Motörhead

Bastard – Rotten Blood Review

Bastard – Rotten Blood Review

“What we have here is the devil’s own bar band. After a seven-year layoff and a slew of lineup changes, Bastard swaggers back onstage with sophomore full-length Rotten Blood. These four likely parolees mine a vein of blackened speed metal and thrash that will be familiar to fans of NifelheimGoatwhore, or, more recently, any of your finer bands ending in the suffix “-er” (Bütcher, Bewitcher, Hellripper, Demiser, etc.). The album is all Motörhead riffs played at 78 rpm and mad-lib lyrics that pay homage to Satan or whatever–mostly, it seems, because cozying up to Old Man Splitfoot is the fastest way to get your hands on the good whiskey.” Bastards, bourbon, Battlestar Galactica.

X.I.L – Rip & Tear Review

X.I.L – Rip & Tear Review

“Following a pretty damn solid year for the thrash genre in 2021, fans of the legendary, often gateway metal genre will be buzzed for more of the same quality in 2022. A good old blast of feisty thrash is always welcome, especially as we swing into the trials, tribulations and hopefully good times of another uncertain year. Kicking off my thrash promos of 2022 is an unheralded act out of Texas, named X.I.L, dropping their self-released debut LP, Rip & Tear.” Rip ride.

Gunjack – The Third Impact Review

Gunjack – The Third Impact Review

“You’ve heard of rock ‘n’ roll. You’ve heard of black ‘n’ roll. You’ve heard of death ‘n’ roll. But, have you ever heard of drunk ‘n’ roll? Sure you have. If you’ve heard Motörhead, then you know exactly what to expect from a band that says they play drunk ‘n’ roll. It’s the kind of music every party deserves. The kind of music to whip your cock out to and blackout on hobowine filled with shards of broken swords. That’s the kind of “roll” Gunjack plays.” Ride the drunk train to the hobo yard.

Knife – Knife Review

Knife – Knife Review

“Over the past few years, I’ve found myself growing increasingly fond of the blackened speed metal subgenre. Something about the mix of simple, unrelenting riffs, vicious vocals and gleefully evil subject matter speak to my soul in a profound and fundamental way. But instead of exploring any of that in therapy, I just keep an eye out for the next morsel of Motörhead-worshipping, Venom-venerating filth that bobs to the surface of the promo sump. That’s exactly how I happened upon Knife, a blackened speed outfit hailing from Germany that traffic in this (un)heavenly concoction.” Blades of steel.

Black Mass – Feast at the Forbidden Tree Review

Black Mass – Feast at the Forbidden Tree Review

“Is it just me, or is Redefining Darkness Records on somewhat of a tear lately? We’ve covered thirteen of the label’s releases since late 2018, and all thirteen have received a score of 3.0 or better. I’ve handled three of those reviews in 2021, and I’ve found them to be good, very good, and fucking awesome. So when the promo for Redefining Darkness act Black Mass came along with its epically sinuous artwork, I threw my head back, cursed the sky, and feasted upon its forbidden fruit.” Rise of the Tree Eaters.

Archangel A.D. – Casus Belli Review

Archangel A.D. – Casus Belli Review

Archangel A.D. play thrash about as retro as it gets. But even retro thrash has its particular flavors, in this case an even split mixture between Metallica and Annihilator. Aside from the opener, which might as well have been called “King of Spades” for as close as it hews to Motörhead’s classic. Nevertheless, there’s a more than satisfying amount of hooky riffs on Casus Belli, as well as a surprising amount of variety.” Belli of the beast.

Hellryder – The Devil Is a Gambler Review

Hellryder – The Devil Is a Gambler Review

“There are castles and dragons, maidens and jesters, kings and queens. But genres have mixed. Instead of shiny armor, the knights are clothed in black leather. The queen serves as a groupie to the local tale spinners. And, the womenfolk have hair bigger than the menfolk’s broadswords. This is a place where stories of love are equally as common as those of war and mythology. It’s a strange time. Conformity and individuality struggle daily. Can members of this society compromise? Evolution is inevitable. Can they combine their best traits and push on to build something greater than their two parts? Lo and behold, this world exists—for better or worse. It’s the world of Hellryder, and according to them, The Devil Is a Gambler.” Gamblor will break you.

Bunker 66 – Beyond the Help of Prayers Review

Bunker 66 – Beyond the Help of Prayers Review

“There’s something so alluring about the melding of two genres like black and speed metal. When executed correctly, these seemingly disparate styles join forces to create a noxious stew altogether stronger than the sum of their individual parts; powerful, bombastic and able to dissolve your stomach lining. Bands like Blackevil, Bewitcher, Hellripper and a cornucopia of their spike-and-denim clad contemporaries prove what transpires when icy BM and the meat-and-potatoes chug of 80s speed form their unholy union. Bunker 66 are no strangers to this format, and are eager to continue the sacrilegious scourge with their new album Beyond the Help of Prayers.” Bunker busters.

Bloody Hell – The Bloodening Review

Bloody Hell – The Bloodening Review

“I’m a simple kind of metal fan. If you title your album “The Bloodening,” I’m going to seize the promo and run off into the night cackling like a crazed seal. Finnish heavy metal act Bloody Hell gave me just such an opportunity with their sophomore opus and I’m truly thankful. I’m less thankful for that eye-scorching poopsicle of an album cover, but you can’t always get what you want. You may get what you need though, if brainless, testosterone-powered 80s metal with both fists in the beer barrel is what you require.” The BloodeningER.