Heavy Metal

Lord Mountain – The Oath Review

Lord Mountain – The Oath Review

“Anyone else ever find themselves forgetting that they like a genre of music? Doom metal is probably the most-often-forgotten stepchild of my psyche, and I rarely give the style a moment’s notice. But whenever I find myself exposed to those big, lumbering riffs, and haunted vocals, I’m always reminded just how awesome classic doom metal can be—emphasis on the classic.” Mountains full of doom.

Screamer – Kingmaker Review

Screamer – Kingmaker Review

Screamer doesn’t shout in the face of tradition—they never have and, predictably so, never will. Yes, here in this brand new year of 2023, young(ish) names chase the 40-year (or more) legacy of established icons like Rainbow, Van Halen, and Judas Priest, and there’s nothing wrong with that as many such surviving progenitors have trouble playing after bingo hours these days.” Still sreaming in the night.

Crom – The Era of Darkness Review

Crom – The Era of Darkness Review

CROM! I have not heard from you these many long years. I was completely blown away by 2008s Vengeance with its slick blend of epic Bathory-isms and power metal leanings, and I pledged my sword to your service. I was, however, somewhat disillusioned by 2011s Of Love and Death and its dialed-down might and majesty. I confess to being a lowly heretic and completely missing the gospel of the 2017 followup, and I need to make amends for my unholy ignorance. Now we come to the rather unexpected release of the fourth testament to all things Wotan, warrior-esque and wengeancy, The Era of Darkness.” Feel the steel.

A Cherdmas Carol: Brojob – A Very Deathcore Christmas, Archeopteryx – A Very Blackened Christmas, and One Hell of a Christmas – Horrific Holiday Music for the Jaded Masses, Vol 1 Reviews

A Cherdmas Carol: Brojob – A Very Deathcore Christmas, Archeopteryx – A Very Blackened Christmas, and One Hell of a Christmas – Horrific Holiday Music for the Jaded Masses, Vol 1 Reviews

“That night in my bedchambers, I had just changed into my dressing gown and settled before the fireplace when a song began playing, faintly, but growing louder until, alarmed, I recognized it as “The Hammer” by Skelator. “How?!” I cried. “Such drivel in my house?!” Just then, a ghostly apparition burst into the room and strut about like a pro wrestler winding up the crowd. I shuddered, for I knew its face.” Right in the Dickens!

Darkthrone – Astral Fortress [Things You Might Have Missed 2022]

Darkthrone – Astral Fortress [Things You Might Have Missed 2022]

Darkthrone is the only early-days black metal band that’s kept me interested through the decades. In times when I care little for the vast majority of black metal releases, I’ll always give a new Darkthrone album a fair shake. That’s because over their 36-year career, Nocturno Culto and Fenriz always embraced change and took more risks than a degenerate gambler at a no-limits poker table in Macau.” Olde, colde, bolde.

Green King – Hidden Beyond Time Review

Green King – Hidden Beyond Time Review

“With pickings slim to threadbare in the nearly drained promo sump, Yours Steely skulked through the muck, kicking aside one-man basement black metal projects, re-releases from 2020, and several of Holdeneye‘s lost retainers looking for something worthy of attention. Eventually, I scraped up a debut by unknown Finnish traditional metallers, Green King to be my (likely) final review of 2022. Originally formed as a stoner rock outfit, Green King came to be much more a traditional heavy metal vehicle, borrowing a great deal from the earliest days of the NWoBHM.” Green but eager.

Hammers of Misfortune – Overtaker Review

Hammers of Misfortune – Overtaker Review

“It’s not easy being John Cobbet, legendary underground guitarist of Vhöl, ex(ish)-Ludicra,] ex-The Lord Weird Slough Feg, and mastermind of Hammers of Misfortune. Along with his long-collaborating partner Sigrid Sheie (also of Vhöl), Cobbet has, at his own pace, pumped out eclectic success after eclectic success with his rotating Hammers crew.” Hammers time.

Risingfall – Rise or Fall Review

Risingfall – Rise or Fall Review

Losing a friend sucks. Whether human or animal, sudden or expected, chronic or acute, death comes as part of life and rarely does it arrive when we most need it. Unfortunately, shortly before the release of Risingfallߵs debut album, Rise or Fall, one of their founding members, Yoshiki, gave way to a chronic illness. However, Risingfall knew they couldn’t let this hold them down—this throwback act hailing from Japan knows there’s only one way to celebrate death: heavy metal.” Metal never dies.

High Command – Eclipse of the Dual Moons Review

High Command – Eclipse of the Dual Moons Review

“For me, 2022 has been chock-full of highly anticipated albums from returning favorites, so it’s only fitting that my last review of the year should be more of the same. Three years ago, I told you not to miss Beyond the Wall of Desolation, the debut full-length from Massachusetts band High Command and late addition to my year-end list. When I first heard that record, I immediately fell in love with the band’s epic, fantasy-themed crossover thrash and was impressed by the way they were able to take a bunch of old-school, typically aggro styles and mash them together into something oozing with grandeur.” Command to highly overrate.