Album Reviews

Review: EMPYREAN THRONE – ‘Chaosborne’ [Song Stream]

Album art by Vladislav Kutuzov

Up and coming black metal artists, Empyrean Throne, are gearing up to release their first full length album: ‘Chaosborne’. The album will be released on January 24th, 2017 by Erthe and Axen Records. The record was produced by Mick Kenney (Anaal Nathrakh). The American band was born in Lake Forest, California back in 2011. This will be the band’s followup to their debut EP that was released in 2013, titled ‘Demonseed’. Empyrean Throne does a great job combining the traditional black metal sound along with the new age sound as well. They blend in orchestral elements, melodic and speedy guitar, and raw, ripping vocals. The band consists of Andrew Knudsen on vocals, Mike Brennan on guitar, and Leviathan on the drums. You can check out some of their previous material on their Bandcamp page as well. Continue reading

Review: Detoxed ‘Modern Slavery’ [Song Stream]

Detoxed first formed in Montpellier, France in 2009. The band’s first release was their EP ‘It Was Written In Blood’ which released in 2011. Detoxed has a thrash sound with elements of melodic speed metal also in the mix. You can hear a lot of influence from In Flames in their music. ‘It Was Written In Blood’ really established the band’s style and sound. The band was off to a great start. The EP, from a listener’s perspective, was a complete hit. All they had to do now was continue to make music in their already successful style. Then the unthinkable happened. The band’s lineup was forced to change as singer Laurent “Styx” Py exits the band. Most people can attest that more often than not the hardest member of a band to replace is the singer. There are guitarists, drummers and bassists that massively contribute to complete a band’s sound, but no two singers can be identical. Regardless who stepped up to the mic Detoxed and their music would be forced to change in some way. Fortunately the band didn’t have to look very far. Guitarist David Fantoni is now pulling double duty playing both guitar as well as singing. Detoxed recently released the album ‘Modern Slavery’ on October 16th via Send The Wood Music (Distributed by Seasons Of The Mist) which showcases David Fantoni as the new voice of the band. All the other parts of the band remain intact and now the only question is if the band will rise or fall with their new voice. Those questions and more are now answered after consuming every second of their new album ‘Modern Slavery’. Continue reading

Review: Static Tension – ‘Out Of Reach’

Static Tension is a band I have been watching grow for quite some time. It was about a year or so ago that I became aware of the Cincinnati, Ohio based band. As a fan of music I tend to always prefer original music, but these guys really captured my attention with their cover of Dax Rigg’s (Acid Bath) song “Night Is The Notion”. (Let me note that there is not a bigger Acid Bath, or Dax Riggs fan than me.) Static Tension draws influence from classic rock, 90’s grunge, and progressive metal, but they have really become masters to their own unique musical blend. They refer to their sound as progressive grunge. Melodic vocal harmonies is a big part of their sound, but they also have creative and powerful riffs to go along with it. The band has only been reformed since 2014, lead guitarist Greg Blachman first used the name Static Tension in 1999. During that time the band recorded the album, ‘Paint By Number’ before parting ways in 2001. After a 13 year absence the name was resurrected in 2014 with a new line-up, including lead vocalist Rob Rom, and bassist Ritchie Paik. In early 2015 the band completed a four track EP entitled ‘Rebirth’, which contains two vocally reworked tracks off of Greg’s solo album ‘Beyond Horizons’ released in 2013, as well as two new, more collaborative tracks “Bottom Rung” & “Rebirth”. Static Tension has now finished their most recent EP ‘Out Of Reach’, which is set to release January 6th, 2017 via Buried By Sky Records. The album was written, recorded and produced by the band. Static Tension will be celebrating the release with a show on January 14th at The Southgate House Revival in Newport, Kentucky. The band will be joined by three amazing bands The Past, Hemp Noose, and Motel Faces. Continue reading

Review and Stream of Tactus “Bending Light”: Where Overwhelming Technical Abilities Illicit Emotional Response

Tactus is:

Jason MacKnight – Vocals

Ben MacLean – Drums/Programming

Steve Parish – Bass

Alec Dobbelsyeyn – Guitar

Adrian Barnes – Guitar/Vocals

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Review: Let The Guilty Hang – ‘In Tongues’

Let The Guilty Hang was formed in 2005 in the deep dark hills of West Virginia. Initially the band was supposed to be a side project, but they quickly realized their potential and jam sessions turned into a full-fledged band. Daniel Johnson (formerly of Guinness Clarke’s Wine) and Matt “Beevare” Jeffrey (formerly of Lifter) formed the band. The band quickly captured the attention of Derek Maynard who joined the band almost immediately adding his electrifying abrasive vocal tone to the bands already talented roster. The band then sought after a second guitarist in an effort to create Iron Maiden like guitar styling. Joe Baer (formerly of Born For Eternity) was the man for the job. The band was then rounded out with Adam Adkins (formerly of Born For Eternity) he brought not only bass playing to the table, but his voice also, supplying the contrasting clean vocals and backup vocals throughout what has become the bands signature sound. In September of 2007, Let The Guilt Hang released their debut album ‘The Unspeakable’. Opening for bands like Byzantine, As I Lay Dying, The Haunted, All That Remains, Trivium, and August Burns Red the band had quickly made a name for themselves around the region. The band has just recently released their latest album ‘In Tongues’ which was recorded at Domicile Studio in Cross Lanes, WV and was produced by Eric Hayne (The Corinthian, Isla Sorna, Profligation). Continue reading

Review of The Blue Sunshine Family Band’s Dazzling, Self-Titled Debut

The band’s name is The Blue Sunshine Family Band. They are from Santa Rosa, California. Now, go ahead and check out the beautiful and cool artwork by David Paul Seymour (also of various Wo Fat albums, Hendrix: Electric Ladyland (Redux), The Vintage Caravan, Ironaut, Doomstress and many others). Don’t listen to it yet though. Get a sound in your head that you think is going to fit. Thinking it is some sanctimonious, rehashed peace, love, rainbows and unicorns, hippie, acoustic crap? Maybe some weird, ethereal, atmospheric stuff with annoying, Far Eastern dissonance and sitars? A Pink Floyd tribute band maybe? No, no and, uh no. Said to have the “Heart of Metal. Mind of Jazz. Soul of Blues.”, The Blue Sunshine Family Band is a very heavy, fuzzy guitar based instrumental band that will simply blow your f’in mind!

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Odyssey’s 25 Best Albums Of 2016

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Review/Stream: AITTALA – ‘American Nightmare’

On December 6th, 2016, Aittala unleashed their 4th full length LP: ‘American Nightmare’. The band was formed by Eric Aittala in 1992 in Raleigh, North Carolina and released a short EP, but then remained dormant for many years. After a long break, the project was brought back when Aittala released their first full length album in 2009, ‘Bed of Thorns’. The band went on to release two more LPs in 2011 and in 2014 (‘Haunt Your Flesh’ and ‘Effigy’). After various lineup changes, there has been a stable, strong lineup consisting of Eric Aittala on the lead guitar and vocals, Gary Smith on drums, and Andrew Sullivan on the bass. The new album was recorded at Incognito Studios, Raleigh NC. It was mixed and mastered by Mike Schaefer at Schaefer Sound Productions. Continue reading

Editor’s 25 Best Albums Of 2016!

It’s an incredibly hard task to narrow down all the amazing albums that released in 2016 to a short list of 25. This year seen the reunion of some amazing acts and we lost several iconic musicians. My personal top 25 albums of the year not only includes veteran acts that you are probably familiar with, but also brand new bands or lesser known bands that blew me away with their sound. There are just some bands that have a way of capturing you moments into the first track. There are several other albums I wish I could have included in this list, but without further ado here is my top 25 albums of 2016:    Continue reading

Review: FORESTERR – ‘The Town Dies Screaming’

Foresterr is a noise rock band from Long Island, New York. Formed in 2013, Foresterr is composed of Danny Meigel (Guitar, Vocals), Kevin Sangalang (Drums, percussion) and Geoff Gader (Bass, Vocals). The band’s music is characterized by its unconventional song structure, changes in style, angular guitar riffs & frenzied stage performance that allow it to stand on its own amongst their contemporaries. Foresterr have released 3 EPs this far in their career. The band has just completed their upcoming full-length, ‘The Town Dies Screaming’ produced by Jay Maas (SOMOS, Citizen, State Champs, Title Fight) formerly of Defeater. It was recorded at Getaway Recording in Massachusetts The album is set to release January 27, 2017. Continue reading