New albums from Finland’s [LULLACRY](http://www.lullacry.com/) and Sweden’s [NOCTURNAL RITES](http://www.nocturnalrites.com/) will see North American release on Jan. 24. Female fronted rock band LULLACRY fire all 8-cylinders throughout *Vol. 4*’s 10-tracks. A pedal pushing crimson joyride straight down a denim and leather studded highway, *Vol. 4*’s supercharged rhythms take control while Tanja Lainio’s enchanting vocals mesmerize. “Mixing modern, hard edged rock with sweet pop vocals and rowdy 80’s abandon” (*Outburn*), *Crucify My Heart*, LULLACRY’s 2003 release, “bridged the gap between Pat Benatar and nü metal guitar power” (*Lollipop*). Supporting Nightwish on their sold-out 2004 tour, North American audiences were introduced to their mesmerizing live performance. “A natural pop-diva” (Alternative Press) “whose voice will lure you to her lair” (*CMJ*), Tanja’s crowd-pleasing stage presence made minions of concertgoers. The New Year and the new album will see Lullacry seduce their way into your heart.
Blending melodic metal and powerful hard rock with a deadly progressive thread, Sweden’s NOCTURNAL RITES crown their 10 years together with *Grand Illusion*. Driven by thundering double-bass drums, authoritative vocal lines, along with gracefully fluid rhythm and solo duel guitar work, the new album captivates as well as commands. Developing “a harder and heavier sound” (*Outburn*), NOCTURNAL RITES “have been evolving into one of power metal’s most heroic acts” (*Kerrang*). Touring extensively across Europe and Japan with Nightwish, Gamma Ray, Nevermore, Overkill, Hammerfall and more and performing at every major European Metal festival (Dynamo, Wacken Open Air, Sweden Rock, etc.), the band has converted legions of fans worldwide. New World Messiah, their 2003 release, was praised as “fantastically brilliant from start to end” (*BW&BK*). *Grand Illusion*, which features guest performances from members of Hammerfall, Stratovarius, Evergrey and Naglfar, along with [cover art](http://www.nocturnalrites.com/index2.htm) by Axel Hermann (Dream Evil, In Flames) and a CD-ROM containing video extras, is sure to surpass fans’ every expectation.