Progressive Metal

Judicator – Let There Be Nothing Review

Judicator – Let There Be Nothing Review

“Thanks entirely to Eldritch Elitist‘s coverage of Judicator‘s last album, The Last Emperor, I discovered one of my favorite new-to-me bands in recent memory. After an initial good impression, The Last Emperor eventually completely won me over, and it landed in my top 10 of 2018. There’s something so pure and magical about the way Judicator combines the influences of Blind Guardian and Iced Earth into a prog/power beast that stands its own. It reminds me of what Demons & Wizards might sound like if their music was actually good.” Nothing is more.

Dystopia A.D. – Rise of the Merciless Review

Dystopia A.D. – Rise of the Merciless Review

“Preconceptions are fun, aren’t they? When I tell you Dystopia A.D. is a 2-man unsigned band from Jersey, or Joisey as it’s colloquially known, you’re already forming a picture in your head. If you’re like me, you’re probably expecting some sort of politically charged thrash, possibly of a crossover or core-related variety. Dystopia is, after all, a word that inherently defines a result of particular forms of governance, and Jersey is known primarily for blue collar thrash, Overkill of course its flag carrier. Combine that with the unsigned 2-man band and the picture seems complete. Except it’s utterly, utterly wrong.” Garden state fake.

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.

Northern Crown – In a Pallid Shadow Review and Album Premiere

Northern Crown – In a Pallid Shadow Review and Album Premiere

“I first stumbled upon Northern Crown back in in 2016 when their sophomore platter The Others hit the promo sump as an unheralded self-release. Their odd mix of doom and epic power metal caught my attention, and who could forget those Ms. Pac Man keyboard effects? After we’d had the promo for their upcoming fourth album for a time, Northern Crown founder Zach Randall reached out and asked if we wanted to premiere it. Since this is a band that always pushes creative boundaries and I was enamored with the new material, I jumped at the chance.” Pallid shadows and deep mysteries.

Virtual Symmetry – Exoverse Review

Virtual Symmetry – Exoverse Review

“My personal favorite of the AMG banners has always been that most legendary of Yngwie Malmsteen quotes – “How can less be more? That’s impossible!” It’s a perfectly true statement as long as you’re willing to completely miss the point of the original cliché, which, frankly, makes for a great worldview. In that vein, I bring you progressive metal, in the form of the sophomore full-length from Swiss-Italian Virtual Symmetry; that output, Exoverse is the very definition of an album that believes, with everything that it’s got, that less is not more, that that would be impossible.” More is MOOAR.

Protest the Hero – Palimpsest Review

Protest the Hero – Palimpsest Review

Protest the Hero couldn’t have known everything that’s happened since their last EP, Pacific Myth, in 2016. Since Rody Walker’s vocal cord scare last year. Hell, since announcing their fifth full-length in April. Protest the Hero couldn’t have known, and yet Palimpsest couldn’t be timelier. Though centering on key events in America’s early 20th century, the record reads so close to our current, woeful zeitgeist that my apophenia is still hovering at Threat Level QAnon.” Protests, man.

Ebonivory – The Long Dream I Review

Ebonivory – The Long Dream I Review

“I first heard of Ebonivory due to Caligula’s Horse. These guys were supposed to open for the Horse on their North American tour this year, but of course that was cancelled. It did prompt me to hit up Bandcamp and purchase their discography (two EPs and an LP), which turned out to be really good. References can definitely be made between these guys and other Australian prog acts such as Voyager, Karnivool, and Dead Letter Circus. Fast forward a couple of months and here we are, with a brand new release from these Aussies.” Perfect harmony?

Maelstrom – Of Gods and Men Review

Maelstrom – Of Gods and Men Review

Maelstrom is a pretty popular handle, but the one we are looking at today has quite a bit of history. Formed in 1988 in West Hempstead, New York, they share their birth year with Iced Earth as well as yours truly. The Iced Earth part is more important, as Maelstrom released a few demos in a similar style, mixing thrash and power metal with a symphonic flair before dropping off the face of the planet.” Fire, ice and shitstorms.