Iron Harvest – Iron Harvest (Review)

Iron HarvestIron Harvest are a death metal band from the Netherlands and this is their debut album.

Sometimes all you need is death metal. Sometimes, brutal chaos and insane extremity is all that it takes to get you through the day. This debut album is one such release that hits the spot perfectly; 33 minutes of what can only be described as previously – brutal chaos. Continue reading

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Mantric – Sin (Review)

MantricMantric are a Norwegian Progressive Metal band. This is their secondĀ album.

Mantric play modern Progressive Metal that favours a combination of atmospheric sections and more aggressive technical parts. Sometimes these parts are separated and sometimes they merge into one another.

The vocals consist of soft cleans and harsher screams. The cleans have a wistful, tender feeling to them while the screams are more Hardcore in nature. The cleaner vocals tend to, (unsurprisingly), correspond to the more atmospheric parts and the harsher ones to the more aggressive parts.

Mantric’s Metal hides a lot of complexity behind the atmospheric veneer that it cloaks itself in. I can imagine that it will be a bit hit-and-miss for a lot of people due to the rather unusual style they play, which combines a rather ethereal feeling of atmosphere with a more rugged technicality that is a strange combination in some ways.

I like its unconventionalĀ charms though, and Sin does have the feel of a special record due to this. It’s certainly not perfect and does have a few unpolished moments, but overall the odd feelings it creates remind me of a strange amalgam of Poison the Well, Enslaved and Drowningman.

Works for me. Check them out.

American Standards – The Death Of Rhythm And Blues (Review)

American StandardsAmerican Standards come from the US and play a fierce brand of inventive Hardcore.

This is a fresh take on the genre with a sound that actually recalls some of Raging Speedhorn’s later work. This is angular, aggressive and in your face.

The energy of these songs cannot be denied and these 5 tracks are a perfect example of heavy music that is modern and relevant, without losing integrity or worth.

Managing to take the best parts of chaos and restraint, they take the Drowningman blueprint and ramp up the aggression until they have torn it to shreds. I can also hear shades of the magnificent Norma Jean in the playful way they effortlessly produce enviable, inspired songs.

At only a brief 14 minutes this EP is a shockingly good listen and should appeal to anyone who likes non-standard, innovative modern Metal. Apparently they have released an album prior to this EP, so it’s time for me to go and hunt that down now…