Prosthetic Records

Vile Creature – Glory, Glory! Apathy Took Helm! Review

Vile Creature – Glory, Glory! Apathy Took Helm! Review

“A couple of years ago, I saddled myself with the record Cast of Static and Smoke by Ontarian duo Vile Creature. It turned out to be perhaps the most memorable 3.0 I have reviewed these past 4 years. Despite its flaws, it was an ambitious record that thrived on hideous, grimy textures, hypnotic repetition and glacial progression, rather than hooks or energy. A bit over 2 years hence, and its follow-up graces my inbox, with a disturbing, Midsommar-esque cover and featuring the unwieldy title of Glory, Glory! Apathy Took Helm!.” Helm’s deep.

ACxDC – Satan Is King Review

ACxDC – Satan Is King Review

““First to betray / First to disobey / First to stand up / Against tyranny,” screams Sergio Amalfitano on the title track of ACxDC’s second full-length Satan Is King. Delivered in one breath and against a grindcore wall of seesawing guitars and hammering drum blasts, these first few verses are a distillation of the Los Angeles-based powerviolence quartet.” I’m gonna get you, Satan get you!

Calligram – The Eye Is The First Circle Review

Calligram – The Eye Is The First Circle Review

“How can music communicate the feeling of dread? While all styles are able, metal’s inherent darkness fits like a glove. While it’s easy to provide aural bludgeoning or emphasize excess, the discipline of restraint takes time and effort. From the post-metal dirges of Neurosis, the avant-garde buildups of Eryn Non Dae., the spiraling doom of Swallowed, the blackened payoffs of Cultes des Ghoules, and the death metal environs of Desolate Shrine, it revels in darkness, plays with menace, but most notably, waits patiently.” Waiting in the darkness.

Loviatar – Lightless Review

Loviatar – Lightless Review

“What makes a great doom record? Adequate levels of sadness, helplessness, or loss expressed in a desperate croon? Perhaps doom is defined by plodding tempos and debilitating riffs? Could it simply be a quality of emptiness that pervades every moment of the music, regardless of the superficial qualities inherent to the sound? I honestly couldn’t tell you. All I know is that when a doom metal band brings its A-game, boy howdy does it wreck my shit sideways, backwards and diagonally. Enter Canadian quartet Loviatar, whose sophomore full-length Lightless wrecks my shit sideways, backwards and diagonally.” Stuff is getting wrecked here.

Fool’s Ghost – Dark Woven Light Review

Fool’s Ghost – Dark Woven Light Review

“Dark, cinematic, and dreamy is not the typical combination of descriptors used for bands signed to heavy metal label Prosthetic Records. Nevertheless, there’s a first time for everything. Prosthetic Records released one of my favorite metal albums of 2019 (Paladin‘s Ascension), and now they are releasing Dark Woven Light, the debut by Fool’s Ghost, a husband and wife duo from Louisville, Kentucky.” Haunting haunts.

Huntsmen – Mandala of Fear Review

Huntsmen – Mandala of Fear Review

Huntsmen was one of the best left-field surprises of 2018 with their American Scrap album. By mixing progressive sludge and Americana, they created a sound not quite like any other. The songs neatly encapsulated heartfelt stories about working in the coal mines, a tragedy in Atlantic City, and others, closing on “The Last President” which included a dramatic performance by Aimee Bueno as the POTUS who unleashes nuclear Armageddon and hangs herself right after. It was a potent storytelling format that was bolstered by strong riffs, earnest vocals and succinct songwriting. So it makes sense that Mandala of Fear continues in… Wait… Does that promo sheet say “85 minute double LP dystopian concept album?!”” More as less.

Leeched – To Dull the Blades of Your Abuse Review

Leeched – To Dull the Blades of Your Abuse Review

“Every year, January is the token month when seemingly every label releases all their one-person black metal projects en masse, and it usually falls on my furry shoulders to find new, creative ways to say, yet again, how a band sounds like certain outfits we no longer talk about. But no, not this year! This year, this damn January, Leeched saw fit to release To Dull the Blades of Your Abuse, the hotly anticipated (by me, at least) follow-up to their impressive debut, 2018’s You Took the Sun When You Left. I was eagerly awaiting filthy, undulating industrialized hardcore with so much dirt and grime that not even a lifetime supply of either Dove soap or Orbit gum could ever clean or freshen up.” Dirty deeds.

Sorxe – The Ark Burner [Things You Might Have Missed 2019]

Sorxe – The Ark Burner [Things You Might Have Missed 2019]

“Hitting our promo bin for the first time in 2014, there was little Grymm found interesting on the band’s debut. But when Matter & Void hit the deck three years later, my eyebrows glued themselves to the top of my head. And seeing them play that album live is still one of the best performances I’ve ever experienced. What didn’t hit our bin was this year’s The Ark Burner. But, thank the stars, I’ve been keeping tabs on this band for all you sludge suckers out there. But, will Sorxe continue their streak?” Ark of triumph.

Schammasch – Hearts of No Light Review

Schammasch – Hearts of No Light Review

“There are two kinds of metal albums that tickle my fancy. The first kind takes a band’s trademark sound, alters it just enough to keep things fresh, but also retains everything that makes that artist or band unique, enjoyable, and otherwise impossible to do without. The other has mere glimpses of what made that band who they are, but throws so many curveballs, surprise left hooks, and a kitchen sink or twelve your way, and demands that you catch it all. Swiss avant garde spiritualists Schammasch most certainly fit into the latter with relative ease. Even after releasing a three-disc, exactly-100-minute monstrosity in the form of Triangle back in 2016, it still didn’t fully prepare me for what Hearts of No Light had in store for me.” That’s a big Schammasch!