Reviews

Hivesmasher – Gutter Choir (Blackmarket Activities)

What d-beat punk/metal needs right now is more death metal. No, not retro death metal, because that would mean everyone with knowledge limited to Left Hand Path would join the fun. We mean death metal, Read more […]

Thy Will Be Done – Temple EP (Eye. On Lion Recordings)

Caught with the unfortunate tag of being nothing more than a mid-market tour support act, Providence, Rhode Island’s Thy Will Be Done have wised up to the industry’s misgivings and started their own Read more […]

Ragnarok – Malediction (Agonia Records)

Blast-first, ask questions later black metal can be a total wash when it wants to be. Actually, it’s not a matter of if wanting to miss the target, it just does because bands like Ragnarok (along with Read more […]

Dark Tranquillity – Zero Distance EP (Century Media Records)

Zero Distance is a stopgap for the Swedes, as they close out the touring for 2010’s We Are the Void and prep for a fresh studio platter, due sometime in the middle of next year. It’s the first EP of Read more […]

Yakuza – Beyul (Profound Lore Records)

Despite being aware of Yakuza for the better part of the last decade, it was only when the opening saxophone-laced din of “Oil ad Water” greeted my ears that I actually listened to the band for the Read more […]

Mob Rules – Cannibal Nation (AFM Records)

Over the course of 18 years, one hopes that a band finds its own identity, naturally shedding their initial influences of songwriting inspiration and spreading their creative wings for a place on their Read more […]

Klone – The Dreamer’s Hideaway (Klonosphere/Season of Mist)

There’s an obvious short-list of metal vocalists worth getting riled up about. Aside from the longstanding quasi superstars our scene has produced (if you are wondering how they are, please drink some Read more […]

Lacrimosa – Revolution (End of the Light Records)

Boasting a sound and style that only European Goth runners would fancy, Switzerland-based Lacrimosa have been able to survive the treacherous Goth landscape for nearly two decades. It’s a feat not to be Read more […]

A Life Once Lost – Ecstatic Trance (Season of Mist Records)

Looking to finally shed the Lamb of God-on-Meshuggah criss-crossing that effectively saddled the band for their last two albums, Philadelphia’s A Life Once Lost have made good on their five-year absence, Read more […]

Forgotten Tomb – …And Don’t Deliver Us From Evil (Agonia Records)

Go away for eight years and the world is apt to be a radically different beast upon return. It isn’t that Forgotten Tomb has been away from the world for eight years, but indeed it’s I that has been Read more […]

T&N – Slave to the Empire (Rat Pak Records)

We all know about the big four in metal (referring to the thrash legends), but did you know there is also a big three too? I am referring to the guys in Dokken who comprised the classic line-up during Read more […]

Paragon – Force of Destruction (Napalm Records)

It’s always a treat to review a classic German power metal band like Paragon. The band has been able to hold their own against a bevy of elite power metal bands hailing from their country of origin. Read more […]

Warseid – Where Fate Lies Unbound (Self-Released)

For fledgling bands, an EP is typically the right way to go in terms of a first release. Instead of blowing off the top with a full-length that chances are, no one will want to sit through (save for friends Read more […]

Wintersun – Time (Nuclear Blast Records)

The reports of head-scratching delays, writer’s block, along with message board whispers that Jari Mäenpää had severe anxiety over releasing a follow-up to 2004’s self-titled album can now be put to Read more […]

Murder Construct – Results (Relapse Records)

Effectively fulfilling the promise heard on their 2010 debut EP, supergroup Murder Construct have accomplished a rare feat in the annals of big-name pairings in death metal – they’ve actually made Read more […]

German Pascual – A New Beginning (Nightmare Records)

Narnia had the Christian power metal field covered. Musically, they were marginally average at best (yeah, those are redundant terms, but who cares), but it was apparently the strong message of faith and Read more […]

Revolution Within – Straight from Within (Rastilho Records)

“Hate” is such a blasé term in metal. You’re angry – we get it. Bands that are transparent with such feelings are usually the ones who are largely forgettable, much like when Metallica thought they could Read more […]

Nuclear Death Terror – Chaos Reigns (Southern Lord Records)

The Danish entry into the d-beat, crust-metal field, Nuclear Death Terror (such a thrash metal name) do their best job at blending in on Chaos Reigns. A compilation of ten songs from the band’s various Read more […]

Anaal Nathrakh – Vanitas (Candlelight Records)

It takes only the initial minute of “The Blood-Dimmed Tide” and its furious motion to be left slack-jawed, fully aware that chaos-as-sound merchants Anaal Nathrakh have returned and are taking zero Read more […]

God Seed – I Begin (Indie Recordings)

The legal squabbles over the Gorgoroth name were must-see TV. Or must-read reading. Something like that. In one corner, you had founding member/guitarist Infernus, who by all accounts, lost motivation Read more […]

Car Bomb – w^w^^w^w (Self-Released)

Homer Simpson once said that every time he learned something new, it pushes some old stuff out of his brain. And surely a lot of us have felt that way, especially when trying to consume overly-ambitious Read more […]

Family – Portrait (Pelagic Records)

Family’s debut album Portrait is supposedly about a dysfunctional family that develops supernatural powers. So, it’s like Disney’s The Incredibles, right? The Incredibles was after all, one of Pixar’s Read more […]

My Dying Bride – A Map Of All Our Failures (Peaceville Records)

A baleful wind fills the night and rain encroaches beneath a sour moon, eternal black extending otherwise across all horizons. Candlelight punctuates ritual madness and schemes of ongoing trauma and Victorian Read more […]

Abiotic – Symbiosis (Metal Blade Records)

You have to wonder if things happen too fast for certain bandssometimes. As in, they get signed before they’re ready, not quite equipped to deal with inevitable setbacks and/or roadblocks, primarily because Read more […]

Kill Ritual – The Serpentine Ritual (Scarlet Records)

Kill Ritual are a real treat as far as I am concerned. You take the remnants of old-school thrash bands Imagika and Dark Angel and you mix them together into a new vital force of original power/thrash. Read more […]

Behexen – Nightside Emanations (Debemur Morti Productions)

A little mystery never hurt anyone. In black metal, it’s generally of the serious nature; the cloak-and-dagger style that is supposed to be as visually enticing as it is sonically. Problematic to such Read more […]

Eugenic Death – Crimes Against Humanity (Heaven and Hell Records)

Long considered as the weak part of thrash, the vocals are wisely made an afterthought amidst the style’s main components of angular riffing, moshable sections, and d-beat stints. There are of course, Read more […]

Dethklok Metalocalypse – Dethalbum III (Williams Street Records)

One doesn’t normally equate cartoons and heavy metal as legitimate items. Usually, the two diametrically-opposed entities are met with a healthy barrage of criticism and ridicule, left to operate by Read more […]

My Sleeping Karma – Soma (Napalm Records)

The old adage that “There is no such thing as background music” should be tossed aside when discussing My Sleeping Karma’s fourth album, Soma. About as relaxed as a spa treatment and energetic as a stoner Read more […]

Undercroft – Ruins of Gomorrah (Season of Mist/Underground Activists)

Had this one pegged as some kind of black metal offering, perhaps channeling Old Scratch and friends by way of general and generic tactics. That’s what will happen when you have a fella holding down a Read more […]