Spooky” Split 7” EP

(Hells Headbangers)


Acid Witch start off the seven inch, with their song “Evil”, a heavy doomish rock song, with some keyboards and heavy guitars. The vocals are growls with a dark tone to them. Their second track, “Fiends Of Old” is a little faster, with a rockin’ doomish anthem. I’ve never been a big fan of Acid Witch, but these song are pretty good and catchy. Up next, is the legendary Nunslaughter, also offering us two new songs for this release. First up, is “Two Spooky Tales”, which is a really good song filled with heavy guitars and some great drumming. The vocals, are done in the early nineties realm, with some screams thrown in. Nunslaughter have crafted two great songs that are definitely Nunslaughter. I'm not sure how many were made, so if you are an Acid Witch or Nunslaughter fan, I would get this as soon as possible.  - Patrick   




“Blood Chalices From The Impure” Split 7” EP

(Blood Harvest Records)


Greece’s Aima start off this split vinyl, with an intro of whispering vocals before they burst out with their song “Pagan Necromancy”, which is a solid blackened death metal hymn. The music is played with a lot of aggression, and skill, displaying extremely fast guitars and blasting drums. Spain’s Supremative unleash two songs, consisting of raw death metal, with some black metal influences. The first song from them is “Triumphant Vengeance Of The Antichrist”, which is played in the chaotic and fast raw, old school death metal style, featuring very well written music and well executed musicianship. The last song is “Omnipresent Morbid Excitement” (great crazy song title haha - Dale), which starts off with a heavier sound and style, then speeding up into to a faster realm in the middle of the song. The guitars are fast, chainsaw riffing backed with blasting drums. If you are a fan of well written, well played old school blackened death then be sure to pick up this split 7 inch.  - Patrick  




“Deathcult Barbaric Hell” LP

(Greyhaze Records)


Originally, this was released in 2007, “Deathcult Barbaric Hell” is the debut album from this US war metal band known as Amputator. Greyhaze Records is re-releasing this classic on vinyl, for the first time, if you have never heard the band they play a barbaric and vicious form of blackened death war metal. The guitar work is done with chaotic and extremely fast guitar riffs and patterns. The guitarist does slow to a more mid paced controlled speed, in a few of the songs, before going back to the extreme and crazed guitar sound and style. The vocals are harsh, raw screams and some deeper, gruff death growls used throughout the release. The music has been remastered for the LP version, but still holds things up in the barbaric blackened death war metal scene.  - Patrick     




Apokalypse Towards Apokalypse” Split 7” EP

(Blood Harvest Records)


Argentina"s Black Vul Destructor, start off this seven inch, with two tracks of violent blackened death. The guitars are done with a lot of sheer power and crazed guitar riffs. The vocals are done with death growls and some gruff vocals as well. Up next is Chile's Et Verbi Sathanus, very chaotic with some thrash influence, as well. The guitars are crazy, all over the place, and the drums are just vicious blasting. The vocals are done  with some crazy black metal shrieks and screams. The second song "Gehinnon", has more of a death thrashy feel and the vocals are growls, with some higher pitched screams. I would say, both bands, are equally great on this split.  - Patrick    





“Upon The Trone... Of Eternal Blasphemous Death” 7 Inch EP

(Iron Bonehead Records)


The Texas based Blaspherian, return with a brand new seven inch, containing two tracks for this release. The music is heavy guitar laden death metal, with some crushing mid-paced drums, but the drummer is not afraid to let loose with some faster drum patterns mixed in. The vocals are heavy death metal growls, which are done extremely well. Blaspherian has released a great new 7 Inch, if you are a fan of this band or a heavy old school death metal fan, then definitely give this band a listen right now.  - Patrick    




“The Sun” 7" EP

(Southern Druid Records)


This is my first encounter with COS, spoiler up front; I very much hope it is not my last. The track on first side is the title cut; it captured me almost immediately, as the music and the singer are filled with infectious charisma. The song features a rich tone and silky flow, the music is classic doom metal influenced, but there is much more going on as it also has hard rock influence and a touch of progressive rock flair. The guitars dance and gallop along, but always return to that emotional doomy heart punch, it is hard to even call this doom at the same time, because in certain sections of the tune the pace is very quick. It is so damn infectious, I can not stop listening to this song, I am convinced it will be a future classic! I can not move on to track two without mentioning the vocals of G.E., he has one of the best classic doom style vocals I have ever heard!! His voice is smooth, so deeply achingly emotive that I can feel it is my soul as it soars through my headphones with such a dynamic range, reflecting the poignant sentimentality of the music step for step effortlessly. It is just wonderful and I am not sure I have ever written so much about one song before haha! Side B of this record features a live recording of “The Hangman”, which is a song from their debut self titled full-length record. Honestly, the first reaction is a slight letdown, but that is partly due to such a drastic drop in sound quality, the recording on the first song is stellar, loud and full then it drops way down here to kind of a flat low level. About halfway through the song, it has this metal or hard rock version of a latin inspired beat / section. It is strange and maybe an acquired taste, but it does seamlessly weave in and out of the hurriedly mournful metal mainstay of the tune better than you would think. This side of the record is a step down from the first, a true B side in that sense, but Side A is more than worth the price of admission, all on it’s own. That title song is a fucking masterful work of art, from the beginning of it’s six minute length, to the last second! Get this posthaste!  - Dale     




“Cloak” 7” EP

(Boris Records)


Cloak is a band that comes out of Atlanta’s metal scene, and they play a very interesting style of metal. The first song, “In The Darkness, The Path”, which is a good song, which displays newer death metal influences. The guitars are played at various speeds, starting off with a mid paced range and tempo, it does speed up to a faster pace in a few parts of the song. The guitarist also does a good job of writing, and playing some well done riffs and interesting patterns. The vocals are death metal growls with some screams intertwined in the music. The second song, “The Hunger”, which is done in the same vein, with some very well constructed and performed drum patterns and mid tempo guitar riffs that were really satisfying to hear. This is a hard band to put into one genre, as there is a few different genres, and a variety of bands that Cloak are influenced by. Cloak is a band that has a lot of good ideas, and they have the musicianship to back it up, so if this sounds like a band you might like then hurry and get this limited vinyl before it is sold out!  - Patrick  




“The Harrowing” LP

(Rusty Knuckles Music)


Datura came out swinging in the second week of June with their debut full-length The Harrowing, celebrating its release the day after at the Raleigh Deathfest with one of the best performances on stage that night. These guys have been a part of the local metal scene in North Carolina for many years, and in their current incarnation have been making music together since around 2015. They began recording The Harrowing last October, and now the fruits of their labors finally manifest! The album expertly combines various influences within its 43-minute playing time, most significantly from thrash and death metal, although one may find sprinkles of doom here and there in such tracks as “Haxan” and “Keeper of the Light”. Regardless of subgenre nitpickiness, the album will have you headbanging no matter what track you listen to. Give “Battle Worn” a listen, and the initially mid-paced riffing will guide you into each verse, building anticipation up until the chorus calls out at the “battle-worn betrayer” with righteous indignation, then releasing you into the rhythmic aftermath that eventually winds down like the falling action of a story within the track’s latter half. Or maybe you would prefer the next track, which showcases Kellie Gates’s vocals at their best, in my opinion. Listen as the guitars at times punctuate the verses, and at times gallop along, keeping the composition moving in a constantly forward direction until you get the broken-down form in the chorus where Gates takes over with deadly delivery of punching lines and contrasting soaring screams. Needless to say, there is a lot to love about this album—more than I can succinctly determine in a single paragraph. Navigate to Datura’s Bandcamp or Spotify in order to hear for yourself why Datura is one of the most promising extreme metal acts coming out of central NC today.  – Aaron       




"Dead Conspiracy” LP

(Self Released)


Portland Oregon’s Dead Conspiracy (one of the pioneer late ‘80s dm bands making a comeback), return with a brand new LP and digital download, consisting of nine songs of pounding, heavy old school death metal. The band knows how to write solid and memorable death metal in the old tradition. The guitarist does a good job of writing and playing a mix of mid tempo, heavier riffs mixed with some aggressive guitar patterns. The drumming is done with a mix of heavy mid paced drum patterns and an all out assault of fast, chaotic drums. The vocals are raw death growls and gruff old school style growling used in a few of the songs. Anyone into pure old school death metal will definitely want to add this self titled record to their collection today.  - Patrick       



"Hell Comes To Life” 7” EP

(Boris Records)


We see the return of the old school thrashing maniacs to Canadian Assault, with a new two song EP. The first song, on this vinyl, is “Hell Comes To Life”, which an aggressive thrash metal attacking track featuring ripping guitars played with a lot of skill and fierce patterns. The vocals are some raw screams mixed with some blackened style vox. The second song is a cover, Judas Priest’s classic “Hell Patrol”, the band does a great job capturing the intensity of that song, but also adding a dash of their own style to the song. If you are a fan of the early years of thrash, such as Kreator, Exodus, Judas Priest “Painkiller”-era, then be sure to check this slab of vinyl out as soon as it is released.  - Patrick   




“Deiphago / Ampütator” 12” EP

(Greyhaze Records)


So up first on this split vinyl is the Philippines own Deiphago with three songs from their recent demo “Lucifer Alpha Omega”, which was a demoed version of songs that wound up on their “Satan Alpha Omega” album released on Hells Headbangers some years ago.  The music is raw, crude black metal that stays true to the early black metal genre. The vocals are raw screams mixed with some deeper growls that are used throughout the songs. The guitars are played with aggressive and fast guitar chords, but do slow down to a slow to heavier mid pace within some of the songs. Flipping over to the second side, we have the U.S. war machine known as Amputator, who presents two unreleased songs for us. Amputator’s style is barbaric and vicious war metal. The drums are blast beats, performed with fierce brutal attack, going from an all out assault of blasting beats to a calmer and fast drum pattern. The vocals are gruff screams and growling. The end result of this split release is a pretty great one uniting two of the underground’s best blackened death war metal bands.  - Patrick    




“A Prophecy Of Nihilism” 7" EP

(Hells Headbangers Records)


Australia’s Destruktor, starts off the split, with their song “Beseiged”. The sound on here is a great sounding brand of old-school death metal bombast. The drumming is performed with a lot of talent and power with crazed blast drumming, with a few parts of more mid-tempo drums. The guitars are just as fast, with some insane riffs and a few solos mixed into the song. Up next, we have Poland’s Throneum, with their song “Cthonian Lust” and again this is a band that totally respects and lives the old-school death metal way. There are some great guitar chords and fast drumming patterns driving home their ancient sound. I am not sure, if this is a limited release or not, so if you interested, then I would check the labels site as soon as possible and pick this one up.  - Patrick   



The Sin Of Sodom” 12” EP

(Edged Circle Productions)


There is no beating around the bush here, from theme, to look, to the music itself is a violent and evil sounding love letter to the German thrash scene of the early to late ‘80s. You could maybe even narrow the focus even further and call this Sodom worship (“In The Sign Of Evil” MLP and the first couple albums in particular), but there is no doubt bands like Kreator, Destruction etc… also played a part in shaping this band. I am sure, with this being nothing new or experimental, progressive or whatever the fuck focused fans have already stopped reading this review. Which is just fine, this not made for you, so continue moving along as there surely is nothing new here. This Swedish band features members (which has been kept kind of hush, hush for the most part) who are currently or formerly members of bands like Destroyer 666, In Aeternum, Centinex, Interment, Hypnosia etc.. After finding that out, you may not be surprised to discover the ferocious Teutonic thrash, played by these maniacs is picture perfect old school blitzkrieg metal of the highest order. This is truly top shelf thrash; played at break neck speeds with amazing riffing that had my head banging like a puppet on a string, leaving me no choice to bow to it’s will. Yes, it is that fucking good! The only problem is it is too short, only two original songs, followed by a scathing cover of “Tormentor” by Kreator. All of which, barely breaks the nine minute mark, so a rather short 12”, but one thing I can promise, if you worship ’80s German thrash. You will be standing close to the record player, because you will be flipping and replaying this constantly, as you punch the air with your spiked fist and bobbing your head in between swinging that arm back to the beginning of the record time and again. Take it from me; during the course of writing this review, I am literally 30 listens deep on this thing with no end in sight!  - Dale  




“Inner Death” 7” EP & Cassette EP

(Blood Harvest Records)


Birmingham, Alabama’s Ectovoid returns with a brand new release featuring three brand new tracks of extremely solid and heavy death metal. The vocals are a mix deep death metal growling and some old school gruff style growls. The music is interesting and keeps your interest at it chugs along at a brutal edge and a fast tempo. The band does play some brief slower, mid paced sections as well. If you are a fan of early Autopsy and Immolation then be sure to pick up a copy of this nice piece vinyl audio violence.  - Patrick      




“Fornication” LP

(Greyhaze Records)


Originally, these three songs were a part of the split release with Brutal Distortion, which was released way back in 1990. The Expulser half of the split have been remastered, but the songs still hold a raw sound and feel to them. The first song “Vomiting Paradise” is a semi-fast thrash style, which features some very good musicianship. The guitarist even adds some well written and performed nice solos. The second song is “The Offensor”, which is a faster, more crazed tune that goes for it. The final track is “No Resurrection”, which is probably the heaviest out of the three tracks on this LP. The drumming on here is done at hyper-speed and the vocals are more old style death growls with some gruff screams intertwined throughout the growling. If you are a fan of old school thrash metal with elements of the early days of death metal, then be sure to pick this up today.  - Patrick     




“Total Extermination” 12” LP

(Greyhaze Records)


Exterminator was an early Brazilian thrash metal band with some early death metal influences. This recording was originally released in 1987; it was the bands debut (as it turns out also their final release) which is now getting the vinyl treatment with this reissue on Greyhaze Records on the thirty anniversary of the original release. The vocals on here are raw thrashy screams mixed with some early death metal growls that really fit the bands musical style. The guitarist wrote some very aggressive and memorable riffing patterns, he even mixed in some well played and written solos. For the most part, the guitars are played in mid paced range with some faster parts here and there in some of the songs. The drummer does a solid job of combining both middle speed drumming and faster paced drums, which he uses throughout the recording. If you are a fan of original, well played thrash mixed with elements of death metal you should pick up a copy of “Total Extermination” as soon as it is available to the public.  - Patrick      




“Sacrifice” LP

(Gates Of Hell Records)


I was not sure if I was that big of a fan of this record, on first listen, but upon subsequent spins this Swedish band is really winning me over. It probably comes as little surprise, looking at the band name and cover artwork, that this band is a retro ‘80s heavy metal throwback. This ‘80s love is achingly on display, in the lyrics about fantasy themes, there are even songs about campy cult classic Kung Fu and Ninja movies like Kill And Kill Again and Ninja III: The Domination. If that were not enough, it is clear they went for yes a clear production, but one that mimics aspects of early to mid ‘80s production, lacking the extra punch at times in the guitars and subdued thinner sounding drums. Being and old school  guy myself I can appreciate this touch, but I do wish at times the guitars had a little more bite to them, also that they would let them gallop a little longer now and then on some of the killer riffs. All of that aside, if you do not mind retro for retro’s sake, then you will find Gravebreaker write some great infectious melodic songs, which showcase some solid song writing talent and feel for emotional highlights in the structuring. The keyboards, at times, are a little over used and unnecessary, but at other times on certain sections of songs like “At The Gates Of Hell” and “Messenger Of Death” they assimilate into the musical tapestry in a wonderful catchy way. The vocals have that cool old school; slightly gritty edge to them with the Swedish accent bleeding through, but only slightly and for me in a very enjoyable way. For reference some influences I could hear, think of early albums from bands like Accept, Omen, Ozzy, Mercyful Fate, Dio, Liege Lord, Running Wild, Acid, Judas Priest, Helstar, Tank etc… I think fans of early 1980s heavy metal will love this beauty of a record.  - Dale 



"Sealed Shut” 7” EP

(Boris Records)


Haunting were a band that was part of the Atlanta, Georgia underground metal scene. The band only put out one release, entitled “Sealed Shut”, which was a limited run demo tape that came out in 2014. That release plus a new intro is essentially what this is, so a re-release, but now on the vinyl format for the first time, giving a chance for those that missed it the first time around to get on it. Just reading the bio from the label, apparently the band was very important back in the 2013-1016 time period in helping revive a local Atlanta seen that was in decline. Haunting’s music is a nice blend of thrash and early death metal. The guitars are played with crazed, fast guitar patterns. The guitarist has a talent for writing some well executed guitar riffs, and even adds some solos, which are weaved into the music quite skillfully. The vocals are old school gruff growls and some screams are used here and there in a few of the songs. If you are a fan of old school death and thrash metal, then make sure to you check this one out and pick up your own copy today.  - Patrick   




“Eden In Flames” 7" EP

(Boris Records / Pale Horse Records)


Coming out of Atlanta, Georgia’s black metal scene is Hellgoat, who return with a new two song seven inch of unholy and barbaric music. The first song is “Inner Sanctum Ablaze”, which is a good song of true satanic blackness, featuring hyper speed and blasting drums that are done with a good style and interesting patterns. The vocals are harsh blackened shrieks and screams. The second song is “Scars Of Our Devotion” is in the same vein except there is more of a brutal and violent approach in this song. The drums are forceful and chaotic drum patterns. The guitars are played at a very fast pace, but the guitarist does slow down a little song, giving things a more controlled feeling. The vocals are done with a lot of power to the harsh evil dark screams.  - Patrick    



Blasphemy From Serpent Tongues” 12” LP

(Boris Records)


Originally released in 2005 Hellgoat’s debut is getting a vinyl re-release through Boris Records. “Blasphemy From Serpent Tongues” is eight songs of intense early nineties raw black metal that has both fast and a more mid pace range of the songs. The guitarist does slow to a more controlled mid paced range in a few songs. The vocals are raw, grim black metal screams of anger. If you are a fan of Hellgoat’s new releases, but missed out on the debut that started it all, then be sure to pick up this beast today.  - Patrick  




“Hellthrasher” 12” EP

(Blak Skul Records)


This came out of left field for me, as I had never heard of Hellthrasher before now, at least not a band by that name. As I understand it, you might be able to call this Memphis band a bit of project band featuring members of Incineration, an ex-member of influential crust punk band His Hero Is Gone and some other local musicians. The result is a pretty brutal mixing of death metal, grind and crust, which is heavy and chunky as fuck, not to mention just catchy enough in many sections that I can not even help myself from headbanging to the metallic maelstrom. The pacing is up and down, from middle pacing chunky death metal to vicious outbursts of high velocity grinding at times, with crust-like structuring and vibe. The vocals, much like the music, seem like a hybrid of the above subgenres with an undertone of aggressive hardcore crust screeching cutting through the slightly more predominant dm growling. I find that combo pretty satisfying, but I guess it depends on how particular you are with those styles, on whether you would mind or not the mixing of those styles. The drums are really the backbone of this record in a lot of ways, it is a rather menacing forceful drum performance, which sets the tone, strongly backing up the thick rumbling bass and stout guitar riffing, and propelling the whole thing in a forward motion in a lot of ways. I am uncertain of the running time, I would guess somewhere between 15-20 minutes, but it is an intense ride you will want to take repeatedly, so you can keep the intensity rolling and trust me you will want to keep it rolling. It is always a treat for me to receive vinyl for review, it is like an Xmas present for me, so cheers to the label for sending this cool limited (300 copies I believe) release on beautiful dark red marbled vinyl (it comes in three editions of red & black marbled and straight black). I listened to this on bandcamp just for comparisons sake and the sound, in my opinion, kills on the vinyl version.  - Dale      




“A Stirring in the Noos” LP

(Relapse Records)


Death metal seems to be experimenting quite a bit this year in terms of bringing influences from other sorts of music into its compositions. Death doom often reigns in this area, but recently psychedelia elements have been sneaking their way into the brutal form. Enter John Frum, a super group of sorts, with “A Stirring in the Noos” released on May 12th in association with Relapse Records. This album merges psychedelia with dusky death metal with seasoned competence, as is to be expected from a lineup that includes members like bassist Liam Wilson of The Dillinger Escape Plan and vocalist Derek Rydquist of ex-The Faceless fame. These two band members produced the elements that I found myself focusing on the most when I was listening to the album, not because of their status in the scene, but rather because of just how much control each has over their deliveries. Wilson’s bass at times pummels through the composition, and at times acts as the pulse to the music. Rydquist’s vocal performance demonstrates his wide range, fluctuating from mid-lows to blackened mid-highs. He has complete power concerning the verses he conveys. However, the drums and guitar do not feel as exceptional in comparison, even though they both show technical capacity throughout the album. Matt Hollenberg’s guitar solos are often astoundingly tortured in the manner that has become familiar in this brand of death metal, but they sometimes fall short in terms of being memorable. Similarly, Eli Litwin’s drumming exhibits his mechanical proficiency, but there were only a few sections on the record where I truly noticed the drums as being brilliant. This is not to say that the album overall is lackluster. Quite the contrary—I believe the band will only better from here because this album presents much promise for their future. John Frum carve out a space to call their own in the vein of psychedelic death metal, but whether they will maintain their rank alongside so many other fantastically written experimental death metal projects churned out this year remains uncertain.  - Aaron   





“Flammarion” LP & CD

(I, Voidhanger Records)


It is an interesting choice by this Finnish band to start off the opening song on their debut album with a cover tune. After listening to it though, it does feel right, as they really add their own style heavily to this cover of Darkthrone’s “The Serpent’s Harvest”, from the Total Death album. They end up largely making the song their own, yet still paying homage to the songs immense cadenced foundation riff. This is my first encounter with this young band, after apparently having missed their digital single and ep, both released a couple years ago. Khanus has been hard at work on this introductory record ever since and that hard work shows. I suppose you could call the band avant-garde or progressive to some extent, as the band incorporates many unusual elements, such as all sorts of primitive sounding ritualistic and occult or Shamanic ceremonial type elements such as chants, hypnotic rhythmic drumming, overall tempos and timing. Like I said, I guess you can call them that, but unlike most bands placed into the avant-garde / progressive realm Khanus never abandons their root sound. Which is very heavy and slightly doomy darkened death metal, that brutal underpinning is always the anchor with everything else spinning around it’s orbit. Despite that description everything on here is solid and well performed, but there is really nothing overly technically impressive or amazingly complex going here with their slow-ish to middle paced music. But, the way it is all put together, the vision and song crafting are where it is special or at least different, and somewhat original (okay so maybe Master’s Hammer and Root have done something approaching this) when combined together as you all know that alone is an achievement these days. All the above described, conspire together to create a very shadowy and mysterious atmospheric vibe that is magnetic in a sinister trance-inducing manner. The vocals display an impressively wide spectrum of styles, often featuring spoken word or partially sung and spoken passages in a brutish intimidating style, as well as growling, clean voices, triumphant almost classic doom style singing and as mentioned previous various iteration chanting. As I said earlier, there is nothing mind-blowing here with regards to it’s unremarkable individual elements, but the manner in which they have all been masterfully woven together, in a different and original sounding way is what makes this a special record, worth your attention.  - Dale      




“Burning Torches” 12” MLP

(Hells Headbangers)


This Spanish band is new, but it’s members have been around for years in other bands (Sheidhim, Graveyard, Morbid Flesh etc…), so it is no surprise how mature this mini-album sounds and the performances within. Things start off with a possessed demonic intro that reminds of the early vocalization of the infamous Hellhammer. Following the intro, the music explodes out of your speakers with an exciting burst of forcefulness, which is sure to invigorate the listener into a frenzy of adrenaline filled headbanging fury. It is a straight shot to the veins of potent, swirling guitars producing a catchy and heavy riff storm. The energy is high, often with a rapid pace to match, but the band does slow things down now and then to create an underlying evil atmospheric to underpin the barbarity. Think of a blitzkrieg melding of early Venom and Celtic Forst, mixed with newer influences like Vomitor, Dissection, Bestial Mockery, Nifelheim, Destruktor and Gospel Of The Horns. So yes, it is in my mind, a caustic love letter to some of the most vicious bands from the Australian and Swedish UG scenes. There is not that much of an own sound, but fuck it, when they do it this fucking good and put this much dedication and diabolic energy into it. I can do nothing but praise what they have accomplished here on this six song, twenty minute recording. Not to even mention, how do you not love a band with high quality music, who also have a song title called “The Great Masturbator”!  - Dale   




“The Rapturous Unraveling” 7" EP

(Boris Records)


Atlanta’s death metallers Malformity return with a new 7” EP, which features two tracks of old school brutal death metal. The first track is “Rapturous Damnation”, which is four minutes of solid and raging barbarous death metal music. The vocals are growls that fit in the musical style very well. The guitars are played at a mid paced tempo, but do speed up a few times, before calming back down to the middle paced realm once again. The second and final song is “Unraveling”, which is a much faster and chaotic piece of music compared to the first track. The drumming is played with some blasting drum parts that do slow down slightly to a fast style similar to the mid ‘90s US and Swedish bands from this era. The vocals in this song are a mix of gruff growls and some deeper brutish growling as well. If you are a fan of quality old school death metal, which has influences from both American and Swedish death metal scenes, you should definitely pick up this seven inch when it is released.  - Patrick    




“Medieval Necromancy” LP & CD

(Hells Headbangers Records)


If anyone knows me, and my musical tastes, they know how big of a die hard I am for early to mid ‘90s Greek black metal. I worshipped at it’s malevolent altar back then, and since tape trading, buying releases and following this scene. It unfortunately, over the years, largely morphed stylistically and sound-wise into something I largely did not care for. I long for those olden days, so does Medieval Demon, who are keeping them alive and attempting to return the scene to past glory. I immediately think of one of my all time favourite black metal releases when listening to this, which is Necromantia’s side of their split album with the mighty Varathron, released way back in 1992, a pure masterpiece. Before anyone gets the wrong idea that M.D. are a new young band, picking up the old mantle, forget that straight away. despite having called it quits for 15 years at the end of the ‘90s, Medieval Demon actually formed in 1992 releasing demos, a split ep and album prior to the hiatus. The two main driving forces of the band are brothers Lord Apollyon & Sirokous, who also run a record label called Cryptia Productions, as well as running a black/death record store together in Athens. This release spews no less than fifty-five minutes of the audio personification of blasphemic darkness and evil! The old Greek bm style, while similar to the early ‘90s second wave of black metal coming from Scandinavia, tends to possess more ritualistic drumming and effects. These bands also show more passion for the first wave of black metal, in the late ‘80s, with more traditional metal elements than many of their Scandinavian counterparts. The sound also often includes dark and freezing synth accents, frequently coupled with a building crescendo of dramatic hypnotic beats. When performed and crafted correctly it can truly take the listener on a sinister emotional mental journey. I know I have built this album up high, I do not want to mislead here, it may not rival those early classics, as good as it is. But, it does capture that sound and tradition with an authentic reverence, assuring that the flame is lit again and that the air crackles electric with the old magic once again. So, if you miss the early years of Greek black metal, as I do, and adore the early releases of bands like Necromantia, Varathron, Rotting Christ, Nergal, Kawir, Agatus, Zemial, Thou Art Lord and more (not Greek but I even hear a bit of Mortuary Drape in there) then you will need to look into this straight away!  - Dale    




“Big Sky, Black Horse” 12" LP

(Self Released)


I was lucky enough to receive this beautiful looking piece of vinyl in the mail. It looks great, the artwork suits the music, looks nice blown up this big, and the record itself is sweet clear vinyl, with black smoke wafting from the center of the vinyl outward. Monobrow are from my homeland Canada, always a plus for me. These Canadian heavyweights, play rocking stoner fuzz hard rock / metal, with healthy doses 70s hard rock doom and progressive rock from the same time period, plus topped as mentioned with a modern stoner feel. All are influences that fall directly into my wheelhouse. Monobrow tend to stick to a middling pace, but they do slow it down, always propelled by catchy as fuck riffs and rhythms. The drumming on this record is great; it really drew me in at times and helped take me on a journey. Which, for me is something, that very rarely happens, coming that particular instrument. There are some sweet little bass noodles on the breaks, in between the riffing heat, that are the perfect accent. I also dig the somber, psychedelic moody moments; they linger in the air like a murky bitch of a head trip, before jumping back into the fray once again. The music on this album, is so good and delivers such a full sound, that I did not mind or really even think about there being no vocals on this album. I have to think, Monobrow would be a great band to experience live, not mention I want hear them say, “The next song is Old Man Mouthbreather” haha Killer song title. Get this!  - Dale    




“Wicca” 7” EP

(Boris Records)


Well this was a bit of a surprise for me. Until now, Boris Records had only sent me bands they championed, from their home base area of Atlanta, Georgia. Which, as it turns out, is more of a hotbed of quality extreme metal bands than I would have imagined? The label has reached way out of the area this time, and out of the country, searching all the way down south to Peru and the mighty South American UG scene to find Morbid Slaughter. There are two songs here “Wicca” and “Nightly Breath Of God” on this lovely little slab of vinyl. Morbid Slaughter play some great old school thrashing black metal that I often find myself missing these days. The songs and riffing are straight ahead and simple, but driving and very effective, creating a cold and sinister atmospheric feel to the music. There is a cool piercing guitar lead on the title track, as well as a more frenzied possessed lead, on the second track as well. Which fits the music surprisingly well and is not out of place at all. The vocals took me a couple listens to get used to and became a highlight for me after a while. I think it took me some time, to get into them, as they are just different than you usually hear these days and again are harkening back to the old days, like early Mortuary Drape or something similar. The vocals have some of the traditional bm rasp to them, but it is cloaked under a cool long drawn out creepy whisper, that only further adds to the ominous feeling the music gives you. This is well worth getting your hands on and it comes with a liner insert as well. I believe as of this writing, the vinyl is still available (I think I read somewhere it is limited to 500 copies), but if it sells out by the time you read this, the music on this vinyl is available in high quality download purchase for less than two bucks on the labels bandcamp site, as are most or all their releases.  - Dale   




“Tortura” 12” Mini LP

(Nuclear War Now!)


Morbosidad have unleashed their brand new Mini-LP “Tortura”. They mix a nice blend of old-school black and death metal elements, together with some influences of war metal chaos. The drumming is non-stop, fast and chaotic, just all over the place, which really fits the songs. The guitars are equally as fast, with some excellent patterns and riffs. The band is not all speed and chaos, they do slow it down in a few songs to a more mid-paced range, before pummeling the listener with yet another barrage of high-speed guitars and drums.  - Partick    





“Santaurio Del Diablo” Split 7” EP

(Hells Headbangers Records)


Starting off this cool piece of split vinyl is the American warring blackened death metal horde Morbosidad with a new track, entitled “Verdugo”, which is an excellent death black metal assault of real destruction and fury. The vocals are cool raw gruff growls and screams. The music is mid paced with a few outbursts of intensity mixed into the anarchy. The second song is “Pureza Del Martir”, which is a more of a little faster paced, and straight to the point with blasting drums backed with a mix of gruff growling and tortured screams. Sweden’s Kill (featuring Carl Warslaughter whom long time CA readers will remember well from the infamous band Bestial Mockery) like their counterparts on this split release are veterans of sick UG game. Kill appear with one longer song (well longer than the two Morbosidad tracks) entitled ‘Prayer Of Destruct’, which is a frenzied piece of blackened death metal music and a real beast of a song! The music is played with a lot of raw intensity that is grim, but also showcases the bands experience and sadistic song writing abilities. The vocals on this track are raw, harsh hateful sounding screams. This is an excellent release for fans on truly dirty and evil metal from the depths, so check it out and also support the great Hells Headbangers who have fine taste in music and champion true death and black metal.  - Patrick   




In Commvnio Tenebrae” Split 7” EP

(Iron Bonehead Records)


The first band on this release, is Columbia's Nebiros with their song "Yo Pecador", it is mid-paced black metal with some death metal influences. The song is done great and the vocals are raspy screams. The band members are really good with their instruments, and one song is not enough, hopefully they will release a new MLP or cd soon. Next is Bolivia's Nekrmanteion, with their song ''Occult Revelations'', it is a dark song with a big black/thrash elements going on. Not as good as Nebiros, but their still a young band, so maybe their next release will see continued improvement.  - Patrick    





“Original Motion Picture Soundtrack” 7” EP

(NoVisible Scars Records)


I thought this was a real coup, for the label, when I heard they were releasing this. I am sure many of you, reading this know the cult classic 1985 horror movie, by the same name. This release is in conjunction, with the movie re-release, by the rapidly gaining in popularity Vinegar Syndrome. Who are releasing all sorts of old film classics from vintage sex movies, to horror movies, that the die hards have being waiting for on DVD and Blu Ray. This soundtrack, of course is not metal in the least, but I have always had a thing for horror movie soundtracks, and this is a hell of a collectors item and very cool. I believe this thing is already sold out. There was a pressing of 500 with 400 on black vinyl and 100 on blue and bone coloured vinyl. So while you scour online, for a second hand copy, you can preview the tracks at the link below. This thing looks beautiful, the old school looking; broken-in layout is fantastic in my opinion. I was told by the label owner Bill, there might be more Vinegar Syndrome soundtrack releases in the future. I really hope so, this is killer gem that is going straight into my collection, mine is #302 out of 500 and you can not have it! Support this one of kind label, they deserve it!  - Dale    






“The Science Of Horror” LP

(Nuclear War Now! Records)


Nuclear War Now has unearthed and released, the early demos, from one of the earliest U.S. death metal hordes and legends. The “Science Of Horror” 1988 demo starts off this slab of death thrashing mayhem, with four songs of early death metal, peppered with some thrashing influence. Even in the bands early demos they recorded, you can hear the beginnings of their technical guitars and trademark sound. There is no doubt, in my mind, that this band is one of the pioneers of the genre and the death metal scene the movement spawned. Up next on side two, is the 1987 demo titled demo 1, which possesses a much more raw production, though you can still make out all the instruments. The guitars are much faster, with a thrashy sound, even in this early demo you can hear this band was extremely focused and knew how to play their instruments. The drumming is performed with a variety of fast drum patterns, then slowing to a more mid pace range at times. I would say this is a must have, for any fans of Nocturnus or if you are a fan of early death metal, this is a great release to your hands on today.  - Patrick      




“Gone To The Devil” 7" EP

(Hells Headbangers Records)


Wow after an epic eight year absence, October 31 graces itself upon the ears and fears of the scene once more. It is good to have them back! Holy shit, that meaty riff off the hop, bursts out of my headphones in rocking fashion. Then we immediately launch into a brief, frantic guitar solo, just before the almighty King Fowley clobbers you with his wonderful, charismatic voice / yells dripping with traditional heavy metal / thrash goodness. I could listen to that man sing over classic style heavy metal of yesteryear all night long. Howl it out brother! Whoooo!! On side B of this sweet piece of vinyl, we are absolutely treated to a rousing, spirited cover of Uriah Heep’s “Too Scared To Run”, one of my favourite Heep tracks. They knock this thing right out of the park, it sounds so great, that stylish chunky riff starts things off and running, with King pouring his heart out all over the microphone! His voice is saturated with emotion and conviction that is perfectly matched by the music. I am getting fucking chills listening to cover man, fuck me this is soooo good it hurts!!  - Dale   




“The Worst” LP & Cassette

(Greyhaze Records)


This is a re-issue of this notorious legend bands final album that originally came out in 1996. The album starts off with a short intro before kicking off the music with a middle paced thrashy old school black metal sound. The vocals are a mix of old style gruff growls and some screams mixed in. There is also some clean singing believe it not and even some whispery spoken word type of vocals used in some of the songs. The guitars are done mainly with mid paced guitars, but do speed up to a faster pace now and then throughout the recording. ‘The Worst’ (a very apt title as this has to be the worst thing the band released - Dale) is Sarcofago’s last full length release, while this release is nowhere near as fast or chaotic as the bands earlier releases, but the ‘The Worst’ does still have some good music on it at times.  - Patrick    




“Goathrower” 7” EP

(Boris Records)


Boris Records is really doing a good job, at putting the Altanta, Georgia scene, on the map. All four of the releases, they have sent for review have been from Atlanta. I must say, I am impressed, at the quality coming out of there. This time around, we get a dirty, grimy band which plays crusty thrashing death/grind insanity. Some of the higher pitched mainstay vocals, remind me slightly to the vox of the mighty Macabre, so you know I like that shit being a big Macabre fan. The more I listen to this record, the more it feels like there is a Spewtilator sound, so to speak, where they have taken a lot of influences and created something of their own with it. I did not feel that way, after the first listen or two, just thought well this is just okay, but the more I listen to it, the more I hear and the more their sound started to click with me. So much so, I am becoming kind of addicted to listening to this, five song circle of vinyl raunchiness, over and over again. It does not want to seem to come off of my turntable! This release, sort of reminds me of many years ago, when I got heavily into a band named Drogheda. Spewtilator remind me of them somewhat stylistically, but more the atmosphere they create and their consistency, within that feel to their music, from song to song. I think their sound has a certain crossover sensibility to it, from a few genres like crust, punk, thrash, death, grind and maybe even the slightest hint of black metal vitriol spit in there. This is some good shit; it just may take a few listens to really sink in like it did with me. Just stick with it and you will be rewarded. I will tell you what, Boris Records and the Atlanta scene have captured my attention, they will capture yours too if given half a chance.  - Dale   






“Succumb” LP

(The Flenser Records)


From the Bay Area of California we have some fresh, hearty meat entering the contemporary death metal scene: Succumb’s self-titled debut. This album was released by the band formerly known as Cloak on May 5th in association with Flenser Records, and has made ripples in the metal community, or at least in the metal blogosphere. Coming in at about 34 minutes of spin time, this record wastes not a single second within its tracks, moving from passage to passage seamlessly with such ferocity that you will wonder when you are truly allowed to catch your breath and massage your neck. Harry Cantwell’s drumming especially adds to the band’s mercilessness, taking a methodical approach that reigns in the other elements of the compositions while still maintaining his own furious pacing and rhythm. Indeed, the guitar and bass consistently feel like they are on the brink of becoming chaotic throughout certain areas of the album, but the drums chain them to the coarse earth while the vocals shout down at them from above. Cheri Musrasrik’s feral, yet controlled, yells exchange lines with bassist Kirk Spaseff’s deep growls intermittently in such tracks as “Bedchambers”, providing a terrific contrast that helps keep the listener invested in the well-crafted verses. Altogether, the elements combined on this record rightly fit together, and thanks in good part to the masterful mixing by Jack Shirley, they only rupture at the seams when it is strategic for the band to do so. Oftentimes heavily rhythmic, and always heavy, Succumb’s self-titled debut brings a hardcore flare to death metal that will definitely see their ripples in the medium turn into waves.  – Aaron      




“Chaotic Devotion” 7” EP

(Boris Records)


Kentucky’s blackened death metal band unleash their brand new two song 7 inch upon the metal underground. The first song “Scared To Death” is a violent and chaotic hymn that mixes in both heavy mid paced tempos along with some faster, crazed parts. The vocals are death metal growls with some raspy vocals mixed in. Flipping over to side B, the track is entitled “Treads Of War”, which is played in the same vein starting off with heavy mid paced music, but wastes little time before going to hyperspeed crazed metal passages. The drumming is mid paced and heavy beats that at times break into an all out assault of blasting drums. The vocals are deep death growls with some gruff screams mixed into music. If you enjoy heavy, chaotic blackened death metal then be sure to check out this release today!  - Patrick   




“14 Sovereign” 12” LP

(Palehorse Records)


This recording was originally released in 2005, on cassette tape, which as you see has been reissued on vinyl through Palehorse Records. Vpaahsalbrox plays a very raw form of black metal, which is mainly in the mid tempo range. The guitars are played with a lot good patterns that stay well within the early black metal genre. The guitars do speed up in a few of the songs, but mainly played with mid paced riffs. The drums go from a mix of fast patterns to a more mid paced drumming style. The vocals are raw vicious black metal screams. If you are a fan of harsh, raw black metal then you will definitely want to pick up this release immediately.  - Patrick  




"White Death” LP

(Hells Headbangers / Werewolf Records)


This is the debut album from this young Finnish band, having formed in 2013, subsequently releasing a demo and a couple seven inches since then. I am extremely pleased that I chose review this album; it is one of the best black metal albums I have heard in recent years. White Death proudly continues the old traditions of early 90s black metal, but put their own stamp on this classic sound, whilst updating it in their own way. I also get impression, unlike so many black metal bands these days, they are serious about the philosophies and meaning behind what originally started the black metal scene and made it severe and evil. This album takes everything you love about early ‘90s Scandinavian black metal and stokes that fire up to a full northern blaze! The mainstay of the music, is mainly a blitzkrieg attack of seething hatred and violence, tearing asunder everything in it’s path. Despite that being the staple of their sound, at times it is also surprisingly diverse, in it’s emotive qualities and thoughtful song structuring. There are also times, when it is almost perplexing that the music is this grim and harsh, yet also incredibly melodic. I say that, because all too often a lot of melodicism is the enemy of musical barbarity and violence, not so with White Death, they marry the two into a catchy, stealth-like savage beast. Always present within the sound, is the classic bm freezing grim atmosphere, which produces that tangible feeling of darkness and evil within the listener that has made me a slave of this movement for nearly three decades. There are some keyboards, but they are mainly kept as a background accompaniment, filling in the atmosphere and not dominating in the forefront, which is just way I prefer. The vocals, much like the music, are harsh and varied in an interesting way, the icy rasping quality is great, but has some depth to it and as mentioned containing some diverse nuances. There is even one vocal bit that sounded like a tortured demon possessed horse snarling or something fucked up like that. This is a fantastic debut album, showcasing what traditional black metal is really capable of, while still staying true to it’s roots and deadly tradition. I simply can not recommend this enough!  - Dale      




“Forest Of Blitzkrieg” 7” EP Single

(Black Skul Records)


This is an interesting release. Wintercoffin hail from Memphis, this release is actually nearly six years old, and is the only recorded material by the band. Apparently this was a two man band, that had originally planned to carry at some point in the future, but some time after this recording, Jimmy Blitzkrieg died. The remaining member Rob Evil (from the band Evil Army) probably never thought it would see the dark of night. But Black Skul records decided this single song “Forest Of The Blitzkrieg”, needed to be heard. I am glad they did, this song is a pretty fucking awesome, it is a combination of headbanging thrash, and harsh early 90s tradition Nordic black metal. It is far from the first time, these two sub-genre’s have been mixed together, but it may be one of the best examples of having done it well. They really capture thrash when they thrash, you can do circles around the living room, nodding your head and punching the air, in an adrenaline frenzy. They also managed to capture and transition, back and forth from classic atmospheric sound of foreboding, freezing black metal, which will chill you with it’s evil vitriol. It is kind of hard to explain properly, but damn I wish they had been able to carry on with this. Because if they could have written, an entire album this good, it could have been something truly memorable, amidst a scene often devoid of that quality. This track was recorded on a basement 4 track, but the sound for me is perfect, it’s clear but low-fi and heavy. I am not sure, there is much more to say going on only one track, but believe it or not, even though this is only a one song release, it is well worth your time and money. The vinyl itself and the packaging are quality and nice to look at, this was limited to 550 and currently it is still available.  - Dale