Retrospective: Iron Maiden’s “Number Of The Beast” Turns 30

By Andrew Bansal

Today, March 22nd 2012 marks the 30th anniversary of the release of Iron Maiden’s iconic third studio album, “Number Of The Beast”.

No amount of praise is enough for this album. The fact that the music on Number Of The Beast is nothing short of legendary is quite obvious, because here we are, still talking about it, and more importantly, still listening to it even after all these years. That moment when I purchased the Number Of The Beast CD, back in 2005, will always be a special and memorable one for me, because it was my first ever heavy metal purchase. I was already a fan of Iron Maiden before I heard this album, but it was very much an impulse buy. I saw it in the record store, had no idea whether the album was any good, didn’t ask anyone for advice, and went for it simply because I was instantly attracted to the cover. “Good choice!” said the record store owner to me, and as soon as I got home and gave it a spin, I found out that he was absolutely right. Indeed, it turned out to be a life-changing choice. Continue reading “Retrospective: Iron Maiden’s “Number Of The Beast” Turns 30″

Album Review: Inverloch – Dusk…Subside [9.5 out of 10]

By Andrew Bansal

Back in the early 90’s, Australian band disEMBOWELMENT were at the forefront of the funeral doom scene, but after their 1993 release “Transcendence Into The Peripheral”, they split up. Nearly two decades later, two members from the band, drummer Paul Mazziotta and guitarist Matthew Skarajew reformed with a new line-up under the name “d.USK”, in order to present the disEMBOWELMENT material on stage. But in addition, they also formed Inverloch, a new band with the same line-up. This band’s debut mini-album “Dusk…Subside” continues from where disEMBOWELMENT left off, and gives listeners a taste of what to expect from Inverloch in the near and distant future. Continue reading “Album Review: Inverloch – Dusk…Subside [9.5 out of 10]”

Album Review: Primitive Weapons – The Shadow Gallery [8 out of 10]

By Andrew Bansal

Brooklyn-based band Primitive Weapons have released their debut album on Prosthetic Records, a very concise 7-song effort with a total duration of merely 25 minutes. Honestly, I had previously never heard of this band, but the fact that they recently signed to Prosthetic Records initially drew me towards them, and the couple of tracks they made available for streaming pre-release caught my attention. So I decided to check out the full album as soon as the opportunity presented itself, and I must say, I’m intrigued by it. The music is so eclectic that it’s nearly impossible to classify this band under one single sub-genre. Continue reading “Album Review: Primitive Weapons – The Shadow Gallery [8 out of 10]”

Album Review: Desaster – The Arts Of Destruction [9 out of 10]

By Andrew Bansal

German blackened thrash metal band Desaster are back with a new length studio album. Throughout their career that has now spanned more than two decades, these cult heroes have worked with great passion and determination, sticking to their guns even through line-up changes and other problems. They have a multitude of demo tapes, singles, EPs, split releases and vinyl-only releases to their name, along with seven full-length albums. Their newest effort, titled “The Arts Of Destruction”, was released on February 28th via Metal Blade Records, and is now available everywhere. Their first full length release since “Satan’s Soldiers Syndicate”, which came out in 2007, this new album is definitely worth the wait. Continue reading “Album Review: Desaster – The Arts Of Destruction [9 out of 10]”

Album Review: Axel Rudi Pell – Circle Of The Oath [8 out of 10]

By Andrew Bansal

German guitar maestro Axel Rudi Pell has undoubtedly had a tremendous career so far. He started out in the band Steeler, contributing his axemanship to the four albums they released in a very prolific 4-year period from 1984 to 1988. After Steeler split up, Axel went on to create a successful solo stint for himself. He has released thirteen studio albums under his own name thus far, each of them presenting the various facets of his musicianship. Now, he is ready to deliver his fourteenth studio album “Circle Of The Oath” in an effort to please his loyal fan base, as well as gain new fans.

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Album Review: 3 Inches Of Blood – Long Live Heavy Metal [10 out of 10]

By Andrew Bansal

Canadian heavy metal warriors 3 Inches Of Blood have given me some great memories over the past couple of years. I’ve seen them perform in all kinds of settings, as a headliner at Anaheim’s tiny Chain Reaction club, as opening act on the second stage at Mayhem Festival, and at a mid-sized club venue as main support to Eluveitie. Besides their high-octane live performances at these shows, I’ve enjoyed the four studio albums they’ve released over the course of their decade-long career, and the announcement of a new 3IOB album was very exciting for me. As soon as I was allowed the chance to listen to it, a sense of nervous anticipation took over me.

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