Author Archives: Reggie

Album Review: Slayer – Repentless

Slayer-RepentlessAlbum:  Repentless

Label:  Nuclear Blast

Release Date:  11 Sep 2015

Genre:  Thrash

Songs:  12

Length:  42 Minutes

Previous Albums:  Show No Mercy (1983); Hell Awaits (1985); Reign In Blood (1986); South Of Heaven (1988); Seasons In The Abyss (1990); Divine Intervention (1994); Undisputed Attitude (1996); Diabolus In Musica (1998); God Hates Us All (2001); Christ Illusion (2006); World Painted Blood (2009)

Location:  United States

I didn’t realize that it had been so long since Slayer’s “World Painted Blood” album back in ’09.  I went to look back and see if we reviewed it, but Metal State didn’t exist back then.  So, this is our first ever review of a Slayer album.  Looks like a retro-review is due.

Back in the day…or a long time ago in the late 80s, early 90s listening to Slayer meant you crossed the line as a metal fan.  I wasn’t keen to what was going on in Europe as a teenager (except for Helloween), but for American standards listening to and loving Slayer meant that you were full-blown metalhead and there was is no coming back from that.  It was a one-way ticket to hell and I was in the front row.  Slayer was a more extreme level than the rest of the Big Four and being a fan was taken seriously.  Seeing a Slayer show in a small club was one of the most intense experiences I have ever had.  On another note, I remember cutting school just to buy their live “Decade of Aggression” album with my buddy…we were such rebels, not!  Just die-hard geeks.  Anyway, owning Slayer material, going to their pummeling shows (10 of them), and trying to interpret their lyrics was time consuming, but time well spent.  Read the rest of this entry

EP Review: Every Hour Kills

Every Hour Kills - Every Hour Kills EP Cover 2Album:  Every Hour Kills EP

Release Date:  18 Sept 2015

Label:  N/A

Songs: 5, plus same songs five as instrumental versions, plus one demo

Length:  20 Minutes for five original songs

Genre:  Melodic Metal / Electronic / Djent / Alternative

Previous Albums:  N/A

FFO:  Soilwork, Sevendust, Lacuna Coil, Celldweller

Location: Calgary, Canada

I tend to get wrapped up in a comfort zone of reviewing music I know or at least bands that fall into genres I am comfortable with; usually death, thrash, and any variation of anything progressive.  Canada’s Every Hour Kills is challenging me because of the profound electronic presence in their songs; something I tend to shy away from for no real explanation except that…I shy away from it.  I wouldn’t say they rely heavily on the electronic elements, but for my taste, it is more than usual. Read the rest of this entry

Album Review: Act of Defiance – Birth and the Burial

R-7375955-1440150647-3346.jpegFor some reason, I was lost on the vocals the first time I heard Act of Defiance on YouTube.  Now that I have had the album experience blasted through my skull, the vocals are stronger and more complimentary than I remember.  After listening to Birth and the Burial, it leaves me to believe that Broderick and Drover were looking to play something much heavier than were authorized on Super Collider, their last effort with Megadeth before moving on.  If you are a fan of early Big Four-era thrash then Act of Defiance should interest you greatly.  With a vibe that reminds me of classic Testament and Exodus, there is no shortage of tight riffs, guitar solos and pure, raw thrash appeal.  3.75 out of 5.

Label:  Metal Blade

Release Date:  21 Aug 2015

Songs: 10

Length:  48 Minutes

Genre:  Thrash Metal

Previous Albums:  This is their debut.

Location:  United States

Show Review: Hellyeah @ Yokota Air Base, Japan

IMG_1421It isn’t too often a metal band get sponsored by the United Services Organizations (USO) to play free shows on military installations.  I am not saying it never happens, but it’s rare and even rarer that I get to be part of the event.  Hellyeah was the sponsored band of the evening and kids were not allowed at the Yokota Air Base, Japan, venue.  It was probably a good thing since it was beyond loud.  Spinal Tap would say it was #11 loud.  I couldn’t care less about all of Chad Gray’s F-bombs he was politely asked not to say, but damn it was one of the loudest shows I have ever been to.  My lovely wife was my date and I think she walked away a fan.  Yep, she just validated that statement and followed up with stating that she thought the show was well-played, Tom Maxwell did a great job with all that southern twang in his guitar, and that Chad Gray was a really good, active frontman.  I can certainly confirm that.  I got tired watching him and that says a lot about his presence on stage.  The dude is a mover! Read the rest of this entry

Album Review: Soulfly – Archangel

SoulflyArchangelMax Cavalera has to be one of the busiest guys in metal at the moment; balancing three bands.  Soulfly’s 10th album, Archangel, continues the barrage of thrash they have perfected over the years.  We Sold Our Souls to Metal opens the album in blistering speed and angst followed up by the bone-crushing Archangel.  Despite a revolving door of musicians entering and leaving the fold, Soulfly manages to maintain a staunch level of continuity.  There aren’t any real surprises with Archangel, but in terms of band progression, album #10 is a step forward for the band compared to Savages and Enslaved.  Overall, Max Cavalera shows no signs of slowing down and Soulfly’s Archangel is evidence of that.  For a ripping good time…purchase, hit play, and try not to break anything.  3.75 out of 5

Label:  Nuclear Blast

Release Date:  14 Aug 2015

Songs:  13

Length:  46 Minutes

Previous Albums:  Soulfly (1998); Primitive (2000); 3 (2002); Prophecy (2004); Dark Ages (2005); Conquer (2008); Omen (2010); Enslaved (2012); Savages (2013).

Location:  US/Brazil

Previous Album Reviews:  Savages, Enslaved, and Chaos A.D.

Album Review: Bullet For My Valentine – Venom

bullet_for_my_valentine_venom_eae2207cc6After 2013’s Temper Temper I was a bit skeptical about a new Bullet For My Valentine album.  When initial reports spread that Venom was more reminiscent of earlier BFMV, I thought it was enough of an excuse to buy new music and give it a try.  In short, what I heard was accurate.  The new material is much less “pop” sounding than Temper Temper.  This can only be a good thing.  After numerous spins, I find the first half of the album is stronger than the latter.  As the album played on, my interest dwindled a little bit. However, tracks such as No Way Out, Army of Noise, and Broken really kick up the adrenaline.  Worthless is one of their anger-management-I-hate-you power ballads BMFV does well.  Overall, Venom is a solid BFMV album that should please long-time fans.  3.5 out of 5

Album:  Venom

Label: RCA Records

Release Date:  14 Aug 2015

Songs:  15

Length:  58 Minutes

Previous Albums:  The Poison (2005); Scream Aim Fire (2008); Fever (2010); Temper Temper (2013).

Location:  United Kingdom

Album Review: Fear Factory – Genexus

downloadAlbum:  Genexus

Label:  Nuclear Blast

Release Date:  7 Aug 2015

Songs:  12

Length:  60 Minutes

Genre:  Thrash / Industrial

Previous Albums:  Soul of a New Machine (1992); Demanufacture (1995); Obsolete (1998); Digimortal (2001); Archetype (2004); Transgression (2005); Mechanize (2010); The Industrialist (2012)

Location:  United States

A great and wise man said that the new Fear Factory sounds like the Slayer of the 90s.  As I pondered such a thought I was taken aback by this statement.  Was the great and wise man a fan of Slayer of the 90s?  In the 90s, I saw a Slayer headline with Fear Factory as the supporting act.  What an amazing coincidence, I thought.  Did the great and wise man know this?  Did he read my mind?  Hack into my computer?  Did he see that tour too?  I asked the great and wise Matt what he meant.  He said that “Slayer was consistent, but not really doing anything new” or something close to that affect.  He hit the nail on the head concerning Fear Factory’s latest output. Read the rest of this entry

Roundtable Review: Cradle of Filth – Hammer of the Witches

Cradle-Of-Filth-Hammer-Of-The-Witches-Artwork-wpcf_300x300Label:  Nuclear Blast

Release Date:  10 Jul 2015

Songs:   13

Length:  69 Minutes (is that a coincidence?)

Genre:  Symphonic Black Metal

Studio Albums:   The Principal of Evil Made Flesh (1994); Dusk…and Her Embrace (1996); Cruelty and the Beast (1998); Midian (2000); Damnation and a Day (2003); Nymphetamine (2004); Thornography (2006); Godspeed on the Devil’s Thunder (2008); Darkly, Darkly, Venus Aversa (2010); The Manticore and Other Horrors (2012).

Location:  UK Read the rest of this entry

Metal State BOLO

BOLO = Be On The Lookout.  Not sure if this term applies outside of the U.S.

I have been lazy keeping up with things that come across our inbox.  For that, I apologize.  I should never deprive anyone of metal because I am just too busy.  It’s not fair to you.  So, let’s play catch up!  Below is a list of various styles of metal you may find attractive in more ways than one. Enjoy and have a great day.

Huntress will be releasing their forthcoming album on September 25th via Napalm Records.  Here is their lyric video for Flesh.

Read the rest of this entry

What is a True Metal Fan?

Bwib33wYou’re not a true metal fan!  This is the allegation I have read in several metal forums over the years.  It always boggled my mind when I saw someone say that to someone else.  I mean, who gets to define what a true fan is?  What constitutes being a fan of something at all, let alone being a “true” fan?  What the hell does that even mean?  In the context of heavy metal I have heard this phrase expressed for at least a couple of reasons. Read the rest of this entry