Category: CD Reviews

Myrkur – ‘Folkesange’ (Relapse)

Myrkur? That’s that black metal artist, right? Bollocks to that, there has always been a rather more refined and tasteful side of Myrkur’s work that focuses on detail in harmonics and the beauty of minimalism to enhance her every action and sound, mixed with some much harsher sounds to show some of the darkness that may lie within. New album ‘Folkesange’ fully sheds the heavier side in search of times long gone, of days of old where the world was a far simpler place and deep into which the roots of her own Danish heritage reach deeply.

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Suicide Silence – ‘Become The Hunter’ (Nuclear Blast)

Suicide Silence are one of those bands that are undoubtedly absolutely committed to producing some of the heaviest and most terrifying music in death metal. Admittedly, our man Jase Walker didn’t even know they were working on a new album, so this one ended up on his lap without much of a warning, but he absolutely wanted to snap it up since he’d caught them a couple of times live before.

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Kvelertak – ‘Splid’ (Rise Records)

Kvelertak are another one of those bands that have always lingered just outside of Jonny B’s usual musical sphere, which is funny because every time he’s caught the odd track, he’s always enjoyed it! But then he managed to catch some of their set at Download last year, and that definitely grabbed his attention a little more, so when he was offered to take a peek at their new album, he couldn’t resist!

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Black Royal – ‘Firebride’ (Suicide Records)

This one is a bit difficult for John B to review. There are aspects that he really likes and many that he finds wanting. Most of his issues are thematic and have less to do with the technical skill or performance, but he will get into what he was less than enthusiastic about in the second half of the review. First, it is only fair that he goes over the things I did like. Starting with the music…

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Starbenders – ‘Love Potions’ (Sumerian)

Starbenders first caught Jase Walker’s attention during their tour supporting Alice in Chains back in 2018 after some videos popped up of their energetic live performances. Admittedly he didn’t look too far into them at this point as 2018 was a bit of a rollercoaster when it came to his music tastes so a lot of music kind of fell by the wayside in favour of exploring very narrow avenues for new bands. The following year Starbenders got signed to Sumerian who happen to have a large number of bands that our boy listesn to on a regular basis on their roster and he follows them on Instagram so by way of that he started regularly seeing clips of Starbenders and eventually built a bigger interest in them in the build up to their latest album, ‘Love Potions’…

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H.E.A.T – ‘H.E.A.T II’ (earMUSIC)

Definitely, and defiantly, one of the coolest, and most talented – not to say successful – Scandinavian melodic rock acts of the past decade or so, it would seem surprising that H.E.A.T would append the epithet ‘II’ to the title of their latest album. But, then, they do view this, their latest opus, as something of a rebirth after a somewhat stagnant period, at least creatively. It’s the first album to be produced by the band themselves, thus seeing them totally in charge of their own destinies, and has them declaring that this is them going back to their roots: “This is what we would sound like if we made a debut album in 2019, hence the title”.

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Snake Oil & Harmony – ‘Hurricane Riders’ (Zero One Entertainment)

As one of the ÜR team who is happiest working away in the background, behind the camera or shouting at the rest of the crüe, it has taken a lot to get The Dark Queen to step forward and present her (often very strongly held) opinions in public. But sometimes an album drops into ÜRHQ that grabs her and makes her want to declare “my precious…” – and when this dropped in she fought off all comers to take it. Snake Oil & Harmony, featuring two of herself’s heart-throbs – Danny Vaughan of Tyketto and Dan Reed of Dan Reed Network – are about to release their debut album on 28 February through Zero One Entertainment.

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The Bombpops – ‘Death in Venice Beach’ (Fat Wreck Chords)

When John B thinks of California skater punk this is what comes to mind. This is very much in the style that he and his mates were all listening to back then growing up in Orange County CA. It is the sound that every garage band on the block wanted to achieve. Therefore, you can understand why he was very excited to be sent this album for review as it is one that he had been looking forward to. To date, The Bombpops have not put out anything that our now resident Kentuckian has not liked and when he heard their single ‘Notre Dame’ from this new album he was pretty sure this new one would be another favorite of his…

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L.A. Takedown – ‘Our Feeling Of Natural High’ (Castle Face)

While he’s still a relatively new contributor here at Über Rock, it seems Jase Walker pigeon-holed himself a small bit for having a bit of a thing for anything remotely synthy; and in our defence we’re not wrong. So, when something lands in our review box that’s labelled as “guitar driven synth pop”, our boy is all over that, which is what brought L.A. Takedown’s ‘Our Feeling of Natural High’ to his attention…

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Spiders From Saigon – ‘Shattered Hearts’ EP (Self-Released)

Fancy having your head ripped off by an angry Viking, who consequently grabs your decapitated skull by the hair, rams it up your arsehole and pulls it back up through your body, replaces it on your severed neck, spits in your mouth and bids you welcome to Valhalla, where they’ll be playing football with said skull for the rest of eternity? Well, that is the sort of effect you’ll feel when the first riff of this, the debut EP from north eastern rockers Spiders From Saigon, pummels itself fist-first into the bridge of your nose, commanding you to sit up and pay attention otherwise you will receive the punishment due…

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Rich Kid Expre$$ – ‘Bubblegum Radio’ (Squib Kick Records)

We all probably wish we could turn back the hands of time to our respective youths, and relive the period when we were growing up, without a care in world, without the hassle of mortgages, pension plans, paying for our own children’s education – a time when our only concern was where our next big rock ‘n’ roll hit was coming from. Well, that is exactly the ethos behind this, the debut EP from a guy by the name of Rob Richardson (who may be known to old-school ÜR readers as the one time drummer in Heaven’s Sake), who is seeking to recreate the era where we from the bubblegum pop of Bay City Rollers and The Sweet to the hard rock attitude of AC/DC and the Headbangers Ball playlists of da Crue, Poison, WASP and their ilk.

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The Flesh Trading Company – ‘Franconian Witchcraft’ EP (Self-Released)

John B thinks this album might have been written with the express goal of him liking it. This is everything that he looks for in a thrash /death metal album. He just wishes it was longer than an EP. It has both retro and modern elements both brought together to make an epic album that is just fun to listen too. He found himself going back to this one a lot more often than he normally does when reviewing an album, and thinks this album will be a hit for many people.

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