Rage and Frustration

Heavy Metal Reviews and Interviews

Band/Album – Ghost Season/Like Stars in A Neon Sky

Country of Origin – Greece

Genre – Alternative Metal

Label/Release Date – Pavement Entertainment//January 27, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

What do you get when you combine equal parts hard rock, djent, emo, and nu metal?  Why Ghost Season of course.

 

Rating:  2.5/5

Band/AlbumUlulatum Tollunt/Quantum Noose of Usurpation

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Black Metal

Label/Release Date – Invictus Productions/January 27, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Raw and bestial, Ululatum Tollunt provide a tutorial on blasphemous fury.  The music is driving, chaotic, and frankly unmusical.

 

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/AlbumBody Void/Ruins

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Sludge Metal

Label/Release Date – Crown and Throne LTD/January 31, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Emotionally raw, nihilistic sludge for fans of Primitive Man, Thou, and similar.  Ruins is a debut album from this project and, while off to a solid start, have left themselves room to grow.

 

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Kemerov/FMKD

Country of Origin – Greece

Genre – Death ‘n Roll

Label/Release Date – Independent/January 31, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Driving rock and roll with a death metal edge.  FMKD treads on well worn trails of many who have gone before.  Other than a little gravel in the vocals and some downtuning, this release leans much closer to the rock side.

 

Rating:  2.5/5

Band/Album – Morbid Messiah/In the Name of True Death Metal

Country of Origin – Mexico

Genre – Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Godz of War Productions/January 31, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Morbid Messiah, from Mexico, plays a putrid style of death metal that has a life (or more like an undeath) of its own.  Brought forth from the grave earlier this year by Godz of War Productions, the filth and chaos destroys the sensibilities of all listeners.

 

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Epoch/Sancrosanct

Country of Origin – Belgium

Genre – Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Lavadome Productions/January 31, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Originally released in digital format only in 2015, Sancrosanct saw a CD release earlier this year.  Playing a filthy death metal style with some subtle blackening, Epoch do a nice job of drawing the listener into their hell.  I love the dual vocal style.  Both are death growls, but the different tones make a nice contrast.

 

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Palace of Worms/Ecferus//Split

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Black Metal

Label/Release Date – Crown and Throne LTD/January 31, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Palace of Worms, from California, plays a hot style of black metal with plenty of death metal influence.  The tone is punishing and fiery, like whips in hell.  Balan doesn’t rush things, allowing plenty of time for the evil to ferment.  Ecferus, another one man project, this time from Indiana, plays a more raw and colder sounding black metal.  He leans a little more towards the Scandinavian masters, where Palace begs comparison to South American black metal.  Both side are excellent and balance each other nicely.

 

Rating:  4/5

Band/Album – Hellfire/Goat Revenge

Country of Origin – Ukraine

Genre – Black/Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Witches Brew/January 31, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Hellfire have been around since 2014, but the Goat Revenge EP is their first release.  The Ukrainian band play a raw black metal style influenced by death and thrash metal.  The result is a pretty solid throwback to some of the masters of the style, though not always consistently so.

 

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Atila / Body

Country of Origin – Portugal

Genre – Blackened Ambient / Drone / Darkwave

Label/Release Date – Disassociated Records / January 20, 2017

Author – JDecker

Coldwave/darkwave that tiptoes around the borders of black metal in an ambient fashion. Heavy, brooding, ominous electronics evoking many of the same feelings as the more borderline so-called “dungeon synth” efforts of black metal artists far and wide. Imagine the more chilled out nine inch nails material thrown in a blender with dungeon synth, black metal, and the most drugged out club music. For purists of dark music for sure, but not exclusively metal music.

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Óreiða / Demo I

Country of Origin – Iceland

Genre – Black Metal

Label/Release Date – Signal Rex / September 11, 2016

Author – JDecker

If you didn’t know better, you’d think this came from Norway. Tried and true recipes for classic and early era raw black metal, twisted up with a little more fuzzed out and melodic flavors reminiscent of the most recent wave of global black metal. If you enjoy slightly muffled screeching howls over familiar yet well executed raw black metal stylings, you’ll dig this. Proper but not groundbreaking.

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Axis Of Despair / Mankind Crawls

Country of Origin – Sweden

Genre – Grindcore / Oldschool Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Spela Snabbare Records/Give Praise Records / October 28, 2016

Author – JDecker

At the crossroads of grindcore and oldschool death metal is precisely where Axis Of Despair dwell. Blistering grindcore riffs and blastbeats exchange time in the spotlight with oldschool death metal solos and breakdowns. Vocals meld both – arguably quite similar – styles into one ferocious beast. Recommended if either genres are your thing.

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – The Drip / The Haunting Fear Of Inevitability

Country of Origin – United States

Genre – Death Metal / Grindcore

Label/Release Date – Relapse Records / January 13, 2017

Author – JDecker

Heavy, competent, newschool death metal and grindcore hybrid shit. Not a shred of anything new or original, but well enjoyable if you’re into the more recent trends of both styles. However, for me, it does almost nothing. Would rate it 1.5 or lower, but gets the solid deuce for at least being quite competently played.

 

Rating:  2/5

Band/Album – Ever Circling Wolves / Of Woe (or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Gloom)

Country of Origin – Finland

Genre – Death-Doom

Label/Release Date – Cimmerian Shade Records / January 27, 2017

Author – JDecker

Really well executed death-doom of a very high caliber. Interesting song structure and progression in a genre often laden with cliche songwriting. To be certain, all the usual suspects are here, so to speak, but in a surprisingly fresh fashion. Excellent production and some unique instrumentation and sounds employed, to round it out. Definitely recommended if the death/doom hybrid is even remotely up your alley. A nod to those into progressive styles of metal music, as well, so if that’s your bag don’t let the typically heavy and downtrodden mood of this sound dissuade you.

 

Rating:  4/5

Band/Album – Maloic / Death

Country of Origin – India

Genre – Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Independent / January 25, 2017

Author – JDecker

Claiming death metal as their genre, Maloic traverse a wide range of subgenres within the realm of heavy metal. If anything, I feel they get the death metal tag based solely on their vocal style. Beyond that, it feels like pretty straight up nods to founding crossover forefathers like Metallica and the like with sprinklings of contemporary progressive styles you might find in Dream Theatre, power/speed metal tendencies you might recall from Helloween, and a healthy dose of forward thinking melody construction along with a nod to the sounds of their homeland. Quite enjoyable, no lie, but probably too “soft” for some and too “hard” for others. Quality heavy metal that can’t be pigeonholed is a dream many try and fail at, however, so bonus points there.

 

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Horn / Turm am Hang

Country of Origin – Germany

Genre – Pagan Black Metal

Label/Release Date – Northern Silence Productions / January 27, 2017

Author – JDecker

One man black metal mammoth from the one known as Nerrath, also responsible for the Licht Erlischt… project – among other efforts and involvements. Much more well produced than many contemporary one man black metal bands and, seemingly, much more focused. Horn offer up epic – in the most accurate and precise definition of the term – pagan black metal right up there with anyone you can name in similar realms. Highly recommended if you can stomach German lyrics/vocals and enjoy epic pagan black metal. \m/

 

Rating:  4.25/5

Band/Album – Gurthang / Shattered Echoes

Country of Origin – Poland

Genre – Black Metal / Doom Metal

Label/Release Date – Cimmerian Shade Recordings / January 20, 2017

Author – JDecker

I’m, admittedly, not a fan of the black and doom hybrid of metal music. But, if there’s one act who can pull it off it is Gurthang. For the last 7 or 8 years they have been carving out that niche, with “Shattered Echoes” they remove the last notch and stand tall on the scrap heap of all others who try. Blistering black metal gives way for slow and downtuned doom, occasionally and miraculously operating collectively at the same time. Marvelous stuff.

Rating:  4/5

Band/Album – Varaha/Varaha EP

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Doom Rock

Label/Release Date – Independent/February 3, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

A brief and interesting release.  Varaha plays a style of rock which features a ton of ambience, atmosphere, and doom influences, and nearly reaches the point of being shoegaze.  I wasn’t sure what to expect, but ended up really liking it.

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Dying Whale/Last Moments of Misery

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Doom Punk

Label/Release Date – Nefarious Industries/February 3, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Dying Whale play messy mix of hardcore punk, sludge, doom, and straight-up rock and roll. Fans of bands such as Thou or Kowloon Walled City might be interested, as might fans of Black Flag.  

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Ritual Lair/Mother of Misery and All Repugnance

Country of Origin – Poland

Genre – Black Metal

Label/Release Date – Godz ov War/February 10, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

If Motorhead had a love child with rawish black metal, it would probably sound something like this.  Ritual Lair, at least on this release, is more black ‘n roll than trve cvlt, but an interesting listen nonetheless.  

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Hereza/I Become Death

Country of Origin – Croatia

Genre – Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Godz ov War/February 13, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Somewhere between death-grind and Stockholm death metal lies Hereza.  This is death metal through and through, but infused with a vicious strain of punk rock.  All-in-all, a deliciously unpleasant listen.

Rating:  4/5

Band/Album – Achiote/Loneliness of Endless Days

Country of Origin – Finland

Genre – Heavy Metal

Label/Release Date – Concorde Music/February 10, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Modern sounding hard rock/heavy metal with some strong progressive tendencies.  Loneliness of Endless Days is a concept record centered around the grief and depression of dealing with the serious illness of one of the band members.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Stinking Lizaveta/Journey to the Underworld

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Instrumental Jazz Doom

Label/Release Date – Translation Loss Records/February 17, 2017

Author – Hayduke X

Wow!  This one is really an interesting listen.  I’m not generally all that into instrumental music.  Perhaps Russian Circles is an exception.  Well, it looks like I’ve found another in Stinking Lizaveta.  

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Grimmd / Demo I – II

Country of Origin – Iceland

Genre – Black Metal

Label/Release Date – Signal Rex / September 17, 2016

Author – JDecker

Ancient and cavernous sounding dissonant black metal with a hint of industrialized perversion. Difficult and rewarding, off-putting and engaging. At once, very likely an alienating release – even for many tried and true fans of dissonant music and black metal of all sorts – while also being hugely engaging and welcoming. Well high up the list for recent discoveries in the realms of non-traditional yet familiar sounding black metal for this reviewer. Recommended!

Rating:  4.5/5

Band/Album – INK/Loom

Country of Origin – Greece

Genre – Alternative Rock

Label/Release Date – Independent/January 1, 2016

Author – Hayduke X

Well done grungy alternative rock.  INK sounds like they could come from Seattle in the 1990’s. While not particularly original, they do a nice job of songwriting and playing. The vocalist is reminiscent of Chris Cornell.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Sede Vacante/Skies Infernal

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Gothic Metal

Label/Release Date – Archasm Releasing/November 18, 2016

Author – Hayduke X

I’ve never been a big fan of gothic metal.  It always seems overly dramatic to me.  That said, if you like Evanescence, you will probably enjoy Sede Vacante.  In fact, they are going out on tour in support of Evanescence apparently.

Rating:  2.5/5

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