album review

Album Review: Gorillaz - "The Singles Collection, 2001-2011"

Somehow, in the shady days of post-grunge radio, when music struggled to find a definable scene or sound, in the midst of the detritus of Staind and the early birth pangs of Disturbed, came the Gorillaz. A quirky British act based on animated characters and the unexplored mental depths of Blur frontman Damon Albarn, the Gorillaz dominated an entire musical cycle without ever bending to the mold.

Album Review: Autumn - "Cold Comfort"

Autumn's new album "Cold Comfort" is a work befitting its creator's name. Varying between pleasantly warm and icily fragile, "Cold Comfort" is both a promise of uneasy transition and muted optimism. That said, this album would have been more complete if there had been one breakthrough moment at the end of it. There are those who would counter that autumn as a season seldom announces winter's arrival with anything but a whimper.

Album Review: Austrian Death Machine - "Jingle All the Way"

Bing Crosby. Andy Williams. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Mannheim Steamroller. The Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Austrian Death Machine? One of these names is clearly not in the same ballpark with the others (and no, it isn't the Choir.)

Album Review: Hollywood Undead - "American Tragedy Redux"

No one has ever quite been able to accurately explain to me what exactly Hollywood Undead is, what audience they’re shooting for, or what their message is. That’s not to say that these are rhetorical questions directed at the powers-that-be running the multiverse, but I’ve never been confronted with the answer. Are they just a rap rock band out of their decade? Are they self-effacing in some subtle way? I’m a man who loathes genre-fication, but I admit I’ve never been sure who this appeals to.

Album Review: Cirith Ungol - "Servants of Chaos" (Re-release)

The re-release (with additions) of the long-lost Cirith Ungol rare tracks album "Servants of Chaos" is as much an anthropological study of heavy metal as it is a celebration of the band's accomplishments.

It is curious to see the strata of early metal and progressive rock laid so bare before the eye of the beholder, particularly through the lens of a band that helped popularize those genres without sharing in their lasting legacy.

Album Review: Megadeth - "Th1rt3en"

"Th1rt3en," the latest offering from heavy metal titans Megadeth, is both a study of what Megadeth has been and could be. It is a self-contained road-map of Megadeth's past aggressions, present explorations and possible future.

Album Review: Cradle of Filth - "Evermore Darkly"

“Evermore Darkly” is slightly thin as a companion piece to “Darkly, Darkly, Venus Aversa,” but that doesn’t mean it is without value.

Comprised mostly of re-cut or re-imagined tracks from the main album, “Evermore Darkly” presents the known cuts from that album in a style that is less abstract. “The Persecution Song,” is reworked in a way that makes the song more accessible while not losing its original pounding, or the effect of Paul Allender’s off-kilter, rangy guitar.

Album Review: Behemoth - "Demonica"

Behemoth. A name that carries a lot of weight, and a lot of stigma in metal circles. Considered the fathers of the Polish death/black/extreme metal scene, Behemoth has been both the center of celebration and consternation for over two decades. Cited on a 2007 list by Polish officials of artists who allegedly promote murder and Satanism, Behemoth is no stranger to controversy.

Album Review: Lou Reed/Metallica - "Lulu"

My word.

The internet has been fairly aflame since the announcement of the cooperative effort between Lou Reed and Metallica, two titans of their respective genres. Cynicism and hope ran high, the backs of necks bristled with both anticipation and fear. As more and more copies were released, and the web stream was opened to the public, the album took on notes of trouble. Soon, the clear skies above the album and its accompanying concept has turned black with a hurricane of vitriolic reviews and crushing waves of critical disdain.

Album Review: This is Hell - "Black Mass"

To say that I was less than enthused about putting This Is Hell's "Black Mass" on my 'to-do' pile is probably an understatement. The band's press speaks volumes about the prowess of this evolving hardcore crossover band that lays down sobering, realistic lyrics....snore. I felt like I read those exact words about Hatebreed in 1999. Which only made me more withdrawn from the album. After all, hardcore has never truly died, but the last decade has seen a precipitous fall in both quality and popularity of the once crowded genre.

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This week we discuss alchemy, camera technology, a first time guest host joins the show, and we review "As Above, So Below".  

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