Jan 242023


Big-name musical artists usually have big names for valid reasons, because at one time or another they made music that became hugely popular. In the world of extreme metal, I think it’s fair to say that it’s tough to become hugely popular unless, at one time or another, the music was also really good. Pretty faces, stylish clothes, and slick videos are few and far between and they don’t count for much in this world anyway, and active PR machines will only move the needle so far.

But note that I keep saying “at one time or another.” That’s because some bands got hugely popular and earned their big names and then continued trading on that popularity long after the music sunk into mediocrity, or worse. But that didn’t happen with the three bands whose songs are the subject of this Part of our list. They’re still earning their big names, and even though our putrid site doesn’t spend a lot of time applauding bands who don’t need any help from us, we still do it from time to time… and today is one of those times.


Here’s Exhibit A in the proof that some big-name bands don’t forget where they came from and still have the fire in the belly and the songwriting talent to turn out a great album 35 fucking years after they started. Here’s also Exhibit A in the proof that I have a very malleable rule about the timing of songs that qualify for this list. Continue reading »

Aug 292022

(Andy Synn gets to grips with the new album from Revocation, due out 09 September on Metal Blade)

It’s always seemed odd to me that some people seem to equate “being a fan” of a band with “never, ever criticising or questioning what they do”.

Maybe it’s because they’ve invested so much of their identity into their fandom (which is never healthy), or maybe it’s because that’s just what they’ve been told by “the internet” and don’t want to rock the boat, but some folks act as though even entertaining the mildest of criticisms about a band is tantamount to a full-blown betrayal.

That’s obviously not the case, of course, and I’d argue that it’s not at all helpful for a band’s fans to just blindly praise them, since honest feedback from their audience potentially provides one of the best ways for an artist to learn and improve (but that’s an issue for a whole other article).

Case in point, while I think most would agree that Revocation have at least two top-tier classics under their belt(s) – namely 2011’s tech-tacular Chaos of Forms and 2014’s bombastically burly Deathless – it’s worth acknowledging that not every one of their seven (soon to be eight) albums hits quite the same heights (the self-titled in particular is a real clunker), and the band definitely aren’t perfect (nor do I think they’d claim to be).

But if all that has you worried about what I’m going to tell you about their newest album… don’t be, because this preamble has actually just been a clever bait-and-switch, since Netherheaven is easily on par with the band’s very best, and might even be the new standard by which all their work will be judged going forwards.

Continue reading »

Jul 082022


The theme of today’s collection of new songs and videos is: THE BEATINGS WILL CONTINUE UNTIL MORALE IMPROVES!

Today is my birthday, and as a gift, my employer has decided to beat me until my morale improves. Therefore, this collection isn’t as large as I would wish, but tomorrow is another day, and I expect I’ll have another collection then.


We may love Revocation around here (we DO love Revocation around here), but they have repaid all our affections with “Diabolical Majesty“, a merciless new song that invokes champions of hell “to crush the cursed creatures of the Christian right”. “Onward to victory! Set their commandments ablaze!” Continue reading »

Dec 192018


(Andy Synn continues his campaign to make many of us jealous over the shows he’s getting to see in the UK, this time witnessing a duo of American tech stalwarts, a Canadian one, and a Swedish one, and documenting the event with video.)

Looking back over the last twelve months I can see that I’ve been lucky enough to attend a number of awesome shows, festivals, etc, this year, with the last couple of months in particular being an incredibly busy (not to mention fun) period, especially where frantic, fret-melting technicality is concerned.

Just in the last few weeks I’ve got the chance to catch Beyond Creation/Gorod prog out and Aborted/Cryptopsy blast faces, and two nights ago saw things get kicked up yet another notch with the fatal four-way of Revocation, Archspire, Soreption, and Rivers of Nihil at Mama Roux’s in Birmingham. Continue reading »

Oct 122018


(In this post Andy Synn reviews both The Outer Ones, the new album by Revocation (released by Metal Blade on September 28th), and Visitant, the new album by Arsis (which will be released on November 2nd by Nuclear Blast and Agonia Records).)

It doesn’t take a genius to identify the multiple similarities between the career progression(s) of Arsis and Revocation.

Both bands have become pretty big names in (and around) the Tech Death sphere, both bands are fronted by an impressively talented vocalist/guitarist (James Malone and David Davidson, respectively), and both bands have a rather notable ’80s Metal obsession bubbling away under the surface (stadium-sized Hair Metal in the case of the former, classic Thrash for the latter).

But the similarities don’t end there.

Not only are both bands pretty cover-happy (Revocation have, to date, released covers of Exhorder, Death, Metallica, Morbid Angel, and Slayer, while Arsis have pursued a slightly more eclectic path, covering tracks from Alice Cooper, Depeche Mode, and Corey Hart… as well as a mooted King Diamond cover which, for some reason, never saw the light of day), but both groups also participated in the Scion A/V EP programme in 2012, leading to the creation of the Leper’s Caress and Teratogenesis EPs.

And, even more recently, both bands have just produced (or are about to produce) brand new albums which are amongst the heaviest, and most Death Metal focussed, of their careers. Continue reading »

Jul 112018


A whirlwind trip to Denver for my fucking day job prevented me from posting anything yesterday other than my premiere and review of the new Temple Desecration album. So I’ve got some catching-up to do. Later today I’ll post Part 2 of a post I began on Monday (“Doom Meets Death”) along with a couple more song premieres and the beginning of a three-day series of photos by Teddie Taylor from this year’s edition of Northwest Terror Fest in Seattle. But first, it’s time for a mid-week round-up of new music and videos.


Pig Destroyer’s new album, Head Cage, has been high on our list of highly anticipated albums for the second half of this year. Yesterday they provided the album’s first single (and video), “Army of Cops“. To put things politely, it produced some mixed reactions across the interhole. For example, there was this exchange among certain people affiliated with NCS, whose names I’ve concealed because I didn’t ask permission to quote them: Continue reading »

Oct 272016



(Andy Synn turns in this review of the live performances by Obscura, Revocation, Beyond Creation, and Rivers of Nihil in Sheffield, England, on October 24, 2016 — along with videos of the performances.)

Our readers in the UK who play guitar or bass will probably have noticed something rather peculiar over the last couple of days. Riffs that they used to be able to play turning into a mangled, lumpen soup of glitches and errors… Fluid solos that they used to rip out with ease skittering away from stumbling fingers… even, in the most extreme cases, a complete inability to even lift their instrument anymore, as if they were no longer “worthy” to wield its power.

And I know why.

You see on Monday night I was there when Obscura, Revocation, Beyond Creation, and Rivers of Nihil selfishly used-up the entire country’s supply of notes and riffs, leading to a crisis of near biblical proportions amongst the string-slinging section of the UK metal community.

Thankfully, however, I’ve been informed that a fresh shipment is being piped in from the mainland, and so normal proceedings should be resumed by the weekend or thereabouts. Continue reading »

Jul 202016

Revocation-Great Is Our Sin


(We present TheMadIsraeli’s review of the new album by Boston’s Revocation.)

Sometimes regression is evolution. While I haven’t kept up with the press surrounding this album, my friends who have tell me that this is supposed to be Revocation’s most progressive record. It certainly, in my estimation, isn’t that at all in the conventional sense you’d suspect. “Progressive” is also a word that’s been pretty butchered in the world of metal. When we live in a world where TesseracT is considered progressive, that shows how much water the label holds.

Revocation’s Great Is Our Sin is interesting, in that it indeed contains elements that might be considered progressive (extreme amounts of stylistic inclusion/blending and nuance brought about by that inclusion), but the music itself isn’t really what I’d call progressive. It’s fantastic technical, thrash-driven death metal that switches gears among just about every variation on the style, and Davidson’s guitar playing in and of itself is certainly progressive in ways that perhaps could only be explained to other musicians or the super-musically-inclined.

Revocation’s music, especially on this record that follows Deathless, which was also played it very straight, is largely devoid of any sort of meandering, exploration, or head-turning twists. It’s all pure, unrestrained brutality and darkness with eccentricities sprinkled throughout. Continue reading »

Jun 172016

Mr. Trash Wheel-Baltimore


(DGR takes over round-up duties today, featuring commentary and a wide array of recent song, video, and album streams. This would have been posted much earlier in the week if our editor weren’t so lame.)

If you’ve been reading the site recently you’ve no doubt noticed that quite a few of us shirked work and decided instead to go out to Maryland for the Maryland Deathfest shindig that the internet likes to talk so much about. However, the internet doesn’t take time off like we do and quite a bit of stuff came out during that period that despite our best efforts slipped right by us.

On top of that, since we’ve been playing catch-up for the last two weeks, a veritable pile of new music landed on top of us as well. And so I find myself opening my great maw wide in order to capture as much of it as possible — as well as using this as an opportunity to share some stuff that flew right past us long before we had MDF as an excuse for being terrible people.

Contained in this here news roundup is a veritable smorgasboard of new music, some of which came to us by the bands themselves and other times was discovered whilst I was spinning in circles on the internet. Either way, there’s a ton of stuff what floated down the river here — only to be captured by my net/boat/if only there was some sort of metaphor or object I could compare my news capturing ability to… ah well, maybe next time. Let’s get on with it. Continue reading »

May 242016

Revocation-Great Is Our Sin


I had intended to prepare a “Seen and Heard” round-up for today, and may still accomplish that, but I just listened to a new song from Revocation and decided to toss it at you without waiting until later — because it’s loads of fun.

The name of the song is “Communion”, and it comes from the band’s new album Great Is Our Sin, which will be released on July 22 by Metal Blade. Here’s a quote about the song from guitar whiz David Davidson:

“‘Communion‘ is the fastest song we’ve recorded to date and while it’s blistering in terms of speed there are also some proggy elements present to add contrast to the aggression.”

And he’s right. There’s even some funky bass work in this song along with lots of exuberant, head-spinning, technically impressive guitar work mixed into this invigorating thrash romp. Continue reading »