Welcome to the latest instalment of Shrapnel – we’ve had an AFM Records takeover!

Seriously, the label seems to be involved in a lot of great music at the moment, so I thought I’d take a look at what they got going on with regard to Shrapnel-friendly fire! Read on, and enjoy!


Seriously, was planet earth ever a cosy or even friendly place to be? We have pandemics, ecological disasters, surging prices for beer. Mankind’s only chance is escapism. So let’s enter the orbital glider and head for the stars where Planet Pink looks like a very nice place to set up your ‘forever home’…

For over thirty years now, Germany’s J.B.O. are recognised specialists in vociferous escapism of the highest order. Gold albums and top ten chart positions have paved their way. Planet Pink will make no exception, even if the album was created under very special circumstances. Usually the band bosses Vito C. and Hannes ‘G.Laber’ Holzmann sit together on a couch and present themselves their ideas. This time they jammed through the telephone. It worked out because Vito and Hannes know each other better than identical twins, even if they don’t look that way.

And so they swapped ideas for songs like the wonderfully clear ambiguous love song Einhorn (Unicorn) or the ironic tune Rockmusik hat mich versaut (Rock music ruined me) which is a payoff for the haters of distorted guitars who are just jealous in the end. The last-mentioned song was a problem for their long time friendship because both singers wanted to perform the song. This issue could only be clarified by a duel, decided by the vote of the J.B.O. fans. It was High Noon in J.B.O.’s hometown Erlangen, where swords turn into guitars.

Planet Pink was recorded with producer Christoph Beyerlein at Sound and Groove Studio, Nuremberg. Beyerlein has part of the J.B.O. family since 1994 and the fifth band member in the studio. Supervised by the observing ears of Beyerlein, the rest of the crew sorted and refined a lot of demo recordings for only one reason: in the end there will be just one planet glow in the brassiest colours. It’s Planet Pink – and it features the splendid single Metal Was My First Love and is set for release on April 15th!


The label is also proud to announce the signing of a very special new band: Fallen Sanctuary, led by masterminds Georg Neuhauser (singer of Serenity) and Marco Pastorino (guitarist of Temperance), who indulge their common love for melodic power metal in this project!

The two became friends in 2018 during a joint tour and soon realised that they pretty much share musical idols and tastes. Neuhauser: “Marco and I often got talking at night on the tour bus to the next show with Serenity and Temperance. It was amazing that we have so many favourite bands in common. And since we also get along really well on a personal level and live only a four-hour drive apart, we came up with the idea of releasing an album together some day.” It would appear that “some day” has now arrived: In June 2022, Neuhauser and Pastorino’s debut album Terranova, released under the moniker of Fallen Sanctuary. The new band also features a permanent rhythm section consisting of Alfonso Mocerino on drums and bassist Gabriele Gozzi, who will complement Fallen Sanctuary live on stage.

“The quality of Fallen Sanctuary convinced and amazed us right away,” says AFM Records A&R Timo Hoffmann. “The passion and dedication, their attention to detail and the super high standards they set for themselves, make Fallen Sanctuary stand out. Songwriting, performance and production are on an immensely high level and will thrill fans of varied melodic power metal. In addition, Georg and Marco are such positive characters that we are very much looking forward to working with them.”

Neuhauser states: “Since I bought Edguy’s Vain Glory Opera album back in 1998 I always followed AFM Records and dreamed of becoming a part of this family. So with Fallen Sanctuary this will happen now and I am sure that AFM is the perfect partner for us to release our debut album Terranova.“

“Many memories come to my mind“, the vocalist recollects, “sitting in my room listening to the AFM albums from Edguy and Avantasia – and now another melodic power metal masterpiece will see the light on this label“.

“We are thrilled to announce that we are joining AFM Records‘ roster for the release of our new album“, guitarist Marco Pastorino adds. “They are the best team possible to be part of our journey.
We worked extremely hard to give you the best debut album possible and we are looking forward to giving you more updates very soon! Get ready for some great melodic power metal!”

The Fallen Sanctuary debut album Terranova will be released on June 24th, but February 25th will already see them present the first single Broken Dream!


Now, after all that positivity, we have a little bit of bad news: Finnish sleaze rock overlords Reckless Love have had to postpone the release of their upcoming new album Turborider.

Vocalist Olli Herman states: “February has been a busy month for Reckless Love and it seems like our comeback has taken off like a rocket. The only things still holding us from soaring above the clouds to a full glide, are the unfortunate effects corona has had on the business. First, we were forced to postpone our UK/European tour until September – and now, we face the decision to postpone the release of our record by a month. This is all due to the difficulties the record distributors have with shipments world wide. We did not want the people who have already ordered our record, to have to wait for a month while the album would be out already online and in some parts of the world. We wanted fair play and the decision was made together with our record company.”

But to shorten your wait for the postponed album release, the band have announced an exclusive, worldwide radio gig hosted by Radio Rock in Finland! The band will be playing a bunch of the new album tracks live on February 24, 2022 – airing at 7pm CET!

“We were determined not to let this minor setback hold us down at all, so we came up with the idea of playing an exclusive world wide radio show on Radio Rock Finland where we’re gonna play some of the new songs to offer our listeners a sneak peek on the new material before the actual album is even released. We are extremely confident, that the new material will take us further than ever before.” Olli also reveals: “Furthermore, we are already planning for the spring of 2023 and we are beyond excited, stoked, to tell you that Reckless Love will be a part of the line-up on the legendary Monsters of Rock Cruise in the Caribbean, in May 2023. Stay tuned for more!! We are going to make sure that you’ll hear more from us sooner than later.”

That’s all for now – tune in for more Shrapnel next week, when normal service will doubtless be resumed!