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Thursday, 4 October 2018

Reviews: Sign Of The Jackal, The Loudest Silence, Temtris, Manic Outburst (Reviews By Stief & Rich)

The Loudest Silence: Aesthetic Illusion (Spinnup) [Stief]

Despite being founded in 2010, this is the debut album from Sarajevo’s The Loudest Silence, and boy, what a debut! Straight from the outset, the spooky Illusion Aeternus, with its piano, slowly building to the pounding drums, layered with strings, horns and choral chanting, the band are laying the groundwork for a great album. It’s clear the band have a vision for what they want to sound like and keep to it, with Denijal Ćatović’s keyboards providing the atmospheric base for Taida Nazraić’s vocals, which are great, but don’t seem to hit the heights of similar bands in their vein.

Nazraić seeming to be comfortable within her certain range, which ultimately works for the sound of the band. There are some great moments throughout the album, including the epic Gallery Of Wonders, which provides not only soaring strings but vicious growls, chanting of ‘kill’ and a ballad-esque finish. The Loudest Silence comes in two flavours; a more grandiose version with full backing from the band or a stripped down version with only a piano behind Nazraić’s vocals. Definitely a band to keep an eye on. 7/10

Sign Of The Jackal: Breaking The Spell (WAX MANIAX Records) [Stief]

Opening with what feels like a rocked up version of Mike Oldfield’s Tubular Bells, with a track named after the antagonist of The Exorcist, it’s a good sign of what’s to come from the Italian five-piece. It’s fast paced heavy-metal plucked straight from the 80’s, with solid basswork from Nick ‘DevilDrunk’ and Corrado Menegatti’s fast-paced drumming providing a great backing to the main two major components the band throw out. Number one, guitars; Bob Condini and Max Pinkle work excellently off each other, as well as separately, providing some face-melting solos in some places, harmonising in others.

Secondly, vocals: Laura Coller’s doro-esque vocal style is what this kind of music was made for, never letting down even as final song Beyond The Door fades out. Although it’s a great album with a great sound, there’s not much here to separate Sign Of The Jackal from their peers. It’s also not a long album, but if you want to get that heavy metal kick and you have a half-hour spare, you can’t go wrong picking this album up. 7/10

Temtris: Rapture (Battlegod Productions) [Rich]

The metal scene in Australia is not one I have really explored. I have listened to a few Australian metal bands and they are nearly always excellent with Temtris being no exception. Rapture is the fifth album by the band and their first with their new line up. Temtris play a style of heavy metal that is both old school and modern at the same time with a few thrash influences thrown in for good measure.

The songs throughout the album are nicely varied. You have faster up tempo songs such as Flames Of Defiance and Parasite to slower ones such as Serpent and Carry You. The performances throughout the album are precise and tight with some suitably kick ass riffs and nifty drumming. Special mention must go to frontwoman Genevieve Rodda and her powerhouse vocals which really elevates these songs. Temtris have released a great album with Rapture that is suitably anthemic and heavy alike. The album will easily appeal to fans of both old school metal and modern metal. 8/10

Manic Outburst: Violent Agitation (Self Released) [Rich]

Violent Agitation is the second album by Detroit thrashers Manic Outburst. Manic Outburst play fast and aggressive thrash with influences from crossover bands as well as traditional heavy metal resulting in a sound that is fast and aggressive but suitably catchy and showcasing some impressive musicality. The throat shredding vocals by frontman Mike Twigg remind me of a more deranged Tomas LIndberg from At The Gates which suitably match the frantic nature of the music.

Violent Agitation is a decent album with all the prime ingredients of thrash but there is nothing about the album that really jumps out and grabs my attention. Also the production whilst suitably raw suffers from the guitars being too buried. A decent if fairly pedestrian thrash album. 7/10

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