1000Dead - 1000Dead
Arkana Code - Brutal Conflict
Astarium - Epoch of Tyrants
Atreides - Neopangea
Blaze of Sorrow - Eremita del fuoco
Bloodphemy - Blood Will Tell
Ceti - Snakes of Eden
Death's Cold Winds - Subyugador - In Goat We Trust
Deisidaemonia - Khthonian Hymns
Domain - Pandemonium
Durothar - Auf See
Fen - Winter
Hydra - Solar Empire
Inquisition - Bloodshed Across The Empyrean Altar Beyond The Celestial Zenith
Keitzer - Ascension
Morbitory - Morbitory
Mourning Dawn - Waste
Nocny Kochanek - Zdrajcy Metalu
Nocte Obducta - Mogontiacum (Nachdem die Nacht herabgesunken)
Norunda - Irruption
Order to Ruin - Lunar Asylum
Pray U Prey - Figure The 8
Rotem - Nacao Valente e Imortal
Saille - Gnosis
Shambles - Realm of Darkness Shrine
Sons of Balaur - Tenebris Deos
Spreading Dread - Age of Aquarius
Starbynary - Divina Commedia: Inferno
Stormfagel - Arla gryning
Sumerlands - Sumerlands
Svoid - Storming Voices of Inner Devotion
Symmetric Organ - States Of Decay
The Brood - The Truth Behind
Those Who Bring The Torture - Necromances

Band: 1000DEAD
Country: Greece
Title: 1000Dead
Label: Metal Scrap Records
Year: 2017
Style: Thrash Metal

Review:
Old-school Thrash Metal followers will disagree with me labeling this as Thrash, but the truth is Thrash Metal is the most obvious genre acting like a backbone on the construction that this Greek combo propose us on their debut album. But yes, labeling it simply as Thrash doesn't do it justice, we get here all sort of harmonies from genres like Death Metal, Alternative, Groove Metal, Hardcore and even Grindcore, and their label, Metal Scrap, recommends it for fans of Hatebreed, Lamb of God, and The Dillinger Escape Plan, so you can imagine the conglomerate of influences 1000Dead managed to squeeze into this debut album. The overall impression is we're dealing with a highly energetic band open to whatever elements they like from wherever, being blessed with good skills when it comes to handling their instruments, and a serious appetite when it comes to composing stuff, and here comes the best feature in their music in my opinion: all tracks are complex, varied and in most parts avoid any overly used repetition so you'll be sure to avoid boredom. The Hardcore/Thrash/Metalcore type of screamed vocals won't fit to everyone's taste (mine included, to be honest), but this is just a matter of taste, the guy really spits his lungs out throughout the whole album. The CD comes with 8 pages booklet featuring all hateful and rebellious lyrics, enjoy!
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8/10

Contact:
facebook.com/1000Dead
metalscraprecords.com

Band: ARKANA CODE
Country: Italy
Title: Brutal Conflict
Label: Metal Scrap Records
Year: 2017
Style: Death Metal

Review:
If there's such a thing like Old School Technical Progressive Death Metal, Arkana Code fits right in it with this debut full-length album finally released 9 years after the band's foundation. Except for Paolo Ponzi, guitarist and band leader, all other 4 members are quite new, joining the band starting 2014; I'm not even sure this album was recorded in a full line-up to be honest, I'd rather say it's a one man work as there's no mention about the line-up in the CD booklet, but I could be wrong, of course. The important thing is the band has a full line-up now and they seem to be active live as well, so maybe this debut gave them the push they needed to take things seriously. As I was saying, I'd fit this into a Progressive Technical Death Metal a la '80's or '90's at most, it has the same patterns used by bands like Death, Atheist, Carcass, Pestilence or their coutrymen Sadist back in the days, maybe with a bit of an influence from the later spawned US Brutal Death Metal, with compositions built around a whirlwind of technical guitar work and highlighted by a dual vocal segment, a main growling vocala and a shrieking one that actually reminded me mostly of Sadist. At first audition it might seem a bit dull and not up to par with what's happening nowadays in this genre, but give it a few more spins and it will grow on you while revealing all sort of interesting elements with each new listen. The lyrical concept behind it is a very interesting one, too, but the cover and booklet artwork adds nothing positive to the whole. All in all a good debut, hope it's not also a swan song...
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 7/10

Contact:
facebook.com/arkanacode
metalscraprecords.com

Band: ASTARIUM
Country: Russia
Title: Epoch of Tyrants
Label: More Hate Productions
Year: 2016
Style: Symphonic Black Metal

Review:
To me this might be one of the most annoying musical projects out there, and I tell you why: SiN, the man behind Astarium, might have found his own original style with this synthetic Symphonic Black Metal, and I agree with that, but it all sounds so weird, so unnatural, so forced... For those of you who don't know, Astarium sounds like Ancient, Cradle of Filth and Dimmu Borgir decided to do a mix of their music but use it as a video game soundtrack, compete with all those midi sounds, of course. It sounds funny and has nothing to do with being menacing, terrifying or mysterious, but at the same time the ability SiN has to compose amazing, simply amazing song structures, is what annoys me the most, the guy is a brilliant composer and I think he simply has no chance finding a suitable line-up to execute all these arrangements like he wants, that's why he chose this route, an original path, for sure, but in my opinion one that doesn't exploit his composer abilities to the max. It's a paradox: I hate synthetic music, but his compositions are like glue to my ears, I'm fascinated by how his songs manage to transmit atmospheres even in such conditions. This EP is made of 5 new tracks plus 3 re-recordings of some old ones, and as usual SiN mixes the Black Metal tracks with Ambient ones. This EP has a solid concept behind it and using all sorts of war sounds it manages to create and deliver some expressive World War II stories. If you know Astarium you should know this is one of its best works to date, if you don't know this project I suggest you give it a try even if for listening something completely weird and original (Warning: you might hate it to tears, but at the same time you might be mesmerized by it as I am...).
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 7.5/10

Contact:
astarium.bandcamp.com
morehate.com

Band: ATREIDES
Country: Spain
Title: Neopangea
Label: Suspiria Records
Year: 2017
Style: Power Metal

Review:
The second album Galician powermetallers a solid dose of melodic border power and heavy metal played the southern arm. "Neopangea" is full of technical solo guitars, spatial riffs and Spanish language. There are also slightly thrash claw, variety and "wild" sounds. Atreides taken a lot of their metal heards to this stuff - and it can be heard. Like driving skills climate. Once you start running up totally - takes interlude in the form of "La Niebla" and then go downhill until the next hill (pathetic "Balada No.6"). At the end of the sail in the sound of progressive elements slightly oriental ("Solaris" - nota bene best song on the album) and the whole thing ends with "Nueva Pangea". The second album of the decade in this case is a good advantage of quality over quantity. Good stuff!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: BLAZE OF SORROW
Country: Italy
Title: Eremita del fuoco
Label: Sun & Moon Records
Year: 2015
Style: Atmospheric Black Metal

Review:
I've always had a soft spot for this band ever since I've first encountered/listened their 2011 album Eterno tramonto, back then released by Naturmacht Production, but since then they've sticked with our local pride, Sun & Moon, and I hope this collaboration will continue. This new album, the band's fourth dince their foundation, in 2007, is made of only 7 new tracks but it lasts for 40 minutes, the perfect amount of time to keep the attention high and avoid boredom. Indeed, the 7 tracks have plenty of elements to enjoy and plenty of influences to be considered a complex, open release, I've heard influences from genres like Gothic Rock, Indie, Post Metal, Alternative, but the backbone remains Atmospheric Black Metal with a perfect blend between the melodic and the explosive, oppressive parts. To me it sounds like Lake of Tears from the '90's started playing Black Metal while keeping their impressive potential in delivering addictive, mesmerizing harmonies. Maybe a bit more versatility on the vocal part would have made it even more impressive, but despite that Eremita del fuoco continues the band's journey towards reaching new heights in this genre. Released as digipak CD with 8 pages booklet featuring all lyrics.
Late edit: it seems the band has just signed with German Eisenwald for the release of their fifth album, so my hope in a longer-lasting collaboration with Sun & Moon has no more grounds.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 9.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/blazeofsorrow
sunandmoonrecords.com

Band: BLOODPHEMY
Country: Holland
Title: Blood Will Tell
Label: Sleaszy Rider Records
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
Dutch band that was initially active between 2000 and 2003, when they also managed to release a demo, Bloodphemy got reunited in 2015 and this is the first fruit of their new collaboration, a 20 minutes EP featuring 4 new tracks and a re-recording of a track that was also featured on their debut Demo. The band plays a massive sounding, technical Death Metal that lead my mind to Morbid Angel although we're not talking about a copycat at all, and including an old track on this EP was a good choice in my opinion, it shows the difference in composition; the new tracks are more complex, more oppressive, atmospheric I'd say, with plenty of those good guitar solos that should be used more often in Death Metal. A powerful material that clearly shows the band is ready for a debut album, album that is scheduled for release in March 2017, so it seems the band took things seriously the second time around. If you're into bands like Morbid Angel, Nile, Deicide, give this band a chance, you'll be surprised.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 7.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/Bloodphemy
sleaszyrider.com

Band: CETI
Country: Poland
Title: Snakes of Eden
Label: Metal Mind Productions
Year: 2016
Style: Heavy Metal

Review:
„Snakes of Eden” is just a quintesence of traditional heavy metal. CETI with one of the best Polish vocalists, Grzegorz Kupczyk made heavy metal on this album to absolute perfection!  You can say, that „Snakes of Eden” is a Damascus  stainless steel, heh! Voice like Bruce Dickinson, melodic but wild sounds of guitars, solos taken from the border of masterpiece and good craftsmanship and tradiotional, heavymetal rhytm, great to make headbanging. CETI is like wine, the older, the better. This band knows, that we should not change what is run in and inspected. Interiors are only a little oil, for „not to creaked”. And they done it - a few drops of oil refreshing and age, but neatly assembled machine itself gives great advice on the highway full of strange inventions, efficient maneuvering and overtaking them easily. Lyrics is taken from classic themes of heavy metal genre: "Lady from the Dark," "Midnight Rider," "Wild & Free" and "Rock & Roll Doctor". CETI was born in golden years of heavy metal and they needn’t to change. For youngers it can be a „dinosaur” but this is a part of heavymetal world tradition like Iron Maiden, Helloween or Accept. "Snake of Eden" can know, that is well and does not need to prove anything. It swept!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 9/10

Contact:
http://ceti-gk.com/

Band: DEATH'S COLD WINDS
Country: Ecuador
Title: Subyugador - In Goat We Trust
Label: Old Temple
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
If you're a fan of traditional and bestial Extreme Metal you'd know by now that South America is one of the biggest springs of bands playing such a style, and it seems Old Temple found yet another proud successor namely Death's Cold Winds, a trio founded back in 2001 but that managed to release this album, their first, only 13 years after, in 2014. Two years after Old Temple re-released it, but I wouldn't know if there are any differences between versions. From what it seems the cover (og, what a cover and booklet artwork, one that could sell the CD without any music on it) and tracklist are identical, even the cover of Dissection's Son of the Mourning is featured on both, so it's possible they added nothing new and re-released the material just for getting a bit more exposure, and they did well, that's how I found out about the band. There are 12 tracks featured in 50 minutes of bestial, dirty, satanic, deeply blasphemous, organic and rough sounding, traditional Death Metal with serious Thrash and Black Metal influences, a constant assault of disgust and hatred definitely not fit for the uninitiated. There's no trace of melody here, even the guitar solos are chaotic and razor-sharp, not to mention the demonic vocals that sound like the devil himself started playing music. Fast, brutal, ruthless Thrash Black Death from the pits of hell, a good surprise although there's room for improvement; fans of the genre will devour this in an instant.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/DEATHS-COLD-WIND-214000331959158
oldtemple.com

Band: DEISIDAEMONIA
Country: Greece
Title: Khthonian Hymns
Label: Old Temple Productions
Year: 2016
Style: Black Metal

Review:
Lately I've been blessed (or damned?) to get to review some pretty awesome pieces of Extreme Metal and this one here is yet another example. Deisidaemonia is a one man project started in 2009 and this is its debut album, an 8 tracks effort totaling almost 40 minutes of traditional Hellenic Black Metal, or better said that kind of proud and fierce Black Metal with plenty of melody, accoustic insertions from tiem to time, atmospheric keyboards here and there, raspy but comprehensive shrieking vocals, and above all memorable guitar work, all these combining into a mighty expressive piece of music that will make the listener somehow connected with the Hellenic legends and the whole atmosphere surrounding them. These might seem like big words, but this one really is a good album making Deisidaemonia a proud continuer of the Rotting Christ / Nightfall tradition. Mid-tempo to fast paced Hellenic Black Metal with a certain melancholic feel to it, with plenty of unexpected elements throughout, and also with plenty of memorable parts, I have to admit after reading the somehow obsolete statement on the back tray about the hate for humanity and all modern things, after seeing the dull cover artwork (the actually is awesome, but it turned out way darker than it should have been and one can't understand a thing out of it; check it online for a better version), I wasn't expecting such a catchy and interesting album, glad to have been proven wrong.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 9/10

Contact:
deisidaemoniaofficial.bandcamp.com
oldtemple.com

Band: DOMAIN
Country: Poland
Title: Pandemonium
Label: Old Temple Records
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
Wow, this is a huge release for Old Temple: the very first album of a band that nowadays is called Pandemonium and is one of the most influencial names in the Polish (Black) Metal scene. Originally released by the well known (back then) Morbid Noizz Productions in 1995, Domain features 9 tracks (one of the in two versions, so actually it's 10 tracks total), lasts for 36 minutes, and it's an amazing piece of traditional Death Metal complete with occasional soft, semi-acoustic, melodic intermezzos that back then were also allowing kids to discover this genre (I still remember how I got into Master as a kid by first discovering the Bass Solo track on the self-titled album, only then getting into the resto of the dirty and brutal stuff). Well the whole album is not brutal at all by Today's standards, but in '95 this would have been a sick release (especially by the vomiting vocals featured) keeping in mind proper instruments were virtually impossible to find in Eastern Europe; still this album has an acceptable production and for me, and I'm sure I'm not the only one like that, it stirs nostalgic emotions. Not having proper instruments to create brutal Death Metal like the Americans or Western Europeans were doing, pushed the Eastern European bands to focus more on creating a dark, evil atmosphere using what they could, especially taking advantage of vocals, and Domain is a prime example for this practice. A mid tempo, oppressive, dark Death Metal release that I highly recommend to all Death Metal followers even if only for the historical value, but obviously not only that; it's a well made, well thought, thrilling release. Too bad the collection of interviews with the band from the booklet are only in Polish, but it's a perfect idea fof the fans of current Pandemonium.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: -/10

Contact:
pandemonium.metal.pl
oldtemple.com

Band: DUROTHAR
Country: Germany
Title: Auf See
Label: Selfreleased
Year: 2016
Style: Pagan Metal

Review:
A short look (and audition, too) at this band's quite short history would unveil the obvious progressive ramp they are "walking" on since their foundation in 2009, culminating with this self-released by absolutely professional debut album, and by the look of it I think the progression is far from being over. The new release is made of 8 new tracks and a bonus song taken from the band's debut demo from 2013, probably the closest to their hearts or to their fans'. Durothar plays Pagan Metal with an accent on building an epic, somewhat heroic atmosphere rather than adding traditional folk influences, the core of their music is based on long, catchy guitar leads, a steady, nice flowing rhythm section emphasized by gritty guitar riffs, and all this led by a mix of raspy vocals (almost growls but more comprehensive if this makes any sense) supported at times by Black Metal-like shrieks. At times I also had the feeling of '70's Hard Rock influence (beside some other, obviously) on guitars, an influence I believe to be an essential future element in Durothar's music if they'll decide to exploit it more in depth, an element that could bring that so desired by anyone originality in their music. This debut album is definitely a good piece of work, entertaining, fluid, varied and expressive, but throughout the audition I got the constant feeling I've already heard this all somewhere else. The CD comes with a nice 8 pages booklet featuring all lyrics (unfortunately for me in German) and I'd also like to mention the nice cover painting that seems (and for sure it is) closely related to the overall topic of the album, the sea.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 7.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/DurotharHamburg

Band: FEN
Country: United Kingdon
Title: Winter
Label: Code666 Records
Year: 2017
Style: Atmospheric Black Metal Post-Rock

Review:
In fact, even the first, a seventeen piece is a good summary of the album "Winter". All of „I (Pathway)” time there happens to all that Fen, in his uneasy, but interesting (and nostalgic of course) twisted music can show. Fen is a smooth music border between raw of black metal and soft of post-rock with some cold-wave and neofolk elements. „Winter” is 75 minutes of music, this may seem lengthy, but quite a few "moments" is really respectable. Especially, operating of sadness Fen brought to perfection, on top of these possibilities climbing in the song marked as „III”. In general, "Winter" consists of six long Part I (Pathway), II (Penance), III (Fear), IV (Interment), V (Death) and VI (Sight), of which only the latter is shorter than ten minutes. The whole „Winter” things is kind of the result, moving like the wind from boom to decline, but it is not directly. This has its charm, but sometimes tedious, it depend on the day and the time. I have the impression that the romanian (Negura Bunget or/and Dordeduh) and ukrainian  (especially Drudkh) metal scene like this type of atmospheric black metal are the more interesting in sounds and more combined in varied way.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 7/10

Contact:
http://facebook.com/fenofficial

Band: HYDRA
Country: Germany
Title: Solar Empire
Label: STF Records
Year: 2016
Style: Symphonic Metal

Review:
German Hydra sees to be a hard-working band: founded in 2013, they have produced their debut 2 years after, and here we get the follow-up album out in 2016 already, both of them under the STF roster. This new album is made of 11 tracks that make up a concept story about two lovers, a story that reminded me of the 2012 Upside Down movie, a clichee story, but very fit for this type of music, I'm talking about Symphonic Metal, of course. There are plenty of things happening on this album, maybe too many because at times I found myself confused by the different elements and influences coming up from all over, or better said it seems that the band tries to gather influences from all over and lets itself being influenced as much as possible so that there's no clear path in the end. At times the band sounds amazing, really mesmerizing and capable of aiming the top of this game, but at times they sound like they try to be much more than they can be and become chaotic. I'm curious if beside the delicate, feminine, enchanting vocal tone Lisa, Hydra's vocalist, also does the occasional Black Metal-like shrieks that spring out from nowhere to enhance the atmospheres. Beside that, there are plenty of surprises sprinkled throughout the whole album, I can't say it's a predictible material, but my final impression is that the band is capable of delivering better, more curdled material and really attack the top.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 7.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/OfficialHydra
stf-records.de

Band: INQUISITION
Country: Colombia/USA
Title: Bloodshed Across The Empyrean Altar Beyond The Celestial Zenith
Label: Season of Mist
Year: 2016
Style: Black Metal

Review:
There's no mercy, Inquisition released in 2016 his 7th album. This gunmachine shoots deadly series from the beginning of „Bloodshed Across...” and this is really bloody harvest!  The most important part in Inquisitions’ sound is really good vocal, like a deadly whisper from behind a wall of fire, but specifically targeting the neurons in the brain of the listeners. Drum section just dent in the floor, in generak Inquisition „They take no prisoners”. From time to time they try to play some longer (They settled in Seattle so influences of post-grunge crying guitars  is heard, heh) – but that are just only very short moments (e.g. at the beginning of „Vortex From the Celestial Flying Throne of Storms”). There are some space with sound machine effects, typical to atmoshpheric black metal (e.g. in „Through the Divine Spirit of Satan a Glorious Universe is Known”). You can hear a piece of martial marches (in tittle’s „Bloodshed Across the Empyrean Altar Beyond the Celestial Zenith”) and psycho-folks ( in outro). In general, this album is a part of thoughtful and decent black metal.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 9/10

Contact:
www.facebook.com/inquisition.official

Band: KEITZER
Country: Germany
Title: Ascension
Label: F.D.A. Rekotz
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal Grindcore

Review:
First impression: this is american death metal influences by grindcore and deathcore? However most of time of „Ascension” is sth like this, wall of sounds which bombards the ears very effectively. But the 5th track, called „Ritual” is a... etno-folk in mod philharmonical! After this little shock the wall f noise strikes back but from time to time cello motifs or slowly, smooth guitar solos „make this album” even though they are hidden among guitar chop. Fast and totally brutal hurricane of destruction – in a smart way!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Contact:
https://www.facebook.com/keitzer/

Band: MORBITORY
Country: Germany
Title: Into the Morbitory
Label: Bret Hard Records
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
Another young band that gets lucky by signing with a label for their very first release which is not even a full-length, but an EP. Into the Morbitory was released in the end of 2016 by Bret Hard Records on Digipak CD and vinyl and offers 6 tracks in a bit over 20 minutes of playing time. Morbitory is all about classic, pounding Death Metal and they found the perfect band name for this, didn't they? This debut EP sounds so damn classic you'll think it was released by an already famous name in the scene, not by a young act, and indeed the 6 tracks sound so very tight and well-thought you'll be amazed; I like them all except for the fourth, White Mask, track that I find way too repetitive and annoying at some point, but as I said, the rest of this debut material is beautifully brutal and solid. Fast, blastbeats-driven rhythms are alternated with groovier, slow to mid-tempo ones, so in the end I kind of feel this is a very well balanced release, it's not innovative in any way, but I think fans of bands like Cannibal Corpse, Morgoth, Sinister or Grave will appreciate it a lot. A band to definitely keep an eye on, a find promise of the German Death Metal scene.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/Morbitory
brethard.de

Band: MOURNING DAWN
Country: France
Title: Waste
Label: Aesthetic Death
Year: 2017
Style: Black Doom Metal

Review:
Deepest darkness, nihilism and fumes ubiquitous distribution ... Heavy, free - but with the effect of the post-industrial residues ruins. Steelyards and looong (after more than 20 minutes) three pieces - this is the "Waste". Screamed (or rather hoarsed) regret with time is interspersed with atmospheric nostalgia. However, everything is impressive and mysterious Mournig Dawn showed that sorrow to play that makes an impression. The musical triptych has the power and the cover gives 100% message "Waste". It should feel the shivers on your own skin. Interesting fact: this album is signed as E.P. but total time is 01:15:42.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: NOCNY KOCHANEK
Country: Poland
Title: Zdrajcy Metalu
Label: Hand2Band
Year: 2017
Style: Heavy Metal

Review:
Nocny Kochanek means „The Night Lover”, title means „Metal Renegades”. This stuff, maintained in really great melodious tones of traditional heavy metal, is just a good parody of Polish metal scene. Nocny Kochanek parodies all: fans and gigs’ behaviors (e.g. songs  „Dziewczyna z kebabem” - „The girl with the kebap”), producers and concert organizers („Zdrajca Metalu” – „The Metal Renegade”), corporate employees listening to metal after hours and drunk weekenders (e.g. „Poniedzialek” - ”Monday”), some social/political situation i Poland („Pigulka Samogwaltu”, - „The Pill of masturbation”), typical heavy metal lyrics („Smoki i gole baby” – „Dragons and naked chicks”), love affairs teenagers („Latwa nie byla” – „she was so hard in contact”) etc, etc, etc... Finally: 12 heavy metal tracks recorded with a large distance to the environment of the metalheads. So if you like good, metal parody and know Polish– you catch it! For others – just exotic heavy metal. However – respect for their way of metal and , heh...
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: NOCTE OBDUCTA 
Country: Germany
Title: Mogontiacum (Nachdem die Nacht herabgesunken)
Label: MDD Records
Year: 2016
Style: Atmospheric Black Metal

Review:
Avant-garde German blackmetaller from the beginning is disturbing the brain... Slowly, post-rock sounds with the pieces of coldvawe aren’t started so fast but this is interesting mix od raw black metal and progressive/avantgarde crazy ideas. However „Mogontiacum...” is a respectionably concept album, with jazz, symphonies, neofolk, psychodelic and schizoidally sounds and motifs. The most shocked points are between jumping from avantgarde to raw blackmetal, e.g. in very shortly track „Löschkommando Walpurgisnacht”, just before long song „Desîhra Mogontiacum”. Over time these sensory overload begins to weary  but if you like twisted music with big sadness, you’ll be back to „Mogontiacum (Nachdem die Nacht herabgesunken)”, quite often.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 7/10

Band: NORUNDA 
Country: Spain/Portugal
Title: Irruption
Label: Suspiria Records
Year: 2017
Style: Thrash Metal

Review:
Spanish-portugeese Norunda just released debut album. After slowly and melodic introduction these guys are started with lighter variant of thrash, like border between melodic thrash and heavy metal. Melodic guitar solos interesting complement to the european south-western thrash tone (e.g. "Asshole in your way"). Next we have „nihil novi” but with nostalgia of 90th („Dynamite”). „Face to face” and „Hit You” are a echoes of  early Metallica, Megadeth or greeks sounds like Sarissa. „Infoxitation” is a drift towards heavy metal, „Pushing to the limit” – drift towards metalcore. „Sultan killer” is a thrash with folkmetal influences, „Only truth” is a hard rock, „Violent Street” is a thrash metal ballad and the end of this album „Into my game” is a prog-thrash metal. Good stuff, great debut!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: ORDER TO RUIN
Country: Germany
Title: Lunar Asylum
Label: Selfreleased
Year: 2017
Style: Melodic Death Metal

Review:
Impressive how these guys have reached with Lunar Asylum the 6th full-length album all released independent from any labels, and to me this says they have no intention of ever signing unless it's a big deal or something. Unfortunately I don't see a big deal coming for them any time soon if they don't find a drummer and start touring the hell out for their albums; otherwise this seems to be a good home-based project and nothing more. The new album comes in Digipak CD format again and features 9 tracks in less than 40 minutes of playing time, in my opinion a mix between the old Swedish (Gothemburg school) Death Metal and Finish Death Metal, that type of mostly fast paced melodic Death Metal heavily based on the guitar work that is mandatory to be influenced by the Heavy Power Metal at least on leads and solos. The vocals are a bit too stale and although the guy has a good tone, it's not enough to keep things interesting for almost 40 minutes. Parts of it are very catchy and I can see them getting proper feedback, but there's also a part of the album where the drum programming becomes obvious and a bit annoying, and that steals attention from the compositions. All in all is an enjoyable release, if you don't mind a soulless drumming and a less expressive vocal part give it a spin or two.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 7.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/OrderToRuin

Band: PRAY U PREY
Country: UK
Title: Figure The 8
Label: Selfmadegod Records
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
British deathmetal with crossover (like DRI), grindcore (like Napalm Death) and thrash (like Slayer) motifs. So you can be summarized debut album Pray U Prey.
Sixteen pieces with inteligent lyrics - mainly social themes and generally excelled satire on hypocrisy and overall mental pathology – screamed and with monolithic noise. „Figure The 8” is a debut album, but recorder by veterans. Pray U Prey consists of musicians associated with such groups as Suicide Watch, Prophecy Of Doom and Alehammer, or representatives scene with over 30 years experience.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: ROTEM
Country: Portugal
Title: Nacao Valente e Imortal
Label: Rotem Records
Year: 2017
Style: Black Death Metal

Review:
Portuguese one man band Rotem returns with its second full-length album after the 2014 debut, Dehumanization. This new material features no less than 15 tracks and clocks over an hour of playing time, offering basically a Black and Death Metal mix with loads of influences from other genres including Alternative, Gothic, Symphonic, Groove Metal, Heavy Thrash Metal and even SciFi Metal that reminded me of good old Nocturnus at times. The major problem here is the production: it's obvious Rotem recorded at home (or if not at home at least in a home-based amateur studio) as this isn't better than a demo recording, and here and there is so annoying not being able to distinguish all instruments or at least the elements that could have sounded interesting. Yes, the compositions are pretty diverse, without any borders, and that's the best point on this album, Rotem shows he has no limits and he can do whatever he wants, and at the same time proves he has a good compositional level, but that's not enough to offer a good release. I'd say if this album would have been properly recorded and trimmed down its unnecessary filling to the important parts of it, it would have been a great, avantgarde release, at this point its is no more than a mediocre demo-level material, sorry.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 6/10

Contact:
facebook.com/rotemband
rotemrecords.blogspot.pt

Band: SAILLE
Country: Belgium
Title: Gnosis
Label:  Code666 Records
Year: 2017
Style: Symphonic Black Metal

Review:
Symphonic black metal with philosophical thinking... Saille already is the fourth album of the band. Album "Gnosis" begins almost ambient but moves with hooves giving a kick and filling the space with the energy of playing ("Benei ha'Elohim"). And this power is practically all the time from "Pandaemonium Gathers" to the end of album and dotting the „i” "1904 Era Vulgaris", a black metal base is complemented by the symphonic elements - from the sound of the harpsichord and opera choirs and the progressive guitar solos and a even a little hidden sound of bells. Good stuff!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: SHAMBLES
Country: Thailand
Title: Realm of Darkness Shrine
Label: Code666 Records
Year: 2015/2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
Heavy, bleak, though vocally that comes from beyond the grave deathmetal native of Thailand mades me a little ... disappointed. Garage, deep underground, nihilistic-blasphemous sounds (close some raw black metal bands) here is not exactly like a particularly revelatory. Exoticism origin of the band did not translate somehow especially mention the shambles of the whole mass of bands of this type and the "Realm of Darkness Shrine" is simply deatmetal chaff withhout taking prisoners but slightly secondary and not really technically refined. For this hellish miasma classic wall of sound / noise and noise to die head and the whole thing ends with "Bitter Abysmal Depths" - wind and bells and guitar riff that mimics the bell.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 6/10

Band: SONS OF BALAUR
Country: UK
Title: Tenebris Deos
Label: Season of Mist
Year: 2016
Style: Black Metal

Review:
The band claims to be based in Oslo, Norway and to have been formed in 1992 as "part of the original first wave of Norwegian black metal" but is actually based on characters that appear in the graphic novel Realm of the Damned by Alec Worley – you can read at Metal Archives about this band. And this is the main idea of the joke and its comics’ shell. "Tenebris Deos" is a piece of solid black metal with spatial sounds and sense of humor. Here they are hit and vocal styling on the Laibach, a little sentiment battlefields, reciting a little, a lot of melodic solos and adapters. Ballad ("The Nameless Roams the Earth") Also, some of the projectile after the cinema in the context of the fight between good and evil ("Van Helsing must die") and the ancient culture ("Athena Bitch Betrayer"). And a few other flavors ("Succubus slut", "Nematari the Desert Queen" - in this last piece of Sons of Balaur smuggled a lot of thrash and gothic metal riffs).
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: SPREADING DREAD
Country: Czech Republic
Title: Age of Aquarius
Label: Bret Hard Records
Year: 2016
Style: Technical Thrash Death

Review:
Spreading Dread are a Czech quintet founded almost 10 years ago, in 2007, and here I have their second full-length album released 4 years distance from their debut. The 8 long tracks featured here are clocking almost 45 minutes of playing time, but that's nothing out of the ordinary for the genre the band plays, a progressive and technical mix of Thrash and Death Metal more inclined towards building cosmic, mysterious atmospheres rather than being as brutal as possible. And they do a damn good job, the album is interesting from start to finish, it varies a lot, and although you have the constant feeling the starting point are Death and Atheist, the compositions are quite modern, welcoming influences from all over the place, maybe too many influences at some point which makes the album feel less aired and memorable and a bit too stuffed. There are plenty of elements to enjoy on this album: the melodic and expressive guitar leads and solos (best thing of the album; I';ve even spotted some classical music influences), complex drumming, upfront, ballsy bass lines, explossive riffing, rare but versatile vocal parts and the overall nice flowing of the structures, so all in all the album is good, fresh sounding and I'd recommend you to give it a try if you're in search of a Progressive Death Metal with clear potential.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8/10

Contact:
facebook.com/spreadingdread
brethard.de

Band: STARBYNARY
Country: Italy
Title: Divina Commedia: Inferno
Label: Revalve Records
Year: 2017
Style: Power Proggresive Metal

Review:
Italian metal scene is full of progressive metallers. Starbynary is the one of the best band from these stage. "Divina Commedia: Inferno" is a well-polished material, full of all sorts of "pianos", backing vocals, cosmic sounds, "playing crystals" and other untypical motifs enriching power-progressive sound. Joe Caggianelli is blessed with pretty good, high-pitched voice, devoid of comic elements, a good fit to the Starbynary'owe playing. The second album in the history of the group is fresh and fun - and above all, hear the artistry members Starbynary. There is no downtime, so-called "claw" - essentially Starbynary have an idea for playing progressive, that is it really good! For this good control moods, they knows how to make this more sadly - and vice versa. I must admit that for me, "Divina Commedia: Inferno" is a pleasant surprise in the flood of Italian metal progressives. It's cool frontier progmetal, powermetal and artrock.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 9/10

Band: STORMFAGEL
Country: Sweden
Title: Arla gryning
Label: Sun & Moon Records
Year: 2016
Style: Martial Neofolk DarkPop

Review:
Wow, what a turn in style from a label one would expect Metal, and especially Black Metal... There's no trace of Metal on this release, but instead we have a blend of other styles I'm unfortunately not that much into, or not at all: Martial, Industrial, Neofolk and DarkPop, the latter I've never heard of, to be quite honest, Dark Pop also known as Suicidal Pop, an absolute novelty for me. The band previously released 2 albums under Cold Meat Industry, the most well known label in this strange field, so scoring the 4th album must be a proud achievement for Sun & Moon, and judging by what my profane ears hear I'd say there's a definite dark element in Stormfagel's music, element that connects it somehow with the rest of this label's catalogue. Acoustic guitars, all sort of percussion, electro and industrial effects, clean vocals, occasional supportive backing vocals, various keyboard lines, all these building an interesting, soft yet grave music even the uninitiated like me will enjoy, to me it sounds like a mix between the new Tiamat, Depeche Mode and Laibach if it makes any sense...
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: -/10

Contact:
facebook.com/stormfageltheoriginal
sunandmoonrecords.com

Band: STYGIAN TEMPLE
Country: Germany
Title: In the Sign of the Five Angles
Label: Sol Records
Year: 2016
Style: Atmospheric Black Metal

Review:
A new and mysterious German band attacking the scene with their debut full-length album, a 7 tracks effort clocking a bit over 40 minutes of playing time, a 4 years worth of work from this band (by how full it sounds I honestly doubt this is a one man project) who devotes it to the Norwegian Mayhem and their e Mysteriis dom Sathanas album that seems to be their biggest influence. The music on this debutl album is great: obscure, atmospheric, thrilling, mystical, demonic, this from the "feeling" point of view, and from the technical I'd say it gives a fine example of how well thought such an album can be, it's dense yet aired, oppressive and complex, surprising and at the same time catchy and following traditional patterns of the genre. Although I would have liked the sound to be a bit more bombastic, maybe with a slight symphonic touch, and maybe some innovative attempts here and there wouldn't have been bad, Stygian Temple's debut album is great, makes a serious impression on the listener, especially on the traditional ones, for fans of the second wave of Norwegian Black Metal. The CD comes with 12 pages booklet and is limited to 500 copies.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8/10

Contact:
solrecords.de

Band: SVOID
Country: Hungary
Title: Storming Voices of Inner Devotion
Label: Sun & Moon Records
Year: 2016
Style: Post-Punk Black Metal

Review:
Hungary is slowly but surely following the "innovation in Black Metal" path previously taken by other countries like France, US, even Poland, and produces bands that are not afraid to experiment, but the good thing about it is these bands actually come up with killer material. And here I include the latest album from Budapest based trio Svoid, an album I've heard a lot of praise about but for some reason never had the chance to give it a try until now, so thanks to Sun & Moon I can say I'm now a proper witness to a glorious, indeed, release. Svoid have managed to merge together raw, furious and organic sounding Black Metal with Post-Punk, Post-Rock and Indie, with a final material that is both catchy and damn interesting. Just imagine an abrasive, visceral yet comprehensive at all times Black Metal vocal on layers of guitar work that's specific to the above mentioned genres, occasional outbursts of blastbeats but also occasional clean, emotional vocals, although I'm sure this would be quite a task if you've never come across such a mix. The production is so clear and organic at the same time it makes you feel the band is right next to you, just another element to make you feel part of something, and as a final conclusion I cannot praise enough this piece of "becoming"; I'm sure they have not stopped here and the next album will be breath-taking... This album comes in an elegant Digipak with 16 pages booklet featuring all lyrics.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 9.5/10

Contact:
svoid.hu
sunandmoonrecords.com

Band: SUMERLANDS
Country: USA
Title: Sumerlands
Label: Relapse Records
Year: 2017
Style: Heavy Metal

Review:
When I’m heard the first guitar solo in the first song "Seventh Seal" I thought it enters vocals ... But this came a little later to completely different than „the high C” - rather like Ozzy. American heavymetallers of Pennsylvania released a debut album, which gave unsophisticated title. Music is in its way a continuation of the work of Black Sabbath but without copying it. Melodic, powerful sound is closer hardrockowi with elements of playing progressive than heavy as such. Over time, which is not surprising, here it is a typical American playing heavy rock but with a powerful dose of spatial sounds. Echo imposed on vocals further reinforces this impression. And suddenly in the fifth song "Haunted Forever" change the drift in the direction of Van Halen, remaining in his, sort of, echo pierced spaciousness. And then I hit a little faster the pace Judasów and a little bit in a climate of "Painkiller". At the end - a bit of the mood ( "Lost My Mind") and the title "Sumerlands" is the ambient atmosphere neofolk impressed with irresistible longing for something unspecified. Not bad album, just a nice debut!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: SYMMETRIC ORGAN
Country: Germany
Title: States Of Decay
Label: Selfreleased
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
From a band with such a name one might only expect some sort of Gore Grind Noise stuff, but to my surprise Symmetric Organ are "walking" on Death Metal territory, with Grindcore influences, of course, but the old-school, menacing, oppressive type of Grind, the one that enhances the brutality of Death Metal, not the funny stuff we're used to more and more nowadays; I prefer the serious type, yes, and so Symmetric Organ was a good surprise. The Dortmund based quartet was founded in 2013 and this is their debut full-length album made of 10 tracks clocking half an hour of aggressive, old-school, abrasive and brutal Death Metal a la Vader, Monstrosity, with a touch of traditional, blunt and in your face Grind. It all sounds so organic, so brutal that for an old-school fanatic this will be a blast, I have no doubt, Symmetric Organ managed to deliver one of the best new old-school Death Metal albums I've heard lately; it doesn't bring originality or any innovation at all, but it sound so damn honest, so well-done and so fit for this guys that I could easily place it throughout the classics of the genre. I love it!
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 10/10

Contact:
symmetricorgan.bandcamp.com

Band: THE BROOD
Country: UK
Title: The Truth Behind
Label: Give Praise Records
Year: 2017
Style: Grindcore Punk Death Metal

Review:
British grindcoreheads (borderline punk and deathmetal) earned a debut longplay. Introduction surprised (melodic, coldwave and melorecitation) but then it's a classic – short, within the period of 1 to 3 minutes, furious, shouted pieces of a political and social oscillating musically between typical grindcore and death / grind and punkrock sharper. And one piece sounds from horror ("Free Range Meat"). The word "Lobotomized", "One By One", "Lament Dementia," "Mud Doll Factory", "Mindfuck" etc, etc. Just fair in its class.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

Band: THOSE WHO BRING THE TORTURE
Country: Sweden
Title: Necromances
Label: Selfmadegod Records
Year: 2017
Style: Death Metal

Review:
Swedish, death metal steel, recognizable after the first few bars and deep growls. Fifth album Those Who Bring the Torture Although not surprising anything special, but the proportions between "Swedish" distorted Deathmetal a peculiar melody here are ideal. Good, metal crafts on "Necromancer" has its corresponding impact on kicking ass through this album, heh ... I absolve until 7 piece "Necromancer Fri. II" but then slaughter is already the end. Short (35 minutes with a hook), but concisely and concretely.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10

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