Archive for February, 2017

Aeterum Vale – Ashes Of Memory EP Review

Aeterum Vale – Ashes Of Memory EP Review



Dublin based Aeternum Vale never sent us on their EP for review. I had to go Spotify like a Peasant and listen to it there.  I thought the whole point of starting a metal site was getting loads of music for free? 

Luckily this is a great EP so I’ll accept this and make an exception and review it this time! 😉 

The EP consists of four tracks. All of which have the bands own style of a mix of heaviness, melody and atmosphere. All that makes a great Black metal release in my humble opinion. Every song just knows when it needs to shift though the gears. Well, to my ears anyway!

As I already mentioned this EP is on Spotify. I’ll post a link below and the EP title track “Ashes Of Memory”.

The EP kicks off with “Shadows Over Sculpted Stone” and what a way to kick this off. Builds up perfectly and kicks off moving through the gears effortlessly throughout. Excellent song!

“Revolt Of The Gods” is a bit flatter after the opener, but it’s also a really good song. It’s the weakest track on the EP. That’s not a negative! That’s saying how good this EP is when you’re calling a really good Black metal song weaker… 

“In Silence Triumphs Burn” then really kicks off. If someone listening was facing a mid EP lull? This would wake them up! It keeps a faster theme throughout and flies along at devastating Black metal speed! Baywatch! 

This release finishes up with my favourite track on the EP, “Ashes Of Memory”. It’s just a great Melodic Black metal track. I’ve listened to it numerous times and it’s not getting old. Great, great song!

Aeternum Vale are among the Best black metal bands this country has produced in the last few years. This release only emphasises the fact!  



Check out “Ashes Of Memory”! 


Aeternum Vale are: 

Vocals — Colin Byrne  

Guitar — Dave Gibson  

Guitar — Cathal Hughes

Bass — Cory Annatar

Drums — Dave ‘Atlas’ Mc Carron


Link to their Facebook page for more details:

Stream via Spotify:



Share Button

Graveyard Dirt To Play Live!

Graveyard Dirt To Play Live!


Formed back in 1994/95.Inspired by the early Peaceville doom/death sound ,in the Summer of ’95 the band ventured into the studio and just 7 hours later emerged with their debut demo. Entitled “ Of Romance & Fire” , it contained 3 tracks , and went on to sell over 700 copies at the time and many more since including a limited re-issue on c.d. in 2007, and reached far-flung places such as Australia ,Japan ,Malaysia ,Argentina as well as most European territories , Germany and U.K in particular through respected distro ‘Black Tears’.

This demo was responsible for the band signing a 2 album deal with German label Ars Metalli which for various reasons never materialised. And with things grinding to a halt the decision was made to lay the band to rest .

However eventually the urge to record again returned and in August 2007 “Shadows of Old Ghosts” was released. Featuring 3 tracks spanning 34 minutes, this E.P sold well and was responsible for securing a 1 album deal with the German underground label Ashen Productions in 2009/2010. In June 2010 the band recorded their debut album entitled “For Grace or Damnation” which was released in Nov 2010 and has since become Ashen Productions biggest selling release, perhaps due to the many excellent reviews it has received in printed magazines and online webzines alike.

The band then went back into hibernation mode again due to some “musical difference” issues which saw 2 members leave before one returned to the fold for the bands most recent trip to the studio for the 2015 3 track EP “ The Siren’s Refrain”, recorded once again in Trackmix Studio in Dublin.

With great surprise it was recently announced they would be headlining Walpurgis Night VI on April 30th, Kelly’s Bar, Galway. They were approached about playing the event by Hexen Haus Promotions. As they had not played Galway, accepted their offer. Sending the Irish metal world into both a state of shock and excitement. 

I reached out to the lads as to what their future plans may be. At the moment, this is a one off! They have no plans to play live again so I would strongly suggest anyone interested make their way to Galway on April 30th. 

If this goes well and it doesn’t interfere with their writing process? They may play another show. But I wouldn’t hold my breath on that, as they are a self described studio project and not about playing live.

Check out “Her Haunting Smile” from “The Siren’s Refrain”.  


Graveyard Dirt are: 
Kieran O’Toole – Guitars
Gary Sweeney – Drums
Tony Barr – Bass
Paul Leyden – Vocals


Link to their Facebook page for more details:


Joining them on the day: TOME, Owlcrusher, Genuflection, Ten Ton Slug, Soothsayer, Weeping Ulcer, So Much For The Sun and Stonecarver. 



Share Button

Urban Assault Festival Feature

Urban Assault Festival Feature



The first “Urban Assault” festival is due to take place in Cork next weekend. For a start up festival, it’s an excellent line up and a great marker for the people behind it to work from! 

Pethrophile Promotions and John from Irish Metal Archive are the festivals promotions team. With help from Trevor of the Cranium Titanium Metal Radio Show. 

It promises to be a great day and will hopefully become a big success. We have included all the acts performing here. No bios included. This is for people unable to attend that may not know these bands for whatever reason. All are worth your time! 


Progressive Sludge from Clonmel, co. Tipperary. 


Christ Agony 

Black/Death/Doom metal from Poland. 


Stereo Nasty 

Classic Metal from Kildare. 



Atmospheric metal from Cork.



Aeternum Vale 

Melodic Black metal from Dublin. 



Modern Metal from Dublin. 



Progressive metal/hardcore from Cork. 


Axial Symmetry 

Black/Death metal from Dublin. 


The Magnapinna 

Alternative metal from another planet quite possibly! 🙂 



Doom Metal from Tipperary. 



Black metal from Cork. 


Running Order on the day. 

14:00 – 14:30 Dementer
14:45 – 15:15 Axial Symmetry
15:30 – 16:00 The Magnapinna
16:15 – 16:50 Brigantia

17:10 – 17:55 Emigra
18:10 – 18:50 Aeternum Vale
19:05 – 19:45 Soothsayer
20:00 – 20:40 AeSect

21:00 – 22:00 Stereo Nasty
22:15 – 23:30 Christ Agony
23:45 – 01:00 Zhora

Share Button

The Vicious Head Society – Abject Tomorrow LP Review

The Vicious Head Society – Abject Tomorrow LP Review



The Vicious Head Society, the brainchild of Irish guitar virtuoso Graham Keane.  “Abject Tomorrow” shall be released on 24th March 2017. Featuring guests such as keyboardist Derek Sherinan of “Alice Cooper” fame, bass player Pat Byrne also of Hedfuzy, and drummer Kevin Talley.  Abject Tomorrow is sure to please the ears of progressive metal fans and most metal fans in general. 

The vast majority of the album was recorded in Keane’s home studio with vocals, drums and other guest musicians being outsourced to their own recording facilities. The album was then mixed and mastered at Dark House Estudios in Mexico. 

As with most progressive records Abject Tomorrow is no different in the sense that it is a concept album. The story is based in a dystopian future in which all humans are required to have emotion inhibiting implants implanted from birth. One man’s implant fails and it chronicles his journey of discovery and reconnection with his humanity. Musically, it draws from a huge range of influences; from classic prog acts that influenced Keane growing up, such as Yes, Genesis, ELP and Rush to metal acts such as Death, Meshuggah and Megadeth. 

After many years of production. The finished product is complete! So, is it any good? This isn’t good. This is a masterpiece! An absolute musical masterpiece! It’s hard to describe as there’s so much going on in this album. But take all your favourite Prog albums. Opeth and other great progressive metal bands. Put them all in a blender and out this comes. It’s that good! 

The album has so many layers and different tones as any concept album should. It’s a musical journey start to finish. I don’t “smoke” anymore, but if I did? I’d be unemployed as I’d just have this album on constantly and forget to go to work… 

The album kicks off with “The Sycophants” which is pure prog magic. Then leads into the albums title track “Abject Tomorrow”, which I shall link below as it’s freely available online for quite a while now. Then we have “Downfall” which is another prog masterpiece with gutter vocals in there and closes in a sea of violins. “Agenda” is 10:51 long and man, it’s just unstoppable. You’d ignore important phones calls while it’s playing as it’s such a journey musically. 

The album follows on with “The 11th Hour”, followed by a purely instrumental track in “Psychedelic Torture Trip”. “Gods Of The New Age” is the albums penultimate track and another blinder. We then reach the albums closing track “Analogue Spectre”. All I can say about that song is wow. Just wow! An insanely good way to close this absolute masterpiece of an album! 

I calling it right now. This is my album of the year! Nothing will touch this for me personally in 2017. There’ll be other albums I’d really like of course, but this is just another level! It’s easily one of the best albums ever made by an Irish act. Hands down! It won’t appeal to everyone of course due to the albums length and the fact it’s a concept album. But, those who get it will love this album and shall play it on a regular basis and every time it will get better. It’s that good! 


Check out the albums Title track “Abject Tomorrow” here! 


1. The Sycophants
2. Abject Tomorrow
3. Downfall
4. Agenda
5. The 11th Hour
6. Psychedelic Torture Trip
7. Gods Of The New Age
8. Analogue Spectre


Link to their Facebook page for more info and how to pre-order “Abject Tomorrow”



Share Button

Xerath Call It A Day and Release New Song “Regret”



UK/Ireland based progressive Orchestral Groove Metal band Xerath have sadly called it a day after nine years. As a big fan of the band this is very sad news. The made made this statement today and released an new unreleased track “Regret”. Fitting last song from them… 


ANNOUNCEMENT. It is with extremely heavy hearts that we formally announce Xerath has come to an end. There are many reasons we came to this decision but ultimately it is
down to creative differences within the band. Xerath has been a huge part of our lives over the last 9 years, and the time has come to move on to other creative ventures.

Of course we would firstly like to thank our passionate fans for believing in what we did. We’re sorry we were not able to visit many of you during our touring cycles, but similarly to a lot of bands the oppourtunities never arose despite our best efforts. We would also like to thank the metal press for the great reviews and features you gave us since our very first interview in Kerrang! back in 2009, and not forgetting the publications that continued to hate on our music which only served to spur us on further.
Special thanks to those close to Xerath personally who encouraged and helped us grow as a band over our 9 year
existence. We couldn’t have survived this long without you.

So this is farewell from Xerath but we all continue to pursue different musical projects and endeavours which
we will keep you updated with. As a parting gift, we present the song “Regret”, our last recording together as a
band. Please enjoy and thank you all once again.


Check out “Regret” here! 


Best of luck to the lads. They’ve given us three great albums in Xerath, Xerath 2 and Xerath 3. 4 was shaping up to be another masterpiece… I’ll continue to wear my Xerath hooded top daily and must get another before they disappear….

Share Button