Ave Noctum

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Andy Barker

Tenebra – Gen Nero (S/R)

A new addition to the retro doom/psych movement are Italian quartet Tenebra, launching a 6 tracker under their own steam this year. It’s actually 6 tracks of a similar vibe that the band like to be viewed as a single… Continue Reading →

KingCrown – A Perfect World (Rock Of Angels Records)

KingCrown (as they seem to favour their name being written rather than Kingcrown or King Crown) are a French Heavy/Power Metal band with plenty of experience, talent and maturity in their ranks. They released an album as Öblivïon a couple… Continue Reading →

Magic Kingdom – MetAlmighty (AFM)

I was pleasantly surprised by 2015’s “Savage Requiem”, an album where Magic Kingdom nicely moved themselves up a division in the Symphonic Power Metal rankings, mixing some good song-writing with a fine production and great musicianship – everything came together… Continue Reading →

Avatarium – The Fire I Long For (Nuclear Blast)

Late 2019 finds guitarist Marcus Jidell and vocalist Jennie-Ann Smith continuing to forge ahead with their doom-sprinkled retro rock/metal outfit Avatarium. Initially the band was pretty much touted as another Leif Edling (Candlemass etc. etc.) project with Jidell and Smith… Continue Reading →

Nocturnalia – III: Winter (The Sign)

I’d sort of given up on hearing anything new by Nocturnalia. This unique Swedish heavy/psyche band presented me with one of my favourite albums of 2015 – I knew nothing about them, took a punt on something I wouldn’t normally,… Continue Reading →

Blind Guardian Twilight Orchestra – Legacy Of The Dark Lands (Nuclear Blast)

Let’s face it – it had to happen! I’m just amazed it took so long. From the moment I heard the orchestral version of ‘Theatre Of Pain’ as a bonus track on Blind Guardian’s fantastic “Somewhere Far Beyond” album way… Continue Reading →

Angel Witch – Angel Of Light (Metal Blade)

Can it really be almost 40 years ago that we were all unceremoniously informed “You’re an Angel Witch…You’re an Angel Witch”? First by way of a 7” with ‘Gorgon’ on the flip-side, then on the ground-breaking genre-defining NWOBHM classic LP… Continue Reading →

Nevaria – Finally Free (Dr. Music)

Nevaria from Bavaria (!) are a relatively new addition to the Symphonic Metal fold. Formed in 2017 they have already shared billing with the likes of Xandria, Axxis and Sabaton and with this their debut studio offering look set to… Continue Reading →

Borknagar – True North (Century Media)

Borknagar are ever-evolving. Never static, never predictable, defying labels and genres, a constantly morphing force of Progressive Extreme Metal that show no signs of stagnation. Previous album “Winter Thrice” was an absolute masterpiece that just gets better with time, but… Continue Reading →

Opeth – In Cauda Venenum (Moderbolaget Records)

Opeth are Progressive, in every sense of the musical terminology. The genre they reside in is labelled as Progressive, but unlike many others with the tag, they are ever-evolving, incorporating new influences and nuances within their current sound, a current… Continue Reading →

Ereb Altor – Järtecken (Hammerheart)

Over their last few releases, Sweden’s Ereb Altor have been pushing the boundaries of their Bathory-esque Viking Metal sound, sometimes darker, sometimes folkier – always epic. “Järtecken” sees an amalgamation of previous guises, delivered by a band suddenly brimming with… Continue Reading →

Tungsten – We Will Rise (Arising Empire)

Swedish Metal band Tungsten have an unorthodox twist to their line-up. Formed by renowned drummer Anders Johansson (who many people will know for his time with Malmsteen and Hammerfall, as well as Fullforce, Stratovarius etc and projects with his brother… Continue Reading →

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