Reviews by Michael O'Brien

H.P. Lovecraft

The Lurking Fear

By Michael O'Brien | 11 July, 2016

While I’m a lover of books, I’ve never really gotten on board with the audiobook format. There’s something about the experience of digesting a story through the written word that isn’t quite the same for me when it’s ...

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C.B. Murdoc

Here be Dragons

By Michael O'Brien | 24 June, 2016

There were two things that drew me to this promo from the outset. The first is that the band’s unusual moniker reminded me of the kind of name a character from a Raymond Chandler novel might have, and the second was that the band was formed ...

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Dark Funeral

Where Shadows Forever Reign

By Michael O'Brien | 07 June, 2016

With seven years having passed since their last album, Sweden’s self-proclaimed “ineffable kings of darkness”, Dark Funeral, have returned with Where Shadows Forever Reign, marking their sixth full-length relea...

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Mirrors for Psychic Warfare

Mirrors for Psychic Warfare

By Michael O'Brien | 25 May, 2016

When it comes to collaborations between artists I like and respect, I tend to try to temper my expectations as best as I can before hearing the fruits of their work, because the only thing worse than a disappointing release from one such artist is...

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Gorguts

Pleiades' Dust

By Michael O'Brien | 11 May, 2016

Like what I assume to be the case with the vast bulk of the death metal community, I’m a pretty big fan of Canada’s Gorguts. They’re a band that has not only spent their lengthy career pushing themselves creatively, but have also...

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Amenra

Alive

By Michael O'Brien | 06 May, 2016

When I first heard 2012’s Mass V, the fifth full-length album from Belgium’s Amenra, it was love at first listen, but as the years stretched out post-release, I found myself returning to the album less and less. Not because I&...

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Wolvserpent

Aporia:Kala:Ananta

By Michael O'Brien | 03 March, 2016

It’s funny how a band’s name can predispose you to an assumption about what they’ll sound like even before you’ve heard a single note. In the case of Boise, Idaho’s two-piece act, Wolvserpent, I’m not really sur...

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Entombed A.D.

Dead Dawn

By Michael O'Brien | 23 February, 2016

You’d have to think that there’s a fair bit riding on the success of Dead Dawn, the second full-length album from En...

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Wildernessking

Mystical Future

By Michael O'Brien | 11 February, 2016

If you’re anything like I recently was and are unfamiliar with Cape Town, South Africa’s Wildernessking, I can save you some time right up front by asking you the following question: do you like atmospheric or, dare I say it, Cascadian...

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Rotting Christ

Rituals

By Michael O'Brien | 05 February, 2016

You really have to hand it to Rotting Christ. Over the course of nearly 30 years and now 12 full-length releases, I can’t think of a single album that hasn’t at the very least been decent, but can definitely think of many that have bee...

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Conan

Revengeance

By Michael O'Brien | 29 January, 2016

From the rough and raw doom of their 2010 EP, Horseback Battle Hammer, through to the more refined but no less crushing doom of their second full-length album, 2014’s Blood Eagle, The UK’s Conan has been responsible f...

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Abbath

Abbath

By Michael O'Brien | 20 January, 2016

At the risk of sounding like a grouchy, jaded contrarian, I have to say that I didn’t come into Abbath’s debut album feeling overly excited about it. I was curious, sure, but excited? No.

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Lion's Daughter, The

Existence is Horror

By Michael O'Brien | 10 January, 2016

Blackened sludge is one of those genres that I find amorphous and broad enough to never really know if I’m what I’m hearing can be classified as such. That said, there are enough albums I enjoy that

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Body & Krieg, The

The Body & Krieg

By Michael O'Brien | 01 December, 2015

The Body & Krieg marks the second collaboration that I’ve reviewed in the past month but, unlike the one by Dragged into Sunlight and Gnaw Their Tongues, I wasn’t entirely what to expect from The Body & Krieg....

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Cryptopsy

The Book of Suffering: Tome 1

By Michael O'Brien | 17 November, 2015

I guess you could characterise my relationship with Cryptopsy as being somewhat atypical for someone of my age group. While I get the impression that the bulk of folks who are my age or older hold up 1994’s Blasphemy Made Flesh and ...

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Dragged into Sunlight & Gnaw Their Tongues

N.V.

By Michael O'Brien | 14 November, 2015

There was never a chance this wasn’t going to be ugly and vicious as hell, was there?

Over the course of two full-length albums, the UK’s Dragged into Sunlight has deservedly earned a reputation for crafting filthy and challengi...

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Otargos

Xeno Kaos

By Michael O'Brien | 11 November, 2015

What initially drew me to France's Otargos when I reviewed their fourth full-length album, No God, No Satan, a number of years back was the band's mixture of black metal with light hints of industrial influence. While I’d be lying i...

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Corrections House

Know How to Carry a Whip

By Michael O'Brien | 27 October, 2015

A couple of years or so ago when supergroup of sorts, Corrections House, was announced, to say that I was excited would be seriously understating things. And, really, with a lineup consisting of Mike IX Williams (Eyehategod), Scott Kelly (Neurosis...

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Dead to a Dying World

Litany

By Michael O'Brien | 14 October, 2015

With its stupendously long running time, its compositional depth, and its *cough* litany of stylistic influences, Texan septet Dead to a Dying World's second full-length release, Litany, is certainly a dense and challenging listen.

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Kowloon Walled City

Grievances

By Michael O'Brien | 03 October, 2015

Kowloon Walled City is a band that I've always wanted to make more time for but never seem to, despite having the best of intentions. Having seen their name mentioned in a positive light by a number of folks online lead me to pick up their second ...

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