Games Meet Metal: February 2011

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Monday, February 28, 2011

8-bit Metal Mondays: Square is starting to pimp its past hard core

A while a go, I made a promise to finish Final Fantasy XIII, even if it's god-awful 25-hour tutorial was creating one hell of a weight on me. Well, I had to break that promise. In the short time that i was beginning to enjoy the game, I was hit with one of the most irritating boss fights i had ever encountered. The prick used every single cheap tactic on me, to the point where I threw the controller down, gave up, and watched the ending on Youtube. It's a true shame, as the leveling system was pretty fun to mess around with, and the game is gorgeous. It just ended up having too many flaws that killed my enjoyment. Word is that there's gonna be a direct sequel. God I hope they fix the big issues. Let's start with NO GOD DAMN SUPER EXTENDED TUTORIAL!!

Square must be realizing that their current output is a bit on the sucky side, as they're beginning a steady release schedule of games on the Playstation Network that were once on the PS1. In other words, we're getting the best of Square's glory years for cheap. We've already seen the release of Final Fantasy VII-IX, but now we're getting the more fan-requested non-FF games popping up. Last week was the uber-long mech RPG Xenogears. This week is the super hard-to-find and collector's dream gem Vagrant Story. If other reports hold true, we'll also end up seeing Parasite Eve in March to go along with it's PSP sequel. All of these old school releases are great for the collector having trouble finding the hard copies, and it's a lot easier on the wallet too.

While we're at it, how about I go ahead and say BRING BACK EINHANDER!!!! You know, just a suggestion.

To close this out, how about some Final Fantsy bleepy metal?

Friday, February 25, 2011

Devildriver's Beast-The Riff Review

Okay, I've said this before, and I'm gonna say it again. But this will be for THE LAST TIME!!

Up until Devildriver's third cd, The Last Kind Words, I was fully behind them, marching to the rhythm of their music. Then the band released Pray for Villains, and I didn't feel like marching anymore. None of the songs were catchy, and that frantic death/thrash vibe Devildriver once had just seemed to disappear. Oh, and my very sore feet. In fact, it felt like the whole band was going pop metal! Things were not good at this point.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Korean Domination Will Be To The Flow of Blast Beats

Homefront is a game that has kind of snuck up on me. Originally, I thought it to be yet another military first person shooter, aping the success of Black Ops. Then they added the Korean invasion of America (impossible, but at least original). Now they're really trying to appeal to my evil metal self and are throwing in a whole metal soundtrack!

A ton of bands are popping in to lend some killer licks. As I Lay Dying, Misery Signals, Periphery, and The Acacia Strain are some confirmed bands. To wet your tonsils some more, publisher THQ is hosting a rally for the game March 2nd in San Francisco. Who's attending? Why, it's the Dillinger Escape Plan and Devin Townsend Band! Holy shit! Korean socialism is turning out to be metal-rific! The downer? I didn't figure the game into their budget, as I'm going out of town for PAX, and, well, travel expenses yo.

Still, we'll see. You can see for yourself when Homefront drops on March 15th. Note to self; bug the THQ guys at PAX. Maybe you'll get lucky.

BTBAM to tour with JFAC and acronymless The Ocean

You know what's really good? Bulletstorm. Damn game's got me hooked like a hooker feeming for her next heroin hit. You know what else is good? Between The Buried and Me. After making me a lifelong fan with their Colors cd, and then building on that with The Great Misdirect, it just made me wish for more upon more stuff from BTBAM. Well, more is coming real damn soon.

The guys have a new record deal with Metal Blade, and they're releasing their next cd, The Parallax: Hypersleep Dialogues, sometime in April on their new label home, but they also have this sweet-ass tour lined up. Called the "Hypersleep Dialogues Trek," and sleep is the last thing you'll be doing at this show. Job For A Cowboy are along for the ride to help bring the evil thrash to the people. Then there's The Ocean, who will be doing their first ever U.S. tour. We've reviewed both of The Ocean's recent outings here at GMM, and we sure do love these super-smart Germans. Cephalic Carnage, grindcore's answer to Cypress Hill, will be opening the show on select dates. Speaking of dates, here's a few for ya, after the jump.

Monday, February 21, 2011

8-bit Metal Mondays: Getting Back Into It

Right now, you don't want to be living in Michigan. Not because of the economy, but because of the weather. The temperature has been going up and down so much you'd think you were at a Catholic wedding. That shit played some major hell with health, thus making me sick as shit last week, thus explaining the lack of articles. to top it all off, we get to wake up today to around 6-8 inches of snow. Oh, fucking joy. Now I'm usually one of those guys who says,"HEY, IT'S MICHIGAN! DEAL WITH IT!!!" Now, though, I'm starting to think that Atlanta is nice this time of year.

Not all is doom and gloom and full of mucus, as PAX East is now just a little over two weeks away! I've arranged my ride to and from the airport, mappped out how I want to walk the main convention floor, and I may even take on an exclusive demo or two from some of Boston's indie game developers. One of the big highlights will be catching Metroid Metal at the end of the first day. Since they're not much of a touring band, seeing them on a trip probably the only way I'll ever catch them. So, in advance celebration, here's some reverse bleepiness.

Monday, February 14, 2011

8-bit Metal Mondays: We Have A Theme Going

In what has become the official new schtick for 8-bit Metal Mondays, a new song has popped up for an awesome band's next record and I get to listen to it several thousand times. In this case, it's a new Amon Amarth track called Slaves of Fear, which is off of their next Viking-praising opus, Surtur Rising. Slaves has a different feel than other AA songs. As the beats are still silly fast, the overall pace of the song as a whole is actually very slow. That, in turn, lets the religion-bashing lyrics come out in full force. You can let your eardrums get pillaged by clicking here here. While you're at it, pre-order that sucka, complete with  a big-ass Surtur sculpture! Just the thing for your cubicle/permanent jail space. Click here to spend your greenbacks.

The beepiness? Viking themed, of course! Here's Amon Amarth's Twilight of the Thunder God.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Dead Space 2-The Riff Review

Ah, Dead Space. the game I initially wrote off as a Resident Evil 4 wanna-be. The game I resisted to play for over a year after it's release. The game that all my gaming buds screamed at me to play. And when i finally did, I had to eat crow. Dead Space was a wonderful game that took me back to the days of the original Alien and how old school horror could be. So then it was obvious that I would pick up the sequel and play through the continued exploits of bad ass engineer Isaac Clarke. However, would the frantic gameplay and awesome atmosphere transfer over to a sequel?

Riff's Rants: Guitar Hero Gets Shitcanned: Part 1

(By this point, you knew it was dead anyways.)

You know that $200 bucks you were saving for the next overly-priced Guitar Hero pack? Well, it just turned into coke and hooker money, as the series has been put on a permanent vacation, Activision announced earlier today via a media briefing. The Big "A" said that all production on any future  "Hero" games would be discontinued. That includes Guitar Hero, DJ Hero, and Band Hero. Not just their music department felt the wrath. Their True Crime reboot got the boot. Also, those lame-ass Tony Hawk skateboard controller games will be going bye-bye as well. To top it all off, 500 people are getting the shaft. Kinda sucks to be working on anything else other than Call of Duty or World of Warcraft in Activision/Blizzard world, doesn't it?

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Lazarus A.D.'s Black Rivers Flow: Another Disturbying CD Review

Wisconsin has taken center stage in the NFL world what with Green Bay's victory over the Steelers on Sunday. I don't follow the NFL at all but I'm told this is a bit of an upset as Green Bay was seeded 6th overall or whatever. The only reason why I bring it up is because I'm sure the boys from Lazarus A.D. are celebrating with their fellow cheese heads. I bet that they're on cloud nine these days because they've also just released their sophomore album on Metal Blade records. Lazarus A.D.'s first album was met with positive response within the metal community so all eyes were on them as they headed into the studio to record their second album. A lot of bands tend to crack under the pressure and those bands don't seem to make it much farther than two albums. LAD were aware of the pressure but took it in stride as they headed into the studio to do what they do best: create some of the best stripped down metal that's been released in the last decade.

Last Chance To Reason Make Last Chance To Get Album Out Before The Snow Melts

Now THAT'S a cd cover with a lot going on. Honestly, very busy, but it's working hard for it's money.

That's the cover for Last Chance To Reason's new cd, Level 2, due out on April 12th. Like any good extreme progressive metal band, the whole thing has a plot that gets uber complex. Also, like the title of our site, it truly does mix video games with heavy metal ti give the band it's own unique sound. One thing though: if memory serves me correctly, LCTR were actually making a real game to go along with the cd's plot. Whether that got shelved for time purposes or is still being programmed is a bit of a mystery at the moment. Me thinks I'll have to do some diving around.

You can pre-order the cd at the Prosthetic store.

Monday, February 7, 2011

8-bit Metal Mondays-WAR FOR TERRI-oh, wait, wrong band.

Another Monday, another free track from a new Roadrunner Records artist. This week we get  a fresh track from Cavalera Conspiracy's new album Blunt Force Trauma. The track's name is called "Killing Inside", and I swear the track starts out sounding like INXS's "Devil Inside." Yes, I'm a product of the 80's, so sue me. Anywho, the track itself has a more melodic side than CC's previous hardcore effort Inflikted. Not a bad thing, but some fans might feel somewhat slighted when they don't hear their old Sepultura style. Judge for yourself and download the track by clicking here.

Sadly, there are no Cavalera Conspiracy 8-bit remixes available on Youtube, but there is plenty of Sepultura bleepiness to go around. Here's the classic Roots Bloody Roots.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Bulletstorm Ads Just Keep Bringing the Awesome

I'm starting to fear that Bulletstorm isn't gonna be that great of a game. The demo was solid, but the ad campaign for it is just seeming to be the real deal here. First, they ripped on Halo with nutshots and regurgitation. Now, they're setting their sites on the Call of Duty series, and all the tropes and stereotypes the series loves to dish out. The best part is that it's in the form of a minigame called Duty Calls, which can be downloaded for free at

I tried to do so myself. Unfortunately, my laptop is some sort of fun Nazi, or it's just plain old, as it didn't want to run the silly thing. Thankfully, featured a run through of the whole thing, so I don't have to!

Bulletstorm rips you a new one on Februaury 22. 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Crowbar's Sever the Wicked Hand: The Riff Review

Fact: Supergroups can be educational.

When Down released their first cd, I became very interested in what other bands the musicians were a part of. Along with Pantera, I discovered quite a bit of awesome. Corrosion of Conformity became a quick fave, as did Eyehategod. However, it was Crowbar's sludgy doomy goodness that I attached to the most. The downtuned guitar riffs along with the Kirk Windstein's grazzly vocal work did for me what the Melvins couldn't. Since then, I became a hardcore Crowbar fan, listening to every release as they came out, even if said releases ended up taking some time.