Synth Bard – Beyond the Crystal Cave

Synth Bard was one of my first discoveries with 2015’s Gold Box Renditions. Aside from being fantastic fantasy synth, Goldbox Renditions was a tribute to the music found in the series of CRPG games published by SSI from 1988 to 1992. This sort of uber niche themes was part and parcel for an artist whose repertoire seemed to be rooted not only old school RPGs but deep speculative fiction. More so than playful reverence came a desire for the artist to fully immerse themselves in a world. The artist’s next…

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Metal Picks of 2019 – January to June

Six months gone and 2019 is already chock-full of quality metal and hard rock releases, many of which are destined to appear on end of year lists all over the Internet. My personal contender for album of the year came out very early in the year, but with six months yet to go I’d love for something awesome to come along and knock the crown off that head. After all, few experiences in life are greater than being lifted up and blown away by new music. Without further ado, here’s…

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Mid Year Heavy Review: Smoulder

For the past few years, I have organized a quarterly top 10 for Reddit’s r/metal which consists of people voting for new records and tabulating positions. We do it quarterly to show movements among new albums and highlight records that stay strong throughout the year. We just had our Top 5 which yielded a large cache of new heavy and power metal. While the presence of heavy and speed among an internet forum could be due to the active participants, one could suggest the influence of traditional metal to be…

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Mid Year Heavy Review: VULTURES VENGEANCE

For the past few years, I have organized a quarterly top 10 for Reddit’s r/metal which consists of people voting for new records and tabulating positions. We do it quarterly to show movements among new albums and highlight records that stay strong throughout the year. We just had our Top 5 which yielded a large cache of new heavy and power metal. While the presence of heavy and speed among an internet forum could be due to the active participants, one could suggest the influence of traditional metal to be…

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Spirit Adrift – Divided By Darkness

Spirit Adrift has been around for a while — if you count the later half of the 2010’s as a while. This Arizona based doom band has been making records since 2016 and saw recognition for their 2017 record Curse of Conception. I think I remember that record. To be honest, Divided by Darkness was the first time I was introduced to the band ans fully saw the world they were offering. While some bands sell themselves on the promise of a genre fulfilled, Spirit Adrift chooses to use genres…

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Vikings: Scourge of the North

vikings scourge of the north

Wargaming is certainly something I never intended to explore nor is it that far away from my current interests to be shocking. In fact, aside from the historical aspect of the hobby, wargaming seems like something that is neighbors to activities like Magic, D&D, and other passionate fandoms. Since attending 1d4 Con I have developed an interest in historical wargaming but do not possess the means or desire to get into miniatures. This led me to search for alternatives that would more compact and cheaper but still retain the strategy…

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Numenera — Starter Set

One of my current RPG groups is in recovery. After two years of weekly Pathfinder campaigns, the group collectively lost interest in most RPG games which has led to a fun delve into weekly boardgames. Because I always want to play new games and learn new games, I am making a small campaign of introducing the group to new systems / settings by use of starter sets. These 20-30$ boxes come with a condensed ruleset, pre-generated characters and enough material to run a gamer for 2-3 hours. It is from…

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AMON AMARTH – Berserker

Amon Amarth Berserker

At some points, one can admire a band like Amon Amarth. Not only has the band retained a core lineup but they have found a sound and niche that will always be understandable to veteran fans and new listeners. Amon Amarth exists for a reason and that reason seems to work with many people. It is not difficult to see why as the band’s mixture of gruff vocals and understandable lyrics center around an expected subject material and is a heavy metal band for people who want to listen to…

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1d4 Con 2019

Worlds Away It was Saturday of the convention and during the twilight hours of 10pm, all of the blocks of games would be in their 2nd or third hour with still two hours to go. The vendor hall closed early at 7 and for few quiet hours the outside of the Clarion Hotel in Shepherdstown West Virginia is filled with the occasional shuffle is a person carrying games or the occasional smoker — though that activity is smaller than other conventions. It had rained all days and by now the…

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