20 Feb 2017

Deathlord: "Maximum Perversion"

Irrefutable evidence that death metal doesn't need to be fancy
When you get down to business and back to basics with death metal, what you're left with is indisputable. Stomach churning vocals, gut wrenching instrumentals, loathsome melodies and ass kicking drums. It's been like that since day one with Possessed, Death and their lot. There's absolutely nothing abstruse or profoundly intelligent about it, and neither does there need to be. That is indeed the modus operandi of the Dutch band of death metal motherfuckers known as Deathlord. Even the name itself seems to be giving the finger to overly thought out metal.

17 Feb 2017

Lid: "In the Mushroom"

Bargain bin classic from Peaceville
In spite of Peaceville Records' history as a metal label, Lid's In the Mushroom album is by and large much more of a rock than a metal album. It is, however, easy to see how the band found their way unto the well-known heavy metal label as the band consists of Eric Wagner, the voice of doom metal legends Trouble, and Danny Cavanagh from the ever-evolving Anathema.

13 Feb 2017

Licrest: "Misery"

Oppressive and heavy in every aspect
For those not initiated in the cult and dogma of American musician Armon Nicholson, his body of work is impressive in size and stylistic span. Of all his projects, including blackened death-thrash project Only A Shadow Remains and many many others, his doomed-out death metal band Licrest is arguably the most well known.

10 Feb 2017

Obliveon: "From This Day Forward"

The forgotten classic, or just a cheap imitation?
Chances are that if you're into death metal you've probably heard (and perhaps even enjoyed) the mind boggling madness of Atheist's Unquestionable Presence, Nocturnus' The Key or Death's Spiritual Healing. All classics within the genre, all from that damned year 1990. But how about From This Day Forward by Canada's Obliveon?

6 Feb 2017

Critical Insanity: "Through the Infinite Darkness"

Strange and unique take on thrash, but stumbling around in the dark
If imitation is the highest form of flattery, then Critical Insanity - a band of thrashing youngsters roaming the streets of Poland - haven't found anyone worth flattering. Or perhaps they've instead opted to truly try and be different, which in a way they have succeeded in with their 2013 full length demo Through the Infinite Darkness.

3 Feb 2017

Lazerhawk: "Dreamrider"

An originator who hasn't lost track of his ultimate goal in the face of genre hype
It's been relatively silent from camp Lazerhawk for some time now, and out of nowhere drops the new album Dreamrider like a meteor from interstellar space. From the earlier efforts' affinity for hard-hitting 80s nostalgia over Skull and Shark's soundtrackesque street cyberpunk turned rough-around-the-edges comic, Dreamrider - as the name would suggest - is a dreaming, lofty affair more reliant on vibrant soundscapes and softly head-boppin' synth-pop tunes than the neon-draped silhouettes with the subtlety of a jackhammer that coloured previous material.

30 Jan 2017

Malichor: "The Serum"

Lovecraftian metal that presents the author's more visceral side
We come to find ourselves once again in the company of Australia's Malichor, brandishing the proud tradition of blackened thrash metal with wild fervour as per usual. From previous experience with the band I have come to expect nothing but the best in ruthlessness and riffing that takes to straight to Lovecraft's most tenebrous nightmares. Inspired by equal measures Re-Animator and From Beyond - Two absolute classics of Lovecraftian horror cinema, both starring Jeffrey Combs - we're being spoiled with a take on the classic mythos, but without the by now standardised Cthulhu/Azathoth shtick.