Skein – Deadweight (Darkened Alternative Metal)

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Lets start with some fact. Skein were formed in 2004 in Tampere, Finland and plays darkened alternative metal (I honestly didn’t know that was a thing but nevermind the genre label). They have three EP’s and one full-length prior the release of Deadweight in their name. While their latest full-length release from 2014 Of Wings Unfolding was a concept album their sophomore album is not. Deadweight is produced by the melancholic master Tuomas Kokko (Ghost Brigade, Swallow the Sun, Timo Rautiainen & Trio Niskalaukaus) and released by Inverse Records.

Melancholic yet beautiful, that’s how I would describe Skein’s emotional sophomore album. As you could probably already tell by the genre and producer behind the band. I get A Perfect Circle featuring Hanging Garden feeling from their music and that in itself is no small feat. Finnish bands are masters when it comes to create an melancholic atmosphere and Skein just adds to that fact. I usually don’t listen to this type of alternative rock but Skein’s mix of clean vocals and screamo, along with some great songwriting, made this an album I certainly won’t see as deadweight in my collection. Lies Mundane, Deadweight along with the two epic closing tracks In Circles and The Unknown are my favorite tracks from the album. Funny thing with the title track Deadweight is that I think vocalist Sami Silvennoinen sounds a lot like Matt Heafy from Trivium on this track with his screamo technique.

I have to say Skein surprised me. I thought this wasn’t going to be my type of music but sometimes you just need to get out of your comfort zone and listen to something new. I am glad I did as Skein has now opened up a whole new genre for me to listen to. Thank you.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/skeinband
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/skeinband
Label: Inverse Records
For fans of: A Perfect Circle and Hanging Garden
Favorite song: In Circles
Score: 4/5

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Necrotted – Worldwide Warfare (Deathcore/Death Metal)

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Coming out with their third full-length album just a few days ago we got Germany’s deathcore/death metal unit Necrotted. Worldwide Warfare has a lot, and I mean a lot, in common with Despised Icon and Thy Art is Murder. The breakdowns and brutality are on point which really does make me think of some early Despised Icon or newer Thy Art is Murder. It’s heavy and filled with class riffs. Worldwide and No War but Class War could be what Puppet Master and The Son of Misery is for Thy Art is Murder on Dear Desolation. Heavy but also really catchy.

My favorite however is Hunt Down the Crown. The drumwork on this song is so freaking fast and brutal, almost 1349 Hellfire style of intro and outro which I love! Overall the song just feels more aggressive getting me headbanging along wanting to get bat-shit crazy and mosh. I kinda wish they took this route more often on the album because the rest of the songs are too much alike Thy Art is Murder and Despised Icon for my taste. As much as I like those bands and think Necrotted does it well it won’t make me go back to this album much in the future as then I might as well pick up an album by TAIM or DI.

Worldwide Warfare is worth a listen for deathcore and death metal lovers out there. Necrotted promises fast, heavy music and they deliver just that. A bit too repetitive in the end so Worldwide Warfare loses me around The Lost Ones which also lowers the score. However I did dig the start of the album and especially Hunt Down the Crown has been on my playlist for a few weeks now.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NECROTTED
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/NECROTTED
Label: Rising Nemesis Records
For fans of: Despised Icon and Thy Art is Murder
Favorite song: Hunt Down the Crown
Score: 2.5/5

Persecutory – Towards the Ultimate Extinction (Black Metal)

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From Turkey we got a full-length debut to review this time! It’s Persecutory, a band which stated out in 2014 and had an EP released last year Perversion Feeds Our Force. I’m not familiar with the band nor it’s sound but from the logo alone I could tell this was going to have black metal elements to it. Being from one of my current underground label favorites Godz ov War Productions I got high hopes on this release being something special.

Do you like Enthroned? What about Acrimonious? Then you’re in luck as Turkish band Persecutory offers an experience quite similar to their work. If you like your black metal with a lot of chaos and destruction in it then Towards the Ultimate Extinction will get your fill. This is very fast paced black metal with some trash metal thrown into the mix and it sounds evil. With that said there is little that makes me stick around for more than a playthrough or two. While some albums grow with time or are instant hits from the get-go I feelt this kinda just went by. Doesn’t by all means mean it’s a bad album it’s just not got those hooks that keeps me wanting to come back for more. No song that sticks out but also no song that I feel the need to skip.

For Enthroned fans I would say this is a really good album to get. It’s an album you can devour and get some satiscation from it but won’t leave you begging for more.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/persecutory666
Label: Godz ov War Productions
For fans of: Acrimonious and Enthroned
Favorite song: Towards the Ultimate Extinction
Score: 2.5/5

Neck of the Woods – The Passenger (Progressive Death Metal/Metalcore)

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Sometimes Spotify really does give me great weekly lists with some new bands and albums I’ve never heard before. This time they pointed me in the direction to Neck of the Woods, a Canadian band which plays a progressive death
metal/metalcore type of music. Think of Misery Signals or August Burns Red doing a co-op project with Dillinger Escape Plan and you’re kinda there. The Passenger is the bands sophomore release and from hearing the opening track Bottom Feeder before I knew I was in for something great.

The progressive elements really does push this albums to great heights. I never get bored and there are so many good riffs and breakdowns on The Passenger it’s almost silly. I haven’t really enjoyed metalcore releases these past years since the genre doesn’t give me anything to enjoy anymore. However once in awhile a band like Neck of the Woods comes along and mixes different elements creating something fresh and new. They got slow paced starts like on Bottom Feeder which eventually turns and produces some metalcore goodness. Nailbiter on the other hand is pedal to the metal from the get go with furious riffs and becomes a favorite of mine, really giving me those August Burns Red vibes. White Coats bass solo is sweet but other than that the song doesn’t quite capture me like Bottom Feeder and Nailbiter did, good song but a bit too slow for me. Open Water is a beautiful passage leading into You’ll Always Look the Same to Me. Initially I found the song a bit too metalcore, less progressive, for my taste but halfway into it they change the pace and I really like it. Making use of the elements I find them sticking out from the rest.

Face of the Villain, oh wow, the start on that features everything I am liking with Neck of the Woods. The bass, the drums, guitar and vocals. Everything is synced well, pushing their sound to new levels and this is the way I want them to sound. Together with Bottom Feeder and Nailbiter it’s definitely the song I will remember from this album. Drift crates another well written intermission until Foothills kicks in. Starts as one of the heavier tracks on the album but eventually slows down and becomes very progressive-sounding like Vattnet. Not a personal favorite of mine but I like that they did a song like this going more all in progressive. The song to end the album, Before I Rest, features another slow progressive start then eventually turn into the August Burns Red-like metalcore sound just to turn it back around. A good ending and one of the better songs on The Passenger.

I have to say I enjoyed my listen of The Passenger. It had its up and downs giving and taking from a wide range of genres but when Neck of the Woods are on form jelling those elements together into one I find them being one of the most interesting bands to follow.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pg/neckofthewoodsmetal
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/NOTWmetal
Label: Basick Records
For fans of: August Burns Red and Dillinger Escape Plan
Favorite song: Face of the Villain
Score: 3.5/5

Throne of Heresy – Decameron (Blackened Death Metal)

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Throne of Heresy is a band I’ve always thought it very underrated. Since their formation in 2009 they’ve released killer music with last years Antioch being one of my favorite death metal albums coming out (which I sadly didn’t review) that year. Sure they have their ups and downs, good and bad songs but who doesn’t? When Throne of Heresy are on point I would say they are one of the best blackened death metal bands going at the moment.

Decameron is the bands latest offering and The Shores of Issyk-Kul starts off the album insanely well. Classic death metal riffs with a touch of black metal aggressiveness that makes me think of the mighty Firespawn. With Decameron being a concept album based on the old book with the same name I had a rough idea on what to expect, a dark album with tales of the black death (the plague). 10 tales into 10 songs of death, brutality and utter horror. The essence of this is captured really well in Decameron, as I said before The Shores of Issyk-Kul sets the tone with it’s aggression, atmosphere of doom and death. Which sets the pace for the rest of the album. Every song have a eerie feeling to it and is very dark, from lyrics to the whole overall performance. In that sense Decameron is almost a perfect concept album for what Throne of Heresy want to broadcast, one of the darkest eras of mankind.

Musically this is an album on par with Antioch, even if they are quite hard to put against each other seeing as they are very different. While Decameron offers an even more atmospheric feeling and blackened death metal take, which I can see as a mix of Naglfar, Dissection and Firespawn at times, Antioch was a more head-on death metal approach in my opinion. I think this is Throne of Heresy’s best work yet and they keep evolving with each release, honing that blackened sound. I hope that soon their plague will spread among the metal community to make more people give into their darkness.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/throneofheresy
Label: The Sign Records
For fans of: Firespawn and Dissection
Favorite song: Siege of Caffa
Score: 4/5

Trivium – The Sin and the Sentence (Metalcore/Trash/Heavy Metal)

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One of my favorite bands of all time is Trivium. Ascendancy was one of the first metal albums I got at the age of 16 which made me like the music even more (along with Linkin Park, Disturbed and other early 00 releases). With that said Trivium got a soft spot in my black heart. A thing that makes me really like the band, but dislike some of their albums, is the fact that they are not afraid to change their sound. One album can be very metalcore, next trash and next one almost a bit of popish heavy metal. Going from growling to clean singing, changing their sound but still putting out good albums isn’t easy but Trivium manages to do that (most of the time). With that said my three favorite albums with them are Ascendancy, Shogun and Silence in the Snow, until now.

Whereas Ascendancy will always be very close to me and I will probably always regard it as their best album due to that reason I am completely sold on The Sin and the Sentence. There is something for every era of Trivium, for every fan, new and old. The opener and titletrack of the album The Sin and the Sentence is almost a perfect example on how a Trivium song should sound like to cover their different sounds in one go. Here you got the clean singing, the catchy riffs, the change of tempo that takes you in with the old trashy and heavy sound Trivium first got known for into the mix (last minute of the song). I’ve listened to that song endless of times and it gets better with each listen. Beyond Oblivion and Other Worlds might not go to history as some of my favorites but they are solid songs. The Heart From the Hate is so damn catchy it hurts. Then comes Betrayer which is freaking sweet, it captures the rawer sound Trivium once had and together with The Sin and the Sentence and The Heart From Your Hate quickly becomes some of the best songs on the album. Bear in mind those are the three singles Trivium released previously so I’d already had quite a few listens to them and goten to know every single riff, the lyrics etc inside out which probably clouds my judgement.

From the songs I hadn’t heard prior the album release The Wretchedness Inside is a really good song with memorable riffs and feels a bit hardcore sounding. In all honesty there isn’t a single song I find bad but some are definitely more memorable than others. Beauty in the Sorrow is a prime example of that, if you want me to name the songs on this album in a year that one would easily waste away compared to lets say The Sin and the Sentence. Also has to be said I originally thought Thrown Into the Fire was a really average but with time has grown on me. Which has actually been the way The Sin and the Sentence has worked for me. The more I listen to it the more I enjoy it. This is one of the best albums Trivium has released with a lot songs that will be remembered as some of their best when we look back at their discography in the future.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Trivium
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/TriviumOfficial
Label: Roadrunner Records
For fans of: Killswitch Engage and All That Remains
Favorite song: The Sin and the Sentence
Score: 4/5

Logic of Denial – Aftermath (Brutal Death Metal)

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Italy, not just a beautiful country but starting to become my go to country for great quality metal releases. 2017 has been a great year overall for metal but for Italy it’s been insane. I’ve mentioned it quite a few times already but wow are bands from that region pulling all the stops this year. Logic of Denial hails from, yes you guessed it, Italy! The band started off as Collapse in 2003, eventually changed name to Logic of Denial in 2006 and got two full-length albums behind their name prior this release. This is my first time with the band but from what I see it seems they’ve evolved nicely, having somewhat average reviews on their debut but on the sophomore and especially on Aftermath getting really good reviews.

I have to say the reviews I’ve seen are completely justified. Aftermath is a fine piece of work that sets the bar high for what Logic of Denial can produce. Just as Unfathomable Ruination was a smashing hit last year with one of the best brutal death metal albums which saw the band take new heights I see Logic of Denial doing the same this year. This is 43 minutes of an unrelenting force you do not want to stand against. Go with it instead, give into the beatdowns, the crushing waves of drums coming at you, the tight guitarplay and gutturals. Tracks like Larvae of Eden are leaving even the mighty Dying Fetus wondering what hit them and here I am wondering how I could not have heard of this album sooner? Everything I want from a brutal death metal release is in Aftermath. Having had a rough week at work this album has been going at least once a day and I’ve loved every second of it.

Aftermath is one of those albums that makes me want to dig into the bands discography and listen to how they have evolved into this sweet sound of death. A splendid release from Logic of Denial and definitely a contender for the best brutal death metal album this year.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/LogicOfDenialBand
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/LogicOfDenial
Label: Comatose Music
For fans of: Unfathomable Ruination and Septycal Gorge
Favorite song: Larvae of Eden
Score: 4/5