Sep 042021


Can’t you read plain English? It says “Labor Day”. It doesn’t say “Holi-Day”. So I’m just following the prescribed agenda, and laboring.

Because I unexpectedly agreed to write a whopping four premieres yesterday, I had no time to begin rounding up a selection of songs and videos that surfaced this past week. Leaving that until today has resulted in another massive collection, again featuring too many bands to name in the post title.

As it happens, the majority of the new music you’ll find below is accompanied by videos. It also happens that almost all of the new songs are high-speed devastators. This isn’t entirely by accident, because many of them were recommended in our NCS group by DGR, who tends to prefer musical riots over other forms of audio entertainment. And once I’d gotten into that kind of groove, I tended to stick with it in choosing from among other possibilities I checked out.


We’ll start with a new lyric video for a frantic new song by Archspire, in which vocalist Oliver Rae Aleron goes faster than a cattle auctioneer and the rest of the band spits a variety of bullets even faster — but then abruptly the song gets dreamy. Continue reading »

Feb 022020


As predicted at the end of yesterday’s penultimate segment of this list, I spent hours agonizing about what to include in this final Part. And in the end, despite the internal misery occasioned by having to make a final choice among so many strong remaining candidates, it’s still a largely random outcome — even though this final episode includes a LOT more songs than usual. Basically, I went with my gut, slightly aided by my brain, which thought this sequence of tracks might be a fitting conclusion. At a minimum, it’s more directly in line with the title of this list than yesterday’s choices.

The first three songs are guitar spectacles, the fourth and fifth ones keep the savage energy in the red zone in different ways, the sixth moves into malevolent brutishness (with serious risk of sore-neck syndrome), and then we shift gears into downright epic territory with the last two stirring and marvelously multi-faceted songs, which seemed the right way, in farewell, to express how glorious metal was in 2019.


I first stumbled across the Swiss band Matterhorn in the spring of 2018 when they had two songs up for streaming in advance of Iron Bonehead‘s CD release of their debut album, Crass Cleansing, and I came away very impressed. I had a tough time categorizing the music, describing it then as a stew of extremity that included elements of thrash, speed metal, punk, black metal, and death metal — and the overall impact was electrifying. Continue reading »

Aug 092019


(Andy Synn breathes more life into this occasional series featuring reviews of new releases by UK bands, with reviews and streams of EPs by Ba’al, Lvcifyre, and Man Must Die.)

Chances are a bunch of our regular UK readers will be off in a field in Derbyshire this weekend attending Bloodstock Festival, and so probably won’t get to read this article.

But that’s ok, because one of the primary purposes behind this “Best of British” series is to introduce readers/listeners from other countries to some of our best home-grown musical exports.

So, in that spirit, please allow me to draw your attention to three of the best new (or new-ish) EPs from three of the UK’s best bands. Continue reading »

Aug 082017


(Last year TheMadIsraeli posted the first two installments in this irregular series, and now brings us a third one.)

Another installment of irrelevant listening where I share albums in my rotation lately that aren’t current. Let’s get started.

Killswitch Engage – Alive Or Just Breathing: Top-Shelf Edition

Alive Or Just Breathing is the melodic metalcore album that in my mind has never been topped. Even the band themselves admitted in an interview, I think it was this year, that this is STILL their best album. I’ve written about this album before on the site and stumbled upon the so-called “Top Shelf” expanded edition (released in 2005) some time ago. Continue reading »

Sep 182016

Man Must Die


I decided to dispense with the usual Sunday installment of The Rearview Mirror in order to spend the time writing this thing. I spent several hours yesterday listening to new metal (when I wasn’t talking calls from world leaders anxious for help in solving their many problems), and these five songs and videos pounced on me like the vicious head-wrecking predators they are. I found a lot of other things to like in my listening excursions, but it just made sense to my addled mind to package these together so as to inflict maximum trauma on you, our beloved readers.

I’m afraid these won’t be the only audio assaults I intend to facilitate today, since I also have a Shades of Black post in progress. Between that post and this one, it will add up to a lot of listening. Just ignore your friends and/or your families and/or food, water, and bathroom breaks, and you’ll be able to take it all in.


We have been writing about Scotland’s Man Must Die for many years (beginning in December 2009 when we were only one month old)… but years have passed since MMD released an album (the last one being 2013’s Peace Was Never An Option). Two years ago they did release a single called “Slave To the Animal” (which we dutifully covered here), and last year they released a video for  a cover of the song “Milk” by S.O.D. (featured here). And now, finally, they seem close to releasing a new EP named Gagging Order. Continue reading »

Oct 212015

hotel photo


I had to make a whirlwind trip to Dallas, Texas, for my fucking day job, leaving Sunday morning and returning to Seattle late yesterday. I didn’t have much time to myself, which means I fell behind in listening to new metal. On the plus side, I was put up in a swanky hotel, the corridors of which were lined with large framed photos from ’60s and ’70s fashion magazines. Every time I walked past the one above, I did a double-take. And that wasn’t the only one that stopped me in my tracks. So there’s that.

Anyway, last night and this morning I enjoyed the following new music streams and videos, presented here in alphabetical order by band name except for the last one, which is a twist on what I usually feature in these pages.


Thanks to Andy Synn, we’ve previously reviewed the excellent new album by Abigail Williams, The Accuser, which will be released by Candlelight Records on October 30. Yesterday CVLT Nation premiered a video for one of the new songs named “Nuumite”. It’s the track that ends the album, and takes a sharp turn from what preceded it (though if you listen closely to the preceding songs, you’ll realize that the twist was forecast all along). Here’s what Andy wrote about the song: Continue reading »

Jul 042014


Google Analytics tells me that over the last 30 days 40.10% of the visitors to our site were located in the United States. Because we math like some motherfuckers, we are able to determine that 59.90% of visitors over the last 30 days were from other nations. For them, today is just another day. So we’ll get the obligatory USA! USA! USA! chant out of the way by celebrating one of our nation’s greatest accomplishments on this July 4th via the video above.

Okie dokie, now that we’ve had our Fourth of July celebration, let’s move along to some musical fireworks. Here are four recommended new metal songs that appeared over the last 48 hours.


As we’ve previously reported, Oslo’s Pantheon I have a new album entitled From the Abyss They Rise that’s due for release on August 14 by Non Serviam Records. It includes both an EP’s worth of new songs plus older compositions, including their first demo tracks from a decade ago. Yesterday I caught up to a stream of one of the new songs that appeared on July 2. Continue reading »

Jan 282014

Welcome to the lucky 13th Part of our list of the year’s most infectious extreme metal songs. For more details about what this list is all about and how it was compiled, read the introductory post via this link. To see the selections that preceded the two I’m announcing today, click here.

You remember that a few days ago I resolved to finish this list by the end of January? Well, like my New Year’s resolution to be nice to children and poodles, I may not be able to follow through on that promise. Just too damned many great songs from 2013 that need to be recognized. Also, it’s easier on me to just keep going than to make hard decisions about what to select and what to cut, and I’m completely in favor of making things easier on myself.


Oh man, did Kataklysm come back strong with 2013’s Waiting For the End To Come — strong, hungry, and with fangs and claws bared. To quote from our review by TheMadIsraeli: Continue reading »

Oct 252013

(In mid-September we posted the first of two reviews of the new album by Scotland’s Man Must Die, and now we bring you the second one, by Andy Synn.  Some albums just just demand this kind of attention.)

Absence makes the heart grow fonder. Hard times make the heart grow harder.

It’s been four years since these Scottish bruisers last brutalised our eardrums with their sickening sonic stew. Four long fucking years of pain and struggle and bloody-minded perseverance. So it’s no surprise that the fourth album by the Scottish juggernauts might just be their most abrasive, most lethally focussed, and most viscerally aggressive release yet.

To those unfamiliar with the band, their sound is a devastating mix of Cryptopsian chaos and Kataklysmic groove, delivered in a manner so utterly merciless, so utterly unforgiving, that its use in certain countries has been declared a war crime.

Fuelled by fire and frustration, each song is a demanding (at times exhausting) sequence of technical, pandemic death metal riffs, frenzied and punishing drums, and rabid, venomous vocals, all tied together by a subtle undercurrent of seditious melody and a grim atmosphere of malevolence and paranoia. Continue reading »

Sep 172013

(In this post TheMadIsraeli brings us the first of two reviews we’ll be publishing of the comeback album by Scotland’s Man Must Die, and at the end we’ll stream a new song from the album — “On the Verge of Collapse” — which debuted today.)

Man Must Die have been out of the game for a good bit.  The last we heard from these Scots was the precision-guided slaughterhouse known as No Tolerance for Imperfection, an album that demonstrated their melodeathgrind sound at its all-time high.  I honestly haven’t listened to this band in a really long while, you know how it is.  Some bands appear to drop off and you just don’t see the point in listening anymore.  I was, however, intrigued when we got the promo for this, especially because I wondered what five years between releases would do to their sound.  Thankfully Man Must Die didn’t let the passage of time change them, it merely make them better at what they do. In fact, they’ve crafted one of 2013’s undeniably best albums.

Man Must Die’s odd mix of technical death metal, grindcore, and melodic death metal has served them well, and it’s never been better than on Peace Was Never an Option.  There are albums that make you feel pumped, albums that make you feel alive, and albums that make you feel like someone shoved a needle of adrenaline straight into your heart.  This album is the third kind.  Not many albums are this razor sharp, this organ-piercingly fatal, or this burly.  Man Must Die know how to do three things: beat your face in, fatally wound you with knife stabs, and break your bones until nothing remains but an indescribable shell of useless waste.  Continue reading »