Applehead
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Applehead

Spring Hill, Tennessee, United States | Established. Jan 01, 1992

Spring Hill, Tennessee, United States
Established on Jan, 1992
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"Applehead Album release"

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DATE: For August 2023
Applehead Releases Highly Anticipated Album, ‘The Light Side of the Apple’
With the successful release of the single, Down, Applehead returns after a 30 year hiatus to deliver the new album, ‘The Light Side of the Apple’ via Roxx Records the indie label that specializes in new rock and metal from favored legacy artists and new artists from across the globe.
Applehead’s first release, ‘Meaning’ was recently reissued as a limited run vinyl/cd on Roxx Records and ‘The Light Side of the Apple’ is more than just a return to form.
Inspired by personal challenges and unanswered questions, Greg Minier guides the listener through a metal onslaught that flows through musical genres and styles that create emotional connections harkening back to the original days of hard rock.
True to the original Applehead concept, Greg Minier played all the instruments with the exception of the bass lines that were done by Jaymi ‘Pinkbassman’ Millard (Mark Slaughter Band, Slaughter).
The album will be released on all streaming and digital platforms as well as CD. There will be a limited vinyl run and the preorder options will be available soon!
The apple tree has grown heavier branches and the fruit of those branches will rock you!
On social media: facebook.com/OfficialApplehead
Store: RoxxRecords.com - Roxx Records


"Applehead: the Light Side of the Apple"

Greg Minier’s Applehead has released their second album some 30 years after the debut. Entitled ‘The Light Side of the Apple’ Applehead has delivered a powerful rock statement. Roxx Records is the label which you can find this absolutely stellar piece of hard rock/metal muscle. In a nutshell Roxx has released one of the greatest albums in their entire discography which goes back nearly 20 years.

Some have described The Light Side of the Apple with vibes like “reminds me of Alice in Chains…” “Sounds like Altar Bridge or Tremonti…” I’ve even read some who thought Greg’s vocal reflected a vibe like Scott Weiland of Stone Temple Pilots. Whatever it is make no mistake this IS NOT AN 80s album, heck it’s not even a 90s album. There are some fantastic allusions to music of the past but have been carefully packaged updated and delivered like a modern metal/rock album in 2023 should be.

Undoubtedly you have seen the music video for the pre-release single “Down” (one of the best rock songs of the year!). Pure groove, melody, power and crunch with a hook that will not quit! A story of redemption and salvation, but it feels incredibly autobiographical. By Greg’s own admission it is. The hooks here is so simple but amazingly effective and MEMORABLE!! Only the best songs remain with you and this one falls into that category. Dynamics and arrangement move this track from average to classic and FRESH! A 10 star knockout.

Another track that moves into the upper echelon of classic is the song “Pretty Creepy.” It’s not what you think, I mean a song about Samson and Delilah!! And it’s from the point of view of Samson, first person! Fresh take!! With a brilliantly executed hook and memorable melody line. Heavy, groovy atmospheric and with such attitude that it demands an immediate replay. And again there are dynamics a plenty with lots of give and take. Lyrically it doesn’t say it’s about Samson and Delilah, but if one is familiar with the story from the Old Testament it’s very evident. Such a fresh take here.

The first couple of times through the album I thought this album was quite good. However as I played it there were so many twists and turns musically, dynamics within songs I wasn’t expecting. The opening track “Raze Hell” starts with the expected crunchy riff and even adds a melodic keyboard part (harpsichord?) with a great staccato like verse. Yet in the middle of the song it breaks down again with an unexpected acoustic guitar part. Highly memorable with another infectious melody that won’t quit! He even brings out a talk box!!

I would be remiss if I failed to mention the ‘epic suite’ entitled ‘The Destiny” which clocks in at over 13 minutes! Highly surprising but is anything but a snooze fest. A maze of music twists and turns that is not simply overindulgent noodling. The Destiny is literally a complete overview of the story of man presented to us in the Bible. Sometimes presented in the third person sometimes presented in the first person. Musically it’s heavy melodic, fast at times, highly engaging and with different “voices” of celebration and warning. It’s not preachy but descriptive. Different elements from power to sweeping atmosphere and melancholy “The Destiny” is a track worth the price of admission alone.

One of the songs here really has its tongue firmly planted in cheek, “A Harmonic Minor” has every metal cliche crammed into one track, on purpose. Not campy at all but as you listen to the music and read the lyrics it becomes quite apparent the cliches are there on purpose, poking fun but not in a derogatory way. This bit of musical whimsy is heavy fast and crushing. It feels like the nod to old school euro power metal which just hammers you into submission.

Yet there is the moody ballad “And the Rain Comes Down.” Which just feels like an old spiritual with power and prayer-fullness. So much to unpack here, musically and lyrically. It is one of the left turns to the unexpected that is so joyful and heartfelt. An ode to living with PAIN and the Lord is enough, while Greg bristles and scorches a monster guitar solo as the track builds to a climax.

The production fits the music well, moody, atmospheric however all the instruments are clearly defined. At this point let me mention that bass player Jaymi Millard provides bass tones that are rich deep clear and driving. His contribution adds that element which helps bring it all together. When he locks with Greg’s drumming and rhythm guitar playing it just smokes. So much feel these guys have together.

One must also mention Greg’s lead playing. Extremely melodic, with some nasty attitude and just the right amount of crunch with amazing feel. Vocally Greg delivers an impassioned and richly heartfelt vocal. It’s the real deal.

There is so much more I wish to say about this release however I will attempt to be brief. I must confess originally hadn’t been that ‘excited’ about it, just a “cool stuff coming out” kinda vibe. Admittedly there are so many albums coming out and some extremely high profile releases that I’ve been waiting for this release was just another album on the “docket.” This album snuck up on me like a f-22 moving faster than sound and has left me destroyed, I can’t stop playing it!! I’m reading lyrics to my wife like a 14 year old kid…

With so many different parts that really shouldn’t work together, yet in its musical diversity ‘The Light Side of the Apple’ has notched itself unique. It definitely has launched itself in album of the year category discussion in my opinion. Perhaps even beyond that, this is one of the FINEST albums Roxx Records has EVER released. Don’t miss out and immediately snag one today!! - Heaven's metal


"Greg Minier resurrects Applehead"

APPLEHEAD is the side-project for Greg Minier, the guitarist for the Hardcore/Crossover Christian band THE CRUCIFIED. They have always been well-respected in the Christian and secular community for their influence on the heavier side of Christian music.

Minier put out the first APPLEHEAD album in 1992 when grunge was taking off. The new material picks up where that album left off to some extent. It’s been over 30 years so of course there will be differences. Minier has the ability to mix heavy music genres quite well, to the point he almost creates a new genre to some degree.

“Raze Hell” starts out the album with a nice groove that somehow blends decades of rock together to make a universal Modern sound. The song is in the pocket like something Black Label Society might do, but Minier’s voice (in my opinion) is more palatable than Zakk Wylde’s nasally delivery.

The first single “Down” has Alternative Metal vibes as Minier sounds a bit like M. Shadows of Avenged Sevenfold… wait, Shadows is much younger, it’s more likely he sounds like Minier. Either way, it’s a cool track with heavy thick guitar and a great groove.

“Worthless Words” was much easier to define as a strait up Classic Metal song. Minier still gives the music his own little twist, but for the most part this is just old-school Metal track.

“Pretty Creepy” is another track that’s obvious Rock, but not sure what else to call it. There’s something interesting going on, it’s a little Gothic, there’s some modern elements too as it’s another one the genre-bending tracks.

I’m not sure how to classify “And Then The Rain Comes Down”. There’s some ALICE IN CHAINS in the song, but Minier can’t help himself but write great hooks and melody. I don’t sense the overall darkness that bands like ALICE IN CHAINS portrayed, there’s more “hope” behind what APPLEHEAD is doing.

“In Pouring Rain” goes nicely with “And Then The Rain Comes Down”, I can’t confirm it, but the tracks could be related, almost a “before and after” track. The latter is more of a hard rock jam.

“A Harmonic Matter” is another track of Classic Metal, but still done in the unique style of APPLEHEAD. You hear some guitars licks that you might hear with his main band THE CRUCIFIED. There’s a killer solo, big chorus and great hooks. One of my personal favs on the album.

The final cut is “The Destiny” and it’s broken into three parts. It’s epic for sure, some nice breakdowns too. It would be a nice, “close your eyes and listen” track if you have the time. Part of the song sounds like it’s written through the eyes of Jesus Christ during his resurrection. It’s done in an interesting way that I havn’t heard before, There’s a PINK FLOYD vibe during the last track. It’s heavier than the British band, but it still brings you to a deeper place of your consciousness.

I will admit I’m biased since I am a devout Christian, but I honestly think you could be an atheist or anything in between and enjoy APPLEHEAD’S “The Light Side Of The Apple”. Minier does a fine job of storytelling without preaching. And throw out all the theology and it’s still an project that shows talent and conviction. I honestly think any fan of heavy/hard music will find something they can really appreciate here. - Rock You Show


"Applehead-Down Review"

Video analysis of first single from the album, "The Light Side of the Apple"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xU289Plu50Q - Iridium Rock and Metal Reviews


"The Graveyard Shift on Applehead"

Sept 4, 2023

HELLo FiEnDs ... Tonight on the Underground Spotlight, the band Applehead and their album "The Light Side of the Apple." While I will admit, I was just recently turned on to this band by a friend (Thank you, Vlad!!) I was highly impressed within the first 20 seconds of the first track!! Outstandingly powerful vocals, sizzling hot guitar solos, and some very crunchy riffs!!! The bottom end is held together with some incredibly insane drumming and a rock-solid bass that reminds me of a cross between the heaviness of Cliff Burton and the precision of Geddy Lee (in my opinion).
The album "The Light Side of the Apple" is one of those albums I would place in the "Holy Shit, This is Fucking Awesome" category!! Every track is one step further on a musical journey. Remember way back when I was describing this band (see above ☝ haha) The album has every bit of what I described. Excellent vocals mixed in with all of the riffy goodness. It's something you have to hear!! At this point, I would mention my favorite tracks, but that is impossible for me because the entire album is THAT GOOD!! Do yourselves a favor, and tune in tonight for a really great band and stellar album!! - Graveyard Shift Radio


"Top Releases 2023"

2023
Personally, this year has been a challenge on so many levels. Yet, despite an almost 11 month drought of contributions from yours truly, I was enabled to push out 14 reviews in 30 days. (Thank you, Lord!) Still, there is so much music I haven’t even heard, and for that I apologize to the artists not given a fair chance at representation here.

Sadly, for some of the albums on this list I had every good intention of writing a review when they were originally released (Dynasty, Bride, Ritual Servant and Wytch Hazel for instance). But for whatever reason, it didn’t happen.

Thankfully, the flood gates opened … and for that I credit Theocracy – with the release of Mosaic – for breaking the ice of my writer’s block. (Thanks also to Emil Westerdahl who encouraged me this past year as well). Hopefully, this list – which just touches on the tip of the iceberg – will recognize some of the artists who have worked hard to deliver inspiring music this past year, and the labels who have supported them.

Additionally, I’ve once again included my rating numbers. As I explained last year, I’ve grown less fond of ratings with age, but I do recognize the value of objective description as a way to “give credit where credit is due.”

Enjoy … and Happy New Year!

[Note: Each album title features a link to the review and where applicable, the HERE button will link to a feature interview. Please also note that Undivided was reviewed by myself and Brad Bowman and links to both are included.]

The Best of the Best
1. Signum Regis – Undivided (9.5)

Honestly, it was somewhat of a toss-up between this and Mosaic, but since Undivided (Brad Bowman review) is the only release this year “double-reviewed” by our karew I put it in the #1 slot. Seriously, though, this is the band’s best release ever – melodic power metal bliss!!

2. Theocracy – Mosaic (9.5)

The album of the year that wasn’t the album of the year? Honestly, this is probably the best line-up the band has enjoyed – their heaviest metal output to date. However, Ghost Ship for me still represents the band’s high-water mark in terms of song composition. Nevertheless, Mosaic is essential listening, and no fan of prog/power metal will be disappointed.

3. Testimony of Apocalypse – The Offering (9.25)

Extreme metal release of the year!! Simply obliterating! Click HERE for the in-depth interview with the band by Chris Gatto.

4. Ritual Servant – Albus Mendacium (9.25)

Holy thrash, holy metal! One review, two interviews!! No white lies here, these guys are the real deal! [See links to the interviews within the review]

5. Applehead – The Light Side of the Apple (9.25)

Such an amazing collection of diverse rock/metal songs. “Pretty Creepy” is likely one of the most outrageously insane songs I’ve heard this year! Thanks to Keven Crothers for the great review (see link above) and to Chris Gatto for the excellent interview HERE.

6. Wytch Hazel – IV: Sacrament (9.25)

These U.K. rockers have a unique style and sound reminiscent of those wonderful ‘70’s classic rock and metal bands, but their 4th album – while not quite as heavy as their first three releases – may be their most accessible.

7. Preterist – Blood Moon Rising (9.25)

Surprise of the year release. Finland’s Simon Kok’s nearly one-man show echoes back to the glory of Matt Smith’s debut Theocracy album. Fantastic melodic progressive metal ala Dream Theater Images and Words/Awake era.

8. Martin Simson’s Destroyer of Death – Eternal Reign (9)

This one was one of the most anticipated releases this year – with Rob Rock and Jorn Lande on vocals. While a bit predictable and “same-y” at times, Eternal Reign is representative of the highest quality melodic metal on the planet! And “Master of All” (Jorn Lande) wins my award for the best metal song of the year!

9. Diviner– Avaton (9)

Same vocalist (Yiannis Papanikolaou) + totally new band = Greek power metal bliss! While the endearing qualities of the debut album make it a favorite, Avaton surpasses what the band has accomplished to date!

10. Narnia – Ghost Town (9)

Veteran Swede melodic metallers stay relevant, consistent and uplifting as always. While not as heavy as some of their signature releases, they still deliver a high-quality set of songs.

11. Dynasty – Back to the Past (9)

Brazil’s premier melodic power metal band may have crafted the most comprehensive and well-executed “cover” album of Christian metal artists of all time!

12. AfterWinter – Paramnesia (8.75)

This one would be my “alternate” for surprise of the year. While this group of musicians made their mark known with BioGenesis, they’ve established themselves as a force in the genre with their dynamic, complex and well-executed debut.

13. Bride – Are You Awake (8.75)

What else can be said about these veteran rockers that hasn’t already been said? They are still in the fight!

14. Deny the Fallen – Echo Chamber (8.75)

EP’s don’t usually garner much in the way of accolades, but this brief collection of songs finds this band swinging for the fence. They’ve improved in every way from their debut and show tremendous promise with their “old meets new” metal formula.

15. Paradox – The Wrath (8.5)

Long overdue, final collection of songs from this San Antonio power metal band released in glorious fashion on Retroactive Records with extensive liner notes.

Honorable Mentions
16. Exodus A.D. – Anthology Vol 1 & 2

I love this unique collection of songs from Kevin Ayers pre-Haven band Exodus. Rarely do we see a “first-time” release consisting of recently recorded – for the first time ever! – songs.

17. Vultures Gathering – The Hunt

I expected a bit more from this release given the credentials of the players, but the musical explorations/ideas are fascinating. Click HERE for Chris Gatto’s interview. - Heaven's metal


Discography

Applehead Meaning released 1992 on Ocean records(remastered 2022 on Roxx Records)
Minier released 1990 (remastered in 2022 on Roxx Records)

New Album, 'The Light Side of The Apple' soon-to-be-released 2023 on Roxx Records

Photos

Bio

Applehead was formed in 1992 as a solo project for Greg Minier while playing for the acclaimed California thrash metal band the Crucified. Applehead would open the Crucified shows starting that same year. The first album was called 'Meaning' and was released on the Ocean Records label(with a limited re-release in 2022 by Roxx Records.) Greg was featured in the August 1993 edition of Guitar World magazine with a five-page article talking about all things guitar and the Crucified.

Fast forward to 2023! There is a new Applehead record releasing in April, and for original Applehead fans, it will be a fresh breath of new music. Unlike the original album, which was sludgy and grungy rock, the new album is a massive injection of retro modern metal stylings. It encompasses tempo variations from slow/insightful to all out fast/speed/shred with lyrics that make you ponder life, death, and the struggles in between.

The first single was released in February of 2023, called 'Down' and is available for all streaming services including Spotify, iTunes, YouTube music etc. A full length music video is for "Down" has been released on Youtube and FB/IG.


Official youtube is: https://www.youtube.com/@appleheadgregminier2107

Band Members