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From Exile — Monolith (2009)
So the Monolith is out!

Well, what can I say except that it's one of the most amazing Melodic Death Metal I've ever heard? Perhaps, they are so amazing because they are not taken up by just one genre. Their music gets its influences from Progressive and Thrash Metal as well. Especially on this album, where one could say it's more Prog-ish than MDM-ish. They focus their music on, well, music; amazing riffs and guitar solos driven to perfection. Oh, and don't forget about the higher musical education the band members have (at least I think they do; if they don't -- it should be given to them right away).

The music on this album is so rich and beautiful that the band decided not to do almost any vocals on it (and I'm so grateful for that). Well, for the exception of couple tracks where the vocals could very hardly be called so -- highly distorted, as well as that they are short.

“Apparition”, “Exhumed” and “The Unlearning Dissent” are my top favorite tracks on this album, if you ask me. How they manage classic metal and rock solos to sound so interesting, so fresh and new, is beyond my understanding. There you also have some prog rock-ish keyboards alongside heavy metal riffs. If it wasn't for my poor English knowledge, I would describe From Exile's new album with such words, which even Oxford started to forget.

Now, if your girlfriend (or gay boyfriend) is so caught up by her precious Britney Spears and you wanted to teach her some metal but was afraid she would have got a heart attack — this album is a perfect solution. Not for the heart attack, but for the getting to know and hopefully love metal easily. Without having to listen to any harsh growl/guttural vocals your average Death Metal has (or those cheesy/high-pitched tenor vocals average Power Metal has).

I'm not saying the album is easy and soft. It's decently heavy, perfectly metal-ish (with double-bass drumming, of course) and amazingly progressive for our time. It's just so very well written and played that almost anyone can start to understand and appreciate metal. Maybe even your grandma if she, at least, was into some previous-century's rock back in her days.

The debut album “Crushing Reality” has also had an amazing music and songwriting, but awful vocals can spoil even a masterpiece. And you can actually hear some familiar bits, or distant reminders if you like, of melodies from it on “Monolith” (“The Unlearning Dissent”, for example). The next thing From Exile should do is to release “Crushing Reality's” score and let people enjoy that otherwise so-close-to-perfect creation.

Genre: Progressive Death Metal / Melodic Death Metal
Release Year: 2009
Country: USA


1. Arrival 04:51
2. Impure Visionary 03:57
3. Apparition 03:32
4. Exhumed 03:32
5. Veritas 02:12
6. The Unlearning Dissent 02:20
7. Monolith 07:12 (listen at Last.fm)
8. In The Faded Silence 04:13

Monolith stream

You can (and definitely should) buy this album. It's available in Lossless and various other formats at FromExile.com.

Скачать бесплатно можно самизнаетегде (в том числе и в Lossless).

Funeral — In Fields of Pestilent Grief (2001)
Funeral was the first Doom Metal band to use female vocals in their music. Not in the boring cheesy way the Gothic bands do. They managed to make those vocals to go precisely and perfectly with heavy and low-tuned riffs. And (sadly) this album is the last one where they used female vocals.

Genre: Doom Metal
Release Year: 2001
Country: Norway


1. Yield to Me
2. Truly a Suffering
3. The Repentant
4. The Stings I Carry
5. When Light Will Dawn
6. In Fields of Pestilent Grief
7. Facing Failure
8. What Could Have Been
9. Vile Are The Pains
10. Epilogue

© CD cover by Mark Lee.

Funeral — From These Wounds (2006)
A very unique and unusual album by Gods of Doom Metal and Fathers of Funeral Doom.

Genre: Doom Metal
Release Year: 2006
Country: Norway


1. The Barren Skin
2. From These Wounds
3. The Architecture of Loss
4. Red Moon
5. Vagrant God
6. Pendulum
7. Saturn
8. Breathing Through You

© CD cover by Mark Lee.

Arsis — A Celebration of Guilt (2004)
One of the most amazing Technical/Melodic Death Metal albums ever. I'm just assuming it's not the most amazing one, because you can never know what else is out there. But the most amazing of all those I've listened to. A masterpiece even.

Too bad, the subsequent albums are so-so. Fingers crossed for the upcoming one. Hope it will be something like "Celebration".

Genre: Technical/Melodic Death Metal
Release Year: 2004
Country: USA


1. The Face of My Innocence
2. Maddening Disdain
3. Seven Whispers Fell Silent
4. Return
5. Worship Depraved
6. Carnal Ways to Recreate the Heart
7. Dust and Guilt
8. Elegant and Perverse
9. The Sadistic Motives Behind Bereavement Letters
10. Looking to Nothing
11. Wholly Night

Winds of Plague — The Great Stone War (2009)
New Winds of Plague's album. A bit more melodic than the debut one, but less interesting somehow.

Genre: Deathcore / Symphonic / Melodic Death Metal
Release Year: 2009
Country: USA


1. Earth
2. Forged In Fire
3. Soldiers of Doomsday
4. Approach The Podium
5. Battle Scars
6. Chest And Horns
7. Greed of Tyrants
8. Our Requiem
9. Classic Struggle
10. The Great Stone War
11. Tides of Change

Trauma — Determination (2005)

Genre: Technical Death Metal
Release Year: 2005
Country: Poland


1. The Elegy For Doom
2. The Solitude Remains
3. Wings Of Frustration
4. An Act Of Providence
5. The Loneliest
6. As Never Before
7. Frozen God
8. Determination

© CD cover by Mark Lee.

Rest in Peace

Burning Skies — Greed. Filth. Abuse. Corruption (2008)
An astounding deathcore/tech-death from UK. These guys are monsters. And I never thought British could make such music.

Genre: Deathcore / Technical Death Metal
Release year: 2008
Country: UK


1. Warhate
2. You Don't Have To Be Dead To Be In Hell
3. Y.G.F.F.
4. Rounding Up The Cattle
5. Abuse To Confuse
6. To Be The Man Who Has To Beat The Man
7. Spat Out And Stamped On
8. It's Hard To Breathe With A Bag On Your Head
9. Slashed, Thrashed And Fucked Up Beyond All Recognition
10. Emocalypse
11. Sticky Richard

After The Burial — Rareform (2008)
This album has a fusion of such sub-genres as progressive metalcore and technical deathcore. And some tracks could very well be mistaken for pure technical death if it was not for those aforementioned bits. I like this album much more better than the previous one. Good job, guys.

Genre: Technical Deathcore / Metalcore
Release year: 2008
Country: USA


1. Berzerker
2. Drifts
3. Cursing Akhenaten
4. Rareform
5. Aspiration
6. The Fractal Effect
7. Ometh
8. A Vicious Reforming of Features

Mors Principium Est — Liberation = Termination (2007)
If this is not one of the best Melodic Death Metal bands, then I'm Miss Universe '59. Not the best, because Kalmah is the other one.

Genre: Melodic Death Metal
Release Year: 2007
Country: Finland


1. Orsus
2. The Oppressed Will Rise
3. The Animal Within
4. Finality
5. Cleansing Rain
6. Forgotten
7. Sinners Defeat
8. The Distance Between
9. It Is Done
10. Terminal Liberation
11. Lost Beyond Retrieval