This week’s new heavy metal releases include chunky guitars, a duel-wielding virtuoso, mood, grooves, and more! To the metals…

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Abiotic – Ikigai

Genre: Technical/progressive deathcore
Origin: Massachusetts/Florida/California
Label: The Artisan Era

Buy now on Bandcamp

Starting this week with some star-studded technical heaviness. The band’s third album, and first since reuniting, includes cameos from Brandon Ellis and Trevor Strand from The Black Dahlia Murder, Chaney Crabb from Entheos, Scott Carstairs from Fallujah, and more. Even without the guests, Abiotic bring flurries of dynamic musical passages. Highly recommend for fans of The Faceless, Fallujah, and the likes.

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God Is An Astronaut – Ghost Tapes #10

Genre: Post-rock/post-metal
Origin: Wicklow, Ireland
Label: Napalm

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It’s crazy to think that this outfit has been bringing their epic, moody, post-rock/metal for almost twenty years. The aptly titles Ghost Tapes #10 (because tenth album) has them at their heaviest without sacrificing their lush atmosphere. This is some of the best instrumental music you’re going to hear all year.


Humanity’s Last Breath – Välde

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Genre: Deathcore/extreme metal
Origin: Helsingsorg, Sweden
Label: Unique Leader Records

Humanity’s Last Breath keeps the lush vibe of God Is An Astronaut going but literally everything else is different. Välde hits hard with low, chunky guitars, pummeling rhythms, and demonic vocals. It winds up being some of the heaviest shit I’ve ever heard while retaining bombastic undertones. It’s very much like Anaal Nathrakh or Strapping Young Lad in this regard. Max has a full review here.


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Immortal Guardian – Psychosomatic

Genre: Progressive metal
Origin: Austin, Texas
Label: M-Theory

Immortal Guardian are a band that are so technically proficient that it’s infuriating. Gabriel Guardian is, as usual, the star of Psychosomatic with his self-dueling guitar/keyboard work, but the shiny new rhythm section is right there with him. The album covers a lot of ground. It’s power metal at it’s core but some moments sound very Dethklok, while others have a bit of a Latin flare, and you’re also getting classical influences.

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Love And Death – Perfectly Preserved

Genre: Rock/nu metal
Origin: Phoenix, Arizona
Label: Blind Tiger

I have to admit that I’ve never given this band a shot and it’s a lot different than I was expecting. Perfectly Preserved is as melodic and grand as I expected, but I was surprised to hear occasional deathcore riffs coupled with djent rhythms. Moments certainly sound like recent Korn, but Head is at the helm, so duh. It’s hard to not nod your noggin to some of these.

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The Pretty Reckless – Death By Rock And Roll

Genre: Hard rock
Origin: New York, New York
Label: Fearless

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Metal purists are going to scoff at this one, but this is some undeniably solid rock that has been charting pretty well. In a world where guitar-driven music is not prevalent in the mainstream, I call that a win. Anyway, Taylor Momsen and pals’ fourth album is a straight-ahead hard rock album with a lot of power behind it. Tom Morello pops up in it, and that’s pretty neat too.


Sirenia – Riddles, Ruins & Revelations

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Genre: Symphonic/gothic metal
Origin: Stavanger, Norway
Label: Napalm

Going to wrap this week with some epic metal. Riddles, Ruins & Revelations is an album that has a lot to offer. This includes melodic death metal, soaring symphonic metal, electronic breaks, and plenty of shredding. Morten Veland and Emmanuelle Zoldan really killed it on this one.


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Also dropping today…

  • Ablaze My Sorrow – Among Ashes and Monoliths (Black Lion Records) – Melodic death metal
  • Aborym – Hostile (Dead Seed Productions) – Industrial
  • Ad Nauseam – Imperative Imperceptible Impulse (Avantgarde Music) – Avant-garde/technical death metal
  • Alltar – Live At Ceremony of Sludge (Self-released) – Sludge
  • Blessed Black – La Brea (Self-released) – Doom
  • Camera Obscura Two – D.O.D. (Selfmadegod Records) – Grind
  • Chmcl Str8jckt – DRK PRGRSSN (Cleopatra) – Industrial
  • DayGlo Mourning – Dead Star Black (Doomba Records) – Stoner/doom
  • Dead Poet Society – -!- (Spinefarm) – Groove rock
  • Death by Unga Bunga – Heavy Male Insecurity (Jansen Records) – Rock
  • Demon King – The Final Tyranny (The Artisan Era) – Blackened death metal
  • Durbin – The Beast Awakens (Frontiers) – Heavy metal
  • Emptiness – Vide (Season Of Mist) – Post-metal/post-punk
  • Fallstar – Sunbreather (Facedown Records) – Hardcore
  • Grand Cadaver – Madness Comes EP (Majestic Mountain Records) – Thrash/death metal
  • Joel Hoekstra’s 13 – Running Games (Frontiers) – Hard rock
  • Inglorious – We Will Ride (Frontiers Music s.r.l.) – Hard rock
  • Narakah – Blast Haven (Self-released) – Death Metal/grindcore
  • Noctambulist – Noctambulist I: Elegieën (Northern Silence Productions) – Post-black metal
  • Pyre – Chained to Ossuaries (Caligari Records) – Death metal
  • Shape Of Water – Lockdown On Mars (Eclipse Records) – Electronic/art-rock
  • Significant Point – Into the Storm (Dying Victims Productions) – Heavy/speed Metal
  • Simulacrum – Genesis (Frontiers) – Progressive metal
  • Swampbeast – Seven Evils Spawned Of Seven Heads (Translation Loss Records) – Death metal/grindcore
  • Toledo Steel – Heading for the Fire (Dissonance Productions) – Heavy metal
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