2021

Album Review: At The Gates – “The Nightmare of Being” 8.5 (Death Metal)

I don’t think any band exemplifies the idea of carrying the whole game on your back quite like Sweden’s At The Gates. Every time they release something new, it’s a monumental moment for metal. There’s a tremendous amount of pressure on them to perform considering their influence. Every melodeath band to this day is still jocking At The Gates riffs, and the entire second wave of metalcore wouldn’t exist without them. Despite this pressure, they never fail to deliver quality tunes and keep death metal fans happy. […]

2021

Album Review: Cognitive – “Malevolent Thoughts of a Hastened Extinction” 9/10 (Tech Death)

Techdeath has long been my favorite of the death metal subgenres. There’s something about the in-your-face aggression combined with the finesse of rhythmic trickery and masterful technique that just hits my ears the right way. The problem, though, is that the space is distinctly oversaturated in the grand scheme of metal. You can’t throw a guitar pick without hitting a new technical outfit square in the chops. There are whole labels (*glances sideways at The Artisan Era*) that seem to be dedicated to cranking out tech act after tech act. It’s a hard scene to stand out in, is my point.  […]

2021

Album Review: Backxwash – “I LIE HERE BURIED WITH MY RINGS AND MY DRESSES” 10/10 (Rap/Industrial)

A powerful album from a powerful person. To summarise it as briefly as possible: it’s an assault on the establishment through a very current lens. On this new album I LIE HERE BURIED WITH MY RINGS AND MY DRESSES, Backxwash annihilates us with each track, taking on subject matter ranging from transphobia and ACAB to colonialism and anarchy. Moving away from religion which was the primary focus of her previous work God Has Nothing To Do With This Leave Him Out Of It, although religion is certainly a part of systemic oppression and still gets it’s mentions. You’ve likely heard about this one even all over the online metal scene, and that’s because this album goes HARD. […]

2021

Album Review: Controller – “The True Sense Of Strength Within” 7.5/10 (Hardcore)

Controller are a DIY hardcore band from Pennsylvania who released their debut full-length The True Sense Of Strength Within earlier this year. Being a completely self-released effort, it’s perhaps no surprise that this album seems to have flown pretty far under the radar for many hardcore fans, myself included. That’s a shame though, because while this record isn’t exactly the most inventive take on the genre, it’s still executed to a very high standard that should sit well with fans of respected up and comers like Thirdface and Gulch. […]