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Review: Mutilation Rites — Harbinger

Review: Mutilation Rites — Harbinger

While many black-metal bands try hard to sound frostbitten, the second release from Mutilation Rites comes in blazing hot. Building on the sound of 2012’s scathing ‘Empyrean,’ the quartet has created a record that is both engrossing and mean, a satisfying mixture of methodical dark sorcery and not giving a fuck. Menacing guitar harmonies and […]

Review: Ill Niño — Till Death, La Familia

Review: Ill Niño — Till Death, La Familia

After a few shaky records, Latin metal kings Ill Niño’s seventh album is a refreshingly melodic and undeniably brutal one. Each band member comes through, from Cristian Machado, who croons and howls his heart out, to Ahrue Luster, who lays down fiery lead guitar work, to the rhythm section, which delivers the sort of ‘Roots’-rocking […]

Review: I the Breather — Life Reaper

Review: I the Breather — Life Reaper

Vocalist Shawn Spann has felt lost at times, and his faith has helped him get back on track, as the inspirational metalcore tracks on I The Breather’s third full-length reveal. As the group’s name implies, its holy cauldron of low-octave, chop-infested heaviness and melodic, super-creative segments dish out the idea that the dude upstairs allows […]

Review: For All Those Sleeping – Incomplete Me

Review: For All Those Sleeping – Incomplete Me

On their third full-length album, ‘Incomplete Me,’ Minnesota metalcore quintet For All Those Sleeping continue the blend of emo melody and metallic fury that landed their last album Outspoken on the Billboard 200. While the band isn’t aiming to break new ground, they have crafted some excellent songs that further the idea that melodic metalcore […]

Review: Kobra And the Lotus — High Priestess

Review: Kobra And the Lotus — High Priestess

Kobra and the Lotus frontwoman Kobra Paige is a classically trained vocalist with a vibrato like a razor and a fiery devotion to the works of her ancestors. Her band’s newest full-length is about as close to a classic Iron Maiden or Judas Priest album as it’s possible to get without actually taking place in 1977. […]

Review: Judas Priest – Redeemer of Souls

Review: Judas Priest – Redeemer of Souls

Whether Judas Priest were consciously aware their next album might be their last and wanted to go out with the power of a firework display, or whether they were trying to redeem themselves in the eyes of the many fans dismayed by their 2008 double-disc rock opera ‘Nostradamus’ is unclear. What’s apparent is that ‘Redeemer […]

Review: The Relapse Symphony — Shadows

Review: The Relapse Symphony — Shadows

On this, their debut full-length, The Relapse Symphony play the sort of brand of glam-inflected metalcore that has been dragged into the spotlight by groups like Black Veil Brides and Asking Alexandria, but the Washington D.C. quintet’s sound is more accessible—and catchy—than those bands’ recent releases. In particular, standout track “Make Your Move” shows strong, […]

Review: The Dead Rabbitts – Shapeshifter

Review: The Dead Rabbitts – Shapeshifter

Phoenix-based metalcore supergroup The Dead Rabbitts formed as the side project of Escape the Fate frontman Craig Mabbitt, and also includes current and former members of Greeley Estates and Alesana. Their latest album is notably heavier than Escape the Fate’s recent hard-rock- and glam-influenced work, packing in plenty of tightly crafted breakdowns and dissonant riffs. […]

Review: Linkin Park – The Hunting Party

Review: Linkin Park – The Hunting Party

Thirteen years after being steeled in the crucible of Ozzfest, and millions of record sales later, Linkin Park have grown into one of America’s biggest rock bands. But now they’re ratcheting the kick-ass up another notch: Their new album, ‘The Hunting Party,’ is not only the hardest and heaviest thing they’ve ever released, but it’s […]

Review: Septicflesh — Titan

Review: Septicflesh — Titan

It’s been six years since Greece’s Septicflesh reinvigorated their sound with the epic Communion, and not much has changed. On Titan, one finds the same mixture of cinematic orchestrals, layered growls, and pneumatic drums. What’s lacking at times is cohesion—often, Septicflesh’s polished, overproduced sound feels haphazard and directionless. Still, tracks like “Order of Dracul” and […]