“The Law”
(Limited Access)
There are times when I don’t know if the Germans are serious or if they are joking about. The first time I saw a Kamikaze Kings photo I thought they were for laughs. I’m not so sure anymore. It might just be me alone that is laughing. The band might take themselves very serious. Still, there is something to the band that makes it hard for me to take them too serious. Hopefully the music will convince me of otherwise. I was raised on bigger than life hardrock and I had a thing for Zodiac Mindwarp back in the days. This kinda reminds me of that one-foot-on-the-speaker-fist-in-the-air-bigger-than-god kind of hardrock that was big in the 80s and totally died with grunge. I gotta admit that against better judgment I like this mindless hardrock assault. There is something very liberating about it that I can’t resist. Anders Ekdahl

MYHRDING “A Legacy Of Shadows”

“A Legacy Of Shadows”
For some reason hard to explain I kinda have high hopes for this band. Don’t know if it has anything to do with the band name that I somehow have fallen for. There is something to the old Swedish word that attracts me. Hopefully this will be a piece of black metal that I will take with me for a long time. This turned out to be as good as I expected. I’ve always had a sweet tooth for Arckanum and this kind of reminds me of latter day Arckanum. Add a big dose of heavy metal to the black metal sound and you get an idea what this sounds like. Or maybe not, but you can at least imagine what it sounds like. A really cool album. Anders Ekdahl

PRAYER “Danger In The Dark”

“Danger In The Dark”
(Escape Music)
What struck me the first time was how much this sounds like the pseudo-hardrock of the 80s you heard on movie soundtracks like Top Gun, St Elmo’s Fire and its likes. It might have worked in that environment and in that era but I’m not too sure about it working today. This is like listening to the first couple of Bon Jovi albums. I liked them back in the 80s and whenever I hear tracks from them today they put a smile on my face. This is in no way a bad album by this Finnish band. I just can’t shake the feeling of this being too clever done for their own good. But if you like your hardrock from that period then this will be a treat for you. I can see myself listening to this while driving, dreaming I’m a Top Gun pilot. Anders Ekdahl

WAYLANDER “Kindred Spirits”

“Kindred Spirits”
I’ve been aware of the name Waylander for a long time now but for various reasons I’ve neglected to check them out in depth. Yet I suspect that this will be metal right up my alley. I kinda have high hopes that this will blow my socks into tomorrow. I feel like it is time for some really cool, epic folkish metal that will dust the cobweb of my furniture. Now that I hear the music I can’t for the life of me understand why I haven’t checked them out before. This is the kind of metal that I can stomp my feet to and headbang like a mad man to in my living room. If anybody were to compare this to Amon Amarth I’d say that they are… not totally of their marker. There is that same kinda groove going here. Great! Anders Ekdahl

ZONARIA “Arrival Of The Red Sun”

“Arrival Of The Red Sun”
If you don’t have a Swedish, Norwegian or Finnish band on your rooster you are not a serious metal label. Or so it seems anyway. It is hard to imagine that any label should be without a Nordic band. That seems like a sure way to die a quick death. Zonaria is another of these bands that I’ve read about but haven’t checked out. I can’t say that I have any greater expectations on this album. I basically just hope that it won’t disappoint me terribly. For some reason I always think of Luciferion when I see Zonaria’s name. Don’t know why. But now that I have heard the music I must have had a subconscious connection because this is technical death metal the same way as I remember Luciferion to be technical. Think of a cross between latter day Death and Atheist mixed with a big dose of atmosphere and you get “Arrival Of the Red Sun”. Anders Ekdahl

ELEGY REMAINS “As Centuries Collide”

“As Centuries Collide”
I have will not rant on about how I don’t get the whole metalcore explosion. I will instead try and concentrate on the music that German Elegy Remains play, even though they do have the typical break downs and the screamy vocals that seem to make it metalcore. This is not my first choice of metal to listen to but when it does come around I try to take it for what it is. I do not know why all the breaks and stop and start gets to me so much. I do not consider myself that impatient that I can’t sit down and listen to it as the music meanders up and down the scales. Given the time this deserves I do find it entertaining enough to enjoy it. I just need to adjust my head to it. Anders Ekdahl

KARYBDIS “From The Depths”

“From The Depths”
To those who say that there are no good bands on the British metal scene I have thing to say. You haven’t dug deep enough. If you just bother to remove the top soil you find a myriad of cool new bands, of which some are just simply great. Karybdis try to add a groove to their death metal. I applaud their effort. And it does work too. This is death metal that is both rough at the edges as well as stomp-your-foot-friendly in a manner that will appeal to most fans of death metal. Those that Karybdis might not appeal to are those into the most melodic of the genre. But for the rest of us this might just prove to be a new favourite on the death metal scene. Anders Ekdahl


(OW Records)
I’v been meaning to check this band out for the longest of times but I don’t seem to get round to it. Until now that is. I have no idea what to expect. All I know basically is that they use dual vocals, which kinda makes me hope that they are akin towards Draconia. Only a three track digital only release this might just be the introduction that I need to this band. Well it didn’t start too bad. Although I got some metalcore vibes to begin with this is more along the way of the tried and tested Gothenburg sound with the added feature of a female voice. It wasn’t as awful I had feared. Actually I came to like it. It’s nothing we haven’t heard before but they do it well enough to stand out (a bit). Anders Ekdahl


“The Last Bow”
I really liked the whole stoner rock thing when it happened even though I never got round to checking out Kyuss. I liked that whole groove thing that these bands got going. It was so much better than grunge because it lacked the whole slacker attitude that grunge had. This time around they let the music do the talking and left the posing to others. I liked that laid back attitude. Don’t know where it stands in 2012. But Polish Satellite Beaver (strange name) has got a Monster Magnet feel to their groove (don’t know how much stoner that is) that I kinda fell for. I like that this swings back and forth in a comfortable manner. This is only an EP but it does show promise for a full length album. Anders Ekdahl


“Nocturnal Guest”
Switchblade Rosie sound like it could be an AC/DC cover band or a sleaze band from LA circa 1986. And I wouldn’t mind if it was either of the two. But the truth is something completely different. When I see jazz mentioned in connection with metal I get a sense that it could end up an even stranger Dillinger Escape Plan. I did not have to fear that with Switchblade Rosie. This is nowhere near as strange to decipher as I feared. It is in fact quite easy to understand. There is a progressive metal side to this that makes it enjoyable and frankly really good. Don’t know if it will appeal to Tool fans but I can see fans of Opeth going for this too. Or if your ears are tired from listening to Meshuggah all day long. Then you can rest them listening to this. Anders Ekdahl