Another week and some more fantastic new music in the world of rock and metal. From industrial to death to blues, there’s a bit of everything! Check it all out down below!
Industrial metal kings Rammstein return with their eighth studio album, and a rather quick successor to 2019s Untitled Album. The band are yet to release a bad album and, to no ones surprise, they keep that record alive with this new music. Whether it is the slow piano build of the title track or the straight up chugging of ‘Giftig’ or ‘OK’. All three tracks are highlights of the album, but honestly there isn’t a bad track on it.
It’s a slower album than I was expecting, though. I do like their mid-tempo stuff a lot, and it has resulted in a much more epic-feeling album, but it’s weird to only have three or four faster tracks on it. I imagine it’s because the band are maturing as songwriters more and more, as the previous album was slower than their early ones too. Also, the final track being ‘Adieu’ and containing various different other ways of saying goodbye, could the band be trying to tell us something…? Either way, a very good album that boarders more on power metal than industrial. 8/10
Ted Nugent: Detroit Muscle
A controversial figure these days due to his political leanings, Ted can at least still write some okay rock music when he wants to. I have to admit this is the first Nugent album I’ve listened to all the way through. I’m British and us over here tend to prefer Canada’s version, Bryan Adams, over Nugent or Bruce Springsteen.
The album’s fun, even if it is full of his usual rhetoric. It annoys me that ‘Come and Take it’ is so catchy, given that it’s very ‘Don’t Tread on Me’. Still, this isn’t the time or place to get political. This is a good blues album full of pretty decent guitar riffs, some catchy choruses and a few fun riffs. ‘American Campfire’ and ‘Alaska’ are definite highlights for me, but the album as a whole is enjoyable to listen to from start to finish. I enjoyed it more than I thought I would, and may have to check out some more of his stuff after this. 6.5/10
Watain: The Agony & Ecstasy of Watain
The Swedish black metal band have been going a lot longer than I thought they had been. Now seven albums in their first decade of music is a bit of a mystery to me. Though black metal has never really been on my radar, I did know about these guys due to a fair amount of hype surrounding them around The Wild Hunt, so I have at least checked out some of their stuff. Though this company has definitely opened my eyes more to the heavier side of metal, black metal still seems like an anomaly to me. I get and enjoy death metal a lot now, and even like a fair amount of extreme stuff. black metal simply seems to not have as much going on in it usually and gets a bit monotonous.
However, this album does a good job at trying to bridge the gap, for me. There’s more going on than your typical black metal album; between guitar solos, thrashier guitars and some fun dynamics it definitely has some death and extreme elements. I still wouldn’t go out of my way to listen to it and the whole 50 minutes in one sitting was a bit of a struggle, but I wouldn’t turn any of it off if it came on. I imagine this is very good for fans of the genre, if I enjoyed it. But I can’t give it more than 5.5/10
Paddy and the Rats: From Wasteland to Wonderland
The Hungarian Celtic punk band released their sixth album last week. First of all, it’s a lot of fun. It’s like all of Christopher Bowes’ projects blended together with a hint of Dropkick Murphys and Train. I have to admit it took me a couple of tracks to get into the vocals, and they’re still not quite as folky/piratey for my liking. However, don’t get me wrong, Paddy can definitely sing. Either way, it’s a very fun album, with tracks like ‘Ship Will Sail’, ‘Matadora’ And the album club-pop ‘Party Like a Pirate’. I love that this is the sort of direction this style of music is going, with Alestorm’s ‘Tortuga’ being another fantastic example. It’s all massively catchy album from start to finish and it’s insane that I haven’t heard of them before. Hopefully this pushes them to even greater heights, and they definitely have a new fan in me! 8.5/10
The Swedish glam metal band are six albums deep now, and show no signs of slowing down! Automation is a good album BUT I want to review it as a whole, given that I’m a Big fan of the band’s music and we are speaking to them later this month. So keep an eye out on our website and socials as it will be up in the next few days!
Reef: Shoot Me Your Ace
The British pop-rock band get a lot less praise and love than they deserve. There is a lot more to them than ‘Place Your Hands’, with tracks like ‘Naked’ and even newer stuff like ‘How I Got Over’ been criminally underrated songs. Aside from that they are still one of the nest live bands around today, with frontman Gary Stringer always being on top form.
Now that the gushing is out of the way, the band’s sixth album is also very good. From the dirty blues title track through to tracks more like ‘Place…’ like ‘Refugee’ and ‘Wolfman’ there is a lot to love here. It’s a fantastic album full of catchy choruses, sorting vocals and effortlessly fantastic guitar riffs. However, I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out that it’s another album that doesn’t have a great deal of variety on it. It’s 42-minutes of awesome, fun blues rock so it’s a lot harder to dislike it all being similar, but a ballad or something out there may have been nice in the middle! Still, I ended up saving half of these tracks so any number of them could end up on the playlist! Another fantastic entry from the band! 8/10
FES: With Regards From Home
A band that we are very familiar with, given that it was the first gig we went to as a company. Their debut album was finally released on Friday and we’ve already reviewed it! Check it out here.
If I Die Today: The Abyss In Silence
Firstly, the concept of this album is really cool. Having life, death, the five stages of grief and then Darkness as the track titles is a chilling way to start off the story. The music fits the tone perfectly too, the hardcore metal bordering on blackened death working well. For the most part the tracks fit the titles, too. However, I know that they’re a very heavy band, but a couple of the tracks, such as ‘Life’, ‘Autumn’ and ‘Darkness’, could have maybe done with being a little slower or stripped back to really get the message across. However, the riffs were fantastic throughout and the vocals changed between heavy growls and extreme, hopeless-filled shrieks and made it pretty interesting. The emotion and talent is definitely there and the concept is fantastic, I’m just being picky and again wishing for some more variety. 6.5/10
The Oklahoman death metal trio put out their first new album in six years last week. In fitting with the album’s artwork, it’s a trippy, heavy album. Pulling no punches, from the first note of ‘Minds of Dust’ to the closing one of ‘Le Petite Mort’ it is an all out assault. Tracks like ‘Bodies of Ash’ and ‘The Whip’ are personal highlights of an insane bunch. It’s definitely on the heavier side of death metal and will take me a bit of getting used to, but I’m sure after a few more listens I’ll love it. The instrumentation is off the charts, some of the riffs are incredible, and the growls are insanely low. If anyone’s into death metal check this out! 7/10