Trials

Black Sites – Exile Review

Black Sites – Exile Review

“Chicago’s Black Sites is the brainchild of guitarist and singer Mark Sugar, formerly of underrated modern thrashers Trials. It could be that Sugar and I are roughly the same age, both grew up on shitty post-glory-days ’90s thrash metal and/or are both from the Midwest, but whatever it is he seems to speak my language. Trials‘ final album ended up on my Top 10(ish) in 2015 and Black Sites‘ debut found similar acclaim in 2017. A songwriter with two albums that placed at #2 in my Top 10(ish) lists in the year they were released is about as close to a direct highway to “elevated expectations” as it gets. And when Mark sent me Exile, I can say that I was very excited.” Makin’ bacon (and metal).

Acrid – Wonderland [Things You Might Have Missed 2018]

Acrid – Wonderland [Things You Might Have Missed 2018]

Acrid is a Dutch melodic death metal band that dropped its first album in 1999 after forming in 1994. The band still features three original members and they hail from The Hague in the Netherlands. Acrid plays tight, noodly death metal with a strong Gothenburgian timbre. And they do it remarkably well.

Black Sites – In Monochrome Review

Black Sites – In Monochrome Review

“Like the Trials album which preceded it, however, In Monochrome is unapologetically modern, but it has two feet firmly planted in the feel(s) of yesteryear. And it is the feeling of being a traditional metal album—without being remotely derivative—which makes In Monochrome an excellent album.” I mean, what more do you want for an endorsement than that!?

AngryMetalGuy.com’s Top 10(ish) of 2015: Aggregating the Lists to Create MOAR Lists!

AngryMetalGuy.com’s Top 10(ish) of 2015: Aggregating the Lists to Create MOAR Lists!

“Last year our very own El Cuervo started rating a consensus list based on the releases that were mentioned in various lists. Giving each release a score, we then tally the point totals for each release. Each of our unique lists has a number of releases that simply come nowhere close to the top list. But it’s cool to see that we do actually seem to rally around a few great releases and some releases that I am a little bit more shocked to see. Regardless, this final “meta-list” will round off the year of AngryMetalGuy.com’s list season.” Lists, man.

Angry Metal Guy’s Top 10(ish) of 2015

Angry Metal Guy’s Top 10(ish) of 2015

Twenty-fifteen has been a hell of a ride. It’s been one of my favorite years for music in quite a long time, and I’ve been struggling to prune this list down to 10(ish) records that I really love. But in some ways, the top 5 has never been easier for me to choose. What I find most fascinating about this list is how completely out of step I feel with what I see as being touted as the coolest parts of the underground. I seem to be pretty far afield while everyone else seems to be fawning over the latest ’70s retro doom phenomenon, hope drones, or the latest example of black metal kids missing that intensity not 15 minute songs was the cool part of black metal. This is what it feels like to have been left behind by a scene; to have lived long enough to be that old guy shaking his fist at new trends in metal.

Grymm’s Top Ten(ish) of 2015

Grymm’s Top Ten(ish) of 2015

“2015 has not been the best of years for yours truly, with car accidents, challenges, setbacks, and death upon death upon even more death dropped into my unwilling lap. I was ready to rain supernova-warm hellfire upon this calendar year, but thankfully, a much-needed vacation with friends just this past week helped to deaden the pain of all this negativity the year had brought upon me. Musically, it’s been quite positive and productive. October alone was a monster of a month for metal, as you can see by my list. So despite all the negative garbage, at least the soundtrack was incredible.”

The AMG Staff Picks the Top Ten Records o’ 2015: There’s No Accounting for Anything Anymore

The AMG Staff Picks the Top Ten Records o’ 2015: There’s No Accounting for Anything Anymore

“We’ve reached the end of 2015 and this year I’m personally editing these Top Ten lists. For the first time (ever) I am reading the production of the different writers we’ve assembled over the last few years. I am shocked. I am dismayed. I feel angry, offended, galled. But I am not surprised. Under Steel Druhm and Madam X‘s indulgent care and averted gaze the young Angry Metal Staffers have run amok. Alas, after having actually consumed of the words these gentlemen produce, I’m firing them all. It’s back to the drawing board: me, Steel Druhm, and as much metalcore as you can eat!”

Battlecross – Rise to Power [Things You Might Have Missed 2015]

Battlecross – Rise to Power [Things You Might Have Missed 2015]

“It comes of no surprise to those of you restlessly commenting on EVERY FUCKING review, YMIO, and TYMHM article that I got truly thrashed this year. Being a product of the Bay-Area heyday, I haven’t had much fun with any of the modern thrash output storming the iTunes racks in the last decade or so. But 2015 gave me a few monsters I will love for eons to come.” The Doctor is a thrashard.