Doom Metal with Psychedelic influencesRelease Date:
February 18th 2013 (original) / February 28th 2014 (extended version)Label:
Self-released (original) / Metal Blade Records (extended version)Author:
(2013) is the debut EP of US doom metal act Mount Salem
. The group originally released it off their own back in 2013 but after being picked up by Metal Blade Records
the EP was reissued in 2014 in a slightly extended format. It's the later version that I have.Mount Salem
are the latest act I've encountered to join the ranks of female fronted retro sounding doom metal/psychedelic rock acts, a group that includes the likes of Blood Ceremony
, Jex Thoth
. Comparisons to Blood Ceremony
in particular are pretty valid to my ears when talking about the music found on Mount Salem
but the other band is set apart by their use of folksy flute playing, which Mount Salem
doesn't use here. Instead the four piece band play raw doom metal riffs straight out of a bygone era, sometimes augmented by some organ played by singer Emily Kopplin
whose powerful voice and singing style suits the music perfectly and stirs up the occult vibes that this type of act is known for. The music on Endless
is a notch heavier and more metal orientated than Blood Ceremony
's most recent effort The Eldritch Dark
(2013) though, so while the two acts and others can comfortable be mentioned in the same breath I do not feel like I am listening to a clone act here.
There are six songs on the original EP and eight on the Metal Blade Records
reissue. While I think the EP is a more than worthwhile effort with the two extra songs The Tower
and Mescaline II
taken out of the equation their addition is a big plus in the favour of Endless
as the new running time of about 43 minutes makes it come across more like a full-length album.
doesn't impress me as much as certain releases by the similar artists to Mount Salem
it's a strong first release from the group, one that hints at potential to seriously challenge the competition in due course. 4 Stars. 83/100Comment
– Demo 2011Genre:
Death MetalRelease Date:
June 7th 2011Label:
is as the title suggests a demo independently released in June 2011 by US death metal act Artificial Brain
. It´s of some notice that Artificial Brain
features guitarist/vocalist Dan Gargiulo
in their ranks. Dan Gargiulo
is the new boy in the successful death/thrash metal act Revocation
...judging from the quality of the material on this 3 track, 11:17 minutes long demo, I´m pretty sure Artificial Brain
is a little hobby project Dan Gargiulo
has on the side. It´s pretty obvious that the music on this demo doesn´t hold many chances of extreme metal mainstream appeal like Revocation
do. The music on the demo is death metal with deep and completely unintelligible growling vocals. It´s the kind of demo where I couldn´t believe it was only 11:17 minutes long, because it felt like forever to get through. There are very few catchy moments and it actually wasn´t until the last couple of minutes of "Lightwaves Birthing Ages"
that I encountered a riff I found exciting.
It´s too bad the songwriting isn´t more interesting because the guys are pretty skilled musicians and the sound production is strong too considering that this is a demo. I guess a 2.5 star (50%) rating isn´t all wrong. 50/100Comment
– By InheritanceGenre:
Thrash MetalRelease Date:
May 29th 1990Label:
is the 3rd full-length studio album by Danish thrash metal act Artillery
. The album was released through Roadrunner/Roadracer Records
in May 1990. The album was produced, engineered and mixed by B]Flemming Rasmussen
, Blind Guardian
, Morbid Angel
...etc) at Sweet Silence Studios
in Copenhagen, Denmark in the early months of 1990.
The album features 1 instrumental intro, 8 "regular" original tracks and a cover version of "Razamanaz"
. The music style on the album is melodic thrash metal with the occasional nod towards US power metal. It´s been three years since the release of the band´s last album "Terror Squad (1987)"
and there´s been quite a development in sound since that album. The music style on "Terror Squad (1987)"
was raw and old school yet technically well played thrash metal, while the music style on "By Inheritance"
is a much more sophisticated yet still powerful type of thrash metal. The band have developed a flair for melody, melodic guitar soloing/guitar themes that are quite impressive.
The instrumental part of the music is very well played. Tight and fast riffing and a powerful rhythm section. It should be noticed here that Morten Stützer
has taken up guitar duties on this album instead of playing bass and new bassist is Peter Thorslund
. In addition to the excellent instrumental musicianship the vocals by Flemming Rønsdorf
are the icing on the cake. Now that´s what I call a great frontman. He has got a strong and rusty kind of voice and while he is certainly able to deliver some really raw thrashy vocals, there´s always a rare melodic sensibility to his vocal parts. He is even capable of delivering more subtle and sensitive vocals in a track like "Don't Believe"
. Tracks like "Beneath the Clay (R.I.P.)"
, the title track and "Back in the Trash"
are simply killer thrash metal of the more sophisticated kind. You won´t hear something like this very often.
The sound production is perfect for the music. A bit dry but powerful and raw. "By Inheritance"
is one of the best known thrash metal albums to ever come out of Denmark and listening to the album it´s obvious to hear why. The band really strike a great balance between the raw and thrashy and the more melodic US power metal style that´s actually pretty rare and not necessarily an easy achievement either. While Artillery
are more a thrash metal band than Sanctuary
were, I think fans of "Into the Mirror Black (1990)"
would really enjoy "By Inheritance"
too. That´s one of the albums I think of when I listen to "By Inheritance"
(just to make a reference that some people might know). A 4.5 star (90%) rating is deserved. 90/100Comment
– Damned in BlackGenre:
Black/Thrash MetalRelease Date:
April 5th 2000Label:
666Sharon666Damned in Black
sees the Immortal
line-up return to a three-piece with the addition of Iscariah
on bass, making this the first Immortal
album that the instrument wasn't played by frontman Abbath
. Damned in Black
sort of continues with the black/thrash metal sound of the previous album At the Heart of Winter
but in a more direct manner. The songs are shorter again and running time of the album isn't even a full forty minutes, so it's more like the standard Immortal
affair of the first four albums in all but sound. I'd say that the real difference to At the Heart of Winter
is that the thrash elements are even more pronounced this time. I'd even go so far as to say that Damned in Black
is blackened thrash metal rather than thrash influenced black metal. The album is not as strong overall as either At the Heart of Winter
or it's follow-up Sons of the Northern Darkness
though, but all in all Damned in Black
is another high quality Immortal
release, possibly one of the more underrated ones along with Blizzard Beasts
. Wrath From Above
and the title track are all particularly great. 90/100Comment
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