As Lions - Selfish Age
Featuring Bruce's son, ex metalcore boy grows up in new band. Very nice epic melodies throughout and no stupid screaming. Some huge rock anthems here.
Cultural Warfare - Future Kill Ep
Heavy melodic thrash by these unknowns. Especially like the heavy clear vocals. No growling which is good. He's not exactly melodic but he's very clear. The music is like a mid paced Testament mixed with Flots maybe with a good tech flair.
Deaf Havana - All These Countless Nights
Stepping out of my comfort zone but these songs and vocals are too good to ignore. This is an uplifting alternative rock album and much lighter than other modern rock bands I like. However the melodies are very addictive and cool as is the dreamy laid back vibe. If it gets all too angsty I'd be the first to switch off but this band stays melodic thankfully and I enjoy the singer's voice and epic melodies a lot.
Firewind - Immortals
Welcome back Gus and Co. Basse fits like a glove and Gussy sounds energised with a bunch of cool new tunes.
Grave Digger - Healed By Metal
Been bored by last couple of GD albums but I begrudgingly have to say I like Healed By Metal. It pounds and wrecks with heavy hitting power metal all over. Bolt even manages to sound likeLemmy at times which is a bit cool though I don't know if it was on purpose as a tribute or just natural. Either way if I need a heavy beating aurally speaking I'll put on GD.
Kreator - Gods of Violence
Hell yeah! Album of the month! Kreator brings it home in great style and sound mega inspired. They sound much more melodic than usual but still give you thrash mayhem at it's best!
Magic Dance - Vanishings
Let's do a 180 degree u-turn and listen to sweet as a nut AOR. Very lushly produced and sweet songs are what Magic Dance are all about. The song Fighting The Fire is one of the songs of the month. Never get tired of that one!
Mors Principum Est - Embers of a Dying World
One of the most consistent and best melodeath bands since they started. They almost never let me down and the new album is real good too. A couple of tunes meander which is not my thing but when they kick the riffs into overdrive I'm giving it the horns and nodding along.
National Suicide - Cast The First Stone
Back to thrash I go. A bit simplistic but catchy and moshable. Imagine if a more rabid Udo was fronting a bay area band and you get National Suicide!
Need - Hegaiamas:A song for freedom
To be honest I wouldn't have even listened to this if The Surfing
Alien hadn't bigged it up on the other side. This is some immense shit right here. I am so surprised. The story is a bit out there but it's all about the riffs for me. They are truly humungous and the vocals are pretty good too. This will need plenty of plays and I'm not sure how much patience and time I have for it but I do know that I really do like it - a lot - with convoluted sci-fi story and all!
No Resolve - Unity
Modern rock has been good to me this early in the new year and no less thanks to No Resolve. I don't know the band's previous stuff
at all but I'm liking this album a lot. Every thing I look for in
modern music is present and correct. Epic, room filling melodies from the singer and a booming thick production with the riffing. I even like the haunting ballads in this album.
Undrask - Battle Through Time
Unknown US melodeath from outta the blue pleases me immensely. Imagine primetime IF with a little Minds I and earlier era DT and a little modern Amon Amarth and you have Undrask! Very cool shit!
Smash Into Pieces - Rise And Shine
Very cool modern rock with great vocals. Swedish come up trumps for me again after the solid last cd. The songs are just very catchy and I can see myself playing them over and over.
The Mantle - st
Didn't realise this was Kenny G's boy but I love this. I don't really listen to instrumental metal but this thing is awesome. Melody is put at the forefront of every tune. Guitarwork is superb and fluid. Love this!
Victorius - Heart Of The Phoenix
Quality Freedom call style power metal. Vocals could be better but they're OK enough and the songs are very happy go lucky and enjoyable in any case. Thumbs up from this power metal diehard!
Wolfchant - Bloodwinter
Didn't really know the band before but the Viking medieval melodic folk death thing works very well here. Love the semi operatic vocals that make the choruses stand out more. Imagine a more folky Amon Amarth with clean booming vocals in the choirs and you have Wolfchant.
Space Unicorn On Fire - Gallop Through The Stars - Very cool
happy power metal music - vocals possible deal breaker.
Starset - Vessels - Quite good modern rock but disappointing compared to debut.
Sepultura - Machine Messiah - Best Seps ever with DG. But still no great shakes. If I play again I might like it more.
Borealis - World of Silence MMXVII - good listen. Nice melodic power, great mid range vocals. Songs not totally grabbing me yet.
Hour of Penance - Cast The First Stone - Brual tech death from Italy. Not totally grabbed yet but heard\some cool riffs. Possibly too dense and not catchy enough for me.
Karma Fire - The Shadow
New band playing hard edged melodic metal. Great production and a
real solid singer too but need more plays to get a handle on the tunes which seem to be hit and miss.
Xandria - Theater of Dimensions. Love her vox totally. Songs a bit progressive so not grabbing me yet but some good melodies nevertheless.
The Murder of My Sweet - Echoes of the Aftermath
Very pleasant and finely produced melodic rock/metal. But how many times will I play this I say to myself.
Syron Vanes - Chaos From A Distance
Probably will make it as it sounded good but not amazing. Production is superb though with tons of cool banging riffs. Nice vocals too.
Pride of Lions - Fearless
Some great tunes especially when Toby sings alone but the album as a whole is possibly a bit borderline namby pamby. It's right on the edge but a few more plays will decide. If you like Survivor styled AOR you should like it though. Very close verdict but the jury's still out.
Terrifier - Weapons of thrash Destruction
The production is a bit too tinny and is painful to listen to with headphones. Riffs are very cool though. Galloping, evil and raw thrash is what's on offer. Songs are helter skelter affairs so no subtlety. I should like this but couple of things mentioned are holding me back at the mo.
Jim Jidhed - Push On through
Jim is a really cool, lite, Scandi AOR singer. This album has some great moments I can't deny. The rather too many sappy ballads don't do a lot for me and lack the edge I'm looking for though. The pure Scandi AOR parts are hard to knock. Further plays will reveal how much I like the songs.
Dismissed after a full listen:
Gotthard - Silver - liked couple of tunes but no more.
Tenth Planet - Pieces - mid paced modern rock. Ok but not enough.
Lancer - Mastery - Couldn't get past vox this time. Whiny to the max and spoiling good music!
Marys Creek - Infinity - Modern rock. Uneventful in the end.
RUSTX - TTPM - weird trad metal from Europe somewhere. Not interesting in the end.
Solarus - Reunion - Good music but don't like the female vox. Sounds weak.
Dismissed after sampling:
Stephen Pearcy - Smash - Ratt guy. Two songs sound Ok but don't wanna hear all.
Warpath - Bullets for a Session - qute brutal thrash.
QSP - st - classic 70s slightly glammy rock.
Pain of Salvation - In The Passing Light Of Day - not into them.
Rude - Remnants - old school death.
AVersions Crown - Xenicide - brutal deathcore.
Invisible Mirror - On the Edge of Tomorrow - prog power
Infinite Density - Recollapse of the Universe - tech death
Odd Logic - Effigy - prog metal
Neoplasma - Watch the Fire - tech death
Devation - Giants - death/thrash
Skeptic - Worship The End - tech death
Constant Threat - The Dismal Order - death/thrash
Carnage - Purification Through Annihilation old school death
Drearyym - Precursions - melodeath
Dharma Storm - Not an Abyss Prey - sympho melodic metal
Phobiatic - st - tech death
Valkeat - st - melodic metal
Beheaded - Beast Incarnate - brutal death
Yggdrassil - All Shall Burn - Viking death
Chrome Molly - Hoodoo Voodoo - hard rock
Unrelenting Force - Indoctrinate - thrash
Cipher - Deviance - thrash/death
Avenford - New Beginning - power
Deathless Legacy - Dance With Devils - trad metal with female vox.
Holycide - Annihilate... Then Ask! - raw thrash
Gatekeeper - Quarantine - death metal
Nyktophobia - Fallen Empire - melodeath
Jасk Russеll's Grеаt Whіtе - Hе Sаw Іt Соmіn' - hard rock
Acranius - Reign of Terror - brutal deathcore
Соnсаtеnаtіоn - Mіndеаtеr - death/thrash
Vintersea - The Gravity Of Fall - prog melodeath
Mycelia - Dawn - deathcore
Spectral - Arctic Rise - Viking power melodeath
Don't Drop The Sword - Into The Fire [ep] - German power
Hybrid Sheep - Hail to the Beast - tech deathcore
Averblack - Torn Between Two Hells - heavy metal
Akoma - Revangels - Sympho Eurogoth
Dark Lambency - Spectra - prog metal
The Ominous Circle - Appaling Ascension - death metal
Demonseed - Human Disposal Syndicate - death metal
Infected Authoritah - Deliverance - heavy thrash
In Vein - Resurrect - prog death metal
Substratum - st - heavy metal
Bullcreek - Osschaert - death metal
Those Who Bring The Torture - Necromancer - old school death.
Stuff from 2016 that I discovered:
Akribi - Anima very cool prog metal with female vox.
Animan - The Unholy - very cool modern rock. Nice vox.
Eric Gillette - The Great Unknown - Prog metal from Neal Morse guitarist.
The Darker My Horizon - No Superhero - Very catchy melodic hard
rock with some superb songs. Why did I miss this? Better late than never at least.
Albums for February that I'm looking forward to:
Overkill - The Grinding Wheel
Battle Beast - Bringer of Pain
Edenbridge - The Great Momentum
Bloodbound - War of Dragons
Dead of Night - In Search of Ancient Magic
Place Vendome - Close To The Sun
Black Star Riders - Heavy Fire
Lionville - A World Of Fools
Unruly Child - Can't Go Home
Tokyo Motor Fist - st
and of course all the unknowns I hope to find like this month.