Alternative Rock

Sunbeam Overdrive – Diama Review

Sunbeam Overdrive – Diama Review

Sunbeam Overdrive as a name conjures the gaudy—a would-be leisure suit-wearing hotshot cruising down the coastal highway, top-down, sunglasses on, radio cranked. But the 90’s California kid in me hears this modern style of progressive metal that borrows more from aged successful radio-friendly acts like A Perfect Circle and Sevendust than anyone who plays in the more expected noodling and tricky rhythm definitions of the genre.” Sun’s out, prog’s out.

Vintersea – Woven into Ashes Review

Vintersea – Woven into Ashes Review

“In the past 20 years that bands like Wolves in the Throne Room and Agalloch have been pioneering a shade of the American black metal sound, a few interesting things have happened: black metal got cool and, as such, has continued to add new notches into its total allowable expressions. Youthful bands, who likely grew up finding out about these bigger names alongside other 00s music trends, have erupted with melodic and even fairly accessible atmospheres defining their modern vision of what black metal can be. These visions can feel a little kitchen sink at times, but that doesn’t stop acts like Vintersea from continuing to try and find that special melodic thread that binds their wide-ranging influences together.” New blood, old blackness.

Netherlands – Severance Review

Netherlands – Severance Review

Netherlands has been kicking, screaming, and blowing out subs with furiously fuzzed twangs for a little over ten years now. Up until receiving this promo for their seventh album, Severance, I had no idea this band existed. Powered primarily by Brooklyn native Timo Ellis, ever busy with various groups (Cibo Matto and Morningwood, to name a couple) ranging from power pop to stoner rock to art rock, Netherlands explores the loudest and proudest of what the multi-instrumentalist has assembled over the years.” No sleep til…Netherlands!

Oceanhoarse – Heads Will Roll Review

Oceanhoarse – Heads Will Roll Review

Heads Will Roll sounds like an idea sparked after a rekindling of enjoyment for In Flamesߵ infamous Reroute to Remain. Now that’s a hoarse of a different color. Defend whatever album you want, but In Flames at their most alternative and least melodeath is not the act you’d expect to see aped in 2023—even In Flames agrees. Yet, here we are, Oceanhoarse in full Björiff meets Breaking Benjamin territory, partying like an 80s arena rock hero got stuck in Sounds of a Playground Fading.” Old flames.

Elyose – Déviante Review

Elyose – Déviante Review

“Why do we find ourselves in the midst of a nu renaissance where bands like The Offering throw down like it’s ’03 and genres like slam can shamelessly quote groove under the guise of gore? Well, it seems that some also grew up to incorporate their first loves into their art. Elyose, an act of that breed, urges you to embrace your inner jumpdafuckup with a French language tour-de-force of alt-rock meets gothy vibes with nu and industrial accouterments on Déviante.” What’s olde is nu.

Katatonia – Sky Void of Stars Review

Katatonia – Sky Void of Stars Review

“I’ve been a long-time admirer of their Swedish sadperson exports, and after putting out what stands as one of my favorite releases of the past decade, Fall of Hearts, they went and put out City Burials, which was just not good. Regardless, Katatonia, the institution of gloom they are, have remained a steady force of sullen output. As such, Renkse and co have been predictably busy distilling from tear water and stained diary pages this latest collection of twilight tunes for Sky Void of Stars.” Star diary.

Turbid North – The Decline Review

Turbid North – The Decline Review

“If you’re looking for thick-stringed pummel somewhere on the heady but heavy spectrum between Anciients and Today Is the Day with a kiss of Machine Head, you might be in the market for Turbid North. I know that sounds like mouthful, but these extreme metal frontiersmen make it a point to switch from Southern rock drones to chug-led beatdowns on a dime.” Trve north?

He Is Legend – Endless Hallway Review

He Is Legend – Endless Hallway Review

“In their post-reunion era He Is Legend has displayed plenty of music on the sonically heavy side. Endless Hallway carves new levels of emotional vitriol in their catalog. If you’ve followed any news surrounding this band, particularly surrounding vocalist Schuylar Croom’s health, you know that there’s a reality out there where this record never happened. Particularly in the time surrounding the recording of this album.” The Legend goes on.

Cave In – Heavy Pendulum [Things You Might Have Missed 2022]

Cave In – Heavy Pendulum [Things You Might Have Missed 2022]

“Although well aware of their revered reputation, I largely came to Cave In via the awesome Mutoid Man. I have since come to deeply respect and appreciate chunks of the band’s diverse catalog, and solid crossover appeal. Final Transmission, 2019’s heart-wrenching tribute to their fallen brother Caleb Scofield, who tragically passed away in a car accident in 2018, was a stripped-back and poignant album, featuring Scofield’s final musical contributions. Rather than shut up shop on the back of a tragic loss, Cave In discovered newfound inspiration and forged on.” Still swinging.