Category Metal

Skyharbor – Sunshine Dust

Release date: September 7, 2018 Label: Entertainment One U.S.  Skyharbor blends progressive metal with emo and hardcore. Essentially the finished product sounds like Circa Survive and The Contortionist got together to record an album. If you’re into soaring vocals paired with the heavy riffs, you’ll dig this album. Dim kicks off the album and is my favorite track. The instrumentation is interesting […]

Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats – Wasteland

Evil. There’s no other way to describe the sound on Uncle Acid & The Deadbeat’s new release, Wasteland. It’s like The Beatles, Black Sabbath, and Electric Wizard formed a super-group and spent a summer hanging out with Alex and the gang from A Clockwork Orange.  I See Through You is a fuzzy and fitting start to an album chock-full of retro rock n’ […]

Coheed and Cambria – The Unheavenly Creatures

I spent large chunks of my high school career listening to Coheed and Cambria so I was excited to hear that my generation’s Rush has released a new album accompanied by an 80-page graphic novel. This 79-minute epic is full of progressive ballad-y tracks that are vintage Coheed and Cambria. Each song is catchy and will have you singing along […]

Windhand – Eternal Return

On previous efforts, Windhand let loose glorious moments of crushing gloom and fuzz that made it clear that the band had all of the pieces necessary to make a Sleep-esque record…they just couldn’t quite keep your attention. It’s hard to explain. You know that moment, when you’re  ALL IN for the first three tracks of an […]

Clutch – Book of Bad Decisions

The world needs more bands like Clutch. In a genre that consistently takes itself too seriously, Clutch is a band you can’t count on for a good time. They also happen to write some catchy songs. Book of Bad Decisions immediately shifts into gear with Gimme the Keys. The title track, Book of Bad Decisions, shows a new, funkier side of […]

Pig Destroyer – Head Cage

Pig Destroyer has been releasing quality grindcore for over 20 years. I remember listening to Phantom Limb in 2007 and thinking that they were loud and fast but walked away from the album generally underwhelmed. Pig Destroyer still plays loud and fast and even warns on the opening track that they won’t be held responsible for any […]

Saxon – Thunderbolt [Silver Lining Music]

Classic sound here on the 24th full-length album from one of the pioneering NWOBHM artists. Solid heavy metal that will not push any boundaries but also does not sound remotely stale. Very strong effort with lots of great, playable tracks. Play: 2,3,4,5,7,8,9,11 FCC: None RIYL: Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Dio  

The Kut – Valley of Thorns [Cargo Records]

British all female group that straddles the line between hard rock and alternative metal. Riff-centric sound reminiscent of the hard rock heyday of the 1980’s, but without the cheese that is so common in that style of music. Hard hitting with lots of great tracks throughout. Play: 2,4,5,6,8,10 FCC: 7,9 RIYL: White Lung, Hole, Le […]

Dramatica – Fall of Tyranny [Record Label Music]

How I imagine Iron Maiden might sound if Paul Di’Anno never left the band and they delved into a more proggish sound. Very apparent influence from classic NWOBHM acts as well as some of the more straightforward heavy metal acts of the 1980’s. Strong effort throughout. Play: 1,2,3,4,5 FCC: None RIYL: Iron Maiden, Iced Earth, […]

Grimskunk – Unreason in the Age of Madness [Indica]

Politically-charged punk music from Montreal-based band. Reminiscent of classic Canadian punk acts such as Nomeansno at times. Sound occasionally gets heavier on some tracks, but for the most part this is straightforward punk rock. Play: 1,2,6 FCC: 3,4,8 RIYL: Nomeansno, Jello Biafra, Turbonegro

Stepping Sideways – Harbinger [Self-Released]

Progressive metal with an atmospheric sound. Clean vocals mixed with occasional death metal growls on some tracks. Features multiple time changes and breakdowns throughout. Play: 2,3,5 FCC: None RIYL: Opeth, Vanden Plas, Dream Theater

Stoned Jesus- Pilgrims

Stoned Jesus– Pilgrims Release date: 2018Sep07 Label: Napalm Records Rating: 4/5 Excited builds slowly with a touch of sludge, gets the head going. Thessalia romps through the valley of riffage. How else to describe it? Sight, Sound, Touch and Feel,  roll one to this slow burner. Where Hands Resist Him, the ears embrace, pounding drums. Water Me percolates, thundering beats to chiming bass.  Apathy […]

La Chinga-Beyond The Sky

La Chinga– Beyond The Sky Release date: 2018Sep07 Label: Small Stone Rating: 3.5/5 La Chinga return with their second full length release. Nothin’ That I Can’t Do opens with a swagger straight from the age of polyester, porn mustache and all. Mama Boogie moves further uptempo, with a dose of  swampy blues. Black River grooves out, building upon the 70s […]

YOB- Our Raw Heart

YOB– Our Raw Heart Release date: 2018Jun08 Label: Relapse Rating: 4/5 Newest release from YOB. Ablaze engulfs the senses with thunderous noise. The Screen revs with sinister bass. In Reverie delves further down the abyss, dirty licks. Lungs Reach to the heart with a profound sadness. Beauty in Falling Leaves strolls along to a cool autumn breeze. Our Raw Heart concludes with lush, […]

Skepticism- Stormcrowfleet

Skepticism– Stormcrowfleet (re-issue) Release date: 2018Oct26 Label: Svart Records Rating: 5/5 Originally released in 1995, now available for the first time on vinyl. Sign of A Storm drones profoundly upon an epic landscape. Pouring rumbles like bullets on the skin, visceral. By Silent Wings across the land, thunderous fury raining down. The Rising of the Flames engulf the senses, Sabbath-esque […]

Northern Crown- Northern Crown

Northern Crown– S/T Release date: 2018Oct12 Label: Self-released Rating: 4/5 Second release from Fort Lauderdale’s Northern Crown. I Am Your Slave throbs sorrowfully, reminding of subservience. Merciless, They Let You Suffer in Cathedral chains, infernal noise. Chasing The Sun, soulful voice punctuated with thunder. The Desert and The Wind, a melodic twist, light and crisp. Righteous & Pure, yet cannot […]

ALMS-Act One

ALMS– Act One Release date: 2018Oct26 Label: Shadow Kingdom Rating: 5/5 ALMS hail from Baltimore, the unofficial capital of doom metal with their debut. Dead Water plods mercilessly through hazy riffs, reminiscent of Saint Vitus. The Toll expands, foreboding bass to rapid guitar. For Shame is the epic ye seek, smokey vocals set to a thump.  The Offering delivers sinister […]

The Exploding Eyes Orchestra- II

  The Exploding Eyes– II Release date: 2018Oct05 Label: Svart Records Rating: 4.5/5 Final album from the Exploding Eyes Orchestra, also comprised of members of Jess and the Ancient Ones. Those of Us Left, overcome with grief and sorrow, lashing out with licks. Belladonna moves with grace, uplifting vocals. Harmain romps, mellow drumbeats and wistful bass. The Things You Do […]

Ghost- Prequelle

Ghost– Prequelle Release date: 2018Jun01 Label: Loma Vista Rating: 5/5 Papa Emeritus III has fallen, bringing the rise of the mysterious Cardinal Copia. Ashes scatter ominously, growling drumbeats. Rats scurry into the night, his wrath set against a melodic dirge. What’s a plague without dance? He scorns with conviction as Faith is his alone. He implores […]

The Evil- S/T

The Evil– S/T Release date: 2018Jun28 Label: Osmose Productions Rating: 3/5 The Evil hail from Brazil. Voices From The Deep cry out with thick, ominous bass.  About None Guilty growls with thick plodding riffs. Sacrifice to the Evil One unfolds on a somber note, building to thunderous guitar. Satan II throws crusty hooks like daggers to the ears. […]

Deafheaven – Ordinary Corrupt Human Love

Deafheaven are often categorized as black metal and vocalist George Clarke’s vocals would fit with any band in the genre. But to shoehorn Deafheaven into such a confining label is a disservice. On Ordinary Corrupt Human Love, Deafheaven dabbles in shoegaze, post-rock, and even balladry. The album opens with You Without End. Spoken word and piano give way […]

Black Fast – Spectre of Ruin

Black Fast– Spectre of Ruin Release date: 2018Jul13 Label: Entertainment One Black Fast’s mission is simple: play fast, destructive, and heavy metal. Spectre of Ruin is a sneaky pick for best heavy metal album of 2018. Black Fast can best be described as thrash metal and the album art provides a pretty accurate description of what […]

Impending Doom – The Sin and Doom Vol. II

Impending Doom– The Sin and Doom Vol. II Release date: 2018Jun22 Label: Entertainment One Rating: 4/5 Impending Doom is a Christian deathcore band from Riverside, California. Despite the baggage and preconceptions that come with such a description, Impending Doom’s sound places them among some of the best in their genre. The Sin and Doom Vol. II […]

YOB – Our Raw Heart

YOB– Our Raw Heart Release date: 2018Jun8 Label: Relapse Records Rating: 4/5 I’m admittedly late to the game with YOB. The Eugene, Oregon doom band released their first full-length album in 2001 but all I knew of them was the Red Fang cover of Dawn Rising featuring vocalist/guitarist Mike Scheidt. YOB recently released Our Raw Heart […]

Orange Goblin – The Wolf Bites Back

Orange Goblin– The Wolf Bites Back Release date: 2018Jun15 Label: Universal Music Operations Limited Rating: 4/5 Although Orange Goblin doesn’t do much that hasn’t already been done by other artists in the doom genre, they have a formula that works.  The Wolf Bites Back would be an excellent soundtrack for you and your friends if you happen to be […]