ALBUM REVIEW: LaMacchia – Thunderheads


For every rush of adrenaline there’s the eventual lull. For each euphoric high there’s the comedown to follow. Thunderheads (Aqualamb Recordings) — the debut record of LaMacchia — plays like the 3am winding down of a night of excess. Thrills and sensual desires wedded to a shadow of sadness and introspection.

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CONCERT REVIEW: Mastodon – Opeth – Khemmis Live At The Masonic


 

The Masonic Temple is one of the most outstanding buildings in Midtown Detroit. The regal Neo-Gothic architecture and cathedral-like design makes it a prime tourist attraction for Motor City. Part of this historic building’s appeal is the theatre and its massive stage. The stateliness of this structure and the 55 by 100 foot theatre platform made it the perfect pick for Mastodon and Opeth to bring their co-headline tour. The bands rolled into town on a cool Spring evening last week and brought Denver’s own Khemmis with them. Having three currently hot and popular bands under one roof is every modern metalhead’s dream.Continue reading


ALBUM REVIEW: Search and Seizure – Nothing Natural


Genre-bending fusion has long been a way to go for alternative rock bands, from Faith No More and Linkin Park to Bring Me The Horizon and beyond. Now Search & Seizure, a Kansas City, Missouri, trio, prove adept multi-taskers as, on Nothing Natural (Self-Released), they meld some spicy ingredients into a satisfying whole. Is such variety a good idea for a band still trying to forge an identity on their first full-length album? Well, yes… then no … and then, by the end, yes again.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Evergrey – A Heartless Portrait (The Orphean Testament)


Good story telling is key to engaging a listener. Everygrey captures the listener with both words and music with their newest album A Heartless Portrait (The Orphean Testament) (Napalm Records). The lyrics tell a coherent story that is augmented by the composition; both what is played and in the silence in between. The album runs like a play; it has a first, second, and third act clearly delineated. There is rising action, a climax, falling action, and a denouement; a tragedy in 10 parts. Everygrey’s A Heartless Portrait (The Orphean Testament) creates an impression of being an open love letter to Vittorio de Sica.

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CONCERT REVIEW: Tech Trek V Tour with Archspire – Entheos – Inferi – Vulvodynia – Live at Brooklyn Monarch


Although initially scheduled to play The Kingsland, popular demand upgraded this stacked metal lineup to the fabulous new and much larger Brooklyn Monarch.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Malevolence – Malicious Intent


The very title of Malevolence’s new record should tell you all you need to know about what to expect.

Malicious Intent (Nuclear Blast) is the third full-length release from the groove-meets-metalcore five-piece outfit hailing from the UK and follows up 2017’s Self Supremacy. Boasting all original members, Malevolence has returned with a vengeance, though one that is tempered.Continue reading


ALBUM REVIEW: James LaBrie – Beautiful Shade of Grey


Having amassed a discography of over twenty albums as the lead vocalist (of which this is the fifth solely under his own name), and nearly two dozen guest appearances across a thirty year professional recording career, you could have forgiven James LaBrie for taking some overdue and well-earned time off when the 2020 Dream Theater world tour was halted. Instead, he and Eden’s Curse (whose Trinity album was adorned by his distinctive a glorious pipes) guitarist Paul Logue began trading the musical ideas that would grow into Beautiful Shade of Gray (InsideOut Music).

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ALBUM REVIEW: Cave In – Heavy Pendulum


Released some twenty-five years into a career that saw them burst out of the east-coast hardcore scene in the mid nineties, Heavy Pendulum (Relapse Records) is Cave In’s seventh album, and is a landmark release for the band who sadly lost their bass player Caleb Schofield to a car accident in 2018. Schofield also provided many of Cave In’s heavier vocals, and his role in the band is assumed by close friend Nate Newton (Converge, Deathriders), and who also has a mean voice himself.

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EP REVIEW: Primitive Man – Insurmountable


The three-man deathsludge machine, known simply as Primitive Man, has dropped four new blistering tracks in the form of an EP entitled Insurmountable (Closed Casket Activities). Mixing funeral doom, black metal, and harsh noise elements, this powerhouse from Denver, Colorado is one of the most abrasive, yet satisfying bands out there. After thirty-eight minutes, any first listeners will certainly start working on the rest of the group’s discography.Continue reading


CONCERT REVIEW: The Bay Strikes Back Tour: Testament – Exodus – Death Angel live at Newport Music Hall.


The Bay Strikes Back Tour – Testament, Exodus, and Death Angel – brought a massive dose of thrash to the edge of the Ohio State University campus on Wednesday night with their stop at the Newport Music Hall. The tour celebrates the origins of thrash metal stretching back to the late 1970s and early 1980s. It is incredible that these three bands are still standing on the stage and belting out their music for long-time and new fans alike.

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