May22

Blue Heron – Ephemeral Review

Blue Heron – Ephemeral Review

“With their sound palette sorted, the most difficult challenge Blue Heron faces is one of momentum. Stoner doom is inherently relaxed and fuzzy, seemingly tailored for casual listening with or without accompanying recreational substances. Ephemeral appears to be perfectly content inside this mold, and as a direct consequence lacks the kind of excitement that more interesting bands like Wizard Rifle offer.” Desert winds, blue birds.

Obscene – From Dead Horizon to Dead Horizon Review

Obscene – From Dead Horizon to Dead Horizon Review

Obscene‘s debut The Inhabitable Dark hit in the midst of a grand revival of old school death worship at the House of Steel. It packed a big, ugly punch and mined the rarefied territory of Obituary, Hail of Bullets and Asphyx for all they were worth. It had just the right amount of nastiness and extremity and the songs were short and sweet too. The WAY over-the-top vocals by Kyle Shaw were a win for me, but some of my AMG colleagues thought they were too WAY over-the-top. That was nonsense of course, and I spent a lot of time with The Inhabitable Dark. This month we got the followup, From Dead Horizon to Dead Horizon and I found myself giddy to hear what kind of vile charms they had in store.” Bring me the Dead Horizons.

Nova Luna – Nova Vita Review

Nova Luna – Nova Vita Review

“”Prog metal” is a weird label. At times, it feels almost like a catch-all for music that isn’t quite rock and isn’t quite metal. At others, it feels like a way for bands and fans alike to tout minor stylistic differences between one group and the next closest thing. And other times, prog metal is weird. So it’s kind of a gamble, opting to review music under this moniker, as was the case when I first spun Nova Vita, the debut full-length from Italian prog metallers Nova Luna.” Super Nova?

Mournful Congregation – The Exuviae of Gods – Part I Review

Mournful Congregation – The Exuviae of Gods – Part I Review

“Every now and then, while minding my little ol’ business as I knock shit off my dresser like a good cat, the random thought of “Hey, whatever happened to such-and-such band” will pop into my furry cranium and, like clockwork, that band will release something new almost immediately afterward. In this case, said band is Australian funeral powerhouse Mournful Congregation, a band that doesn’t always drop new things at a constant rate, but when they do drop those new things, they’re always heavy, reflective, and… well, mournful.” Short mourning.

Darkened – The Black Winter Review

Darkened – The Black Winter Review

“Everybody misses Bolt Thrower. Ask any death metal fan what band they’d want to resurrect for one last platter of greatness, and I bet the British bruisers would be near the top of the list, alongside Death itself. There’s just something about Bolt Thrower‘s trance-inducing grooves that speaks to the violent beast hidden within each and every one of us, and the band name’s is still sprayed across death metal reviews like so much machine-gun fire whenever a burly tremolo rears its head—and this is nearly two decades after their last album saw the light of day. No one has been able to completely fill the void left in Bolt Thrower‘s absence.” Tanks for the memories.

Anvil – Impact Is Imminent Review

Anvil – Impact Is Imminent Review

“O’ Canada, guess who’s back? Good ol’ Anvil, with their ninety-eighth full-length album. And look at this: another writer penning an Anvil review. Once you’ve reviewed Anvil, you can’t get yourself to do it again. It’s only been two years since their last release (which is about the same as all their albums), and there’s no sign of stopping this Canadian threesome—even if you want them to stop. But, no, they keep coming with a sound they helped to cement 40 years ago. But, while you all might think their sound is irrelevant, Anvil sure as hell doesn’t care.” Danger: Falling Anvil.

Texas Murder Crew – Wrapped in Their Blood Review

Texas Murder Crew – Wrapped in Their Blood Review

“While I proudly fly the OSDM flag, I’ve been much slower to hop on the brutal death and slam bandwagon (the slamwagon, if you will). While I’ve enjoyed a Dying Fetus tune or three, I’ve rarely enjoyed the many go-to bands that have come to define these sub-sub genres. All my preconceived notions were blasted to bits, though, when TheKenWord violently introduced me to Cytotoxin back in 2020. My world was changed, my mind expanded, and my ear cartilage was suitably pulverized. That fond yet painful memory is what led me to scoop Wrapped in Their Blood, the first full-length from Texas Murder Crew, a (wait for it) Texas-based group who slam, smash, churn and gurgle their way through ten gleefully murderous tracks.” Glazed slam.

Serpentent – Mother of Light Review

Serpentent – Mother of Light Review

“If all you want is raw riffs, skull-crushing rhythms, or dissonant aggression, you’ve come to the wrong place. Serpentent’s debut full-length Mother of Light flirts casually with distorted guitars and heavier percussion, but there’s no metal to be found here. The brainchild of Seattle multi-instrumentalist Anne K. O’Neill, Serpentent plays minimalist dark folk music built around O’Neill’s emotive vocals and acoustic guitars. Spring 2022 has set a high bar for folky non-metal around these parts, with Urferd releasing an intricate slab of Nordic folk and Darkher continuing to set the standard for introspective doom. Mother of Light doesn’t quite reach those lofty heights, but it’s a pleasant surprise in a crowded genre.” Snake charming.

Come to Grief – When the World Dies Review

Come to Grief – When the World Dies Review

“Back in the early 90s, Louisiana wasn’t the only locale with conditions ripe for the development of sludge metal. Congealing in 1991, Boston, Massachusetts’ Grief were similarly influential in forging a template for how sludge, especially sludge doom, would develop in the subsequent decades. original Grief members Chuck Conlon (drums) and Terry Savastano (guitar) kept a candle burning for their former band until 2017 saw them resurrect the project, this time as Come to Grief. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect considering world events since then, and 2022 sees the full-length debut of their current iteration, the aptly named When the World Dies.” Come to silver, come to sludge.