ANY BANDS/LABELS that want their releases reviewed can send me a
promo kit at the following address. Anything sent will be reviewed and posted
within 30 days.
METAL CORE ZINE c/o CHRIS FORBES PO BOX622 MARLTON, NJ 08053 USA
SHATTERED DESTINY/Fragments (Self Released) 4 solid tunes of some nice progressive metal with some tasty hooks and a good singer. The songs are catchy and heavy and the songs don't fly over my head like some prog bands. The singer has a strong voice and he hits all the right notes and his voice works well with the music. Production is solid too and I'd like to hear more cause I liked what I heard. Info:
SutureSkeletal/Vortex (Soulflesh Collector) A Cannibal Corpse wanna-be band that has no originally at all and I hate the tin can drum sound and this just sounds like hundred of other faceless death metal bands making the rounds in the underground. Boring.
Fates Demise/Sins of a Life Past (Digital Media Records) Dear god another shitty groove metal/nu metal band with all those tough guy vocals and happy thrash music. Bands like this are a dime a dozen and all pretty much suck and add this band to the ever growing list. Oh I love the clean vocals too. Fucking garbage. Info:
BLACKLIST UNION/Til Death Do Us Part (Self Released) This is one of those modern rock bands that I am not a big fan of, but this wasn’t bad. They kinda have their own sound to them and they mix sort of a goth style with modern rock and it works. The singer has a great voice and he sings the songs with passion and feeling and I was into this. The songs are catchy and not in that happy thrash or happy rock style. It kinda has that dark and moody style to it as well. Info:
STUTZMarching Into Hell CD (Stormspell Records) This came out in 1986 and the band play a "hair style" metal. You know bands like Poison, Motley Crue, etc. Now I do like some of this as Journey and Firehouse are one of my favorite bands. There is 3 albums coming out and this was OK. I am not a fan of the singer, to me he has annoying voice and my wife even said so. The music isn't bad, the songs have some catchy riffs and all and at times I can get past the vocals at times.
STUTZ/Keep Running (Stormspell Records) This is the best release of the 3 this band put out. The songs are way better and more catchy and the singer doesn't sound annoying on this all. This is some really good melodic metal with solid hooks and singing. This is way better than the above release and the production is good and bottom line this has some ass kickin rockin tunes with great hooks. Easily the best release of the 3. Info:
FEAR FACTORY/The Industrialist (Candlelight Records) This band is back with one whale of a release. This is fast, hard hitting, bone to the core industrial metal. This just drives a stake through your heart. Just the vibe and power of this band will crush you. I remember they were a big deal when they came out many years ago and well this is the real deal and will absolutely destroy anything in its path. Great vocals and just toms of speed and power. One of the best releases of the year so far. Info:
SONS OF TONATIUH/Parade Of Sorrow (Hydro-Phonic) Just a wall of sludge/noise that I thought was awful. All the singer does he yell out some annoying screams along with some terrible music that has no value at all. Oh and the band throw in some clean vocals as well. A waste of your time and money. Info:
Offending/Age of Perversion (Deepsend Records) Heard it a million times before death metal. If you want Cannibal Corpse Jr here is your band. Vocals are just growls and are not brutal over some below average music. I found nothing good about this whatsoever. Same ole same ole. Info:
DESALMADO/Desalmado (Grayhaze Records) Terrible death/grind that went nowhere fast. Don't these bands know how to write a decent riff. The songs suck, the singing sucked and this sucked. Forgettable death grind. Info:
MERCURY TIDE/Killing Saw (Limited Access Records) This has one of the members of the band Angel Dust in it and well I don't care about that. All I know this is a limp attempt at power metal with no catchy songs at all. The songs are flat as a pancake and pretty much put me to sleep. As with other releases, there is nothing even close to being good on this. Info:
Katana/Storms of War (Listenable) Hey a band that writes catchy riffs and vocals that don't sound the same as everybody else. This band plays some catchy power metal with bone crushing riffs that had my neck moving and playing air guitar as well. The singer sounds like Halford and that my friends is a good thing. Production is perfect and that guitar sound and crunch rule. This is a great power metal release with tons of hooks and vocals and speed to boot. Info:
HEARTCAKEPARTY/Mock Heroic (Indianola Records) Just what we need another nu metal band with tough guy and clean vocals. Bands like this are a dime a dozen and all sound the same. Don't waste your money.
GG ALLEN & THE MURDER JUNKIES/Blood Shit & Fears (MVD VISUAL) Oh my god this is easily the most of the most disgusting and vile DVD’s I have ever watched. I read about GG a lot in the days when Maximum Rock N Roll was published. I read about all the crazy stuff he did and all and now I got to see it with my own eyes. His band play dirty down rock n roll/punk rock and GG is absolutely insane. He cuts himself in the head and bleeds. He shoves a microphone up his ass and shits onstage and eats it!!! There is a total of 5 shows on this and the quality of the footage varies. All I know is GG maybe dead, but he in his time was one sick motherfucker and I am sure he was on some kind of drugs or what not when he was doing this live. Be warned this is not for the faint of heart. Info:
ENTHROPY/Enthropy 3 (Self Released) I am by no means a fan of that this groove or nu-metal stuff that is flooding the underground these days as most of it all sounds the same and the tough guy and clean metal vocals need to go. That being said this is one of the best bands doing that style that I have heard. The vocals aren’t annoying that the songs have some damn good riffs and I was nodding my head to these tunes on this instead of frowning. The music is that new style of thrash it what I call and I can’t put my exact finger on it, but I liked this. Production is solid and just the songs won me over and are very good and no annoying vocals to boot. Very solid release:
WARCHEST/Aftershock (MVD Audio) Some nice old school thrash metal that wasn’t too far from a Testament sound. The singer sounds a bit like Chuck and the music is just got that Bay Area thrash sound that I loved so long ago. The crunchy riffs and vocals won me over in no time. No groove or nu metal crap is found on this baby. Just bone crushing riffs with pure thrash metal vocals behind it. Info:
LEFUTRAY/Last Breath (MVD Audio) Just another faceless groove/nu metal band with those gruff tough guy vocals and this just sounds like any other band doing this style bringing nothing to the table whatsoever. Info:
FROM NOWHERE/Agony (MVD Audio) This was some OK heavy metal mixed in with some thrash metal at times. The band just didn’t blow me away as I thought the riffs on this were just average at best. The vocals are just growled and screamed and I wasn’t feeling his vocals much neither. The songs were just flat to a point and just didn’t click with me much. The band doesn’t suck, but I just didn’t hear that killer riff or song structure to knock me off my feet. Info:
HORROR OF HORRORS/Blood Fangs & Foulness (Thrash Corner Records) My man Reinaldo has done it again and this is ultra cool as he has put both of this band's releases on a double disc and a few bonus tracks to boot. I interviewed this band for issue 20 of my zine many moons ago when their "Sounds Of Eerie" release came out. The band play straight forward death/thrash metal with Aantar Lee smashing the shit out of his drums. Both releases are damn fine examples of hard, fast thrash mixed with a bit of death metal. Vocals are more in the death metal vein and this still sounds as fresh as it did in 1994. Just buy the bloody thing as this band blows away most of the crap out there nowadays. Info:
AETHERIUS OBSCURITAS/Ventus (Paragon Records) While I am not the biggest black metal fan, this music when done right, can be a pleasant listen. This band was sort of down the middle with a slight horns up to it. The production is good and the singer has a decent black metal voice, but the problem is as with many bands, this to me just sounds like a bunch of other black metal bands, but I'll say at least some of the riffs and melodies are good. The music is fast black metal with a pic riffing style that many other black metal bands do. A slight thumbs up. Info:
SECTIONED/Purulent Reality (Paragon Records) Straight forward death metal is the ticket here. Bone crushing riffs, wicked speed and vocals from hell. No groove, no tough guy shit and no slammin groove neither. Just balls to the wall hard hitting fast death metal. The band just pound and ground you into oblivion. Production is good and the guitar sound and drums I love. Info
HAVOK/Point Of No Return (Candlelight Records) One of my favorite thrash bands return with a new Ep with 2 new tunes and 3 cover tunes, Arise and Post Mortem/Raining Blood. The 2 new tunes are total ripping thrash numbers that will pulverize your skull.The cover tunes are also awesome as well and this is another great release from one of the best thrash bands around there days. Info:
ANNILATE THE HERO/Same (Self Released) Another in the line of bands that sound like a million others. Wow let’s be original. Let’s use tough guy vocals and throw them in with a line of clean vocals. That has never been done before. Then let’s throw in some groovy riffs and also throw a few cup the mic vocals to sweeten the pot. This was beyond bad and is another case of another faceless band in the underground. Info:
FORTE/Unholy War (Tribunal Records) I remember this band from the late 80's and now the band are back with a new release some 12 years later. This for me was just some average power metal. There is just a certain something missing that would take this over the top and I think it is the singing and production on this. It just seemed kinda muddy to me and I was not a fan of the drum sound and the singer is kinda just medicore. He has a gruff voice, sort of like a bad version of Chuck Billy. He just sings the songs with little emotion and I just couldn't get into him. Info:
Blood MORTIZED/The Key To A Black Heart (Chaos Records) Oh this was some wicked old school speedy death metal with some really wicked razor sharp riffing and pounding drums over some great death metal vocals. Tunes are mostly fast blasting parts with some slower parts here and there to catch your breath. This some intense parts that won me over and thank god no tough guys vocals or annoying pig squeal vocals to boot. Just hard hitting death metal to the bone. Info:
LIVARKAHIL/Wrath Of God (Self Released) This is an EP that from what I read is going to be a free download, which is cool of the band to do. To my ears this is heard it a million times before death metal with speed parts that bored me and I was just sitting there and nothing hit me or stood out. The band isn't that bad, but after reviewing music since 1986 I need a band to bring something to the table and this table was empty. The singer has a good death/black metal voice and heck with the band giving this away for free that is ultra cool so go check em out and decide for yourself. Info:
MORBID EXECUTION (Vulgar Darkness) Deathgasm Records) Like the above band, this isn't bad, but again I just sat there and listened to this and nothing grabbed me. The songs were actually pretty boring and this is not for fans of Sodom and Hellhammer as the bio states. This is for fans of boring music that is will put you to sleep. Riffs so simple and just no feeling or emotion to them and the band was just another of many that doing nothing. Info:
BRUME D'AUTOMME/Self-Titled (Sepulchral Productions) A complete wall of awful black metal noise that belongs in the fuckin toilet. Sounds like 3 or 4 different guys playing different songs. Satan would spit on this shit.
MORTAL INFINITY/District Destruction (Digital Media Records) This reminded me a lot of some of the newer Exodus stuff as the singer sounds like the guy they have singing now. The riffs on this are razor sharp thrash crunch all the way. Production is on the money as the guitar, bass and drums just pound out the music with pure heaviness. None of this nu metal shit this is pure thrash all the way. The riffs just toally sucked me in and this just destroys. Info:
POWER THEORY/An Axe to Grind (Pure Steel Records) This is a power metal band from Phila, PA and there isn't much power going on. The songs are like a limp dick. No power at all and the band just play totally forgettable music that was more like WASP then a power metal band like early Anthrax or Exciter or even a band like Hammerfall. The music is just total wimp metal and guys add a bit of speed to your sound cause you sound like some limp wristed 80's metal band. Info:
ZOMBIEFICATION/Reaper's Consecration (Pulverised Records) Now this is what the doctor ordered. Just balls to the wall old school face ripping death metal to the bone. Riffs that will tear you in pieces along with vocals from hell that satan would love. Production is great and the sound and violence that came out from this band is second to none. This is the way death metal should be played and sound, rip facing heavy as fuck riffs and intense speed and power. Get it. Info:
ENEMY REIGN/Between Hell And Oblivion (Self Released) This is just yet another case of another band that just brings nothing to the table with the same blast beats, death riffs and vocals and this is something no different that 5000 other death metal bands out there. It doesn't suck, but it isn't anything to write home about and is just kinda there along with the 1000's of other bands in the underground.
DIOCLETIAN/Annihilation Rituals (Osmose Productions) Oh my this is some raw as fuck black metal played the right way. Lots of speed, lots of emotion and feeling and oh are those vocals nasty and I mean that in a good way. He just spews and sounds evil and not like a bunch of these awful black metal singers. The songs just create a hateful atmosphere and suck you in. The raw production is just what the doctor ordered and this is easily one of the best black metal releases I have heard this year, heck I'd put it in the top 3. Great band. Info:
RUMPELSTILTSKIN GRINDER/Ghostmaker (Candlelight Records) I am not the biggest grind fan, but damned if this wasn't a great release. I think that is due to this not being all in all out speed. Trust me it's fan and all, but not noisy fast. Production is good and I like the guitar sound and the riffs are wicked and the speed parts aren't just noise and the singing is like older Napalm Death and this is a solid release no doubt. Info:
DEHUMAN/Black Throne of All Creation (Kaotoxin) Some solid old school death metal is what the doctor orders on this. Just heavy and fast riffs over some great death metal vocals. In other words he sings the way death metal should be.The riffs and speed and intensity of this will sent tingles down your spine. The blast parts will have you air drumming big time and this is a solid death metal release. Info:
SPIDER ROCKETS/Bitten P Dog Records This was beyond bad rock n roll that just went nowhere. Sleaze rock with no power and awful vocals too boot. Songs were not catchy and this plain bored me.
UDO/Celebrator Rare Tracks (AFM Records) This was great collection as there is just a ton of stuff on these 2 cds. Japan bonus tracks, unreleased stuff, etc. This is just solid balls to the wall metal and I am sure most people don't even have any of this material and it is nice of the label to put it all out there on these 2 discs. Info:
HALLADROL/The Last Mile On The Earth (Violent Journey Records) This was just some boring death/doom that bored me rather quickly. The music just plodded along with little or no intensity and the vocals were just blah. The songs kinda just sat there and sat there more. Not something I was into at all. Info:
ADASTRA/Corroder Of Minds (Violent Journey Records) Straight ahead heavy metal with crunchy riffs to boot. Raise the fists as metal is alive and well with this band. This is like some of those 80's metal bands like Blacksmith and Overlorde. They also throw a bit of power metal here and there as well. The female singer has a great voice and she sings the songs strongly and with passion and fire. A really good straight forward metal release and something that is a bit different than all the bad death metal flooding the music scene. Info:
SACRED OATH/The Best Of (Angel Thorne Music) Some of you might remember this band as they were a pretty nice heavy metal/power metal band sort of the vein of bands like Deadly Blessing, Hades, but they don’t sound like them, just making a comparison ok. Anyway this is a best of cd, which is a cool way to introduce you to the band. The songs on here are just kick ass power metal tunes with a touch of thrash to them and some great vocals to boot. 14 metal tunes in all including 2 bonus track. This is way cool to hear on CD for the 1st time as well all these tunes. Info:
ROSE TATTOO/Live in 1993 From Boggo Road Jail (MVD Visual) This band I remember back in the day as a almost AC/DC sort of clone band with a bald headed singer and also on album stood out to me was called “Scarred For Life”. This is from a show many moons ago and while this didn’t blow me away, the band sound good and heck since AC/DC is my favorite band, this bands brand of rock n roll was decent to my ears. Really good live quality sound and visual as well. Also the original line-up got back together to do this, which is cool as well. Info:
LIVARKAHIL/Signs Of Decay (Listenable Records) Awful, heard it a million times before death metal. The music is faceless and pretty much sucks. Nothing here knocked me over not even an inch. Vocals are god awful as all the guy is growl into the mic. Music just dragged on to a road of nowhere. Not worth a time of your money. Info:
POISONOUS/Perdition's Den (Metalhit) Oh my these guys aren't playing around. Pure death/doom metal that reminded me of Autopsy and Symphony of Grief. Just heavy as hell riffs and bone crushing power behind them make this quite a killer release. That bass and guitar sound is unreal. I love the production and the vocals are that low, but not super low, great death metal vocal style I love. if somebody asked me what death metal was, I'd pop this in. Total crushing slab of music. Info:
GRAVE DESECRATOR/Deathspells Rising (Metalhit) This wasn't bad, but this just sounds like too many other bands for me to really get into it. Basically it is black metal that I have heard a million times before and it is raw and yeah it is fast, etc, but this brings nothing to an already way overcrowded table and just was another case of the same ole same. Info:
FINAL CURSE/Way of The Accursed (Dark Harvest Records) Some bone crushing hard hitting thrash metal without all that tough guy singing and nu metal shit. Just bone crushing heavy, crunchy riffs that will have your neck moving in no time. Big guitar production as well. This is like the Metallica "Master of Puppets" era sort of stuff. The singing is aggressive, but again not in a tough guy style of way. Thrash metal the way it was meant to be played. Info:
A SOUND OF THUNDER/Out of the Darkness (Nightmare Records) I found this to be some awful played metal. The bands bio says for fans of Hammerfall, Judas Priest, etc. I would say it is for fans of some badly played metal with no power whatsoever. The female singer isn't bad, but the music is like limp wristed rock with no power at all. Production is good, but the songs lacked big time. Info:
DEATHRONATION/Exorchrism (Metalhit) Really solid old school death metal is the ticket here. Total old school vocals, music and even production as well. Ripping fast riffs played with feeling and pure death. Vocals are great as he sings and spews out the words as only a great death metal singer like Ross from Immolation. As an added bonus you also get the band's demo as bonus tracks. This is really death metal my friends. Info:
BESTIAL HOLOCAUST/Into The Goat Vulva (Metalhit) Oh my god is this a godly combo of black metal and thrash metal. Sort of Venom meeting Nuclear Assault in a dark alley. The riffs and oh the power and feeling that this band have is unreal. I am stunned at how damn good this is. The music mixes in fast and slower parts and the vocals are pure hate filled hell filled black metal vocals. The razor sharp riffs are just unreal. Simply incredible. Info:
MARAUDER/Elegy of Blood (Pitch Black Records) Some very good heavy metal that branches off into thrash metal at times. Just good ole plain heavy, fist pumping metal that was having me pump fisting in the air as well. Awesome vocals as well and the singer, who has a clean, but not annoying voice, sorta sounds like Mr. Halford in spots, and that is a good thing. Don't believe me. Go to the below addy and you can hear a song for free. Info:
THE DAY OF THE BEAST/Relentless Demonic Intrusion (Self Released) Absolutely incredible thrash metal with tons of killer old school thrash riffs and singing. I was totally off the charts about a min into this. The riffs are catchy and along with the speedy music make for one hell of a combo. Production on this is solid as well and I am a sucker for a great riff and this band had a million of them along with that godly guitar sound. This is thrash metal at its best. Info:
BONEBREAKER/Heavy Metal Attack-Warriors Of The Night (Hels’ Trash Industries) I got a cassette here to review and how cool is that. This has 4 total old school demo sounding thrash tracks that wouldn’t be out of place from me reviewing them in issue # 1 of Metal Core. Again more really cool thrash although this band uses more mid paced stuff than speed, but it more than gets the job done. I love the production in its demo style and if you were around back in the 80’s, you know what I am talking about. The singer has a good solid thrash metal voice and the 4 tunes on this had me wanting more. Just good old fashioned thrash metal and that is just what the doctored ordered. Info:
THE HANGMEN/East Of Western (Acetate Records) This is easily one of the best rock bands I have heard in quite some time. Just honest to goodness simple, catchy rock n roll riffs along with a kick ass singer won me over. Sort of AC/DC meets southern rock at times. Again I am a sucker for a great riff and this just had simple, but big time effective riffs and none of that new rock sound that you hear on the radio that is all garbage. Just kick ass rock n roll that brings it and delivers it with no flash and style, just straight down the middle. Info:
SIX FEET UNDER/Undead (Metal Blade Records) To me this music was typical, very boring death metal with the lower than low vocals that Mr Barnes likes to sing. The songs on here pretty much sucked and the production was very good and I wasn't expecting much and I didn't get much. Kinda like the Philadelphia Eagles ha ha. Info:
STALWART/Manifest Of Ritual (PRC Music) This didn't sound bad to start with and then the vocals kicked in and some awful music followed. 1st 2 min or so was some nice blasting, fast death metal and then it went south. God awful vocals, he sings in a death metal tone and also clean a bit, and then the mid paced bad death metal began. This mixes up from time to time and it just pretty much bored me to death.
WORDS LIKE DAGGERS/Literature (Indianola Records) This is another jump metal group with the total groove sound with the tough guy vocals. I am sorry, but to me bands like this are a dime a dozen and nothing stands out to me as being anything remotely good about them. This I admit is a bit better than most I have heard as at least a bit of it being some ok riffs at best. Not a fan of any of this style of metal that is big time around now. Info:
ORDER OF NINE/Seventh Year Of The Broken Mirror (Nightmare Records) The bands bio called this thrash metal, I would call it a horrible version of Type O Negative, who I thought sucked as well. Well this sucks just as bad with songs that totally suck and vocals that are a joke. Oh lets sing in that clean and the semi death metal style. This is NOT thrash metal, but more like trash metal. Info:
DEHUMAN/Black Throne Of All Creation (Kaotoxin Records) This wasn't bad, but like a lot of bands this brought nothing new to my table or anything that excited me. I know bands can't be original, but this, which wasn't bad, just kinda sat there and didn't suck, but didn't blow me away. Like sitting on a fence and could go either way. The band play fast death metal with some really good death metal vocals and the fast parts are killer and stuff and I would overall say it isn't bad and is better then some stuff out there. Info:
AXE RIPPER/Welcome To Detroit Destruction (Pirated Records) Some solid thrash metal that surprise, surprise, does not sound like a million other bands. This band has their own little sound and I was really digging this thrash metal band. Catchy riffs and some solid non generic singing too. Just a guy who sings with some hate and passion and none of that tough guy crap. Production is raw, but I think it makes this band better. Sort of like Whiplash this band is. Info:
BLESSED CURSE/Same (M Theory Records) Now this is what the doctor ordered. Killer old school thrash that wouldn't be out of place at a show in 1988 at Lamour's in Brooklyn, NY. Total speed metal riffs that had my neck moving and a big smile on my face. Production is awesome and that guitar crunch is unreal. Vocals are just pure hate screamed vocals that I love and fit this band perfectly. Put it this way if your into Blessed Death, Whiplash, Exodus, Bloodfeast, etc, then you will do backflips over this. Glad to see a band keeping the thrash metal flag running high. Info:
CANANN OF PRISIONERS/ Wandering Souls And Cruel Fears (Eibon Records) Absolutely awful doom metal with clean female vocals. This is something I am not really into as I hate clean female vocals and the music on this was just plain awful, bring and bad.
MANTAS/Death By Metal (Relapse Records) This is some really early pre Death material and is big time raw and then again we are talking 1984 here. Some of you younger folks will hear the production and think this sucks, but I like the raw as fuck production and the chainsaw riffs and death metal growls. This is pretty much all the old pre Death material on CD and it is cool that a label put this out as I am sure this stuff is hard as hell to find. Info:
MORBID SAINT/Spectrum Of Death (Relapse Records) I have a bootleg version of this and now the guys at Relapse had re-issued this. This came out in 1988 and is bone crushing thrash with killer riffs, screamed old school thrash vocals and speed baby. Oh this is just some killer music. Riffs that will knock your head off and will have you playing air drums in seconds. This is prime time thrash that if you missed the first time around you need it this time. Info:
FATE DEMISE/Sins Of A Life Past (Digital Media Records) Just what the world needs another nu metal band with all those breakdown riffs and tough guy vocals and clean vocals too. This sounds just like the rest of them and they suck and so does this. Info:
HOLOCAUSTUM/Crawling Through The Flames Of Damnation (Dark Descent Records) Just crushing old school death/black metal with riffs and feeling that will just rip through your body and leave it a mess. Vocals from hell itself. The band mix up the speed and tempos and the guitar sound just had that feeling and atmosphere that may bands lack nowadays. If your into Immolation or Incantation you’ll want this trust me. Info:
PROSEVERE/Burn The City (Self Released) This is a modern rock band and they are actually not bad. They write and play some solid riffs and the singer has a nice, thick voice and his music works well with the music. The production on this is solid as well. This is not something I would listen to everyday, but it is much better than a lot of crap I hear on the radio and other modern style rock bands that I have heard. Info:
LEGACY OF DISORDER/Break (Self Released) This has its good and bad points. First the good, for a nu metal or groove metal band, they are musicwise very good as the riffs don’t sound like every other band and are very catchy and have a hard edge to them sort of like old hardcore bands from the 80’s like Sick of it All. The riffs are damn catchy and don’t sound generic at all. The bad is the vocals. The tough guy vocals aren’t that bad as doesn’t sound like every other band doing this style and are actually pretty damn good, but when he goes into that death metal/tough guy style and then also throw in some clean style vocals I was like shaking my head no. If they would lose the clean vocals and cut out the tough guy vocals this would be a really kick ass band. I would throw them a C plus. Info:
RADIATION SICKNESS/Advance Tracks (Self Released) I got a 3 track advance from this band and they just recently re-united with all the original members minus one. The band is going to record their 1st album in 20 years! The 3 tunes on this are big time old school thrash metal in the vein of, you guessed it, Nuclear Assault. The tunes even have that raw 80’s sound I liked as well. The singer has a that snarly, thrash metal voice I like a lot as well. These 3 tunes just made me want more and more and I can’t wait to hear the full album cause if these 3 tunes are anything to go by, it is gonna be a thrash metal classic. Info:
KEVIN M BUCK/Musick For The New Aeon (Self Released) I have been getting into some jazz in the last couple years and most of the albums have little or no vocals and that didn’t bother me listening to this one bit. This actually has a bit of a Pat Methany sound to it and it mixes in with some metal sounds as well. The guitar riffs and solos are out of this world as I could hear the passion just ozze out of the guitar notes as this played. The production on this is perfect and everything just sets a mood and what a mood it is. This isn’t for everybody, but I tell you I thought this was great and again the playing and mood and atmosphere on this is second to none. Info:
AKRED/Spills & Thrills (Hels Thrash) This is a rehearsal cd from this band and heck with this and Radiation Sickness I thought I was in 1987 again getting demo tapes in the mail. Just raw as fuck killer thrash metal that I was loving the minute it started playing. Ripping riffs and screamed thrash metal vocals easily won me over and this was like an 80’s thrash metal band and I loved it. The raw production only adds not subtracts. Just raw, balls to the wall thrash the way I like it. Info:
EMILI/Asylum (Unexploded Records) Absolutely beyond awful black metal. All the singer is scream and scream more with those annoying pitchy, whiny baby vocals. My daughter can sing better than this. Hate to tell you, but this is not brutal or sick and Satan would not approve trust me. Throw in beyond bad music, all this is just fast and slower parts that put me to sleep and satan would hate this band as do I. Shitty bands like this flood the once great underground. Info:
MYHRDING/A Legacy Of Shadows (Unexploded Records) This was better than above band cause at least the band writes and plays some decent riffs and the singing isn't all that screeching. The band have a more slower sound and more feeling in their music as well. I do like the guitar sound and the fact that they don't blast away all the time. Not great, not bad. Info:
DANTALION/Return to Deep Lethargy (Unexploded Records) Another bad black metal band with all screaming screeching beyond some pitiful music. The singer sounds like he is dying and I feel like I am dying with this awful music and this was bad. Info:
STRONG INTENTION/Razorblade Express (PATAC) I may need a razorblade after listening to some of these terrible releases. Here we have another one which is a wall of grind and breakdown parts with some guy screaming into the mic and then singing in a tough guy style. Bands like this are a dime a dozen and I ain't buying. Info:
ENABLER/All Hail The Void (Southern Lord) More nu metal with a death metal mix in there too. This actually was pretty cool as the band mixed in both and thank god no tough guy singer. He has a more death metal style and the music just has killer riffs and structures and oh the bass sound rules. This is one of the few bands I have heard that can mix in hardcore, nu metal and death metal and it just crushes. A complete avalanche of sounds that will suck you in and destroy you. Incredible heavy as fuck production too and damn that guitar sound is unreal. Info:
IDES OF GEMINI/Constantinople (Neurot Records) Oh my god this is easily one of the worst releases I have heard this year. The bio boasts about how great the singer on here is and he totally sucks. I guess singing with no emotion or feeling is great. I found his voice to be totally annoying and mix that in with some boring doomy metal and you got a band that would put me to sleep. This band sucks and the label should be ashamed to release something this bad, please don't waste a dime on this shit.
FALLEN MARTYR/Shadows (Siegen Records) Some god awful black metal with the same blast beats and screamed black metal vocals that I have heard a million times. Oh it gets worse. Female vocals and clean vocals are also thrown in the mix with some even worse slower parts. This band tries to mix in several styles and it doesn’t work at all. The music is all over the place and the clear vocals are absolutely awful and the black metal parts are generic all the way. This pretty much sucked all around. Info:
PREDATORY VIOLENCE/Marked For Death (Killer Metal Records) This mixed in old school thrash with some newer thrash metal. The riffs are catchy and of course heavy and speedy as well. The vocals have a bit of that tough guy style that I hate, but they aren’t to the point of annoying. The production is solid and I would say this band is in the style of Pantera's “Vulgar Display of Power” and that is one crushing thrash release so there ya go. Info:
METALHEAD/Same (Killer Metal Records) Oh my god I am bowing to this. A pure 100% heavy metal attack with none of the garbage styles of most of today’s bands. Riffs that bring up images of Saxon, Judas Priest, etc. Don’t get me know this band has a pure sound of its own and the singer even throws in some Merciful Fate screams and actually the music isn’t far away from them neither. This had me having a big time smile on my face and also the fact that not many bands are playing true heavy metal this was like a HUGE breath of fresh air. Easily in my top 10 this year. Info:
UNITY/Reborn (Killer Metal Records) This is another band that is playing the straight ahead heavy metal style and I thought was somewhat decent. It didn’t blow me away like the above band, but they were far from boring. This has some nice song structures and riffs to it as well. Actually after giving it a few listens I backtrack and would say this is above decent and will say it very good and the singer has a good set of pipes and fits the music well. Solid metal is the ticket here. Info:
TAIPAN/Snakes (Killer Metal Records) Oh this is another band that blew me away. Another pure heavy metal band with some amazing hooks and a great singer. Each song on this is just got hooks that are out of this world. This had my head nodding along to each tune and the singer has a great set of pipes as he sings the song with a cleat voice, but also has aggression as well. This is like a lot of those early 80’s metal bands that pure played fist banging metal. Well add this to the bunch except it is 2012. Great release. Info:
THE LOVING TONGUE/Temple Of Love (Killer Metal Records) This was some hard rock and it wasn’t played very well. I felt the songs lacked any punch and just didn’t do a thing for me as the riffs I felt dragged and there was nothing catchy about him. The singer sounds like one of those bad hair metal band bands from the 80’s as well. Not into this at all at lacked quality big time. Info:
SATANIC BLOODSPRAYING/At The Mercy of Satan (Hells Headbangers) 8 songs of absolute incredible death/black metal that just totally blew me away with its power, speed, intensity and fury. The raw production and guitar sound this band uses is absolute spot on. the singer screams and growls his heart out and heck satan would be proud of him. This style, when done right can absolutely kill and this easily kills. Prepare to have your throat ripped from your body when you pop this in. Info:
MONGRELS CROSS/The Sins Of Aquarius (Hells Headbangers) I didn’t love nor hate this. This is raw, very raw black metal with some decent songs, but the vocals I wasn’t the biggest fan of as they are buried in the mix and all he does he growl and howl, almost like he is not saying any words. The music is chainsaw pounding black metal that has slow and faster parts and the music for the most part is decent, but the vocals take it a notch down for me. Info:
ROYAL ARCH BLASPHEME/II (Hells Headbangers) This to me this is another case of heard it a million times before black metal. There was nothing on this I had not heard from other black metal bands countless times over. This was just another raw, fast black metal band with the same tuned guitars, riffs and singing. Info:
DEIPHAGO/Satan Alpha Omega (Hells Headbangers) Holy shit this is the a freight train of black metal that will destroy every weak band in its path. Just a whirlwind of furious black metal that is not for the weak. This is like a hurricane coming out at you and you can’t get away. Just pounding you into the ground with its intensity. Vocals that will send shivers down your spine and music that just never lets up and the raw sound this band gets is unreal. This will suck you in and keep you there till the last note. Info:
DENIAL OF GOD/Death And The Beyond (Hells Headbangers) Most black metal fans that have been in the scene for a bit will easily recognize the name of this band. Well they deliver the goods and more on this. This is another truck coming at you a hundred miles an hour and knocking you right over and leaving you in the dust. I like the mix the band uses on this as they slow in some slow, doomy parts that have such a vibe and way about them and then mix that in with some wicked fast black metal and it becomes one lethal combo. I also like the fact that this is not just another fast black metal band that sounds like all the rest. The singer is easily one of the best black metal singers as well. This clocks in at over an hour and is one damn good release. Info:
TANK/War Nation (Metal Mind Productions) This band has been around a long time and recently came back and this is their 2nd release since coming back and it is another excellent slab of metal. Tremendous hooks and song structures won me over easily by track 2. The singer has an excellent voice as he belts out the lyrics with passion and feeling. His voice fits in perfectly with this band as well. Just solid balls to the wall heavy metal at its core. Info:
NOKO/Same (Metal Mind Productions) From reading the bands bio and what kind of music they played, I wasn’t too keen on hearing this. The band say they combine the best elements of metal, nu-metal, grunge and progressive metal. What I heard was just some damn good metal music that yeah falls a bit on the grunge side. I didn’t hear much nu-metal, which was fine by me. To me this sounded like a combo of Alice in Chains meets Soundgarden. The singer big time sounds like the now deceased singer in Alice in Chains Layne Staley. I was into some of the Seattle stuff and actually A.I.C. was my favorite band from that whole scene and this band reminded me of them a lot. Just big time heavy and catchy riffs with a haunting singer and just a style and feeling that ruled. Kick ass band. Info:
OKKETAEHM STONES/Same (Contaminated Tones Productions) Wow was this some pretty damn good raw as fuckin hell black metal. This band can create a mood and just sink you in with feeling and emotion. The riffs, the style of music, the way it is played and the vocals all play a part in this. This isn’t just saw fly by night black metal band screaming about satan and all that. Sure this is fast and raw, but to me black metal is a lot about feeling and emotion and this had both. This easily comes from the pits of hell. Info:
DISEASED OBLIVION/Portals Of Past & Present (Contaminated Tones Productions) All this was to me was a bunch of senseless guitar and keyboard parts that sounded like a storm was approaching. It is one riff repeated over and over with some guy just growling very low into a mic saying nothing every now and then. It sounds like a thunderstorm to me with the vocals being the lighting. To me this isn’t even music and I can’t see how anybody would even like this at all. This I can say is the worst black metal shit I have ever heard in my 25 years of reviewing metal. Info:
BLEEDING UTOPIA/Demons To Some Gods To Others (Self Released) Awful boring death/groove metal that goes nowhere fast. Bad riffs and song structures are big time found on this. The vocals are scratchy and thank god no tough guy vocals, but the music is easily forgettable.
FERAL/Dragged To The Alter (IBex Moon Records) Now this is what death metal should sound like. Crushing, brutal and heavy as hell riffs along with some pure death vocals. The singer just sings his death metal heart out and no pig squealing or tough guy vocals anywhere. The music is 100% death metal in the vein of say a band like Autopsy. Production is good as the thick guitar sound and vocals sound great on this. 11 tracks of putrid death metal the way it should be. Info:
K’ANNIBAL WOMAN/Self Titled (Self Released) This is easily and by far the worst release I have heard in the last 2 years. There is nothing on this that is even decent or passable. The music is totally pointless and the song structures and riffs are beyond bad. The vocals are a complete joke and are even worse than the music. All the guy does is sing the words with no feeling or passion at all and back with that up with some of the worst music. This band should go back to the hole they came out of and stay there forever.
THE HACKISH/Same (Self Released) 4 tunes of some ok death metal. The band play fast pure straight ahead death metal with some decent riffing and song structures. The singer isn’t the best as he needs to sing with a little more aggression as in some parts he sounds like he is just mouthing the words and that takes away from the band a bit. That said the band aren’t bad and they just keep working on their songs and the singer changes his style a bit they could go somewhere. Keep working at it guys. Info:
SVODER/Same (Self Released) This band plays black metal and the music isn’t bad, it is just the singing, the singer sounds just any other black metal singer that I have heard over the years. I don’t expect him to be different, but at least try. All it is, is that screechy black metal style. The music is fast and pretty good as it is not just a wall of noise and the riffs and songs are strong and catchy as well. If you like black metal this is better than most.
IMMINENT COLLAPSE/Same (Self Released) Again the music wasn’t bad, some serious bone crushing death metal with speed and power, but the vocals ruin it. The singer does the deep growls of death, which were passable, then he goes into that pig squealing voice and that my friends is not brutal, it sounds generic like some kid crying. I have no idea why any band thinks that is brutal. If this band lost the pig squealing they would be much better off. The music is just crushing, heavy and fast as fuck death metal to the bone. Only 2 tunes on this, like to hear more and what they do next. Info:
BONG/Mana-Yood-Sushai (Ritual Productions) This to me was just beyond awful. All this was, was some keyboard parts with a really atmospheric sound and some guy or guys just chanting, but no words. Almost like a bunch of droids from a Star Wars movie or so. This is something I am not into at all and can’t see many people into this unless your high on drugs. Info:
SAXON/Heavy Metal Thunder Live-Eagles Over Wacken (UDR-EMI) This is just an incredible package. A DVD filled with 31 tunes from Wacken (2004, 2007, 2009) with a nice mix of old and new stuff. Great sound and camera work on this. Wait till you see the incredible stage set-up these use as well. The DVD also only runs 177 minutes!!! Oh there is much more. A double CD is also enclosed with 24 more tunes from 2 different shows. The band sound great on both the CDS and DVD and the double disc also has a great mix of old and new and Biff still has a great sounding voice after all these years and I am a huge Saxon fan and this is easily a must for any Saxon fan or for the heavy metal fan. Info:
www.saxon747.com www.saxon-music.com www.saxon.udr-music.com
CEREMONIUM/Dreams We Have Written (Weird Truth Productions) This is a 2 CD set of all the material of this great doom/death band. 2 albums, an Ep and demos and a promo from 2001 are on this. Great packaging as well. For those not familiar with the band they play an insane mix of death and doom meta. The doomy parts are just ripping, slow, heavy as fuck parts that will slice your brain up. The faster parts are prime slabs of old school death metal with total feeling. The band do different singers, Oscar sings on the older stuff, while Brandon does the vocals and guitar on the newer material on here. Both singers have a great set of pipes and I love when labels do stuff like this, but only when it is done right and not just putting out some quick piece of shit re-issue. This is the real deal for sure. Info:
Dimentianon/Collapse The Void (Paragon Records) This was some OK black metal. It didn’t suck, but it wasn’t mind blowing neither. The songs are well played and the vocals are solid black metal style, without all that annoying screeching, but in some parts it becomes a heard it all before thing. Production is good and this is better than a lot of the other bands making the black metal rounds these days and also none of those cheesy blast beats that some black metal band use, so that was a plus too. Info:
KHORS The Flame Of Eternity’s Decline/Cold (Paragon records) This is a 2 cd release of 2 releases from this band, one it looks like in 2004 and the other in 2006. Cold is the 1st disc I popped in and it wasn’t bad. Some semi strong black/death metal that didn’t bore me and wasn’t just a wall of that tin can blast beats that some black metal use. The singer sings in a black metal style, but doesn’t get to the point of where I hated it and he actually wasn’t bad and fit the music. The music is a mix of faster and slower parts and the doomy parts had that atmospheric style, that when played well, I can get into. You also get some demo and tracks and a live track, adding up to 15 songs on the disc. Disc # 2 was the release “Cold” which has 9 tracks and 2 bonus tracks and a video on it. “Cold” I didn’t like as much as this one had more of those annoying tin can blast beats and all the singer on this does is growl and screech, which to me isn’t brutal and just sounds ridiculous. I wasn’t too fund of this as the production was pretty bad on this as well. So part of it is good and part of it is not so good, but hey it is cool that this label, which could have put these releases by themselves, but them together as one. Info:
PROSEVERE/Burn The City (Self Released) This was some decent rock n roll that is totally in that modern rock sound. The singer has a pretty solid voice and he fits the music rather well. The riffs are built around simple, but effective riffs that are catchy. The thing that sort of brings this down is that the band uses those annoying tough guy death metal yelling that is so overdone and a band like this does not need them at all whatsoever. Production lets everything flow freely and this isn’t bad for what it is esp if you can leave or ignore those generic death metal/tough guy growls. Info: