Band/Album – Cannibal Corpse/A Skeletal Domain

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Metal Blade/September 16, 2014

Does Cannibal Corpse really need introduction?  This album is almost two years old, but features one of the premier American Death Metal bands.  Cannibal Corpse was out on tour again this summer, which is why we were sent the promo.  The album is still worth picking up if you haven’t already.

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Doomsday Hymn/Mene Tequel Ufarsim

Country of Origin – Brazil

Genre – Metalcore

Label/Release Date – Rottweiler Records/July 21st, 2015

Hailing from Brazil, Doomsday Hymn is a Christian Metalcore act.  The is pretty solid, with enough variety in riffs and tempo to keep things interesting.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Harmonic Cross/It Is Finished

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Punk

Label/Release Date – Magic Bullet Records/July 24th, 2015

Dark and interesting ambient sounds which are meant as a soundtrack to an unsolved and unexplained true crime known as the Somerton Man.  The album makes for creepy background music.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Windfaerer/Tenebrosum

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Folk Black Metal

Label/Release Date – Independent/September 22nd, 2015

Well conceived black metal with violins.  I don’t hear any particular folk melodies, but Metal-Archives says they sing about the myths of the Iberian Peninsula.  Regardless, the violins add a nice touch without drawing the band out of the realm of black metal.

Rating:  4/5

Band/Album – Grime/Circle of Molesters

Country of Origin – Italy

Genre – Sludge Metal

Label/Release Date – Argento Records/September 1st, 2015

Brutal sludge in the tradition of Primitive Man.  Nihilistic and ominous, this album is pleasantly unpleasant.

Rating:  4/5

Band/Album – Recitation/Carrion

Country of Origin – Denmark

Genre – Death Doom

Label/Release Date – Interdisciplinarian/October 9th, 2015

Slow and heavy is the name of the game here.  Carrion is a 27 minute glacier of in your face death doom.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Satan/Atom by Atom

Country of Origin – United Kingdom

Genre – Heavy Metal

Label/Release Date – Listenable Records/October 16th, 2015

Playing heavy metal since 1979, Satan still know how to write a good metal song.  Playing fist pumping, evil, traditional metal, Atom by Atom is a solid album worth a listen.

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Vehemence/Forward Without Motion

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Melodic Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Battleground Records/October 23rd, 2015

Vehemence play ripping melodic death metal with technical elements.  Forward Without Motion is considerably more savage than much of the other melodeath I’ve heard, which I consider a positive.  Chaotic guitars and some variation in vocals make this a fun listen.

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Vastum/Hole Below

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Death Metal

Label/Release Date – 20 Buck Spin/November 6th, 2015

Dark, heavy, brutal.  Bay area beasts Vastum have crafted a tutorial in punishing old school death metal, yet with enough musicality to keep it interesting.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Moloken/All is Left to See

Country of Origin – Sweden

Genre – Post-Metal

Label/Release Date – Temple of Torturous/November 13th, 2015

Sinister post-metal with lots of sludge influence and a little crust thrown in for good measure.  Some pretty guitar lines and tones, but plenty of ominous underneath.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Mohicans/Mohicans

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Post-Metal

Label/Release Date – Creator-Destructor Records/December 18th, 2015

Solid Post-Metal with a fair bit of punk rock attitude.  No breaking of new ground here, but lots of energy.

Rating:  2.5/5

Band/Album – Classhole/Classhole

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Hardcore Punk

Label/Release Date – The Compound/Terror Cult/January 1st, 2016

Angry hardcore punk from the swamps of NOLA.  Filthy guitars and bile filled vocals make this worth a listen.

Rating:  2.5/5

Band/Album – Khtoniik Cerviiks/SeroLogiikal Scars (Vertex of Dementiia)

Country of Origin – Germany

Genre – Blackened Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Iron Bonehead Production/February 5th, 2016

Fast, chaotic, brutal and mesmerizing, this release doesn’t quite make it to the brutal chaos of war metal.  SeroLogiikal Scars (Vertex of Dementiia) is really black metal with death metal influences more than the other way around.  A very dark and compelling listen.

Rating:  4/5

Band/Album – Manipulate/Becoming Madness EP

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Hardcore

Label/Release Date – Flatspot Records/February 12th, 2016

Hardcore punk with a fair bit of metallic influence.  Manipulate reminds me a fair bit of Agnostic Front.  These guys are pissed off and letting you know in this in-your-face political manifesto.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Black Wizard/New Waste

Country of Origin – Canada

Genre – Traditional Heavy Metal

Label/Release Date – Listenable Records/February 12th, 2016

No new ground.  Just excellent work within the same formula The Sword and similar bands have followed since the dawn of Black Sabbath.  

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Goatcraft/Olethros

Country of Origin – Slovakia

Genre – Black/Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Iron Bonehead Production/February 22nd, 2016

Viciously savage guitars.  Brutal, pounding bass lines.  Echoey, lo-fi drums.  Filthy, bile-ridden vocals.  Goatcraft has everything you want in bestial black metal here on their debut album. 

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Infernal Curse/Apocalipsis

Country of Origin – Argentina

Genre – Black/Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Iron Bonehead Production/February 26th, 2016

Though more mature sounding (which is to be expected for a second album compared to a first), these Argentinians inhabit essentially the same layer of hell as label mates Goatcraft.  Slightly more polish and precision, but no less bestiality give them the edge in my mind.

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album -Wake/Sowing the Seeds of a Worthless Tomorrow

Country of Origin – Canada

Genre – Grindcore

Label/Release Date – Sentient Ruin Laboratories/February 27th, 2016

Sentient Ruin has developed a knack for finding exceptionally dark material for release, but more angry than evil.  Wake is no exception.  These guys are pissed off at everything.  Seriously good, face-melting grind that isn’t afraid to slow down to watch your features melt.

Rating:  4/5

Band/Album -Metatrone/Eucharismetal

Country of Origin – Italy

Genre – Progressive Power Metal

Label/Release Date – Rockshots Records/March 11th, 2016

With powerful vocals and sweeping guitars, this is power metal with progressive tendencies designed to uplift instead of share darkness.  Hailing from Italy, Christianity is a major theme for the band.  Solid power metal album.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album -Decrepit Soul/The Coming of War!

Country of Origin – Australia

Genre – Black/Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Iron Bonehead Productions/March 18th, 2016

Savage death metal with plenty of blackening that veers into war metal territory on a regular basis.  The Coming of War! is an absolutely punishing, yet extremely compelling listening.  To me, it is primarily the rabid guitars and howling vocals that set Decrepit Soul apart from similar bands.

Rating:  4/5

Band/Album -Ifrinn/Ifrinn

Country of Origin – Scotland

Genre – Black Metal

Label/Release Date – Iron Bonehead Productions/March 25th, 2016

Well-crafted if quite traditional black metal.  There is perhaps more heat than the ice cold of the Scandinavian second wave, but that is maybe also better suited for images of warring clans on blood drenched slopes of the Scottish highlands anyway.  This debut is very solid if not groundbreaking.

Rating:  3.5/5

Band/Album – Demonstealer/This Burden is Mine

Country of Origin – India

Genre – Melodic Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Demonstealer Records/March 25th, 2016

Solid melodeath featuring George Kollias (Nile) as a guest drummer.  Apparently, Demonstealer is essentially the one man project of Demonstealer (aka Sahil Makhija) and also features Ashwin Shriyan on bass.  I’m not so big on the cleaner, mellower parts or this ould be more highly rated.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Ectovoid/Dark Abstraction

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Death Metal

Label/Release Date – Blood Harvest Records/March 28th, 2016

Ectovoid is a completely different style of death metal than Demonstealer (above).  The Alabama trio crawls from deep in the oozing filth to bring some of the most noxious earworms that have ever crawled into my skull.  Though not exceptionally complex, the music here is savagely compelling.

Rating:  4/5

Band/Album – Ill Omen/Æ.Thy.Rift

Country of Origin – Australia

Genre – Black Metal

Label/Release Date – Nuclear War Now! Productions/March 31st, 2016

Foul, ominous, ritualistic graveyard black metal.  There is a strong doom influence here in the pacing.  Dark and cold, this one man project is another from the hotbed of Australian black metal.

Rating:  3/5

Band/Album – Child Bite/Negative Noise

Country of Origin – USA

Genre – Noise Rock

Label/Release Date – Housecore Records/April 1st, 2016

Child Bite is billed as noise rock, but sounds to me like serious Dead Kennedys worship.  From the chaotic guitars, to the driving drums, to the schizophrenic vocals, this album brought back serious memories of my own teenaged, angsty DK worship.

Rating:  4/5

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