Unspeakable Axe Records

Malformity – Monumental Ruin Review

Malformity – Monumental Ruin Review

Malformity have been lurking around the American death metal scene since 1991, dropping their first demo in 95. It took them until now however to finally get their debut full-length out of the dark and into the light. Generally such a low wattage release schedule speaks to a band’s overall quality and a 30 year inability to produce is a big fat red flag. Though the band’s been prodigiously unproductive up until now, I noticed Glenn Sykes of General Surgery and Regurgitate fame was on board, so I took a risky flyer and grabbed the promo.” Cautionary titles.

Obsolete – Animate//Isolate Review

Obsolete – Animate//Isolate Review

“I’ve spent much of this year listening to Obituary and Mortician. Both are death metal, but death metal is a wide field and you can’t mistake either band’s sound for the other’s. To address this, we put bands into subgenres within a subgenre – Floridian death metal, for instance. This is nice because I don’t want to sift through a bunch of Entombed clones to find something like Monstrosity. What about when our subgenres within subgenres cease to be useful to describe a sound? Then we get stuff like slam, which is brutal death metal played a specific way –  a subgenre of a subgenre within a subgenre. If you’re thinking that Obsolete‘s debut Animate//Isolate will lead me down a sub-sub-sub-genre rabbit hole, go ahead and give yourself an executive producer credit.” Old tech.

Shards of Humanity – Cold Logic Review

Shards of Humanity – Cold Logic Review

“There may not be any band out there that all the Angry Metal Guy staff like. I suppose that’s not surprising once you consider how many writers we have and the heathenous poseurdom among those whose prose is not currently caressing your fovea. Consensus is a tall order for this crew, the kind you only get when work is paying for it. If we really got our shit together to pick a favorite, we performed the kind of rigorous internal study necessary – laproscope and all – it would trigger years of bloody sectarian violence. In the end, even if Iron Maiden emerged atop the highest pedestal, Death would command the most zealous supporters. Since our website is the sole source of metal criticism available, I am forced assume our views are universal. Death-worship bands like Shards of Humanity confirm this.” All hail the new olde Gods.

Cemetery Filth – Dominion Review

Cemetery Filth – Dominion Review

“For such an iconic band, there aren’t many modern groups that sound very much like Death. Sure, Gruesome‘s whole schtick is sounding like them and Skeletal Remains have a hearty Death influence, but compared to the legions of bands that mimic Entombed or Incantation, Chuck Schuldiner’s brainchild seems underrepresented. After Live Burial answered the call earlier this month, Atlanta’s Cemetery Filth are here with their Dominion debut to profess their own love of Schuldiner’s work.” I am become Death.

Algebra – Pulse? Review

Algebra – Pulse? Review

“On their third full-length, Pulse?, Swiss thrashers Algebra explore some science not-so-fiction topics like artificial intelligence and robots through a groovy yet technically proficient thrash lens. Chaos Edy handles lead guitar and vocal duties. His grunts are reminiscent of those of Max Cavalera, and when combined with the bouncing and aggressive riff style of Phil Void and the lyrics warning of future societal calamities, you can’t help but feel that the spirit of classic Sepultura is being conjured.” Math kills.

Sadistic Ritual – Visionaire of Death Review

Sadistic Ritual – Visionaire of Death Review

“Goddamn, I’ve reviewed a lot of black metal this year. Not that I’m upset about it. But, since joining this illustrious website of snobbery and pretentiousness five years ago, my yearly average is higher than it’s ever been. Is it due to Grier selling out and over-rating the under-rated albums of 2019? Oh, hell no, you over-commenting sonsofbitches. It’s because I’m blessed to review bands like Istapp, Darkthrone, and Vous Autres. Over-rater, I am not. Over-editor? Well, yeah, look at what I have to work with here! But, in hopes of lowering my average for the year and giving my black, swollen head a rest, I closed my eyes and reached into the scorpion-infested grog box that is the AMG Promo Bin. And out I pulled Atlanta’s only Kreator-inspired thrash metal band, Sadistic Ritual.” Thrashlanta.

Laceration – Remnants Review

Laceration – Remnants Review

Slayer’s first few albums were bloody good weren’t they? I know it, you know it, and Californian  death thrashers Laceration know it too. It’s all here, that slightly grating scooped-mids guitar tone, heaping helpings of shredding riffs, throat-ripping vocals.  Not only that but these guys also enjoy quite a bit of early Metallica and Sepultura too, and chances are that if you’re a fan of any of that stuff, there will be something for you to enjoy on Remnants. Friendly violent fun.

Hellish – The Spectre of Lonely Souls Review

Hellish – The Spectre of Lonely Souls Review

“As the length of your average re-thrash album shrinks, so does the amount of brainpower worth expending on the genre. You needn’t be a Rhodes scholar to appreciate dirty licks and thirty years of glacial progress previously, but the pull towards a Reign in Blood-sized event horizon makes thrash feel more like grindcore at times. I struggle to decide whether to embrace the movement — if you have less to say, take less time to say it — or if I should expect more from a scene that once set trends. Hellish places me squarely in the middle with their sophomore album, The Spectre of Lonely Souls.” Thrash is Hell(ish).

Gravewards – Ruinous Ensoulment Review

Gravewards – Ruinous Ensoulment Review

“Now if there’s one thing I love more than needless pedantry, it’s death metal, and since this band knocked off the first without playing so much as a note, I’m particularly well-disposed towards Ruinous Ensoulment. But Gravewards hardly need the boost. The Greek trio’s winding riffs and gritty, old-school attitude makes Ruinous Ensoulment an engaging debut and earns them a respectable spot among this year’s bevy of solid underground death metal releases.” Death in Greece.