Host – IX

Nick Holmes and Greg Mackintosh of legendary Paradise Lost finally found the time to resurrect the Host project delivering the new full length “IX” evidently inspired by the glorious New Wave and Goth music scenes.
“Wretched Soul” instantly manifests a seductive goth vision as Nick’s haunting vocals flow smoothly through the hypnotizing multilayered synths spiced up by dreamy guitar phrases.
“Divine Emotion” is bound to spellbind you with an impeccable mix of melancholic piano melodies and rich atmospheric textures ultimately leading to a rather addictive chorus.
Throughout “Hiding From Tomorrow” guitars become more dominant crafting steady riffs and sorrowful harmonies enriched by the futuristic electronic elements.
You can appreciate the eclectic synths of “A Troubled Mind” maintaining a gloomy yet dancefloor friendly mood in proper darkwave fashion while guitars can add some crispy melodic accents.
Everything feels bleak on “Inquisition” due to the slower rhythmic patterns and the constant hazy synths surrounding Nick’s contemplative vocal delivery.
The atmospheric arrangements of “I Ran” might sound darker and a bit surreal but the rhythm seamlessly shifts from softer introspective moments to super catchy dynamics.
It’s easy to notice the strong connection between Paradise Lost album “Host” and “IX” as Nick and Greg here have the freedom to experiment following a different musical pathway that naturally leads to fascinating melodies and darkened atmospheres.

Enslaved – Heimdal

It all started with the infamous Norway’s black metal scene three decades ago and since then Enslaved fearlessly have been exploring diverse sounds and concepts to reach another crucial milestone releasing the thrilling 16th studio album “Heimdal”.
The esoteric journey begins with the ceremonial horn of “Behind The Mirror” which grabs your attention with a complex composition putting the spotlight on the sharp guitar riffs and the consequent majestic rhythmic rampage carefully embellished by soothing clean vocals and surreal atmospheric nuances.
“Forest Dweller” shifts the focus to a compelling melodic grandeur featuring ethereal acoustic passages accompanied by the poignant vocal delivery nevertheless a sinister blackened force is bound to take over through the colossal drumming and the ravenous growls.
Throughout “The Eternal Sea” the fascinating clean vocal harmonies and the crispy guitar tonalities create an epic melodic flow while the galloping riffs lead to a dramatically heavier momentum ultimately channeling the band’s obscure black metal roots.
The title track opens a portal to an ancestral realm as the intricate synths arrangements meticulously craft a perennial mystifying aura around the elaborate rhythmic patterns fueled by the proggy guitar leads and groovy riffs.
Within the kaleidoscopic world of “Heimdal” Enslaved once again demonstrate an eclectic songwriting approach revolving around the most mysterious entity in Nordic mythology and skillfully combining rich prog dynamics and inflamed black metal elements.

Threshold – Dividing Lines

UK’s premier progressive metal band Threshold begins a new thrilling chapter with the release of 12th studio album “Dividing Lines” characterized by excellent musicianship and intricate composition.
‘Haunted” instantly showcases the key elements of the whole album, in fact you can appreciate the prowess that generates big guitar riffs and tasteful leads embellished by bittersweet melodic accents and modern electro layers.
“Silenced” stands out for the futuristic mood with robotic sounds and rich atmospheric arrangements while guitars skillfully build bold rhythmic patterns ultimately leading to a smooth melodic solo.
The cinematic synths on “The Domino Effect” introduce an inflamed rhythmic ensemble highlighting a complex prog pathway while the elegant harmonies emphasize a contemplative essence reaching the acme with a flawless melodic guitar solo.
Throughout “Complex” guitars deliberately acquire heavier tones to ensure a groovy approach and the precise rhythmic section generates shapeshifting dynamics always enriched by the eclectic keyboards.
“Lost Along The Way” features a catchy chorus and some harrowing atmospheric waves that contribute to build a palpable rhythmic tension while the compelling lead guitar work provides polished melodic motifs.
The majestic final track “Defence Condition” conveys a significantly darker atmospheric grandeur through the sorrowful tones of the multilayered synths surrounding a winning combo of mighty riffage and charismatic technical solos while Glynn Morgan fully demonstrates his vocal abilities.
The strength of “Dividing Lines” evidently relies on the band’s chemistry and the sophisticated songwriting style as today Threshold are still driven forward by a strong creative force.

Therion – Leviathan II

During their successful 35 years career Therion have developed a perfect blend of symphonic grandeur and mystifying gothic metal and now they reach another significant milestone with the release of “Leviathan II”.
“Litany Of The Fallen” has an evident epic flair as the solemn operatic choirs perfectly complement the sharp guitar riffs and the cinematic atmospheric arrangements.
“Alchemy Of The Soul” mainly focuses on deeply melancholic guitar melodies and the soulful violin enriched by the delicate vocals yet the rhythmic section can acquire heavier tones through the bold riffage.
“Lunar Coloured Fields” has a classical operetta flair with a dramatic vocal delivery and understated orchestral layers but at times the atmospheric ensemble can manifest a significantly darker essence.
The mood changes on “Lucifuge Rofocale” as the energetic guitar riffs become more dominant following a classic heavy metal inspiration amplified by the powerful male vocals while the choirs maintain a flawless symphonic approach.
“Hades And Elysium” embraces a mellow yet intricate composition as the refined orchestrations and the soothing melodic phrases unfold gently around the poignant vocal duets.
A mystical aura surrounds “Codex Gigas” which naturally shifts from enigmatic atmospheric layers to a harsh darkened rhythmic momentum easily emphasized by Thomas Vikström’s intense vocals.
With “Leviathan II” Therion choose to please their loyal acolytes staying true to their signature symphonic metal formula so you can expect opulent orchestrations, impeccable vocal performances and plenty of catchy heavy metal elements.

Behemoth – Opvs Contra Natvram

Polish extreme metal titans Behemoth make a majestic return with the sophisticated obscure realm of the twelfth studio album “Opvs Contra Natvram”.
You cannot escape the blasphemous force of “Malaria Vvlgata” as the relentless riffage and the hammering drums easily create an asphyxiating rhythmic rampage.
The mood changes a bit on “The Deathless Sun” as the guitar leads & charismatic solos acquire enigmatic tonalities generating quasi melodic moments emphasized by the triumphant chorus without sacrificing the inner blackened fury.
On “Ov My Herculean Exile” guitars focus on slower passages and the consequent decadent atmosphere naturally evokes tormented feelings further enhanced by the dramatic vocal delivery.
“Once Upon A Pale Horse” offers ominous melodic phrases highlighting the somber guitar work yet the precise drumming proudly delivers a fair dosage of memorable blackened grooves.
“Thy Becoming Eternal” stays true to a devilish black metal formula with unstoppable guitar riffs and extra speed but certainly benefits from the solemn choirs to convey a mysterious flair.
“Versvs Christvs” shows a contemplative and refined songwriting approach as the sheer beauty of classical piano accompanied by whispered vocals introduce a solid series of aggressive rhythmic patterns enriched by a savage guitar solo.
Over the course of three decades Behemoth bravely forged an uncompromising sonic vision that today continues to symbolize rebellion and individuality throughout the labyrinthine soundscapes of “Opvs Contra Natvram”.

The Halo Effect – Days Of The Lost

Featuring extraordinary musicians Gothenburg’s newest melo-death metal supergroup The Halo Effect proudly releases the highly anticipated debut album “Days Of The Lost”.
The golden days of melo-death metal are perfectly represented by the infectious riffage of “Shadowminds” which marks a memorable beginning combining an overdose of harsh guitar riffs, sweeping melodic phrases and modern atmospheric tapestries.
The title track picks up a faster energetic tempo enhanced by the hammering drum blasts and Mikael Stanne’s visceral growls while the crispy guitar leads and the excellent solo focus on a polished melodic essence.
During “Conditional” the slower moments clearly emphasize a gloomy mood through elegant guitar phrases but the precise rhythmic section certainly has the chance to provide proper death metal patterns.
“In Broken Trust” skillfully showcases an ideal balance between fiery guitar driven grooves and cathartic melodic passages within a refined atmospheric ensemble consequently the soulful clean vocals amplify a beloved Nordic melancholia.
The poetic strings intro of “Last Of Our Kind” swiftly leads to a quite aggressive rhythmic rampage highlighting the perfect combo of relentless riffage and gruesome growls featuring guest vocalist Matt Heafy of Trivium.
Staying true to an irresistible melo-death formula “The Most Alone” brings a contemplative closure with a captivating series of darkened melodic crescendos and soothing wintry guitar tonalities.
“Days Of The Lost” is bound to conquer all acolytes of the legendary Gothenburg melo-death scene with plenty of melodic hooks as The Halo Effect never fails to showcase true passion and brilliant musicianship.

Decapitated – Cancer Culture

Polish technical death metal veterans Decapitated aspire to expand their music vision combining devastating rhythmic dynamics and contemplative themes on the new long-awaited album “Cancer Culture”.
The title track clearly manifests pure ferocity through the relentless riffage and the breakneck speed yet the lead guitar work has a chance to craft refined harmonious progressions expressing grim emotions.
Featuring a striking clean vocal performance by Tatiana Shmayluk of Jinjer, “Hello Death” seamlessly blends absolute brutality and eloquent melodic aesthetics as guitars confidently shift from frantic technical riffs to sophisticated gloomy tonalities.
“Iconoclast” hits you in the face with massive grooves constantly fueled by the sharp riffage yet the darkly alluring melodic flair is destined to steal the spotlight as the immersive guitar phrases unfold around the fervent clean vocals courtesy of Robb Flynn of Machine Head.
“Suicidal Space Programme” begins with appealing melodic passages that gradually morph into a savage rhythmic assault executed in impeccable tech death metal fashion easily amplified by the hostile growls.
Showcasing a multifaceted composition “Hours As Battlegrounds” stands out for the harrowing atmospheric textures and the darkened tones of the evocative guitar melodies which skillfully enrich the abrasive rhythmic patterns.
Reflecting on human capabilities and lack of illusion throughout “Cancer Culture” Decapitated follow an intriguing sonic evolution delivering the expected dosage of harsh technical prowess adorned by a surprising and fascinating melodic essence.

Black Void – Antithesis

Featuring mastermind Lars Are Nedland, renowned for his work in legendary Borknagar, Black Void symbolizes the flipside of his melodic hard rock band White Void and clearly manifests a visionary punk/black metal approach on the new album “Antithesis” inspired by the philosophical works of Friedrich Nietzsche.
The crust punk energy of “Void” leads to a belligerent rhythmic rampage yet a soulful melodic essence is destined to emerge through the melancholia infused guitar harmonies and the soothing clean vocal delivery.
On “Reject Everything” the harsh guitar riffs take the center stage generating impactful grooves enhanced by the ravenous growls but as the tempo slows down a bit the moody atmosphere reveals a dramatic depth.
“Death To Morality” focuses on an irresistible groovy blackened momentum constantly fueled by the soaring guitar riffs and the primal growls by guest vocalist Hoest of Taake in contrast with the calmer clean vocals and the cold melodic textures.
“No Right, No Wrong” skillfully combines savage rhythmic blasts evoking a perennial darkness and eloquent melodic accents that effortlessly emphasize catchy vibes and refined guitar tonalities.
Featuring spiteful growls courtesy of Sakis Tolis of Rotting Christ “Dadaist Disgust” channels an obscure blackened force through the unrestrained riffage and the breakneck speed building an intense rhythmic tension enriched by some smooth melodic guitar leads.
Dwelling within a metaphysical dimension Black Void never fails to unleash pure aggression and constantly demands your attention with the twisted rhythmic patterns of “Antithesis”.

Septicflesh – Modern Primitive

Greek extreme metal titans Septicflesh have carefully shaped a unique sonic vision that today thrives within the magnificent blend of striking symphonic tapestries and immense fury of the brand new full-length “Modern Primitive” featuring a continuous collaboration with the Philharmonic Orchestra of Prague.
The inflamed album opener “The Collector” shines for the warm Mediterranean nuances of arpeggios and strings but the ruthless combo of unrestrained guitar riffs and malevolent growls is often bound to prevail within a pitchblack dimension.
On “Hierophant” the breathtaking solemn orchestrations and the cinematic atmospheric moments naturally enrich the crushing rhythmic onslaught which relies on the colossal guitar work and the precise drumming.
“Neuromancer” meticulously crafts spellbinding acoustic harmonies before engaging in an aggressive approach constantly fueled by the memorable fiery guitar riffs yet there will be more peaceful moments emphasizing a stunning melodic flow accompanied by passionate clean vocals.
“Coming Storm” reveals an obscure flair through the feverish orchestrations and the soaring riffage following a brutally fast tempo until an impeccable cinematic breakdown conveys major epic vibes featuring majestic choirs.
“Modern Primitives” demands your attention unleashing an overdose of monumental grooves and complex guitar progressions skillfully adorned by the elevated symphonic arrangements and the luminous atmospheric accents.
“A Dreadful Muse” focuses on impressive harsh dynamics as the scorching guitar riffs and the insane drum blasts feel very dominant marching through a dramatic atmospheric ensemble while the guitar leads showcase a poignant melodic essence.
As Septicflesh manifest a thrilling creative force and a remarkable musical prowess through an intricate composition, “Modern Primitive” dwells within a sonic realm of contrasting feelings where the undiluted darkness of death metal and the gripping symphonic elegance magically become entwined.

Watain -The Agony & Ecstasy of Watain

The unholy ascension of Swedish black metal icons Watain continues through the darkest depths of the majestic seventh studio album “The Agony & Ecstasy of Watain”.
Within the oppressive darkened realm of “Ecstasies In Night Infinite” visceral riffage and feverish drum blasts begin an unstoppable wild hunt through a twisted rhythmic maze adorned by the charismatic guitar leads.
The perilous journey continues with “The Howling” revolving around a primordial blackened force that successfully acquires addictive groovy black ‘n roll dynamics through the frostbitten guitar riffs and the tormented melodic licks.
The slightly slower tempo and the atmospheric gloom of “Serimosa” emphasize an ancestral spiritual essence as guitars have the chance to meticulously craft hypnotizing lugubrious melodic tapestries within a malignant rhythmic ensemble.
A decadent melodic flair lingers throughout “Before The Cataclysm” as guitars effortlessly shift from sheer brutality to intricate bewitching harmonies inevitably conveying tumultuous feelings and amplifying a fascinating dramatic depth.
A mysterious aura surrounds “We Remain” as extraordinaire guest vocalist Farida Lemouchi (Ex The Devil’s Blood, now in Molasses) delivers a spellbinding performance emphasizing the arcane power of the refined melodic guitar work reaching the acme with a cathartic solo.
“Septentrion” triumphantly follows an ominous blackened pathway as the malevolent growls express immense fury and the relentless guitar riffs diligently create monolithic rhythmic patterns enriched by exquisite sinister melodic phrases.
With a 25 year long career Watain aim to reach the equilibrium between sublime melodies and endless darkness while conjuring an intense black metal magic that will leave you shattered wandering through the gelid grooves of “The Agony & Ecstasy of Watain”.