KnuckleTracks #83

1) THE CROWN - 'Drugged Unholy' 4:11; from Crowned Unholy (Metal Blade)
Ah yes, how the mighty have fallen. The Crown's inexplicable break-up has the thrashing faithful up in arms. Maybe this posthumous release of a remake of the band's fifth album Crowned In Terror with the band's old classic era singer Johan Lindstrand on vocals, will bring 'em back alive?

2) SHADOWS FALL - 'The Power Of I And I' 3:34; from The War Within (Century Media)
Metalcore's elite band is back with an album that just might revolutionize the metal industry for the next five years. No question, Shadows Fall, along with Lamb Of God, are the two buzziest bands on the metal planet. This masterpiece of melody, metal power and sterling songwriting deserves to turn that buzz insane. or

3) PIG DESTROYER - 'Gravedancer' 1:49; from the forthcoming Terrifyer (Relapse)
Pig Destroyer return with Terrifyer, the long-awaited follow-up to their critically acclaimed Prowler In The Yard. PD's frighteningly compelling mix of metal, grind, thrash and punk rock seethes with an intensity that will unnerve the unprepared.

4) MAGISTER DIXIT - 'The Stone Has Spoken...' 3:32; from Infernal Martyrism (Galy)
With a futuristic and avant garde black metal sound that still manages judicious viciousness, Quebec's Magister Dixit have created an epic, ruthless masterpiece of blood-soaked mayhem. Meticulous detailing elevated the occasion, the band creating a symphony of soulless sounds for the discerning extreme ear. Contact: 5100 De Verdun, POB 28544, Verdun QC, Canada H4G 3L7,, 514-769-6137, or

5) CRADLE OF FILTH - 'Gilded C***' 4:24; from Nymphetamine (Roadrunner)
Exploding with new vigour, Cradle celebrate their new record deal with their most robust and powerful album yet. Whether it's the production of Rob Caggiano or whether it's the will and determination to make '05 their year, Cradle are spitting nails, especially Dani, who roars like never before. or

6) DEAD TO FALL - 'Bastard Set Of Dreams' 4:22; from Villainy And Virtue (Victory)
Chicago's Dead To Fall have created a record that crushes all others in the metalcore scene, Villainy And Virtue setting a new standard in doomy extremity, harrowing vocal work and weighty core beyond the commercial. Technical, powerful and fresh of arrangement, this is a band destined to give Lamb Of God a run for the moshpit. or

7) MELIAH RAGE - 'Wrong Place Right Time' 4:01; from Barely Human (Screaming Ferret/Escapi)
American old school legends Meliah Rage have made some of the most interesting and hooky proto-thrash throughout the years, with their reputation gaining generation by generation. Barely Human continues the legacy, with expert pacing, sequencing, sense of adventure and growling performances all around. Contact:, or

8) DIMMU BORGIR - 'Vredesbyrd' 4:44; from Death Cult Armageddon (Nuclear Blast)
Dimmu continue to drill themselves into the consciousness of America through scorching Ozzfest shows, where it becomes all too apparent that the new guard is ready to take over. Quality and authenticity combined will win out in the end. or

9) WOODS OF YPRES - 'Shedding The Deadwood' 5:25; from Pursuit Of The Sun & Allure Of The Earth (Woods Of Ypres)
One of Canada's most elegant, intelligent and breathlessly creative bands, Woods Of Ypres is quickly gaining a legion of loyal fans with their rapturous, exquisitely high fidelity progressive doom. Contact: David Gold, 3421 Colonial Dr., Mississauga ON L5L 5B3 or or

10) AMON AMARTH - 'An Ancient Sign Of Coming Storm' 4:38; from Fate Of Norns (Metal Blade)
The prime purveyors of bleak yet majestic and weighty Viking metal are back with a traditional blue-blooded Amon Amarth album. Hail to the riffs, the leads and the leaden skies from which they descend. or

11) DEVILINSIDE - '34 Months For Nothing' 2:31; from Volume One (Abacus)
This post-Disembodied band has vaulted that influential act's reputation into a searing package of futuristic metal might. Fearlessly creative, grindingly violent, and artfully crafty, Minneapolis' Devilinside are looking to push hardcore forward, incredibly, just as the tried and true are breaking with less abrasive records. or or

12) DEAD SOUL TRIBE - 'Sirens' 4:28; from The January Tree (InsideOut Music)
Embracing a complex concept of hope, Dead Soul Tribe parallel the literary journey with a swirling cauldron of heavy progressive rock that is rhythmic, biting, exotic and of the utmost quality. This Vienna-based band is led by ex-Psychotic Waltz head Devon Graves, a multi-instrumentalist that has emerged, through three albums now, as one of prog's great hopes. or or

13) BLOODAXE - 'Drifting Of Ull' 6:00; from Raping The Ancient (White Legends Productions)
Northern Ontario's Bloodaxe are spearheaded by Norwegian-Canadian Nordavinden Lien, and the sound they have come up with is a blizzard-like black metal as old school and authentic as is being dared today. If the unearthly melody lines of this cryonic masterpiece are any indication, the band's second CD will become a classic of luminous Canadian blackness. Contact: Suite #15, 936 Tungsten St., Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada P7B 5Z6, or

14) BOBNOXIOUS - 'Big Cannons' 2:50; from Bobnoxious (Wannabe Records)
Bobnoxious is none other than the barbed punk metal side-project of Razor vocalist Bob Reid. Bob and his roar take on all comers with these irresistible fastback rockers, and, given the man's veteran status in the biz, he makes sure to bring some sharp players and production help along for the riotous ride. Contact: mgmt: 519-868-4558 or; publicity: 905-275-9613 or; radio: 519-432-5317, or band: or

15) ANVIL - 'Can't Catch Me' 3:31; from Back To Basics (Screaming Ferret/Escapi)
Canada's reigning thrash kings are back with a loose 'n' groovy record that has been considered a departure for the band. Still, Robb Reiner's signature drum style is everywhere, as is Lips' razor-slashing guitar work and howling, expressive vocals. Fat, slippery production caps this triumph. Bottoms up! Contact:, or

16) TEARABYTE - 'Insanity' 4:09; from Gloom Factory (Screaming Ferret/Escapi)
First off, if you wanna hear a thrash version of 'Comfortably Numb', get this album! Second, if you want to hear originals with the same heart-racing, string-scraping old school speed madness, then get a second copy of this album, Tearabyte scowling and grinding their way through a collection that rings true to metal in the bloodied but unbowed spirit of 1987. Contact:, or

17) BRAVE - 'Words' 6:02; from Passages (Brave)
Brave have evolved into a swirling mass of ethereal folk metal magic, and the band's female vocalist Michelle Loose is a treasure with her clarity and projection. The five new songs are exciting, fresh, and painstakingly crafted, as has been Brave's ethic from day one. Contact: POB 1077, Dale City VA 22195-1077 or or