Tons of new metal surfaced this week, including albums by two huge names and a full load of new singles and EPs. There were already a lot of contenders for the top albums of the month, but Jesus Christ did this week ever make my job a hell of a lot harder.
Anyway, here’s your metal update for the week.
Singles and EPs
Mötley Crüe – The Dirt (Est. 1981) (feat. Machine Gun Kelly)
These metal legends have been around for a long fucking time and their lineup has been mostly consistent since their founding. From the upcoming biopic The Dirt (22 March), ‘The Dirt’ is classic Crüe.
Iron Savior – Kill Or Get Killed
My anticipation for this album only grows with each new single we get. It’s fast, heavy, and the solo is absolutely killer. Plus, that dramatic reading in the middle had me just as uneasy as the band!
Darkwater – In Front Of You
As I’ve already heard Darkwater’s Human (it’s out 1 March, but you can see the review here), I almost didn’t catch this one. It’s a great prog track (not the best on the album, though) that sums up the album as a whole quite nicely.
Frozen Crown – Neverending
Power outfit Frozen Crown’s second record Crowned in Fost (great name, isn’t it?) is set to come out 22 March. Judging by this new single, it’ll contain a similar sound as their debut album, which is fine by me. This is a great new group and you should definitely check out their material if you haven’t before!
Norvhar – Kauna EP
Relatively new as far as real releases go, folk metal group Norvhar’s first EP is exceptional. The vocals are rough but the instrumentals are fairly lighthearted and the overall sound is far from being gloomy, with the exception of the ten minute ‘Fields of Fate’, which varies quite a bit.
The musicianship and songwriting are very good, and there’s a lot of variety packed into its seven tracks.
Delain – Hunter’s Moon EP
Delain came out with a new EP on Friday, which features four new tracks, as well as ten live songs and (if you got the physical copy), some Blu-Ray content as well.
I only cared to listen to the new ones, because I’ve heard the other songs already. They’re pretty good; they’re poppy, with some symphonic epicness sprinkled throughout, and Charlotte Wessels’ chops are as beautiful as ever.
Rhapsody of Fire – The Eighth Mountain
Rhapsody is back with an album that makes up for their last few colossal disappointments in The Eighth Mountain. It’s back to its former epic, uplifting glory, and the band displays nothing but skill.
You can read more about the medieval madness here!
Mortanius – Till Death Do Us Part
Mortanius’ debut album is wonderful. Its lively symphonic foundation and exuberant tenor vocals make it a very interesting listen. To describe it in a few words, it’s symphonic power metal with a medium-heavy prog influence, as well vocal harmonies and harpsichord that give it a vampirey feel. Make sense? Probably not. Go check out the review and listen to it yourself. You’ll get it.
Vanir – Allfather
I don’t often listen to music that comes close to melodic death metal unless I really like it. Examples of exceptions would be Exmortus and Brymir, where the power elements are strong enough that I don’t mind the more extreme sound. Vanir falls under a similar category for me. It’s harsh and rough, but it’s relatively melodic and never too messy. It’s viking metal done extremely well.
Dream Theater – Distance over Time
Distance over Time is the beast Dream Theater record since 2009 as well as one of the best overall. It’s got a few more unique songs, such as ‘Viper King’ (below), and the songwriting strikes a perfect balance between proggy timechanges and more conventional beats, with phenomenal instrumentation that lifts the album to great heights.
Read more about it here.
Sylvania – Testigos de las Estrellas
Sylvania’s Spanish roots are impossible to miss in Testigos de las Estrellas. The dual vocals (and many guest vocals) add a unique sound to its already impressive power metal prowess. Despite its less-than-perfect mixing, this album is stellar and should be given a listen.
Check out the full review.
A handful of good heavy and classic metal albums also came out this week, but I don’t want to make this article much longer, so there’ll be a separate post for that.
We’ll finish off with Sabaton History Channel’s newest video, for ‘Panzerkampf’, based on one of the largest tank battles of all time, between the Soviets and the Germans.
Want to know what’s coming up? Go check out the Upcoming Albums List.