Reviews

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November 1, 2019

Kanye West - Jesus Is King

“Damn” is the only curse word you’ll hear on Kanye West’s latest album.* Jesus Is King is gospel rap, and not only in the usual sense. With the help of the Sunday Service Choir and Fred Hammond, the gospel influence is potent; although rhymes and beats are present, the latter are especially minimal.… Continued →

October 28, 2019

October 14, 2019

The Devil Wears Prada - The Act

Longtime metalcore band The Devil Wears Prada is back with an incredible album that should be the surprise of the year. Let’s be honest, metalcore has become somewhat predictable with only a few bands making quality music. Even still, it’s become stagnant as there has been very little growth in the genre over the past decade.… Continued →

September 13, 2019

War of Ages - Void

Two thousand and nineteen has proven to be quite the year. One day, a bunch of rowdy hooligans on Facebook are planning how best to invade Area 51, and the next, there’s a War of Ages occurring on planet Djent. Void places an emphasis on groove, which is kicked into full gear by track three, “Blood of the Earth.” That being said, the more conservative fans need not fret; War of Ages are still our metalcore heroes from Mars.… Continued →

September 7, 2019

August 30, 2019

Bram Cools - We Are Civilised!?

The Belgian lo-fi Christian scene himself, Bram Cools, is back with a fourth album. More quirky weirdness accompanied by lyrics that tackle a wide range of social topics. I don’t know how familiar IVM readers are with this Belgian artist, but Bram makes eccentric lo-fi indie pop/rock with socially-conscious lyrics from a European viewpoint.… Continued →

August 28, 2019

Svarteskerm - Illojala Till Slutet

  The fan base of crust punk may be slim, but the music is significant. Returning to the studio is Sweden’s Svarteskerm. Sung entirely in Swedish, the four song EP, Illojala Till Slutet, delivers a blistering fast and aggressive look at the political and social turmoil found in their native country.… Continued →

August 21, 2019

August 10, 2019

July 27, 2019

Skillet - Victorious

I got my first taste of Skillet in the early 2000’s just after I came to know the Lord. I was drawn to their raw, gritty, heavy sound because, musically, I heard some similarities to Marilyn Manson, a band I’d been a tremendous fan of in my B.C.… Continued →

July 25, 2019

Wolves at the Gate - Eclipse

Coming off of their undeniably best album to date, Wolves at the Gate is back with their fourth release. Eclipse begins with “The Cure,” which was the first single released for the album. Already, lyrics are beaming from the album. “I can taste the misery, spitting out the remedy.… Continued →

July 24, 2019

July 22, 2019

July 20, 2019

June 15, 2019

Leem of Earth - Chapter 1, Chapter 2, and Chapter 3

Atmospheric, floating, literary and lush. Leem of Earth has completed their trilogy with the June 7th release of Chapter 3,  the third EP in their belletristic series: Chapter 1, Chapter 2 and Chapter 3. In all three efforts, the band from Pensacola, Florida, creates a fragile wall of sound that hearkens between the fuzz and soundscapes of 90s 4AD shoegaze bands and the ethereal charm of Mazzy Star, The Sundays, Cocteau Twins and The Innocence Mission.

June 2, 2019

MrENC - On and On and On

Right off the bat, it’s loud and energetic.  This is melodic, yet noisy indie rock, reminiscent of the classic 90s Britpop with hints of 70s glam (think the rock riffs of Suede meet the swagger of The Divine Comedy).  But don’t be fooled, this isn’t simply nostalgic stuff, stuck in the past. … Continued →

May 17, 2019

Chris Bernstorf - It's All Joy

Chris Bernstorf is the poetic equivalent to a bowl of jelly beans. Well, unless you study those jelly bean guides, but that’s beside the point. Opening track “Swing” lives up to its name, offering a dizzying array of topics from water parks, to The Mentalist, to online classes, all pointing to the theme of overcoming personal vices.… Continued →

May 12, 2019

April 24, 2019

Cruentis - Alpha and Omega

This 5-song EP contains 3 songs of melodic death metal (tracks 2-4) sandwiched in between 2 longer, unusual songs that genre-wise feature a hybrid of nu metal, doom metal and some classical instrumentation. Stylistically, the middle 3 tracks are similar to bands like Pantokrator, World to Ashes and similar melodeath bands (or In Flames and At the Gates from a mainstream perspective), but there is not a huge emphasis on the lead guitar.… Continued →

April 22, 2019

April 19, 2019

Starflyer 59 - Young in My Head

Starflyer 59 are back. But, what does even mean when they never went away? Christian indie rock’s most prolific band have just released their 15th full-length album (not counting their 9 EPs, 4 live releases, 3 box sets/collections, numerous vinyl singles and LP variants or compilation appearances—I didn’t even mention the side projects: Pony Express, Bon Voyage, Dance House Children, The Brothers Martin, White Lighter, Neon Horse and Lo-Tom) making them probably the second most prolific band in all of indie rock (second only to Guided by Voices, who are at something like 100 releases).… Continued →

April 6, 2019

April 5, 2019

April 1, 2019

March 26, 2019

Relent - Heart Attack

Sometime last year, Brandon was kind enough to introduce me to a band named Relent. At the time, the band only had a 2 song ep available called “Embers”, but it was more than enough to pique my interest. What we have in these guys is a what I’m going to call a new nu metal sound.… Continued →

March 25, 2019

Demon Hunter - Peace

So, it’s been a couple weeks since Zac reviewed Demon Hunter’s “War” album. If you haven’t yet given it a read, you can find it HERE. Go check it out, I’ll wait. Caught up? Good. Now that we’re all on the same page, it’s my turn.… Continued →

March 24, 2019

March 10, 2019

Good Saint Nathanael - Hide No Truth

If you’re reading this review, chances are you’re aware of Nate Allen. Released a ton of folk-punk albums with wife Tessa as Destroy Nate Allen. DNA was energetic, fun, and although there was always a message, it was generally focused outward (“Jesus, Keep us Safe from the Cops” and “Boobie Bar” come to mind).… Continued →

March 9, 2019

Heath McNease - Be Clean Again

Be Clean Again feels like a Sunday. The weather is somber, you’re feeling introspective, and everything just seems rather slow. Very little of Heath McNease’s latest effort (save for “Believe”) could be deemed upbeat from a musical or lyrical standpoint. This album is 54 minutes of slow hip-hop meets folk, never lacking in sincerity or seriousness.… Continued →