Huoripukki – Voima & Barbaria (2018)


Huoripukki – Voima & Barbaria
Fallen Temple, 2018

This reissue of two EPs as one CD/LP demonstrates clearly why the “Incantoclone” bands are all the rage: they take metal backward to rock and carefully disguise this as a wave of noise. To make an Incantoclone band, you forget about all the cool extended riffs and structures of Onward to Golgotha and focus on the rushing riff, which consists of choosing a power chord — first five frets only please! — and then wiggling your fingers in a constant chromatic fill over that note.

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Death Squad – Split You At The Seams (1991)


Death Squad – Split You At The Seams
Ever Rat Records, 1991

Speed metal — rising from Tank, Satan, Metallica, and Mercyful Fate — had a good but short run in the 1980s before enterprising poseurs worked rock and blues back into the mix, taking away the focus on riffs and song construction in favor of what were essentially pop songs with lots of muted E-chords. Split You At The Seams shows a late entry with roll-your-own spirit.

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Kever – Primordial Offerings (2018)

Primordial Offerings follows up on the first Kever which focused more on an intelligent form of percussive death metal; the second EP from this promising band attempts to invent a new style of atmospheric death metal without losing any of the intensity, sounding like a mix of Florida, Buffalo, and selectively melodic European acts like Fleshcrawl and Demigod.

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Deserted Fear – Dead Shores Rising (2017)


Deserted Fear – Dead Shores Rising
Century Media, 2017

Living after the age of vitality of a genre, one becomes accustomed to the process of decay that happens as knowledge of why things are done becomes lost, and people instead fill in with the usual stuff that they do anyway. Humans are experts at dressing up the mundane as the exceptional.

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Monstrosity – The Passage Of Existence (2018)


Monstrosity – The Passage Of Existence
Metal Blade Records, 2015

Working within an establishment genre presents a challenge to the musician: the major patterns are known, and the audience has been inundated with an abundance of bands who can play the style of the classics note-perfectly, meaning that musicians have to either add new aesthetics to attract a lot of fans, or play a subtle take on the older for those with some knowledge.

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