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REVIEWS 2017 - Page 7

MARY'S KIDS: Don't Back Down - EP
Marys Kids
So, this EP should have been released for about half a year ago or something. But for reasons that I know nothing about, it has not been released until now.
Only 1 of these 4 songs are almost 2 minutes. The rest is around 1 and a half minutes. So this is over way too fast. Fact is that it doesn't last for more than approximately 5 and a half minutes.
This is the second EP of 4 that they plan to release before their next album will be released.
And if you're not familiar with their sound, I would say that it's a mixture of action rock and punk rock. This is a band that every rocker should like, because they really kick ass!
(Beluga Records)
DECEMBER 24, 2017

SORROWFUL LAND: Where The Sullen Waters Flow - EP
..and yet another band with only 3 songs that are long as the eternity (7,26-10,44 min). And these songs are heavy of course, but with a melancholy melody, but yet hard. Classical doom/death metal is what they call it.
But even though the songs are really long, I actually like what I hear. And it's also very suitable for the eternal darkness that we seems to have here in Sweden now. I think you should check this out.
I don't have much else to say..
(Solitude Productions)
DECEMBER 23, 2017

SnakeyeS: Metal Monster - Album
Another heavy metal band in the good old tradition. And I have been listening to so many bands in this genre now that it's getting hard to hear any difference between them. But this is a band that I have been writing about before, and I have liked what I have heard. The question is if they have not become even better since last time. I really like this album.
I think this band is ready to compete with a band like PRIMAL FEAR for example. This is something similar to what they are doing. It's powerful, hard and heavy (but hardly slow). Everything a fan of real heavy metal need.
(Self released?)
DECEMBER 23, 2017

Holly West: Mokita - EP
She might not be the best singer, but somehow it works anyway. I have definitely heard better though.
Holly comes from Dallas, and have been singing in a lot of cover and original bands through the years. But now it was time to go solo.
Her music is some kind of heavier hard rock, and she end this 5-track EP with a cover of LED ZEPPELIN's "When The Levee Breaks".
(Self released)
DECEMBER 22, 2017

ORACLE: Into The Unknown - Album
ORACLE were formed in 2016 by Father and son duo Trey and Ray Ozinga of Baldwin County, Alabama, along with Jason Long and B.G. Watson of Mobile county, Alabama. The goal was to create something unique by blending several different genres of metal. And this is the result of that. Now it doesn't sound as crazy as you might think that it will do. Because in genral this is just really good extreme metal. Maybe with some progressive parts here and there. They definitely have some good ideas here, and they really seems to know how to play this kind of stuff.
Their first album, "Beyond Omega", was released in the summer of 2016. So this is their second album.
(Self released?)
DECEMBER 21, 2017

JONO: Life - Album
Swedish band JONO started as a solo project of singer Johan Norrby (hence the moniker JoNo), who has been singing, writing and playing music in various bands and projects over the years. This applies also for all the other members of the band: guitarist Stefan Helleblad is a member of Dutch symphonic metal band WITHIN TEMPTATION, drummer Nicka Hellenberg played all the drums on WITHIN TEMPTATION's "The Unforgiving" and has an impressive resume involving bands and recordings, and both keyboard player Johan Carlgren and bass player Janne Henriksson are frequently hired for both live and studio sessions, while Leo Olsson also is a busy musician who joined the band in 2015.
The music they create is probably best described as melodic hard rock with symphonic and progressive elements. It's said to be influenced by bands like QUEEN, SUPERTRAMP, KANSAS, JOURNEY and The SPARKS. Well, possibly maybe I say. There's some truth to that at least.
The funny thing with this album is that I always think that it's not so good. But then I listen to it, and then it's suddenly a fantastic record. For some reason it makes me think of the late Ronnie James Dio (r.i.p). I'm not really sure why though..
You must listen to this!
(Frontiers Music srl)
DECEMBER 20, 2017

DRIVE was 5 gentlemen from the northside of Houston, Texas. They played progressive power metal and released 2 albums: "Characters In Time" (1988) and "Diablero" (1992). The band initially came together in the early 1980s when its original members were barely out of high school. They soon moved to Los Angeles and got signed. But when the second album came out, grunge came and took over the whole music scene. But before it was over they had already written some new material, and even recorded some demo tapes for their 3rd album. "IDEFI" consist of these last recordings.
Unfortunately vocalist David Taylor passed away after a fatal car accident on June 30, 2009. And on February 25, 2017 founder, guitarist and songwriter Rick Chavez passed from an internal bleed that went undetected until it was too late. So this record is also a tribute to them.
Some songs are really good. But unfortunately they are too few. And they have a tendency to flirt with the latino sound sometimes. Which I don't think fit in. But when they are as best according to me, then it's classic 80s hard rock and heavy metal. But in the 2 last songs they suddenly change totally and wants to be a funk rock band like SANTANA, RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS or something like that. Not my thing. But that's just 2 songs, so that's not such a big problem. It's a small probelm though, as 1 of them last for as long as 8,43 minutes and have those damned latino rythms included in 1 part of the song, which is followed by a lot of jamming/solos.
(20th Century Music)
DECEMBER 19, 2017

DOWN 'N' OUTZ: My Re-Generation - Album reissue / The Further Adventures Of... - Album reissue / The Further Live Adventures Of... - 2-CD/DVD, Blu-ray
Maybe Frontiers Music thought it was too little to release 5-6 records a month, because this month we also get 3 albums with DOWN 'N' OUTZ. But it's soon Christmas, so why not something extra?
If I got it right this is a band with DEF LEPPARD vocalist Joe Elliot, backed up by some of the guys from The QUIREBOYS, playing rare tracks connected to the British rock band MOTT THE HOOPLE (including MOTT, Ian Hunter and BRITISH LIONS).
"My Re-Generation" is their first album, and "The Further Adventures Of..." is their second, while "The Further Live Adventures Of..." is a brand new live recording.
Now I don't think I have heard that much with MOTT THE HOOPLE before, and I don't reconize any of these songs. So I'm not the man who can compare with the original recordings of these songs. But 1 thing is for sure, this is definitely worth checking out. Especially if you like good old rock n roll and glam rock. Fans of The QUIREBOYS should love this band.
(Frontiers Music srl)
DECEMBER 19, 2017

RAINTIMES: Raintimes - Album
RAINTIMES is a new melodic rock project featuring Italian musicians Pierpaolo Zorro Monti (CHARMING GRACE, SHINING LINE) and Davide Barbieri (WHEELS OF FIRE, CHARMING GRACE), together with singer Michael Shotton (VON GROOVE), Sven Larsson and Ivan Gonzalez on guitars and Andrea Gipponi on bass.
This makes me think of EUROPE in the late 80s actually, even though Pierpaolo says that he wanted this album to be a tribute to a band called The STORM (which I don't think I have heard). They have many good songs here anyway. There's no doubt about that. So this is worth checking out of course.
(Frontiers Music srl)
DECEMBER 18, 2017

PSYCHOCIDE: Alcohol & Bad Decisions - Album
These Canadians seems to be funny guys. Their biography is so damned dishonest, so I actually don't know much else about them then that they seems to be from Montreal. I guess there's a lot of truth behind the title of this album.
But somehow they succeeded to make enough songs for a album. And what we get is a wild mixture of hard rock, rock n roll, metal and pop rock. 10 tracks where most of the songs have a party vibe.
(Self released?)
DECEMBER 18, 2017

PRETTY BOY FLOYD: Public Enemies - Album
These veterans sounds like a mixture of the L.A. rock scene in the 80s. I can hear bands like MÖTLEY CRÜE, POISON and possibly VAN HALEN on this album. It sounds like time have been standing still since the 80s. Like a sleaze rock party on Sunset Strip. But it's good. Really good! So I don't complain.
We get as much as 14 tracks here, but the only one that I don't like is the intro, "S.A.T.A.", which is just as useless as most intros use to be nowadays.
If you're friends like good old sleaze rock, then this is the album you have to play at your Christmas party this year.
(Frontiers Music srl)
DECEMBER 18, 2017

POISON PILL: Poison Pill - Album
This is definitely something for fans of ACCEPT and U.D.O., because this sounds a lot like those 2 German bands. But there's other stuff too of course. Classic heavy metal is what you get anyway. They might not have created any classic anthems here, but it's definitely good stuff that we get.
The band comes from Sweden, and this is their debut album.
(Sliptrick Records)
DECEMBER 18, 2017

EISLEY/GOLDY: Blood, Guts And Games - Album
Singer David Glen Eisley and guitarist Craig Goldy (ex-DIO), both formerly of GIUFFRIA, have joined forces again in EISLEY/GOLDY. And they really try hard to recreate the sound that launched their careers back in the 80s. Unfortunately I have to say that they fail. This is not bad, but not good either. It's the classic in through 1 ear and out through the other. Pretty boring actually.
The music is melodic hard rock, just like it sounded back in the 80s. So it should be good, as I use to like that stuff. But for some reason I'm not impressed by this.
(Frontiers Music srl)
DECEMBER 17, 2017

ENHAILER: Dumb Enough To Care - EP
Just 1 song, but it's 18 minutes long. It's said to fit fans of doom, blackened roll (?) and progressive stoner rockers. I think I go for doom/stoner. It's hard and heavy anyway. But when a song last for as long as 18 minutes, it goes in many different directions of course. So I guess we can call it progressive as well.
The band comes from Akron, Ohio and was formed in 2014 by core members of MOCKINGBIRD and RUE. Their first demo was released in 2015, and in 2016 the first album, "Grisaille", was released. This EP will be followed by 2 split records around spring 2018.
(Blackseed Records)
DECEMBER 17, 2017

ESTERTOR: Buried In Morningside - Album
Totally incomprehensible title! Not even Google Translate can tell me what "morningside" means. So the deep question is of course: What the hell is morningside?
What ESTERTOR are is easier to tell though: It's a thrash metal band from Spain. The band is young, but consist of veterans in the Spannish metal scene. What they have made here is a tribute to horror, and the thrash sound of the late 80s/early 90s.
It might not be the best band that I have heard in this genre, but it's not bad either. So you can always give it a try and see (or hear) if you like it.
(World War Now Records)
DECEMBER 17, 2017

More power pop. And this band is just as catchy and melodic as these kind of bands use to be. So I like what I hear. Because they are just as good as any other band in this genre.
This started as a solo thing by Roger Arvidson, a stalwart of the Göteborg, Sweden music scene, who have been playing in bands like The REMAINS and SONIC WALTHERS. His first, self titled, album was released in 2001 already. The funny thing is that he released another self titled album last year, by if I got it right it must have been under the new name ARVIDSON & BUTTERFLIES, as he has a band nowadays.
This little EP is a teaser for a new album, which I suppose will be released during 2018. Could be interesting..
(Beluga Records)
DECEMBER 16, 2017

The WHY OH WHY'S: Without You I'm Nothing - Single
Another single with this Swedish garage rock band. And they keep on rocking. And it's good. What else can I say?
The WHY OH WHY'S are a young band originally from Flen, Sweden. But nowadays they are based in the south of Stockholm. This song is the second single from their upcoming album, which will be released on January 5, 2018. And that album could be worth a try.
(Beluga Records)
DECEMBER 16, 2017

UR: Black Vortex - Album
Primeval forest black metal. Not the fastest band, but good. So this could be worth a try of course.
Some of the tracks are philosophical in nature. They are filled with sadness and pity over human existence. Other tracks, however, are aggressive, primitive anthems of hatred about human greed, materialism and stupidity.
UR comes from Poland and have previously released a EP, with the stupid title "Hail Death".
Release date: Dec. 22, 2017 (Arachnophobia Records)
DECEMBER 15, 2017

M.I.D: Tills Pengarna Skiljer Oss Åt - EP
I have not heard M.I.D in many years. It must have been when they used to appear on the Äggröran" and "Röjarskivan" compilations from Ägg Tapes & Records in the late 90s/early 00 I suppose. But they sounds more or less just the same as they did back then. Good and catchy Swedish punk rock that fans of bands like ASTA KASK and STREBERS will like (not that M.I.D sounds exactly like them).
The vinyl version (10") gives you 6 new tracks, while the CD includes as much as 11 bonus tracks as well.
(Second Class Kids Records)
DECEMBER 15, 2017

GORGON: Ishassara - Single
Symphonic death metal, does that really work? Yeah, why not? For a while at least.. I don't think I would like to listen to a whole album with this.
This little song is a short and tragic story that founder/vocalist Paul Thureau has written. It take place in ancient Crete, where a tortured man who has lived a life in pain, regrets and guilt, and who starts giving all his love and devotion to a goddess (Ishassara) asking her for peace of mind and soul. This devotion to Ishassara turns quickly into an obsession. But the Goddess keeps on ignoring him and not listening to his prayers. So his ritual turns every day more into occultism - loosing his mind, he starts mutilating and sacrificing his first-born son. Seeing that still nothing happens and feeling betrayed by the goddess, he burns the whole temple down, dying in its flames.
This is also the first single from a new album, that will be released during 2018.
(Self released)
DECEMBER 14, 2017

The GLORIA STORY: Does Your Heart Feel At Home - Single
The Gloria Story
A new single with Swedish 70s rockers The GLORIA STORY. And just in time for Christmas.
This band have been doing a lot of acoustic shows during the last years, and to me it sounds like this is a combination between the acoustic and the electric version of the band. It's more like a singer/songwriter song with electric guitars but still rock (if you get what I mean).
This band use to do energetic party anthems, but not this time. But who said that a band isn't allowed to develop their sound? And as long as it's good, which this is, there's no reason to complain. So check this it.
Now it would be nice with a new album, or at least a EP. Feels like it was a while ago now.
(Wild Kingdom)
DECEMBER 14, 2017

FOREFATHER: Ours Is The Kingdom (reissue) - Album
So, this is a reissue of a album that was originally released in 2004. It's said to include many of the band's classics. This version has been remastered by FOREFATHER themselves, with minimal change in sound, but yet revealing the full dynamics not present on the original. We also get the bonus track "Fighters Of The Angelcynn", which will give you over 65 minutes of music.
FOREFATHER is a duo from UK who play some kind of melodic pagan/viking metal. And I think that this is a really good album. Especially the first song, "The Shield-Wall". Absolutely worth checking out, no matter what kind of metal you usually prefer.
The only track I don't really like (or understand the use of) is "The Sea-King".
(Heidens Hart Records)
DECEMBER 14, 2017

OPERATION: MINDCRIME: The New Reality - Album
O.k., I didn't like the last album, and this album doesn't impress me either. I think they have actually succeeded to make a even worse album. The music is like if David Bowie and Iggy Pop would have teamed up to make a progressive rock album. And that just doesn't work for me. Most of these songs sounds more like something laidback with David Bowie. Hardly any party songs.
I actually think that they are cheating people by calling the band OPERATION: MINDCRIME. Because the music they make has nothing at all to do with the QUEENSRŸCHE classic "Operation: Mindcrime".
This is the last part of a trilogy, and I would hardly cry if they never make an album again. Give this to some jazz dude. He might like it.
(Frontiers Music srl)
DECEMBER 13, 2017

NO AMNESTY: Psychopathy - Album
This band was formed in Sant Boi de Llobregat (Barcelona), Spain in mid-2012. The members was just 15 years old at that time. They recorded their first EP, "A New Order For Attack", in 2013 already. After a few years some members had to be replaced. The same old story as with many other bands.
But now a album is here, which gives us true old-school thrash metal like we never had left the 80s. Nothing originally, but who will complain? It's exactly the kind of stuff that we want, isn't it?
(Xtreem Music)
DECEMBER 13, 2017

NIGHTFEAR: Cryptasm - Album
Debut EP with a band from Pennsylvania, who combine different genres like thrash, hardcore, crossover and death metal. You could say that they channel the old school feeling and atmosphere from old hardcore and crossover bands, and add some modern death/thrash to that. And I promise you that it's not as weird as it may sound for some of you (especially those of you who are just into metal or hardcore).
Let me put it this way then: You take a big dose of violence and razor-sharp riffs, and then you have a aggressive band like NIGHTFEAR.
Still not convinced? Well, listen to them then stupid. They kick ass!
(Black Market Metal Label)
DECEMBER 13, 2017

MARGINAL: Total Destruction - Album
I'm usually not such a big fan of grindcore. But when you mix it with crust punk like these Belgians does, then it works really good. Because even if it's fast and aggressive, this is not just a hell of a noise. It's still music. I think of a band like EXTREME NOISE TERROR for example, even though this is a little more friendly for your ears. But I suspect that fans of let's say NAPALM DEATH, SKITSYSTEM and NASUM are going to like this as well.
The lyrics are the usual punk stuff about a fucked up system and greedy bastards. On the more intelligent side. You will definitely not find any love songs here. MARGINAL are angry.
Release date: Dec. 15, 2017 (Transcending Obscurity Records)
DECEMBER 13, 2017

JUGGERNAUT: Out Of The Ashes - Album
Macho music for big and angry men. The best track is actually a cover of JUDAS PRIEST's "Jawbreaker", and that's almost always a warning sign (when a cover is better than their original material).
I guess this is not the first or the last band with the name JUGGERNAUT. It seems to be a pretty new band who release their debut album. Their music is some kind of groove/thrash metal. But there's also more melodic parts here and there.
Well, I have definitely heard worse in my life.
(Art Gates Records)
DECEMBER 13, 2017

RYLOS: Planet - Album
This is the second album from this up and coming Finnish rock act, who actually have a drummer who has been blind all his life. But he play just as good as anybody else. And their mascot is a crazy, angry carrot.
Their music is the alternative kind of rock, which doesn't say much. It's on the border to melodic hard rock sometimes. Always a catchy melody that takes you through the songs. Not bad at all actually. Just listen to songs like "Planet R" and "My Capricious Heart" for example.
This guys have already started to work on their 3rd album, which will be a concept album called "Solarworks", and tells a story about adventures in time, space and mind.
(Secret Entertainment)
DECEMBER 12, 2017

Question: Did this singer think about taking over the vocals in QUEENSRŸCHE after Geoff Tate had left the band? Because his voice is similar to Geoff's voice, which makes me think of good old QUEENSRŸCHE when I listen to this. But sure, there's other influences too. It wouldn't surprise me if they also like IRON MAIDEN and HELLOWEEN for example. Good old U.S./heavy metal is what we get anyway. And who can say no to that? A damned good band that you must check out! It's that simple!
It's a pretty long album though: 68 minutes. Former MANOWAR guitarist David Shankle is doing a guest solo on 1 of the songs, if that can be of interest to know.
Release date: Dec. 15, 2017 (Self Released)
DECEMBER 12, 2017

VINEGAR HILL: Ghost Flowers - Album
Another one of these modern metal acts. And they have all the usual ingredients. It's catchy and melodic just like everybody else use to be, and they also seems to have some really good songs here. But they also add the extra ingredients brutality, speed and heaviness here and there. Nothing unique, but every band doesn't do that.
This band comes from Austria, and for some reason they are described as melodic death metal. But are they really hard enough to be called that? Sometimes I would say. But I prefer to just call it modern metal instead, and then you can call it whatever you want.
This band is hardly new. It seems like they have been around for 10 years already, and this is their 3rd album.
Could be worth a try..
(Art Gates Records)
DECEMBER 11, 2017

Compilation with 4 Swedish trallpunk bands, who play 3 songs each. I think the 2 first bands, SARDO NUMSPA and BJÖRNKAJAN, sounds more or less like different versions of LASTKAJ 14. But on the other hand that's a damned good band in this Swedish genre of punk rock. But BJÖRNKAJAN win the fight between these 2 bands because SARDO NUMSPA's vocalist sounds a little odd, but it could be the bad sound quality just as well.
KKPA is a band that I have not heard in many years, but they still seems to be very good anyway. And BENDEL & CO. end this collection. Maybe not the best band. Too little energy for my taste, which makes it a little boring and affected somehow.
Well, if you want to know what the Swedish trallpunk scene has to offer today, then this is the compilation for you.
(Second Class Kids Records)
DECEMBER 11, 2017

HYPERION: Dangerous Days - Album
HYPERION was born in Bologna, Italy in 2015 to play pure heavy metal in classic 80s style. In August 2016 the lineup was complete, and the band was ready to record their debut album. And now it's finally here. And what a album it is. Lots of great songs here. Sure, I have heard better, but it's definitely not bad at all. So I recomend you to check this out of course.
(Fighter Records)
DECEMBER 10, 2017

HUMANASH: Reborn From The Ashes - EP
HUMANASH was created by vocalist John Goldfinch (L'IMPERO DELLA OMBRE) for the love of classic heavy metal, and the need to play heavier music than his main band. More speed metal oriented with a horror theme, and with influences from DEATH SS and 80s metal bands. So he recruited some guys and gave birth to the horror story that is "Reborn From The Ashes". And the result is 6 tracks in 22 minutes of good old heavy metal. Not bad. The only thing I wonder a little about is if that last opera piece really was necessary.
(Jolly Roger Records)
DECEMBER 10, 2017

HENRY METAL: Henry Metal V - Album
So, this is the 5th album this year from this humorous metal dude. It's not as good as his last album, "Metal O'Clock". It's as simple as that the songs are a bit weaker and more boring. But otherwise it's more or less the same as earlier: humorous lyrics about sex, monsters and muscle cars, mixed with all kinds of metal.
This metal adventure started with a release of 2 singles in late March 2017, which has been followed by as much as 5 albums now. Is it time for a break, or will he continue to be over-productive? The one who lives will see and hear..
(Henry Metal Records)
DECEMBER 10, 2017

HENRY METAL: Metal O'Clock - Album
Before I had written 1 single word about this album (which was released in August), I got another album (which was released on Dec. 1). Seems to be a active dude. A very active dude actually, as he have released 5 albums this year.
HENRY METAL gives us the more humorous kind of metal, even though the music itself is not a joke (if you get what I mean). There's a big middle-finger and tongue-in-cheek when it comes to the lyrics, while the music can be all kinds of metal. It's often catchy, and this guy knows how to play, so don't expect any amateur songs here.
Well, let's just say that most of these 8 songs are good stuff. And if you think that humour doesn't belong in metal, too bad for you then.
(Henry Metal Records)
DECEMBER 10, 2017

HALPHAS: Dawn Of A Crimson Empire - Album
The music is good, no doubt about that. But unfortunately they have a singer who sounds like he is drunk and doesn't really know how to sing. And that's a very big problem. Because while the others play some kind of melodic black metal, the singer just scream without any vocal melody at all. But in songs like "Damnation Of The Weak" and "Sword Of The Necromancer" he actually try to have a vocal melody at least. Much better than all the other songs together. I would hardly call it excellent though.
The band started in 2014, and this is their first album.
Release date: Dec. 15, 2017 (Folter Records)
DECEMBER 10, 2017

SQUEALER: Behind Closed Doors - Single
This German band was originally founded in the 80s as a classic power metal band. Today the music is a mixture of several different metal elements, as well as groovy rock. And this song - which is the title track of their new album that will be released on February 23, 2018 - sounds pretty modern actually, and not like an old band from the 80s.
This is the first of 3 singles that will be released before the album comes out.
(Pride & Joy Music)
DECEMBER 9, 2017

SWITCHBLADE JESUS/FUZZ EVIL: Chapter 7, The Second Coming Of Heavy - Split EP
This record is so long that I'm not really sure if I should call it EP or full length. But it's a split between 2 stoner rock bands anyway, and SWITCHBLADE JESUS is the first band out. They are a trio from Texas, and are said to be "a mixture of southwestern boogie, desert-worn blues, retro-metal assault and fierce rocking". 1 thing is for sure, they are heavy (and that seems to be enough information for some people). Their songs are between 5 to 9 and a half minutes, and we get 3 songs from them. Not bad actually, even though some of the songs are a little too long for my taste.
FUZZ EVIL is another trio, and they participate with 4 songs. They are described as "a monolithic speaker-ripping fuzzapocaplyse for your ears and soul". But I don't know.. They sounds a lot more catchy and friendly than SWITCHBLADE JESUS, and far away from as heavy as them. Their first song, "Better Off Alone", is almost a little like early QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE actually. While the second, "Graves And Cupids", reminds me of early BLACK SABBATH. And that's not so bad, huh?
(Ripple Music)
DECEMBER 9, 2017

SEAX: Speed Metal Mania/To The Grave - Double CD
SEAX was formed in Massachusetts, U.S.A. in 2009. Their debut album, "High On Metal", was released in 2012. And what we have here is their second and third album. "To The Grave" was just released on vinyl in December 2014, and "Speed Metal Mania" was released by themselves in September 2016. But now it's finally time for a more real release of this albums.
They play what I would call really cool speed metal in the good old tradition. Just like it was 1985 again. So if that sounds interesting, then I think you know what to do next..
(Iron Shield Records)
DECEMBER 9, 2017

PALE HORSEMAN: The Fourth Seal - Album
PALE HORSEMAN is a 4-piece metal band from the Chicago area, who combines elements of sludge, doom and death metal. This is the first recording with their new drummer, Jason Schryver, who joined the band in May 2016. They say that he has given the band a newfound power and energy. Well, 1 thing is for sure though: If you like it loud and heavy, then this might be the band for you. Hardly anything new or original, so you probably know what you're going to get here. I wouldn't say that they are the best band on the planet though. But we all have different taste, don't we?
Release date: Dec. 8, 2017 (Black Bow Records)
DECEMBER 5, 2017

MASTER / DEHUMAN: Decay Into Inferior Conditions - Split Album
You could say that the old school meets the new school here. MASTER are the death metal veterans that formed back in 1983 already, while DEHUMAN give us some new blood. This split release seems to be a special one for the band's 3rd European tour together, which took place in October/November (if I'm not totally wrong). And I guess that this album was sold there, but now it will be released worldwide as well.
MASTER participate with a soundboard recording from Lepakkomies in Helsinki, Finland, which was recorded on October 7, 2016. 4 tracks is what we get, and it's a raw and brutal recording, but with a clear sound for coming straight from a soundboard.
DEHUMAN recorded their part of this split live in the studio. We get 2 "old" songs and 1 new. The songs have been re-written and updated with additional contribution by their new ex-VIBRION guitarist, Lou-Indigo Caspar. True death metal. No more no less.
Release date: Dec. 8, 2017 (Xenokorp)
DECEMBER 5, 2017

KING GOAT: Conduit - Album
Debut album from a British band who play progressive doom metal. This album has previously been self released, but has now been re-released with 3 tracks from their first EP as a bonus. They have previously released 2 EPs in 2013 and 2014.
The band was formed in Brighton in 2012. They take their influences from both metal and other music. And that's what gives them thier own sound. It's hard and heavy as doom, but as it happens a little bit more it will also please fans of progressive music. So if you want it simple, then this might not be something for you. But if you like long pieces who are more or less like an adventure, then this might be what you're looking for.
I know that I'm not always impressed by progressive bands, but this is actually good. And it seems like KING GOAT plan to release their second album during 2018.
Release date: Dec. 8, 2017 (Aural Music)
DECEMBER 4, 2017

INFECTED DEAD: Archaic Malevolence - EP
Zombie death metal from Kent, UK. This is their debut album, which deliver 6 tracks of brutal but catchy death metal influenced by ABORTED and The BLACK DAHLIA MURDER. And if that sounds interesting, then I recomend you to check this out, because they are definitely not bad at all.
Release date: Dec. 8, 2017 (Hostile Media)
DECEMBER 4, 2017

CAN OF WORMS: Nuclear Thrasher - Album
Yeah, why include any kind of information at all? Because of that I know shit nada nothing about this band. But I guess that's not important. Well, don't expect a long and deep review then (like you would have got that anyway).
Their music is thrash metal in good old style with a pinch of hardcore. And it's not bad at all. So give them a try no matter where they come from and who they are.
As they didn't even include a release date, I suppose that this album is already released.
(Great Dane Records)
DECEMBER 3, 2017

SKARLETT RIOT: Affliction - Single
Yet another single from their new album, "Regenerate", which is out now. And what can I say that I haven't already said before? This is simply one of the best British modern metal bands right now. Very catchy and melodic stuff that you already should have checked out (if you have read my previous reviews at least).
(Despotz Records)
DECEMBER 3, 2017

SKINWEAVER: Gratification Eternal - Album
..and here's another band from the record label who doesn't include any information. So I don't know much about this band either. But they play death metal anyway, and they are hardly the worst band in the world. Sure, I have heard better, but it's not bad, and could still be worth a try.
(Great Dane Records)
DECEMBER 3, 2017

MASQUED: The Light In The Dark - Album
A modern heavy metal band from Houston, Texas with members from HELSTAR/LEATHERWOLF and TESTAMENT/SADUS. They are described as a female-fronted progressive/power metal band, and an American version of NIGHTWISH. But fact is that their influences comes from so much more than that. Sure, it's mainly heavy metal, but they also blend in stuff like 70s rock, Bay Area thrash and even jazz, just to name a few of all their influences. The music is very soulful, and they are damned good at playing. So it's almost hard to understand that this is just their debut album.
There's lots of good songs among these 9 tracks, so I think that this is a band that you really should check out.
(Sleazy Rider Records)
DECEMBER 2, 2017

MILLENNIUM: Awakening - Album
This NWOBHM band was originally formed back in 1982 already, and released their debut album in 1984. It was followed by a number of demos between 1985-1988. The band disbanded in June 1988.
In 2014 No Remorse Records re-released the debut album, and in 2015 they reunited the band and released a new album in 2016 (with old demo material). Now a completely new album is here for us to enjoy the fruits of.
All I can say about this record is that it's damned good. So if good old New Wave Of British Heavy Metal is your thing, then MILLENNIUM is definitely your thing.
(Self released?)
DECEMBER 2, 2017

MARBLE MAMMOTH: The Girl Of A 1000 Thrills - Single
Yet another single from their EP. They have probably released half of the songs by now. But it seems to be a interesting release. So why complain? This song might not be as interesting as the previous singles though. But it's definitely not bad.
MARBLE MAMMOTH is a quartet from Stockholm, Sweden who blend riff rock and psychedelic rock. Their self titled EP is out now (I still haven't got it though).
(House of Marble/Sound Pollution)
DECEMBER 2, 2017

This band combine classic hard rock with a contemporary metal sound. They have taken their influences from the 70s hard rock, and created their own style of metal out of it. The members are mostly unknown to most people, but they have all had long careers in music.
I could easily survive without the last ballad, "My Mortal Soul", because that song was not good.
Their latest album, "Bloodbound", was released as late as in March 2017, and they are already working on their next album, which will be released in 2018. Seems to be a hard working band.
Release date: Dec. 8, 2017 (Pride & Joy Music)
DECEMBER 1, 2017

STORMHOLD: Salvation - Album
Swedish heavy/power metal band. This is their second album, which consist of strong melodies, twin guitars and choirs. Definitely something for those of you who like good old 80s heavy metal. Think of a band like IRON MAIDEN for example. It's something similar to that, but not yet another copy of them.
STORMHOLD released a self titled demo in 2010 and a EP, "Tales Of Astraal", in 2012. Their debut album, "Battle Of The Royal Halls", was released in 2015.
Release date: Dec. 8, 2017 (Pure Steel Publishing)
DECEMBER 1, 2017

WOLF COUNSEL: Age Of Madness/Reign Of Chaos - Album
WOLF COUNSEL is a doom metal band from Zürich, Switzerland, and they has existed since 2014. Their debut album, "Vol. 1 - Wolf Counsel", was released in 2015. And another album, "Ironclad", was released in 2016. So this is their 3rd full length.
It's definitely not bad at all. I think that fans of classic heavy bands from the 70s/80s are going to like this a lot. That doesn't mean that they sound exactly like everybody else though.
(Czar Of Crickets Productions)
DECEMBER 1, 2017

MASS MURDER AGENDA: Vulturis - Album
This is like a big and heavy machine that is chewing metal like there was no tomorrow. Somewhere between MINISTRY and RAMMSTEIN if we take it in musical terms. And these 11 tracks are not bad at all. This is actually really good stuff that you should check out.
"Vulturis" is their second album. Their debut album, "Bring The Violence", was released in 2012. I don't know why it has taken so long between the albums. But if that's what it takes to create such a good record as this, then I guess it's worth the wait.
(Machine Records)
DECEMBER 1, 2017

NUCKIN' FUTS: Abyss - Album
Thrash metal band from Barcelona, Spain who formed in 2012. They released a EP, "Evilution", in 2013, and a full length, "Fair Warning", in 2014. But it's not until now that their second album is out.
Well, their songs on this record is very good old school thrash metal that should satisfy all fans of that genre. Because if you don't like this, then you must be very demanding. But o.k., if you are looking for something different, then this is not the band for you.
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (Blood Fire Death)
DECEMBER 1, 2017

A HERO FOR THE WORLD: CineRock - Album
Epic and symphonic power metal and rock versions of songs from more or less well-known movies and TV shows might sound like a cool idea for those who were involved. And they probably had a lot of fun recording these songs. But honestly, is it so funny to listen to? I would say no. Because famous movies hardly ever have any good rock songs. It's mainly stupid and silly songs for stupid and silly people. Is there anybody else but me who think that some of these songs reminds a little of Christmas songs? I get tired of this very fast.
With that said I guess I should add that they are at least doing a really good job here. It must have been very much work with this. And well, everything doesn't suck. I might also add that everything isn't power metal or even rock. And I'm not really sure if all these songs have something to do with the film/TV theme (you have to ask a film nerd about that).
This is actually more or less a solo project with Jacob Kaasgaard from Sweden on all instruments and vocals. But Louie Ryan from the Philippines is also singing on many of these songs.
"CineRock" will be released worldwide on iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify, Google Play, Deezer and Amazon.
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (Jacob K Productions)
NOVEMBER 30, 2017

DRAKONIS: The Great Miasma - EP
Northern Irish extreme metal quintet. "The Great Miasma" is said to be a story driven concept EP with 3 songs. Each song takes the listener through a different chapter, following the ritualistic sacrifice, possession and wrath of a young girl to appease an ancient god. Each song will also be accompanied by a music video, released out of sequence. Only when all 3 videos have been released and played in order, will the story become clear. Ambitious boys I must say.
The music is mainly a mixture of black and death metal, but without being limited to just 1 genre. They simply do as they want to. But 1 thing is for sure: It's brutal. But not chaotic. I think black metallers will like this more than death metallers. I really like what I hear!
DRAKONIS have been an ongoing project for many years. The band remained a studio project until 2015, when they started to play live.
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (Hostile Media)
NOVEMBER 30, 2017

EIGENSINN: Persona Non Grata - Album
This is like a more melodic and electronic RAMMSTEIN with Nina Hagen on vocals. This singer (who calls herself Nemesis) is not as crazy as Nina, and thanks for that (a friend have been playing some Hagen for me, and I wasn't impressed). I guess it could have been an interesting combination though, but probably not so good.
Well, I like what I hear. This band has several good songs on this album, so I think it's something that you should hear. Most of the songs are in German, but 2 are in English.
EIGENSINN comes from southern Germany, and this is their 3rd album. It will take you on a twisted tale about zombies, monsters and evil fairies.
Best track: "My Emptiness"
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (Pride & Joy Music)
NOVEMBER 30, 2017

NERO DOCTRIN: II, Interitus - Album
Founded in 2012 as DYSTOPIA. Their goal was to play a mixture of Swedish melodic death metal and modern thrash metal. They released their debut album, "Tools Of Oblivion", in 2013. Over the years the band has developed their sound, and in 2017 they decided to change the name of the band to NERO DOCTRIN. I would say that they still deliver their original recipe, but with some extra spices. And it's an excellent meal that they serves us.
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (Boersma Records)
NOVEMBER 30, 2017

NIMROD B.C.: God Of War And Chaos - Album
This thrash band has actually existed since 1985 (with a couple of breaks now and then), and released their first demo tape, "Time Of Changes", back in 1988. In 1990 they finally got a record deal, and recorded a album that was never released due to different reasons. Which made guitarist Chris Ira so frustrated that he left the band for a few years. But in 2004 they decided to release the old demo with some unreleased studio tracks and a few live recordings. After that it took 5 years before Chris decided to reform the band. They did some festival shows in South America and released the album "Return To Babylon".
Now a new album is here, and it's the first album with new singer Gary Wayne. This is really good old school thrash metal for fans of the old German bands. I think you're going to like this a lot.
Best song: "They Shall Not Pass".
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (Metalapolis)
NOVEMBER 30, 2017

SELF DECEPTION: Broken Generation - Single
Yet another modern melodic rock band that sounds very American. But this band comes from Stockholm, Sweden. This is the first of 3 singles that will be released from their new self titled album, which will be released in February. That will be their 3rd album.
It's not worthless, but not my kind of stuff either. So I don't think I want more of this band. Not a whole album anyway.
(Ninetone Records)
NOVEMBER 29, 2017

SCARS OF SOLITUDE: Deformation - Album
Melodic metal quintet from Äänekoski, Finland who was founded in January 2015. This is their debut album. Their music is both dark and colourful at the same time. Something that many might not succeed with. But this band does. And I really like what I hear, so I think you should give them a try. Especially if you are among those who like Finnish metal. Because this is very Finnish somehow.
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (Inverse Records)
NOVEMBER 29, 2017

RIDDLEMASTER: Bring The Magik Down - Album
They set the standard at once with a 14-minute adventure that is like 2-3 songs in 1 long track. The 5 other songs are shorter though (4,51-9,21 min).
RIDDLEMASTER is the brainchild of Mark The Shark Shelton and Rick Fisher. Rick Fisher was the drummer on the first MANILLA ROAD records from 1979 to 1984. Mark Shelton is founder, guitarist, vocalist and primary composer for MANILLA ROAD since its beginning in 1977 (and is still going strong with the band after 40 years). The idea for this project came up when Rick and Shark were discussing what MANILLA ROAD might sound like if Rick had never stopped performing with the band. Accompanied by E.C. Hellwell on bass guitar, this is an experiment in what might have been. This album consist of a wild mixture of different genres of classic rock and metal. But to make it easy we can call it quiet hard rock. Because this is not a party record.
They have some good stuff here, even though it might not be any masterpieces. And it's said to be something for fans of early MANILLA ROAD. So this is probably very cool for them.
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (Metalapolis)
NOVEMBER 29, 2017

The GO GETTERS: Love & Hate - Album
Rockabilly veterans from the Swedish cucumber town Västerås. This trio has actually been around for 29 years now.
I know that you might want to do something different once in a while, but they really should concentrate on good old rock n roll instead of a Mexican inspired song like "Maria". Because when they're rocking, then they're just as good as any other band in this genre.
Even though they play old rock n roll, it actually seems like they like MOTÖRHEAD (which is always a extra plus in my book), as they are doing a cover of "Motorhead" (which was originally done by HAWKWIND). And while we talk about covers, they are also doing the Johnny Cash classic "Ring Of Fire".
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (Goofin' Records)
NOVEMBER 29, 2017

SUPERCHUNK: What A Time To Be Alive - Single
Power pop. A pretty good song, even though I have heard much better. This is hardly something for the hardest rockers though. It's very catchy and melodic.
This is the title track from a new album with these Americans, which will be released on February 16, 2018 via Merge Records.
I don't have anything else to say..
(Merge Records)
NOVEMBER 29, 2017

CROM: When Northmen Die - Album
Epic Viking/power metal that is said to be in the same tradition as the BATHORY albums "Hammerheart" and "Twilight Of The Gods". Calm and silent melodies go hand in hand with majestic guitar riffs, sweeping harmonies, as well as clean and powerful vocals.
CROM is a solo project with Walter "Crom" Grosse (DARK FORTRESS). This is his 3rd album, which last for over an hour. Most of these songs are good though, so no problem there.
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (Pure Steel Records)
NOVEMBER 28, 2017

BongCauldron: Binge - Album
Another hard and heavy sludge band, even though they're a little catchy too. And that last thing is always a extra plus according to me. When you don't play heavy just because you think it's so funny, and forget the whole idea of a melody and a real song.
But this band also have a other side. In some songs they actually sounds like MOTÖRHEAD. So there's variation too, which is another plus.
This little trio comes from the United Kingdom, and this is their debut album. It can actually be worth checking out.
Release date: Dec. 1, 2017 (APF Records)
NOVEMBER 28, 2017

COME BACK FROM THE DEAD: Caro Data Vermibus - EP
Sounds like some drunk punks trying to play like ENTOMBED. But they say that their sound has its roots in Finnish death metal, and that they also throw in some Spanish darkness in their brew. It's old school death metal anyway. No doubt about that. And it's actually not so bad at all.
COME BACK FROM THE DEAD are from Spain, and they have previously released a full length album. The members comes from bands like NASHGUL, BOKLUK and MACHETAZO, if any of them sounds familiar?
Release date: Nov. 30, 2017 (Transcending Obscurity Records)
NOVEMBER 28, 2017

BLACK ALTAR: Winds ov Decay / BEASTCRAFT: Occult Ceremonial Rites - Split Album
What BLACK ALTAR is doing is a very good question. First it takes almost 2 minutes before they finally start to play, and when they start to play it's almost chaos. It's not chaos all the time though, but hardly the best black metal band that I have heard.
When it's time for BEASTCRAFT we get another useless intro without any meaning. Their music seems to be better than BLACK ALATAR's chaos though. More atmospheric. And that's always something. I wouldn't say that it's excellent, but some of their songs are good though.
Not an album that I would waste any money on.
Release date: Nov. 30, 2017 (Odium Records)
NOVEMBER 28, 2017

ANNIHILATION: The Undivided Wholeness Of All Things - Album
Now I'm not such a big fan of that deep, guttural growl voice. And to me these 8 tracks sounds more or less the same all the way. So no, I'm not impressed. But I wouldn't say that it's the worst I have heard though. They have their short bright moments once in a while.
ANNIHILATION is a Portugese death metal band who play hard and heavy. And if that's what you want, then I won't stop you from giving them a try.
The band's founder Fabio Da Silva is no longer the vocalist. On this album they have used session vocalist Diogo Santana. But when they play live they will have Sofia Silva (A TREE OF SIGNS, NEOPLASMAH) on vocals.
Release date: Nov. 28, 2017 (Nice To Eat You Records)
NOVEMBER 27, 2017

IMPERIALIST: Cipher - Album
I hope these guys know what they're doing, because I don't really understand why they first have a string orchestra intro that last for 2 minutes, and when they finally start to play some metal after that, it takes several minutes before there's any vocals at all. Don't waste my time! And they are hardly the first or the last band who make that little mistake. When are people going to listen to the master (me) and learn?
These boys are hard black metallers from Los Angeles. Not exactly a city famous for black metal. But that might change now that their debut album is going to be released. Because this is really good stuff in the more melodic way. But it wouldn't surprise me if just the most fanatic underground fans will hear about this band. I think they deserve more than that. You will check this out though. No matter if you're an underground fanatic or not.
IMPERIALIST was established in 2013. Their first EP, "Quantum Annexation", was released in 2015.
Release date: Nov. 28, 2017 (Self released)
NOVEMBER 26, 2017

EGONAUT: The Omega - Album
I'm a little impressed that we have such a great doom metal band as this here in Borås, Sweden. This is defintely a album that you should check out as soon as possible. That's how good I think it is. And when they end the whole party with the majestic piece "Revelations", it's almost magic.
EGONAUT was formed in 2006 already, so it's hardly a new band. In the beginning their music was more like a mixture of punk, stoner and hard rock. But during the years it has developed to what they call doom n roll. This is their 4th album, and the first with new vocalist Emil Kyrk, who is doing a really good job behind the mic.
"The Omega" is the first concept album from EGONAUT, and it tells the story of a seeker trying to find his place in the modern world and what transpires when he finally finds it.
(Mighty Music)
NOVEMBER 25, 2017

OUTLAWS & MOONSHINE: Devil In The Moonshine - Album
Rednecks from Indianapolis playing Southern country rock, and singing about drinking and other "important" stuff in their life. Most songs are good, so there's not much to complain about.
This quartet released their first EP, "1919", on their own in 2015. Now it's time for their debut album. And this is something for fans of bands like BLACKSTONE CHERRY, BLACKBERRY SMOKE and .38 SPECIAL.
The coolest song on this album must be "Cootie Brown".
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Nemesis Records/Vanity Music Group)
NOVEMBER 24, 2017

PILE OF PRIESTS: Tenebrous Labyrinth - EP
3 original songs and 3 covers by a progressive death metal trio from Denver, Colorado. They are inspired by bands like DEATH, EDGE OF SANITY, OLD MAN'S CHILD, CANNIBAL CORPSE and VOIVOD, and aim to produce a sound inspired by 90s death and thrash bands. The covers they play here are from CORONER, SADUS and KREATOR. Pretty good stuff, even though I have heard better.
PILE OF PRIESTS released their debut album, "Void To Enlightenment", in 2015.
(Self released?)
NOVEMBER 24, 2017

DEATHPROOF: Evolve Or Die - Album
DEATHPROOF was formed in the city of Valencia, Spain in 2010. They deliver a wall of guitars and angry vocals. Their sound is a combination of thrash and groove metal. The debut album, "Abuse", was released in 2011, but it's not until now that their second album, "Evolve Or Die" is ready to be released. The album consist of 8 tracks of hard and angry metal, and it's not so bad I suppose.
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Art Gates Records)
NOVEMBER 23, 2017

DANTE FOX: Six String Revolver - Album
Typical American, emotional and very melodic rock/AOR (I think they're from Europe though, but I'm not really sure). In the slower songs they are on the border to pop. They have a few good songs though, but there's too little variation to please me. And I can't help feeling that this is nothing but radio friendly dozen music. Which doesn't exactly sound like something for a hard rocker. Maybe your pop friends will like this?
DANTE FOX was formed in 1989 already, but their debut album, "Under Suspicion", wasn't released until 1996 (97 in Japan). After their second album, "The Fire Within" (1999), the band took a break and didn't return until 2005. And they have continued to release albums since 2007 (when their 3rd album came out).
This album features re-recordings of songs from their 2 first albums, so I guess it's a good introduction to the band.
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (AOR Heaven)
NOVEMBER 23, 2017

CARDIANT: Mirrors - Album
Hard to get a grip on this melodic metal orchestra. Some songs are good, some are not. So let's just say that it's neither the best or the worst album that I have heard in this genre. I think the song I like best here must be the opening track, "A Quiet One", which is a laidback, slow and acoustic song. Weird that I would like a song like that best.
CARDIANT comes from Finland, and was formed in the 2000s. They have had the current lineup since 2008, and this is their 4th album, which is said to be a concept album (they forgot to mention the theme though). They have been working on this album since 2015, and it features guest singers like Pasi Rantanen (THUNDERSTONE, KING COMPANY), Nitte Valo (BURNING POINT, SERAPHIEL) and Janne Saksa, who sang on their debut album, "Midday Moon".
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Inverse Records, Semi-Perfect Ry, Marquee Avalon)
NOVEMBER 23, 2017

BLISSFUL STREAM / LIGHTSABRES: Devi's Night To All Souls - Split EP
I can't really figure out why this is labeled as black folk rock. I guess you just have to love how some record labels decribe their artist's music.
BLISSFUL STREAM was formed after Martin Sällström left Swedish black metallers PEST. The songs was now inspired by 70s and 80s metal, but also spaghetti western and death rock. And I guess death rock might be a good genre description for this.
LIGHTSABRES is also from Sweden. John Strömshed from TUNGA MOLN seems to be the man behind this. And the music is described as stoner punk and alternative grunge. I think I have reviewed something with LIGHTSABRES before actually, but I don't have a clue what I might have written then. This sounds like some kind of stoner rock to me.
This EP will just be available digitally and as cassette to begin with. But a limited digipack CD will be released later. Good stuff, but you will easily survive without this.
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Medusa Crush Recordings)
NOVEMBER 23, 2017

The WHY OH WHY'S: Hoochie - Single
Swedish band playing some kind of garage rock that sounds like a more laidback The STOOGES. Not bad, but it's far away from hit potential.
This song has been available on digital platforms for a few weeks now, and I think it's taken from an upcoming album with them.
I actually don't know much else about them, but it wouldn't surprise me if we hear more from them pretty soon.
(Beluga Records)
NOVEMBER 22, 2017

AXEMASTER: Crawling Chaos - Album
It starts dark and heavy, but after that it's more like U.S. metal use to sound. Or power metal in the old U.S. tradition as their record label says.
It's 2 years since their debut album, "Overture To Madness", was released. And that's long enough for me to forget if that album was good or not. So I can't compare.
Even though this is their second album, this is hardly a new band. They released their first demo, "The Heirs To Revolution", in 1983 already. After that it has been some more demo recordings and singles, as well as a couple of split records.
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Pure Steel Records)
NOVEMBER 21, 2017

ALEA JACTA: Tales Of Void And Dependence - Album
This metal band is said to be one of the leading acts from The Canary Islands, Spain. Their sound is similar to what bands like MACHINE HEAD, HATEBREED and DEVILDRIVER are doing. They have released several EP's, but this is their first full length.
To me it sounds like some kind of modern and melodic, but yet hard metal. It's o.k., but not much else. But if you like the bands I mentioned above, then don't listen to what I say.
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Art Gates Records)
NOVEMBER 21, 2017

ABSALEM: Chaosvolution - Album
What shall we call this then? The failing link between The AGONIST and ARCH ENEMY maybe? Harder metal with a woman who mix clean vocals and growl anyway.
ABSALEM started as late as last year, and now their debut album is here for the world to hear. And they definitely have some good songs among these 10 tracks, so it could absolutely be worth a try or 10. Especially if you're into the bands mentioned earlier and similar stuff. Then you must hear this.
Not much else to add, sir..
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Art Gates Records)
NOVEMBER 21, 2017

ACCIDENTAL SUICIDE: Dead Erotica - Album (reissue)
ACCIDENTAL SUICIDE was an old school death metal band from Wisconsin, USA, who formed in 1989. Their debut album, "Deceased", was released in 1992. And in 1993 they recorded the "Dead Erotica" EP, which was never released. Until now then. You get that previously unreleased EP plus 2 old demos on this album.
I can understand why that EP wasn't released, because it's hardly the best I have heard. They probably try to be so evil and all, but I don't fall for that. It sounds like some kind of ghost metal recorded by some maniacs at the madhouse. And with a song title like "God Just Let Me Die" you don't exactly get the most positive vibes from this band. They hardly seems to aim at the top of metal anyway. And this band will stay in the underground forever. But that's probably exactly where they want to be. This is probably not something that I will listen to again.
After 4 songs the sound quality is suddenly very low. Which means that it's time for the demo recordings. And suddenly the music is so much better. Now it actually sounds like death metal and not like some maniacs trying to be as evil as possible. So if you want to check this out, go to track 4 at once and don't even listen to that EP (at least not more than once).
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Vic Records)
NOVEMBER 20, 2017

DEVASTATION: Dispensable Bloodshed - Album (reissue)
"Dispensable Bloodshed" is an unreleased LP from 1987 with the Chicago extreme/death metal band DEVASTATION. This CD also includes their 2 demo tapes from 1986. A total of 17 tracks. And at this time growl/grunt vocals was more or less unknown, so they was a little revolutionary when they released those demos. And many of the death metal artists from the 90s were influenced by this band.
The weird thing is that the album also sounds like a demo recording (the first songs at least). But it's pretty o.k. stuff anyway. ..for a while at least. Too many songs and too little variation for my taste. And I think this is the kind of album that you listen to just a couple of times, and then you forget all about it. But that's just my opinion.
Release date: Nov 24, 2017 (Vic Records)
NOVEMBER 20, 2017

DISCIPLES OF POWER: Powertrap - Album (reissue)
Canadian thrash/death metal band who originally formed as WARTHORN in Medicine Hat, Alberta in 1986. In 1987 they changed their name to DISCIPLES OF POWER and relocated to Edmonton. They were active until November 2003, and released 5 albums from 1989 up to 2002.
"Powertrap" is their debut album, and on this re-release we also get their demo from 1988 as a bonus. And well, what can I say? They seems to be skilful musicians, and I have definitely heard worse than this in my life. So why not give it a try?
Release date: Nov 24, 2017 (Vic Records)
NOVEMBER 20, 2017

FUNERAL NATION: Molted From Sin - Album (reissue)
Damned what a bad sound quality! But I'm not sure if I should complain about that, because this is just another band that's o.k. but not much else. I get tired of this after just a few songs. There's just a couple of songs here that are a little bit better.
What we have here is a thrash/black metal band from Chicago, who formed in 1989 and consist of past members of FUNERAL BITCH and ABOMINATION. They have released 1 studio album, 2 EPs, 1 live album and several demos through the years.
What we get on this album is their latest EP from 2017, the "The Benediction" demo from 1993 and their first demo, "State Of Insanity" from 1989. Maybe they should have made a best of collection instead? Because to me it seems to be a little stupid to release a album with a new EP and 2 old demos.
The only thing that impress me when it comes to FUNERAL NATION, is the fact that they are still playing with the same lineup that they have had since 1992. That's pretty unusual.
Release date: Nov 24, 2017 (Vic Records)
NOVEMBER 20, 2017

JUMPIN' JESUS: The Art Of Crucifying - Album (reissue)
Hardly any hallelujah music. But I don't think you expected any gospel or something like that anyway. But let's stop joking and talk about this band instead.
This is a death metal band from Germany, who formed in 1989. They released 3 demos before it was time for their first full length album, "The Art Of Crucifying", was released in 1991. The band split up soon after the album was released.
There's a whole jungle of reissues like this nowadays, and everything is hardly any good. My opinion about this album is that it's pretty good stuff. So this could absolutely be worth checking out. Most songs are not unnecessarily long and advanced. It's just pure raw death metal brutality from the beginning to the end.
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Vic Records)
NOVEMBER 20, 2017

MYSTIFIER: Profanus - Album (reissue)
They just laugh.. A weird beginning of an extreme metal album, as laughing is not so evil, is it? Well, that depends on how you laugh I suppose. Maybe not the best band in this genre, but I'm at least man enough to admit that I can hear that they are good at what they are doing. And something that makes them a little special is that keyboard in the background in some of the songs (luckily not that many songs). But no, it's not any orchestral stuff or something like that. It's more like a part of their scary atmosphere.
Now that I have heard this album a few times, it has become a little better than the first times I heard it. And that's positive of course. It sounds like some kind of death/thrash metal, even though there's some black metal too sometimes.
This band comes from Brazil, and was formed by bassist Beelseebubth in July 1989. In 2001 they released their 4th full length, "Profanus", on a Brazilian label. It was soon sold out, and has been hard to find since then. But now the album will be re-released with 3 live tracks as a bonus.
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Vic Records)
NOVEMBER 20, 2017

SPARZANZA: The Trigger - Single
Yet another single (the 3rd) from their new album, "Announcing The End", which didn't really impress me. But this is at least 1 of the better songs from that album. According to the band themselves, the sound on this song is back to their roots, which is stoner and 70s rock. And just like all the other songs on the album, the theme is the end. In this case to end a difficult situation and move on.
There's really not that much else to say, so if you want more information, read my album review.
(Despotz Records)
NOVEMBER 19, 2017

BOUNDSLUG: Circus In Town - Album
The Finnish horror circus is in town to give you some rock, and you're invited no matter if you want it or not.
"BOUNDSLUG is a horror rock quartet from eastern Finland, combining psychobilly influences with heavy rock and punk", according to their record label. For once I think I can agree, even though it's mainly eerie psychobilly that I hear here. And it's actually not so bad. They have some good songs here, even though everything might not be so great. But it could still be worth checking out.
"Circus In Town" is their second album, which consist of 11 tracks.
(Self released)
NOVEMBER 19, 2017

Jeff Scott Soto: Retribution - Album
Jeff Scott Soto has been an active singer for more than 30 years now. He is most well-known for singing on Yngwie Malmsteen's 2 first albums. But he has also been a member of bands like TALISMAN, TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA, W.E.T., JOURNEY and SOTO, to name just a few of all the projects he has been involved with. Once in a while he has recorded a solo album as well. His first solo album, "Love Parade", came out in 1994. "Retribution" is his 6th solo album.
Somehow this makes me think of KISS during the mid-80s, even though it's not exactly the same thing. It's melodic hard rock anyway, with lots of guitar and some keyboard. And if you like that, then you will probably like this record.
(Frontiers Music srl)
NOVEMBER 18, 2017

The DARK ELEMENT: The Dark Element - Album
This is a new project with former NIGHTWISH vocalist Anette Ohlzon and former SONATA ARCTICA guitarist Jani Liimatainen. You should not have to be a rocket scientist to figure out how that will sound. But I don't know.. For some reason some of these songs reminds me a little of ABBA actually, if it wasn't for the heavy guitars then. But in the end, this is on a totally different level. This is very melodic of course. So it might be their melodies that makes me think of ABBA.
Luckily there's no opera vocals a'la NIGHTWISH here. Just clean vocals. And that's a good thing according to me, as I really don't like that opera voice. But I'm not really sure if I should call this symphonic metal or melodic hard rock. Maybe it's a combination of both? I think fans of both genres will like this though.
(Frontiers Music srl)
NOVEMBER 18, 2017

BABYLON A.D.: Revelation Highway - Album
BABYLON A.D. are actually one of the few acts from the late 80s/early 90s that still have all the original members left in the band. They formed back in 1987 already, and to celebrate their 30th anniversary they thought it was a good idea to release a new album. And well, that wasn't such a bad idea actually.
Now I'm not sure if I have heard this band before or not, so I have nothing to compare with. But what we get here is really good classic hard rock anyway. So if you happens to like that, then you have to try this album.
(Frontiers Music srl)
NOVEMBER 18, 2017

PINK CREAM 69: Headstrong - Double Album
This album marks the 30th anniversary for these German hard rockers. But it's actually not a best of collection, but a new studio album, which on the other hand also includes a bonus CD with a live recording from Ludwigsburg, Germany in 2013, where they performed material from their whole career.
This is yet another band that I can't really remember if I have heard before or not, but this album sounds really good anyway, so it could be worth checking out. But a weird thing with the live album is that the singer is mixing both English and German when he speak between the songs. Funny dude.
(Frontiers Music srl)
NOVEMBER 17, 2017

PRIMAL FEAR: Best Of Fear - Double Album
These Germans released a live album less than half a year ago. And here comes a best of album. Weird. But luckily they are a really good band, so why complain?
The songs on this collection is taken from the last 10 years of their long career. The first disc encompasses the heavier and more straight ahead material, while the second shows the more involved and epic side of the band's songwriting. But before the nostalgic party starts, we get 4 new songs as a warm-up. It's as much as 27 tracks here, so if you don't find your favorites here, then I don't know.
And if you have not heard PRIMAL FEAR before, then I would say that it's something for fans of JUDAS PRIEST. But sure, there's much more influences involved here, but that will give you a direction. Any fan of good old heavy metal should like this.
(Frontiers Music srl)
NOVEMBER 17, 2017

SWEET & LYNCH: Unified - Album
This band is centered around STRYPER guitarist/vocalist Michael Sweet and guitarist George Lynch (LYNCH MOB, ex-DOKKEN). The other members are bassist James Lomenzo (ex-MEGADETH, WHITE LION, BLACK LABEL SOCIETY) and drummer Brian Tichy (The DEAD DAISIES, ex-WHITESNAKE). In other words what you could call yet another all-star band. But it's also a way for Sweet and Lynch to operate a little on the outside of their previous works, and a chance to investigate other areas of hard rock. Some songs are really heavy actually. It's not too far away from what they're normally do though.
Well, they have obviously succeeded to make some really good songs here, so this is of course worth a chance. You will probably like it.
(Frontiers Music srl)
NOVEMBER 17, 2017

IN VEIN: Veiled In Pain - EP
IN VEIN is a gothic rock band with indutrial elements, who was born in Athens, Greece in 2005. Their main influences are bands like The 69 EYES, SISTERS OF MERCY, HIM, TYPE O NEGATIVE, SENTENCED, DOPE STARS, Marilyn Manson, RAMMSTEIN and DEATHSTARS.
What we have here is 5 tracks that are all different from each other. So variation is not a problem anyway. Some songs are o.k., while some are not so funny. But if you like gothic rock, then I think you should give them a try at least. InVeinGreece
NOVEMBER 16, 2017

STARBLIND: Never Seen Again - Album
Oh, a new album with IRON MAIDEN. That was nice. And it sounds like they are back in good old 80s style. Which is even better. Yes my friends, this is probably the best IRON MAIDEN album that IRON MAIDEN never did. I think of several old songs with them when I listen to this. But they also have their own twist of course, and maybe not the same hit potential.
This band comes from Sweden, and this is their 3rd album, the first with new singer Marcus Sannefjord Olkerud (ex-ROCKA ROLLAS).
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (Pure Steel Records)
NOVEMBER 16, 2017

WILDNESS: Wildness - Album
Well, what we have here my friends is nothing but the finest kind of melodic hard rock. Top quality! You could almost think that it's something like 1987 again. The classics are on a row. Just listen to excellent pieces like the opening track "War Inside My Head", or why not "Collide" for example? Brilliant stuff that I would have loved when I was a kid. But don't worry. I obviously still like this kind of music a lot.
WILDNESS started as a studio project in 2013, when drummer Erik Modin wrote the first songs for what later on became a real band. Their first single, "Collide", was released digitally by themselves in 2015. And another single, "Turning The Pages", was released in 2016. Now their self titled debut album is here for you.
Release date: Nov. 24, 2017 (AOR Heaven)
NOVEMBER 16, 2017

KANSAS: Leftoverture Live & Beyond - Double Album
I thought that the only song I had heard before was a cover of "Carry On Wayward Son", which is one of their most famous songs. But I also reconize "Dust In The Wind" for some reason. So I might have reviewed something with them before, but forgot it.
Their music is in the category classic rock. But you could just as well call it progressive rock I suppose. They released their first album back in 1974 already, and have sold more than 30 million albums worldwide since then. But then they have released 15 studio albums and as much as 5 live albums through the years.
In 2016 they released their first studio album in 16 years and went on tour, where they also celebrated the 40-year anniversary of their break through album "Leftoverture". And somewhere during that tour they recorded yet another live album, "Leftoverture Live & Beyond". A double sandwich that last for almost 2 hours.
(InsideOut Music)
NOVEMBER 15, 2017

LOS TRES MOTEL: Writings On The Wall - Single
LOS TRES MOTEL is a power trio based in the rock city Göteborg, Sweden. They have been friends since the 90s, but it wasn't until 2016 that they decided to collaborate on some songs. And here's the result of that.
This is not the first band that they have had. They have individually been involved in bands, collaborations and projects with several artists through the years. And I think you can hear that here. Because even though this is their first release, it hardly sounds like that.
Their music is some kind of dark and heavy alternative rock. And it's pretty good stuff.
This single is available on digital platforms like YouTube, iTunes, Spotify etc.
NOVEMBER 15, 2017

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