Meshuggah

Malossi – Blanke Barter Review

Malossi – Blanke Barter Review

“It sounds like a dream or a hallucination. Clutch is actually a Norwegian band. They rock hard, they add a bit more of a desert vibe to their sound (think of a more restrained Kyuss), and they sing in Norwegian. They love to throw things like tuba and harmonica into their songs. Their favorite thing in life is abusing the hell out of scooters (hence the band name). And for their album cover, they use a portrait that basically looks like my dad. Sound crazy? It’s not that far from reality, my friends. Let me introduce you to Malossi, and their second album, Blanke Barter.” Scooter-core.

Nothing Noble – Modern Dismay Review

Nothing Noble – Modern Dismay Review

“I’m not sure how everyone got their start with metal, but there had to be a bit of a transition to the more extreme stuff, unless you eat nails for breakfast while listening to Cryptopsy’s None So Vile. Unlike you sausage or oatmeal or vegemite shippers who are descended from the yesteryears of heavy, thrash, or doom, I enjoy my eggs with my bacon: my origins of Christian metalcore a la Demon Hunter, Haste the Day, and Oh Sleeper stick with me. While metalcore has not been the kindest to me thus far in 2021, I’m always rooting for any that may wander across my lap like a feral kitten. Is Nothing Noble available for adoption?” Dismay Day.

Voronoi – The Last Three Seconds Review

Voronoi – The Last Three Seconds Review

Voronoi is a progressive jazz metal trio hailing from Leeds, UK. The fact that keyboardist Aleks Podraza worked with the emotionally beautiful and genre-defying The Cinematic Orchestra immediately caught my eye. The band blends together the sophistication of classical music and modern jazz fusion with the heavy downtempo riffs of prog-metal. Imagine cutting edge jazz pianist Tigran Hamasyan and math-metal experts Meshuggah teaming up to provide the background music for a dinner party.” Fusion turbulence.

Humanity’s Last Breath – Välde Review

Humanity’s Last Breath – Välde Review

“Just about a year and a half ago, I shocked the world by covering Humanity’s Last Breath‘s sophomore record, Abyssal. Djenty deathcore is not normally in my wheelhouse, but every once in a while, I get a craving for something über heavy. I really liked a lot of what I heard on Abyssal. Humanity’s Last Breath paint horrific scenes using an crushingly bleak sonic palette, and when things clicked on Abyssal, it shook the very ground. But as much as I loved most of what the band did on that record, it felt like it could have used some trimming to sharpen the impact. When I heard that followup Välde was scheduled for a February release, it immediately landed a spot on my most-anticipated albums of 2021 list.” Next to last breath.

Paradise in Flames – Devil’s Collection Review

Paradise in Flames – Devil’s Collection Review

Paradise in Flames is a Brazilian black metal quartet, having released two albums, two demos, and an EP since their 2003 formation. While their third full-length’s cover poses questions, a glance at their promo confuses further. They cite death metal countrymen Sepultura and Sarcófago as influences, while the Devil’s Collection was mastered by producer Tue Madsen of Meshuggah and Dark Tranquility fame. Such first impressions are baffling, but the looming question is: is Devil’s Collection any good?” Riffing is fundamental.

Kataklysm – Unconquered Review

Kataklysm – Unconquered Review

“I’ve stuck by Kataklysm for a long time. The Quebecois death metal institution has remained a personal favorite for ages, partly because I grew up with the stuff. I became a fan through great records like Shadows & Dust, Serenity in Fire, In the Arms of Devastation, and the underrated Prevail. One tends to associate the era of a band most formative to their tastes with the sound of that band, which makes sense; that’s what caused them to become a fan, after all. As time takes its toll, things change; we can’t stagnate forever. Sometimes, after an absence, we don’t recognize our friend for a moment. Such was my initial reaction to Unconquered.” Identity crisis.

Regardless of Me – Black Flowers Blossom Review

Regardless of Me – Black Flowers Blossom Review

“Six years into this gig, and I still largely choose albums from the promo pool by name and/or genre tag. While I like to review a diverse array of sub-genres, it’s tough for me to not pick the low hanging fruit of obscure tags. The prospect of “trance metal” was an enticing one indeed, and it was from this that I selected Italy’s Regardless of Me.” No regard.

Intercepting Pattern – The Encounter

Intercepting Pattern – The Encounter

“Just the other day, it occurred to me that I wanted to hear a very specific type of album. In exploring this desire, I began to understand exactly what type of album that was. I wanted to hear an experimental and progressive album influenced by Fredrik Thorendal’s Special Defects solo project that combined angular rhythms and flowing jazz-fusion with spacey atmospheres and a sci-fi concept about alien contact. I wanted the record to feature great drumming, perhaps by Defeated Sanity’s Lille Gruber, and adventurous guitar and bass playing from musicians with a brutal death metal sensibility, maybe the guys from Cerebric Turmoil.” Speak of the Devil…

GOD – IV – Revelation Review

GOD – IV – Revelation Review

Narnia is one thing. Try a band whose name says it all. Try GOD. All bold, all caps, almighty. I can see you looking at the genre tags, expecting words like ‘gospel’ and ‘power metal.’ Instead, you see ‘prog,’ ‘instrumental,’ and ‘tech-death.’ Do you believe in revelations? Well, you’re about to.” Get right with the Man.

Aseitas – False Peace Review

Aseitas – False Peace Review

Aseitas are the Northwest’s death metal answer to the Northeast’s black metal alchemists in Genevieve, twisting the most experimental threads of metal into sleeker, stronger songs. The Portland quintet’s eclectic experiments began with 2018’s Aseitas, a record that seemed woven from every strand of extreme metal’s experiments in the decade before it.” No brutality, no peace.