• God Dethroned – Under the Sign of the Iron Cross (2010)


    With two new additions to the band’s line-up since their devastating last release “Passiondale”, God Dethroned returns with their crushing sound with “Under the Sign of the Iron Cross”. Showing no signs of slowing down, the band’s latest release is both crushing and relentless with some monumental Death Metal perfect for some neck-breaking moshing.

    The addition of Danny Tunker on guitars and Mike van der Plicht on drums keeps the band as brutal as every with that slight melodic edge that separates them from the rest. For over 35 minutes, God Dethroned rips through 9 tracks of crushing music that will leave you craving for more.

  • Instanzia – Ghosts (2010)


    Also from Metalodic records, today we have Instanzia and their highly impressive debut album “Ghosts”. The band crafts their sound with very solid guitar riffing, majestic orchestrations and superb vocal arrangements that make most bands debut albums pale in comparison to “Ghosts”. However, a small warning comes with such an ambitious production: will the band be able to ever play it live with the same quality?

    Since the very enthusiastic intro “Omen”, the band quickly builds up momentum in the same vein as Edguy, Avantasia, Pagan’s Mind, etc. With “Ghosts of the Past”, the band will immediately grab your attention with their fast-paced riffing, tight drumming and very impressive vocal arrangements. The band used three different singers to create a very powerful choir that greatly improves the band’s chorus sections giving them a very massive and majestic sound, but makes us weary on how this band will sound in reality when they don’t have all this studio magic behind them.

  • Icewind - Again Came the Storm (2010)


    All the way from our neighbors up north (Canada), this weekend we got a very good promo pack containing Icewind’s latest release “Again Came the Storm”. Playing an excellent Power Metal with Symphonic elements, the band’s second full-length release will surely blow everybody away.

    After reviewing all the great Power Metal albums of 2010, we are still very impressed by the quality of “Again Came the Storm” and it’s over 50 minutes of brilliantly crafted songs that will please even the most demanding fans of the genre. As we all know, this genre is very crowded with bands, but it’s quality bands like Icewind that make it prosper and continue to be one of the most impressive genres of metal.

  • Furze - Reaper Subconscious Guide (2010)


    In the category of the weirdest album we received in 2010, today we have Furze and their “Reaper Subconscious Guide” release. Being the band’s fourth full-length release, “Reaper Subconscious Guide” is full of surprises and a very old-school vibe that will throw most people off, and requires more than a few listens to fully digest.

    As a ‘tribute’ to Black Sabbath, Furze recorded all this tracks in vintage equipment from the 40’s to the 70’s, creating a very interesting sound that we rarely get to appreciate. The band also recorded it and mastered it especially for the Vinyl version of this release, and then mastered digitally for the CD release (the one we reviewed) so rest assured that you will have two different sounding products that will be equally impressive.

  • Pandemonium – Hellspawn (2007)


    With a killer presentation, a few weeks ago we received Pandemonium’s promo package that included their 2007 release “Hellspawn”. In a time when promo presentation does not matter for younger bands, it’s nice to see that Pandemonium’s new label Godz Ov War Productions cares enough to get their bands noticed and remembered by reviewers getting shit tons of albums every week.

    Anyways, going back to the actual thing that matters: the music, “Hellspawn” treats us with 30+ minutes of crushing Black/Death Metal that is very high in intensity and effectiveness, even though it was released ‘back in’ 2007, this album still sound very easily comparable to anything we get in the mail these days. The band’s sound very well polished and all 10 tracks are very solid.

  • Bethlehem – Stönkfitzchen (2010)


    After getting trashed for their ‘re-interpretation’ of their “S.U.i.Z.i.D” album, today we have “Stönkfitzchen” the return of Bartsch and company to the more deranged and totally sublime side of Dark Metal and the Bethlehem sound we all love. Niklas Kvarforth is now somewhat adjusted to the band and their lyrics in mostly German, allowing Bethlehem to sound very deranged and as weird as always.

    The first moment we received this promo CD we immediately started listening to it since we are huge fans of Bethlehem and Kvarforth’s work with Shining, and let me tell you, we were not disappointed at all with this cosmic combination of probably two of the most twisted people in Metal: Bartsch and Kvarforth.

  • Limbonic Art – Phantasmagoria (2010)


    In their two albums after their 2006 reformation, Limbonic Art has managed to tarnish their legacy created by impressive releases such as “Moon in the Scorpio” and “In Abhorrence Dementia”. “Phantasmagoria” is one of said albums, and with this release we can only hope that the band changes their name or goes back to sleep once more.

    In another attempt at creating something ‘impressive’ the ‘band’ fails miserably and creates another sub-par release from what once was from Limbonic Art. “Phantasmagoria” features well over one hour of pointless and direction-less songs that will only cause Black Metal fans to cringe track after track, since this release will give you a headache similar to the ones you get by listening to pure static for 6 hours.

  • Woe – Quiet, Undramatically (2010)


    Featuring half of the Woods of Ypres lineup and everybody of The Green Evening Requiem, today we have Woe and their very impressive second full-length release “Quiet, Undramatically”. The now full band, delivers a crushing 43 minutes of Black Metal with melodic and emotional passages that will surely get a bunch of people yelling Agalloch, Wolves in the Throne Room, etc, rip-offs.

    While the band’s sound does have very little of the Agalloch, WitTR, melodic edge, they do have a hefty amount of aggressiveness and power to their sound, making them a very different band from what we are used to listening to from the Black Metal scene here in the USA. “Quiet, Undramatically” is a brilliant album that is both raw and aggressive, but it also has that certain elements of melody that makes you start ‘pseudo’ headbanging in your seat.

  • Krieg – The Isolationist (2010)


    “The Isolationist” marks the first full-length album after the 2007 revival of USBM band Krieg. Featuring members of a wide variety of Black Metal bands, most notably N. Imperial, we get 11 tracks of an interesting combination of raw Black Metal and some experimental elements that take this release into the ‘Black Metal with weird stuff’ category in our book.

    Opening with a very desolate intro, “No Future” shows a very raw and aggressive side of Black Metal that only a few bands (and Krieg) can pull off and not sound pretentious or that they are trying too hard. The guitar riffing is hellish, N. Imperials screams are brutal and the overall atmosphere of this song will bring unrest to even the calmest person in the world. This is pretty much how the rest of “The Isolationist” will continue to affect the listeners psyche.

  • Forbidden – Omega Wave (2010)


    In their first album in 13 years, Forbidden has managed to surpass all expectations and deliver a Thrash-tastic album that can easily be considered one of their best in their career, next to “Twisted into Form”. With the new addition of Steve Smyth on guitars and Mark Hernandez on drums, the band shows no signs of aging and with “Omega Wave” they deliver 12 excellent tracks of fresh-sounding Thrash Metal.

    Immediately with the momentum builder opening track “Alpha Century”, you can see that Forbidden is not back to re-hash old days of glory, but rather push forward with their Thrash Metal sound. The band’s current sound is the perfectly blend of old-school style Thrash with dynamic riffing, a highly technical edge over other bands, brilliant vocal work, and that hint of experimentation that brings this release nicely in to 2010.


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