Chris Forbes’s Metal Reviews #16

Chris Forbes’s Metal Reviews #16

Well, I am back with a new set of reviews and this is a shorter set and from now I will do just this. I am going to try and put a new set out every month, this way the reviews get in your hands quicker. There was some cool music in this set and by all means I hope you go and check some of this stuff out. Until next time, keep those horns up…


A ten-song comp is what we have here. Evil Incarnate starts things off right with a crushing song of prime death metal that crushes the weak with some great vocals too. Viogression is up next and they sound a lot like a faster version of Obituary. Necrotombs is up next and they deliver a slab of totally great old-school death metal that had me playing air guitar. Singer has a nice death metal growl style as well. Necrotesque delivers more death metal, but it is more on the doomy side of things, and damn another great death metal singer.

Savages Torment is up next and is pretty bad. Below-average death metal and oh those stupid and generic-sounding drums on the blast beats need to be stopped it sounds childish too. Blinder is up next and is faceless death metal that had me yawning. It sounds like a bad Obituary. Cyanosis is up next. This came out in 1994 and is Cannibal Corpse Jr. big time. Secrets of Silence is up next. They play decent death metal with some cool riffing and fast sounds and a good singer and production to boot.

Murmur is the 2nd to last band and they offer up a devastating brand of black/thrash metal that threw me for a loop. Wicked vocals as well. Great band. The band Medium rounds out this comp and they sadly don’t offer up much for me. The drum sound is awful and the song on here is terrible. Nothing of value at all and was like blah, blah, blah.

Now with comps judging a band is hard, but I advise you to go out and search for these bands online or You Tube, Facebook, etc and you may find something you like.

PARAGON ZERO/Omass (Pest Records)

This I didn’t like much at all. Black metal with doomy parts and the riffs just chug along with no direction. Nothing catchy to keen my interest whatsoever. I’m sorry whether it be doom, black, thrash, speed, power, or heavy metal, I need something to spike my interest and this did nothing. Another faceless black metal band making the rounds adding nothing to an already overcrowded scene.

AFTERDEATH/Unreal Life (Metal Soldiers Records)

What we have here is a comp of this band’s demos from 1992 and 1994, plus some tunes from various comps they were on and a promo-only song from 1990. The band is from Portugal and the tunes are in the death/thrash style and the vocals are more in the death metal style for sure. The tunes are catchy speedy numbers and it is a shame that thrash was kinda done by the time time these guys released music cause this is really good. Just honest to goodness thrash played the right way and well worth checking out thrash fans.

BONEHAMMER/Black Crust Invasion (Awakening)

A blistering attack of death/thrash/heavy metal that won’t be soon forgotten. Raw production adds to the madness and I love it. Vocals are deep and raw and dirty and fit this band like a tight glove. When they play fast, I was reminded of Venom meets Blessed Death. The mid-tempo parts have screams from hell like thrashers Bloodfeast. This was one heck of a release.

KOSUKE HASHIDA/Justifiable Homicide (H.P.D.G.)

Some crushing fast thrash/death that doesn’t let up. Fast tunes that are powerful and catchy too. Great vocals that fit the music too. Production has that 80’s 80-style thrash sound and production as well. Thrash played and did it the right way.

ALL THIS FILTH/Tomorrow Will Be Better? (Brutal Records)

All this is, is another jump/nu metal band with the same crap Pantera, Rage Against The Machine and all those other bands did. The tough guy vocals sucked then and then suck in 2024. If your into nu metal you’ll love this is all I can say.

THE ABSENCE/Self-titled (Listenable Insanity Records)

Some decent melodic death metal is the ticket here. Some cool riffing and song structures kept me interested. Vocals at times I didn’t like the shrieking sounds, but that is just me. Production is nice and solid as well. Nice to see a melodic death metal band holding my attention as this band did.

GRAUFAR/Scordalus (Self-Released)

Decent death metal here. The vocals are screechy at times, which I don’t like, but he mostly stays good death growls, which I love. The music is solid death metal and no crappy death metal it is solid straightforward death metal the way it should be. This band is off to a solid start I’d say.

REVERSED/Wildly Possessed (Invictus Productions)

A wicked slaying of old-school death metal with razor-sharp riffing and speed complete with intense death metal vocals that make this a trifecta treat. Songs and riffing that are memorable and ozze feeling like the old days. You old-school fans know what the fuck I mean. This will smash and blast you into hell you bastards. Prepare to meet thy maker when you pop this one. A must-have.


Nothing you haven’t heard before. Straight forward punishing death metal with some good singing. Production is good and thank god groove metal shit. Think of bands such as Morbid Angel and Obituary would be in the mix as to how this sounds. No screechy vocals here.

ULTERROR/Transcendent Origins (Inverse Records)

Musicwise I like this a lot. It is fast as fuck death metal with some wicked riffing and catchy riffing at that. Of the shreechy vocals, I couldn’t stand. Production is on the money and the band has a great guitar sound. Morbid Angel springs to mind for sure on this. A very intense band for sure and I think a lot of you would enjoy this.

BETWEEN THE KILLINGS/Omnipotence The Murderous Saga Continues…(COMATOSE MUSIC)

Generic death metal with horrible death growls and screechy vocals to match. Nothing of value on here just blah blah blah death metal that goes nowhere fast. Forgetable songs as soon as they are over. Nothing hooked me on this I’m afraid.

NATTHAMMER/The Hammer Of The Witch (Black Legion Records)

Some really good heavy metal in the vein of Priest and an edge of power metal with a singer who has a great set of pipes. Fantastic catchy metal-like tunes that will have the head moving. With bands like this, I need to get my fill of metal and this band delivers on it and then some. Good stuff from a good band.

ABREAKTION/Bornhatred (Chaos Records)

Thrash metal time baby and thrash metal done the right way. Classic 80’s like thrash that includes a Dark Angel cover of “Welcome to The Slaughterhouse”. Ripping riffs and speed and power fill the air as this plays onwards. Solid singer to boot makes this a thrash metal winner. The awesome guitar sound, I love it and those riffs bounce out and make thy head bang.

ACERUS/The Caliginous Serenade (Luxinframundis Productions/ Nameless Grave Records)

Some metal in the style of the NWOBHM here both music and vocals as well. Singer reminded me of Brian from Diamond Head a bit. The music is a pure heavy metal delight with no modern sounds in sight as well. Just fist-banging, stud-wearing metal. Some sounds of early Maiden and Saxon as well. Very cool band here keeping the sounds of metal alive and well.

DRAGHKAR/HELCARAXE/A Glorious Call in the Terrible Darkness (Nameless Grave Records)

A godly split 7″ from this label. Draghkar offer up some tasteful death and heavy metal at the same time and death and clean vocals and I loved them both! Listen it works for them and the song is so damn catchy and heavy. Helcaraxe offers up a track of heavy metal with some death metal overtones in the vocals.. This track is great too and both bands sound different in their own way and no clean vocals on their tune. A must to get.

TORTURERS’ LOBBY/Deadened Nerves (Caligari Records, Ixiol Productions)

A slaughtering slab of prime death metal. Heavy as fuck riffing along with lots of speed and power to match. Vocals from the pits of hell and this will just whip you into a fury and not let go until the end. A full frontal attack of death metal the way it should and was meant to be. A great debut from these guys. Prepare for the onslaught. Info and sample track

DEGRAVED/Whispered Morbidity & Exhumed Remnants (Chaos Records)

Raw, unrelenting death metal that hurts and crushes. A nice mix of fast and slow parts made this a treat to listen to and review as well. Vocals are super low growls of death. The chainsaw-pounding riffs along with the death growls will have any fan of death metal smiling. Yes, this isn’t super original, but it’s more that gets the job done I can tell you that. Info and sample track

REVERSED/Wildly Possessed (Invictus Productions)

Yes oh yes. Razor sharp riffing with mixes, of death, black and thrash metal in a blender. Vocals that reminded me of Cronos at times and the sounds of that old-school feeling of the old gods of the 80’s came to mind as this played. Speed is in the mix here and prepare to pay the price and go back to the old days when thrash and death were king. This band mixes in all the good in underground metal and had me grinning from ear to ear. Love it.

HOLYCIDE/Towards Idiocrazy (Xtreem Music)

Decent thrash that sometimes I grew bored with at times. The songs, some just didn’t grab me and make me want to bang my head or play air guitar. That being said this band plays thrash the right way and the singer is really good as well. The music for the most part is fast thrash that is enjoyable at times and not so at times, but the enjoyable is better than the not. Overall a C plus.

UNLEASHED/Before the Creation of Time (Darkness Shall Rise)

This is not a new Unleashed recording, but 14 tracks of demos prior to getting signed to Century Media and also from the And The Laughter Has Died… 7″ EP, the Century Media Promo Tape, and songs from the Century Media compilation In The Eyes Of Death. I’m old school so I was around back in the 80’s when all these bands were releasing demos before getting signed so the production doesn’t bother me one bit. This is prime beef Swedish death meta that crushes big time. All 3 demos are prime beef too. Early Swedish death metal that you’ll love if you are a death metal fan I can tell you that. Unleashed is an awesome band, it is so cool to see this stuff released.

VULCANO/Epilogue (Self-Released)

Yes, this is the same Vulcano that has been around for over 40 years. The band is still kicking ass I must say and this release is a kick-ass combo of thrash and metal that will have your neck in a neck brace. Razor-sharp riffing with screams as only Luiz Carlos Louzada can.  The music is so damn catchy and thrashy it isn’t funny. I love this from start to end. Amazing after 40-plus years this band can still deliver the goods.

DEICIDE/Banished By Sin (RPM)

13th release by this band. I thought this was good, but not great. There was too much mid-paced stuff on here for my liking. I like my music fast, speedy, and brutal and this was missing a lot of speed and fast parts. Glen’s vocals are solid and the music is heavy and death metal for sure. For a band to release 13 albums my hat goes off to them though.

EVIL INCARNATE/Depopulation Agenda (Dark United Media)

This release came out in 2020 originally and now Dark United Media sent me a copy as they must have picked up this incredible album to sell. A pure death metal masterpiece is all I can say. Mike Eisenhauer’s vocals take a back seat to nobody in the death metal scene. The music is fast and brutal just how I like it. The band also does slow it down at times, which was fine by me. A wicked cover of Dismember’s “Override of the Overture” is done well too. If you like Immolation or Incantation, you need this.

AGENTS OF BRUTALITY/A Tribute To Kreator (Dark United Media)


13 bands here try their hands at covering a Kreator tune. Sledgehammer Guillotine try “Under The Guillotine” and absolutely butcher it and the high-pitched vocals at times during the song are awful. Why this band would try a Kreator song is beyond me and an old classic to boot. Burning try their hand at “Flag of Hate” and do a good job as the speed and intensity are there and also the vocals as well. Good job guys. Severance offers up “People Of The Lie” and it’s ok, not a fan of the death metal growls in a newer Kreator song that’s all. Necrotombs offers up “Pleasure to Kill” and it is my favorite Kreator song it’s not bad. They made the song their own as it turned into a death metal song with death metal vocals and I liked it. T. Machines tried “Tormentor” and this was the best of the bands that had the singer sound like Mille until the generic screechy vocals at times. Please next time lose them. PaganFire does a horrible version of “Riot of Violence”. No power at all and just dull speed during the up-tempo parts. The other bands did songs of Kreator tunes I am not a fan of. This isn’t bad, but it doesn’t destroy either.

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