Brock’s 2 Cents – OCTOBER 2022

Fall is here and this year is coming to an end very quickly. I recently saw IRON MAIDEN live, and they were incredible as usual, hard to think they’ll soon be hanging it up because of age. I was amazingly happy seeing families at the show, that parents brought their kids to see the greatness!  Anyways, I have a stack of albums I’d like to get in before new year’s hits so I’m going to do my best! Something different this time around, more black metal reviews compared to normal. Here are my reviews of recently released albums that I think you should know about. Forget about these in-depth reviews, I’m bringing you quick reviews on multiple releases to help you guide your way through the METAL world today!
Ratings: [0(sucks) to 5(awesome)]
{Format: Band – album title = rating |label |style of metal. review}

DEFLESHEDGrind Over Matter = 4.25/5 |Metal Blade |DEATH THRASH/GRIND
I’ll go out on a limb and say it, DEFLESHED IS THE MOST UNDERRATED DEATH THRASH BAND EVER! I still don’t understand why so many people have slept on this band, maybe they didn’t get the promotion exposure they needed or whatever but take heed now!!! Ever since I heard Under the Blade a year or so after it came out (which was probably the first I’ve heard of the genre), I was all in on DEFLESHED! Death thrash at a 100mph that goes straight for the jugular with no remorse! What more could you ask for?!? Under the Blade and Reclaim the Beat are f’n amazing pieces of work in the genre! Grind Over Matter is ferocious, energetic, relentless, insert any synonym word that means it hits you like a wrecking ball launch out of a cannon powered by nuclear fusion! The production on this is top notch which adds to the intensity of this monster! Basically, DEFLESHED ARE BACK! This album is vicious and might be/will rival to be their best album yet! This is a must! Holy Shit, a pure, no lie, album that wears you out after listening! This will be in my top albums of the year! 11 tracks, 6 are killer and 4 are good.

GAEREAMirage = 4/5 |Season of Mist |BLACK METAL
This band from Portugal has been getting better and better with every release. The third album Mirage is here and holy shit, it’s their best one yet! I didn’t think their last album Limbo could be topped but I’m wrong! Cathartic BM is what GAEREA is offering, and it’s pushed them to the top of the BM genre! Even through this blasting barrage the band has a way to make you feel their pain. GAEREA has really mastered this counterbalance from just enough atmospheric vibes to invoke your emotions to take that pain, anger into the most ferocious BM riffs to beatdown your soul! I feel like this is kind of a thinking man’s BM as this band has taken the traditional sound of a few BM subgenres but adding a progressive touch into expanding what BM could be while keeping an emotional feel to the album and making it listenable for all fans just speaks volumes of how great this band is. Yet through all that I have a feeling this band has not yet hit their opus (I truly think this band can take things to a level further). Don’t take that last statement as a deterrent because this will be in my top albums of the year list! The production of the album sounds amazing to me, you can hear all the instruments, but it is more of a clean slick sound other than the raw, natural vibes a lot of BM bands like to use. A must for BM fans! 8 tracks, 6 are killer and 1 is good.

NORDJEVELGnavhol = 3.5/5 |Indie |BLACK METAL
One of my favorite newer BM bands! One of the major things I love about BM is its relentlessness and this is pure satanic beatdown of everything that is the genre. Their debut album was solid but when Destructhor (MYRKSKOG) became the main guitarist in 2018 NORDJEVEL became a BM juggernaut! The sophomore album Necrogenesis and two following EPs are killer! Gnavhol is a ferocious, incredibly tight, chaotic riffs fest with enough twists and turns to keep your attention but even with all the speed and aggression, there are some mid-tempo passages with touches doom-laden vibes here and there to keep thing interesting. Gnavhol may not be as good as Necrogenesis but still a powerhouse BM album that will absolutely flatten you! A must for BM fans and this is probably in my top albums of 2022! 9 tracks, 5 are killer and 2 are good.

GOATWHOREAngels Hung from the Arches of Heaven = 3/5 |Metal Blade |BLACK/DEATH METAL
I like very few BM bands from the USA but GOATWHORE‘s version with a mix of DM and a pinch of southern New Orleans sludge has always been comforting to me. It’s been a while since we’ve heard from GOATWHORE, and the new album it’s definitely a blasting, merciless force to be reckoned with! First thing I’ve noticed, the music has gotten a lot better and can even rival BM bands from Europe. My favorite albums are Carving Out the Eyes of God and Blood for the Master as the last two albums didn’t live up to those. Angels Hung from the Arches of Heaven still delivers that tried-and-true authentic European sound with a touch of DM, NOLA sludge and adrenaline-fueled Thrash vibes but it’s a bit more aggressive and melodic than previous albums. Probably their best album musicianship wise but I wanted more catchy songs/choruses to get the crowd/listener more involved. The album starts off incredible then gets a little dull in the middle but ends off strong. This is probably my third favorite album, but I can this being some people’s #1! 12 tracks, 1 intro, 4 are killer and 5 are good.

STRIGOI Viscera = 2.25/5 |Season of Mist |DEATH METAL/CRUST
Out of the ashes of VALLENFYRE, main man Gregor Mackintosh (PARADISE LOST) created STRIGOI. The debut album Abandon All Faith was f’n amazing, mixing just enough doom with crust to DM without it being too gloomy. VALLENFYRE did the same thing but not as much, STRIGOI pushes the envelope further into a darker sound with doom/crust vibes. I’m not a big fan of crust genre but Viscera compared to the first album has slowed down with more doom-ish riffs and a slower overall pace of the album. For me, this is a sophomore slump, it’s too slow for my taste, if the overall pace was a bit faster, I’d enjoy it more. It’s still a decent album for what it is. Fans of doomdeath or dark metal will enjoy this a lot. 10 tracks, 3 are killer and 4 are OK.

EPOCH OF UNLIGHT At War with the Multiverse = 3.5/5 |Dark Horizon |MELODIC BLACKENED DEATH METAL
I’ve always liked this band with their different take on blackened DM. Their last album The Continuum Hypothesis that came out in 2005 and sophomore album Caught in the Unlight were a tie for best album. Finally, a new album, 17 years later with At War with the Multiverse brings more of what was heard on The Continuum Hypothesis with intense, technical, yet melodic hybrid of black meets death meets thrash metal. The album starts off a little slow but starting with track 3 “Wrath of the Cryomancer” the album takes off and never looks back! Basically, EPOCH OF UNLIGHT is f’n back! Their sound, even if you want to say is retro, is still solid top quality and they deliver an album that you could defend as their best yet! At War with the Multiverse might end up in my top albums of the year list! 10 tracks, 5 are killer and 3 are good.

OMOPHAGIARebirth in Black = 2/5 |Unique Leader |DEATH METAL
I discovered this band when Unique Leader put out their sophomore album In the Name of Chaos which was a killer head-banging groove juggernaut of DM. The next album 646965 OMOPHAGIA started to expand their sound a bit but with Rebirth in Black, they’ve definitely found a new element and went in hard. A darker harsher atmosphere with elements sounding very familiar to NILE, SEPTICFLESH, etc… but the band has put grooves more on the back burner for this album. With the new instrumentation adding a cinematic type feel to this album has really taken away from what I liked about the band, which was grooves and the technical riffs of straight forward DM. The album starts off incredible but quickly falls flat in the middle and sort of picked back up by the end. This might be one of those albums that it’s just not for me, I’m not big of the direction of the new sound, there’s a lot of other bands already doing this out there. 11 tracks, 1 instrumental, 3 are killer and 4 are good.

I literally checked this band out a few years because of their name, expecting something cheesy, but this is actually really good progressive BDM! They take their name from old forgotten Norwegian word in dialect meaning “The one who has to take care of the job, the unpleasant one”. With an EP and two albums already out since 2017, BROTTHOGG is wasting no time creating their brand of extreme metal. Each release the band is getting better and better and you could say this album is as good as their last album The Die is Cast. The band comment: “As always we try to provide a personal approach towards the fine attributes extreme metal has to offer. Our focus is to create something brutal and aggressive, but also melodic and progressive, all interspersed with the freezing cold layers of black metal. Whether you call it back metal, death metal or even thrash metal, we hope we have created an intriguing release well worth exploring”. Trust me this band is definitely worth checking out, top notch quality genre-crossing metal. 7 tracks, 4 are killer and 1 is good.

SCEPTICNailed to Ignorance = 2.5/5 |Szataniec |TECHNICAL DEATH METAL
WOW! It’s been a long time, 2 years ago they teased us with a 4-song demo and finally the 5th full length album is here 17 years later. SCEPTIC plays tech DM more in the vein of the late 90s ala DEATH, PESTILENCE but with a pinch of the early sounds from GOROD, PSYCROPTIC, etc… Their first two albums Blind Existence and Pathetic Being were more my favorite than the last two as those albums seemed kind of stale/unoriginal. SCEPTIC definitely shows a lot of maturity on Nailed to Ignorance as they created something fresh yet reminiscent of the old school days of tech DM. I think they could’ve done more to push the boundaries or experimented but after so long, I think they played it a little safe to grab back their old and new fans alike. Overall, the album is very good, but I’d love to hear more to technicality to compete with the younger tech DM bands of today. A must for tech DM fans to check out! 9 tracks, 3 are killer and 4 are good.

NIGHTBEARERGhosts of a Darkness to Come = 3.25/5 |Testiony |OLD SCHOOL DEATH METAL
In the past 2 decades the old school HM2 DM worship has exploded on many levels, with old school bands reforming, new band featuring veterans to younger kids creating bands paying their worship and there are some gems out there, but NIGHTBEARER is definitely a diamond in the rough of this quickly oversaturated genre. This German band brings back memories of previous German bands delivering the old HM2 ENTOMBED style DM with a little touch of melody. NIGHTBEARER started off by Dominik Hellmuth playing all the instruments and lead vocalist Michael Torka but now has enlisted a full band. Their debut EP and Full Length were solid OSDM albums that definitely put them right up there in the top echelon of the genre! Ghosts of a Darkness to Come is their best album yet! Yeah, it’s OSDM but there’s something more here to chew on! A definite must for OSDM fans! 10 tracks, 5 are killer and 2 are good.

ATRONOSFehde = 3/5 |Purity Through Fire |MELODIC BLACK METAL
Besides the Scandanavian countries, Germany seems to put out top notch BM! Definitely a strong old school Swedish melodic BM vibe going on here, not recreating the wheel or anything but just a well written album that brings back all the feels from back in the day! ATRONOS plays melodic BM that perfectly mixes catchy riffs with merciless intensity of the faster pace style bands. This is definitely a wild listening as raspy vocals and clean singing (all in German) to help add a folk/pagan vibe to the album. If you like melodic BM with pagan/folk/Viking vibes than this is a must. Just like the German band GLEICHMACHER came out of nowhere and kicked everyone’s ass, this is another one you need to hear! Quality BM that’s worth checking out! 8 tracks, 3 are killer and 4 are good.

SONIVINOS Sonicated Intravaginal Insemination In Numbers = 3/5 |Unsigned |TECHNICAL DEATH METAL
This is straight over the top, uber insane tech DM! This reminds me of BRAINDRILL but taking it to the next level! Basically, it’s ex-members of BRAINDRILL and HENKER (from France) creating a relentless barrage of mind melting tech death! If you’re into uber tech DM then this is a must! I appreciate it for how technically insane these songs are, but I need a bit more of hooks or more grooves, something to more to grab a hold of. The tracks seem to fly by at amazing speeds but don’t really separate themselves from one track to another. The thing that is so great about this album will probably limit its fan base to only the true uber fans of tech DM! I dig it, even if it’s probably not a put-on repeat type album. 9 tracks, 4 are killer and 3 are good.

INSECT INSIDEInto Impending Apotheosis = 2/5 |Gore House Productions |BRUTAL SLAM DEATH METAL
The whole slam genre has become over saturated to the point it’s kind of hard being a fan nowadays. Out of 20 bands you might find one worthy enough. So, if I’m writing about a slam band, it’s one of three things, #1 it’s a band I love-so it’s about a new release, #2 it’s a band who has raised the bar and released something killer or #3 it might not be recreating the wheel but it’s a band who released a solid material that’s above 75% of the rest in the genre. This new EP from INSECT INSIDE is #3, not recreating the wheel but top-notch brutal slam DM! Their debut album The First Shining of Genus was f’n incredible and a year later we get a new EP. Honestly, I’m a little bit disappointed with this new EP, too much straight forward brutal DM and not enough slam. Definitely can say a sophomore slump here. Hopefully their next release will be better. 5 tracks, 1 instrumental, 1 is killer and 2 are OK.

ASKOG Varþnaþer = 2/5 |Grind to Death |BLACK METAL
A new name in Swedish BM is ASKOG with their debut album Varþnaþer which offers the typical melodic riffs, blast beats and heavy atmosphere but there’s more going on throughout. Musically they definitely cover a lot of ground from straightforward blast fest to traditional BM to doomy atmospheric vibes. The production is clean and slick which helps add to the heaviness at whatever pace they are playing. As the album progresses, the pay tribute to the roots of BM but are a little bit too all over the place. My only gripe is its too many styles without keeping a singular tone as these songs could be on different albums from different bands, but this fault could be something that you may treasure. I am looking forward to the next release. 8 tracks, 2 are killer and 3 are OK.

MUTILAGIANon-Human Atrocities = 3/5 |Unsigned |SLAM BRUTAL DEATH METAL
A newer band from Argentina! Bringing us their version of slam! Their debut EP was OK but needed focus, well, 2 years later focus is found with their sophomore EP Non-Human Atrocities! Fine tuning with more brutal and slams, MUTILAGIA are here to put their name in contention within the genre! Now this is not recreating the wheel as I like to say but just solid well written brutal slam! Definitely not a copy and paste, riff repeating/insert one slam riff type band. MUTILAGIA shows major improvement from their debut and has potential for some killer shit in the future! Slam fans this is your chance to get in on the ground floor! Slam fans take notice, a nice quality EP release here! 7 tracks, 3 are killer and 3 are good.

KILL DIVISIONPeace Through Tyranny = 1.5/5 |Refining Darkness |DEATHGRIND
Well, personally, I’m already I little pissed off by their name. KILL DIVISION has already been out there and I understand if some underground band had the name, but it was a band on Metal Blade Records from the Netherlands featuring members of GOD DETHRONED, SINISTER, LEGION OF THE DAMNED, INHUME, etc… Do your research, I know it’s very hard nowadays to find an original name but still! Other than that, KILL DIVISION from Florida brings us straight TERRORIZER grind worship! With Kyle Simmons on vocals (HATEPLOW, MALEVOLENT CREATION, etc…) this can be best described as HATEPLOW plays tribute to TERRORIZER with new songs. There’s nothing special here, its grind that probably TERRORIZER would write. I mean, I get it, Jesse Pintado was a badass and a true legend in the grind genre and it’s awesome to pay tribute to the man but then again, but I would like something new or different. Gus Rios from his drum fame (MALEVOLENT CREATION, DIVINE EMPIRE, GRUESOME) displays his guitar grind skills on this album and it’s not bad, but I like I said, nothing special here. 11 tracks, 1 TERRORIZER cover, 4 are good and 4 are OK.

askogatronosBrock's 2 Centsbrotthoggdefleshedepoch of unlightgaereaGoatwhoreInsect Insidekill divisionmutilagiaNightbearerNordjevelomophagiascepticsonivinosStrigoi
Comments (0)
Add Comment