Devil You Know – They Bleed Red (Review)

Devil You KnowThis is the second album from US Modern Metal band Devil You Know.

Featuring ex-members of such high-profile bands as Killswitch Engage, Divine Heresy, All Shall Perish and Bleeding Through, you know there’s a wealth of experience and talent behind this album before you even press play.

When you do press play, I like that there’s no messing around with pointless intros or anything like that; it’s straight into the double-bass led action, with plenty of heaviness and groove.

The singer is on fine form. Whether he was shouting at the top of his voice in Killswitch Engage or Blood Has Been Shed, he has always had a top-rate set of lungs. The majority of his work on They Bleed Red is angry and harsh shouting, although other variations are also used, as well as his clean singing voice.

The music is heavy and full of rhythmic Metal that also takes influences from both Metalcore’s beatdowns and the more extreme, faster side of Modern Metal. Although it’s all thoroughly modern and new-sounding, they still find the time to add in some more Classic Metal influences, including the odd guitar solo.

The production, as should be expected from a band like this, is huge and crushing. Bands like this need a strong sound as otherwise the power of some the riffs can easily be distilled. No such worry here, of course, and you can feel every guitar riff and drum beat.

They Bleed Red is a good combination of the more commercial side of Metal mixed with a heavier, more extreme sensibility. It’s too heavy and shouty to be as popular as a band like Killswitch Engage, but it’s got a commercial edge and songwriting-calibre that will see it snapped up by those who like some catchy songs with their heaviness.

Give it a listen and see what you think.

Show Me Wolves – Between Man, God and False Idols (Review)

Show Me WolvesThis is the début album of Icelandic one-man Black Metal project Show Me Wolves.

So, this is a little different. Here we have Progressive Black Metal that takes elements of both Old-School Black Metal and cutting-edge Post-Black Metal as well as, believe it or not, bits of modern Metal here and there. Okay, so on paper it sounds a mish-mash of genres that normally never meet, but when you listen to it it does all make sense. For the most part, anyway.

Black Metal with a modern, Progressive flavour is the main order of business, but there’s a good deal of other stuff going on here. The modern Metal influence is not as jarring as it first might seem, as in reality this mainly means the Progressive Black Metal is added to by some stirring, upliftingly bright melodic guitars that serve as an icing on top of a Blackened cake. Think the types of melodies used by bands like Killswitch Engage and the like, only Blacken it up some.

It’s an unusual route to take but it works well due to the coherent delivery. Ultimately, this is Post/Progressive Black Metal that’s modern and forward-thinking, yet retains an atavistic violence at its core.

The vocals are harsh screams, unyielding in their extremity and a definite counterpoint to the largely shiny, resplendent music. He sounds angry, and I like that. Clean vocals also appear occasionally, lending a despondent, lonesome edge to things.

Before listening to this, the low-rent album cover led me to believe I was in for some Old-School Darkthrone clone, but I was quite wrong. Between Man, God and False Idols has impressed. It’s not perfect, but it’s better than a lot and shows massive promise.

One to check out, for sure.

Voice of Ruin – Morning Wood (Review)

Voice of RuinComing from Switzerland, here we have Voice of Ruin.

A bit of an enigma this band in some ways; from the song titles I was expecting gore/porn-obsessed Death Metal but then the artwork is a bit unusual for that. Couple that with the band’s tendency to dress as farmers it tends to throw you a bit.

When you finally press play the style of music is actually a thoroughly modern Metalcore/Thrash influenced melodic Death Metal. From everything else about this release and the band, it’s quite unexpected.

Imagine Killswitch Engage and Lamb of God getting together to do a more extreme side band, (less commercial cleans, some blast beats, etc.); throw in a few modern Melodic Death Metal influences such as The Black Dahlia Murder and you should be there.

The sound is immense and state-of-the-art, with all of the instruments honed to crushing perfection and all aimed at utterly destroying. It does the music justice.

The songs are well written and have that thoroughly modern melodic crunch to them that will probably have just as many people running away from the band as running to them, such is the divisive nature of this kind of genre for some people.

It’s good though, very good, so don’t let preconceptions put you off discovering a talented band.

A Breach of Silence – Dead or Alive (Review)

A Breach of SilenceThis is the début release from Australian band A Breach of Silence.

The band play a nice line in modern Melodic Death Metal combined with the huge sweeping chorus-style Metalcore that bands like Killswitch Engage popularised.

The singer has a very good voice; his growls are deep and enthusiastic and the clean vocals are passionate and a bit different from the usual of this type as they incorporate a little bit of Power Metal into their delivery, giving them a bit more of an edge.

The music has plenty of bite and aggression with the band playing their hearts out and preforming with gusto. Although they do have breakdowns and whatnot, they don’t completely abuse and over-use them as a lot of these kind of bands have a tendency to do; they seem to have struck the right balance. The songs are largely both heavy and catchy.

Ultimately this does fall into the more commercial end of the Metal spectrum, and won’t be to everyone’s taste. I haven’t listened to a new band of this style for some time and I think A Breach of Silence are very good at what they do. If you’re a fan of heavy modern Metal and don’t object to more commercial melodic clean choruses then check them out.