Oct16

Candiria – While They Were Sleeping Review

Candiria – While They Were Sleeping Review

“Look up “adversity” in the dictionary, and you’re likely going to encounter a picture of Brooklyn’s Candiria. The legendary hardcore outfit, made infamous through their fusion of hip-hop, freeform jazz, NYC hardcore, and death metal, crushed crowds the world over with their frenetic live show. Influential albums such as 1999’s The Process of Self-Development and 2001’s 300 Percent Density wowed listeners with their amorphous stop-on-the-crest-of-a-dime style changes, ridiculous lyrical flow by frontman Carley Coma, and the ability to keep things heavy. A horrific van accident that nearly killed the band in 2002 disrupted the momentum significantly.” Brooklyn strong.

Northern Crown – The Others Review

Northern Crown – The Others Review

“When I saw the promo descriptor for Northern Crown‘s debut, The Others listing it as “epic doom,” I took a flyer and grabbed it. You never know when you’ll stumble across the next While Heaven Wept or Atlantean Kodex, and I’d want to plunder all the glorious metal cred such a discovery would impart, while lording it over staff members in the AMG break room. So is this the doom juggernaut you’ve been waiting for? I can’t formulate the beginnings of a sensible answer to that question.” Steel be flummoxed.

Mercyless – Pathetic Divinity Review

Mercyless – Pathetic Divinity Review

“First, we have Fronch fries. And Fronch dressing. And Fronch bread. And Fronch death metal. And to drink, ta-da! Peru! As with most bands with old guys like me in them, I have a long history with Mercyless. I received a cassette promo of 1993’s Coloured Funeral right after losing access to a free copy machine that put a nail in the coffin of the print version of Unchain the Underground. While I never got around to reviewing it, that particular slab of adventurous Fronch death metal stayed in regular rotation and made the cut through upgrades to CD right into the digital age.” Mercyless is about to activate your dental plan.

Decomposed – Wither Review

Decomposed – Wither Review

“Amidst all the inevitable aspects of life and death metal, as we know it, the tried and true sounds of old school Swedish death appears here to stay. Nostalgia is a powerful thing and the rotted riffs and buzzsaw tones of the Stockholm death metal scene that spawned endless imitators of varying quality remains a strong source of inspiration for up and coming death metal bands. And sucker’s like I keep coming back for more.” You can’t have just one bite of Swede-death.

Swampcult – The Festival Review

Swampcult – The Festival Review

“Hailing from the Netherlands, doom duo Swampcult offer us sophomore outing The Festival – this time in full concept album regalia. We have all heard the myriad odes to Cthulhu and the Elder Ones, of star spawned atrocities and dark bloodlines, replete with many a tentacle toting album cover. Thematically speaking, originality is barely worth discussing; the real question is, as always: is it any good?” Get in your LoveCraft!

Gatecreeper – Sonoran Depravation Review

Gatecreeper – Sonoran Depravation Review

“I haven’t reviewed death metal in a good long time, so I thought I’d get back on the dead horse with upstart Arizona act, Gatecreeper. For their Sonoran Depravation debut they’ve crafted a style mixing equal parts of the D-beat Swede-death style made famous by Entombed, the grit and dirge of Asphyx and the bastard war grind of Bolt Thrower. Sounds tempting, eh?” Tempted by the tank of another….

Sonata Arctica – The Ninth Hour Review

Sonata Arctica – The Ninth Hour Review

The Ninth Hour marks Sonata Arctica‘s fourth full length since Unia. In 2016, that means that half the band’s career is post-Unia and since that monumental album Sonata Arctica has gone through a tense relationship with its history and—if the comments on this blog are anything to go by—their fanbase. This has led to these veterans of Europower reintroducing wolf shirt and their old logo. But for me it’s The Days of Grays—an album distinctly lacking in both—that remains the band’s best since 2007.” So after all this time has Sonata Arctica produced a worthy successor to The Days of Grays?