Season of Arrows – Give It to the Mountain (Review)

Season of ArrowsThis is the second album from Season of Arrows, a doom/stoner metal band from the US.

This is an album that combines retro/70s doom metal stylings with a more contemporary stoner rock vibe.

The songs on this release merge the various influences of the band effectively, creating tracks that not only worship at the altars of old-school doom and more recent stoner, but also give nods towards post-metal and atmospheric metal in places too. Continue reading

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Pénitence Onirique – V.I.T.R.I.O.L. (Review)

Pénitence OniriqueThis is the debut album by Pénitence Onirique, a French black metal band.

Pénitence Onirique play scathing black metal, filled with dark atmosphere and with a foreboding presence.

Razor sharp vocals lash out from the music like barbs, lacerating with ease, while the Continue reading

Agatus – The Eternalist (Review)

AgatusThis is the third album from this Greek black/heavy metal band.

Now this is an interesting release. 14 years after their second album, Agatus return with even more of a progressive/heavy metal approach to their music.

70s progressive rock and NWOBHM influences collide head-on with the black metal background of the group, making for an album that sounds little like any of their contemporaries.

The closest I can come to compare with other bands would be a crazy fusion of Rotting Christ, Vintersorg and Countess, all given a workover by NWOBHM and 70s progressive rock. or something. All I know is it’s infectious, addictive, individual and bloody good.

The black metal aspects Continue reading

Interview with Ancient

Ancient Logo

Ancient have returned! Back to the Land of the Dead is the band’s first outing in 12 years, and one that has amassed no small amount of expectation in certain quarters.

You’ll no doubt be pleased to know that it’s an album that lives up to these expectations, one that’s worth taking the time to listen to and to get to know as it lashes you with its frosted riffs and serrated vocals.

Thankfully, when speaking to the owner of said serrated vocals, he revealed himself to be much less scary than his recordings would suggest.

Step into the world of Ancient…

Introduce yourself!

My name is Zel, founder of the band Ancient, an extreme metal band, with roots in the Norwegian black metal scene, founded in Norway in 1992, but today is based in Italy, and Greece (where I live). Continue reading

Allegaeon – Proponent for Sentience (Review)

AllegaeonThis is the fourth album from US death metallers Allegaeon.

This is an ambitious, epic release; 72 minutes of science fiction-themed grandeur and technical aggression.

The band’s music is technical, melodic death metal that features a lot of engaging content and some quite virtuoso playing. For a band like this, the level of technicality on display is always going to be high, but Allegaeon never Continue reading

Delain – Moonbathers (Review)

DelainDelain are a symphonic metal band from The Netherlands and this is their fifth album.

Delain are one of those bands that I feel I should have heard a long time ago, but Moonbathers is actually my first encounter with the band’s material.

Within Temptation and Nightwish are the obvious reference points for a band like this, and Continue reading

Deprive – Temple of the Lost Wisdom (Review)

DepriveThis is the second album from Deprive, a one-man death metal band from Spain.

This is thickly emotive death metal, forged in the fires of the 90s metal scene. This was a time when death metal was allowed to be slower and incorporate elements of doom/death to increase the atmosphere, and this is something that Continue reading

Vrtra – My Bones Hold a Stillness (Review)

VrtraVrtra are a black metal/post-black metal/blackened doom band from the US. This is their debut album.

Holy shit this is good! Is that an appropriate way to start a review? I dunno. Probably not, but who cares, because holy shit this is good!

This is a sickly-blackened release that contains elements of doom, death, black and post-metal within its 31 minute length. Vrtra do not respect musical boundaries, and why should they? I’ll tentatively refer to them as Continue reading

Vulvodynia – Psychosadistic Design (Review)

VolvodyniaThis is the second album from Volvodynia, a death metal band from South Africa.

Vulvodynia specialise in a form of brutal death metal that features a large helping of slam, beatdowns and deathcore/whatever – basically it’s brutal, bouncy and smashes the Hell out of everything around it.

This is heavy and groovy, designed to fuel violence in mosh pits Continue reading