Century Media

Heaven Shall Burn – Of Truth & Sacrifice Review

Heaven Shall Burn – Of Truth & Sacrifice Review

“We’re currently living in some batshit crazy times, friends. Between the United States being heavily divided to the point where people within their own political wheelhouses are fighting with each other, political tensions throughout the world where another war could erupt practically any minute, and now COVID-19 wrecking havoc on our daily lives, it’s not an easy time for anybody. There’s enough anger to go around to power a small nation, and very few metalcore bands channel that anger as effectively as Heaven Shall Burn.” Double the anger.

Wolf – Feeding the Machine Review

Wolf – Feeding the Machine Review

Wolf came into being in the mid-1990s just as the metal scene was poised for a big retro nostalgia trend. A product of their time, they followed the lead of acts like Hammerfall and jumped aboard that “let’s do the 80s metal thing all over again” train with enthusiasm. Their 1999 debut mixed speed and traditional metal influences in ways big and small and managed to impart a degree of youthful vim and vigor to the olde timey sounds. As the band grew and evolved they continued to mine the 80s for all they were worth. After 2014s Devil’s Seed the band went silent and underwent personnel shuffles. 6 years later they reemerge from their steely cocoon with a new lineup, grisly, Korn-esque cover art and 8th album, Feeding the Machine.” Feeding time at the petting zoo.

Dark Fortress – Spectres from the Old World Review

Dark Fortress – Spectres from the Old World Review

“Back in 2014, Madam X covered the release of Venereal Dawn by Bavarian brutalists Dark Fortress. Our Marchioness de Machiavelli didn’t particularly care for the album’s progressive expansion of melodic black metal. I, on the other hand, adored it. Since Morean joined forces with V. Santura, their sonic shade has substantially deepened. The duo’s combined involvement in projects as diverse as Alkaloid, Triptykon, Noneuclid and Hannes Grossmann has wrought one my favorite writing partnerships in extreme metal. Six years on, and Dark Fortress are poised to drop eighth album Spectres from the Old World.” Old world, new blackness.

Body Count – Carnivore Review

Body Count – Carnivore Review

“My love of Body Count should come as no surprise to longtime readers at this point. However, I’ve been somewhat skeptical of the band’s output since their reformation/comeback in 2014. Manslaughter and Bloodlust each had their moments, but new band members and attempts at modernization had resulted in something of an identity crisis. On Carnivore, Body Count‘s third album since said comeback, I can’t help but wonder: which version of the band will show up?” Ice T-Bone.

Demons & Wizards – III Review

Demons & Wizards – III Review

Blind Guardian has always fed my fantastical appetite through the years—providing me with stories and full concept records at a pace and with a passion that is pure fun. Then, there’s Iced Earth. A band that has given me plenty of headbangable moments and vivid imagery through their own concepts—even crushing my spirit at times with heartbreaking ballads and war/lost-love themes. When I first heard Demons & Wizards, I realized it was no different. In a single band, I could experience the storytelling nature of Blind Guardian and the crushing, yet crippling character of Iced Earth. For two—now three—records, this has been the goal of this power-metal duo. But, fifteen years is a long time to go without your partner-in-crime. Even identical twins can lose a connection after a decade-and-a-half of separation. So, what’s that mean for Kürsch and Schaffer and their precious III?” Two Demons, one Triwizard Cup.

Lorna Shore – Immortal Review

Lorna Shore – Immortal Review

“I’ve been a booster for Lorna Shore ever since I heard the Bone Kingdom EP. The basic pitch of the band’s early work was deathcore, for cats but good. Good riffs and effective breakdowns formed the backbone of songs that Adam DeMicco’s considerable solo and lead work elevated above almost anything else in the scene. The band has since re-invented themselves with each release, delving into grimy blackened deathcore with Psalms and taking a slick, blackened/melodic course with Flesh Coffin. AMG’s coverage of the band has been scanty due to the band’s rapid bounce through several record labels. Now playing in the big leagues with Century Media, I and the band, have been looking forward to their third LP, Immortal.” Going through changes.

Svart Crown – Wolves Among the Ashes Review

Svart Crown – Wolves Among the Ashes Review

“While Svart Crown have never shied away from ambitious concepts, Wolves Among the Ashes presents, for better or worse, the most direct sublimation of extramusical ideas in their style. Initially, the music is as demented as the psychological and sociological madness they choose to explore.” Wolves and madmen.

Bonded – Rest in Violence Review

Bonded – Rest in Violence Review

Bonded is a German band that qualifies as both new and old when it comes to thrash. Rest in Violence is their debut record, but founders Bernd ‘Bernemann’ Kost and Markus ‘Makka’ Freiwald are both longtime veterans of Teutonic thrash legends Sodom. The duo has assembled an army of talent and is launching an all-out assault on the groovier side of the thrash subgenre tree. Will this initial foray hit with the force of an agent orange drop, or is it better off dead?” Bond jumpers.

Hideous Divinity – Simulacrum Review

Hideous Divinity – Simulacrum Review

Simulacrum forges even further ahead with myriad permutations of an already mutated theme. The angelic atrocity that inhabits the front of Adveniens now appears mottled and in tormented flux as it attempts to assume a new form. The result is ugly and twisted but, for better or worse, remains affixed to the foundation from which it first drew such terrible life. The message couldn’t be clearer: some pain will last.” Agony as ecstasy.

Mayhem – Daemon Review

Mayhem – Daemon Review

“A new Mayhem release is the most exciting thing to happen in metal this year. Unlike most other bands who offer refinements and (ideally) improvements on their established sound with each release, Mayhem exhausts a sound on each full-length by exhausting a theme; as the sound’s purpose is to express the theme, the sound’s purpose is fulfilled once the theme is expressed. This means the lazy reviewer can’t merely compare the new Mayhem record to prior ones and base his analysis on that without completely missing the point of the record at hand — Mayhem’s career is an anthology, not an arc.” Mayhem‘s Hell awaits.