Monday, 30 March 2015

Neverendinghate - Demo EP (Cassette Review)

02.Silenciando La Memoria
03.No Hay Perdón Para El Cobarde

Enserune (Vocals/Bass)
Erun Dagoth (Guitar/Drums)

Spanish duo formed band in 2013, released first demo last year and now getting a re-issue to reach a wider audience.
This is a limited edition cassette only release.

Strange and pointless 'Intro' into a strange and noise laden first song, chaotic and all over the place, one wonders what the fuck is going on, were they in the same room when they recorded this or even the same planet?
Drums are out of time, vocal screams have nothing to add, on occasion however it does briefly come together with a good bit of guitar playing, but then it goes off in different directions again.

'No Hay...' slightly more together, some quite clever timing changes blending the brutality with some doom elements, but again terrible vocals and that drumming keeps going out of time with the rest of the noise, a brief guitar solo cannot save this one either.

Next up is 'Esclavos' and is the only song here that has some real structure, that said its just another pointless noise, this is followed by some stunning but simple guitar strumming as the 'Outro'.

Yes okay it's a demo, but i fail to see what they are trying to achieve or where they intent to head next.The blurb claims this to be "visceral old school Thrash/Black/Death Metal, in the vein of the old masters with a faster approach", not sure which old masters they mean, obviously one i've never heard of.

Rating 4/10
For fans of: Korgull The Destroyer

Sunday, 29 March 2015

SFD - The Complete Works (CD Review)

Daryl Taveira (Bass)
Grant McKinnon (Drums)
Paul Giltrow (Guitar)
Jax Murray (Guitar)
Chris Robson (Vocals)

S.F.D. were an Australian Thrash Metal band active from 1991-1993.
This is a 2-CD set bringing together all their demos and releases, being hailed as something of a "legend" creaing music in the classic thrash of Bay Area in parts, old Teutonic thrash, as well as the more technical kind such as CORONER's style of thrash.
Did a bit of research on them, well attempted to, couldnt find anything apart from a few pics of the demos and a you tube video, not even a picture of the band and the record company didnt have one either, also they were unsigned, not quite sure that the term "Legend" is going to very relevant for a band who i'm guessing did little outside their local area.

So hitting play on disc one and the first couple of songs are pretty rough, when track 3 'The Saviour' starts though we get some intresting music, starting with some keyboards which then moves into some nice well played melodic thrash that builds layer upon layer until bursting into life and a full on assault.

As the disc moves on we get a mixture of old school thrash, some silly and pointless instrumentals and some rough sounding songs, seems there is two styles here, on the one hand we have well thought out songs with melody and agression and some plain noisey ones with rough vocals.

As for Disc 2, you can hear the progression in the bands sound as they try new ideas in an attempt to move forward, more technical playing and some very impressive bass playing at times, the vocals continued more on the harsh side.

So an intresting collection, one for fans of the genre and it's history, but hardly "legendary".

Rating 7/10
For fans of: Exodus, Testament, Dark Angel, Metallica, Slayer

Morass Of Molasses - So Flows Our Fate EP (CD Review)

01.Rotten Teeth
03.Fear To Tread
04.Bear River

Bones The Beard (Vocals/Bass)
Phil The Mountain (Guitar)
Chris The Beast (Drums)

Stoner band formed in march 2013, like a half submerged man slowing crawling onto dry land; Not yet completely visible. Dragging behind him all that he has experienced. Thick with mud, drenched with sweat. Feral, but subdued, waiting for the moment to drag you down.
This three piece from Reading blend all your favourite sins into a rich odious syrup... they will rot your teeth.

'Rotten Teeth' starts with a huge wall of sound and just as it gets going, goes all melodic and quiet, almost reminding me of that early grunge style.
With each of the four tracks you get this amazing blend of classic neo 70's sounds and modern influence, somehow it manages to sound retro and up to date and for some reason I can't help but feel it sounds a bit American.
Now that's not a bad thing at all in fact i would go so far to say it's very clever to be able to create this music at this level for a debut and give the estabilished American movement something to think about.

So if you like pure power, epic guitar playing, soulfull vocals, agression and melody, then this is one to add to the collection.

Rating 9/10
For fans of: Dusteroid, Blood Island Raiders, Kyuss, Trippy Wicked, The Quill

Thursday, 26 March 2015

Mindflair - Scourge Of Mankind (CD Review)

01.Black Frost
02.Sunprotectionfactor 13
07.Ideal Of Stupidity
10.Quite The Opposite
11.Conspiracy Of Shit
13.Theatre Of The Absurd

Arthur (Drums)
Boris (Guitar)
Chris (Bass)
Moshfred (Vocals)

Seb Bxe (Vocals on 'Unkrautbekämpfung')

German grindcore band with an impressive back catalogue dating back to 1996, famously contributed to the repulsion tribute cd in 2009.
This latest album features a guest appearence from Seb from Bitterness Exhumed.

Well I am 9 tracks in so far and its just a relentless wall of noise, some of the fastest drumming I have heard for ages, the most tortured screams replacing vocals and just endless distortion.

Yet in here are some clever almost sludgelike breakdowns, very slight but somehow manages to get some structure into the mayhem, in the song 'Conspiracy Of Shit' there is some actual "nice" guitar playing as well.

This does what you would expect from 'Grindcore' but its not the usual case of each song sounding exactly the same.

Rating 8/10
For Fans of: Repulsion, aAnd?, The Locust, SOB

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Mindfall - Post Apocalyptic Grind EP (CD Review)

01.False Decisions-Fatal Actions
02.Slashed Tongues
03.Dead Inside
04.Shadows Grow Deep

Juha Aunola (Vocals)
Andy Aunola (Guitar)
Jonne Tolonen (Guitar)
Mikko Pakanen (Bass)
Jari Huttunen (Drums)

Mindfall formed in 2014 and are from the City of Oulu, Northern Finland.
Band members have many years of experience in a various other bands playing music from
different genres.
The band members are defined by participation in the song writing process and the desire to provide an intensive gig experience to the audience.

Well no fancy intro from these guys damn if the first song doesn't just explode through the speakers with an unholy scream and then bang right into the powerhouse that is 'False Decisions-Fatal Actions'.Not as the title suggests "Grind" but more of a very well produced technical death metal with some real melody blending with true power.

Less furious but just as brutal is 'Slashed Tongues', highly rhythm drum patterns are punctuated by simple but effective chords, the chorus is backed with a great riff, really gives the song some structure and depth.

'Dead Inside' is another juggernaut of a song, driven by superb drumming, the song builds as the guitars come in, all the time the song is held together by the death meatl styled vocal, but one you can hear!

A highly melodic start to 'Shadows Grow Deep', almost lures you into a happy place but as was expected the power and agression comes in and smacks you around the head, but through clever timing changes they bring that melody back to perfection.

Rating 9/10
For Fans Of: Chaosanct, Xenochord, Spitting Blood

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Cyrence - The Hospital EP (CD Review)

01.A New Begininng
03.This Life
04.The Hospital
05.I Won't Fall
06.You Kill Me
07.Purity Control

Tim Grathwohl (Vocals/Guitar)
Dominic Millett (Guitar)
Chris Hammer (Bass)
Thomas Goldberg (Drums)

Started in 2006 as a solo project of Tim Grathwohl (Vocals and Guitar, Ex-ONE MORE DAY/Ex-GATECRUSHER). In early 2009 they became a full band, featuring bassist Sebastian Moser of SHAPESHIFT/CYNICISM and Chris Boenisch on drums. In late 2009, drumming duties were handed over to Lenz Scharf (SICK SOUL/Ex- A-RECORDZ/Ex-GATECRUSHER).

With Artur Vladinovskij on Lead Guitar, the line-up was complete from late 2009 until April 2010.
Due to conflicting schedules, Artur left and was replaced by Dominic Millett in May 2010. Unfortunately, Basti and Lenz decided to leave the Band in June 2011, again because of conflicting schedules. Luckily, Thomas Goldberg, former drummer of DEATHFEAR, joined in October 2011. In March 2012 finally they found the right person to fill the gap Basti left behind, as Chris Hammer (Ex-KNOW YOUR FOE/AS MENTIONED BELOW) joined the band as their permanent Bassist.

'Dystopia' starts after another fucking intro to an ep/album!
What we get is a very mature sounding melodic thrash metal influenced sound, vocals sung properly (no grunts and growls), solid drumming and endless riffs.

Next few tracks do exactly the same a precision take on the genre faultless in its delivery with a lavish sound production.

'I Wont Fall' is a seven minute mini-masterpiece starts slowly and just builds layer upon layer, highly rhythmic drum patterns blended with clean chord structures, then some timing changes to slow things down before a new rhythm starts, stop/start drum and vocal keeps things intresting, then full on thrash assault time!

Rating 9/10
For fans of: Metallica, Megadeth, Exodus, Evile, Kemakil

Dark Void - Release The Kraken EP (CD Review)

01.The Awakening
03.100 Years
04.Release The Kraken
05.Anger Within
06.Near Death

Philippos Chrysostomou (Vocals)
Andreas Tryfonos (Guitar)
Trifun Moskalj (Guitar)
Christos Papadopoulos (Bass)
Panayiotis Soteriou (Drums)

Dark Void were formed by Andreas, Christos, Giorgos Hajistilis and Panayiotis late summer of 2013. They started playing mostly covers but soon started on original songs.

Late spring of 2014 Hajistillis decides to leave the band fot personal reason but he still remains a very good friend to dark void! the band at that time decided that if they wanted to rise above all the other bands they needed a singer, and thats were Philipos came in and finally Trifun came to fill in for the 2nd guitar.

Ignoring the pointless 2 minute opening sound effects and a bit of acoustic guitar, yep another band another intro as a seperate track as opposed to simply placing it at the beginning of the main song, which after nearly 12 seconds appears to start exactly where the other one ended.

Okay so rant over and on to 'Nameless', from its distortion opening it then hammers it way through the speakers for some full on thrash metal, no messing around here, ahh well thats what i thought until it went all "symphonic" for a second with keyboards??? then seems to move more into black metal timings and more of that keyboard, and no vocals so what is this "Intro" part 2???

Finally a song! and '100 Years' sounds the part musically, but the vocals need some work and why throw in death metal backing growls where they are not needed or fit?

'Release The Kraken', well this one is worthy of all praise because it samples Eric Cartman from the Cthulhu episodes.The music really does fit more with melodic death metal than out and out thrash, but it is a seriously good and heavy track, very drum driven.

Up next is 'Anger Within' and the first song that really ticks most of the thrash metal boxes, though i still think the vocals are to harsh.

The last track 'Near Death' starts with some pounding basswork followed by furious drumming, there is a slight effect on the vocal which helps it along, slightly reminiscent of early metallica, but dispite that, still really kicks ass!
Some brilliant guitarwork in here as well.

Rating 8/10
For fans of: Tempestora, Breathless, Reaping Havoc, Savage Messiah

Monday, 23 March 2015

Vetten AEpaeraet - Sydaentalven Viha (Single Review)

01.Sydaentalven Viha

Sami Ferm (Vocals/Flutes)
Aleksi Kulmala (Guitar)
Leo Lemmetty (Guitar)
Jarmo Luopa (Bass)
Irene Penttonen (Keyboards)
Anton Nisonen (Drums)

From Helsinki, Finland Vetten Äpärät is a six member folk metal band founded in 2006. They consider themselves to be the second generation of Finnish folk metal as they were influenced by the Finnish pioneer bands that came before them. Wanting to take the genre to the next level Vetten Äpärät are currently creating a folk metal lifestyle that goes beyond just playing and recording music.

Their music is built on the strong base of Nordic melodic metal ranging from skull crushing low tuned sounds to traditional folk melodies. The vocals bring the message of the harsh but beautiful life in the realm of north. Visually their goal is to create an authentic theatre-like concept. The band has found their style from the flora and fauna of the creatures and elements in folklore like dryads.

In 2011 and 2012 Vetten Äpärät recorded two demos (Demo 2011 and Taru 2012) as a five piece unit. After their original bassist left in the spring of 2013 the band went through changes in their concept. By the end of the year the band got a new bass player and recruited a completely new member for lead guitars which changed Sami's role in the band to just vocals and flutes. With the new line-up Vetten Äpärät recorded their debut single "Sydäntalven Viha" in 2014.

The new album is to be released later this year.

Normally pretty difficult to get a handle on how good a band is from just one song, however, this is no ordinary song.
Starts nice and acoustic with some vocals, then rest of the band join in and it is epic, full of meldy, passion and power, then gets even faster and full on folk metal is let loose, drum driven and then use of keyboards to give it that celtic feel.
As the song progresses they just thow more and more in, numerous timing and style changes.

Rating 10/10
For fans of: Turisas, Elvenking, Tanzwut

Friday, 20 March 2015

Dormant Inferno & Dionysus - Beyond Forgotten Shores (CD Review)

Dormant Inferno
01.Veil Of Lunacy
03.A Once Holy Throne (Incantation)

Gautam Shankar (Vocals)
Sunny Bhambri (Guitar/Bass)
Lenin Kharat (Keyboards)

Formed in 2009, Amidst the clutter of Thrash, Death & Metalcore bands in Mumbai, two guys decided to take a different route and play Doom Metal back in 2009. Influenced by varied bands Dormant Inferno aims at attaining a sound which is minimal yet captivating. Dormant Inferno hopes at exposing the Metalheads in Mumbai to Doom Metal, a beautiful yet ignored genre of Metal.

Starting off with a pretty straight forward modern metal workout 'Veil Of Lunacy' has no elements of Doom at all, the acoustic sounding breakdown around 3 minutes in is well played and then starts to come to life as darker chords come in and some evil sounding vocals appear.

'Deliverance' is a bit more doomy but then ends up sounding more like Iron Maiden, okay with death meatl growl vocals and then just like the previous track it goes all quiet with another acoustic breakdown and with added hushed vocal, expecting this one to then go into Doom, well it doesn't, almost symphonic metal yes, doom no.

Well for the last song 'A Once Holy Throne' can we get some doom? Nope again just metal, might have a dark edge to it but it aint doom.

Rating 4/10

04.Beneath The Skies Of War

Sheraz Ahmed (Guitar/Drums)
Umair Ahmed (Guitar)
Waleed Ahmed (Vocals/Bass/Acoustic Guitar)
Rauhan Lasharie (Flute/Synth/Violin)

Dionysus is a Death/Doom band from Lahore, Pakistan, and thats about all the info i have on them im guessing they formed around 2010.

'Beneath The Skies Of War' and still no sign of Doom metal, this is more of a mix of death/extreme metal with a slight nod to a couple of doomish chords.

And here comes the 'Rain' for another death metal inspired workout, at times more melodic thrash than anything else, this ones saving grace is the last few minutes of clever use of acoustic instruments and a bluesy/power metal solo.

Rating 6/10

So what should have been a blistering doom split ep, turns out to be another dissapointment, have these people never heard of Electric Wizard or Cathedral???

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Zapotek - Blood Offering EP (Download Review)

01.Blood Offering
02.Rip Your Face Off
03.Human Sacrifice
04.Atomic Energy
05.Noise Machine

Sky London (All Instruments)

This is the new project from Sky London who has moved out from behind the drum kit (currently with Star Scream) into Bass Music Production in the DnB/Dubstep/EDM style.
Not being a style i know anything about this could be a tricky review.

Starting with 'Blood Offering' an ambient and quite percussive beginning, nice light synth tones, yet as the keyboards come in more it has an edgy almost un-nerving quality, synth pulses then come in with a few voice samples thrown in.
It almost sounds like a intro to a horror movie and not what I was expecting.

The same quality of soundscapes return for 'Rip Your Face Of' add a more uptempo drum beat and this is clearly aimed at the dancefloor, but there are intresting elements thrown in here, my old ears detect a passing nod to electronica soundtracks by Klaus Schulze to more modern  composers like Deadmau5.

The next piece 'Human Sacrifice' has some electronic harpsicord and a very disturbing sample of a babys vice.
The music is punctuated by some clever synth scrapes and use of traditional piano.

'Atomic Energy' is multilayered with voice samples and hi-energy drum and bass rhythms, the overall style is very reminiscent to Chase & Status.

The final piece 'Noise Machine' has a more automated rhythm, tinges of Kraftwerk and Moroder blend perfectly with the modern dubstep style.
Nice use of vocal samples once again and at times the timing changes and chord structures, use of drum machine and that hi-hat sound remind me of good old "house music", can see a dancefloor rammed with everybody waving their hands around.

Overall I have to say, to me it seems quite dark in places, not happy and upbeat, more suited to a cyberpunk gig than Ibiza!

Rating 9/10
For fans of: Deadmau5, Chase & Status, Skream, Skrillex


Monday, 16 March 2015

The Lidocaine - Chicken Cage Of Horror (CD Review)

01.Chicken Cage Of Horror
02.Empty Space Devil's Blog
03.The End Of The Beginning....
04.Too Late To Escape
06.Onion Of Chasity
07.Zest For Life
09.Throat Of A Monster
10.Voyage Of Discovery

Anthony Rausku (Vocals/Guitar)
Eroz (Vocals/Guitar)
Tatu Hiltunen (Bass)
Jari Vanhanen (Drums)

The Lidocaine are a finnish rock/metal/progressive band coming from the city of Helsinki, formed in 2007.
Their debut album "The Voices and Noises of KILING KOLING" was released in summer 2009 and their second album "On The Road To MIERO" was released in 2013.

Okay so this is pretty odd, 'Chicken Cage Of Horror' starts with a pretty wild but straight forward mix of rock and metal, but the vocal really carrys the song, part power metal style part almost folk/metal, cant really put my finger on it, it is also slightly silly, but very infectious, I wonder what's next?

Even with this next song cant help but notice a kind of folkish rock element to the music, that said it also seriously rocks, i am really struggling with this one!

Okay skipping forward to 'Too Late To Escape' and we have a rock ballad with female vocals, no mention in the blurb as to who this is?

Thats followed by 'Fabrication' a sort of melodic thrash workout, lots of neat riffs and some great drumming, gets into some quite epic classic rock style riffing during its seven minute duration.

Back to the silly with 'Onion Of Chasity' from more folkish vocal to what sounds like an impression of dani filth, all over some frantic extreme metal then it all gets this timing change that shouldn't work but somehow does.

Really moving into prog territory with 'Zest For life' like rush jamming with primus.

With 'Retrobution' well frankly I give up, ballad, heavy metal, extreme metal, doom, blues, you name it it's in here somewhere!

After another fairly straight forward and very well executed prog/metal workout on 'Throat Of A Monster' we get to 'Voyage Of Discovery' more folk rock blended with just about everything else and some more female vocals (I think).

One helluva album, quite brilliant, full of humor and just about every genre of rock and metal n show at one time or another.

Rating 10/10
For fans of: Primus, Deep Switch, Turisas

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Sacred Blood - Argonautica (CD Review)

01.Legends Of The Sea/The Epic Of Apollonius
02.Hellenic Steel
03.Hail The Heroes
04.Legacy Of The Lyre
05.To Lands No Man Hath Seen
06.Call Of Blood
07.O'er The Tomb (Beyond The Pillars Of Heracles)
08.Friend Or Foe
09.Enchantress Of The East
10.The Golden Fleece Pt1
11.The Golden Fleece Pt2

Epeios Phocaeus (Vocals)
Polydeykis (Guitars/Keyboards/Flute/Accordion)
George Karahalios (Drums)

Greek band formed originally under the band name "Sacred" in December 2003.

The following year they record their first self financed demo cd titled “Clash of The Titans”. The demo included four tracks in the music direction of heavy/power/epic metal and got some very encouraging reviews from the underground heavy metal scene.

The band started working on some ideas and they composed 10 tracks that musically drew on some folk elements from the Hellenic and Celtic music heritage and lyrically they refer to the heroic sacrifice of 300 Spartan and 700 Thespian warriors, eventually released in 2008 'The Battle Of Thermopylae:The Chronicle' under the new band name Sacred Blood.
In 2012 the band released a concept album about the deeds of Alexander the Great, called 'Alexandros' and was hailed as one of the best albums of the year.

Played this one through, it is an epic piece of work, cannot fault it's production and musicanship one bit.
That this is a trio is something to be admired, they have created an album that bands with seven or eight members couldn't compete with.

So what can I say, stunning mixture of symphonic and power metal, elements of folk and good old heavy metal, hell even some progressive rock in the mix.

Got to pick a couple out, because they are a little different, firstly 'O'er The Tomb (Beyond The Pillars Of Heracles)' a brilliant celtic folk song, traditional instruments used to perfection, stunning vocal delivery, simple almost understated yet this song just has that special something, not an electric instrument in sight, then when the backing vocals come in complete with feamle voices, oh just wow!

At the other end of the musical spectrum comes 'Enchantress Of The East' a full on speed metal piece, extreme drum patterns, Dio (esque) vocals, clever orchestration, brilliant backing vocals, scathing guitarwork.

Then to wrap this up a two parter with 'The Golden Fleece' starts off with full orchestration, then some normal vocals, but its when the drum starts that the atmosphere begins to build, a female voice speaks (not sure what as its in greek) but it really adds something till the full chorus harmonys come in, this is then topped off with 6 minutes of epic power metal, riff loaded and more clever timing changes that flow into folk rock and mini ballads and full blown metal.

Rating 10/10
For fans of: Dream Evil, Achilla, Elvenking, Northland, Lyriel

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Sinners Moon - Atlantis (CD Review)

01.Inner Demons
02.Memento Mori
04.Pray For The Child
05.Falls Of The Neverland
06.My Servant
07.Fly To The Moon
08.Dark Episode
09.Sinners Moon
11.Upon A Star

Simona (Vocals)
Luken (Guitars)
Derrick (Growls)
Jano (Drums)
Jarthuusen (Keyboards)
Viktor (Bass)

Tony Kakko (Vocals on My Servant)

Sinners Moon formed in 2010, founder member Luken spoke about the latest release;

"Album itself keeps the message of hope, lost & found, from my point of view as a composer but it might be possible to find another different meanings as you listen to it song by song.
We recorded the album in Grapow studios in Slovakia for the best sound and best metal experience possible that we could get and so, hopefully we got it. Tony Kakko (Sonata Arctica) as a guest singer for "My Servant" song was honestly the first and the only choice. Since I was composing the song I had his voice in my head but still couldn't really imagine him to sing it. But I was kinda "stubborn kid" in that and now I see it was worth it. After a while he accepted to be the part of the song, I think that this is going to be the most interesting thing on the album. It really means something huge to me as a fan of him and Sonata Arctica."

'Inner Demons' sets the standard for this album of good old fashioned "symphonic Metal", the female vocals work well alongside the growls, bringing to mind Tristania (back when they were good circa 'Ashes').
Lavish keyboards, solid drumming and lots of punchy guitar chords, this one ticks all the boxes.

The next song 'Memento Mori' is more agressive, the vocals soar through the speakers and the growls complete with a near spoken piece really give this song an epic feel, at times its Nightwish then could almost be Dimmu Borgir.

Keeps going well until the bland 'Pray For The Child' another typical naff ballad type song, that really does nothing for the concept of the album.

It has to be said that 'My Servant' totally powers it way throughout, hyper pedal drum work and simple keyboard notes blend perfectly with the rest of the band, then the vocals come in, first the beautiful harmny of the females then the unmistakable sounds of Kakko, backed with a few growls.
This one just grows as it goes along, more orchestration is brought in and then some stunning guitar solos.

Next one to stick out is 'Dark Episode' a borderline symphonic black feel feel, thanks mainly due to that evil growl vocal, keeping the symphonic in line is the female vocals, whilst the backing throws in everything it can from speed to clever timing changes.

At 11 minutes 'Atlantis' really shines through, starting slowly with piano and vocals this one builds up the layers, changing from melody to agression, then a quiet string section breakdown.

Such a shame that the last track is another naff ballad!

Rating 8/10
For fans of: Tristania, Kamelot, Nightwish, Epica, Sonata Arctica

Friday, 13 March 2015

Al B Damned - For Old Times Stake (CD Review)

01.Good To Be Bad
02.Scream Come True
03.Drink The Blood
04.Home Is Where The Haunt Is
05.Look Who's Stalking
08.Never Sleep Again
09.Life In Space
10.End Of The Line
11.Creeping Beauty Part 2
12.You Are What We Eat
14.Possessed (Acoustic)
15.Chopping Mall (Remake)

Joey Draper (Vocals/Bass/Guitars)
Pip Samson (Drums/Backing Vocals)

James McIlroy (Guitar Solos: Good To Be Bad/Drink The Blood)
Doug Cartwright & Alexz "Face" Allen - Guitar (Look Who's Stalking)
Dan Evans (Guitar)

Having reviewed their new ep last month complete with the usual mini bio etc  (Look Whos Stalking Review) I shall get straight to the album.

A little symphonic music introduces us to 'Good To Be Bad', the haunting keyboard sound remains throughout the song, its so simple yet somehow it's understated appearence holds you in its own right.The song itself is slow, powerfull and the vocals have a raw growl to them.Then right at the end comes a killer solo to end of one helluva opener!

'Scream Come True' is a pretty straight forward rocker, reminiscent of "Raise Your Fist" era Alice Cooper.

Picking up the pace next with 'Drink The Blood', a hint of good old rock n roll lurks here, some really solid pedal work from Pip, great backing vocals and this one really drives along with its sing-a-long style.
Another instatntly recognisable solo is then perfectly executed but then the music drops out for a near tortured vocal full of emotion, finally the band join in to close.

Great bass playing kicks off 'Home Is Where The Haunt Is', this is another slower paced song, quite typical of the horror rock style, this one stalks the speakers with menace.

'Look Whos Stalking' and this one sure packs a punch, it's faster and heavier than previous songs, definatley like a jam session between the Misfits and Motorhead, add some riff loaded guitar work and a shout it out loud backing and this is one killer song.

Staying with the previous vibe comes 'Exorsister', not quite as furious, but has all the swagger and more of those infectious backing vocals.

Oh wow 'Modified' is really different, the vocal effect reminds me of Corey Taylor is his darker spoken moments, this is a dark and werid gothic monster, slow and anthemic treatment from the drums and guitar and some clever multi tracked vocal styles.

Some nice hints of Thrash Metal in 'Never Sleep Again', punchy riffs and some frantic drumming absolutley sledgehammer this one through my speakers.
Towards the end it gets weird, first with something that sounds like its from the soundtrack to clice barkers Candyman, then some strange vocal chants.

Some space related samples, awesome little synth pattern and near gothic guitar picking and 'Life In Space' presents itself as another dark, neo gothic downbeat song.
If the Peter Murphy vocal delivery wasn't enough to behold it gets the weird treatment with some f/x as well.

Relaxed and chilled as I was after that last song, my ears get blown up by 'End Of The Line' more of that upbeat horror rock delivered with real passion and understanding of the genre.

'Creeping Beauty Part 2' starts off dangerously like a ballad, fortunatley that doesn't last long and it picks up, but I have to say I do find it a tad average, it's mid paced but doesn't seem to go anywhere.What happend to Part One? Ahh just remembered it's an old TDQM song :-)

The fact that 'You Are What We Eat' includes a lyric that says "welcome to the jungle" seems to indicate a touch of Guns N Roses and you know the overall glam/metal/rock n roll feel of this song could fit in with the classic era of that band.

Bringing the mood right down next with 'Mommy', a melancolic and moody gothic tune, that candyman sound is back as well, another stand out song thats for sure.

'Possessed (Acoustic)' well not that acoustic as there is synth on it, the passionate and tortured vocal delivery is first class.

Finally 'Chopping Mall (Remake)' another old TDQM song given the ABD treatment, this one adds a little more agression with the guitar and is a nice way to end a brilliant and well executed album.

Rating 10/10
For fans of: Alice Cooper, Rob Zombie, Marilyn Manson, The Misfits, Generation Graveyard

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Breathless - Return To Pangea (CD Review)

01.Tectonic Chant
03.Atomic Waste
04.Introspective Nightmare
05.Return To Pangea
06.Beyond The Ritual
08.Ursula Has A Tank
10.Brooding Wraith
11.Spinning Metal

Joan Font (Drums)
Eduardo Moreno (Guitar/Vocals)
Nazareno (Bass)

Spanish thrash metal band formed way back in 1999, yet this is only their second album.

Starting with a pointless intro the music kicks in with a slow and melodic start, but as 'Killing-sophy' progresses we are treated to some quite technical sounding thrash metal with a slayer (ish) vocal.

'Atomic Waste' is a mixture of that classic chugging sound and more upbeat rhythms, but doesn't seem to go anywhere to make you sit up and go "Wow" and that tends to be the feeling I get from the next few songs as well.

A borderline mix of speed metal riffs and traditional thrash is apparent on 'Beyond The Ritual' and has so far proved the best one so far.

The rest is pretty much "Thrash by numbers" it ticks the boxes but fails to push the boundaries or raise it's head above a thousand other bands doing the same thing, maybe thats why its only their second album after so many years?

Rating 5/10
For Fans Of: Slayer, Evile, Elimination

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Balmog - Necroangels Revelations EP (CD Review)

01.First Revelation
02.Second Revelation
03.Last Revelation

Balc (Guitar/Vocals)
Virus (Drums)
Morg (Bass)

Spanish black metal band formed in 2003, Morg is ex Unhallowed, Virus ex Immacula Mortem and Balc ex Witchfyre.

'First revelation' is a nightmare of distortion, extreme drumming, powerfull nasty riffs and demonic vocal growls.Yet somehow this remains quite musical, it does not descend into a pointless noise but is in fact a piledriver of old school punk/black metal harking back to Venom, Warfare and Hellhammer.

The 'Second Revelation' just seems to continue from the first, the only difference here is that this one slows down occasionally and throws in a few doom (ish) elements, then returns to the full on frenzy, until the end goes quiet with some sound effects and a church bell.

To the 'Last Revelation' which actually seems to count in right at the very end of the previous song, is a 9 minute piece, so I am expecting something slightly different.
Yes as it progresses this is slower and darker, some layered vocals (I say vocals more like screams of torment) and some timing changes, once again throwing in elements of funeral doom before speeding up and then even more screams of torment over some very distorted powerchords which then fade out whilst some monk like chanting comes in for the ending.

Rating 9/10
For Fans Of: Venom, Warfare, Marduk, Triptykon, Hellhammer

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Matthau Mikojan - Her Foreign Language (CD Review)

02.Things You Can't Handle
03.No Preference
06.Another Snake In Paradise
07.Lobotomy Blues
08.Hours Overdue
09.God Nights Bad Mornings
10.Life Can Suprise
11.Gold Silver
12.Thoughts Of Glass

Matthau Mikojan (Vocals/All Instruments)

Matthau Mikojan started writing his own music in his early teens. At a very young age he decided to one day form his own band, just like the great ones of his generation had done. Although it seemed to take forever, in 1999 things were finally happening: Bloodpit worked their ass off playing whenever and wherever they could to build up a name. Hard work paid off. Their debut album Mental Circus was released in 2005. A couple of successful albums, an EP, some music videos, a bunch of singles plus a DVD later, the band members decided to go their separate ways. In 2008 Matthau Mikojan’s eponymous solo debut was released, and was followed by Mania For Life a year later. The third album Hell Or High Water came out in 2011.

This time, he wanted to do everything from scratch: the songs on his upcoming album have not only been written, composed and sung by him, but also all instruments have been played and the recording process has completely been carried out as well.

Having listened to this I have come to the conclusion that this is an album of two halves, much of this is straight forward melodic songs and ballads, the other half rocks!

It is to that latter half and songs such as 'No Preference', 'Another Snake In Paradise'and 'Hours Overdue' that really come across well, full of the rock n roll swagger of classic "Stones" and "Faces" mixed with the modern attitude of Buckcherry.
Well produced and full of life these songs represent an understanding of classic 70's rock, excellent musicianship and well executed.

Rating 6/10
For Fans Of: Buckchery, Black Crowes, The Faces, Rolling Stones, Quireboys

Monday, 9 March 2015

Hamerex - The Last Ride EP (CD Review)

01.Calm Before The Storm/Natures Wrath
02.Ride On Ruin
03.Reign Of Fire

Steve Blower (Guitar/Vocals)
Andy Firth (Guitar)
Simon Brooks (Bass)
Darren Kelsall (Drums)

The latest offering from the Wakefield band formed in august 2004 who have so far notched up 4 demos, 2 ep's and two albums; 'Rites Of Passage' which got a 9 out of 10 from me in september 2011 (though not actually released till feb 2012) and IX in August 2013 which got a 10 out of 10.
Now with a new bassist Simon Brooks and mainman Steve Blower handling the vocals after the departure of singer Chris Moules they are back with a brand new ep, cant wait to hit play!

Starting with an 8 minute melodic thrash/power metal epic ;'Calm Before The Storm/Natures Wrath', first thing to really notice here is the amazing vocal range of Steve Blower, real power part Bruce Dickinson, part Niklas Isfeldt.
From the melodic opening of gentle guitar it moves into a clever mix of Thrash and Power metal, switching pace and timings to perfection, add to this some great backing vocals and the love of a Maidenesque riff and a blasting solo, and this is just track 1 !

'Ride On Ruin' is much shorter, this one is pretty straight forward, driven as it is by some excellent pedal work, it's one of those heads down no noncence rockers.

Up next another 7 minutes of metal with 'Reign Of Fire', ahh but wait this one gets dangerously close to a ballad, one helluva passionate vocal full of power, hits the high notes and then oh yes ballad nightmare overted and the band kick in with some punchy riffs.
Overall a much slower paced song, love the dark guitar riff that breaks up the song to allow the vocal to fill the speakers.

'Apophis' little guitar intro then into another mid paced thrash piece, really nasty sounding riff powers through, more superb vocals reign out, then that killer riff returns, slow and pounding, just waiting for a screaming solo and i am not let down, it comes and it is good.
Just to nail the point home the songs ends on some full on hi-speed thrash.

Strikes me that this band just want to keep pushing forward and each time they do they produce something worth listening to time and again.

Rating 10/10
For fans of: Iron Maiden, Helloween, Metallica

Offal & Zombie Cookbook - Split EP (Single Review)

01.Dementia Trash. The Cult Of The Low-budget Cinema.
02.Spinal Extractions Fiend For Blood

André Luiz (Vocals)
Igor Thomaz (Drums)
João Carlos Ongaro (Bass)
Tersis Zonato (Guitar)

2 bands from Brazil playing a mixture of grindcore and death metal and presented on a limited edition 7" vinyl ep.

Well bit of a suprise track 1 has a really good mix from thrash inspired grind to an almost sludge/doom sound, yep its got the death metal vocal, but overall its quite musical!
Track 2, standard under a minute 100mph in your face grind/death.


03.Motel Hell
04.Eredità Maledetta

Dr.Stink (Vocals)
Horace Bones (Guitar)
Ed The Dead (Guitar)
Purgy (Bass)
Dr Freudstein (Drums)

More of a punk attitude to this first track, at times its like Motorhead on speed, vocals are slightly clearer, the second track starts off quite weird before heading into grind territory.

Rating 7/10
For fans of: Carcass, Coffinborn, Kunt Puncher, Ghoul