Melodic Death Metal

Void Dancer – Prone Burial Review

Void Dancer – Prone Burial Review

“Metal as a genre is still relatively young. This means both that the meanings and definitions of sub-genres are constantly evolving, and that musicians are continually combining them in novel ways. Void Dancer’s debut Prone Burial purports to be melodic death metal, but is actually more a blend of metalcore and tech death. I’m not mad about it, in spite of being misled, because Void Dancer hit upon something. They manage to do on their debut album what many fail to achieve after several: fuse technicality with punchiness. And they do it in an enjoyable, fairly unique way.” Burn, baby, burn, disco abyss.

Cryptivore – Celestial Extinction Review

Cryptivore – Celestial Extinction Review

“Nasty things can happen in the blink of an eye. A stroke, a car accident, a sucker punch that leaves you concussed and picking up teeth like so many spilled Tic Tacs… now feel free to add the songs of Cryptivore to that list of fleeting but brutal mishaps. Celestial Extinction delivers ten tracks in twenty-seven minutes, each one of which wastes no time beating your ass bloody and then fleeing the scene before anyone can hold it accountable. This is mixed martial songwriting, a blitzkrieg of techniques and styles designed to probe your feeble defenses until something yields.” You are what you beat.

Fall of Stasis – The Chronophagist Review

Fall of Stasis – The Chronophagist Review

“Extreme music and cheer have an uneasy relationship. Power metal is generally expected to be upbeat and not take itself too seriously, but when the growls and screams enter the building, such attitudes are wont to leap out the window. Death and black metal are serious business, dammit! Except when they’re not, and examples abound of bands that embrace both the dark and the light. At first glance, Fall of Stasis seem to be the serious sort. A faux Old English logo, a grim apocalyptic cover, and a title that literally means ‘the time eater.’ But is it all as dark as it seems?” Goro-core.

Hath – All that Was Promised Review

Hath – All that Was Promised Review

Hath are a cool band. They fill that Slugdge-shaped hole in my thirsty sponge body quite snugly without being a carbon copy, and you can clearly hear how much the group’s sound and skill grew between debut EP Hive and debut LP Of Rot and Ruin. The same measure of growth in songwriting and style applies between Of Rot and Ruin and their latest opus, All that Was Promised.” Hell Hath more fury.

The Devils of Loudun – Escaping Eternity Review

The Devils of Loudun – Escaping Eternity Review

“Hailing from Seattle, and featuring members of Aethereus—who themselves released a stellar album just a few weeks back—The Devils of Loudun specialize in death metal of the melodic and symphonic variety. The band’s debut full-length Escaping Eternity finds neoclassical guitar leads and keys soaring over a foundation of thick, grooving riffs, while the powerful vocals of Aethereus’ Vance Bratcher dial the heaviness quotient up to critical levels.” Devil be Loud(un).

Venom Prison – Erebos Review

Venom Prison – Erebos Review

“In the three years since their sophomore release Samsara, Venom Prison has experienced a meteoric rise to fame. Samsara captured the hearts of both underground metal aficionados and non-sociopaths, by infusing high-energy brutal death metal with a healthy dose of slamming hardcore. Venom Prison’s unrelenting sound earned them a deal with Century Media, and Erebos brings the band to a crossroads as their major label debut.” Prisoner of expectations.

Sarcasm – Stellar Stream Obscured Review

Sarcasm – Stellar Stream Obscured Review

“If you like old-school Swedeath, old-school black metal, old-school doom, then, sorry, you won’t like this album at all. That was my pitiful attempt at sarcasm. The Sarcasm in question here are a Swedish melodic blackened death metal group who have been knocking about since the late ‘80s. Their veteran status in the scene shows they take their craft a whole lot more seriously than their name might let on. It also prompts the question of whether music that follows a blueprint now 30 years old can still be exciting and compelling, particularly to those too young to feel the nostalgia factor.” Don’t cross the streams.

Burned in Effigy – Rex Mortem Review

Burned in Effigy – Rex Mortem Review

“Melodic death metal is a strange beast for me. It’s one of those genres that almost always sounds good on first listen, but once the novelty wears off, I rarely find myself enamored enough to hang around. I recently joked that Amon Amarth is the only melodeath band I actually like, and while that may not actually be true, the sentiment illustrates what I need in order to like an album of this particular genre. No thanks to sad-boi, contemplative versions of the style; I need riffs and aggression in my melodeath platters.” Burning in elegance.

Record(s) o’ the Month – November 2021

Record(s) o’ the Month – November 2021

“October and November can, without a doubt, be said to have saved 2021 for me. After last month’s pile of elite records, it was hard to imagine that November could be better. But two big things happened in November: 1) I successfully defended my PhD thesis, thus finally making me Dr. Angry Metal Guy; and 2) the rest of the big releases for 2021 dropped hard, fast, and heavy.” How to choose from this bumper crop?

Bloody Cumshot – Nymphomania [Things You Might Have Missed 2021]

Bloody Cumshot – Nymphomania [Things You Might Have Missed 2021]

“In a year of awful band names, Bloody Cumshot —a project by Junya of Zemeth— may be the only one that has moved several AMG staff members to boycott the band on principle. And who can blame them? It is stupidly, ridiculously over the top. I’d assume anyone with such a band name to be edgelords among edgelords, and the song titles don’t help. But you can safely ignore all of that. Here’s bloodshot in your eye.