Review

Havok – Burn Review

Havok – Burn Review

How could Havok be anything but thrash? One doesn’t even have to listen to the band to get an idea of what they sound like when one looks at the coloration and logo of the band’s debut album: Burn. And Havok truly lives up to their predecessors, need I name them? Kill ‘Em All era Metallica, Testament, and so forth.. actually, these guys sound like a re-birth of America’s most famous metal scene of all time: the bay area thrash scene.

Threat Signal – Vigilance

Threat Signal – Vigilance

Three years after their initial release, after being a true Internet success story, Threat Signal is back with a new album called Vigilance. I never got to review the first album, and I must admit that this style is a little bit too sugary sweet for my tastes, but I was pleasantly surprised with what I heard contained within the borders of Vigilance: a band comfortable in their own shell, producing music that skates the fine line between pop metal, metalcore and thrash. This record is sure to bring delight to those among us who aren’t fans of the more heavy hitting, brutal or technical things that are flooding the market these days.

Guilt Machine – On This Perfect Day

Guilt Machine – On This Perfect Day

The modern hero of the progressive rock concept album (that’d be Arjen Lucassen for those not aware) is back with a new project called Guilt Machine and this time, it doesn’t take place in space! I think he’s making steps forward, frankly, because I’ve had some previous experience with Arjen Lucassen. I was never a fan of Star One or Ayreon, despite the fact that many fans of both seem to have objected to many of my critiques. I’m a fan of concept albums, but I’m also a fan of consistent vocals, good melodies and non-embarrassing lyrics: things that do not describe Mr. Lucassen’s past work, in my opinion. Fortunately for the progressive rock/metal world, he’s made up for this with the highly excellent Guilt Machine.

Beardfish – Destined Solitaire Review

Beardfish – Destined Solitaire Review

“Apparently, someone forgot to inform Beardfish that 1970 has graciously left us behind to suffer without it. If they’re not careful, these guys are going to get lost in a pile of pet rocks, bell bottoms and turtle necks. Still, it’s hard to argue in matters of taste, so I’m going to try to be as fair about this record as I can be. While these guys aren’t really doing something that I enjoy intrinsically, I do appreciate certain things about them and their new album Destined Solitaire.” Angry Metal Guy weighs in on Swedish proggers who will never forget the feeling of ’68.

Valkyrja – The Invocation of Demise

Valkyrja – The Invocation of Demise Rating: 2.5/5.0 – Nothing special Label: Metal Blade Websites: myspace.com/valkyrjaswe | valkyrja.swe.name Valkyrja hails from Sweden, where the ice-cold summers, and even colder winters, apparently breed tons of little metal kids.  Everywhere you look here you run into a band, and many of them are good.  But certainly not […]

Swashbuckle – Back to the Noose Review

Swashbuckle – Back to the Noose Rating: 3.0/5.0 Label: Nuclear Blast (EU | USA) Websites: myspace.com/swashbuckle | swashbuckle.info Release date: July 24th, 2009 (EU) | August 11th, 2009 (USA) Pirates are becoming an all-too-common and all-too-silly theme in our current society—sort of a strange zeitgeist, if you will.  Everything from the pirates in Somalia to […]

Indukti – Idmen Review

Indukti – Idmen Rating: 4.25/5.0 – Excellent, but winding and weak at moments Label: InsideOut Websites: myspace.com/indukti | indukti.com Release date: July 27th, 2009 There is a challenge with truly progressive metal and rock and that challenge is, of course, how one describes it in novel terms without sounding like some kind of pretentious ass.   […]

Black Sun Aeon – Darkness Walks Beside Me Review

Black Sun Aeon – Darkness Walks Beside Me Review

I have often commented that Finland is really producing the best metal in the world right now. Of course, when I say that I’m usually associating with bands like Moonsorrow, Finntroll or Amorphis, but apparently I’ve been leaving out a band from that whole list because they’re on a small label: Black Sun Aeon. Right now I’m going to add Black Sun Aeon to the pantheon of excellent metal coming from Finland, but unlike those other bands, they’re not wandering on the folk/viking side of things, but instead they’re doing more old-fashioned mid-paced death, intermingled with a doomy goth element that I haven’t heard done well for a long time.

Riverside – Anno Domini High Definition Review

Riverside – Anno Domini High Definition Review

Riverside – Anno Domini High Definition Rating: 4.5/5.0 – Excellent composition – Stays with the listener for days Label: Inside Out Music Websites: myspace.com/riversidepl | riverside.art.pl Riverside was a band that I approached with some caution. I’ve often been unimpressed with progressive metal in the modern era. Not just unimpressed, but often so much as […]