Evergrey

Evergrey – The Atlantic Review

Evergrey – The Atlantic Review

Evergrey carved quite the little niche for themselves over the last 20-plus years. Their brand of stripped down depressive progressive metal is never the most flashy or trendy thing in the room, but they’ve always had a certain somber magic that pulls you in and draws you back. They’ve been on a nice roll of late too, with 2014s Hymns for the Broken and 2016s The Storm Within both delivering the sadboy goods with enough meat and weight taters to hit the metal bone just so. The Atlantic is the final chapter in the loose conceptual trilogy started with Hymns, dealing with the confusing ebbs and tides of life as we try to chart a course and keep our head above water.” Come sail away.

Divine Ascension – The Uncovering Review

Divine Ascension – The Uncovering Review

“Australian progressive metallers Divine Ascension are back with their third album, The Uncovering. Apparently. To be honest, I was blissfully unaware they were here in the first place or that they’d gone anywhere. But this appears to be a failing on my part. Their previous outing, Liberator, saw them touring in support of genre stalwarts Stratovarius, as well as getting on the road with the inimitable Blind Guardian. Whilst I have something of a soft spot for both these bands, it is undeniable that their (extensive) back catalogs are patchy—although I won’t hear a word said against Blind Guardian’s Nightfall in Middle Earth—and I can’t help but query how much space there really is in what might be termed progressive-power metal.” Cover up, Buttercup.

Parasite Inc. – Dead and Alive Review

Parasite Inc. – Dead and Alive Review

“Bands like Hypocrisy and Dark Tranquillity were like gateway drugs for me. I remember getting heavy into the style about a decade ago and then it seemed to run its course. And, as most of my favorite bands carry on with run-of-the-mill material, while others—like Soilwork, Arch Enemy, and In Flames—continue to bore me to fucking death, it’s become even more clear that I’ve fallen away from the genre. So, in hopes of rekindling some of those flames, I grabbed Parasite Inc.‘s Dead and Alive. What the hell was I thinking?” The Doc has worms.

Redemption – Long Night’s Journey into Day Review

Redemption – Long Night’s Journey into Day Review

“Once upon a time I went all in for the larger than life prog bombast of Fates Warning and later, Dream Theater.  I admired the cerebral nature of both their works and the mind-blowing level of technical proficiency with which they delivered it.  Over the years, Dream Theater lost their way and the ability to deliver memorable material, but Fates Warning modified and ultimately streamlined their sound to remain a reliable, engaging act 30-plus years into their career arc.  Redemption, a sort of prog super group helmed by Fates Warning‘s Ray Alder and some Fates expats, has managed a successful run of albums by following Fates‘  blueprint and delivering songs first, with wankery added in a relatively unobtrusive way.” A long noodle’s journey.

Borealis – The Offering Review

Borealis – The Offering Review

“I’ll be straight with you: there’s been a lot of shit going on in the World of Grier. Some of it has resulted in a big sigh of relief, while the rest of it is shit. Like, pure shit. Festering, fucking stuff that no toilet can flush. So, Borealis‘ newest release, coming as it does during these dark days, is a true blessing.” Lights, cameras, high expectations!

Oceans of Slumber – The Banished Heart Review

Oceans of Slumber – The Banished Heart Review

“Here’s one many of us at AMG have been waiting for with bated breath. Back in 2016, Oceans of Slumber’s excellent but flawed Winter made it onto a number of year-end lists, including AMG Himself despite his positively negative review. Needless to say, all of us were eager to see if the Texas progsters could tighten up in a few areas and push things a bit farther on their next release. Of course, being the pack leader, AMG asserted himself early and claimed dibs on this prized promo, but a quick call to Jeff Gillooly and the review was mine.” Sweep the leg.

Rage – Seasons of the Black Review

Rage – Seasons of the Black Review

“OK, so maybe I don’t have Netflix and, maybe, I thought Twitter was a porn site. And, maybe, I haven’t owned or played a video game in two decades or watched my beloved Yankees whip the Red Sox in over five years. And, maybe, the reason is that I don’t watch TV (or have one). So what if I like to sit around with my old man and talk about the Battle of Franklin? What if I like to have my breakfast at 4:30 every morning? And, so what if it’s currently 4 am right now? Maybe I have gray in my beard. Maybe I have gray in my pubes. That doesn’t make me fucking old. It’s not my fault I’m way more mature and far busier than the rest of you. You want old? Go find Huck, Steel, and Rage.”Silver and olde, silver and olde.

DGM – The Passage [Things You Might Have Missed 2016]

DGM – The Passage [Things You Might Have Missed 2016]

“Italy’s litany of exports are unmistakably intertwined with the country’s culture; one look at a Fiat or an Armani suit and my intuition immediately tips me off that it’s a product of pizza-pasta land, even if I can’t quite place what makes the item in question distinctly Italian. The same applies to DGM.” It’s all in the seasoning.

Noveria – Forsaken Review

Noveria – Forsaken Review

“The mainstream view of metal is that it’s either scary or ridiculous. Which, I suppose, makes us all a bunch of clowns, both in how society views us and in our low-key terrorization of the collective subconscious. But you have to admit that a lot of metal really is a bit idiotic, with grown men playing Viking metal, stringing together the foulest descriptions of gore, or, in the case of power metal, screaming about flaming dragons in the skies.” Those dragons are en fuego!