Crime Records

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Amok - Somewhere In The West Review

Band: Amok
Album: Somewhere In The West
Label: Witches Brew
Genre: Thrash Metal
Country: Scotland
Release Date: November 2013

Amok hail from Scotland with their brand of thrash which for this reviewer brings back memories of all the old bands I used to listen to Whiplash, Wargasm, Triphammer, Laaz Rockit, Faith Or Fear the early days of Destruction and others great bands. According to their bio, this is their second full length disc, ontop of their 5 demos as well. So with Amok, you'll be jumping in the pit and getting ready to thrash to their tunes. At times their vocalist hits a pitch similiar to Tom Araya from Slayer which if you don't know who Slayer is you need to dig out the history books of metal and learn... Also goes for the bands I mentioned above.  

Hard to pick out a favorite track, as they all sound great, although track 4 "Creature of Habit" hits a sweet spot, and it's true we're all creatures of habit in one way or another some good/some bad. Before I digress, in any case the production on the music is clear and everything pops out at the listener. Certainly no muddy production on this disc to say the least. The disc consists of 10 songs, they're the average 4 to 5 minutes for most. The tracks are as follow below.


01. 1885
02. Somewhere In The West
03. No Faith
04. Creature Of Habit
05. Lawbreakers
06. Uprise
07. Cover Your Tracks
08. Sixty-Eight
09. Make Time To Kill Time
10. Lost Generation

Total Playing Time: 0:46:15

Guitars are crisp and gritty sounding, bass has some kick and of course the drums are pretty killer too. I would definitely recommend Amok to any and all fans of metal, the old school thrashers, even the newer fans of metal and let them know this is how it's supposed to be.

I'd give this disc an 8.

So go check them out at the links below, and buy their tunes, well worth the money. 

Youtube Video:

Band Contact:

Whispered - Shogunate Macabre review

Band: Whispered
Album: Shogunate Macabre
Label: Redhouse Finland Music Publishing
Genre: Symphonic Metal
Country: Finland
Release Date: 7th Feb 2014

If you selected a track at random, depending on which one you chose, you would be forgiven for thinking that you're listening to either a Children Of Bodom or a Septic Flesh album. At first. But then comes the Eastern instrumentation and this becomes a different beast, entirely. It sounds distinctly Finnish at its heart, but the Eastern melodies add a whole, wonderful new depth and elevate Whispered to a entirely new level. One that is way above their peers. 

I have never heard anything quite like this Finnish act before and I suspect that neither have you. Very odd and very different, but at the same time, bloody brilliant. Despite the underlying and overpowering Eastern feel, I really wouldn't class this as Folk Metal any more than I would, Therion or Nightwish. This is Symphonic Melodic Death Metal with an Eastern slant. 

While it provides a whole new experience when taken as a whole, the influences do clearly shine through. To my ears there are elements of Children Of Bodom, Kalmah, Finntroll, Therion, Dimmu Borgir, Sigh, Septic Flesh and Nightwish among others, but of course, every band has its influences and it is where they take those influences and what they do with them that matters and Whispered perform some kind of wonderful alchemy - The Folk melodies and harmonies are incorporated perfectly into the lead work and riffs and said influences are twisted, blended and mashed to great effect and there is never a dull moment as, just when you think you've got this Oriental thing pegged, they throw in something unexpected to keep you on your toes. 

With incredible musicianship and the virtuoso lead guitar work that is synonymous with the Finns, meeting occasional bursts of off the wall Finntroll / latter-day Nightwish instrumental passages and other-wordly keyboards blending seamlessly with the often strikingly beautiful Eastern melodies, the overall feel is that of a concept album-come-film soundtrack. The important thing for me to stress is that it never feels like a mere gimmick and although the basic idea soon becomes familiar, it doesn't at any point wear thin. Let's face it, not to take anything away from them, as talented as Whispered obviously are, take away the Eastern melodies and they become another run-of-the-mill, forgettable Melodic Death Metal band from Finland. 

Shogunate Macabre is one of the most enjoyable and interesting albums I've heard this or any other year. A new personal favourite and an album that is not only guaranteed to make my end of year 'best of' list, but is also going to be receiving many more spins (can you still say that?) in years to come.

Total Playing Time: 45:20

Overall: 9/10


Hold The Sword
Fallen Amaterasu
One Man's Burden
Lady Of The Wind
Upon My Honor

Official website:

Monday, February 10, 2014

Behemoth - The Satanist review

Band: Behemoth
Album: The Satanist
Label: Nuclear Blast
Genre: Black Metal
Country: Poland
Release Date: 3rd Feb 2014

The Polish legends have a lot to prove following the highly publicised battles they have had with the Church in their home country and of course after Adam "Nergal" Darski's personal fight with cancer - both of which they won, by the way. Not only have Behemoth proved themselves to be indestructible, but they have managed to come out of all of these trials and tribulations a stronger band than they were before. It appears that Nergal's brush with the reaper has given him a new found vigour and passion for existence. To quote the man himself "facing death made me embrace life with more purpose".

Ever since the mighty Emperor hung up their blackened cloaks, the extreme metal world has waited eagerly for a band to step up and fill the gaping void that they left behind. Well, the wait is well and truly over. Behemoth have stepped up in jaw-dropping style. This is the album the band has always been threatening to drop, but has fallen frustratingly short of in the past.

The Satanist sees Behemoth raising the bar in every conceivable way. Everything that made 2009's Evangelion a good (but not great) album has been improved upon and honed to absolute black metal perfection. The songs are perfectly crafted and never overstay their welcome, the string arrangements more subtle and the riffs sharper, colder and more vicious than ever before.

Brimming with all of the confidence befitting a band that knows it is the most important band active in the sub-genre today, this is not 'merely' the best album in Behemoth's 23 year career, but it one of the best albums the sub-genre has ever produced. A true classic which rivals anything released by the Norwegian masters of yesteryear. It is nothing short of an open challenge to the rest of the extreme metal world to up their game. The new kings are here. Put simply, this is Black Metal: Redefined.

Total Playing Time: 44:18

Overall: 9.5/10


Blow Your Trumpets Gabriel
Furor Divinus
Messe Noire
Ora Pro Nobis Lucifer
The Satanist
Ben Sahar
In The Absence Of Light
O Father O Satan O Sun!

Official website:

Friday, February 7, 2014

Brood of Hatred - Skinless Agony Review

Band: Brood of Hatred
Album: Skinless Agony
Label: Crime Records
Genre: Death Metal
Country: Tunisia (North Africa)
Release Date: March 2014

To start out this review, my geography sucks I actually had to look up Tunisa didn't know where it was honestly. Now I do.. it's part of North Africa. At first I thought Brood of Hatred was going to be one of those cheesy everday generic clone death metal bands that spring out like termites from rotted wood. I was completely wrong on that assumption. But I still enjoy all those cheesy death metal clone bands, so not shooting them down either by any means.

Brood of Hatred have some good and heavy riffs, not to mention quite melodic too. Definitely one of the more progressive death metal bands I've heard lately. Will definitely add them onto my list of favorites to keep in my mp3 player to say the least. Love the heavy bass on this, it doesn't over power like say Overkill or some others, but it does stand out quite a bit. The guitars and drums sound good as well on this, the disc certainly has a live feel to it in my opinion.  Haunting atmospheres abound on this cd, along with some soundclips placed here and there for a good touch of atmosphere. They fit into the music to say the least, which is a good thing to say the least. They have some videos up on their YouTube page scope out the link below as well as the video below.

Like alot of the international bands this reviewer tends to listen to I can always tell the music is much more solid and unique sounding compared to say most US based bands which quite a few sound generic and sound the same. The disc is just shy of 42 minutes, the songs are all a decent length as well.


01 Deconstruction
02 The Mind That Emerged
03 Technological Genocide
04 Cacophony In The Creation
05 The Singularity Is Near
06 Skinless Agony
07 Predestined Suicide
08 Obsession
09 Disbelief Grows

Total Playing Time: 0:41:45

I would highly recommend this band to anyone who listens to say Beheaded, Internal Suffering among other heavy hitters like Cannibal Corpse, Obituary, etc. Go check them out, I give this disc an 8 out of 10, could of been longer and I'd of been a happy camper.

YouTube Video:

Band Contact:

Sound Cloud:

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Cynic: Kindly Bent To Free Us Review

Band: Cynic
Album: Kindly Bent To Free Us
Label: Season of Mist
Genre: Progressive Metal
Country: US
Release Date: February 2014

Now I've been a fan of Cynic since their first disc "Focus" was released back in 1993. Which of course got the remastered treatment by the original label Roadrunner Records in 2004... They hail from Florida, but they're not you're every day death metal band from Florida. Back then they had the label "Progressive Death" slapped on them. They are so far beyond that label especially now with their new disc "Kindly Bent To Free Us". They certainly haven't lost their technical edge they've had since the beginning, gone are the growly vocals they used to have. But that certainly doesn't detract from their music. The only band that closely relates to Cynic is fellow labelmates Athiest both are amazing bands and ahead of their time.

Musically their still at the crossroads of a metal and jazz fusion, so obviously they're not for everyone. So yeah, those death metal, black metal freaks and the "Hot Topic crowd" expecting breakdowns, blast beats and all that.. can go jump in a muddy pit elsewhere slamming into each other.

Back to the review, if you like your music technical, and perhaps experimental at times you'll enjoy this disc. The regular edition of the disc falls just short of 42 minutes. The music is crisp and clear, every instrument is clear sounding as it always is. If you want to read up more on Cynic as a whole and on their history visit their Season Of Mist page linked below this review, it's quite a good read.


1. True Hallucination Speak
2. The Lion’s Roar
3. Kindly Bent to Free Us
4. Infinite Shapes
5. Moon Heart Sun Head
6. Gitanjali
7. Holy Fallout
8. Endlessly Bountiful

Total Playing Time: 0:41:51 (before the bonus track)

Bonus track (Deluxe Edition)
9. Earth Is My Witness

Certainly one band I give a solid 10 for, due to their originality, and forward thinking in regards to music. Not many bands can touch the areas that Cynic reach and travel. Honestly at times it's hard to describe their sounds, so it's best just to give them a listen. Pretty sure you'll enjoy what you hear.

YouTube Video:

Band Contact:


Season of Mist Bio Page:

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Adrenaline Mob - Men of Honor Review

Band: Adrenaline Mob
Album: Men of Honor
Label: Century Media
Genre: Hard Rock
Country: US
Release Date: 2/18/2014

What we have here with Adrenaline Mob with their 2nd disc is your standard hard & heavy rock. The opening track which is an instrumental sounds like the ending to the cd honestly. After that exit track, oops I mean intro.. The music itself begins, and what I hear isn't half bad to be honest. Obviously like some discs, you'll have a few clunkers that could of been tossed into a well like old change like the 5th song "Let It Go" should of been one of them.

Anyways, the music itself is crisp and clear and you can hear all the instruments without them being drowned out by one another. To me that's always good as I hate muddy production on any album regardless of music genre. For a roughly 47 minute disc, it goes by pretty fast. As the music sets a pretty quick pace, other than one ballad. The tracks are as follow below...


The Mob Is Back  
Come On Get Up    
Dearly Departed  
Behind These Eyes
Let It Go.mp3
Feel The Adrenaline
Men Of Honor
Crystal Clear
House Of Lies
Fallin' To Pieces

Total Playing Time: 0:46:36

Now I like hard rock as it has that old school feel to me. This does at time as well. Is it on par with say Benedictum's "Obey" cd ( Also it doesn't have the certain kick that say Chrome Division has in my opinion which they're more of a grittier hard rock band as well. Like one place I ran across which I tend to agree, the lyrics on Adrenaline Mob's disc are kind of cheesy at times. Not sure if it was done on purpose or accident. The song "Come One and Get Up".. The main verse starts with saying "I hear you took one in the face"  What should that be a punch or slap to the face? a moneyshot? Just what really. I automatically thought of the latter.. Maybe my mind is just in the gutter but who knows.

But anyways, it doesn't sound like a band that had a former Dream Theater member in it in my opinion. Anyways I give this disc a 6 out of 10.  Like I said it's decent cd, it's worth a listen for those wanting to get more into hard rock and away from the mainstream radio tripe. I love the cover art, granted it's not the most unique though.

Youtube Video:

Band Contact:

Century Media Artist Page: