This is sharp, energetic, melodic music that takes influences from a number of death metal avenues, and then sprinkles engaging melodies over everything quite liberally. Continue reading
I enjoyed 2017’s Znoi, and on the band’s new release we get a further 33 minutes of melodic post-black metal. The album follows on from Znoi, even down to the tracklisting, which picks up where the last one left off. Continue reading
My relationship with Children of Bodom up to this point can be summarised like so –
- Hatebreeder (1999) – Wow, yeah! Such a damn good album. I really like this band.
- Hate Crew Death Roll (2003) – The band just continue to get better!
- Are You Dead Yet? (2005) – Oh no. What happened here? It’s okay I suppose, but not really my thing.
- Halo of Blood (2013) – Not too bad, but not too good either.
And now we have Hexed. Yes, there are other albums too, in addition to the ones mentioned above, but you get the general idea.
Hexed contains 45 minutes of rocking melodeath, which consists of ten new tracks and, curiously, a reworking of an older song, (Knuckleduster). My verdict? It seems Children of Bodom have returned to the quality levels of the late 90s/early 00s. Yes, you read that right.
Prominent, expressive keyboards work wonders with the material. Songs that are catchy and memorable tear out from the music like bladed predators scything through the airwaves. Old school rock and metal elements are captured in the band’s electrifying songs, especially in the melodies used. Aggressive, energetic, and melodic, Hexed is full of good tunes and confident attitude.
I’m impressed. I’m very pleased to say that the band sound revitalised, despite how much of a cliché that probably comes across as. The album art suggested something along these lines when I first saw it, but the music firmly backs it up.
Hexed is Children of Bodom’s best album in years. I feel like I’ve rediscovered an old friend.
This is the eleventh album from Soilwork, a veteran Swedish metal band.
Soilwork’s eleventh album mixes melodic death metal with fat grooving riffs and a hard rock sensibility that sits at the heart of the band, allowing them to straddle the worlds of metal and rock quite effectively. Having said that, it should be clarified that the rock aspects of this album are mainly hidden underneath a firmly metal veneer; they inform, without overpowering. Continue reading
Here we have 43 minutes of tasty and aggressive melodic blackened death metal. That may be a bit of a mouthful to say, but the music of Solium Fatalis rolls freely from the speakers and is quite easy to enjoy. Continue reading
Here we have 22 minutes of Depths of Hatred’s brand of punishing intensity. Mixing together multiple strains of death metal with some decent character and a professional recording, the band’s modern attack is easy to recommend. Continue reading
Apparently this is a rerecording of the band’s 2016 release Blackbound, with added vocals, and other differences. I was totally unfamiliar with Second to Sun’s work prior to listening to The Black, so I can’t comment on how this relates to Blackbound, other than to say that it does. Continue reading
Tormentor is the first release from The Agony Scene since 2007’s Get Damned. I always liked this band’s razor-sharp take on modern metal, so it’s great to hear them make a return. Continue reading