Jorn

Pulver – Kings Under the Sand Review

Pulver – Kings Under the Sand Review

“Things have been rather hectic here at the Hall as ov late. N00blings are blossoming into semi-functional writers, eagerly frittering about with their promos clasped to their chests and causing general chaos as they run amok. Adding further confusion to the fray, THE SYSTEM… IS DOWN; our website maintenance platform has been as cooperative as Julian Assange, thrusting our fabled Sentynel into a battle that has left vast digital bedlam in its wake. Amidst this sea of gleefully scurrying hordes and flames, order is nowhere to be found. In all this madness, I heard a voice cry out, choked and rasping from ash and years of hobo wine: ‘One of you overrating bastards better cover Pulver, or I’ll see to it that Madam X haunts you to the end of your Jørn-forsaken lives!'” Consequences and repercussions.

Sol Sistere – Cold Extinguished Light Review

Sol Sistere – Cold Extinguished Light Review

“Ov all the cruel ironies in this angry metal world, black metal’s oversaturated state, at this point presumably mere days from breaching mainstream radio status, is likely the one that yanks my unicorn the most. That the brave new musical world discovered by such wanderers as Burzum, Mayhem, and Bathory would be further explored and defiled in time was never a question, yet the rampant proliferation of new obsidian acts we find ourselves plagued with is less akin to expansion than to… well, frankly, a fucking plague.” Semi-cold.

Steel Prophet – The God Machine Review

Steel Prophet – The God Machine Review

Steel Prophet has endured an up and down career of late. They started life as a highly prolific heavy metal band sounding like a cross between Queensrÿche and Iced Earth, churning out 7 albums between 1995 and 2004. Then they fell completely silent until 2014s surprise comeback album, Omniscient. It was a respectable reunion outing and it had me hoping the Prophet was back in a late career groove. Then another four long years went by without a peep and I assumed they were dead in the water again, until album number nine The God Machine arrived unexpectedly.” God as tech.

Herman Frank – Fight the Fear Review

Herman Frank – Fight the Fear Review

Herman Frank made his metal bones by playing guitar alongside Wolf Hoffman on Accept’s early and influential albums like Restless and Wild and Balls to the Wall. He then took a decades-long hiatus, returning for the band’s first few post-Udo albums before decamping once again to helm his eponymous project. His solo output hasn’t fallen far from the Accept tree, but always steered closer to classic hard rock ideas and formulas. This rock influence became more prominent on 2016s The Devil Rides Out, and the trend continues on fourth outing, Fight the Fear.” Fear is the mindkiller.

Whyzdom – As Time Turns to Dust Review

Whyzdom – As Time Turns to Dust Review

“In the curd kingdom of Powermetapolis, in the days just before World War III, things were not well. A cruel wizard, known as Dread Lord Chëëse, had descended upon Powermetapolis with his army — the Trite Trope Troop — and engulfed the lands in flames of predictable parmesan. The echoes of endless Epica clones haunted the air with their carbon-copy cries, over-the-top orchestral orchids had all but choked the indigenous metal flora into extinction, and the kingdom found itself reduced to a laughable shell of its former potential in the wake of the invading tides. Times were trvly tough for Powermetapolis, and in 2007 a group of a peculiar species known as Frenchmen formed an alliance known as Whyzdom, a musical militia whose mission was to bring back the life, the glory, and the powah to the kingdom.” Take the powah back!

Preludio Ancestral – Oblivion Review

Preludio Ancestral – Oblivion Review

“Next up on the AMG stack of rotating power metal promos is the fourth studio album from Argentinian independent sympho-heavy/power entity Preludio Ancestral, a band heretofore bound to digital obscurity in the South American underground. The band’s past fits with my general impression of many underground metal acts from South American nations: a strange amalgamation of Spanish and English lyricism, bizarre album cover art, and a penchant for very eccentric, almost anarchical musical stylings that run the gamut from alternative rock, Manowar-hailing shirtless heavy metal, and Euro-styled power metal across individual albums.” Hail, hail the shirtless.

Voodoo Circle – Raised on Rock Review

Voodoo Circle – Raised on Rock Review

Voodoo Circle make Steel and I yearn for the olde days, when we would sit on the veranda in our trailer park, drinking hobo wine out of pickle jars, listening to mixtapes of Blue Murder, Whitesnake, Great White, and the Scorpions. It was a simpler time: hairspray-soaked blues metal dominated the scene, and there were four main lyrical topics: love, bad love, dirty love, and sex. You can’t get away with that in today’s climate, but that won’t stop Voodoo Circle from trying.” Sex is love.

Nocturnal Rites – Phoenix Review

Nocturnal Rites – Phoenix Review

“Back when I was a carefree graduate student, the band was a fairly typical sword and sorcery themed Euro-power outfit. Despite an artery clogging cheese quotient, the sheer infectious strength of albums like Tales of Mystery and Imagination and The Sacred Talisman all but forced you to get your Balrogs to the wall. Everything changed when Jonny Lindqvist joined as vocalist for 2000s Afterlife opus, slowly shifting the style into a more hard rock oriented sound.” Back from the ash hole of metal history.

Deathless Legacy – Dance with Devils Review

Deathless Legacy – Dance with Devils Review

“Despite trying to sound like Death SS via their humble beginnings as a tribute to those guys, Deathless Legacy comes across more as a soporific Halloween-themed Nightwish, but with worse vocals. There are plenty of keyboards, and the tempos don’t generally get too lively. Sadly, ‘Monster Mash’ may actually make for an apt comparison.” So much for the Transylvanian Twist.