Album Review: Gothminister – The Other Side

By Ryan Falla

Since 2003, Gothminister has been blowing the music world away with their trippy sense of industrial metal. Now it’s time for the release of their new album ‘The Other Side’, and like all Gothminister albums before, this record drives a heavy industrial groove that carves out a strong identity rather than slip into the flow of overt familiarity. You wouldn’t be surprised to know they’re based out of Norway, given the familiar European industrial flow of the record. Continue reading “Album Review: Gothminister – The Other Side”

Album Review: The Haxans – Party Monsters

By Ryan Falla

There’s something very special about The Haxans and their debut record ‘Party Monsters’. A power-duo featuring Ash Costello (New Years Day) and Matt Montgomery a.k.a. Piggy D (Rob Zombie), this is a band that describes themselves as “goth pop”. Delving into their debut record, it comes as no surprise that The Haxans have tinges of Rob Zombie-esque sound work given their goth-pop musicality and ties to Rob Zombie. There’s a lot in ‘Party Monsters’ that creates a unique sound that is The Haxans, as they very much do their own thing with this foundation. Continue reading “Album Review: The Haxans – Party Monsters”

Album Review: Belphegor – Totenritual

By Rosie Walker

Named after one of the seven princes of Hell, the band Belphegor likes to push boundaries of what is socially acceptable. With startling aesthetics and evil lyrics, Belphegor is one of the most popular modern black metal bands in the world. Conjured in 1991, these Austrian fellas are always evolving and developing their dark, sinister sound. Things really picked up for the band in the mid 2000s, when the extreme European metal scene started to pay attention to the band’s commitment and dedication to their craft. They released their eleventh full-length album, ‘Totenritual’, through Nuclear Blast Records on September 15, and the anticipation was high. Continue reading “Album Review: Belphegor – Totenritual”

Album Review: Monarch – Go Forth… Slaughter

By Doug Walker

Monarch is a direct throwback to the late ’80s / early ’90s era of speed rock that spawned in Slayer’s wake. The band features a who’s who of metal musicians from San Diego’s north county, boasting a former/current member of list including but not limited to Cage, Nihilist, Great Electric Quest, Ratt Black… you get the idea. The band has been playing regionally for a few years, and this is their first offering. Continue reading “Album Review: Monarch – Go Forth… Slaughter”

Album Review: Septicflesh – Codex Omega

By Francisco Zamudio

Longevity is an accolade that has become more and more apparent in the last couple of years. Not to be categorized with the over-the-hill and nearly laughable group of bands from the Sunset Strip or the glam days and comeback reunion final farewell tours. No, we are talking more about the underground and extreme side of the spectrum. And when the ’90s hit, there was a lot of confusion as to where metal was going. While the American influence was searching for its identity, you have a band like Septicflesh from Greece who have stayed consistent for the most part despite their five-year break-up/hiatus from 2003, after their paramount release ‘Sumerian Daemons’. For 20 years, the Greek troupe has cast a dark veil with their symphonic metal hybrid. Now through Prosthetic Records they release their 10th full-length, ‘Codex Omega’. Continue reading “Album Review: Septicflesh – Codex Omega”

Album Review: Alter Bridge – Live at the O2 Arena + Rarities

By Rosie Walker

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Creed was one of the most successful rock bands in the world. With selling millions of records and winning countless awards, everyone thought they’d last forever. But they didn’t. This rock sensation broke up and three out of the four members immediately formed a new band. Alter Bridge was birthed in 2004, when the former Creed members found the former singer of the band The Mayfield Four, Myles Kennedy. Alter Bridge (named after a real bridge in Detroit, Michigan), released their debut album, ‘One Day Remains’ that same year. Distancing themselves from the Creed name, these guys wanted something different, and after their first record was certified gold, the rest is history. Continue reading “Album Review: Alter Bridge – Live at the O2 Arena + Rarities”

Album Review: Usnea – Portals Into Futility

By Ryan Falla

Portland doom/sludge quartet, Usnea, bolsters the rosters of their discography with their third full-length release ‘Portals Into Futility’. This is a record that pushes doom/sludge metal to the extreme; heavy, yet slowly grinding guitar riffs and simplistic yet staggering percussion, taking it to just off the edge of extreme. ‘Portals Into Futility’ powers through its sixty minute runtime with six impressively crafted tracks that paint a conceptual picture of despair. Continue reading “Album Review: Usnea – Portals Into Futility”

Album Review: Paradise Lost – Medusa

By Rosie Walker

Many consider the British band Paradise Lost to be the fathers of the gothic metal genre. Well-known for their ever-changing and inventive sound, these guys are always surprising their faithful fans. Formed in 1988, four out of the five members have been there since the beginning. This tight-knit group is a prime example of a hard working band who knows how to stay original and creative. After exploring and experimenting on albums like ‘One Second’ and ‘Believe In Nothing’, Paradise Lost got back to their roots in 2015 with the release of ‘The Plague Within’. They embraced their dark, death metal background once again and it seems to be sticking. Their newest release, ‘Medusa’, coming out September 1 through Nuclear Blast Records, is their 15th full-length record and one of their heaviest albums to date. Continue reading “Album Review: Paradise Lost – Medusa”

Album Review: The Haunted – Strength in Numbers

By Francisco Zamudio

The words “Swedish” and “metal” combined have nearly always produced some of the most memorable bands and albums, many pushing the boundaries of extreme music. Breaking away from the Swedish death metal mold is The Haunted who have been a relevant band since the late ’90s. Since leaving Earache Records, and some would argue peaking with their Century Media debut ‘Revolver’ (2004), they have since revolved around the same style throughout their existence, And as part of the CM roster of safe and marketable signing decisions, they’ve held nearly their entire career with CM. Now since parting ways with long-standing vocalist Peter Dolving, and the return of both Marco Aro & Adrian Erlandsson (At The Gates, Cradle of Filth) since their self-titled and sophomore release, respectively – they are back for their second effort together since their return on the soon-to-be released ‘Strength In Numbers’. Continue reading “Album Review: The Haunted – Strength in Numbers”

Album Review: Portrait – Burn the World

By Ryan Falla

It’s been eleven years since Swedish heavy metal band Portrait’s debut, and they’re still making big strides in the metal world. With their fourth record, ‘Burn the World’, Portrait looks to live up to the namesake of their album and set the world ablaze with their furious metal stylings. Much like heavy metal of the ’70’s and ’80s there’s a hint of power metal with darkened vibes swirled into the thrash metal goodness. Continue reading “Album Review: Portrait – Burn the World”