Feb16

Lorn – Arrayed Claws Review

Lorn – Arrayed Claws Review

“Recall, if you can, your first exposure to black metal. If you’re a grizzled follower of the genre, its sinister novelties have become an aspect of your daily listenings that ceased to faze you long ago. I imagine, however, that you reacted to your first encounter with the style much in the same way your parents would; a knee-jerk response of “what the fuck am I listening to?” that shocked you in a way music never had before. My initial listen of Italian duo Lorn’s Arrayed Claws instantly recalled my reaction to the loss of my black metal virginity.” You never forget your first.

Sunburst – Fragments of Creation Review

Sunburst – Fragments of Creation Review

“It’s well known that I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with power metal and progressive/power. Some of my favorite bands ever—Symphony X and Blind Guardian the most obvious among them—fall into this category, and I keep an ever-watchful eye peeled for new additions to my catalogue. Yet the genre is also plagued by some serious annoyances for me. First, many of the most popular vocalists are people who I find nigh-on unlistenable (Warrel Dane). Second, unlike my esteemed colleague and dictatorial collaborator Lieutenant Corporal Steel Druhm, I find that much of the music being produced within this scene just isn’t terribly heavy. Bands that others worship—see Anubis Gate—feel washed out and bland, offering up little “metal” to keep me engaged.”

Pogavranjen – Jedva čekam da nikad ne umrem Review

Pogavranjen – Jedva čekam da nikad ne umrem Review

“I don’t often get a chance to write about Croatian metal bands or, to be exact, I don’t often feel like writing about Croatian metal bands. There’s barely anything to call a “metal scene” in my homeland, with most acts birthed alone and lonely into a generic and photocopied existence, only to disappear in a flash of insignificance. Suffice to say that during the last 25 odd years since the country’s declaration of independence, there were only a few bands worth mentioning in the same breath with their international stylistic brethren (Ashes You Leave, Umor, Death of Folk, Infernal Tenebra). Imagine my elation, then, when something as good as Pogavranjen’s third LP, Jedva čekam da nikad ne umrem,[1. Looking Forward to Never Dying] came along. Curiously composed and competently played avant-garde black metal that is not merely the fruit of derivative rehashing? Yes, please!” We’ll take a double of that, with fries.

Goatpsalm – Downstream Review

Goatpsalm – Downstream Review

“It’s rare that I find music I can appreciate on a superficial, musical and a cerebral level. Too much of the former and it likely won’t stick with me in the long term; too much of the latter and the smell of shit wards me off as groups examine how far they can reach up their rectum. It’s great to hear that ideal fusion of the two, particularly when it comes out of left field – in this case, Russia.” From Russia, with folk.

Ereb Altor – Blot Ilt Taut – Review

Ereb Altor – Blot Ilt Taut – Review

“I’ve reviewed several albums by Sweden’s Ereb Altor, all approvingly. They even captured my Song o’ the Year for 2015 with the mighty “Nattramm.” Whenever I discuss their style, I’m forced to compare them to Viking-era Bathory because that’s clearly their chief influence and they do nothing to hide it. With that in mind, I wasn’t surprised to hear they were doing an entire album of Bathory covers to honor the late, great Quorthon.” Raise the Tribute Hammer.

Myrath – Legacy Review

Myrath – Legacy Review

Myrath makes what they call “Tunisian metal.” While this is a totally legit way of framing it, it’s also fair to say that they really make a kind of orchestral power metal laced with the sounds and stories of North Africa. Despite having debuted in 2007, I’ve only previously listened to 2010’s Desert Call. It might be that I had just gotten to the album directly after reviewing the absolutely transcendent The Never Ending Way of ORwarriOR by Orphaned Land, but the album didn’t stand up for me and I didn’t really ever follow up on them.” So what’s 5 years distance do for Angry Metal Guy’s opinion of the only Tunisian metal band you’ve ever heard of?

Temisto – Temisto Review

Temisto – Temisto Review

“I can almost hear the collective groans as I break the news that we have another old school death metal band on our hands, hailing from Stockholm, Sweden no less. That horse has been pounded into dust after all and the number of sub-par clones has exceeded the saturation point. Yet being a sucker for old school death I always approach such situations with a glimmer of optimism, particularly when bands like Horrendous and Tribulation have demonstrated that old school death metal can be executed with a degree of originality and innovation.” We review death metal. Deal with it.

Record(s) o’ the Month – February 2016

Record(s) o’ the Month – February 2016

If I’d thought further ahead, I’d have come up with a fantastic joke about the fact that we’re releasing this February edition of the Record(s) o’ the Month on the 29th of February—that’s right, a leap year. This seldom-occurring date is, of course, special in a lot of different ways and made even more special by the fact that I am once again delivering the Record(s) o’ the Month on time. Well, not just on time, but early. Despite everything—and literally I have so much to do because I spent nearly ⅔ of February fucking sick—I am bucking up and telling you what the best record o’ the month for February was. And you should probably have seen these coming…

Voivod – Post Society EP Review

Voivod – Post Society EP Review

“Being old means you keep a lot of crap and not just what’s clogging your colon. I still have the issue of Unchain the Underground (as referenced in my last review) where I lambasted Voivod‘s Angel Rat, an album that was like a poison-tipped arrow to my heart of steel at the tender age of 16.” The man has been lambasting since before some of you were eating.

Redemption – The Art of Loss Review

Redemption – The Art of Loss Review

“Over my life as a metal fan I’ve had my share of issues with proggy musical endeavors. Though there was a time when I loved everything Dream Theater did, they eventually drifted into a grey purgatory of wanking and showboatery which left those of us who appreciated actual songs out in the cold. I loved early Fates Warning even more dearly, but they too took their progressive tendencies too far afield for my liking, losing their traditional metal charm entirely. Somehow, Redemption managed to avoid alienating my affections over their career though they embody the exact same tendencies as the aforementioned acts.” Don’t put the W in wank and everything will be just fine.