Decibel Magazine Declares The Death of Mainstream Metal

In an end of year article, Decibel Magazine’s veteran scribe Shawn Macomber has declared the death of Mainstream metal in his piece, ‘Mainstream Metal is F*cking Dead’. The piece was written in reaction to both Decibel’s top albums of the Decade 2010-2019 list as well as their top albums of 2019. The writer, one of the best at the magazine goes on to say that he isn’t against mainstream metal albums and actually likes some, but that the best quality releases from the last year or beyond are really coming from the underground bands and labels. Continue reading

Demon Hunter – War / Peace

Demon Hunter has been around for a while so they can pretty much do whatever they want. War and Peace (Solid State Records) is proof that they probably shouldn’t. The compilations are polar opposites. War is alright—mildly entertaining filled with your typical Demon Hunter tracks. Peace is just a soft listen of nine uninspired songs and one decent ballad. Continue reading

All That Remains – Victim Of The New Disease

It has been a tough time for All That Remains. Less than a month prior to their ninth studio release, Victim Of The New Disease (Razor & Tie) founding member and guitarist, Oli Herbert passed away. Herbert was a key member that created the ATR signature sound. His technical Melodic Metalcore solos have always been memorable and for one last record, he doesn’t disappoint. Continue reading

Disturbed – Evolution

There have been some bold claims coming out of the Disturbed camp with regards to seventh album Evolution (Reprise Records); and for one of Rock and Metal’s biggest, most successful and most stable acts to be making noises about a release setting them up for the next phase of their career, this must mean the feeling in the camp must be that this album is “the one” – the definitive release. From the redesigning of the logo, the stripping away of the Heavy Metal demon that has fronted most of their stock, to the slick and calculated pre-release campaign, there is a weight of evidence that Disturbed have gone away and found their new selves. Continue reading

Bullet For My Valentine – Gravity

What a ride Bullet For My Valentine (BFMV) have been on thus far, having gone from being part of a newly anointed ‘New Big 4 of Thrash’, and heralded in the same breaths of Metal’s greatest bands upon the release of their debut album The Poison (Visible Noise) to the flip side of the real lows felt after the release of their fourth record Temper, Temper (RCA) which saw creative levels dip to point where many wrote the band off completely. They attempted a return with 2015’s Venom (RCA) and seemed to be slowly kicking in the Metal cogs into motion again and saw a kind of spluttering rebirth. Continue reading

Halcyon Days – Rain Soaked Pavements & Fresh Cut Grass

 

 If you haven’t heard of Halcyon Days and you are a melodic metalcore fan, add them to your playlists and give them a follow. The Oslo natives resemble Architects and Underoath and were coined as one of the most promising bands of the last few years after releasing their debut Elevate in 2014. The band has slowly gained momentum throughout Norway since releasing their self-titled EP in 2016 and they are ready to make your summer that more melodic with Rain Soaked Pavements & Fresh Cut Grass (Indie Recordings). Continue reading

Five Finger Death Punch – And Justice for None

If there is one phrase that is certain to make your humble scribe’s blood boil, then it is that oft-used lazy epithet, “guilty pleasure”. This particular phrase became common currency at the start of the 21st Century to describe records and artists that, despite not being held in high regard by the so-called taste police were still liked by lots and lots of people. Popular music in its truest sense. Continue reading