Imperium Dekadenz – Procella Vadens

While it’s questionable whether the band haven’t left behind one set of stereotypes only to embrace another, what isn’t questionable is that Imperium Dekadenz have produced an awesome album that is one of the best that the black metal genre has to offer so far this year.

Postcards From Natalie Zed, Part 1

Hellbound readers, please welcome aboard Natalie Zed! Natalie was our big grand prize winner back in January, taking home more than 50 CDs + and shortly after she received her huge box ‘o CDs, Ms. Zed asked us over at Hellbound HQ if we’d be interested in running reviews of her winnings if she did postcard sized reviews of the albums. How could we say no?

So, without further adieu, here is Natalie’s first installment in what Hellbound likes to refer to as “Postcards From Natalie Zed”…

Semen Datura – Einsamkeit

Germany’s Semen Datura have returned with their latest full-length album Einsamkeit. It’s an eclectic archive of black metal-influenced noise that isn’t afraid to go in some unexpected directions. With the band avoiding familiar pagan or satanic imagery in favour of pursuing the “intellectual aspect” of “this art” (as stated in the liner notes), Einsamkeit opts for more minimalist and bleaker pictures of isolation amidst crushing metallic vibes.

Siegfried – Nibelung

On first listen, this album gave me visions of using it as a soundtrack to a documentary about people who are into epic fantasy role-playing. I can see the hordes of costumed Lord of the Rings fans clashing their replica swords on a battlefield to win the princesses hand

Brainstorm – Memorial Roots

Along with Matt Barlow, vocalist Andy Franck of Brainstorm is one of the more unique and better singers in the power metal genre and without him, Brainstorm’s sixth album Memorial Roots would have been just an average album at best.

Dark Age: Acedia

A very solid mature release that should garner them some attention, Acedia is chock full of very well written songs that are smartly paced and demand repeat listens.

Leaves’ Eyes: Njord

The overall sound gives me an image of Viking Goths parading around in Scandinavia. On most of the songs they manage to sound well balanced between classical and metal without sounding too rock opera cheesy