Gee thanks guys...
Out of all the great extreme metal bands to release albums in 2012, who would’ve thought the mighty Pig Destroyer would be the ones to show the more accessible side of their sound? That’s not to say that this isn’t a grindcore record. Scott Hull’s maniacal genius is still ever present in the guitar work throughout the record. I found this to be an album that I needed to digest a few times before I “got it”. Katherine Katz, of Agoraphobic Nosebleed fame, delivers the standout guest performance of the record on ‘Eve’ and ‘The Bug’. Book Burner
might not be the best in their discography but it’s an excellent grind record that more than holds it’s own in the genre.
This is the 19th full length album from Canadian prog rock legends Rush. After a great album in 2007’s Snakes and Arrows
I think they top it with Clockwork Angels
. As usual, all three musicians shine on this record. This is not a band looking into their past and trying to recapture glory, it’s a modern incarnation of the band’s sound that comprises another chapter in the book of progressive rock that Rush has written. Some of the older rock bands eventually run out of lyrical content over a long career and themes get stale over time, but somehow Rush is able to come off as fresh and inspired on each record. If you consider yourself a Rush fan I would venture to say that there really isn’t a bad song on the album.
Black Breath’s killer combination of crossover thrash with Swedish death metal continues to deliver great songs on their sophomore full length, another knockout on Southern Lord. The pummeling riffs rocket these songs along from thrash grooves to hardcore breakdowns into death metal blasts. The shredded throat hardcore vocals fit perfectly with the frenetic pace. Black Breath is only two albums in to what is shaping up to be an excellent career. The songs from this record sound great in concert and the record really captures their furious energy. Seeing a drunken Brett of Pallbearer knock hardcore ninjas to the ground in the Black Breath pit at SXSW was one of the best memories at concerts in 2012.
Feast of the Damned
is basically a pop-rock album as viewed through the lens of sludge metal. If these catchy songs and memorable riffs don’t make you headbang with a smile on your face then you probably don’t like Torche to begin with. This is a short record and at under 39 minutes it flys by but that’s fine by me because I would find myself letting it loop without getting bored. Torche just might be defining their own sub-sub-genre of metal and having a unique sound in this age of so many copycats is an accomplishment.
Martin van Drunen is a legend in the history of death metal and his return as the frontman and vocalist for Asphyx in 2007 marked another excellent chapter for this already prolific band. Asphyx is mainly a death/doom band, but there are hints of thrash and black tossed into their blender of classic death metal quickening and slowing the pace at will. Deathhammer
is a masterpiece of fun, headbanging, old school death metal. Between Asphyx, Hail of Bullets and Grand Supreme Blood Court Martin van Drunen is a very busy man, fronting the best death metal coming out of the Netherlands.
We Doom You to Death