HammerFall * Flotsam and Jetsam * Millennial Reign
2709 Elm St, Dallas, TX, 75226
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Hammerfall plus Flotsam and Jetsam, Millennial Reign
Formed in Göteborg, Sweden, in 1993 by guitarist Oscar Dronjak. Early line-ups included members from In Flames and Dark Tranquillity, most notably Jesper Strömblad, who continued to write songs together with Oscar and singer Joacim Cans despite leaving before the first album was released. Glory To The Brave (1997) and Legacy Of Kings (1998) cemented the band as the pioneers of modern Eighties heavy metal.
Often credited with bringing back the melodies and honesty in music, the world-wide crusade continued with Renegade (2000), an album that generated a breakthrough for HammerFall and metal music in general in the mainstream media in Sweden.
The line-up was now complete with drummer Anders Johansson, formerly of Rising Force fame, Stefan Elmgren on guitar and Magnus Rosén on bass guitar. The latter two joined HF before the release of the inaugural record, with Stefan even being a session player on Glory To The Brave.
Crimson Thunder (2002) was next, followed by a live album and DVD - One Crimson Night (2003) - recorded in their home town in front of a capacity crowd. The fifth album, aptly titled Chapter V: Unbent, Unbowed, Unbroken (2005) further planted the name HammerFall in the minds of households in Sweden, as well as metal fans all over the world. The band's fourth world tour on as many albums was an even bigger success than before, headlining the U.S. for the first time (after supporting Death and Dio in 1998 and 2002 respectively).
Two sportsrelated videos were recorded in 2006, a remake of "Hearts On Fire" for the Swedish Olympic Women's Curling Team, and a brand new song called "The Fire Burns Forever" specifically written for Kajsa Bergqvist, Robert Kronberg and a couple of other Swedish track & field superstars, culminating in a performance at the opening ceremony at the European Athletics Championships in August, bringing HammerFall into the home of 250 million people around the world. Threshold (2006) saw the light of day at the end of the year, and virtually the entire 2007 was spent on the road promoting it.
Magnus Rosén left the band in March. Without skipping a beat, original basist Fredrik Larsson was brought back into the fold, elevating the musical side with his steady brilliance. Celebrating its ten year anniversary as a record-releasing artist, HammerFall released Steel Meets Steel - Ten Years of Glory (2007). The album features two brand new tracks, a re-recording of an old classic plus some bonus material for the true fans.
Surprising to all, Stefan got a job as an airline pilot in the spring of 2008, and after careful consideration decided to pursue that dream instead. Pontus Norgren of The Poodles fame replaced Stefan and made his on stage debut with the band at the Heavy MTL Festival in Montréal, Canada.
Out of this sprung the very successful album No Sacrifice, No Victory (2009), and the world tour took the band to as remote locations as India, as well as the regular sold-out shows in Scandinavia, continental and Eastern Europe and USA.
The strain known as Infected (2011) spread throughout the world, and was followed by an extensive tour over the next two years. The concert at Dalhalla in July was captured by Patric Ullaeus and released as the Gates To Dalhalla (2012) DVD/Bluray. Shortly after, the band took a time out, after fifteen years of non-stop recording and touring. In order to be able to bring the fans another fifteen years of Templar steel this was a necessary move, to recharge the batteries and return with a fresh energy.
This 18-month break resulted in an invigorated and hungry band, as HammerFall once again reunited with producer Fredrik Nordström, merging his experience with the band members' own for a hard-hitting, in-your-face album. Recorded in Oscar's own Castle Black Studios, the drums, guitar and bass has gotten back that raw energy that hasn't been duplicated since the first album. The vocals were recorded by James Michael, who somehow got Joacim to perform even better than last time. For the mix, Fredrik Nordström spent 3 weeks in his own Studio Fredman to give the production the crisp and powerful polish it has.
(r)Evolution (2014) was released on August 29 and stormed the charts worldwide, debuting on #1 in Sweden and on the Billboard Heatseekers Chart, as well as reaching Top 5 in several other countries. The subsequent tour, dubbed the World Wide (r)Evolution 2014-15, saw HammerFall return to Latin America together with Edguy and Gotthard, followed by a full European assasult in the beginning of 2015. Unfortunately, the band was decimated when drummer Anders Johansson left shortly after the release of (r)Evolution, but David Wallin (Pain) was brought in as a temporary replacement to ensure that the show would go on.
After another very successful world crusade, the band went to work writing and recording the follow-up to (r)Revolution, entitled Built To Last (2016), which comes out on November 4th. 2 singles will be released before the full-length:
"The Sacred Vow" (lyric video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7EBB26EXopg)
and "Hammer High" (coming on September 23rd). The production was set up almost exactly as last time, and became even heavier and more energised than the previous one. After 20 years, HammerFall feels hungrier and more vital than ever before!
HammerFall stands for powerful, majestic and melodic heavy metal. The memorable choruses, straight and heavy riffs, thundering drums, pounding bass power and outstanding vocals will without a doubt become metal hymns for eternity. Their unstoppable creations reigned in a time when none cared about classical Heavy Metal, and they have and will always deserve credit for bringing the melodies back to metal music.
Flotsam and Jetsam
Flotsam and Jetsam are an American thrash metal band, formed in Phoenix, Arizona in 1981.
We made our live debuts in local clubs and in California and had the opportunity to play with bands such as Megadeth, Armored Saint, Alcatraz, Malice, Exciter, Mercyful Fate, Riot, Autograph. Mark left and the 17 year old Michael Gilbert joined the band in 1985. Flotsam and Jetsam released two demo tapes in 1985, Iron Tears and Metal Shock. We created our own video "Hammerhead" from the Metal Shock demo in Jason's living room. We also recorded live video from the infamous club Bootleggers. Those combined with the demos made a good impression on Record labels and after we contributed to the Speed Metal Hell II and Metal Massacre VII compilations, we got a deal with Metal Blade Records.
Then we recorded our first album in Los Angeles with producer Brian Slagel. The release of "Doomsday for the Deceiver" was on July 19, 1986. Many considered this album as a milestone in the history of thrash metal and we were the first band in KERRANG's history to achieve the 6K rating. Bassist Jason Newsted, who was also the band's main lyric writer, departed soon after to join Metallica, replacing their bassist Cliff Burton who died in an accident. Flotsam and Jetsam had asked another local bassist Phil Rind, "Sacred Reich", to fill in Jason's place for a short time. We then acquired Mike Spencer from Sacramento band "Sentinel Beast". The band signed with Elektra Records before touring Europe with Megadeth in 1987.
Millennial Reign was formed as a solo CD project by ASKA guitarist, Dave Harvey. Writing for the album began in 2010 as Dave searched for the right vocalist and drummer. Bryan Diffee who had worked with Dave in a prior band a few years earlier was recruited to play drums. Once a solid drummer was secured, Trae Doss came on board to write and record vocals. All guitar, bass and key tracks for Millennial Reign's debut self titled album were written and recorded by Dave Harvey. The album was recorded at The Recovery Room Studio with engineer Ty Sims and released indepedently in 2012.
A year or so passed and Dave decided to start writing material for the second album. Trae and Bryan weren't available to work on the sophomore album so Dave began searching for a vocalist as music writing continued. James Guest of the muliple album project Eden's Realm replied to an online ad and it was soon obvious that he was definitely the right guy for the job.
As writing between both Dave and James began, the decision was made to make Millennial Reign a full band, rather than just a recording project.
Once recording was finished, mix and mastering took place at Nomad Studio with engineers JT Longoria and Gary Long. A deal was made with Swedish label Ulterium Records for an October 30th release in both Europe and North America for the new album Carry The Fire.
Any fan of Iron Maiden, Queensryche, Judas Priest and Crimson Glory will not be dissappointed with this new album. Millennial Reign should be in any collection of melodic or traditional powermetal.