Not everyone has the chance to travel the world. But for us, a trip to Australia would rank high on the list of choice destinations. With some of the most talented and versatile metal bands in the world, it would be reason enough for any metalhead to make the trip. First stop, Launceston. Never heard of it? Neither had we... until, that is, the first EP by Sam Locke made it's way into our inbox.
When his debut EP hit our speakers, we knew then and there that we were witness to something special. The five songs on "Era" were one part progressive metal, one part djent, and one part virtuoso guitars. Written, recorded and produced by the man himself in his home studio (i.e. his desk), you would never believe that an accomplished engineer wasn't behind the knobs. Without a second of filler to be found, this was as strong a debut as you would find in metal today, and was the inspiration for the launch of our first sampler, which featured "Epoch" as the opening track.
But with experience comes evolution. And the same applies to music. Locke returned, more focused and more impressive than ever with his full length album "Crossing The Barrier." Everything that had been so positive on "Era" is enhanced here, taking his talent and songwriting to new levels. And though the drums were programmed, no one would know... or care. With nine songs of pure guitar driven metal, including the personal favorite "Secondary Fires," this young Australian is on the verge of tearing down the walls of global metal. The album was so good, in fact, that is made it to the Top 10 for the first half of the year. With his video for "Squared" available on various outlets of the internets, including the YouTube link below, it is time for you to be introduced to the face of the land down under.