Apr 212022

(The living legend himself, Andy Synn, has thoughts about the epic new album from Vanum)

There’s this idea, prevalent among a lot of Metal fans (hell, among music fans in general, let’s be honest) that every band’s newest album has to be better than the one before, otherwise it’s considered a failure.

And I know what you’re thinking… of course it should be better. That’s just the way things should work. Only, no-one ever seems to want to take a moment to stop and think about what exactly “better” means.

Does it mean heavier? Faster? More technical? Does it mean more melodic? More popular? More accessible?

We always say that music isn’t meant to be a competition – but when we do so we’re usually talking about competition between bands, not about bands competing against themselves.

But the older (and, ahem, “wiser”) I get, the more I realise that the point of any album, any piece of art, is not to be “better” than the one which came before it, but to best represent the artist themselves, who they are and what they are trying to say (in whatever medium) at this precise point in their lives.

So when I say that Legend isn’t a “better” album than 2019’s Ageless Fire, I’m also not saying that it’s “worse”. It is, simply put, a perfect companion piece to it’s career-defining predecessor – one which showcases a more morose and melancholy side of the band – and a more than worthy addition to the group’s legacy.

Continue reading »

Feb 102022


The new music keeps coming in a flood. So what else is new? Well, these six songs and videos are new, and I’d like to recommend them. With a bit of luck I’ll have time to recommend more tomorrow.


Lord of Chaos is a new Killing Joke EP. Recorded by the original line-up, it’s their first new music in seven years. It includes two brand new recordings, plus two re-workings of songs from the band’s last studio album, 2015’s Pylon. The new songs are described as tracks that “set the tone for the band’s next studio album, currently being worked on in Prague”. The re-worked older songs are titled “Big Buzz” (Motorcade Mix) and “Delete In Dub” (Youth’s Disco 45 Dystopian Dub). Continue reading »

Apr 292019


(This is a quartet of reviews written by Andy Synn, gathering together impressions and streams for four excellent new albums by bands who happen to share a first letter.)

Did you know they’re planning on doing a full-length movie version of Sesame Street?

I didn’t until recently, but I guess it just goes to show that anything which the studios believe can be turned into a movie will be turned into one eventually.

Still, as long as they avoid the temptation to make it a “dark and gritty reboot” I suppose it can’t be that bad, right?

Anyway, this has very little to do with the bands I’m writing about here today, other than to act as a cheeky little segue into me saying that today’s article is brought to you by the letter V and the number 4. Continue reading »

May 122015


From my wanderings through the interhole and the NCS mailbox yesterday I came across four diverse new songs that grabbed me. So I thought I would put you in their clutches as well.


I paused in my wanderings to hear this new song from Vanum based on the disclosure that the band consists of K. Morgan of Ash Borer and M. Rekevics of Fell Voices, Vorde, and Vilkacis. All those bands are quite good in my estimation, and so I was curious to hear what the union of these talents had produced. Profound Lore must have been intrigued, too, because they’re releasing Vanum’s debut album Realm of Sacrifice in June (digital and CD), with vinyl coming later via Psychic Violence. Continue reading »