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Wooden Shjips: Back to Land

Back to Land, the latest release from minimalist motorik four-piece Wooden Shjips, isn’t likely to be the album you were expecting. But it is one to prove that the band’s free spirit still reigns.

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Aqua Nebula Oscillator: Spiritus Mundi

Wig-outs, freak-outs, and tripped-and-fuzzed-out rock 'n' roll is accepted from French trio Aqua Nebula Oscillator. But, in keeping with the band's enigmatic persona, it's pulled a sinister swerve on its latest album, Spiritus Mundi.

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Grave Miasma: Odori Sepulcrorum

Grave Miasma's debut full-length, Odori Sepulcrorum, speaks of ages past, but not with any sense of love or fondness. The band is here to prove that quintessentially evil death metal has never gone out of fashion.

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Mountaineater: Mountaineater

Dunedin, New Zealand might be famed for its jingling and jangling indie pop bands, but as Mountaineater’s self-titled debut reminds us, the city has plenty of gigantic and jagged riffs to be discovered too.

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Loss of Self: Twelve Minutes

Twelve Minutes, the debut EP from Loss of Self, might not be providing anything new, but if the band continues to refine its blending of black metal with other genres, it might well strike a point of real difference.

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Kevin Hufnagel: Ashland

Kevin Hufnagel is a musician who generally deals in intense, steely and complex riffs. However, on his new album, Ashland, he steps right off the metal pedal, producing a set of baritone and eight-string ukulele instrumentals.

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A Good Death

All heavy metal bands burn out eventually, but when and how they end matters most. A good death counts for a lot in the genre, because it marks the final point in a band's quest for immortality.

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Raspberry Bulbs: Deformed Worship

Round two from Raspberry Bulbs is just as aggressive as round one, but stepping up a weight class with the band's new members has given it more room to swing and experiment with a few new punches.

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White Hills: So You Are... So You'll Be

Played at deafening volume, with the lights turned low and incense lit, mind-expanding journeys have been guaranteed from White Hills in the past, but the band's latest release, So You Are… So You’ll Be, finds the group dropping from its cosmic trajectory for a more controlled burn through the atmosphere.

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Oathbreaker: Eros|Anteros

Oathbreaker's decision to exhibit more range on its sophomore album, Eros|Anteros, isn't a unique artistic statement in metallic hardcore. But it's one that many bands of its ilk ignore in favour of "stamping on a human face, forever".

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