Airbourne - Breakin’ Outta Hell
Arkona - Lunaris
Bleak Revelation - Afflictive Seclusion
Cardiac Arrest - Promo 2016
Coldborn - Lingering Voidwards
Crossbones - WWIII
Darkrypt - Delirious Excursion
Depeseblo - Nightmare Desolation
Heimdalls Wacht - Geisterseher
Heimsgard - Ordrag
Hellspawn - There Has Never Been a Son of Me
Irreverence - Raise Chaos - Live in Milan
Ketch - The Anthems of Dread
Kosmokrator - First Step Towards Supremacy
Liquid Graveyard - By Nature so Perverse
Miserist - Miserist
Misteyes - Creeping Time
Old Witch - Come Mourning Come
Ottone Pesante - Blasphemy Set In Stone
Percussor - Disturbing Reality
Putrefied Remains - The Enthronement
Rosario - And the Storm Surges
Selbst - An Ominous Landscape
Whipstriker - Only Filth Will Prevail
Winter Deluge - Devolution - Decay
Witchery Flames of Underground Lust #9
 

Band: AIRBOURNE
Country: Australia
Title: Breakin’ Outta Hell
Label: Spinefarm Records
Year: 2016
Style: Hard’n’Heavy

Review:
Airbourne from Australia are successors of AC/DC! From the first tacts, this stuff is a kind of Angus Young’s crew cult, heh... Hovewer there are some sounds taken from early Guns’n’Roses, Poison and some american electric blues too. „Breakin’ Outta Hell” is a good example the fact, if hard’n’heavy music is solid and good, changing something is not necessary. If you realy like old school hard rock and hard’n’heavy, if you already puking all these post-modern progressive confused albums and if you prefer hard rock than stoner – please catch „Breakin’ Outta Hell” ASAP. This is a good antidote to the contrived music, heh!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10
 

Band: ARKONA
Country: Poland
Title: Lunaris
Label: Debemur Morti Productions
Year: 2016
Style: Black Metal

Review:
Polish Arkona are back, keeps a high level of Polish black metal and "Lunaris" is a the resultant of it. The wall of guitar sound with typical blackmetal vocals creates an atmosphere of well-oiled machine, ruthlessly crushing everything that gets under the wheels (the title "Lunaris" is first on the list piece "The road to salvation"). On the other hand, the album "Lunaris" contains a lot of nostalgic and neofolk-ambient motifs, giving the climate of specific pieces (eg. In the songs "Earth", "Death and Rebirth" and "No mercy for me"). Where Arkona wants to play „carnage” – there is „carnege”, where they want play a mood – there is a mood. And that's it! And respect from me for the Polish language using in the texts.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 9/10
 

Band: BLEAK REVELATION
Country: Bulgaria
Title: Afflictive Seclusion
Label: Selfreleased
Year: 2015
Style: Melodic Doom Death Metal 

Review:
Bulgarian doom metallers began their album in sorrow and slow mood. This talks, that „Afflictive Seclusion” include a lot of coldwaved-doom with crying guitar solos and choir voices. That’s it! Bulgarian metallers has their balcan drive in playing metal and I love it! „As If”, „Enslaved”, „Egoistic Considering”, „Perished” kicking ass very good and chor voices has a dialog with growl screams. During listening this stuff I’m feeling as the beat turning on and music is taking a more and more better power. At the end of this album „Clearity” and „Defief by Clouds” (in two versions, this more powerfully from the album and this more softly taken from single a.d. 2014) nostalgy is coming back and... kicking ass again! Great stuff, I’ll be back here!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10
 

Band: CARDIAC ARREST
Country: USA
Title: Promo 2016
Label: Selfreleased
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
With this one I remember the old days (until the beginning of the 2000's) when bands were still releasing and promoting promo tapes or CDs, advance recordings to gather feedback from press and shop for labels, a practice I have to say I miss nowadays. This promo CD features 3 new tracks that will be featured on Cardiac Arrest's upcoming full-length album. The band are celebrating 20 years of activity this year and I guess the target is to release this new album, their sixth, as a celebration, or at least it would be nice for them to happen that way. This promo offers 3 tracks in 15 minutes of playing time, a healthy, brutal and unrelenting dose of US style Death Metal characterized by intelligent rhythm changes, a monolithic bass line, catchy guitar riffs, precise and imposing drums and a hoarse and growling vocalist that would raise the dead. The melodic, epic guitar lead from the third track reminded me of the good old Dismember, but overall think of the Incantation path with occasional Autopsy stench. The production is damn excellent, massive and crystal clear, perfect to the bone! Curious to see who will sign this monster of a band.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/CardiacArrestDeathMetal
 

Band: COLDBORN
Country: Belgium
Title: Lingering Voidwards
Label: Final Sacrifice Records
Year: 2016
Style: Black Metal

Review:
Apparently this project was started back in 2007 but this seems to be its first ever official release, so there's something fishy about the data I found on it. Anyway, talking about this debut album, the 5 tracks featured here in almost 50 minutes of playing time shows that Norgaath, the musician behind this moniker, has some courage and trust in his abilities, that's for sure. Unfortunately after a few spins I can say I'm not impressed by this debut at all, it all sounds dusty and quite old, a mid-tempo to fast paced Black Metal characterized by overly repetitive guitar riffs, continuous double-bass drumming, slow, semi-acoustic inserts that are quite boring to tell you the truth, and occasional atmospheric keyboards in the background. The only element I liked on this album are the vocals, Norgaath has a sick, piercing tone quite excellent for Black Metal, reaching Maniac's (Mayhem) sonorities at times, not to mention the occasional inhuman growls he manages to deliver. To put it even shorter Coldborn's debut would have been an enjoyable piece in the '90's, but nowadays it has way too few surprises and original elements to stand up in the overcrowded scene. The production on the other side is pretty neat, not sure if the drums are recorded live but I like their sound.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 6/10

Contact:
facebook.com/Coldborn
 

Band: CROSSBONES
Country: Albania
Title: WWIII
Label: Nadir Music
Year: 2017
Style: Heavy Thrash  Metal

Review:
Albanian Crossbones signs their music as heavy / thrash metal but "WWIII" album (begins a track "I'm God") included  a lot accretions taken from progressive metal and core. I must admit that "WWIII" is a material very well technically polished from the first piece to the end. Throughout the 54 minutes and 22 seconds there is no chance for boredom! Crossbones every sound plays with meticulous care even, smoothly moving among the broken rhytms and speeds changes. For this we tucked here and there are elements of sound, a lot of technical and melodic solos. The ease with which they move between styles (from early and late Metallica and the Annihilator, doom metal elements and even climates derived from band like Korn) is impressive and at the same time does not seem „reloaded”. They just play and it just talks! I pay attention to the timbre of the voice of the singer Olsi Ballta, which reminded me of Greek Sariss. This is the balcanic way of singing in the local scene of metal, characteristic of the region and that’s very old school. Basically, Crossbones is one of the most important and suitable tone Albanian metal scene bands and uneasy (but really good) album "WWIII" is a confirmation of this. The whole is ended by neofolk ballad "I'm God Part 2".
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 9/10
 

Band: DARKRYPT
Country: India
Title: Delirious Excursion
Label: Transcending Obscurity India
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
Debut album of India’s deathmetallers from Mumbai kick ass !!! Spits growling rage well corresponds with the well-designed solos and typical death metal „hack” but technically polished. This is the essence of this style, these guys do not make noise without sense, everything comes like a Swiss watch. And although Darkrypt "America does not discover" their approach to death metal is considered. There are moments of driving fast, insertions are free and heavy - all the time clipped buckle excellent growls. For this in the track "Folie Deux ù" these gentlemen try, too successfully, to sail in a slightly progressive sound. I have the impression that Darkrypt have at your fingertips all the work of Chuck Schuldiner and Death’s stuff. And very well !!!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10


Band: DEPESEBLO
Country: Sweden
Title: Nightmare Desolation
Label: Selfmadegod Records
Year: 2017
Style: Melodic Grind Death Metal

Review:
Melodic grind / death? Yes, it looks that way. The solo project of Dennis Blomberg, known lovers of rocking with bands like DOWN AMONG THE DEAD MEN, PAGANIZER and THOSE WHO BRING THE TORTURE sounds very nice! Some pieces of Amon Amarth, some space music like Drudkh (I mean here is not sound as such but the effect obtained by the process of playing - although blackmetal’s elements efficient ear will catch it), flow taken from Bathory’s kind of guitars drive, a lot of death / grind growl (but also in the total melodic, heh) and here oldschool meets whiff of something fresher. And it makes sense. Old Swedish death, a pinch of melody, pinch black metal, pinch grind and solid technical preparation. Not bad!
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 9/10
 

Band: HEIMDALLS WACHT
Country: Germany
Title: Geisterseher
Label: Trollzorn Records
Year: 2016
Style: Pagan Black Metal

Review:
The seventh full-length album from this German band founded in 2004 is a total triumph! The 7 tracks featured here in 55 minutes of wrath are all one better than the other delivering a strong, inventive, intricate, expressive mix of Black Metal with Pagan atmospheres, with a fierce, extremely aggressive backbone (fantastic drumming!), a powerful and melodic core made by the excellently balanced guitar work and supportive bass lines, and a totally devastating lead provided by the razor-sharp, hateful vocals seconded by epic clean vocals here and there, and all this delivered with a perfect, crystal clear yet not overly polished production. There are even some Melodic Heavy Death (I'd say) influenced parts to make thing even more spicier, so the end result is complex, exciting, surprising and entertaining, no doubt one of the best albums I've heard in a while. If you're into Melodic Black, Pagan Black, Melodic Death or mixes of these genres you shouldn't miss this album for the World.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 10/10

Contact:
heimdallswacht.de
trollzorn.de
 

Band: HEIMSGARD
Country: France
Title: Ordrag
Label: Epictural Production
Year: 2015
Style: Pagan Black Folk Metal

Review:
At the beginning you can find intro, which is a part of big world of fantasy folk... This comes to first track „For the Love and War”, very melodic and powerfully folkmetal drive. All album is a kind of „keyboarded” (means: folk motifs taken from keyboard) battle blackened folk metal drive. During the time Heimsgard gives more and more interesting solo guitars and some stuffs, which are similar to celtic music like „Robin Hood”’s TV – especially in „The Unfallen Warrior” and „Flavour of Victory”. However, in „Wanderer Song” music is back to blackmetal way... Summary: this stuff is very typical folkmetal and soundly very similar to Polish folkmetallers like Runika, Lesne Licho, Othalan or Elforg. That’s not bad of course. Well, „Ordrag” is more SF-battle folmetal than traditional culture folk metal.
Reviewed by Vilcin
Rating: 8/10
 

Band: HELLSPAWN
Country: Poland
Title: There Has Never Been a Son of Me
Label: Old Temple
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
Hailing from the small city of Wielun, in central Poland, Hellspawn are one of those very few bands that had the luck and will to keep a stable line-up since their foundation (or at least so it seems from the info I found on the net) in 2003. Pretty cool, isn't it? That should say it all about how solid their collective and compositions must be after so many years of playing together. This is the band's third full-length, a 10 tracks effort clocking a bit over 40 minutes of traditional, fierce, brutal Death Metal with occasional symphonic, grandiose keyboards to enhance the mythical atmosphere I guess they wanted to create. It sounds like a mix between Nile, Morbid Angel, Vital Remains, Deicide and maybe even Behemoth at times, a ostly fast paced, ultra-brutal, technical to the bone, expressiveto the point of becoming story-telling even without needing the lyrics, oppressive and atmospheric, and all this delivered with a perfect production where nothing seems out of order or annoying. Solid is the first word that comes to mind after the audition, I'd have no restraints recommending this to all fans of above mentioned bands. The cover artwork on the other side is too dull and does not pair the music on this excellent album, at least in my opinion.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/Hellspawn.Metal
oldtemple.com
 

Band: IRREVERENCE
Country: Italy
Title: Raise Chaos - Live in Milan
Label: STF Records
Year: 2016
Style: Thrash Death Metal

Review:
If you're a regular reader of my reviews you know I'm not a fan of live recordings and I honestly don't see their point, but in this case let's say I can understand the urge to release such a recording. Irreverence recorded their 20 years anniversary show in Milan and STF though it was a good idea to release it until the band is ready with another studio recording which judging by the fact their previous full-length was out in 2014, should be quite impending. After a great, atmospheric intro, Irreverence serves us 9 tracks from 3 of their albums (except from the first one) and finishes with 2 covers from the Italian Hardcore legends Raw Power, one from Tankard and one from Motorhead. The sound is very good, and odd enough for my taste, during the audition I never felt like the sound is dry or that the "space" is not used at full potential. Mostly fast paced mix of Thrash and Death Metal delivered with overflowing, contagious energy, and a solid choice of tracks; Raise Chaos proves Irreverence became a mature, respected band in the Italian scene.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: -/10

Contact:
irreverence.it
stf-records.de
 

Band: KETCH
Country: USA
Title: The Anthems of Dread
Label: Aesthetic Death
Year: 2016
Style: Sludge Doom Metal

Review:
Oh man, it all works so fast nowadays for (some) bands I cannot help in linking all this rush with the internet era; Ketch were founded in 2014 and 2 years after here we have their debut album, first released by themselves on Bandcamp, and immediately after picked up by UK based Aesthetic Death for a rerelease on physical format, and here we have a band with already a promising career ahead. Back in the days, in the '90's, I remember there were bands playing similar music but we used to call it slow Death or even Doom Death, and nowadays, after a narrowing down of all these sub-genres one could say this is a combination of Sludge and Doom Metal, with groovy drumming, slick, incisive bass lines, low-tuned bombastic guitar riffs, ethereal, mysterious shrieking vocals supported by growls from time to time, and all this delivered on slow to mid-tempo rhythms with occasional fast paced rhythms that actually sound like Post Black Metal to me to be honest. It's obvious the backbone of this material are the intricate guitar riffs, but the complexity of the whole material leads to a mature, imaginative, open to experimentation ensemble that will possibly offer their followers some good surprises in the future. I'd recommend this debut release of their to both Sludge Doom Metal followers but also to the ones of you in serach for something new.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
ketchdoom.bandcamp.com
aestheticdeath.com
 

Band: KOSMOKRATOR
Country: Belgium
Title: First Step Towards Supremacy
Label: Van Records
Year: 2016
Style: Black Death Metal

Review:
A really interesting surprise coming from Belgium, this quitet founded in 2013 and already signed with a respected label like Van Records. After spinning this debut EP of theirs for a few times (read: many times) I can say I'm surprised they are not from Poland, and not only because at some point they add priest choirs like Batushka, or because their compositions are so think and massive like Mgla's, but mostly because of the tremendous, blasphemic, proud, imposing attitude they deliver on these 4 long tracks here (a bit over half an hour of playing time). The cover artwork, although a pretty nice painting, doesn't reflect what's happening on this album, by imagining it after seeing the artwork you might think their music is blunt, unpolished, menacing and that's about it, but actually we're dealing with a great deal of care in all minor details of their compositions, the massive sound is actually created by complex structures, lots of effects and gimmicks, but which taken as one sound curdled and perfect flowing. I've seen this album is quite a few year end tops and for damn sure it's well worth these mentions, Kosmokrator might just be the next big thing in the near future Black Metal...
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
initiate-decimation.bandcamp.com
van-gbr.de
 

Band: LIQUID GRAVEYARD
Country: International
Title: By Nature so Perverse
Label: Sleaszy Rider Records
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
Founded by the Walker family (Raquel and John of Cancer fame), Liquid Graveyard have been around since 2006 but it always seemed like a side-project, like something done over the weekend, when time allows, a pass-time for 2 metalheads at heart, and even if they released 2 albums (On Evil Days in 2009 and The Fifth Time I Died in 2011) the band remained (or at least gave the impression to be) at that hobby-stage until 2014. In 2014 the Walker family were joined by Nick Barker and Shane Embury and we can call it a super-group already, and although it still gives the impression of a side-project, at least this new, third, full-length album will be taken more seriousely by the media and fans. And indeed, Shane Embury's bass lines are an ultra-heavy influence on the new material from the start, and Nick's drumming is, as we know it from countless other projects, Swiss-clock precise, the perfect patch to any Metal wound, so their joining of Liquid Graveyard won't go unnoticed from the music composition of view either. The arrangements are again aiming at an oppressive, fast paced Death Metal with progressive influences, fresh sounding although mostly using old-school patterns, technical and complex as we all know John can deliver, and lead by the vicious, ferocious growling vocals of Raquel it all makes sense. There are even a few tracks that could be considered as the hits of the album, so this is pretty much a complete material from my point of view, not innovative in any way, but fresh and honest sounding.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 9/10

Contact:
facebook.com/LiquidGraveyard
sleaszyrider.com
 

Band: MISERIST
Country: Australia
Title: Miserist
Label: Krucyator Productions
Year: 2017
Style: Instrumental Experimental Black Death Metal

Review:
I always thought Insturmental Metal of all kinds to be the perfect "tool" to introduce someone into a different type of music, in our case Extreme Metal, but in this particular case this "rule" does not apply at all. Miserist is a new and mysterious act from Australia experimenting through Black Death territories without using any vocals, and this is their debut EP, a 6 tracks effort clocking half an hour of intense and at the same time hypnotic music. Miserist are mixing Black, Death, Doom, Sludge, Ambient and Noise elements into what becomes a seriously addictive yet highly uncommercial type of dark, cold, heavy and mysterious music that, as ironical as it may sound for an instrumental band, sound very close to UK based Voices, one of my current fave bands. As I was saying earlier, I wouldn't advise to play this CD to a profane of the genre because although lacking the vocal part (which usually disturbs unusual listeners), the compositions are so intricate and demanding, so unpredictable and surprising that I doubt someone without experience in this field would ever get anything from it. If you're into experimental, avantgarde, sludgy, heavy and mysterious/atmospheric Metal this might be a tremendous new find for your collection, give it a try.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/miserist
facebook.com/krucyatorproductions
 

Band: MISTEYES
Country: Italy
Title: Creeping Time
Label: Maple Metal Records
Year: 2016
Style: Symphonic Gothic Death Metal

Review:
It's a long time since I've last heard a "beauty and the beast vocals"-led band, this Gothic-influenced genre seems to have lurked into shadows during the past few years, but I feel it's about time for it to reemerge and Misteyes might just pick the big wave, we'll wait and see. Although founded in 2012, the band had 2 decissive line-up milestones: in 2014 when their bassist left but was replaced by three other musicians, and in 2016 when there were again some serious line-up changes resulting in the current 7 members team complete with a male growling vocalist and a female operatic one. This is their debut album featuring 12 tracks in a bit over an hour of playing time, a strong and inventive mix of Gothic, Symphonic and Death Metal with influences from Power and Progressive Metal. The tempos are mostly mid-paced to fast, with occasional slow, enchanting passages, the guitars are upfront providing a metallic, muscular impression, in contrast with the dreamy, fairy-like keyboards on the background, but in my opinion the main star of the instrumental part is the bass, subtle most of the time, but also influential and groovy, the bass plays a very important role in this band's music. I have to also mention the stady and precise drumming here, and with this I've praised all areas, haha. No, really, this is a good album, varied, modern sounding, inventive and above all, enjoyable, Misteyes prove to be a promising band to keep an eye on.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8/10

Contact:
facebook.com/misteyesband
maplemetalrecords.com
 

Band: OLD WITCH
Country: Canada
Title: Come Mourning Come
Label: Sun & Moon Records
Year: 2014
Style: Doom Drone Black Metal

Review:
Although initially released by the band in 2013, only 1 year after their foundation (although I feel this is and always was a one man project), this debut album of theirs sounds pretty promising and really, really interesting. Featuring 6 tracks but clocking 36 minutes of playing time, Come Mourning Come impresses through its heaviness, through its constant oppressive atmospheres from the main structures that are a mix of Drone Doom with Black Metal, to the Ambient fourth track, all of them evoke the same dark, depressive, introverted feelings. The interesting aspect when we talk about the compositions is the Drone element, the monolithis, intense, crushing and abrasive (but not annoying though) effects that compliment the whole heaviness of this album. Apart from that the demolishing bass lines, the low-tuned guitars and the desperate Black Metal shrieks (that I don't particularly like) are all contributing to a mysterious, terrifying final offering, an album that I find very interesting and feel will be a serious part of the Black Metal scene in Canada if it were to be written a book about it at a certain point. This version of it was re-released by Sun & Moon Records in 2014 and benefits of cover and back-cover images made by the label owner, Robert, which is pretty cool.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/GODOVWOLVES
sunandmoonrecords.com
 

Band: OTTONE PESSANTE
Country: Italy
Title: Blasphemy Set In Stone
Label: Selfreleased
Year: 2016
Style: Heavy Brass Metal

Review:
Heavy Metal done only on and by drums, trumpet and trombone, or better said exactly how I envision Goran Bregovic would love his Heavy Metal to sound like. A debut album that tokk me by surprise; I was expecting some sort of Heavy Metal, or by the look of its cover artwork, even Death Metal, but actually I got 10 tracks that sound like Taraf De Haidouks went Metal all of a sudden, just imagine my surprise. This Italian trio managed to deliver 10 tracks that although lacking any guitars, bass or vocals, sound more Metal than lots of "traditional" Metal bands nowadays. Fast, thrilling, brutal by the sound of the drums, happy by the sound of the trumpet, or grave by the sound of the trombone, Blasphemy Set In Stone is one hell of a debut album I'm sure you'll love in an instant if you're in a constant search for something new. Although impressive by its boldness and courage, Blasphemy Set In Stone still feels like missing something, like there's always room for something more, and I hope they'll find it by their next album; also the drums (very inventive and intricate) sound a bit too synthetic here and there.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 7.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/ottonepesante
 

Band: PERCUSSOR
Country: USA
Title: Disturbing Reality
Label: Horror Pain Gore Death Productions
Year: 2016
Style: Death Metal

Review:
This Philadelphia based trio seems to have been active between 96 and 98 but without luck in what concerns recordings; they are back since 2014 and this is already their second full-length since the reunion, featuring 9 tracks (1 is a cover though) in a bit over 35 minutes of playing time. Everything about the band, starting with their name, and ending with this album's cover artwork and of course music, screams '80's Death Metal, and here I include the production, a bit too stuffed and opaque for my taste, causing a few guitar gimmicks to become unobserved and somehow leveling everything to a point where you won't notice the little things. The mostly fast paced rhythms have their moments of breathing when the band sounds like Autopsy-influenced, but the whole I'd say sounds like a mix of Deicide, Vital Remains, Obituary and maybe a bit of Bolt Thrower, too. A traditional Death Metal album with its fair share of progressive-like insertions from all three instruments just to keep things spicy, but on the vocal side unfortunately nothing really stick to mind after the audition; a mostly angry monster, ugly and harassing from start to finish. If you like a dry, organic, stuffed production and your Death Metal a la '80's this might make your day.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 6.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/PercussorMetal
horrorpaingoredeath.com
 

Band: PUTREFIED REMAINS
Country: Malaysia
Title: The Enthronement
Label: Barbarian Wrath
Year: 2016
Style: Black Death Metal

Review:
First time I meet this band's music and I'm surprised of how much I like it, and I say surprised because although I knew they are delivering some kind of Black Death Metal, a genre I'm not expecting much surprises lately, their old-school approach is at the same time both a nostalgic touch and a breath of fresh air (even though this sounds silly). The second full-length album from Putrefied Remains follows a well-received debut, Novus Ordo Seclorum, out in 2014 on local label Narrowards, now on a German label, Barbarian Wrath, probably a step forward from this point of view, too. 12 tracks, almost an hour of mid-paced to fast Black Death Metal highlighted by spacey, atmospheric keyboards in the backgrounds, rusty, animalic growling vocals, catchy guitar riffs, memorable leads and solos, a powerful, upfront bass line and good production. The first 4 tracks offer nothing special from my point of view, but from then on almost each new track comes with its own hook, it's own something to be pinpointed by and the whole album becomes very, very interesting. It sound genuine and honest, an album that reminds me of my teenager years, of the bands I got into Metal for in the first place. Great!
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/Putrefied-Remains-230147383773039
barbarianwrath.org
 

Band: ROSARIO
Country: Italy
Title: And the Storm Surges
Label: Electric Valley Records
Year: 2016
Style: Stoner Metal

Review:
Hailing from the beautiful Northeastern Italian region Veneto, Rosario were formed in 2013 and this is their debut full-length album, a Digipak CD released by no less than 6 different labels, to me that says the band is pretty appreciated in their genre despite being only a few years old. The band treats us here with 10 tracks in a bit over 50 minutes of playing time, a groovy, easy flowing, gruitar riff driven Stoner Metal lead by a good vocalist that should work a bit more on his pronounciation (although he sings in English, without the lyrics in front of my eyes I doubt I could distinguish one word...). Every track has its own hook, a little something to be different than the others, but I still feel there would have been room for much more experimentation, for some more (or bigger) surprises thrown inthere, I managed to spin the album almost 3 times already and I start to feel signs of boredom and loose interest, but maybe that's only me... The point is the band have all they need to deliver some slick tunes, all they do is pretty typical to this genre, but in my opinion they have potential to bring a way better album next time. My fave track on this album is the 6th, I am the Morass, probably because I feel that's the darker from the bunch.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 6.5/10

Contact:
facebook.com/rosariostoner
facebook.com/electricvalleyrecords
 

Band: SELBST
Country: Venezuela
Title: An Ominous Landscape
Label: Sun & Moon Records
Year: 2015
Style: Black Metal

Review:
5 years after their foundation Venezuelan Selbst manage to release their official debut release, but not a full-length like one might expect, but a 3 tracks EP. Yes, the tracks are long (7 minutes each) and quite plurivalent, but I feel it's still not enough for a duo that works together for so many years. Anyway, the three tracks offered here are damn excellent presenting us a melodic and a bit melancholic Black Metal based on a backbone of technical guitar riffs and leads, short but prominent guitar solos, intensive, complex and organic sounding drums and a smooth bass line that makes it all even more appealing. Indeed, these 3 tracks sound professional and carefully crafted that after a couple of spins I feel I could easily handle a full-length album from this band. A really good debut, much better than I expected, I have nothing to complain about here except the short duration, and I hope the awful situation in their country won't make them stop composing and releasing new stuff.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 9/10

Contact:
facebook.com/selbstbm
sunandmoonrecords.com
 

Band: TRAUMER
Country: Brazil
Title: Avalon
Label: FastBall Music
Year: 2016
Style: Melodic Power Metal

Review:
After an EP, Eleazar, selfreleased in 2012, and a debut album, The Great Metal Storm, released by Peruvian Total Steel Records, Brazilian Power Metal quintet Traumer found its way to what I consider the promised land of Heavy Power Metal, Germany, and this second full-length album is now out on the fast and seriously moving FastBall Records from Elsdorf, a good step for the band to become the next Angra of the Brazilian scene. We're treated here with 11 tracks clocking almost a full hour of melodic and mostly fast paced Power Metal; light but still metallic structures, epic atmospheres, a quite organic, although heavily polished productions, and nice flowing compositions led by the good, memorable vocals of Guilherme Hirose, with subtle but important support from the keyboard backgrounds. I think this is a good second step for the band and a strong opus to present themselves to the European scene as well, but I also think they should think of some more hooks to add to their arrangements, to make the tracks more memorable, to stand-out with something other than vocals, and judging by this material I'd say the technical abilities to that that are there, it's just up to their compositional skills.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 7/10

Contact:
traumer.com.br
fastball-music.com
 

Band: WHIPSTRIKER
Country: Brazil
Title: Only Filth Will Prevail
Label: Morbid Tales Records
Year: 2016
Style: Heavy Speed Metal

Review:
Although it's hard to believe as the band has been tremendously active on discographic level during the years releasing loads of EPs and Splits, this is only the third studio album from Whipstriker. Victor "Whipstriker" continues his journey being joined on this record by Leo "Witchcaptor" and a new drumer who goes by the name of Hugo, but I as the previous releases this is a one man deal mostly and Leo is the only one appearing in the "band photo" on the cover of this disc. Whipstriker continues the same dirty, satanic Speed Metal path heavily influenced by monsters like Motorhead and Venom, so we're dealing here with catchy repetitive guitar riffs backed up by occasional slick solos, subtle but well supportive bass lines and monotone, fast paced drums that give a primitive energy to the whole but on a long-term are pretty boring from my point of view. The vocals are comprehensive although venomous and disgusting, pretty fit for this type of music. There's not much to disect here, we're getting an energetic, old-school type of contagious, headbanging-friendly and unpretentious Speed Metal that will surely reach its goal; don't expect anything more or less than that.
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8/10

Contact:
facebook.com/whipstriker
morbidtalesrecords@hotmail.com
 

Band: WINTER DELUGE
Country: New Zealand
Title: Devolution - Decay
Label: Frozen Blood Industries
Year: 2016
Style: Black Metal

Review:
Finally, after a 4 years wait, here's Winter Deluge back with their second full-length album, Devolution - Decay, a 9 tracks effort clocking 47 minutes of thunderous Black Metal. Although the band was plagues by lots of line-up changes seeing it left now at only 2 original members left and two new ones, they've kept their way and the Black Metal they propose us here is at least the as angrier as before if not more. Indeed, Winter Deluge always based their music on fast and furious drumming (you have to be a pretty mad drummer to cope with the demands here, and probably if Autumus leaves the band is done) reminding me of Urgehal somehow, and fast but intelligent and intricate guitar work. The vocalist is a new one, Seelenfresser from Germany, also known from his work in Scottish Daemonolith, so I'm not sure if he now lives in New Zealand, or if he's a session vocalist for the band, but to be quite frank I like the vocals of his predecessor, Nekasarof, better, they were sharper, more active; Seelenfresser sounds more ghoulish, but less leading as Nekasarof, but this has to do with one's own taste only I guess. The point is Winter Deluge produced a new excellent Black Metal material that deserves your full attention!
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: 8/10

Contact:
facebook.com/WINTERDELUGE
facebook.com/frozenbloodindustries

Band: Various Artists
Country: Various
Title: Witchery Flames of Underground Lust #9
Label: Metal Scrap Records
Year: 2016
Style: Metal

Review:
It's not often nowadays to stumble upon a compilation CD, let alone one that reached its 9th edition, so horns up for Metal Scrap for keeping this method of promoting bands still alive. 17 bands, 17 tracks, almost 80 minutes of playing time, so let's take them one by one:
Druknroll - one of the most (if not THE most) promoted bands in Metal Scrap's roster, Druknroll sounds damn experienced and not afraid to experiment; an original Modern Heavy Metal band that you should check out
Psychophobia - a Polish band that apparently started out as a Melodic Black Metal outfit, but this track, and probably the whole EP it's taken off, have nothing to do with Black Metal anymore, maybe just some minor reminiscences on vocals; Melodic Heavy Death Metal with good and catchy guitar work, promising stuff although not original
Aeternus Prophet - vicious, raw and dark Black Death Metal from Ukraine characterized by long, chaotic, old-school Death Metal-like guitar solos, upfront and massive bass lines and angry growls
Hortus Animae - this one sounds like Theatre of Tragedy and Graveworm met and started creating a mix between Thrash and Black Metal, but still keeping their specific features intact; pretty cool!
Sabotage - Russian Heavy Thrash Metal band with native tongue lyrics, pretty powerful but without understanding what they sing about you'll only feel like you've heard this before
Estate - Russian Melodic Power Metal band led by a vocalist with excellent tone for this music but who still has some work on his English pronounciation; the music is entertaining, energetic, complex and modern sounding while still following the traditional patterns of this genre, I'd say this is a band with great potential
One Step Beyond - Aussie trio bringing forth an interesting and quite original Experimental Metal, a mix of Extreme Metal with Doom, Stoner, and Hard Rock, or at least that's how this track sounds like
Brokdar - Melodic Extreme Metal from Russia; the longest track on this compilation takes almost 2 minutes to become a bit interesting and then falls into mid-tempo, overly repetitive rhythms, I've heard multiple times in the '90's but nowadays sound pretty dull, not to mention the extremely stale and synthetic drum machine; the fast parts, the upfront metallic bass lines and the growling vocals are pretty neat, but the rest I found mediocre, sorry
Phantasmal - Thrash Metal from USA; entertaining, involving, but not original one bit, just the usual fast paced Thrash with cool riffs, nothing more, nothing less
Sunlight - well, after all the Extreme Metal this band really sounds like their name; melodic, mid-paced Heavy Metal with Power Metal keyboard backgrounds and a vocalist that seems to be capable of more than what he delivered here, he seems bored on this recording; nice track, nice band
Dark Morok - from Russia this quartet mixing Thrash, Death and Black Metal, a short and energetic track demonstrating clear potential; the band is pretty lazy releasing stuff, not sure if they are taking things seriously though
Nihilistinen Barbaarisuus - Ambient Black Metal from Finland, an excellent band although the drums' sound is close to crap; mystical, vicious, fast paced Finnish Black Metal
Strident - traditional Thrash Metal from Israel; fast and energetic, quite catchy and based on regular patterns of this genre; in the beginning of the 90's this would have been a true hit, nowadays it's enjoying and that's all
X Pus - one of the most blasphemic and offenssive newcomers on the Italian scene X Pus debuted in 2015 on Metal Scrap Records and this track is an extract from their debut album; low-tuned, dark, oppressive, unrelenting, cavernous, satanic Black Death Metal from the pits of hell
Grenouer - to me this seems to be one of the most hard-working bands from Russia; ferocious, groovy, precise, intricate Industrial Metal, really powerful and professional sounding
Divine Weep - Polish Heavy Metal led by an excellent, powerful vocalist supported by a team of great musicians, one of the best bands on this compilation regardless of genre; their track is the second longest here (over 8 minutes!) and I'd still like to hear more
Ungrace - solid Death Metal with both an industrial and a groove side to it; mid-tempo and heavy as fuck, with a dark, atmospheric side to it, cool stuff
Reviewed by Adrian
Rating: -/10

Contact:
metalscraprecords.com

 
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