Napalm Records

Alestorm – Curse of the Crystal Coconut Review

Alestorm – Curse of the Crystal Coconut Review

“Figuring out what a band sounds like is akin to writing a biography: look first to the influences. Alestorm’s biography would need chapters devoted to a beloved and trve band named Bal-Sagoth. Early Alestorm material is based around the idea that it would be fun if Bal-Sagoth were Scottish, got drunk, played sea shanties, and kept the keyboard heroics.” Who ordered the Ale with Bals?

Warbringer – Weapons of Tomorrow Review

Warbringer – Weapons of Tomorrow Review

Warbringer has been bringing the war to thrash since 2006, breathing life back into the classic 80s sound with a powerhouse blend of Bay Area legends like Exodus, Death Angel and Testament. On 2017’s Woe to the Vanquished they expanded their sound outward, incorporating black metal influences into their thrash template with interesting if not always completely successful results.” Has Weapons of Tomorrow upped the ante once again and armed them for revolution?

Gloryhammer – Legends From Beyond the Galactic Terrorvortex Review

Gloryhammer – Legends From Beyond the Galactic Terrorvortex Review

“If you missed the tongue-bathing AMG gave their last album, Gloryhammer are one of the best active Rhapsody-style epic power metal bands, and also a loving, self-aware parody of same. They’re founded first on quality and second on overly-amped up tropes—D-tier speculative fiction plot, non-native English speaker lyrics, etc.—to the precise point where they become obviously funny. It’s not so overdone that it becomes tiresome, and it works because of the attention to detail and cohesiveness of the whole: take a couple of elements away and you might wonder whether they were actually serious all along.” Get hammered.

Candlemass – The Door to Doom Review

Candlemass – The Door to Doom Review

“It’s interesting to watch things come full circle with Candlemass. Having helped reboot doom metal in the 80s with their excellent Epicus Doomicus Metallicus, the band launched a career spanning several decades. While their output varied in quality over the years, they are rightfully considered a legendary doom band. 2012s Psalms for the Dead was supposed to be their swan song, and founder Leif Edling has since kept busy with his Avatarium and Krux projects. The urge to reform his original band proved too great however, and for this reunion Leif even managed to dig up original vocalist Johan Langquist, who hasn’t done anything since Epicus Doomicus.” Doom at your door.

Corrective Measures: Angry Metal Guy’s Stack o’ Shame Edition

Corrective Measures: Angry Metal Guy’s Stack o’ Shame Edition

“Like with video games or books, one’s “Stack o’ Shame” is the stuff one intends to do but has not been able to do for one reason or another. These reviews are all too late to write full 600-800 word reviews for. On the other hand, I am going to be way too busy this winter to be able to handle writing a bunch of TYMHM. So, I am invoking my right to rule through this (hopefully one-off) post that rounds up some stuff that I fully intended to review and didn’t. So by ways of an apology to both you, the readers, and the albums in my Stack o’ Shame, I bring you some angry, metal blurbs. Mea culpa.” Sometimes sorry is enough.

Kamelot – The Shadow Theory Review

Kamelot – The Shadow Theory Review

“There aren’t many bands as steeped in class and refinement as Kamelot. Since their earliest days their take on melodic power metal has been swanky and upper-crust,, and its only grown more polished over the years, adopting neo-classical influences and pompous orchestration. The Shadow Theory marks the band’s third release with Tommy Karevik behind the mic, and things are as elegantly highfalutin as ever, often at the expense of the heavy and the metal components of their sound.” Fancy boys making noise.

Heidevolk – Vuur van Verzet Review

Heidevolk – Vuur van Verzet Review

“I’m a bit of a Johnny-come-lately when it comes to folk. I occupied the Ensiferum / Finntroll bandwagon for a decade, but the Viking folk of Heidevolk came to me as a recent and pleasant surprise. They are not Bathory, not Korpiklaani, not Týr or Vintersorg, but the Dutchmen  blend the aesthetics and strengths of each into one cohesive package.” Go folk yourself.

Audrey Horne – Blackout Review

Audrey Horne – Blackout Review

“Before there was The Night Flight Orchestra, there was Audrey Horne. They were the first extreme metal collective to rediscover and mercilessly plunder the sacred crypts of 70s and 80s radio rock, leaving naught behind for subsequent tomb raiders but Frank Stallone 8-tracks and broken pieces of Toto and Billy Joel imports. Those purloined rock relics helped fuel album after album of irresistibly rowdy music, establishing these sticky fingered Norwegians as the best hard rock band America never produced.” Who rocks in a pineapple under the sea?