Rebel Extravaganza

Heavy Metal & Extreme Music And Culture

Album Reviews

ALBUM REVIEW: AIMA – Tragos

While what’s happening to the goat in the lead track from AIMA’s debut full-length, Tragos may involve fucking of a sort, it definitely doesn’t sound as if anything’s being redeemed, so furious is the rhythm cannonade, so malevolent the riffs. Slithering back and forth and back again, from INCANTATION-style doom to a more cavernous BLEEDING FIST, this trio is locked into each other’s musical sensibilities, grafted to one another, even when ‘The Occultist’ threatens to take the whole careening train off the rails. ‘Possessed Preacher’ imbues and invades, a sonic reverse exorcism, casting demonic forces in rather than out. The […]

ALBUM REVIEW: Magic Circle – Departed Souls

Finally, some honest music. MAGIC CIRCLE have been a kind of cult name in doom metal circles the last few years and have shown a talent for epic metal in the CANDLEMASS vein. Their previous effort Journey Blind was a really strong release that definitely aimed for that mark. On Departed Souls, they are going for a more earthy vibe, injecting some blues and classic rock elements into the heaviness. Think of PENTAGRAM and early BLACK SABBATH more than CANDLEMASS this time around. Most importantly, this has a real pure analog sound to it. Praise be to the metal gods […]

Album Review: Undoer – Survival Is A Myth

The phrase “unlooked-for” fits Turkey’s UNDOER like a black, fingerless glove. Only a year out of the gate, the trio self-released Survival Is A Myth late 2018, streaking low under the radar of those (myself included) who weren’t paying enough attention, but should’ve been. It’s the nature of the beast circa 2018-19, however. The press/media is bloated with our own ego-driven elitism, fancying ourselves the watchguards of taste, so it’s unavoidable but – let’s be honest here – unfortunate that sometimes entire bands literally going supernova with quality exist in the exile of our oblivion. Wisely snapped up for wide(r) […]

Album Review: Paladin – Ascension

The buzz has been strong on this Atlanta band in the last few weeks, and they seem to be the latest darlings of the “true metal” crowd. I find Ascension entertaining enough, but I really have an issue with calling this an ode to ‘80s style power metal. That description leads me to expect something that draws a lot of influence from the likes of OMEN, MANILLA ROAD and the like. PALADIN to me sounds like they’re the second coming of 3 INCHES OF BLOOD mixed with the shredding guitar frenzy of DRAGONFORCE. The songs are fast, leaning to thrash, […]

Album Review: Abysmal Grief – Mors Eleison

The mid-late ‘90s in doom metal were a time of flux, moreso than any before or since. On the US front TROUBLE had gone full bloom, from the Sabbathian tones of its classic era into the hazed out, psychedelia-fueled Manic Frustration and Plastic Green Head, whilst on the other side of the Pond, Peaceville’s Big 3 and CATHEDRAL had morphed into entities that – while still miserable as ever – were not what they were at the start. It’s a safe bet, though, that all sub-variations of doom today owe themselves to the exploration of that time, so all that […]

Album Review: Full Of Hell – Weeping Choir

Depending on whom you’re speaking to, FULL OF HELL is either a merchant of modern death/grind of the highest order, or a marketing-funded merch machine masquerading as a band on the level of JOB FOR A COWBOY. For myself, I’ve always thought the Maryland quartet passable, but no great shakes in the grand scheme of things. Just seemed a bit too groomed for the Summer Slaughter circuit for me.It’s comforting, strangely, to know that some things never change. While opener ‘Burning Myrrh’ is SSDD when it comes to FOH, ‘Haunted Arches’ ups the ante, a bit of the ol’ power-faux-lence […]

Album Review: The Lord Weird Slough Feg – New Organon

What band has the balls to name their album after a book on scientific method written by Francis Bacon in 1620? Who else but THE LORD WEIRD SLOUGH FEG (also known as SLOUGH FEG, but now favoring the longer name again)? It’s a pleasure to see these eccentric masters of philosophical and literary metal in my inbox again! If you love metal in the classic style but with plenty of quirk, I can’t recommend these guys highly enough. And I’m happy to say that New Organon is their best work in quite a while. The recording is rougher, heavier and […]

Album Review: Blood Of Kingu – De Occultia Philosophia

BLOOD OF KINGU’s 2010 Sun In The House Of The Scorpion and Dark Star On The Right Horn Of The Crescent Moon of four years later were, to these ears, classic cosmic black metal albums, their focus on ancient Middle Eastern mythology rendered all the more unforeseen by the entity behind them being Roman Saenko, founding (and current) guitarist/bassist of Ukrainian Nature-worshipers, DRUDKH. Before all of that, though, there was De Occulta Philosophia, first released in 2007 on Supernal Music, and now given new breath by ATMF. It couldn’t have come at a better moment either, the scathing-yet-starborne ‘Your Blood, […]

ALBUM Review: BERTHOLD CITY – What Time Takes

Igniting with all the energy of JUDGE, XREPRESENTX and early SICK OF IT ALL, Los Angeles’ BERTHOLD CITY lets you know what it’s about in the first 10 seconds of What Time Takes…which is good, as we only have 7 minutes to work with here. Slashing guitars, drums on full auto, and vocals that demand to be not only heard, but respected. ‘No One To Blame’ flails, but focused, a clear sense of direction and self-introspection snarl-spitting into a mirror held up to modern society. “I’ve seen the ugly truth! Got you figured out!” is confrontational in the way only […]

Album Review: Wormwitch – Heaven That Dwells Within

This is my first encounter with WORMWITCH. The band belongs to a kind of subgenre where gloom reigns and black metal is just one flavor in an overall tasting. It resembles the approach of another band I recently encountered, FROSTHELM. But there is an extra layering of melody and mood here that surpasses what FROSTHELM was able to achieve. This is a pretty sophisticated sound with a number of subtle layers. All the songs here are quite involved and have a root in black metal. Changes in riff and tempo are frequent but there are some catchy hooks that make […]