Getting to know you… through unsigned talent.

Good day , everyone. I hope that you’ve all had a reasonably okay week.

Instead of a review as originally planned, I have decided to turn this update into a Public Service Announcement – Unsigned edition (if you will).


Notice how this comes after the review for Twilight’s Embrace, who are a currently unsigned band; though Me(n)tal-Meltdown has covered groups in similar positions in the past. If you’ll remember, the first proper post to this site was for a then unsigned Canadian doom band called Dark Covenant. Gosh, I wonder what they’re up to right now?

As always, there is a good reason why music critics such as myself choose to write about bands who aren’t yet signed to a label – one which practically speaks for itself, to be honest. But I digress.

Part of this concern has led me to decide that perhaps it wouldn’t hurt to make my respective readers here for some help – namely in ensuring that there is yet another space dedicated on the Internet to discussing the quality of unsigned bands, for all to read. Even if it’s just on a website as obscure and small-scale as this; though I continuously seek to change all of that in the future.


So, without waffling on any further; I would like you, dear readers, to tell me about the unsigned bands in your local scene. Which genres do they play, how do you feel about their music, and what do you personally feel that they contribute to the metal and hard rock scene where you live?


Twilight’s Embrace – ‘Reflections’ EP, Self-released; 2010


Beautiful melancholy and melodic brutality, as paradoxical as that may sound; have always held an appeal in the metal world; showing from the number of smaller melodic death and gothic bands on the radar. One example of this is Twilight’s Embrace who released their debut EP this year, despite their previous presence in their local scene. Continue reading

Various Artists – ‘Whom the Moon A Nightsong Sings’, Prophecy Productions; 2010

In a move which seeks to showcase their musical specialties, record labels such as Prophecy Productions will occasionally sell themselves to likely consumers by putting out a carefully selected compilation CD with the best of their bands’ repertoire. However, it’s rarely seen that these bands will be linked together by something other than genre or even icon tributes; which is where ‘Whom The Moon A Nightsong Sings‘ draws its own niche, to set itself apart from other label packages. Bringing musicians together under the aesthetic theme that the two-disc release’s title describes; it may be that this is one relatively small step for Prophecy and another step forward for creative integrity in the ocean of the current music industry. Continue reading

An Interview with Olli-Pekka Laine (Barren Earth)

It’s not every day that you get the opportunity to talk to a seasoned veteran of the Finnish metal scene, and it’s not every day that you find that the bands you like are connected to one another in subtle ways. Well, to me at least.

If I had known that the person answering my questions about Barren Earth would be Olli-Pekka Laine, I guess I would’ve just focused everything on him; especially because of his past involvement with one of my favourite bands.

But, as we all know; the past is past. It’s better to focus on the present, and so everything remained focused on the history of how the group got together, what their plans are for the future and the current state of Finnish metal Continue reading

Hail of Bullets – ‘On Divine Winds’, Metal Blade; 2010

Coming two years after the release of debut album ‘…Of Frost And War‘, the second outing from Dutch old school deathsters Hail of Bullets sees a shift in focus from conflicts in Europe during the Second World War to the Far East as the Japanese Empire rose and fell from power. Coincidentally, this change in lyrical direction comes with a change in musical direction for the band. Where the past two releases were really just promising, ‘On Divine Winds‘ sounds mightier, heavier and – as far as death metal goes – groovier than its predecessors. By Jove, this time they’ve got it. Continue reading

Natur – Demo, Self-released; 2010


It may be cliché to say this about any underground band, but with an organic sound and attitude that delivers the original, darker spirit of traditional metal it is almost hard to believe that this demo from New Yorkers Natur has only been released this year. Without even stating the obvious about passionate energy and bringing back the ’80’s; the tracks on this release meld nicely into seventeen minutes of throbbingly fast riffing and strong solos mixed with frontman Ryan Weibust’s aggressively raw vocals. Continue reading

Resume Transmission

Aaaand we’re back!

Here’s a possible tip, if it’s applicable: never try to do your work in another country; particularly if you’re visiting relatives abroad.

Updates shall continue regularly, starting from this Wednesday. Thank you for your patience!

Ann S.