Reviews – Audio

Laudanum: The Coronation

The sophomore release from Oakland-based Laudanum is a fragmented collection of ambient doom-ish noise that only adequately reveals the band’s self-proclaimed “blackened instrument damage” when it’s listened to as a whole.

Knight Area: Realm Of Shadows

Realm of Shadows has reached a different ground than their previous albums and that makes for a smooth and pleasant album to listen too. If you’re the sort who likes Dream Theater, Ayreon and Solis then this cd is going to hit the spot. If someone had told me this was an early Dream Theater release, I wouldn’t doubt them. And that’s a good thing.

Vader: Necropolis

Going strong now since the early 90s, Vader keeps getting better and better with each subsequent release. Considered the death metal version of Slayer they are the leaders of the Polish death metal scene and, with this album, soon the planet.

Whiplash: Unborn Again

Returning from the late-90s to capitalize on the continuing bear hug the metal world given to every thrash band that ever existed in the 80s is Whiplash. The difference being that for a short while back in 1985-86, Whiplash fucking ruled – well, fucking ruled my world, at the very least.

MGR y Destructo Swarmbots: Amigos de la Guitarra

A little bit of background information: the record is a collaborative project between two Mikes — Mike Mare and Mike Gallager (of Isis fame). Amigos is a 40-plus minute single-track of ambient guitar textures and carefully pieced-together layers of sound that, just as they are on the verge of overstaying their welcome, shifts gears so as to keep things from getting too boring.

Sacrifice: The Ones I Condemn

Forget all of your cardboard cutout third division skidthrash bands that have been popping up all over the place in the last few years, Sacrifice has returned to show how it is done, period. These Canadian thrash icons have come back after sixteen years of hibernation to create what is possibly the best work of their career.

Rob Kachluba reviews the brand new, long-awaited return album by Canadian thrash legends Sacrifice.

Bodychoke: Cold River Songs

Ok, I admit when I offered to review this CD I didn’t realize it was a reissue. Since I had never heard of the band before I couldn’t possibly know they had a discography and haven’t been together in ten years. On a good note, if I hadn’t actually looked at the date and saw this was recorded in 1997 I wouldn’t have thought the album sounded dated.

Old Wainds: Death Nord Kult

Apparently it’s pretty cold in Murmansk. Less chilly is Death Nord Kult, the latest release from Old Wainds. They hail from northern Russia, and thus it’s not overly surprising that their brand of black metal is all about darkness, the arctic, and geographical isolation.