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Album Reviews

The greatest selection of albums, reviewed and rated

The bad flowers – Starting gun

The Bad Flowers have been making a name for themselves since releasing their debut EP in 2016 and putting in a string of great live shows since then. Now they’re gearing up for the release of their debut album – Starting gun. Ahead of the album release they released their …

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Night Demon – Darkness remains (expanded edition)

Following the release of their “Darkness remains” album in early 2017, Night Demon are kicking off 2018 with the release of an expanded edition of the album. I have to say I’m not a fan of this sort of strategy since it penalises the dedicated fans who bought the album …

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Damnation’s Hammer – Unseen Planets, Deadly Spheres

A phrase I’ve used once before and certainly applies to Unseen Planets, Deadly Spheres by Damnation’s Hammer is “Riff after riff after motherfucking riff!”. The power they create is breathtaking, bringing to mind a fusion of Paradise Lost and Burn My Eyes era Machine Head, will be released via Massacre …

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Vandenberg’s Moonkings – MKII

Former Whitesnake guitarist, Adrian Vandenberg formed Vandeberg’s Moonkings a few years ago, releasing their debut album four years ago. Now they’re back with their second album, the rather unimaginatively named “Mk II”. Thankfully the lack of effort coming up with a decent album title is the only area of the …

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Carousel vertigo – Revenge of rock and roll

For some reason French rock and metal bands don’t seem to get the attention they deserve elsewhere in Europe. Sometimes it’s because they sing in French, but with some bands it’s hard to understand why they aren’t well known around Europe. One such band is Carousel Vertigo who come from …

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Heavatar – Opus II – The Annihilation

Stefan Schmidt is the mastermind behind acapella metal band Van Canto and also Heavatar. Unlike Van Canto, Heavatar is a more conventional band with instruments rather than acapella, but once again he’s tried to do something a little different. Heavatar fuse classical music and metal music. OK they’re far from …

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Galactic cowboys – Long way back to the moon

Younger metal fans won’t remember the last time Galactic cowboys released an album – that was way back in 2000. Having released six albums and an EP between 1991 and 2000 the band split, and apart from a couple of very brief reunions have been silent for the last seventeen …

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Destruction – Thrash Anthems II

By the title you may think this is a covers album but German thrash metallers Destruction have not remastered some of their finest songs, they have re recorded them and to say they have breathed new life into them is an understatement! Thrash Anthems II was originally a pledge music …

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Reuben Archer’s Personal Sin – Petrolhead

Reuben Archer, the Peter Pan of hard rock without a shadow of a doubt has released one of my highlights of 2017 with his studio album Petrolhead from his band Personal Sin. Released by Toxic Records his songwriting suss with Lautrec, Lionheart, Wild Horses and Stampede was pure gold and …

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Trespass – Footprints In The Rock

2018 is already looking to be a good year for heavy metal as NWOBHM legends Trespass release their brand new studio album Footprints In The Rock via Mighty Music Label and distributed by Target. Formed in Sudbury, Suffolk in 1979 by Mark Sutcliffe, the front man still flies their flag …

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Jesse’s Divide – Other World’s Than These EP

True to its word of the press release announcing “For your all out hard rock enjoyment”, Jesses’s Divide have a sure fire winner with their upcoming release of their four track EP Other World’s Than These, due out on January 26th 2018 on Spotify, iTunes and other online providers Physical …

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Anvil – Pounding The Pavement

Another year and another Anvil album to crank up. Pounding The Pavement, their seventeenth studio release due out on January 19th 2018 via Steamhammer/SPV Records follows Anvil Is Anvil, a statement of who they are and they are still blazing a trail their way! Formed by Lips and Robb Reiner, …

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Rose Tattoo – Tatts Live In Brunswick 1982

Now this is how you make a live album! No overdubs, just a furious run through of your finest songs that sound like you are at the gig. Rose Tattoo, one of Australia’s finest exports, formed in Melbourne, Sydney in 1976 are still blazing away with tour dates penned for …

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Morbid Angel – Kingdoms Disdained

Well this is the heaviest and most brutal album I’ve heard for quite some time. Kingdoms Disdained, the ninth and latest studio album from Tampa Bay,Florida death metal band Morbid Angel, founded by original guitarist Trey Azagthoth in 1983. Released by Silver Lining Music, it is a constant assault to …

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Twisted Illusion – Molly’s Smile

Matt Jones, frontman for Twisted Illusion, when he is not screaming his lungs over heavy progressive metal, has a knack of stopping you in your tracks with deft, heart wrenching balladry and he has surpassed himself with ‘Molly’s Smile’. It’s a charity single dedicated to Brian and Claire Mear who …

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Blitzkrieg – Reign Of Fire EP

NWOBHM band Blitzkrieg, formed in Leicester in 1980 burst back onto the scene with a two track EP titled Reign Of Fire. Original lead vocalist Brian Ross still captains the ship and his eerie, operatic performance on the title track sets the tone for a five minute heavy metal masterpiece …

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Tommy Emmanuel – Accomplice one

Grammy nominated guitarist Tommy Emmanuel releases a collaborative album, Accomplice One, in January. For this album he’s teamed up with a whole host of talented musicians to perform a mix of cover versions and original songs. The list of musicians includes Ricky Skaggs, Mark Knopfler, Jerry Douglas and many more, …

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Joe Satriani – What happens next

Joe Satriani is one of the very few guitarists where I look forward to hearing their next solo album. Why? Well all too often solo albums from guitarists are just a collection of guitar solos, sometimes with vocals, but all aimed at showing how good they are at playing guitar. …

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The Fright – Canto V

The Fright have a sound that conjures up memories of Sisters of Mercy, The Mission, 69 eyes and Fields of the Nephilim but at the same time has a more mainstream rock feel to it with strong catchy songs with choruses people can sing along to. It’s a tricky balancing …

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Various – Rockin the blues

In March next year, Mascot label group artists Eric Gales, Quinn Sullivan, Gary Hoey and Lance Lopez embark on the Rockin the blues tour. Ahead of the tour, Mascot are releasing a compliation (conveniently available in time for Christmas). Rather than it being limited to the artists on the tour, …

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