album review

EP Review: Puscifer – “Donkey Punch the Night”

Fans of Tool have been anxiously anticipating a new record from the band band since “10,000 Days” was released in 2006. Fans of A Perfect Circle have been waiting even longer. Unfortunately for both groups, however, Maynard James Keenan just keeps having ideas for side projects and is perfectly content to let everyone wait.

Album Review: Coldsteel - American Idle

Just how big is the thrash revival we've seen over the last handful of years? These sorts of things are hard to quantify, but here's a good example: Coldsteel, a New York thrash band that put out exactly one album in their career, has enough attention and interest to reunite and put out their first new material in twenty years. You know the movement is serious when it's not just the big names of the past that are being resurrected, but also the ones you never heard about in their own heyday. For a band like Coldsteel, this is more than they could have ever hoped for.

Album Review: Suffocation - Pinnacle Of Bedlam

It's always difficult to review the latest album from a legendary band, especially when they don't fall into your realm of expertise. Death metal has never been my thing, and even in my brief escapades into the genre, Suffocation never crossed my path. Of course, I know of Suffocation, I just can't speak with any authority as to their status or stature. It's with that in mind that I find myself hesitant talking about this new album, because I'm not sure how much their reputation in death metal circles has influenced me.

Album Review: Raven Black Night - "Barbarian Winter"

Attentive readers have no doubt noticed that my compatriot Chris has been dedicating a lot of words to the notion that this wave of traditional metal which has so captures our attention in the past two years is beginning to play itself out. The idea behind the theory is that in some form, we’ve heard all this before, that these new or resurgent bands need to bring something new to the fold, lest they simply be branded as more of the tired same.

Album Review: Mustasch – “Sounds Like Hell, Looks Like Heaven”

Mustasch, a heavy metal band from Sweden, has been around for a long time; too long, in fact, for them to be not be better known in the rest of the world. After seven albums, tours with the likes of Motörhead, three Swedish Grammy nominations and one victory to the tune of “Metal Album of the Year” in 2008, you would think Mustasch would be about as close to a household name around the world as heavy metal bands get these days. However, despite their Scandinavian success, Mustasch have yet to take the world by storm.

Album Review: Sacred Steel - The Bloodshed Summoning

If you spend enough time listening to a narrow band of music, you will eventually hear everything. Not literally, of course, but you will hear so much music that fits into the same small box of cliches that nothing short of a revolution will be able to catch you off-guard anymore. You can't be surprised by what you hear, nor can you be overwhelmed by what might have, at a different time, been music that would have helped you define yourself. And so it is with any record that crosses my desk these days that isn't concerned with the latest trend.

Album Review: Mothership - "Mothership"

Just read the press release for Mothership and you’ll learn there’s a lot to like about this band. (And for clarity’s sake, let’s get one thing out of the way; this band has nothing to do with George Clinton.) There are the stock-in-trade quotes about what the band is and what they want to be. There are all the conformist comparisons to who the band sounds like and allusions to who inspires their composition.

Album Review: Psychothermia – “Fall to the Rising Sun”

“While there are many bands in the hard rock/metal world that like to play with fire, it requires a certain combination of insanity and balls to douse yourself in it.” This opening line of Psychothermia’s biography from the band’s website is certainly true, but if you’re going to play with real fire during a photo shoot, you better have the music to back up these incredibly unique and powerful images.

Album Review: Gloria Morti - Lateral Constraint

Melodic death metal is one of those things that, if you listen to a purist, will tell you cannot exist. Death metal, they say, is incompatible with the melodic elements other facets of the metal universe take for granted. The music should be uncompromising, focused on nothing but steamrolling the listener with riff after riff of unrelenting brutality. The bands that dared step outside that box and try to make their assaults into what conventional thinkers might consider songs were heretics, and the music they made was cute, but not really death metal.

Album Review: Destruction - "Spiritual Genocide"

Okay kids, gather round. It’s confession time.

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