ANATHEMA Announce First Ever North America Tour

Doom/progressive rock legends ANATHEMA have announced their debut North America tour with ALCEST and MAMIFFER in support of their best selling album in the U.S., Weather Systems. The tour starts runs from September 12, 2013 until October 5, 2013. Visit the band’s website for tour dates.

“I can’t wait. Such a cool line up. Three bands who move in different spheres while sharing the intent to create music that is honest, forward thinking and uninhibited. I first met Stephane from ALCEST last year, discussing 90′s shoegaze bands in a forest in Lithuania! He is someone for whom I have great respect. Their music is melodic & soulful, full of dream-like imagery. MAMIFFER are true artists. The dynamic mix of stark piano, crushing melancholic textures and choral reverie is something to behold. Exactly the kind of thing I’m into, so I’m really looking forward to it.” – Vincent Cavanagh

New ALCEST Album to Omit “Metal Elements”?

AlcestALCEST recently entered Sundlaugin Studio in Iceland to start recording the successor of Les Voyages De L’Âme with producer Birgir Jón Birgisson. Last year, Neige had this to say about the new ALCEST material:

“You can expect something different from ALCEST‘s previous releases. I don’t think there are any metal music elements anymore, though a lot of very intense parts and dynamics are still there. Things are just done in another way, and the core remains the same. That album will come back to the nostalgic side of ALCEST, it’s very dreamy, aquatic and a bit less progressive than the last two albums. Melodies are taking their time to grow, if you see what I mean. I feel very excited about these songs and this new approach feels very refreshing to me.”

Guest appearances of Neil Halstead (SLOWDIVE, MOJAVE 3) and Billie Lindhal (PROMISE AND THE MONSTER) have been confirmed so far.

The yet untitled album is tentatively scheduled for a release in late 2013 or early 2014 on Prophecy Productions.

GHOST Forced to Pull Out of U.S. Tour with ENSLAVED, ALCEST

Sweden’s GHOST have just announced that they are dropping out of the U.S. tour with ENSLAVED and ALCEST, which is scheduled to start later this month (see our previous post).

Here is official word from the band:

“Everybody,

“Due to some last minute complications with our visas, we have been forced to cancel our North American tour.

“We are sorry towards the other bands on the tour, ENSLAVED and ALCEST.

“And we are most of all tremendously sorry towards all of our fans.

“This is truly beyond our control and we are making everything within our (His) powers to be able to come back to the US as soon as possible and perform for all of you.

“Our most malicious of wishes

“/A Nameless Ghoul”

ENSLAVED 20th Anniversary Tour Coming September 2011 with GHOST & ALCEST

Norwegian progressive/psychedelic black metal band ENSLAVED will be returning to North America this Fall for a headlining tour marking the band’s 20th anniversary. Support will come from Swedish sensation, GHOST, as well as France’s ALCEST.

ENSLAVED had the follow comment:

“Listen; the sun is setting, but I still see the twinkle! The support we’ve been getting from North America throughout our latest releases and tours is unparalleled, and for that we are eternally grateful. It is therefore an undivided pleasure for us to announce that when autumn sets, we will be back to tour the U.S. and Canada; this time for a full headliner tour with a full headliner set. 2011 marks the 20th anniversary for ENSLAVED, so we will be underlining both the deep past and blazing present of our musical universe to celebrate. It is also with a sense of intense pride that we can present the bands that will be travelling with us for the tour: GHOST and ALCEST. Yes, you read that right! I don’t think I need to elaborate more on that; it will be a package for the books. See you then!”

Tour dates:
09-23-11 Jaxx – Springfield, VA
09-24-11 Mr. Small’s Theatre – Pittsburgh, PA
09-25-11 Gramercy Theatre – New York, NY
09-26-11 Middle East (Downstairs) – Boston, MA
09-28-11 Imperial de Quebec – Quebec City, QC CANADA
09-29-11 Café Campus Montreal, QC CANADA
09-30-11 Opera House – Toronto, ON CANADA
10-01-11 Outland Live – Columbus, OH
10-02-11 The Bottom Lounge – Chicago, IL
10-03-11 Station 4 – St. Paul, MN
10-05-11 West End Cultural Centre – Winnipeg, MB CANADA
10-06-11 The Exchange – Regina, SK
10-07-11 The Starlite Room – Edmonton, AB CANADA
10-08-11 Dickens Pub – Calgary, AB
10-10-11 Rickshaw Theatre – Vancouver, B.C. CANADA
10-11-11 El Corazon – Seattle, WA
10-12-11 Hawthorne Theatre – Portland, OR
10-13-11 Slim’s – San Francisco, CA
10-14-11 The Troubadour – Hollywood, CA

APESHIT’s Top Metal Albums of 2010

December is here, so it is time for us, the APESHIT goons, to share with you our list of metal albums that made an impression on us in 2010. Meaningful and meaningless, but sharing is caring. Bang your head and enjoy!
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ALCEST – Écailles De Lune

ALCEST may not be a household name yet but their second album, Écailles De Lune, proves to be one of the most enjoyable metal albums of 2010. Atmospheric and mood-driven, ALCEST are a seamless blend of early UK gothic rock (i.e. FIELDS OF THE NEPHILIM, middle era-CURE), dark metal (i.e. KATATONIA, AGALLOCH), shoegaze, and Norwegian black metal. With such musical diversity, the crossover potential here is vast as fans of ENSLAVED, SLOWDIVE, and MOGWAI could all find much to enjoy.

Clean electric guitars flow into high speed showers of black metal chords, and sweeping, majestic riffs, and then back around again. The clean vocals are as fragile and delicate as the somber tones. Raspy black metal vocals are used only when the action calls for them. The songs naturally and unobtrusively ebb and flow. The band doesn’t break the mood with very obvious and predicable song section changes as do most metal bands.

It goes without saying but Écailles De Lune can only be fully experienced in full length listening sessions. A fine pair of headphones or speakers is highly recommended for optimum enjoyment. While the album is not flawless or always potent, ALCEST has a done a fine job, which all should take note of. (Prophecy Productions)