Ihsahn

Thy Catafalque – Meta Review

Thy Catafalque – Meta Review

“Imagine your basic symphonic black metal, say, Emperor. One day, Ihsahn’s on a big electronica kick, so he throws some cash at the latest Toontrack update, digs out his high school band instruments, and rolls all his artsy friends over for a weekend. No blasting, no razor thin production, just a full plate of programmed drums and defied expectations. This is the sound of Tamás Kátai’s Thy Catafalque.” And what a sound!

Ihsahn – Arktis. Review

Ihsahn – Arktis. Review

Ihsahn is always in motion. Following a storied career in one of the premier black metal bands of all time, he’s released five full-length albums. Nearly all of those records have been critically acclaimed, but only one has been critically acclaimed by me. While I enjoyed The Adversary, Ihsahn‘s post-Emperor zenith was angL. Starting with After, however, Ihsahn started to lose me. What made his earlier material so good—riffs, riffs, more riffs, and slick composition (also riffs)—began to be replaced by increasingly abstract compositions. And when songs like “Scarab” started getting replaced with tracks like “M,” I stopped enjoying new Ihsahn albums. Yet Arktis. marks the next phase for Ihsahn, having finally left the Nihilists behind him.” Praise Zarathustra!

Hyperion – Seraphical Euphony Review

Hyperion – Seraphical Euphony Review

“Crack a beer and get comfy folks, it’s storytime. Our tale is about a brave group of Swedes who decided to storm the castle of greatness, knowing full well the dangers and hardships they’d face. The lofty standards of age-old records loved worldwide would need to be breached. Our protagonists would need to deftly maneuver within clear and defined stylistic boundaries. These Swedes go by the name Hyperion, and the tome of their triumph is called Seraphical Euphony. Storytime!

Trivium – Silence in the Snow Review

Trivium – Silence in the Snow Review

“Well, kids, let this be a lesson to you all. Dropping clickbait jokes and fucking too much with the AMG HR department results in the dropping of various hammers. In my case, punishments manifested themselves in the form of name-calling (Steel called me a “Master Baiter”) and a metalcore promo for review.” The core will flow until you praise our new logo.

Mr. Fisting Comments: Evolve or Die

Mr. Fisting Comments: Evolve or Die

“As someone who entered the world of metal during the mid-1990s, I quickly got used to bands evolving and changing established formulas. We never knew if someone’s next album was going to go techno, or go punk rock, or invent new subgenres entirely. Granted, a lot of these “experiments” had commercial motives behind them, and oftentimes the results straight-up sucked. But still, there’s something to be said for being surprised.” Mr. Fisting is tired of metal bands playing it safe and he’s pissed at metal fans too. Give us hell, Fisting!

Angry Metal Guy’s Top 10(ish) o’ 2013

Angry Metal Guy’s Top 10(ish) o’ 2013

Angry Metal Guy is becoming an interwebs institution. You might not realize this, but this is my fifth Top 10(ish) Records o’ the Year since I started this as a lone Internet Metal Warrior back in 2009, reviewing for my literally dozens of readers, none of whom commented. Can’t believe it? Try these on for size. It’s impressive how far this little blog that could can come, and it’s amazing how much I used to review! Several CDs a week! Incredible. Anyway, the times they are achangin’, but the one thing that isn’t changing is that I have opinions and galldarnit, I’m going to tell you them.

Ihsahn – Das Seelenbrechen Review

Ihsahn – Das Seelenbrechen Review

Ihsahn records used to get a breathless introduction about how incredible the former Emperor frontman’s solo career was. While this might still be true for some breathless fans, it is not the case for me. While I am still a huge fan of The Adversary and angL, both Eremita and its predecessor After left me cold.” Das seelenbrechen is Ihsahn‘s newest crack at a solo record. Will it leave this Angry Metal Guy as cold as the man’s last two records?

Loch Vostok – V: The Doctrine Decoded Review

Loch Vostok – V: The Doctrine Decoded Review

So last year (that’d be 2011 for everyone reading this review in 2013 and forward) I discovered Loch Vostok‘s record Dystopium a few months after it was released and did a Things You Might Have Missed entry about it. But given that it was last year, I was surprised when I saw that the fecund Teddy Möller and crew had already produced a new record and that it was sitting in my inbox. Now, granted, I didn’t get to it nearly quickly enough (since it’s already out), but I thought I’d drop in and let you know that a) it’s out and b) what I think of it. I like it, but not as much as Dystopium. There, now you don’t need to read any further!

Ihsahn – Eremita Review

Ihsahn – Eremita Review

Post-Emporer, Ihsahn has kicked a lot of ass, but After was a controversial record without a doubt. While I gave it my thumbs up at the time, I feel like it hasn’t aged well—with the saxophone performance being my biggest complaint. Sure, jazz and metal have histories of solo players who push the boundaries of what is “acceptable,” but the saxophone performances get pretty taxing after a while. So for me, the thing that I’m looking for from a new Ihsahn record is that it lives up to the songwriting and groove-oriented riffing from The Adversary and especially angL which is one of my favorite records of the last 10 years. So, as you can guess, I approached Eremita (Latin for “hermit” and the root of the English word “eremite” if you weren’t aware) nervously.

Interview with Mirai Kawashima from Sigh

Interview with Mirai Kawashima from Sigh

Enigmatic and uncomfortably cheerful, gregarious and ambitious Happy Metal Guy managed to catch up with Mirai Kawashima from the Japanese avant-garde black metal band Sigh. He bombarded him with positivity, amusing anecdotes and uncomfortable questions about steel phalli until Mr. Kawashima relented; answering the questions and talking about… flowers? This fucking blog gets weirder and weirder every day.