The Nature of Music Possession


I don’t know, I think we’re getting pretty close. Shouldn’t be illegal then either.

This is the opinion of one journalist/musician based on his observations and experience listening to, obtaining, composing, and handling music. I expect no immediate consensus on this subject nor do I anticipate a lack of debate.

Is downloading music immoral, unethical? Is it not stealing, and what should be done about it either way?

A consistent argument on those that are opposed to music downloading is that downloading and filesharing are indeed stealing and it would be wrong to do so like it is wrong to steal anyone’s property. One argument is that artists will not see the fruit of their labor and are unable to profit, bankrupting the music industry, especially those artists. Another is the matter of intellectual property – the songs do not belong to those who download it, therefore it is stealing. A third argument is a straightforward one – that it is illegal. However, I can respond to this one swiftly: “Don’t do this or you will be arrested” is no answer to the moral and ethical nature of an act.

Continue reading

Certified Bryan: Soulmass Needs Your Help!

I’m taking a break this week from the usual Certified Bryan posts to raise awareness of our band Soulmass’ current Indiegogo campaign. A new article will be posted next Friday!


In the past I have spoken at length about the importance of crowdfunding to the future of the music industry. For reasons outlined in that examination of the facts, we have decided to use Indiegogo as a support network to build a pre-order and help us purchase some awesome merchandise for our fans. Brett Windnagle (Lascaille’s Shroud) and I have worked really hard this year to craft what we both feel is one of the greatest albums either of us has ever been associated with, so we only want the best for this material and for more people to be able to appreciate it in the best way possible. CDs may be going out of style for most new music listeners these days, but we feel nothing can compare to having that physical album in your hands and flipping through the booklet to read lyrics and enjoy the artwork. Donations will help Soulmass print a limited run of CDs for the upcoming album, Despairing Fates, as well as stock some beautiful t-shirts and posters featuring the album artwork (courtesy of our talented artist and friend, Bo Bradshaw of Brilliant Engine).


Check out our donation perks at the Indiegogo page. Even if you aren’t able to contribute, remember to share with your friends and others who might appreciate our music! Despairing Fates is a loose concept album based on enduring themes in the lore of the popular video games Demon’s Souls, Dark Souls, and Dark Souls II. Donors to the campaign will receive a early download links to 320kbps mp3 and lossless WAV versions of the album (available on 9/9/2014). A release date for the physical CDs will be available once the campaign ends. Thank you all for your continued support! – Bryan

Steamforged – The Endless Review


Let me start this review off bluntly: Steamforged’s fourth album The Endless makes the previous three albums feel like test projects. No, this does not in any way denigrate those albums because for what they were (composed entirely and all instruments performed on keyboards by mastermind Tyler Sherrill), they were flights of steps above the average independent recording musician. However, one cannot deny after listening to The Endless that this is not the same Steamforged sound. Indeed, the listener can tell that it is Steamforged in writing style and manner of performance, but the sound is leagues above even the previous album Fractured Singularity.

Continue reading

Soulmass Reveal Upcoming Debut Album Details

Soulmass have revealed the album title, cover art, and track-listing for their upcoming debut album, Despairing Fates! More news is soon to follow concerning the release date and plans for band merchandise. Stay tuned to their Facebook page!


Release Info:
Name: Despairing Fates
Type: Full-length

1. In Fate’s Thralldom
2. Vicissitudinous Entrance to the Painted World
3. Hollow
4. Chronicles of the Abysswalker
5. Keeper of Cowardice
6. Crushed by the Bramd
7. Scorpion Horror (Born of the Madness)
8. Throne of Want


Bryan Edwards – Vocals
Brett Windnagle – Guitars, Bass, Vocals, Drum Programming


Brett Windnagle – Mixing/Mastering
Miles Neff – Vocal Engineering
Bo Bradshaw – Cover Art/Booklet Design

Lyrics and Music by Soulmass

Certified Bryan: My Selfish Rant on Suicide Awareness


Much has been in the news lately which disheartens me and brings me to make this a very personal Certified Bryan post. (You may also notice that this is Friday instead of the biweekly Thursday posts I had been keeping up with since coming back. From now on I will be trying to make these posts every other Friday. Thank you for your continued support!)

The world was shocked recently with news of the passing of beloved actor/comedian Robin Williams. Multiple generations grew up watching his brilliant wit on television and in movies, so it was no surprise to see a lot of drama in the news when it was revealed that he took his own life. Many had positive words of support for his family and in remembrance of his extensive legacy. Many also voiced negative opinions of suicide and preferred to let it tarnish their memories of Robin as a person. While we now know that he had been recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease, it is no secret that he struggled with depression and addiction throughout his life. I want to take this opportunity to promote awareness of how depression effects those who suffer its grip, as well as say my two cents to those who have expressed derogatory viewpoints on the topic of suicide in the wake of Robin Williams’ death.

Continue reading

Certified Bryan: A Nuclear Blast of Reality


Note: I apologize in advance if this one turns into a rambling rant. I tend to do that when I have way too much to say about something.

Wintersun’s Jari Mäenpää has become infamous over the past decade thanks to critical acclaim for Wintersun’s debut album and the long wait on its follow-up, which lasted eight years. Jari has a reputation for talking highly of his own music and skills at songwriting, but also for making endless excuses for the excessive length of time between each release. Updates from Jari are typically infrequent, so when something new does get said it takes to the internet upon a blazing storm of hype. Wintersun command a legion of loyal fans with an impressive social reach. Last week, Jari posted a lengthy “reality update” on his Facebook page giving fans a piece of his mind concerning the current status of Wintersun’s third album, Time II, which was originally hoped for a 2013 release. In typical form, this update from Jari featured a list of reasons why Time II isn’t finished, but what caught the media’s attention and stirred drama were some scathing words from Jari pointed toward Wintersun’s own label, Nuclear Blast. I will link Jari’s original post here again in case you would like to read it before going forward.

Continue reading

Steamforged – Release – The Endless (Full-length)

The EndlessRelease Info:
Name: The Endless
Type: Full-length
Date: 07/31/14

1. Whispers of Myth – Godlike Epiphany
2. The Endless – Infinity, Perpetuity
3. Mu – Three Lives Myriad
4. Atlantis – Trenchbound Majesty
5. Agartha – Worldheart
6. Freya’s Anguish
7. Valhalla – Crimson Drops of Gold
8. Rumination of the King
9. Avalon – Starless
10. Columna Cerului – Journey Divine
11. Of Gods
12. Empyrean Heaven – Celestial Downfall
13. Antechamber – Solar Providence
14. Stasis – Deity Cocoon
15. Transform – Cosmic Apotheosis
16. Grand Creation – Nova Regnus
17. Apolytos – The Grand Palace
18. History Changed – Tyrant of Mythology
19. Altered Tomorrow

Steamforged is:
Tyler Sherrill - All instrumentation

Brett Windnagle – Mixing/Mastering

John Yelland (Disforia, Judicator) – King of Atlantis
Mercedes Victoria – Freya, Empyrean Goddess
Patrick Hoyt Parris (Project: Roenwolfe, Lascaille’s Shroud, ex-Theocracy) – King Arthur
Norman Skinner (Dire Peril, ex-Imagika)– The Endless
Tony Cordisco (Judicator, Project: Roenwolfe) – Teacher (on Altered Tomorrow)