Band: MACABRE OMEN
Country: Greece
Title: The Ancient Returns (re-release)
Label: Van Records
Year: 2016
Style: Epic Pagan Black Metal

Review:
After the release of the band's second album, in 2015, Van Records re-releases their debut full-length, probably in lack of new material and to keep the band fresh in attention, but also because previous versions are probably long time sold out by now. I have here the Digipak CD version that comes with a beautiful matte booklet with images glorifying Hellenic landscapes that go hand in hand with the music on it. Macabre Omen's music sounds like Bathory meets Varathron and Rotting Christ, or better said an epic, majestic form of Pagan Black Metal with plenty of catchy and accessible elements beside the rough, offensive Black Metal parts. The traditional, expressive Black Metal guitar riffs are perfectly blending with Pagan leads and acoustic guitar passages to create a balanced material delivered with organic, even raw sounding production that gives it an old-school feeling. If you give it a chance and listen carefully you'll discover all sorts of little elements that make this record worthwile and close to a masterpiece of Greek Black Metal, one that shouldn't be missed if you don;t have the first editions, one to be proud of having in your collection.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/macabreomen.rhodes
van-records.de

Band: MARIANAS REST
Country:  Finland
Title: Horror Vacui
Label: Sliptrick Records
Year: 2016
Style: Melodic Doom Death Metal

Review:
Great debut album from Finland! At the beginning Marianas Rest are playing very melodically, then wild growl is activating in track „The Millenialist” and all flow is changing on faster but with some nostalgical pieces „Nadir”. Next „For The Heartless” introduces the effect of rocking the boat to the „Hurts Like Hell”. Another track, „Lonely Place to Die” are not so fast, but this is kicking ass very accurately! Next 8 minutes’ sorrow called „Chokegold” and blackened „Place to Nothing” with great riffs is ending in the last track „Vestigal”, I’ll remember this band, they play the sad things in an very interesting way.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: METALOBOS
Country:  Mexico
Title: Arte Macabro
Label: Concreto Records
Year: 2016
Style: Melodic Doom Death Metal

Review:
This EP is six track stuff based on slowly and hardly twisted doom/death metal. These tracks are unmercifully long stretches with effects of slautering brain. Vocalist spits his guts to the slowed to the point of absurdity guitar and bass sounds. In this wall of sound they are woven some shy acoustic motifs, which boldly come to the fore in the fourth track called „Shiver”. Next just two times this mad road roller slows down your movement and stops with the fatal convulsions... „Arte Macabro” just occupied drawers signed „Doom” and „Nihilistic Black Metal” (more than declarated oficially melodic death metal).
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 6/10

Band: MORPHIUM
Country:  Spain
Title: The Blackout
Label: Mass Productions
Year: 2016
Style: Gothic Death Metal

Review:
Catalonian gothic/deathmetallers released third full lenght album and this is really interesting fusion more brutal and quasi-progressive metal. Strongly, deathmetal’s sounds crossed here with delicate pieces of whispers and this music draws ears and mind like quicksand!  There are a lot unconventional dialogues between growles and progressive solo guitars. In my opiniom MorphiuM would like to mix on this album a lot of their visions and ideas and they made it good. „The Blackout”, despite the many surprising „changes in action” does not feel overloaded. At the end, title track is... pure darkambient flow and this is the most surprising thing on this album. 
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: NATVRE’S
Country: Greece
Title: Wrath
Label: Argento Records
Year: 2015
Style: Black Metal

Review:
Nature's debut album was released at the end of 2015. This black metal created by three Greeks trio ruthlessly and raw smashed ear and brain from beginning to end, spitting venom through hell, rustly bite and slowing the pace from time to time. Bass, guitar, drums + spirited vocals merge in hell in a uniform wall of sound, which in its seedy wilderness becomes the engine of  deeply underground  blackmetal software-sounding unprofessional. By the way, this is 99% of nihil novi and it would be another black metal album in this „never-ending holy war”, but one track is darkambient ("Hinterland") and just this track is the best of „Wrath”. That’s all.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 6/10

Band: NEKRAPE
Country: Poland
Title: The Hypostasis of the Archons
Label: Demented Omen of Masochism
Year: 2016
Style: Black Metal

Review:
With jost under half an hour of playing time, but a total of 10 tracks, The Hypostasis of the Archons is the debut album from this Polish trio founded in 2012. It seems the three guys making out this band are all experienced in the obscure underground Black Metal scene from Poland, so I guess this album was pretty much waited by fans of the genre. What we get here are 10 tracks of fast paced, Thrash Metal influenced, Bestial Black Metal defined by spectre-like demented shrieks, a frenzy of old-school drum patterns, heavy, incissive bass lines and thrashy guitar riffs supported from time to time by crazy solos. The production is rough, organic, and unpolished, so make sure you keep this in mind if you're thinking of giving it a try. There's not much to impress here, the whole is pretty traditional and opposed to innovation, but if you're into bestial, organic, fast paced Black Metal try it out.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 6.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/dementedomen

Band: NERODIA
Country:  Italy
Title: Vanity Unfair
Label: Revalve Records
Year: 2016
Style: Blackened Death Metal

Review:
Third full length album of italian Neordia reminds me a little Darkthrone’s „Circle of Wagons”. Album „Vanity Unfair” is a music monolith, but with some „swirls and hidden corners”. This is official „blackened death metal”, but unofficial - unobvious. Roots of Neordia are deep in thrash metal, you can hear this fact in e.g. „Pussywith 666”, title’s track „Vanity Unfair” and „Souldead”. And at the beginning of „The Black Line”. Not bad album, but without breakthroughs. 
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 7/10

Band: PATH OF DESOLATION
Country: Switzerland
Title: Where the Grass Withers
Label: Selfreleased
Year: 2016
Style: Melodic Death Metal

Review:
Oh man, the first thing that stucks you from this album is the fantastic cover artwork, or at least that's what it did for me, so I immediately wanted to know who did it; and the responsible is Travis Smith who did work for Amorphis, Anathema, Cradle of Filth, Katatonia or Opeth among many others of similar calibre. So a first target hit when it comes to the look of this 3 panels gatefold digipak CD selfreleased by this kind of new Swiss band founded in 2013. Regarding the music on it, we're treated with 11 tracks clocking almost 50 minutes of playing time, a modern, melodic, technical Death Metal on the In Flames, Dark Tranquillity, Omnium Gatherum path, one that was and still is heavily overcrowded, so naturally one that competition is fierce resulting in slimer chances of breaking through. Not to be overly enthousiastic about it, but I think these guys have what it takes to break through, or at least this debut album sounds so well done, so carefully structured and planned that it induces this impression even from the very first track. Beside, it's technical level, its flawless production and it's complex compositions are extra points to the overall heavy value of this band. They only need something to set them apart, to make them easily distinguishable, and the mostly monotone but armor piercing vocals of David (whom I've admired in his other band 3 Days of Silence, too) might be just that, his colleagues are extremely talented and well trained in offering him the perfect platform, this debut album convinced me. If you're into Melodic Death Metal give this album a chance, but try to listen to it in full, it's so diverse and at the same time curdled that it deserves to be given a full chance.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 9/10

Contact:
facebook.com/band.pathofdesolation

Band: PRECIPITATION
Country: Germany
Title: The Power of...
Label: Selfreleased
Year: 2016
Style: Melodic Death Metal Metalcore

Review:
Fresh deathmetal/deathcore blood from Germany two years ago was debut short EP stuff. In 2016 „The Power Of...” was shown to the World. German precision is connected melodic death metal (with a heavy metal flow played) with deathcore, a piece of hard rock and some elements of prog metal. This album balances between the hard ground and space travel and 
the drifting at sea on an ice floe... And this is good idea! You can say, that 
uncomplicated „teutonic point of view „is strongly connected with technical engineering here, heh... However all music trick, changing the rhytms and guitar riffs I’ve been heard earlier at other bands. Precipitation collected on „The Power of...” a lot of secondary pieces in one mosaic, but if this work is a new quality, there’s a moot, especially for someone who has more than 40 years and from the 20 years have listen to metal music.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 6/10

Band: RUDRA
Country: Singapore
Title: Enemy the Duality
Label: Transcending Obscurity Asia
Year: 2016
Style: Folk Death Black Metal

Review:
Singaporean deathmetallers are in the best form! "Enemy of Duality" is more than 40 minutes relentless slaughter death / black metal play at the highest level. I always thought that playing technical death metal is art high end and the "thud" interiors to be able to play so as to give a kick and not deafening. Shiva, Kathir, Vinod and Simon come to the uprightly pressed elements of Malay and India traditional music - primarily in the form of typical borrowers sounds of the strings of the sitar. In particular, a piece of "Root of Misapprehension" is just such a great and much needed reference to their own musical traditions, and at the same time giving a minute of breath. Chopped, like a machine gun drums and aggressively suggestive growl’s vocals is a  honey on the ears and not their wilting. Besides Rudra from the many years known how to play death metal at the highest world champion level! At the end Rudra play death / folkmetal raga "Ancient Fourth," which is the essence of this album! That’s just brillant!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 10/10

Band: SCUM
Country: Italy
Title: Humana
Label: Sliptrick Records
Year: 2016
Style: Thrash Death Metal

Review:
„Humana” is just 27 minutes of metal sounds divided on 7 tracks, included intro. This stuff is official thrash/death metal flow, but you can hear a lot of deathcore and doom metal motifs here, played pauses. This is good, that this stuff is short, because you can hear it in one stream without feelings of boredom and that’s good idea to listen it quite carefully. Scum from italian Toscania created really good piece of heavy music and back to the times, when albums was more shorter than today is. Maybe is this good way?
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 7/10

Band: SECOND TO SUN
Country:  Russia
Title: Blackbound
Label: Selfreleased
Year: 2016
Style: Post-Black Groove Metal

Review:
„Blackbound "is very interesting, entirely instrumental material based on progressive poate-black / groove metal. Each of these songs without words tells a specific story and these are based on a particle of Russia history. This is very important fact, because without the knowledge of the history, a full understanding of this album can’t be a full! In any case, Vladimir Lehtinen and Fyodor Borowski reach in his avantgarde progressive-psychedelic pieces to the Finno-Ugric legends ( "Vasilisa," "Chokk Kapper"), the local history of the region of Nizhny Novgorod ( "Region13", "The Yoke") and lake Ladoga ( "Ladoga Master") and refers to the contemporary Russian cinema ( "the Fool"). The album also included two pieces of bonus based on darkambient genre. "Blackbound", similar to  "Meta" (Thy Catafalque’s album) are one of the most interesting production avangarde metal from Central and Eastern Europe, released in 2016.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 9/10

Band: SZEPT
Country: Poland
Title: Krzyk czarnej ziemi
Label: Hell Is Here Production
Year: 2016
Style: Black Metal

Review:
Hell Is Here propose us a new band, Szept, a trio from the Southern Poland, from Rybnik, founded in 2015, and here I have their debut release, a 3 tracks demo released on tape with professional cover featuring all lyrics. Unfortunately for me the lyrics are completely in the band's mother tongue, so I don't understand a thing, don't even know what they are about, but for "artistic" impression using native language might just be a winning idea for the band. There are only 2 tracks featured here, plus intro and outro, but the total timing of the release is well over 10 minutes, so for a demo that's fair enough. Szept blends mid-tempo, atmospheric Black Metal with fast paced second wave of Black Metal like sturctures; the production is pretty good, nothing to complain about, and the compositions are interesting enough, based on fierce guitar riffs, simple but intense drumming, atmospheric keyboard lines in the background and abrasive, raspy shrieks supported by viking-like choirs at times. A good debut.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 6.5/10

Contact:
hellishereprod.republika.pl

Band: TALESIEN
Country:  Spain
Title: Talesien
Label: Suspiria Records
Year: 2016
Style: Progressive Power Metal

Review:
This album, called just as a name of the band, are started by intro kept in a climate of film music - and this is a good introduction to this really pretty good material! "Tálesien" is crystal clear and progressive metal, singing in their own language. Broken, jazz rhythms, a lot of electronics effects, some soundspaces taken from progressive rock classic of 70th made the album listen with pleasure. To the timbre of the voice of the singer fits perfectly into this progressive machine sound. The team is defined as a progressive power metal, and in some simplification reflects their sounds. In addition, power metal heating (such as eg. In the piece "Sexta Extinción") Tálesien sailed in the atmosphere slightly pathetic-mood (eg. "Naphtali") and heavy metal and symphonic way (eg. "Incompresion") and ,which I emphasize once again, very harmonizes well with the Spanish language and the great voice of the singer. At the end could not miss the sound sentimental ballads, like old times. Good stuff!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 9/10

Band: TEMTRIS
Country:  Australia
Title: Enter The Asylum
Label: Battlegod Productions
Year: 2016
Style: Heavy Metal

Review:
Australian Temtris was founded in 1999 and the current album is the 4th in history. Music of  Temtris is untypical thrashened heavy metal owing to the girl on vocal. Genevieve Rodda doesn’t sing like Sabina Classen, she has a voice taken from blues and rock’n’roll’s manner and, from time to time, like Manowar’s or The Cult’s vocalists. „Enter The Asylum” is not so great discovery in heavy metal on the technical side it is very good! The mood of this album are changed quite smoothly (based on heavy metal/thrash typical riffs and guitar solos of course) and this is not boring, though a lot of secondary sounds. At the end you can hear „Lament” song, which is a piece of golden time of metal ballads like Scorpions, heh... And another track „Phoenix”, like fenix rebirth from the (thr)ashes...  
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 7/10

Band: THE DESCENT
Country:  Spain
Title: The Coven of Rats
Label: Suspiria Records
Year: 2016
Style: Melodic Death Metal

Review:
At the beginning: ambient and space sounds taken from the cinema... But that was just the short beginning. Next Basque metallers are spitting from the throats of fury and raw venom!
 This mixture of death metal and deathcore is fairly typical of the prevailing current trends but with melodic guitar solos little distinguished from the whole mass of this type of play metal. Here comes to mind the Evildead’s solo guitars (if anyone else remember this band) which introduce an element of "melodic" to "death metal" declared by the band. In any case, "The Coven of Rats" are rally good kicking ass without unnecessary tearing robes, despite some core scream’s vocals. Fury of drums and the frayed strings of guitar thrash simply keeps the level and listen to this flipping head. There is a main  power of The Descent!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: UFOSONIC GENERATOR
Country: Italy
Title: The Evil Smoke Possession
Label: Minotauro Records
Year: 2016
Style: Stoner Doom metal

Review:
Italian’s stoner/doom metalist recorded stuff, which is more similar to Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, early Black Sabbath than to doom metal as well. Especially voice of vocalist is strongly similar to Robert Plant, Ozzy Osbourne and Ian Gillan’ s kind of singing (in one, heh...) and even the album cover refers to the age of 70th. If you put some Cathedral style to this boiling old rock playing boiler, you receive „The Evil Smoke Possession”. This album are confusingly similar to golden classic rock times (mean: 100% copy).  Ufosonic Generator should change the name to „Time Machine”, however if you like it – you love it. I prefer original but I appreciate playing music technique.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 7/10

Band: VEONITY
Country:  Sweden
Title: Into the Void
Label: Sliptrick Records
Year: 2016
Style: Power Metal

Review:
Do you remember the hard’n’heavy band Europe from Sweden? So If you remember, please take some Dragonforce’s speed and pathetical sounds of Manowar to Europe’s melodic flow - and you can create Veonity. This swedish steel after powermetal’s melt aren’t so revealing, but Veonity’s enjoing of playing is more important, just from the first track called "When Humanity is Gone". Album "Into the Void" is a typical powermetal monolith, where the most important is the power of pressure and speed to the front than the complicated sounds. 
Veonity focused on the joyful, power-heavy metal drive - a perfect to the eg. to drive car, heh... If someone has too much in the ears of Iron Maiden, Helloween, Manowar, Judas Priest, Gamma Ray and Motley Crue but If you does not want to part with these sounds, Veonity is an ideal proposal! Warning! This includes also deeply romantic motifs ("Insanity", "Astral Flames"), and such a climate of Bon Jovi ("Until The Day I Die") too.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 7/10

Band: VULTURES VENGEANCE
Country: Italy
Title: Where the Time Dwelt in
Label: Gates of Hell Records
Year: 2016
Style: Heavy Metal

Review:
With an image between the macho-barbarian Manowar style and pre-Metal Pantera if anyone remembers, Vultures Vengeance seem to be right out of the end of '70's - beginning of '80's Metal scene, and the music on this debut EP of theirs stands tall to confirm this. Although the band was founded in 2009, this is just their first EP, a 3 tracks effort plus intro and a final instrumental track to top the list, so 5 tracks in total clocking a bit over 25 minutes of playing time. The intro sounded to me like the perfect soundtrack for the cover artwork, aired, spacey and thrilling, a la '80's classic Thriller/Horror movies sountracks, then the band's classic Heavy Metal kicks in. Their compositions are clearly inspired by Iron Maiden, but you can also hear influences from Saxon, and maybe even Diamond Head and Black Sabbath, all structured on an excellent, intricate, interesting double guitars backbone with plenty of virtuoso moments and little elements to keep things spicy, complex rhythm section that's as well very impressing and a fantastic vocalist that has obvious potential to lead the band to higher levels. But as I said earlier, the highlight of this album is the guitar work, really, really good stuff, classic to the bone, catchy and contagious. The band mentions in the CD booklet that no synths have been used in recording this EP, this points out to how dedicated they are to recreate the classic sound. Impressive debut, hope they'll start releasing more stuff now.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
vulturesvengeance.bandcamp.com
gatesofhellrecords.com

Band: YARAST
Country:  Italy
Title: Tunguska 1908
Label: Revalve Records
Year: 2016
Style: Melodic Death Metal

Review:
Cyrillic on the cover of this album and the Russian theme - but the formation Yarast comes from Italy. They fascinaded times of cold war and ex-communist block mysteries. Sharp, thash / death metal guitar riffs turn up a nice growl vs melodic flows. From time to time there comes some progressive elements but playing rhythm and style remains in the wider "melodic death metal" ("Nuclear Winter"). With time, „chaff” taken up and breaking down the guitar solos ("Rasputitza", "Retalation") to drive some deathcore ("Tabula Rasa").  At the end you can hear title track "Tunguska in 1908" is a departure in the thrash / death / power metal and this is „the grand finale” of  this material.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Email: contact@pestwebzine.com