Funerus – “Reduced To Sludge”

Funerus
“Reduced To Sludge”
(Ibex Moon Records)

Wow, this old school death metal crew from the Pennsylvania mountains have been going nigh on 20 years – and it shows by this grade A release that is very much in the vein of Massacre, Autopsy and of course, Death. With Jill McEntee’s amazingly good death growls n grunts and remaining trio made up of guitarist husband John and drummer Sam Inzerra, it’s total brutality all the way in the cement mixer of death! But what makes Funerus stand out on songs like ‘Bedpan Commando’, ‘Death Of A God’ and the searing ‘Leatherface’ is just how catchy and addictive they are while not letting a shred on their pummeling brutality. Hail to Funerus! Continue reading

ASTROFAES “Dying Emotions “Domain”

ASTROFAES
“Dying Emotions Domain”
(Negative Existence)
This one is not new, not even to me. I’ve had this one on tape, well basically since it was released the first time around. That was so long ago that I don’t remember too much of it. So it is a nice reunion we have going on. Metal from the former Soviet Union can be very unpredictable. You never know when you’ll get delivered a turd or a loaf. Continue reading

ACHERONTAS “Vamachara”

ACHERONTAS
”Vamachara ”
(Agonia Records)
I have no memory of ever having come across Acherontas before but this is their 15 year celebration. “Vamachara” is black metal more in the style of Mayhem than Cradle Of Filth, more 90s old school than Venom old school. It does bring back memories of a time when the second wave of black metal was fresh and new. Continue reading

HARPOON “Deception Among Birds”

HARPOON
“Deception Among Birds”
(Seventh Rule)
There was a time when I thought Helmet was the coolest in metal you could listen to. Not so anymore. The kind of metal that Helmet played quickly got old and something new came and replaced it. Harpoon kinda make me feel like that again. This is quirky and twisty in a way that can get tiresome if you’re not in the right mood. Continue reading

NUNFUCKRITUAL “In Bondage To The Serpent”

NUNFUCKRITUAL
“In Bondage To The Serpent “
(Debemur Morti Productions)
That Dan Lilker has a taste for extreme metal is no surprise. That he can be found in various projects/bands is no surprise either. Norwegian Nunfuckritual is just another band to feature Dan in its line-up. If you expect black metal in the vein of Dimmu Borgir or Immortal you might as well stop reading now. This has more in common with Ved Buens End ear an avant-garde Burzum. Continue reading

ROOT “Heritage Of Satan”

ROOT
“Heritage Of Satan “
(Agonia Records)
I remember the first time I heard a Root album. I was pretty blown away by the primitive and aggressive metal these Czechs presented me with. That was back in the nineties. Two decades has passed and now it is time for a reunion between me and the band. Will the experience be the same? No, simply because we are both two decades older and perhaps wiser. While older I’m not sure either of us are any wiser. I like the down-tempo old school feeling that “Heritage Of Satan” brings with it. It doesn’t have to be full speed ahead for it to be good. Continue reading

THOUSAND YEAR WAR “Tyrants And Men”

THOUSAND YEAR WAR
“Tyrants And Men”
(Abyss)
With a name like Thousand Year War you are forgiven for thinking that this will be the worst kind of Christ-bashing ever seen on CD. This is not any criticism but the moment I put this on I thought I had accidentally accessed the new Amon Amarth album. This has that same groove and feel as all Amon Amarth’s records. Continue reading

Whitechapel – “Recorrupted”

Whitechapel
“Recorrupted” EP
(Metal Blade Records)

TN’s deathcore crew are on tour right now, so just to kick us in the groove, Whitechapel have issued this limited edition EP. And quite an interesting l’il puppy it is too! Comprising a brand new track in ‘Section 8’, the band then give us a deathcore take on Pantera’s ‘Strength Beyond Strength’, which although more extreme in Whitechapel’s style of sound, I still found less heavy than Dimebag & co (at least when they were at their peak). Continue reading

Morta Skuld – “Through the Eyes of Death: The Early Demos”

Morta Skuld
“Through the Eyes of Death: The Early Demos”
(Relapse Records)

All hail Morta Skuld!! Milwaukee’s own, these guys were a regular at Metalfest thru the 90s essentially taking off where old school Death left off: brutal, dirty, evil riffs, guttural vocals and tribal rhythms. So if you were and still are fans of this primitive-yet-so-catchy death in its simplicity then look no further than this release, which essentially combines the band’s two 1990 demos, ‘Gory Departure’ (ironically produced by Death’s manager Eric ‘Griffy’ Greif right after working on “Spiritual Healing”) and ‘Prolong The Agony’, on one disc. Continue reading

Martyr – “Circle Of 8”

Martyr
“Circle Of 8”
(Metal Blade Records)

Another NWOBHM band from the mists of time, in this case Dutch band Martyr. Formed in the early 80s as the sorta equivalent to England’s Savage or Grim Reaper, Martyr also combined heaviness with melodies (along with poof hairdos n stripey pants) and played the Eurometal circuit where they enjoyed quite a success, were voted Holland’s best new metal band in Aardschok magazine, and eventually appeared on Metal Blade’s “Metal Massacre Part 6” compilation – mind you, that was 25 years ago! Continue reading