Archive for the Metal Category

Psyclon Nine – Icon of The Adversary

Posted in Metal, Industrial with tags , , , , on 17th September 2018 by izaforestspirit

Psyclon Nine
Icon of The Adversary
Released 24th August 2018
Industrial/ Industrial Metal with Black Metal elements
Released via Metropolis Records

I really wasn’t expecting to hear anything new from Psyclon Nine again. It’s been five years since their last opus ‘Order of The Shadow: Act 1’. The following year proved to be a very turbulent time to the band with various factors contributing towards what effectively became the end of Psyclon Nine. Or so I thought… It turned out that band needed some time to recover, regroup and refocus. After several line-up changes and a few successful live shows in 2015, it became pretty clear that Psyclon Nine were back. They are now a trio and frontman Nero Bellum is the only original member left.

So that’s the background out of the way, now on to music… If I were to sum this album up into just a few words it would be ‘creepy, gritty and disturbing’. As far as genre classifications go, there’s a fair bit of dark ambient on here. This is most notably on the opening track. The eerie-sounding, analog synth and voice samples are also prominent on Behold An Icon. Nero Bellum’s black metal -esque shrieks are as haunting as ever and the guitars have a coarse and unsettling feel to them.

The predominant style is industrial metal as evidenced by the likes of Crown of The Worm which reminded me a lot of their previous works. It has all the markings of a classic Psyclon Nine song; in other words thunderous guitars, atmospheric synth noise and harsh, creepy vocals. Beware The Wolves also caught my attention due to the change in vocal style, from shrieks to an eerie rasp which reminded me of Marilyn Manson’s trilogy. The only disappointing part of the album is the final track The Last. I’ve never been a massive fan of dark ambient so having to endure it for nearly fifteen minutes seems a little too much.

In summary, ‘Icon of Adversary’ is one of those bleak, creepy “feel bad” albums. ‘Creepy, gritty and disturbing’ seems to be very fitting for Psyclon Nine in 2018 given what they have been through. I would personally skip the final track unless you’re really into dark ambient but other than that this is a good industrial album and black metal fans might like it too.

3.5/5

Iza Raittila

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Alice In Chains – Rainer Fog

Posted in CD, Metal, Rock with tags , , , , , on 16th September 2018 by mickbirchy

Alice In Chains
Rainer Fog
Grunge, Alternative Metal, Stoner Rock
Released: 24 August 2018
via BMG Records

The grunge rock icons, Alice In Chains return with their sixth studio album, Rainer Fog. They’ve always been one of those bands for me that I’ve had a bit of a love/hate relationship with. I think they’ve had some amazing songs over the years and their influence is certainly felt across the world of rock music. Yet, I don’t think I’ve ever really enjoyed a full album from them, I like a few songs but never a full record. So, when I got the chance to check out their new album, I was curious to have a listen. This album is the third album with William DuVall as lead vocalist sharing vocals duties with Jerry Cantrell, and the first Alice in Chains album in 22 years to be recorded in their hometown of Seattle. The album’s title was inspired by Mount Rainier, a volcano that overlooks the Seattle-Tacoma metropolitan area.

Straight away the grunge tone takes over with sharp heavy blasts of the guitar as the opening tune “The One You Know”. The riffs are heavy and have that chugging tone. A lot of bass and the drum hits come through sharp. From a production standpoint, they sound excellent with a great balance and a clear tone. I will say they have a lot of strong hooks that keep you listening. There are moments of the album that just get stuck in your head. Also, the weird vocal effect is so strange to my ears it gets lodged in my brain. The dueling vocals between DuVall and Cantrell creates some very nice moments of harmony. Even the weirder moments from a musical perspective are save by the harmony. Like on the track “Fly”. A song that sounds like it was cut and pasted straight from the nineties.

Musically, Rainer Fog has some particularly strong tunes. The title track is great as it has that old-school Seattle grunge feel injected into it. Also, I really like “So Far Under” with it’s Sabbath-esk riff and bass tone that hits you right in the gut. However, I can’t stand up for the whole thing. A lot of the album feels like filler from previous Alice In Chains albums and it might as well be white noise to me. It has interesting ideas but for the most part it does nothing super interesting with them. It sounds fine and if you’re in to Alice In Chains you’re probably used to the hit and miss songwriting. For me though, there are just long stretches of the album that either don’t pack enough punch like on “Red Giant” or feels like it’s there to just take up space on the album such as “Drones”.

Yet again, Alice In Chains just makes an okay album. Nothing bad just nothing that really gets me going. It’s produced well but lacks a lot of imagination and feels like a band that’s just stuck, spinning their wheels. There are some great songs here and ones I really liked, with strong riffs and hooks. Others, where just long windy tunes that didn’t go anywhere. If you’re really into Alice In Chains and the Seattle scene then… well, you’ve probably already got it.

2.5/5

Mick Birchall

Mortiis announces new ‘Era 1’ tour dates

Posted in Experimental, Industrial, Metal, Misc., News with tags , , on 12th September 2018 by izaforestspirit

Good news for Mortiis fans, particularly those who like the band’s older works. The band has announced a series of new tour dates continuing with the Mortiis Era 1 Tour. As the tour name suggests, these shows will include songs from the band’s dark ambient era which ended with The Stargate album.

Image result for mortiis era 1 tour poster 2018

 

They have recently played two shows in Russia. Here’s the rest of the schedule:

14. 11 Lo Barnechea, Chile
15. 11 Buenos Aires, Argentina
16.11 La Paz, Bolivia
17.11 Quito, Ecuador
30.11 Erfurt, Germany
1.12 Mannheim, Germany
2.12 Stretch, The Netherlands
13.12 Brighton, United Kingdom
14.12 Belfast, Ireland
15.12 Dublin, Ireland
28.12 Tampere, Finland
29.12 Helsinki, Finland

For further details go to:

https://www.facebook.com/officialmortiis

https://downloadmusic.mortiis.com/

Kilmara – Across The Realm of Time

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , on 9th September 2018 by izaforestspirit

Kilmara
Across The Realm of Time
Released 31st August 2018
Heavy Metal / Power Metal
Released via Rock of Angels Records

Kilmara - Across the Realm of Time

‘Across The Realm of Time’ is the new album from the Spanish heavy metal band Kilmara. They have been around since 2003 and have undergone various line-up changes. This is the first album to feature their new singer Dani Ponce who joined the band in 2015.

My knowledge of the Spanish metal scene is very limited. Most of the bands I am familiar with are no longer active so it’s about time that I checked out something new… The description for this album was fairly vague – “melodic metal” could potentially mean anything from heavy metal, power metal, atmospheric metal ,progressive metal or even Gothic metal. Power metal on the other hand, is one of those genres that ranges from the sublime to the ridiculous. At it’s best it will entertain you and fill your mind with wonderful stories of fantasy adventures or epic historic battles. At its worst, it’s just cheesy, and so badly over-the-top that it becomes irritating after a few listens. That is why there are only a few power metal bands I regularly listen to.

So let’s see what category Kilmara fit into…. Well, for one thing it’s not cheesy so that is a good thing. The vocals are melodic and powerful but not high pitched, which is another plus. The use of keyboards is minimal and very sporadic and most of the emphasis is on the guitars. Fantasy adventure is a highly plausible theme based on the track tiles, the cover art and the cinematic style intro. So far so good… Some tracks have a hard rock feel to them – such as the mid-paced I Shall Rise Again, which is one of the more melodic songs on here. It’s one of those moments when the vocals are in harmony with the guitars, complementing each other. Mr. Ponce’s duet with guest vocalist Viktorie Surmøva works well and I can’t fault the guitar work either.

Principle of Hatred initially caught my attention due to the middle-eastern style acoustic guitar intro. A nice touch which I didn’t see coming. The rest of the song is essentially pure power metal, not too far removed from the likes of Helloween. Once again the vocals work a treat and the guitar work is top notch. Similar things can be said about The Forge except that song has a more aggressive stance when it comes to the guitars.

In summary, ‘Across The Realm of Time’ features a mixture of various styles ranging from heavy metal via hard rock to power metal. All the songs are well executed, not overly cheesy, melodic but not progressive. There is a lot to like on here if you’re a fan of these genres, especially power metal.

4/5

Iza Raittila

Bloodbath unveil new album details

Posted in Metal, Misc., News, Studio Report with tags , , on 4th September 2018 by izaforestspirit

It’s been four years since their last piece of work, and now the Swedish death metal band Bloodbath are ready to unleash their latest gore-drenched opus onto the world. Their new album will be entitled ‘The Arrow Of Satan Is Drawn’.

Here is what their guitarist Anders “Blakkheim” Nyström had to say about it:

“What are we presenting with this album? Humanity’s unfaltering march prone towards downfall…. “The threat to this world isn’t from far beyond the sun, the enemy is right here, within the walls. Only the god of emptiness will survive us all. The arrow of Satan is drawn!”

The album will feature guest appearances from Jeff Walker (Carcass), Karl Willetts (Bolt Thrower/ Memorian) and John Walker (Cancer).

You can admire the cover art below:

The release date is set for 26th October 2018 via Peaceville Records.

For more details go to:

https://www.facebook.com/bloodbathband

http://peaceville.com/bands/bloodbath-2/

Artillery join Onslaught on their European tour this autumn

Posted in Metal, Misc., News with tags , , , on 31st August 2018 by izaforestspirit

Get ready for the thrash metal assault in Europe this autumn…

The Danish thrashers Artillery have recently announced that will be co-headlining ‘Thrash Til Death’ European tour along with Onslaught starting in Oberhausen, Germany next month. They will be joined by their Greek brethren Exarsis and Chronosphere.

This year also marks the 30th anniversary of their ‘Terror Squad’ album so their fans can expect to hear some of the classics from the band’s early days along with new material from their last opus ‘Penalty By Perception’.

For the full schedule see the list and the poster below:

23/09 – Helvete Club – Oberhausen (DE)
24/09 – Hedon Club – Zwolle (NL)
25/09 – De Verlichte Geest – Roeselare (BE)
26/09 – Roxy Concerts – Flensburg (DE)
27/09 – Garage Deluxe – München (DE)
28/09 – Moonlight Music Hall – Diest (BE)
29/09 – Fuizenfest – Riel (NL) (ONSLAUGHT)
30/09 – Kiehool Burgum – Burgum (NL)
01/10 – OFF DAY
02/10 – Schwarzer Adler – Tannheim-Egelsee (DE)
03/10 – Escape Metalcorner – Vienna (AT)
04/10 – 7er-Club – Mannheim (DE)
05/10 – Musigburg – Aarburg (CH)
06/10 – Dada Live Club – Pavia (IT)
07/10 – Revolver Music Hall – Venice (IT)
08/10 – Borderline – Pisa (IT)
09/10 – Sala Utopia – Zaragoza (SP)
10/10 – OFF DAY
11/10 – SMAC de La Gespe – Tarbes (FR)
12/10 – Sala Upload – Barcelona (SP)

Artillery are currently in the studio putting the finishing touches on their new album ‘The Face of Fear’ which will be out later this year.

For more details on the tour and more updates go to:

https://www.facebook.com/ARTILLERY.DK

https://www.powerfromhell.com/

https://www.facebook.com/onslaughtuk

 

Monstrosity return with new album

Posted in Metal, Misc., News, Studio Report with tags , , on 28th August 2018 by izaforestspirit

More death metal news… It’s been eleven years since the Florida based American death metal band Monstrosity‘s last studio release. Now they are ready to unveil their latest offering – a new album entitled ‘The Passage of Existence’.

Here’s the cover-art and track-listing:

1. Cosmic Pandemia
2. Kingdom Of Fire
3. Radiated
4. Solar Vacuum
5. The Proselygeist
6. Maelstrom
7. Eyes Upon The Abyss
8. Dark Matter Invocation (ltd. Digi-CD bonus)
9. The Hive
10. Eternal Void (ltd. Digi-CD bonus)
11. Century
12. Slaves To The Evermore

‘The Passage of Existence’ will be out on 7th September 2018 via Metal Blade Records. In the meantime you check out one of the songs here:

For more details visit:

https://www.monstrosity.us/

https://www.facebook.com/MonstrosityOfficial