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'This Wicked Nest'
(AFM Records)
Out Now

Daryl Soar

daryl soar



Whatever conclusion you jumped to from that opener, it is sure to fit this album in some respect. Ever wanted to relive the good bits of yesterday? 'This Wicked Nest' could be your chance to start.

Far from a backward looking rampage through rock history, the music and vocal screams reflect contemporary bands as well as classic tastes. Whatever your favourite rock tipple, if it's from the 80s onwards, your needs will be satisfied. King Diamond, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Metallica, Annihilator... the list of memories just goes on.

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So for the bit after the advert... the YouTube offering, and album opener, 'Fall Of Dominion'.

By now you should be comfortable with the my earlier ramblings and be coming to grips with where the music of Helstar is going to take you.

The opening of the second track leaves you waiting like a schoolboy outside the headmaster's office. For all the growing tension, the promised ear bashing doesn't quite live up to earlier pretensions. But don't be discouraged, by the second listen through the album, 'Eternal Black' will strike you as much better and more accomplished than you remembered.

By the third track I was ready for more riff based songs thrashing my ears with a wall of sound. While true songmanship may force the best vocalists to diverge from the guitar riffs, Helstar's James Rivera is comfortable in reliving past glories of the 80s and blindly following the riff.


Again, have no fear, he has stepped up to the plate an incorporated an almost fry-vocal to bring things up to date. And just when you think you've discovered his limitations he even finds a tune in his own right.

By the fourth track I thought I had come to grips with everything Helstar could throw at me only to be greeted by a proper musical treat akin to those old offerings from Maiden and Metallica. Yes, an instrumental, and a good one at that. Not just a self indulgent musical extravaganza of mastabatory guitar work but a valid song that maintains your interest through out.

The rest of the album carries on in the same vein. Vocals follow and diverge from the guitar riffs with impeccable timing. The overall sound maintains a fresh modern metal feel with some favourite elements of yesteryear thrown in to the production for good cheer. The album has an eclectic mix of mature and naive songwriting that glued a smile to my face. Nothing particularly surprises from one song to the next but if you like 'Fall Of Dominion' it's a pretty safe bet you'll like the rest.





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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