Ranked

HIM’s studio albums, ranked worst to best

When I heard that HIM decided to end their journey in 2017, I was devastated. Yet, silly me wasn't able to get her hands on tickets for the farewell tour, so I was even more heartbroken. So what else could I do? You got it, I thought I could rank their albums. It wasn't an easy task for sure. Especially with a band like HIM, it wouldn't be very wise do make a gut decision, so I tried to come up with a fairly useful decision matrix. Yes, I have an Excel sheet and all. This is serious business to...

Reviews

Review: Parkway Drive – “Reverence”

I truly cherish the memory of Parkway Drive's headline gig at Summer Breeze Festival 2016, which took place on the day Architects guitarist Tom Searle died of cancer. This was the reason why Parkway Drive cancelled their afternoon signing session. Around midnight, they delivered one of the most energetic shows I have ever witnessed. It rained heavily when they started their gig, but the rain eventually stopped halfway through, as if their music had scared the clouds away. The entire field was extremely muddy, which didn't keep the audience from jumping, headbanging, moshing and crowdsurfing - I definitely got my share of hair and boots in the face! I also ended up crying three times, which wasn't caused by any injuries (thankfully), but rather by the overall exceptionally emotional experience that Parkway Drive offered their fans. At that time, Parkway Drive had released "IRE" almost one year ago, and I...

Review: Shinedown – “ATTENTION ATTENTION”

Shinedown's music is, despite the band's mainstream success, quite unique. It makes you feel like a million dollars ("Adrenaline"), sigh longingly ("The Crow And The Butterfly"), cry yourself to sleep ("Call Me") and punch someone in the face ("Cut The Cord"), all at the same time. Shinedown is probably the only band that can deliver the perfect song and lyrics for every situation you might be in. I consider their album "The Sound Of Madness" a classic. Strangely enough, as much as I can rave about this band, I haven't been a huge fan of their 2015 release "Threat To Survival" save a couple tracks. Shinedown were drifting into a direction that sounded quite generic and that lacked the depth and edge their older material has. Considering this, "ATTENTION ATTENTION" is indeed an interesting release. Musically, Shinedown are still on a similar path as three years ago, but seem to...

Review: My Indigo – “My Indigo”

When it comes to music, I seem to have a split personality: One part is drenching herself in the darkest music she can find and never smiles and the other one listens to light, happy music and drinks green smoothies. So it is no surprise that it took some time for me to get used to the idea that Sharon den Adel, the frontwoman of symphonic metal band Within Temptation, otherwise known for her signature angelic voice and her gothic ball gowns, has released an alternative pop album. Seeing Sharon den Adel dressed like a fashion blogger at Coachella on the cover of "My Indigo" rather than wedged in a corset didn't really convince me of this record, either. But you know what they say: You should never judge a book by its cover, and this is the best example. If one were to be unfamiliar with the background of...

Review: Light The Torch – “Revival”

Fun fact: At our graduation ceremony, everyone had to assemble a PowerPoint slide with pictures of them with family and friends, which then was displayed on a big screen during the handover of the graduation diploma. We could also pick a song to be played during the handover. Me and a friend were the only ones to pick metal songs, and I chose Light The Torch's "My Own" (formerly Devil You Know) because the lyrics and the message of the song speak to me so much. I consider this band to be one of my favorite bands, that's what I'm saying. And as with all favorite bands, a new release means a lot of excitement and high expectations in equal measure. Great melodies are truly the focal point of "Revival", while the previous album "They Bleed Red" was considerably heavier. Vocals of course play a big part in that. Howard...

Review: Savage Hands – “Barely Alive” (EP)

A couple of years ago, I have embarked on a quest to identify great modern metal and metalcore music and I have been quite successful, if I can say so. So, we keep discussing bands that are "the hottest shit" on this little site here. The quest continues with this brand new band called Savage Hands. Let me tell you, these guys weren't love at first listen. I had to listen not only twice, but many times until I liked what I heard. Now I even know almost all lyrics by heart - that's when I realized that a review was very much overdue. The short version is this: Savage Hands play that kind of music that makes you want to headbang, mosh, sing along, dance and throw your hands in the air all at the same time and it's glorious. Now for the longer version. Savage Hands border modern hard rock...

Review: Good Tiger – “We Will All Be Gone”

I probably don't need to introduce this band, as they have been hyped up for months. Good Tiger's second record "We Will All Be Gone" has been released a month ago and the time has finally come to tell you the truth about it. I didn't want to like this record. Then I thought: There has to be a reason why everybody and their mama is so excited about Good Tiger. Generally, I can't deny that "We Will All Be Gone" is consistently well written and executed. Good Tiger deliver some cheerful yet mysterious tracks like "The Devil Thinks I'm Sinking" and "Blueshift", continue quite strongly with catchy tunes like "Float On" and display a striking maturity as musicians throughout the record. The issue, though, is the following: I have been listening to this record for over a month now. I give up! I can't find anything here that is...

Review: Dreamgrave – “Monuments” (EP)

The first full-length release called “Presentiment” by the Hungarian progressive band Dreamgrave saw the light of day over three years ago and ever since then, “Presentiment” remains an album I listen to on a regular basis. I believe that Dreamgrave’s formula for success is their diversity, and they continue to release great music with their (fairly) new EP “Monuments”. For a more detailed introduction to the band, I suggest reading my (slightly embarrassing) review of Dreamgrave’s debut album on powerofmetal.dk. I had nothing but the highest expectations of this new release. Still, I was surprised to hear an even broader spectrum of different sounds and styles than I had anticipated, compiled into only three tracks. The EP starts with the track “Drop The Curtain”, which has an atmosphere similar to the two part-track “Presentiment” off the same-named record. This is a beautiful way to create cohesiveness between the two records....

Review: Epica – The Solace System (EP)

Epica, to me, is the best example of a band that steadily climbed towards success. Nightwish may be the better known band in the genre, but Epica make up for that with hard work – they seem to have been working harder than their Finnish counterpart have for the past five years. Just look at how well they have been developing. They aren’t just another symphonic metal band anymore; Epica have become a symphonic metal powerhouse with all the bells and whistles. Not only do they collaborate with highly acclaimed orchestras and choirs for their very well-frequented shows and studio albums, they also release well-produced videos and have one of the biggest metal labels at their side since ten years. Epica have even been working so hard that they wrote enough material for their latest full length record “The Holographic Principle” to release an EP called “The Solace System” with...

Beyond music

Hänsel and Gretel, World War II and The Flying Dutchman: A guide to Carach Angren’s horror concept albums until 2017

If you are into cinematic music that also scares you a little, you have surely heard of the Dutch horror metal band Carach Angren. They are not only known for their extreme, yet hauntingly beautiful music, but also for their concept albums. Each of their records is based on a specific tale, myth or historical event, which the Dutch then reinterpret and create something (fairly) new. I will advise you to proceed with caution. For the most part, Carach Angren’s concept albums are quite disturbing. Tales of death, abuse and horror is what you can expect here. Nevertheless, I hope...

Favorites

New tracks worth checking out: March 2018

I've been really inconsistent with posting new episodes of this series, I know. But to be fair, there wasn't anything to write about from November to February because I was listening to the exact same five songs on shuffle and picked another five songs once I got bored with the old ones, all that while living in the university library and being snowed under with books on calculus and other (not so) pleasant things. It was a terrible time for music discovery. Now, while still feeling guilty for not pottering at microeconomics, I have more free time on my hands...

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