BACKDAWN – I Shall Burn Your Empire

backdawn lpFrench metallers Backdawn released their first full length release ‘Through Extermination’ in 2013. The hard working band then spent the following years promoting that album and setting about creating even stronger material for its successor. That successor, 2016’s ‘I Shall Burn Your Empire’, was crowdfunded by fans and mixed by Annihilator’s Jeff Waters. The results are spectacular.

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THE SHAPERS – Reckless Youth EP

Shapers EPSince their formation in 2009, French punks The Shapers seemed to constantly be on the road. Their high energy melodic sound saw them travel the globe – including a visit to Thailand – and also score high profile support slots with classic bands Pennywise, NOFX, Face To Face and others, all without the aid of an extensive back-catalogue.

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KRASSEVILLE – Nous Somme Faux

KRASSEVILLEIf members of a black metal band embarked on a project that sounded like a film soundtrack and then also channelled various bits of early 80s goth and Nick Cave, that would be a bit of a jumble, but a fairly cool one nonetheless. Such a rambling bag of ideas is the closest approximation of describing the sounds with which French band Krasseville fill their 2015 release ‘Nous Somme Faux’. It’s avant-garde for sure, yet at the same time, it’s also strangely listenable.

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BLACK LUNA – Death Alley

black lunaComprising ex-members of The Venus Flytrap, Black Luna is a three piece band who bill their music as “heavy lo-fi psychedelic garage”. That just about covers it, since their debut album 2015’s ‘Death Alley’ is all those things…and more. Often coming across like a hybrid of Yeah Yeah Yeahs and stoner rockers Ruby The Hatchet dressed down with a production value befitting a shoegaze band, these eight tracks really capture a sense of raw energy within a rather succinct twenty eight minutes.

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HERSCHER – Herscher

herscherHerscher are practicioners of a rather mean and lo-fi brand of doom metal, the kind that’s so intense that makes your average doom band sound like they’re gearing up to play a few Boney M covers and then bed down for a late night at about 7pm. On the bulk of this third release, this French trio are so frighteningly robust, it’s a genuine challenge to get through the near forty minute playing time in one hit. Depending on how much you love your doom and sludge, of course, this could turn out to a be a very positive thing.

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