THE INFERNO DOLL – Sacrifice EP

Chilean vocalist Laura Vargas is no stranger to the symphonic and gothic metal scenes. While she might not have reached “household name” status, she spent eight years as a member of Sacramento, eventually scoring support slots with Theatre of Tragedy and Within Temptation. After relocating to Canada, she formed her own theatrical art/music project The Inferno Doll, whose debut album (‘Dollmination’, 2015) fused gothic metal with striking imagery to tell the tale of demonic possession within a mannquin-like figure. After that somewhat dark release, all seemed to go quiet, but The Inferno Doll eventually re-emerged in 2019 and dropped various hints regarding the continuation of their haunting and twisted musical tales. An EP eventually emerged at the death of 2020 – long overdue, but certainly worth the wait.

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DICKIE DEVIL AND THE DEVIANTS – Book Of The Beast EP

Creating a sound they’ve dubbed “Munstercore”, Dickie Devil and the Deviants create music that takes a hefty dose of rockabilly and punk, a decent amount of surf rock and just enough sass to create perfect additions to your Halloween themed playlists. Their 2020 digital release offers a couple of numbers which resurrect fond memories of the early 80s and of classic psychobilly fare, but with a dash of Necromantix toughness and some good pop culture thrown in for good measure.

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The Great 80s Project: 1987

After three years of brilliant pop frivolity, 1987 has a huge contrast in mood with albums and singles that seem far more thoughtful and downbeat. U2 turned in a career best with ‘The Joshua Tree’; Pink Floyd made a huge comeback with the moody ‘A Momentary Lapse of Reason’ and from a more alternative perspective, Sisters of Mercy and The Jesus & Mary Chain made huge waves with epic goth sounds.

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DOOL – Summerland

On their debut album ‘Here Now, There Then’, Dool formulated a sound that blended goth, hard rock and a touch of trad metal to create a sound that drew a lot of influence from the early 90s, but in some ways sounded almost timeless. With elements of Killing Joke providing a core influence – especially in some of Job van der Zande’s chosen basslines – it was a record that had a relatively strong musical foundation, even if some of the songs weren’t especially memorable. A cover of ‘Love Like Blood’ flaunted their love of Killing Joke further on an EP in 2019 that, in the band’s own words, saw them growing in confidence.

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