Welcome back to New Music Mondays, where we take you through all of the new releases in the rock and metal world once a week. This week is pretty heavy, so strap yourselves in and enjoy the ride!
Jack White: Entering Heaven Alive
The former White Stripes frontman’s second album of 2022, on first listen I have to say I preferred the previous one. It’s not a bad album by any stretch, but Fear of the Dawn was much more of a rock album, which I prefer over the folk pop-rock of this album. It felt to me like where the Beatles would have gone later in their careers, than what I was hoping for. There are definitely some highlights and epic moments. ‘All Along the Way’ is incredible and I think getting just a bit bigger or having a grander payoff may have put it up there with one of my favourite tracks of the year. Outside of that though, it all felt pretty steady and a little boring. 6/10
Oceans of Slumber: Starlight and Ash
All info I found online about this band called them a prog metal band. I heard very little metal here. This was a rock album. Don’t get me wrong though, it’s still a very good album. The opening track is somehow both chaotic and methodical and builds up beautifully for the ending crescendo. ‘The Lighthouse’ has a country/americana feel to it, but still being dark and heavy enough to fit in with the band. You’ll find both on our 2022 highlights Spotify playlist here.
However, after five or six tracks the same plodding pace does get a little old for me. I very much get that it’s their style and it’s very good, but some variety would have been nice. Each track individually is awesome, but the album as a whole dragged for me a little. If you like it awesome, and I really wish I could, but I can’t give it any higher than a 7/10
The extreme Swedes are back with their eighth album. It’s everything you can expect an extreme metal album to be, fast, aggressive and full of dark, insane lyrics. It’s great. ‘Don’t Burn the Witch’ had some fun dynamics in with the emphasis on the bass. And a track called ‘Popecrusher’ should really speak for itself. The lyrics are so exretreme that it almost gets a little comical. I mean ‘A Forest of Burning Coffins’ is hard to take seriously. A lot of fun if you’re into the heavier side of music. 7/10
Karl Sanders: Saurian Apocalypse
An interesting one up now. Usually playing tech-death with Nile, Karl’s solo stuff is more on the folk side of the Egyptian/ambient style. It being his first album in 13 years and only third overall makes this an intriguing release. It was definitely intriguing, to put it lightly. I don’t often listen to this style and it wouldn’t really fall into the rock category, but it’s somehow still heavy. It’s not exactly something I would listen to often, but man can I appreciate the art and time it would have taken to write it. It really did take me on a journey, and I loved every second of it. Plus, the guitaring is INSANE. If you have the time, find this and check it out! 8/10
Palisades: Reaching Hypercritical
The alt-metal band are bringing back a lot of early-to-mid 2000s nostalgia for me, so if that is your scene stop what you are doing right now and check this out. Between Three Days Grace, Skillet, Linkin Park and Drowning Pool, it draws together a lot of sounds that I love. From the very first track to the last, this was all incredible. The singles have made it onto our playlist but honestly that doesn’t do enough justice to this album. Each track, album or single, is fantastic. I have nothing more to say, every track is a highlight, Check this out! 9/10
Ashenspire: Hostile Architecture
And now for some prog-doom. And I’m not going to lie, it went almost completely over my head. This was like a mess of a whole lot of sounds and vocals and strings with rather meh punk vocals over the top. Old Gwar is about the closest thing I can think of to compare it too, and I didn’t get that either. Don’t get me wrong though, I like the sentiment behind the concept of the album. It just doesn’t really sound good to me. I’m really sorry guys. Though I will admit the vocals sounded a little better when they were just spoken instead of shouted, I felt like I connected with the emotion more. but still, 3/10
Patient Sixty-Seven: Wishful Thinking
A fantastic album that I’ve already reviewed! Check it out here.
Hatriot: The Vale of Shadows
Zetro’s (the best Exodus frontman, fight me) between bands project, we have since had the last now two albums without him and instead have bassist Cody Souza on vocals too. While not quite as good, you can tell he’s trying to emulate the same style and does a decent enough job. The album itself is pretty base level thrash, being quick, awesome riffs, fast drumming and crazy solos. Thankfully the vocals don’t take as much of a backseat as some other thrash bands. All you have to do is check out the different screams in ‘The Hate Inside’ to hear some truly awesome vocals. This album had some awesome moments, with ‘Verminous and Vile’ and the title track both also being highlights. 7.5/10
Nicolas Cage Fighter: The Bones That Grew From Pain
The metallic hardcore band released their much anticipated debut album this past Friday. It’s another that goes to 10 immediately and stays there throughout. Opener ‘Grey Eye’ shows you exactly what the band are about and what you are in for, and it’s great. It’s definitely an album for the heavy fans again, like much of this week is. But if you are into that late 90s early 2000s heavy vibe, you’ll definitely love this. Ten tracks filled with aggression and anger that’ll definitely get your head banging! 7.5/10
Imperial Triumphant: Spirit of Ecstasy
A band that I never really ‘got’. I remember seeing the picture of them in the Sons of the Harpy masks everywhere a few years ago and ended up checking them out. It just sounded like heavy noise to me. I get that some people crave that originality and so the weirdness is appreciated, but I will happily hold up my hands and say give me a radio-rock chorus any day of the week. I like the brooding atmosphere created with some of the quieter moments, but otherwise it’s a little too heavy for me. 3.5/10