American Metal

Crawling Manifest – Radical Absolution Review

Crawling Manifest – Radical Absolution Review

“I hate to admit it, but I laughed when I first saw the name Crawling Manifest. I immediately had images of babies presenting documentation of the dangerous cargo held within their diapers as they crawl from one location to another pop into my head, and once I saw those images, they were impossible to unsee. My apologies to the band for this, but the strange mind does what the strange mind will do. Radical Absolution is the sophomore record from these Maryland thrashers, coming by way of self-release.” The Manifest is destiny.

Nightshadow – Strike Them Dead Review

Nightshadow – Strike Them Dead Review

“Sometimes a band comes along that seems to have rummaged through your brain to find all the stuff you love and then cobbled together an album designed to appeal to you specifically. Nightshadow are currently under suspicious for such a mind ransacking as I spin their full-length debut Strike Them Dead. With a sound steeped in 80s speed and trve metal then coated in a thick layer of technical, neo-classical polish, Nightshadow leave no wank unwanked in their effort to bring high-octane metal to the filthy masses. If I had to describe them concisely, it would be as it would be as a sped up, really pissed off Witherfall.” Wank til struck dead.

Kosmodemonic – Liminal Light Review

Kosmodemonic – Liminal Light Review

“Sometimes around this place, you pick up a promo and just have a good feeling about. You look at the cover and read the promo blurb and, without even hearing a note, you start to mentally prepare yourself for the tongue lashing Steel Druhm will dish out, as you submit an absurdly high score. In the case of Brooklyn’s Kosmodemonic I was making just these preparations.” Grate expectations.

Stone Healer – Conquistador Review

Stone Healer – Conquistador Review

“The central thesis forming Stone Healer’s impressive debut is this: how does one cross-breed the warm fuzz of stoner with the cold lacerations of black metal? The answer is manifold and not easily summarized. The songwriting is absolutely wild, frequently thriving upon a nightmare train-of-thought flow, flying from reflective melancholy to gnawing discordance and back.” Black desert voyage.

Body Void – Bury Me Beneath this Rotting Earth Review

Body Void – Bury Me Beneath this Rotting Earth Review

“After recent (and in one case accidental) forays into genres somewhat removed from my traditional hunting grounds – funeral fucking drone and death metal –  I am pleased this week to be back in more familiar waters with some sludgy doom. Vermont two-piece, Body Void return with their third full-length, Bury Me Beneath this Rotting Earth.” Cull and void.

Oryx – Lamenting a Dead World Review

Oryx – Lamenting a Dead World Review

“It’s not often that doom metal turns my head these days. Growing up as an impressionable teen in rural New Hampshire, I hunted down as many CDs at Newbury Comics from as many different subsets of doom metal as I could, whether it was the likes of the Peaceville Three, or the more biker-influenced style of Americanized doom metal. But while I still love those bands, it has to take something special to cause my head to turn and take notice. That something special is the one variety of doom that creeps forth from your speakers with hellish intent, that sound that does everything in its power to make you as uncomfortable as humanly possible while slowly grinding you down into a fine crimson powder. Doom like HellPrimitive Man, and today’s subject of intense scrutiny, Denver’s Oryx.” Doom for comfort.

Bongzilla – Weedsconsin Review

Bongzilla – Weedsconsin Review

“It’s high noon. Sweet Mary Jane is at the wheel. Her best bud Bongzilla is in the passenger seat. Master of Reality is rattling through the truck’s rusty speakers. The sun is setting. They’ve hit the jackpot. After sixteen years in a distant haze, Bongzilla is back. Muleboy (bass/vocals), Spanky (guitar) and Magma (drums) have awoken from their dazed slumber. Sixteen years is like sixty years in stoner time and a lot has changed. For one, the recreational use of cannabis has been legalized in many more states. Bongzilla is still on a mission for fweedom, however.” Weed the children.

Malformity – Monumental Ruin Review

Malformity – Monumental Ruin Review

Malformity have been lurking around the American death metal scene since 1991, dropping their first demo in 95. It took them until now however to finally get their debut full-length out of the dark and into the light. Generally such a low wattage release schedule speaks to a band’s overall quality and a 30 year inability to produce is a big fat red flag. Though the band’s been prodigiously unproductive up until now, I noticed Glenn Sykes of General Surgery and Regurgitate fame was on board, so I took a risky flyer and grabbed the promo.” Cautionary titles.

Obsolete – Animate//Isolate Review

Obsolete – Animate//Isolate Review

“I’ve spent much of this year listening to Obituary and Mortician. Both are death metal, but death metal is a wide field and you can’t mistake either band’s sound for the other’s. To address this, we put bands into subgenres within a subgenre – Floridian death metal, for instance. This is nice because I don’t want to sift through a bunch of Entombed clones to find something like Monstrosity. What about when our subgenres within subgenres cease to be useful to describe a sound? Then we get stuff like slam, which is brutal death metal played a specific way –  a subgenre of a subgenre within a subgenre. If you’re thinking that Obsolete‘s debut Animate//Isolate will lead me down a sub-sub-sub-genre rabbit hole, go ahead and give yourself an executive producer credit.” Old tech.