Extol’s self-titled fifth album is a long overdue masterpiece. The Norwegian band is finally following up on their Norwegian Grammy nominated The Blueprint Dives – from 2005. Eight years later, Extol is back in the U.S. Christian market with their first-ever record for the popular southern California label Facedown Records. In last year’s mystery teaser-trailer for a new documentary on the band, we found out that they were back together writing music. Ten months later, all we saw on the documentary has reached its crowning moment. Extol covers the history of the amazing sounds the band has created over the years. They’re known for starting a record strong and not letting up till it is over, and this fifth record is no exception. They come out swinging with “Betrayal” – its groovy intro gives way to a headbanging fury into to a melodic chorus with the amazing singing they have come to be known for. Then? Back into some amazing technical riffage. The record features a long-awaited creative collaboration with Jens Bogren (Opeth, Paradise Lost, Enslaved), and the result is masterful. This record is next to flawless, with some of the most amazing song structures you will hear this year. When it’s all said and done, you are going to have a bangover after this album is over.
With influences that span Miles Davis and Stravinsky to Geddy Lee and Les Claypool, jazz metal force Imperial Triumphant is the epitome of genre-bending. HM contributing writer Andrew Voigt spoke with the band about their unique style, the massive bass presence in their music, and the rise and fall of civilization.Full Feature More from Imperial Triumphant
At their core, Atreyu is a hard rock band with metal riffs and pop choruses. Now, after more than 20 years, the band has stepped boldly into their next chapter with a change in lineup and an album that proves the lifeblood of Atreyu is stronger than ever.Full Feature More from Atreyu
Death metal is no longer strictly a one-kind-of-sound genre but a cloud under which many elements have formed. We have assembled five must-hear death metal acts you should be listening to now, each distinctly set apart from another in form, yet still brethren in the death metal community.Full Feature More from In-Conquered
When rock emerged from blues and 'heavy metal' began to surface, faith-based metal acts also rose to start their own journeys. Initially shunned by both believers and non-believers, they were fighting for their spot at the table, ultimately building a legacy that would go on to change the genre forever. HM presents an oral history of the beginning of Christian metal music, featuring Guardian, Tourniquet, Holy Soldier, Whitecross, and, of course, Stryper.Full Feature More from Guardian