Shatter Brain – Pitchfork Justice (Review)

Shatter Brain - Pitchfork JusticeThis is the debut album from Shatter Brain, an Australian thrash metal band.

Featuring members of Voros and Alkira, Pitchfork Justice contains 40 minutes of bellicose metal. Blending thrash, hardcore, and sludge metal into a strong-tasting and satisfying concoction, this is a very impressive debut album. If you imagine Continue reading

Hyborian – Volume II (Review)

Hyborian - Volume IIHyborian are a stoner metal band from the US and this is their second album.

Hyborian’s first album Vol. 1 was infectious and moreish, and made a strong impression. Volume II continues with Hyborian’s hyper-palatable style, providing 40 minutes of anthemic tunes that are near-impossible to dislike. Continue reading

Everest Queen – Dead Eden (Review)

Everest Queen - Dead EdenThis is the debut album from Everest Queen, a sludge metal band from the UK.

Having enjoyed 2016’s self titled debut EP it’s good to have a full length from the band now. This is progressive sludge metal, with an imposing presence and plenty of riffs. The band’s promo blurb states that this is for fans of High on Fire, Om, Mastodon, and Isis, and it’s hard to disagree. Continue reading

Barbarian Hermit – Solitude and Savagery (Review)

Barbarian Hermit - Solitude and SavageryThis is the debut album from Barbarian Hermit, a stoner/sludge metal band from the UK.

With a thick, heavy sound, Barbarian Hermit explode out of the speakers with big riffs and a forceful presence. No messing around, no stupid intros, just straight into the good stuff. Just as I like it. Continue reading

Nadir – The Sixth Extinction (Review)

NadirNadir are a sludge/death metal band from Hungary and this is their sixth album.

The Sixth Extinction features 33 minutes of sludgy death metal. Think of a cross between Crowbar and Bolt Thrower and you’ll not be too far off from where Nadir operate. There’s also a touch of Obituary, Coffins, Incantation, and High on Fire here and there. Continue reading

Hark – Machinations (Review)

HarkHark are a stoner/hard rock band from the UK and this is their second album.

Featuring rocking tunes, sludgy Southern vibes and progressive sensibilities, Machinations should easily appeal to fans of Baroness, Mastodon, Red Fang, Corrosion of Conformity and High on Fire. Continue reading

Sardonis – III (Doom)

SardonisAs the name suggests, this is the third album from Sardonis, who are an instrumental Stoner Doom band from Belgium.

Sardonis combine elements of Stoner Metal, Doom and Sludge into their songs. There’s no vocals, so the emphasis is purely on the music itself.

The album has more variation on it than you might think too. It avoids being a one-dimensional Stoner-fest by adding in elements of these other genres so that the band take you to many different places throughout the journey. The band are obviously equally comfortable playing at all kinds of speeds, and this is another reason that they keep things interesting.

The album has an incredibly warm and textured recording, benefiting their sound by focusing the listener’s attention on what matters.

Huge riffs are a big part of their repertoire, as befitting an instrumental band of this nature. This is not all they’re capable of though, as they also know how to build atmosphere and mood across these 39 minutes.

Occasionally I have mixed feelings about bands that are entirely instrumental; sometimes I think vocals would enhance the music and other times I know it would merely detract from what they have created. With Sardonis I think it’s a mixture of the two, although favouring the latter. Maybe a few added vocals on one or two tracks in a couple of places, leaving the bulk of it instrumental? Regardless, III is a massively enjoyable release and the lack of vocals doesn’t hold it back at all.

Recommended for fans of Karma to Burn, High on Fire, Judd Madden, Lord Dying, Pelican, etc.

Favourite Track: Forward to the Abyss. Because who doesn’t love a 12-minute Pelican-esque Doomathon with a hint of Earth to the guitars?

XII Boar – Pitworthy (Review)

XII BoarXII Boar are from the UK and this is their début album. They play Stoner Rock/Metal.

This is gritty, Metallic Rock ‘N’ Roll in the vein of Orange Goblin that will find a nice home in the hands of fans of Corrosion of Conformity, Down, Lord Dying, Crowbar, High on Fire, Apostle of Solitude, etc.

XII Boar play feel-good music with an earthy, raw quality. The singer is full of charisma and attitude, as is the band as a whole really.

The songs are catchy and memorable slabs of rocking distortion and hot guitar licks.

It’s an easily identifiable style but the band play with such passion and conviction it’s easy to get swept up in their enthusiasm. The NOLA influence is apparent in their riffs but this has been filtered through the UK and Orange Goblin’s legacy is definitely felt in XII Boar’s style.

Pitworthy is an enjoyable album with a good sound and belligerent swagger. Have a listen.