Æther Realm

Aether – In Embers [Things You Might Have Missed 2019]

Aether – In Embers [Things You Might Have Missed 2019]

Wintersun has long been a favorite of mine. Sure, it’s a band with a whole bunch of frustrations, but Jari Mänepää is a strong composer, and he’s got a cool sound that I can’t help but like. His wild blend of melodeath, power metal, black-tinged folk, and symphonic over-the-top wizardry appeals to me. It’s always a good Time T(w)o listen to well-composed symphonic heavy metal, and this is where the Polish group Aether come in.” Less spa, more metal.

Crepuscle – Heavenly Skies Review

Crepuscle – Heavenly Skies Review

“With scant few acts from the golden era of Finnish melodic death metal living up to their former glitter and gusto, the torch has been unwittingly passed across state lines. From Æther Realm to Aephanemer, the kids who grew up worshiping at the altars of Ensiferum, Children of Bodom, and scores of others are now handily matching the quality of their influences. California’s Crepuscle is no exception.” The American way.

Embrace of Disharmony – De Rervm Natvra Review

Embrace of Disharmony – De Rervm Natvra Review

“Stagnation is a problem. In this wondrous day and age where music can be shared across the globe at a mere few clicks, you’d think that “too much of the same” in metal would be a laughable concept. Instead, it’s an actual problem. An uncountable number of fledgling bands are being influenced by the same big acts and creating essentially the same sound over and over again. There is nothing more exciting in this musical sphere than a band that breaks the cycle of stagnation, who smashes through stereotypes and clichés both to rise above the rest and revitalize their sad, tired genre. Symphonic metal, I give you Embrace of Disharmony and their sophomore effort: De Rervm Natvra.” Symphonies of slickness.

Meadows End – The Grand Antiquation Review

Meadows End – The Grand Antiquation Review

Sweden’s Meadows End has been pushing their symphonic metal wares on the world for over 20 years and across 3 full-length albums yet had surprisingly avoided coverage at this website thus far. Album four goes by the name of The Grand Antiquation (TGA) and features album artwork about which I am undecided: is it delightfully tacky or just tacky? Light / dark theme? Check. Angel / devil imagery? Check. Heaven / Hell setting? Check? Shotgun wielded in one hand Terminator-style? Check. It’s certainly eye-catching and perhaps an indicator of the unsubtle amalgamation of metal and classical housed within. But does it fall closer to Heaven or Hell?” Worse or better angels?

Sacrificed Alliance – Withdrawn Review

Sacrificed Alliance – Withdrawn Review

“Look past the front pages, beyond the newest Kalmah or Omnium Gatherum, but to the fringes. What do you see? Melodeath, by inch and by foot, grows longer by the year. This lengthwise legacy has nascent foundations as far back as Crimson before acts like Insomnium and Be’lakor (for better) and Wintersun (or worse) exposed that phenomenon to the masses. The most impressive returns rely not on track listings overstuffed with a dozen taut melobangers but long-form songs pushing the boundaries of melodeath’s expectation. Sacrificed Alliance assume this mantle.” Melodeath and the universe are ever expanding.

AngryMetalGuy.com’s Aggregated Top 10(ish) of 2017: The List to End All Lists

AngryMetalGuy.com’s Aggregated Top 10(ish) of 2017: The List to End All Lists

“¡Chicos! It is arrived. The list for which you have all been waiting. Listurnalia has run its course for 2017, and the semi-final list is upon us. This year, there were a ton of different albums mentioned, and let’s just say for the record that any record that was mentioned that isn’t on my (AMG) list is wrong. But, alas, other people also work here or the blog wouldn’t be written. So, in honor of all these lesser mortals who think they’re special, I present: AngryMetalGuy.com’s Meta List. Also known as…” Lists of things once listed.

El Cuervo and Diabolus in Muzaka’s Top Ten(ish) of 2017

El Cuervo and Diabolus in Muzaka’s Top Ten(ish) of 2017

“Making a successful and popular Top Ten list involves a series of complex calculations, comprised of, but not limited to the following: a tallying of recorded scores, estimated scene cred, a precise proportion of big and underground bands, a spot for that one record universally praised during the year, and a pathological need to seem like one has not missed anything.” Making a list, checking it thrice.

Mark Z’s and L. Saunder’s Top Ten(ish of 2017

Mark Z’s and L. Saunder’s Top Ten(ish of 2017

“Well, there it went. Another year, another… blah blah blah. Let’s be honest: you’re not here to listen to me drone on about how 2017 was, you’re here to scour my list for stuff you might not have heard, confirm your own good taste by seeing how many of your favorites match up with my own, and chime in with your own take on my admittedly questionable choices.” Valid.