Archspire

Black Swamp Water – Awakening Review

Black Swamp Water – Awakening Review

“I grabbed this promo from the rattlesnake and scorpion-infested bin at AMG‘s Southwest office because I thought it was thrash. See, I’ve been on a thrash kick lately and I had no qualms grabbing another thrash release to review. The band name didn’t exactly strike me as a band that played thrash. But, who am I to judge? Maybe they’re swampy thrashers from the South, like Pantera and Exhorder. But, this is no thrash band. Everything I know about life is a lie.” Swamp romps.

Fleshbore – Embers Gathering Review

Fleshbore – Embers Gathering Review

“One of the only true perks in this gig, besides the callous hazing of my fellow writers and the mindless braying of the commentariat, is getting highly anticipated releases weeks in advance. When that happens, a swarm of reviewers pilfer the promo pit, greedily clutching the release like so many Gollums with the One Ring. If you’re the lucky reviewer actually covering said album (we hates them), it’s a boon, as you get peer reactions in real time. But for everyone else, it means it becomes that much harder to focus on the album you’ve actually chosen that week. This is especially unfair to the band you’re reviewing when the Big Release is the same genre. This week, Archspire‘s follow up to tech death masterpiece Relentless Mutation ran through the writers’ room like rancid chili. My own official assignment was Indianapolis, IN tech death newcomers Fleshbore‘s debut Embers Gathering. ” Flesh and golden arches.

Stortregn – Impermanence Review

Stortregn – Impermanence Review

“Every year it seems that in the midst of all the doom, sludge and black metal clogging up my arteries, I find that one album of fast, technical, brutal sci-fi themed metal that I can’t stop listening to. Recent output by Xoth, Æpoch, Beast of Nod and the mighty Archspire have flayed my face meat and chilled my soul with surgical guitars and the unknowable horrors of the cosmos. In 2018 I discovered Swiss band Stortregn through their fantastic third full-length Emptiness Fills the Void. Despite its title, the album absolutely burst at the seams with blackened, thrashy tech death glory that never sacrificed melody for brutality. The cold, dark vacuum of space sounded thrilling in their capable hands. Three years later, Stortregn has moved from the diverse roster of Non Serviam Records to tech death specialists The Artisan Era for their fourth LP Impermanence.” In space no one can hear you fanboy.

Ysgaroth – Storm Over a Black Sea Review

Ysgaroth – Storm Over a Black Sea Review

Ysgaroth is a “progressive extreme metal” band from Vancouver, their self-released Storm Over a Black Sea being their debut. While I’ve never entirely understood the phrase “extreme metal,” these Canucks throw everything and the kitchen sink into their poutine platter: black metal shrieks and tremolo, thrashy riffs, hardcore drumming, technical noodling, and avant-garde post-metal/sludge strangeness for a multi-car pileup with multiple fatalities.” Frequent wind.

Cult of Lilith – Mara

Cult of Lilith – Mara

Cult of Lilith is one of those bands that are in the middle of what journalists and label blurb writers might call a ‘meteoric rise.’ Hailing from Iceland, the quintet has only one EP and no demos to their name since their inception in 2015. Yet Mara, their debut full-length, is already coming out through Metal Blade, one of the biggest labels in the business. On top of that, none other than semi-classical master painter and annual album art top 10 contestant Eliran Kantor delivered the ever excellent cover, and producer Dave Otero has such names as Cattle Decapitation, Archspire and Cephalic Carnage on his resume.” Big buzz, big expectations.

Ahtme – Mephitic Review

Ahtme – Mephitic Review

“It’s hard to believe considering my current taste, but back in the mid 00s I consumed all the tech death I could. I devoured Arsis, Deeds of Flesh, Origin, and all the other bands who were just coming into their own in the midst of MySpace and metalcore. My tastes have changed since then, but it doesn’t take much to make me give a genre another try. And by “doesn’t take much,” I mean a Monday night death metal show two years ago that just happened to be taking place at my favorite bar in town.” Easy Z.

Witches – The Fates Review

Witches – The Fates Review

“It never ceases to amaze me how many metal bands can continue to release high quality material so late in their careers. This year alone has seen terrific releases from both Vulcano and Sinister, for instance, and I’ll now be adding Witches to this list as well. Admittedly, I’d never even heard of this group until AMG Himself recommended I give them a try, a decision I’ve become quite happy with over the past week.” Run for covens.

Symbolik – Emergence Review

Symbolik – Emergence Review

“I’ve always preferred melodic death metal to plain death metal. While I appreciate the skill involved in well-crafted brutality, I generally insist on having some kind of melody to follow along with or atmosphere to get lost in. I remember when Archspire hit the Angry Metal world through Relentless Mutation, and I could not understand the appeal. One day, not too long ago, it just… clicked. The technical skill, the expert neoclassical weavings, the sheer unmatched power of the thing — I’ve loved the album ever since. And ever since, I’ve been hungry for more. Symbolik are the next tech-death group to take a shot at winning my heart with Emergence, their debut full-length.” Heart clicks.