Another week of new music that, while there isn’t much huge stuff out, has a lot of amazing artists involved. Let’s check it out!
Lordi: Screem Writers Guild
The crazy, mask-wearing Finnish Eurovision-alumni are back with their 18th studio album. Following up their epic seven-in-one Lordiversity boxset is a hard task, as I love every one of those different albums, but they gave it a fair crack here.
The theatrics and storytelling are cranked up to 11 with the album opener and the likes of ‘Nosferiuz Horror Show’ and ‘The SWG Awards’ being short interlude tracks. Meanwhile sonically the band are back to their usual blend of styles; everything from Judas Priest to power metal to the hints of pop and disco. ‘Dead Again Jayne’, ‘Lucyfer Prime Evil’ and ‘Heavengeance’ were all huge highlights of the album. My only real critique is that there are a lot of tracks that have like minute long intros. I get that it adds to the atmosphere of it all, but it got a little old. Still, it’s a fun, good rock album and a solid non-Lordiversity Lordi album. 7.5/10
Bury Tomorrow: The Seventh Sun
Max: The seventh album by Bury Tomorrow picks straight up where Cannibal left of, continuing the mix of heavy and technical instruments and the blend of both clean and unclean vocals. The breakdowns are as fantastic as always and there’s something about the bridge in ‘Carcass’ where everything swells that I can’t quite describe in anyway other than to say it is fantastic. Having one of the first bands you saw live continuing from strength to strength is absolutely brilliant and I can’t wait to see them tour this album. 9/10
Nothing,Nowhere.: VOID ETERNAL
Max: So I am a massive fan of nothing,nowhere. In fact ‘death’ and ‘Pieces of You’ are two of my favourite songs of all time, so I’m always going to be happy to get more. Regardless of that though, this album is fantastic. From the solo songs like ‘ER4SER’ which has a fantastic chorus with the thick and full bassline and drums to the more stripped and vocal focused verses. And then you have songs like ‘CYAN1DE’; heavy breakdowns and screams which change up the album and are done so well. On the topic of changing up the album, all of the features are absolutely brilliant and really fun to listen to. It’s not going to be to everyone’s taste but I think it is brilliant and fun especially if you already enjoy his music. Overall this is a 8/10
We’ve already reviewed this awesome album! Check it out here!
City and Colour: The Love Still Held Me Near
The creative name of Dallas Green’s side-project was something I had to check out. I’m not a big Alexisonfire fan (as you can see here) but I’m super curious to hear someone go from a post hardcore band to country solo stuff. As it turns out, not only does the transition work, but I prefer it!
It’s incredibly chilled out music, somewhere on the boarder between country, indie and pop. It’s damn good too. It actually reminds me of a guy local to us, Jody Blount. So, if you like this, check him out too, they’re very similar and both fantastic! It’s hard to pick highlights as the whole album is fairly similar, so I’d recommend just listening to it all! 7/10, good stuff!
It feels like a good few weeks at this point since we’ve covered some straight-up punk here, so this was a nice and very welcome change of pace. The band’s ninth studio album arrives after a massive 12 years, the biggest gap in their releases to date. However, it launches right into it in ‘Lake Speed’ and barely lets up for it’s entire 35-minute runtime. The aforementioned track is a big highlight, as is single ‘Lights Out Little Hustler’ and ‘Highwire’. At times it felt like early, more punk-like Foo Fighters. It was awesome. For a band that I’ve never heard of before, they definitely have a new fan in me! 8/10
Ad Infinitum: Chapter III – Downfall
This was a fantastic blend of styles. It’s a modernisation of the typical symphonic metal formula, having a slightly more modern, poppy, almost nu-metal edge to it. It’s also a collection of some of the most talented musicians I’ve heard in a while. From the steady, heavy drums to some insane lead guitar work to Melissa Bonny’s impressive, powerful vocals and range. Heck, even the growls were great and fit with the tracks perfectly.
The band have been on my radar for a while now, since their first album was released a few years back, but this is the first time I’ve managed to listen to a full album. It was definitely worth it, as there isn’t a bad track on it! ‘Seth’, ‘Somewhere Better’ and ‘Ravenous’ were all huge highlights of a great album. It was a tad samey by the 12th track, but when the music is this good, it’s hard to hear that as a bad thing. 9/10, I loved this.
Lauren Morrow: People Talk
I’ve been a fan of Lauren since seeing her at The Long Road Festival last year (check out how it was here). So to say that I’ve been eagerly anticipating this debut album is an understatement!
While still being country, it has a bit more of a pop edge to it than her EP did, but that doesn’t take away from the quality at all. If I’m honest, it’s more the opposite. Tracks like ‘I’m Sorry’ and ‘People Talk’ where the pop shines through more are fantastic and definite highlights of the album. However, then the straight-up country songs like ‘Looking for Trouble’ are just as good. The extended guitar solo in the aforementioned track was amazing, too, and gave off huge Lynyrd Synyrd/Brothers Osbourne vibes. If you’re at all a fan of country or southern music, check this out, you’re bound to love it just as much as I do. 9.5/10
Dead End Finland: Victory
I’d not heard of these before we were sent this album across to review. I’m so glad they did though, as it’s fucking phenomenal. It’s somehow a mixture of power metal, deathcore and early 2000s radio rock/metal (think Godsmack, Shinedown etc). It’s not a combination I’d have expected to work at all, but it 110% does.
Check out tracks like the opener, ‘Beyond the Distance’ and ‘Up so High, Down so Low’ to see what I mean. All are massive highlights of another amazing album full of them. The latter track in particular is my favourite on the album. The contrast between the majority of the track being a rather beautiful ballad, and then the massively heavy, screamed bridge, was amazing. The whole album is great from start to finish though. What a great week, another 8.5/10
Lance Roark: Better Man
More country, this time with a very honkytonk, bluegrass feel. It’s another feelgood album that lands somewhere between Lauren and Colour. The synth in particular in tracks like ‘Honey Babe’ adds so much and is amazing. And the string work, be it guitar or fiddle, throughout is also amazing. Not only is everyone involved very talented, but Lance himself is one hell of a songwriter. It’s another album that I’m struggling to pick a favourite or highlight from, as it’s all so good. It also helps that for once it’s a short country album, just 8 tracks at less than 30 minutes. It’s so refreshing to hear a concise album in the genre, not just every single idea thrown on to make up over an hours worth of music. 8.5/10
Max: So I wasn’t too sure as to what I thought of this album initially. I’m not generally a fan of this style of “Rock n’ Metal” so I wasn’t feeling too wowed on my first listen. That being said, I went on a walk passively listening to it and I started to get a feel for the grove and what shone in the album. It’s a bit of fun, there’s nothing bad or anything to make you turn it off, instead you bob your head and walk with a bit of a strut. So to be honest it’s actually quite good and went beyond my expectations. 7/10
Deadwolff: Heavy Rock n’ Roll
I can’t tell if this is rock, punk or light metal. While it’s definitely a mixture of all three, it actually gives me The Stooges vibes the most, though that might be because of the vocals. The Stooges with a hint of Judas Priest in the instrumentation. Whatever this punk-metal is called, it’s great, and a damn enjoyable album. ‘Homeward Bound’ and ‘Close Call’ were personal highlights, but again like with much of this list, there isn’t a bad track on the album! 8/10