• The Approach & the Execution – The Blood March (2011)


    With all the new ‘modern’ Metal coming out these days, it is really hard to find bands that are actually doing something to improve things rather than copy everybody else. The Approach & the Execution (TA&TE from now on) does a great job in mixing a bit of everything and somewhat creating a familiar sound that will appeal fans from all areas of Metal and can be commercialized in the current ‘trendy’ Metal markets and maybe in some underground ones as well.  

    With a very diverse approach to Metal the band combines fast paced guitar work and melodic sections of Melodic Death Metal. They also mix several styles of vocals ranging from female clean vocals, growls, semi-shrieks and clean male vocals creating very interesting vocal sections. If this wasn’t enough, there are some clear indications of traditional Heavy Metal elements in the supper catchy and powerful chorus sections in the last songs of the album. All of these elements sound like the perfect recipe for disaster, but the band somehow manages to pulls it off graciously.

  • Tasha-Yar – Tasha-Yar (2011)


    In the same vein of U.S.Christmas, Hawkwind, and other Psychedelic Space Rockers, today we have Tasha-Yar and their very impressive self-released self-titled album. In this release we are treated to 8 tracks of pure atmospheric brilliance that will transport the listener to lands far far away.

    Featuring ex-members of U.S. Christmas and Chad Davis of Hour of 13, this band creates a very unique and hypnotic atmosphere infused with Psychedelic elements that will blow you away. Each of the songs in this album nicely flows after each other and before you know it, you will find yourself hitting the play button again.

  • Intervention - Growing Line of Caskets (2011)


    All the way from the artic circle in Finland, today we have the Thrash-tastic 3rd demo of Intervention called “Growing Line of Caskets”. In this very effective demo, the band presents us with 3 tracks and around 16 minutes of excellently crafted Thrash-infused Death Metal tracks that will surely take you by surprise.

    Starting with “The Mortal Shell of Man”, the band quickly makes a strong impression with excellent Thrash riffing, elaborate drumming and a three-prong attack on vocals. This song is very well crafted and shows a level of maturity far superior to other bands that are signed to bigger labels. The band’s sound is dynamic enough to be both modern and ‘classical’ sounding at the same time.

  • Forgotten Legacy – The Oracle (2009)


    Hailing from Pennsylvania, today we have Forgotten Legacy and their 2009 demo “The Oracle”. If you are a fan of old-school American Power/Heavy Metal you will find this release very enjoyable.

    Featuring 5 songs, the band quickly gathers momentum with the opening track “2012”. In this song we are treated to very effective riffs and powerful vocals. The production is evidently weak, but this does not diminish the abilities presented by the band. The song is very catchy, the riffs are well crafted and the drumming is very effective.

  • Shroud of Despondency – Dark Meditations in Monastic Seclusion (2011)


    It’s been a while since we’ve heard from Shroud of Despondency and with “Dark Meditation in Monastic Seclusion” we can say the wait was not in vain. Featuring seven tracks of Black Metal and an atmospheric passages, the band returns with full force to make an impact on the USBM scene.

    Mixed between acoustic passages, “Dark Meditations” has some excellent Black Metal sections with very creepy atmospheres that will haunt your dreams for months. A fine example of this is the use of choirs in the track “Homo Homini Lupus”, a chaotic 8 minute long track.

  • Lebowski – Cinematic (2010)


    As one of the most ambitious self-released albums we have received in years, we have Lebowski’s musical opus “Cinematic”. In this release, the band culminates a 5 year writing process in the shape of a sound track to a non-existent movie as they put it. Being the band’s first full-length release, we are sure they will turn some heads along the way with such a professional and rich production.

    The variety of textures created by the moods and instruments is outstanding, all the elements come together magically in such a way that you can visualize the atmospheres created by the band in each of the 10 songs presented in this release.

  • Corrosive Carcass – Rot.In.Pieces (2010)


    Hailing from Sweden, today we have a very catchy demo from Corrosive Carcass and their old-school Swedish Death Metal. In “Rot.In.Pieces” this relatively new band gives us 7 tracks totaling 18 minutes of neck breaking old-school Death Metal. While the production is a bit on the ‘raw’ side of things, the overall sound of the band will take you back in time quite a few years.

    Having a raw and gritty sound actually helps Corrosive Carcass get the old-school vibe going for most of the duration of this very effective demo. Most songs are under 3 minutes and feature a hefty amount of catchy riffs, tight drumming and somewhat standard growls and screams.

  • Ironwood - Storm Over Sea (2010)


    With a very confusing approach to music, today we have Ironwood, a band that seems to suffer from multiple personality disorder and plays a very wide variety of music genres in a very disconnected way. However, at some moments the band reminds us of Borknagar and such bands that mix and match genres in very crafty ways.

    Hailing from Australia, “Storm Over Sea” is Ironwood’s second full-length release and shows the band trying to find their own sound, or just playing a bunch of random things together and hoping for the best. Starting off with “When it’s all Over” a very Folk/Progressive piece, the band will surely grab your attention, but will confuse you immediately after with “Hail Sign” a very ‘random’ song in our opinion.

  • Veneficum – In Tranquil Absurd (2010)


    It’s been a while since we get the ‘holy shit’ look after listening to a release coming from an unsigned band, and recently Veneficum’s “In Tranquil Absurd” changed that. With a monumental Symphonic Black Metal sound, this American band managed to blow us away after a couple of songs. And while Veneficum does not have the budget to create the expensive orchestrations that bands like Cradle of Filth and Dimmu Borgir are capable of, they do manage to create an epic orchestral atmosphere using synthesizers.

    Before you start thinking that we will talk about another clone band that is just trying to capitalize on what CoF and Dimmu have already done, you should give Veneficum a try and verify for your self that they are a quality band with an imposing sound. With the atmosphere being the main ‘attention grabber’, the band also shows great amount of skills in terms of cohesive songwriting, and ridiculously precise execution.

  • Tempting Tragedy – Descent into Madness (2010)


    Hailing from Canada, today we have Tempting Tragedy, a hard rocking Gothic Metal/Rock band that gives any big name band a run for their money in when it comes to creating catchy tunes of darkness. Having received mostly Black Metal and ‘whatever’-core bands from Canada is refreshing get Tempting Tragedy’s hard-hitting second full-length album “Descent into Madness”.

    Opening “Descent into Madness” with the song “Calamities”, we are quickly treated to solid guitar riffing, pounding bass guitar line and vocals very similar to Ville Valo’s hypnotic style. Before you assume that Tempting Tragedy is another H.I.M wannabe clone band, let us tell us you are wrong since while “Calamities” might sound a lot like them, it’s the only song of this album with this nature.


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