Various Artists – Metal Massacre XV

Reviewed Digital Download by : Chris Hammond
Metal Massacre XV track-listing

  1. Midnight “Masked and Deadly” (Metal Massacre XV exclusive!) 2:50
  2. Poison Ruïn “Demon Wind” 3:41
  3. Fuming Mouth “Master of Extremity” 4:14
  4. Many Suffer “The Trees Die Standing” (Metal Massacre XV exclusive!) 5:56
  5. Temple of Void “Leave the Light Behind” 5:17
  6. Ripped to Shreds “撿骨 (Bone Ritual)” (Metal Massacre XV exclusive!) 5:13
  7. Rude “Omega” 3:52
  8. Midnight Dice “Starblind” 6:11
  9. Smoulder “Warrior Witch of Hel” 5:54
  10. Mother of Graves “In Somber Dreams” 5:05

    Metal Blade Records puts out its fifteen edition of Metal Massacre which first appeared in 1982. The first edition features bands like Metallica and Ratt plus many more up-and-comers of the time. This time around Ryan Williams (Metal Blade Records A&R) was blessed with the task of coming up with the newest volume and search out the bands that were to be included. Nikki Law (Metal Blade Record’s Head of Publicity) suggested partnering with Albert at Decibel Magazine. The two went to work gathering a collection of songs from a distinct group of bands.

    The album comes out of the gates hard with the exclusive to this collection “Masked and Deadly” by the band Midnight. Formed in 2003 as a solo project initially. The band has been very active putting out EP’s and singles since its inception. Black Death and speed metal are the primary genres that one can find Midnight working under. The song “Masked and Deadly” has an old speed metal feel and really starts this compilation out the right way.

    Poison Ruïn continues this collection off with the song “Demon Wind”. The band straddles many genres including NWOBHM, Black Death, and Death Rock. There’s a very retrospective feel to this song. One may envision chain mail-wearing warriors fighting hordes of evil. This is the perfect song to just zone out to after a hard day.

    Fuming Mouth, the proprietors of Death, Crust Metal since the band started in 2013 have the song “Master of Extremity” included in this collection. The song although much darker in tone than the earlier offerings on the album is still a welcomed inclusion to this collection.

    The next song “The Trees Die Standing” is the first of many exclusive songs on this compilation. The band Many Suffer, which is the solo project of ex-My Dying Bride guitarist Calvin Robertshaw is full ahead Doom/Death Metal on this offering. It’s a great exclusive that helps to showcase is the unsigned band.

    Leave the Light Behind by Detroit, Michigan’s Temple of Void takes the listeners on a galactic Death, Doom Metal adventure. This particular song feels heavily influenced by the band Paradise Lost. Out of this world gothic tones. Staying the course of Death Metal the band Ripped to Shreds goes full Death mode on “撿骨 (Bone Ritual)”. This Exclusive song to this collection is full of hammer-down drums, guitars, and guttural growling vocals.

    The last half of the album includes bands Rude, Midnight Dice, and Mother of Graves. Rude offers another foray into Death Metal with the song “Omega”. The album then turns the clock past midnight and goes pure Heavy Metal with the song “Starblind”.Chicago’s Midnight Dice (who formed after the break-up of the band Satan’s Hollow) crank out a classic heavy metal song full of breakdowns, clean vocals, and substance. This is one of the stand-out songs on this compilation.

    Toronto, Canada’s Smoulder play “Warrior Witch of Hel”. This is more of a Fantasy Metal song than a Doom Metal song, which is the band is known for. It is an enjoyable lead-up to the final offering on the album. Mother of Graves Closes out the album in Doom Metal Fashion with the song “In Somber Dreams”. This song has its melodic moments and ends the Metal Massacre XV compilation on a good note.

    Metal Massacre XV is solid with ten different bands. Although most are from the Doom/Death Metal style there is still enough here for heavy metal purest to sink their teeth into. The album has a nice selection of exclusive content too, which is always nice to see. Although none of these bands are household names yet, there are a few nice hidden gems in the lot.
    Rating 3 out of 5 Massacres
    This Compilation is out now via Metal Blade Records website

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