This week's new heavy metal releases include a diverse offering of blackened metal with technical moments, stoner rock with pop moments, symphonic metal with Celtic moments, and more!
To the metals…
Abigail Williams – Walk Beyond The Dark
Genre: Atmospheric Black Metal
Origin: Olympia, Washington
Label: Blood Music
It's been four years since Ken Sorceron and his gang dropped an album, and they came back swinging. They're still on the atmospheric blackened path, but there are lots of technical moments and some experimenting going on here. This is easily their best in quite some time.
Deaf Radio – Modern Panic
Genre: Hard rock/stoner
Origin: Athens, Greece
Buy now on Bandcamp
This was my introduction to the band, and I am glad to met them. Modern Panic is a band of Greek folks taking on smoky hard rock in a way that only Queens of the Stone Age have before. This has riffs infused with some big hooks. I'm excited to seek out more of this band.
Despised Icon – Purgatory
Origin: Montréal, Quebec
Label: Nuclear Blast
If you're looking for some unrelenting heaviness, look no further than Purgatory. You'll jam, you'll slam, and probably break a bunch of stuff in the process. J. Andrew has a full review here.
Leah – Ancient Winter
Genre: Symphonic metal
Origin: Vancouver, British Columbia
Label: Ex Cathedra
Now how about some whimsical metal? With Leah you're getting symphonic heaviness, but it really seems to be Celtic music with heavy moments. So you're getting some pan flute, marching drums, and jig-worthy rhythms too! This is a beautiful voice accompanying some beautiful music.
The Pineapple Thief – Hold Our Fire
Genre: Progressive rock
Origin: Somerset, England
The Pineapple Thief are one of prog's, and specifically sad prog's, finest. Hold Our Fire mostly includes tracks from their Dissolution album, but this could be some fans's first chance to hear them live if they didn't come to their town. This wouldn't be the best one to start wit if you're hoping for a career overview, but it'll be a must fan for die-hards.
Tribulation – Alive & Dead At Södra Teatern DVD/CD
Genre: Gothic metal
Origin: Arvika, Sweden
Label: Metal Blade
Like The Pineapple Thief, this release is very much geared for those that were a fan of Tribulation's most recent album. Down Below popped up on a number of end of the year lists last year, and the band brought the album to Sweden's legendary Södra Teatern. Fans of older material will also be happy as there is an entire second set of older jams. THIS would be a good starting point to get into this band.
Zao – Reformat/Reboot
Genre: Metalcore remixes
Origin: Parkersburg, West Virginia
Label: Observed/Observer Recordings
Buy now on Bandcamp
Zao have gotten in the habit of taking their time between albums. They released a full-length back in 2016, an EP since then, a split since the EP, and now they're dropping a remix album. I frankly didn't think metal bands did these anymore, but it's an interesting listen. They're putting a spin on their The Well-Intentioned Virus release here.
Also dropping today…
Bombus – Vulture Culture (Century Media) – Hard rock
Casket Huffer – Filth Ouroboros (Hibernation Release) – Brutal death metal
Cyhra – No Halos In Hell (Nuclear Blast) – Groove metal
El Drugstore – The Golden Age Of Bad Ideas (Nefarious Industries) – Progressive instrumental metal
Fake Figures – We Are The Dead EP (War Against) – Rock/metalcore
Havohej – Table Of Uncreation (Hells Headbangers) – Black metal/experimental
Ignivomous – Hieroglossia (Nuclear War Now!) – Death metal
Left Behind – No One Goes To Heaven (Pure Noise Records) – Sludge/metalcore
Lionheart – Valley Of Death (Arising Empire) – Hardcore
Liturgy – H.A.Q.Q. (YLYLCYN) – Experimental black metal
Look What I Did – Sympathy Porn (Say We All Records) – Punk
Necropanther – The Doomed City (Sailor) – Melodic death metal
Opulence – Black Magic (Blacklight) – Hard rock
Ragnarok – Non Debellicata (Agonia Records) – Black metal
Raised Fist – Anthems (Epitaph) – Hardcore
Raw Hex – Always High, Always Low (Closed Casket Activities) – Hardcore
Suidakra – Echoes Of Yore (MDD) – Melodic death metal
The Three Tremors – The Three Tremors: The Solo Versions (Steel Cartel) – Heavy metal
Vatican – Sole Impulse (1126 Records) – Metalcore