Adversary – We Must Be in Hell (Cursed Productions, 1999)

The mid-to-late 1990s wasn’t a particularly interesting period in US death metal history. Old bands were busy coping with their past triumphs and the newer arrivals on the scene did what they could to recapture the magic of preceding classics, but by doing so stalled the potentials of exploration presented to them. However, there did exist a few notable exceptions, many of whom chose to peek at their European counterparts for galvanization. Among them were the Indiana-based Adversary – a much overlooked act then and now who came up with distinctive and unique approach to death metal.

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Hazael – Thor (Loud Out, 1994)

Despite hosting a substantial early-1990s underground scene, Polish death metal never managed to break through on a wider scale. Beyond high-profile acts like Vader, Behemoth and Decapitated, most Polish acts continue to dwell in obscurity. However, the renewed interest in old school death metal have caused record labels to probe back catalogues in search of potential lost gems, or at least releases that can be marketed as such. One example of recent years is Thor, the 1994 debut full-length album by Polish death metal band Hazael.

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Brief Analysis: Introduction of Satan – “Trial By Fire”

One of the few great bands from the NWOBHM movement in a genre known for a few gems in a sea of stadium and bar rock bands. While never receiving the deserved praise and success of their peers, Satan nonetheless were one of the best bands coming from the scene and used Speed metal elements in creating their magnum opus Court in the Act. On “Trial by Fire”, Satan show the large number of tools at their disposition after the opening blast of notes.

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Sammath Streams Across the Rhine is only death

Furious melodic war metal band Sammath published its stream of its sixth album, Across the Rhine is only death, late last night. This new album shows the band integrating the streams of its influences from death metal, black metal, hardcore punk, ritual music, and war metal into a single voice.

This will delight those who think that metal lost its guts and balls, but also who are tired of melodyless and repetitively-structured three-chord “NWN/FMP” styled bands which hold zero musical interest for minds above the yeast level. You can acquire your copy via preorder. Blast it loud and make your neighbors, friends, family, and coworkers weep in terror!

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