Candlelight Records

Diablo Swing Orchestra – Swagger & Stroll Down the Rabbit Hole Review

Diablo Swing Orchestra – Swagger & Stroll Down the Rabbit Hole Review

“This album is probably my most anticipated release of this year. To me, Diablo Swing Orchestra don’t simply play avant-garde metal—they are avant-garde metal, owing to the fact that they were my gateway into the genre with the incredible Pandora’s Piñata. And yet, Pacifisticuffs never really drew me in. I blamed the production at the time; something about the sound of the album kept me at arm’s length. But that doesn’t change the fact that the Diablo Swing Orchestra octet is a machine of creativity, talent, and ambition. However I may have felt about their previous release, a new album by them is a special occasion.” Rabbit revenge.

TRNA – Istok Review

TRNA – Istok Review

TRNA first came to my attention not long ago, when I volunteered to review Istok, their fourth full-length release, without knowing anything about it. I learned that the band describes their own music as “celestial blackgaze” and thought, what could go wrong? Obviously, that answer to that is “everything,” but I was optimistic. As I read about the band’s story, one that drifts away from their Russian homeland to try and capture the spirit of an altogether dreamier, darker, and more abstract place, I grew increasingly intrigued.” Space gaze.

Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn Review

Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn Review

“Wtf’s occur in everyday life. I’ve broken a thumb of one hand under the hammer held by the other and exclaimed the same betrayed question. Hell, I’m sure my mother pinched me out and exclaimed those same three words to my father. I sure did whisper it when I heard Winterfylleth‘s The Hallowing of Heirdom. An acoustic album was not what I expected. I had hoped, instead, for a strong release to balance out the mediocre The Dark Hereafter. Upon the first spin of The Reckoning Dawn, my mouth hung open once more and I exclaimed, ‘what the fuck.’ But what kind of ‘wtf’ is this? The good kind? Or the bad?” You can’t spell Winterfylleth without WTF.

Yer Metal is Olde: Opeth – My Arms, Your Hearse

Yer Metal is Olde: Opeth – My Arms, Your Hearse

“There’s raging debate about which Opeth album sits on the pedestal as their greatest achievement. I’m not here to proclaim My Arms, Your Hearse as their best album, but it holds a special place in my heart and is a fundamental stepping stone towards the band’s momentous career peak. Fittingly it was the first Opeth album I heard around the turn of the millennium, setting me on course for a hell of a ride across the band’s decorated career.” Once were metal.

Sigh – Heir to Despair Review

Sigh – Heir to Despair Review

“Some of the band’s previously bagged waterfowl are among the rarest and colorful to ever take flight, flashing their lavish plumage in iridescent hues and streaming with fanciful feathers. After the modern classic of In Somniphobia and Graveward‘s acceptable, if not always exciting, follow-up, the band needed something different to end this quartet with something more powerful than mere exhalation.” Where the Heir is thin.

Ultra-Violence – Operation Misdirection Review

Ultra-Violence – Operation Misdirection Review

“2018 has not been the year of amazing thrash. That’s to be expected though as the years of amazing thrash ended in the 80s. We now live in the age of passable, serviceable and very occasionally, good thrash. Italian speed fiends Ultra-Violence fit someplace in the center of these threadbare thrash end days, better than some, but not as good as the very best.” Ultra-good enough.

Witchsorrow – Hexenhammer Review

Witchsorrow – Hexenhammer Review

Cathedral left such a gaping hole in the doom metal scene when they dissolved back in 2013. Sure, they dabbled in some rather goofy disco moments, and 2010’s The Guessing Game was an exercise in headfuckery, but when they brought the heavy, it was delivered by a fleet of Mack trucks. Calling them a massive influence would be understating the obvious in extremes. So when younger bands such as Hampshire’s Witchsorrow come along with a sound eerily like their forefathers, I tend to get a bit weary. Now on their fourth album, Hexenhammer, the British trio hope to impress the grumpy old man-cat from Blashyrkh, Florida…” Lord Of Hexhammers.

Ihsahn – Àmr Review

Ihsahn – Àmr Review

“Whether we care to admit it or not, we are all subject to re-invention at some point or another. Ihsahn, a man made legend for his contributions to the legacy of black metal, has never shied away from re-calibrating his musical character, and his discography is the hard proof. Having blazed a trail with the mighty Emperor, his solo career has been no exception, never afraid to reflect its creator’s inherently eclectic tastes.” Seize the Throne of Eccentricity.

Voices – Frightened Review

Voices – Frightened Review

“When Akercocke dissolved in 2012, a few of its members regrouped as Voices, releasing a respectable debut in the form of Voices from the Human Forest Create a Fugue of Imaginary Rain, revealing that there was some life left from the ashes of everyone’s favorite hedonistic prog-death merchants. However, absolutely no one was prepared for the relentless headfuck that came out the following year.” Voices carry… expectations.

Winterfylleth – The Hallowing of Heirdom Review

Winterfylleth – The Hallowing of Heirdom Review

“The first time I sat down with The Hallowing of Heirdom, I was in denial. With every song, I expected the sky to crack open and a dark sheet of black rain to pour from blood-red clouds. It never happened. And, as a result, I’m going to try to rate, compare, and measure The Hallowing of Heirdom against Winterfylleth‘s decade of atmospheric black metal records. For how much I hate the phrase, this is like comparing apples to oranges.” Strum and drag.