El Cuervo

I'm not deliberately contrary.
Grave Miasma – Abyss of Wrathful Deities Review

Grave Miasma – Abyss of Wrathful Deities Review

“It scares me to say this but it’s been 5 entire years since the last Grave Miasma release. Almost everything in my life has changed since that point and I would like to think (perhaps naively) that I’m better now than I was then. I respected and enjoyed 2016’s Endless Pilgrimage which offered 30 minutes of brutal but atmospheric music across a mini-LP, but with only one prior full-length and a handful of EPs across nearly 20 years, does Abyss of Wrathful Deities find Grave Miasma able to make the same comment about themselves?” Malaise in the grave.

Ungfell – Es grauet Review

Ungfell – Es grauet Review

Ungfell launched into life with 2017’s Tôtbringære, an album displaying a singular blend of weird atmospheres with melodic black metal. 2018’s Mythen, Mären, Pestilenz developed this a little but stalled on the potential of the debut, failing to balance the punchy atmosphere with punchy music. A longer gap to write and more time for the music to stew boded well for their sequel, entitled Es grauet (It Is Dreadful) and I was keen to hear how they had progressed. Above all else, their themes and atmosphere are prized by the band but I wanted to hear music to match.” Mood over meat.

My Refuge – The Anger Is Never Over Review

My Refuge – The Anger Is Never Over Review

“Following a distinctly cheese-less 2021, I decided to cherry pick something smelly. A promo surfaced, bearing both the words “Italian” and “power.” Perfect. However, and disappointingly, a deeper dive into the one sheet showed that this is only four eighteenths of the story; although the founder and main man is indeed Italian, the core band comprises a Spaniard and a German, with a further 15 contributors from across the globe, covering Czech Republic, Turkey, Canada and Venezuela, among others. My Refuge and their second full-length release entitled The Anger Is Never Over takes international to the next level but is it good? Is it cheesy?” No sanctuary from the anger.

Wode – Burn in Many Mirrors Review

Wode – Burn in Many Mirrors Review

“I’m struggling to think of a musical genre which so obstinately refuses to go away as traditional black metal. Despite the progression of 30 years since the ‘second wave’ style was crystallized by the lonely teenagers of Norway, new bands continue to produce metal which is entirely imitative of such teens. Wode, of Manchester, joined the fray in 2016 with their self-titled debut which was an especially mean and riff-dominated example of the sound. It was a powerful, if one-dimensional, release which was bettered by its sequel called Servants of the Countercosmos which wrapped intricate leads and dynamic song-writing into a more cohesive album. 4 year later and Burn in Many Mirrors is primed for unveiling, promising yet more tales of cosmic evil.” Wode to you of earth and sea.

Fuath – II Review

Fuath – II Review

“Representing a darker, meaner interpretation of black metal, Andy Marshall, better known for Saor, unleashed his Fuath (Gaelic for hatred) project around now over 5 years ago (fuck me, my life’s getting away from me). I excelled in black atmosphere and understated but sticky melodies and remains one of the decade’s better examples of atmospheric black metal, in a sub-genre full to the brim with mediocrity. It was intended to be a one-off but the inspirationally-entitled II is now primed for release.” Atmo-II: Electric Boogaloo.

Utbyrd – Varskrik Review

Utbyrd – Varskrik Review

“Here at AMG.com we have instituted a firm “no re-release policy” which precludes new reviews of old albums. The typical use case is a physical release by a label of an album previously self-released digitally by a small band. We do this a) for consistency, b) to narrow the almost-unlimited range of music we could review, and c) so that our reviews remain relevant to what’s buzzing in the scene. It’s important we take this step. So anyway, here’s a review of a 2017 re-release.” Protocol havoc.

The Lylat Continuum – Ephemeral Review

The Lylat Continuum – Ephemeral Review

“This review is testament to the power of the pre-release single. I was immediately intrigued by the description “blending proggy death metal with psychedelic ambient breaks” and its atypical approach to death metal fulfilled this description. I specifically sought out the release in the promo swamp, dredging it up from between the smelly stoner doom and fetid black metal ordinarily infesting it. Denver’s The Lylat Continuum have brewed their potion for a number of years before releasing Ephemeral, their debut album, and it’s nothing if not inventive.” Hype and regret.

Steven Wilson – The Future Bites Review

Steven Wilson – The Future Bites Review

“Given that we’re no longer in the 1970s, for better and for worse, Steven Wilson is now the unwilling “King of Prog.” He’s the writer of what some consider modern classics; a remixologist extraordinaire; a sophisticated producer; a musical experimentalist; a successful imitator; and even a pop star. And yet it appears he’s still not the star he wants to be.” Once and future prog star.