Century Media

Swallow the Sun – Moonflowers Review

Swallow the Sun – Moonflowers Review

“There hasn’t been much positivity coming from the Swallow the Sun camp these last few years. The tragic passing of guitarist Juha Raivio’s partner and Trees of Eternity collaborator Aleah Stanbridge led to a grief-driven release from Raivio’s Hallatar project as well as the unrelentingly depressive When a Shadow is Forced Into the Light from this group. Years pass and pain diminishes, but based on what we get on Moonflowers, it seems Mr. Raivio is still struggling to get back to the light.” Aphotic hypnotic.

Tribulation – Where the Gloom Becomes Sound Review

Tribulation – Where the Gloom Becomes Sound Review

“I’ve loved Tribulation backwards. After Dr. Fisting‘s review introduced me to Down Below, I paid it forward to my fiancée, whose reaction was initially lukewarm. But after we witnessed the band play at the Dynamo Metalfest festival, she became an even bigger fan than I was, and she started spinning their material relentlessly. This obsession exposed me to much of the band’s back catalog, from the recent gothic-oriented material to the early Entombed-style death metal, and even branching off to guitarist Jonathan Hultén’s excellent dark folk solo album Chants From Another Place last year.” Gloom for rent.

Frozen Soul – Crypt of Ice Review

Frozen Soul – Crypt of Ice Review

“Let’s keep this death metal train going, people! One entire year of it surely isn’t enough, right? We gotta maintain this hot streak like our lives depended on it. Or, I guess, if you’re Century Media’s newly signed Texan caveperson collective Frozen Soul, it’s a cold streak. Either way, I want more death, more metal, more riffs. The quintet’s first LP Crypt of Ice promises to deliver on all three, express shipped in a plank-wood box and ensconced in prehistoric ice.” Ice, ice rabies.

Soulburn – Noa’s D’ark Review

Soulburn – Noa’s D’ark Review

Originally formed by two members of Asphyx when their band went on hiatus, Soulburn resurfaced under their original moniker in 2014, after a hiatus of their own and a stint carrying the name To The Gallows during which Rogga Johanssen briefly joined the line-up. Nowadays, the cast still includes founding member Eric Daniels, as well as Legion of the Damned guitarist Twan van Geel and Graceless members Remco Kreft and Marc Verhaar. On paper, a team like this should be able to make a pretty killer record.” Death reclamation.

Skeletal Remains – The Entombment of Chaos Review

Skeletal Remains – The Entombment of Chaos Review

“Old school death has bucked the dreary trend of a wretched 2020 thus far with a stellar supply of quality albums to help keep the blues away. Now the unfashionable but dependably solid Californian crew Skeletal Remains emerge from their dank and dusty crypt with their bludgeoning brand of no-frills death on latest platter of destruction, The Entombment of Chaos.” Bone entombers unite!

Havok – V Review

Havok – V Review

“Earlier in Havok‘s career, I would have guided the tour bus past all the sights worth seeing on V. On the left, the Leaning Toutwer of le Monde, on the right, the (wait for it) And Justice for All Department, dead ahead, the famous Roots 66. However, those elements would be noteworthy only because they spiced up a paint-drying-by-the-numbers take on thrash.” Cry Havok.

The Alligator Wine – Demons of the Mind Review

The Alligator Wine – Demons of the Mind Review

“Picture a scene of domestic bliss lockdown homelife, as Mrs. Carcharodon enters to the kitchen, where yours truly is playing with the shark pup, and, after a lengthy pause, asks: “Is this one of your promos? It’s actually pretty good—sort of reminds me of Nick Cave in one of his alter egos like Grinderman.” An astute observation and one that got me wondering, what are the limits or boundaries to what we do and do not review here on this ol’ metal review site.” Power metal, and only power metal.

Dark Fortress – Spectres from the Old World Review

Dark Fortress – Spectres from the Old World Review

“Back in 2014, Madam X covered the release of Venereal Dawn by Bavarian brutalists Dark Fortress. Our Marchioness de Machiavelli didn’t particularly care for the album’s progressive expansion of melodic black metal. I, on the other hand, adored it. Since Morean joined forces with V. Santura, their sonic shade has substantially deepened. The duo’s combined involvement in projects as diverse as Alkaloid, Triptykon, Noneuclid and Hannes Grossmann has wrought one my favorite writing partnerships in extreme metal. Six years on, and Dark Fortress are poised to drop eighth album Spectres from the Old World.” Old world, new blackness.

Lorna Shore – Immortal Review

Lorna Shore – Immortal Review

“I’ve been a booster for Lorna Shore ever since I heard the Bone Kingdom EP. The basic pitch of the band’s early work was deathcore, for cats but good. Good riffs and effective breakdowns formed the backbone of songs that Adam DeMicco’s considerable solo and lead work elevated above almost anything else in the scene. The band has since re-invented themselves with each release, delving into grimy blackened deathcore with Psalms and taking a slick, blackened/melodic course with Flesh Coffin. AMG’s coverage of the band has been scanty due to the band’s rapid bounce through several record labels. Now playing in the big leagues with Century Media, I and the band, have been looking forward to their third LP, Immortal.” Going through changes.

Hideous Divinity – Simulacrum Review

Hideous Divinity – Simulacrum Review

Simulacrum forges even further ahead with myriad permutations of an already mutated theme. The angelic atrocity that inhabits the front of Adveniens now appears mottled and in tormented flux as it attempts to assume a new form. The result is ugly and twisted but, for better or worse, remains affixed to the foundation from which it first drew such terrible life. The message couldn’t be clearer: some pain will last.” Agony as ecstasy.