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Review: Combichrist —We Love You

Review: Combichrist —We Love You

Combichrist’s love comes with a caveat: “Our only hope to save you is to terminate you.” And so these Norwegians rage forth with snarling synths and squealing feedback, yelling about death and destruction, and, um, unicorns? OK, “Fuck Unicorns” doesn’t actually say the “U” word, but you get the point–these guys are serious badasses and […]

Reviews: Cage the Gods — Badlands

Reviews: Cage the Gods — Badlands

These Brits have carved their debut full-length out of the bones of bands from the ’70s (Thin Lizzy), bands from the ’80s (The Black Crowes), and bands that think they were from the ’80s (Buckcherry). An utterly uncontemporary mix of blues rock and Sunset Strip sleaze metal, Badlands‘ songs are entirely decent and thoroughly unremarkable–all […]

Review: Twilight — III: Beneath Trident’s Tomb

Review: Twilight — III: Beneath Trident’s Tomb

If this is indeed Twilight’s last album, as the band claims, it’s not going quietly. The six tracks on III offer a characteristically robust black-metal assault from the shape-shifting all-star group, which has included everyone from Isis’ Aaron Turner to Nachtmystium main man Blake Judd among it’s ranks, and recently welcomed Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore […]

Review: Ringworm — Hammer of the Witch

Review: Ringworm — Hammer of the Witch

Twenty-plus years into their careers, Cleveland metallic-hardcore heavyweights Ringworm have delivered what should stand as their finest entry in their catalogue. Frontman Human Furnace and cohorts sound darker and more evil than ever–for proof, crank tracks like “Psychic Vampire” and “Bleed,” which reek of piss and vinegar. But with that said, some things are better […]

Review: Menace — Impact Velocity

Review: Menace — Impact Velocity

Napalm Death guitarist Mitch Harris originally intended to record the debut from this side project with Mastodon drummer Brann Dailor and Soufly/ex-Sepultura main man Max Cavelera. When scheduling conflicts arose, Harris enlisted DragonForce bassist Frédéric Leclercq, former Hate Eternal drummer Derek Roddy, and fellow Napalm commando Shane Embury, who help him realize a space-age sonic […]

Review: The Shrine — Bless Off

Review: The Shrine — Bless Off

The second full-length offering from The Shine finds the Chuck Dukowski–approved Los Angeles skater/stoner-rock trio more or less picking up where their last album, 2012′s Primitive Blast, left off–which, if you dig Marshall pedals through Marshall stacks, rampaging boogie grooves, and plenty of raised-middle-finger attitude, is welcome news, indeed. The head-whipping likes of “Tripping Corpse,” […]

Review: Vampire — Vampire

Review: Vampire — Vampire

From the dark depths of Sweden, the anonymous graveyard desecrators of Vampire have arrived to shred your face and possess your corpse. Wielding old-school death-thrash like a spiked club on tracks like “Howl from the Coffin” and “The Bestial Abyss,” this mysterious foursome–rumored to include ex-members of Portrait and current members of In Solitude–temper their […]

Review: Bigelf —Into the Maelstrom

Review: Bigelf —Into the Maelstrom

Six long years after the last Bigelf record, Cheat the Gallows, head ‘elf Damon Fox returns with a new lineup (including guitarist Luis Maldonado, longtime bassist Duffy Snowhill, and the inimitable Mike Portnoy on drums) and the best album of his band’s career. A dizzyingly tuneful trip down the prog-rock rabbit hole, Into the Maelstrom […]

Review: Gridlink — Longhena

Review: Gridlink — Longhena

The last time grindcore vocalist Jon Chang said goodbye, it was via Discordance Axis’ 2000 classic The Inalienable Dreamless. But while Chang kept shrieking over inhuman BPMs after that extreme institution retired, he’s saying goodbye to grindcore for good with this third Gridlink album. What a way to go: 21 minutes of blasting that rarely […]

Review: Taking Back Sunday – Happiness Is

Review: Taking Back Sunday – Happiness Is

It’s been over a decade since Taking Back Sunday released their debut, Tell All Friends, but you wouldn’t guess that from listening to their sixth album, Happiness Is. The second release from TBS’ reunited original lineup sees them getting their groove back via everything from upbeat anthems such as “Stood a Chance” to catchy compositions […]