(((O))) Category: Reviews

Mark Dicker – Metropolith

The titles suggest a quick scout around a concrete plant and the music sounds like a night in an abandoned multi-storey car park.

Constantine Skourlis – Eternal Recurrence

That our times are so tempestuous as to result in such stirring art should be cause for concern. How bad can things get? And, terrifyingly, how compelling can Skourlis’s music yet become?

Laura Veirs – My Echo

My Echo by Laura Veirs could quite possibly make you feel small, fragile, but also determined and alive.

Ruff Majik – The Devil’s Cattle

With The Devils’s Cattle Ruff Majick have made a great couple of albums. You may consider yourself lucky that it’s buy one get one free.

Sam Barton – Acid Apple Satin Walls

In short, this bizarrely melodic, masterfully well-written and produced lysergic opus is easily one of my favourite albums this year.

Nick Cave – Idiot Prayer

It’s remarkable that an artist this far into their career is still holding out that promise of going somewhere new for both themselves and their audience. Looking forward to seeing where we go.

Idiot Grins – Thoughts & Prayers

What we get is ‘real’ gospel roots music that in its sound and spirit is at the same time same as the original, but with a touch of timelessness.

Liturgy – Origin of the Alimonies

Liturgy are a polarising band and their fifth LP, being an attempt to write an opera, will surely do them no favours in changing opinion. However, the record is incredible in how, for the most part, the quartet manage to pull off the impossible. Surely, the most ambitious album of 2020?

pg.lost – Oscillate

One of post-rocks finest bands continues its evolution with Oscillate. Huge walls of atmosphere keep the momentum rolling from the ground breaking Versus.

Respire – Black Line

Sensational screamo/post-hardcore which is possibly the finest album I have heard this year. A prefect lesson in riding the fine line between chaos and control, a flawless record.

Alessandra Novaga – I Should Have Been A Gardener

A feedback loop destined to swirl round and round, every listen exposing a hitherto unheard element or emotional pang.

Echoes of the Past: Black Sabbath – Self-Titled & Paranoid

There’s no denying that Black Sabbath’s first two studio albums broke the barriers of what is now known as both Hard Rock and Heavy Metal. It’s been 52 years since the band launched. They originally started out as a blues band between two different nam …

Tombs – Under Sullen Skies

The band continue their constant and considerable evolution, but despite it all, genre debates and line-up changes aside, this record still sounds resolutely like Tombs. Only the best bands can do that.

Scotty Seed – Hallows Eve

The final result tells us that Seed’s changes of musical colors work, particularly if you are more attuned to the current electronic sounds. Or, if you need a Halloween 2020 soundtrack.

Liminal Shroud – Through the False Narrows

A fine raw black metal debut album from Canadian trio, Liminal Shroud, unfortunately undercut by poor production that despite their aesthetic, weighs too heavily upon the material on offer.

All Them Witches – Nothing as the Ideal

It wasn’t a wasted trip from Tennessee to Abbey Road. Because All Them Witches have delivered their best album yet. Nuanced, moody, heavy in places and delicate in others.

Gianna Lauren – Vanity Metrics

Lauren uses all the ‘same old story’ concept and infuses it with the exact touch of emotion and (musical) side steps to make Vanity Metrics interesting and engaging throughout.

Dark Tranquillity – Moment

Veteran Swedes stick rigidly to their melodic death metal template. Fans will find plenty to love here, but ultimately Moment feels like a band going through the motions.

Ana Roxanne – Because of a Flower

The only uncertainty Because of a Flower leaves you with, in the end, is a question – can Ana Roxanne come up again with another album of such excellence and beauty.

The Bats – Foothills

The Bats are a NZ institution, not only recording for most of their careers on the venerable Flying Nun Records, but also maintaining the same 4 person lineup since their inception in 1982.

Vipid – Memories

On Memories, Vipid doesn’t try to paint his personal memories with too many, either rosy or dark colors, and makes a good walk over the thin (ambient) ice.

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