Album Review: Artificial Brain — “Artificial Brain”

Artificial Brain - Artificial Brain

New York City is home to some of the wildest, most experimental forms of art in general, from every medium, but we’re already pretty aware of how the metal music scene is in the heart of the Big Apple.  Many notable bands have done so much work to shape the landscape of extreme music, not least of which is Artificial Brain, whose progressive take on both death metal and science fiction have been integral in moving the genre forward.  On their third eponymous release, the band closes several chapters at once, but we already know they never stop progressing.

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Allegaeon’s Riley McShane on new album “Damnum,” touring, no finish line on success, and much more!

Allegaeon

It’s no secret that here at Nine Circles we love some Allegaeon. So, it’s obvious we had to get vocalist Riley McShane back to chat about their new album Damnum and how it came together as well as how it was to work with new blood drummer Jeff Saltzman and what he brought to the table. They also cover how touring brings the best and worst out of people, the deeply personal lyrics in the new album, attachment to albums and when to let them go, how there’s never any finish line to success and there’s always room to grow, pandemic effects on the band and their touring, not taking criticism from someone you wouldn’t take advice from, and gamer talk. With that said, jump in for an excellent chat via The Nine Circles Audio Thing.

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Album Review: Burial In The Sky — “The Consumed Self”

Ever since my interest in tech death began to expand, I had always heard about Burial In The Sky (Burial), but I never thought to actually listen to any of their music because I was too enamored by what other bands were doing to pay attention. However, once my interest grew and I opted to expand my tech death palette, I finally decided to jump in and see what I had been missing this entire time. It suffices to say that The Consumed Self, the band’s third album, is a cohesive tour de force that makes Alustrium’s A Monument to Silence pale in comparison with how intricate its instrumentality is.

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Nine (or so Heavily Qualified) Circles ov…2021: A Mid-Year Report

2021 mid-year report

Wait…so the guy who only wrote a total of 10 freakin’ reviews this year thinks he has any weight when it comes to a mid-year report? Well, uh…I guess that’s why I put the “heavily qualified” in the title of this post?

But seriously, I’ll be the first to admit that metal hasn’t really been my #1 go-to when it comes to music lately, but like everything else, what you see on the Internet never tells you the whole story. I haven’t been writing nearly as much about the genre lately, but I have been listening. Listening, and refining. Finding the things that really resonate despite the press and the push of PR, or what the pundits tell you on the 1,001 other sites out there scrambling for clicks. And what I’ve discovered is that more and more I’m coming to the sounds that drew me to the genre: thrash riffs, lots of melody, and tasty solos. So yeah: expect some old school bands putting out great records more than 30 years into their existence here. And maybe a few newer bands as well.

Is that qualified enough for ya? Then let’s dig in.

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Album Review: Alustrium — “A Monument To Silence”

Alustrium - A Moment to Silence

In a short amount of time, I have come to appreciate the intricacies of progressive death metal, especially since it has been doing incredibly well during a pandemic, where death is rampant and trauma is at its height. While things are slowly improving, it still feels like a sense of dread hangs over this newfound normalcy, and all one can want is a sense of silence. A lot of albums released last year seemed to deal with what happens when trauma is left unchecked, leaving you feeling hollow and as if you have no one to rely on. However, underneath that hollowness stands a sense of hope that’s slowly gaining traction, and that makes you want to get out of bed in the morning. If last year was about the heaviness of trauma, then Alustrium’s A Monument to Silence, an album that seems to straddle the line between experimentation and melody, is about making the decision to deal with that trauma.

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