A Pale Horse Named Death – When the World Becomes Undone (Review)

A Pale Horse Named Death - When The World Becomes UndoneThis is the third album from A Pale Horse Named Death, a Gothic/doom metal band from the US.

Featuring the ex-drummer of both Type O Negative and Life of Agony, When the World Becomes Undone is the band’s latest release after a long wait; their second album came out in 2013. Continue reading

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Diablo Blvd – Zero Hour (Review)

Diablo BlvdThis is the fourth album from Belgian dark metal/rock band Diablo Blvd.

Just take a look at that album cover. I mean, how could you not be intrigued by that?

When you delve in, you’ll find that Diablo Blvd play a mix of classic and Continue reading

Warped Cross – Abbot of Unreason (Review)

Warped CrossWarped Cross are a sludge metal band from Germany and this is their début album.

This is underground filthy sludge metal that takes inspiration from bands like Eyehategod, Crowbar, Down, Corrosion of Conformity, Cathedral and Electric Wizard. There’s a hint of, (dirtied-up), grunge in their sound, (not too dissimilar from the recent Boss Keloid album), as well as some pinches of old-school punk. There’s even a touch of Type O Negative in places.

This is raw and utterly unpolished, but Continue reading

Tor Marrock – Destroy the Soul (Review)

Tor MarrockTor Marrock are a Gothic Metal band from Wales. This is their second album.

Tor Marrock play Gothic Metal with a plethora of different influences; Black, Death and Doom Metal are all represented to various degrees. The tracks are an interesting combination of these influences and make the band quite hard to pigeonhole in some ways.

For reference points I’d say an unholy mix of Type O Negative, Celtic Frost, Paradise Lost and Moonspell. Essentially it’s an Old-School Peaceville sound updated with a few different elements from some of the aforementioned bands and genres.

The songs are quite catchy and are quite accomplished in the verse/chorus technique. You could almost sing along, if you fancied trying to keep up with the usually gruff tones of the vocalist.

Some of the songs are quite upbeat while others take a slower, more maudlin route. I find I slightly prefer the latter, although the former is almost as good. Songs like Christ Betrayed have the best of both worlds, making this track one of my favourites.

The songs are stripped back and simplified; it’s easy for Gothic Metal bands to pile on the keyboards and other sounds/effects for quite an ostentatious sound, but Tor Marrock have gone for a basic and raw sound, (relatively speaking), making the most of the standard instruments to colour their emotive palette.

Tor Marrock are doing something a bit different with their take on Metal and this relatively short album, (36 minutes), is an individual and charismatic take on the genre.

The 69 Eyes – The Best of Helsinki Vampires (Review)

The 69 EyesThe 69 Eyes are from Finland and play Gothic Rock.

This is a pretty epic Best Of album, spanning 28 tracks across 25 years. Most bands will never be that prolific.

I haven’t actually heard The 69 Eyes before but they’re certainly a band I’ve been aware of.

As is the case with Best Of albums like this it’s essentially a greatest hits package, and the quality of the songs reflect this.

It shows a remarkable consistency over the band’s long career. Times, style and fortunes may shift and change, but a good song is a good song regardless.

These are catchy, memorable, Gothic-infused Rock songs with personality and choruses aplenty.

The singer has that kind of deep, charismatic voice that is essential for this kind of music and it’s easy to see why he has captivated so many hearts over the decades with his vocal performance.

There is a lot of music on this release, almost 2 hours in total. But even given the constraints of the genre there’s a decent amount of variety here, with everything from up-tempo rockers, moody slower songs and outright ballads getting a chance to shine. The band have suffered no shortage of inspiration over the years, that’s apparent.

From my own point of reference, they combine elements of HIM, Ashbury Heights, Mono Inc., Paradise Lost, Tiamat, Type O Negative, Moonspell and Sentenced; although I’m well aware that it’s probably the other way around in reality.

With such a wealth of riches in one package, if this is your kind of music then it’s hard to go wrong with The Best of Helsinki Vampires.

I’m sold. Sign me up.