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By Jannatul Ruhan Raha

If men can, women aren't far behind in expressing their aggression. While men head bang to the screaming of Ozzy Ozbourne and taunt women for not being able to produce metal music, these taunts actually imbue women to reveal their dynamic voices. When today, men still think metal music only exists within the man's world, the number of female bands all over the globe is increasing every year.

These females can sing, growl, and head bang like all the other male heavy metal singers out there. They have stood out with their heads high in every concert they have been to. They have dropped jaws after their performances, and avenged the taunts they had to face before they even started playing on stage.

Massive Scar Era (Mascara)
The name of this band defines how violent the world has become these days. When this Egyptian female metal band first went up on stage, they only got to hear abuses for daring to play metal music. But then, when they started playing, everyone out there was compelled to listen. This band commenced their journey in the year 2005, and it's the first of its kind in Egypt. Mascara plays hardcore metal music, with both aggressive and clean vocals, accompanied by a violin, flute and keyboard. They attended their first international concert in Sweden rock festival in the year 2009. The following year they have performed in the cornerstone concert in Illinois, USA. Mascara's “The World is Rising”, “Nobody”, and “Dancing Tear” are some songs you might want to try.

Frantic Amber
This band consists of five female members, coming from different countries who have gathered together to create awesome metal songs worth hearing. The growls and the powerful voice that their vocalist portrays proves how deep-seated they are about holding on to their dreams. They have performed in the Sweden Rock Festival, and their songs, “Wrath of Judgment” and “Bloodlust” have attracted many metal fans.

The Vehemal
“We are of atoms and milky way, moved b the violence and intensity of the universe. The dark matter holding our defragmented humanity together,” this is how Vehemal describe themselves. Vehemal is a Canadian death/black metal band consisting of all female members who have also made their way through to the metal scene. “The Last Fantasy of Christ”, “Spirit of Soldier”, “Cosmic Collision” are some of the great works of Vehemal.

Lee Aaron
When it comes to female metal singers, Lee Aaron is considered as an idol. She has rocked the 80's and 90's with her songs “Whatcha do to my body”, “Metal queen” and many others. This Canadian singer has earned the Toronto Music Awards three times for being the Best Female Vocalist. She has attended 20 European tours and made releases in countries like UK, Austria, Germany and the Benelux (Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg). Lee Aaron has hit her greatest commercial success in her studio album “Bodyrock”.

Alissa White Gluz
Alissa has taken her band “The Agonist” to great heights. This young female singer has great potential and is making the most of it to keep her audience entertained. Alissa with her band has attended the South-American tour and performed in countries like Mexico, Japan, China, and Columbia. They have released the studio albums “Once Only Imagined”, and “Lullabies for the Dormant Mind” together. Their songs “And their Eulogies Sang Me to Sleep”, and “Business Suits and Combat Boots” has attracted thousands of listeners.

Other than these also there are many other all-female metals bands who are producing great works. Some of them are Hell Cats, Arnorettes, Civet Breaking News, Jaded, Hovario, Screaming Voices, Imber, Wox , Sargatanas and Harlequin. That is of course without mentioning Amy Lee or Paramore. With so many female metal bands all over the world, we can easily comprehend that female power in metal music can no longer be doubted.

By Shaer Reaz
Sources: Wikipedia and YouTube

Max Payne OST: A ground breaking game in almost every way, Max Payne was the first game to have an “emotional” edge to it; it went to great lengths to create the perfect atmosphere for a fallen hero's spiraling fate. Essential to creating that mood was the musical score, and the 35 second track, composed and performed by Kärtsy Hatakka, Kimmo Kajasto and Tero Kostermaa, left a haunting impression of a dark, gritty world of crime and uncontrollable fate on the player.

Halo OST: Halo: Combat Evolved was one of the best first person shooter games ever made. When it came out, it blindsided gamers with its epic storyline, gameplay and “feel”; the original Halo single handedly pulled potential XBOX sales out of the gutter as one of the launch titles. The soundtrack needed to be similarly epic too. Written and composed by Martin O'Donnell and Michael Salvatori, the recurring Halo signature theme was almost like a religious hymn. What with the game dealing with alien prophets and heretics, it was obviously a good match. The full length (4:22) theme is available as a digital download.

Red Alert “Hell March”: Red Alert may have been solely responsible for an entire generation of teenage gamers turning into pseudo-communists and Soviet idolisers. Something about a massive army of conscripts, tanks, zeppelins and mad scientists marching into cities of Europe and leaving behind a trail of destruction and savagery, all under the Hammer and Sickle of Soviet Russia while the insane “Hell March” blared out of loudspeakers, left gamers wide eyed and gaping. It was like a Viking drum beat. It was like a better motivational song for Darth Vader's troops (yes, Vader's theme song was lamer than this). “Hell March” made us want to be the bad guys so bad, we downloaded the theme and hummed it under our breath in math class. The original Red Alert version is the best; the sequel ones were not as inspiring.

Starcraft II “Wings of Liberty”: A newer game, Starcraft II is like the spiritual descendant of Red Alert even though they come from rival developers. It too had awe inspiring tracks, blended smoothly with each level, increasing in tempo with the impending doom the game promises. The title song is a mixture of emotions, it starts out all charged up and ready to fight the filthy hordes of Zerg, with energetic riffs and drumming, then slowly lapses into despair before ending with some semblance of hope: inspiring stuff, making long hours of mouse clicking and strategic planning bearable. The inclusion of some great hits from past masters like Led Zeppelin and Lynyrd Skynyrd as part of the non-original track list also scores Starcraft II a number of points.

Mirror's Edge “Still Alive”: Sung by Swedish artist Lisa Miskovsky, “Still Alive” has to be one of the greatest songs ever recorded for a game. The game, telling the story of a “runner”, Faith, demanded a soundtrack that pulled gamers emotionally. While the rest of the songs on this list are mostly hard edged, gritty pieces made to attract male gamers for the most part, this game is about a girl struggling to survive in a police state and hold on to everything that is important to her, like family and friends. The soundtrack is hauntingly beautiful, with Ms. Miskovsky's beautiful voice delivering on every level. Watch the accompanying music video on YouTube to get a gist of what the song represents.


By Padya Paramita

When a prequel is released, most people don't watch it because well, they know how it ends. However, you should know that history matters. X-Men First Class is definitely no exception.

Directed by Matthew Vaughn , and based on the characters by Stan Lee and first brought out by Marvel Comics, the X-Men are a group of superheroes brought together by a common feature mutation. The 2011 prequel to the trilogy shows the group's roots. The film starts at a concentration camp in Poland with Dr Schmidt noticing young Eric Lensherr. Eric possesses the power to control metal. He realises the only way Eric can release his power is in anger, and thus kills his mother. In England, Charles Xavier, a young telepath discovers shapeshifter Raven, and is very excited to meet someone different like him.

Charles (James McAvoy), all-grown up, inspires many with his research on mutants. He is keen on stopping Schmidt, who along with possessing energy-absorbing powers supported the launching of U.S. missiles on Turkey.

Meanwhile, Eric tracks down Schmidt in Las Vegas, planning to avenge his mother's death. When Schmidt's ship is too powerful for him to control, he almost drowns, until Xavier realises his presence and dives in to save him. Thus begins a new friendship and together Eric and Charles track down more mutants like them. These “kids” name Charles “Professor X” and Eric “Magneto.” Their mutations give them superior skills, which Charles and Eric help them hone.

They soon realise that war is upon them, and they must stop Schmidt from starting World War III. The battle brings on a test of loyalties, at the end of which the fate of the world as well as that of a strong friendship remains to be decided

The film portrays the past excellently; the stunts, action and effects being pulled off rather well. This movie should definitely be watched in HD rather than the theatre print, a mistake committed by yours truly. The dialogue and drama are likeable as well, and full of irony to those who know what happens later for example the part where Charles says he'll “never leave” Eric who displays thorough loyalty for his future arch-enemy. Many can also learn a lot of history from this film, and many clips of John F. Kennedy are shown throughout the film.

James McAvoy must be praised for his portrayal of Charles Xavier. Having seen him bend bullets in Wanted, many people were curious to see how the title of “Professor” would suit him. His friendship with Michael Fassbender would fool anyone to believe that they remain best friends forever.

Overall, X-Men First Class is worth watching if you're in the mood for an action-packed thriller and a super smooth cameo from Hugh Jackman as Wolverine. Definitely a summer prequel to enjoy!


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