This week was one of those weeks in metal that just makes you happy to be a metal fan. So many awesome new albums came out this week and even the ones I was anticipating the least were surprisingly awesome.

It was especially good for Denver metal as In the Company of Serpents, Cellador, and Havok all put out new albums this week, and all of them fucking nailed it. Denver continues to keep the metal heat streak alive.

NEW STUFF: (Click those titles, trust me)

Bear Mace – Butchering the Colossus
I know I was decrying all these new old school death bands (should OSDM be it’s own genre) but I couldn’t pass up on a band called Bear Mace. And yeah, it’s more of that OSDM style, hooky, ear worm riffs, well executed, and head bang-able. Maybe a little more fun and well crafted than some, but not many surprises here. Just some decent OSDM.

Cellador – Off the Grid
Straight up blistering, uplifting power metal that’s a fucking riff machine. Sure, it has it’s cheesy moments, mostly the Cyndi Lauper cover, but what do you expect from power metal? I’ll tell you what I expect, awesome songs, catchy songs and sheer power. Cellador delivers on all of that.

Havok – Conformicide
A nice surprise after their last album left me cold. Upped the heaviness, the thrash, and experimented some to craft a more fresh and revitalized sound. Check out my full review at Kvlt of Brewtality.

Greg Graffin – Millport
Part of me wants to find Greg Graffin’s country/folk solo outings laughable, but another part of me has always thought the best of Bad Religion songs are essential folk/country/protest songs, just set to punk music. And that’s essentially what this is. Reversed engineered Bad Religion songs without all the swearing and the “whoas.” Graffin’s voice suits the folk, banjo, acoustic guitar heavy music and songs are well written, and catchy. Just like Bad Religion. Just through a different pair of glasses.

Lunar Shadow – Far From Light
Epic fucking heavy metal in the vein of Atlantean Kodex, a band they’re getting compared to a lot. I think it’s an apt comparison in the epic tone but to my ears Atlantean Kodex has more doom elements where Lunar Shadow is more classical. Regardless, this album fucking kills. Absolutely. Classic epic metal for sure.

Planning for Burial – Below the House
Ambient filled, atmospheric, emotional, metal/rock drone, blah blah blah. This is good. Emotionally stirring and engaging. Probably a bit dramatic but a damn good listen.

Lock Up – Demonization
A supergroup of some awesome players featuring Shane Embury of a billion bands but most importantly Napalm Death, Nicholas Barker, an amazing drummer from so many killer bands it’s stupifying, Aton Reisenegger from Twilight of the Gods and Brujeria of note, and Kevin Sharp, former vocalist of Brutal Truth. Now what does this crew sound like? Fucking insanely well played Grind/Death metal. Just a punch in the fucking teeth. Totally kills.

In the Company of Serpents – Ain-Soph Aur
In the Company of Serpents just crushing it with their dreary, dismal, slow and sludgy, two man doom attack. Additionally they’ve added some more “twangy” and southern sounding elements to the mix, which I think, fit flawlessly. Great, always engaging Denver metal band.

OTHER JAMS:

Violet Cold – Anomie
Rebel Wizard – Triumph of Gloom
Ultha – Converging Sins
Lydia Loveless – Indestructible Machine
Lydia Loveless – Boy Crazy
Lydia Loveless – Somewhere Else
Lydia Loveless – Real
Grafvitnir – Necrosophia
Waldgefluster – Ruinen
Holy Martyr – Still At War
Ulver – Nattens Madrigal

Until next time, make mine metal.

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