Testament-Brotherhood of the Snake ©2016 Nuclear Blast Records
Testament is really on a roll. The band has been releasing really consistent albums, and the 'Brotherhood of the Snake' is no exception. This is a very heavy record. Big riffs, punishing low end and hard driving tempo are all evident. I've had a little time to spend with this album now and to me it gets better with every listen. Little things pop out at you that you may not have noticed in previous listens. I like the subject material as well. This is a pure Testament record through and through. No surprises. Just a very intense listen once again. The great year of thrash continues and Testament is part of the reason why!
Release Date: October 28, 2016
Beasto Blanco-Beasto Blanco ©2016 Rat Pak Records
The sophomore effort from Chuck Garric and company is a dandy. Obvious comparisons will be drawn to bands like White Zombie due to the groove the band incorporates in their sound and also Garric's vocals. I feel the band has grown as unit even more with this release. There is a raw sound to it, but at the same time a bit of polish. Also on vocals is Calico Cooper who some will know as Alice Cooper's daughter. As mentioned before, I love the vibe of this record. Favorite track of this record is without a doubt 'Death Rattle'. Almost has a Monster Magnet feel to it. Very good release by a very cool band!
Release Date: November 25, 2016
Robert Pehrsson's Humbucker-Long Way to the Light ©2016 High Roller Records
This is a fun record, especially if you are feeling a bit nostalgic. This album has a very retro feel to it in everything from the music up to the album cover. With the sound of this record it's amazing when you release that Pehrsson really got his start in much more extreme metal. He also has a pretty decent resume up to this point playing with many diverse bands. While this might not be the heaviest work he has done to date, it's got a really cool feel to it. One other thing that stands out to me is his feel as a guitarist. He plays in a definite nod to some of the greats such as Blackmore. Very cool retro sounding album!
Release Date: November 4, 2016
In Flames-Battles ©2016 Eleven Seven Music
It is going to be very interesting to see how the fans react to In Flames latest release 'Battles'. For the past few albums you have seen the band evolving. They definitely have stepped into a bit of new ground with this release. You still get the core In Flames sound and structure to the songs here, but there is also in some ways a bit of a mainstream feel to this album. This album has plenty of crossover potential, but will it be too much to retain some of the bands older fans? Time will tell. Me personally, I dig it. There is a bit of diversity here and with the retention of the core, I like where the band is.
Release Date: November 11, 2016
Roth Brock Project-Roth Brock Project ©2016 Frontiers Records
One thing I look forward to from Frontiers Records is releases just like Roth Brock Project. The band features John Roth and Terry Brock and is a collection of mid tempo rockers mixed with some more melodic songs as well. If you are aware of these 2 musicians and where they have been, you will pretty well know what to expect here, and it doesn't disappoint. At times it reminded me of Sons of Angels, other times maybe similar to Stryper in ways. The album packs a bit of edge in the front and as you are approaching the end, it has the melodic smooth tracks. It's a very good melodic rock record. Recommended!
Release Date: November 4, 2016