Friends of Hell – Friends of Hell (Review)

Friends of Hell - Friends of HellThis is the debut album by Friends of Hell, an international doom metal band.

As soon as I saw that Friends of Hell featured ex-members of Electric Wizard and Reverend Bizarre, I knew I wanted to sample its wares. I haven’t been disappointed. Continue reading “Friends of Hell – Friends of Hell (Review)”

Brimstone Coven – The Woes of a Mortal Earth (Review)

Brimstone Coven - The Woes of a Mortal EarthThis is the fourth album from Brimstone Coven, a rock band from the US.

Here we have 35 minutes of endearing rock that mixes together elements of proto-metal and doom rock to produce music that has a 70s feel, while not being overly beholden to it. Bands like Black Sabbath, Pentagram, and Deep Continue reading “Brimstone Coven – The Woes of a Mortal Earth (Review)”

Hellhookah – The Curse (Review)

Hellhookah - The CurseThis is the second album from Lithuanian doom metallers Hellhookah.

2015’s Endless Serpents was a good start to the Hellhookah tale, and now, five years later, we have the next chapter. The Curse gives us eight new tracks and 38 minutes of material to enjoy. Continue reading “Hellhookah – The Curse (Review)”

Satyrus – Rites (Review)

Satyrus - RitesSatyrus are an Italian doom metal band and this is their debut album.

Based on the classic sound of doom in the vein of Black Sabbath and Pentagram, and then updated with modern influences from the realms of sludge and stoner, Rites contains 45 minutes of satisfying doom metal. Continue reading “Satyrus – Rites (Review)”

Eternal Black – Slow Burn Suicide (Review)

Eternal Black - Slow Burn SuicideEternal Black are a doom metal band from the US and this is their second album.

I enjoyed both 2015’s Eternal Black and 2017’s Bleed the Days, so new material from this band is no bad thing. Across 38 minutes Eternal Black bring the doom, and do so very ably. Continue reading “Eternal Black – Slow Burn Suicide (Review)”

Epitaph – Claws (Review)

EpitaphThis is the second album from Italian doom metallers Epitaph.

2014’s Crawling out of the Crypt was one of my favourite release from that year, and if I had to do that best of list over again the album would have definitely made it into the top 20 or so. As much as I enjoyed it at the time, it’s been a firm grower, and is an exceptional example of doom metal done right in an authentic, honest, and traditional way. Continue reading “Epitaph – Claws (Review)”

Dead Witches – Ouija (Review)

Dead WitchesDead Witches are a doom metal band form the UK and this is their debut album.

Dead Witches feature past and current members of Electric Wizard, Ramesses and Psychedelic Witchcraft. Listening to Ouija you can expect slow, hypnotic doom metal that worships at the altar of Pentagram, Saint Vitus and, yes, Electric Wizard. Continue reading “Dead Witches – Ouija (Review)”

Lucifer’s Fall – II: Cursed & Damned (Review)

Lucifer's FallLucifer’s Fall are an Australian doom metal band and this is their second album.

We know Lucifer’s Fall from their 2014 debut album Lucifer’s Fall and their 2015 EP, (the title track of which also appears on this latest album). Continue reading “Lucifer’s Fall – II: Cursed & Damned (Review)”

Messa – Belfry (Review)

MessaThis is the début album from Messa, a doom/drone metal band from Italy.

Messa provide the listener with almost an hour of occult retro doom and dark ambience.

This is akin to a strange-yet-effective mix of Sunn O))) and Pentagram, with deliciously seductive female vocals included. Some tracks are dark ambient/drone, full of mysterious atmospheres and distorted malice, while others take Continue reading “Messa – Belfry (Review)”

Brimstone Coven – Black Magic (Review)

Brimstone CovenBrimstone Coven are a Hard Rock band from the US. This is their second album.

Brimstone Coven worship at the smoky altar of all things 60s and 70s. Black Sabbath, Pentagram and Led Zeppelin may be obvious reference points, but there’s more going on here than you might expect and Black Magic is a well-rounded release that is greater than the sum of its influences.

This album has a pleasingly authentic sound, both in the recording and the vibes that seem to come off the music in heady waves.

The main vocalist’s voice suits the music well and there’s lots of catchy singing going on here, which works well with the equally catchy music. The band also employ multi-singer harmonies and put these to good use.

The music is instantly familiar and it’s easy to get into this and feel a pleasant buzz emanating from it. The songs contain so many good riffs and warm melodies that every song has something pretty damn special to offer.

Black Magic gives us 55 minutes of music to entrance and captivate. If you’re in the mood for this kind of thing then it really is up there with the best of them. With top-drawer songwriting and a decent amount of variety and moods to explore, this is a very enjoyable release.

I’m not always a huge fan of music that takes its inspiration from this era, (although bands such as Witchcraft, Agusa, Ecstatic Vision and Greenleaf have been known to frequent my playlist from time to time…), but when it’s done well and with enthusiasm and passion as it clearly is on Black Magic, the result is infectious and hard to ignore.

Highly recommended.