So, after the delay of the new Fozzy album to May 6th, there isn’t a massive amount of new music for us to cover this week. However, there is still enough good stuff released that we are excited about, so join us in checking it all out below!
Monuments: In Stasis
The British prog metal band returned with their fourth album this week, continuing their impressive, underrated discography. From the opening note to the closing one this is a perfect example of how to do modern prog metal right. It obviously gives off heavy Periphery vibes, but I actually found myself enjoying this more than any of their stuff, I have to admit. Also four of the tracks feature awesome guest appearances, with the best being from Doom-master Mick Gordon himself. It’s a heavy, catchy album full of crazy riffs, heavy screams and catchy choruses, and I loved every minute. 8.5/10
Cancer Bats: Psychic Jailbreak
A band who seemed to be poised to be the next big things when I was first getting into the scene properly, Cancer Bats have sadly dropped off a fair amount in recent years, with me not even knowing this was being released until the time of writing! However, I’m still a big fan of Hail Destroyer and Bears, Mayors…, so I’m excited to check this out!
The first thing I noticed is that Liam sounds a fair bit different to what he used to. I had to Google to make sure it was still him. It sounds more like Rob Zombie. Doing his scream for nearly 20 years would be almost impossible, though, so I get why he changed it. It honestly makes them sound like a completely different band, and I was struggling to get into it because of it. Tracks like the title one and ‘Crocodiles’ were good, but it’s not like they have anything on ‘Hail Destroyer’ or ‘Sleep This Away’. Not bad overall, but completely different to what I was expecting. 6/10
Kurt Vile: (Watch My Moves)
The former War on Drugs guitarist released his whopping 9th studio album in only 14 years on Friday. I have to admit, a lot of it is a little too slow and Lou Reed for me. Don’t get me wrong, some of the tracks aren’t bad and I don’t mind the soft rock/indie/country style of it. But it’s an hour and a quarter of the same thing over and over. It’s good background music for sure, but I got five tracks in before I started getting pretty bored. 3/10
Alunah: Strange Machine
Brummy stoner rockers released their new album last Friday. I have to say, it’s an awful lot of fun. Reminding me of a female-fronted The Sword, of course with a healthy dose of Sabbath mixed in for good measure, it’s a sound there isn’t enough of these days. Tracks like the title one, ‘The Earth Spins’ and ‘Fade Into Fantasy’ are all excellent and show off the bands range well. I can’t complain at all about this album, 42-minutes of awesome rock music. Check it out! 8/10
Greyhaven: This Bright and Beautiful World
A band that I have heard the name of but unfortunately not had the chance to check out until this point. I definitely regret that after hearing this album. From the heavy opening track through slower tracks like ‘All Candy’ through to the epic conclusion with ‘Ornaments From the Well’, it’s a journey through and through. And I always find myself admiring bands that can do the whole prog thing while keeping the tracks under 5-minutes. This won’t be for everyone as it is definitely heavy, but it reminds me a bit of the Zeal & Ardor album in its experimentation and blend of styles. These guys should be massive if their other stuff is this good, and they have a new fan in me! 8/10
Nazareth: Surviving The Law
The 24th (wow!) studio album from the Scottish rock band is pretty damn good. Over half a century after their debut album the band return with a surprising amount of energy and motivation. ‘Strange Days’ sounds like a NWOCR anthem that easily could have come from the likes of Dead Daisies or Inglorious. ‘Runaway’ is also a massive highlight of the album for me. For a band that I really only knew the slower, ballady stuff of their early days from, they really impressed me here. A fun album that I’d love to hear live! 8/10
Darkher: The Buried Storm
I didn’t quite get this. It was an entire album of build-up, but the crescendo never came. The folk-doom sound overall was awesome, but it never dropping into anything really hurt it. It felt like that point in a movie when you have just reached the end of the second act and it feels all is lost before the big character evolution happens. Like it is definitely a good thing to be compared to cinematic soundtracks, but if it doesn’t go anywhere it’s not going to work. It’s 40+ minutes of piano, (admittedly beautiful) operatic vocals and slow guitars and drums if they ever come in at all. 2/10
Great instrumentation, terrible vocals. I never understood the appeal off a voice that sounded like it had been recorded through a muddy puddle, and it unfortunately didn’t change with this album. I’m becoming quite the fan of death metal through this company, but I just couldn’t get past the voice. Controversial opinion I imagine, but it reminds me of Cannibal Corpse pre-Corpsegrinder, just a little meh. 3/10
A Wilhelm Scream: Lose Your Delusion
I’m not sure how to feel about this. It’s pop-punk (maybe?), a genre I usually love. And it sounded like a mixture of two of the favourite bands of my early childhood, Blink 182 and Busted, but with a hardcore edge to it. However, something about this just didn’t quite click with me. None of it is bad by any stretch, but none of it is really that standout or great. It’s a combination of a lot of different styles that I love, but it seems a tad unsure about its actual identity. For a band seven albums into their career, it seems odd to have an album so messy. 4/10
Another week down! Tune in to our Facebook here next week for more content, including radio-rock titans Shinedown!