Lucky Number Seven

We hit another milestone!  Seven years straight of a couple of Metal fans sharing their thoughts on new Metal albums.  Sure, not all of them have been posted “on time,” but for 364 weeks in a row we have posted episodes, working around natural disasters, vacations, and commitments to our actual jobs..  And this is about as much special attention as this is gonna get.


Korpiklaani Kulkija (Nuclear Blast)
Krisiun Scourge of the Enthroned (Century Media)
SkyharborSunshine Dust (eOne/Good Fight)


Spit Black

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As we were hitting Episode 200 and about to review the new Lamb of God (a band first heard about back in the radio show days) for Episode 201, it got me thinking about the effect this show has had on my life…

As many of you know, this podcast is the evolution of a radio show I started way back in 2003 at 98.1 WQAQ, then just “The Sideshow.” It was a rough start for me (you should hear that first show…oi!), but, specifically because of said rough start, I met Nick, he soon joined, and we picked up steam. When I graduated, I passed the show to Nick; when he graduated, he passed it to Kyle (aka The ROCK(Jock)). When Kyle graduated, he passed it down. Last I knew, The Sideshow was the longest running show in WQAQ history.

That show was priority for Nick and I when we were in school, many times to a fault. We spent far too much time meticulously plotting every show and building the brand. To be honest, it was just more fun than school work. It paid off, though…everybody who remotely cared about WQAQ (actually involved or not) knew who we were.  Even if they didn’t care, they saw the 5 foot chaos logo banner hanging in the cafe at various times.

The radio show was more than just fun, though. It actually changed my life, and had a lasting impact. It helped me become the Metal fan I am today, coming in at a time where I was ready to grow, musically speaking, introducing me to countless bands I may not have known otherwise. (Some of that was through Nick too.) I mean, ask anybody – I dove in as deep as I could and never came out. Arguably, I became obsessed…and still am. In turn, my lifestyle evolved to go with it all.

Most importantly, though, almost every friend I still have from college I have because of The Sideshow. Some I just keep up with mostly on social media, some I meet at shows, others I only get to see only a few times a year, and a few are some of my closest friends. (You all know who you are!) Without that show, I may not have met any of those people and have the relationships I do now. It seems weird to even think about that…

Also, that’s not to mention the people I didn’t keep in touch with who were part of my life then.  Whether it was having psuedo-philosophical discussions in the station lobby (where I spent a lot of time), going to Hartford or New Haven for a show (or that one time at the Elks Lodge in Hamden), or any other shenanigans that went down, these awesome radio people touched my life.

Even when I stopped doing the show after graduation (to which I did make one more appearance), it was still happening “underground” between Nick, Kyle and I via email. The podcast just brought it to the surface again. Like the radio show, this podcast is a labor of love to which we happily dedicate our time, working it in around full-time jobs, relationships, and the rest of our lives. We do it for the love of the music. We do it to keep the legacy alive…the legacy that forever impacted my life.*

So, to anybody who has ever listened to an episode, any band that has sent us their music, anybody who has taken the time out of their schedule to be on the show, everybody who has left a comment, liked s on Facebook, reviewed us on iTunes, said hi at a show…whatever you contributed, in any form…I sincerely thank you. It means the world.

– Brian

*I’m sure it impacted Nick’s too, but I am not going to speak for him.


For two hundred straight weeks, this show has be availability on or about every Sunday.  So, to, uh, celebrate, we did this one like most of our first hundred shows.  That’s right, freaks – The ROCK(Jock) makes a triumphant return to the podcast, bring his crotchety, jaded, yet unique perspective to this week’s reviews.

We’d also like to sincerely thank all of you who have listened to the show, sent us your band’s music, or otherwise supported this podcast in some way over the past two hundred weeks.  We wouldn’t be doing this without you!*


*Ok, we might, but it wouldn’t be as good or fun.

Thy Art Is Murder Holy War (Nuclear Blast)
Deathrite Revelation of Chaos (Prosthetic)
Great American Ghost – Everyone Leaves (Good Fight)
Solipsist – The Burning Mass (Ferocious)

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As we promised in our one year anniversary episode, here is a pretty comprehensive list of starter bands to consider trying out if you’re a little hesitant to dive right into the deep end.  The list covers logical progressions from certain other genres that would provide a good starting point, as well as some bands that we find enjoyable all around that have a more broad appeal.  Obviously there are TONS of other ways to get started, and (since most of you obviously enjoy the genre to begin with) feel free to leave comments to this post or in Episode 52 to provide some suggestions that we may have missed. Since we are so far into it, we probably aren’t even aware of many good “starter” bands, so feel free to fill those in.

It’s time to bust out the training wheels, and stretch your neck muscles: head banging hurts without a proper warmup!

General Bands/Albums To Check Out:
Still Remains – The Serpent
It Dies Today – Sirens
Bullet For My Valentine – Fever
Sevendust – Cold Day Memory
Deftones – Diamond Eyes
Textures – Dualism
In Flames – Soundtrack to your Escape

Kyle and Brian (and faithful listener Bob Sala before them) all addressed that the music you currently enjoy can have a huge impact on what metal you may ultimately gravitate toward as well as the music that you should start with when trying to get into a heavier frame of mind.  With that said:

If you listen to Radio Rock, try:
• Metallica – Metallica (aka The Black Album)
• All That Remains – Overcome
• Chevelle – This Type of Thinking
• Volbeat – Beyond Hell/Above Heaven
• Seether – Karma & Effect
• Shinedown – Leave A Whisper, or Sound of Madness

Classic Rock:
• Black Sabbath
• Iron Maiden
• Judas Priest
• Christian Mistress
• Witchcraft
• Dawnbringer

Top 40:
• Dead Letter Circus – This is the Warning
• Enter Shikari – A Flash Flood Of Color
• I See Stars
• We Came As Romans

Southern Rock:
• The Damned Things
• Maylene And The Sons Of Disaster

• Bring Me The Horizon
• After The Burial
• Safety Fire

It’s official now: The Sideshow Podcast is now ONE YEAR OLD!! From our humble beginnings, to our first interview, through our first Festivus and the creation of our drinking game all the way to our first featured music submission to our exclusive Byzantine interview and all of the mayhem in between, we have been bringing you album reviews, concert recaps, intelligent discussions and senseless arguing for 52 weeks straight, all in the name of everything that is heavy!

As we had discussed in the last few episodes, it turns out we have a few listeners who aren’t into heavy music at all and want to know how they can get into it without scaring themselves away by just accidentally jumping into Brutal Death Metal. We are also fairly certain that most of our listeners have friends or significant others who also just “don’t get it.”  So, in this special anniversary episode, Brian, Nick, and Kyle bring you Metal 101, discussing out how to bring someone over to the dark side .  As we all know, Metal has many different sub-genres and stylings, and they are not all for everyone. So what we do here is map out what bands and styles should be good for different people depending on their current musical leanings so we can get the uninitiated to hep become defenders of the faith.

Later this week, we will post a rundown of the many bands we discuss and who they may be good for.  In the meantime, we would also like to hear from you!  Tell us how you got into heavy music and if you have any suggestions for those fortunate  knowledgable. Also, be sure to come back next week for Episode 53 where we kick off year two with some fresh changes, new goodies, and a brand new interview!


We also would like to thank all of our listeners “friends of the Sideshow” for their comments, emails, tweets, Facebook posts, G+ messages, music submissions, interviews and just all of the support this last year.  We never saw ourselves getting to where we are now (and where we are going) we couldn’t have done it without you!