Wonderbox Metal End of Year List – Best Metal of 2018

Having considered it long and hard, I’ve decided that any form of introductory paragraph with any real substance would simply detract from the list below. As such, all I’ll say is that 2018, like every year, has given us some top quality metal releases. So have a look at my top picks for 2018, and hopefully you’ll find a new band to obsess over…

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Monthly Overview – the Best of November 2018

November was a strong month for metal. Both death metal and doom are well-represented below, but as we’ll see more than just those two genres produced some great records in the past month. November saw a strong showcase for UK talent too, as five of the below bands are all from this country. Continue reading

Psycroptic – As the Kingdom Drowns (Review)

Psycroptic - As the Kingdom DrownsPsycroptic are an Australian technical death metal band and this is their seventh album.

I massively, hugely enjoyed 2015’s self-titled album, and the more I’ve got to know it over the years the more I’ve come to appreciate just how good of a record it is. Continue reading

Pestilent Reign – Pyres (Review)

Pestilent ReignThis is the debut album from German death metallers Pestilent Reign.

I found myself drawn to this album quite naturally. The band name, their logo, the album cover, it all said to me quite clearly “Listen to me, you will like me…”. Seeing that the band were on Rising Nemesis Records sealed the deal, so I pressed play and prepared myself for… Continue reading

Eternal Rest – A Death in the Darkness (Review)

Eternal RestEternal Rest are an Australian technical death metal band and this is their second album.

This is technical death metal that’s relatively low key in how it shows off, choosing the usually superior route of concentrating on the actual songs themselves rather than ostentatious showmanship. A wise choice. Continue reading

Vipassi – Śūnyatā (Review)

VipassiThis is the debut album from Australian instrumental metal band Vipassi.

Śūnyatā is 30 minutes of instrumental music that combines elements of progressive, technical and death metal together to form an engaging and thoughtful listening experience.

Atheist, Cynic and Death are the Continue reading

Psycroptic – Psycroptic (Review)

PsycropticPsycroptic are from Australia and play Technical Death Metal. This is their sixth album.

Psycroptic’s brand of Death Metal is sharp and finely edged, honed to a fine killing point through years of mastercrafted precision and expertise.

As such, they offer us 9 tracks of advanced-level Technical Death Metal over 39 minutes.

They’re not a band to get overly technical at the expense of the song though, as there are plenty of songwriting skills on display here too.

They also know how to write some emotive passages that have a kind of modern Blackened feel to them, almost akin to some of the harder, faster sections that bands like Enslaved do so well.

The vocals are aggressive shouts that also bring in semi-cleans and screams as appropriate. It’s typically the semi-clean parts that are the most emotive and remind most of a Technical Death Metal version of Enslaved, if you can imagine such a thing. Well, imagine no more!

They’ve incorporated a decent amount of variety on this release too, which, alongside the well-composed song structures, stops the album from becoming a one-dimensional blur of technicality.

I love the Progressive Metal elements of these songs, which help impart the feeling of a journey through Hellishly complicated waters with only the band as guides.

The playing is impressive all-round, of course, but I feel compelled to give special mention to the drummer as he puts in an astounding performance, especially for someone with, (presumably), the normal number of limbs.

An exceptionally good album.