Staff picks


Southern Empire - Southern Empire
28.09.2016 | Prog

If prog along the lines of Unitopia, Neal Morse or Transatlantic is your thing, don't miss out on the début album of Australia's Southern Empire, formed by the former Unitopia's keyboardist Sean Timms. Not only do they know how to write good prog tunes, they also have a handle on producing epics: clocking in at almost half an hour, "The Bridge that Binds" is brilliant and worth every moment of your time. Danny Lopresto on vocals is also top-notch. This album is definitely one of my favourites this year.

Try "Forest Fire" or "Hold" and hear for yourself.
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
Ivor
BloodTears
Spheron - A Clockwork Universe
16.09.2016 | Tech death
Bandcamp music player

Spheron's much-anticipated sophomore record was released earlier this year and what a record it is. Technical death metal with such a dense atmosphere and the odd progressive touch make this strong follow-up a must listen. Without sacrificing their immense skill, addictive groove, or crazy aggression, Spheron certainly colors outside the lines with this one. Go exploring.

Melt your face at their Bandcamp.
Picked by:
Susan
Vôdûn - Possession
04.09.2016 | Stoner
Bandcamp music player

If there is an album released this year that will knock you flat on your back then this has got to be Possession, a début album by Vôdûn. A powerful rocking statement, this has been one of the most memorable releases this year and my personal go to album when low on energy. It can kick start you like no other and goes to show that a trio of guitar, drums and vocals is still enough for good music.

Try "Loa's Kingdom" or "Mawu"
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
Ivor
ScreamingSteelUS, Susan, BloodTears

Apparently the band has read on the internet that their vocals are ridiculously annoying and acted on that. They managed to craft a lot of great music too.
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
Daniell
Marcel Hubregtse, Mr. Doctor, psykometal
Hammers Of Misfortune - Dead Revolution
23.08.2016 | Progressive
Bandcamp music player

Intelligent, expansive, diverse. Engaging, intriguing, inspired. If these six adjectives appeal to you, give this album a chance.
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
Daniell
Fat & Sassy!, Marcel Hubregtse
Wo Fat - Midnight Cometh
22.08.2016 | stonerdoomsludge
Bandcamp music player

Discussing this with Pippin, he described as "If Orange Goblin and Tool had a psychedelic doom baby". What he said. bandcamp cometh
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
BitterCOld
Abattoir, Apothecary, Introspekrieg, BloodTears
Thrawsunblat - Metachthonia
10.08.2016 | Blackened folk, I guess
Bandcamp music player

Far from flawless, but still probably the best folk metal album of the last few months.
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
Daniell
Susan, psykometal, BloodTears, ScreamingSteelUS
Ewïg Frost - No Dice
18.07.2016 | punk speedmetal

Hooray! loved the "High Octane Anarchy" of Ewig Frost's EP and now they are back with another Motorhead worship punked-up speed metal Atomic Release. 13 songs, 30 minutes of ugly, gritty, rip-roaring Black Mountain Madness. Get yer smash on!
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
BitterCOld
Abattoir
Névoa - Re Un
03.07.2016 | Black metal (plus all kinds of stuff)
Bandcamp music player

It's hard to find massive albums that really engulf you from the start and grab you until the very last note. But Névoa's Re Un is one of those albums. This stellar work from the Portuguese duo owes a lot to their name, Névoa (or "mist" in English). The immersive riffs just hoover around like a dim fog of hopelessness. The atmosphere is everything on this release and so is the unexpected. The music is anything but predicable with sludge, post, black and doom all mixed up into one big cauldron of hypnotic and hallucinatory musings. It's desolate, contemplative and slow. You might look for a beacon of light in Re Un's darkness but you will never find one, only mist.
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
BloodTears
Susan, Paz
Blood Of An Outlaw - Southern Hymns
03.07.2016 | Deathcore/Metalcore
Bandcamp music player

Up and coming -core band from my hometown, Houston, TX. Check 'em out. My favorite track is "Foundations".

Bandcamp
Picked by:
psykometal
Barús - Barús
29.06.2016 | Progressive Death Metal
Bandcamp music player

The self-titled EP by Frenchies Barús is fantastique. Four separate tracks of slightly proggy death with vision, each with their own unique feel and vibe. Listened to this more than a dozen times now over three months, each time enjoying it while hating myself for not pounding out a review saying how much I enjoy it. Thus ends my confession. Hold not my sins against the band. Check it out.
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
BitterCOld
Nefarious
Blut Aus Nord - Codex Obscura Nomina [Split]
28.06.2016 | Hallucinatory BM... and some Ævangelist
Bandcamp music player

This new split really feels more like a Blut Aus Nord EP + a rather poorly produced Ævangelist track than anything else. While Ævangelist largely disappoint with their contribution, Blut Aus Nord meanwhile craft a mesmerizing, 4 track journey that sounds somewhat like MoRT at points, but is also strikingly new, dripping of a strange psychedelic influence in the guitar tone and background effects. A pleasant surprise for this year that is just too damn short.

Bandcamp.
Picked by:
Apothecary
Nails - You Will Never Be One Of Us
19.06.2016 | Hardcore
Bandcamp music player

Another solid, brutal release in the genre of "show up 15 minutes late, miss first 3 bands". A few more sprinklings of death metal and doom riffs in this one, along with the grindy frantic intensity that Nails is known for. Be uplifted by the sheer optimism of songs like "Life Is A Death Sentence" and "Violence Is Forever" as you watch the world burn.

Read review ››
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
Introspekrieg
Apothecary, Mr. Doctor, Abattoir, ScreamingSteelUS
Howls Of Ebb - Cursus Impasse: The Pendlomic Vows
17.06.2016 | Lovecraftian black/death

Howls Of Ebb are a fine example of the growing tendency towards experimentation taking place right now not only in black metal, but in death metal as well. There's little that can be said about this album other than that it's a bizarre, stimulating journey into a blackened death whirlwind oozing of psychedelic bounce and eerie atmospheres. Say that doesn't sound fun and Yog-Sothoth will smack you with his tentacles.

Sing to the Old Ones.
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
Apothecary
Mr. Doctor
Terra Tenebrosa - The Reverses
16.06.2016 | Unadulterated darkness
Bandcamp music player

They did it again...



Read review ››
Picked by:
Thumbs up:
Darkside Momo
Marcel Hubregtse, psykometal, Mr. Doctor, BloodTears, Apothecary, Ag Fox