RSSAuthor Archive for David McKenna

Review: The HAARP Machine – Disclosure

Review: The HAARP Machine – Disclosure

Named after a secretive U.S. military research program, this Sumerian-signed band packs a political message into its Meshuggah-esque sound. But these themes are overshadowed by the music–complex riffs, odd meters, and even sitar interludes make for a lively 34 minutes on the UK progressive metal quartet’s debut album. The record’s best moments are usually its […]

Review: Chelsea Grin – Evolve EP

Review: Chelsea Grin – Evolve EP

Utah deathcore quintet Chelsea Grin blends technicality, melody, and a heaping scoop of breakdown-fueled brutality on their new EP, Evolve. With the addition of former Born of Osiris guitarist Jason Richardson, the band puts its technical chops on greater display, crafting sweeping riffs reminiscent of Richardson’s former group. There is also greater emphasis on melody […]

Review: Storm Corrosion – Storm Corrosion

Review: Storm Corrosion – Storm Corrosion

Storm Corrosion is the long-awaited collaborative project from Porcupine Tree’s Steven Wilson and Opeth’s Mikael Åkerfeldt—but you might not guess it from listening to this debut album. Rather than playing the progressive metal associated with those bands, the duo crafts dark, cinematic orchestral music closer to the experimentation of Univers Zero or Scott Walker. Perhaps […]

Review: Bleeding Through – The Great Fire

Review: Bleeding Through – The Great Fire

The melodic black metalcore churned out by Orange County sextet Bleeding Through once sounded fresh and unique. Sadly, in a world of Winds of Plagues and Abigail Williams, that is no longer the case on album No. 7, The Great Fire. The record is filled with 14 short tracks that reconfirms the band’s occasionally powerful […]

Review: As I Lay Dying – Decas

Review: As I Lay Dying – Decas

Decas celebrates the 10-year anniversary of metalcore stalwarts As I Lay Dying. The EP contains three new songs, four covers, four remixes, and a re-recorded medley track. The new songs sound similar to those on the the band’s last full length release, The Powerless Rise: “Paralyzed” is filled with melodic guitar hooks, pummeling verses, and […]

Review: Century – Red Giant

Review: Century – Red Giant

Red Giant is the third full-length album from Lancaster quintet Century. The band packs hardcore fury and dissonant metal riffs into a brisk 30-minute package. When they’re on, they’re really on. “Obelisk” is a standout that features oddly timed riffs and pummeling double bass, which will impress hardcore and metal fans alike. But Century aren’t […]

Review: August Burns Red – Leveler

Review: August Burns Red – Leveler

Over the years, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, quintet August Burns Red have crafted a signature brand of metalcore that challenges the genre’s status quo, and the band’s fourth album pushes the envelope even further. Leveler sees the band returning to (and exceeding) the heaviness of their 2007 album, Messengers, while crafting its most ambitious songs to date. The second […]

Review: Arch Enemy – Khaos Legions

Review: Arch Enemy – Khaos Legions

Veteran Swedish death-metal quintet Arch Enemy—led by fierce frontwoman Angela Gossow and former Carcass guitarist Michael Amott—pack an impressive variety of hooky melodic riffs on their eighth studio album, Khaos Legions. This release finds the band slowing down some of the speed and pulling back on the furious intensity of their last original studio album, […]

Review: Dark Castle – Surrender to All Life Beyond Form

Review: Dark Castle – Surrender to All Life Beyond Form

Surrender to All Life Beyond Form is the second full-length album from Florida co-ed doom-metal duo Dark Castle, and it’s an exercise in gloomy cacophony and failed experimentation. Dark Castle attempt an eerie tone of hopelessness throughout the record by blending droning sludge riffage with noise rock, black metal, and industrial metal, but the mix […]

Review: For the Fallen Dreams – Back Burner

Review: For the Fallen Dreams – Back Burner

Michigan trio For the Fallen Dreams’ third full-length album, Back Burner, doesn’t exactly bring anything new to the table in terms of the now well-worn metalcore formula. But the band does manage to create material that will, at times, engage even the most jaded heavy-music listener. Tracks like “Complicate the Situation” and “The Human Collective” […]