Album Review: Ol’ Dagger – Bobcat Dynamite

Posted by on Mar Tue, 2016 in Album Review, Death Metal, New Releases, Thrash

Album Review: Ol’ Dagger – Bobcat Dynamite

Holy fucking hell, these vocals will kill you. David Ahern-Seronde (Yar, Oscillation, Obelisk) expands his skills ever further with a wider range of high pitched screams and low growls. The guitars and drums are symbiotic in their primitivism and raw power, reminiscent of early Death and Dark Angel. The rhythm often loses itself in a decadent groove, which results in some sinuous bass lines and drum riffs. This album superimposes sludgy lethargy … read...

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Album Review: Fleshgod Apocalypse – King

Posted by on Feb Wed, 2016 in Album Review, Death Metal, Melodic Death Metal, New Releases, Symphonic, Technical

Album Review: Fleshgod Apocalypse – King

Italian quintet Fleshgod Apocalypse are masters of symphonic technical death metal. Their newest release, King, is pinnacle of elegance, with music as sophisticated and powerful as its title.  Crunchy blast beats in the guitar and drums open up into sweeping orchestral arrangements. The heavily distorted electric guitar, with its melodic leads and shredding solos, merges seamlessly with the symphonic instruments. Similarly, the twinkling pianos are exquisitely integrated, while the chorus creates a soundscape of epic … read...

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EP Review: Parallellism by Ot-un-et-ir

Posted by on Feb Tue, 2016 in Album Review, Doom Metal, New Releases, Progressive Rock, Stoner Metal

EP Review: Parallellism by Ot-un-et-ir

Ot-un-et-ir is a New Mexico based band with a downtempo, sludgy sound so thick that you could cut it with a knife. Their first release, Parallelism, is album length at 58 minutes, but is considered a single piece. (For convenience sake, I will refer to it as an EP.) The music is extremely heavy-footed with the drums and bass, droning alongside each other with slow and sweet riffs. The rhythm is similar to that of … read...

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Album Review: I Declare War -We Are Violent People By Nature

Posted by on Nov Mon, 2015 in Album Review, Deathcore, New Releases, Technical

Album Review: I Declare War -We Are Violent People By Nature

This album is living proof that life imitates art, and vice versa. The furious, hateful music reflects a world being crumbled by politics, propoganda, and society itself. Hope gives in to misanthropy and despair. The lyrics are spoken by both the forsaken and the forsaker.  Having been betrayed by our fellow man, we exact revenge, and thus continues the vicious cycle of violence which will ultimately be our demise. Vocalist Jamie Hanks has a formidable … read...

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Album Review: Cyanic/Infinite Waste 2015 Split

Posted by on Nov Mon, 2015 in Album Review, Death Metal, Grind, Hardcore, New Releases

Album Review: Cyanic/Infinite Waste 2015 Split

This EP is a collaboration between San Jose’s Cyanic and Oakland’s Infinite Waste. Both bands from the California coast have a propensity for coarse, ball-busting dissonance with distorted guitars and beastly vocals. Here is a track-by-track review of this split: Cyanic have blasting soundwalls of sinuous counterpointed rhythms, which intertwine with complexity. The vocals are good, even though the sound quality itself is somewhat choppy. The drums, bass, and guitar each play their own thing, … read...

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Album Review: October File -Monuments

Posted by on Oct Tue, 2015 in Album Review, Cult Classics, Hardcore, Metalcore, New Releases, Punk

Album Review: October File -Monuments

Monuments is a fitting title for the 20014 release by October File, a colossal jewel which captures the band at their zenith. This chimerical beast is a culmination of hardcore, post punk, and industrial influences, making a musical juggernaut of monstrous proportions.  Although they are a relatively obscure band, they have withstood the test of time thus far and have remained a thematic powerhouse for over a decade.  October File have the boastful confidence, and … read...

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Album Review: Octaveleven – This Hyperlink

Posted by on Oct Sun, 2015 in Album Review, New Releases, Progressive Rock, Technical

Album Review: Octaveleven – This Hyperlink

This music is as bizarre and moving as a delirious fever dream.  Octaveleven is multilayered, very experimental and progressive, with spacey keyboards that might be more comfortable in an Atari game. The best songs had the  dissonant urgency and impatience of a boss battle, with musical tension mirroring a climactic showdown.  In the haystack of disharmony, you occasionally find a needle of melody. Some of the refrains are catchy despite themselves, and the percussion anchors … read...

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Album Review: I Am The Shotgun -Garroter

Posted by on Sep Tue, 2015 in Album Review, Cult Classics, Death Metal, Deathcore, Grind, Hardcore, New Releases, Technical

Album Review: I Am The Shotgun -Garroter

Garroter has a choppy, chunky sound reflecting the bloody bits and pieces on the album artwork. Palm muted chords ad nauseum, layered over an obscene amount of guitars and double pedal drums,  creates immense walls of polyphonic  discordance.  These colossal soundwalls persist at a sludgy pace, but frequent interruptions by blast beats and breakdowns keep them from being overwhelming. Despite the cacophonous music and coarse production quality, I Am The Shotgun have a cleancut aftertaste. … read...

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Album Review: I Am The Shotgun -I Am The Shotgun

Posted by on Sep Sat, 2015 in Album Review, Death Metal, Deathcore, Hardcore, New Releases

Album Review: I Am The Shotgun -I Am The Shotgun

This self-titled album is a hefty slab of deathcore, with a thudding pulse of bass and percussion as a backbeat to crunchy breakdowns and dynamic leads. The guitar had some cool pitch harmonics and intricate solos, otherwise falling in lock-step with the rhythmic sections. All hell breaks loose when two or more rhythms syncopate, such as in the track This Mic Smells Like Beer, in which the chugging bass lines and machine gun drumming are … read...

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Album Review: Iron Maiden – The Book Of Souls

Posted by on Sep Sun, 2015 in Album Review, Heavy/Traditional Metal, New Releases, Power Metal

Album Review: Iron Maiden – The Book Of Souls

Iron Maiden have already carved a distinguished niche for themselves in the world of metal, and this latest offering stays comfortably in that territory. This is a double edged sword: On one side, they retain the galloping riffs and powerful vocals that have always defined them, but on the other, they are not bringing anything new to the table. Some songs are indulgently long, making you savor the natural progression of the music. Others are … read...

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