Find us on Facebook!

To keep updated like our page at:

Or on Twitter:

Or E-mail us at:

Friday 9 December 2022

Reviews: Shaam Larein, Lionheart, Serenity, Xygrbryrx (Reviews By Matt Bladen & GC)

Shaam Larein - Sticka En Kniv I Världen (Svart Records) [Matt Bladen]

Sticka En Kniv I Världen means "stick a knife into the world" so you can get an idea of where Shaam Larein come from as a band. It's the follow up to their 2020 debut album is a collection of gothic, post punk, that dwells in the darkest reaches of music, unsettling and euphoric, with a taste of the occult. Their debut immediately gained them respect and kudos from critics, and led to them touring with Chelsea Wolfe who they owe a lot of their sound to. 

So they have a pedigree already established, the style of artists such as Emma Ruth Rundle also quite strong. Named after singer Shaam Lerein who comes from a Syrian heritage and has a background in theatrical art, it's both of these aspects that she uses to inform the music here, with the tribal occult Gothicism of Flesh Of Gold, darkly seductive. She uses her heritage and the sounds of her band to conjure some Siouxsie Sioux-like grooves with the same kind of devil may care attitude of bands like Beastmilk with the doomy mysticism of Lowen or Molasses. 

The waves of heavy doom start off the album, distortion rings out through your speakers as the evocative title track, unveils its black wings, the jangling guitars of Beware The Duchess, drags things into the macabre but artistic sensibility of a Gabriel-era Genesis, but without the public school posturing and a lot more doom riffs. Murderer is a highlight for me as it's this record most theatrical record, you almost hear the prowling in the dissonant guitar and tonal shifts, while the Middle Eastern themes in the organs on Caress My Thoughts are very prominent, the same can be said on the percussive Leave Me Here To Die

Sticka En Kniv I Världen is an atmospheric journey through the spectral voice of Shaam Larein. 9/10

Lionheart - Welcome To The West Coast III (Arising Empire) [GC]

I have noticed that recently all I seem to review for Musipedia Of Metal is death metal or some form of extreme metal but, today that changes as I am reviewing my true music love, this is some good old fashioned hardcore! I grew up on hardcore and it formed the musical tastes I have to this day and will always be my go too choice, so today its Lionheart and their new album Welcome To The West Coast III. So, as they say, LET’S FUCKIN GOOOOOOOOOO! 

The Trilogy: Intro is just absolutely everything you need it to be it’s a hype track of the highest order and really gets the blood pumping and then Death Comes In 3’s is an absolute blast with its bass heavy verse and then the chug hits and its all gang chants and two stepping and also features hardcore royalty Mr Jamey Jasta which instantly gives it another boost and midway through it has a delicious beatdown that mixes onto the next verse perfectly and the end part of this song is almost the perfect example of how to write a hardcore song! 

Hell On Earth just continues with the theme but injects a bit more of a punk element into the mix and this makes for an up-tempo pace that is an absolute joy to listen to and the mosh riff towards the end is another beauty. Live By The Gun starts off with an echoed, calm section that then introduces a straight up metal riff that has a stop start rhythm and then kicks in to the tried and tested hardcore formula and has another legend on this track in the shape of Ice T, these lads are not messing about here, Cold Water Farewell is a short, sharp blast of furious gang chant hardcore punk and keeps the pace and violence going along nicely for Stories From The Gutter Part 2 to mix the pace again with hip-hop influenced beats now throw into the whole mix of sounds. 

New Money-Old Pain has more metal influences running through and adds an almost thrash like influence, but it never drifts too far from the hardcore punk we know and love so much! Deathbed Confessions is more of the hip-hop, stop start style and has a great two-step mid-section and once again has Jamey Jasta is providing his dulcet tones as a guest appearance and its worth listening to this song just for the end as this will cause havoc in a live setting! 

At War With The Gods has probably the most subtle attack on the album but is no less urgent and angry than anything else that has been so far and has probably the best gang chant on the album so far! Bonnie & Clyde thunders into view with the chugging riffs and double bass drum assault back and driving the song forward with energy and vigour and you can tell under all the bravado that there is a beautiful meaning to this track, which as a big softy at heart really strikes a chord and then to my complete horror, I am already on the final track Exit Wounds which starts off slow and menacing with a nice fat riff and is probably the most metal song on the whole album and has one last guest appearance form Malevolence’s Alex and he REALLY adds to this song in a big way before the drop of the bomb style beatdown riff and it is GLORIOUS before everything fades away and you are left feeling bruised, and battered but most of all in awe of what has just happened! 

If you haven’t already guessed, I fucking LOVED this album! The songs were full of heart and soul and mixed with the sort of violence and anger that only great hardcore can provide. Every song had a message, and it was delivered with total conviction and passion. If you like hardcore you will LOVE this record. If you don’t know much about hardcore, then this wouldn’t be a bad place to start as it mixes enough of all styles that would pique your interest to delve in a bit deeper and discover some truly magical music. Make it your business to hear this album and really take it in because it is a truly magnificent piece of work! 10/10

Serenity - Memoria (Napalm Records) [Matt Bladen]

A live retrospective of their 20 year career Memoria is a conceptual performance piece that brings together songs from their entire career for a special performance, where the songs are used to tell a thematic story line much like a broadway musical. Serenity's symphonic metal style is tailor made for a project like this, the chanting In Memoriam leads into the folky United and Changing Time where Chris Hermsdörfer shares his time between guitar and mandolin, in fact most of this album is more acoustic than it is electric. 

Reinterpreting tracks such as Broken Dreams and Velatum into the acoustic sound. To start off the band even bringing guests such as vocalist Marco Pastorino (Virtual Symmetry/Even Flow), bringing his voice to meet with Georg Neuhauser on Set The World On Fire and Broken Dreams, while on the beautiful Fairytales amongst two others former member Clémentine Delauney (Vision Of Atlantis) returning with her beautiful vocals in conjunction with Georg. 

It's not just vocalists though as both Michele Guaitoli (Visions Of Atlantis) and Sascha Paeth (Heavens Gate/Avantasia) bring some additional guitars to the rhythm section of Fabio D'Amore (bass) and Andreas Schipflinger (drums). Memoria is a unique idea and works well, the DVD portion I'm sure will give a much more of an experience than just the audio side, that being said it's a lovely listen against a roaring fire on a cold winter eve. 8/10

Xygrbryrx - Cunning Punts (Self Released) [GC]

Before we get into the music on offer here lets get the obvious talking point out of the way, what the fuck are this band even called? I don’t know, so answers on a postcard and send it to someone who might care! As for the EP title, take another guess as to why they bothered to make it so shit and then answers on the same postcard to the same person who probably won’t care.

Anyway, on with the music and skipping past the intro Lullaby For The Undeserving as it is completely pointless and offers absolutely nothing we are straight into The Bigot They Are and it’s a weird mix of drum machine grind and black metal riffs that also has some nu-metal/djent style riffs thrown into the mixer and the vocals are probably the high point of everything as they sound furious and angry and really seem to have some passion behind the message that is being pushed forward, its an odd mix of styles on this track and but it is an interesting start before Beaten To Death with an Opinion Pole is slow and sludgy death metal that drags along at a pedestrian pace from the very first note all the way to the end of the song and never really picks up the pace and the change of pace doesn’t really inspire much hope from the intrigue of the first song.

Then A Fiscal Of Dollars is another slow track that continues to completely slow the pace and now we have completely lost all the momentum that was created at the start and now it all just seems to get a bit boring as the song doesn’t really go anywhere and just plods along at a mid-pace which is a shame as the vocals are again absolutely disgustingly vicious and deserve a much better showcase that this and now were are already on the final track TERF Wars which thankfully picks the pace up and even offers a bit more of a hardcore tinge to the sound but, that’s about as good as it gets because this song just seems to be weirdly timed and just thrown together and all the individual sections don’t seem to connect to make one whole coherent song, a couple of decent bits here and there do not make a song decent.

Luckily for me this was only an EP because I got sick of this quickly, the initial blast was interesting and piqued my attention and then the next 3 tracks completely lost me and were just boring and confusingly played. I was dubious from the beginning here due to the name and title and I was hoping that the music would prove me wrong, unfortunately this was not the case at all, this is not worth your time or effort, avoid at all costs. 2/10

1 comment:

  1. Hey, xygrbryrx here. Sorry you didn't enjoy the record. Thanks for the compliments on my vocals though! I'm a one man band kinda deal, working off a tiny budget. I don't know if you got the press release but it does clarify a few things. ZYE GER BRY REX is the name, Cunning Punts is a stupid pun, just like the song titles. Switch the first letters of each word. Anyway, thanks for the review regardless and I really do appreciate the compliment on my voice.