The Vatican: The Trump Card & Unintimidated: Wisconsin Musicians Against Scott Walker

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“Politics man, frickin’ politics”

From the other side of the pond, I can only imagine what it is like to be surrounded by the US Presidential nomination race, but if these two releases are anything to go by it is getting rather tense to say the least.

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Ommadon: S/T

Ommadon - VI album cover Date Released: 03/16/2016
Label: Burning World Records
Album Type: Full Length
Album info: Bandcamp

OMG! It’s OMDN!!

Ommadon duo takes things slow, and allow their tunes to build up over time. Coming from Scotland, I shall be incredibly stereotypical here and say maybe they are used to allowing the whiskey to mature! These things can’t be rushed.

Ommadon have released a number of crushingly heavy albums of slow burn doom drone. They create a sound of tectonic plates moving at the dawn of time, as the earth cooled, and the lava boiled, Ommadon were forged in the bowels of the earth, or was it the valves of an amp?

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Frank’s Guide to Power Metal, Part II: North American

Iced Earth
Iced Earth

Welcome back, brave warriors! I hope you enjoyed Part I. Because of the European style being the most recognizable for Power Metal I considered it a warm-up for Parts II – V. Power Metal has grown and evolved to reflect many different sounds and incorporate the influences of other genres. The sound becomes similar, yet different.

Confused? No worries. Let the journey continue…

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Bardus: Stella Porta

Bardus - Stella Porta album cover Date Released: 04/01/2016
Label: Solar Flare Records
Album Type: Full Length
Band info: Facebook

Philadelphia is one of the first city’s that come to mind when I think “noise rock”. Heavy hitters Fight Amp, Psychic Teen and Creepoid seem to be well established to the point where I’m surprised when even non-Rock friends haven’t heard of them.

Bardus is a band that is elevating themselves to that point with their most recent full length Stella Porta. A band not unfamiliar with using Latin (Bardus, Solus) is at it again. Stella Porta translates to Star Gate. Appropriately named for an album that jettisons the listener out of this world on multiple occasions with delicious stoner rock breakdowns.

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Like Rats: II

Short review of Like Rats album II was originally written for About Heavy Metal.

Like Rats - II album cover Date Released: 03/25/2016
Label: Southern Lord
Album Type: Full Length
Album info: Bandcamp

Chicago’s Like Rats create a rage fueled blend of hardcore and sludge that will destroy you slowly.

The end result of II is eight colossal and pulverizing songs, beginning with opening track “From Beyond,” which will immediately have you bobbing your head like a madman.

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Brothers of the Sonic Cloth: 2016 European Tour

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The bellowing trio of Brothers of the Sonic Cloth (Tad Doyle, Peggy Doyle and Dave French) embark on their first European tour beginning next week, in support of their astoundingly heavy debut self-titled full-length, which saw release last year through Neurot Recordings. This tour will see the band start with a date in London and rumble through France, Spain, Italy, Austria and Germany, before wrapping it up with a set at this year’s Roadburn, the spiritual home of all things low-end and high-powered.

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Frank’s Guide to Power Metal, Part I: European

HammerFall
HammerFall

Have you ever wondered what kind of Power Metal is right for you?

No? Oh…well…pretend you have.

Like many other metal genres, not all Power Metal is the same. There are many different bands that vary in sound, style and cheesiness. No worries; I am here to help you (as much as one average fan can).

I have narrowed it down to five sub-genres of Power Metal.

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Pensevor: Klothod

Pensevor - Klothod album cover Date Released: 05/06/2016
Label: Hibernacula Records
Album Type: Full Length
Album info: Bandcamp

My doom claws come out within the first minute of this album! And the mesmerising doom nod is close behind. This is a monolithic, psychedelic, slab of despairing doom, with as a I mentioned a psychedelic feel. Its hypno-monotonic drum beat accompanied with the vocal stylings of Mark Jennings make this four piece from Farnborough in leafy Hampshire a beast of a band!

This is the debut long player from Pensevor, being released on Hibernacula Records. The band have been around since 2011, releasing a self-titled EP in 2013, available on Bandcamp. You can listen to it below.

Klothod is a juggernaut of a sound that has relentless barrage of a non stop tsunami wave. It’s not necessarily that heavy, or big, but just keeps rolling and rolling and rolling, And with song titles such as “Sewerpuss” and “Dungeoness” (Dungeness is a small parcel of land in the UK known for its bleak coastal landscape and power station) I like the way their wordsmith thinks.

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Palace of Worms: The Ladder

Palace of Worms - The Ladder album cover Date Released: 04/08/2016
Label: Broken Limbs
Album Type: Full Length
Band/Album info: Bandcamp

As this opens it caught me off guard – I had to check I’d hit play on the right album, as I hear something akin to Eastern European folk tunes, but then, ah yes, the growl comes in along with the electric guitar and we open up in to slow grumbling death rock not far off from the old Peaceville three.

Palace of Worms have long been a standard US black metal band, or one man band, and this album sees him move in a different direction. It is much slower and gloomier than before, hence my Peaceville three comparisons. It’s not as dramatic as say My Dying Bride, but includes the odd pseudo operatic style vocals at times. But more in the camp of Paradise Lost. It certainly has a more theatrical Christian death style sound to it with depth. And less BM howls.

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