Cocaine Piss – “Passionate And Tragic”

Cocaine Piss – “Passionate And Tragic” (Hypertension Records) By now establishing themselves as one of the most intensively touring bands on the European punk scene, averaging about 150 gigs a year from Norway to Portugal, across the UK and Lithuania, playing squats to big summer festivals, Cocaine Piss continue their meteoric rise with this sophomore still under the wing of legendary recording engineer Steve Albini (Nirvana, Pixies, PJ Harvey, Manic Street Preachers, Helmet, Neurosis, Cheap Trick etc etc etc). Formed in the unassuming Belgian city of Liège just five years ago, the dementedly named Cocaine Piss certainly live up to… Continue reading

Sister Shotgun – “Fragments”

Sister Shotgun – “Fragments” (Pavement Music) Mixing metallic heaviness and rock melody, Sister Shotgun have toured across the UK and Europe including festival appearances at Hard Rock Hell, Macmillan Fest, and FortFest. With their accompanying music videos amassing collectively over 150,000 views, the band have just been signed to a multi album deal by Pavement Music, kicking off with this debut produced by Romesh Dodangoda (Funeral for a Friend, Bullet For My Valentine, Bring Me the Horizon). Reflected in their name, Sister Shotgun’s ability to write highly catchy but ballsy material is no fluke judging by the 10 winning numbers… Continue reading

Eluveitie – “Ategnatos”

Eluveitie – “Ategnatos” (Nuclear Blast) There’s folk metal, then there’s Eluveitie. Formed in 2002 by multi instrumentalist Chrigel Glanzmann, who along with fronting the band through his harsh vocals also adds in the mandola, whistles, pipes, gaita, acoustic guitar, bodhrán and harp such that you’d almost think this was a solo effort – except that there’s 8 other musicians that make up this terrific Swiss ensemble! From a very early point Eluveitie have been deeply rooted within Celtic mythology, Gaulish history and proto-European culture, and on this 8th release they continue their vision to propel mythology, pagan belief and spirituality… Continue reading

Exumer – “Hostile Defiance”

Exumer – “Hostile Defiance” (Metal Blade Records) ‘…tear it down!..tear it down!..’. No kidding, this is probably Exumer’s best release – ever! Formed by vocalist Mem V. Stein and guitarist Ray Mensh back in 1985, these German thrashers broke up in 1991 after two demos and two albums, then following a one-off show at Wacken Open Air in 2001 were re-activated in 2008. Since then they’ve been steadily gaining back their popularity through regular releases and touring. Now onto album number 5, “Hostile Defiance” is everything its belligerent title suggests, but moreover, the sheer gravitas of the material is really… Continue reading

Antropomorphia – “Merciless Savagery”

Antropomorphia – “Merciless Savagery” (Metal Blade Records) ‘…we paint with a dark pallet but we paint with lots of shades of darkness..’. Indeed, this 5th full length release from Dutch nekromantiks Antropomorphia continues the evolution from its raw predecessor “Sermon ov Wrath”, being darker, heavier and definitely incorporating more catchy hooks and grooves – while being still as punishing! Founded in the late 80s by vocalist / guitarist Ferry Damen and drummer Marco Stubbe, with early Celtic Frost influences that later progressed into early Swe-deth like Grave, more recently Antropomorphia have evolved into an extreme band incorporating blackish elements, with this 5th album even… Continue reading

Hedonihil – “I”

Hedonihil – “I” (Inverse Records) Oh wow, take one half of Swallow The Sun, add massive doses of black and a touch of death metal and hey presto, Hedonihil is what you get! A new ‘anti-poetry product’ formed by drummer Juuso Raatikainen, vocalist Mikko Kotamäki and guitarist Juho Räihä, the band’s ‘..purpose is to be a direct sonic insult towards existence, no remorse. Take it or leave it, negative vibes only…’. Certainly true, as being a good deal faster and nastier you couldn’t anything more diametrically opposed to Swallow The Sun. However, despite the more depressive implications, the decibel energy… Continue reading

Suzi Quatro – “No Control”

Suzi Quatro – “No Control” (Steamhammer / SPV) ‘… when I saw Elvis for the first time when I was 5, I decided I wanted to be him, and it didn’t occur to me that he was a guy…’. Widely acknowledged as being the first female bass player to become a major rock star, selling over 50 million albums worldwide, the legendary Suzi Quatro is also recognised for being a (if not the) female rock pioneer, ‘.. kicking down the male door in rock and roll and proving that a female musician could play as well if not better than the boys..’. Still actively… Continue reading

Anthem – “Nucleus”

Anthem – “Nucleus” (Nuclear Blast) Oh wow man, if you want to know what real heavy metal is all about then check out this gem of an album! That’s right, this isn’t ‘true’, ‘classic’, retro’ or anything else but the real deal – and all played by one of Japan’s original HM bands – Anthem. Formed in 1981, the band rose to prominence alongside Loudness and Earthshaker, even at one time featuring Graham Bonnet (Rainbow, Alcatrazz) before taking a hiatus during the 90s grunge years. Since then they’ve made a return by all accounts, and now, after 20 albums, Anthem… Continue reading

Sworn Enemy – “Gamechanger”

Sworn Enemy – “Gamechanger” (M-Theory Audio) ‘..step the f–k back, before you get knocked down!!!..’ OMG, for those of you that remember 2003’s “As Real As It Gets” produced by Hatebreed’s Jamey Jasta, then get ready for “Gamechanger”, a mean mutha of a release under the streetwise hands of none other than Robb Flynn of Machine Head, and engineered, mixed and mastered by Zack Ohren (Suffocation, Fallujah, Warbringer). As such, this is an utterly savage beast, bringing the ugly, heavy riffs of Terror with the gutter attitude and metallic crossover that famed Biohazard back in their heyday. Sworn Enemy, who… Continue reading

Nixa – “Opus Tierra”

Nixa – “Opus Tierra” (War Anthem Records) ‘…dwelling in primordial riffs, anguished melodies, foreboding aural landscapes and heavy-as-mountains riffs…’, yep, I’d definitely concur with the Nixa’s self described view on themselves, although also I’d add the lush harmonies, beautiful vocals of Valentin Mellström and utterly epic atmosphere of this sophomore. Put it this way, “Opus Tierra” actually makes the sound shake!!! Formed in 2012, this Florida trio have already made their name sharing stages with High On Fire and Crowbar, and with this sterling release produced by Kristian Karlsson (Cult of Luna, Pg.Lost), stands to take them to the next… Continue reading