Atreyu have shared the video for “Super Hero” from their 2018-released album In Our Wake. The track features appearances from Avenged Sevenfold frontman M.Shadows and Underoath drummer/vocalist Aaron Gillespie.

Watch it HERE.

“Our song ‘Super Hero’ was written about what it’s like to be a parent and the vast amount of time, effort, energy, and hard work it takes to be a real-life superhero for your children,” the band says. “The song also has a broader meaning, especially given the current situation the entire world is dealing with. There are many superheroes out there who appear in many forms — namely the first responders, medical personnel, and health care workers who are putting others first as they work to fight COVID-19 and to save lives. We dedicate this song to them.”
Atreyu are working on their eighth album, due out via Spinefarm Records later this year. 


CD Review: Zakk Wylde “Book of Shadows II”

“Book of Shadows II”

Zakk Wylde
eOne Music
Tracks: 14

Our Score: 4 out 5 stars

Black Label Society front man Zakk Wylde is back with the second installment of his acoustic fueled fret board wizardry “Book of Shadows II”. Stripped down and incredibly raw the new album not only picks up where the previous 1996 album “Book of Shadows” left off but the former Ozzy Osbourne axe man shows immense growth as an artist while forging new ground with his signature blend of doom crew infused melodic shred.

Don’t let the fact that “Book of Shadows II” showcases the softer side of the berserker as each of the 14 tracks that make up this release are signature Zakk Wylde through and through. Yes missing are the signature laser like pinch harmonics and the thunderous dirge Wylde is most closely associated with however, what the album lacks in ferocity it makes up for it by creating its own unique power through impressive vocal and instrumental performances. Tracks like “Tears In December” and “Darkest Hour” strike deep as they overflow with emotion while tracks like “Lost Prayer” and ”Sleeping Dogs” feature upbeat rythms and bluesy instrumentation giving the album a solid balance.

For long time fans of Zakk dating back to the old “Pride and Glory” days this is a no brainer to pick up as it will be right at home with Wylde’s subsequent releases. For newer fans it’s just as equally worth checking out but be sure to also check out Zakk’s electric work before hand as it will only make you appreciate the range and musicianship found on “Book of Shadows II” that much more.

Track Listing:
1.) Autumn Changes
2.) Tears of December
3.) Lay Me Down
4.) Lost Prayer
5.) Darkest Hour
6.) The Levee
7.) Eyes of Burden
8.) Forgotten Memory
9.) Yesterday’s Tears
10.) Harbors of Pity
11.) Sorrowed Regrets
12.) Useless Apologies
13.) Sleeping Dogs
14.) The King

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Emerge from the Shadows onto the Big Screen and into Fans’ Hands

Playmates Toys to Introduce New Toy Line Based on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Film

El Segundo, CA – June 18, 2014 – Playmates Toys, the creative force behind the successful Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles toy line over the last three decades, is set to introduce a new product line inspired by Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies’ summer blockbuster film, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, directed by Jonathan Liebesman, written by Josh Appelbaum & André Nemec and Evan Daugherty and produced by Michael Bay, hitting theaters August 8. The movie line of toys will include an assortment of products for Turtles fans, including action figures, vehicles and role play gear.

“We are proud to introduce an all-new line of toys that reflect the personalities and distinctive look of the Turtles in the movie,” said Karl Aaronian, Senior Vice President of Marketing, Playmates Toys. “The range of toys will provide kids and fans of all ages with a one-of-a-kind ninja play experience that brings their favorite characters from the film to life.”

“Playmates has outdone themselves yet again, with an incredible product offering for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie,” said Manuel Torres, SVP Global Toys and Publishing, Nickelodeon Consumer Products. “These products – from action figures to role play toys – will provide hours of play, collectability and deepen our fans’ connection to the beloved brand.”
The new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie toy line from Playmates Toys will feature the following action figures, group vehicle and role-play gear:

Action Figures
The action figure collection will include basic action figures, 11-inch figures and deluxe feature figures. The action figures are highly detailed, fully articulated and uniquely sculpted to reflect the Turtles’ appearance in the movie. In addition, each figure comes equipped with unique accessories. The basic action figures vary in heights from 4.0 inches to 5.5 inches. The collection includes Leonardo, Donatello, Michelangelo and Raphael, as well as Splinter, The Shredder, Foot Soldier, April O’Neil and Raphael in Disguise. The 11-inch figure collection includes the four Ninja Turtles.

The Combat Warrior Deluxe Figures are highly detailed, fully articulated and uniquely sculpted, with heights ranging from 5.25 inches to 6 inches. The Turtles’ legs can be squeezed to trigger battle actions. The collection includes Leonardo with quick cut katana action, Donatello with smack-down spinning staff action, Michelangelo with triple terror twist nunchuck action and Raphael with serious slashing sai action.

The Turtle Assault Van is packed with ninja action features, allowing kids to drive the Turtles into their next battle and recreate their favorite scenes from the movie. Features include a spring-powered Turtle torpedo, launching luge assault vehicle, pop top hatch and side attack ramp. The control cabin holds the basic Ninja Turtles action figures.

Role Play Gear
With the Ninja Combat Gear, kids can transform themselves into one of their favorite heroes in a half shell from the film. Each set includes the Turtles’ signature weapon and bandana, allowing kids to see if they have what it takes to become a Ninja Turtle. The collection includes Leonardo with katana sword, bandana and two hand guards, Michelangelo with Nunchuck, bandana and two hand guards, Raphael with two Sais and bandana and Donatello with Bo Staff and bandana.

About the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Movie
In this modern-day iteration of the popular franchise that has captivated audiences of all ages for decades, the Turtles must work with fearless reporter April O’Neil (Megan Fox) and her wise-cracking cameraman Vern Fenwick (Will Arnett) to save New York City and unravel Shredder’s diabolical plan. Based on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles characters created by Peter Laird and Kevin Eastman, written by Josh Appelbaum & André Nemec and Evan Daugherty, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is produced by Michael Bay (director and executive producer of the blockbuster Transformers franchise), Andrew Form, Brad Fuller, Galen Walker, Scott Mednick and Ian Bryce, and directed by Jonathan Liebesman (Wrath of the Titans).

About Playmates Toys
With a history of over 40 years, Playmates Toys is today among the most well-respected and innovative marketing and distribution companies in the global toy industry with a proven history in the creation of imaginative products as well as the development and management of profitable, long-term brand franchises. Key brands include TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES, HEARTS FOR HEARTS GIRLS and WATERBABIES. From its offices in Hong Kong and California, Playmates designs, develops, markets and distributes its products in over 60 countries worldwide. For more information, visit or

About Nickelodeon
Nickelodeon, now in its 35th year, is the number-one entertainment brand for kids. It has built a diverse, global business by putting kids first in everything it does. The company includes television programming and production in the United States and around the world, plus consumer products, online, recreation, books and feature films. Nickelodeon’s U.S. television network is seen in almost 100 million households and has been the number-one-rated basic cable network for 19 consecutive years.

About Paramount Pictures
Paramount Pictures Corporation (PPC), a global producer and distributor of filmed entertainment, is a unit of Viacom (NASDAQ: VIAB, VIA), a leading content company with prominent and respected film, television and digital entertainment brands. Paramount controls a collection of some of the most powerful brands in filmed entertainment, including Paramount Pictures, Paramount Animation, Paramount Vantage, Paramount Classics, Insurge Pictures, MTV Films, and Nickelodeon Movies. PPC operations also include Paramount Home Media Distribution, Paramount Pictures International, Paramount Licensing Inc., and Paramount Studio Group.

© 2014 Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and all related titles, logos and characters are trademarks of Viacom International Inc.

Blu-ray Review “Beware the Batman: Shadows of Gotham – Season 1, Part 1”

Voices of: Anthony Ruivivar, J.B. Blanc, Sumalee Montano, Kurtwood Smith
Rated TV-PG
Studio: Warner Archive Collection
DVD Release Date: February 18, 2014
Run Time: 286 minutes

Season: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Extras: N/A

After “Batman: The Brave and the Bold” although a fun show, but with the success of “The Dark Knight” series, fans were looking for something with a darker tone. Enter, “Beware the Batman”. The show has a more serious tone and a really snazzy look and feel to it. The animation style is great and Batman is quite badass. Unfortunately Cartoon Network did not give this show much love, they pulled it from their schedule back in October after 11 episodes and left two unaired. They claimed it would be back on in January but as we approach March there is still no word. Either way I really dug this show and I would recommend it to any Batman fan out there. “Batman: The Animated Series” still holds the reigns but it is quite an impressive entry for the Caped Crusader.

Batman swings into an exhilarating new age, teaming with a powerful allies old and new for a thrilling new take on the classic Dark Knight franchise in Beware the Batman: Shadows of Gotham, Season 1 Part 1. The new action-packed detective thriller incorporates Batman’s core characters with a rogue’s gallery of criminals as the Caped Crusader faces some of Gotham City’s most despicable villains. Through the show’s first 13 animated adventures of this two-disc collection, ex-secret agent Alfred and lethal swordstress Katana join Batman to takes on an array of evildoers including the likes of Anarky, Professor Pyg, Mister Toad and Magpie. This thrilling series redefines what we have come to know as the “Batman show” and is sure to excite fans with cutting-edge CGI visuals.

This Blu-ray contains all 11 episodes that official aired and the additional 2 that are still unaired. Included are “Hunted”, “Secrets”, Tests”, “Safe”, “Broken”, “Toxic”, “Family”, “Allies”, “Control”, “Sacrifice”, “Instinct”, “Attraction” and “Fall”. There are some solid villains as well in these episodes including Professor Pyg and Mister Toad, Cypher, Magpie, Anarky and Lady Shiva to name a few. I think it was a brave move to include some new and not so well-known villains. Other shows have done in the past having Joker be the lead villains and who doesn’t love the Joker but you have to give it to “Beware the Batman” for being ballsy here. I am sure if this show continued on we would see the funny man pop up surely but we did not rely on it from the beginning.

This Blu-ray comes from Warner Bros’ made-on-demand (MOD) service, Warner Archive, which produced their releases as they are ordered. I feel that this series deserves more than that but at least it is seeing the light of day. The 1080p transfer works well with the tone of the show and the killer CGI visuals. There are no special features included on this release unless you count the two unaired episodes. I hope that Warner Bros and Cartoon Network continue this series this Spring otherwise, this “Season 1 Part 1” Blu-ray will not have a “Part 2” release to complete it.

Book Review “Dark Shadows: The Visual Companion”

Author: Mark Salisbury
Hardcover: 192 pages
Publisher: Titan Books
Release Date: November 27, 2012

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

When I first saw Tim Burton and Johnny Depp’s “Dark Shadows”, I have to say I was a little let down.  I am very familiar with the 70’s Soap Opera series and I thought this would have been a perfect collaboration for them.  After my second viewing of the film, I enjoyed it a bit more.  Honestly after reading this visual companion, I am feeling very compelled (vampireget it?) to watch this film again. This book literally takes you through every aspect of the film from the characters to the score.  If you have your doubts about this film, I suggest you check out this book it will easily convince you to give the film a chance.

“Dark Shadows: The Visual Companion” is wonderful produced by Titan Books, yet another gem. Author Mark Salisbury was in close cooperation with Tim Burton and the production team during its creation.  It includes a very nice foreword by Depp, an Introduction by Burton and an afterword by the late producer Richard D. Zanuck.  I really enjoyed Zanuck’s words, it is sad that this was his last film but at least from his what he said it seems like he really enjoyed the experience.  Mark Salisbury is the former editor of Britain’s magazine, Empire, and has worked with Burton before including “Alice in Wonderland: A Visual Companion” (one of my favorites) and also on “Burton on Burton”.

Like the film itself, this book really took two going throughs in order to really wow me.  I did my usual quick flip through to see what catches my eye and I though it looked good but not great.  But when I really dug into this book, I realized that it was in fact a great visual companion, as it is titled.  It is jam packed with wonderful photos, concept drawings and production designs.  You really get to learn about the characters and their part in the film.  There are also some great interviews with the cast and crew.  All that would normally be good enough for me but there is still more.  They touch on the visual effects, creating the town of Collinswood and even the score from Danny Elfman.  There is not a detail left out here.  So if you whether you are a fan of this film or a curious party, I highly recommend picking this up.

Blu-ray Reviews “House of Dark Shadows / Night of Dark Shadows”

Cast: Jonathan Frid, Grayson Hall, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Roger Davis, Nancy Barrett, David Selby, John Karlen
Director: Dan Curtis
Studio: Warner Bros.
MPAA Rating: PG
Running Time: 97 / 95 minutes

House of Dark Shadows: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Night of Dark Shadows: 3 out of 5 stars
Extras: 1/2 out of 5 stars

“Dark Shadows” is the longest running horror soap opera, actually I think it is also the only. I never saw this show on TV but I have watch many many episodes courtesy of Netflix Instant over the years. The original series had actually ran for over 1200 episodes.  With Tim Burton/Johnny Depp’s recent reboot recently released on Blu-ray, it is prime-time to finally release these movies for the first time ever on DVD, let alone Blu-ray. These films are definitely a bit campy, but they also have a few decent creepy moments. “House of Dark Shadows” features Jonathan Frid in the lead as Barnabas Collins and is my favorite of the two. “Night of Dark Shadows”  was originally supposed to bring back Barnabas, but the show ended before the film started production and Jonathan Frid had moved on.  It is still a decent installment to the series.

Warner Brothers delivers the good with both of these 1080p transfer presented in 1.78:1 aspect ratio. They also look good since these were just low-budget movies and weren’t large productions at the time. They are still catalog release quality but are much more impressive that I would have expected. Both films also have DTS-HD Master Audio Mono audio tracks, which work well for each. It setups up the mood and works well with the dialogue.  If you are a fan of the “Dark Shadows” series, I would definitely recommend picking up these reasonably priced Blu-rays. They are a nice upgrade since the films were only previously available on VHS and Laserdisc.  So if you are looking for a flashback to the 70’s to meet up with the Collins again, then this is a no-brainer.

Official Premises: “House of Dark Shadows”: Rejoice, night creatures! Collinwood’s affected Barnabas Collins (Jonathan Frid) hopes a series of serum injections will make him normal. Alas, nothing can be normal at eerie Collinwood! “Night of Dark Shadows”: One bite is never enough! New blood comes home in Night of Dark Shadows, as Quentin Collins (David Selby) arrives with his bride (Kate Jackson).

House of Dark Shadows + Night of Dark Shadows both available on October 30th!
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Win a Blu-ray for Johnny Depp/Tim Burton’s “Dark Shadows” [ENDED]


Warner Bros. Pictures is proud to announce the release of Dark Shadows on DVD and Blu-Ray October 2nd 2012;  Media Mikes would like to giveaway a copy of the film on Blu-ray Combo Pack (Blu-ray™ + DVD). If you would like to win one of these great prizes, please leave us a comment below or send us an email and let us know your favorite character from the series. This giveaway will be open until October 5th at Noon, Eastern Time and is only open to residents of the United States. Only one entry per person, per household; all other entries will be considered invalid. Once the giveaway ends, Media Mikes will randomly pick out winners and alert the winners via email.

From the incredible mind of Tim Burton comes the hit film Dark Shadows, based on the classic television series! Barnabas Collins (Johnny Depp) has been trapped for two centuries by an evil witch (Eva Green) who just happens to be an ex lover. Barnabas now has to struggle with the ever changing 1970s and save his families business! With an all star cast that includes Michelle Pfeiffer, Helena Bonham Carter, Chloe Grace Moretz, Jonny Lee Miller and more, Dark Shadows will be sure to whet your appetite for fun.

Check out the great features below:

  • Are You Creepy Enough Quiz! Do your friends refer to you as a Child of the Night or do you shiver at the thought of a creepy crawly? Take the Are You Creepy Enough quiz to find out.
  • Barnabas’ Terror Trivia! Are you a Barnabas buff? Take the 3 truths and a lie trivia all about Barnabas Collins and you can unlock clips and downloads from Dark Shadows.
  • Dark Shadows Horror-Scope! Whether you are a Virgo Vampire or a Transylvanian Taurus, you can get your custom hauntified Horror-Scope.
  • Get Social! Tweet with the #DarkShadows hashtag to get your audience excited for this blockbuster h

Blu-ray Review “Dark Shadows”

Directed by: Tim Burton
Starring: Johnny Depp, Michelle Pfeiffer, Helena Bonham Carter, Eva Green, Jackie Earle Haley
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Distributed by: Warner Home Video
Release Date: October 2, 2012
Running Time: 113 minutes

Film: 3 out of 5 stars
Extras: 3 out of 5 stars

When I heard that Tim Burton was directing Johnny Depp as Barnabas Collins in “Dark Shadows”, I almost fell out of my chair. I am a big fan of the original series and low the duo’s past collaborations. This film was a bit disappointing and has a lot of story and pacing issues. Johnny Depp is brilliant in the film that otherwise feelings cloudy and claustrophobic. The screenplay is from Seth Grahame-Smith, author of “Pride & Prejudice and Zombies” and “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter”. This was also the last film that was produced by Oscar® winner Richard D. Zanuck (“Jaws”). Besides Depp, this also has a great supporting cast including Michelle Pfeiffer, Helena Bonham Carter, Eva Green (my second favorite) and Chloë Grace Moretz. Upon second viewing this film improved a bit but not even close enough to make this one of my top 20 of the year.

The Blu-ray Combo Pack features a high-definition Blu-ray and standard definition DVD copy of the film as well as an UltraViolet digital streaming copy. The 1080p transfer looks nearly perfect and really shines. The colors in the film are absolutely sharp and works well with light and dark situations. The audio is also nearly perfect with its DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track. The film relies heavily on its score and themed 70’s music and it comes with very clearly with this track. The special features are decent but lacking any commentary tracks, which I would have liked to seen with this release.

The special features are primarily made up with nine behind-the-film Focus Points. The first is called “Becoming Barnabas”, which takes us through Depp’s transformation. “Welcome to Collinsport!” takes us on a trip through the created town. “A Melee of Monstrous Proporitions” looks into the plans for the final battle sequence. “Angelique: A Witch Scorned” is a character profile with Johnny Depp and Eva Green chatting about their plot-relationship. “Reliving a Decade” takes Collinsport into the music of the 70s. “Dark Shadowy Secrets” brings us into the mind of Tim Burton for the films props and special effects that bring this world alive. “The Collinses: Every Family Has It’s Demons” looks at the rest of the Collin family with Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter and their co-stars. “Cooper Rocks Collinsport!” is a party featurette with Alice Cooper and cast on the roof of Collinsport Manor. “Vampires, Witches and Werewolves, Oh My!” examines the twists behind Burton’s plans to include his favorite classic movie monsters in the gothic universe of Dark Shadows.

Synopsis: From the wonderfully warped imagination of Tim Burton comes the story of Barnabas Collins (Johnny Depp), a dashing aristocrat who is turned into a vampire by a jilted lover and entombed for two centuries. Emerging from his coffin into the world of 1972, he returns to his once-majestic home, only to the few dysfunctional descendants of the Collins family who remain. Determined to return his family name to its former glory, Barnabas is thwarted at every turn by his former lover – the seductive witch Angelique (Eva Green).

Own it on Blu-ray Combo Pack or Digital Download 10/2!
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CD Review: Shadows Fall “Fire From the Sky”

Shadows Fall
“Fire From the Sky”
Razor & Tie
Producer: Adam Dutkiewicz
Tracks: 10

Our Score: 3 out of 5 stars

“Fire From the Sky” is the 7th release from Massachusetts metalers Shadows Falls. The album is the follow up to the bands 2009 release titled “Retribution”. “Fire From the Sky” is being released via Razor & Tie and features 10 new tracks that were produced by Killswitch Engage guitarist Adam Dutkiewicz.

Having followed Shadows Falls since the late 90’s it was great to hear that the band would be putting out a new album as the bands last release was in 2009. It goes without saying that I was quite anxious to dive in to the new material. The songs feature some really great playing and a heightened intensity however I really couldn’t find anything else that really grabbed me. In my opinion the song structures were very similar to those hear on the bands last 3. Producer Adam D. did a great job getting the most out of the songs and the albums intensity proves that. I really felt that a majority of the riffs on this album were a bit stock. There were a few tracks that did rise above the other on the album. “Divide and Conquer” was just a sheer metal track while the album’s title track “Fire From the Sky” had a brutal slugging feel to it which made you want bang your head and pump your fist

Long time Shadows Fall fans expecting something new and fresh with this release may not find what they are looking for. However if you can appreciate the album solely based on intensity and skill then you will surely want to pick up a copy of this album.

Track Listing:
1.) The Unknown
2.) Divide and Conquer
3.) Weight of the World
4.) Nothing Remains
5.) Fire From the Sky
6.) Save Your Soul
7.) Blind Faith
8.) Lost Within
9.) Walk the Edge
10.) The Wasteland

Blu-ray Review “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows”

Directed by: Guy Ritchie
Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Noomi Rapace, Jared Harris
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Distributed: Warner Home Video
Release Date: June 12, 2012

Blu-ray Score: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Film Score: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Extras Score: 3 out of 5 stars

Can Robert Downey Jr. do no wrong?  He is brilliant as Tony Stark and amazing as Sherlock Holmes.  The interactions between RDJ and Jude Law are just absolutely perfect.  They are made to start in these roles together.  Jared Harris is also an amazing villain and a great rival for Holmes. “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows” is not just an action film.  It is so much more.  Thought maybe not the best sequel ever, it definitely improves some on the first film and is downright really entertaining. I really enjoyed this film and I hope that Warner continues this franchise.

The Blu-ray presentation is very impressive for this release. The 1080p transfer looks really sharp and crystal clear. It also boasts an aspect ratio of 2.40:1.  The audio track is also amazing boasting a DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1.  During the film’s action scenes, my surround sound system was shaking the walls, which is totally awesome! This releases (like most WB’s releases) comes stocked with all the goods. It comes with a Blu-ray of the film, plus a DVD disc as well. Lastly there is an UltraViolet streaming digital copy included.

The special features are decent but not completely overwhelming.  There is a Maximum Movie Mode including, which is a Picture-in-Picture track hosted by Robert Downey Jr..  It is a very informative and who will honestly turn down a one-man-show of Robert Downey Jr.? There are 35 minutes of “Focus Point” included through seven featurettes, within Maximum Movie Mode. Lastly be sure to check out the free Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows movie app for iPad2 or Kindle Fire. The app synchs with the Blu-ray disc to start exploring the rich and exciting history of Sherlock Holmes.

Synopsis: Robert Downey Jr. reprises his role as the world’s most famous detective, Sherlock Holmes, and Jude Law returns as his friend and colleague, Dr. Watson, in “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows.” Sherlock Holmes has always been the smartest man in the room…until now. There is a new criminal mastermind at large—Professor James Moriarty (Jared Harris)—and not only is he Holmes’ intellectual equal, but his capacity for evil, coupled with a complete lack of conscience, may give him an advantage over the renowned detective. Around the globe, headlines break the news: a scandal takes down an Indian cotton tycoon; a Chinese opium trader dies of an apparent overdose; bombings in Strasbourg and Vienna; the death of an American steel magnate… No one sees the connective thread between these seemingly random events—no one, that is, except the great Sherlock Holmes, who has discerned a deliberate web of death and destruction. At its center sits a singularly sinister spider: Moriarty. Holmes’ investigation into Moriarty’s plot becomes more dangerous as it leads him and Watson out of London to France, Germany and finally Switzerland. But the cunning Moriarty is always one step ahead, and moving perilously close to completing his ominous plan. If he succeeds, it will not only bring him immense wealth and power but alter the course of history.

Own it on Blu-ray Combo Pack or Digital Download 6/12!
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Concert Review “Shadows Fall, Station 58, Syracuse, NY”

Shadows Fall, Maps of War, Spire, All That Is Sacred, One Step From Falling
Date: Friday, February 17th 2012
Venue: Station 58, Syracuse, NY

Our Score: 3 out of 5 stars

Shadows Fall came to the intimate Station 58 venue in Syracuse, NY on February 17th and performed to a near capacity crowd. The band came through the city as part of a 5 date tour that is in preparation for their appearance at this year’s Sound Waves festival held in Australia.

One Step From Falling started the night off playing an interesting blend of experimental rock that reminded me of early System of a Down however with less substance. All That Is Scared took the stage next as the club began to slowly fill and though the bands set was brief each member appeared to put their best foot forward. Local favorite Spire was up next and received a very warm welcome from the crowd. The band played a technical blend of prog metal that received a great response from the crowd that helped set the stage for the rest of the evening. Maps of War followed playing to a packed house. The band was very technical and provided an intense in your face performance.

Shadows Fall would close out the night and though the band had not performed since the summer of last year it did not show. Lead vocalist Brian Fair with his signature dreadlocks had the crowd in a sweat filled mosh from the word go. Fair took several trips into the crowd which seemed to only fuel the crowd that much more. Guitarists Jon Donais and Matt Bachand laid down their signature riffage while drummer Jason Bittner and Bassist Paul Romanko filled in the band’s sound with thunderous bass runs and beats. The band played a variety of tracks from their 6 album catalog as well as the track “Fire From the Sky” which will be on the bands upcoming album due in May of this year. Shadows Fall along with all the other bands on the bill really delivered by putting on a great show for the Syracuse crowd.

Shadows Fall Set List:
1.)    My Demise
2.)    Thoughts Without Words
3.)    Enlightened By The Cold
4.)    Burning The Lives
5.)    Stepping Outside The Circle
6.)    Still I Rise
7.)    Fire From The Sky
8.)    The Power of I and I
9.)    King of Nothing
10.) What Drives The Weak
11.)  Inspiration on Demand
12.)  Destroyer of Senses
13.)  The Light That Blinds
14.)  Redemption


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Film Review “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows”

Starring: Robert Downey, Jr., Jude Law and Jared Harris
Directed by: Guy Ritchie
Rated: PG 13
Running time: 2 hours 9 minutes
Warner Brothers

Our Score: 4 out of 5 stars

It is 1891. At his typewriter, Dr. James Watson (Law) is completing his memoirs. He has come to the chapter concerning his wedding and perhaps he and Sherlock Holmes’(Downey) greatest adventure. “It was 1878, “ he begins.

Told in director Guy Ritchie’s inimitable style, “Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows” is a worthy follow up to 2009’s initial “Holmes” film. The familiar faces are back but it’s a new face that makes the film so enjoyably fun…the face of Holmes greatest adversary, Professor James Moriarty (Harris). As evil to the core as Holmes is brilliant, Moriarty has devised a way to not only begin a major military conflict but also make a fortune off of it. With the soon to be newlywed Watson contemplating the end of his work with Holmes, our private investigator instills the assistance of his older brother, Mycroft (the always dependable Stephen Fry) As Watson heads to Brighton with his new bride, Holmes gains the confidence of a gypsy woman named Simza (Noomi Rapace, who starred as the original “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”). But is the new team clever enough to match wits with Moriarty’s genius?

The formula for a good adventure film is two-fold. First, you need likeable characters. And second, you need adventure. Both ingredients are featured here in spades. Refining the chemistry they began building in the first film, Downey and Law are more like an old married couple then professional partners. If I were to liken them to another film duo, I would call them the Riggs and Murtaugh of the 19th century. Their comfort with each other makes them seem like old friends to the audience. Fry, who hosts Great Britain’s annual BAFTA awards each year (I would love to see him do the Academy Awards) is great comic relief. In her first English language film, Rapace makes a fine debut. And as Professor Moriarty, “Mad Men” co-star Harris proves himself a most worthy addition to the Holmes canon. The visual effects are outstanding while the gadgets Holmes comes up with would rival anything “Q” could come up with for James Bond.