Hoth – Astral Necromancy

Concept albums are such a hard thing to follow up. An artist spends so much time developing a universe and playing on themes that it’s often hard to come back from especially if the artist is not known for that kind of songwriting or storytelling. Luckily, that isn’t a problem for Seattle’s black metal duo Hoth returning for their second full album release Astral Necromancy. Instead, David Dees and Eric Peters dig in their heels and go for expanding their universe and certainly have the chops necessary to do it. First, we need to confront the obvious. Yes, the band…

Half-Life: Bleeding Through

If you’re not convinced that we’re currently deep in the middle of the metalcore resurgence, then the simple fact that tomorrow sees the release of the first Bleeding Through record in over six-years should lay those doubts to rest. You’ll have to wait until then for Jordan to tell you just how good Love Will Kill All is, but this seems like as good an opportunity as ever to look back upon the career of a band who were foundational to the dominant heavy metal movement of the new millennium, and who certainly carved out a strong following for themselves, yet who—in retrospect—feel somewhat overlooked compared to their peers, especially considering the sheer quality and consistency of their output. You might say, that their genre’s Testament and, if new single “Fade Into The Ash” is anything to go by, it would also seem they haven’t lost any of that edge in the more than half-decade interim.

The Afterimage – Eve

We all know bands that have difficult roads to their first full-length albums. Sometimes the journey is so difficult that you only see a smattering of singles and EPs materialize. There can be a long period of silence before you see the saddening, “It’s been a great run” social media post that affirms the band is going into hiatus or calling it quits entirely. Thankfully, this is not every story. There are times where we get to see a band that has gone through hardships such as lineup changes, roadblocks in personal lives, etc., come out more resilient and determined…

It’s Time To Face the Music with Reckoner Festival

It’s now time again for good news out of the ever-creative spaces of sunny, Old Kingdom(s) post/math rock in the form of Reckoner Festival. Reckoner Festival will take place on October 13th, on what will hopefully be a Saturday with some amount of sun and heat left, in the University of Sheffield, at the uber-sleek FUSION & FOUNDRY. During said date, attendees of the festival will enjoy the sounds of bands like LITE (an amazing post rock band from Japan, who you simply must hear), up and coming chaotic hardcore madmen Employed to Serve, the extremely powerful all-around-noise-machine that is Oslo’s Aiming for Enrike, blog darlings VASA, and other bands like Body Hound and Trigger Thumb.

Hey! Listen to Galactic Empire!

As another Star Wars movie release is upon us, I would like to offer up Galactic Empire to your music rotation today. As you’re standing in line waiting for Solo tickets and you need a boost, the John Williams shredders should lift your spirits and reduce your anxiety. The YouTube cover band sensations are more than just a couple of dudes who plucked away until they had “Imperial March” nailed. These guys are legitimate talents in their own right, and everyone should take a listen just to hear it.

Dylan Carlson – Conquistador

Though solo albums can excel or plummet in multiple different directions, they virtually always follow one of two paths: a slight or negligible deviation from the artist’s main project, or a complete departure from the sound they’ve become associated with. Dylan Carlson—the drone-doom pioneer and founder of Earth—has ventured down both paths with his latest two solo efforts, both of which arrived during the four years after Earth’s divisive album Primitive and Deadly. It’s worth ruminating on this point for a bit, as P&D and Carlson’ latest output represents the second biggest nexus point in Earth career. After Carlson and company had moved on from…

8-Track: Amorphis

Amorphis has had an eclectic career, to say the least. The Finish melodeath pioneers have been responsible for some of the most memorable and the most forgettable melodic death metal the genre has to offer. While modern times may have seen them become overshadowed by their countrymen in Insomnium and Children of Bodom, yet few have traversed a stylistic spectrum as wide as Amorphis. The near three-decades since their inception has seen the band go through significant line-up changes, all while incorporating sizable aspects of folk, progressive, doom and even power metal into their ever-evolving sound. Now with thirteen studio records under their belt, finding an entry point into their oft-overlooked yet not inconsiderable career can be a daunting task. So, in celebration of the release of their new record Queen of Time, here’s a look at 8 of the most definitive and rewarding moments of their career.

Hey! Listen to Thornhill!

Thornhill are a young band aiming, and succeeding, in striking that precarious balance between throwback and their own unique sound, producing an enjoyable EP titled Butterfly. This is basically djent a la Northlane, early Karnivool or TesseracT, by which we mean progressive metal with emphasis on melody, soaring mostly-clean vocals and the thick, and the metallic tone on the guitars which gave the genre its name. You’ll find nothing that will shock you on this album but it’s really well made, from production to songwriting to execution, tapping into the stores of thrilling groove that, at the end of the day, created one of the most popular modern metal genres. 

At The Gates – To Drink from the Night Itself

In the build-up to the release of At The Gates’ sixth full-length, To Drink From The Night Itself, there appeared to be a clear split within the community. On the one hand we had the ‘fuck yeah, new At The Gates!’ crowd, and on the other hand, we had the Slaughter of the Soul exists, why are you still making new music?’ group. What the latter seem to have ignored is just how good 2014’s At War With Reality really was. It was a comeback album of Traced In Air proportions; following up arguably the greatest album in the genre…