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New Metal Revolution: Royal Thunder - The Soul Shakers

Through the powerhouse vocals of Mlny Parzonz and a refusal to keep their sound boxed, Royal Thunder look set to be the underground's next big breakout stars.

These are curious times for fans of heavy rock music that skirts the fringes of the metal world.

The current scene is dominated by bands that either shamelessly plunder the sounds and aesthetic of the early 70s, or that aim squarely for the arena circuit, with all the crass universality and blank-eyed plodding that such an aspiration generally entails. As a result, Atlanta’s Royal Thunder stand out like a gleaming diamond in an ocean of arse-slurry. Instinctively original and possessed of an exhilarating, soulful power that has seen them regularly (if somewhat erroneously) compared to Led Zeppelin – rumour has it that Jimmy Page is a fan – this mercurial quartet have been steadily building a reputation over the last few years, aided considerably by their status as type-defying oddballs on the much-revered Relapse Records roster.

This looks certain to be the year that Royal Thunder break through to bigger audiences: their new album, Crooked Doors, is a gloriously cohesive and mesmerising affair that loudly proclaims the wondrous chemistry between vocalist/bassist Mlny Parsonz and her bandmates, guitarists Josh Weaver and Will Fiore and drummer Evan Diprima.

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