Kaine’s brand new album was recently reviewed by Planet Mosh who gave the record 5 out of 5 stars. The full review can be read here. You can order the CD/Digital download from here. There will be delays in orders being posted due to the corona virus outbreak in the UK.
Kaine will release their new album Reforge The Steel this Friday via Bandcamp. The album art has been enhanced (again done by Kaine’s long serving artist Silencer 8) and updated for the release (above).
The band began recording in November 2018 (just 9 months after the release of A Crisis of Faith) and recording was concluded in June of this year. The album was finally mixed and mastered last month and is now ready for full release. Reforge The Steel was again produced by Carl B of Pointy Halo Productions alongside Sheldon Jolly, the same team who worked on A Crisis of Faith.
The bulk of the material was written between April and October of last year with many songs being staples of the bands current sets, two live versions of the album tracks will soon be available, the first being Kaine X Live 2019 (already available to purchase, just awaiting mastering) and Reforge The Steel live which will be recorded next month at the B2 Norwich (tickets available from here).
An additional live EP of the songs will be made exclusively available to bandcamp members next week. Members will also get 10% off the CD and additional merch for the album – to join as a member click here.
It’s the first release to feature the line-up of Rage Sadler (guitars and vocals), Liam Etheridge (drums), Toby Woods (lead guitar) and Isaac Healy (bass).
Kaine’s new album Reforge the Steel has today been finished with the final mixing and mastering taking place by Pointy Halo Productions based at Redwall Studio, Bury.
The album has been recorded by Carl Brewer again alongside Sheldon James Jolly who both worked on the band’s previous album A Crisis of Faith.
We’ll be issuing an update as to when and where it will be available to purchase.
Yesterday Toby Woods and Rage Sadler finished tracking the remaining solos and guitars for Reforge The Steel. The album will now move into the mixing and mastering stage before going to release.
Rage spent last week in the vocal booth at Pointy Halo, based out of Redwall Studios in Bury working on the new album. The vocals have now been recorded for the album with only the guitar solos remaining to record before it can be fully mixed, mastered and then released. There has been a different approach to the vocals taken for this album which differs greatly from the approach taken on A Crisis of Faith.
Rage said: “I have spent a lot of time working on my voice to become a better singer for this album. I recognise one of the reasons many have dismissed us in the past has been the fact I am not a naturally gifted singer; I have always been more of a guitar player who happens to also sing rather than a singer first and foremost. I have put a lot more focus on the vocals this time, especially trying to improve my voice ahead of the recording, and having written the material for the album its been a lot easier to write for my own voice. Theres still a lot of variation in vocal style on this album and I hope I will surprise a few people also. Those who have heard it in its raw form have already been impressed and some of the live reviews coming back have also praised my voice, which is a nice change from the past.”
Rage after a week away, re-united with his bandmates on Sunday for a show supporting Twisted Illusion alongside Salt Hill at Whittles in Oldham before returning home on Monday.
Kaine over the past four days have finished tracking the majority of guitars and bass for their new album Reforge the Steel, as well as completed further work on the drum edits for the album. The tracking again took place at Redwall Studios in Bury, Greater Manchester.
The team at Pointy halo Productions, Carl Brewer producing once again from Crisis of Faith with Sheldon Jolly also assisting with much of the tracking including writing contributions to the new songs for what should hopefully be the biggest and best sounding Kaine record yet.
The album is the recording debut with the band for Liam Etheridge, Toby Woods and Isaac Healy who have all worked with extreme professionalism throughout the process so far having only been the bands line-up since May of 2018. It’s also the first album that all three band members have recorded.
Kaine, now revitalised will now take a brief break from recording the new album to play a show in London at the legendary Cart & Horses as guests of NWOBHM legends Satan’s Empire this Saturday. The band will resume recording the new album as soon as possible.
Yesterday I wrote about how the album was promoted and how it performed in terms of sales. Today I thought I’d take a look back on the background of the album and how it was written.
The album has its origins in August 2015 when a year after The Waystone, Dan Mailer (bass and vocals) decided to move on from the band and we recruited Drop Dead Fred bassist Stevo Ellis to join the band. At this point in time the band was still a five piece and we had been writing music for a follow up album to the Waystone, we released one of tracks as a single as a taster for the new record which was Justice, Injustice however when Dan left the band this was all scrapped. We remained as a five piece until the end of 2015 and in that period, we had brought Voice in Hell into the live set, as well as started to write songs such as Afterlife, Fall of Jericho and A Night Meets Death. I had written Voice in Hell, Chris had written Afterlife and Fall of Jericho and A Night Meets Death were Stevo’s work. We had taken most of January off to begin writing the next album in full when Anthony decided to leave the band also for personal reasons.
Going into 2016 we decided to remain as a four piece and to work solely on new material, which is what we did for the next year and a bit. We put hours into rehearse and refine every little detail of everything we wrote because we knew how important this release would be for us, being our third album and it being a brand-new line-up. Much of the rehearsals were done at Pioneer Music in Colchester, with some also work being done at Unit One.
We demoed the songs, would practice the songs, play them live, alter and so on until we were happy. Saxon brought the song Heaven’s Abandonment to the table, while Stevo added to it with the intro, Chris wrote Afterlife and The Mind is Willing, which saw him perform lead vocals for both for the first time. Stevo wrote A Night Meets Death with Saxons input, Fall of Jericho and of course “Stephens Song” which was a n old Drop Dead Fred song which Stevo and Chris had done in that band together before being ejected from that band, which we turned into Frailty of the Blade. My contributions were Voice in Hell, Crisis of Faith, Alone, Behind the Preacher’s Eyes. I wrote all the lyrics bar those for Afterlife and The Mind is Willing, however Stevo helped me with some of the melodies for A Night Meets Death. Of course, we all had a degree of input on all of the material written but the original ideas came from essentially one of us having the bulk of an idea and taking it to the band and working it from there.
The ambition really was to write the best album we could and try and push it to the moon and back once it was released, and try and improve upon what had happened in the past, we gave ourselves the time to write and flesh ideas out whereas on The Waystone we were pressured by a label to do things much quicker than we would have liked.
Rolling into 2017 we were ready to record the album, having already played all of it live as heard on our A Crisis of Faith Live album, which was recorded before the album was even released. In terms of finding somewhere to record, Stevo had performed bass on the Twisted Illusion album Insight to a Mind with a Million Faces album and had recorded at Pointy Halo with Carl Brewer based out of Red Wall Studios in Greater Manchester and suggested we use him. We listened to his work and agreed that he would be ideal for the new release, in order to give us a much more modern sound to fit the new band as well as move away from being stuck in that old school bracket production wise, as well as musically speaking we wanted to move away from more of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal influenced stuff and stamp our own sound on the album as much as we could while keeping true to our music roots and I think we did deliver that, and given much of the NWOTM online scene loathed the album, the evidence was clear we had achieved that distance.
We recorded over the course of several months in 2017 after demoing the album in full, we did release the demos as a special one-off Ghost Edition which sold out in under an hour. Once in the studio and after the bulk of the recording had been done we spent a lot of time mixing it with Carl and Sheldon, adding in orchestral elements, making a lot of effort to ensure the vocals were strong, that the instruments sounded to as we wanted which is why we didn’t release the album until February of 2018, because we really spent the time on it. Chris in particular took a lead role in all of this, putting those elements together as well as the orchestrations, hidden tracks and even the track listing.
Ultimately the release was a team effort and I really hope this shows throughout the album.
So, it’s been exactly one year since the release of our last album A Crisis of Faith, it’s been a very challenging year, from line-up changes to continuing to push the album as hard as I can using my own personal budget, and of course the bands gigs to try and promote the album.
When we released the album, we sent it out by e-mail to over 8000 people, friends, family, fans, industry contacts, everyone we could. Unfortunately, the response rate to those contacts were pretty poor, I think less than 20% of those people we sent to the e-mail to actually opened and read it and even less checked out the album! We of course pushed it hard through Facebook, but social media like e-mail is getting harder and harder to get people to both see and then interact with you on. We followed up the e-mail with a press pack to record labels, festivals, management, whoever we could think of and it was sadly rejected by all we contacted but we did our best to push it as hard as we could.
Reviews wise, most seemed to enjoy the album with only a couple of bad reviews out of them all, but the album didn’t feature in any major outlets top ten lists or essential Metal albums and the feedback on the album dissipated fairly quickly this time, whereas the Waystone which got panned much harder seemed to rumble on for a lot longer. We tried a music video for the album, after contemplating it for years which got a couple of thousand views, but it didn’t prove to be a very successful outlet to market our music as again, trying to convince people to try and watch the video was a real challenge for us as it either wasn’t seen when we promoted it, or ignored.
In terms of playing gigs to support the release, we booked 41 shows, many of which were self-promoted in the hope that those who attended the nights would also buy the album. These went broadly well with only a few bad ones now and again. The main difference between A Crisis of Faith and The Waystone is that more people bought that album on the gigs to begin with than A Crisis of Faith, but overall the initial release of A Crisis of Faith performed stronger online, however it picked up towards the end of the year. In terms of Spotify, we’re still struggling for plays there so we typically don’t focus on it. We did try and encourage digital sales by offering them for just £3 too. We offered packages which included t-shirts, vinyl’s and everything we could do.
I have been criticized in the past about writing about how well or how badly our albums and tours have done, one being was when I wrote about the Waystone which caused a lot of the local music scene to engage with a lot of slagging off and insulting of the band, in particular myself, but I am not one to hide from this sort of thing, these things are what they are and I am not going to pretend to be a successful musician just to appear bigger than I am online.
So how do the stats look a year on from release?
• Steaming/Downloads – 31,356 = £441.06
• Physical Sales (CD, Vinyl etc.) – 434 = £6,338.03
So that’s where we are after exactly one years, naturally this isn’t pure profit as the costs of the recording, printing CD’s, pressing, marketing and everything else. As you can see the amount of streaming massively outweighs the sales, but it pays so little in return that despite the fact we have been downloaded and streamed over 30 thousand times, that’s only paying £0.0140662074244164p per play. It’s another challenge with more people moving to streaming such as Spotify, YouTube, and everything else and less people even owning the means to play a CD or vinyl for a band our size to rely on streaming to fund albums. This is the future and in 10 years’ time the whole landscape will have changed entirely again with more people streaming albums, rather than buying. At least in America there have been moves to improve the situation in terms of artists being paid fairer for streaming but no one has taken up the mantle in the U.K. as of yet to push for a bigger share of the income. We’ve also seen HMV go into administration after losing something like 80% of their physical DVD/CD sales in just a year which gives you further indication of how the game is changing.
I have been told that many do find the insight helpful. It’s a sign of the times when a band has tens of thousands of streams, over 11 thousand social media follows and whatnot and the real strength in terms of income is still gigs and physicals such as CD, as they were ten years ago, without those physical sales we wouldn’t have even made £500 on the album.
I’d say overall what we have achieved with this album has been successful for a band our size although our critics will point to the fact we’re now 10 years old and are still at this level. Naturally we’d liked to have done better with it (as anyone would) but relying on your own budget to promote and gig you can only afford to do so much between affording to live, but we worked hard (that is both line-ups) and the response overall was positive so I don’t have any complaints. The album has proven popular enough it’s being re-released in Europe by Underground Power Records and I hope it is really successful there so we can emulate the likes of Toledo Steel, Seven Sisters and Midnight Force on the continent and hopefully do more that side of the sea moving forward.
As ever thanks for reading and to those who supported the band by buying the album I truly appreciate the support.
The album is now in the very final stages of mixing and mastering ready for release. As of today the £13 CD/Shirt pre-order has now been taken down as the shirts are soon to be available on general sale. Thanks to everyone who took advantage of the discounted price, as these early sales helped fund the album recording.
The band issued the following statement on social media earlier today..
We’ve been busy working on the mixes of A Crisis of Faith alongside Pointy Halo Productions and we can confirm we are close to a release.
We return to the road next week with the following shows..
Saturday, February 3rd – B2 VENUE NORWICH
Sunday, February 4th – The Horn, Saint Albans
We hope to see you at those shows, if your coming please let us know below and thanks for the continued support.
The new shirts will be available to purchase online in the coming weeks in a variety of sizes.