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Reviews From M To P



Reviews from letters: N - O - P

MACHINE HEAD: "The Burning Red" - CD (Roadrunner/Attic)

As much as I would love to hate this album, I just can't because it simply is solid. I have never been a big fan of MACHINE HEAD, as I found their two previous albums to be of good quality but boring music. However, this album is full of hits and misses but the hits largely compensate for the misses. Experimenting with Hip-Hop grooves, Robb and co. are opening the vault to the good things that lied in their music all along. Robb is unfortunately not a very good rapper in my ears, so he screws a couple of songs with it. What I really hate about the record is the engineering, which I think was greatly influenced by Ross Robinson. I just hate the sound; it is the traditional MH sound through a fuzzbox. The mix is great on the other hand; Terry is more than able to do that. This is undoubtedly their most commercial record but that doesn't make it very commercial in the traditional sense... The "Message In A Bottle" cover (THE POLICE) is like punching oneself in the face. They really shouldn't have done that. If this is seen as sell-out, then fine, I find it much more of a step forward because some of the songs are clearly very good.
S.T.
Label web site!
2nd label web site!
Band web site!
4 out of 5

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MACTÄTUS: "Provenance Of Cruelty" - CD (Napalm)

This record was co-produced by Samoth of EMPEROR, which could very well be a factor in buying this record by one unsuspectedly Black Metaller. However, the suspicion will be provided right here within these pages. MACTÄTUS is a very plain and boring Black Metal band. They play a low quality copycat of "Nightside" era EMPEROR. Vocalist Hate Rodvitnesson has the same kind of screams as Ishahn and the keyboards are similar. One other thing not helping them is the triggered drums, which also sound cheap. Not nearly as much depth as EMPEROR in the production makes them sound very weak and thin. They nonetheless have a few good songs that probably could have been better used. Buy at your own risks.
S.T.
2 out of 5

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MALEVOLENT CREATION: "Manifestation" 2CD set comp. - CD (Pavement)

Surviving over ten years as a Florida-sounding Death Metal band(!) must be quite an achievement by itself. To celebrate it with a release of this deluxe double-CD compilation is quite an achievement indeed from the label, too... To release something you can hardly call as a "Best of" from MALEVOLENT CREATION. Let me explain anyway... The info sheet proudly proclaims that "...this remarkable 2CD set includes music from every one of their CDs released throughout their career..." Sure! Right! Correct! In case MALEVOLENT's career did not start until 1995 with the release of "Eternal"? So the question is, why THE HELL are they ignoring their TRUE "ear-candies", the first two albums, "Ten Commandments" and the savage "Retribution"?! I can even understand that no songs off "Stillborn" were included for this release, as "Stillborn" was undoubtedly their weakest effort so far, but giving NO spotlight for any of the songs either on "Ten..." or "Retribution"!?? There's really no reasonable point to talk about the band's "Best of"... Or is there after all?! As for this promo-CD, it has (only?) got sixteen songs out of twenty songs, plus fifteen minutes of Live footage from MALEVOLENT's 1999 U.S. tour is missing as well. Maybe the actual version still has some of my MALEVOLENT favorites there? Maybe, just maybe, I'm grumbling in vain? Or maybe, maybe (again?) it's the staff of this greedy label that has chosen the songs for this "tries-to-be-the-best-of" compilation CD (the worst possible move you I can think of!) and for copyright reasons, they just couldn't take any of the songs off the band's first three albums as the MALEVOLENT dudes were then signed to Roadrunner at the time..? That could make some more sense here. "Best of" MALEVOLENT's Pavement-era?! I guess that's more like it, which is a shame as the "Best of" MALEVOLENT CREATION put together by Roadrunner could have better served the needs of the most devoted fans.
L.L.
2½ out of 5

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MANOWAR: "Hell On Stage" - CD (Metal Blade)

As you may know by now, I am a fairly young Metal fan (young in terms of years liking Metal). This fact is a problem when I am to talk of the older "classic" bands. Eventhough I have heard quite a few of them, a few are still a mystery to me. One of my notorious (not really) omissions has been MANOWAR and that for two simple reasons: They look stupid and were stupid in interviews. Let's just say that after hearing this Live recording, my opinion of the music follows in the same path. This is a double Live album (their second Live album in a row) containing (I believe) some of the band's best. As usual, power is the only way to go for MANOWAR, sometimes it works for me, most of the times it sounds corny. Most of the riffs are very good and most probably been influential to many. It is just the way they are arranged together that tickles me. If you are a fan, then you'll rave for this! If you are a newcomer like me, then you probably won't like it much, as I did.
S.T.
Web site!
1 out of 5

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MINDSET: "A Bullet For Cinderella" - CD (Noise)

A departure from their admittedly pretty lame Rap-KORN debut, this CD is a much more interesting attempt at a style already well established. They are playing music very much alike the one of CHUM, ONLY LIVING WITNESS and LIFE OF AGONY. That is a Hardcore based, catchy, heavy Rock that could easily be on Rock radio but doesn't for reasons that I cannot quite understand. Some songs are fairly good but not enough to keep me interested for too long. I really think that it has commercial possibilities; it is certainly better than the GOO GOO DOLLS, but I don't think it will please many of the readers of these pages.
S.T.
Web site!
2 out of 5

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MORGION: "Solinari" - CD (Relapse)

Having never heard their more grinding debuts, I can only judge by what I have here. And what we have here is a slow and atmospheric Doom. Very heavy, the riffs are not too melodic, leaving that to the keyboard parts. Both spoken words and deep growls are used as vocals. The music reminds me a bit of the new TIAMAT but with their old vocal approach. All the songs go very well together and form a whole like it is rare to see. The arrangements are simply great. Each instrument compliment the other very well, keeping quiet when it's time to and taking central stage when it's time to. The production is crystal clear and manage to get a very dirty and heavy guitar sound. Eventhough it is not very original, it is very well done and the songs are simply good. What else do you want?
S.T.
Web site!
4 out of 5

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MORTICIAN: "Chainsaw Dismemberement" - CD (Relapse)

MORTICIAN are so bad, it's almost funny. Notice the "almost". The reasons why they have so much success are just beyond me, I really cannot understand why. Anyway you look at it, it's bad. The drum machine is a joke as it is the same freaking beat from song to song. On this new record, the boys have tuned down so the bass and guitars are buzzing, shrieking through the amps, which clearly can't handle the sounds. Maybe a few quality amops and a decent producer, other than Roger (Beaujard, the guitar player sometimes drummer) would help. After five short songs of this and I was ready cut it off... But there were seventeen more songs to it. After seven, it wasn't funny anymore...
S.T.
Label web site!
Band web site!
0 out of 5

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MORTIFICATION: "Hammer Of God" - CD (Metal Blade/Rowe Production)

Although MORTIFICATION is a ten years old band, I had never heard them and had no plans in doing so either. This is their second album since their return, after singer-main songwriter-bassist Stev Rowe's battle with leukemia. What I am hearing is very plain Thrash Metal with some little Death stylings. This album is not bringing anything good to the table. More to this is that this is a christian band that actually preaches. I don't care at all what religion you practice but if you come preaching your ways to me, then I get aggressive. Really not.
S.T.
Web site!
1 out of 5

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MOSTLY AUTUMN: "The Spirit Of Autumn Past" - CD (Cyclops)

Wicked Prog Celtic Rock here! Astonishing band! Their music reflects everything Prog ever pushed toward; intricacy, odd changes... Rockier moments sounding a bit like PINK FLOYD by time... The odd aspect of Celtic Music makes the release overwhelming in originality. The album is 70 minutes (+/-) long and it is going by like a two minutes piece on the radio... The album finishes up with the amazing "The Gap Is Too Wide", an epic masterpiece of melodic "grandeur"... The choir part is amazing! Well, thanks Cyclops... It's all I can add! Unbelievable!!!
R.C.
5 out of 5

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MOSTLY AUTUMN: "For All We Shared..." - CD (Cyclops)

Well, what can I say? Fabulous! This is their first album and what a debut it is... Astonishing! They can be described as PINK FLOYD meets Celtic Rock... What?! I know, it is original and quite amazing. Vocal arrangements are stunning and musically speaking, this is it!.. This is the thing Rock needed these last few years... A kick in the butt! MOSTLY AUTUMN is the next big thing in Prog/Rock... Don't miss it!!! Buy both releases here!
R.C.
5 out of 5

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MUNDZUK: "Unholy Forces" - MCD (A.M.I. Productions)

This is a fairly new French Black Metal band who has recorded a few demos in their first two years of existence. After that, they have just released their first official CD material, namely this mini-CD "Unholy Forces": This, my friend, is unrestricted, purely evil and decadent Black Metal in its simplest, most primitive and classic way. The guitars sound large and pretty heavy and also kind of razor-like, which was the trade-mark of Black Metal a few years ago. The riffing is extremely simplistic, also Punkish by nature, also like it was done some years ago. I must say here that the standards have greatly risen since then and this is obviously not even close to the quality that we are used to nowadays. Plus these types of riffings have been done a few million times by now, which makes this material quite undistinguishable from other Black Metal outfits of the early 90's. The vocals are nothing else than the exact replica of all these other high pitch screaming growls that we are used to hear from the Black Metal genre. And then, there's the drumming: The slower parts are okay, but the faster parts are unskilled and untight, to say the least. The drums sound alright for the genre though, with some good attack on the snare. But the rest of the drum set rapidly disappear in the mix. The overall sound and music is just a carbon copy of what has been done and re-done in the last couple of years. Not much to offer here I'm afraid... If you are a die hard fan of totally sick and unholy Black Metal, you may enjoy this... But you won't have a single glimpse of originality anywhere in this music... Be warned!
S.B.
Band e-mail!
Label e-mail!
1½ out of 5

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MYRKSKOG: "Deathmachine" - CD (Candlelight)

The bastards sons of an apocalyptic decibel storm hit hard... Hit REALLY hard, straight in your face with their demonizing debut; "Deathmachine". A lethal dose of Norwegian Death Metal... Yes, you got it right! True, pissed-off Death(!) Metal, which doesn't allow you many moments for a long, deep breath due to its really tightly-packed intensity and sinister power that rolls over you like a squadron of NATO's fighter planes, from the very first moments of "Discipline Misanthropy" to the title track, "Deathmachine". All the songs (except a question-arousing last song, "Pilar Deconstruction", which is more like a rehearsal song put on a CD) are well executed, having enough power and balls to smash weaker listeners down who obviously cannot survive from the opener further. These spiked satanic rebels want to scare you off right into your sweet mom's arms. The guys ARE mean! They ARE malicious and determined to stick a rusty knife into your guts and gouge your bowels out just for fun! That evil they are... Need comparisons? I think it's quite safe to say that Mr. Savant M. & co. adore PESTILENCE's "Consuming Impulse" album (Martin Van Drunen's restless spirit is present here!). They love dynamic song structures of MORBID ANGEL too and I couldn't ignore their fellow countrymen, EMPEROR's light-speed and haunting keyboard parts on the first two albums. Need I say more?! "Deathmachine...(!)", they could not have chosen a better title for this crushing album. So let the killing begin!
L.L.
4½ out of 5

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Reviews from letters: M - O - P

NECRODEATH: "Mater Of All Evil" - CD (Scarlet Records/SPV)

After hearing PLASMA POOL (the other CD I got on this promo package from Scarlet records), I hoped I wasn't going to hate this as much... Well, it is my pleasure to say that this album totally rules! NECRODEATH was a band that released two albums in the late 80's before disappearing from the map. Now, more than ten years later, they just released their third album. Now this could have been something to be scared of, when you consider some of the comebacks that have taken place in the last few years... But this one is the real thing! Their brand of powerful brutal Thrash sounds as classic as it also sounds fresh! Reminding me a little bit as some type of a cross between KREATOR and SLAYER, they also bring some elements of more modern Death/Black, but without letting those two elements taking over what this band is all about: Thrash! But all of this is done in a very personal way that will not allow you to find them as a rip off of the old school stuff... Like I said, this is the real thing! The guitars are heavy as hell with a great powerful, large and intense sound that also has the quality of letting all the details of the playing to get through clearly. The riffing varies pretty much from the crunchy power chords of great intensity, to the more intricate picking of Thrash original, to the noteful riffing. Quite a great variety of styles and techniques are displayed in there. There are no long and endless solos, but the ones you have are very ambiance and/or long squeaking notes, full of tremolos... The drumming is intense, yet basic and very tight. There are no blasts but a nice variety if slower and fast "speed" beats, just like we can hear from such acts as THE HAUNTED... The vocals are outstanding, fitting this genre very well... Kind of reminding me a little bit of Mille from KREATOR, mixed with a few Black Metalish intonations... All of this is well mixed with a sound that has only these priorities: Intensity, brutality and clarity. Highly recommended! Sad that it lasts just a bit over 35 minutes...
S.B.
E-mail!
4 out of 5

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NECROLOGY: "Cold Skin" - CD (Indie)

Man, this is pure fucking Death Metal! No nice little emotional intros, no ambiant stuff, no clean vocals (male or female), no synths... Just pure fucking brutal aggression! Their Metal is somewhat technical in some parts with some pretty interesting riffing that can remind me of older DEATH and stuff like that... All this is completed with a much more brutal Grinding speed of the sicker side of Death Metal. The guitars are pretty fat and very heavy... The playing is very square, intense and precise, with riffs that will demand more attention and other that are just simpler, heavy stuff that crushes through your brain. The bass is not a big asset here, simply adding bottom to the guitars. The drumming is also very intense, varying easily from slower, power drumming with lots of bass drums, to sick blast beats. All of this is played in a very controled way and the drumming and its punches are very tight! The drums sound too flat though; A lot more snap on the snare would add a lot of intensity to this music, which already has a lot of it to offer as it is! The vocals are decent but not very original; it's the very, very ultra low growl type of vocals, which are completed with the occasional high screams. Not bad but nothing really new here, of course. But it fits the genre well. The overall sound makes this to be a very good debut, self-financed affair and I urge you to get this now! Very intense stuff! Not totally original but as brutal as a 180 kilograms fat chick sitting on your face!
S.B.
E-mail!
4 out of 5

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NEW EDEN: "Obscure Master Plan" - CD (Nuclear Blast)

This is really bad. A Power Metal band not even able to carry a melody through its songs. Not even able to carry a little momentum in its songs. The transitions are certainly what they are good at. Their riffs are much inspired by early KING DIAMOND/MERCYFUL FATE but not of the quality of the two legends. The leads are quite uninspired and the guitar sound is very annoying. Drumming is very generic. Don't buy this, there is nothing interesting in there.
S.T.
Web site!
1 out of 5

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NIGHT TO DIE: "All Evil Crying" - CD (Repulse )

Slow melodic Death with a lot of groove from these four Spaniards. These guys are in to impress me: Nice guitar harmonies, great bass work and emotional vocals, in the screaming, growly and the clean kind. Very interesting song structure keeps you alert throughout the songs. Very soulful keyboard parts enhance the ensemble with a Doom sensibility. Great production too: Vocal layering and amazing musical depth. They really have created three amazing songs and I recommend everybody to check it out!
S.T.
Web site!
5 out of 5

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NOCTURNAL RITES: "The Sacred Talisman" - CD (Century Media)

I really don't see the point in this. Liking old music is one thing but a 1999 copycat of WHITESNAKE is another. Listening to your old IRON MAIDEN albums I understand, (they were cool anyway you look at it) but NOCTURNAL RITES I aren't. They don't even have the decency of not doing the same record twice. This album is exactly the same as their previous. Worst than all, the last one had some kind of attempt at having a 1998 sound and this one doesn't. It is the most pathetic attempt at a record I have heard in a long time. Enough, I am taking this off this CD player now before I reek something.
S.T.
Web site!
0 out of 5

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NOCTURNUS: "Ethereal Tomb" - CD (Season Of Mist)

Man, this was one of my favorite band back in the early 90's and their first two albums "The Key" and "Thresholds" have played so much, I almost got sick of it! So you can imagine that when I heard that these guys were coming back together and were getting ready to release a long awaited third album, I was pretty excited! So "Ethereal Tomb" was the result and I can say that the result is pretty satisfying! The trade-mark NOCTURNUS is still there, with some very technical riffing that are arranged in a way that makes the most melodious of riffs to still sound as heavy as hell! And the majority of the riffing is still completed with some synthesizers not they have finally manage to mix it in the music and not over the music. The result is that it is the guitars that are the leading riff maker and the synths are there to complete the sound. The guitars are also very heavy with a good, crunchy sound that lets you clearly hear every other riffs. The riffing is quite diverse and will take you from the Death-like power crunch to the more sophisticated Thrashy stuff. The bass is there and pounds its way into the riffs, adding snap to the rhythm section and adding its own touch to the overall melodies. I would say that yes, in fact, this album has a bit more melodies than the previous ones, all mixed with the brutality of the Death stuff. There are not as many solos as they used to have but there are still many of them all around and they are still as technical and melodious as ever before. Now the drums sound has to be one of the most obvious improvements from their former line-up; It sound clear, very snappy and quite intense. All of the parts get through clearly and the drumming is top notch! Pretty technical, very tight and intense playing is the deal here! Overall, the songs are not as fast as before though. The vocals are also much better than before. You get your usual Death Metal vocals, but you can feel the chest power in it! I like them very much... Of course, the lyrics are still into the evil-sci-fi stuff, which is very cool too! The overall sound is well balanced, allowing every instruments to make their mark and fulfil their part of the bargain. It is not an album that you will be able to memorize after two listenings though... It's a thoughtful, technical Death Thrash opus that will grow on you and which will offer you a challenging time to memorize and appreciate! Need I say more? Get this now my friends!
S.B.
E-mail!
4½ out of 5

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NOKTURNAL MORTUM: "To The Gates Of Blasphemous Fire" - CD (The End)

The previous NOKTURNAL MORTUM album, "Goat Horns", was a great Black Metal album. Creating jaw-dropping epics with a lead and atmospheric keyboards. The interaction between the two keyboardist was what made the record so fascinating. On this new one, the two keyboard player remain but are so buried in the mix that you can barely hear their great work. In fact, the whole mix is wrong, you can't really hear something since everything is at the same level. The drums are much too high, the guitars are barely audible as are the vocals and keys. The drums sound triggered as hell too. Nonetheless, the music is pretty decent and as aggressive as we could hope for. This is some of the best Black Metal release I have heard this year; it kicks DIMMU BORGIR's ass big time and "kick" is a bit of an understatement here. I have found a way to get passed the bad mix: Play it REAL LOUD! Very good.
S.T.
Web site!
5 out of 5

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NOMAD: "The Devilish Whirl" - CD (Novum Vox Mortis)

This label is amazing! They have the most amazing productions/layouts you can possibly expect from an underground label!!! Remember, the debut BEHEMOTH CD?! Well, they did it again... Killer! Anyway, Musically speaking, NOMAD are beyond heavy, brutal and in your face. I haven't heard something that heavy since I bought the new SOULGRIND "Kalma" CD... They remind me of VADER sometimes, with intricate guitars and arrangements... Vocals are "spit at your face mercilessly" and fuck, is this stuff hitting hard!!! Some cool melo dramatic (...) bridges are highly entertaining but short lived as the onslaught goes on and on, forever and forever more... I am impressed, to say the least!!! Do yourself a favor: get this masterpiece of extreme Death Metal now... (Look for it here)
R.C.
4½ out of 5

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NOTHING: "Nondescript..." - CD (Root Of Evil)

Again, ambiant music which I couldn't care less for... I don't get why people are freaking on this type of noise... It's a complete mystery. Background noises at best... I don't want to hurt anybody here but hey, what's the point of recording this??? Sorry, for me it's just painful!!! I guess that is the only release from this label I do not enjoy, as most of R.O.E. releases are usually crushing and original. Whatever, I hate this!
R.C.
2 out of 5

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Reviews from letters: M - N - P

ONE KING DOWN: "God Loves, Man Kills" - CD (Equal Vision)

Now we're talking! This is some heavy Hardcore of the kind which I like! Good aggressive Metalcore that is common these days but always good. This one has good songs, catchy riffs and aggressive vocals, a combination that surely makes it good enough for me. ONE KING DOWN is certainly not the best example of this style but they are of enough quality to put them as one of the leaders of the genre. The only thing that I find bad is the fact that too many songs are alike and some riffs are too similar from song to song. Other than that, I only can only say good things about this band and I am looking forward to hear more of them. Pretty damn good.
S.T.
Web site!
3 out of 5

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Reviews from letters: M - N - O

PC69: "Shame" - CD (Digital Dimension)

Multinational band PC69 is on deck with its first ever US single taken from their first US release. They supposedly had some success in Europe and Japan as they sold over 350,000 units in the past. Now enough bio transcribing and getting on with the music. What I am listening to is a 1980 Glam Metal single in the pure tradition of WARRANT, WHITE LION, SLAUGHTER and so many others. This song is not all that bad but it sounds a tad dated and unoriginal. Every classic pattern is followed very closely, telling me even more that this is very unoriginal. I don't like the song and I don't see any good reasons to buy their album. If that sounded interesting, then buy their album, it is called "Electrified"...
S.T.
0 out of 5

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PINNAPPLE THIEF "Abducting The Unicorn" - CD (Cyclops)

Let's take it easy for a few minutes now... This CD from PINNAPPLE THIEF is a mixture of '70s Prog with '90s Rock sound. Very mellow, smooth... The singer sounds a bit like that guy from SMASHING PUMPKINS, which is not too bad. Musically, well, what about a Prog version of RADIO HEAD? This is great. Cool vocal harmonies can be enjoyed throughout the disc and it basically sticks to your brain like gum to your old pair of Nikes... It's a great surprise!!! Finally a promo that my wife will enjoy as much as me!!! I love this... Once in a while, in between regular spins from BEHEMOTH and NOMAD...  ;-))  Open your mind and get this!
R.C.
4 out of 5

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PISSING RAZORS: "Cast Down The Plague" - CD (Noise)

Many writers thought that the first PISSING RAZORS album was much too MACHINE HEAD influenced. I didn't thought so; to me it sounded a bit more like PANTERA. That doesn't matter much now as the PISSING RAZORS style is forming. This style is a mix of "Vulgar Display Of Power"-PANTERA with "Burn My Eyes"-MACHINE HEAD and a FEAR FACTORY rhythm section. Their drummer has the same kind of drumming style as Raymond Hererra, to the difference that he does weird and interesting fills here and there. Vocalist Joe Rodriguez has very powerful part scream, part growl vocals but doesn't have more to offer than that. Most leads are really a joke and should have been left out. Most of the songs have much more depth and maturity than the debut's and show a great progression. I really recommend this album to any fan of the three bands and their albums... Then you can't go wrong...
S.T.
Web site!
4 out of 5

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PLASMA POOL: "Drowning" - CD (Scarlet Records)

PURE CRAP!!! That is how I'll resume this. It is some kind of "evil" techno Altern house dance music, a type of music that I really despise in my entire soul and body. The songs are all alike, redundant to the death, all based on the same fucking electronic beat and all of the (dare I say) melodies are produced electronically... By computer, I guess... The vocals are weak, full of effects and mixed like five hundred feet over the rest of the instru... Oups, I mean the computer generated annoying sounds... AVOID AT ALL COSTS!
S.B.
E-mail!
0 out of 5

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POSTMORTEM: "Repulsion" - CD (Morbid/Pavement)

I could describe POSTMORTEM's music as a kind of mix between slow Death, Hardcore and MOTÖRHEAD. Their music is fairly simple but the heaviness of the riffs compensate for these Germans. They pretty much have the same attitude and rhythm that made MOTÖRHEAD famous and the singer even sounds a bit like Lemmy at times. What this record really lacks is good songs. Every song is pleasant and listenable but quite forgettable. Aside from that, the album is a decent one and will certainly please fans of the genre. I would appreciate this if I would hear it on the radio but I doubt I will often put it in the CD player.
S.T.
2 out of 5

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PROPHANITY: "Stronger Than Steel" - CD (Blackend/Metal Blade)

Black-Death on deck with PROPHANITY! Very well executed and technically complex, PROPHANITY are a challenge to almost every Death or Black band out there. Every song is mindbogling with intricacies and should please guitar, drum and bass freaks. Songs are really well written and arranged so that guitars are neither redundant or plain. Their music is very similar to the band EPOCH OF UNLIGHT, on The End Records and is a good. My only complaint is that the song are a bit sterile and not much emotions are going through. A bit more variety would have been nice but it is good, none the less... I recommend it.
S.T.
3 out of 5

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PSYCHOTRON: "Chaos Cosmic Time" - CD (Indie)

This German Power Metal act is alright but not all that exciting. The overall music isn't that bad but there are just a bit too much clichés in there to make it an outstanding album. The guitars are well versed in their stuff, playing heavier powerful riffs of power chords, mixed with some more melodic guitars, which isn't bad... But no riffs really stand out as totally innovative and the solos are where we find the old clichés. The guitars do sound pretty heavy but a bit muddy... Still, it's a good heavy guitar sound which is clear and defined. The bass does the job without any flashy lines, adding depth to the guitars, nothing more. The drumming is alright but there are several places where the double bass drums work is not square and tight... But overall, it's alright. The drums sound pretty good though: Lot's of attack... But, like I said, not always tight. Now the vocals are the one thing that can hurt this band. While some of the vocal lines are pretty interesting and Matze Morbitzer's voice isn't the worst ever, there are several places where the vocals are way off key, especially in places where he has to hold on a note for a few seconds... Then it really starts to wave. He has a good tone though, which is why he could stay in the band, but he should definitely take some lessons in order to straighten his voice... Besides that, I still think it is a promising band and they might offer us some solid Metal in the future... They only have to put a few turns and knots together and they're in business!
S.B.
E-mail!
3 out of 5

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PUNKY BRÜSTER: "Cooked On Phonics" - CD (HevyDevy)

This is a reissue of this one-off joke record spawned in the head of Devin Townsend a few years ago and then, only released in Japan. The joke in question is the story of Polish Death Metal band CRYPTIC CORONER that decides to turn to Punk Rock because they were making no money. As we witness the rise and fall of PUNKY BRÜSTER through songs like: "Fake Punk", "Wallet Chain", "EZ$$", "Metal Dilemma", "Oats, Peas, Beans And Barley" and others, we hear some of the funniest lyrics ever!.. Much funnier than GWAR anyway. Devin isn't even able to make bad Punk songs; they are all pretty decent songs. I am no Punk fan but those certainly kick a lot of NOFX, MxPx and MILLENCOLIN out of the ball park. If you want a good laugh, then it is something to get.
S.T.
Web site!
5 out of 5

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PUYA: "Fundamental" - CD (MCA)

Many among you will put that record in the same bin as all the KORN soundalikes, but I am not so quick to put them in that category. Sure enough, they have that down tuned heavy guitar sound, rapped and screamed vocals but that is where the comparisons ends. PUYA come from Puerto Rico and a LOT of Latin influences are in there: Samba, salsa, mambo and more are rhythms, which are a big part of the music. The lyrics are mostly in Spanish with some English and Spanglish. The most interesting parts of this melting pot are the numerous brass parts. Remember that they go back to Metal every now and then but the music is full of "party" rhythms. Singer Sergio has a good clean voice and a fairly powerful Hardcore scream. Some pretty decent leads are also found, something that nobody from KORN could dream of. Well, this album sound very fresh and is party music, not very "Metal" in the traditional way but who said that we can't have fun? Very addictive.
S.T.
Label's web site!
Band's web site!
4 out of 5

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