AMG single spin reviews – week 2

It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that I am miles behind my plans to listen to each new album review on Angry Metal Guy, and even further behind on actually writing about it. I could claim that I’ve been busy with work, but nobody would believe that. Still, let’s plod on. What delights have I already listened to in week 2: 8th to the 14th of January 2022.

Wombbath album cover
Wombbath – Agma

Wombbath – Agma

We start the week off with a pretty decent death metal album. I generally need something added to death metal for me to properly enjoy it, and while much of this album is standard swedeath, there are elements that make it far more interesting. There are folky bits, some violins, and loads of big meaty thrashy riffs.

There’s plenty of good tracks to get your teeth into, but at 70 minutes it is way too long. I like it, but there are too many samey songs and it doesn’t quite stand out enough for me to be buying the t-shirt. Certainly an album that might be getting some replays this year, though.

[AMG review]


Necrophagous – In Chaos Ascend

Necrophagous – In Chaos Ascend

More death metal? Sure, but this demonstrates the variety in that genre – this hits similar inspirational touchpoints to the Wombbath album but sounds quite different to my ears. In Chaos Ascend has a modern-sounding production that sounds almost live. You can hear quite a lot of natural instrument noises, something that often gets hidden during mixing – I like this a lot!

The vocals are raspy and really nasty, while somehow maintaining a melodic edge. The songs are varied, hooky and show hints of all kinds of bands; from Morbid Angel to Pantera. There’s a lot to enjoy and even after one spin of this I can tell that Necrophagous have a great chance of making my year-end list. If I make one, which isn’t a given.

Cracking!

[AMG review]


Nihility – Beyond Human Concepts

Nihility – Beyond Human Concepts

Oh, another death metal band, this time from Portugal. This decent slab of death comes with a side-helping of black metal too. I often enjoy mixing black metal with other genres, while not really getting into bands that start off with the black and end up elsewhere. I don’t know, I’m weird.

Either way, this is pretty good death without really doing much new. Solid and enjoyable, and that’s pretty much all I can say about it after one spin. It’s not quite as memorable as the Necrophagous or Wombbath, but left me happy to play it some more.

[AMG Review]


Avskräde – Det stora tunga sjuka

Avskräde – Det stora tunga sjuka

Well, that’s easy for you to say. It should be fairly obvious from the album cover that this is some kind of black metal. It’s an enthusiastic, if flawed, album that revisits the early days of black metal. It’s not trying to be anything fancy, just black all the time.

It starts off pretty well, but I soon found myself wondering if I’d accidentally just left the first song on repeat or something. There’s little to distinguish one song from another, and while there’s certainly some good grooves going on I was pretty glad that this album is quite short.

The song endings are pretty bad mostly, with some awful fade-outs where some kind of resolution would have been good. This is a shame, because you can hear a good hint of quality in there. Hopefully future albums will have a bit more variety.
[AMG review]


Mizmor – Wit’s End

Mizmor – Wit’s End

I saw the (incredible) album art for this and assumed I was going to get some prog metal or something. What I did get was something rather strange – a mix of styles outside my usual playlists.

There are only two tracks, both monstrous in their own way. The first is packed full of justifiably angry lyrics and plodding doom death. There’s a hint of Neurosis I think, and strong post-metal hints amongst the sludgy doom and raging vocals. I really liked this track, but not so much the second one which might well have been written and performed by a different artist. It’s largely ambient, and while it’s enjoyable in itself I’m not sure I could call it a ‘song’.

This was definitely the most intriguing album so far this year. I just wish I could like it a bit more.

[AMG review]


Torii – Torii

Torii – Torii

Ooooh, something doomy. I’m partial to acts that deliver massive, crushing riffs at a glacial pace and there are parts of this that deliver just that. There’s a mix of post-metal, doom and death in here, and while it’s not always great there’s some terrific elements dotted around.

I’m glad that it’s not all slow, grave-bothering doom. There’s enough variety to maintain interest throughout, even with the obligatory incomprehensible vocals growling away buried in the mix.

The whole album could certainly sound better, but pretty good stuff.

[AMG review]


Aethereus – Leiden

Aethereus – Leiden

Hey, now here’s something interesting. 2021 was a pretty good year for technical death, and it’s good to see more of that this year. Aethereus deliver the insanity a bit differently though, with the addition of some dissonant elements.

I generally find disso-death hard work. I like a tune – hooks are necessary for me to enjoy music – and some disso-death can be pretty dense. If an album requires me to put in some effort to figure out what’s going on, well, that’s a hard no from me. There are plenty of other acts I can listen to.

Aethereus, somehow, deliver all of the tech death and dissonance you can handle, while also making tuneful songs. This is quite a revelation for me. I found some elements of this album harder to get into than others, but the bits I enjoyed I loved. Final song Upon Infinite Seas is an epic disso-tech-death song that somehow ends up with an absolutely delicious chorus. It’s one of the best songs I’ve heard in ages. I’m certainly going to revisit this one quite a bit.

[AMG review]


Wolfbastard – Hammer the Bastards

Wolfbastard – Hammer the Bastards

I’m starting to regret the decision to listen to all of these albums reviewed at Angry Metal Guy. Not because they’re bad (I generally find something I like in everything), but because there are so many of them! I’m not getting to dwell on any artist, and that is a shame in a way.

I’d quite like to dwell on these bastards. It is not subtle, but huge amounts of fun. It’s labelled as ‘crusty black metal’, which isn’t a category I’d normally be flicking through on the shelves at HMV. I’m hearing a lot of punk in this; lovely, loud, obnoxious punk.

It’s quite big, if not clever. It doesn’t need to be though. Brilliant!

[AMG review]


King Bastard – It Came From the Void

King Bastard – It Came From the Void

More bastards. You’d think this would be more crusty black metal with that moniker, but no – this is some spicy psychedelic stoner doom, or something like that.

They are a bit obsessed with Aliens (the film) and space in general. Huge riffs abound, interspersed with some lovely, spacey moments. Vocals are death-adjacent at times, but the songs contain quite a bit of weird variety, and visit lots of memorable hooks.

It can be a little too weird at times, maybe, but a fun listen nonetheless.

[AMG review]


Ereb Altor – Vargtimman

Ereb Altor – Vargtimman

Crikey, still going on week 2? There were a lot of reviews this week. At least we are finishing on something really good.

Ereb Altor are, apparently, inspired by Bathory. I never got on with Bathory in my youth. I’m not sure why, but they didn’t appeal to me then. I was very much into Anthrax, Metallica and the usual Thrash suspects back then. I kind of wish I’d given them more attention, as this album is great!

There are loads of great tunes delivered in suitably Viking metal stylings. I enjoyed this quite a bit more than Steel in the review, but then I do have quite simple tastes.

[AMG review]

That’s it for week 2! I love the reviews over at Angry Metal Guy and have found loads of new bands from there over the years. Let’s hope I can keep up!

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