Candlelight

Ihsahn – Arktis. Review

Ihsahn – Arktis. Review

Ihsahn is always in motion. Following a storied career in one of the premier black metal bands of all time, he’s released five full-length albums. Nearly all of those records have been critically acclaimed, but only one has been critically acclaimed by me. While I enjoyed The Adversary, Ihsahn‘s post-Emperor zenith was angL. Starting with After, however, Ihsahn started to lose me. What made his earlier material so good—riffs, riffs, more riffs, and slick composition (also riffs)—began to be replaced by increasingly abstract compositions. And when songs like “Scarab” started getting replaced with tracks like “M,” I stopped enjoying new Ihsahn albums. Yet Arktis. marks the next phase for Ihsahn, having finally left the Nihilists behind him.” Praise Zarathustra!

Sigh – Graveward Review

Sigh – Graveward Review

Sigh are on their tenth trip around the turntable and still spin at 45, since there isn’t a faster option. Graveward is their attempt to penetrate the monolithic shadow cast by In Somniphobia, an album so fantastically strange that it was a sidestep even by the standards of a band that defines the term “avant-garde”.” Sigh is a breath of fresh air.

Xerath – III Review

Xerath – III Review

“Let’s face it: traditional symphonic metal is a playground of melodrama that’s nowhere near brutal enough. That’s why Fleshgod Apocalypse and Septicflesh (get mad about that concretion) are such popular bands – no matter how much we complain about their loud as hell albums here, there’s no denying that symphonic death is the perfect step forward for the maligned fusion genre.” Madam X will not take kindly to this Septicflesh bashing….

Vampillia – Some Nightmares Take You Aurora Rainbow Darkness Review

Vampillia – Some Nightmares Take You Aurora Rainbow Darkness Review

“”Beautiful” is a word that I don’t normally use to describe an album here at AMG, and especially in Casa de los Grymm.  “Fun” is even less of a descriptor.  What was it again that Euronymous wanted none of via his record label again?  But I took a shot at an unknown (to me, at least) group of Japanese noise brigands (with a former Boredom, Toyohito Yoshikawa, in its ever-growing ranks) known as Vampillia. With quite a few releases under their belt (seventeen, according to their website), their newest, the very wordy Some Nightmares Take You Aurora Rainbow Darkness, is their first full-length, and it’s a good snapshot into their crazy world.” All your bases are belong to us! And don’t call me Aurora Rainbow!

Corrosion Of Conformity – IX Review

Corrosion Of Conformity – IX Review

“Considering that the band was left for dead after 2005’s In The Arms Of God, North Carolina’s Corrosion of Conformity has been on a fucking roll these last few years. The band’s original trio reconvened in 2010 and embarked on heavy-duty touring, followed by 2012’s excellent self-titled LP and the hastily-assembled Megalodon EP for Scion A/V. Just two short years later, COC is back again with their 9th album, creatively titled IX.” Old stoner/hardcore bands never die, they just get more garage-y.

Coltsblood – Into the Unfathomable Abyss Review

Coltsblood – Into the Unfathomable Abyss Review

“Colts are young male horses. Colts, assuming that they are not neutered in their upbringings, will eventually grow up to be stallions, free to roam the range, gallop at high speeds, and get their horsey groove on with the nice mare a few barns down. I know you’re thinking to yourself, “Gee, Mr. Grymm, why the educational lesson on horses?” (Okay, you’re not thinking this at all, but roll with me here, dear readers.) As mentioned earlier, horses are fast creatures, hence their use as a mode of transportation in the olden days. Coltsblood, a fairly new band from Liverpool, England, is so very, very, very not fast. At all. Into the Unfathomable Abyss crawls and lurches like a pissed off, swamp-covered turtle in a race that’s impossible to win nor does it care for victory, but will you stay involved through all 58 minutes of its marathon duration?” I like turtles as much as the next guy, but…yeah.

Shores of Null – Quiescence Review

Shores of Null – Quiescence Review

“Swimming among an overcrowded sea of retro-thrashers, tech-death wankers, and sweepy-haired shoegazers playing post-whatever-the-fuck-the-flavor-is-this-week, there’s a band from Italy that’s looking to Finland and Seattle for the inspiration behind their début, Quiescence. Shores of Null may be a brand-spankin’-new band, but they are looking to capture your attention in pretty interesting ways. And they succeed to a degree.” Grymm just might have stumbled on something interesting here.

The Wounded Kings – Consolamentum Review

The Wounded Kings – Consolamentum Review

“Supreme overlord and beloved Great Leader Angry Metal Guy recently suggested that we don’t lead into our reviews talking about genre, in the interest of avoiding redundancy. Moreover, I’d imagine that the average AMG listener doesn’t really need a lesson on thrash metal 101, right? That’s because, in many cases, it does a disservice to band’s artistic uniqueness – isn’t it better to discuss the band, rather than its relationship to the genre it would appear to work within? I wish I could say that was possible with The Wounded Kings, but this Dartmoor-based five piece do little if not play to a genre, which is that of Sabbath-ian Electric Wizard worship.” Now that we pigeonholed everything, JF Williams discusses the merits of the music itself.