GMA - Vol130 - Incinery, Denied, Zeitgeist, Trick or Treat, Exalt Cycle, Tystnaden, Project46, Secret Signs, Distained, (Al-Namrood / Dhul-Qarnayn / Ayyur split)
'Dawn Of War'
So 2011 saw the first record outing by Nottinghamshire Thrash newbies Incinery, not a perfect start it would seem as their debut EP exhibits the standard Thrash Metal sound that most bands in this music style seem to employ, sure 'Dawn Of War' spits fire and acts as a sentimental starting block to this quintet's career, but there is much improvement to be considered, but as far as the first attempt goes it is a decent enough effort and will surely be advanced on when the band release new material. However 'Dawn Of War' will appeal to those who devote their lives to the 80's Thrash Metal sound and especially fans of Slayer and Kreator, as for Incinery the time has come to face the 'Dawn Of War' as they battle for British Thrash Metal survival.
Download This: "Life of Hate"
 RHYS STEVENSON
'Let Them Burn'
What a better way to mark the tenth anniversary of your band by releasing the third album in your musical career and that is exactly what Swedish Thrashers Denied have done, sticking together Heavy Metal epic numbers with tunes of agile brutality together and leaving the album finishing on a note that warrants much more from this five-piece. 'Let Them Burn' shifts gears across the ten tracks that drive this album, perhaps it's coincidental that ten tracks are for the ten years this band has been around, but if the last song title is anything to go by then the band has issues, ironically the song 'In Hell' sums up the release to the very last note, simply put 'Let Them Burn' is a juicy and explosive burst of Heavy Metal vocals and slaying Thrash Metal music.
Download This: "In Hell"
'Let Them Burn' is out now via Sliptrick Records
 RHYS STEVENSON
Paraguay isn't usually a country that spews out Melodic Gothic Metal, it usually focuses on more aggressive styles of metal, so when in 2010 the premier self-titled demo by quartet Zeitgeist dropped, it unleashed a new wave of sound amongst the underground of this South American country. Ascending on every song and delivering a powerful atmospheric presence, there is much melancholy as there is lusciousness on this release, it filters out the weaker elements and accentuates the very essence missing from the metal scene, a vocalist with utmost harmonic vocals. Zeitgeist are sure to push boundaries in the future ahead but for now they remain as one of Paraguay's hidden gems, awaiting discovery by many alike.
Download This: "The Blame"
 RHYS STEVENSON
TRICK OR TREAT
"Rabbits Hill Part. 1"
In the year of the band's 10th anniversary, the Italian Power Metal ensemble Trick or Treat deliver a right treat in the form of their third album "Rabbits Hill Part. 1", it showers the atmosphere with emphatic vocals, slaloming solos and rapturous riffs that decapitate all that stand in its way. The vocals themselves carry that adventurous feel and although not on same par as Sonata Arctica, they offer a unique style, quite like the music as it weaves in folk elements on 'The Tale Of Rowsby Woof', but what sets the band aside mostly is the lyrical themes, rather an elaborated metal form of Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck, the five-piece deliver a range of themes that any mad march hare would hop to.
Download This: "Wrong Turn"
 RHYS STEVENSON
From what could be put down as a mixture of Dead By April, Avenged Sevenfold and Mudvayne, Italian slickers Exalt Cycle find no fault in the system to crack but instead crack open an album that quite simply is a revelation, 'Revelations' spews out the very musical core of modern metal as it laces together industrial elements with a heavy progressive / metalcore sound, or perhaps that could be ones senses playing tricks via the Exalt Cycle, but one thing for certain is these lads have got the sound to take themselves to newer heights and are sure to push for european domination this year.
Download This: "A New Day"
[7.5] RHYS STEVENSON
Italy was born for delivering any band that plays Gothic Metal and so when the third album by Italian sextet Tystnaden comes to life, it delivers an astounding blast of Gothic-laden Melodic Death Metal fronted by the awe-inspiring Laura De Luca. What these musicians have done is more than make an album, they have made a new sound come to life and dragging influences from bands like In Flames, Slipknot and Dark Tranquility, Tystnaden are vastly becoming one of Italy's hidden gems as 'Anima' explodes in sensational fashion with heavenly vocals, spine-chilling atmospheric backdrops courtesy of the keyboard and of course sharp slicing sounds coming combined from the elegant savageness of the guitars and drums, but as everything starts entwining, the only two things thats wrong with this album is that it is simply too good to be true and its not long enough, listeners will beg for more and are unlikely to find fault, simply divine.
Download This: "Mindrama"
 RHYS STEVENSON
'Doa A Quem Doer'
How many times does it take to fully conclude that 'Doa A Quem Doer' is a brain-smashing face belter? One. Back in 2011 the debut album by Brazilian bulldozing Metalcore maniacs Project46 slays through the mass-produced music genre and installs their own stance on the music genre, illuminating killer technical riffs and setting up complex breakdowns, if anything this is what could be dubbed as matrix-core, a sound that embellishes the Metalcore sound in the center with technical, melodic and hardcore influences padding out the nooks and crannies and yet the album of which is entirely in Portuguese, still weeps and bleeds toxic contagious elements that warrants a health warning to be slapped on it. Project46 are taking Metalcore to newer levels and are sure to become a huge metal export in the years ahead.
Download This: "Impunidade"
 RHYS STEVENSON
'For A Lifetime'
There aren't many Gothic Metal bands from Spain that manage to get a decent sound going, unfortunately there aren't many bands like Secret Signs going around, dropping their debut album 'For A Lifetime' last year, the quintet immerse the emotional feelings of darkened despair with their atmospheric style of ambient Gothic metal. However the drawback is the male vocals, they crush the album the wrong way and at times leave it meaningless, by leaving out the deep vocals it would sound better, but apart from that the album strikes out as a decent enough effort to really kick start the band, besides the solo on 'voices from the afterlife' is one of epic bizarreness as it starts awfully but finishes gracefully, so whilst the overall album is great there are parts that should not be there.
Download This: "Battle For The Darkness"
[6.5] RHYS STEVENSON
'Between Nowhere And Goodbye' + 'Hereditas'
2010 saw the second EP by Finnish Melodic Metal ensemble Distained drop, 'Between Nowhere And Goodbye' carries the same vocals experienced on bands like H.I.M., Poisonblack and many of Finland's Gothic Metal catalogue, but don't let that fool you as the EP displays why the home nation is notorius for its love of rock and metal music as here proven by Distained. This is a sound that should get the labels attention, in fact it's surprising to why the lads aren't signed yet as 'Between Nowhere And Goodbye' clearly demonstrates a solid outburst of modern melodic metal that is worthy of paying attention to. Moving onto the 2012 EP release 'Hereditas', what comes now is a more solidified sound and a greater prominent level of precision that seems to kink out the cracks from the previous EP and ends up cleaning out the old and putting in the new, but whilst 'Hereditas' is the better of the two, the major fact behind Distained is that they are simply one of a kind and are sure to battle forward to become favourites amongst European rock and metal fans.
Download These: "Drown In Gray" and "Someone Else's Song"
 +  RHYS STEVENSON
AL-NAMROOD / DHUL-QARNAYN / AYYUR
What we have hear is a split between three of the most underground metal bands from Saudi Arabia, Tunisia and Bahrain respectively, the 'Narcotized' split kicks off with 'Barzakh' by Saudi Arabian Black Metal trio Al-Namrood and as the song delivers a chilling sound to be embraced, the key result of the song is that it warrants repetitious plays as it is simply is a divine way to start a three-way split. Al-Namrood certainly know how to create their own unique sound and by doing so develop a very atmospheric style, but that is soon forgotten as Dhul-Qarnayn come into the affray with their song 'Suqoot Allah' as it explodes in pummeling fashion, as for the long-gone one man project is without any doubt a raw black metal sounding production on its own accord, but as Bahrain's underground metal scene shows, nothing lasts and as the song comes to a close, Tunisian Black Metal duo Ayyur do the honors of closing up the split with two songs 'The Queen Of Awres (Narcotized Version)' and 'Proud Slave', both of which spew out the very essence of what makes Black Metal, Black Metal. Simple yet basic drumming is all that's needed to setup this elegant dark act and as the very note sounds out, it is worth saying this is a truly Arabic Black Metal release.
You can buy the release from: http://saluterecords.blogspot.co.uk/
 + [7.5] +  RHYS STEVENSON
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