Bodom After Midnight – Paint The Sky With Blood

Founded by legendary musician Alexi Laiho, Bodom After Midnight was supposed to be a new explosive sonic endeavor but sadly following his tragic death the release of the EP “Paint The Sky With Blood” marks a final salute.
The title track relies on a triumphant heavy assault constantly fueled by a savage & precise rhythmic section ensuring soaring dynamics surrounded by the symphonic accents of the opulent keyboards layers and certainly enriched by Alexi’s charismatic guitar leads and flamboyant shredding.
“Payback’s a Bitch” unleashes raw energy favoring speed and chunky riffage through unrestrained rhythmic patterns embellished by epic keyboards arrangements while the guitar work reaches the acme with the eclectic nature of the wild soloing.
The cover of Dissection’s “Where Dead Angels Lie” is a striking surprise showcasing a compelling darkened vision through the perfect combo of gloomy melodic phrases and blackened grooves.
The new project Bodom After Midnight unfortunately ended far too soon but with inflamed grooves and a strong creative force “Paint The Sky With Blood” successfully pays homage to Alexi’s legacy.

The Vintage Caravan – Monuments

Icelandic rockers The Vintage Caravan manifest a soulful psychedelic prog rock vision on the compelling fifth studio album “Monuments”.
“Whispers” immediately channels glorious ‘70s rock vibes through the massive groovy rhythmic dynamics clearly fueled by the robust riffage and the lingering psychedelic accents ultimately leading to a super catchy chorus emphasized by the passionate vocal delivery.
“Crystallized” often follows a slower tempo favoring the moody blues influenced melodic guitar phrases and the consequent nostalgic feelings yet the memorable rhythmic patterns showcase great diversity with an elaborate prog approach.
“Dark Times” begins with minimalist melancholic lines yet the super groovy momentum is bound to explode as the gritty guitar riffs skillfully build intense rhythmic segments that will eventually acquire trippy accents emphasized by the warm melodic soloing.
The magnetic guitar work thrives within the intriguing psychedelic tinged realm of “Forgotten” and reaches the acme with a charismatic extensive solo while the galloping drums can easily trigger entertaining grooves and the chorus maintains a catchy melodic essence.
“Torn In Two” often sounds like a spontaneous jam session and rightfully puts the spotlight on the stellar guitar progressions shifting from wild soloing to hazy melodic passages once again characterized by addictive vintage tonalities and charming bluesy rock elements.
“Clarity” embodies a nostalgia infused grand finale as the fragile arpeggios accompanied by emotional vocals express bittersweet feelings and create a dreamy atmosphere while the dazzling guitar solo will lead to a magical melodic crescendo.
Undoubtedly “Monuments” is another impressive addition to The Vintage Caravan’s successful discography as they confidently continue to develop an intriguing sonic identity blending captivating melodies and memorable retro rock grooves.

Greenleaf – Echoes From A Mass

Swedish stoner rockers Greenleaf return with a soulful blend of fuzzy grooves and hypnotic melodies on the new fiery offering “Echoes From A Mass”.
The wild ride begins with “Tides” manifesting a captivating vintage flair through the raw guitar sound delivering robust riffs and stellar leads that will ultimately lead to bewitching rhythmic crescendos within a surreal atmospheric realm.
The bluesy influences thrive throughout “Good God I Better Run Away” focusing on the slick guitar work which spontaneously builds memorable grooves enriched by the fuzzy soloing and the bittersweet vocal harmonies.
“Needle In My Eye” naturally conveys the hazy vibes of desert rock as the heavy combo of bass lines and guitar riffs consistently creates monumental rhythmic patterns reaching the acme with the addictive retro tones of the glorious solo.
Throughout “Bury Me My Son” the spacey atmospheric moments and the soulful vocal delivery fully express somber emotions which certainly enhance the warm bluesy rock spirit of the guitar riffs and the consequent vibrant rhythmic crescendos.
“On Wings Of Gold” takes you in the middle of the desert with an irresistible spacey jam highlighting the eloquent guitar phrases surrounded by an alluring atmospheric daze while the excellent rhythmic ensemble ensures plenty of solid grooves.
“What Have We Become” marks a poignant finale as the beautiful slower nostalgia infused guitar melodies accompanied by a truly passionate vocal performance emphasize the emotional themes flowing through a dreamy atmospheric realm.
Within the burgeoning stoner rock scene Greenleaf definitely deserve attention as the charismatic musicianship and the moody soundscapes of “Echoes From A Mass” are bound to make you space out instantly.

Marianas Rest – Fata Morgana

Finnish melodic death metal band Marianas Rest is ready to spread immense melancholia with the release of the third studio album “Fata Morgana” channeling a renowned Nordic gelid music style.
On “Sacrificial” the cold understated atmospheric intro leads to a dismal world where the gorgeous melodic guitar progressions convey overwhelming grave emotions that will inevitably move the listeners while the death metal inspiration triggers a heavier combo of galloping riffage and enraged growls.
The gloomy atmosphere of “Glow From The Edge” surrounds the elegant guitar melodies which rightfully become the main focus effortlessly evoking wistful feelings and wintry tonalities further enhanced by the theatrical narratives.
“Pointless Tale” stays true to the Finnish melodic death metal legacy as the charming darkness expressed by the excellent guitar work and the mournful rhythmic crescendos revolve around an irresistible mix of harsh riffs and hypnotizing melodic phrases.
The title track begins with monolithic rhythmic patterns channeling an obscure doom essence amplified by the desperate growls yet the fragile beauty of the refined atmospheric arrangements entwined with dreamy guitar harmonies can convey a cathartic feel.
A perennial melancholia continues to prevail throughout “South Of Vostok” as the mesmerizing atmospheric splendor enriches the tormented & heavy rhythmic segments while once again guitars hold a fundamental role crafting enticing and absolutely heart wrenching melodic passages.
Darkness and poignant emotions are destined to thrive within the sombre sonic realm of “Fata Morgana” as Marianas Rest carefully blend monumental doom/death metal elements and alluring melodic tapestries.

Wolfheart – Skull Soldiers

After the successful release of the full-length “Wolves Of Karelia” last year, Finnish death metal band Wolfheart continues to show an unstoppable creative force with the EP “Skull Soldiers” which includes two new tracks and two special rarities.
The title track takes you straight to a bloody battlefield as the unrestrained riffage and the hostile drum blasts generate a harsh rhythmic ensemble enriched by the charismatic licks of the guitar solos while the atmospheric arrangements aptly add solemn vibes.
Listening to “Hereditary” you can instantly perceive an intense rage as the faster aggressive rhythmic patterns amplified by the insanely vicious growls become the main focus marching through the somber nuances of the gelid atmospheric layers while the melodic guitar solo leads to a contemplative acoustic momentum.
The acoustic version of “Aeon of Cold”, released on the album “Shadow World” back in 2015, revolves around minimalist arpeggios and sorrowful vocals evoking a captivating melancholia.
The last track is a live version of “Reaper”, released on “Wolves Of Karelia”, which fully embodies the blend of wintry soundscapes and fierce rhythmic dynamics.
Once again pack leader Tuomas Saukkonen proves to be a prolific composer as “Skull Soldiers”, inspired by heroic battles, channels the monumental energy that characterizes the winter metal style of Wolfheart’s recent offerings.

Moonspell – Hermitage

As dark metal titans Moonspell approach their 30th anniversary the brand new opus “Hermitage” symbolizes a crucial moment in time and a cathartic voyage created with rare emotions and of course impeccable musicianship. 

The detailed atmospheric tapestries of “The Greater Good” certainly belong to a gloomy world where Fernando Ribeiro’s poetic clean delivery emphasizes the sombre beauty of the melodic guitar work while the rhythmic section will eventually embrace a significantly heavier momentum. 

You can immediately perceive the darkened grandeur of the title track as the solemn vocal performance and the sharp riffage highlight the soaring rhythmic patterns surrounded by alluring atmospheric arrangements and enriched by the dazzling melodic nature of the guitar solo. 

On “Entitlement” the rhythm often slows down to focus on the cinematic approach and the experimental twists of the intricate keyboards while guitars can acquire dreamy tonalities to create spellbinding melodies.  

“The Hermit Saints” feels like an epic journey fueled by Ferrnando’s theatrical vocals and the band’s darkest roots that inevitably lead to inflamed guitar progressions and fierce rhythmic blasts marching through the opulent atmospheric waves. 

“Apophthegmata” can sound quite soothing due to the delicate keyboards and the mellow vocals but the inner darkness is bound to emerge through the gothic flair of the refined atmospheric textures and the harsh guitar riffs. 

The dystopian poetry feels strong throughout “Without Rule” which perfectly blends the vibrant atmospheric layers, the futuristic electronic accents and the deeply darkened guitar tonalities that will ultimately generate brooding crescendos but also monumental  guitar driven grooves. 

It becomes evident that the intricate composition behind “Hermitage” is the product of an intense sonic evolution that defies standard categorization and rightfully aims to reach the soul of the listeners as Moonspell genuinely share their feelings through words and music.

God Is An Astronaut – Ghost Tapes #10

Irish experimental instrumental quartet God Is An Astronaut reach a crucial milestone with the release of the 10th album “Ghost Tapes #10” showcasing an opulent multifaceted composition. 

“Adrift” is a fascinating album opener where the whole instrumentation gradually builds a powerful momentum blending hazy harmonies and harsh rhythmic patterns that highlight the expression of contrasting emotions. 

“Burial” begins with shimmering piano melodies entwined with soulful guitar phrases channeling a dreamy post rock essence while the impeccable rhythmic section will acquire a cosmic energy to create memorable grooves. 

The ethereal atmosphere of “In Flux” evokes a surreal distant world favoring a moody melodic ensemble yet the rhythmic segments gradually acquire heavier murky tonalities following a syncopated rhythm. 

Listening to “Barren Trees” you can easily space out as the cinematic motifs take the center stage while the mesmerizing multilayered synths and the melancholic melodies constantly evoke an emotional whirlwind. 

“Ghost Tapes #10” definitely marks an intense sonic experience as God Is An Astronaut skillfully create intricate soundscapes that range from energetic dynamics to contemplative post rock nuances. 

Sirenia – Riddles, Ruins & Revelations

Sirenia’s mastermind Morten Veland is definitely an incredibly prolific composer and today his unstoppable creativity shines bright on the new super catchy full length “Riddles, Ruins & Revelations” skillfully combining lavish symphonic tapestries and modern electro twists. 

The electronic layers feel quite dominant on “Addiction No. 1” channeling cool futuristic vibes that naturally embrace the groovy rhythmic dynamics and the polished melodic phrases unfolding around Emmanuelle Zoldan’s passionate vocals. 

The delicious inner darkness of “Towards An Early Grave” is naturally emphasized by the poetic flair of the elaborate atmospheric waves and the cold melodic moments while guitars can also deliver plenty of heavier grooves. 

“Passing Seasons” embodies the renowned symphonic formula with refined atmospheric arrangements and solemn operatic choirs that definitely enrich the sultry melodic essence often spiced up by a mix of electro accents and gritty riffage. 

On “We Come To Ruins” the mood becomes significantly darker as the harsh rhythmic section takes the center stage amplified by intricate guitar progressions and Morten’s tormented growls in contrast with Emmanuelle’s soothing vocal harmonies and the dreamy atmospheric momentum. 

Throughout “Downwards Spiral” guitars can acquire a raw energy that leads to massive riffage and darkened tonalities while the blend of soothing melodic phrases and luminous keyboards lead to an addictive chorus featuring a lovely duet with guest vocalist Joakim Næss. 

The opulent atmospheric arrangements of “December Snow” evoke bittersweet feelings during the slower passages yet the rhythmic section will often focus on catchy dynamics enhanced by an enthralling vocal performance.   

The last track “Voyage Voyage” is a cover of Desireless 1986 hit and certainly maintains distinct 80s vibes with the prominent shiny keyboards style while Emmanuelle delivers a charming performance singing in French. 

On the tenth album “Riddles, Ruins & Revelations” Sirenia clearly aim to expand their sonic vision without sacrificing the symphonic metal roots in order to create a memorable collection of songs that can easily captivate the listeners.

Nervosa – Perpetual Chaos

With a new line-up and untamed fury Nervosa unleash a massive thrash/death metal onslaught on the latest ravenous offering “Perpetual Chaos”. 

“Venomous” is a perfect album opener as it incarnates the perennial rage that characterizes Nervosa’s music style so you will find an overdose of blistering guitar driven grooves enriched by the grave tonalities of the solo and the diabolical growls. 

The faster merciless rhythmic blasts on “People Of The Abyss” generate an infectious riffage marching fiercely through an asphyxiating sonic realm yet when the tempo slows down a bit the guitar work promptly delivers intriguing leads. 

The title track never fails to create energetic grooves courtesy of the inflamed rhythmic section yet the mood feels darker during the slower paced passages evoking a sense of impending doom.  

On “Until The Very End” the vicious guitar riffs lead the way to a hostile rhythmic rampage channeling all the raw energy of old school thrash metal while the soloing adds variety with ominous progressions. 

The ritualistic intro of “Blood Eagle” influences the darkened flair of the slightly slower rhythm yet the monumental drums and the galloping riffage can still generate enraged thrash blasts always amplified by the vicious growls. 

Featuring an explosive performance by guest vocalist Eric Knudsen of Flotsam And Jetsam “Rebel Soul” manifests a straightforward groovy approach revolving around the obviously rebellious unrestrained rhythmic patterns. 

On “Under Ruins” the slower guitar progressions add some melodic accents and naturally evoke a dense darkness that inevitably lingers through the crushing faster grooves unfolding around the malignant growls. 

Nervosa confidently follow a classic thrash/death metal pathway delivering the expected dosage of savage grooves and as the title suggests you simply cannot escape the chaotic fury of “Perpetual Chaos”.   

Draconian – Under A Godless Veil

Masters of gothic doom metal Draconian invite you to enter a magical world of melancholia & poetry with the new long awaited release “Under A Godless Veil” which stays true to their fascinating legacy blending pure despair and haunting melodies. 

The sophisticated atmospheric arrangements on “Sorrow Of Sophia” create a darkly alluring dimension where the enchanting voice of Heike Langhans flows delicately while the guitar work and the tormented growls effortlessly convey the crestfallen essence of authentic gothic doom metal. 

On “The Sacrificial Flame” you can immediately feel the oppressing weight of the guitar riffs following a funereal march in proper doom fashion and certainly the vicious growls and the solemn narrative amplify the inner darkness in contrast with Heike’s ethereal vocal delivery. 

“Lustrous Heart” still relies on mournful doom nuances as the guitars are drenched in darkness yet fully embrace a lavish melodic splendor embellished by the sophisticated leads and the elegant vocals flourishing through the evocative atmosphere. 

The heart wrenching guitar melodies on “The Sethian” constantly enhance the classic gothic flair and the consequent gloomy feelings yet there is space for some heavier rhythmic patterns fueled by the solemn faster drumming and the anguished growls. 

Within the celestial atmospheric ensemble of “Claw Marks On The Throne” guitars stand out for the exquisite melodic phrases expressing an immense melancholia around the graceful vocals while the mesmerizing rhythmic crescendo is enriched by the eloquent solo. 

On the spellbinding final opus “Ascend Into Darkness” the intricate combo of understated atmospheric layers and darkly alluring guitar progressions impeccably creates a hypnotic desolate sonic realm where the contrasting vocals can fully convey poignant emotions.  

Undoubtedly Draconian continue to successfully keep alive a sumptuous gothic grandeur that is destined to move the listeners with the fragile beauty of the opulent soundscapes embodied by “Under A Godless Veil”.