Ghost Cult caught up with Mattias Nööjd of Firebreather! The band was new to America and on the eve of their massive tour with Monolord! They tour Europe later on with High on Fire and others. Their album Dwell In The Fog was newly released at the time of this interview and you can buy it from Riding Easy Records, at the link below. Continue reading →
It is an often overlooked but undeniable fact that up to the present day, Katatonia is on a phenomenal creative run; arguably one of the best in Metal music, in general. Since 2006’s The Great Cold Distance (and arguably even before this), Katatonia have been consistently put out near classics up to 2016’s excellent The Fall Of Hearts, with even 2020’s hiatus ending City Burials (all Peaceville) standing shoulder to shoulder with such works. Firmly returned from a brief absence, 2023 sees the band’s second album since this return, on a new label home for the first time in their career.
With only three tracks and a short run-time clocking in slighter over ten minutes, Wolfbrigade wasted no time with their hardcore punk assault on their latest EP, Anti-Tank Dogs (Armageddon / Agipunk).Continue reading →
Swedish Rock dynamos The Hawkins will release their brand new album Silence Is A Bomb releases this week, September 4th, via The Sign Records! To celebrate Ghost Cult is streaming their album in full right here at the site! The for their second full-length, the band continues to ply their classic rock influences their high octane delivery for furious, catchy songs with great vocals, and ripping riffs. Check out Silence Is A Bomb right now!Continue reading →
Retro Psychedelic rockers from Sweden, Hällas, have long been a hidden treasure known to the European crowds for their work on the fest scene. Now they have signed a new worldwide record deal (excluding Nordics) with Napalm Records. The band begins a new European tour on March 12, 2020 supporting Kadavar! don’t fret! Their new album, Conundrum, comes out in Scandinavia on January 31. The album will also see release internationally via Napalm Records this spring.Continue reading →
Heavy metal legends Sabaton have released their new single, the first from their forthcoming new album The Last Stand, due this summer from Nuclear Blast on August 19th. You can with the lyric video for ‘The Lost Battalion’ at this link or below:
The band has provided some background on the lyrics:
‘The Lost Battalion’ is the name given to nine companies of the United States’ 77th Division during the battle of the Argonne in 1918. Even though these 550-575 brave men were completely surrounded by the German Army and subjected to friendly artillery fire, they kept on fighting for a week until they were relieved. Of the over 500-plus soldiers who entered the Argonne Forest, only 194 walked out unscathed. The rest were killed, missing, captured, or wounded.
A long time ago, Swedish three-piece Grand Magus were primarily a doomy stoner band. In the years since their 2001 self-titled début, an increasingly large proportion of their sound has been dedicated to bombastic heavy metal. With the release of their eighth album, Sword Songs [Nuclear Blast], the transformation is basically complete.
Magus can still write a chunky riff, the solos still invoke the best kind of air guitar and JB’s vocals still have a Dio-esque quality about them, but there’s a worrying sense that every new album is case of diminishing returns. The songs aren’t bad; far from it, but it’s lacking the heaviness or the spark that made some of their previous work so enjoyable.
There are occasionally occasional great moments; opener ‘Feja’s Choice’ is classic Magus; thick slabs of doom combined with wailing choruses and a heavy dose of guitar solos. The latter half of ‘Last One to Fall’ is heavy with a tinge of Iron Maiden running through it, ‘Born for Battle (Black Dog of Brocéliande)’ mixes a rocking stomp with another epic sing along chorus, while closer ‘Every Day a Battle to Fight’ is probably the album highlight; a mid-paced belter that shows off the best of what the band can do.
But there’s plenty of forgettable or just plain naff moments. Lead single ‘Varangian’ is a perfectly passable sing along number that will no doubt get the fists pumping live, but there’s a definitive aura of cheesy heavy metal about it. ‘Forged in Iron – Crowned in Steel’s chant of “Viking Metal” is probably the worst example of over-egging the Viking aesthetic. It just doesn’t sound like their hearts are in it a lot of the time.
Sword Songs feels like an album to drink mead and sing along to. But as fun as it is, there’s a real lack of memorable songs, the Vikings and war shtick is overplayed, and ultimately it’s definite step down from some of the band’s past glories. Go listen to Iron Will instead.