UK Metal

Qrixkuor – Poison Palinopsia

Qrixkuor – Poison Palinopsia

“I didn’t choose this. This album I had no intent to cover. But, thanks to a contract I signed under duress, swearing myself to temporary servitude under one green, be-grilled Kermit impersonator, I am here reviewing a random record of his choosing. Lo, here I be, with UK trio Qrixkuor (pronounced “Trix-are-for-kids,” I believe) and their debut opus Poison Palinopsia. Two tracks. Forty-eight minutes and change. This is going to be one weird, wild ride.” Death writ large.

Firienholt – By the Waters of Awakening Review

Firienholt – By the Waters of Awakening Review

Firienholt sound pretty much exactly as you’d expect based solely on this album art. Falling somewhere in the center of a Venn diagram split between atmospheric black metal, symphonic folk-ish metal, and dungeonsynth, By the Waters of Awakening offers an experience that not only relaxes and soothes, but also evokes a desire for bone-chilling winter to return forthwith. Tambourines, flutes, strings, trumpets and French horns, and glistening synths decorate a light dusting of blackened frost across a wondrous landscape of mournful melodies and heartfelt verses. This is not an album for headbanging.” Serenity now!

Voronoi – The Last Three Seconds Review

Voronoi – The Last Three Seconds Review

Voronoi is a progressive jazz metal trio hailing from Leeds, UK. The fact that keyboardist Aleks Podraza worked with the emotionally beautiful and genre-defying The Cinematic Orchestra immediately caught my eye. The band blends together the sophistication of classical music and modern jazz fusion with the heavy downtempo riffs of prog-metal. Imagine cutting edge jazz pianist Tigran Hamasyan and math-metal experts Meshuggah teaming up to provide the background music for a dinner party.” Fusion turbulence.

Luna’s Call – Void [Things You Might Have Missed 2020]

Luna’s Call – Void [Things You Might Have Missed 2020]

“2020 provided plenty of quality metal releases, but only a scant few of those which tickled my fancy fall into the “progressive metal” category. Of those, we missed two that deserve mention. The first is Cellar Vessel‘s immense slab of Xanthrochroided symphonic prog-death, entitled Vein Beneath the Soil. The second—and, obviously, more preferred, since I’m writing about it—is UK quartet Luna’s Call‘s sophomore epic Void.” When the void calls…

Sorceress of Sin – Mirrored Revenge Review

Sorceress of Sin – Mirrored Revenge Review

“I decided to go for something epic to wrap up the year. It’s been a while since I reviewed any power metal or even just vanilla heavy metal, so I figured, what the hell? I’ll pick up UK’s Sorceress of Sin. Now, I’m not the biggest trad-heavy or trad-power fan, and 99% of the time the thing that kills my mood with the genre are vocals. Regardless of the skill exhibited, there are too many greats who adopt a tone and style that just does not appeal to me. Can Sorceress of Sin break the curse with their debut album Mirrored Revenge?” Mirrors of wengeance.

Memories of Old – The Zeramin Game Review

Memories of Old – The Zeramin Game Review

“As if the cover of Memories of Old‘s debut wasn’t enough of an indicator, this one is for all the fantasy nerds out there. Promo materials for The Zeramin Game identify Memories of Old‘s music as symphonic power metal, but if we’re talking specifics, The Zeramin Game is a spirited cross between castle metal and pirate metal. It’s the kind of album I’d expect might be born if Serenity and Alestorm had an inkling for each other — an album concerning equal parts ancient times, legend, and prophecy and equal parts a journey across turbulent seas.” Game-core.

Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn Review

Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn Review

“Wtf’s occur in everyday life. I’ve broken a thumb of one hand under the hammer held by the other and exclaimed the same betrayed question. Hell, I’m sure my mother pinched me out and exclaimed those same three words to my father. I sure did whisper it when I heard Winterfylleth‘s The Hallowing of Heirdom. An acoustic album was not what I expected. I had hoped, instead, for a strong release to balance out the mediocre The Dark Hereafter. Upon the first spin of The Reckoning Dawn, my mouth hung open once more and I exclaimed, ‘what the fuck.’ But what kind of ‘wtf’ is this? The good kind? Or the bad?” You can’t spell Winterfylleth without WTF.