Release Day Roundup: 1/12/24

Rounding up new releases from Extinction A. D., Alluvial, Engulf, Escuela Grind, Windows96, Yersin, Sabotage, Give me the Grave and more.

2 months ago

Top Picks

Engulf – The Dying Planet Weeps (brutal dissonant prog-death)  

I was already pretty enamoured with Engulf's earlier EPs, but this first full-length absolutely blows them out of the water. For the uninitiated, Engulf is the solo side-project of Blasphemous guitarist Hal Microutsicos, and throws back to formative, brutal, boundary pushing death metal acts like Immolation, Morbid Angel, Gorguts, Suffocation and Deeds of Flesh. While there have been hints of prog to the band's sound in the past, The Dying Planet Weeps fully embraces the more progressive aspects of their foundation, delivering thirty-six minutes of blistering, dissonant-leaning prog-death that comes across in equal parts like the missing link between Gorguts' Erosion of Sanity (1993) and Obscura (1998) or the best Morbid Angel album since Gateways to Annihilation (2000).

Unlike other throwback (and similarly artworked) death metal acts like Contrarian, though, Engulf isn't entirely dedicated to the retro aesthetic. The old-school inspirations are apparent, but the presentation is refreshingly modern. The Dying Planet sounds crisp and punchy, with the amalgamation of their influences often also bringing to mind more modern artists like Ulcerate or even Alkaloid (before they went off the progressive deep end), except way more intent on caving your skull in than ascending your mind or whatever.

Alluvial – Death Is But A Door (progressive tech-death/core)

Everybody's second-favourite Faceless spin-off are back! And, as with Engulf, this new offering also puts their prior output to complete shame. The much-touted Sarcoma (2021) was a fine record to be sure, but it didn't go to as many places as this and it didn't go there as hard either. The influence of scene-leaders Fit for an Autopsy is immediately apparent, with leaning ever further into the progressive aspects of their sound across the EP's four-tracks, while also keeping the crushing deathcore groove that put them on the map ever at its centre. At seventeen-or-so minutes, Death is But a Door also doesn't overstay its welcome, the way Alluvial's previous material often has, and—if you're anything like me—it'll leave you longing for plenty more in the process. For all its dreary darkness, this EP suggests a very bright future ahead for Alluvial and their listeners.

Release Roundup

Ak//47 – Menari Dalam Abu Algoritma (grindcore)

Announce the Apocalypse – Experience Machine (Prog Thrash, Melodeath)

Artificial Heaven – Digital Dreams (goth rock)

Bloodstone – Electrocution (black thrash)

Bronson Arm – Bronson Arm (actual post hardcore, noise rock)

Cariosus – Will, Until Beauty (groove death, metalcore)

Casey – How To Disappear (alt rock, emo)

The Clamps – Megamouth (stoner metal)

Crucifier – Hell Is For The Hopeful (kooky thrash)

Domination Campaign – A Storm Of Steel (blackened death metal)

Drown In Sulphur – Dark Secrets Of The Soul (symphonic deathcore, mellowdeath)

Emil Bulls – Love Will Fix It (bad metal)

Empire Demolition – Defenestration (sludgy deathcore)

Escuela Grind – Ddeeaaatthhmmeettaall (grindy deathcore)

Exit Eden – Femmes Fatales (folky metal, Steeeeve Perry!)

Extinction A.D. – Ruthless Intent (crossover thrash)

"We heard you like Slayer and breakdowns, and when Slayer do breakdowns. So we did that. And Pantera."

Give Me The Grave – Mind In Decay (brutal deathcore)

Gothony – Gothony (very bad metal)

The Grandmaster – Black Sun (heavy metal)

Infant Island – Obsidian Wreath (post black metal/core)

Iron Front – Hooked (slamming brutal death metal)

Jim Peterik & World Stage – Roots & Shoots Vol. 1 (the dadest of rock)

Karnak Seti – Restos (death metal, melodeath)

Krvna – The Rhythmus Of Death Eternal (black metal)

Last In Time – Too Late (hard rock, melodic metal)

Lifesick – Love And Other Lies (crossover death metal)

Magnum – Here Comes The Rain (heavy metal, trad rock)

Mourning Dawn – The Foam Of Despair (blackened goth doom)

Narzissus – Akt III: Erlösung (black metal)

Neal Morse – The Restoration: Joseph, Part Two (bad prog)

No Terror In The Bang – Heal (prog metal)

Nobody’s Fool – Time (heavy metal, hard rock)

Oathbringer – Tales Of Valor (heavy metal)

Psycho Ward – Committed (heavy metal)

Ravenstine – 2024 (melodic prog metal)

Resistência Terminal – In Aeternum (death metal)

Ritual Earth/Kazak – Turned To Stone (stoner doom)

The Rods – Rattle the Cage (hard rock)

Russell/Guns – Medusa (hard rock)

Rough Justice – Faith in Vain (hardcore)

Ruthless – The Fallen (trad thrash)

Ryujin – Ryujin (folk thrash)

Sabotage – Pishach (thrash)

Scanner – The Cosmic Race (power metal)

Saevus Finis – Facilis Descensus Averno (weird brutal death metal)

Splitknuckle – Breathing Through The Wound (deathcore)

Tangent Plane – The Judas Cell (progressive folk metal)

Windows96 – Dated New Aethetic (vaporwave)

Xephyr – No Signal (subway dudes rock?)

Yersin – The Scythe Is Remorseless (crossover death metal)

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Published 2 months ago