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DECADES OF DESPAIR/Throes Of The Wretched (Self Released) This is some crushing, ultra fast death metal. The only thing I didn't like at times was some of the screaming vocals. The music is bone crushing death metal that hits hard and hits often. The music is not a wall of noise and even with the fast parts, the music still kills. The vocals aren't bad except some of the screeching parts I didn't prefer, but otherwise this is some prime killer death metal. Info:

FOR THE SUFFERING/Self Titled (Crash Music) This was OK modern thrash metal. I hated the female vocals as they sounded out of place and I am by no means a fan of the clear female vocals stuff in metal and this is another case of it. The music isn't too bad, but it nothing you haven't heard before as it is heavy groove metal with touches of thrash metal with screamed vocals. This was something that didn't sound awful, but didn't knock me over neither. If they would lose the female vocals, they would be much better off without them. Info:

PERSONA NON GRATA/Shade In The Light (Sensory) This was some really cool progressive music. By track # 3 I was hooked as this band just took my on a journey of many rides and I didn't want to get off. The singer has an incredible voice and on this puppy he belts out the lyrics with a passion not matched by many. The songs don't fly over my head like some progressive bands and this band have just enough melody I think to appeal that just hardcore progressive metal fans. This journey will have you flying in the air on wings. Info:

TARDY BROTHERS/Bloodline (Candlelight Records) Yes this is the 2 Tardy brothers from Obituary. This sounds like Obituary to a point (naturally), but I would say this has more melody and it is not as fast as Obituary. The riffs on here totally crush and vocals are just what you would expect. This is prime death metal and production is right on the money and if your a death metal fan you will want this. This has plenty of hooks to sink your teeth into. Info:

LEIF EDLING/Songs Of Torment, Songs Of Joy (Candlelight Records) This is the 1st solo effort from Leif and this is some crushing doom metal. Leif is on vocals on this and his voice sounds good to my ears. The tunes on here are as heavy as a ton of lead. Just one bone crushing riff after another. This is easily one of the best doom metal releases I have heard in quite some time and yeah I'll say it, it is better than any Candlemess release in my eyes. Info:

ONCE OVER/Red Right Returning (Self Released) This some cool death metal. They remind me a bit of Obituary in spots. The singing part is the only negative I would say as the band mix in clean and death metal vocals and with so many other bands doing that, it sounds dull and forced. The music is bone crushing death metal with lots of thick ass hooks and the music just plain kicks ass. Thank god the clean vocal thing is not used too often. This is a very good release and some might like the dual vocal thing it's just not my cup of tea. Info:

SAXON/Into The Labyrinch (SPV) Saxon is easily one of my favorite bands and yet again on this release they show me again that they hardly ever fail to deliver the goods. This is bone crushing heavy metal as only Saxon can play. How the band can continue to find killer riffs and melodies is beyond me. Biff still sounds great on vocals and this is just full of classic metal tracks. Saxon continue to put out classic metal releases and this gets a double horns up from me. Check out the interview I did with Biff on my interview section as well. Info:

LION'S SHARE/Dark Hours (Blistering Records) This is pure fish banging heavy metal and I love every note of it. This is just balls to the wall metal. The singer reminds me a bit of Dio and this band just churn out some of the best metal these ears have heard in quite some time. The band have just enough melody in the tunes and the combo of that just makes me melt. The production is perfect and the guitar sound is mint. Any fan of metal would be proud to have this in their collection and yeah it is that damn good. Info:

THE TRIBULATION/The Horror (Pulverised Records) This is some wicked old school thrash metal that easily brought a smile to my face. This hits hard and it hits fast. Just bone slicing riffs with wicked speed behind them. The vocals are a pure death/thrash metal delight. Just listening to this brought tingles down my spine. The production is right on the money and the guitar sound is mint. Fans of Kreator, Deathrow, Bloodfeast, etc will be doing backflips over this and this is easily one of the best releases of 2009 so far. Info:

DECEIVER/Thrashing Heavy Metal (Pulverised) Oh is this is one that gave my neck an instant workout. This is some beautiful old school death/thrash metal with some of the most wicked riffs. The band just get this incredible guitar sound that had my neck moving in seconds. The production is right on the money and the vocals are great growls of death, not some low guttural shit or female vocals. This is a pure underground metal delight. Some of the best old school death/thrash metal you'll ears will hear. Info:

SEANCE/Awakening Of The Gods (Pulverised) This band return with another ultra heavy release of death metal. There are 11 tunes on this to sink your death metal claws into. The vocalist reminds me of Ross from Immolation at times and that is easily not a bad thing. The music is straight ahead balls to the wall death metal. The tunes are mostly mid tempo or into the speed lane. The guitar sound the band uses on this is killer and it will have your neck moving in no time. This is death metal played the way it was meant to be played: brutal and heavy. Get this at it kills. Pulverised Records hits a mighty trifecta with their 3 releases. Info:

NECRODEMON/7" Adv Tracks-The band is looking for a label to put this out and a label would be foolish not to. This is 2 tracks of prime bone crushing death metal in the vein of Immolation/Incantation. Crushing riffs that will make you bow and death metal vocals that will send shivers up and down your spine. The songs are already recorded and the artwork is done so all the need is a label to step up and put this slab of killer music out. More info: or

GENERAL SURGERY/Corpus In Extremis-Analysing Necrocriticism (Listenable Records) This is some fast shit here. This is also some of the best music I have heard this year so far. 15 tracks of pulverizing death/grind that will you playing air drums in seconds. God these riffs are crushing and ultra heavy. The tunes are ultra fast naturally, but don't come across as noise and the vocals are wicked slabs of death growls that had me smiling. The band don't blast a way at a million miles an hour all the time and when they slow it down they unleash some of the heaviest riffs this side of the Atlantic. This is a pure old school death/grind delight that hits hard and fast and is something that needs to be in your collection pronto. Info:

CENTAURUS-A/Side Effects Expected (Listenable Records) This is some decent death metal with plenty of hooks and speed to keep any death metal fan happy. No groove or female vocals to be found thank god. The band tear through these tunes mixing up the speed and technicality that had my neck moving. Nobody loves a good riff better than me and this had more than it's fair share. The vocals are growls of death that are cool and the production shines through on this and the guitar sound the band use is perfect. Solid release. Info:

SCARECROW/Hangman (Self Released) This is 5 adv tracks from this band forthcoming release and what a release it will be. The 5 tunes I got here are awesome metal/hardcore tunes that are the perfect of underground metal and hardcore. The singer has that old school hardcore singing down to a science and the music is a mix of crossover stuff like Agnostic Front, The Cromags, DRI, The Meatmen etc. The production is down and dirty that helps the band not takes away from it. The tunes are all super catchy punky tunes that I enjoyed from the 1st note till the last. I for one can't wait for the full length album to come out. This kills. Info:

ANVIL BITCH/Sanctify (Self Released) Oh my god my boys Anvil Bitch return and 4 out of 5 original members are in this and they have the guitar player from Dominance (which was the band they went on to form after A.B. broke up) to round out the line up. I recently had the pleasure to see them live several times and they killed. Now I have here a 3 track CD of new tunes and the new tunes are crushing. This band still deliver the goods and this is prime time thrash metal with that John Plumley guitar sound that I love and adore. Gary still belts out the lyrics with a fury and conviction and Chuck still wails those feet on the double bass drum parts. I hope some label snaps these guys up and lets them record a full length cause it could be a nice kick in the ass that the trash metal scene needs now. Welcome back guys. Info:

HEAD'S UP/Soul Brother Crisis (Metal Mind Productions) This is a re-release of this band's album that originally came out on Roadracer Records. Their EP "Duke" is added for 5 bonus tracks, which is a nice touch. This was one of those metal/funk bands that became all the rage back in the early 90's with the success of bands like Faith No More and the Red Hot Chilli Peppers. I had heard of the band before, but not their music. I must say as I listened to this, that this was pretty damn good. I am by no means a fan of this stuff, but when it is played this good I have to sit up and take notice. The songs are just too good on this and the singer has an amazing voice and he just sings the songs with such a passion and he just fits the music like a pair of tight spandex from the 80's. His voice reminds me of Tommy from Ludichrist/Scatterbrain. The bottom line is these songs are good and catchy and this in my opinion blows away anything the Chilli Peppers ever did. I do like Faith No More and this is as good as anything they did and having the EP as bonus tracks is like the icing on a beautiful chocolate sundae. Info: or

THE PROPHECY/Into The Light (Aural Music) This was just bone crushing doom metal played with tons of feeling and emotion. The songs just sucked me in and gladly went along for this ride. The band also inject some melody with their tunes and this is just an incredible release. The riffs are as heavy a ton of lead and the vocals are sung with such feeling and passion you can't help but be sucked in. Each tune just has so much power and emotion that is impossible to describe. Oh by the way the vocals are sung by a male and a female and unlike many other combo female/male vocals this works on this big time. This will easily be one of my top releases of 2009. Info:

STEMM/Blood Scent (Catch 22 Records) This to me is just another faceless groove metal band that sounds like any band that could play the side stage of Ozfest. The style they play has been done to death right down to the vocals and music. This band could be any number of groove nu metal bands making the rounds these days and this to me is just faceless and generic. This didn't do a thing for me. Info:

PESTILENCE/Resurrection Macabre (Mascot Records) Pestilence was one killer band back in the day and now they have reformed and are back. Now the bands last couple releases were on the more technical side and their early stuff was just balls to the wall crushing death metal. Well, that is exactly what this is, balls to the wall crushing death metal. Martin's vocals will send chills up and down your spine as he is easily one of the best death metal singers ever. The music is crushing fast death metal that lays all the pretenders to waste. The production is right on the money and the guitar sound is mint. This release and band restore my faith in death metal and this is simply an incredible release of death metal played the way it was meant to be played. Info:

CHILDREN/Hard Times Hanging At The End Of The World (Kemado Records) This was quite a surprise to my ears. This is pure fist banging metal mixed in with a touch of thrash and these boys have come up with quite sound. The riffs will be the 1st thing that sucks you in as they just rip out some of the most lethal riffs I have heard in quite sometime. This is sort of like Kill Em All meeting punk rock in a dark alley. The singer reminds me of Lips from Anvil at times. The band while heavy y and fast still retain some melody to them and the riffs and song structures will have that neck moving in no time. The production has that dirty, dark feel and I love it. Just prepare to crank this sucker loud and have your neck brace ready. Info:

DIES IRAE/The Art Of Endless Creation (Metal Mind Productions) This is a nice DVD/CD package. The band has 2 members from the band Vader and also 'DOC" from Vader who sadly passed away plays drums on the DVD/CD. The DVD is from a show from 2005 and the band just rip through the tunes on it and it also includes a few bonus clips too. The CD has 9 full tunes and also has plenty of extra goodies including the bands 1996 demo, which is a great added bonus. The band play vicious death metal, but are not a Vader clone at all. They don't play as many fast parts and just let the riffs do the talking. Speaking of that, there are plenty of thick heavy riffs that your neck and body will be most happy with. The guitar sound on this is about as heavy as it gets. I was also glad this wasn't some Vader clone band that just plays fast all the time. This band are more mid paced in their style, but trust me it is nothing less heavy and brutal as any death metal band you can name. Info:

RHINO/Dead Throne Monarch (MVD Audio) This was heavier than a ton of lead. This was part stoner rock, part Down and part Alice in Chains. I am not a huge of stoner rock or even doom to a point, but this just blew me away. This has some of the sickest vocals I have ever heard and the music is just so bone crushing heavy and catchy, I could not stand up and take notice. Within 2 minutes of this playing I was easily sucked in. The singer sounds like he is on his last dying breaths and he fits in with what the band is doing perfectly. His screams and growls out the tunes and one of the heaviest bands this side of the Atlantic belts out the tunes. This also didn't bore me as some bands do when they become too one diminutional. This band just have that wicked guitar sound and hook that sucked me in and left me to drown. Info:

ENSOPH/Rex Mundi Ile (Cruz Del Sur Music) This band was a mix of black metal meets goth. At first I was not liking this much, but by about 3/4 of the way through the 1st song I was digging this. The singer sings in an almost black metal voice and the music is like a combo of black metal goth and even a bit of techno music. The bottom line is the songs are quite good and I was into this and to me this was something new and fresh and different and I liked it. The songs are good and catchy and the singer has a voice that sucked me in. Info:

CROWN THE LOST/Blind Faith Loyalty (Cruz Del Sur Music) This was a wicked cool thrash metal band with a singer that you will either love or hate his voice. I for one love his voice as it is different and cool. The band aren't a typical bay area thrash metal band and they write some very interesting songs and riffs that are out of this world. The only negative this is the use of the dual vocal thing that sounds childish and this band does not need a guy signing in a death metal style voice at all on this. This is some cool, original and different form of thrash metal and I liked this a lot. Info:

SACRED OATH/Self Titled (Angel Thorne Music) I saw this band live about a year ago and I thought they were great and now I have a CD from the band. 14 songs of pure heavy metal with bits and pieces of power metal thrown in the mix. The singer I feel as a tremendous voice and he sings the songs with conviction, power and style. Think Deadly Blessing, Omen, Helstar, etc. This is a pure heavy metal delight and 14 songs are on this and not a bad one in the bunch. The songs on here just kick ass and if your a heavy metal fan this is a must get. Info:

IRONWOOD/Fire Water Ash (Self Released) This is a folk/metal band and I must say I have not heard many of them before. This would not be something I would pop in my stereo everyday, but it is good for what it is and would be perfect music to relax to or read a book. The singer has a really good voice and he sings the songs with a passion and style not found by many. The music is metal with some folk thrown in and it makes for quite a combo. Some may not like this, but I think if you go in with an open min you might just find yourself liking this. I know I did. Info:

DAVID T. CHASTAIN/Heavy Excursions (Leviathan Records) Dave has released 6 solo albums beside his work in his other bands and this is a 18 sort of best of, except he only included the heaviest and fastest stuff on this. 6 songs are from his first releases in 87 and some of the stuff on it even borders on speed metal, which was fine by me. Dave can write some crushing riffs and you will hear plenty on this as he spans his career on this and I don't know one man can write some many wicked riffs. Do I wish their were some vocals on this, sure I do, but I love a killer riff as much as the next guy and when you got that, I can overlook some things. I love the early stuff and you get 6 tracks from that debut, which smokes. This is a guitar metal delight and I am sure Dave will have some more riffs coming in the future too. Info:

WOLF SPIDER/Kingdom Of Paranoia (Metal Mind Productions) I have never heard of this band before, but boy am I glad that Metal Mind reissued this puppy. This originally came out in 1990 and is primo bay area style thrash metal that gave my neck a mega workout. I was also whipping away playing air drums too. The singer reminds me of the guy in Death Angel. The music is just wicked, crushing, balls to the wall thrash metal that I love. Just crushing riff after riff that had my playing air guitar as well. You also get 5 bonus tracks and if your an old school thrash metalhead such as myself then this is easily a must have. Info:

CEREBRAL FIX/Death Erotica (Metal Mind Productions) This originally came out in 1992 and this has 9 yes 9 bonus tracks. I remember a bit about this band back in the day and I thought they were a grind band, but they are more of a sludge metal band with some death metal added in at times. The singer Simon as a good gruffy voice and he fits the music rather well. The music is sludgy metal with a mid paced sound. Almost doomy in parts. Funny cover of Judas Priest's Living After Midnight done in a sludgy way. They also do a Discharge cover. The bonus tracks are some live stuff that doesn't sound bad production wise. This band I think had their own sound back in the day and they still sound fresh and different today. Track 12 "Too Drunk To Fuck" is some warped up shit. Info:

WRETCHED/The Exodus Of Autonomy (Victory Records) This is some pretty hard hitting thrash/death metal that I quite enjoyed. Riffs are the name of the game for me and this had plenty of them. Riffs that will tear through you and had my neck moving and vocals that thank god aren't that lower than low crap. The singer growls, but doesn't go below that guttural line which to me a joke and I have no idea why bands do it. The singer sings with lots of conviction and power and the band when they turn it up whip out some wicked blast parts that had my playing air drums. The guitar sound is awesome too and the production is right on the money. You have a winner here. Info:

WITHIN THE RUINS/Creature (Victory Records) This I have mixed feelings on. The band play the nu metal/jump style, but also throw in some wicked technical riffing like Human Remains that had me going nuts. The singer thank god again doesn't go down the lower than low route and that shored points with me. The jump metal stuff is not used all the time and the technical riffs were just awesome and I was listening this I was amazed at how killer the riffing sounds when they go into those parts. The band also speed it up and keep it mid paced at times and although I am not digging some of the jump metal stuff, this overall is a solid effort from a band trying to do and be something different from the norm and it works for me. Info:

ARISE AND BURN/Night Storms The Hailfire (Victory Records) This was a mix of thrash metal, nu metal and some old hardcore sounds. Again thank god no lower than low guttural vocals, he just growls out the lyrics like a good death metal singer should ha ha. Actually he has a really solid voice. The music is like a mix of say Motorhead meets DRI meets Hatebreed and they get into a brawl with Helmet. Yes, the band have a bit of that jump metal style in them, but it never gets to the point of annoying and I kinda just overlooked it and accepted it. This has some head banging riffs galore and I like the production as it has a really heavy guitar sound, but it has that raw type of feel too. Info:

CORPUS CHRISTI/The Darker Shades Of White (Victory Records) This was another one of those typical jump/nu metal bands that I have heard many times before. The singer just belts out the songs by growling at some parts and then sings in a clean style, which is so overdone now. The music is either mid paced or speedier nu metal style with a touch of thrash added to it and it just is so overdone these days that I found this boring pretty quick. This is nu metal with plenty of jump metal riffs and some speed added in with screaming death metal and clean vocals and it has been done to death and just sounds boring now. This didn't do much for me and it just sounded like too many other bands out there. Info:

23 RAIN DAYS/Wonderful Disaster (Self Released) This was decent for what it was, but it is not my cup of tea so to speak. This is like a very commercial goth style band that writes some catchy riffs that I am sure a lot of people will like and can get into, but it is not for me. The band have that spacey/electronic dance beat sound that I am not into at all, even though I will admit the songs are catchy and I could see a huge club full of people dancing to this, but it won't be me ha ha. The singer has a strong catchy melodic voice that fits the music well, but this just isn't my style. Info:

HARKONIN/Ghanima (Battlegod Productions) This was some solid black metal with a touch of death metal thrown in. The singer has a great black metal voice and he sings with much passion and he can really belt out the lyrics and he just sounds evil. The music is mid paced and fast black metal with lots of wicked riffs and blast beats. None of the songs bored me and this was just a solid release that was not generic at all and the riffs had my neck moving quite often. Info:

DENIAL OF GOD/Planet Of Tombs (Battlegod Productions) This is another black metal band and I have read some interviews with these guys and was looking forward to reviewing them. The singer has an incredible black metal voice as each note he hits and screams seems like his last. He hits the notes with lots of feeling and I can just hear the pain as he belts out the lyrics. The music is raw and punishing black metal that doesn't sound like a typical black metal band. This band I feel is different from most as they have their own sound and even the pick riffing parts sound different that other black metal bands. One of the best black metal bands I have heard in some time and they just have that raw, intense sound that rips into me big time. Info:

TEMTRIS/Masquerade (Battlegod Productions) I loved this except for the clean and death metal vocal thing they use sometimes which at this point when any band uses it sounds generic and pointless. The band play heavy metal with a bit of sludge and power metal to them and the riffs are fuckin fantastic and catchy. The singer has a solid and clean voice and he sounds great on this, but then the band use that death metal growl (I am sure another member is doing this) it just sounds generic. When music is this catchy and this good I can overlook it and the songs on this are so crunchy and catchy it isn't funny. Great production allows everything to flow and this just has great songs on it and I liked this a lot. Info:

BLACK REIGN/Soveriegn (Battlegod Productions) This was a wicked crossover band that I absolutely loved. Huge riffs and great singing. This was fast, it was slow, it was mid paced, it was everything. The band just take the best in metal and in hardcore and blend them together. The singer even throws in fast hardcore like vocals at times. Think DRI meeting Wargasm and they mix it up with The Crumbsuckers and Faith of Fear. I love the guitar sound and the riffs had my neck moving and I was looking for the nearest pit. The production is not over polished and sounds like one of those crossover 80's productions, which I didn't mind at all. Cool to see a real metalcore band for a change and not all this jump metal shit pretending to be crossover. Info:

THIRTEENTH SIGN/Oracles Of Armageddon (Battlegod Productions) This was some fast death/thrash metal that surprised me. I thought the band had a very cool and original sound and I love the choppy like riffs that they played as it had my neck moving. The singer has a solid thrash metal vocal voice as he belts out the tunes with power and conviction. The music when it goes into the fast mode doesn't sound like noise and it had my playing my air drums. The razor like guitar riffs and sounds were music to my ears as I am a sucker for a killer riff or hook and this had them by the bunches. The band mix up the slow and faster parts rather nicely and this release crushed. Info:

MAY RESULT/Cdara Cdhpth (Battlegod Productions) This was some OK black metal, but to me is just seemed to similar and down the same path as many other black metal bands. The band play fast pick riffing black metal with black/death vocals and keyboards. This sounds no different from 100 other bands I have reviewed over the years. It is well played and it isn't bad, but just sounds like any other band and they are doing nothing different that I have not heard before. Info:

MOTORHEAD/The Early Years (World Of Blueline) I thought this was going to be some cheap re issue of songs that have been released countless times over, but I was wrong. Opening up is a live version of "Motorhead" that sounded great and following that is a sort of different and I assume early version of "Ace of Spades", which is a bit different from the version I have heard countless times. The other tunes (some are live and some are studio) I have heard only one tune (White Line Fever) before so if you want to glimpse into some early Motorhead stuff here ya go and while maybe some of this stuff as been on other releases, this stuff was all new to my ears. You can get this from: