MANA – Demo 2024

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://mana666.bandcamp.com/album/demo-2024 I accidentally stumbled on this wild and reckless demo output by the Finnish act named Mana, and it turns out that this potent three-track offering of theirs is a solid and well-written slab of raw and ugly black metal that works like a charm right now thanks to yours truly…

SHADOW KNELL – Shadow Knell

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://shadowknell.bandcamp.com/album/shadow-knell They rarely make records like these anymore, i.e. dark medieval ambient-esque works that pay homage to dungeon synth linchpins such as Mortiis and Penitent while also weaving influences from Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze into their richly textured and evocative soundscapes in such a confident and pleasantly assured manner. Sure,…

MISTRA – Waltz of Death

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://mistra.bandcamp.com/album/waltz-of-death-2 The talented duo consisting of Benedicte Adrian and Anders Odden is an inspired and musically eclectic one that merges something akin to grand-sounding gothic soundscapes with subtle black metal influences and also something along the lines of dark symphonic rock (and even hints of electro pop), and the great thing…

LAUGHING STOCK – Shelter

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://laughingstock1.bandcamp.com/album/shelter Norwegian prog rockers Laughing Stock have never been anything but adventurous and many of their outputs possess a creative wanderlust that sees them covering quite a bit of musical ground while showcasing an impressive ability to balance what can only be termed intimately introspective with themes that are larger in…

LARS FREDRIK FRØISLIE – Un Posto Sotto Il Cielo

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://larsfredrikfroislie.bandcamp.com/album/un-posto-sotto-il-cielo Singles are usually not something that this scribe covers in these online pages, but occasionally one has to make an exception, and this beautiful 2-song release by Wobbler’s immensely talented Lars Fredrik Frøislie, which will be released on 10-inch vinyl by Karisma Records, is one such exception. This one is…

PARADOGMATA – Endetid

RELEASE YEAR: 2023 BAND URL: https://www.paradogmata.com/ It’s becoming harder and harder to come up with a clever name as all the Megadeths, Medevils and Cryptopsies and Darkanes have already been taken. Paradogmata, presumably adressing fake dogmata, contradictory dogmata (as we will learn) or dogmata as it were, is an Norwegian progressive melodic heavy death metal…

HYPERIA – The Serpent’s Cycle

RELEASE YEAR: 2023 BAND URL: https://hyperiametal.bandcamp.com/ Hyperia is a Canadian technical heavy thrash metal band founded in 2018 and they have just released their 3rd (after Insanitarium²⁰²⁰ and Silhouettes Of Horror²⁰²²) full length The Serpent’s Cycle²⁰²³ on November 17th, independently but courtesy of two promotors Jon Asher & Asher Media Relations and Sonja Schlicht &…

THE DREDGE – Torches

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://thedredge1.bandcamp.com/album/torches The Norwegian indie rock collective sporting the moniker The Dredge has been around for ages, but it was not until quite recently that this skilled trio finally released its debut offering. Entitled Torches and consisting of eight tunes that are loaded with atmosphere and a subtle sense of melancholy, this…

NEAL MORSE – The Restoration- Joseph: Part Two

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://www.facebook.com/nealmorse/ Neal Morse hardly needs any introduction to the prog rock aficionados out there, and his impressive back catalog speaks for itself. Personally, I favor his work with the amazing Flying Colors but that is a story for another day. The Nashville-based musician and songwriter is undoubtedly a virtuoso and his…

MISTRA – Waltz of Death (single)

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://mistra.bandcamp.com/album/waltz-of-death-single What we have here is really interesting, and although I hardly ever bother reviewing singles, I simply could not resist the temptation to write a few short sentences about this wicked slab of vinyl that I was lucky enough to get my filthy paws on. Dark and melancholy and with…

WHITE WILLOW – Ex Tenebris (2024 Remaster)

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://whitewillow.bandcamp.com/album/ex-tenebris-remaster Recently remastered by White Willow’s very own Jacob Holm-Lupo and sporting the original cover artwork, this 2024 version of the band’s sophomore album Ex Tenebris (1997) is a most welcome addition to the prog music library. Venturing into darker and more world-weary territory than its predecessor did, the LP feels…

ALKALOID – Numen

RELEASE YEAR: 2023 BAND URL: https://alkaloid-band.com/ As in my review of the second Alkaloid’s album, Liquid Anatomy²⁰¹⁸ (5/6) I again refer to the debut The Malcuth Grimmoire²⁰¹⁵ as one of the greatest most complete progressive death metal works in the genre one I sincerely believe it will one day will be mentioned in one breath…

GOTUS – Gotus

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://www.facebook.com/gotusmusic/ This deftly executed slab of varied hard rock nearly got away from my enormous review pile but luckily found its way to the CD player before it was too late – something that I am extremely grateful for as the music housed in this great-looking jewel case is a fine…

PAULINE MURRAY – Life’s a Gamble: Penetration, The Invisible Girls and Other Stories

RELEASE YEAR: 2023BAND URL: https://omnibuspress.com/products/lifes-a-gamble-my-life-in-penetration-the-invisible-girls-published-on-18th-may-2023 The talented and iconic Pauline Murray is best known for her splendid work with punk rockers Penetration in the latter half of the seventies and some truly interesting, original-sounding solo works in the eighties that exist somewhere between new wave, synth pop, post-punk, and electronic music. Life’s a Gamble, her…

HONEYMOON SUITE – Alive

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://honeymoonsuiteband.com/ Alive by the Canadian melodic rockers Honeymoon Suite was an album that I had looked forward to receiving and reviewing, and the cool thing is that it did not disappoint. Featuring some superb guitar work, excellent keyboard atmospherics, a tight and energetic rhythm section, and not least a great vocal…

WOLFEN RELOADED – The Ghost from Within

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://www.facebook.com/wolfenreloaded/ This is my first encounter with the German rockers known as Wolfen Reloaded and I must say that I find this sophomore effort of theirs titled The Ghost From Within an engaging and delightful listen. Containing bucketloads of muscular riffs, magnificent vocal hooks, and interesting arrangements, the LP immediately stands…

JIM PETERIK & WORLD STAGE – Roots and Shoots Volume One

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://jimpeterik.com/ There are few songwriters out there who can top the legendary Jim Peterik (Pride of Lions) when it comes to crafting a delicious AOR tune filled with irresistible hooks. This instalment in the “World Stage” project sees him teaming up with renowned singers and musicians such as Kevin Cronin (REO…

BALANCE OF POWER – Fresh from the Abyss

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://www.music-merchant.shop/en/balance-of-power/ The long-running British outfit named Balance of Power will unleash their next batch of songs via Massacre Records in April, and if aggressive and melodic metal with countless cool and interesting layers to it is your particular brand of vodka then you need to make sure that you check this…

CRYPTOPSY – As Gomorrah Burns

RELEASE YEAR: 2023 BAND URL: https://cryptopsyofficial.bandcamp.com/ While I admit that the Canadian brutal technical death metal purveyors Cryptopsy have one of the best names and (legible!) logos in metal, I don’t quite hold them in such high regard as others. True, Whisper Supremacy¹⁹⁹⁸ was once in heavy rotation in both my CD player and my…

THE GRANDMASTER – Black Sun

RELEASE YEAR: 2024BAND URL: https://orcd.co/thegrandmasterblacksun The debut offering by The Grandmaster titled Skywards (2021) was a very entertaining and solid slab of epic heavy metal, and I recall thinking that this was one of those Frontiers Records projects that I would like to see continue and record a follow-up, which is exactly what has come…

Load More