Russian Circles are back with album number 8 called Gnosis. The Chicago based post-rock/post-metal trio are back in full force as Geoff Topley explains in his review of the album: “Gnosis finds Russian Circles in merciless mood and is for me, after Memorial, their finest album.”

We asked guitarist Mike Sullivan about 3 releases that have influenced him and the band a lot, so check out the 3 releases Mike came back with here…

Pantera – Far Beyond Driven

For whatever reason, at the start of COVID I started listening to Pantera daily. I obsessively listened to Far Beyond Driven on long daily walks. I can never get enough of the riffs! Song after song….just brutal. I love how aggressive the album sounds as a whole. Since I spent the majority of COVID in solitude, there was nobody around to tell me to give Pantera a rest. As a result, this daily listening affected the sound of our new LP.

At the Gates – At War with Reality

As much as I love their seminal album, Slaughter of the Soul. At War with Reality is another exceptional addition to their discography that doesn’t get enough praise. Some of my favorite riffs of all time are tucked deep in this record. Also, Tomas has one of the best voices in metal history and it’s in top form on this one. It’s always nice to be able to hear what the vocalist is actually saying. Tomas does a great job delivering his distinct heavy voice but in a coherent manner.

Gorgoroth – Ad Majoram Sathanas Gloriam

My favorite Gorgoroth album from my favorite lineup. Everything about this record is insanely angry. The guitars are drenched in dissonance and rotten filth. Whether it be a mid tempo banger or a blastbeat driven assault, every song on this record hits so hard. For about two years, whenever I hopped in my car, this album would begin playing, which made for plenty of impromptu listens.

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