Reviews by Michael O'Brien

  • Gorguts - Pleiades' Dust
  • Gorguts

    Pleiades' Dust

    By Michael O'Brien | 11 May, 2016

    Like what I assume to be the case with the vast bulk of the death metal community, I’m a pretty big fan of Canada’s Gorguts. They’re a band that has not only spent their lengthy career pushing themselves creatively, but have also...

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  • Amenra - Alive
  • Amenra

    Alive

    By Michael O'Brien | 06 May, 2016

    When I first heard 2012’s Mass V, the fifth full-length album from Belgium’s Amenra, it was love at first listen, but as the years stretched out post-release, I found myself returning to the album less and less. Not because I&...

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  • Wolvserpent - Aporia:Kala:Ananta
  • Wolvserpent

    Aporia:Kala:Ananta

    By Michael O'Brien | 03 March, 2016

    It’s funny how a band’s name can predispose you to an assumption about what they’ll sound like even before you’ve heard a single note. In the case of Boise, Idaho’s two-piece act, Wolvserpent, I’m not really sur...

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  • Wildernessking - Mystical Future
  • Wildernessking

    Mystical Future

    By Michael O'Brien | 11 February, 2016

    If you’re anything like I recently was and are unfamiliar with Cape Town, South Africa’s Wildernessking, I can save you some time right up front by asking you the following question: do you like atmospheric or, dare I say it, Cascadian...

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  • Rotting Christ - Rituals
  • Rotting Christ

    Rituals

    By Michael O'Brien | 05 February, 2016

    You really have to hand it to Rotting Christ. Over the course of nearly 30 years and now 12 full-length releases, I can’t think of a single album that hasn’t at the very least been decent, but can definitely think of many that have bee...

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  • Conan - Revengeance
  • Conan

    Revengeance

    By Michael O'Brien | 29 January, 2016

    From the rough and raw doom of their 2010 EP, Horseback Battle Hammer, through to the more refined but no less crushing doom of their second full-length album, 2014’s Blood Eagle, The UK’s Conan has been responsible f...

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  • Abbath - Abbath
  • Abbath

    Abbath

    By Michael O'Brien | 20 January, 2016

    At the risk of sounding like a grouchy, jaded contrarian, I have to say that I didn’t come into Abbath’s debut album feeling overly excited about it. I was curious, sure, but excited? No.

    <...

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  • Otargos - Xeno Kaos
  • Otargos

    Xeno Kaos

    By Michael O'Brien | 11 November, 2015

    What initially drew me to France's Otargos when I reviewed their fourth full-length album, No God, No Satan, a number of years back was the band's mixture of black metal with light hints of industrial influence. While I’d be lying i...

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  • Dead to a Dying World - Litany
  • Dead to a Dying World

    Litany

    By Michael O'Brien | 14 October, 2015

    With its stupendously long running time, its compositional depth, and its *cough* litany of stylistic influences, Texan septet Dead to a Dying World's second full-length release, Litany, is certainly a dense and challenging listen.

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  • Kowloon Walled City - Grievances
  • Kowloon Walled City

    Grievances

    By Michael O'Brien | 03 October, 2015

    Kowloon Walled City is a band that I've always wanted to make more time for but never seem to, despite having the best of intentions. Having seen their name mentioned in a positive light by a number of folks online lead me to pick up their second ...

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  • Myrkur - M
  • Myrkur

    M

    By Michael O'Brien | 08 September, 2015

    With all of the heated and polarised opinions about one-woman band, Myrkur, the cynic in me can’t help but wonder if there’s a marketing department out there patting itself on the back for the chaos it has had a hand in confecting, bec...

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  • Soulfly - Archangel
  • Soulfly

    Archangel

    By Michael O'Brien | 07 August, 2015

    Soulfly is a band that just about every metal fan seems to have an opinion on, and in my circles that opinion trends heavily towards the negative. In fact, that opinion is held almost universally within said circles to the point that I’ve av...

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  • C R O W N - Natron
  • C R O W N

    Natron

    By Michael O'Brien | 03 August, 2015

    France's C R O W N (Crown, henceforth) have been on my radar for a while now, originally from seeing their name around the traps and then from their bio which simply and minimally states that the band is "three men, three guitars, a voice and mach...

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