Blog Archives

Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2008, #16 – #13


MetalCatToday we have brown, red and black music. That’s not the colour of the musical notes but the colours used on the artwork of the albums from which this selection is taken.

Isn’t that a marvellous coincidence? Those colours match the brown of my teeth, the red of my eyeballs and the black of my blood. They also match Dark Metal Cat’s coat when he stands in bright sunlight with harsh shadows.

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EP Review: Brutai – Brutai


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This should come with a warning-sticker that says “highly addictive music”.

A good friend of mine has been saying lots of positive things about the five tracks on this EP, and after a couple of spins I have to say he’s right. This is an impressive collection of groovy songs with a progressive and modern sound, which should appeal to fans of classic heavy metal just as much as it will to people that prefer newer styles. It’s slightly reminiscent of both Symphony X and Iced Earth, with heavy, hard-hitting music and melodic singing, but Brutai also mixes in elements of metalcore and progressive death metal, which gives a nice edgy feel to their songs.

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Mik’s Top 100 Favourite Albums of All Time #35-31


Top100A while ago, at the same time as Matt and Reggie, I posted my Top 100 All Time Favourite (Metal) Albums over at the forum The History of Metal on FB. It took a good amount of time and effort to put it together, but it was so much fun! My taste in metal is always changing, so the list will not always look the same. In fact, it’s already a bit different than it was when I first put it together and posted it on the forum seven months ago.

I tried to limit myself to three albums per band to make the list a little more diverse and interesting. I don’t really consider the ‘test of time’-factor when selecting what albums that will go on my list, instead I measure it by how strongly the album has affected me emotionally and how much/often it has helped me through both good and bad phases in my life. That’s why you can find quite a few newer releases among my favourites too.

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#35 Omnium Gatherum – New World Shadows

Accessible and infectious, but still tastefully complex with a modern feeling. I like the versatility of this album, it’s good if you need positive energy, it’s heavy and powerful enough to headbang to, at the same time it’s relaxing, works for sing along when you want to practice your growling skills, it’s quite family friendly, perfect for private air-guitar performances and beautiful enough to keep you company on cold winter nights. What more can you ask for?

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#34 Lantlôs – .neon

Post rock mixed with black metal is one of the best combinations of musical styles. Add a dose of jazz, intense emotional singing and some proggy elements and you have Lantlôs. Their music makes me close my eyes and completely lose track of time. The album has an unusual dark, flowing feeling to it that makes every song a pleasure to listen to. To me, this is an atmospheric masterpiece where the music perfectly pictures the album’s lyrical theme.

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#33 Finntroll- Visor om Slutet

The most beautiful troll album ever. I love every second of it and every sound, from the frog’s “ribbit”, the trolls gnarling while sharpening their knives and the owls howling. It’s not a typical Finntroll album and it’s partly what makes it so good; this is more atmospheric, full of emotions with many instrumental parts and nature-related sound effects. It’s dedicated to Somnium, a band member that passed away, and they really managed to create something unique for him.

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#32 Alcest – Les Voyages De L’Âme

Because the music juuust floooows and wanders in such a nice, wonderful pace throughout the whole album. It’s so smooth and seamless. I barely notice when a track ends and a new begins, or the pause between the songs. This is one long, extremely beautiful listening experience that takes me away to another me(n)tal dimension and makes me relax completely. An album to daydream to.

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#31 Watain – Sworn To The Dark

I don’t care about Watain’s dark and super-evil image and everything that comes with it. I simply like the music because of the awesome, detailed and powerful sound. This is not recorded in a deep forest in the middle of nowhere! It has the typical raw black metal atmosphere, but you can actually hear every instrument being played, which I appreciate. You can find a bit of Dissection and a small dose of Bathory here and there, but Watain has their own recognizable style and to me they are one of the very best black metal bands out there.

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Album Reviews: Taketh – Ignorance Is Strength and Noumena – Death Walks With Me


a1775136158_10Taketh – Ignorance Is Strength

Taketh is a Swedish melodic death metal band and this is their second full length album. It contains ten tracks of typical sounding melo death, with growling vocals, melodic choruses and middle paced songs. The songs are well written and well performed and although the lyrics are a bit simple and too cliché, it still works out okay. After a couple of listens it gets a bit repetitive, both the music and the vocals don’t have much variation to them and some riffs seem a bit overused. I like the guitar solos and the more screamy, powerful vocals that appear at times. More of that and a little more diversity and maybe it could have been a more than average release. The last song is titled “Mind Numbing Crap” and makes me suspect the band isn’t overly serious about this release and when I hear it ends with someone saying “Oh well, shut up” in Swedish, I smile to myself and think my suspicions were probably right. But I hope Taketh are having fun when creating music, which is all that matters in the end!

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