Category METAL REVIEWS

ROCKET REVIEW: HAVOK – “Conformicide” (CD)



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American thrash metal act, HAVOK, are back in 2017 with a new album entitled “Conformicide”, which is their debut release via Century Media Records, and while some critics already named it one of the heaviest albums of the year, I’m not so quick to give these guys that kind of immense praise. Sure, this album don’t suck… but come on, calling it a masterpiece is a lie to hard working people. Don’t get me wrong. The effort is good.. and so is the pissed off energy. That’s exactly what thrash needs more of. Frontman David Sanchez on lead vocals and rhythm guitar rips through the first several tracks with an absolutely vicious demeanor.

Kicking off with the above average cut “F.P.C.”, for me the party really gets started thanks to the balls to the walls “Hang ‘Em High...

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ROCKET REVIEW: OVERKILL -“The Grinding Wheel” (CD)



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American thrash metal act, OVERKILL, have unleashed their eighteenth studio album in 2017 entitled The Grinding Wheel and having been a long time fan of this band going back three decades, this is easily my favorite since 1991’s Horrorscope. While other old school metal acts have become more mainstream and have dulled around the edges, Blitz and the boys are bringing the pain at a level that only a few other bands going today half their age can match. Produced by the band, with Andy Sneap handliing mixing and mastering the slamming effort kicks off with “Mean, Green, Killing Machine”, which is a totally killer and epic tune clocking in at seven and a half minutes, followed by the go for the throat “Goddamn Trouble” and absolutely brilliant “Our Finest Hour”.

All of the songs on this r...

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ROCKET REVIEW: BORIS THE BLADE – “Warpath” (CD)



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Australia’s BORIS THE BLADE are one of the meaner deathcore acts to emerge in recent years and they come out swinging to back it up with their new album released in 2017 entitled ‘Warpath’, the follow up to their 2014 debut LP ‘The Human Hive’, and this new collection of songs offers up even more slamming grooves. It is easy to see why they are moving up the ladder so fast in the Australian brutal music scene. Like THY ART IS MURDER, whose vocalist Chris “CJ” McMahon does a guest vocal spot on track three’s crushing “Misery”, this band truly knows how to deliver dark, sonic punishment.

The rhythm section of bassist Coby Chatz and Karl Steller on drums are heavy as hell, caving in the side of your head on the album’s equally awesome title track and “Backstabber”, an absolute pile d...

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ROCKET REVIEW: SEPULTURA – “Machine Messiah” (CD)




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Brazilian metal band, SEPULTURA, have released, Machine Messiah, their fourteenth studio album in 2017. Producer Jens Bogren turns in an impressive collection of well put together songs that kicks off with the powerful self titled track, followed next by the even more explosive “I Am The Enemy”. However, the following cut, “Phantom Self”, is off the charts good. Singer Derrick Green’s crazy roaring vocals are on full display once again. Up next is the cranking “Alethea”, followed by the insane instrumental “Iceberg Dances”. While there are certainly more progressive moments (with orchestral string accompaniment), they still deliver their combustible combination of groove, thrash and hardcore.

Guitarist Andreas Kisser is one of my favorite shredders, and he throws down some ass kickin...

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ROCKET REVIEW: METALLICA – “Hardwired… To Self-Destruct” (2 CD)


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American thrash metal giants METALLICA have returned in 2016 with a new double studio album entitled “Hardwired… To Self-Destruct” and while many critics have already begun to hail it as the band’s best release in 25 years, I’m not so sure I totally agree with them. Clocking in at nearly 80 minutes, this collection of heavy rockers is no doubt filled with some cool musical moments but for me there is a lot of time that lags or where the songs start to sound alike, becoming rather redundant… and frankly, some of the tunes are trying too hard to be epic and really fall flat...

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ROCKET REVIEW: SUPERJOINT – “Caught Up In The Gears Of Application” (CD)


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Former PANTERA vocalist, Philip H. Anselmo, recorded the first two SUPERJOINT RITUAL albums right before the tragic on stage murder of his former guitarist, the late Dimebag Darrell. I remember seeing the band live several times in and around the years 2002-2003 at Danzig’s Blackest of The Black concert and a couple other gigs that were held at House of Blues clubs in Anaheim and Hollywood. I always told my friends they were a truly explosive act when witnessed in person, much like his old band, but in a way even more pissed off and dark if that is even possible. I always wanted to hear the third album as a fan and have waited many years for this moment...

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ROCKET REVIEW: SUICIDAL TENDENCIES – “World Gone Mad” (CD)


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Legendary American crossover thrashers SUICIDAL TENDENCIES have released their twelfth studio full length in 2016 entitled “World Gone Mad” via Suicidal Records. Lead vocalist Mike Muir has not slowed down one bit as the years have crept up on him. The slam session kicks off with the first single released off the album “Clap Like Ozzy”, an effective ode to the Prince of Darkness of BLACK SABBATH fame. Right away I could tell the drumming sounded so much more powerful than anything ST has recorded in recent years. The reason it sounds so radical is because the one and only Dave Lombardo (Ex-SLAYER) has joined the ST lineup and this gem rocks so hard it will straight up rattle the teeth in your head.

Up next are the totally jamming cuts “The New Degeneration”, “Living For Life”, and my ...

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ROCKET REVIEW: OPERATION: MINDCRIME – “Resurrection” (CD)


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Legendary ex-Queensrÿche vocalist Geoff Tate has somehow stood the test of time and today sounds better than ever. The iconic metal vocalist – at age 57 – delivers an absolutely masterful singing performance on the second album from his current band project OPERATION: MINDCRIME, entitled “Resurrection”. The collection of progressive metal rockers impressed me way more than I thought they ever could. Released this month via Frontiers Music, this gem will certainly go down as one of Tate’s crowning achievements. I never thought he had another one in him. Not only was I wrong, but I will go on the record to state that this is one of my favorites of 2016.

After all the turmoil that has happened between Tate and his former band in recent years it’s safe to say that he’s now well beyond al...

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ROCKET REVIEW: HELSTAR – “Vampiro” (CD)


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Legendary Texas power metal band, HELSTAR, are back in 2016 with a new full length studio effort entitled “Vampiro”, released via MEGADETH bassist David Ellefson’s EMP Label Group. I’m pleased to report that these cats have put together a radical collection of tunes, starting off with the first cut, “Awaken Into Darkness”, which rocked my skull hard as hell. Lead vocalist James Rivera has certainly mastered the high pitch scream in the style of KING DIAMOND. Up next are the slamming “Blood Lust, “To Dust You Will Become”, and “Off With His Head”. The drums handled by Mikey Lewis sound huge in the mix, which is what I always look for in a heavy music release. But for me, the guitar soloing stands out against just about every other band out there...

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ROCKET REVIEW: GOJIRA – “Magma” (CD)


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French metal band GOJIRA have unleasheda new studio album entitled “Magma” in 2016. It is being touted as the best release of the year by many critics. I wanted to make sure and have give it a spin so I could see if all the hype is indeed warranted. To be blunt, it didn’t take long for me after listening to the first song to realize that this was going to be a very boring experience and not at all what I was expecting. The mood of the album is just depressing and not up-tempo in its delivery, which is what I have always come to expect from this band.

I really enjoy their earlier material. Go back and listen to that stuff because that is where they sound heaviest...

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