Betzefer – Freedom to the Slave Makers (AFM Records)

Hard to picture a band from Israel not channeling the sounds of its homeland, but give credit to Betzefer for this: they don’t sound a thing like Orphaned Land. On their third album Freedom To the Slave Read more […]

The Haunted – Unseen (Century Media Records)

On North American shores, excitement for a new Haunted album has drawn to a whimper, thanks in part to the Swedes’ gradual evolution into a non-thrash, non-melodic death, non-anything band. Really, who Read more […]

Dornenreich – Flammentriebe (Prophecy Productions)

Any band that can successfully volley between all-acoustic and avant-garde metal without a skipping a beat is one to take note of. Such is the case for Austria’s Dornenreich, who aren’t the first name Read more […]

Srodek – Förfall (A Sad Sadness Song)

Right in the wheelhouse of classic Burzum (yes, please), Sweden’s Srodek offer up the usual one-man BM production tactics on Förfall , albeit with a much higher grade of success than its contemporaries. Read more […]

Mindflow – With Bare Hands (Nightmare Records)

If there’s one continent that passionately comes up from touring bands in the embracing metal music landscape, it would have to be South America. Iron Maiden’s 1985 Rock In Rio performance set off Read more […]

Burzum – Fallen (Candlelight Records)

Man, Belus is barely a year old and here comes a new one in the form of Fallen. ‘Ole Varg is certainly making up for that span of inactivity related to his stint in jail, isn’t he? Essentially a continuation Read more […]

Neurosis – Souls At Zero Reissue (Neurot Recordings)

Long considered an unheralded classic, Souls At Zero is the set-up album for Neurosis’ ascent into underground darlings. Originally released in 1992,Souls saw the Californians move away from their Read more […]

Benighted – Asylum Cave (Season of Mist Records)

If you really want to ruffle the feathers of your audience, then start your album with the sound of an alarm clock going off…that’s real horror for some people. Frankly, the morning is the best Read more […]

My Inner Burning – Eleven Scars (SPV Records)

Surely My Inner Burning had all the right intentions when coming up with their moniker, but surely there’s a segment of assholes out there who will poke and prod at the band’s name, comparing it to Read more […]

Mercenary – Metamorphosis (Prosthetic Records)

This Danish act epitomize the “underrated” moniker in the metal world. Their sound has enough rambunctious hooks and fierceness to achieve a broad cross-section of appeal, and yet in the United States Read more […]

Darkest Hour – The Human Romance (EOne Music)

Stolen Swedish riffs be damned, Darkest Hour are still around, remarkably, and back with an album in the form of The Human Romance that may (or may not) be their most effective in years. Their weak spots Read more […]

Goes Cube – In Tides and Drifts (The End Records)

Imagine a filthy three-way pile-up between Kylesa, These Arms Are Snakes and Torche jamming Floor songs. If that’s getting you aroused in the downtown, trouser area and setting your ears a tingle you’re Read more […]

Crowbar – Sever the Wicked Hand (Eone Music)

Funny how it’s taken such a considerable amount of time for people to finally give Crowbar their just due. Fact of the matter is, almost every sludge-oriented band going right now owes something to Kirk Read more […]

Crystal Viper – Legends (AFM Records)

As history has demonstrated, a female singer is a good way to change the landscape, or at least get more eyeballs pointed in the desired direction. And since there a few landscapes as dry as power metal, Read more […]

Death – The Sound of Perseverance Reissue (Relapse Records)

Considering it will be the 10th anniversary of Chuck Schuldiner’s passing this December, it’s quite fitting that Death is getting the reissue treatment. We would be remiss to not convey the band’s Read more […]

Battlelore – Doombound (Napalm Records)

In a career marked by consistency and all things Tolkien, Battlelore forge ahead on Doombound, the band’s sixth album. While previous efforts including 2008’s hearty and valiant The Last Alliance were Read more […]

Havok – Time Is Up (Candlelight Records)

There are roughly 80 million bands parading around with the “Havok” moniker, one of which resides in this scribe’s hometown of Pittsburgh, PA. The Pittsburgh Havok are quality dudes (and very polite), Read more […]

Suidakra – Book of Dowth (AFM Records)

Ten albums in a 13 year history – that’s almost unheard of in today’s scene, unless you carbon-copy studio records to the next in a quick cut-and-paste rehearsal to recording fashion. Such is the life Read more […]

Eastern Front – Blood On Snow (Candlelight Records)

Thanks to the success of Hail of Bullets and ongoing lyrical dalliances from God Dethroned, war-related themes are getting quite the workout. It’s nothing new – just about every self-respecting metal Read more […]

Tankard – Vol(u)me 14 (AFM Records)

Hey, you try and write 14 albums dedicated to alcohol…not as easy as one would think. For Germany’s Tankard, beer, beer, and more beer has been the topic of choice for their shallow brand of thrash, Read more […]

Lazarus AD – Black Rivers Flow (Metal Blade Records)

Once the retro movement came barrelling down the street, it was all over for thrash metal. Yeah, the vanguards of the style (i.e. Exodus, Testament, Death Angel, etc.) have done their job in holding down Read more […]

Serenity – Death & Legacy (Napalm Records)

Still in the wheelhouse of Sonata Arctica’s early 00’s work, Serenity are making gradual strides toward establishing some semblance of an identity, although there are more than a few Tony Kakko-worshipping Read more […]

Tuck From Hell – Thrashing (Metalville Records)

Ask any red-blooded American what they think of when they hear the word “tuck” and they’ll associate it with the infamous “Tuck Rule” from the NFL. Our Matt Coe would know more than anyone, as Read more […]

Darkest Era – The Last Caress of Light (Metal Blade Records)

Irish metal circa 2011 is almost solely associated with Primordial, who finally are getting their just due after years of being so consistent and earnest. Perhaps looking to piggyback off Primordial’s Read more […]

Artas – Riotology (Napalm Records)

The “kitchen sink effect” is in…effect. Bands that are able to do such things (like Artas) have the propensity to get a little carried away with how varied and scattershot they can actually be, Read more […]

Turisas – Stand Up And Fight (Century Media Records)

In what clearly is a concerted effort to not sound like their contemporaries, Pagan/epic/folk metallers Turisas have turned this long stagnant sound upside down on Stand Up And Fight, sounding more Read more […]

Tesseract – One (Century Media Records)

Essentially Meshuggah with clean vocals, or Textures with less-awesome clean singing and thrash, or Extol for the brief moment in time when they were good, the UK’s Tesseract is the embodiment of a modern Read more […]

Demonic Resurrection – The Return to Darkness (Candlelight Records)

No one can get symphonic black metal right these days, and yeah, we can blame the hacks comprising of the metalcore scene for all but ruining this sound altogether, but the supposed “true” bands of Read more […]

Motorhead – The World Is Yours (Future PLC/Motorhead Music)

At this juncture, it’s next to impossible to knock Motorhead. Any band that has been able to hang around for as long as Lemmy and co. must be doing something right, and if that’s not prevalent to thee, Read more […]

Long Distance Calling – Long Distance Calling (Superball Music)

No one’s really that infatuated with instrumental metal/rock/whatever these days, primarily because the style’s main bands (Pelican, Mono, Red Sparowes) have effectively peaked. All that means is Read more […]