Tag Archives: black metal

Plains of Oblivion: Are Blackment the Start of the New Wave of Finnish Heavy Metal?

Blackment, in case you couldn’t guess by the title, are a melodic heavy metal band from Finland. I hadn’t heard of the band before but we got sent the album a week or two ago for review. It comes out today so we thought we’d let you know what we thought!

‘Apparatus’ opens heavy with a great synth behind it, giving the death metal an 80s edge. It then opens up into a fantastic thrash riff, already a highlight. It stays thrashy as the harsh vocals come in for the verse, before it suddenly changes pace into some proggy, jazzy rock. The chorus after is really catchy too thanks to some cleaner power metal vocals ringing through. This really has a bit of everything so far. A ripping, technical guitar solo or three follows the second chorus. It makes me in no way jealous of their talent at all… However surprisingly, the song fades out after this. One the one hand, it’s always fun to not know what’s coming. On the other hand, I feel like another big chorus could have really helped cement this track as a top tier opener.

‘Remnants Astray’ opens on a prog as fuck riff and I’m all for it. The synths are behind it to give it such a huge sound, too. The power metal is back the powerful clean vocals come in over the top of a great, epic riff. It stays heavy and interesting though, two things that I find are my two downfalls when it comes to power metal so this is excellent. The kinda harsh vocals return for the bridge after the second chorus, but they are still rather clean, like a Matt Heafy kind of sound. There’s more absolutely incredible guitar soloing afterwards, so good it would probably make Steve Vai jealous. We then get a final epic chorus to close up. This was utterly fantastic, I loved it. It very easily made our playlist.

‘Clouds’ is a slightly slower but in no way less epic riff. The clean vocals sound even bigger and more powerful here given that the riff is bigger and it’s all backed by some great strings and even some operatic backing. Also, the backing vocals for the chorus make it even catchy and again we get the kind of half-scream on the back of it. It’s still a harsh vocal but most not familiar with scream would probably still be able to understand what is being said. The best of both worlds, so to speak. It feels almost redundant at this point to say there was a good guitar solo in the track, but you’ll never guess what… there was! Another song that I cannot praise enough, this was phenomenal. Playlisted!

If I didn’t feel like a vastly inferior musician before, ‘Composure’ definitely made it clear. This is awesome riff after awesome riff and I love it. The Trivium-style vocals are back in full force for this track too, which is another huge positive for me. It honestly feels like ‘Ascendency’, which for anyone who knows that album is very high praise. Again there is nothing but praise I can give for this track. The third in a row to make the playlist. This album better chill out or I’mma get in trouble for it all making it to our Spotify!

The most recent single, ‘Northern Lights’, starts folky as hell. To carry on the feeling, a modern day Maiden riff comes in over the top of it all, sounding great. This whole track in fact is like a heavier Iron Maiden song, it’s great! The same could be said for the following track, ‘Grasp of Hel’, too. Both are great songs that somehow sound like power metal, NOWBH while also sounding modern and following the bands sound. You definitely know it’s Blackment when hearing the tracks.

Check another metal review here.

The title track brings the heaviness and progginess back with a huge but fantastically technical couple of riffs. Even when the guitars are doing stuff like this, the band add synths and strings and stuff to really pack out the sound. It makes it all sound huge. The pre and chorus are massively catchy too even as the vocal melody jumps all over the place. It’s so interesting and I couldn’t stop listening to it, skipping it back a couple of times at least. Some more awesome guitar soloing and even a jazzy as fuck bassline round out this AWESOME track. Playlisted, it’s amazing.

‘Desolation Fields’ brings back the blackened death metal for a slow intro that builds into a hugely heavy track. The heaviness continues through the final two tracks too, single ‘Maw of the Dread’ and album closer ‘The Ruins’. However, the band also blend it masterfully with their epic power metal side. All three tracks are fantastic and the latter is a great closer. In a time where most bands seem to follow the weird trend of putting the lightest track last, I’m glad this was still pretty heavy. Three great tracks that I’d just gush over the same points for if I didn’t clump them together. Great stuff!

Overall: this was MUCH better than I was expecting. Granted, I went into it with zero expectations, but they blew the roof off my mind. Everyone involved with this is a master of their craft, be it guitars, vocals, songwriting, even production, it’s all top notch. I’ve already listened to this a few times and I don’t think I’ll be stopping any time soon!

The Score: 9/10

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How to Shroud Yourself with Night: Are Lacrimas Profundere the Next Rise of Gothic Music?

Boy, am I excited for this one. Now that reactions are becoming more of a part of Overtone, I ended up reacting to the most recent single Lacrimas Profundere put out on our YouTube channel. People ended up liking it and asked me to react to the previous singles from the album, which came out last week. I have just finished doing so and I gotta tell you, they’re amazing. So this review is going to be pretty positive, just to warn you. And while I take the time to edit down that video, check out what I thought of the other tracks on the album!

The album opens on one of said singles, ‘Wall of Gloom’. However, since I’m not very clear in my reactions, babbling on like a nervous schoolchild, I’ll quickly reiterate here. This is a great track. The plodding pace sets the dark mood for the entire album perfectly. And, of course, it gives vocalist Julian Larre plenty of chance to show off his impressive range. However, this isn’t my favourite single from the album, and it feels like an odd choice to open the album with. It’s a great track but I don’t think it quite hits that high gear that the following track does. However, when listening through as a full album, it almost feels like an extended intro track for the following track…

‘A Cloak Woven of Stars’ is one of my favourite tracks of the year. Period. I gushed over this track a bunch in the reaction, but I feel like I must do it here too. It somehow blends a commercial, radio-friendly sound in with their already dark, heavy one, and it works seamlessly. It combines together so many different sounds seemingly effortlessly, and the result is phenomenal. From the low, clean verses to the harmonised, harsher but massively catchy choruses to even a breakdown riff, this song is incredible. It blew my mind when I listened to it for the first time and made me an even bigger fan of the band. Playlisted!

Next we reach the first one I haven’t heard yet and the first ballad track of the album, ‘Nebula’. The clean guitars sound great, as does Julian as he sings low over the top. It again builds to a huge, harsher chorus, but it feels epic and very earnt. Also, the harmonies between the high clean and lower screams that have been present on the last two tracks are incredible and maybe my favourite part of the album. It’s another great track that once again shows off the band’s staggeringly impressive range.

As if reading that last sentence, ‘In a Lengthening Shadow’ opens on an almost uplifting folk/punk guitar riff. The track stays pretty high-energy throughout, almost giving off power metal vibes than anything else. Gothic power metal is something I definitely need more of! It’s a straight-forward, under 4-minute rock track and I loved it. Another that makes the playlist.

Another single, ‘The Curtain of White Silence’, is up next. I LOVE Julian’s desperate, emotion-filled harsh vocals in the verses. It honestly gives me goosebumps listening back. It reminds me a little of In This Moments’ ‘Whore’, it channels a similar energy. Also, how is it that this band build up to heavier choruses but it’s super catchy and still feels anthemic? It’s damn impressive. The quicker half of the chorus is great but when the drums slow to half-time it’s incredible. More harmonised vocals which again fit so well. A fantastic track and playlisted. I have nothing more to say other than awesome.

Check out more heavy music here.

‘Unseen’ and ‘The Vastness of Infinity’ are both good tracks but both feel a little similar to ‘Shadows’, power metal-esque. That is in no way a bad thing, I love both tracks. It simply means that there isn’t a massive amount for me to say that I haven’t already about a previous track.

Then we reach my introduction track to the band, ‘To Disappear in You’. It’s a fantastic track and one hell of an introduction to the band and album. It has a little bit of everything the band are showing off throughout these tracks and does it so well. It’s heavy, catchy and fun to listen to while still being dark, which is a hard task. I have barely stopped listening to it since the reaction, it’s a great track.

Our reaction of the track!

The synth to open up ‘An Invisible Beginning’ was a nice touch, setting the tone perfectly as a massively catchy riff runs through most of the track. It gave the song a poppier edge that continued throughout. It reminded me of Ghost, or at least what Ghost should have been with their image. It’s goth as anything, also feeling a little Billy Idol at times. Also, the chorus is the catchiest on the album, and I love it. Playlisted, this was awesome.

The final track of the album opens with an evil riff. Like, I’m talking ‘Black Sabbath’ evil. Unfortunately it doesn’t last too long but the rest of the band come in over the top, with Julian doing his harsh talking again like in ‘…White Silence’. There’s another catchy chorus, this one clean while the verses and pres are the heavier, screamed parts. It’s a heavy track to close the album (which I love) and there’s some GREAT riffs in here. It’s one of the best album closers I’ve heard this year, another great track.

Overall: This was phenomenal. I feel awful that I haven’t heard of the band before now and will definitely be checking out more of their back catalogue after this. This is easily one of the best albums I’ve heard and reviewed this year, every track was top notch. Hopefully they come to the UK to tour now as I HAVE to hear some of this live!

The Score: 9/10

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New Music Mondays: Muse, Machine Head and Much More!

We have a fun addition to New Music Mondays this week. Our newest team member Max has given me a hand in writing this, as I was away for the weekend. Give him some love as he saved my ass and did a great job! I’ve covered a few of them and he’s done a few, and if I had any more thoughts on an album I added them on too!

It’s another week another list! A fun set of albums have been released this week so join me in exploring them all.

Muse: Will of the People

Max: So where to begin? This is Muse’s 10th album if you don’t include the two live albums and the anniversary version of Origin of Symmetry. I must say that it is my favourite since the resistance. There are so many things to say about this album and I wish I had more time for it, from the amazing grooves in the bass to the solos spaced throughout. However, Matt’s voice is utterly outstanding.

If you only have time for a couple of songs I highly recommend ‘Ghosts (How Can I Move On)’ which is a beautiful piano led song which gives me chills every time I listen to it, ‘You Make Me Feel Like It’s Halloween’ which has a brilliant groovy and feel to it which makes me want to get up and move each time and then ‘Kill Or Be Killed’ which is definitely more inline with some of Muse’s heavier music. All in all, a great album and an easy 8.5/10.

Machine Head: Øf KingdØm and CrØwn

Max: Machine Head are back, and they want you to know what they’re about again. It has been four years since Catharsis, their last album. It’s clear in that time that they have been working hard on perfecting their art . All I can say is wow. It is heavier, it is intense, and it is brilliant. From ‘Slaughter the Martyr’; their ten and a half minute opening song is kickass from the slow intro to the filthy riffs and the solos. There is so much in this song to digest however there is more to get through. ‘Become The Firestorm’ and ‘No Gods, No Masters’ are must listens and as potentially controversial as this might be, I think this album is better than Burn My Eyes, their seminal first album. This is a 9/10 but if you rate it higher there is no contest because this is a phenomenal album.

Joe: As a HUGE fan of Machine Head, especially their output from Ashes, Catharsis and a couple of singles afterwards were a pretty big let down. I enjoyed last year’s EP, though (all of which ended up on this album). My god does this build on that perfectly. Right from opening on a 10-minute heavy epic with a good three minutes of slow-build to start, I knew the Machine Fuckin’ Head I knew were back. I’ve seen a fair few journalists comparing this to The Blackening. While I think that’s a bit of a stretch, it’s definitely a step back in the right direction. I agree with Max on all of his highlight tracks, and would also like to add the venomous ‘Rotten’. 9/10

Embrace: How to Be a Person Like Other People

Joe: The Yorkshiran rock band released their eighth studio album last week. While I was sceptical it would make it onto this list at all with the slow piano intro, it build into a cracking, stadium-filling ballad in ‘Death is Not the End’. While the rest of the album was still good, it’s in a similar style to the opening track and never quite reached the same lofty heights. It’s a blend of British and US indie rock which was perfect for a background listen or a long car journey, but I found it not holding my attention too well when listened to intently. If you’re into indie you’ll enjoy this a lot more than I did,. I feel like I’d ‘get’ this a lot more if I saw it live. For now, it gets a 5/10 from me!

Excuses Excuses: Listen Up

We’ve covered this already last week, and you can find the review and score here.

Sigh: Shiki

Max: The Japanese cult black metal band Sigh are back also after four years. For a first venture into this band, Shiki is a great place to start. It is a difficult listen if you are new to black metal, but their somewhat eclectic mix of styles can be a saving grace if you find the raw and intense vocals a little hard. This is not the best album ever made but I think it is a must listen for anyone wanting to explore more music and expand their genres.

I found it difficult to pick out which songs were the best in the album. But, after a couple more listens, the strange, almost jazz-break in the second track of the album, ‘Kuroi Kage’, just sticks with me even now. Its one for all to explore if they feel brave enough to which brings me to give this a solid 7.5/10 and I am excited for what might come next.

Joe: What has this company done to me? I loved this. I’ve somehow gotten pretty into the more epic side of extreme metal, and I kinda like it. Whether it was the balls to the wall track above or the more up and down ‘Mayonaka No Kaii’ there was a lot I enjoyed here. I do however agree with Max in that it’s a 7.5/10. Good stuff!

Brymir: Voices In The Sky

Max: The Finnish metal band are here with another packed album. It’s difficult to say what their plan for this album was as it felt to cross many layers. All in the band pushed their art to the next level with each song feeling quite different from the next. This being said I would not say this is the best album on the list. It was constantly punchy and energetic, and I found myself listening to it in the background through out the day but I truly struggled to find one song that was the best.

With all this said, however, I do think everyone should check it out. I am excited to see if they explore a but more of the melodic/death metal side that they can clearly do. I’m going to have to give this an 8/10 but that could change once I’ve got to grips more with this band who were completely new to me.

Manifest: The Sinking

Max: Here’s a band that I doubt many of you have heard of before. This is the bands fifth album, and it is a hard one. Whilst some of you may question me on this considering I liked Sigh, I really could not get past the Stian’s vocals and there was not much for me in the album. I implore you to check it out for yourself but I struggled to get past the fourth track so there is not much more to say. It is a 5/10 for me.

Joe: The mixing on this was pretty meh. It felt like a punch in the face, but that may have been the intention. However, I didn’t mind this aside for that. The elements are there of a good album, it just needs a fair amount of polish. It reminded me of a more biker Hatebreed, the same aggression and speed but with some catchy choruses thrown in at times. However, the cleans aren’t all that great, and the extreme vocals could be little stronger. I preferred when they stuck to the hardcore stuff as opposed to jumping to black metal or their slower stuff. 5/10

Lacrimas Profundere: How to Shroud Yourself with Night

We’ve got a review coming out of this album in the coming days. It was delayed due to being ask to react to some of their singles. While you wait, check out our reaction to their latest single, ‘To Disappear In You’, below. And check back in a couple of days for the link to the review!

Dynazty: Final Advent

Max: This one definitely ends the list on a high. Its hard to say exactly what this album makes me feel because wow its good, exceptionally good. They are top of their field, all the members of this band. There is so much pure and lovable energy in this band, and you can see how much they love making music. Each of the songs remind me of why I do this and how much I love music. There is one song that everyone needs to hear: ‘Yours’. Its an utterly beautiful songs and the chorus with its great hook and amazing vocals hits me somewhere deep. Its is a top song of the year so far for me and I am definitely going to try and see them live some time soon. It’s great to be surprised by music no matter what you hear, and this album hit in all the right places so I can’t see any reason to not listen to it because I really do think its inviting enough for everyone 9/10.

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New Music Mondays: Motionless in White, Kreator and More!

Another week stacked full of new music, this time primarily metal. Also, both myself and Charlotte are tackling this one together, as I had a crazy busy weekend. Without further ado, let’s get cracking!

Motionless In White: Scoring the End of the World

I was never really a fan of this band. Another that my friends all liked when we were growing up that I never really ‘got’. However, this was great! Leaning heavier into the industrial side of metal as opposed to their earlier metalcore stuff, it’s like a heavier, catchy Marylin Manson. ‘Meltdown’ is a great opener with some catchy hooks and melody and suitible heaviness, though the lyrics being about the last couple of years felt just a tad cringy. Tracks like ‘Sign of Life’ and ‘Cyberhex’ also draw on the bands nu-metal influences with the rapping, it sounding like a great mix of Limp Bizkit and Linkin Park.

However, the biggest highlight for me is ‘Werewolf’. It’s heavily influenced by 80s pop and synth but still maintains the heaviness the band are known for. And it fits the song title perfectly, it feels like a horror song. It’s amazing. Subsequent tracks ‘Porcelain’ and ‘Slaughterhouse’ are also fantastic. A surprisingly great album.

Charlotte: Motionless in White’s Scoring The End Of The World embodies man’s inhumanity and explores the struggles we’re facing today – everything from violence and leadership to inequality and global warming.

As an album with an important but heavy message, I think you can subconsciously expect the music to be pretty either too heavy or too soft but I think this album hits it just right and it’s definitely something I’ll listen to again.

8.5/10

Kreator: Hate Uber Alles

German thrash legends Kreator released their whopping 15th studio album last week. I have to admit that as much of a thrash head I am, I have slept on the German scene for years without really any reason to. This album very much shows me the error of my ways. It is a brutal assault of the senses from start to finish and touches on some pretty interesting topics lyrically. It reminds me a lot of Slayer’s best work. The band did a good job at picking the singles too, as all of them (alongside the opening track) are definite highlights of the album. The inclusion of sofia portanet on ‘Midnight Sun’ was a nice addition too, adding an almost symphonic metal element to the album. Another good album. 8/10

Wind Rose: Warfront

Charlotte: Wind Rose’s album Warfront took me by surprise. For an album written specifically for a video game, I wasn’t sure if it would engage me enough but I can’t deny the composition is fantastic.

I don’t think this is an album I could listen to on repeat, it’s not exactly written for car sing-alongs or festival crowd surfing, but it’s impressive all the same.

Joe: Italian ‘dwarf metallers’ Wind Rose have gained quite the following thanks to their Tolkein-inspired lyrics and getup. Their last album was fantastic (who can’t love ‘Diggy DiggyHole’?) and this one very much continues that same energy. Opener ‘Army of Stone’ is a great track and one of the singles, ‘Together we Rise’, is still enjoyable even though I’ve already been listening to it for a month to get on the hype train. Sometimes power metal takes itself far too seriously, and it’s nice that some bands can still have fun with it, too. 7.5/10

The Dream Syndicate: Ultraviolet Battle Hymns and True Confessions

Switching gears away from metal for just a se3cond, we get alt-rock pioneers The Dream Syndiate and their eighth studio album. It isn’t especially my thing, but it is enjoyable. It’s chilled out, punk-inspired soft rock, and it’s amazing background music. There’s not quite enough going on to keep my little ADHD brain interested fully, but it is far from boring. ‘Damian’ and ‘Every Time You Come Around’ were particular highlights for me. 6.5/10

Yatra: Born Into Chaos

This band are on their fourth album in four years. Even if you don’t like death/extreme metal, you’ve got to at least admire their work ethic. Heck, it’s a tiny bit heavy even for me, with the growls being a little hard to hear at times. However, the instrumentation was fantastic and off-set a the vocals a fair bit for me. The riffs were incredible, venturing into black and doom metal with ease and almost grace throughout the album. I wouldn’t go out of my way to listebn to it but I also wouldn’t turn it off if it came on! 5/10

Wolfsbane: Genius (Wolfgenius)

Poor Blaze Bayley. He gets such a bad rep from the metal community because he simply wasn’t Bruce Dickinson. Sure, his tenure in Maiden gave us X Factor, but it also gave us The Clansman, so it was not all bad. Blaze’s original band, Wolfsbane, reunited the band when he parted ways with Maiden and has put out some great music since then. Their new one is no different. Having a punk edge to the NWOBHM sound, not too dissimilar to Wildhearts, the album is a fun collection of catchy choruses and grungy guitar riffs. Tracks like the opener and ‘Rock the Boat’ stood out to me as some of the best on the album and give off a good idea of what the band are like for new listeners! 7/10

Check out our review of Iron Maiden’s latest album here.

Black Therapy: Onward

While it boarders black metal and regular readers know my feeling on said sub-genre, there is enough melody and death metal in here to keep me interested and enjoying it. It’s definitely not going to be everyone’s cup of tea, but I again find myself drawn to the sick riffs and awesome drumming. Don’t get me wrong though, those deep growls are insane. ‘Blindness’ was a particularly great highlight, but the whole album is a pleasant surprise! 7/10

Megasnake: Charming

Charlotte: As a first time listener of Megasnake, I didn’t know what to expect. After listening to their latest release Charming, I’m left wondering why I haven’t heard of them before? I loved this album.

The style is right up my street – that classic rock sound combined with gritty and powerful vocals (reminiscent of Chris Robertson), and not to mention the quality of the album’s production is superb. 

I expect to see them hitting some major new wave of classic rock festivals in the UK next year. 7.5/10

And there we have it, another great week for rock music in the bag! Next week promises to be just as good, too, so make sure to keep an eye on our Facebook here for all of our content.

New Music Mondays: State Champs, Misery Index and More!

A slightly slower week this week, with no absolutely massive releases or a huge amount of albums out. But still, there was some great new music from the rock and metal world released this week, with six new albums out. Let’s check them out!

STATE CHAMPS: Kings of the New Age

New Yorkian pop-punkers State Champs put out their fourth album last Friday. I have to admit I know the name and have probably heard a track or two, but I never really got much into the modern wave of pop-punk.

However, having said that, this is a pretty damn good album. It’s a little heavier than traditional pop punk, but I also thinks it adds a more anthemic feel to it all. It’s arena pop-punk, and I am shocked it’s taken me this long to listen to it. Obviously the singles are all amazing, but there isn’t a bad track on the album really. I need to check out more from this band and genre ASAP, I think! 8/10

Misery Index: Complete Control

The Maryland based death metal band put out a DAMN heavy death metal album last week. And it’s great. Before Overtone I would never have even attempted to listen to this album, but it’s opened my eyes to a lot of fantastic death metal, this included. The riffs are brutal, crushing awesomeness and the gang vocals means that a few of the tracks are even pretty catchy. Just check out ‘Infiltrators’, it perfectly encapsulates the bands sound and attitude in just two short minutes. Great stuff! 8/10

Cage Fight: Self-Titled

The new band seem to go by so many different labels, be it punk, thrash, metalcore. Either the latter or metalic hardcore is probably the closest to their sound. Either way, it’s fucking fantastic. From the first track of the album I was hooked, and I stayed hooked throughout. I love that we are starting to get more and more female screamers these days as they are showing they can do it just as good as the guys. I also have to gush over just as smooth the transitions between the tracks are. At times I didn’t realise a new song had started until like 30 seconds in. It’s the sign of a great album as it flows perfectly. I was going to say the first X amount of tracks were fantastic, but honestly it just kept rolling with great track after great track! This is a ridiculously strong debut album and they have found a new fan in me! Not a bad track on the album and damn, I need to see them live soon! 9/10

Moon Tooth: Phototroph

The Prog Metallers have been around for a decade now, constantly wowing audiences with their talent and songwriting skill. That continues with Phototroph. Their new music may be their best yet. The guitaring in the opener and ‘Deathwish Blues’ is a technical masterclass, combining both lead and rhythm together perfectly. There are times even the vocals somehow sounds both completely separate from the instrumentation but also the perfect accompaniment. ‘O My Isle’ may be my favourite of the bunch, combining light, catchy sounds with a pretty heavy riff. Another band that I need to check out more of! 8.5/10

Visions of Atlantis: Pirates

It’s like if Nightwish and Alestorm had a lovechild. Symphonic metal about pirates is something I never knew I needed until now, and yet also I’m surprised there isn’t more of. All of it is great, but ‘Master the Hurricane’ is on a level of its own. Unquestionably epic from the string-heavy opening to the massive closing riff, it is how you do symphonic/power metal at its very best. A highlight on an album that also includes the likes of ‘Wild Elysium ‘ is an impressive feat and should hopefully set Visions of Atlantis up to be the next big thing in the sub-genre. 7.5/10

Check out our Powerwolf review here.

Morgue Supplier: Inevitability

If anyone was here last week, you know what’s coming here. It’s death metal. What more do you expect. Granted, this had slightly more groove to it than the typical blast beat and ‘AHHHHH’, but it still didn’t do a great deal for me. As such, I don’t feel qualified to give scores to death metal, as I am just not going to like it enough to give it a good rating, no matter how good at the sub-genre the band is. I’mma give it a 4/10 and hope that works!

New Music Mondays: Halestorm, Three Days Grace and Much More!

An absolutely HUGE week for New Music Mondays. 12 massive albums from some of the biggest names in rock and metal all out on the same day. I don’t know what it was about May 6th, but I’ve been waiting for it for a while. Without further ado, let’s get to it!

Halestorm: Back From the Dead

Back from the dead indeed. After four years the band returned with their follow-up to 2018’s Vicious. The two singles from the album were both fantastic, setting the scene for the rest of it perfectly. However, you are going to have to wait just a little longer for my review and score, as there is no way I’m NOT doing this in depth! It should be on the site and socials within a couple of days, so keep an eye out!

Three Days Grace: EXPLOSIONS

One of the leaders of the affectionately dubbed ‘butt-rock’ sub-genre, Three Days Grace have been around over two decades at this point and show no sign of slowing down. I have to admit, I haven’t really actively listened to this band since One-X all the way back in 2006. So, it was nice to find myself rather pleasantly surprised by this album!

All the elements of butt-rock are here, the basic, heavy guitar riffs, the electronic melodies to help build the track and the edgy lyrical content. However, it is clear it is being written by a band that know exactly what they are doing, and do it exceptionally well. While the opener and lead single was a little too edgy for me, tracks like ‘I Am The Weapon’ and ‘No Tomorrow’ are just as good as anything else they’ve put out. Even the slower tracks like ‘Lifetime’ and ‘Redemption’ are fantastic, even if they are pretty depressing lyrically. Still, the emotion is definitely there, in every track. It’s made me want to check out the albums from them I’ve missed and I’ll definitely be listening to this a lot in the coming weeks! 7/10

Simple Plan: Harder Than it Looks

The Canadian pop-punkers have done a lot more than just ‘What’s New Scooby Do?’. The band have had some amazing, huge tracks over their now six album career. Their latest looks to continue that trend, being packed with huge, catchy, arena-filling choruses and vocal lines… and not a great deal else. Don’t get me wrong, the instrumentation is fine, but there isn’t really any of it that I would consider memorable. It’s a usual issue with pop punk, but it’s more prevalent in more anthemic bands like these or Good Charlotte. Still, tracks like the opener and ‘Million Pictures of You’ are good fun and highlights of a fairly standard, samey album. 6.5/10

Fozzy: Boombox

Another album I have to do an in-depth review of I’m afraid, as I have been a Jericho fan for as long as I can remember. Still though, from what I’ve heard so far, it’s going to be pretty good, and certainly better than their last couple of albums!

Silverstein: Misery Made Me

The pop-punk/emo/post hardcore(?) band hit double digits on their discography last week. This sort of music was never really my thing as a kid, in fact I actively avoided most ’emo’ music aside the odd AFI song. So, because of that, I know the band by name only. However, I did enjoy this album. The band managed to put together some interesting different styles throughout. I didn’t think the opening track was that heavy at all and leant heavily into pop-punk so it had me wondering where the post hardcore was. Then the heavy second track came in and I understood a lot more.

Tracks like ‘Ultraviolet’, ‘It’s Over’ and ‘Slow Motion’ also perfectly blend these two styles. The tracks have some awesome catchiness blended with the heaviness too. I’m actually pissed at myself for not giving this band a chance sooner, I’ll definitely be checking them out more! It’s an effortless style of arena-heavy-rock that bands like Asking Alexandria and BVB have tried to varying degrees of success recently. Awesome stuff! 8.5/10

Ibaraki: Rashomon

Trivium frontman and all-round metal legend Matt Heafy finally put out his solo album last week. This is said album. Oh, and it’s death/black metal, so I have been even more excited! Opening on a seven-and-a-half minute death epic for an essentially debut album is a ballsy move, but Heafy pulls it off masterfully. Insane riffs and a harsher scream than I have heard him use in a while, as well as still some of his powerful cleans, start the album off strong.

Then there’s the all out assault of ‘Ibaraki-Doji’ and the darkly beautiful black metal slow build of ‘Jigoku Dayu’, both of which are massive highlights. Oh, and Behemoth’s own Nergal also makes an appearance on the awesome ‘Akumu’, another highlight. There is also guest appearances from the legendary Ihsahn of Emperor and even My Chemical Romance Frontman Gerard Way. Oh, and yes, you guessed it, both tracks are also awesome. Especially the latter, which sees the usually clean vocalist scream his fucking lungs out. I honestly didn’t think he had it in him, that was awesome. Heafy does a good job of managing to make it sound not too much like Trivium, but still have that recognisable edge to it. While I wouldn’t put it quite up there with Court of the Dragon, it is still an insanely strong album. 9/10

Otoboke Beaver: Super Champon

I don’t understand how these girls have over 100k monthly listeners. Then again, the punk scene is and always has been weird. I’m going to be honest with you, I didn’t make it through the whole album. I couldn’t. The vocals were barely in tune and the lyrics were SO VERY REPETITIVE. For a guy who complains about the Killers’s magnum opus ‘Mr Brightside’ being ‘lazy’ for having the same verse twice, this band make them look like J.R. Tolkien. I don’t get it, it sounds awful. If you like it please let me know on our socials what I’m missing, because this was not good. 2/10

Depressed Mode: Decade of Silence

The doom metallers returned after… well… a decade of silence (13 years, to be exact). I’ve already reviewed this very good album, so you can check out what I had to say, alongside my score, here.

Terror: Pain Into Power

This is the first ‘beatdown hardcore’ band I believe we have (at least knowingly) covered here at Overtone. While I feel like I have heard the term somewhere before, it doesn’t sound like my sort of thing so I suspect this will be a review of my first time listening to a whole new sub-genre today, rare these days.

It’s alright. Better than I expected it to be, given the name of the subgenre. It wasn’t anything special but there were a few good riffs, like the one at the end of ‘Boundless Contempt’. And it didn’t overstay its welcome either, being just 18-minutes spread across ten songs. Even the lyrics weren’t terrible. It’s not the best thing I’ve ever listened to but I’ll happily listen to it again. 6/10

Puppy: Pure Evil

This was somehow a more doom version of Smashing Pumpkins. The intro track made me think the album was going to be pretty slow and heavy, but then ‘The Kiss’ flipped it all on its head. It’s an interesting blend of styles: doom/stoner, metal, grunge and even some desert rock. I enjoyed it a fair bit, with ‘Spellbound’ being my particular album highlight. 6/10

I Am The Night: While the Gods Are Sleeping

It’s black metal. That alone should tell you exactly what to expect. I’ve really tried, guys. I’ve been doing NMM for over seven months now and have since listened to a fair amount of black metal. It’s the only sub-genre that does absolutely nothing for me. The musicians in this band are clearly very good at what they do, and the vocalist has one hell of a scream on him, but the actual songs kinda bore me. This is what people think of when they use phrases like ‘all metal just sounds the same’ and ‘you can’t tell what they’re saying’ and you know what, they’re absolutely right. I am the Night are a solid band and probably a great black metal band, bit it isn’t for me. 3/10

Stand Atlantic: f.e.a.r.

I nearly didn’t cover this. Then I remembered I covered Avril Lavigne in one of these and realised I kind of had to. It is still guitar based, even if it is more pop than rock. It reminds me very much of the likes of Olivia Rodrigo or Gayle in its melody, just with slightly more guitars. It isn’t a bad thing and is certainly catchy. It’s simply very basic catchiness and the lyrics are not really my sort of thing. It’s clearly inspired by modern female pop and punk (like AS IT IS) alongside the likes of Avril and P!no. It simply doesn’t quite live up to those influences. Tracks like ‘Deathwish’ and ‘Don’t Talk’ are pretty decent though and definite highlights. 5.5/10

Shades of Pale: The Next Big Thing in Death Metal?

Extinction in Progress are an alternative death metal band from Finland. The band have released a couple of EPs, with the latest coming way back in 2015, but are finally putting out their debut album tomorrow. I have heard their singles off the album already and was impressed by them. I cannot wait to hear what they have to offer with the full release!

After an epic, almost power-metal intro, ‘Cold, Part 1’ rips into a thrash riff that reminds me a lot of late 2000s Machine Head. The vocals fit perfectly over the top, being hardcore-inspired screams before getting into low gutturals as the instrumentation gets pure black metal for the chorus. It drops down a bit for a lower bridge, the vocals being the death metal equivalent of a whisper. After a brief drop-out to just guitars it explodes into a HUGE riff. It also features some of the most disgusting vocals I’ve heard in a while. It’s fantastic. The added (albeit not too focused on) female vocals added a nice touch in the middle too, a beautiful reprise from the brutality for moments. They also all combine together to make for one hell of an epic conclusion. Awesome. Playlisted.

Part 2 of the track continues on the same energy and aggression, but at the same time is noticeably slower and sluggier in parts. How the band manage to pack the same anger into these parts is impressive. They go hard enough round them still to live up to their death metal label. The riff that kicks in in the middle had my face screwing up, it was fantastic, but doesn’t last nearly long enough before the band drop down to just clean guitars and actual whispers. However, the atmosphere generated is amazing and eerie, and it builds up slowly into a MASSIVE ending. Both parts are impressive and Cold in general is a masterpiece of black/death/any other metal. Check these out!

If you like this, check out our Gomorran review here

‘The Wedding’ jumps straight into the verse, the harsh vocals kicking in over a quick, technical riff. It again gets black metal AF in the chorus, a staple of the band so it seems, and a welcome one. The blast beats are insane. This track pulls no punches, going hard through the verses and choruses. It still manages to drop down to an awesome, slower clean riff. The dynamics the band put into their song keep it interesting and, as a newer fan of the genre, I definitely appreciate the tracks changing up and not being an all out assault. Still, it isn’t long before it explodes into the heaviness again, punching the listener in the face respectfully and repeatedly until the end. Great stuff!

‘The Loudest Silence’ opening on a quiet, clean intro was a fun little bit of irony. However, while it may not be the fastest track on the album by a fair margin, it is certainly still HEAVY. It carries the same energy as Gojira’s ‘Heaviest Matter in the Universe’; two tracks that explain exactly what you are going to be listening to. And also two tracks that throw every insane riff they have in their arsenal together. I love it.

And then what do they do? Make it jazzy in the middle and add a fucking sax. Horns in metal (especially death) is my weakness, and this was done perfectly. This even beats out that At the Gates track from last year that did a similar thing. As if I couldn’t have loved it any more. Safe to say this will be my favourite track on the album, another that easily makes the playlist!

‘Ashes’ opens on a bouncy as he’ll riff that almost sounded metalcore more than anything. Especially when it kicked in. It’s also a minute in before any vocals come in, another couple of amazing riffs being thrown in in between for good measure. I do have to say though that outside of these riffs nothing stood out to me too much about the track. I felt the same about ‘Feasting Upon a False God’, too, though the interlude track between the two, ‘Limbo’ was a great little atmospheric piece. It gave the listener a bit of breather and set the scene perfectly for the following track.

The next track is more of the same while the closing track, ‘Motherload’ goes massively black metal. It’s heavy, plodding and filled with extreme metal screams and growls. The guitars were a particular highlight too, setting a creepy, atmospheric atmosphere from start to finish. Between that and the dynamics shifting from stripped back, quite parts to heavy, double-bass-peddle filled highs, this is one hell of a conclusion to an album. It feels huge and massively epic. We live in a time when bands struggle to finish an album well (in my opinion), but Extinction in Progress nail it here! It also helps that the band go prog as fuck out of nowhere, the track clocking in at over 10 minutes. It’s prog done right too, ever changing and evolving to keep it interesting. If you check out any tracks from this album, make it this and the opener.

Overall: This was great! As a recent convert to death/black metal, this is one of the best things I have heard so far. The instrumentation is off the charts and the screams were damn impressive. And the ups and downs kept it constantly interesting, as well as adding plenty of feeling and atmosphere to it. I can’t wait to see where the band go from here, and hopefully it’s to the UK for a tour…

The Score: 7.5/10

New Music Mondays: Dream Widow, Machine Gun Kelly and Much more!

What can I even say this week? After the devastating news that rocked the entire music world over the weekend, it’s hard to tear my ears away from Foo Fighters. However, a lot of potentially great music came out last Friday, and one of them is very fitting, which you are about to read. Join me as we take a look at this week in music.

Also, as a little P.S. 13 albums came out last week, this is gonna be a long one.

Dream Widow: Self-Titled

Yes, let’s get the tough one out of the way first. The Foo Fighters’ alter ego metal band created for their very own movie, Studio 666, was released just the day before the tragic, untimely passing of their drummer Taylor Hawkins. While the immediate future of Dave Grohl and co. is up in the air, this album and Studio 666 is one hell of a statement to leave behind for a while.

First things first to get the obvious out of the way, Dave Grohl can scream damn well. It is not at all fair how damn talented that man is at everything. However, that’s not to take away from the rest of the band, this is a damn good extreme metal band. From the balls-to-the-wall opener through the massively catchy doom metal of ‘Cold’ to the albums single, it’s one of the strongest opening three tracks of any album this year. All three made the playlist, as did the suitably epic ‘Becoming’. It’s hard not to separate the situation from the music, but even if Taylor was still with us this would still be an incredible album and brings a lot of mainstream eyes on an otherwise sheltered sub-genre. All of it combined, how can I not give it 10/10?

Machine Gun Kelly: Mainstream Sellout

Apologies in advance for even mentioning the man. However, whether we all like it or not, he is somehow classed as ‘rock’ music these days, and we are a rock publication, so unfortunately I’m gonna have to listen to it. I listened to his last album, Tickets to my Downfall, and believe I scored it around a 6. Let’s see if this one lives up to the ‘hype’ surrounding him.

It doesn’t. That was a TERRIBLE listen. I was already over it by the second track, but being the consummate professional I am, I gritted my teeth and bared it. It was the longest 40 minutes of my life. I don’t know what I hate more, his awful, not-even-autotune-could-save vocals or his angsty 12-year-old lyrics. Oh, or maybe it was how all the guest acts are somehow JUST AS BAD AS HE IS. Or maybe it’s this faux-rockstar persona he has decided to adopt, seemingly being proud to be a drug addict and suicidal, instead of putting any emotion or message behind his words. Heck, he couldn’t even have some attitude when he was calling out the people who shat on his last album. His autotune probably wouldn’t allow it. This experimentation into ‘pop-punk’ (it’s still just pop music) needs to end, it’s not good. Can someone write a rock diss track about him already and run him out of the genre like Eminem did with his rap career? 1/10

Placebo: Never Let Me Go

A band that I can safely say I used to be a fan of but haven’t really gotten into their stuff since 2006’s Meds. However, I have heard a single or two from this album on the radio and it’s sounding good, I’m more excited than I have been about their last two albums.

I have to admit, the singles were definitely the big highlights of the album. ‘Surrounded by Spies’ is my favourite track by the band since ‘Meds’ and the likes of ‘Beautiful James’ and even ‘Sad White Reggae’ are all awesome. However, not all of the album is quite as strong. The opener fell a little flat, as did tracks like ‘Hugz’ and ‘Twin Demons’. It’s still better than anything they have put out in a while, but at nearly an hour it may be just a tad bloated. Still, I enjoyed it a lot! 7/10

Animals as Leaders: Parrhesia

Instrumental djent pioneers Animals as Leaders dropped their much anticipated fifth album on Friday. The three once again prove why they are up there with some of the best musicians around today, in any genre. Heck, the opening track alone should prove that, from Matt’s insane drum playing to some truly inspired guitar work and THAT bass part, the band show why they get so much praise. And that’s just the first five minutes. Then you have the two huge singles in ‘Monomyth’ and ‘The Problem of Other Minds’ which are both equally brilliant. Oh, and the other six tracks are pretty great too! As usual, if you struggle with instrumental music you’ll probably still find this a tough 35 minutes, but it’s a solid album that’s well worth checking out even a bit of. 7.5/10

Check out our Amped review here.

Reckless Love: Turborider

The Finnish Glam rockers returned to the studio after six years away from it and, just like their last album, their sound has evolved somewhat again. I have to admit, I kept wanting to call this Turbo Lover instead of Turborider; the band seem to have adopted elements of Judas Priest’s Turbo and Painkiller albums into their own sound. It’s heavier and more electro-pop, but still keeps the underlying elements of glam that brought them to the dance with their first few albums.

Honestly, I’m not sure how convinced I am by the change in sound. Don’t get me wrong, I love the heavier tracks like the title track and the old-school-glam of ”89 Sparkle’, but some of the rest feels like the bands attempt to capitalise on the somehow still rolling wave of 80s nostalgia. They don’t capitalise quite as well as the likes of Stranger Things or The Weeknd, and it somehow comes across as less genuine than playing straight up 80s glam. They will always have a hard task beating Spirit, and while this was overall enjoyable, they didn’t with this one. 6/10

COIN: Uncanny Valley

American pop-rock band COIN returned with their fourth album over the weekend. It’s definitely on the lighter end of rock music, but stuff like ‘Chapstick’ and ‘Cutie’. Unfortunately, the rest was all painfully slow and samey, boring me pretty quick. It’s not my sort of thing at all, but if you enjoyed it more power to you! 3/10

Abbath: Dread Reaver

Don’t worry guys, Abbath is here to bring some metal back to the proceedings. The former Immortal front-man returned with his third studio album, and it’s just as dark and black metal as all the rest of his stuff. If anyone is familiar with any of his stuff then you know exactly what to expect here, and it’s good. I do still feel like once you’ve listened to one black metal album you’re pretty familiar with it all, it’s still the one sub-genre of metal I don’t quite ‘get’, but it’s still an okay listen all the same! Highlights include ‘Scarred Core’ and ‘Septentrion’. Also a shout-out to their ‘Trapped Under Ice’ cover, it’s heavier than the original and I think it does it some favours! 6/10

Hardcore Superstar: Abrakadabra

Swedish hard rock band Hardcore Superstar have been around a lot longer than most realise, with Adbrakadabra being the bands 12th studio album. I’ve been a fan since their self-titled album, and honestly this one is fairly close in terms of quality. Tracks like ‘Influencer’, ‘Weep When I Die’ and ‘Give me a Smile’ all sound fantastic, like they were written by a band comfortable and proud of their sound. Plus, single ‘Catch Me If You Can’ is one of the best songs they’ve ever written, in my opinion. Great stuff from one of the most underappreciated bands of the last decade. 8/10

Falls of Rauros: Key to a Vanishing Future

Time for some more black metal, this time with some slight folk influence. I hadn’t even heard of the band before this article but already appreciate the LOTR reference. Like I said previously, it’s still black metal, so not a massive amount stands out from me compared to the Abbath album earlier. Don’t get me wrong, the atmosphere is a little different, it feels a tad more epic and open, more room to breathe. But musically it is a lot of the same elements and tropes and generally they don’t interest me as much as other sub-genres. Please don’t hate me in the comments. But, having said that, it was still a decent album. 5/10

Ignite: Self-Titled

The melodic hardcore band bring some much needed punk to NMM, as no enough punk bands put stuff out regularly any more. I’ve been a fan of this band for a few years now, ever since Spotify recommended the Our Darkest Days album. They always reminded me of a heavier Anti-Flag, which is high praise as they are one of my favourite bands. And, honestly, this album is up there with some of the best either band have produced. It’s heavy, catchy, punk AF and honestly has a great anti-establishment message behind it that music is definitely lacking in these days. I’m struggling to even pick highlights out of it, it’s all that good. Check out the playlist for the very best of the tracks, but honestly I could have put the whole album on there. 9/10

Mammoth Weed Wizard Bastard: The Harvest

The Welsh prog-doomers are back with a follow-up to 2019s Yn Oi I Annwn. I actually reviewed it back in 2020, giving it an 8/10 I believe. They are a great band and let’s see if this one measure up to their last!

It’s just as epic and ethereal as the previous album, something I loved back then. Everything is given such room to breathe, getting the most out of every section and riff. Between that and the multiple interlude tracks between songs that tie everything together in a nice little spacy bow, this is definitely an album to listen to all the way through in one. Chuck this on and lay back in a dark room, maybe with some questionable substances in your system, and just enjoy. But, if you don’t have that much spare time or acid, holy crap is ‘Logic Bomb’ amazing. It’s another home-run form yet another band that don’t get the credit they deserve. It’s another 8/10.

Light Beneath: Self-Titled

And finally we reach the debut album of Finnish post-metal band Light Beneath. It’s heavy, I’ll give them that. However, it’s in the slower, more open stuff that I find myself enjoying it more. The intro to ‘Sirens’ is beautiful, and the way the it all fits together is so Tool it’s insane. In fact, said track is my favourite on the album, it’s sludgy and heavy and builds perfectly through the screaming and drums. The other tracks are good, but they don’t have quite as fun or memorable a structure as ‘Sirens’. Overall, though, a solid debut! 7/10

And there we have it, a MASSIVE week in rock and metal music, with some fantastic albums out, albeit amongst some not so great ones. Stay tuned for next week: Red Hot Chili Peppers! Keep an eye out on our socials here for it!

New Music Mondays: Feeder, Cypress Hill and More!

Welcome back to New Music Mondays, where we go over all of the new releases from the world of rock. Another eight albums or us this week, so let’s check them out!

Feeder: Torpedo

Feeder were a band similar to The Darkness, exploding onto the scene in the early 2000s and capitalising on the mainstreams last few years of true love for rock music. Heck, they headlined Download Festival, for crying out loud. That’s big. Then, as quickly as they arrived, they seemed to disappear again. However, I can safely tell you that not only have they continued to make music, but it has been consistently pretty good.

Torpedo is no different. Tracks like ‘The Healing’ channel the bands inner Foo Fighters while the title track and ‘Magpie’ have a heaviness to them that I often forget that I oft forget they have. It’s a solid album all round, both from a heavier and lighter perspective. It shows that the band should never have dropped back down the pecking order, as this is one of the strongest overall albums of the year so far. Something I was not expecting to say today! 8/10

Cypress Hill: Back in Black

While technically not ‘rock’ by any means, Cypress Hill have always been in that scene, even before B-Real joined Prophets of Rage. However, this is by far the least rock I have heard them. I*t’s a straight up elate 90s rap record, tired themes and all. I’m a pretty big fan of that era of rap, and this band, but it was pretty underwhelming. 3/10

Sonic Youth: In/Out/In

If you thought the album title was weird, this album is only 5 tracks long but runs for 45 minutes. Ugh. I know it isn’t exactly new music, more a rarities album, but it is still a new release. Now, I don’t not like prog, when it’s done right and kept interesting. Rush are a perfect example, as are Dream Theater, two bands who constantly change things up in the songs and have the heaviness to appreciate too. But a 9-minute instrumental track to open the album that revolves around the same slow, boring chord progression throughout is not at all my thing. This is somehow worse than Grateful Dead. See how long you can subject yourself to down below and leave your scores in the comments! 2/10

Stabbing Westward: Chasing Ghosts

This is more like it! The industrial rock band’s fifth studio album and first since their 2016 reunion pulls no punches, opening on a fantastic, heavy, industrial guitar riff that really sets the tone for the rest of the album. It’s a dark, heavy and everything I wish Nine Inch Nails would do for a full album. It’s definitely one hell of a return album with a good few highlights, including ‘Cold’, ‘Ghost’ and ‘Control Z’. If you’re a fan of industrial rock at all, you’ll love this. 7.5/10

Weezer: SZNZ: Spring

Firstly, how rude of Weezer put out an album on a Sunday instead of a Friday like the rest, making me work all weekend! Secondly, the band are no strangers to overtone, with their 2021 album getting a very respectable 7.5 from us. And, this is one of four albums the band are releasing this year, one for each season. It’s definitely an ambition plan!

I love the idea behind having four widely different feeling albums that fit with the season they are named after, but the light, happy, folky spring album didn’t do much for me. I’m definitely more a fan of Weezer’s heavier, rockier stuff over their more pop leaning, and there wasn’t much of that here. Single ‘A Little Bit of Love’ is a tune, though! 6/10

Agathodaimon: The Seven

The German black metal band go hard on their first album in nine years. However, while it’s pretty extreme at times, I was also pretty surprised to hear some clean vocals throughout. It was nice to hear a black metal band branch out and diversify a little throughout their album rather than just an all out assault on the ears. The heaviness is still there for sure, but so is the melody, and it helps this album a lot for me. The fact that there are catchy vocal lines and guitar solos is fantastic and definitely puts this above your average super-heavy album. And it still has plenty of epicness from the symphonic side of stuff. No matter your music tastes, check out ‘The Divine’, you won’t be disappointed! 8.5/10

Audio Karate: ¡Otra!

Bringing a more pop-punk flavour to NMM, Audio Karate returned with their fourth studio album last week. The album is at it’s best when it leans into the punk side over the pop, too. Tracks like ‘Segway’ and ‘She Looks Good’ channel almost Rancid or Distillers vibes, and sound a lot more appealing to me than the opening track or ‘Care Carelessly’. Generally there is more good than meh on the album, but the good stuff is surprisingly towards the latter stages of the album. The last three tracks on the album are easily the best on it. 6.5/10

Dark Funeral: We Are The Apocalypse

Swedish death metal band Dark Funeral put out their seventh album last week. It’s okay. It’s enjoyable, don’t get me wrong, but in my limited foray into the sub-genre that I have experienced through this company it doesn’t sound like it is doing much different or too interesting. Tracks like ‘Nosferatu’ and ‘Leviathan’ are good, but didn’t do a lot to hold my interest. 6/10

And that’s all folks! As always keep up to date on our socials here and tune in next week for, depending on your tastes, Machine Gun Kelly and Placebo!

Excerpts From The Dark Age: The Start of Something great for Gomorran?

Gomorran is a blackened death metal band from Finland. Only established in 2019, the band rolled into 2021 in a big way with the release of their first single. They didn’t stop there, releasing a second before finally releasing their first EP, this one, to close out the year. I hadn’t heard of them before we received their EP from our friends at Inverse records, so I am excited to check them out and see how much of a blackened death metal fan I am!

Intro track ‘Tavern’ starts us off slow, quietly, and rather beautifully. A simple acoustic guitar note begins, a chord progression building over the top and a simple yet perfect violin coming in over the top. It definitely gives off the vibe of it being in a medieval/dark ages sort of time. It gives the EP an immediate epic feel to it. The instruments build up more and more steadily throughout the nearly 2-minute track, it being a perfect setup for something heavier. The violin melody towards the end did give off some Game of Thrones vibes too, which is never an issue as that theme is incredible.

‘Black Plague’ then gets into more of what I was expecting, some evil-sounding guitar chords and the drums building up slowly and heavily over the top. The main riff soon kicks in and sounds heavy and menacing before the vocals come in over the top to add to that even more. The low growled scream is fantastic, and the drums immediately start to work overtime. However, what really catches my ear is the keys/synth in the back. They take the edge off the music a little bit and give it an almost mystical sound. It’s awesome. There’s a REALLY heavy bit around the 2-minute mark where the vocals get even lower and it’s awesome. The whole track is a collection of black metal guitaring, guttural vocals, and blast beats, and I am all for it. I’d love to see it live.

The band’s first single, ‘Sermon’ slows things down a little at first. The steadier pace if anything makes it even heavier, though. The drums drop out just before a minute in outside of a single cymbal and the guitars just hit simple chords, giving the powerful, crazy-good scream space to breath. It’s more of a chance to show off and impresses me massively. The track then kicks into high gear, everyone working overtime as they go into a speedy black metal part. It’s so evil and menacing sounding, setting an incredible tone throughout this EP so far. The track opens up again a little when the instruments go back to regular/half-time, and the vocals go a little Danny Filth. The main recurring riff is also insanely good. A fantastic track, and one that makes the playlist!

The band’s biggest song to date, ‘Hopeless Endeavour’, fades in and out with a guitar riff before the entire band slaps you in the face with a huge second one. The track doesn’t let up once, either, just powers through 4 minutes of massive riffs, quick beats, and a surprisingly catchy and open chorus. I can see why this is their biggest single, that chorus is awesome and the rest of it is crazy. Another track from Gomorran that easily makes the playlist!

‘Essaiah’ has a more plodding pace to it than the previous tracks. It’s a good thing after three tracks that were very full-on and in your face. I enjoyed this song but I have to admit it didn’t go anywhere that interesting. There’s some awesome guitar work in there, though.

However, the last track, ‘Hail Caesar’, really impressed me. Opening on an atmospheric note with a male choir. It definitely didn’t remind me of the Halo theme… A menacing guitar riff comes in over the top, the track slow-building perfectly. It soon heads into more black metal, quick drums and guitars and heavy, growled vocals. It stays at that level for most of the rest of the track but parts of it have a real epic feel to it and there are some chanted vocals around the middle that are awesome. Between those points and it being a longer track than the others, it gives off an even more epic feel to things and was definitely the right track to finish the EP on. Heck, the entire extended outro part which faded into the choir again was amazing. Awesome stuff from Gomorran.

Overall: This was great. Not being as used to the genre and heaviness as I should be, I enjoyed this a hell of a lot more than I thought I would. It was crazy heavy, crazy good and everyone involved is crazy talented. I can see big things for Gomorran in the future if they keep on putting out stuff like this! 

The Score: 8/10

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