Watchtower VII

This months image comes from an artist called jjcanvas whoese painting I found on Youtube just in timelapse form. Though digital painting is not new, this is one of the first timelapse photoshop paintings IO have seen and is interesting to watch as it seems all one needs to a good digital pad for drawing and knowledge of Photoshop. Talent is somewhere in there as well. Other than that please enjoy the new sounds of heavy, speed, and power metal from 2018 and maybe one from 2017.

Read More

MOONSHIELD – The Warband

Moonshield - The Warband

Harken, brave adventurer, and let me regale you with an epic yarn of war and wizardry, of fire and fell deeds – a tale from days of old, veiled in the mists of legend! Well, not really, this is a music review. But looking at the cover art to the debut album by Moonshield you’d be right to expect a fair level of sword and sorcery shenanigans, and the Atlanta axe-wielders dutifully deliver on that promise. The Warband is a concept album recounting the battles of legendary war-chief Hengest who…

Read More

KALMAH – Palo

Kalmah Palo

Sometimes with melodic death / power, I am later when actually reviewing the records. This Kalmah record technically came out in June of this year which in the landscape of heavy metal is sometimes ages ago. Our editor always likes to think of these pieces as timeless and without date so we can assume this Kalmah record came out every year. Also before getting into this record, I would like to state for the record that I have not listened to a Kalmah record before despite seeing this Finnish band…

Read More

Watchtower VI

Watchtower is a monthly digest compiling interesting developments in speed, heavy, and doom albums on Bandcamp. to fit the theme of the site, these albums were chosen for their recent release and also for potential interest with people who are already adventuring in the worlds of fantasy. This month’s image comes from the talented artist Jorge Jacinto whose landscapes are made even more dramatic with the addition of small figures in its foreground. Looking through the artists webpage, one can see a fascination with Lovecraft monsters as well as the…

Read More

BEHEMOTH – I Loved You At Your Darkest

Looking back on Behemoths early albums, I am aware they were strict black metal before whatever incarnation in which they currently reside yet I can not think of any distinguishing album that marks their early years. Even the band’s demos, which sometimes hold lofi nostalgia for fans, is forgettable and unremarkable to the outside observer. The earliest record of note is Satanica in 1999 but the Behemoth everyone discusses is from 2004’s Demigod on. Behemoth is a current band and their records and sound has grown through the years becoming…

Read More

Watchtower V

Watchtower is a monthly digest compiling interesting developments in speed, heavy, and doom albums on Bandcamp. to fit the theme of the site, these albums were chosen for their recent release and also for potential interest with people who are already adventuring in the worlds of fantasy. This month’s image comes from Magic the Gathering with an older set called Return to Ravinca. The image, illustrated by Svetlin Velinov, depicts the Simic Guildgate which is one of 10 gates to the guilds which rule over Ravinca. I could explain more…

Read More

SATAN – Cruel Magic

Satan - Cruel Magic

Satan has perhaps the most iconic name in heavy metal history — not because they are the most iconic band in metal history but rather Satan is a pretty big deal. This is what happens when you name your band first and retain a legacy that overshadows all of the other black metal acts with the same name. 1981 saw the first demo from UK heavy metal act Satan and since that time, this cult followed act has retained the rights to being the coolest Satan. It also helps when…

Read More

Watchtower IV

Watchtower is a monthly digest compiling interesting developments in speed, heavy, and doom albums on Bandcamp. to fit the theme of the site, these albums were chosen for their recent release and also for potential interest with people who are already adventuring in the worlds of fantasy. As always I also try to highlight an artist and their work in the realms of fantasy art. This month’s picture is of a striking landscape whose creator has been completely severed from the picture. Through numerous searching I can not find the…

Read More

Watchtower III

Viktor Mukhin Final Land

Watchtower is a monthly digest compiling interesting developments in speed, heavy, and doom albums on Bandcamp. to fit the theme of the site, these albums were chosen for their recent release and also for potential interest with people who are already adventuring in the worlds of fantasy. this month’s feature image comes from Ukrainian concept artist Viktor Mukhin whoese works can be seen here for anyone interesting in getting lost in imagination.

Read More

BONGRIPPER – Terminal

I know I say a lot that these metal reviews are not fitting of the site but as an exception. Bongripper could be the furthest thing from fantasy metal as I can ascertain but we are traveling to the realms of stoner doom and while the genre certainly has its own flair for the fantastic they also have one goal in min which is pure suffocation. Terminal is the band’s 7th record for this instrumental stoner doom act and by the two tracks which total over 40 minutes, they are not giving up the drugs of heaviness.

Read More

GHOST – Prequelle

It is difficult to believe that we only four albums into their career. It feels strange as so much has been written on this Swedish heavy metal band that their tenure in the world of heavy metal seems like it should be longer. With so many fans, detractors, press coverage, marketing schemes, and new converts, Ghost should be at least 20 years old. It certainly feels that long.

Read More

Big Metal Month (April)

Adult Swim’s Singles series has been a pretty decent source for sub mainstream one offs from a variety of metal and non metal bands. In 2017, Adult Swin did 52 singles throughput the year from bands like Protomartyr, Thuindercat, The Field, Dinosaur Jr. and just about any band that was pulled from the collective brain of the hip listener. Pallbearer is up for a round following their well received 2017 record Heartless. Expect sullen dispositions and mournful congregations.

Read More

Big Metal Month (March)

Amorphis is a band who I totally know and respect for their early contributions to a subgenre and know almost nothing of their recent work. Queen of Time is the band’s 14th record since 1992 and marches closely to 30 years for the band being active. Queen of Time also sees a return and reformation of most of the original members for Amorphis which is funny considering how far this band has gone with membership. “The Bee” is an oddly named song but sees Amorphis where they feel most comfortable with a sound that is both harsh, melodic, progressive, and spotless in its production.

Read More

Big Metal Month (February)

This is the third single from Judas Priest’s 18th album Firepower. The previous singles, “Firepower” and “Lightning Strike”, gave longtime fans and people who havent listened to metal since the 80’s something to look forward to to as both songs shook off the lethargy of previous records. “Never The Heroes” shifts down in terms of tempo but is still just as strong as previous singles even more so when not looking at the lame lyric animated video.

Read More