Continuing with March is Metal month, we face a contrast from last week’s spartan list to an overwhelming amount of releases this week. Adding to the contrast this week is that we have many big names with new albums today. Last year didn’t have many weeks like this, where the new release list is glutted with high-profile artists. But in 2012, we had our first week like this two weeks ago, the second occurring right now, and a shocking third week coming up at the end of March. Metal is still highly active as a genre, even in the current industry state, and in the month of metal, it couldn’t be showing at a better time.
Today’s list features one of the biggest death metal acts of all time, a new release from Max Cavalera, a sensational new offering in symphonic metal, and the return of a certain former drummer from Dream Theater. All that and more await you in the newest release list. Check it out!
Cannibal Corpse, Torture (Metal Blade)
The death metal band most prone to controversy in America has returned with their twelfth studio album, a feat that few American death metal bands have even come close to. Torture‘s predecessor, Evisceration Plague, was a high point in the band’s career, debuting at #66 on the Billboard charts three years ago and leading into the band’s newest DVD, Global Evisceration. It also was a springboard by which the group stormed through the 2009 Mayhem Festival, stealing the show from some of the headliners and earning rave reviews from attendees. In that sense, Torture has some big shoes to fill, but that shouldn’t be a problem since the group returned to Erik Rutan, producer for Evisceration Plague, to put Torture together. And with their headlining slot on the Summer Slaughter Tour set as their first chance to promote the album, expect for Torture to perform very well on the charts throughout the year. On an interesting side note, for those that enjoy the more visceral cover artwork of the band’s past, Torture is the first album since 2004’s The Wretched Spawn to have artwork showing a human death in some fashion (albeit on the inside cover flap of the liner notes).
Soulfly, Enslaved (Roadrunner)
Soulfly has gone through some changes since 2010’s Omen. In July of that year, longtime bassist Bobby Burns left the group. And in August 2011, prior to beginning recording for Enslaved, drummer Joe Nunez also departed. However, their replacements are certainly well-qualified and should placate fans nicely. Tony Campos of Ministry, Prong, and Static-X has stepped in on bass, while David Kinkade, formerly of Borknagar, is now on drums. Enslaved was described by Kinkade as being like “Arise on crack”, and for the album to be compared to Sepultura’s 1991 masterpiece, it must be good. Enslaved features guest appearances by Dez Fafara of DevilDriver, Travis Ryan of Cattle Decapitation, and Richie Cavalera of Incite (also Max’s stepson). Max’s sons Zyon and Igor Jr. are also guests on this album, just as they were on Omen. Personally, I hope Max continues having his sons appear on his records, as they are both talented musicians. It would be great to see them follow in their father’s footsteps to become important contributors to metal.
Epica, Requiem for the Indifferent (Nuclear Blast)
Coming on the heels of Design Your Universe, one of Epica’s best albums to date, Requiem for the Indifferent is at once both a continuation of Epica’s previous excellence and a beginning of something new and exciting. Musically, the album has the same incredible symphonic elements, choirs, and heaviness that made Design Your Universe so amazing. Lyrically, though, Simone Simons and Mark Jansen have turned to new topics of world events, citing a need for change and an end to selfish ignorance worldwide. It is an expansion of the topics covered throughout Design Your Universe, but it has a much more focused goal. To understand this, one only needs to read the lyrics of “Internal Warfare”, a song which is dedicated to the victims of Norwegian terrorist Anders Breivik, who bombed government buildings in Oslo and murdered teens at a camp of the Workers’ Youth League last year.
Adrenaline Mob, Omertá (Elm City)
After self-releasing their self-titled debut EP last summer, Adrenaline Mob has slowly built up the buzz for the release of Omertá. Unfortunately, the group lost guitarist Rich Ward and bassist Paul DiLeo earlier this year, due to scheduling conflicts with other bands, most notably Fozzy. However, the addition of Disturbed bassist John Moyer is sure to help raise the band’s profile even more, especially since Adrenaline Mob fits the sound desired by Disturbed fans better than any of the other bands with which the members of Adrenaline Mob are associated (Symphony X, Dream Theater, etc.). Moyer made his live debut with the band at the Omertá release party yesterday in New York City. The hope is that the band will continue to thrive with the current lineup.
Impending Doom, Baptized in Filth (eOne)
2010’s There Will Be Violence debuted at #123 on the Billboard charts, a fantastic position for Impending Doom. It also provided the Christian death metal group with an opportunity to advance their position, prompting a new deal with eOne Music. Baptized in Filth was recorded as a four-piece, which is how the band has been playing since their appearance on the Thrash and Burn Tour in 2010. It will be interesting to see how the self-stylized “Gorship” band performs on this record and if their sound has changed with the new lineup arrangement. Demon Hunter vocalist Ryan Clark makes a guest appearance on the track “My Light Unseen”.
MyChildren MyBride, MyChildren MyBride (Solid State)
Sticking with the Christian metal scene, MyChildren MyBride’s third album was produced by Zeuss at Planet Z in Massachusetts, a new setting for the band. The metalcore group received fairly positive reviews for 2010’s Lost Boy, mostly because of the newly diversified sound from their debut Unbreakable. No word yet on if that continues on the self-titled album, but the first single is “On Wings of Integrity Part II”, harkening back to a track from Unbreakable, so make of that what you will. Making it to their third album proves that MyChildren MyBride has staying power. Now we get to see what they do with it.
Also being released this week:
Coldworker, The Doomsayer’s Call (Listenable)
Sigh, In Somniphobia (Candlelight)
Drudkh, Eternal Turn of the Wheel (Season of Mist)
Primitive Weapons, The Shadow Gallery (Prosthetic)
Spawn of Possession, Incurso (Relapse)
Barren Earth, The Devil’s Resolve (Peaceville)
RPWL, Beyond Man and Time (AFM)
Opera IX, Strix – Maledicte In Aeternum (Agonia)
Wizard Rifle, Speak Loud Say Nothing (Megaforce)
Darkthrone, Sempiternal Past (Peaceville)
Next Week: One veteran release tops a list of newcomers. This seems to be an alternating pattern now, doesn’t it? Either way, come on back and see what’s new!