Dawnbringer – Nucleus (Profound Lore Records)

Since Dawnbringer mainman Chris Black has his foot in several camps (Nachtmystium, Pharaoh, High Spirits, to name a few), it’s not a reach to find that Nucleus dips from a similar, wide-sized pool. Read more […]

Blood of Kingu – Sun in the House of the Scorpion (Candlelight Records)

If you’re familiar with the band Drudkh, you should be in the know about Blood of Kingu. After all, three of the four current members of said Ukrainian black metal group are in this band, as well as Read more […]

Nightfall – Astron Black and the Thirty Tyrants (Metal Blade Records)

For those unfamiliar with Nightfall, they’re one of the more important bands that have risen from the Greek scene. The band has been around since 1991, and has seen many incarnations – both in style Read more […]

Star One – Victims of the Modern Age (InsideOut Music)

When Star One first hit in 2002, it was a near-revelation, mainly because us journalistic-types got all excited about “space metal,” which frankly, sounds really dumb now, but hey, we’re still the Read more […]

Angra – Aqua (SPV Records)

Boy, 2006’s Aurora Consurgens feels old, doesn’t it? And since it didn’t have the flair of its predecessor Temple of Shadows, Angra suddenly isn’t the enticing, 3rd World power metal prospect Read more […]

Enslaved – Axioma Ethica Odini (Nuclear Blast Records)

Going heavier after 2008’s very progressive, Pink Floyd-intensive Vertebrae was easily the smartest move Enslaved could have made. Then again, the band have been all about making smart decisions for Read more […]

Dawn of Ashes – Genocide Chapters (Metal Blade Records)

Dawn of Ashes’ scary/horror-inspired/highly cinematic blend of black and death metal has fallen out of favor for more primitive means of late, which explains why the band’s third album, Genocide Chapters comes Read more […]

Blood Revolt – Indoctrine (Profound Lore)

Best known for his totally unique wails, howls, pleas for order, love for nature, etc., Primordial’s Alan Nemtheanga Averill sounds every bit as tortured against the backdrop of sloppy, buzzing primal Read more […]

Kamelot – Poetry For the Poisoned (KMG Recordings)

Ninth album for this veteran dark power metal act, who have reached headline status the world over thanks to the charismatic vocal presence of Roy Khan, the unyielding work ethic and vision of guitarist Read more […]

Woe – Quietly, Undramatically (Candlelight Records)

A natural sounding snare drum…can’t deal with it. It’s so passé to play extreme metal of any form without some type of triggering that when something like Woe comes along, it throws the ears for Read more […]

Firewind – Days of Defiance (Century Media Records)

All eyes are on Gus G., especially from the casual mainstream heavy music follower who probably just discovered this axe-slinger’s skill set taking over for Zakk Wylde as Ozzy Osbourne’s guitar man. Read more […]

The Absence – Enemy Unbound (Metal Blade Records)

Gothenburg worship can only get one so far, and if you’re The Absence, it’s time for a detour. Their 2005 debut From Your Grave had a fair amount of spunk, even if it totally crossed into Black Dahlia Read more […]

Mar de Grises – Streams Inwards (Season of Mist Records)

Streams Inwards reveals the same thing about Chile’s Mar de Grises that their previous album Draining the Waterheart did: the band isn’t quite there yet. One would be a fool to not be drawn to the Read more […]

Death Angel – Relentless Retribution (Nuclear Blast Records)

Many have gotten in the habit of stacking all of the old-school, Bay Area thrash bands up against one another, which isn’t all that surprising – it’s probably what happened during the 80’s too. Read more […]

Rattlehead – Tales From the Gutter (Self-Released)

The second generation of thrash seems to have as much impact on audiences worldwide as the first one I grew up savoring. As long as the passion and talent focus on the songwriting and less about writing Read more […]

System Divide – The Conscious Sedation (Metal Blade Records)

A multi-national act that dips into Israel (of all places) thanks to singer Miri Milman’s (ex-Distorted) involvement, System Divide is decidedly American-sounding, rife with pummelling deathcore chugs Read more […]

The Crown – Doomsday King (Century Media Records)

Hard to fuck with The Crown, you know? They ended things a bit too early in 2004 after years of slugging it away on the death metal club circuit, broke, destitute, and oft-overlooked. ‘Tis a crime, actually, Read more […]

Otargos – No God, No Satan (Season of Mist Records)


Raunchy – A Discord Electric (Lifeforce Records)

It’s easy to forget just how poppy and utterly non-metal Raunchy can be. After making significant headway with 2004’ s excellent Confusion Bay, the Danes have gradually settled into a niche few want Read more […]

King of Asgard – Fi’mbulvintr (Metal Blade Records)

All has been relatively quiet this year on the epic/Pagan metal front (thank you, sweet Odin), which could be why King of Asgard’s relatively by-the-book take on said style works in spades. It’s the Read more […]

Shadowgarden – Ashen (Napalm Records)

It could be the case that within every black-shrouded Goth metal dude/chick, there’s a commercial, radio-friendly side waiting to burst out. For Draconian’s Andreas Hindenas and Johan Ericsson, Shadowgarden Read more […]

Accept – Blood of the Nations (Nuclear Blast Records)

Let’s be honest – when you decide to replace a well known vocalist such as Udo Dirkschneider, the public and critical knives will be sharp and ready to strike if anything less comes out from a classic Read more […]

Iron Maiden – The Final Frontier (EMI Records)

Boy, Maiden sure is making a lot of people wonder with this album title. If this truly is the “final frontier,” then let’s forget the last several legs, ’cause The Final Frontier is another skirtish, Read more […]

Korzus – Discipline of Hate (AFM Records)

This Brazilian thrash act has been a part of the scene since 1983 as one of the pioneers of the movement along with Sepultura and Sarcofago. Attempting to break in the US market like some of their peers, Read more […]

October Tide – A Thin Shell (Candlelight Records)

Leaving Katatonia. It’s not like leaving Las Vegas or leaving Metallica to play for Voivod (ref. Jason Newsted), but in these circles, it’s quite the leap. Yet with those leaps, comes opportunity, Read more […]

Tristania – Rubicon (Napalm Records)

Once at the forefront of the female-fronted Goth metal scene, Norway’s Tristania have gradually descended into the pits of mediocrity. Their 2000 release, Beyond the Veil is still a stylistic milestone, Read more […]

Drudkh – Handful of Stars (Season of Mist Records)

Perhaps best known for their unabashed Burzum worship, Ukrainian black metal ensemble Drudkh have made the next logical career step with Handful of Stars and in turn, have popped out one of the year’s Read more […]

Lantlôs – Neon (Prophecy Productions/Lupus Lounge)

Can someone come up with a name for Neige (Alcest) and his French art-metal comrades? Blistering is at a loss, primarily because we’re overtaken once again by a project involving the Alcest mainman and Read more […]

Danzig – Deth Red Sabaoth (Evillive/The End Records)

Sheesh Glenn, can your vocals get any higher in the mix? Not like this is a surprise or anything – there are few acts as egocentric as Danzig, which probably has a lot do with the man’s longevity. It’s Read more […]

Blind Guardian – At the Edge of Time (Nuclear Blast Records)

Blind Guardian peaked with Nightfall in Middle Earth. Let’s not kid ourselves or even try to deem A Night at the Opera or A Twist in the Myth as comparable, ’cause they’re not. Such a conundrum is Read more […]