Deeper Graves - Open Roads

With tons of wonderful albums reaching METAL KAOZ HQ, I have to admit that, besides the short description accompanying the digital promo (which half of the times tends to be misleading), the cover artwork has become a good indication for me to give a chance to the most obscure / underground releases that, let’s face it, rarely gain listening time. This is a bit unfair, although there is not enough time to properly listen to all the new albums and, of course, I am not talking about song-skipping and 30sec sampling – this is sad. Thankfully, CHROME WAVES and ex-NACHTMYSTIUM guitarist Jeff Wilson’s debut effort “Open Roads”, released under the DEEPER GRAVES moniker, has both virtues (sonically and visually), and therefore I did not need much to be convinced and take this six-track gem for a ride.


Falconer - From A Dying Ember

It is disheartening and often infuriating to see a band that you love become a performer of its own music. You see, I believe that once a band stops making music - or even worse, release albums just to get on the road - it becomes a lost cause and eventually falls off my radar. With that being said, I have absolute respect to those musicians who refuse to follow this path and instead call it a day. Reading the announcement that FALCONER would split up after the release of their swansong “From A Dying Ember”, made me feel sad (they have released some awesome albums), but at the same time, immediately earned my respect for not accepting to become imprisoned by their own music style. Although, reading “make this final album as good as we possibly could” did not leave a nice ring on my ears, as it showed that the inspiration-well had dried for quite some time. Could that be the case?


Meridian Dawn - The Fever Syndrome

For some reason, I’ve connected melodic Death Metal with the mid-90s era, and therefore whenever a new release of this genre blips into my radar, it makes me feel a bit nostalgic. I got exposed to this high-voltage genre by bands like IN FLAMES, AT THE GATES and DARK TRANQUILLITY back in the day (haven’t we all?!), that remain a big influential part of this still-producing-new-material scene. But, how can one band be interesting and fresh-sounding belonging in the nowadays’ oversaturated scene? The more years pass, the harder answering this question will become but not everything is lost. American / Finnish MERIDIAN DAWN have the knowledge and the right set of skills to be part of that answer via their debut full length release, “The Fever Syndrome”.


Stygian Crown - Stygian Crown

I really like when female-fronted Metal bands go against the ‘beauty-and-the-beast’ grain and the whole growling male vs female ethereal / operatic vocals, and instead go with vein-popping vocals characterized by that harsh Metal-lic hue, following the path carved by singers like HELLION’s Ann Boleyn and of that ilk. Southern California’s Doom metallers STYGIAN CROWN are fortunate to have Melissa Pinion, a powerful and classically trained singer with whom they create a pretty impressive sound that at first may remind of the Doom legends CANDLEMASS. Melissa’s vocals bring so much epicness and dynamics that grant STYGIAN CROWN a quite distinct and recognizable sound.

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