Written by: Lord Hsrah
Portland based heavy metal quartet Splintered Throne's latest offering in The Greater Good of Man comes as a solid slab of classic heavy metal, with a touch of modernity. Reborn with a new lineup reinforced with the addition of vocalist Lisa Mann, The Greater Good of Man blends sonic flavors and audio textures, old and new, combining certain elements from progressive rock, some from speed metal and those of traditional heavy metal, culminating into eight brand new tracks of epic, modern heavy metal goodness.
The album opens with a banger of a tune reminiscent of the late 80s Judas Priest, Grave Digger-esque speed/heavy metal style of riffage and overall progresses in similar vain all throughout the rest of the tracks on the record. Add to that the epic vocal lines and melodic passages, and you've got a pretty solid and epic sets of songs to bang your head to.
Greetings, dear adventurer! If you, like I, spend entirely too music time traipsing the hallowed halls of metal twitter, you are undoubtedly familiar with the work, wit, and glorious flowing locks of one Laurence Kerbov, the face of Legendarium.
If you aren't familiar, prepare to get acquainted real damn quick.
Legendarium plays heavy metal for heartfelt fans of heavy metal. In other words, this two-man crew reliably delivers the expected sonic goods alongside a jubilantly old-school ethos. Their projects never shy away from the overtly nerdy fascinations of yore--sword and sorcery is a common theme, and the profoundly epic nature of his influences shine through across every album released thusfar. As I wrote in regards to 2020's Reign in Repose, "Legendarium plays good ol' heavy metal with a healthy tinge of jubilant punky bounce...a highly melodic affair, with an emphasis on fun riffage, triumphant solos, and narrative cohesion." The forthcoming Under the Spell of Destruction, out this Friday, mirrors yet improves upon this winning formula in every way, resulting in an album that demonstrates a consistent evolution in both technical proficiency and compelling songcraft.
We're honored and pleased to present here today the excellent title track. Give it a listen below, and, as always, we'll meet ye on the other side!
This year, in an attempt to cover more music that would all-too-oft slip through the very large cracks, we're trying something new and novel around these parts. Namely, we're gonna actually publish the little one-off reviews that were previously (and arbitrarily) deemed too short for publication. In that spirit, here's a mini-review of a very metal-y single I've been spinning all day. Dig in!
Written by: The Administrator
It's a Friday evening here at the Sleeping Village, which means that this particular scribe is ready to cut loose with some loud music, an irresponsibly massive pile of cheap pizza, and some beer(s). Whether or not the night pans out in that exact fashion is yet to be determined, but at least I have the soundtrack sorted. Time, methinks, for some capital-M Metül.
On their latest thrash/hard rock/speed metal single, fresh off the press today, TANTIVY delivers no-nonsense abrasivity and enough leather-and-bullet-belted swagger to adequately satisfy any acolyte of the gritty Motörhead ethos and aesthetic. Built on the back of rolling drums and galloping riffs, "Worthy Foe" is a track that is invested in its own forward momentum. It's a rhythmic and boot-stomping affair, with a sense of urgency permeating the whole. The vocals, which notably feel like they were tied to the back of a truck and dragged through the gravel for a good long while, lend the track an intrinsic gruffness and toughness.
Despite the deliberate rough-n-tumble approach, "Worthy Foe" feels like a refinement on the template they established on 2021's Eyes if the Night, and points in a very promising direction for anyone invested in hard rockin' heavy metal. It's a single that practically demands a larger project to call home. I'm excited to hear what this crew cooks up next.
Written by: Blackie Skulless
Mourn The Light is the first of the inevitable “incredible album from last year that I didn’t discover until January.” Hailing from Connecticut here in the states, they do a very up-tempo brand of doom metal with traditional heavy metal influences. Rather than being dark and gloomy at all turns, they head the warmer direction and construct music that’s full of emotion and strong tempo. Having been around for a couple years now, last summer they released their debut full-length titled Suffer, Then We’re Gone.
Coming at it with this approach immediately makes it more digestible as an album on the longer side. Naturally, grand constructions bordering the epic end (without the obnoxious toppings) take the majority of the cake. There are pretty extreme shifts in mood that somehow work, easily seen in the hook-friendly opener “When The Fear Subsides.” It rides on that gothic sadness that Idle Hands utilizes, before swinging into an acoustic, clean and upbeat outro. The title track also opens up side B with a very similar, bassy approach before switching entirely to the heaviest moment on the album.
Written by: Blackie Skulless
Two years ago, Black Sites absolutely blew my mind with their second album titled Exile. The Chicago musicians have certainly not hit the brakes on giving it a follow-up. Considering frontman Mark Sugar took on Bear Mace last year, I’d say they had their hands full. Late this year, a follow-up titled Untrue hit the scene. While played in the same traditional metal style with proggier takes and modern surface finishes, this avoids being a carbon copy.
For the most part, this record lays down the melancholic gradient heavier than before. Though it’s only slight, it’s enough to let it stand apart. Lyrical themes around life, tragedy, and modern issues certainly boost this, and I think helped the poetic flow, which is something that really stands out. The smasher “Call It By Its Name” is a wonderful vocal driven number with a smooth chorus and galloping guitars weaved in. Songs like this breathe life by relying on higher wails and dissonant, drawn-out passages to really dial in the emotion on top of everything else.
We provide thoughtful reviews of music that wakes us from slumber. Written by a highfalutin peasantry.