Chthonic

Chthonic – Battlefields of Asura Review

Chthonic – Battlefields of Asura Review

“After five years spent successfully spearheading a successful new political party in Taiwan, Chthonic is back, and no, they do not come bearing gifts of blackened metal. For those of us who were won over by 2013’s Bu-Tik, this is not necessarily bad news. That record, which marked a full transition from peak Cradle of Filth-esque extreme metal to soaring, folk-spliced melodeath, executed the transition with aplomb. Five years on, the latter style remains the status quo, and Battlefields of Asura handles the aesthetic with confidence indicative of half a decade of preparation.” Fog of war.

Mongol – The Return Review

Mongol – The Return Review

“If you ascribe to the Arrow of Time theory, as AMG Inc. certainly does, you can never look back. Forward, always. A million-promo horde batters constantly at the wall, and only a brave few can stem the tide. So it’s the rare album indeed that subverts the laws of nature and demands you look backward. The Return is just such a prize.” Withstand the folk of time.

Assault – The Fallen Reich Review

Assault – The Fallen Reich Review

“Singapore probably isn’t the first country that springs to mind when considering the apex of ferocious heavy metal, but Assault‘s debut album, The Fallen Reich, is doing its very best to convince you of its worthy candidacy, by carving a thick slab of Gothenburg marbled death metal and thrashing the living hell out of it.” Skulls, tanks, skull-tanks.

Kawir – Father Sun Mother Moon Review

Kawir – Father Sun Mother Moon Review

“I’m a sucker for bands who incorporate their country’s cultural sounds into their music. Whether it’s Orphaned Land‘s Israeli instrumentation, Chthonic‘s weeping erhu-induced Thai melodies, or Nile‘s violent riffing recalling the war-torn sand dunes and ancient pyramids of their home country of South Carolina, peppering your music with your country’s native sounds can make things a bit more interesting.” Think globally, listen locally.

Darkestrah – Turan Review

Darkestrah – Turan Review

“It’s always fun to pick up a promo from a band that you’ve never heard before. Especially one hailing from a country you know diddly shit about. Perhaps the most enjoyable part of researching bands like this is reading about the rich heritage that surrounds the music. And on today’s exotic expedition into the unknown, we will explore Darkestrah, a black-metal outfit from Kyrgyzstan.” Turan the money!

Chthonic – Bú-Tik Review

Chthonic – Bú-Tik Review

“While first wetting my feet with black metal I came across Chthonic‘s 9th Empyrean, Relentless Recurrence and Seediq Bale albums. I felt a distinct pull towards their use of traditional instruments, their dramatic, aggressive, melodic sound and their bleak, nihilistic undercurrent and for a fair while their screams gripped my attention. Eventually though I felt the inevitable allure for darker and uglier and sank deeper and into the blackness discovering Nattefrost, Carpathian Forest, Shining (Swedish), 1349, Marduk and so on and to be honest I got distracted and I guess I just forgot about Chthonic….” Will Madam X have a happy reunion with the once beloved Chthonic or has absence made the heart grow bitter? So much drama!

Illnath – 4 Shades of Me Review

Illnath – 4 Shades of Me Review

“Prior to 4 Shades of Me, their fourth full-length, Danish metallers Illnath had similarities to bands like Taiwanese Chthonic, South Korean Dark Mirror ov Tragedy, and the the non-Asian Cradle of Filth and Dimmu Borgir. The evolution that is 4 Shades of Me led them to drop the keyboard and symphonic sparkle, instead giving up their inner Illnath and adopting a virtually unrecognizable aggressive approach resembling the melodic blackened side of Dark Funeral. While I was intrigued to spin this album and waited for it with some anticipation I also had a seed of trepidation lurking in the pit of my stomach that 4 Shades of Me would have the same meh, lack of power and spark as Third Act in the Theatre of Madness.” I’m not sure what surprises me more, that Madam X actually has heard of the band Illnath, or that she actually knows their discog inside out? Looks like she’s the person to tell you whether or not you should be check out their new record Four Shades of Me.