side of La Torre’s talents. The vast majority of Drover fans loved it. And while he was already committed to releasing a second full-on metal bloodletting, the success of “Discordia” served to strengthen his already ironclad resolve. He made certain his return to metal was a strong one with “Discordia”, and new song “Walls Of Blood” featuring Untimely Demise frontman Matt Cuthbertson is the face-ripping follow-up that stands to surpass its success.
“You know what? Not to sound ‘whatever’ about it, but I believe the same thing because of the strength of the song,” says Drover. “I’m really happy with it and excited to see how the people respond to it. You have to believe in your work before anyone else does, and there was lots of confidence and belief in ‘Walls Of Blood’ when we put it together.”
“I think it’s just the new mindframe I have right now,” he says of his full-on return to churning out his brand of metal mayhem. “Doing ‘Discordia’ with Todd gave me a clear picture of a path forward. It’s a lot less work doing a single rather than an album, obviously, but you put more focus on that particular song. ‘Discordia’ kind of wrote itself and things came together, so we put it out for fun.” Continue Reading
My Ruin have carved themselves a reputation for street level in-your-face bad-assedness, albeit only amongst those that look for their metal and mayhem outside the confines of big record label business. The ultimate do-it-yourself outfit led by vocalist/wordsmith Tairrie B. Murphy and guitarist/multi-instrumentalist Mick Murphy – the wife and husband team par excellence – My Ruin have slugged it out for the last several years as independent artists (even with a record deal), turning in some positively brash and pointedly aggressive work for the masses to swallow.
The Sacred Mood follows on the heels of A Southern Revelation’s ultra-violence, making the descent into the Murphy maelstrom somewhat slower this time out. ‘Monolith Of Wrath’ kicks things off with pulse, pound and Tairrie B.’s lush spoken word delivery, turning to My Ruin’s familiar up-tempo punk attitude for ‘Moriendo Renascor’ before giving the expected beating in ‘God Is A Girl With A Butcher Knife’, perhaps THE song to feature everything My Ruin has to offer. From there it’s a journey through all facets of the band’s personality, Mick Murphy churning out Tony Iommi / Zakk Wylde-flavoured metal or a welcome rock crunch (‘Hour Of The Wolf’, ‘Heretic Dreams’) depending on the mood set by Tairrie B.’s vocals. And the lady is all about her non-tweaked all natural scream (‘God Is A Girl…’, ‘Harsh Light Of Day’) when she’s not in her spoken word spotlight (‘Honey Of The Human Soul’). Continue Reading
By Carl Begai
Making a long and disappointing story short, metal veterans Queensrÿche came apart at the seams in April 2012 after 30 years in the trenches. With vocalist Geoff Tate on one side and the rest of the line-up on the other, the band split into two factions, both laying claim to the Queensrÿche name. The ugly details of the split can be found here (scroll down for older updates), with a court date set for November 2013 to decide who will actually be allowed to wear the moniker. In the meantime both Tate and his former bandmates are working on new albums, with both due to be released this year.
Of the two parties, the Queensrÿche consisting of founding members Michael Wilton (guitars), Eddie Jackson (bass), and Scott Rockenfield (drums) – also featuring new-ish guitarist Parker Lundgren – have had it easier by hiring former Crimson Glory singer Todd La Torre. They’ve chosen to go back to the band’s original metal sound and the long-time fans are loving it. Tate, on the other hand, has gathered a group of musicians to continue his own ‘Rÿche legacy, with Rudy Sarzo (ex-Ozzy Osbourne), Glen Drover (ex-Megadeth), Bobby Blotzer (Ratt), Kelly Gray (ex-Queensrÿche) and Randy Gane (ex-Myth) having rallied around Tate in September 2012. Only two months later, however, Drover bowed out for undisclosed reasons.
I recently caught up with Drover to discuss his decision to pack it in before any recordings or live performances with Tate’s band were in the can. Continue Reading
Yeah, about a week early, but I’m planning on going out as Silent Bob for Halloween and have to practice not talking shit. So, before I take my vow of quietude…
Eclipse Eternal – home town T.O. black metal skull crushers and a favourite of Swedish producer-to-the-gods Fredrik Nordstrom – have signed with Archaic North Records and will release their new album, The Essence of Hopelessness, on January 14th, 2012 (cover art can be viewed on the left). The band returned to ex-Megadeth guitarist Glen Drover’s Eclipse Studio for the recordings, and according to the pre-release hype sheet it’s going to be the sort of chaos-driven smackdown fans are expecting:
“They have delved into their innermost suffering and wrenched forth an album that is both poignant and memorable. From cold atmospheres to absolute chaos, from acoustic and spoken word interludes to ripping shredding, this album is as brutal as it is stirring.”
So, take that as you will, but past experience has taught me that anything Eclipse Eternal releases rips metal trendies like Dimmu Borgir and Cradle Of Filth to shreds. Continue Reading
By Carl Begai
Back in January, former Megadeth guitarist Glen Drover offered a look inside his solo debut, Metalusion, which had just been completed. The record has since been released and received unexpectedly glowing reviews. Not that odds were in favour of Drover releasing something stale and sub- par, but smart money was on a large portion of his Megadeth-bred fans being disappointed that Metalusion isn’t the full-on rip-yer-face-off metal shred record they were expecting. All in spite of Drover’s warnings it wouldn’t be.
“A few people have made comments about that,” Drover agrees, “but it hasn’t been as common as you might expect. But, in my opinion… do we really, really need another album like that? There’s so much of that out there and it’s all great stuff, but for me to do a full blown instrumental metal record with solos every five seconds, it gets boring for me after five minutes, never mind 50 minutes of it. With all due respect to the guys that are doing that stuff, it’s cool, but it’s just too much for me. With that kind of thing I almost start asking where the vocals are.”
“I listen to instrumental stuff as much as I listen to music with vocals. Me and Shawn (Drover / Megadeth drummer) did the instrumental stuff way back in the early ‘90s when we were starting to get the Eidolon thing rolling. We just had a four track, a drum machine, some guitar gear, and we did the best we could, and it turned into a metal band with vocals. This time out, I just wanted to do an instrumental album properly.” Continue Reading
I recently caught up with Toronto homeboy Glen Drover to discuss his forthcoming solo instrumental album, Metalusion. An excerpt appears below, featuring his ongoing battle with his Megadeth past… or rather the inability of some fans to let dead issues lie. Read on…
Former Megadeth guitarist Glen Drover is back, raising a new kind of hell. Not that he went very far after leaving the band, but some fans and media hacks have treated news of his return to the spotlight as a surprise. Thus, as he gears up for the spring 2011 release of his first solo album, Drover is prepared and somewhat resigned to the fact that people will start asking questions and poking around with regards to his decision to leave Megadeth back in January 2008. Unfortunately for the drama-loving horde, his reasons haven’t changed and there won’t be any attacks on his former bandmates in the upcoming weeks and months of press. In case you missed it, however, Drover offers one more go-round of the otherwise low-key parting of ways.
“There was personal stuff going on in the band that I wasn’t happy about,” says Drover. “I think the one really unfortunate thing about that whole situation – and I really don’t understand it – was that when I did the initial press release after I left the band, everybody seemed to think that I left because I just wanted to be with my family and didn’t want to play music anymore. I said I was unhappy with the situation, meaning the band, so people thought I was out of music for good. I wish I could have done things differently with regards to that press release.” Continue Reading
By Carl Begai
The last place anyone expected two former members of Megadeth to resurface is with a band hailing from Ashland, Kentucky. Sounds like the set-up for a redneck joke, but in actual fact it’s a very serious buzz now that guitarist Jeff Young – from Megadeth’s 1988 record So Far, So, Good… So What! – and recently departed bassist James Lomenzo have officially joined Hydrogyn. An extensive overview covering the how and why of Young and Lomenzo coming aboard can be found on the BW&BK site here. Below is an inside look at Young’s relationship with guitarist Jeff Westlake and vocalist Julie Westlake, which amounts to a trial-by-fire gone right.
Westlake: “After Deadly Passions we had problems with our label, Demolition, and it left such a bad taste in our mouth that Julie and I were about ready to completely shelve Hydrogyn. We were thinking about doing some solo projects and see where that would take us, but then Jeff entered the picture. I feel like I’ve known the guy my entire life. We get along great. He brought in some songs, I brought in some stuff, we’re teaching each other the parts that we have to learn, we’re writing stuff together, and that’s really brought Hydrogyn back.”
Young, who has more or less steered clear of the metal world since leaving Megadeth in favour of a career working in world music and classical guitar, reveals his return to the realms of distortion was all a matter of finding the right people to work with.