2009

Arise – The Reckoning Review

Arise – The Reckoning Review

Arise was a little late on the uptake on the first go around of the Gothenburg sound, forming in 1996, but really getting their first demo out there in 1998 and getting signed about the time that all the death metal elitists I knew were already writing off the sound as “done”. However, unlike most of the bands from that era, they are still alive and kicking and putting out music of the style that was popular at the time. There’s some confusion about this record, which according to some sources came out last year, but it’s being promoted right now by Regain with a release date of the 22nd of March (which means it’s out now). It has, indeed, been a few years since Arise put out their last album, but even with the departure of two members, they don’t seem to have lost any steam.

Oskoreien – Illusions Review

Oskoreien – Illusions Review

Oskoreien is another one of those DIY projects that I was directed to which delighted me to check out. There was a time when you, as a metal guy, probably got friended by Oskoreien on MySpace, when the creator was in full-on promo mode. The tracks that I remembered hearing were very much in the Ensiferum / Wintersun kind of vein. Lots of sweep picking and sort of melodic death influences. So when I got my hands on the Illusions EP I wasn’t sure what to expect.

Interview with Mary Zimmer from Luna Mortis

Interview with Mary Zimmer from Luna Mortis

One of the most promising bands that I’ve ever encountered in my time in the underground has been Luna Mortis. Within the scene that they were surrounded by, it was basically taken for granted that if someone from the scene was going to take off it would be them (at the time called The Ottoman Empire). To no one’s surprise they got bigger, got better management, got a better band together and continued developing. To no one’s surprise they started getting good press and good reviews and making contacts. To, I think, a lot of people’s surprise they ended up getting signed by Century Media. Not that they didn’t deserve it, but just to think that a group of local kids were getting picked up by the label that had shepherded so many of us into the extreme metal scene was pretty astounding.

Top 10(ish) of 2009

Top 10(ish) of 2009

Well, everyone else under the sun has been releasing their Top 10 lists, and for those of you faithful readers out there I’m sure you’re also interested in what I’m going to say about the best records of 2009. First, let me say that for the first half of this year I was not indeed Angry Metal Guy, but instead, I was just a normal guy buying my metal and hoping that it was going to be fucking awesome. Now, I’m a bitter critic. As a bitter critic I hear a lot more, but this year has still been characterized by some of the biggest bands on the scene for me. Mainly, Amorphis, who in my opinion have released the finest album of the year, if not the finest album of their very distinguished career. But, let me get to that later. There have been some great records this year, but there has been a lot of mediocre shit. Think of this list as being two-tiered, top 10 and then top 20. The top 10 are the records that I think were really awesome, elite albums, the second 10 are records that I think are great and worth your time and effort. Note that I haven’t heard certain albums that I’d like to hear due to that whole poverty not being offset by stealing music thing. With this, I hope to launch AngryMetalGuy.com into the new year on a new note: one where bands suck less.

Luna Mortis Dropped by Century Media

Unfortunately, the up-and-coming Madison, Wisconsin progressive metal act Luna Mortis has been dropped by Century Media. There’s a lot that I can say, but I think honestly that Century is not only making a mistake here, but I think just in general that labels are unwise to not let bands develop. Honestly, the business is so cut-throat and retarded sometimes. These guys are seriously talented, and I hope they get picked up by someone who gives them a chance. Especially since Century signed fucking Iced Earth and gave them how many records to get good? Seriously…

Things You May Have Missed: Kalisia – Cybion

Things You May Have Missed: Kalisia – Cybion

One of the most surprising records of this year for me and one that I’d sort of forgotten about until recently was Kalisia‘s epic concept album Cybion. Sold online as a single track for very cheap, this is one long-ass amazing progressive soundscape that probably shouldn’t be missed. These guys come from France which puts […]

Be’lakor – Stone’s Reach Review

Be’lakor – Stone’s Reach Review

Be’lakor is an Australian melodic death metal band that has been getting some serious attention in the underground despite the fact that much melodic death metal has pretty much been declared by the scene to be dead on arrival. I’d been reading about them for some time so I just wrote them a message on MySpace and the guys were cool enough to send me a copy to review. And I can see why they’re so eager to get their music out to the masses, it’s a bit like ear heroin.

The Chasm – Farseeing the Paranormal Abysm

The Chasm – Farseeing the Paranormal Abysm

In a lot of ways one has to feel a bit bad for The Chasm these days. They have worked as hard, or harder, than almost any band in the underground and fought for ground the whole time. They finally managed to fight their way to a good record deal with a good label that subsequently collapsed and now they’re back at at ground zero. Well, not really ground zero, think Point A. But not even really Point A, because honestly Point A is “write good music,” which they’ve got down. However, as opposed to breaking up after getting knocked down, The Chasm have instead produced a record: 2009’s opus Farseeing the Paranormal Abysm, which doesn’t have the same kind of support that it should have despite its fantastic quality.