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Reviews
Emptiness - Not For Music

In 2014, the Belgians in Emptiness threw out Nothing But The Whole, a thundering album of black and death metal that combined the two quite seamlessly, with a delicious sense of atmosphere to boot. Being almost universally praised in underground metal circles, how exactly does the band follow up such a powerhouse release? Easy: by going for something different.

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Posted: 24.01.2017 by Apothecary | Comments (4)

Reviews
Avenged Sevenfold - The Stage

I have never liked Avenged Sevenfold. I had some very unkind things to say about their last album, Metallica Rulez!!, and fondly remember deriding my younger brother for purchasing Nightmare when it came out. I was in middle school when the band was really in its stride, and I strongly disliked them then; nowadays when I listen to old Avenged Sevenfold I am reminded of middle school, and I feel terrible. I think, therefore, that my endorsement might carry a little more weight, as A7x had to pull off something quite impressive to win me over.

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Posted: 16.01.2017 by ScreamingSteelUS | Comments (6)

Reviews
Firewind - Immortals

Spartaaaa!! After a five-year hiatus, The Greek powerhouse that is Firewind is back in full force with a power metal concept album about the Battle of Thermopylae and Salamis in 480 BC during the second Persian invasion of Greece. Look it up, it's fascinating and a few movies were made about it.

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Posted: 15.01.2017 by Demonic Tutor | Comments (0)

Reviews
Eye Of Solitude - Cenotaph

You like being miserable? Then get the heck on over here, you miserable sack of misery. It's groveling time.

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Posted: 13.01.2017 by ScreamingSteelUS | Comments (2)

Reviews
Mors Principium Est - Embers Of A Dying World

Mors Principium Est is at the core a Gothenburg metal band from Finland with a duo of killer albums released in the early 2000s, Inhumanity and The Unborn. Yet their front man Andy Gillion is from the UK. He took over songwriting and guitar duties when the band was on the brink of being dissolved in 2011. He carried on the legacy with Ville Viljanen [vocals], Mikko Sipola [drums] and Teemu Heinola [bass]. This Mors Principium Est v2.0 has been thriving under his astute vision and vista.

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Posted: 09.01.2017 by Demonic Tutor | Comments (9)

Reviews
Jambinai - A Hermitage

Wielding an array of Korean folk instruments in addition to a standard metal four-piece setup, Jambinai already stands out as an unusual sight. Combine that with uncommon songwriting intuition and you've got a wondrous, expansive, and engaging album the likes of which rarely stumble across your path.

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Posted: 06.01.2017 by ScreamingSteelUS | Comments (6)

Reviews
Gateway To Selfdestruction - Death, My Salvation

I knew I made a good decision when I picked this up from Northern Silence Productions and a bad decision when I slept on it for three months. On the surface, and, indeed, to a great extent beneath that, Gateway To Selfdestruction is another friendly neighborhood black metal band, but this debut release executes its mission with such creativity and spirit that it should not be overlooked.

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Posted: 29.12.2016 by ScreamingSteelUS | Comments (4)

Reviews
Pylar - Pyedra

Quick everybody! It's "Guess The Style By The Album Artwork" time! Here we seem to have a cover depicting a giant rock with a portion missing, the drawing style of which could easily be misinterpreted as a male genitalia by our more imaginative friends, or a cake by the more gluttonous. Just what are we dealing with here?

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Posted: 24.12.2016 by Apothecary | Comments (10)

Reviews
Bölzer - Hero

If there's one release from 2016 that has generated the most mixed reaction in me, it would probably have to be Bölzer's Hero.

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Posted: 23.12.2016 by Apothecary | Comments (4)

Reviews
Klimt 1918 - Sentimentale Jugend

It's become an annual occurrence in my music listening curriculum for an album to completely blow me away just before the turn of another year.

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Posted: 18.12.2016 by tea[m]ster | Comments (8)

Reviews
E-an-na - Jiana

I discovered E-an-na some months back when they had only a song or two to their name and I thought it would be wonderful if they could release a full-length. Jiana is only an EP, but already E-an-na sounds like a veteran act with an established personality and a mastery of sound. It's easy to pick up an accordion, call your melodeath guitarist buddy, and write something in five minutes that sounds sufficiently like folk metal, but the best folk artists have a sense of continuity and a particular spirit that cannot be derived alchemically. The best folk music sounds like what E-an-na has done.

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Posted: 18.12.2016 by ScreamingSteelUS | Comments (4)

Reviews
Kypck - 3epo

With the color palette and subject of that cover, this could only be a Kypck album. With the ghostly echoes of a rattling train bookending the opening and closing tracks, this could only be a Kypck album. With these icy, foreboding riffs and military-style breakdowns, Зеро is a perfect example of a Kypck album.

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Posted: 12.12.2016 by ScreamingSteelUS | Comments (6)

Reviews
Equilibrium - Armageddon

Armageddon reveals the beginnings of a shift in Equilibrium's style - sometimes a flattering shift, other times less so. This album pulls the band in a couple of different ways with a rather mixed result that has garnered some even more mixed reactions.

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Posted: 09.12.2016 by ScreamingSteelUS | Comments (11)

Reviews
Metallica - Hardwired…To Self-Destruct

Is Metallica back? Nah. Is Metallica less gone? Yeah, sure.

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Posted: 27.11.2016 by ScreamingSteelUS | Comments (20)

Reviews
Dawn On Sedna - Our Sky Has Changed

Dawn On Sedna are a post-metal act hailing from Viareggio, Tuscany, Italy. So I'm going to take the easy way out and use food metaphors to describe the album. Lazy on my part? Sure. But Italian food is great, and so is this album.

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Posted: 27.11.2016 by BitterCOld | Comments (7)