Australian Metal

Temple Nightside – Pillars of Damnation Review

Temple Nightside – Pillars of Damnation Review

“Readers of this site will not find it surprising when I say that I love blackened death metal of the chaotic and brutal variety, with groups like Impiety, Archgoat, and Angelcorpse being some of my favorites. In the last decade, however, a new strain of blackened death metal came to prominence that seemed to prioritize atmosphere and uneasiness above all else. Some of the more notable bands in this category are Portal, Abyssal, and Teitanblood—groups whose work I respect, even if it doesn’t resonate with me as deeply. When I grabbed Pillars of Damnation, the fourth album by Australia’s Temple Nightside, I had no idea what strain of blackened death metal it would be.” Cavern kegger.

Faceless Burial – Speciation Review

Faceless Burial – Speciation Review

“Sometimes you know within seconds that an album is going to absolutely rule. I knew it when I heard the chimes in Desolate Endscape. I knew it when I heard the first riff of “Cognitive Sedation Butchery.” This time I knew it when I heard three notes – guitar, bass, and snare – and fell into a tetanic stupor, fists clenched in ecstasy, tongue projected out to the state line. Faceless Burial just made a modern classic in old school death metal.” Endangering species.

Blood Stronghold – Spectres of Bloodshed Review

Blood Stronghold – Spectres of Bloodshed Review

“Collaborations in music (and metal) have been around since you were a tyke on your grandpappy’s arthritic knee. When they work, differing artists can bring out the best in each other, highlighting each other’s strengths, and masking their weaknesses. Blood Stronghold follows in this grand tradition: an international amalgamation of Australia’s Nightwolf (from Runespell) and veteran Polish drummer Krew (from numerous projects I honestly haven’t of).” Blood is thicker than…forts.

Nemesium – Continua Review

Nemesium – Continua Review

“There are times that that little hunger for the visceral creeps up, and I need to have that itch at the very least tickled, and only the most extreme of extreme metal can satisfy that particular pang. Do Aussie newcomers Nemesium succeed in flaying my skin raw with their debut, Continua?” Rage show.

Ebonivory – The Long Dream I Review

Ebonivory – The Long Dream I Review

“I first heard of Ebonivory due to Caligula’s Horse. These guys were supposed to open for the Horse on their North American tour this year, but of course that was cancelled. It did prompt me to hit up Bandcamp and purchase their discography (two EPs and an LP), which turned out to be really good. References can definitely be made between these guys and other Australian prog acts such as Voyager, Karnivool, and Dead Letter Circus. Fast forward a couple of months and here we are, with a brand new release from these Aussies.” Perfect harmony?

Witchskull – A Driftwood Cross Review

Witchskull – A Driftwood Cross Review

“The April 24 release cycle is an interesting one for me: three bands I’ve reviewed before are dropping new albums. Since we usually review bands we’ve reviewed in the past, and we also usually review one release each per week, this is a conundrum. I’m too olde and slow to review three albums in a week, but I think I can pull off two. And that’s good news: it means I can avoid what is likely to be another travesty from Road Warrior. Instead I can focus on local up-and-comers Traveler and Aussie rockers Witchskull.” Witchy business.

Shatter Brain – Pitchfork Justice Review

Shatter Brain – Pitchfork Justice Review

“When I saw the eye-catching cover for Shatter Brain‘s debut full-length, Pitchfork Justice, I immediately assumed they were a thrash band. I was about 1/8th right, as this Australian act mixes sludge, grind, death and punk with speed for what can only be described as an unruly and boisterous sound. Pitchfork Justice is an album that wants to be many things, sometimes all at the same time, and this leads to some interesting moments to be sure.” The mob is revolting.

Wardaemonic – Acts of Repentance Review

Wardaemonic – Acts of Repentance Review

“Length alone does not a smart song make. Anyone can throw a dozen disparate riffs together without rhyme or reason under the pretense of progressive songwriting. That’s what’s kind of amazing about Wardaemonic‘s fourth LP, Acts of Repentance. These songs aren’t necessarily clever, but what they lack in songwriting tact is made up for by a dense, captivating atmosphere.” Repentance, then war.

Earth Rot – Black Tides of Obscurity Review

Earth Rot – Black Tides of Obscurity Review

“Last month I sampled an advance track for Earth Rot‘s third full-length album, Black Tides of Obscurity, and I rather enjoyed what I heard. And now that I’ve spent some significant time with the full record, I have to say that I’m completely blown away. Black Tides of Obscurity is the sound of a band that believes the answer to the question “Should we play old school Swedish death metal or true Norwegian black metal?” is an emphatic “YES!”” Rot n’ roll.