Motörhead-Aftershock ©2013 UDR
What more can be said about this band. Spanning numerous decades and proving to be one of the most unique and consistent bands the genre has ever seen. There is no mistaking this band when you hear them. The album musically has a pretty good groove running through it. It isn't all about speed this go around. More about the vibe and even a bit of Blues. The band to this point haven't really shown signs of slowing down as they release in regular fashion. Ihave many albums in my collection at this point, and this one fits in as another solid effort. It is available as a Best Buy exclusive with a DVD.
Armory-Empyrean Realms ©2013 Armory
Was nice to hear that Armory was still around. I remember liking their previous effort from 4 or 5 years ago. I actually went back and listened to it to have a decent comparison to the new album. To me there is a good progression in terms of sound and musicianship. I really liked the polish added to the mix. This album has a great sound and the songs are once again really good. Musicianship as mentioned is quite impressive. The band sounds tight and every bit as good as a lot of better known power metal acts. It's a good consistent record that definitely hits the mark. Recommended!
Heretic-A Time of Crisis ©2012 Metal on Metal Records
Been around 25 years between the first and now this the second album by Heretic. Some will remember that this was the band that featured Mike Howe on vocals at one point who went on to join Metal Church. This band had a decent debut album and this second album is pretty solid in its own right. It retains a more classic Metal sound that was prevalent in the late 80's. I found it to be a good listen with no need to skip tracks. It has been out for a bit now, but is worth your time on searching this one out. The nostalgia is evident, but has more than that going for it. Good traditional release!
Five Finger Death Punch-The Wrong Side of Heaven ... Vol. 2 ©2013 Prospect Park Records
In similar fashion to what Guns 'n Roses did years ago, here is the second of the 'The Wrong Side of Heaven' series. This one jumps to life immediately with some great riffs and really maintains a decent edge throughout. There is some decent melody on this release and the closer 'House of the Rising Sun' has a very cool vibe to finish it all up. The band has a decent amount of crossover appeal for fans of older metal as well as new. 'Volume 2' is a good compliment to the first volume released earlier this year. The limited version I reviewed also has a DVD of a live show and a free T-Shirt offer!
Varga-Enter the Metal ©2013 Vargantuan Music
It has been a long time since I had heard a Varga album. You know, I forgot how heavy they could be. This album reminded me very quickly. After having been absent from releasing albums for about 18 years, 'Enter the Metal' does just that. This album is heavy as noted and has that Varga flair to it that was part of the earlier albums. One of the bigger elements to me is the guitar work. Chunky and at times explosive. The album is made up of 6 tracks of which half are better are pretty lengthy. In ways it is an e.p. that doesn't feel like an e.p. I'm definitely impressed and looking forward to more!