El Cuervo

I'm not deliberately contrary.
Skálmöld – Með vættum Review

Skálmöld – Með vættum Review

“I dislike ‘Viking metal’ as a descriptor. It’s a vague term which alludes to lyrical content above the music itself. It can entail black or folk metal-derived darkness (Bathory), epic doom (Atlantean Kodex), raucous melodeath (Amon Amarth), and even power metal (Týr). Iceland’s Skálmöld falls somewhere between Amon Amarth‘s melodeath and the galloping triple-axe attack of Iron Maiden, stopping off at black metal for its raw tone and dabbling in doom for its long songs. See, wasn’t that easier than just ‘Viking metal’?” It is easier, but then Wotan will smite us.

Manimalism – Manimalism Review

Manimalism – Manimalism Review

“Originating as Taarenes Vaar in 1992 in a very different metal landscape, Sølve resolved to push his brand of Norwegian black metal further than previously. Composed of two demos from 1996 and 1997, plus additional material from the same period, the integration of black metal with avant garde here is raw and darkly perverse.” There are more mentions of sex in this review than any in AMG history, and this isn’t even cock rock! You just never know what to expect these days….

Ne Obliviscaris – Citadel Review

Ne Obliviscaris – Citadel Review

“The Seasons of Mist promo team must have collectively flipped their titties when the Sydney Conservatorium of Music announced they were to use Ne Obliviscaris‘s “And Plague Flowers The Kaleido” on their teaching syllabus. In a world of increasingly simple and commercial music, nothing screams musical credibility more than appreciation from a prestigious classical school. Mutual respect and musical coalition of the ‘complex’ and ‘respectable’ genres of classical, jazz and metal are commonly used by bands and fans for self-validation and in intellectual dick-waving contests.” El Cuervo braves the dick wavery and boards the hype train like Phallus in Wonderland.

My Brother The Wind – Once There Was A Time When Time And Space Were One Review

My Brother The Wind – Once There Was A Time When Time And Space Were One Review

“Harmony pervades Once There Was A Time When Time And Space Were One. Not in the strictly musical sense, but in its idyllic unity between typically opposed characteristics. Time and space, old and new, science and nature. Sweden’s My Brother The Wind returns on this, their third record, to peacefully entrance and impart their wholly-improvised instrumental Space Rock on the rushed and pressured masses.” God knows we all need a break from the pressures of modern life!

Alunah – Awakening The Forest Review

Alunah – Awakening The Forest Review

“There was a huge weight on Alunah‘s shoulders at the advent of their career. Hailing from Birmingham, the illustrious home to heavy metal, it would have been all to easy to fly under the radar. Fortunately, their début captivated doomsters with its crushing riffs and entrancing female vocals, and the follow-up White Hoarhound miraculously eluded the sophomore slump by boldly expanding their sound to epic levels and progressing their song-writing prowess. Now, Awakening The Forest has arrived and blows them out of the water.” The year of quality doom keeps a rolling!

Skyscraper – Elevation Review

Skyscraper – Elevation Review

“I want to begin this review of Skyscraper‘s début, Elevation, with a game of complete the lyrics, from sixth track “Walk Through Fire.” “I walk through fire…” (a) “while in ferocious combat with the dragon sent by the Elven armies,” (b) “in order to emulate the fiery depths of Hell for my unification with Lucifer,” or (c) “for you.” Done? If you chose (a) or (b) then I regret to inform you that neither option is correct, but if you liked either, I would suggest that this record may not align with your usual musical preferences (and that you should book an appointment with your local shrink and/or exorcist).” Well, I flunked that pop quiz bigtime. I hate pop quizzes.

Stryvigor – Forgotten by Ages Review

Stryvigor – Forgotten by Ages Review

“For a Ukrainian black metal band writing in their native tongue, deriving their name and lyrical themes from distant mountains and rivers of which I’m unaware, Stryvigor is remarkably accessible. Forgotten by Ages, their debut album, is atmospheric black metal laced with memorable riffs, clearly influenced by fellow compatriots such as Drudkh and Khors. It’s like being set upon by distant mountain wolves while the stars twinkle overhead. Though its accessibility undercuts its kvlt black metal origins, there is no denying these Ukrainians charmed me with this ode to their native Carpathian mountains, brimming with beautiful synths and hooky guitar lines.” Who doesn’t love some good Ukrainian black metal about mountains and wolves?