KLOGR “Till You Turn”

KLOGR
“Till You Turn”
(Valery)
I liked KROGH’s last album so much that I interviewed them. Now they are back with what I take is an in-between record. Hopefully we will be treated to some great songs. KROGH has a very American sound despite being from Italy. I have my moments when I need to hear something very American. I am not ashamed to admit that I liked the band Live. I thought that they had some awesome songs. I kinda feel the same way with KLOGR. They have some really cool songs going for them. Even so on this EP. The collaboration on this EP doesn’t say or do much for me so I’ll leave that as a footnote. If you liked them before you’ll want to have this record in your collection. The live songs might be an added bonus for some but I’d rather have seen them do some cool covers. But that is me. Anders Ekdahl

MONSTERWORKS “Album Of Man”

MONSTERWORKS
“Album Of Man”
()
Apparently I liked MONSTERWORKS EP that was released a while back. And I do remember it. But that was then and this is now. So here I sit with a full length album from this British band that in some ways are the future of metal, or so I’m told. I get a Godflesh feeling when listen to this although they are nowhere near in sound. But there is that claustrophobic-industrial-nation-on-a-downfall feel to the music. The one that British acts do so well. You can see before you Welsh coal cities crumble and fall as they are being emptied of people. Depopulation put to music. And as a huge fan of Britain as a whole and their music in particular I find great pleasure in listening to this. Because in all the doom’n’gloom there is a string of hope fighting its way to the surface. It isn’t always as bad as it looks. You can fight your way back to the top again. Anders Ekdahl

NUCLEAR SALVATION “Ruins Of Reality”

NUCLEAR SALVATION
“Ruins Of Reality”
(Skinforge Records)
I totally missed out on NUCLEAR SALVATION’s debut album, which I guess most people did. But now they are back with a new album and this time I’m onboard. If this is anything but thrash metal I’ll eat my own hat, without salt’n’vinegar. I like my thrash on the more abrasive side of things. And that is just what NUCLEAR SALVATION are. This is full on thrash blast. Think latter day Kreator and you might get an idea where to start looking. Add to it a ton of aggression and you are even closer to getting what this is sounds like. This is the stuff that I find my head start banging to. I really like to be shaken up, thrown about and generally tossed like a squash ball when I listen to thrash. Just like I’m being while listening to this. Anders Ekdahl

SEVENTRIBE “Reborn”

SEVENTRIBE
“Reborn”
()
I’ve only heard a couple of SEVENTRIBE songs before being sent this record. I can’t say that I was that impressed by what I heard. Not when you take into consideration that this octet has the look to match many other bands wearing make-up and masks. I’m still not convinced that this is my cup of tea. I get a very street dance feel to this. That is more of a communal than it is a band. But I might just read too much into it. Because when they really get going they get going. Hearing the music I can’t shake the feeling of this owing a lot to Slipknot. OK, this might be more melodic but it is still moving about in that same region as Slipknot operates in. Not that I mind. Where would we be if bands didn’t pick up what other bands already have done? It is what they make of it that counts. And SEVENTRIBE do a rather good job of playing their metal. It is catchy enough to make me dig. Anders Ekdahl

SHADOWCRAFT “Principles Of Chaos”

SHADOWCRAFT
“Principles Of Chaos”
(Noisehead)
There comes a time when you feel that everything has already been done twice and that there is no future to doing it again. I get that feeling looking at the photos of SHADOWCRAFT. Corpes paint and playing symphonic black metal feels so out of date right now but perhaps that is just what the world needs now to balance out the metalcore that keeps flooding our ears. OK, there is no denying the impact Dimmu Borgir has had on this band. And while they leave the biggest symphonic orchestration behind this is symphonic enough to my ears. I get some Limbonic Art’s vibes too from this album. So take early Dimmu Borgir and mix it with Limbonic Art and you get a picture of where to place this. The fact that this feels very much 1990s-ish is of no importance. This is symphonic black metal. And it works any time and any place you like. Anders Ekdahl

SOFY MAJOR “Idolize”

SOFY MAJOR
“Idolize”
()
I don’t want to offend the band but the first time I saw the name I thought it was a Czech porn star doing a music career as a solo star. But it isn’t. This is a band. And as that I’ll treat it with the respect it needs and deserves. I’m not much for noise or powerchord or what the hell it is that the noisier end of the spectra is called. Mostly because I’m almost totally unfamiliar with it. Listening to SOFY MAJOR I can’t help thinking back to Helmet. I really liked the off-beat music in the borderline of metal/hardcore that Helmet produced on their albums. Add some Prong to the equation and you might get a drift of what SOFY MAJOR is all about. In all this you’ll find me digging it all. There is a charm to not being as everybody else is. SOFY MAJOR proves that very well. And what about the noise rock part then? Beats me. Anders Ekdahl

SVARTSYN “Black Testament”

SVARTSYN
“Black Testament”
(Agonia)
I’ve been following SVARTSYN for a while now and even though I missed out on the sixth album up until then I had been following their progress. Not that I think it will make that much of a difference. This will most probably be black metal in a very basic and “down to earth” way. This is black metal as I picture black metal to be in its purest form. No grand symphonic arrangements or female sopranos. Just guitar, bass and drums. And a rather repetitive drive to the music. Pure and simple in all its glory. What more can you expect? This is black metal that has no ulterior motive but to corrupt your soul and bring you into total damnation. This is black metal that will leave you feeling drained of your soul. This is black metal, period. And it is so glorious. Anders Ekdahl

TUSMÖRKE “Den internasjonale bronsalderen”

TUSMÖRKE
“Den internasjonale bronsalderen”
()
This is a 12” from Norwegian act TUSMÖRKE. It only contains two tracks. I say this because there are people out there that do not know what a 12” is, let alone what the fuzz about vinyl is all about. I’ll tell you what the big deal is all about. Vinyl is da shit, period. Oh, was I supposed to talk about the music too? If you haven’t heard anything by TUSMÖRKE before you might want to brace yourself because this isn’t music for the faint hearted. If anything ever should be described as progressive then it should be TUSMÖRKE. You could say that it is because they are Norwegians but in all honesty this is something that I would have pegged as Danish if anything. But if you are of the more adventurous type you’ll find great pleasure in this trip. Anders Ekdahl

THE UNCONSCIOUS MIND “Where Philosophers Fall”

THE UNCONSCIOUS MIND
“Where Philosophers Fall”
()
There are times when I wish that I had an UNCONCIOUS MIND but no such luck. My mind races on in full speed mode all the time making it impossible to neglect any sort of information being thrown at me. This Canadian black metal outfit might prove to be well worth having an open mind for. Being another symphonic black metal act doesn’t give you any extra cred points these days. With 13 to a dozen of these acts you need to have something a little bit extra to get ahead of the pack. THE UNCONCIOUS MIND has all the right tools in their box but is it enough to set them apart? I actually think that they might have a chance. This is so much more aggressive than it is symphonic making them stand out amongst all the Cradle Of Filth and Dimmu Borgir clones doing the rounds. This is black metal that is tighter than the ice in the Baltic sea on a cold December night. Anders Ekdahl

V/A “The Bridge 2”

V/A
” The Bridge Comp 2”
(GhostLabelRecords)
I’m not much for compilation records. Not anymore. There used to be a time when it was fun to buy comp albums to discover new bands but that was long before social media made its introduction into our lives. You get thirteen acts to discover. So that is value for your money right there. But is it really worth you money? The bands don’t really follow any specific genre but span over a variety of metal/hardrock/alt rock(?) genres. That is good. You get to taste a lot of different stuff. But for you to fully enjoy it you gotta have a wide taste palette. And with no artist like the other you get treated to a lot. I personally don’t have a particular favourite. There are a couple of artist that I like to check out further and there are some that I’ll just leave to this record. Anders Ekdahl