Shadow of Intent

Aborted – ManiaCult Review

Aborted – ManiaCult Review

“There’s no such thing as a truly objective review so let’s get one thing straight: I fucking adore Aborted. Their brand of pulverizing death metal appeals to me on a primitive level and I’ve followed these Belgians for years. For the most part, I have enjoyed being reduced to DNA and endorphins every few years. And it’s that time again. 2018’s TerrorVision was good but it had some issues. Or rather it had one big issue. It just seemed to ramble on too long, which, for a band with grind sensibilities, isn’t optimal. ManiaCult is the definitive younger model.” Culted nuts.

Distant – Aeons of Oblivion Review

Distant – Aeons of Oblivion Review

“Netherlands outfit Distant emerged on the scene with 2019’s Tyrannotophia debut, showcasing their self-proclaimed downtempo deathcore brand, with atmospheric stylings. While potential was evident, overall the album fell short of the mark, marred by monotonous writing and lack of interesting and dynamic arrangements. I missed their stopgap EP from 2020, but with two years having slipped by I plunge in with trepidation and hope to see if Distant have revamped their brand enough to sustain a deeper level of engagement.” Maintaining minimum safe distance.

Noctule – Wretched Abyss Review

Noctule – Wretched Abyss Review

Serena Cherry has a knack for melody. In her storied career with Svalbard, the charismatic vocalist and guitarist has co-written and performed a decade of melodic hardcore tinged with post-hardcore, post-metal, and black metal. Now, Cherry tries a little something different in her new solo project Noctule, hoping to “spread her dragon wings and take off in an intriguing musical direction on her own. A labor of love and isolation, Cherry composed and recorded the Noctule debut while in the UK Coronavirus lockdown. Opposed to the melodic hardcore leanings of Svalbard, she now bets it all on black in blackened release Wretched Abyss, an album themed after the popular RPG Skyrim.” Dragon, why do you cry?

Osiah – Loss Review

Osiah – Loss Review

“Another day, another album called Loss. While some crews take up this tragic mantle with sobriety and melody, Osiah‘s content pummeling you with big “djunz” time and I guess the “loss” is, like, a loss of goddamn peace and quiet. This is a band I inherited from the Spongey One who simply didn’t have the time to devote to deathcore. Shocker, I know.” Identity loss.

Serene Dark – Enantiodromia Review

Serene Dark – Enantiodromia Review

“After thirteen years of existence as End Demise, the band felt that it had experienced enough change over the years to warrant a fresh start and a fresh name. So in a way, even though it continues with the eclectic genre bastardization seen on End Demise‘s previous releases, Enantiodromia is essentially the debut record from a new band.” Serenity now!

Argesk – Realm of Eternal Night Review

Argesk – Realm of Eternal Night Review

When I
“When I’m unsettled, I retreat to what I know; to what I’m comfortable with. And while there’s a global pandemic locking down the planet, these are profoundly unsettling times. When the promo bin threw some atmospheric black metal my way, I was completely on board for that. This is the genre, after all, that got me into metal, and it’s where I feel most at home. No matter the time of day, or my mood, I can always spin some atmoblack. The icy embrace warms my cold heart and calms me. Which is all to say that Realm of Eternal Night, the debut album from British outfit Argesk, is precisely the kind of music I was looking for this week.” No escape.

Monolith – No Saints No Solace Review

Monolith – No Saints No Solace Review

“My tolerance for the often maligned deathcore subgenre received a boost of newfound optimism on the back of stellar 2019 releases from scene heavyweights, Shadow of Intent and Fit for an Autopsy. Both bands demonstrated the sick grooves and punishing, over-the-top brutality and technical chops, reminding me of a time long ago where bands like All Shall Perish and early Despised Icon tore me a new one. Yet, more often than not the style falls flat to my jaded ears. Perhaps an unsigned UK deathcore outfit may not be the best choice to pull myself out of a writing rut, but I’ll be damned if I’m not ready to take the plunge and hope for minor miracles.” Deathcore blues.

Xenobiotic – Mordrake Review

Xenobiotic – Mordrake Review

“Recently a new rule was established in the AMG offices: no more claiming promos more than a month out. Giving everyone equal opportunity makes for more entertaining gladiatorial combat in the Skull Pit, you see. But now it’s become a game for the clever, so I decided to scout the waters ahead in case I needed to be ready to pounce. When I came across a promo by Australian prog-tech-deathcore outfit Xenobiotic, stared at the gorgeous Lewandowski cover and listened to its advance track, I actually set an alarm for the day I could lay claim to it, before Kronos or Ferrous could get their claws into my precious. Because if the rest of Mordrake was as good as the single I sampled, I knew we were dealing with potential Album of the Year material.” Throw it into the fire!

Lorna Shore – Immortal Review

Lorna Shore – Immortal Review

“I’ve been a booster for Lorna Shore ever since I heard the Bone Kingdom EP. The basic pitch of the band’s early work was deathcore, for cats but good. Good riffs and effective breakdowns formed the backbone of songs that Adam DeMicco’s considerable solo and lead work elevated above almost anything else in the scene. The band has since re-invented themselves with each release, delving into grimy blackened deathcore with Psalms and taking a slick, blackened/melodic course with Flesh Coffin. AMG’s coverage of the band has been scanty due to the band’s rapid bounce through several record labels. Now playing in the big leagues with Century Media, I and the band, have been looking forward to their third LP, Immortal.” Going through changes.