Dec 022017


We’re rushing toward the end of the year like an out-of-control car speeding toward a precipice. And I find myself getting a similar panicked feeling, as if it will be a world-ending event for a metal writer and I only have four weeks to finish spouting off about 2017 releases, a task made even more daunting by the fact that I’m leaving on a 12-day vacation tomorrow (as explained here), and by the prospect of all the LISTMANIA stuff we will be doing between now and December 31 as well.

Of course, this is a completely irrational feeling. There’s no law which prevents us from continuing to write about 2017 releases after New Year’s Day, and no doubt we will. Nevertheless, I’m still feeling a feverish compulsion to give as much attention as I can to recent releases (and a few forthcoming ones) before “time runs out”. So I’ve crammed music from five bands into this post, without nearly enough time to say what I want about them, and I also have some hopes of finishing a SHADES OF BLACK post for tomorrow before beginning my 12-day hiatus. Don’t know if that will work out or not….


Thanks to a message from Conor O., and then a subsequent e-mail from the Dutch label Hammerheart Records, I learned that after a 22-year hiatus, Inquisitor have returned with a new album, and it’s an explosive resurrection for sure. Continue reading »

Apr 042016

Godless Angel-The Conjuring of Four


If you look at what I posted at the site this past weekend, you’ll see that I was caught up in the throes of a blogging frenzy and threw a large amount of new music at your head. Having done that, I took some deep breaths — and then almost immediately discovered a bunch of other new songs that had appeared while I was scribbling thoughts about all the others. From that batch of new discoveries I’ve sifted these four — in part because I really enjoyed all of them and in part because they make for a diverse playlist of new metal with which to start the week.


A very good friend of our site, Derek Neibarger from Lawrence, Kansas, has just released The Conjuring of Four, the third album of his solo project Godless Angel. It follows last year’s Harvester of Shadows (released by Inverse Records). For a pretty complete narrative of the interesting musical journey that led to the creation of Godless Angel, peruse my interview of Derek from last October (here). And for a taste of this new album, check out our stream of the album’s first single — “The Worms Are Eating Him Now”. Continue reading »

Oct 122015

Godless Angel Logo on brick


(Here’s an interview I conducted by e-mail with Derek Neibarger, a strong supporter of our site, the creator of the Godless Angel death metal project, and an all-around good dude. And at the end of the interview, you’ll find a discount code for the latest Godless Angel album, Harvester of Shadows.)

Hi Derek, thanks for letting me bother you with some questions.

Being interviewed about something you love is never a bother, it’s a privilege and I’m grateful for the opportunity! Continue reading »

Oct 082015

Nervosa 2


(Our friend Derek Neibarger (Godless Angel) interviews Fernanda Lira of the Brazilian band Nervosa.)

A short while ago I wrote a post in which I praised the Brazilian thrash/death trio, Nervosa. Fernanda Lira, Prika Amaral, and Pitchu Ferraz have been bringing their awesome brand of metal to the masses since 2010. Their first full length album, Victim of Yourself, was released in 2014 through Napalm Records, and the band has been on the road ever since.

I was hooked from the first moment I heard “Masked Betrayer” off of their debut EP, Time of Death. Simply put, Nervosa is a hundred different kinds of badass. So I was extremely excited when I was granted an interview with bassist/vocalist Fernanda. As you’ll soon see, she’s extremely cool, passionate, and a true metal warrior. A huge thank you to Mona Muliski for making this possible! Continue reading »

Jul 072015

Mayhem victory records stage


(Our friend DerekGodless AngelNeibarger brings us this series of interviews with four bands who will be performing on the Victory Records Stage at this year’s edition of the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival.)

Unless you’ve been living under a rock you’re almost certainly aware that the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival has once again returned this summer. This year’s edition features thirteen bands and the knockout punch of dual headliners Slayer and King Diamond. The festival has twenty-six stops between June 26th and August 2nd, and if you’re lucky enough to score tickets to one of those shows I am insanely envious.

My son and I attended our first, and so far only, Mayhem festival several years ago when Slayer also headlined along with Slipknot. It was an amazing experience that included three stages for an all-day-long barrage of metal, a glorious overabundance of merch booths, food, and meet-and-greets. We got to meet Shawn Crahan of Slipknot, grabbed some killer t-shirts, and banged our heads to the point of exhaustion. It was also an amazing social experience, as we were met with friendly smiles and lively conversation from excited metalheads throughout the entire day. We left the festival swearing we would be regular attendees from that day forward, but sadly the tour has skipped the Kansas City area ever since.

That hasn’t stopped me from following the news of every Mayhem tour. I eagerly await the line-up announcement each year and I eat up every fan footage video to hit YouTube as the festival carves a path of destruction from coast to coast. For 2015 the second stage has been dubbed the Victory Records Stage and features nine artists from the Victory roster. I was offered the opportunity to send a few questions to a handful of Victory artists as they prepared to hit the road. Continue reading »

Jun 012015


(Our Kansas-based friend Derek Neibarger — the man behind the Godless Angel death metal project and the inventor of the Cat Hand Rest©, brings us his interview of Johnathan Matos of Abiotic.)

April 21st was a great day for technical death metal fans as it brought us the release of Casuistry, the second full-length album from Florida’s Abiotic. Built around furious yet intricate riffs riding atop a pounding and swirling rhythm section and featuring the recording debut of vocalist Travis Bartosek, Casuistry is as complex as it is crushing while still managing to be melodic and catchy.

I recently caught up with guitarist and founding member, Johnathan Matos, to talk about the new album, new band members, and breakfast. Continue reading »

May 152015


(Our Kansas-based friend Derek Neibarger — the man behind the Godless Angel death metal project and the inventor of the Cat Hand Rest©, brings us his interview of Dave Matrise, vocalist of Jungle Rot.)

I have to extend a very heartfelt thank you to Kenosha, Wisconsin. The fourth largest city in the state has given us Mark Ruffalo, the best Bruce Banner aka The Hulk. And more importantly it is the home of the death metal monstrosity, Jungle Rot.

Formed in 1994, Jungle Rot has delivered seven crushing full-length albums. With their eighth album on the way and a coveted slot on this year’s Rockstar Mayhem Festival, it was the perfect time to catch up with vocalist, Dave Matrise, to talk about what looks to be a very exciting year for these death metal legends!


Derek: Hi Dave! Thank you for taking time to do this interview for me! Jungle Rot entered the studio last month to begin working on your eighth album. How are the recording sessions going, so far? Do you have any idea when the album will be released, or when we’ll get to hear some new music?

Dave: Hi, yes we went into Bell City Recordings on April 17th. I could not be happier with how everything is coming out. Again, we went into the studio ready for war. We all had a job to do and everyone did it well. Knowing just what we had and what needed to be done to make this another J-Rot release. The album will be available on June 30th and I’m sure a video will be released at the same time to let everyone get a taste of it. Continue reading »

May 122015


(Our Kansas-based friend Derek Neibarger — the man behind the Godless Angel death metal project and the inventor of the Cat Hand Rest©, returns to NCS with this interview of the man behind IHATE.)

When I think of places around the world which have been the birthplace of great death metal, I typically think of well-known metal spawning grounds such as Florida, Brazil, New York, and Sweden. The last city that comes to mind is Waterbury, Connecticut. Thanks to IHATE, I’ve been shown the error of my ways.

IHATE is the twisted brainchild of multi-instrumentalist Bob Taggett. His musical prowess is easily on par with the death metal greats, delivering crushing slabs of riffage over steamroller percussion. My introduction to IHATE came in the form of the super-creepy music video for “Stretcher”, a first-person view of a psychopath stalking his victim. The track comes from IHATE’s full length demo, which features the familiar gurgling roar of none other than Chris Barnes, from Six Feet Under.

I was incredibly fortunate to be granted an interview with Mr. Taggett, who was more than happy to talk to me about the origin of IHATE and what we can expect next from this remarkably talented musician. Continue reading »

May 062015


(Our Kansas-based friend Derek Neibarger — the man behind the Godless Angel death metal project and the inventor of the Cat Hand Rest©, returns to NCS with this interview of two members of the mysterious Undead.)


My introduction to Undead came by way of their first single, “Voices Within”. The blog entry that accompanied the track only had a brief excerpt from Undead’s press release. It revealed some of the legendary metal acts that have influenced the band but not much else. In a time when we’ve become so accustomed to being given lengthy band bios, Undead has chosen to share very little about the band’s creation. The faces of the band members are hidden under ominous hoods, their identities a mystery. Their country of origin was omitted. The video for “Voices Within” even broke with tradition by not including the lyrics for the song. And so it fell upon the music to do the talking, and it most definitely delivered.

“Voices Within” is a sinister dose of old school death metal, rising up from the darkest depths to claw its way out your speakers with vicious riffs and demonic growls. For me it was love at first sight. I had to interview this band. My prayer to the dark lords of the underworld did not go unanswered. I was granted an interview with Necros and King Oscuros, shortly before the release of their debut album, False Prophecies. Continue reading »

Apr 302015


(Our Kansas-based friend Derek Neibarger — the man behind the Godless Angel death metal project and the inventor of the Cat Hand Rest©, brings us this interview of Zhema Rodero of Brazil’s long-running Vulcano, who will be performing at this year’s Maryland Deathfest in the U.S.)

The Brazilian death metal scene has provided me a seemingly endless source of exciting new discoveries for many years. Like many other metalheads, my introduction to South America’s deadliest export came in the form of now-legendary Sepultura. My insatiable appetite for new music inspired me to dig deeper into the Brazilian metal scene. My efforts have been rewarded with one savage and crushing band after another, and in the case of one band in particular I strongly believe that I might have discovered ground zero of the Brazilian death metal movement. The name of that band is Vulcano.

I don’t remember the exact circumstances under which I was introduced to Santos, São Paulo blackened death metallers Vulcano, but I definitely owe the Metal Gods of the Universe a massive “Thank You”! The death metal pioneers have released nine slabs of audio warfare since forming in 1980, and influenced an entire generation of extreme metal artists, Sepultura among them.

I was extremely fortunate to have been granted an interview with founding guitarist, Zhema Rodero. Continue reading »