Cruz Del Sur Music

Pharaoh – The Powers That Be Review

Pharaoh – The Powers That Be Review

“For a time it seemed Philly-based Pharaoh would be the vanguard of a new wave of gritty American traditional/power metal. Albums like The Longest Night and 2012s Bury the Light bristled with burly riffs and rough-hewn vocals, accentuated by super slick musicality and proggy elements. After nearly nine years without a release, the band’s forward momentum is a thing of the distant past, but that doesn’t mean they can’t drop another barn burning dose of heavy metal thunder with fifth album The Powers That Be.” Curse of the Pharaoh!

Wheel – Preserved in Time Review

Wheel – Preserved in Time Review

“Metal ebbs and flows. Sub-genres within metal ebb and flow. A few years ago, with Khemmis and Pallbearer leading the charge, it appeared we were entering a golden age of doom which honored its classic and heavy roots, while adopting a progressive sensibility. Sadly, Pallbearer veered into hard-rock territory, Khemmis went very prog, and suddenly, the cupboard seemed bare. Sure, Fvneral Fvkk made a classic, but it was the exception rather than the rule. Doom is not going anywhere, of course, and stoner doom bands are more common than Holdeneye 4.0s, but over the past few years, it’s played a supporting role to its black and death metal cousins. Well, Wheel (not to be confused with their identically named prog counterparts, reviewed recently) is here to remind you of the glorious, thunderous, epic power of classic doom.” Doom wheeling.

Lunar Shadow – Wish to Leave Review

Lunar Shadow – Wish to Leave Review

Lunar Shadow is a relatively young act, but they’ve logged more miles on their progress-o-meter than some bands do over several decades. Here on album number three, Wish to Leave, they’ve undergone their third significant style shift. Having started life playing a form of  retro epic metal fused with black metal, they quickly shifted and incorporated a significant Goth rock element on 2019s The Smokeless Fire, while still trying to make their traditional/epic/NWoBHM/black style function. Now a scant year and change later they’ve shifted deeper into Goth rock and post/indie territory.” Sudden departures and chronic indecisiveness.

Coronary – Sinbad Review

Coronary – Sinbad Review

“I first heard of Coronary when they did a split release with local heroes (and overall excellent band) Traveler a few years ago. While the cuts of the  Traveler trio were more raw and old-school, the Coronary selection was more like the offspring of Accept and Judas Priest — and equally invigorating.” Strongbad.

White Magician – Dealers of Divinity Review

White Magician – Dealers of Divinity Review

“In the unhallowed halls of Angry Metal Guy World Headquarters, some of the thralls writers wax on about what a great year it has been for death metal. I would put forward that it’s also been pretty decent for traditional/epic/classic metal – or whatever you want to call it. Enter White Magician, a quartet of like-minded classic metal aficionados from Detroit, and their debut release, Dealers of Divinity. These guys hope to take their brand of classic rock and metal all the way to the top. Professing to be a blend of Mercyful Fate and Blue Öyster Cult, could the odds be stacked in their favor?” Mages wild.

Stygian Crown – Stygian Crown Review

Stygian Crown – Stygian Crown Review

“I love me some traditional doom and have since I was a wee metal laddie. I’m also a major fan of Bolt Thrower. Naturally then, when an unknown act described their style as “Candlethrower” and promised a union of Candlemass and Bolt Thrower, the brass knuckles and electro-whip came out and the Steel One made damn sure that promo ended up in his hairy clutches.” Back waxed.

Pale Divine – Consequence of Time Review

Pale Divine – Consequence of Time Review

“Generally speaking, bands don’t wait until their 25th year in existence to hit their peak. Don’t tell that to Pale Divine though. Pennsylvania’s best kept secret has been quietly churning out beefy classic doom albums since the turn of the century, basing their sound around Trouble, Black Sabbath and Pentagram, with a gritty biker rock edge making everything feel sturdy and muscular.” Time has been good to some of us.

Dark Forest – Oak, Ash & Thorn Review

Dark Forest – Oak, Ash & Thorn Review

“U.K.’s Dark Forest has been cranking out high quality music since 2009, with a very interesting blend of Euro-power, traditional heavy metal and just enough folk elements to give them a slightly unique sound. Albums like The Awakening and 2016s Beyond the Veil were very good, teetering on the cusp of greatness, borrowing from NWoBHM legends like Iron Maiden while also dipping into the slick songcraft of Avantasia and prime Sonata Arctica. Their compositional and storytelling acumen improved with each release and I just knew they had a truly big release in them dying to burst free.” Really good wood.

Death the Leveller – II Review

Death the Leveller – II Review

“Every now and then you stumble across a young band and find yourself in the presence of enormous potential. Sometimes that potential is on full display and impossible to miss, and sometimes it’s partially concealed behind flaws or kinks yet to be worked out. My experience with the promo for II by Ireland’s Death the Leveller has been an odd combination of both these scenarios.” Irish eyes are crying.

Terminus – A Single Point of Light Review

Terminus – A Single Point of Light Review

“I haven’t gotten my hands on much trve metal of late beyond the massive overdose administered by Atlantean Kodex in September. That was enough to keep me sacking and pillaging like a berserk Vandal for months, but a booster shot of trveness is never a bad thing. Northern Ireland’s epic heavy metal act Terminus is set to deliver such an inoculation this week with their sophomore release A Single Point of Light.” Light the torches.