Tuesday, 7 April 2020

EP Review: FREDDY SPERA - Temper

01. Temper
02. Summer's Walk
03. Treading Waters
04. Meanwhile
05. The End Of I
06. Rain


Monday, 6 April 2020

Album Review: TESTAMENT - Titans Of Creation

Testament - Titans Of Creation

01. Children of the Next Level
03. Dream Deceiver
04. Night of the Witch
05. City of Angels
06. Ishtar's Gate
07. Symptoms
08. False Prophet
09. The Healers
10. Code of Hammurabi
11. Curse of Osiris
12. Catacombs

Thursday, 2 April 2020

Sunday, 29 March 2020

Album Review: IN THIS MOMENT - Mother

In This Moment - Mother

01. The Beginning (interlude)
02. Fly Like An Eagle (Steve Miller Band cover)
03. The Red Crusade (interlude)
04. The In-Between
05. Legacy
06. We Will Rock You (feat. Maria Brink, Lzzy Hale, Taylor Momsen) (Queen cover)
07. Mother
08. As Above So Below
09. Born In Flames
10. God Is She
11. Holy Man
12. Hunting Grounds (feat. Joe Cotela)
13. Lay Me Down
14. Into Dust (Mazzy Star cover)

Saturday, 28 March 2020

Album Review: STITCHED UP HEART - Darkness

Stitched Up Heart - Darkness

01. Lost
02. This Skin
03. Problems
04. Warrior
05. Straitjacket
06. Dirty Secrets
07. Darkness
08. Bones
09. Dead Roses
10. Crooked Halo
11. My Demon


Friday, 27 March 2020

Album Review: THE BIRTHDAY MASSACRE - Diamonds

The Birthday Massacre - Diamonds

01. Enter
02. The Sky Will Turn
03. Diamonds
04. Run
05. Flashback
06. The Last Goodbye
07. Crush
08. Mirrors
09. Parallel World


Thursday, 26 March 2020

Album Review: BIFF BYFORD - School Of Hard Knocks

Biff Byford - School Of Hard Knocks

01. Welcome To The Show
02. School Of Hard Knocks
03. Inquisitor
04. The Pit And The Pendulum
05. Worlds Collide
06. Scarborough Fair (Simon & Garfunkel cover)
07. Pedal To The Metal
08. Hearts Of Steel
09. Throw Down The Sword
10. Me And You
11. Black And White

Wednesday, 25 March 2020

EP Review: DOOMSDAY SUN - Cult Of Stasis

Doomsday Sun - Cult Of Stasis

01A. UKBC Radio Broadcast
01. Clean The Bones
02A. Stantech Advert
02 Cult Of Stasis
03A. Log 25-08-2119 #1
03. Husk Of The Augur
04A. Log 25-08-2119 #2
04. Bring Forth The Plague
05A. J Stantham Tape 
05. He Who Fights Monsters
06. Log 25-08-2119 #3

Doomsday Sun is a Sludge Metal band from Uttoxeter, and Cult Of Stasis is their second EP. It's an ambitious affair, being a concept piece about a story involving time travel and civil war. In their words:

"Cult of Stasis is the second EP by Doomsday Sun; a five-track offering that tells the story of Dr. Jeremy Stantham, an innovative medical scientist. Despairing at his country being torn apart by civil war, Dr. Stantham invents the time capsule; a device that preserves him in a nostalgia-fuelled stasis, but still has to deal with the consequences that a twenty-year slumber can result in"

OK, so before I delve into this opus, I have a small criticism straight off the bat. Most concept albums tell a story through the songs. Sometimes there is some spoken word dialogue which fills in the gaps and effectively glues the chapters together. Doomsday Sun have spoken word interludes between every track, and a couple of them are over a minute long. If you're listening to this EP from start-to-finish as concept records are supposed to be heard, it is quite off-puting and kills the flow. If there was one at the start, one after three songs and one at the end, it may have worked, but as it is, these interludes are too much and serve as an annoyance to skip past.

However, the actual songs are pretty good. I reckon they're quite heavily influenced by bands like Mastodon, Gojira and Neurosis, but they've ended up sounding a bit more like Fourwaykill, especially on the faster tracks like Husk Of The Augur. Incidentally, that's probably my favourite song on here, along with the title track, which has a huge filthy riff that would make Pepper Keenan proud.

Bring Forth The Plague is an accomplished Metal track that is more in the vein of Lamb Of God than the other tracks. It's as crushing as it is technically proficient.

Overall, Cult Of Stasis is a solid release. It has more diversity that your average Sludge Metal release, and enough attack to appeal to a more mainstream Metal audience. Despite my earlier criticism of the spoken tracks, I do think it's cool that they're trying something a little different and, dare I say, theatrical. A bit of imagination is what sets many a beloved band apart from the oceans of dudes with long hair 'playing Metal', so kudos to them for that.

The music is the key though, and there's enough quality heavy tuneage on this new EP for them to make an impact on the underground scene.


Tuesday, 24 March 2020

Album Review: AMBUSH - Infidel

Ambush - Infidel

01. Infidel
02. Yperite
03. Leave Them To Die
04. Hellbiter
05. The Summoning
06. The Demon Within
07. A Silent Killer
08. Iron Helm Of War
09. Heart Of Stone
10. Lust For Blood


Monday, 23 March 2020

Album Review: PETER AND THE TEST TUBE BABIES - Fuctifano

Peter and the Test Tube Babies - Fuctifano

01. Liver's Lament
02. Facebook Loser
03. Hell to Pay
04. Cydrated
05. Saturday Dad
06. Gravy Train
07. Ain't Missing Her Yet
08. Wanker
09. Small Victories
10. Punched Awake
11. Tales of the Bleedin' Obvious
12. Screwed Down
13. Queen of Fucking Everything
14. Liver's Lament (Reprise)


Sunday, 22 March 2020

Album Review: DAVID REECE - Cacophony Of Souls

David Reece - Cacophony Of Souls

01. Chasing The Shadows
02. Blood On Our Hands
03. Judgement Day
04. Collective Anaesthesia
05. Cacophony Of Souls
06. Another Life Another Time
07. Metal Voice
08. Over And Over
09. Back In The Days
10. A Perfect World
11. Bleed
12. No Disguise


Saturday, 21 March 2020

Album Review: CODE ORANGE - Underneath

Code Orange - Underneath

01. (deeperthanbefore)
02. Swallowing The Rabbit Whole
03. In Fear
04. You And You Alone
05. Who I Am
06. Cold.Metal.Place
07. Sulfur Surrounding
08. The Easy Way
09. Erasure Scan
10. Last Ones Left
11. Autumn And Carbine
12. Back Inside The Glass
13. A Sliver
14. Underneath

Monday, 16 March 2020

Album Review: THERAPY? - Greatest Hits (2020 Versions)

Therapy? - Greatest Hits 2020

01. Teethgrinder
02. Screamager
03. Opal Mantra
04. Turn
05. Nowhere
06. Trigger Inside
07. Die Laughing
08. Stories
09. Loose
10. Diane (Husker Du cover)
11. Church Of Noise
12. Lonely, Cryin' Only


Sunday, 15 March 2020

Album Review: BODY COUNT - Carnivore

Body Count - Carnivore

01. Carnivore
02. Point The Finger (feat. Riley Gale)
03. Bum-Rush
04. Ace Of Spades (Motorhead cover)
05. Another Level (feat. Jamey Jasta)
06. Colors (2020)
07. No Remorse
08. When I'm Gone (feat. Amy Lee)
09. Thee Critical Beatdown
10. The Hate Is Real

Tuesday, 10 March 2020

Album Review: BURNING WITCHES - Dance With The Devil

Burning Witches - Dance With The Devil

01. The Incantation
02. Lucid Nightmare
03. Dance With The Devil
04. Wings Of Steel
05. Six Feet Underground
06. Black Magic
07. Sea Of Lies
08. The Sisters Of Fate
09. Necronomicon
10. The Final Fight
11. Threefold Return
12. Battle Hymn (feat. Ross The Boss and Michael Lepond) [Manowar cover]

Friday, 6 March 2020

Album Review: H.E.A.T - H.E.A.T II

01. Rock Your Body
02. Dangerous Ground
03. Come Clean
04. Victory
05. We Are Gods
06. Adrenaline
07. One By One
08. Nothing To Say
09. Heaven Must Have Won A
10. Under The Gun
11. Rise


Thursday, 5 March 2020

Album Review: LORDI - Killection

Lordi - Killection

01. Radio SCG 10
02. Horror For Hire
03. Shake The Baby Silent
04. Like A Bee To The Honey
05. Apollyon
06. SCG10 The Last Hour
07. Blow My Fuse
08. I Dug A Hole In The Yard For You
09. Zombimbo
10. Up To No Good
11. SCG10 Demonic Semitones
12. Cutterfly
13. Evil
14. Scream Demon
15. SCG10 I Am Here


Thursday, 27 February 2020

Album Review: OZZY OSBOURNE - Ordinary Man

OZZY OSBOURNE - Ordinary Man

01. Straight To Hell (featuring Slash)
02. All My Life
03. Goodbye
04. Ordinary Man (featuring Elton John)
05. Under The Graveyard
06. Eat Me
07. Today Is The End
08. Scary Little Green Men
09. Holy For Tonight
10. It's A Raid (featuring Post Malone)
11. Take What You Want  [Bonus Track: Post Malone (featuring Ozzy Osbourne and Travis Scott)]

A new Ozzy album was long overdue, but Ordinary Man is a strange one. After Ozzy guested on rapper Post Malone's hit Take What You Want (included on here as a bonus track), the producer, Andrew Watt, clearly hit it off with Ozzy and they decided to do a full album together. 

Andrew Watt handled guitar duties and brought in Duff McKagan from Guns N' Roses on bass and Chad Smith from the Red Hot Chili Peppers on drums. That's a seriously good team to make a record with. It' also a breath of fresh air to hear Ozzy working with a different set of people.

Most of the songs have reflective lyrics, which make me think that when it was recorded, Ozzy was in the mind-set that this would be his last record. His recent revelation that he has been suffering with Parkinson's disease since 2003 and recent tour cancellations certainly back up this theory. Opener Straight To Hell is a decent rocker, and is blatantly about drug addiction. Under The Graveyard documents one of the darkest points of Ozzy's life, and the superbly acted and poignant music video complements the song perfectly. It also has some nice Sabbath style riffing, making it one of the stronger tracks on here.

The title track, which features Elton John, is probably the best ballad Ozzy has ever put his name to. Continuing the theme of looking back at his life, Ordinary Man is a beautiful duet which has a melancholy mix of both celebration and sadness.

There is also a lot of fun on this album. Eat Me is a catchy number with a cannibalistic theme. I have no idea what it's about really, it's just daft entertainment. Scary Little Green Men seems to be about aliens living among us. Again, it's escapism and a welcome break from the lyrical epitaphs that are in abundance on the rest of the record. Scary Little Green Men is also, along with the title track, my favourite song on the album. The chorus is an earworm and Ozzy's character brings some real magic to it.

Ordinary Man is, in my opinion, Ozzy's best album since the classic No More Tears. If it turns out to be his last, he will have gone out with a solid 'Goodbye'. However, I can't shake the feeling that Ozzy will be continuing to make records for as long as his health allows. One thing is certain though, we'll all miss him when he's gone.


Sunday, 23 February 2020

Album Review: SEPULTURA - Quadra

01. Isolation
02. Means To An End
03. Last Time
04. Capital Enslavement
05. Ali
06. Raging Void
07. Guardians Of Earth
08. The Pentagram
09. Autem
10. Quadra
11. Agony Of Defeat
12. Fear; Pain; Chaos; Suffering

Thursday, 20 February 2020

Album Review: GREEN DAY - Father Of All Motherfuckers

Green Day - Father Of All Motherfuckers

01. Father Of All...
02. Fire, Ready, Aim
03. Oh Yeah!
04. Meet Me On The Roof
05. I Was A Teenage Teenager
06. Stab You In The Heart
07. Sugar Youth
08. Junkies On A High
09. Take The Money And Crawl
10. Graffitia


Saturday, 8 February 2020

Album Review: LOVEBITES - Electric Pentagram

Lovebites - Electric Pentagram

01. Thunder Vengeance
02. Holy War
03. Golden Destination
04. Raise Some Hell
05. Today Is The Day
06. When Destinies Align
07. A Frozen Serenade
08. Dancing With The Devil
09. Signs Of Deliverance
10. Set The World On Fire
11. The Unbroken
12. Swan Song


Friday, 7 February 2020

Album Review: ANNIHILATOR - Ballistic, Sadistic

Annihilator - Ballistic, Sadistic

01. Armed To The Teeth
02. The Attitude
03. Psycho Ward
04. I Am Warfare
05. Out With The Garbage
06. Dressed Up For Evil
07. Riot
08. One Wrong Move
09. Lip Service
10. The End Of The Lie


Sunday, 2 February 2020

Gig Review: TWIN TEMPLE + THE VIOLENT HEARTS at The Deaf Institute, Manchester (UK) 27/01/2020

Twin Temple UK tour 2020

I only discovered Twin Temple a couple of weeks before this show after a chance encounter on my Facebook feed. They looked rather awesome so I went down the rabbit hole, watching YouTube videos and reading up on them. There's something wonderfully exciting about discovering a new band you really like and immersing yourself in their art.

The core of the band is a real-life Satanic married couple, singer Alexandra and guitarist Zachary James. Their music is a blend of 50's and 60's Rock n' Roll, but with occult lyrical themes, which they call Satanic Doo-Wop. I can see how on an initial listen, they may seem like an evil version of Amy Winehouse, but there's so much more to this act than that. They tap into the timelessness of classic Rock n' Roll, giving it a contemporary spin, yet managing to retain the vintage aspect of the music in both terms of performance and production.

Being such a genuinely interesting and unique act, I couldn't miss out on the chance to catch them live. The retro-looking Deaf Institute in Manchester was the ideal venue for such an experience.

The support band, The Violent Hearts, reminded me a bit of that evil band from the movie Jennifer's Body. Seriously though, they were actually pretty cool. Imagine a mix of The Smiths, The Cure and Creeper and you'll be somewhere close. They seemed to go down well with the audience too, so I'm sure they chalked this gig up as a success.

The Violent Hearts at The Deaf Institute, Manchester Jan 2020
The Violent Hearts
The Violent Hearts at The Deaf Institute, Manchester Jan 2020
The Violent Hearts

Twin Temple began their set with a Satanic ritual, involving a skull, ceremonial swords and the denouncing of sexism, racism, prejudice etc. It's as theatrical as it is empowering, and the positive messages and passion are lapped up by the audience. The band then broke into The Devil (Didn't Make Me Do It), and the whole room simply sizzled with energy. It was a truly euphoric start to the show, and the audience was clearly captivated.

As far as I'm aware, they played every song they've released so far. That's everything off the debut and the two new songs, I Am A Witch and Satan's A Woman, from their 7 inch.  All of these, with the occasional ritual thrown in, lasted over an hour, and every minute was engaging. Twin Temple really is a great band. The performance was slick and, dare I say it, perfect. It's also been a long time since I've seen a band with a saxophonist on stage too, which I enjoyed a lot. Alexandra's voice is mesmerising, and on the same level as any international mega-stars in this genre one could mention.

Finishing up with an extended version of the brilliant I'm Wicked, they left a lasting impression. Tonight's show was nothing short of superb, and I'll be keeping a close eye on where the band goes from here.

Waiting for Twin Temple at The Deaf Institute, Manchester Jan 2020
Waiting for Twin Temple
Twin Temple at The Deaf Institute, Manchester Jan 2020
Twin Temple starting their show with a ritual
Twin Temple at The Deaf Institute, Manchester Jan 2020
Twin Temple
Twin Temple at The Deaf Institute, Manchester Jan 2020
Twin Temple


Friday, 24 January 2020

Album Review: RAGE - Wings Of Rage

Rage - Wings of Rage

01. True
02. Let Them Rest In Peace
03. Chasing The Twilight Zone
04. Tomorrow
05. Wings Of Rage
06. Shadow Over Deadland (The Twilight Transition)
07. A Nameless Grave
08. Don't Let Me Down
09. Shine A Light
10. HTTS 2.0
11. Blame It On The Truth
12. For Those Who Wish To Die


Thursday, 23 January 2020

Album Review: ANTI-FLAG - 20/20 Vision

Anti-Flag - 20/20 Vision

01. Hate Conquers All
02. It Went Off Like A Bomb
03. 20/20 Vision
04. Christian Nationalist
05. Don't Let The Bastards Get You Down
06. Unbreakable
07. The Disease
08. A Nation Sleeps
09. You Make Me Sick
10. Un-American
11. Resistance Frequencies


Wednesday, 22 January 2020

Album Review: MAGNUM - The Serpent Rings

Magnum - The Serpent Rings

01. Where Are You Eden?
02. You Can't Run Faster Than Bullets
03. Madman Or Messiah
04. The Archway Of Tears
05. Not Forgiven
06. The Serpent Rings
07. House Of Kings
08. The Great Unknown
09. Man
10. The Last One On Earth
11. Crimson On The White Sand

Tuesday, 14 January 2020

Album Review: POPPY - I Disagree

Poppy - I Disagree

01. Concrete
02. I Disagree
04. Anything Like Me
05. Fill The Crown
06. Nothing I Need
07. Sit/Stay
08. Bite Your Teeth
09. Sick Of The Sun
10. Don't Go Outside


Saturday, 11 January 2020

Album Review: THE HELLFREAKS - God On The Run

The Hellfreaks - God On The Run

01. Men In Grey
02. Red Sky
03. Hello Sea!
04. Doldrum Dynasty
05. Witches Heal
06. Royal Blue
07. Adrenalized
08. As Above
09. Clear Water
10. Tabby
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