Album Review: Astronoid – “Astronoid”

astronoid self titled

On the Scriptnotes podcast, professional screenwriters John August and Craig Mazin dispense advice to young and aspiring writers, and a recurring thread is the idea that building a career of screenwriting isn’t about writing one perfect script, but about being able to repeat that process on an ongoing basis. While not diminishing the merits of a single particularly good work of art, longevity requires more than that. That is the question that is asked of Astronoid’s self-titled sophomore album.   Continue reading

Album Review: Dødsfall – “Døden Skal Ikke Vente”

dødsfall - døden skal ikke vente

Døden Skal Ikke Vente translates from Norwegian to “Death Must Not Wait” and it’s a good thing 2019 didn’t have to wait for some great black metal to come out, because the latest from Dødsfall is a skin-peeling melodic black metal assault.  After four years of inactivity and the pickup of new drummer Telal, Døden Skal Ikke Vente finds Ishtar (the man, not the Dustin Hoffman/Warren Beatty film, although that would be cool) in a rejuvenated place, with a brighter overall sound that doesn’t diminish the frigid attack of the album. Continue reading

Album Review: Inferno – “Basado En Hechos Reales”

inferno - basado en hechos reales

Sometimes you don’t want to think.  You just want to get that nasty guitar in your head and thrash like a denim clad meathead like you did in the 80s.  But the old stuff just isn’t cutting it like it used to.  Too much nostalgia in those riffs you carved into your head after so many listens.  No, you need something new, something fresh.  Something that invokes the same speed feeling, has the pulse of the past but is new and shiny and here in the present.

My friend, you need Inferno.  And you need their new album Basados En Hechos Reales now. Continue reading

Album Review: Barshasketh – “Barshasketh”

barshasketh - barshasketh

Here’s the thing about black metal, particularly black metal in the vein of the second wave: there’s so much of it.  So if you’re going to play it, or pay homage to it, you’re going to have to do something to stand out because when you get down to it most people are going to be perfectly content to go back to the 5-10 albums that made them love the genre in the first place.  And for about a song and a half the new self titled album from Barshasketh appeared to tread similar ground.  But like the best the genre has to offer, there are strange and sharp hooks on Barshasketh that come out and refuse to let go, resulting in a real grabber of an album as well as a fitting use of the eponymous title. Continue reading

Album Review: Mo’ynoq – “Dreaming in a Dead Language”

Mo'ynoq - Dreaming In a Dead Language

USBM feels like it’s in a good place musically right now.  Depending on what your appetite is, you can trawl pretty much any region of the United States and find a unique scene where geography, community, and culture roll into a diverse assortment of styles.  Moving just a bit south from the current scene in the Northeast, Mo’ynoq have constructed a blistering, raw collage of influences on their full length debut Dreaming in a Dead Language. Continue reading