Aftermath - There Is Something Wrong

Seeing AFTERMATH for the first time onstage felt like there was a lot to unpack from their music all the way to the performance with both being a strange (at first) mix of Punk, Thrash with almost Progressive finishing touches. Confusing, right? A second gig and after some needed homework, I started understanding what this band was doing, and in the end, I was on the look-out for the new album that would break a 25-year studio silence. In fact, “There Is Something Wrong” is just AFTERMATH’s second full length and the follow-up to 1994’s “Eyes Of Tomorrow”.


High Spirits - Hard To Stop

One of the things that make me think I have grown old(er) is band anniversaries. Reading that HIGH SPIRITS are celebrating their 10th anniversary made me pause a bit to recall getting that minimalistic looking vinyl inside a white sleeve with a printed piece of paper as liner note 10 years ago, while being on the other side of the Atlantic. Sure, acknowledging the passing of time can be a hard pill to swallow for some, but definitely not for me. I like to connect albums and, in some rare cases, bands with life milestones, no matter if those are high or low moments. In this case, I have tied HIGH SPIRITS with some amazing memories, and this reason is more than enough to fuel my excitement for every single thing Professor Black is putting out. I cannot recall a single piece of music that has come out with the HIGH SPIRITS moniker on the cover that did not put a huge smile on my face and got me instantly singing-along. After reading the above, how do you imagine it was for me right after double clicking on the “Hard To Stop” folder?


Cirith Ungol - Forever Black

I put on my skepticism hat whenever I hear news about a band, after some reunion shows, going back to the studio. This is almost a reflex reaction considering how much a band can change during the course of two or even three decades, boiling down to the lineup chemistry that may even be nonexistent.  In the case of Ventura, California’s Heavy / Doom Metal legends CIRITH UNGOL this fails to apply, even though these guys have returned with their fifth full-length album, titled “Forever Black”, 29 years since “Paradise Lost” had seen the light of day, and it sounds like they’re at their creative peak being refreshing and, at the same time, faithful to the scripts of old school Heavy Metal.


Alestorm - Curse Of The Crystal Coconut

Music is a wonderful thing as it can pretty much fit whatever mood you find yourself in. On top of this, it can easily turn tables for you when you’re feeling down. For me, Metal has been a constant companion and has never left my side, no matter the occasion. I’m aware that this is a strange way to start an album presentation, but some decades ago, I may have discredited ALESTORM for ‘making fun of my favorite music’. You see, back in the day, I used to be extremely defensive (or offensive for that matter) against anything that felt hostile to my Metal. Anyways, my thinking has evolved since then (my taste for music hasn’t though), and now, I am free to enjoy the funnier side of Metal without feeling guilty... During these strange and often dark days, spinning “Curse Of The Crystal Coconut” kept my smile on throughout its 44 minutes.

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