Shadowside – “Inner Monster Out”

Shadowside – “Inner Monster Out” (Inner Wound Recordings)

Brazil’s Shadowside are quite a mix befitting both the ethnic composition of their nation as well as their sound which melds angry guitars and nu metal rhythms with progressive melodies. Added to this is vocalist Dani Nolden whose vocals which remain sexily husky (down boy – Ed) whether she’s being melodic or aggressive, but able to stand their own ground against guest vocalists Mikael Stanne (Dark Tranquillity), Björn “Speed” Strid (Soilwork) and Niklas Isfeldt (Dream Evil) be it on the title-track, or the bottom heavy bounding ‘Habitchual’ as well as their closing cover of Motorhead’s ‘Ace Of Spades’ – where rather than compete with Lemmy’s glass-in-throat larynx, Dani instead thrashes it out Sabina Classen style – yea babaay! Musically, Shadowside seem to reflect a wide range of bands from a heavy Skid Row to Disturbed to even Maiden, who they incidentally supported in Rio de Janeiro last year, and having undertaken a successful European tour supporting WASP previously, this all important 3rd release looks set to move them into the light. Continue reading

Marauder – “Elegy Of Blood”

Marauder – “Elegy Of Blood” (Pitch Black Records)

Marauder are Greek heavy metal legends who have been around for over 20 years. In fact, when they first started, Pitch Black Records manager Phivos was sending off for their demo, so he must be really savoring that two decades on they’re now signed to him! Despite their aggressive name, Marauder play a classy brand of power / melodic heavy metal but with enough guts to be worthy descendants of Alexander: vocalist Alexandros Kostarakos can certainly hit the highs while ably shifting into a melodic stance as does the rest of the band on songs like ‘Roman Empire’, ‘Hiroshima’ and ‘Black Gold’ which contain a mixture of heaviness and melody, essentially the components of classic HM. Truth be told Maraude’s music is more likely to appeal to the true metal genre, given its classic style with scarcely any sign of modernity, and is as bold and uncompromising as the Spartans who held Thermopylae! Continue reading

End Of September – “End Of September”

(Ulterium Records)

This Swedish female fronted band started only a few years back, but suffered a 2 year hiatus when their original vocalist left before Elin Redin joined them. Despite being compared to the likes of Evanescence or Within Temptation, listening to songs like ‘Fallen’, ‘Left In This World’ and ‘Waiting For The Rain’ I’d say there’s really nothing gothic nor symphonic about them but essentially they play hard rock with Erik Tordsson’s guitar being almost Alter Bridge / Creed like in its heavy, fuzzy, post grunge sound, while Redin’s femme vocals, while being high, aren’t in any particular style. Overall, End Of September show a lot of promise musically but having not played any gigs yet, it remains to be seen whether they can take this band beyond a personal passion to that of a commercial one. Continue reading


(Xtreem Music)
You don’t have to dig deep to find the underground. On the surface Spain might look like a sunny country but just scrape the surface and you’ll find a myriad of underground bands that wants your attention. Aggression is one of these Spanish bands that should be discovered if you like thrash metal the way it sounded when Anthrax was on top. Continue reading

ANHEDONIST “Netherwards”

(Dark Descent)
I’ve said it before and I’ll keep saying it until the day I die; I love discovering new bands that I’ve never heard of before. If ever faced with a band I’ve never heard of and a new album by a known band I’ll go for the new band in 9 out of 10 cases. Anhedonist are new to me. I like it when it is primitive and basic. Continue reading

ANTROPOFAGUS “Architecture Of Lust”

“Architecture Of Lust”
(Comatose Records)
At times an album comes along that I can’t genre define. Antropofagus I thought would be black metal but instead I get a strong death metal feel a la Behemoth. There is that same attack to this album by these Italians as there is to present day Behemoth. So to hell with all expectations of this or that. I’ll just enjoy it for what it is; a pretty hard hitting extreme metal album. Continue reading

BLOOD MORTIZED “The Key To A Black Heart”

“The Key To A Black Heart”
(Chaos Records/FDA Rekotz)
I liked Blood Mortized’s “Bestial” EP quite a bit. I’m a huge fan of the late 80s/early 90s Swedish death metal sound not only because I was there when it happened but because the music that came out of that period is so brutal and raw even to this day. So when I got word that Blood Mortized had an album coming I pretty much wetted myself in anticipation. Continue reading

CATAMENIA “The Re-written Chapters”

“The Re-written Chapters”
(Massacre Records)
I have to admit that I’ve never cared too much for Catamenia. I’ve always looked upon them as some sort of second rate black metal wannabes from Finland. Perhaps wrong of me but never the less the truth. I might have been a bit too hasty in my judgement but hey it is too late to regret it now. With a new opportunity to actually get a picture of what the band is all about all I can say is that this sounded exactly like I had expected. Continue reading

DEADBORN “Mayhem Maniac Machine”

“Mayhem Maniac Machine”
(Apostasy Records)
Deadborn, stillborn, never born. Death metal the way Deadborn play it has a certain appeal. This is raw and to the point. No fussing about. It is like being hit with a sledgehammer from the very first note. But is it a good beating or is it just a painful one? I have to say that “Mayhem Maniac Machine” rightly so impressed me. Continue reading

DRUKNROLL “On The Knife Blade”

“On The Knife Blade”
(Metal Scrap Records)
Druknroll might be a weird band name but that shouldn’t stop you from checking out this band if you like industrial/thrash metal light. This isn’t as bad as it may sound. For most parts it’s like any other thrash metal album. Nothing strange about it at all. They just through in some time changes and breaks and a bit of noise here and there. Continue reading