Voivod

Imperial Triumphant – Spirit of Ecstasy Review

Imperial Triumphant – Spirit of Ecstasy Review

“We already know what’s going to happen here: I review Imperial Triumphant‘s fifth album, Spirit of Ecstasy, and the comments section here will explode with remarks from the peanut gallery, explaining how much they can’t stand this type of music and how it’s “hipster drivel” of the highest magnitude. Ah, yes… the most divisive band we’ve ever reviewed that’s not named Impure WilhelminaFellowship, or Wilderun, New York’s guttural black-death-jazz miscreants have no less stirred up the masses here in such a tizzy that you’d half-expect them to have somehow personally violated your dog. But no, all they did was make music.” Opulence amid the decadence.

Without Waves – Comedian Review

Without Waves – Comedian Review

“Cover art can be make or break. Despite that old axiom, I do indeed judge a book by its often horrific cover. I tend to avoid the intentionally bad (looking at you, Voivod‘s Target Earth) and the unabashedly anatomical (I’ve already seen The Reek of Putrefaction, thank you very much.) However, there’s plenty of room between the two extremes to play, and you can always count on a few quality covers lurking around the primeval AMG promo sump; the kind that just begs for a spin or three. Such was the case with Comedian, the latest from Chicago-based progressive metalers Without Waves. Their fortuitous choice to immortalize a moment in the life of one very unlucky flamingo has earned them one whole review.” Flightless.

Heavy Meta – Mana Regmata Review

Heavy Meta – Mana Regmata Review

“Don’t get your hopes up, ye of heavy metal’s golden years. Heavy Meta is nearly everything you hate about today’s extreme music. Mathcore, black metal, noise rock, and prog all have a hand in this monstrosity, and if there is an inkling of distaste for any of these styles, Mana Regmata might need to come with a side of aspirin. Featuring a tongue-in-cheek moniker that you could proudly proclaim at any party, it’s a group that only jokingly defines itself as “blackened progressive cowboy nintendocore.”” Meta health.

Voivod – Synchro Anarchy Review

Voivod – Synchro Anarchy Review

“The most frightening album I ever bought was in 1984, a cassette called War and Pain, issued by the weirdly-named Voivod. Up here in Canada it came out on Banzai Records, a strange little upstart that licensed metal albums not otherwise available. Anyhow, back in the 80s my pals and I snapped up everything on that label, even when we had no clue who the band was. We were pretty lucky – Metallica, Exciter, Slayer, Venom, all sorts of great up-and-comers. And then this one. Pressing play on the tape deck resulted in some of the scariest, heaviest thrash-death-punk shit we’d ever heard. That was our introduction to Voivod.” War, pain, anarchy, progress.

Pestilence – Exitivm Review

Pestilence – Exitivm Review

“I’ll forever have a soft spot in my wrought iron heart for Dutch death act Pestilence. Their 1989 magnum opus Consuming Impulse blew my mind all over the wall with its gnarly death metal assault and I still play it regularly. I haven’t completely loved any of their second career stage releases however, as their style has parked somewhere between OSDM and prog-death with jazz elements, making things a bit too awkward for my tastes. That said, 2013s Obsideo was good if weird, and 2018s Hadeon was a respectable shift toward more straightforward death metal. Ninth album Exitivm is now set to drop with an almost entirely new lineup from last time, with founding guitarist Patrick Mameli the sole survivor.” Prog infection.

Moanhand – Present Serpent Review

Moanhand – Present Serpent Review

“Try as I might, it’s hard to break out of patterns that take months, if not years, to craft and make a template out of. I still put actual milk in my coffee and not that oily Coffeemate bullshit. My breakfast omelets will always have cheddar cheese, bacon, and enough garlic to anger vampires. Above all, I like my doom metal to be… doom metal. Heavy. Oppressive. Mournful. That said, sometimes a little deviation can work wonders, and Roman Filatov, chief songwriter and solo proprietor of Moanhand, is seeking to woo the masses over with his creative take on a classic sound using a wide swath of influences.” Snake’s take.

Olde – Pilgrimage Review

Olde – Pilgrimage Review

“Ontario’s Olde have been banging around the sludge scene for an unknown period of time, formerly as Corvuss until around 2014 when they decided to change their name to what it is today. I’m usually pretty good at keeping an ear out for quality sludge and doom releases, but I will admit I’ve never heard of Olde until the accompanying one-sheet bio claimed that they’re for fans of High on FireTroubleThe Melvins, and Entombed How do I say no to that?!” Olde and slowe.

Wanderer – Awakening Force [Things You Might Have Missed 2020]

Wanderer – Awakening Force [Things You Might Have Missed 2020]

“For the second year in a row, a metal band from Portugal floored me with something I had no idea that I wanted to hear until I heard it. Last year it was Midnight Priest, and this year it’s Wanderer with their debut record Awakening Force. It’s not that either band are doing something extremely novel, but it’s their execution and emphasis on specific parts of their influences that make them both special.” All that wander and not lame.

Brave the Cold – Scarcity Review

Brave the Cold – Scarcity Review

“When it was announced that guitarist Mitch Harris and drummer Dirk Verbeuren were collaborating for some kind of death metal project, I was unsure exactly what to expect. Mr. Harris is a grand progenitor of grind, starting out with Righteous Pigs before joining Napalm Death in 1989. Since then he’s helped define an entire genre and dabbled in weirdness on the side, as with Meathook Seed. On the other hand, Dirk Verbeuren has played with Megadeth, Soilwork, Devin Townsend, Warrel Dane, and any number of black and death metal acts. With such a widely traveled duo, the options seem limitless.” Frost grinding.

The Third Kind – Man vs Earth Review

The Third Kind – Man vs Earth Review

“As a reviewer, it always feels good when you correctly identify a band’s influences. Hmm, I thought to myself upon first listening to The Third Kind‘s Man vs Earth debut, this kind of sounds like All Out War. It turns out there’s a good reason for that. Formed in 2015, Kind count All Out War guitarist Taras Apuzzo amongst their ranks, along with other members from a slew of New York hardcore bands.” Earth had it coming.