'Mock The Weak'
Deep from within the Welsh valleys arises a Black / Death metal band of four musicians of whom come together to unleash their debut album 'Mock The Weak'. Fourth Autumn are ready to unleash the darkness onto the masses in fierce style, whilst not exactly sounding similar to that of Polish titans Behemoth, the clear swinging-beat of Black Metal emphasises the extreme mentality of the quartet and yet manages to stab the atmosphere with insanity and spectacular intricacy, none the less this is a beacon of hope for the Welsh Metal scene which seems to of late been dominated by the common genre of Metalcore, or any 'core' genre. Fourth Autumn are set to take the UK Metal scene by storm and show how evil the dragons of the west really can be.
[8.5] RHYS STEVENSON
FROM THE DEPTH
'Back To Life'
Adventure and magical sorcery come to mind with the Italian Power Metal ensemble From The Depth's debut album 'Back To Life', with a constant stream of majestic keyboard strokes to add a level of discovery to the affray, uniquely this is a band who somehow mix European Power Metal; with its neck-breaking pace and decibel-smashing solos, with the embodiment of Disney magic, one would assume they had just come from a fairy tale with the gallant feel in their music. 'Back To Life' is surely a solid reminder that the Italian's are passionate about fast and powerful metal and From The Depth is no exception, without a doubt power metal album of the year 2011.
 RHYS STEVENSON
Uprising Italian Viking / Death Metal quintet Vinterblot make the first move with their debut album 'Nether Collapse' being released next year, it sees the new signing of Rising Records unleash a horrid and eccentric mix of cutting-edge Death Metal and Viking Metal melodies / lyrics. How odd it is that a band from a country with no Viking relation whatsoever, manages to deliver the same level of brutality as per se Tyr from the Faroe Islands. With an armament of ten tracks to batter your brains and mosh your body to, Vinterblot are only just getting started and are far from shying away just yet, the journey for them has just begun.
 RHYS STEVENSON
'Submission For Liberty'
2011 saw Australia's 4 Arm release their third album in absolute... what the? It would seem that the Groove Metal, crossed with Thrash Metal and Metalcore went AWOL. Whilst the attempt is there, the tunes are near out of sync, the Metalcore style vocals are not there, and whilst this is a poser copy of Lamb Of God, the guitars only offer little light for this quartet. With most of the songs sounding similar in more ways than one and with no sense of change of tune, this may be a shooting in the foot for the Australian band.
[3.5] RHYS STEVENSON
THE SULLEN ROUTE
Typical Russian Doom / Death Metal, none the less The Sullen Route offer their version of the common sound and nationality combination with their second album in two years, 'Apocalyclinic' delivers a reasonably paced period of depressing yet neatly organised Doom Metal. But just like most Doom / Death Metal bands, the music is slow, heavy and full of depressive dark atmosphere, but take hats off to the Russian quintet for keeping the old style alive, almost certainly one of those releases that even when you're drunk out of your mind, it still captivates somehow.
 RHYS STEVENSON