album review

Album Review: The Devil's Blood - "The Thousandfold Epicentre"

With a name like "The Thousandfold Epicentre," it probably goes without saying that the new album from The Devil's Blood is not to be taken likely. I feel no shame in admitting to you that this review has taken me longer than any review I have ever composed. The album is a dense tapestry of elements both sanguine and chaotic, hypnotic and variable, fragile and durable. After the fifth time through this album, I looked back at my collected notes to see what thoughts I would put to paper.

Album Review: Machine Head - "Unto the Locust"

Machine Head’s newest album, “Unto the Locust” is not an effort recommended for those succored by simplicity. Unlike the Deep Purple album that the band’s name invokes, this brand of American heavy metal is not for those looking for a hallucinogen-induced quadraphonic, two-four downbeat good time.

Album Review: Gorillaz - "The Singles Collection, 2001-2011"

Somehow, in the shady days of post-grunge radio, when music struggled to find a definable scene or sound, in the midst of the detritus of Staind and the early birth pangs of Disturbed, came the Gorillaz. A quirky British act based on animated characters and the unexplored mental depths of Blur frontman Damon Albarn, the Gorillaz dominated an entire musical cycle without ever bending to the mold.

Album Review: Autumn - "Cold Comfort"

Autumn's new album "Cold Comfort" is a work befitting its creator's name. Varying between pleasantly warm and icily fragile, "Cold Comfort" is both a promise of uneasy transition and muted optimism. That said, this album would have been more complete if there had been one breakthrough moment at the end of it. There are those who would counter that autumn as a season seldom announces winter's arrival with anything but a whimper.

Album Review: Austrian Death Machine - "Jingle All the Way"

Bing Crosby. Andy Williams. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Mannheim Steamroller. The Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Austrian Death Machine? One of these names is clearly not in the same ballpark with the others (and no, it isn't the Choir.)

Album Review: Hollywood Undead - "American Tragedy Redux"

No one has ever quite been able to accurately explain to me what exactly Hollywood Undead is, what audience they’re shooting for, or what their message is. That’s not to say that these are rhetorical questions directed at the powers-that-be running the multiverse, but I’ve never been confronted with the answer. Are they just a rap rock band out of their decade? Are they self-effacing in some subtle way? I’m a man who loathes genre-fication, but I admit I’ve never been sure who this appeals to.

Album Review: Cirith Ungol - "Servants of Chaos" (Re-release)

The re-release (with additions) of the long-lost Cirith Ungol rare tracks album "Servants of Chaos" is as much an anthropological study of heavy metal as it is a celebration of the band's accomplishments.

It is curious to see the strata of early metal and progressive rock laid so bare before the eye of the beholder, particularly through the lens of a band that helped popularize those genres without sharing in their lasting legacy.

Album Review: Megadeth - "Th1rt3en"

"Th1rt3en," the latest offering from heavy metal titans Megadeth, is both a study of what Megadeth has been and could be. It is a self-contained road-map of Megadeth's past aggressions, present explorations and possible future.

Album Review: Cradle of Filth - "Evermore Darkly"

“Evermore Darkly” is slightly thin as a companion piece to “Darkly, Darkly, Venus Aversa,” but that doesn’t mean it is without value.

Comprised mostly of re-cut or re-imagined tracks from the main album, “Evermore Darkly” presents the known cuts from that album in a style that is less abstract. “The Persecution Song,” is reworked in a way that makes the song more accessible while not losing its original pounding, or the effect of Paul Allender’s off-kilter, rangy guitar.

Album Review: Behemoth - "Demonica"

Behemoth. A name that carries a lot of weight, and a lot of stigma in metal circles. Considered the fathers of the Polish death/black/extreme metal scene, Behemoth has been both the center of celebration and consternation for over two decades. Cited on a 2007 list by Polish officials of artists who allegedly promote murder and Satanism, Behemoth is no stranger to controversy.

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