Kobra and the Lotus – Prevail II

Loud. Frenetic. Angry. It got my heart pumping and I’m only 68 seconds into it. That, my gentle readers, is Kobra and the LotusPrevail II (Napalm). Woah, I was not expecting that break down! Hell to the yeah! Oh, and yes, I’m still on the first track, ‘Losing my Humanity’. The lyrics are so kick ass. The phrasing is little gems dotted throughout this song. Continue reading

The Black Dahlia Murder – Nightbringers

The Black Dahlia Murder have been the picture of consistency when it comes to modern extreme metal. Ever since planting their flag firmly on Death Metal in an era when so many contemporaries cashed in on the Metalcore and Deathcore frenzies, Dahlia can always be expected to provide strong content. So, after years of successful albums and touring, it’s natural to expect this Michigan outfit to take it easy, but boy is that wrong. New album Nightbringers (Metal Blade) is the type of work you get from angry young men with something to prove. Continue reading

Death Angel – The Evil Divide

death angel the evil divide ghostcultmag

Full disclosure: I’ve been a Death Angel fan since Frolic Through the Park (Restless/Enigma) in 1988. I remember my sister and I blasting ‘Bored’ and singing along. It’s been a sort of anthem for us ever since. Twenty-eight years later, Death Angel is still killing it onstage and on cassette. Do they still make those? No? OK. Then you must go forth and purchase on CD The Evil Divide (Nuclear Blast). The Evil Divide is classic Death Angel done to perfection.

The album opens with ‘The Moth’. It sets the tone for massive amounts of head banging to come. ‘Cause for Alarm’ has the most blistering guitar work of all time. Ted Aguilar is just gobsmackingly amazing on guitar. We should make #musiciancrushmonday a thing and Ted can be our first guitar crush! ‘Lost’ kicks us right in the feels with the lyrics. “Can anybody save me now? Exposed I stand alone…I close my eyes and let it go with one final breath of shame.” Mark Osegueda’s voice is like buttuh! Buttuh! I tellz ya! He rips into your soul and sings it to shreds.

‘It Can’t Be This’ opens with the most groovilicious bass line from Damien Sisson is wicked. The entire song has this funk groove that makes the hips move. It has faint shades of the guitar tone in Slayer’s ‘Dead Skin Mask’. It may be written in the same key. ‘Breakaway’ provides some excellent circle pit action. Well, it would if circle pits were still a thing that is done. I can’t wait to hear these songs live!

Every tune on The Evil Divide is jaw-dropping. Then you whoop! with excitement and commence to thrashing about the room. Musically, it’s tight. The precision in which Mark, Ted, Damian, Rob Cavestany, and Will Carroll execute their respective instruments shows consistency and diligence. The quality of production allows each note to coalesce and form an album that ingrains itself into your psyche and stays with you all day and night. The Evil Divide is a whole body experience: mind, soul, body. Every part of you is intimately engaged.

9.0/10

VICTORIA ANDERSON

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