Steel Druhm

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Seventh Storm – Maledictus Review

Seventh Storm – Maledictus Review

“When a musician has a protracted affiliation with a certain band and then gets the freedom to do his/her own thing, sometimes you end up with a funky batch of seabiscuits. Take for instance Seventh Storm, the new project by long-time Moonspell drummer Mike Gaspar. With 20-plus years manning the kit for the Portuguese black/folk/goth/prog titans, I’m not sure what folks were expecting from his solo phase, but I feel safe saying Maledictus isn’t it.” Strange waves.

Early Moods – Early Moods Review

Early Moods – Early Moods Review

“With a name like Early Moods, this promo looked very out of place bobbing about in the AMG promo muck. It sounds like something a 60s jazz artist would dub his debut album, and it doesn’t so much as hint at its doom on roids character. That’s a marketing shame, as the band offers a unique and interesting take on the style pioneered by the likes of Black Sabbath, Pentagram, Witchfinder General, and Trouble. Formed by musicians from various thrash and death metal projects, Early Moods came together to attempt a marriage of classic doom with traditional heavy metal ideas and melodies.” Heavy dudes, doomy moods.

Amon Amarth – The Great Heathen Army Review

Amon Amarth – The Great Heathen Army Review

Amon Amarth have been raiding and pillaging so long, even Mighty Odin thinks their minds are gone. The Great Heathen Army is their 12th foray into the great unknown, and their “Vikings on the prowl” schtick is as firmly in place as ever (despite a video displaying a dystopian future with MMA and guns). By this point in their long and storied career, we pretty much know what to expect from a new platter, and as with 2019s Berserker, the wheels of the Norse battering ram go round and round.” Rhymin’ and heathen.

Katakomba – Katakomba Review

Katakomba – Katakomba Review

“Swedeath is one of the most stylistically stagnant and overfull genre sumps in metal, with countless bands trying to distinguish themselves by playing olde Entombed or Dismember riffs faster or meaner than their HM-2 wielding brethren. It’s hard to reach for the stars when your feet are so firmly planted in genre foundations, but every year a cadre of new acts test their might. Sweden’s own Katokomba are one of the latest to throw their hat into the everflowing stream that runs alongside the left hand path.” Kombaya.

Record(s) o’ the Month – June 2022

Record(s) o’ the Month – June 2022

“The summer swelters and bakes and tensions boil over at AMG HQ. There’s been an unusually high number of arguments and shouting matches over the proper Record o’ the Month for June. The resulting clamor has disrupted the orderly working environment we strive to maintain through fear and abject brutality.” Sun’s out, manbun’s out.

Castrator – Defiled in Oblivion Review

Castrator – Defiled in Oblivion Review

“It’s been a slow rollout for the sharp knives behind New York-based death metal act Castrator. The rare all-female death crew, they’ve been lurking since 2014, honing their cutting techniques. 2022 finally sees them drop a full-length platter of testicularly challenging material, and Defiled in Oblivion certainly demonstrates the chops you look for in a fledgling death upstart. Trafficking in the OSDM style of Cannibal Corpse and Morbid Angel, Castrator aren’t looking to rewrite the book of death or take things to strange new places. Instead, they’re content to play with establish sounds and put their own grisly stamp on well-traveled styles.” Throw a pair.

Maul – Seraphic Punishment Review

Maul – Seraphic Punishment Review

“There’s a certain level of scummy purulence I crave in my death metal. I want it to sound filthy and vile, toxic and infectious. When the style is performed too cleanly, it feels almost like a PC version of death and it loses its dangerous edge. Fargo-based scuzz merchants Maul speak my offensive language, and on their Seraphic Punishment debut, they set out to dunk you in pus and coffin slime before applying a powder coat of poo-crust. This is the recipe for a bad skin rash and good music.” Enter the chopping Maul.

Inhuman Condition – Fearsick Review

Inhuman Condition – Fearsick Review

“Formed by members of Death, Massacre and Wombbath, Inhuman Condition hit the streets with a wet, disgusting thud via their 2021 Rat°God debut. It was a painfully retro throwback to late 80s death metal and no new stones were turned, but it was a ton of dumb, beefbrained fun packed with enough nostalgia to bring all the Steels to the boneyard. Now scarcely a year later Inhuman Condition is back with a whole new album. Talk about inhuman working conditions!” Condition critical.

Altaria – Wisdom Review

Altaria – Wisdom Review

“Finland’s Altaria are one of those fourth-tier melodic metal acts I stumbled upon back in the early aughts and took a flyer on. 2004s Divinity had a few worthwhile cuts but was largely forgettable faux-power/hard rock in the vein of Allen/Lande or Eden’s Curse. By the time 2006s The Fallen Empire hit I was less interested in what they were doing and essentially consigned them to the darkest corners of my music collection. I slept on 2009s Unholy and was mildly surprised to see their name emerge from the skunk weeds of the promo sump some 12 years after they last sallied forth. So what does fifth album Wisdom offer the curious listener?” Unsolicited wisdom.