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REVIEWS 2021 - Page 1


REZET: Truth In Between - Album
(Metalville on Jan. 29)
REZET blend influences from all 4 members, and the result is of course varied. But you could say that in general it's thrash and heavy metal, with lyrics that paint a gloomy picture of the world. Sometimes they are harder and heavier, sometimes more melodic.
The band comes from northern Germany, and this is their fifth studio album, where we get as much as 13 tracks (why so many?). They have some good stuff here, so it could absolutely be worth a try.
Among my favorites are "Jailpit".
Published: Jan. 16

NEUROTOX: Egal Was Kommt - Album
(Metalville on Jan. 29)
German punk rock band NEUROTOX has existed for 6 years, and "Egal Was Kommt" (No Matter What in English) is their fifth studio album. All their lyrics are in German, so I don't understand much (unless I use Google Translate). But it's said that they sing about topics that are close to their hearts and important to them.
Their music is pretty catchy and with much melody, as well as lots of choir singing in the background. And this is not bad at all. I think of both Swedish and American punk rock bands when I hear this. 12 tracks is much though.
If you're into more melodic punk, then this could be something for you.
Published: Jan. 16

HERZLOS: Babylon - Album
(Metalville on Jan. 29)
HERZLOS is said to be one of the hottest bands in Germany right now. All lyrics are in German, and their music is a little bit of everything - rock, punk rock, hard rock and metal. So I guess that most people who like different kinds of harder rock will find something that they like here. It's often catchy and heavy guitars, and most of these 11 songs are pretty good stuff. Nothing is so bad that it sucks anyway.
Published: Jan. 16

20 WATT TOMBSTONE: Year of the Jackalope - Single
(Self released on Jan. 22)
On the A-side we get a cover of "Just Got Paid" by ZZ TOP. So I guess it's not so hard to figure out that this band play blues rock from the American South. The B-side is a bit darker though, and is a cover of Chris Stapleton's "Midnight Train To Memphis".
Well, there's not much to say about this as it's just 2 songs, but it sounds good anyway. So just give it a try.
Published: Jan. 15

HOLY DEATH TRIO: The Killer - Single
(Self released on Jan. 22)
The 2 first singles from these Texas rockers was great, and this song is not so bad either, even though it might not be as great as the first songs. I would describe it as a heavier rocker. It was actually written in the same vein as an old blues song from the early 1900s, and was originally written and performed as a 1-man blues band. But here we get it with a full band, which makes it sound like straight up power trio heavy blues rock-n-roll instead.
I'm still waiting for their full length debut, which should be out soon.
Published: Jan. 15

(Luftslott Records on Jan. 22)
Catchy and energetic power pop/punk rock in Swedish. 3 songs is what we get on this EP, and it's definitely not bad at all. So you should check this out of course.
This northern Swedish band released their first EP, "Paradiset EP", in January 2020, and the physical copies sold out fast. Their music has been described as a perfect blend of classic Swedish acts like EBBA GRÖN and modern American garage punk. I don't know if I agree, but it's stable 4-beat anyway, and then you can describe it however you want. The lyrics deal with everyday issues in a capitalist society.
sekunderna.bandcamp.com   luftslottrecords.com
Published: Jan. 13

ROVESCIO DELLA MEDAGLIA: Contaminazione 2.0 - Album
(Jolly Roger Records - Out now)
This was a really weird experience.. Some kind of over ambitious, progressive rock opera adventure in Italian. Not really my kind of thing. And I don't think that this is so rock n roll either, as it sounds more like a opera or possibly a musical. It's more or less torture to me to listen to some of the parts here - Like when there's violin or piano for example, and when they play solo or instrumental for way too long. But o.k., I'm not going to lie to you, there are some good parts too here and there, so this is not totally hopeless after all.
Published: Jan. 13

GENERATION STEEL: The Eagle Will Rise - Album
(Pure Steel Records on Jan. 22)
Can heavy metal be more true than this? They have the right sound and the right passion. It's powerful and energetic, yet melodic somehow, and they are really good at what they are doing. And that's fuel enough to make a great album like this.
If I should compare them with the veterans, then I would say JUDAS PRIEST in the 80s for example. Simply good old heavy metal as we all know it and love it.
GENERATION STEEL comes from Germany, and was founded in 2019. So this is obviously their debut album, which consist of 13 tracks and almost an hour of music. The band was formed by guitarist Jack The Riffer (ex-DEAD MAN'S HAND, BULLET TRAIN). The other members are Pascal Lorenz (ex-OSCURA, CORBIAN) on lead guitar, Michael Kaspar (ex-SQUEALER) on bass, Martin Winter on drums and Rio Ullrich on vocals.
The album was produced by ACCEPT guitarist Uwe Lulis.
generation-steel.de   puresteel-records.com
Published: Jan. 12

KICKIN VALENTINA: The Revenge Of Rock - Album
(Mighty Music on Jan. 22)
"The Revenge Of Rock" is the third full length album from these American hard rockers. They deliver 9 tracks of loud and dirty rock n roll, often with a party vibe on top of that. They throw in some punk rock here and there too, which gives it even more energy. There is a few more melodic songs too though, so it's not just full speed ahead all the time. This is really good stuff!
KICKIN VALENTINA formed in 2013, and released their first EP in October the same year. In 2015 they signed with the Danish label Mighty Music, who has released 2 albums and 1 EP with the band.
Fans of early GUNS N' ROSES and AC/DC should check this out.
kickinvalentina.com   mightymusic.dk
Published: Jan. 11

CONVICTION: Conviction - Album
(Argonauta Records on Jan. 22)
Heavy boys. We talk doom metal here, and nothing else. They are highly recommended for fans of SAINT VITUS, PENTAGRAM, COUNT RAVEN and early CATHEDRAL.
CONVICTION is a French band, who formed in 2013. But it's not until now that their first full length album will be released, which consist of 8 massive tracks. And this is hardly something for those of you who are in a hurry. It's slow and heavy, but yet with a melody, and the songs are pretty long pieces (5:28-11:18 minutes). It's absolutely not bad though.
convictiondoom.bandcamp.com   argonautarecords.com
Published: Jan. 10

BLOODLETTER: Funeral Hymns - Album
(Petrichor on Jan. 22)
BLOODLETTER hails from Chicago, Illinois, USA. They have previously released several EPs and a full length.
A album title like "Funeral Hymns" might sound like something really depressing, but what we get here is 11 tracks of furious and raging thrash metal with slight crossover hints. There's also lots of space for melodies. So no, this is absolutely not depressing or any funeral hymns.
BLOODLETTER play a kind of thrash metal that sounds really good to me. I think you might like it too.
facebook.com/bloodletterMetal   hammerheartpetrichor.com
Published: Jan. 10

ALPHA BOYS: Saviours of Rock 'N' Roll - Album
(Sliptrick Records on Jan. 21)
Swedish band ALPHA BOYS sing about drunken adventures and dirty stuff among other things. And some of the lyrics are actually a bit silly. But if it had been something like 20-25 years ago, then I would probably have laughed a lot at this band's lyrics.
They are obviously inspired by TURBONEGRO, and even call their music deathpunk, just like them. The music is not exactly the same as the Norwegians though, as they are also inspired by MOTÖRHEAD. And sure it's not so bad, but on the other hand they don't have that big hit song that they should have if they want to go anywhere.
I guess a song title like "Too Smart To Be Sober" says it all. You don't need that much intelligence to listen to this. Which is o.k. as rock is meant to be fun.
"Saviours of Rock 'N' Roll" is the debut album from these high energy rockers.
facebook.com/alphaboysSWE   sliptrickrecords.com
Published: Jan. 10

SNOW: Skate Fast Die Hard - Single
(Red Garage Records - Out now)
This is a new solo band with Rodrigo Neves (TIGERSHARKS), formed as late as last year during the pandemic. In this band he focus on a mixture of sludge, hardcore/punk and stoner rock, and it sounds like crust core (more or less) to me, possibly with a pinch of thrash. It's a pretty fast and short song.
"Skate Fast Die Hard" is the first single with SNOW, but another single should be out soon. An album with the same title as this song is expected in early 2021.
Published: Jan. 9

ROYAL HUNT: Dystopia - Album
(NorthPoint Productions/King Records - Out now)
It's a dramatically and ambitious album that these Danish progressive metal veterans has created. I can hear power metal as well as neo-classical metal here. But also some classical/symphonic music, which makes it cinnematic.
This could have been the kind of album that I don't really like. But ROYAL HUNT succeed to make good songs, and are not ambitious just because they can. So this is simply a very good metal album.
"Dystopia" is the band's 15th studio album, and it's also a concept album, which features vocals from people like Mats Leven (PRINS SVART, SKYBLOOD, ex-CANDLEMASS, Yngwie Malmsteen etc etc), Mark Boals (Yngwie Malmsteen, RING OF FIRE), Henrik Brockmann (ROYAL HUNT, EVIL MASQUERADE, N'TRIBE), Kenny Lubcke (NARITA, ZOSER MEZ) and Alexandra Andersen (ROYAL HUNT, JSP).
royalhunt.com   northpoint-productions.com
Published: Jan. 9

PINK COCOON: Wasting My Time - Single
(Self released - Out now)
Doom blues is what they call this, and it's said to fit fans of BLACK SABBATH, Jimi Hendrix and ALICE IN CHAINS.
PINK CACOON is a 1-man band with multi-instrumentalist Marc Zolla from Montreal. This song is said to be darker and heavier than "It's No Fun", which was released in August 2020. His sound is described as a mixture of psychedelic riffs, hard rock and pop melodies.
"Wasting My Time" is the second in a series of singles that will eventually form the basis of a new EP, which is due later this year. And this is a really good song that you should check out at once.
Published: Jan. 9

SISTER: Scream for Pleasure - Single
(Flick Records - Out now)
Yet another single with these Swedish hard rockers. "Scream for Pleasure" is the fifth single from their upcoming 4th album. So it looks like they have released something like half the album as singles now.
Well, this song is among the better of those that I have heard so far, so it's absolutely worth checking out of course. And why not try the previous singles as well?
The new album, "Vengeance Ignited", will be released in February.
flickagency.se   facebook.com/sisterband
Published: Jan. 8

HERE LIES MAN: Ritual Divination - Album
(RidingEasy Records on Jan. 22)
This is almost like listening to 15 different versions of the same song. The music is heavy/psych rock, and the only "vocals" is background singing. They repeat the same thing over and over again. It's honestly very difficult to listen to. And why did they have to include as much as 15 tracks of this shit?! It makes it last for an eternity.
HERE LIES MAN are based in L.A., and this is their 4th full length album. Their music has been decribed as "if BLACK SABBATH played Afrobeat", which might not be true anymore as "the guitars are heavier and more blues based than before, but the ancient rhythmic formula of the clave remains a constant", as they describe this album.
hereliesman.com   ridingeasyrecs.com
Published: Jan. 6

Joey Diabolic: Through Soundwaves Vol. 3 - EP
(Self released on Jan. 15)
Joey Diabolic is a multi-instrumentalist and solo artist, and this 6-track EP is a tribute to the film "A Nightmare On Elm Street". It features a couple of original songs, but mainly covers of ANTHRAX, SPONGE, STABBING WESTWARD and WHITE ZOMBIE. And to be honest with you, there's not much that is good here, but there's variation at least.
The first track, "Son of a Hundred Maniacs", is just a intro. After that it's more electronic/industrial. "Plowed" is a more normal metal song, and among the few songs here that are o.k. at least. The next track, "I Am The Shadow in Darkness", is a slower piece. And after that comes another electronic/industrial song. The last bite, "Creatures of the Wheel", is a industrial song.
Published: Jan. 5

MEZMORIA: Scars - Single
(Self released - Out now)
MEZMORIA was first founded in 2006 by Robin Jidhed (Ex-CREYE) together with Eric Wikström (HAGWATER) and Martin Floberg (ENBOUND). But after years of writing and recording, life intervened and the project was put on ice. Until now..
"Scars" is the first release from this Swedish metal project, which also features Eric Skjuttorp (CHUGGER) on drums and David Åkesson (QANTICE) on backing vocals. It's a very melodic metal song, but yet energetic, and very good. This is absolutely worth checking out my friend.
Published: Jan. 4

NORSEMAN: Lady In Black - Single
(Inverse Records - Out now)
What we get from this Finnish band is a metal version of URIAH HEEP's classic ballad "Lady In Black". It was recorded as a tribute to the late Ken Hensley (URIAH HEEP among others), and they are doing a pretty good version of it, even though it's a bit harder, faster and heavier than the original version. You should absolutely check it out.
On this song they collaborate with Finnish heavy metal singers Taage Laiho, Maya Liittokivi, Markku Palm and Hannu Leiden. NORSEMAN are currently working on a new album, which will be released later this year.
youtu.be/ah52e4NSEPQ   inverse.fi
Published: Jan. 3

ANGSTKRÍG: Lucifer Kalder - Single
(Despotz Records - Out now)
"Lucifer Kalder" is the first single with this Danish black metal duo, which also features a guest apperance from Frédéric Leclercq (KREATOR, DRAGONFORCE). Their debut album, "Skyggespil", will be released soon, and this song is a taste of that.
Their music is best described as a powerful mass of energy ready for the doom of the earth, but with a pinch of catchy rock n roll. We can just call it black n roll.
A o.k. song, but honestly not much else.
angstskrig.bandcamp.com   despotz.se
Published: Jan. 3

STASS: Songs of Flesh and Decay - Album
(Emanzipation Productions on Jan. 15)
Here's yet another band with the Swedish death metal legend Rogga Johansson (PAGANIZER, RIBSPREADER, REVOLTING, DOWN AMONG THE DEAD MEN). In this band he has teamed up with vocalist Felix Stass (CREMATORY), and the lineup also features members from APOSTASY. The debut album, "The Darkside", was released in 2017, and now the second album from STASS is finally here.
What we get from these boys is a mixture of old school death metal and melodic death metal. The songs here are both heavy and catchy at the same time. And it will probably remind you of the old Sunlight sound or an old demo from the same era.
facebook.com/stassband   emanzipation.dk
Published: Jan. 2