Author Archives: bbarratt

Tusmørke- Hinsides

Tusmørke– Hinsides Release date: 2017May12 Label: Svart Rating:  5/5 Hjemsøkte Hjem is an ethereal amalgamation of woodsy folk and punk unlike anything else I’ve heard. I Feel Like Midnight throws in some funk to compliment sounds of woodland animals. Rykende Ruin lifts your spirits with somber riffs straight from 1973. Lyssky Drom reaches out and […]

Beastmaker- Inside The Skull

Beastmaker– Inside The Skull Release date: 2017May19 Label: Rise Above Rating: 3.5/5 Beastmaker hail from Fresno, CA with this follow-up to Lusus Naturae, released just last year. Evil One lives up to its’ name, reminiscent of tracks from Electric Wizard and Uncle Acid. Now Howls The Beast lunges for the throat with sinister, foreboding vocals set […]

Sabbath Assembly- Rites of Passage

Sabbath Assembly– Rites of Passage Release date: 2017May12 Label: Svart Records Rating: 4/5 Sabbath Assembly hail from TX and NYC with a potent mix of occult rock. Shadows Revenge takes no prisoners with dark, foreboding riffs set to thick, rolling drums. Angel’s Trumpets is soft, melodic with dark, dirty bass licks.  Does Love Die is full of harmonic […]

Medusa1975- Rising From The Ashes

Medusa1975– Rising From The Ashes Release date: 2017Apr21 Label: Svart Records Rating: 5/5 Medusa1975 represents the evolution of Medusa, an obscure proto-metal group out of Colorado formed in the 1970s. Armageddon opens with somber notes, picking up in the middle with a punishing bass/guitar attack. Rage On is a lazy afternoon stoner jam. Indeed, man. Fall […]

The Obsessed- Sacred

The Obsessed– Sacred Release date: 2017Apr07 Label: Relapse Rating: 4/5 Formed by Scott “Wino” Weinrich (Saint Vitus),  The Obsessed return with their first record since 1994’s The Church Within. Punk Crusher and Haywire serve up punk-ish doom rock. Stranger Things is a  melodic romp through the desert. Razor Wire sounds a lot like a certain […]

Ymir’s Blood- Ymir’s Blood

Ymir’s Blood– Ymir’s Blood Release date: 2017Mar01 Label: Archaic Sound Rating: 3.5/5 I may have overstated my fondness for this release. Unleasher: Beerbarian is full of thick, crushing sludge with an old-school feel. 1589 impresses with medieval doom riffs and a pounding bass line. Origin of Iron hurtles at an epic pace with catchy bass licks. Immigrant Song is a decent cover of the Led […]

Unearthly Trance- Stalking the Ghost

Unearthly Trance– Stalking The Ghost Release date: 2017Feb24 Label: Relapse Rating: 5/5 Two words come to mind: night terrors. Into The Spiral dominates, acidic drumbeats, searing every inch of your being. Dream State Arsenal like a hellwolf, plodding with cavernous bass, encrusted drums. Famine drones into existence with lethargic licks. Lion Strength conjures thoughts of Saint Vitus, […]

Spagegoat- Superstition

Spacegoat– Superstition Release date: 2016Dec15 Label: Self-released Rating: 4.5/5 Monterrey, Mexico’s Spacegoat return with a new full-length. Their debut EP was a top pick of mine. “Doomensional” sets the mood with psychedelic doom riffage. “Transmuta” is a mid-paced bluesy stomper. “Superstition” is a favorite with its’ trance-y licks mated to somber vocals. There’s a strong Black Sabbath […]

Dawnbringer- XX

Dawnbringer– XX Release date: 2016Dec23 Label: Ektro Rating: 3.5/5 Dawnbringer recently split-up, which is a disappointment as I was a fan of Into The Lair of the Sun God and have yet to listen to the follow-up to that. “Why Would You Leave Me” opens on  soft note, seguing “Into The Maze”, which offers dark, […]

Lo-Pan- In Tensions

Lo-Pan- In Tensions Release date: 2017Jan13 Label: Aqualamb Rating: 4.5/5 Lo-Pan return from Columbus, Ohio with this excellent EP.”Go West” is quick and dirty with light sludge licks. “Long Live the King” evokes early-QOTSA with infectious hooks. “Pathfinder” soars over the rest with soft melodies giving way to a sonic attack. I admit, it’s not […]

Luciferian Light Orchestra- Black EP

Luciferian Light Orchestra– Black EP Release date: 2016Dec09 Label: Svart Records Rating: 5/5 Fans of Therion might be familiar with vocalist Christofer Johnsson and his newest project, the Lucifierian Light Orchestra.  I was blown away the first time I heard this and it’s taken me a while to put my thoughts to a page. “Evil Masquerade” greets with dark, […]

Captain Crimson- Remind

Captain Crimson– Remind Release date: 2016Oct14 Label: Small Stone Rating: 4/5 This is not the first time that I’ve reviewed anything from Captain Crimson (2012’s Dancing Madly Backwards was excellent). Remind has a lot of offer, starting with “Bells from the Underground”, which rolls with dripping grunge-lite hooks and catchy tempos. “Love Street” is full of bluesy […]

Kremlin- Kremlin

Kremlin– Kremlin Release date: 2016Oct07 Label: Svart Records Rating: 4.5/5 Kremlin hail from Helsinki, Finland. “Ghost Flyers” greets the ears with an organic rock soundscape with strong ’70s psychedelic/hard rock influences. “Cruhn” is highly reminiscent of Pentagram. “Lizards” takes one on a memorable romp with bluesy guitar and rolling bass, similar to Deep Purple. “Lizards II” increases […]

Void King- There Is Nothing

Void King– There Is Nothing Release date: 2016Jun21 Label: self Rating: 3.5/5 Void King hail from Indianapolis, IN with a blend of riff-heavy metal. Skull Junkie rips with dirty blues licks set against abrasive vocals. Brandy Knew changes it up with punk guitar/bass, flowing into filthy drums. Canyon Hammer rains down fire and brimstone. It’s […]

Howling Giant- Black Hole Space Wizard Part 1 EP

Howling Giant– Black Hole Space Wizard Part 1 EP Release date: 2016Aug12 Label: self Rating: 3/5 Prepare for lift-off Mothership descends with punishing guitar and surefire vocals. Exodus-Earth makes reference to H.G Wells’ The War of the Worlds. Dirtmouth whistles and pops, giving way to frantic drumming and chaotic vocals. Clouds of Smoke part to […]

Valient Thorr-Old Salt

Valient Thorr– Old Salt Release date: 2016Jul29 Label: Napalm Rating: 5/5 Valient Thorr hail from Chapel Hill, NC. Mirakuru hits the ground running, spewing forth infectious thrash licks (radio edit available). Lil’ Knife stabs gently with a touch of blues. Cut and Run rocks your eardrums with an epic bass imprint. No Count Blues sounds like […]

The Wounded Kings- Visions of Bone

The Wounded Kings– Visions of Bone Release date: 2016Aug26 Label: Candlelight Rating: 2.5/5 The Wounded Kings announced shortly before the release of this album that they would be disbanding. Beast is comprised of soul-crushing doom with a harmonious pause. Kingdom plods through the field, taunting the ears with wrenching hooks. Vanishing Sea mercifully finishes with […]

Cardinals Folly- Holocaust of Ecstasy & Freedom

Cardinals Folly– Holocaust of Ecstasy & Freedom Release date: 2016Jun03 Label: Shadow Kingdom Rating: 4/5 Cardinals Folly return with a follow-up to Our Cult Continues!. Goats on the Left, sheep on the right, damning uptempo licks all around. Her Twins of Evil entice with harmony, scold with demonic drumbeats. Vaporous bass licks and ghoulish drums […]

Bloody Hammers- Lovely Sort of Death

Bloody Hammers– Lovely Sort of Death Release date: 2016Aug05 Label: Napalm Rating: 4/5 Think synth-doom. Lights Come Alive with scratches and pops, accompanied by a foreboding voice. The Reaper Comes, wielding a scepter of droning synth melded to soft drumbeats. Infinite Gaze to the Sun stomps with tasty, sludgy licks. Stoke The Fire and Catastrophe […]

Castle- Welcome to the Graveyard

Castle– Welcome to the Graveyard Release date: 2016Jul15 Label: Van Records Rating: 4.5/5 Castle is doom as fuck. Black Widow snags the ears with blitzkrieg drums against urgent vocals. Hammer and the Cross plods along with a fuck-all guitar/bass attack. Veil of Death is set to melancholic vocals, giving way to upbeat licks. A quick Flash […]

Candlemass- Death Thy Lover EP

Candlemass– Death Thy Lover Release date: 2016Jun03 Label: Napalm Rating: 4.5/5 Candlemass‘s first  release since the departure of Robert Lowe and return of Mats Leven. Death Thy Lover starts with a soft wail, echoing louder, melding with thunderous drums and epic bass. Thy Sleeping Giant plods along, guided by tortured vocals. Sinister & Sweet is kind-of similar […]

Pallbearer- Fear and Fury EP

Pallbearer– Fear and Fury EP Release date: 2016Aug10 Label: Profound Lore Rating: 4.5/5 Pallbearer return with a remastered version of the title track and two covers, one of Black Sabbath and the other being Type O Negative. Fear and Fury defines them with a crisp, melancholy vibe. Over & Over is softer, thicker than the […]

Direct Hit- Wasted Mind

Direct Hit– Wasted Mind Release date: 2016Jun24 Label: Fat Wreck Chords Rating: 3.5/5 Direct Hit hail from Milwaukee. Promo material claims that this album is a concise version of Green Day‘s American Idiot. Ok, if you say so. “Artificial Confidence” starts off with a standard pop punk vibe. Favorites include “Paid in Brains“, “Was It […]

Useless ID- State Is Burning

Useless ID– State Is Burning Release date: 2016Jul01 Label: Fat Wreck Chords Rating: 4/5 Newest release from Useless ID. Sounds like stripped, old school punk to my jaded ears. Favorites include “Land of Idiocracy“, “Stopwatch“, “Creation“, “State is Burning” and “We Don’t Want the Airwaves” (lots of name-dropping, a Ramones tribute). It’s fast, it’s loud […]

Fat Wreck Chords- Mild in The Streets

Fat Wreck Chords– Mild In The Streets (Fat Music Unplugged) Release date: 2016Jul01 Label: Fat Wreck Chords Rating: 3.5/5 This is a compilation of acoustic versions of songs from several bands in Fat’s roster. Some of my favorite tracks are “Fruitless Fortunes” (Swingin’ Utters), “Care of Me” (Morning Glory), “1 Trillion Dollars” (Anti-Flag), “This One’s […]