2013

Legion of the Damned – Ravenous Plague Review

Legion of the Damned – Ravenous Plague Review

“2014 is here and it’s time for the Metal Show to begin anew! And what better way to raise the curtain on the sixth year of AMG than with… retread thrash! Yes, yes, you’ve all had your fill of thrash, re-thrash, retro-thrash and frash, but as long as bands keep spitting this stuff out, we in the reviewing biz have a duty to review it… and it’s a BIG duty!” When the call of duty is heard, Steel Druhm jumps in the skull tank and reviews thrash metal from the Netherlands. Thank him for his service.

Madam X’s Top Ten(ish) of 2013

Madam X’s Top Ten(ish) of 2013

“Wow, what a year! A large portion of 2013 has had me working my ass off in preparation for my stint out at sea with 70,000 Tons of Pure Fucking METAL! I’ve tried to curtail my excitement, but fuck it, this is huge – Carcass, Septicflesh, Finntroll, Overkill… what more could a girl ask for?” As Madam X shamelessly drops free plugs for a certain novelty cruise line, she also delivers her best albums of the year. That lady can multi-task!

Angry Metal Guy’s Top 10(ish) Songs of 2013

Angry Metal Guy’s Top 10(ish) Songs of 2013

Every year we listen to a lot of music, and while some records might be superior, they don’t always contain the best songs. So, I started doing the “Top 10(ish) Songs o’ the Year” to point out the amazing songs that I love even if they come from records I don’t have to love. So here’s the first of my amazing Top 10(ish) lists from 2013. I’ll write a year-end look for my Top 10(ish) albums later, so without further ado…

Steel Druhm’s Top Ten(ish) Songs of 2013

Steel Druhm’s Top Ten(ish) Songs of 2013

“In my (vain)glorious time at AMG Conglomerated, I’ve written off almost every year as a substandard time for quality metal. While some of that criticism was well founded, 2013 was the most craptastic year so far! The first half was the ultimate in lackluster and underwhelming, with many major players releasing flat, uninspiring platters. Hell, even the mythical Amorphis fell off their Pedestal of I-ruhn with a dull thud. While the back end of 2013 picked up the quality dramatically, it wasn’t enough to redeem a very sub par year.” Join the all knowing Steel Druhm as he takes you on a whirlwind tour of the best of a fairly crappy year in metal. Yes, 2013 kind of blew, get over it!

Netherbird – The Ferocious Tides of Fate Review

Netherbird – The Ferocious Tides of Fate Review

“Steel Druhm has for some time been riding me to finish, or, more accurately, begin this review. Squeezed in before end of the year lists, I have rather wisely decided to comply with his request [As you should ALL of my requests! — Steel “Imperious” Druhm] and reveal my thoughts on the latest release from Stockholm’s Netherbird, a relatively unknown black metal quintet with a surprising taste for melody in the vein of their countrymen in Gothenburg.” Better late than never, Kronos arrives with a review of Netherbird‘s latest blast of blackened death. However, because it’s so late, Kronos will begin the new year in metal detention.

Alcest – Shelter Review

Alcest – Shelter Review

Alcest’s trek to Shelter has been a long and gorgeous journey. Over the years, Neige has taken his most-loved project from black metal soil and sprouted upward, spinning his branches and leaves into beautiful, soothing soundscapes. His ambitions have long been combated by black metallers that thrive on ugliness and rebellion; Alcest’s inherent prettiness seemed at odds with the genre’s core ethos. Yet it was hard to argue with the results.” Does the beautification of black metal continue on Shelter? How much lush gorgeousness can the blackness take before turning that frown upside down? Valid questions all.

Things You Might Have Missed 2013: Theocracy – Theocracy (Re-recorded)

Things You Might Have Missed 2013: Theocracy – Theocracy (Re-recorded)

“Once upon a time, Christian metal was completely devoid of bands talented enough to make a name for themselves outside their very small niche [Except for Trouble, of course. — Steel Druhm]. 10 years ago, Theocracy changed all that, and today the budding Christian metal scene boasts supremely talented artists numbering… well, it’s pretty much still just them. Sure, the scene has cracked out a few good releases here and there, but by and large, there’s not a wealth of quality. Despite the relative lack of bands to follow in their righteous wake, Theocracy has still been a pretty significant force in power metal over the last two years, with their highly acclaimed Mirror of Souls and As the World Bleeds albums.” Christian metal gets a bum rap, so in the spirit of the Holiday and love for all Mankind, we make sure you didn’t miss the re-recording of Theocracy‘s debut! God rest ye merry metalheads.

Things You Might Have Missed 2013: Fates Warning – Darkness In A Different Light

Things You Might Have Missed 2013: Fates Warning – Darkness In A Different Light

Darkness In A Different Light is the first album in nearly a decade from prog legends Fates Warning. Arriving on the heels of 2011’s Arch/Matheos project (a Fates Warning album in all but name), Darkness features most of the same lineup except with longtime vocalist Ray Alder back at the mic. Guitarist Frank Aresti makes his first appearance on a Fates record since the early ’90s, and the rhythm section now includes Joey Vera on bass (Armored Saint) and journeyman drummer Bobby Jarzombek. Of course, founding guitarist/songwriter/main guy Jim Matheos is present as well.” How the hell did we miss this one, you ask? Because Steel Druhm was overworked, had to make strategic decisions and mistakes were made. Luckily, Mr. Fisting is here to right some wrongs and save the day.

Things You Might Have Missed 2013: Ulver – Messe I.X–VI.X

Things You Might Have Missed 2013: Ulver – Messe I.X–VI.X

The good people reading this blog will certainly not be offended if I start this review with a personal note. The problem is that, sometimes, I feel that in order to be able to express an individual judgement on an album, you have to try and see things from a different perspective. The world is full of people in bad faith and scribes with no taste in music, but problems arise when the two categories merge and ignorant self-assuredness is given a blank page and a word processor. With this in mind, the point of view on the opposite side of the spectrum is undoubtedly the most interesting and challenging one, so for this reason, and for this reason only, Messe I.X–VI.X is an incredibly arrogant and presumptuously conceited piece of contemporary music.

Things You May Have Missed 2013:  Patrons of the Rotting Gate – The Rose Coil

Things You May Have Missed 2013: Patrons of the Rotting Gate – The Rose Coil

“My summer vacations weren’t very… productive. Here’s a quick laundry list of my early Grymmness: blowing on Nintendo cartridges to get that damn pink screen to stop flashing, trying (and failing) to learn how to skateboard, playing guitar in a proto-metalcore band that would make early Converge shake their heads in embarrassment, swimming in a ice-cold pool in New Hampshire, etc. Needless to say, my summers were for lounging and goofing off. So when I ask how was your summer and you say, “Oh, it was okay, I just spent the entire summer writing, recording, screaming, playing, programming drums, producing, mastering, and even doing the artwork for the debut album of my one-band progressive black metal band. Nothing major!“, you are either: a) gleefully full of shit, or b) multi-talented Irish lad Andrew “Manshrew” Millar, sole proprietor of Patrons of the Rotting Gate, and mastermind behind their impressive self-released debut, The Rose Coil.” Grymm sets his review phaser on fanboyish glee and blasts way about something you might have missed.