This is a new monthly section where we will post an assortment of shorter reviews for albums that we have checked out or may have missed out on previously. The reviews are short and to the point, thus the tile “Quick Jabs”.
Angelus Apatrida – Cabaret de la Guillotine
Released: 2018, Century Media Records
Review by: EvilG
While this Spanish band are not new, they are a new band that have caught my ear. Their live performance in the online Isolation Festival 2020 stood out and got me to order their newst album. It’s great to hear a newer band playing thrash metal that sounds classic with nods to Testament, Death Angel, Forbidden, etc. check out the song “Downfall Of The Nation” on YouTube to be convinced of their awesomeness.
An amazing 2019 release was TRUE NORTH by the black/folk/prog – metal band Borknagar. I got this album as soon as it came out in the fall of 2019, and now almost a year later it’s still in my rotation. The only negative thing to say is that I do miss Vintersorg’s vocals on here. But the band is amazing and the songs are varied covering some extreme moments and some gentle ones like the laid back “Voices”. However, it’s the song “Up North” which bounces along with an almost 70’s feel that was my main ear-worm, and is one of the best songs from 2019.
Although this album has been out for a year, it was overlooked and didn’t get a review here….so this is my little tribute to one of the best albums from 2019! OUTSTRIDER is the black metal legend’s second studio album and it is again high quality, sometimes melodic, often catchy black metal similar to his first solo album. It doesn’t quite sound like Immortal, but of course comparisons can be made and fans of Immortal and of Abbath’s first solo album will no doubt love it. The line up is different on his second solo album, so it’s not a carbon copy of the first, but it’s still awesome and worth checking out.
For mesmerizing, hypnotizing black metal, it does not get any better than this! Poland’s greatest black metal output roared back with continued savagery in 2019 following the amazing EXERCISES IN FUTILITY from 2015. The ringing chords, tremolo picked melodic riffs, blasts, etc create a wall of melodic black noise that is a pleasure to listen to. and the drums? Wow….some of the best you’ll hear in black metal. If you like black metal at all, then this band is a must listen. Pure nihilism has never sounded so good.
With a string of EPs and a full-length under their belt, Grimgotts has been off to a good start in the U.K. with their brand of symphonic power metal which sees them delve into a world of Harry Potter, fantasy, and adventure. This is my first encounter with Grimgotts, but surely will not be the last. I like the fact they are a bit heavier than what I was expecting with a little pirate sounds for added measure, but all four tracks here are very well written and should appeal to fans of most genres of metal.
The sophomore release by Norway’s Sinsid is a NWOBHM sounding assault on the senses. Musically the songs are all pretty cool. I have listened to this a couple of times now, and as the vocalist has a distinct sound that is good, it does not seem to fully fit in with the style of music that is being played. I have my doubts about saying that, but this is suppose to be a quick jab/first impression of the album. I do fell it is a voice that will have to grow on you in the band. Overall, a pretty cool band and this is one of those albums that should be checked out. Well? Take a listen for yourself!
Straight from the Ukraine, ALTER EGO is the band’s debut closely following an EP released last year. There sure is the ingredient of heavy here. These guys remind me a bit of Meshuggah or even Mnemic a bit. There are some mellower atmospheric passages in the tracks, but that was my first thoughts. Even though I not listened to either one of those bands for a few years now. There are moments of a heavy sludge or doom as well. What are we calling this now? Post rock? Post metal? I can’t keep track. In a nutshell, Nug is a really good heavy band that seems to have a familiar sound to them, but at the same time a sound that is all their own.
This Southern California duo plays a ferocious style of not only chaotic, but frantic death metal. These guys have an extremely tight sound that crosses the boundaries of black, speed, math metal all rolled it a death metal package. One cool thing here, and I can not speak for their previous releases is the fact that there are no vocals. There are some melodic moments, yet they are pretty sparse when it comes to the overall theme of the music. This is some really cool music. Vocals or not, Fermentor should be checked into. The musicianship of these guys is off the charts. Another cool thing is you get to sing along to whatever lyrics you can come up with on your own! Pow!