Find us on Facebook!

To keep updated like our page at:

Or on Twitter:

Or E-mail us at:

Wednesday 4 October 2023

Reviews: Sinnery, Emilie, Dictator Ship, Eradikated (Reviews By Zak Skane, Matt Bladen, Rich Piva & Richard Oliver)

Sinnery - Below The Summit EP (Exitus Stratagem Records) [Zak Skane]

Somber opens the five track EP by showing the bands thrashing heart on their sleeve with furious skank beats along with classic speedy thrash riffs that pay a great tribute to riff lords of this genre such as Gary Holt (Exodus) and Eric Peterson (Testament). The riffs on the opening track swing from classic thrashy down picked riffs to speed metal tremolo picking, to even adding some black metal inspired chords whilst the vocalist is channelling some Josh Middleton (Sylosis) styled harsh vocals, from his fast passed gutturals to soaring high fry screams. 

The following track An Ode (Knife Of Erato) brings in some Neo Classical styled riffage that would pay homage to bands like The Black Dahlia Murder to it’s hypnotic tapped solos to would please any Gojira fans. Through out the song drummer is going from ride cymbal bashing pattern beats to marching patterns on his feet whilst playing standard half time grooves on the hands. Share This contains some edge crushing hardcore vibes along with their thrashtastic assault by bringing in some razor sharp harmonic infused riffs and stabbing chords, whilst infused with fast and furious tremolo picking and skank beats until it swan dives into heavy halftime sections. 

Their closing track Serene brings us whirling waves of harmonised tremolo picked riffs, ambient melodies whilst containing some classic thrash metal goodness with soaring solos and neck snapping note switching riffs locked in with double kick pattern grooves. Through out this five track EP the four piece thrash act have made a splendid job showing us that the thrash genre is still standing strong. This short listening experience has been pure speed and aggression through out, so it would be nice to see some more dynamics in future releases. 8/10

Emile - Spirit (Heavy Psych Sounds) [Matt Bladen]

Sometimes a label like Heavy Psych Sounds experiment with other styles. Emile Bureau usually performs on The Sonic Dawn, but on his second solo album we move from the furthest reaches of the psych verse back to the corner of Haight Ashbury where acoustic folk troubadours, counter culture revolutionaries and sidewalk philosophers ply their trade. 

Inspired by the likes of Simon & Garfunkel, The Band, Buffalo Springfield and CSN as well as modern singers such as José González or Nick Mulvey. The album is based around acoustic guitar and vocals, his smoky, soulful tones delivered nice and close to the mic so it sounds as if he is in the room with you. The acoustic plucking is inventive not always following an easy pattern, augmenting the six strings and vocals are some more analog instrumentation, the vibraphone on Elegant Spring used well as we take a ride on post-Sgt Pepper's The Beatles, before it shifts in to smooth jazz, Heavy Rain bringing some Pink Floyd-esque dark dynamism, Wilderness which reminds me of Brain Damage

Hammond organ swells, extra percussion allows more mood shifts on Circles, with the always welcome flute bringing things to Tull Territory. Spirit is about the passing of time and connecting with nature, which is why songs like Images and Images (Reprise) feature birdsong throughout the instrumental(s). A major change in what Heavy Psych Sounds usually release but Spirit is a stripped back journey to another era. 7/10 

Dictator Ship - Electric Jihad (The Sign Records) [Rich Piva]

More kick ass rock is in my queue to review, which is a trend for me this week, with the new album, Electric Jihad, from the “raw” rock and roll band from Sweden, Dictator Ship. You would think that an album called Electric Jihad would have to kick ass, and you would be right, mostly, as this is a fun rock and roll party but there is something about te sound that leaves me feeling a bit short changed, but overall, this is a collection of ten songs designed to combine all of the raw energy of 60s and 70s rock to 2023 and get you up and moving.

I love opening an album like this with a scream, and that is just what you get on And Then I Heard About The Groove, which is like taking an early 60s rock tune and turning into a raw rock ripper updated for today. If the whole album sounds like this one you would be completely out of breath before the 38 minutes was up for sure, but the rest is not quite muted, but it is tough to keep up that pace for all ten songs. The band tries with the title track that has some killer guitar work and some Blue Cheer vibes and maintains the energy for the first seven minutes of Electric Jihad

City Girl is a fun little track that is very catchy but lacks the crunch, which is fine given you don’t have to smash people over the head with every track. I love the doo doos on this one, as the 60s vibes the band calls out in their promo material shines through on this one. Back to ripping it up with Just Like Before, which picks the pace back up it highlights that these guys can really play. Sorry State is on the poppier side of Dictator Ship’s work, and I dig it, but holy crap when it picks up dig that drum and guitar work. 

Losing Ground has a fun and unique melody to it and continues to outline how well these guys play at such an upbeat tempo. But here is where I can’t get 100% behind Electric Jihad. I want to hear the drums more. I want this to be rawer, especially with you calling yourself “raw” rock in your promo materials. I mean this song kicks ass, but something is muted on it, and it bugs me, because with a click or two down on production and a better drum sound and this record would be blowing me away. This is also highlighted in Resignation Boogie, that would be kicking my ass if it wasn’t just a tad muted on how it sounds. Mute or not, I love the closer, She Makes Me Wanna, with an almost Allmans style guitar solo and all the harmonies.

I dig Electric Jihad; I just wish it had that “raw” that I have been mentioning throughout the review. But overall, Dictator Ship bring us some more kick ass rock from Sweden, which seems to be a trend right now, especially with all the stuff that I have been reviewing. Now just turn down the production a tad bit and we have a game changer here. 7/10

Eradikated - Descendants (Indie Recordings) [Rich Oliver]

Descendants is the debut full length album from Swedish thrashers Eradikated. The band have existed since 2014 originally called The Generations Army before rebirthing at Eradikated in 2021 and self-releasing a debut E.P. the same year. Two years later the band are ready to strike hard and fast with a rapid fire thrash metal attack on Descendants.

Thrash is a very saturated genre but when it is done well it is as good as the metal genre gets and thankfully Eradikated know how to fucking thrash with Descendants being made up of eleven songs which are firmly rooted in old school thrash metal with bag fulls of speed, aggression, crunchy riffs, high velocity drumming and vocals which exude pure attitud. Any self-respecting thrasher is going to find it an incredibly difficult job not to bang their head or at least tap their foot and nod along to frantic tunes such as Drought, Hazardous and the blistering title track. 

The latter half of the album has a bit more variation with more melodic tunes such as Reckoning and chunkier mid-paced numbers such as Blood-Like Red. It’s this variation that ensures that when the album steps up the speed and aggression it hits you like a spade to the face such as on album closer Coffin which sees the band reaching crippling levels of speed and venom.

Like the majority of thrash you hear in 2023, Descendants has a lack of originality running through it and at times the band proudly wear their influences on their sleeves such as during Dead Heaven which is full of Slayer-isms but thrash does not need to sound original or innovative especially considering the genre has been around since the early 80’s. 

What thrash needs to do is sound good with tight musicianship, bags of aggression and a fuck you attitude and in all those areas this album meets expectations and at times excels. Descendants may not be an original sounding thrash album but it is a damn good sounding one and as a self-appointed thrash metal maniac, I can easily give this album my seal of approval. 8/10

No comments:

Post a Comment