Rebel Extravaganza

Heavy Metal & Extreme Music And Culture

Album Reviews

Album Review: Picture – Wings

PICTURE is a band that almost made it big in heavy metal. Like many other bands of the dawn of the metal age, they SHOULD have made it big. All the tools were there. It’s been 40 years since these Dutchmen first made their mark. Is there a place for PICTURE in 2019? You bet your sweet bippy there is. Wings has such a flavor of what made metal great in the early ’80s and that formula still works today. You’d have to be dead inside to not get a warm fuzzy feeling from this record. This is where classic […]

ALBUM REVIEW: Gaahl’s Wyrd – GastiR – Ghosts Invited

There’s no doubt that Mr. Kristian Espedal better known as GAAHL is one of the most polarizing, if not the most polarizing figure on the black metal scene. And so he’s been for quite some time. Much of it seems to revolve around his sexuality, which I could give a rat’s ass about. It’s no more pertinent with Gaahl than it is with Rob Halford or the dude from TORCHE. But even beyond that, the guy’s been a real outsider since Day One and in a lot of ways he sums up the rebel aspect of black metal a lot […]

Album Review: Burial Party – Please, Electric Move Slow

BURIAL PARTY launches its 10+ minute debut 7” with jagged riffing, snap-mare rhythms and Ian MacKaye-styled vox, and it’s the early ’90s all over again, son. No, not the Use Your Illusion, or even Nevermind early ’90s, mind you, but the ones that brought us Grippe / In On The Kill Taker, so you know right off what BURIAL PARTY has on offer. ‘Black Stripe’ jiggers its way into the angular, saw-toothed ‘Crisis Actor’, yanking the ghosts of noise-rawk gods DRIVE LIKE JEHU back into corporeal form, all tension, build and release, something many post-whatever bands could take a lesson […]

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 […]