AGATHODAIMON – “Blacken The Angel”

Nuclear Blast

Rating: 9 /10

Waw! I had no fucking idea about what the hell was Agathodaimon, but the last months months they have become one of my faves in my hi-fi!!! How such a great band has been anonymous for so much time?! In reality, I know nothing about this band. All I know is that “Blacken The Angel – Nemuritor Si Rece” is their first album and that their Romanian-origined singer, Vlad Dracul, after a trip to his hometown Bucarest was denied to enter the European Union. So the recording was made with his substitute Akaias, who is a great singer, mixing whispers, screamy and growly vox. Agathodaimon’s music is melodyc and majestic and haunting as the inmense Carpathian forests with reallly Transylvanian atmospheres :), while other parts are faster and more passioned (“Banner Of Blasphemy”) and yet others are more relaxed and tranquil, sometimes bedeckened with beautiful female vocals. Many melodies are based upon synths, over which guitars flow nitidly and sometimes melancholially, with some metalllic riff as in “Ill Of A Imaginary Guilt”. The album is excellently and madurely performed, and production is great as well with loads of classical music arrangements that bring majesty to this release, as in “Contemplation Song”. An excellent album born despite the stupidity of the German (and the European Union’s, in fact) immigration laws. Europe is ONE, not TWO!!! Music, and culture in general cannot be stopped with boundaries!

GRAVE DIGGER – “Knights Of The Cross”

Gun / BMG

Rating: 6/10

Neither Heavy Metal nor Christianity appeal to me, so when I got this heavy metal band’s CD that lyrically dealt with the legend of the crusaders and the Christian fight to “alliberate” the s-called Holy Land, I wasn’t too happy to listen to the CD. And, after having listened to it carefully, well, there ain’t much to say: Typically German Heavy Metal. Sometimes pretentious, sometimes alright, but the musical approach is quite basic, and Chris Boltendahl’s singing is also quite childisch, lyrics are extremely poor (just compare them to those of Cradle Of Filth) and simple, in the vein of Manowar so to speak: swords, crosses, knights, battles and so forth: nothing new indeed. I suppose that was the reason why Manowar became so succesful: their message was so simple that everybody could understand it and therefore join the “cult”. I guess this is the way Heavy Metal fans like HM to be and theerfore i don’t expeect it to change… …unfortunately. The only remarkable things are the speed of “Lionheart”, the acoustic guitars of “The Keeper Of The Holy Grail” and the bagpipes on “The Battle Of Bannockburn”

RUINATION – “Visionary Breed”

Goldtrack Records

Rating: 8/10

Hmm… Lithuania? Where the fuck is Lithuania? I have just checked my Europe’s map and still haven’t found it on the map! (Joke) Anyway, what counts here is the music, and I have to say it’s really good! They show many Paradise Lost influences, which mainly flourish on the guitarwork and the singer’s way of atoning the lyrics. Most of the songs’s tempo is quite slow, with gothic-rocky melodies with a metal touch, yet in another ones, as in “Never”, the acoustic guitars achieve importance over all and the speed is diminished till becoming kind of a ballad.

Anyway, I respect very much the nations which struggle for its independence aand sovereignity, so I congratulate Lithuania for having freed herself from two of the biggest pestilences at the same time: Communism and Occupation. Freedom is a European valour and all European nations shoud enjoy it thereafter! These lines of course have nothing to do with my CD reviews’ section, but I wanted to express my feelings on the history of my beloved Europa… …and as this is MY VERY OWN e-zine I write what I WANT! I won’t restrict myself at my own e-zine, would I?

NIGHT IN GALES – “Thunderbeast”

Nuclear Blast

Rating: 7/10

Night In Gales became quite famous in the European metal (not so) underground scene by the the release of their previous effort “Towards The Twilight”, but vocals have changed a bit: Now they are less deep and softer yet sharper, and more appassionatted. Melodies are similar, with weighty riffs, perhaps a bit slower and heavier, but the melody lines created by the Basten brothers maffia (Jens Basten and Frank Basten) are also drawn in the background of the songs, which now are more gothic and less deathy. In fact their label calls their style “Death’n’Roll”. The album contains 13 songs, whereof one is the so-called “thunderversion” of their successful hit “From Ebony Skies”. A fairly good album of a fairly good band.

ANASARCA – “Godmachine”

Repulse Records

Rating: 7/10

Out of the ashes of Vomiting Corpses and Vae Solis come German band Anasarca. Anasarca play a German-styled death metal (similar to Messiah in the fastest parts yet less melodyc) full of aggressivity and brutality. In fact, immediately after the symphonic overture “The Way Into The Light” begins a grinding maelstrom of ultra-fast brutality with loads of escalating riffs that slaughter you till the ending “Whips And Cries” (Sorry! “Whispers And Cries” that is, what was I thinking about? :)) Vovals are both screamy (demonlike) and growling, sometimes combining one with each other as in “The Weird Ways”.

No sleep till death (metal), Anasarca will be probably on tour with Swede geezers Centinex by Europe. Hope to see how do they do on stage…

CHARON – Sorrowburn


Rating: 9/10

In Greek mythology, Charon is the name of the shady man who ships the souls of the dead through the lake Styx up to the misty island of Hades, the beyond of the pagan Hellenes. Out of this dark and rusty realm comes Charon, a brand new band hailing from Finland.

Charon play melodyc and agile atmospheric metal, being kind of the result of a sexual night on the bed with Type O’Negative’s Peter Steele, Paradise Lost’s Greg Mackintosh and Sentenced’s Ville Leihala. After nine months, the child born would be Charon, an atmospheric metal band bedeckened with the sensuality of singer Juha-Pekka Leppäluoto (What kind of surname is Leppäluoto???).  Songs like “Wortex” have a Paradise Lost’s guitar line, catchy song “November’s Eve” (of which a video has been recorded) and industrial-ized, piano-ized and Type O’Negative-ish song “Morrow” are highly promising and enoughly nice looking so as to guarantee a great success for this commercial (yet excellent) album.

Taetre – “The Art”

Diehard / Emanzipation 

Rating: 3/10

A bizarre and industrial intro gives way to the Megadeth-esque riffs of “My Lament”, combined with faster Swedish-styled melodies, which flourish again in songs such as “Into The Dawn” and throughout the album, actually. Unfortunately, these Swedish-made guitar lines have been cloned by hundreds of bands, so the fan may begin to feel fed up of them. It’s enough with one At The Gates, we don’t need clones! And by many ways Taetre are another Swedish-styled Swedish-made Swedish-played Swedish band, so they hardly bring anything new (apart from the experimental outro “The Return”). So if you are a fanatic who loves everything Swedish, then you’ll most likely love it, but for the rest of us who have eyes, we have had enough and demand something different. As you know, it’s a question of tastes.

GOTHIC SEX – Laments

Repulse Records 


Gothic Sex is a ten years old Spanish band whose ”band concept” deals with extreme topics such as sado/maso, gore and violence. This album has been released through Nightbreed in the UK, through Ausfahrt in Germany and now Repulse in Spain (and the rest of the world I think), so it’s up to your choice depending on where do you live.

Musically they play melodyc doom with a gothic atmosphere, basing 80% of the melodies upon the guitar work, which draw the main lines while the male and female vocalists sing, slowly yet appassionattely.

10 songs that as a whole last 40’ that will appeal to those who are into gothic/doom metal bands such as Lacrimosa, Septic Flesh or Love Like Blood and the like.

Oops! I nearly forget to mention it: the CD includes a CD-Rom track that increases the appeal of this by-its-own-right excellent work. Twisted minds, dark sould and horny beings, this is what you were waiting for!!!


Repulse Records 

Rating: 6/10

“If you think (Finnish) death metal is dead, then perhaps it is you who should be dead!” say the guys at the awesome Madrid-ian label Repulse Records. Mmh, if they are right or wrong, judge by yourself, because Adramelech doesn’t make the question any clearer at all.

The MCD contains two new songs (“Seven” and “The Sleep Of Ishtar”), a new version of “Ancestral Souls” (rebaptised as “Captured In Eternal Lost”) and two songs performed and recorded live both from their previous work “Psychostasia”.

The new songs go in the same vein of their previous releases, so you can guess what is it all about. The best song is undoubtly “Captured..”. As for the live songs (“And The Gods Succumbed” and “Across The Grey Waters”), they are good enough to be recorded live, but of course it is nothing compared to the feeling you have when you actually are IN the concert. All in all, a good MCD worth listening to if you like Finnish death metal; the only thing I don’t like about this band is Seppo Taatila’s communist t-shirt, but Europe is (unlike America) is a REALLY FREE nation, and everybody wears what they want, but of course this has nothing to do with music…

CENTINEX – Reborn Through Flames

Repulse Records

Rating: 7/10

If you are told of a Swedish band whose songs’ titles are “Embraced By Moonlight”, “Summon Th Golden Twilight” or “The Beauty of Malice”, you would probably imagine a mainstream, trendy and oversaturating black metal band, and you would be wrong. Centinex are not a bunch of young blackmetallers, but a veteran band that took part of the early 90’s Swedish death metal avalanch (At The Gates, Dismember, Entombed, Dark Tranquillity…) yet still rocking.

Now signed to fabulous Spanish label Repulse Records, Centinex deliver throughout “RTF” all their talent and energy materialized in music, a music which sounds Swedish as hell and has nearly no steps, kicking you in the face from the beginning till the end with their Swedish guitar riffs, their drum machine (Kalimaa) and singer’s electric vocal strings. Speed, aggressivity and striking riffs and simple tunes all around… …the Swedish school is still alive! 8 songs, whereof one is a version of the legendary Italo-German combo Kreator (“Under The Guillotine”)