King Diamond

Crystal Viper – The Cult Review

Crystal Viper – The Cult Review

“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little afraid of picking up the new Crystal Viper. Having never let me down, the band’s 2019 release, Tales of Fire and Ice, was truly disappointing. In fact, it’s so disappointing, that after three-to-four spins, I erased it from my computer and threw out the review I was writing. Sadly, its only mention was as a 2019 Disappointment o’ the Year. So, yeah, I was a little worried.” Cult is just another word for family.

Them – Return to Hemmersmoor [Things You Might Have Missed 2020]

Them – Return to Hemmersmoor [Things You Might Have Missed 2020]

“I can’t believe we never received the promo for Them‘s Return to Hemmersmoor. I mean, seriously, I’m their biggest fan! Even when their first album fell into the hands of an anti-Diamonder, I still hailed the shit out of it. This October, I even asked my kids if they wanted to watch Tim Burton’s Sweet Hollow. That’s how much the band is on my mind.” Themsmoor.

Yer Metal Is Olde: King Diamond – The Eye

Yer Metal Is Olde: King Diamond – The Eye

“Then there’re examples like Fast Eddie Clarke walking away from Motörhead and the canning of Ozzy Osbourne by Black Sabbath. Anthrax, Exodus, Iron Maiden, and Judas Priest lost their vocalists, who psyched everyone out and returned later anyway. In some cases, end-of-era albums are more like transition pieces—bridging the gap between the band of old and the band of new. Arguably Metallica‘s …And Justice For All fits the bill. It was clear that Justice was different, but it wasn’t until Metallica arrived that everyone saw what Justice really was. King Diamond‘s The Eye is also such an album.” Fading eyesight.

Onirik – The Fire Cult Beyond Eternity Review

Onirik – The Fire Cult Beyond Eternity Review

“In 2015, I had the opportunity to review Casket Dream Veneration; an album I had much love for. But something happened. As I revisit it again, I find myself in love with it even more. It’s a unique experience—spinning an album loved and forgotten, only to cherish it more than ever. As one would expect, this had me excited for follow-up The Fire Cult Beyond Eternity. Not only does G. Rex remain the mastermind behind Onirik but he invited Dirge Rep (drums; The Konsortium, ex-Orcustus, ex-Emperor, ex-Gehenna, and the list goes on forever) and Semjaza (mixing, mastering, and ambient vox; Thy Darkened Shade) to contribute. This is a dream team of underground black metal proportions!” Burning cults.

Poltergeist – Feather of Truth

Poltergeist – Feather of Truth

“Switzerland’s Poltergeist are a better-established band than I had initially realized. Sitting pretty with 4 previous albums spreading back to 1989, they benefit from a degree of metal legitimacy, having produced music in the same decade in which thrash metal came into existence. Following a 23-year hiatus, their 2016 comeback suitably impressed the prior AMG reviewer with their tasteful references to many of their better-known 80s contemporaries. 2020 sees their fifth full-length unveiled and it’s called Feather of Truth. Ghost ticklers.

Carach Angren – Franckensteina Strataemontanus Review

Carach Angren – Franckensteina Strataemontanus Review

“But Franckensteina Strataemontanus is not a true retelling of Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley. If any of you know the myths and legends surrounding the creation of this story, you know that there’re a lot of tales that involve Johann Konrad Dippel. There’s no proof that Shelley was ever inspired by this strange individual, but the connection is hard to ignore. An individual who reportedly invented nitroglycerin, experimented on dead animals and human cadavers, and created an elixir that would allow him to live until the age of 135. Here, Carach Angren provides us with a slight reinvention of the classic Frankenstein story. One that uses artistic license to make Dippel the psychotic creator of an unloved monster.” Frank n’ frowners.

Solitary Sabred – By Fire & Brimstone Review

Solitary Sabred – By Fire & Brimstone Review

“When Cypriot band Solitary Sabred entered my schedule, I looked back in the site’s archives and saw that their 2014 release Redemption Through Force had not only been covered, but highly recommended. Naturally, I was intrigued and I sampled. What I found was a heavy/power metal concept album with absolutely insane vocals. Sounding like a mixture of Manowar and Sanctuary due in no small part to singer Petros Leptos’ delivery consisting of three parts Eric Adams and one part early Warrel Dane, I immediately fell in love and ordered a physical copy of the release.” Steel thyself.

Dr. A.N. Grier’s Top Ten(ish) of 2019

Dr. A.N. Grier’s Top Ten(ish) of 2019

“Name another site out there with writers hiding behind silly monikers whom you know better than your best friends. Name a site you dared to lean on, pouring your heart out in the comments, getting positive and uplifting responses when you needed them most. Name a site you’ve spent as much time debating, loving, and sharing music as you have on AMG. You can’t.” Truth telling.