Progressive Death

Sweven – The Eternal Resonance Review

Sweven – The Eternal Resonance Review

“I’m sure I’m not alone in wondering what Chuck Schuldiner would have done musically had he not been taken from us far too soon. Would he have maintaining the style heard on the sole Control Denied release or move things onward and outward into ever weirder environs? These questions were front and center in my head as I digested The Eternal Resonance, the stunningly odd and original debut album by Sweven.” Ripples in music and time.

Aronious – Perspicacity Review

Aronious – Perspicacity Review

“Before the podium this week is the debut from Wisconsin’s Aronious, a prog/tech death outfit with impressive chops and no lack of ambition. Across Perspicacity, Aronious can’t relax, and nor can they yield, relent, or…  uh… Anyway, they’ve heard every tech death band and will pretend to be all of them.” Pretensions to the throne.

White Stones – Kuarahy Review

White Stones – Kuarahy Review

“Martin Méndez always appeared the most metal of the Opeth crew, with his cool stage presence and thrashing headbanging style. As his main band continue spiraling down a vintage progressive rock rabbit hole, Méndez has decided to reconnect with his death metal roots with brand spanking new project, White Stones. Combining with some like-minded and suitably talented buddies, Méndez and co have crafted debut album Kuarahy.” Morepth.

Neck of the Woods – The Annex of Ire Review

Neck of the Woods – The Annex of Ire Review

“Do you ever have that feeling of listening to an album and feeling that it’s somehow better than you’re giving it credit for? Or, as GardensTale put it to me, the feeling that “I’m probably just not good enough for the album”? That’s how I felt about the second full-length from Vancouver’s Neck of the Woods, until about 4pm today.” You’re good enough and people like you.

Afterbirth – Four Dimensional Flesh Review

Afterbirth – Four Dimensional Flesh Review

“Welcome to my ass. We won’t be long. I’ve gathered us here today before my review of the brilliant new Afterbirth record because I didn’t want to drag you through here in the middle of it. Suffice it to say that my critique of Afterbirth‘s The Time Traveler’s Dilemma has proven unassailably correct: Afterbirth should get right back on the horse, they should keep exploring their progressive tendencies, and they absolutely should record with Colin Marston. Probably no thanks to my scolding they have. Four Dimensional Flesh is a triumph, one of the most charismatic and original death metal albums you’ll ever hear.” Ass above, so below.

Krosis – A Memoir of Free Will Review

Krosis – A Memoir of Free Will Review

Krosis is a progressive deathcore band from North Carolina, A Memoir of Free Will being their second full-length. I’m not sure what progressive really entails, as the label has been used to describe anything from the djenty chuggaboundabounboundaluggs of Structures or Volumes, to the transcendental offerings of Slice the Cake or Kardashev.” Jawbreakers.

In Mourning – Garden of Storms Review

In Mourning – Garden of Storms Review

“I’ve heard it said many a time that In Mourning carry the torch that Opeth “abandoned” with the release of Heritage. I don’t happen to agree with that statement. Sure, superficially the Swedish prog-melo-death-doom quintet share something in common with Blackwater Park-era Opeth, but it was clear to me from the first minute of the indelible Monolith that In Mourning were an entirely different collective, a point that each subsequent release reinforced.” Mourning frost on the Great Pumpkin.

Essence of Datum – Spellcrying Machine Review

Essence of Datum – Spellcrying Machine Review

“Instrumental metal has been a difficult branch for me to get into. A big part of why I got into metal is due to the wild dynamics offered by a human voice (and in one particular case, a coffee grinder). But there are always exceptions to the rule that eventually break the rule entirely. In my case, the first band to pop my “vocals or bust” bubble was Nightwish, whose instrumental-only rendition of Dark Passion Play is so compelling I ended up preferring it over the standard edition. Then I discovered Sleep Terror, a fantastic instrumental tech-death/surf/funk band you all owe it to yourselves to investigate. From there I discovered Echopraxia, a ghost/supernatural themed instrumental metal act, and now I’ve stumbled upon Essence of Datum, an instrumental melodic prog-death couplet from Minsk.” Voices don’t carry.

Eternal Storm – Come the Tide Review and Album Premiere

Eternal Storm – Come the Tide Review and Album Premiere

“Surround myself as I might with dissonant blasts and angular minimalism, all it takes is the first few notes of a melodic lead by Insomnium or mid-era ,b>Amon Amarth and all of my weirdo-cred moves to the back burner. There’s something about that mix of primal aggression and soaring emotion that scratches an itch no other genre can reach, so whenever I happen upon a new melodeath record of exceptional quality, it’s almost a religious experience. Come the Tide, the incredible debut album from Spain’s Eternal Storm, is just such a record.” Seize the tidal.

Ascend the Hollow – Echoes of Existence Review

Ascend the Hollow – Echoes of Existence Review

“I am ashamed. Why? Because I almost let this badass record slip through my greedy clutches. You see, my good friend (who we know as Septic ’round these parts) randomly pops in now and again to apprise me on some of his choice metallic discoveries. He introduced Irish/German/Dutch quartet Ascend the Hollow to me and I was instantly hooked. Like, so fast my head spun. I needed to share my excitement for Echoes of Existence with as many people as possible, but how? It would’ve been grand if we received promo, I thought. Then, all of a sudden I received a virtual sucker punch while rooting around the bin—the thing’s been sitting there since the end of April! How in the actual heck did I miss that??? And lo I experienced great embarrassment. I nearly neglected one of the coolest new bands to materialize out of absolute nowhere this year.” Finder of nearly lost things.