Category: CD Reviews

The Liars Club – ‘Of Self’ (Neoprima Music)

For what is only the second time during his ÜR tenure, Jonny B os fortunate enough to be reviewing a band from his own town’s surprisingly active music scene. Yes, that’s right, the “cul-de-sac of the UK”, Barrow-in-Furness, does indeed have an active and diverse music scene! Last time JB was reviewing some old school death metal, but this time it’s a complete change of pace with the post punk crew The Liars Club who happen to be based above his local record shop – TNT Records (which is where his wages seem to mysteriously disappear…)

Read More

Mother of All – ‘Age Of The Solipsist’ (Black Lion)

When John B hears “melodic” and “progressive” being used to describe an upcoming death metal album you instantly get his full attention. That being said JB has high hopes and high expectations for the genre as it is a personal favorite. He expects complexity in the instrumentation and evolution within the tracks. He expects aggressive vocals with a lot of power to keep up with the heavy tone in the guitars – and, yes, he expects that heavy tone as well. So, do Mother of All live up to this expectation with their debut album? Hell yeah, they do!

Read More

Mark Datter – ‘Deathswing’ (Self-Released)

The only way to introduce this album is to take you through Jonny B’s thought process that led him into his first listen… First of all, the name Mark Datter: he likes that; a classic spoonerism of Dark Matter. Next, the title ‘Deathswing’, now is that a hint at the style, or some sort of hint that we’re talking death metal that makes wild swings into other genres? And third, the opening track ‘Vaginal Frostbite’: well not only is that not what he expected, it also sounds seriously uncomfortable!

Read More

Various Artists – ‘New Wave Of Classic Rock – Volume One’ (NWOCR)

There can be no doubt that one of THE buzz phrases of the past decade or so has been “new wave of classic rock”, which in turn seems to have evolved into something of a descriptive for an entire sub-genre, albeit one which encompasses a wide variety of musical styles, but all linked by one common factor, that being the mutual love of “classic rock” in all its myriad styles – even though this new generic denominator could be seen to be very much dominated by bands operating within the British blues rock revivalist mien.

Read More

Living Dead Girl – ‘Exorcism’ (Self-Released)

Oh, hell yeah! It is not that often when John B feels an album absolutely nails it right out of the gate and to do so with a debut, well done! The press email JB received describes throwing out full EPs worth of material while looking for the perfect sound and it really shows. From top to bottom this is a wonderfully crafted experience…

Read More

Metalwings – ‘A Whole New Land’ (Self-Released)

Now it’s pretty safe to say that Jonny B quite likes a bit of symphonic metal. Hell, when Nightwish played at Bloodstock, he and his mate spent the entire event telling everyone who would listen that “Nightwish have done more for music than The Beatles.” Okay, so partly that was to get a rise out of people, but also, JB does listen to more Nightwish than The Beatles, so take that as you will… The issue with the symphonic metal genre, though, is that it’s completely dominated by a handful of greats and those that try to breakthrough into the scene have a huge leap to be able to get noticed.

Read More

Black Sabbath – ‘Sabotage: Super Deluxe Edition’ (BMG)

Black Sabbath rightfully sit at the head of proto-metal and celebrating their 50th anniversary is a hell of an achievement for absolutely any act. They are also, unashamedly, DJ Astrocreep’s favourite band, whose members were responsible for the big lad wanting to take up two instruments (drums and bass) and the chance to hear a further remastering – especially after being offered a vinyl release for review – was an opportunity he simply could not pass by. When you add in a lot of extras, as has been done here, there are a number of hours going to be spent in audio heaven listening back to what feels like an underrated release from the rock titans.

Read More

Midnite City – ‘Itch You Can’t Scratch’ (Roulette Media)

One of the beauties of being in the position that we are in, both as music fans (first and foremost) and journalists (which is very much a secondary consideration), is being able to get in at the very first stages of a band’s career and subsequently watch them bloom and blossom into the best in their chosen mine… Monk has been fortunate to have been in such a position dozens of times, watching a plethora of bands whom it would be unfair to namecheck in isolation develop and grow, building on momentum and, oftentimes, overcoming severe adversity to do so… Of course, many others have fallen by the wayside, but it always has been a pleasure to be there at the beginning… Such as we were with Midnite City…

Read More

Hellryder – ‘The Devil Is A Gambler’ (ROAR! Rock Of Angels Records)

One thing about the pandemic of the last 15 or so months that is virtually indisputable is that it has forced, and in many cases helped, many of us involved in the music business to re-evaluate ourselves and look at the broader picture. In the cases of hundreds, nay thousands, of musicians, it has presented them with the opportunity to explore new opportunities, and maybe take on challenges which had laid dormant due to more positive restrictions placed on them pre-Covid – i.e., the fact that they were simply too feckin’ busy to follow them through… Such is the case with this new project from Chris Boltendahl and Axel Ritt of German thrash veterans Grave Digger, who long had wanted to explore their love of more traditional, old-school heavy metal….

Read More

Mercutio – ‘Antagonist’ (Diverge Records)

It has to be hoped that London alt-rockers Mercutio do not live up to their ill-starred moniker, taking their name as they do from one of the characters who meets a particularly gruesome end in Shakespeare’s tragi-romance ‘Romeo And Juliet’. Mind you, it’s also probably not the most auspicious of beginnings to seriously launch your career in the midst of a pandemic which all-but closed down the music business as a whole, but the release of the quartet’s debut could equally not be better timed, coming as it does as we finally have light at the end of the intensely dark tunnel that has been the past year or so.

Read More
Loading