New Heavy Metal Album Reviews: April 1, 2014

Austrian Death Machine – ‘Triple Brutal’ (Artery)

Austrian Death  Machine - 'Triple Brutal'
Artery Recordings

Genre: Thrash/Crossover
Triple Brutal is likely the last we’ll be hearing from Tim Lambesis for a while, so it’s probably not coincidence that the album opener is “I’ll Be Back.”

The album continues the thread of the first two Austrian Death Machinereleases, blending pretty decent thrash/crossover with cheesy Arnold Schwarzenegger impressions and lyrics inspired by his movies. His dalliance with his housekeeper is also parodied on some of the tracks. If you liked the first two ADM albums, there’s no reason you won’t like this one, too. The musicianship and songwriting is top-notch, but a little of the Ah-nold shtick goes a long way.

Rating: 3
(Chad Bowar)

Bigelf – ‘Into the Maelstrom’ (Inside Out)

Bigelf – ‘Into the Maelstrom’
Inside Out Music

Genre: Psychedelic Hard Rock
Due to internal conflicts, Bigelf were put to rest after the release of the critically acclaimed 2008 Cheat the Gallows. At the insistence of drum legend Mike Portnoy, founder Damon Fox resurrected the band with Portnoy behind the kit. Five years later they are back with their most consistent record of their career, Into the Maelstrom.

Combining the melodies and musical intricacies of The Beatles with the swagger of Led Zeppelin and the progressive tendencies of early Pink Floyd showcases the quality of the songwriting. The John Lennon inspired “Already Gone” finds the band at their most majestic. Portnoy shines on the groove filled “Alien Frequency.” A must have for any Beatles fan with an added hard rock edge.

Rating: 4
(Dan Drago)

Buioingola – ‘Dopo l’Apnea’ (Sentient Ruin)

Buioingola - 'Dopo l’Apnea'
Sentient Ruin Laboratory

Genre: Crust/Doom Metal
Tuscany, Italy’s Buioingola, defined as “darkness in my throat,” create a bleak blend of apocalyptic doom that will destroy you slowly. After releasing an explosive three track demo in 2012, the band went back into the studio in February 2013 to record the music that makes up Dopo l’Apnea.

The end result is five colossal and pulverizing songs, beginning with opening track “Persevero,” which engages the listener in a game of tug-of-war between life and death. Album closer “Oceano,” will take you on a 15 minute journey filled with despondency and desperation that leads nowhere. Buioingola have arrived.

Rating: 4
(Ken Kopija)

Cauldron Black Ram – ‘Stalagmire’ (20 Buck Spin)

Cauldron Black Ram – 'Stalagmire'
20 Buck Spin

Genre: Blackened Death/Sludge Metal
Aussies Cauldron Black Ram have brought Stalagmire, their third LP over to the always reliable 20 Buck Spin roster. This move will hopefully garner the trio some much deserved attention on North American shores.

CBR raid the pantry to cook up a boiling stew of death, doom and black metal, spiced with a bit of thrash and solos a plenty. Scurvy is a good possibility as any bright fruits have long since rotted under the punishing darkness pervading the album. Undead black/death vocals snarl and whisper through endless seas of hearty head-bobbling riffs and inspired percussion. Lock up your daughters, Cauldron Black Ram are here.

Rating: 3.5
(Matt Hinch)


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