ISA – Chimera (Review)

ISAISA is a one man death metal project from the US and this is his debut album.

Chimera contains 41 minutes of music that draws from a twisted death metal base, but builds progressive, technical, and psychedelic elements into it. This basic description really doesn’t do this album justice, however. Continue reading

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Tomb Mold – Manor of Infinite Forms (Review)

Tomb MoldTomb Mold are a Canadian death metal band and this is their second album.

This is an interesting release. Ostensibly old-school death metal that reeks of the underground and has a filthy, ugly delivery, there’s also a firmly atypical and non-standard side to these songs which makes Manor of Infinite Forms definitely stand out from the pack. Continue reading

Horror God/Techne – Split (Review)

Horror God TechneHorror God and Techne are both Russian death metal bands and this is their split release.

Horror God offer up four songs lasting 19 minutes in total; three originals and a Purulence cover. Continue reading

Eccentric Pendulum – Tellurian Concepts (Review)

Eccentric PendulumThis is the latest EP from Indian progressive death metal band Eccentric Pendulum.

Featuring the vocalist of Gutslit and Godless, Eccentric Pendulum is a different affair to those worthy death metal bands.  Continue reading

Coma Cluster Void – Thoughts from a Stone (Review)

Coma Cluster VoidThis is the second album from Coma Cluster Void, an experimental avant-garde metal band with an international background.

Coma Cluster Void’s debut album Mind Cemeteries was 45 minutes of dissonant, cryptic, esoteric death metal that took a few spins to fully appreciate, but when you did conquer its challenging extreme metal worldview, it yielded many rewards and treasures.

Continue reading

Colosso – Obnoxious (Review)

ColossoColosso are a Portuguese death metal band and this is their second album.

I really enjoy Colosso’s earlier work, (Abrasive Peace, for example), so Obnoxious is a release I was looking forward too.

The band have a track record of experimentation with their sound and looking to better themselves however they Continue reading

Manipulation – Ecstasy (Review)

ManipulationManipulation are a Polish Death Metal band and this is their third album.

Manipulation play muscular Modern Death Metal with plenty of attack and some interesting twists to the standard formula.

Blast beats and chugging mid-paced carnage are the order of the day, but the band also throw in some unexpected atmospheric moments throughout, via the inclusion of melodic guitars, subtle keyboards, choral-like cleans, etc.

Add to this experimentalism some ultra-modern riffs and Deathcore influences and you have 44 minutes of engaging Extreme Metal, the likes of which Poland always seems to do so well.

The songs are well-written and, as mentioned previously, Manipulation aren’t afraid to experiment or try new things, which is great to hear. This edge of Progressive Metal is buried within their core sound, but really does add to their delivery. When these elements mix with blasting extremity or heavy grooves it all comes together very nicely indeed.

The vocalist has a passionate and dynamic growl that fits the music well, giving them the Death Metal anchoring they need as well as enough variety to move beyond this and into more emphatic territories.

Energetic brutality with a playful spin on the genre; this is really, really impressive.

Highly recommended.

For fans of Thy Art Is Murder, Aborted, All Shall Perish, Cryptopsy, Gorod, Molotov Solution, Whitechapel, etc.

The Big Jazz Duo – Enemy (Review)

The Big Jazz DuoThe Big Jazz Duo arre from Italy and this is their début album.

Looking at the album cover and knowing the band’s name, you’d probably never guess that they play Death Metal. But they do; Experimental/Atmospheric Death Metal/Deathcore.

This is sickeningly heavy with grooves and breakdowns aplenty. Speed and brutality are also present, as are pignoise vocals and scathing screams.

There’s a Djent aspect to their sound too, which seems to go hand-in-hand with a lot of Deathcore.

The band also include orchestral interludes, atmospheric sections and the like in their sound, which immediately makes them more interesting and raises their game.

Deathcore and Djent are two sub-genres that can get very stale, very quickly, if not handled well. The Big Jazz Duo avoid this trap by mixing these up with more traditional Death Metal and a melodic edge, as well as the more experimental aspects of their sound.

The songs are well written and the band understand the need for dynamics and pacing. A very polished and strong production rounds off the package and ensures that the songs have the best chance to shine.

These songs may be largely quite short but they’re packed to the rafters with goodies. Heavy groove, blasting carnage and atmosphere all merge together to create a listening experience that, in all honestly, makes me really fucking happy. I can always tell when I’m getting into an album when I start spontaneously bouncing along to it without realising. As you do.

If you imagine a cross between The Black Dahlia Murder, All Shall Perish and Xehanort then you’ll be on the right lines.

So, Brutal Death Metal, Djent, Deathcore, melody, atmosphere, orchestration…all in 31 minutes and all very well-written? I’m sold!

An extremely impressive album, especially considering the oft-dreaded Deathcore/Djent aspects of their sound.

Very highly recommended.

Ataxia – Calignious (Review)

AtaxiaAtaxia are a Canadian Death Metal band and this is their début album.

This is sharp Death Metal with a technical twist.

The band have a well-produced sound that’s tight and focused. Good musicianship means that the band know how to widdle and lots of technical muscles are flexed.

The singer has a decent growl that seems to come straight from the depths of somewhere dark and evil.

Ataxia are a band who are trying to do something slightly different with the Death Metal template. Yes, to the untrained eye this is essentially Death Metal, but to the connoisseur of such things Ataxia have enough of their own personality and ideas that are manifested in Calignious to cause you to sit up and take notice.

The band seem to prefer to embed their technicality into the very brutal essence of the songs as a general rule, as there are surprisingly few solos or leads on this release. Most of the time the complicated fretwork makes up the bulwark of the rhythms and snakes around the blasting drums.

This is brutal, Technical Death Metal which takes its cues from the experimental sides of Atheist and Death as much as Cannibal Corpse and Suffocation.

I think it’s time to support the Metal underground once more and lay your hands on this.