Black Sabbath

Yer Metal is Olde: Black Sabbath – Dehumanizer

Yer Metal is Olde: Black Sabbath – Dehumanizer

“To put things ever so gently, the 1990s were not a good time for heavy metal, especially not the classic triumvirate of British heavy metal. Judas Priest and Iron Maiden, both riding the winds of success of the 1980s, were struggling to stay afloat due to dips in quality of music, the change of musical tastes in people, the looming flannel-cloaked spectre of grunge, and both their vocalists leaving to pursue solo careers. Black Sabbath, though… hoo boy.” More Humanizer than a human, man.

Gramma Vedetta – The Hum of the Machine Review

Gramma Vedetta – The Hum of the Machine Review

“It’s been some time. A devastating trifecta of moving homes, work fuckery and family shit closed down my writing faculties for a little while, but I’m very pleased to return to this lovely little blog. Perhaps as a regression to each writer’s humble beginnings, I asked Steel Druhm to assign me a promo of his choice for my restoration. I suspect that Gramma Vedetta’s new album called The Hum of the Machine was his interpretation of a homecoming gift, leaning into my strong preference for progressive music.”

Strange Horizon – Beyond the Strange Horizon Review

Strange Horizon – Beyond the Strange Horizon Review

“As a child of the 80s metal scene, I grew to statuesque manhood marinating in the sounds of Pentagram and Saint Vitus. Those 80s doom titans are still near and dear to me and any act that tries to recapture the sound of that era has me as an ally. Norway’s Strange Horizon are one such band, striving to recapture that classic doom magic on debut Beyond the Strange Horizon.” Dawn of the doom.

Alunah – Strange Machine Review

Alunah – Strange Machine Review

“Birmingham-based Alunah returns with their fourth album—Strange Machine—and second since the departure of founding members Sophie and David Day. As originally formulated, Alunah played straightforward—albeit folk-tinged—doom metal. Perhaps the biggest difference from doom in the vein of Saint Vitus is Alunah’s penchant for the bounce and swing of early Black Sabbath’s heavy blues.” Rage against the Strange Machine.

Luzifer – Iron Shackles Review

Luzifer – Iron Shackles Review

“A question was posed on Twitter, the most reliable source of information in the world, earlier this year asking which up-and-coming band was going to be the Next Big Thing. Someone commented that Luzifer was that band, and seeing March promo just sitting there all forlorn, I grabbed it. I knew nothing about them, and there’s a good chance you, dear reader, did not either. Turns out this German trio is three-fifths of the speed metal band Vulture, and Iron Shackles is their first full-length release.” Zatan’s Returnz.

Ghost – IMPERA Review

Ghost – IMPERA Review

Ghost is a divisive band. Forget red states and blue states; don’t bother with Yankees or Red Sox; and I don’t want to hear whose side you take in the Montreal Screwjob debacle. There’s only one true rivalry, and the debate only grows more contentious with each new Papa. Indeed, the rift between Ghost adherents and their vehement detractors is a vast, otherworldly chasm, overflowing with hate-kindled magma and plumes of blackened self-righteousness. All that being said, I really like ’em.” Ghost in the cash machine.

Into the Obscure: Masters of Reality – Deep in the Hole

Into the Obscure: Masters of Reality – Deep in the Hole

“We all have our dirty metal secrets that we selfishly keep to ourselves, only sharing with a select few close to us. Or alternatively, we incessantly talk up underground gems and spread the gospel to anyone that will listen, as we cherish our slice of underground cred. Into the Obscure aims to right the wrongs and unearth the artists/albums that for whatever unjust reason didn’t get the exposure, appreciation or credit they sorely deserved the first time round.” Master! Master!

Sanhedrin – Lights On Review

Sanhedrin – Lights On Review

“I am wholly unfamiliar with Sanhedrin the band aside from remembering that I almost reviewed their 2019 album The Poisoner but ended up not doing so for some reason I can no longer remember. Apparently, the album impressed many, earning Sanhedrin a place on Metal Blade’s roster. This time around, I was bound and determined to not let these New Yorkers slip through my fingers again, so now you get to watch as Judge Holdy hands out his verdict on the band’s third full-length, Lights On. All rise!” Judge not, lest you be judged.

Kryptograf – The Eldorado Spell Review

Kryptograf – The Eldorado Spell Review

“With that album cover, you know exactly what you’re getting. You’ve heard it before – a bunch of musicians who smoked one too many joints in high school, and then one too many joints in college, and decided to share their boundless love for early Black Sabbath with the world. Norwegian four-piece Kryptograf is relatively new to the overcrowded stoner rock scene, but they made a splash with their self-titled 2020 debut, which melded vintage doom, hard rock, and psychedelic jams.” Loving the leaf.

X.I.L – Rip & Tear Review

X.I.L – Rip & Tear Review

“Following a pretty damn solid year for the thrash genre in 2021, fans of the legendary, often gateway metal genre will be buzzed for more of the same quality in 2022. A good old blast of feisty thrash is always welcome, especially as we swing into the trials, tribulations and hopefully good times of another uncertain year. Kicking off my thrash promos of 2022 is an unheralded act out of Texas, named X.I.L, dropping their self-released debut LP, Rip & Tear.” Rip ride.