REVIEWS ROUND-UP: Oni – Petrol Girls – Profiler – We Struck Gold – Limbs


 

ONI – Loathing Light (Ironshore Records)

The development and progression from Jake Oni’s 2016 debut, the tech metal minded Ironshore to second offering Loathing Light is something quite notable. Always technically proficient, Oni has made the most of his exposure to a host of successful musical others (for one, he worked with Mark Morton on the latter’s solo record), and their class has rubbed off. That isn’t to say that ONI is reliant on the guest interventions and mentorship and guidance of others, more to say that the eponymous mastermind has become the proverbial sponge, moving on his ability to write engaging, memorable metal tunes, with the emphasis on energy, and setting a series of barbed aural traps to ensnare both the willing victims and the unwitting.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Municipal Waste – Electrified Brain


The artwork that emblazons Municipal Waste’s Electrified Brain (Nuclear Blast) sets the scene as strongly as anything else could have: a Flying-V guitar violently piercing the left cheek of a skeletal head that’s also being shocked. That’s precisely what the nearly thirty-four-minute attack feels like. It’s a pummeling marathon of fun-loving ire, of bodacious violence. Continue reading


ALBUM REVIEW: Vatican – Ultra


While Georgian five-piece Vatican may name-check Meshuggah and Dillinger Escape Plan, their roots are firmly planted in (the original type of) metalcore, owing as much to Earth Crisis and Vision of Disorder (et al) as the latter-day spearheads of discordant “popular” heavy music. Ultra (UNFD) may be the band’s second full-length overall, however with a focus on the sound and style, and with the smooth integration of new vocalist Mike Sugars, it feels like a milestone moment in the definition of what Vatican is as a band, and who they are as an artist.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Killswitch Engage – Live At The Palladium


An interesting release from Killswitch Engage, metalcore royalty who at the beginning of 2020 had just commenced touring their latest album Atonement. But found themselves heading home as the pandemic struck, licking their wounds and unable to take one of their strongest records out on the road, for shows that included support from former vocalist Howard Jones’s band Light The Torch; Atonement featuring the crushing track (‘The Signal Fire’) which saw Jones trading vocals with current (and original) singer Jesse Leach, and the tour providing the perfect opportunity for both frontmen to hit the stage together. Continue reading


GIVEAWAY: Win Vinyl or CD’s of The New Album from Sleepless – “Host Desecration”


Portland Progressive Trad Metal band Sleepless just released their new album – Host Desecration on the Metal Warrior Records label. The album is chock full of crunching riffs, shifty time signatures, great grooves, and killer vocals! Ghost Cult is teaming up with the band to give away two (2) CD’s or a vinyl (1) to three lucky winners! The vinyl is due out in June! Enter on our post on Instagram! US residents only. Details to win here:

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Jeff Hanneman of Slayer Died Nine Years Ago Today


Jeff Hanneman, legendary guitarist of Slayer passed away on May 2nd, 2013, nine years ago today. Ghost Cult continues to fly the flag of Slayer high, and customarily we celebrate the life of Jeff, the music he made and the stages he left scorched. His legacy as a riff maker, songwriter, soloist, and metal personality has not been dampened since his death. In the time since he passed, Ghost Cult covered Slayer just as heavily in Jeff’s life, as they released a final studio album with Jeff’s contributions (Repentless), had a legend and friend hold down his spot live (Gary Holt of Exodus), released a comic book with Jeff’s likeness, completed their final world tour ever of two years, released an incredible film/music video trilogy (The Repentless Killogy), former bandmate DaveLombardo wrote a loving tribute to his fallen friend, and we have created two career-spanning retrospectives (read them here and here) on the end of the band. From the time Jeff passed and every night on that final world tour, Slayer honored Jeff during ‘Raining Blood’ with the “still reigning” banner. As we say every year at this time: Hail Jeff and hail Slayer!

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CONCERT REVIEW: Immolation – Demolition Hammer – Black Anvil – Mortician – Funeral Leech Live at Irving Plaza


This is the most New York show I’ve been to in a long while. It felt like one big local show. That’s what happens when all five bands come from here. That being said, this show started earlier, doors at the renovated Irving Plaza were at 6 pm. or 1800 for non-Americans. Every few steps you ran into someone you knew. I saw a lot of faces that this was their first show since you know what. It’s rare to see in metal shows nowadays but this show had a host! Bassist extraordinaire, Dan Lilker from Nuclear Assault and Brutal Truth fame. MCed the whole night.

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EP REVIEW: Vio-lence – Let The World Burn


Bay Area thrashers Vio-Lence might have only been around for eight years but what a magnificent near-decade it was. From their classic hyper-aggressive debut Eternal Nightmare (MCA Records) to the controversial lyrics of ‘Torture Tactics’ and a deliciously questionable vegetable soup and vinegar “vomit bag” plastic record sleeve, the band also launched the career of a certain Robb Flynn who went on to form 1990s game-changers Machine Head, eventually to be followed by guitarist Phil Demmel. With three studio albums under their belts, the band went their separate ways in 1993, only becoming a full-time going concern again in 2019.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Once Human – Scar Weaver


Five years used to feel like a long time in music. Entire scenes have risen, consumed all and fallen away to be a nostalgic footnote (or an ever-lasting sea change) in the same length between Once Human‘s last release and Scar Weaver (earMUSIC), their re-birth of a third album.

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