Album Reviews

The Acacia Strain has been around nearly 20 years. Now on 2020 with the release of the album "Slow Decay," the band has produced some of its best music. The opener "Feed A Pigeon Breed A Rat" and the bludgeoning beatdown-fest "The Lucid Dream" are easily heavy and brutal enough to please the more myopic faithful. The new record is filled with an intensity, spanning twelve brain twisting songs that will make the listener really dig deep and think about the state of the world today. This album is a definite good listen.


Draghkar: At The Crossroads Of Infinity: 2

Sunny southern California would seem like an unlikely place for utterly bleak and hopeless death metal to emanate from. But it makes more sense when you consider Draghkar's roots in the black metal scenes of sun-soaked Italy and Greece, or for that matter the Floridian origins of the earliest death metal, which clearly this band has also absorbed.

At The Crossroads Of Infinity' is a six-track black metal album full of pummeling riffs, pounding rhythms that sear themselves into the brain, and monstrous vocals that are sure to send shivers down the spine. This CD is highly recommended to fans of a.o. Autopsy, Demigod and Varathron. This album is a great purchase so pick it up today.


Insatanity: Hymns Of The Gods Before: 3

Since 1992 Insatanity have been pummeling listeners with gut wrenching Death Metal. This being the bands only their second full-length album "Hymns of the Gods Before", mixed and mastered by Jarrett Pritchard at New Constellation and produced by bassist Chris Lytle with cover art from by Guang Yang at Confessional Studio. The band waste no time as a straight for the jugular approach starts the proceedings with “Seed of Baal”, into a throwback OSDM sounding “Ashes of the Apostle.” The well-structured but equally savage “Demons Within Creation” crashes unforgivingly into “Upon the Ivory Throne” which unleashes the hellish vocal combination of both Lytle and Cordoba. Insatanity have delivered a bludgeoning blackened death metal sermon of the highest order. Pick up this album now !


Mercyless: The Mother of All Plagues: 2

Mercyless return with their 7th full-length of powerful thrash/death metal. The band is no less impressive than in their early days during the late 80's/early 90's. Although the only original memeber is vocalist Max Otero, the others have be making great music seemlessly since 2011. With their latest offering, "The Mother of All Plagues, you get a sense of where Mercyless is goin into the 2020's. The album brings you 12 original tracks and 4 covers. There is no reinventing the wheel with this album. Why should their be after 32 years. This abum will give you down and dirty death/thrash music. Thi is a solid album so for the Mercyless diehards, this will probably be one of your top albums of the year.!


Progressive/Brutal Death Metal luminaries DEFEATED SANITY return with The Sanguinary Impetus on Willowtip Records. The Sanguinary Impetus is perhaps the ultimate expression of DEFEATED SANITY's signature blend of the brutal with the technical, performed in a manner largely unparalleled in the world of extreme metal. The songs are mostly brief—four of nine don’t even reach beyond the 3-minute mark. But there’s enough force and jigsawed severity for your brain to contend with throughout each song that you’d never complain of brevity by the time the record pulls to a close. It all fits together extremely well, too, and a little time and a great set of headphones will reveal a million shit-your-pants moments that spring up after repeated plays. 


Carach Angren: Franckensteina Strataemontanus: 3

Carach Angren return to their familiar Black Metal storytelling with the 6th full length Franckensteina Strataemontanus! An album that tells a different side of the Frankenstein story about Johann Konrad Dippel who reportedly invented nitroglycerin experimented on dead animals and human cadavers, and created an elixir that would allow him to live until the age of 135. The album opens up with an eerie mood, almost to reminiscence about the past with a small narration for an intrude. “Der Vampir von Nürnberg”and “Skull with a Forked Tongue” are classic Carach Angren. Typical CA riffs, blasts, and orchestral sections round out this intense album. This album is something to be listened to intently.


Behold... The Arctopus: Hapeleptic Overtrove: 4

BEHOLD... THE ARCTOPUS have partnered with Willowtip Records for the June 12 release of Hapeleptic Overtrove, the band's 7th recording. Behold… the Arctopus have never been about casual, and Hapeleptic Overtrove displays that sentiment clearly and with great enthusiasm. “Adult Contemporary” puts the direction of their latest record on full display with relentlessly interesting guitar work from Mike Learner and Marston, who create a spiralling, interwoven sequence of notes. I heartily recommend that you give Hapeleptic Overtrove your undivided attention upon its release. There isn’t another metal record I’ve heard this year that can be compared to it, and if we’re counting points for uniqueness Behold… the Arctopus may have just dropped the record of the year.


Devangelic: Ersetu: 4

One of the best albums of the year is the 3rd LP from Death Metal band, "Devangelic!" Named after the Akkadian term for "Mesopotamian Underworld / Realm of the Dead,” Ersetu is a concept album based on the Annunaki’s myth “Those Who from Heaven to Earth Came.” The myth explores the theory of creation through the alien DNA, human slavery and the legend of the great serpent (the Knower) as the emblem of Enki and of two of his sons, Ningishzidda and Marduk. The kick is very present on this album and it’s a killer clean. It sounds like a constant fast chopping. The growls vocals are deep and wide like a lot of blackened death metal. “Throne of Larvae” is a stand out track that utilizes a dual vocal technique overlapping death highs and lows. This is an amazing album that should not be overlooked.


Unmerciful: Wrath Encompassed: 4

Topeka, Kansas-based brutal death metal horde UNMERCIFUL are set to unleash Wrath Encompassed, their angriest and most destructive album to date. Wrath Encompassed is the band’s third full-length, and first since signing with Willowtip Records. “Incineration” does not waste much time with its straight-forward CANNIBAL CORPSE approach. There are definitely some similarities in the vocal style with the latter. The song maintains a very steady level of intensity. “Predator to Prey” actually takes its time with some complex elements in the first 30 seconds. Another standout is “The Stench of Fear “ which has so much hate-driven guitars. It’s the kind of song that just leaves you stuck in a state of amazement at how intense it is and never lets go UNMERCIFUL takes brutality to new levels on Wrath Encompassed, delivering an intense and relentless assault on the senses. Guitarist Clint Appelhanz comments on the album, “It’s almost time to unleash this audial onslaught! Let’s take a voyage to the furnace and become submerged in a celebration of suffering!”


Benighted: Obscene Repressed: 4

With a career spanning over 20 years, French deathgrind wrecking crew Benighted have released their 9th album, "Obscene Repressed. This album does not disappoint. The album title track and opener Obscene Repressed forgoes the lengthy movie sample for a eerie drip, before getting down to the bloody brass tacks. Benighted are at their best when they cycle in and out of various subgenres and influences as seen on tracks like Nails which has thrash-grind sections.  Benighted has sampled orgasms on The Starving Beast which is humorously yet skillfully placed in the pauses of a stomping groove at the book ends of the track.  Obscene Repressed is a Benighted album through and through, with only the requisite quirks demonstrating the band’s experimental side. Benighted is not your typical brutal act, nor do they deviate far from a formula that’s worked wonders for them and been expertly refined over the years. Through multiple listens, both casual and critical, I’ve still been getting the urge to come back. Pick this album up now!


The Scum: Dead Eyes: 2

Old School Death Metal band, "The Scum release a new EP, "Dead Eyes!" The EP, which was produced in Sunlight Studios by Tomas Skogsberg and mastered by Andy Classen, recalls the sounds of old school death metal pioneers, such as Benediction, Grave, Unleashed, Dismember, and Entombed. In fact, the title track features none other than Dave Ingram of Benediction! This 2 track EP is just a brutal punch to the gut. Unmerciful vocals and crushing guitars. This album is a great appetizer for what's to come.


Reptilium: Adrenochromacy: 2

South American death cult REPTILIUM will release a new four-song EP April 17 on Slam World Wide.

The Reptile Sect is back with a new set of hierophantic transmissions: Adrenochromacy. This follow-up to 2019’s debut EP Conspiranoic conveys even more information about the truth of worldwide enslavement, abduction, and reveals a new musical aspect of REPTILIUM’s blistering ufonaut horror. The album features 4 brutal tracks. Everything you want in a death metal band is featured, kick drums, blast beats, speed, and grueling vocals. A true DIY project, Adrenochromacy was recorded, engineered and produced by REPTILIUM’s Nirah (guitar & vocals) and Cecrops (drums) at Valley of the Death in Quito, Ecuador. Music for the EP was written and recorded by Nirah, with drums, cover art, lyrics and vocals by Cecrops. Mixing and mastering duties were handled by Cody Fuentes at Rapture Recordings, Los Angeles, California. This is a solid album. Hopefully a preview of what's to come.