Quick Jabs for January 2021

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”.


Trident – North
October 2nd, 2020 – Non Serviam Records
Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
Reviewer: John Haseltine

The Swedish blackened death metal supergroup Trident has unleashed upon us their 2nd full-length release titled NORTH. This is a really good album. While the members roots are based primarily in the black metal genre, it has not impeded the fact that these guys have much more to offer. NORTH does have a bit more melody to it. Even when combined with some of the death metal aesthetics. This one is a sure banger that has the essence of all things black metal while showcasing the players talents. More of a four dimensional style to the genre rather than one. Fans of Necrophobic, Thulcandra and Dissection will embrace this band. You really need to check this one out!


Shaark – Deathonation
November 23rd, 2020 – Slovak Metal Army
Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
Reviewer: John Haseltine

Shaark is a thrash metal band from Czechia. These guys formed in 1991. After a couple of demos, the band released 3 full-length album in 1995, 1997, and 2000. They have been fairly dormant since then only releasing a compilation of earlier works. This brings us to 2020 and the devastating release of DEATHONATION. Their brand of thrash metal reminds me a bit of a blend of the Bay Area thrash scene like Exodus and Testament, to the German thrash scene of the like of Kreator or Destruction. However you tend to slice it, Shaark has a sound that does set them on their own. After you get a run through or two on this one, you will understand what I am getting at. Cool album. Glad you guys are back. And sorry if I didn’t miss you before as this is my first encounter with Shaark. One that will surely not be my last.


DVNE – Omega Server
November 6th, 2020 – Metal Blade Records
Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
Reviewer: John Haseltine

DVNE from the U.K. started their career out in 2013 under the moniker DUNE and released a couple of EPs before changing their name. This EP, OMEGA SERVER is the follow up to their critically acclaimed 2017 full-length ASHERAN. These guys play a progressive sludge / stoner metal that is in ways fairly similar to the likes of Mastodon, Kylesa, and Baroness. What I dig about this band is that they do not come off as a copycat sounding band. That and they are not too sludgy either. As I have been getting more and more into bands of this genre, I was totally pleased with coming across this one. I realize there are still some “metalheads” out there that do not want to give this genre a chance, but I’m telling you, you will like it. Just try it! Haha, DVNE are well worth the time of day.


Skelethal – Unveiling The Threshold
November 20th, 2020 – Hells Headbanger Records
Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
Reviewer: John Haseltine

I like it when a death metal band is just a death metal band. This is something this French act does well. Now I know there are several different sub-genres of death metal, but Skelethal, to me only falls under one of them. That is, not totally old-school, but damn close. This is an original sounding album that is done with some great musicianship. The playing is really top-notch in terms of the genre. Their sound here is what one should expect when they are told a band is death metal. For fans of Dismember, Death, Carnage, Possessed, and Nihilst. Give this one a spin and have a slamming good time!


Ikitan – Twenty-Twenty
November 20th, 2020 – Self-Release
Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
Reviewer: John Haseltine

Here is one that is a bit different. So this Italian band had just recently formed in October of 2019. While writing tracks and jam sessions getting a feel for the music they were going to unleash upon the world, that little virus put a halt on their plans. Well, this did not stop them from getting together looking forward to a bright future. While in one of their jam sessions, TWENTY-TWENTY was born. This track was conceived pretty much how it sounds. the players were just jamming along feeding off one another. It doesn’t get anymore spontaneous as that. So from what they remembered, they recorded. It is a hard rock, progressive, and atmospheric metal blend that does not roll off very heavy in terms of speed, but it does check all of the other boxes. It is an instrumental. I am not sure how they could have fit vocals into this one. And to top it off, it clocks in at 20 minutes, 20 seconds. They decided to record it and released it as a limited edition single digipak. So, POW! Good stuff.


Prestige – Exit
December 15th, 2020 – Massacre Records
Rating: 5.0 / 5.0
Reviewer: John Haseltine

Prestige originally formed back in 1987 in Finland at the height of the thrash metal movement. They were able to unleash 3 full-length albums before calling it quits in what I can gather was around 1993 or 94. Massacre Records has released this single, EXIT to get us all amped up for what is to come. I cannot wait! These guys are pure thrash. Maybe one could say old-school as this track does have that late 80’s, straight-up thrash sound to it. All I can say is damn good thrash here. Looking forward to the full-length coming in 2021 so keep those eyes pealed. If you are a thrasher, be prepared to be astonished! Now I have to search out their back catalog.


 

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