2017

Brutal Unrest – Trinitas Review

Brutal Unrest – Trinitas Review

“Once upon a time, this writer, still a wet-behind-the-ears thrash aficionado, met his first brother-in-metal. He was a lanky fellow who’d rattle his neighbors’ windows with sessions of Cannibal Corpse and hit the pits so hard he’d be out of class for a week. So strong was our bromance that I cut my very first class to hit my first real show with him — I even had a beer (underage!) — what a rebel I was. I owe him, specifically his deification of Glen Benton, for a good portion of my listening habits.” Beers, Benton, bromance, Battlestar Galactica.

Need – Hegaiamas​: ​A Song for Freedom Review

Need – Hegaiamas​: ​A Song for Freedom Review

“Every genre has its tropes. Power metal’s unhealthy obsession with dragons and unicorns, for example. Thrashers shower but twice a year. Did you know that most black metal musicians are allergic to both colors and happiness? All true facts! Progressive metal is no exception.” Unicorns are the new white meat.

Shaarimoth – Temple of the Adversarial Fire Review

Shaarimoth – Temple of the Adversarial Fire Review

“January isn’t known for being a break-out month for music. With Shaarimoth‘s sole output being 2005’s  Current 11, they return after a lengthy period of inactivity with Temple of the Adversarial Fire. Can their rituals hold up after a lengthy lay-off?” Everything has a return these days.

Balfor – Black Serpent Rising Review

Balfor – Black Serpent Rising Review

“Way back in 2011 I was pleasantly surprised by a little known Ukrainian blackened death act called Balfor. So much so that I wrote a Things You Might Have Missed for their sophomore outing Barbaric Blood. Their highly effective fusion of Immortal-riffs and In Flames guitar virtuosity really got to me and though it wasn’t very original, it left me looking forward to hearing more from them. It took over five years for them to resurface and they do so with a radically different line up with only founder Thorgeir Berserk returning, but Black Serpent Rising is finally here.” Snake bite, on my leg!

Suppressive Fire – Nature of War Review

Suppressive Fire – Nature of War Review

“Given how great 2016 was for me personally, my resolution for the New Year, if I was forced to make one, would be to keep doing what I was doing but do even more of it. The more things stay the same, the more things keep coming up Milhouse Diabolus. With that in mind, 2017 is off to a great start! Case in point: just like 2016, my first review of the year’s subject is Raleigh’s Suppressive Fire.” Thrashy deja vu.

Draugsól – Volaða Land Review

Draugsól – Volaða Land Review

“It’s no secret that—following a legacy now two decades old—black metal is synonymous with Scandinavia. For most, this refers to Norway and Sweden, but, depending on who you ask, this may also include Finland and Iceland. Regardless if these countries meet the rules for the “Scandinavia” tag, they have a plethora of black metal bands, with legacies all their own. And I thank that goat-headed deity for that.” Feeling Scandinavia, looking frozen tundra.

Slamophiliac – Perihelion Review

Slamophiliac – Perihelion Review

“Much like how everyone figured out what Ewoks were called despite the name never being mentioned in film, mysterious forces of collective cultural understanding have conspired to associate slamming brutal death metal with forced puns. I have not the faintest chance of elucidating the causes for this association, but I want to go on record in support of it.” Slam-fisted stuff here, folks.

Akoma – Revangels Review

Akoma – Revangels Review

“Let’s play a game of ‘guess the genre!’ We have a band with a nondescript, vaguely fantasy-sounding name. Google betrays it to be the Ghanese word for ‘heart.’ The album name is Revangels, which I’m guessing is a contraction of revenge and angels? That seems likely, but I choose to believe it’s about angels that have become groupies for deceased drummer The Rev, instead because that’s more clever than the alternative.” Show no symphony.