Blog Archives

Album Review: Kings Among Men by Crimson Shadows


PromoImageThere are a few metal sub-genres that I’m pickier than a toddler at the dinner table with.  Of the ones I am most picky with, Power Metal would probably take the cake.  In my opinion, good Power Metal needs to have something I call the cheese factor (superfluousness, theatrics, high-flying-ness, not taking things too serious-ness, etc)  balanced in the right place.  Not enough cheese you end up with one of those sad solo Timo Tolkki records, too much and the band is just a parody of itself (Rhapsody of Fire excluded).  Get it in the right and you end up with some of the greats like Helloween and Stratovarius.  Now, to add to my pickiness, since I can go pop one of the already Ch-balanced records in any time I want, a new Power Metal band really has to do something unique and original to grab me by the shorty hairs and get me to pay attention.  That’s the hard part and probably why I haven’t fallen for a new Power Metal band in quite some time now.  Enter Canada’s Crimson Shadows and their major label debut and sophomore record Kings Among Men.

Read the rest of this entry

Round Table Review: The Flesh Prevails by Fallujah


fallujah-thefleshprevails-620x619Album Review: Fallujah – The Flesh Prevails

Label: Unique Leader Records

Release Date: July 22nd, 2014

Songs: 9

Length: 41:32

Genre: Progressive Death Metal

Studio Albums: Leper Colony (EP – 2009), The Harvest Wombs (2011), Nomadic (EP – 2013)

Location: CA, USA

Read the rest of this entry

Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 1998 / #9 – #7


MetalCatToday’s posts reflect a minor problem that occurs constantly in metal – how the hell do you categorize a particular type of music? Sometimes it’s easy and obvious; heavy metal sounds like heavy metal. But when you have bands as different as Liquid Tension Experiment and Ayreon both labelled as progressive metal, that could easily confuse anyone listening to either band for the first time.

For each of us individually, there are only really two kinds music – the music we like and the music we don’t. If you prefer Elton John to Cannibal Corpse, that’s your business and nobody else’s.

Read the rest of this entry

Album Review & Interview: Bloodhunter – Bloodhunter


coverLabel:  Suspiria Records

Release Date:  6 May 2014

Songs:  11

Length:  45 Minutes

Genre:  Death / Extreme Metal

Studio Albums:  This is their debut album

Location:  Spain

If you are looking for a dose of the hard stuff, look no further than Bloodhunter, whose guttural vocals behind the throat of Diva Satanica will make your ears bleed…in a good way.  Their debut album, released in May 2014, is a fierce dose of death metal on the more extreme side.  Blast beats – yes, quick riffs – check, all around viciousness – of course.  The First Insurrection opens with a sound clip from the movie The Shining which is one of the best parts of the movie where “Jack” breaks open the door with an ax trying to kill his wife.  It’s a cool start to an album laced with violent melodies. The rest of the instrumental track sets the album up nicely as its speed intensifies and the blast beat kicks in.  Read the rest of this entry

Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 1994 / #10 and #9


My, 1993 went by quickly. I have a feeling 1994 is also going to flash by in a week. This continues my personal hit parade. It is not a Metal State hit parade and I don’t claim these were the best songs of any year. They’re the ones I liked and still like.

1994, #10: Bolt Thrower – …For Victory

Album: …For Victory
Country: UK
Genre: Death Metal

 

1994, #9: Dream Theater – Space-Dye Vest

Album: Awake
Country: USA
Genre: Prog Metal

 

 

Roundtable Review: Deep in Hate – Chronicles of Oblivion


stillLabel:  Kaotoxin

Release Date:  3 Jun 2014

Songs:   9

Length:  35 Minutes

Genre:  Metal/Death/Deathcore

Studio Albums:  2007 – Only The Strong Survive; 2011 – Origins of Inequality

Location:  France

For Fans of:  Death metal in general, but specifically speaking Whitechapel, Aborted, Carnifex, and Decapitated. Read the rest of this entry

Album Review: Awakening Sun – Imbalance


ARTWORKI was impressed with the first full-length album from this Lithuanian quartet, now labeled as Lithuanian/Netherlands quartet.  Sold Out was a solid album of groovy death metal with a pleasant cadence of brutal beats and rhythms.  Six Feet Under meets Amon Amarth comes to mind for a quick comparison.  It was enough to keep this band on my radar.  When I saw they filmed a video for In The Clouds of Dust, I waited impatiently for the next chapter in Awakening Sun’s evolution.  Only, it didn’t come as fast as I had hoped.  Based on my cursory research, the band had some lineup issues and mostly all the same shit other new bands go through…time, money, etc.  Then, I realized the release of Imbalance passed me by somehow.  Only now, this very second, I am tickling my ears with their sophomore effort.  As indicated from their bandcamp page, this is the work of mostly one person.  Since then, the band has acquired full-time members and they are already working on new material. Read the rest of this entry

Roundtable Review: Process Pain – Outcast of Society


download (1)Label:  Inverse Records

Release Date:  9 May 2014

Songs:   10

Length:  38 Minutes

Genre:  Death Metal

Studio Albums:   This is their debut album.  They have two previous EPs – The Beginning and The Prologue

Location:  Finland Read the rest of this entry

Roundtable Review: Sonus Mortis – Propaganda Dream Sequence


00_DigipakPhotosLabel:  Unsigned

Release Date:  1 Mar 2014

Songs:   11

Length:  63 Minutes

Genre:  Doom/Symphonic/Atmospheric

Studio Albums:   This is their Debut

Location:  Dublin, Ireland

WarpRider – Unsigned?  What shame!  I like the more melodic approach to this death/doom/atmospheric metal 1-piece act.  Often, these individual subgenres can be extreme, but under the right circumstances, together can be beautiful deathly hallowed music.  Sonus Mortis (the one guy); hit the nail with the hammer.  3.8 

Atleastimhousebroken – Neat-O album (horrible album art though.  Drop me a line, I’ll MS Paint you a masterpiece next time ;) ).  Went in expecting a Fleshgod Apocolypse/Septic Flesh rip off, left thinking that this album is near equal both those bands best albums.  While songs can meander here and there, the songwriting and performance is superb and packs a heavy punch when called for.  The vocals deserve special mention as they have that gut-rumbling quality I look for in my growly guy vocals. 4.0

Irmelinis – It was surprising to find out that this is a one-person-project. It’s pretty impressive considering this is an album packed with high quality songs and superb songwriting, in the same vein as Therion, Septic Flesh and at times even reminiscent of Devin Townsend. Recommended! 3.5

ChristopherMammal – This solo project by Kevin Byrne delivers the best blackened death-type music I’ve heard in a while. I’m sure my endorphin count went up to “Level: Bliss” while this album was playing. The overall impact is a smooth deluge of sound. But listen to the individual instrumental components – there’s an ocean of frigging good variation and skill, washing over you in swirls and drawing you in like a maelstrom. The same goes for the vocals, which span deep gutturals, higher-pitched growling, clean singing and gruff narration in an Irish accent. And all that from just one guy… fantastic job, Mister Byrne. 4.5

A Metal State of Mind Score – 4 out of 5 

Round Table Review: The Mother of Virtue by Pyrrhon


12 Jacket (Gatefold - Two Pocket) [GD30OB2-N]Label: Relapse Records

Release Date: Out Now

Songs: 9

Genre: Tech-Deth

Studio Albums: This is their 3rd album

Location: NY, USA

Read the rest of this entry