WINGLESS – Nonconform

RELEASE YEAR: 2021BAND URL: https://facebook.com/winglessofficialI It’s about time I have heard from my native Poland death metal scene (where I currently reside) which boasts the likes of Behemoth, Azarath and Vader, to mention just the most excellent ones. The occassion is the doom/death trio Wingless who have recently released their fourth , after “Hatred Is…

ATHEMON-Athemon

RELEASE YEAR: 2021 BAND URL: http://flyathemon.bandcamp.com/ The international (Brazilian-British) progressive melodic groove doom metal act, Athemon, released their debut self-titled album some time last year but only now was I able to take on this fairly unique fantastic record. At the core guitar groove of ancient Machine Head and Skinlab (remember them?) or Pissing Razors…

ANTI RITUAL – Expel The Leeches

  RELEASE YEAR: 2021 BAND URL: https://indisciplinarian.bandcamp.com/album/anti-ritual   Look at that beautiful cover – do you think these guys sing love songs on “Expel The Leeches”? Indeed, the music of this 30 minute recording is as crude, ugly and brutal as the guillotine on its cover, a hardcore punk crust with generous helpings of death…

THE DESIGN ABSTRACT – Metemtechnosis

RELEASE YEAR: 2021BAND URL: https://facebook.com/thedesignabstract/   “Technotheism”, The Design Abstract’s third and Voiicide’s (vocals, bass, scoring, sampling, programming) and Logan Mayhem’s (guitars, modular synthesis) fourth album (previously as Design) was good if a very flawed effort suffering from overwhelming form over content and, specifically, the techno synth and keyboard elements overwhelming both the death metal…

THE DESIGN ABSTRACT – Technotheism

RELEASE YEAR: 2021 BAND URL: https://facebook.com/thedesignabstract/   When Fear Factory had released their groundbreaking second album “Demanufacture”¹⁹⁹⁵ they have inadvertently spawned a whole slew of imitators, although, Initially, only the known acts such as Darkane and Soilwork started incorporating the clean/growl dynamics in their sound but soon brand new outfits cropped up, Scar Symmetry and…

OBSCURA – A Valediction

RELEASE YEAR: 2021BAND URL: https://realmofobscura.com/ I’m probably going to be called a contrarian for saying this but I don’t consider this German progressive technical melodic death metal act a revelation it seems to be so universally regarded. True, the first two albums: “Retribution”²⁰⁰⁶ and “Cosmogenesis”²⁰⁰⁹ had borne a promise of the “we may have a…

HYPOCRISY – Worship

If there’s one thing you can confidently say about this Swedish blackened melodic death metal act is that they do whatever they want whenever they want for however long they want to do it. From the extreme but not very innovative beginnings through development into a first class melodic death metal act and subsequent, thankfully…

AQUILUS – Bellum I

The Australian progressive neofolk black/death metal one man act Aquilus (meaning something male dark-colored and swarthy) has just (December 3rd) released its second full-length, "Bellum I", which comes ten years after the also fantastic if slightly inferior debut, "Griseus"²⁰¹¹. The level of musical genius which had gone into the making of this new masterpiece is…

EXODUS – Persona Non Grata

The term "thrash metal" was coined in February 1984 by Kerrang! journalist Malcolm Dome in reference to Anthrax’s song "Metal Thrashing Mad". Prior to this, Metallica’s founding guitarist James Alan Hetfield had referred to Metallica’s sound as "power metal", so, although many credit Metalica’s and Megadeth’s founding guitarist, David Scott Mustaine, with birthing the genre…

AUTOKRATOR – Persecution

Who’s to say that heavy metal, even extreme metal, must always be against Christianity unless the artists are themselves Christians? A band can explore a historical drama without taking sides or, as with the death/black metal French duo, provide historical context as a background for violent and crushing music while clearly sympathetic with one side.…

BLOOD RED THRONE – Imperial Congregation

I have a weird (admittedly) habit of listening in succession to the entire back discography of a band I know well and respect before reviewing their latest album and the Norwegian death metallers, Blood Red Throne (BRT), are no exception. Their previous installment, "Fit To Kill"²⁰¹⁹, was a very good record showing even progressive tendencies…

BONDED – Into Blackness

You would think that a band formed in 2018 by former members of the thrash metal icon, Sodom, Bernd "Bernemann" Kost (Guitars) and Markus "Makka" Freiwald (Drums) would simply sound like its extension, especially given the production handled by the same Cornelius "Corny" Rambadt at Rambado Recordings who produced Sodom, but Bonded, currently consisting of…

MASSACRE – Resurgence

I don’t care what anybody says, "Back From Beyond" was a brutal yet very catchy slab of hardcorish groove/death metal and a worthy follow up to Massacre’s classic debut, "From Beyond". It was also a very good response to the thrash/groove oriented clean sung "Promise" and a natural bridge between the two. It didn’t have…

LIVLØS – And Then There Were None

One of the best things to happen to a reviewer is discovering an excellent band or an album previously unheard of. Such is the case with the Danish melodic death metallers, Livløs (Danish: lifeloss) and their second, after the independently released "Into Beyond"²⁰¹⁸, album, mysteriously and epicly titled "And Then There Were None", which, as…

SWALLOW THE SUN – Moonflowers

As much as I love and respect this brilliant Finnish melodic doom/death ensemble I found their last "When The Shadow Is Forced Into The Light"²⁰¹⁹ disappointing as if the weight of anguish they had gone through, especially their founding guitarist, crushed their ability to craft memorable hooks and bind them to cascading old Peaceville style…

MØL – Diorama

Møl is a black metal/shoegaze quintet who reportedly made waves in the genre with their debut album, "Jord"²⁰¹⁸, this, the sophomore release, "Diorama", released on November 5th, being their first major label album. Although I’m usually not that much into this genre, seeing as much of it are just better or worse copies of Alcest,…

OMNIUM GATHERUM – Origin

If you don’t know how much this Finnish progressive melodic death metal band means to me read my review of their previous album, "The Burning Cold" (6/6), my personal album of the year 2018. I have followed them from the 2011 "New World Shadows" through "Beyond" (2013) and "Grey Heavens" (2016), each a fantastic record…

MASTODON – Medium Rarities

The brand new installment from the Georgian heavy metallers Mastodon, "Hushed & Grim", is a hell of a ride, probably the best since "Crack The Skye" and it did it two things for me: 1. reestablished them as unique artists who have won my heart from the humble but deadly "Call Of Mastodon"²⁰⁰⁶ compilation, through…

STASS – Songs Of Flesh And Decay

These days it seems you can’t turn around without hitting one of the many old school death metal projects of one of the hardest working guitarists in metal, Roger "Rogga" Johansson. They all tend to sound the same but so far I had the honor and/or pleasure to present albums by Rogga Johansson (the band),…

MASTODON – Hushed & Grim

These four Georgians are one of the reasons why I love music, I mean, not just heavy metal but music widely understood. I have very fond memories of hearing the opener of "Blood Mountain", "The Wolf Is Loose", with its opening chord the freshest thing in recent memory back in 2006. And Mastodon had been…

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