Blog Archives

Roundtable Review: Nexilva – Eschatologies

nexilva-coverLabel: Ghost

Release Date:  April 7 2014

Songs:  14

Genre:  Progressive death metal

Studio Albums: The Trials Of Mankind 2010, Defile The Flesh Of Innocence EP 2011

Location:  Sunderland, UK

For fans of: Born Of Osiris, Fleshgod Apocalypse, The Faceless, Fallujah, Carnifex


Read the rest of this entry

Album Review: Earth Diver by Cormorant

a2140768649_2When take a gander at some of the reasons some of my favorite bands have remained my favorite bands over the course of decades one reason always seems to take the forefront.  The ability to grow and evolve, not afraid to make dramatic changes, while remaining true to a core sound or style that initial made me a super-fan in the first place.  These kind of bands give me something to look forward from release to release as I know I am going to get lots of new alleyways and avenues to explore.  They keep their career fresh and I get a variety of albums to listen to (unlike just more or less needing a single album that sums up the bands catalog) all with different experiences contained within.

Enter Cormorant.  A couple of years ago when they released their sophomore album Dwellings my ears picked up on the unique blend of blackened prog rock tinged with hints of classic metal and instantly became a super-fan of the Bay Area band.  As par for the course, since I liked their current record so much I ponied up the cash for the back catalog expecting more of the same that was on Dwellings.  To my delight, their debut album Metazoa was a much different beast than the record I was spinning ad nauseam, yet was still very much a Cormorant affair.  They just needed a third record to prove they were the real deal and not just a fluke and they were pretty much guaranteed a spot in my coveted Realm of Upper Echelon Bands.  I was very much hoping this would happen.  Then tragedy struck; Arthur Von Nagal, the bands front man, lyricist, vocalist, bassist, and major songwriter contribute made the decision to leave the band to pursue in a career of video game development (FYI, that really freaking awesome Walking Dead game that won all them awards, he was on that team.  Go play games made by TellTale, their all great!).

Read the rest of this entry

Album review: The Deadstation – Episode 01: Like Peering into the Deepest Ocean Abyss (EP)

DeadstationCoverLocation: USA

Genre: Progressive metal

Release date: 3 April 2014

Label: Self-released

Recommended to: Fans of many prog metal and crossover prog rock bands including those named in this review

The Deadstation spells its name in upper-case letters. I don’t. My keyboard is allergic to Caps Lock. The sound card, the headphones and my ears, however, are anything but allergic to The Deadstation. I experienced two immediate reactions after playing their one and only release. The first was: “Where are they hiding the rest of their albums?” The second: “Why aren’t there more?”

A digital version of the EP was released two years ago. The physical recording, which includes an additional song, runs to 34 minutes of grand music.

Read the rest of this entry

Stream of the Week – Whose Hearts Were His

This week’s Stream of the Week hails from Kansas City, Missouri.  Gabe Fry is the brain behind Whose Hearts Were His – his new solo project.  He was formerly part of Solace and Stable, a band we featured here on A Metal State of Mind a couple of years ago.  If you would like to check that project out as well, you can click here.  The new self-titled album is set for release in the near future – not date indicated just yet, but if I am supplied one I will let you know.  For now you can check out this track, Tongues Like Knives, to water your mouths for more of what’s to come.

For fans of:  Gojira, Between The Buried and Me, The Red Chord

Members:  Gabe Fry

Album Review: Alaya – Thrones

Thrones_Cover“Are we the only breathing among the dead?”


Release Date: March 17, 2014

Label: Basick Records

Length: 43 minutes, 13 tracks

Genre: Handsome and thoughtful melodic prog/tech metal

Recommended for fans of:  Periphery, Muse, Karnivool, Protest The Hero, TesseracT


Description: One excellent debut after another. The first four months of this year present a large number of releases from promising, upcoming bands. Centiment, Servers, Zoax, The Kindred, Intervals, Echoes, only to name a few. And now we can add Alaya to that collection. Yes, it was definitely worth the wait. Buy it!

Read the rest of this entry

Stream of the Week: Acts of Tragedy – Cursed Words

Acts of tragedy hails from the Mediterranean Island of Sardinia.  Before I get into a little more detail about our Stream of the Week let me try to paint a picture for you.  The band’s listed influences are Pantera The Dillinger Escape Plan, Nevermore, Lamb of god, Periphery, Parkway Drive, Metallica, and Alter Bridge to name a few.  Does that excite our progressive, thrash, and deathcore lovers?  Not sure how Alter Bridge fits into the mix, but Acts of Tragedy certainly embodies a style in line with their influences.

Their six-track EP, Cursed Words, was released 1 July 2013.  The second track, What Remains, features Kevin Talley on drums.  You might know him as one of those drummers that has played roles in “almost” as many bands as Gene Hoglan.  In other words, he gets around and is a cool addition to the track list.  Overall, there is no shortage of aggression, but also includes a more melodic side with the song The Descending DownCursed Words is a helluva start.  I look forward to seeing what Acts of Tragedy brings us in the future.  Check them out for yourself.

Album Review: Intervals – A Voice Within

Intervals.AVoiceWithin.cover.lo”We can’t help but to admire its beauty”


Release Date: March 4th 2014, self-released

Length: 50 minutes of seducing melodies

Genre: Exceptionally good progressive/melodic tech metal

Previous releases: The Space Between EP 2011, In Time EP 2012

Recommended for fans of: Between The Buried And Me, Protest The Hero, Periphery


Description: A really good metal album with heavy music and only clean vocals seems to be almost impossible to come by these days. But never fear, Intervals is here!

Read the rest of this entry

Roundtable Review: Need – Orvam: A Song For Home

needLabel:  Trailblazer Records

Release Date:  10 Jan 2014

Songs:   7

Length:  60 Min

Genre:  Progressive Metal

Studio Albums:   N/A

Location:  Athens, Greece

Read the rest of this entry

Video of the Week: Akb’al – Chapter 4: Equilibrium

Akb’al is a very Mammal-type band, playing a mixture of prog metal and prog rock. The band is based in Cardiff, Wales. Its founding was in 2006, and now Akb’al is set to release an album, …Of Darness And Light, on February 10.

This song is very trippy. The video reminds me of some of the psychedlic posters I used to have on my walls when I was nearly 50 years younger. As for the confused bloke in the video, he is me if I have to wake up before midday.

Album review: Exxasens – Satellites

Exxasens_cover_artGenre: Post rock.

Release date: October 29, 2013.

Label: Aloud Music.

Recommended to: Fans of ambient, atmospheric and progressive instrumental metal; psychedelic and space rock.

Space metal is comparatively rare. While a number of bands play metal with science fiction and space themes, few actually do what you’d call “space music”. As for good space metal, it’s like a chemical trace element – you may have to travel to the Asteroid Belt to find it in concentrated quantities. Exxasens obviously comes from one of the asteroids, although the man behind the band may tell you otherwise.

Read the rest of this entry