Sometimes you’re completely underwhelmed by an album you thought you’d love. That’s how I feel bout 68’s debut In Humor and Sadness. After great album after album with the Chariot, Josh Scogin’s chaotic classics rock outfit’s debut just doesn’t click for me. There are some killer heavy moments, and some great unexpected melodies, but overall, it’s not a record that I instantly found myself draw to, and that feeling didn’t change over time. 3 out of 5 Stars.
It’s no secret that I was severely underwhelmed with War of Age’s last offering, Return to Life. After Eternal, Return to Life felt flat.Supreme Chaos is a great record! I feel there’s a shift for War of Ages. While the band has always had metal roots, I feel like Supreme Chaos is the first real metal record the band has released. While it sounds like War of Ages, the record has a completely different vibe. A strong outing. It doesn’t have the catchy hooks that the band’s previous records have had, but still a great record! 4 out of 5 Stars.
I shouldn’t be surprised that a record Facedown Records releases is good, but I continually am. Mouth of the South is a band I expected not to like. But Struggle Well is excellent! MOTS walks that line between death core, metal core, and core, all the while managing to stay on the “core” side of music. Super heavy without feeling like this overly processed package. Just another great Facedown Records release. 4 out of 5 Stars.
Sometimes you just know a record is going to be special. And so it was with Comrade’s officially Blood and Ink Records debut, Safekeeper. While the label released a collection of the band’s earlier material, I knew that when Comrades finally released new material it would be something worth listening to, and Safekeepers is a post rock gem! I don’t think anyone will accuse Comrades of being a Russian Circles rip off any time soon. The band still post rock through and through, but the addition of Laura’s singing vocals or the screaming gives the music an extra epic quality. Great guitar riffs! Just a really strong album! 5 out of 5 Stars!
Foreknown is a different kind of artist for Humble Beast, which is good. Diversity is never a bad thing. It’s hip-hop with a comedic twist. Not from start to bottom. Songs like Cathartes Aura, The Truth About Flight, Love, and BB Guns, and The Phoenix all hit hard and drop the comedy that Foreknown does well. It’s an interesting mix and the beats are simple, complimenting each track just enough… Very early 90’s. 4 out of 5 Stars.
I’ve heard songs from Lakes before, but Fire Ahead is the first record I’ve listened to start to finish. Fire Ahead is a beautiful indie record. Simple pop songs with beautiful melodies. Not overly complex arrangements but differing instrumentation from track to track keeps things interesting. And the songs are well written were you don’t need anything more compelling! Great record! 5 out of 5 Stars!
After surprisingly and thoroughly enjoying TFK’s The End Is Where We Begin, I was excited for Oxygen Inhale. Sadly, I’ve been largely disappointed with the record. More FM Static than TFK, the band takes a step back and refocuses on making pop rock, leaving their rap core roots behind. There are a couple of nice tracks (Untraveled Road, Give It To Me), but largely not a fan of this outing. 2 out of 5 Stars.