Felagund

Birth – Born Review

Birth – Born Review

“As I listened to Born by Birth, it became clear I was witnessing another throwback progressive rock band being, well…born; one which harkens back to a bygone era of English prog majesty; less identified by the harder-edged, complex compositions of early Rush and more by the extended jams and intricate, less metallic instrumentation of King Crimson, Emerson, Lake and Palmer and Genesis. These were the bands I’d fallen in love with during my earlier sojourns, and it’s clear the Birth boys feel similarly.” Born too late.

Animalize – Meat We’re Made Of Review

Animalize – Meat We’re Made Of Review

“Heavy metal. Trad metal. Dad metal. It all boils down to the same thing, really: galloping guitars, soaring vocals, a dose of cheese (don’t forget to take your Lactaid, old timer!) and enough triumphant riffs to get those creaky, arthritic bones a’janglin’. So it was with nagging nostalgia that I  picked up Meat We’re Made Of, the first full-length from France’s Animalize, a group who traffic in a form of classic heavy metal firmly entrenched in the 70s and 80s.” Meat is the message.

American Anymen – Cities Changing Names Review

American Anymen – Cities Changing Names Review

“We’re no stranger to bands who claim more sub-genres than they have members (or fans). You’ll routinely see tags for things like “symphonic doom” and “blackened death” and “hardcore Viking sludge.” It’s also not surprising when musicians change course from one album to the next. We’ve all perused reviews about a band with an established sound veering off into wildly new directions. Really, adding new sub-genres seems to come with the territory. But what happens when a non-metal band takes a running leap into the dark side? Such is the case with New York-based act American Anymen, a group that, up until very recently, played a vitriolic form of anti-folk on a slew of singles, EPs, splits and one full-length. Now, it appears they’ve leapt headlong into the metal game with Cities Changing Names.” Duct tape-core.

Sensory Amusia – Breed Death Review

Sensory Amusia – Breed Death Review

Sensory Amusia are an interesting and, I’d contend, somewhat enigmatic band. They released their debut album in 2013 and then basically went dark. They popped up again six years later with an EP, quickly followed by another the following year. Now, two years after that last sojourn, Sensory Amusia have resurfaced again, this time with their first full-length in almost a decade. In many ways, Breed Death marks a departure from their 2013 debut, but even the most Vogonesque bands among us tend to evolve and grow. Whether that growth pulled the band in a more positive direction musically is another question.” Selective breeding.

Texas Murder Crew – Wrapped in Their Blood Review

Texas Murder Crew – Wrapped in Their Blood Review

“While I proudly fly the OSDM flag, I’ve been much slower to hop on the brutal death and slam bandwagon (the slamwagon, if you will). While I’ve enjoyed a Dying Fetus tune or three, I’ve rarely enjoyed the many go-to bands that have come to define these sub-sub genres. All my preconceived notions were blasted to bits, though, when TheKenWord violently introduced me to Cytotoxin back in 2020. My world was changed, my mind expanded, and my ear cartilage was suitably pulverized. That fond yet painful memory is what led me to scoop Wrapped in Their Blood, the first full-length from Texas Murder Crew, a (wait for it) Texas-based group who slam, smash, churn and gurgle their way through ten gleefully murderous tracks.” Glazed slam.

Azaab – Summoning the Cataclysm Review

Azaab – Summoning the Cataclysm Review

“”Azaab” is an interesting word. Translated from Urdu, it means “torment” or “agony.” If that isn’t metal enough for you, the word itself sounds brutal; that harsh “z” consonant, violently squished between an unrelenting onslaught of vowels, all culminating with the unassuming but no doubt homicidal “b.” Ironically, Azaab is also the name of a death metal band hailing from Pakistan. This Islamabad-based five-piece just unleashed their debut album Summoning the Cataclysm upon an unsuspecting world.” A is for Azaab.

Mortify – Fragments at the Edge of Sorrow Review

Mortify – Fragments at the Edge of Sorrow Review

“South America has an enviable metal pedigree. Like the early 90s Floridian filth we know and love, or the Gothenburg school that scratches that brutal yet melodic itch, the South American scene has delivered its own unique set of sounds, approaches and atmospheres to the heavy metal maelstrom. Perhaps that was why I was so eager to pick up Fragments at the Edge of Sorrow, the sophomore release from Mortify, a Chilean group who specialize in a murky, bass-forward death doom concoction verging on the technical.” Life on the edge.

Ghost – IMPERA Review

Ghost – IMPERA Review

Ghost is a divisive band. Forget red states and blue states; don’t bother with Yankees or Red Sox; and I don’t want to hear whose side you take in the Montreal Screwjob debacle. There’s only one true rivalry, and the debate only grows more contentious with each new Papa. Indeed, the rift between Ghost adherents and their vehement detractors is a vast, otherworldly chasm, overflowing with hate-kindled magma and plumes of blackened self-righteousness. All that being said, I really like ’em.” Ghost in the cash machine.

Without Waves – Comedian Review

Without Waves – Comedian Review

“Cover art can be make or break. Despite that old axiom, I do indeed judge a book by its often horrific cover. I tend to avoid the intentionally bad (looking at you, Voivod‘s Target Earth) and the unabashedly anatomical (I’ve already seen The Reek of Putrefaction, thank you very much.) However, there’s plenty of room between the two extremes to play, and you can always count on a few quality covers lurking around the primeval AMG promo sump; the kind that just begs for a spin or three. Such was the case with Comedian, the latest from Chicago-based progressive metalers Without Waves. Their fortuitous choice to immortalize a moment in the life of one very unlucky flamingo has earned them one whole review.” Flightless.

Corpsegrinder – Corpsegrinder Review

Corpsegrinder – Corpsegrinder Review

“Let’s get this out of the way: I love Cannibal Corpse. I’ve been a devotee for years, a fact that will undoubtedly color this review, which is completely and utterly devoid of objectivity. To be more specific, I’m a fan of post-Barnes era Cannibal Corpse; that magical moment in 1996 when George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher took the vocal reins on Vile and imbued everyone’s favorite splatter-core death metal band with his trademark brutal bellow. And now, 26 years and 11 studio albums later, Mr. Fisher has finally decided to go it alone, foregoing Target discounts and World of Warcraft raids in order to render unto us his very first solo record.” A Corpse is a Corpse, of course, of course.