2019 Albums

Album Review: Hell Yeah – Welcome Home 7 (Groove/Southern)

It was back in 2012 or so that the American super-band HELLYEAH (consisting of such members as Vinnie Paul of Pantera and Damageplan, Chad Gray and Greg Tribbett of Mudvayne and Tom Maxwell of Nothingface) came into my attention with Band of Brothers. Way before that, they had released Alcohaulin’ Ass, a southern-rock-sounding track, which I had heard on some occasions. But it was Blood for Blood (2014) that established them as a groove metal act I would call qualified. Their 2016’s Undeniable, being not on par with its antecedent, tossed the band back to normalcy again, only having a few highlights here and there. But with the founding member Vinnie Paul’s untimely demise in June 2018, the band has had so much to prove whether they are able to pick up where they left off or they are just another run-of-the-meal metal band with a couple of commendable songs and quite a handful of fillers per album. […]

2019 Albums

Album Review: Rings Of Saturn – Gidim 10 (Deathcore)

Rings Of Saturn have been around for a bit perfecting their insane brand of techno death metal, and with this latest album they prove they can soar alongside current titans Infant Annihilator and Cattle Decapitation. 2019 keeps upping the vocal game and setting an insane standard that most just can’t compete with. Add an overgrown child prodigy of a guitarist and you’ve got the essence of RoS, it’s excessive… and fancy. Utilizing brutality with finesse rather than toxic bravado. I’ve heard so many albums try to reach this peak but fall short, so it’s not without pause that I consider this one of the greatest tech death works of like… the decade? Imagine if Dragonforce was good. […]

2019 Albums

Review/Interview: Moon and Azure Shadow – Age Of Darkness and Frost 9 (Blackgaze)

I’m so excited to share this album with you guys, it’s an absolute gem. Moon and Azure Shadow is a solo project that mixes atmospheric black metal with Japanese style soundtracks. You have to listen to this with headphones on in a dark room to get the full effect of how grand this album is. As a fan of soundtrack style music and dark ambient, I’m so stoked to see that type of sound being so well mixed with the harshness of black metal. […]

2019 Albums

Interview: Satta (Visual Artist)

I became familiar with Satta through IG as I follow a lot of dark artists suitable for band merch, Satta however has a classical approach to the style that outshines the rabble of common assets and lazy work ethic. His art is not just dark by subject, it embodies it fully, from conception to technique to completion. It’s a higher brow darkness. I also became familiar with the aussie OSDM band Aeon’s Abyss through instagram, who ended up commissioning Satta for their upcoming album Impenitent (Nov 1), a fortunate pairing sharing similar classic metal values. Here is an interview with the artist Satta in which we discuss influences, the upcoming album and living as an artist. […]

2019 Albums

Album Review: Messora – The Door 8.7 (Prog Death)

Progressive death metal is a very underrated subgenre. I think it’s sort of overlooked because it’s pretty hard to classify, I often think of it as all encompassing yet forward thinking death metal. Every year there’s at least one progressive death record that absolutely blows me away. Last year it was Where Owls Know My Name by Rivers Of Nihil, this year it’s The Door by Messora. […]

2019 Albums

Review/Interview: Heráldica de Mandrake – Esto también pasará 8.7 (Stoner Doom)

This is one of those scenarios where you don’t understand Spanish but can identify enough words capable of setting a tone. Get ready for some psychedelic action from this Chilean doom trio that’s wet with distortion, I may have even heard an amp blow at some point – unless it’s a drum they’ve down tuned or a pedal effect. There’s a strange aspect to it that a lot of people would describe as “not music”, bordering on noise doom, but it works organically into the overall sound. It’s an interesting release made ever more so by its distinguishable album art created by the frontman Francisco Rivera who offered some insight to the story behind their art as well as their anti-fascist stance (included at the end). […]

2019 Albums

Album Review: The Ritual Aura – Velothi 8.2 (Tech Death)

Before even pressing play I am more or less in love with this album and I think the concept of Morrowind Metal has been a long ass time coming. Morrowind was the game of my life, no doubt about it, I found it at Video Ezy on original XBOX when I was 11. I played Morrowind and only Morrowind until Oblivion was released on 360 when I was 15. I have an encyclopedia like memory of that game and its many quest lines, as well as exploits. I found that fucking Dwemer Cube about 300 times. I’ve played it plenty as an adult too, fully modded. This is even more in my wheelhouse than Dark Souls. The Ritual Aura are also an Australian band with great album art. The music would have to suck more balls than I can imagine being sucked to fuck this up. […]

2019 Albums

Album Review: Mortiferum – Disgorged From Psychotic Depths 8 (Death Doom)

I had an epiphany during the opening track, “Archaic Vision Of Despair”, that death doom is supposed to be a combination of death metal into doom metal but in reality it’s mostly death growls over doom instrumentals. Well in this case the instrumentation brings a strong sense of death riffery but with a sludgy twist. It feels old school, it reminds me of some solid shit out of the late 90s and early 00s of death doomdom. Like all good music, this sounds like descending into the mouth of madness. Well, madness is a mixed bag. […]

2019 Albums

Album Review: Kublai Khan TX – Absolute 8 (Hardcore)

The latter half of the 2010s has brought a savage strain of hardcore to the masses. It’s metalcore tinged hardcore filled with savage breakdowns, fight riffs, and 2-steps galore. It’s been a very nice evolution to the genre, and popularity is at an all-time high with bands like Knocked Loose raking in huge first week sales and Billboard numbers. A front runner in the genre has been the mighty Kublai Khan, or Kublai Khan TX now (they haven’t spoken out about the inclusion of the TX to my knowledge, but I can assume it’s because of legal troubles with an old speed metal band by the same name). I was super pumped for this album. I’ve seen the band live, met their lead singer, own some of their merch, and jam their stuff on the regular. They did not disappoint my sky-high expectations! […]