Children of Bodom

Nekrogoblikon – Heavy Meta Review

Nekrogoblikon – Heavy Meta Review

“We all have a little touch of crazy inside us. You know what I mean; trapped laughter that rumbles out with such force it makes your belly hurt. Sadly with all the hullabaloo and day-to-day grind we forget to stop and breath, but more importantly, we forget to laugh. American melo-death merchants, Nekrogoblikon have made it their mission to remind us that tapping into our crazy and embracing the silly is just downright necessary and I support that!” Goblins are the medium, meta is the message.

Ensiferum – One Man Army Review

Ensiferum – One Man Army Review

Ensiferum isn’t Finland’s most popular or well-loved melodic folk/viking metal band, but they certainly are a band whose legacy cannot be ignored. For me, they revolutionized the music I was listening to in 2001 with their immense self-titled debut Ensiferum, which took Children of Bodom and made it fruitier.” Fruity Viking metal is an important part of any balanced diet.

Mors Principium Est – Dawn of the 5th Era Review

Mors Principium Est – Dawn of the 5th Era Review

“The first time I heard Mors Principium Est was at the end of 2012 when I discovered that they had been slotted to release their first record in five years in December. Somehow in the course of my metal journey I’d managed to miss a band that few have anything bad to say about. In fact, despite being a bit late to the scene—with a debut record in 2003—Mors is one of those bands that everyone I know seems to either not know or love. And AFM releasing your new record in December? Not helping. This time of year is when lists blossom and we bloggers start going through all the stuff we’ve heard and a lot of the stuff we haven’t: new records have trouble finding their way on to our radars in December. AFM seemed to be telling them: ‘No end of year lists for you.'” December? Must mean AFM is releasing a new Mors Principium Est record. AMG has the scoop.

Dreamgrave – Presentiment Review

Dreamgrave – Presentiment Review

“Metal has been extremely retro in the last 5 years. From rethrash to retro death metal, the whole scene has crawled into its proverbial ass in order to wallow in the digested remnants of metal music that is just plain better. Rethrash celebrates the 2.5 years when thrash was the heaviest and most exciting music on the planet. Retro death celebrates a time when bands would scrape together their last Swedish kronor to put a record together that would still sound like total shit. All the bands who wish they were Black Sabbath celebrate a time when amplifiers didn’t actually have overdrive. But all of these celebrated sounds appeal to us because they were authentic: times when newness and creativity gave the world something exciting and special. One such scene for me is the melodic death and black metal scenes of the Scandinavian 1990s. It’s an era when metal was heavy, engaging, abstract, and yet melodic—it felt exciting and new. While not all of the best ideas from this era were executed perfectly at the time, it laid the groundwork for the late ’90s and the early aughts when great metal bands produced great music.” What the hell does this have to do with anything? Click and find out!

Nekrogoblikon – Power Review

Nekrogoblikon – Power Review

“I’m finding it tough to grasp the fact that it’s been two years since Los Angeles, CA’s Nekrogoblikon released Stench. While being one of the silliest, over-the-top albums I picked up in 2011, it was packed with just the right level of gore, disembowelment, blood and great folk infused melodic death (as only goblins can deliver) that their dark onslaught just didn’t date! Goblins, hobgoblins and gore, oh my! These are a few of Madam X’s favorite things. Join her as she examines the weirdly melodic death metal of Nekrogolikon.

Happy Metal Guy Comments: On The Carry-Over Effects in Music-Reviewing And Other Scientific Mumbo-Jumbo

Happy Metal Guy Comments: On The Carry-Over Effects in Music-Reviewing And Other Scientific Mumbo-Jumbo

“I guess you could say this is Happy Metal Guy’s version of Angry Metal Guy’s well-known article on objectivity mixed with Steel Druhm’s rant about the trials of a music reviewer. In research methodology, there is a phenomenon called “carry-over effects”. This refers to the problem of a previous experimental treatment’s effects on research subjects carrying over to the next experiment the subjects are participating in, which is likely to confound the results of that experiment.” In one of the strangest posts ever at AMG, Happy Metal Guy dons a lab coat and attempts to redefine the ongoing struggle for reviewer objectivity through the prism of science, scientology, phrenology, eugenics and other illegal human experimentation. In short, he aims to blind us all…with (junk) SCIENCE!

Kalmah – Seventh Swamphony Review

Kalmah – Seventh Swamphony Review

“As the only blackened thrash band willing to sing about fishing and fish generally, Kalmah always had a special place in my outdoorsy heart. I mean, who else can make simple tales of man vs. fish seem so epic and life threatening? I was impressed by their first four outings (with Swampsong being my favorite), but I felt really let down by their For the Revolution opus, which felt quite tedious. While things kicked back up for the enjoyable and energetic 12 Gauge, it still felt like a band entering the “spinning the wheels” period of their career. Thankfully, Seventh Swamphony sees these psychotic fishermen make a triumphant return to the off-the-rails, blackened thrash of old which straddles the line between the melodic tomfoolery of Children of Bodom and more extreme, cvlt black/death acts.” Do you like blackended catfish metal like Steel Druhm does? If so, you best don the hip waders and read all about the return of the swamp lords.

Eternal Tears of Sorrow – Saivon Lapsi Review

Eternal Tears of Sorrow – Saivon Lapsi Review

Eternal Tears of Sorrow is an exceptionally fruity band name. The mere mention of it conjures images of a self-serious, black-garbed goth band (see photos) with a sultry, pouty femme fatale as front woman. If the name was keeping you away, you missed out on a quality band that blended black metal with melodic death, goth rock and symphonic power metal with good to great results. While I enjoyed all their albums, their crowning achievement was 2009’s Children of the Dark Water, which hit on the perfect combination of bombast, dark atmosphere, extremity, beauty and song writing that was shockingly good from stem to stern. At times it sounded like Cradle of Filth at their most symphonic mixed with early Cemetery, with traces of Kalmah, Insomnium and Amorphis added for good measure. After waiting over three years for a follow-up, we finally get Saivon Lapsi and with the long wait after such a great album, expectations were unavoidably high.” So… does this live up to those great expectations, or is it more of a bleak house? Get it? [YOU’RE FIRED!AMG]

Wintersun – Time I Review

Wintersun – Time I Review

For a few years now, the proverbial white whale of the heavy metal scene has been a new Wintersun record. After the band’s initial, highly acclaimed (some would say overrated), self-titled debut from 2004 former Ensiferum frontman Jari Mäenpää essentially fell off the face of the earth. Now, I’m not a die-hard fan, so I have not kept up with the ridiculous, neurotic, Axl Rose-like kabuki theater that apparently drove fans nuts, but the fact that 8 years later we’re getting record number two should probably tell you the torture that Jari put his fans through. Teaming up with Kai Hanto of Swallow the Sun on drums, Jukka Koskinen of Amberian Dawn and Cain’s Offering  on bass and Teemu Mäntysaari of the short-lived Imperanon on guitar, Jari’s new record, what we now know to be 2012’s Time I, has teased fans for years and has ruffled some feathers. So the question is at it always is: can this record possibly live up to the sky-high expectations that the fans have.