Dec18

Splendidula – Post Mortem Review

Splendidula – Post Mortem Review

“Coming from the Latin ‘splendidus’, ‘splendid’ is defined—by one (free) online dictionary that this n00b found, anyway—as an adjective meaning ‘magnificent; very impressive.’ Of what relevance is this to Post Mortem, the second album from Splendidula? Quite possibly none but having made the splendid-Splendidula link in my head, I got my hopes up.” Album autopsy.

Rauhnåcht – Unterm Gipfelthron Review

Rauhnåcht – Unterm Gipfelthron Review

“Shit, there’re still albums coming out in 2018? Good ones, too? Yet, with my top ten already complete, it’s easy to write off December. But Madam X‘s watchful eye doesn’t sleep. And thank your lucky stars for that. Because we would have walked right past Rauhnåcht‘s newest release, Unterm Gipfelthron.” Nearly missed.

Nekrofilth – Worm Ritual Review

Nekrofilth – Worm Ritual Review

“Metal is all about excess. Be as fast as possible. Be as slow as possible. Or, in Nekrofilth‘s case, be as nasty as possible. Just take the lyrics of “Junkie Cunt,” from the band’s 2013 debut Devil’s Breath: “I want to squeeze your rotten tits/Your curdled cunt gets my cock so fucking hard!” Unless you’re trying to get rid of your in-laws, these aren’t the type of people you’d invite to your Christmas party.” Filthy masses.

Ice War – Manifest Destiny Review

Ice War – Manifest Destiny Review

“Unless your band is Galneryus or Sulphur Aeon, a release date within a week of Christmas is about as suspect as it gets. Ice War, the moniker under which the Canadian solo artist Jo Capitalcide operates, doesn’t dodge the dregs of December either. Ice War’s new platter drops on the cusp of Christmas eve and is about as lousy as you’d expect a one-man traditional metal band to be at this point in the year. I don’t know whether that constitutes a spoiler, but if so, here’s another spoiler for you: the next Adam Sandler movie will be an unfunny comedy in an exotic locale. Some things are just foregone conclusions.” Fabulous disasters.

Lifesick – Swept in Black Review

Lifesick – Swept in Black Review

“Sometimes, I hear a band and wonder if anybody actually listens to them. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure plenty of people blast The Acacia Strain while working on their trucks or whatever, but are those people actually listening to the riffs and paying attention to the songwriting, or do they just want something br00tal blasting in the background? I suspect the answer is the latter, and such is my distaste for bands who build their songs solely from breakdowns. By its very nature, a breakdown is supposed to ‘break down’ the song.” Sack beatings and breakdowns.

Odious Devotion – Odious Devotion Review

Odious Devotion – Odious Devotion Review

“Every now and again I crave to venture forth into uncharted territory, at least as it pertains to my musical imbibements. I yearn to take in new music totally blind, without expectations or prior knowledge of the artist or the genre. Thankfully it’s December, a month where a decent crop of obscure bands creep out of the darkest corners of the metalverse, one of whom are newcomers Odious Devotion. I suspected that I would uncover little about this band other than that they were Finnish, played black metal, and were ready to drop an eponymous debut just before Christmas. Despite best efforts, my suspicions proved well-founded.” Suspicious minds.

Sönambula – Bicéfalo Review

Sönambula – Bicéfalo Review

“Before hearing Deathhammer by Asphyx a few years ago, I didn’t think that death/doom was something that I wanted or needed in my life. Its combination of crushing heaviness and blistering extremity immediately grabbed me. I love that album so much that I named one of my favorite workouts after it. “Deathhammer” is what happens when I go out to my garage, put the title track on repeat, and beat a giant tire with a 20 pound sledge until I can no longer breathe. You can imagine my glee upon finding out that my latest promo counts the mighty Dutch juggernaut among its primary influences.” Hammer time.

Feral – Flesh for Funerals Eternal Review

Feral – Flesh for Funerals Eternal Review

“I never get sick—except during Christmas and New Year’s. It never fails. Every. Single. Holiday. Season. Thankfully, I have Feral with their latest drop to keep me warm and energized as I cough my lungs out. Flesh of Funerals Eternal is the band’s third full length effort, and these Swedes are here to prove that they are exactly as their name suggests: frantic, vicious and unrelenting death metal.” Cat scratch blood fever.

Vanha – Melancholia Review

Vanha – Melancholia Review

“As a mere music critic, I’m well aware I’m not in the music business in a meaningful way. Still, I’m entirely baffled when artists choose to release albums at the very ass end of the year. Even more perplexing is when an album drops on December 30th when a sizable portion of the world is distracted by holiday cheer and excessive eggnogery. Call it bad capitalism or extreme trvism, but one man doom death act Vanha decided to release an album on this of all days in what seems like a calculated attempt to get it overlooked. Luckily for all concerned, Steel isn’t letting this slip into that good night unnoticed.” Bad timing, good doom.

Burial Oath – Subjugation of the Bastard Son Review

Burial Oath – Subjugation of the Bastard Son Review

“As I zip maniacally through these hallowed halls with Cleveland, Ohio’s Burial Oath’s second offering Subjugation of the Bastard Son, I can’t help but feel karma sneaking up on me. Surely, for all of the crimes and indecencies I have committed here, this new shadowy thing I’ve snatched will mark my last acquisition before the Mvppety One obliterates me in a singularity of hate and caliginosity.” Into Crypts of Muppets.