• Sin City: A Dame To Kill For (2014)

    The first "Sin City" was a revolutionary movie in my opinion in terms of its comic book style, violent film noir atmosphere and intriguing storytelling involving switches between several plot lines that were loosely bound together. While many mediocre American movies quickly got many unnecessary sequels, one of the very best Hollywood films of the past ten years had to wait more than nine years for its second strike to be released. This is also the reason for the rather disappointing sales figures as many younger fans of the original have grown older and forgotten about the first part, younger audiences might not have heard about the excellent original yet and worn-out superhero movies in the key of "Guardians Of The Galaxy" as well as the wave of exchangeable dystopian teenage flicks like "Divergent" are what younger audiences prefer to watch these days.

    Let me tell you that these people are missing out on a highly atmospheric, breathtaking and stylistic follow-up that brings back the magic of the original and only fails to beat it because this movie is slightly shorter and the four stories told in here are a little bit less original than the four ones told nine and a half years earlier. This being said, it would be a wise choice to watch the first movie again before you get to see its sequel because the new film refers to several events that have happened before in Sin City. 

    The style and spirit of the movie has been copied many times after its original release in rather similar flicks like "V for Vendetta" (2006), "Max Payne" (2008) and "The Spirit" (2008) which just proves how influencing the original was. That's why the sequel feels a little bit like one has seen similar stuff before but let's not forget that this franchise is the one that started this whole unique extravagant comic book style. If you like the aforementioned movies, you will also adore this movie that is hold in classic black and white with a few colourful parts here and there that make stand out certain body parts or objects. I'm still fascinated by this classic and yet revolutionary way to design a movie. The sinister and often sarcastic stories, the excellent soundtrack and the bleak characters that all have their dark sides add much to the gripping atmosphere of the movie. Especially the actors are doing an outstanding job in this movie. Mickey Rourke convinces as brutal yet charming outlaw, Josh Brolin excels as broken man with a raw appearance but a soft core who definitely makes me forget that his character was performed by Clive Owen in the first film, Powers Boothe delivers as antisocial, corrupt and pitiless politician and Eva Green perfectly portrays the sexy yet evil miss misery. Even the secondary characters like the suicidal Jessica Alba, the silent beauty and elegant killing machine Jamie Chung or the short role of Bruce Willis as a desperate ghost or guardian angel can entirely convince. The cameos of Lady Gaga and other famous people are also a nice addition to this film. The clash of all these characters leads to many brutal yet artistic fight scenes where the blood is flowing, explicit but honestly passionate dialogues take place and several scenes including explicit yet elegant nudity are shown. This is a highly entertaining mixture including lots of black humour and sarcasm, tons of over-the-top action sequences, some moments filled with extreme emotions and a solid base of tension and a high dose of sex appeal. Weak or conservative minds as well as young children should therefor definitely avoid this movie.

     

    In the end, if you liked the original "Sin City", you will also like its high above average but not classic sequel "Sin City: A Dame To Kill For". If you haven't watched these movie, you have definitely missed out on two of the most atmospheric, original and vivid Hollywood movies of the past ten years. Go and correct your mistakes of the past now. Along with the experimental crazy ride filled with star actors that was Luc Besson's "Lucy", this is by far the best movie of the not-so-young year 2014 for me. This is the only current movie franchise I definitely want to carry on, no matter if the majority misjudges this excellent movie and prefers to watch its trendy fast-food cinema. This kind of art isn't for everyone and this is what makes this so unique. 

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  • Dear readers of my blog,

    the administrator of the steadily growing Black Wind Metal website (our Facebook section just reached over 1000 likes) has just updated the section where the reviewers from all around the world introduce themselves. I'm proud to share my profile with you and recommend you to visit...

    the website (http://blackwindmetal.com),

    Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/BlackWindMetal) and

    Twitter (http://twitter.com/BlackWindMetal) sections

    ...to discover interesting interviews, reports and reviews about metal music from all around the world.

    Take good care and have a nice (long) weekend!

    Greetings from Chicoutimi today,

    Sebastian 

    SebastianName: Sebastian Kluth

    Online Alias (if applicable): kluseba

    Position At Black Wind: interviewer, reporter & reviewer

    Age: 24

    Hometown: Leverkusen, North ­Rhine­-Westphalia, Federal Republic of Germany

    What You Do In Real Life: I’m a high school teacher in Gatineau, Quebec, Canada

    Preferred Style Of Metal: Progressive, symphonic, power

    Least Favorite Styles Of Metal: Brutal death metal, grindcore, drone

    Favorite Non­-metal Music: Neue Deutsche Härte, Neue Deutsche Todeskunst, medieval and folk rock, progressive rock, world music, new age, soundtracks.

    How You Got Into Metal: I first got in contact with heavier music through mainstream acts like Puddle Of Mudd, Linkin Park, Drowning Pool, and so on in 2002. In 2003 and 2004, I discovered the German medieval rock and metal scene around bands like In Extremo, Subway To Sally and Saltatio Mortis. I then started to listen to heavy and power metal like Iron Maiden, Edguy, HammerFall, and so on in early 2005. My tastes have continued to evolve since then. My first real metal album (if you don’t take into consideration nu metal and medieval rock) was Iron Maiden’s Fear Of The Dark.

    Favorite Metal Albums (My current 20 favorites):

    1. The Old Dead Tree ­ The Perpetual Motion (2005, progressive gothic metal from France)
    2. The Vision Bleak ­ Carpathia: A Dramatic Poem (2005, gothic metal from Germany)
    3. Amorphis ­ Circle (2013, progressive metal from Finland)
    4. Stratovarius ­ Dreamspace (1994, power metal from Finland)
    5. Heaven’s Cry ­ Primal Power Addiction (2002, progressive metal from Canada)
    6. Amorphis ­ Tales From The Thousand Lakes (1994, progressive death metal from Finland)
    7. Orphaned Land ­ All Is One (2013, Middle Eastern folk metal from Israel)
    8. Amorphis ­ Am Universum (2001, progressive rock/metal from Finland)
    9. The Last Successor ­ The Last Successor (2010, progressive metal from China)
    10. Voivod ­ Angel Rat (1991, progressive metal from Canada)
    11. Savatage ­ Gutter Ballet (1989, symphonic heavy metal from the USA)
    12. Rush ­ Clockwork Angels (2012, progressive rock/metal from Canada)
    13. Tang Dynasty ­ A Dream Return To Dang Dynasty (1992, heavy metal from China)
    14. Therion ­ Sirius B / Lemuria (2004, symphonic metal from Sweden)
    15. Iron Maiden ­ Powerslave (1984, heavy metal from the UK)
    16. Moonspeel ­ Wolfheart (1995, gothic black metal from Portugal)
    17. Pantommind ­ Shade Of Fate (2005, progressive metal from Bulgaria)
    18. In Extremo ­ Mein rasend Herz (2005, medieval folk metal from Germany)
    19. Seraphim ­ The Equal Spirit (2002, symphonic power metal from Taiwan)
    20. Blaze Bayley ­ The King Of Metal (2012, heavy metal from the UK)

    Favorite Metal Artists (In Alphabetical Order): Amorphis, Anthrax, Aria, Dream Theater, Edguy, In Extremo, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Loudness, Moonspell, Ningen­Isu, Orphaned Land, Savatage, Stratovarius, Tang Dynasty, The Old Dead Tree, Therion, The Vision Bleak, Voivod, X Japan

    Most Overrated Metal Artists: Iced Earth, Megadeth, Saxon

    What Metal Means To You: Metal is my favorite music genre because it is so diverse and emotional. It has united many different social and cultural aspects throughout the decades and centuries, and from all over the world.

    Why You Enjoy Reviewing: I’m a creative person and have loved reading and even writing my own books since a very young age. I have worked as a journalist for several years now, where I have learned many new things, met a lot of interesting people, and enjoyed exposing my writings to a larger audience and getting all kinds of feedback. I always feel the need to create and write new things.

    Today, I most enjoy supporting young and obscure artists. I also like to help people to discover all kinds of arts and to discover the same things from artists, colleagues, and readers of my works.

    Best Personal Encounter With A Metal Musician: I consider musicians to be human beings who don’t like to get stalked after concerts and deserve some free space, and that’s part of why I’m somewhat shy to approach some of the musicians I adore. I have met and talked numerous times with the bass player and singer Vincent Peake, who is involved in alternative rock bands such as Groovy, Aardvark, and GrimSkunk. Since I have done an interview with Seraphim’s singer Quinn Weng via internet, I have stayed in contact with her and consider her to be a very kind person. I also enjoyed meeting the members of the band Krypteria at a festival and they were all very kind and generous. One of my favorite interviews (which led to meeting him in person) was with Blaze Bayley, who is an extremely friendly person.

    Favorite Literature: I enjoy reading: Enid Blyton, Ray Bradbury, Jason Dark, Annette von Droste­Hülshoff, Dmitry Glukhovsky, Ralf Isau, Michel Jobin, Karl May, Hans­Georg Noack, Edgar Allan Poe, Erich Maria Remarque, J.K. Rowling, John Saul, Friedrich von Schiller, Dan Simmons, Yves Thériault, Thomas Thiemeyer, Jules Verne, Edgar Wallace and many more

    Favorite Films (Top 20):

    1. The Good, The Band And The Ugly (1966)
    2. Twin Peaks ­ Fire Walk With Me (1992)
    3. Gojira (1954)
    4. Sympathy For Mister Vengeance (2002)
    5. Lost Highway (1997)
    6. The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)
    7. Vidocq (2001)
    8. A Tale Of Two Sisters (2003)
    9. Shining (1980)
    10. Metropolis (1927)
    11. I Saw The Devil (2010)
    12. Sin City (2005)
    13. Once Upon A Time In The West (1968)
    14. Inglorious Basterds (2009)
    15. The Naked Gun (1988)
    16. Mongol: The Rise Of Genghis Khan (2007)
    17. Good Cop Bad Cop (2006)
    18. Marebito (2004)
    19. Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood Of War (2004)
    20. Gozu (2003)

    Favorite Television Show: Twin Peaks

    Favorite Cuisine: I’m pretty open­ minded to discover any kind of cuisine. I especially enjoy eating Chinese, Croatian, German, Greek, Indian, Italian, Japanese, Korean and Mongolian food.

    Favorite Beverage: My favourite non­alcoholic drinks are Almdudler, Arizona Ice Tea, blueberry or liquorice tea, Evian and Gerolsteiner water, Granini’s banana juice, Fruitopia orange juice, kvass, Sinalco Cola, vanilla soy milk, and Vita Malt. My favourite beer breweries are Baltika Breweries, Bavarian State Brewery Weihenstephan, Grimbergen, Les Brasseurs du Nord, Les Brasseurs du Temps, Les Brasseurs RJ, McAuslan Brewing, Mill Street Brewery, Unibroue and Velkopopovický Kozel. I rarely drink hard alcool but if I do so, I drink some Cuarenta Y Tres (Licor 43), some Ouzo 12 Gold and moderately different kinds of absinthe.

    Song That You Would Have Played At Your Funeral: Iron Maiden’s “Fear Of The Dark”

    Message To Black Wind Readers: Thanks for reading our contributions and keep on commenting, discussing, and enriching our writing and your listening. Please support the artists and purchase your music legally. Have some fun at concerts and festivals. Carpe diem!

    Partager via Gmail Delicious Technorati Yahoo! Google Bookmarks Blogmarks Pin It

  • SebastianName: Sebastian Kluth

    Online Alias (if applicable): kluseba

    Position At Black Wind: interviewer, reporter & reviewer

    Age: 24

    Hometown: Leverkusen, North ­Rhine­-Westphalia, Federal Republic of Germany

    What You Do In Real Life: I’m a high school teacher in Gatineau, Quebec, Canada

    Preferred Style Of Metal: Progressive, symphonic, power

    Least Favorite Styles Of Metal: Brutal death metal, grindcore, drone

    Favorite Non­-metal Music: Neue Deutsche Härte, Neue Deutsche Todeskunst, medieval and folk rock, progressive rock, world music, new age, soundtracks.

    How You Got Into Metal: I first got in contact with heavier music through mainstream acts like Puddle Of Mudd, Linkin Park, Drowning Pool, and so on in 2002. In 2003 and 2004, I discovered the German medieval rock and metal scene around bands like In Extremo, Subway To Sally and Saltatio Mortis. I then started to listen to heavy and power metal like Iron Maiden, Edguy, HammerFall, and so on in early 2005. My tastes have continued to evolve since then. My first real metal album (if you don’t take into consideration nu metal and medieval rock) was Iron Maiden’s Fear Of The Dark.

    Favorite Metal Albums (My current 20 favorites):

    1. The Old Dead Tree ­ The Perpetual Motion (2005, progressive gothic metal from France)
    2. The Vision Bleak ­ Carpathia: A Dramatic Poem (2005, gothic metal from Germany)
    3. Amorphis ­ Circle (2013, progressive metal from Finland)
    4. Stratovarius ­ Dreamspace (1994, power metal from Finland)
    5. Heaven’s Cry ­ Primal Power Addiction (2002, progressive metal from Canada)
    6. Amorphis ­ Tales From The Thousand Lakes (1994, progressive death metal from Finland)
    7. Orphaned Land ­ All Is One (2013, Middle Eastern folk metal from Israel)
    8. Amorphis ­ Am Universum (2001, progressive rock/metal from Finland)
    9. The Last Successor ­ The Last Successor (2010, progressive metal from China)
    10. Voivod ­ Angel Rat (1991, progressive metal from Canada)
    11. Savatage ­ Gutter Ballet (1989, symphonic heavy metal from the USA)
    12. Rush ­ Clockwork Angels (2012, progressive rock/metal from Canada)
    13. Tang Dynasty ­ A Dream Return To Dang Dynasty (1992, heavy metal from China)
    14. Therion ­ Sirius B / Lemuria (2004, symphonic metal from Sweden)
    15. Iron Maiden ­ Powerslave (1984, heavy metal from the UK)
    16. Moonspeel ­ Wolfheart (1995, gothic black metal from Portugal)
    17. Pantommind ­ Shade Of Fate (2005, progressive metal from Bulgaria)
    18. In Extremo ­ Mein rasend Herz (2005, medieval folk metal from Germany)
    19. Seraphim ­ The Equal Spirit (2002, symphonic power metal from Taiwan)
    20. Blaze Bayley ­ The King Of Metal (2012, heavy metal from the UK)

    Favorite Metal Artists (In Alphabetical Order): Amorphis, Anthrax, Aria, Dream Theater, Edguy, In Extremo, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Loudness, Moonspell, Ningen­Isu, Orphaned Land, Savatage, Stratovarius, Tang Dynasty, The Old Dead Tree, Therion, The Vision Bleak, Voivod, X Japan

    Most Overrated Metal Artists: Iced Earth, Megadeth, Saxon

    What Metal Means To You: Metal is my favorite music genre because it is so diverse and emotional. It has united many different social and cultural aspects throughout the decades and centuries, and from all over the world.

    Why You Enjoy Reviewing: I’m a creative person and have loved reading and even writing my own books since a very young age. I have worked as a journalist for several years now, where I have learned many new things, met a lot of interesting people, and enjoyed exposing my writings to a larger audience and getting all kinds of feedback. I always feel the need to create and write new things.

    Today, I most enjoy supporting young and obscure artists. I also like to help people to discover all kinds of arts and to discover the same things from artists, colleagues, and readers of my works.

    Best Personal Encounter With A Metal Musician: I consider musicians to be human beings who don’t like to get stalked after concerts and deserve some free space, and that’s part of why I’m somewhat shy to approach some of the musicians I adore. I have met and talked numerous times with the bass player and singer Vincent Peake, who is involved in alternative rock bands such as Groovy, Aardvark, and GrimSkunk. Since I have done an interview with Seraphim’s singer Quinn Weng via internet, I have stayed in contact with her and consider her to be a very kind person. I also enjoyed meeting the members of the band Krypteria at a festival and they were all very kind and generous. One of my favorite interviews (which led to meeting him in person) was with Blaze Bayley, who is an extremely friendly person.

    Favorite Literature: I enjoy reading: Enid Blyton, Ray Bradbury, Jason Dark, Annette von Droste­Hülshoff, Dmitry Glukhovsky, Ralf Isau, Michel Jobin, Karl May, Hans­Georg Noack, Edgar Allan Poe, Erich Maria Remarque, J.K. Rowling, John Saul, Friedrich von Schiller, Dan Simmons, Yves Thériault, Thomas Thiemeyer, Jules Verne, Edgar Wallace and many more

    Favorite Films (Top 20):

    1. The Good, The Band And The Ugly (1966)
    2. Twin Peaks ­ Fire Walk With Me (1992)
    3. Gojira (1954)
    4. Sympathy For Mister Vengeance (2002)
    5. Lost Highway (1997)
    6. The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)
    7. Vidocq (2001)
    8. A Tale Of Two Sisters (2003)
    9. Shining (1980)
    10. Metropolis (1927)
    11. I Saw The Devil (2010)
    12. Sin City (2005)
    13. Once Upon A Time In The West (1968)
    14. Inglorious Basterds (2009)
    15. The Naked Gun (1988)
    16. Mongol: The Rise Of Genghis Khan (2007)
    17. Good Cop Bad Cop (2006)
    18. Marebito (2004)
    19. Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood Of War (2004)
    20. Gozu (2003)

    Favorite Television Show: Twin Peaks

    Favorite Cuisine: I’m pretty open­ minded to discover any kind of cuisine. I especially enjoy eating Chinese, Croatian, German, Greek, Indian, Italian, Japanese, Korean and Mongolian food.

    Favorite Beverage: My favourite non­alcoholic drinks are Almdudler, Arizona Ice Tea, blueberry or liquorice tea, Evian and Gerolsteiner water, Granini’s banana juice, Fruitopia orange juice, kvass, Sinalco Cola, vanilla soy milk, and Vita Malt. My favourite beer breweries are Baltika Breweries, Bavarian State Brewery Weihenstephan, Grimbergen, Les Brasseurs du Nord, Les Brasseurs du Temps, Les Brasseurs RJ, McAuslan Brewing, Mill Street Brewery, Unibroue and Velkopopovický Kozel. I rarely drink hard alcool but if I do so, I drink some Cuarenta Y Tres (Licor 43), some Ouzo 12 Gold and moderately different kinds of absinthe.

    Song That You Would Have Played At Your Funeral: Iron Maiden’s “Fear Of The Dark”

    Message To Black Wind Readers: Thanks for reading our contributions and keep on commenting, discussing, and enriching our writing and your listening. Please support the artists and purchase your music legally. Have some fun at concerts and festivals. Carpe diem!

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  • Grave Digger – Return Of The Reaper

    August 27, 2014 in Reviews by Sebastian Kluth

    Grave Digger - Return Of The Reaper 2014Grave Digger Return Of The Reaper (2014)

    Reviewed by Sebastian Kluth

    Grave Digger is one of the most important German heavy metal institutions and I have always loved this band for its courage to try out new things. I am a big fan of the dark and epic masterpiece Heart Of Darkness; the very well written and historically authentic Middle Age trilogy around the records Tunes Of WarKnights Of The Cross and Excalibur; the more classic and orchestral tribute to Richard Wagner in Rheingold; the dark storytelling with religious background in The Last Supper; the more complex and progressive tunes in the epic Liberty Or Death; and the songs about Greek mythology on the gripping Clash Of The Gods. From time to time however, Grave Digger stops experimenting and pushing forward in order to release records that go back to the band’s energetic but usually exchangeable standard heavy metal roots. Return Of The Reaper is just such an example, as it hearkens back to the band’s comeback release The Reaper, which was released in 1993. In my opinion, these nostalgic steps back in quality and time are unnecessary, and that’s also the case for this release.

     

    After an interesting introduction in the form of the title track, things immediately get redundant with opener “Hell Funeral”. It simply feels like hearing a very similar track that’s been done by Grave Digger a dozen times or more. The song wants to sound fresh, short, and uncompromising, but turns out to be old-fashioned, predictable, and even slightly laughable because Chris Boltendahl’s English has somehow gotten worse as time went by (which is rather strange). The new record includes several redundant short tracks like this that vary between heavy and thrash metal. Usually, the band includes a couple of songs like these on each record, but this time almost the entire release is filled with this kind of unimpressive, trite music.

    A few songs break this cycle. “Tattooed Rider” sounds like a song from Judas Priest’s controversial “Turbo” release. It’s an interesting change of style, but copying a sound that already sounded quite dated almost thirty years ago isn’t a big achievement either. “Season Of The Witch” is much more interesting because it builds up a bleak, hypnotizing, and mysterious atmosphere right from the start, and includes a few surprising passages here and there. The track’s biggest strength is the epic chorus that should work very well in concert. “Death Smiles At All Of Us” opens with charming organ sounds and leads us through faster verses to a truly catchy and fresh chorus. The closing piano ballad “Nothing To Believe” sounds exchangeable however, and Chris Boltendahl’s raw vocals and very average English skills really don’t fit this kind of music at all.

    If you purchase the 2 disc limited mediabook version of the album, the second disc helps to save this otherwise at-best average release. It includes two decent bonus tracks in form of the cinematic and sinister mid-tempo stomper “The Emperor’s Death” and the average heavy metal track “Rebel Of Damnation”, that at least provides a gripping guitar sound that builds up some atmosphere. The other eight songs are all acoustic versions of Grave Digger classics. However, the band didn’t simply adapt its songs from electric to acoustic versions, but also rearranged some parts here and there. These reinvented tracks have a certain free jazz approach here and there, and sound really imaginative and joyful. Grave Digger manages to sound much better than many other bands that have hopped on the bandwagon to do acoustic albums, and prove that they are still among the greatest heavy metal acts in the world when they are yet willing to experiment.

    If you are a collector and faithful fan, you should really purchase the limited version of this record, as it turns out to be much more interesting than the redundant main release – where only two or three songs stand out and convince me. With this being said, I hope that Grave Digger continues to experiment again on the next release.

    2.75 // 5

     

     

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  • Ladies and gentlemen!

    Today is the third anniversary of my blog. In its first year, this blog had been visited 5182 times. The second year saw a significant rise to 20539 visitors. I'm proud to realize that this amazing number has more than doubled in one year as a stunning total of 46971 people have read an inredible 197147 pages on this blog and a record of 73 visitors had been connected at the same time at a certain point over the course of the last twelve months. I want to thank your for your faithful attention and hope that you will continue visiting my blog in such a high number and spreading the word about it on the internet.

    Currently, I'm busy with a new job and some bureaucratic issues but I'm still regularly writing film and music reviews and I continue working on my third novel about the Russian journalist and demon hunter Aljenikow. I have a couple of other projects on my mind for the future such as different reports about my trips to different North American cities, a list of my twenty favourite video games of all times and a new novel that talks about a lonesome and mysterious man seeking for revenge in the People's Republic of China. I will keep you informed about my new projects on this blog.

    Take good care and let's stay in touch. I'm always open for suggestions of any kind, so don't hesitate to leave me a message.

    Sincerely yours,

    Sebastian Kluth

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