Album Review: At The Gates – “To Drink From the Night Itself”

at the gates - to drink from the night itself

The legacy and influence of At The Gates approaches almost mythological status.  The impact of Slaughter of the Soul on the metal landscape, coupled with the band’s breakup soon after left a massive footprint dozens of bands were eager to fill.  Whether you blame or cheer ATG for the foundation and onslaught of melodic death metal (or NWOSDM or the Gothenburg sound or whatever you choose to call it) that followed in its wake, you can’t deny the spark that ignited it.  Now with the release of their second post-reunion album To Drink From the Night Itself it’s up to us to determine if they’re carrying the legacy forward or merely riding the wave they first created.   Continue reading

Album Review: The Crown – “Cobra Speed Venom”

the crown - cobra speed venom

There’s something to be said for craftsmanship.  If all the pieces fit together snugly and the whole performs as easy as you expect it to, what’s not to like?  Almost a decade into their second life The Crown have their brand of Swedish death/thrash nailed down like a fine table, and Cobra Speed Venom, while offering nothing new in the way of innovation, is a reliable and sturdy entry in the band’s discography, offering plenty of chugging and that distinct guitar crunch that can only come from the lands of Entombed, Carnage, and In Flames.  Continue reading

The Nine Circles Ov… At the Gates

at-the-gates-bandGothenburg, Sweden’s At the Gates need no introduction. Call them pioneers, call them forefathers, call them innovators – but there are few modern metal bands who haven’t been impacted by at least one of the death metal trailblazers’ albums, whether the avant-garde tech tendencies of their first two albums or the more accessible riff-factory approach of their later works. Simply, they’re one of the most important metal bands of the 90s, and their impact continues to ring true today in their well-received reforming. They’re the kind of band we love analyzing at the various points of their career, and for that reason, they’ve earned a place in this column. Welcome to the Nine Circles Ov… At the Gates.  Continue reading

Interview: A Conversation with At The Gates’ Tomas Lindberg

At-the-Gates

I found At The Gates in a roundabout way. It was 1998 or 1999,  I think, and I was still in high school and living in a shitty little town in South Arkansas. At The Gates was already history by then, having broken up after releasing their landmark achievement, 1995’s melodic death metal masterpiece, Slaughter of The Soul. While I had other European imports like Emperor and In Flames handed to me by friends (and friends’ older brothers/cousins), I heard At The Gates by association, via poking around the other way we found new music: mIRC. Through the bustling community of metal listeners in Dalnet’s #mp3_deathmetal and similar channels, I became acquainted with At The Gates, Dark Tranquillity, Dissection, and a number of other bands I still love to this day. But, even from that initial first listen, nothing left a mark on me quite the way Slaughter of The Soul did. Continue reading

Throwback Thursday: Disfear – “Live the Storm”

disfear_livethestorm

As one who entered the metal realm through the rusty gate of punk rock, I’ve held crust and d-beat close to my heart for years. The first time I heard Napalm Death circa 2002 I immediately thought, in my tender age, “Hey, this is like punk blown out of proportion and I love it for all of its insanity.” The history of punks rubbing shoulders with longhairs is an extensive one, and an album that beautifully marries the two worlds is Disfear’s 2008 album Live the Storm, which remains a cornerstone in the global crust/metal community. Continue reading