AT THE GATES – “At War With Reality”

At War With Reality

There are probably quite high expectations for At The Gates to live up to with this, their first album since 1995’s landmark melodic death metal opus, Slaughter Of The Soul. I’m certainly feeling a certain sense of trepidation hitting the play button, but my hopes are high after hearing the preview title track. Continue reading

WINTERFYLLETH – “The Divination Of Antiquity”

WF14So here we are; 4 Winterfylleth albums in… yet it only seems like yesterday that these boys were playing in front of a few staunch separatists like myself in sweaty underground clubs. The band as a group, since all but the very earliest live outings, has been consistent and since the second album, “The Mercian Sphere”, the same lads have written and recorded the music.  The thing is, the band themselves have been on a bit of a journey in the last 12 months, and I believe that this has resulted in the album of their careers thus far. A tour with Enslaved, festival appearances around Europe and then time to reflect and write have resulted in something very special indeed. Continue reading

BENEATH – “The Barren Throne”

Beneath - ""The Barren ThroneThose that know me are well aware of my distaste…. even open hostility for music that I can only describe as ‘wafty’.  Doesn’t matter who it is (even Enslaved sail a bit close sometimes), if you’re showing off and widdling so wildly, progging so madly that you forget about the SONGS, you can fuck right off.  That’s not too say I don’t like ‘technical’ music but songs come first.  Plus I like my death metal to be bludgeoning.  I wanna feel beaten up & concussed at the end of the record, not stroke my beard (that I haven’t got) and nod sagely.  I wanna be in a pool of sweat having been sonically violated… which brings me to the new album by Iceland’s Beneath. Continue reading

SOREPTION – “Engineering The Void”

SorepDespite forming in 2005, this only the third release, and second full-length from tech-death Swedes Soreption. Its predecessor, “Deterioration Of Minds”, released four years earlier in 2010, was somewhat of a behemoth, so this time around they have some significant living up to do. Continue reading

THE KING IS BLIND – Live @ Bloodstock Open Air 2014

Paul Ryan, of The King Is Blind, live at BOA'14The Modern Alternative was privileged to get a good clear view of the Bloodstock début of The King Is Blind this past weekend.  A video of the set opener, “Mors Somnis” can be seen further down the page.  This was shot spontaneously with a regular camera and, albeit a little shaky, the raw footage gives an insight into the performance, without any visual or audio retouching. Continue reading

SHORES OF NULL – “Quiescence”

SHORES OF NULL - "Quiescence"

SHORES OF NULL – “Quiescence”

If you like your death doom, with a vocalist who has range, this album has to be on your to buy list. Cover art featuring a dead tree is often a clue to what’s in store on the disc, and a melancholic myriad of misery and despair ensues. However, the band whom hail from Rome, deliver an album which is heavy yes, but which has very catchy melodies and a vibe not too dissimilar to Ghost Brigade, Katatonia and err, Alice in Chains! Yep, that’s what I am hearing and that’s what I am loving folks. Continue reading

ALCEST – “Shelter”

AlcestShelterThe much anticipated new Alcest release nestled in my post box and I knew immediately that the day was indeed a good day. Neige and Winterhalter have returned with another beautifully written album with a slight move back to the feel and sounds of the wonderful debut full length ‘Souvenirs d’Un Autre Monde’.  The few harsh vocals evident on the previous release ‘Les Voyages De L’Ame’ have given way to a completely clean delivery and with a voice like Neige’s, why on earth not? Continue reading

CANCEROUS WOMB – “Born Of A Cancerous Womb”

CW14Edinburgh’s Cancerous Womb have created a bit of a buzz on the underground UK death metal scene over the last few years. They’ve gigged extensively across the UK and Europe and some of my buddies in other death metal bands have raved about them to me but up ‘till now I’ve yet to have the pleasure of hearing them.

When I got the album through I have to admit that due to the band’s name I was expecting some pig squealing bullshit ‘brootal tech death’ bollocks to come blasting out of my speakers… Fuck me, was I in for a surprise! Continue reading