Brainstorm

Almanac – A Discographic Review [Tsar (2016), Kingslayer (2017) and Rush of Death (2020)]

Almanac – A Discographic Review [Tsar (2016), Kingslayer (2017) and Rush of Death (2020)]

“For the last four years, I have been neglecting—and you have been denied my Very Important Opinion™ about—one of the most idiosyncratic voices in metal: Victor Smolski. And so, in a Swallow the Sun-sized act of hubris, I’m writing a discographic review of Victor Smolski’s Almanac.” You can’t spell “Almanac” without MAN!

Mystic Prophecy – Metal Division Review

Mystic Prophecy – Metal Division Review

“Back in 2007, I ran across the Myspace page of a band called Mystic Prophecy. My fire for trve heavy metal was still in its incipient stage at the time—a time that saw Manowar, Iron Maiden, and Iced Earth as my favorite bands—so when I heard “Demon’s Blood” and its immense bottom-end power metal attack on that soon-to-be-obsolete social media platform, I was giddy.” MySpace prophecies.

Tarchon Fist – Apocalypse Review

Tarchon Fist – Apocalypse Review

“What? You thought Victorious was gonna be the only metal band we reviewed here with bright colors and dinosaurs in their album art? Fools! The lot of ye! Tarchon Fist, an Italian heavy metal quintet formed in 2005, demands representation in the land of outlandish tapestries bursting with muscular sword-dudes and rampant nonsense. I summoned Apocalypse from the post-apocalyptic wasteland that is August’s promotional dump site because I believed the metal deities wouldn’t permit such artwork were it not for the righteous wares forged therein.” Fist of the Past.

Diviner – Realms of Time Review

Diviner – Realms of Time Review

Diviner‘s Fallen Empires debut was one of the happy little surprises of 2015, offering a burly, beefy and catchy fusion of Iced Earth and Brainstorm. It was easy to digest traditional metal with a bit of Euro-power flair – simple, straight forward and heavy enough to satisfy. Now these Greek metal warriors return with the followup, Realms of Time and it seems the band used their down time wisely. All the things they did well last time have been improved upon. The music is heavier, but even catchier, and the hooks dig deeper than before as they pull out all the stops to make a humdinger of a classic heavy metal album.” Divine right.

Brainstorm – Midnight Ghost Review

Brainstorm – Midnight Ghost Review

“No matter the relative strength of a given year’s metal output, knowing a new Brainstorm album is on the horizon always warms the cockles of my miserly old school heart (ov Steel). They’ve been one of the most consistent and enjoyable metal acts since 2000, releasing album after album of meat n’ taters metal sounding like Nevermore‘s progressive and modern approach jammed through a Judas Priest and Iced Earth accessibility filter.” Midnight special.

Testament – Brotherhood of the Snake Review

Testament – Brotherhood of the Snake Review

“2016 will go down as the year 80s thrash legends struck a blow for the AARP crowd. It’s the year Anthrax, Megadeth and Death Angel all shook off the dust and complacency, releasing shockingly good albums, and in what may be the final sign of the Apocalypse, even Metallica seems poised to drop something marginally listenable next month.” Next stop: Apocalyptic City!

Steel Druhm’s Top Ten(ish) of 2014

Steel Druhm’s Top Ten(ish) of 2014

“As I walk through the valley where I harvest my grain, I take a look at my list and realize it’s very plain. Barring an oddity or two, this feels like the most predictable list I’ve assembled since joining the AMG crusade. I can’t even blame 2014, since it was a decent if not amazing year for metal during which we all learned to enjoy of deep sadness and worship at the altar of the all seeing Sphere of I-ruhn.” Brace yourselves, sheeples, a two ton Top Ten(ish) heavy thing is about to drop from the steely skies onto your eager eyes.

Nightmare – The Aftermath Review

Nightmare – The Aftermath Review

“Let’s face it, power metal is the drama club of the metal world. Members of said club tend to be overdramatic, artsy fartsy and prone to big gestures and frilly shirts. Needless to say, that makes them the target for the rest of metaldom and inevitably, lunch money gets stolen and nipples get twisted. However, none of that shit is going to fly with French power meisters Nightmare. You try to give them a wedgie or rear admiral and you may lose a tooth or six. Yep, these cats pack a lot of muscle and menace in their music and between the crunching guitars and rough and raucous vocals, you’ll forget all about the need to snicker.” But I thought drama club was cool!