SPV/Steamhammer

Lacrimas Profundere – Bleeding the Stars Review

Lacrimas Profundere – Bleeding the Stars Review

Lacrimas Profundere has been one of my go-to sources of sadboi goth rock for a very long time. From their doom death Peaceville Three inspired days in the early aughts, to their recent string of moody goth rockers, they had a real knack for delivering the exact dose of gloomy medicine I crave, while keeping things intense enough to still be metal. It wasn’t until 2016s Hope is Here outing that the wheels came off their gravy train with an album littered with uninspiring ballads and listless soft rock. I truly wanted to like it, but was unable to connect with the material.” Blood well spent.

Mob Rules – Beast Reborn Review

Mob Rules – Beast Reborn Review

“Once upon a time, Steel Druhm was brought on board the Bad Ship AMG to handle all things traditional and power metal. Since then I’ve branched out and find myself covering much less power-related music, and few albums in the genre get me geeked up these days. Mob Rules are one of the few acts that have restored my faith in the genre in recent years, with a slick, accessible style packed with essential crunch, heaviness and power.” The Mob has spoken.

Axel Rudi Pell – Knight’s Call Review

Axel Rudi Pell – Knight’s Call Review

Axel Rudi Pell (heretofore abbreviated as ARP) and his gang of Westphalian rockers are a one-trick pony, and the whole world of hard rock and heavy metal well knows this. However, the eponymous band has maintained a solid reputation for consistency and quality amongst those who enjoy the stuff, and Axel himself is an old-fashioned fella whose 80’s mindset frequently comes across in more than just his music.” We Camelot!

Running Wild – Rapid Foray Review

Running Wild – Rapid Foray Review

“The pirate’s life is not for everyone. Extensive travel, oft unprofessional coworkers and arcane profit sharing arrangements conspire to limit the talent pool and keep opportunities scarce. None of that ever mattered to Running Wild. They took to the trade like a duck to water and from 1987 onward they’ve kept the marauder’s flag flying almost nonstop through hard times and rough seas. Rapid Foray is the third release since their 2012 “reformation” and as on Shadowmaker and Resilient, they’re not looking to reinvent the parrot.” Rum and rummer.

Crematory – Monument Review

Crematory – Monument Review

“The reigning kings of techno/industrial/party death are back once again to pump up the volume and rock your boots n’ pants, boots n’ pants. On their 13th full length, Monument, Crematory sees some major line up changes but the kraut rockers pick right up where 2014s Antiserum left off. That means more poppy techno-death tailor-made for metallized strip clubs and sketchy back alley discos.” Boots n’ pants and boots n’ pants….

Prong – X – No Absolutes Review

Prong – X – No Absolutes Review

“Tommy Victor’s Prong have been cranking out music at a furious rate lately, delivering a studio record, a covers EP and a live album within the past 2 years or so. While this work ethic is admirable (and rivaled only by perhaps Max Cavalera), we all know quantity does not always equal quality. 2012’s Carved Into Stone was their best record since their early 1990s heyday, but the follow-up Ruining Lives was somewhat hindered by fake-sounding production and some half-baked attempts at melody. Can X–No Absolutes reverse the trend, or continue it further?” You just have to root for Prong, don’t you?

Raven – ExtermiNation Review

Raven – ExtermiNation Review

Raven is somewhat of a metallic riddle. Having been around since 1974 and considered one of the banner bearers of the NWoBHM invasion of the early 80s, as well as a major influence on the thrash genre, they never gained as much traction as one would expect. Like Anvil and Krokus, they seemed poised on the precipice of greatness, but a combination of bad timing, poor decisions and the fickle mistress that is metal fandom conspired to bring them low and deny them their due.” But they’re still here, and they can still metal. Can you say the same?

Alpha Tiger – iDentity Review

Alpha Tiger – iDentity Review

“In the recesses of my chrome and iron 80s heart, I have endless affection for the early Fates Warning albums like The Specter Within and Awaken the Guardian. They just don’t make classy, traditional metal like that anymore and I wish more retro noodle heads would turn their gaze back to that golden era of metal and give it a go.” What’s new, pussy cat? Quite a bit, actually.

Crematory – Antiserum Review

Crematory – Antiserum Review

“Few bands have dipped their toes in more genre pools than Germany’s Crematory. Over the course of their career, they’ve cobbled elements of death metal, gothic rock, electronica, industrial and even club music into what could called the “Crematory sound.” As the years went by, certain elements would drift in and out of prominence, but in recent times, the sonic space between them and countrymen Rammstein has narrowed to a fine line. These guys are heavier and more death-oriented, but the basic sound is essentially the same. While I’ve followed them since 1997, I’ve always found them frustratingly inconsistent.” Do you like your death metal backed by throbbing club music? If so, Crematory is here to fill that specialized niche.

Edenbridge – The Bonding Review

Edenbridge – The Bonding Review

“When I reviewed Edenbridge‘s Solitaire album a few years back, I suggested their sound was only metal if you use the most generous and inclusive definition of the word. Their (slightly) evolving approach makes them sound like Nightwish‘s prettier, quieter sister and many of their songs are so light, ephemeral and gauzy, they seem more akin to New Age meditation soundscapes than anything heavy or hard. While that may seem like some kind of indictment on the pages of Angry Metal Guy Dot Com, I mean it in no such way. In fact, I’ve enjoyed almost all their output because they’re so good at crafting soothing, sugar-coated odes to tranquility and I’m utterly at a loss to resist the charms of Sabine Edelsbacher’s beautiful and enchanting voice.” Lush and gorgeous music is in short supply in metaldom. Does Edenbridge‘s ambitious new opus help reduce the deficit or is it just so much empty fluffery?