April 2018, New Releases Review Part A

The number of promos arriving to our mailboxes is constantly increasing in an exponential manner while the free time to properly listen and review all these materials is getting less and less. Here’s the first part of another collective review post with respect and gratitude to all the bands who have trusted us with their material…

A Devil’s Din - One Hallucination Under God

According to the press release, Devil’s Din are a psycho rock trio coming from Montreal and "One Hallucination Under God" is their 3d studio album. To be honest, I am not the most knowledgable person or the biggest fan of that genre so I have tried to listen to the album with open ears and mind and what I have to say is that I loved the melodies in it. The production is modern and does not sound retro and this, in my opinion, provides more chances to the album to be liked by non-fans of the genre (like me)…

Album Rating : 7.5 out of 10

Howling Giant - "Black Hole Space Wizard: Part 2"

Nashville’s Howling Giant play stoner rock, writing tunes about space travel, doomed seafarers and a sentient android hellbent for a camel killing death crusade (ok I copied this from the press release…). "Black Hole Space Wizard: Part 2" EP is the second (obviously) part of a concept trilogy which describes the cosmic progressive travels of 'The Pioneer' continuing his quest for self-discovery and purpose on the husk planet, Earth and if you like stoner which is heavy enough to classify as Doom metal this is for sure a release worth checking out…

Album Rating : 8 out of 10

Mason - Impervious

Groovy US thrash with solid production which references to Exodus of the Fabulous Disaster era. Not the most original thing that you will listen this month but the nice solos and the overall aggressivenes make it a highly enjoyable release…

Album Rating : 8.5 out of 10

Time For Energy - Gang of Losers

I cannot be very objective here. Time for Energy play a style of punk rock which has marked and defined an important period of my life and they do it in a remarkable way! Intelligent riffs, intensity and melody combined in equal parts make Gang of Losers an album that had it been released in the early 2000’s would have placed them in the pantheon of emo - hardcore bands next to Snapcase, Refused, Quicksand and Glassjaw

Album Rating : 9 out of 10

dIVA - SOL

This 5 song EP is not exactly metal but it is mostly intended for fans of artists like Chelsea Wolfe and Zola Jesus which means that what you will listen is a mixture of post rock, trip-hop and dream pop which may not be as dark as Chelsea Wolfe however is introspective, melodic and beautiful.

Album Rating : 8 out of 10

Antidote - The Rock Years

This is a compilation of early Antidote material form the period when they were still a hard rock act but despite what the tile suggests I see no resemblance to rock or hard rock here. The songs are more closer to street punk and to the sound of English Oi bands like The Business, rather than Guns N’ Roses. Still the material included though is worth checking out so do not let categories stop you from giving this album a listen.

Album Rating : 7.5 out of 10

Temptation’s Wings - Skulthor Ebonblade

Seeing the cover of the album, I initially though that this is another Splatter Death/Grindcore album. To my surprise, Skulthor Ebonblade contains a wonderful combination of epic and doom metal with a couple songs that generate some of the most exciting (sic) goosebumps that a true metal fun can expect (To Forget a Legend Ulfbehrt - Lair of the Gordon Queen). Honest album !

Album Rating : 8 out of 10

Beldam - Pasung

Beldam’s sludge metel has plenty of Black Metal influences however their Black Sabbath references make them much more accessible than bands like Primitive Man. This is their second release and the first with new singer Randall Guidry.

Album Rating : 7.5 out of 10

Mutank - W.H.A.T.A.S.T.H.A.T.

Mutank’s humoristic thrashcore reminds bands like M.O.D. and Mucky Pup. Their 10 minute EP additionally bears some Maiden and Megadeth influences (in the vocals) however, with the exception of the last song, it did not manage to generate any enthusiasm to me…

Album Rating : 7 out of 10

Mutilator - Immortal Force

Immortal Force is a document of the Brazilian thrash scene as it was released by Brazil’s Cogumelo record back in 1988. Like in Sepultura early albums (until Schizophrenia era) here we have aggressive, sick riffs, fast drumming and exotic accents however any other attempt to put the two bands side by side stops here. By year 1988, Sepultura had already signed to Roadrunner Records and were about to unleash Beneath the Remains being ready for the next big step so in a way we can say that Mutilator were left a bit behind in the effort for an international career. Retro Death/Thrash lovers will love this record though…

Album Rating : 7.5 out of 10