All posts by Anthony Carioscia

Hailing from Montgomery, New York, Anthony, better known as Tony has a love of horror films and heavy metal music and is a film editing student at Mount Saint Mary college and part time member of the improv troupe, Mission Improvable.

Top 10 Metal Albums Of 1994

1994 is considered to be one of the best years for music in general, being no exception in the realm of heavy metal music. Many, many classic albums came out that year. In no order, here are the ten best of those in time for the the year’s closure. Also check out our top ten alternative rock albums of 1994.


10. In Flames – The Lunar Strain

A band that has been infamous in the metal world for jumping the shark over and over for about the last ten years, but don’t let that make you forget how awesome their early albums were. The Lunar Strain is the debut album by these Swedish melodeath pioneers, featuring many of the genre’s early tropes such as melodic riffs and occasional clean vocals. It has more folk elements then later albums, incorporating acoustic guitar and violin in certain songs. After this album, In Flames and Dark Tranquility would swap vocalists.


9. Pantera – Far Beyond Driven

Pantera’s seventh album and their second best next to Cowboys from Hell. Far Beyond Driven is known for, at the time, being the heaviest album to debut at number 1 on the Billboard 200.  The album spawned many Pantera classics such as “5 Minutes Alone” and “I’m Broken”. Not much to say about this album since its pretty well known… if you’re not already a Pantera fan, check it out!


8. Cannibal Corpse – The Bleeding

The final album with Chris Barnes and the bands finest hour. On this album, Cannibal Corpse plays a slightly more slowed down style of death metal as opposed to the previous three focusing on speed; the vocals became more decipherable, so now you can hear Cannibal Corpse’s beautiful lyrics nice and clear! Another change on the album was an increase in technicality, mainly in the bass.


7. Edge of Sanity – Purgatory Afterglow

From Sweden comes a metal album that was dedicated to Kurt Cobain. The style on this album is a fusion of melodic death metal and progressive metal. The brain child of Dan Swano (who did vocals, keyboards and on certain tracks guitars), this fourth offering by the band is the closest they ever had to commercial success. The clean vocal track “Black Tears” possessed one of their only music videos. This album is a great one to start with if you want to get into the band (or Dan Swano’s works in general)


6. Mayhem – De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas

The debut album of these Norse black metal pioneers, which was actually started in 1987 but kept getting pushed back due to original vocalist Dead’s suicide and guitarist Euronymous’s murder. All of the tropes of second wave black metal is present here, including dark atmosphere, black beats, minimal musicianship, and low-fi production. These elements make for one of the most influential black metal albums and a good place to start for someone looking into 2nd wave black metal.


5. Emperor – In the Nightside’s Eclipse

The debut album by another great band from the Norse black metal scene, In the Nightside’s Eclipse is different from most other black metal albums at the time as in it was a lot more technical and had heavy use of keyboards. This album is normally considered to be the first symphonic black metal album. On later albums the prog and symphonic elements would increase (as well as anger from black metal elitists).


4. Kyuss – Welcome to Sky Valley

Kyuss are mostly known for being Josh Homme’s original band, and Welcome to Sky Valley is the third album by these stoner metal/rock pioneers.  The album has very good flow as it was meant to be listened to as a full album. Its easily Kyuss’s best album and one hell of a psychedelic whirlpool.


3. Darkthrone – Transylvanian Hunger

The pinnacle of the 90’s Norse black metal scene, Transyvlanian Hunter is this two piece band’s fourth album and third as a black metal band. Very minimalistic in its musicianship, Transyvlanian Hunter strips away any of the band’s influences that aren’t black metal; on earlier releases from Darkthrone, present were elements of death metal, doom metal, punk and classical, however this album just uses elements known in black metal, making it a pure black metal release.


2. Amorphis – Tales from the Thousand Lake

Opus by the ever changing Finnish band Amorphis. Here on their second album, the band transitions from a straight up death metal act to a fusion of melodeath and doom metal. This album adds clean vocal parts and synthesizers elements that were not present on their debut. There are also signs of folk and electronic influences. The album is based on the Finnish epic called the Kalevala. Amorphis will play this entire album at 2015’s Maryland Death Fest.


1. Acid Bath – When the Kite String Pops

And the list goes to a close with one of the most underrated albums of the 90’s. Hailing from New Orleans, Acid Bath were a sludge band at its core, mixing in elements of goth, grunge, psychedelic rock, death metal, black metal, folk music, and country. No two songs sound the same and the lyrics are very dark and artsy. They would only release one more album before splitting due to bassist Audie Pitre’s death. Sammy, the guitarist, would then go on to form Goatwhore and Dax, the lead singer, would have many later projects, more notable being the indie rock band Deadboy and the Elephantmen.


The Grungependables: Total CorgaNation, Prologue

NOTE: It’s Thanksgiving, and going to be a slow news day. is about to get a lot more epic.

Written by some weirdo AltNation reader named Mackenzie Kaufman from somewhere in New Jersey who absolutely begged us to publish his “masterpiece”, The Grungependables, in concept, is an ongoing action saga starring your favorite regulars, with each chapter published irregularly; you’ll be reading the story as it takes shape, like a comic book series. If anyone is interested in providing illustrations/photoshops for further installments, contact

Without further ado, here’s the first installment of the first planned story arc: Total CorgaNation!

The Grungependables: Total CorgaNation, Prologue

Written by Mackenzie Kaufman

The room was barely lit save for single flickering light dangling from the center of the ceiling. A man sat strapped into a chair in the center of the room directly under the light, and a crudely stitched potato sack was tied around his head.

His tormenter was WWE superstar Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson; built like a monster powerhouse, Johnson was only the muscle who blindly followed his master’s orders. Standing next to The Rock, grinning wildly, was the President of the United Sates of America, William Corgan. Corgan, possessing a shiny bald head and a consistently smug grin about his face, walked forward towards his captive, ripping the sack off his head.

“Stephen Malkmus, I’ve been waiting for this moment for over two decades.” Corgan rubbed his hands together in delight. The tied up former Pavement frontman and lead songwriter spat a good amount of blood, courtesy of his very recent beating from The Rock, at Corgan.

“Fuck you, Billy. You’re insane.”

“It’s ‘William’ now, Malkmus.” Corgan, hands behind his back, strolled to the other side of the room, speaking loudly so that Malkmus could still hear his voice with his back turned. “You started this, twenty three years ago. So tell me, Stephen: how can you not give a fuck about The Smashing Pumpkins when we were the only interesting band of the mid-90’s alternative period?”

Malkmus stared at Corgan in utter disbelief, suddenly laughing until his damaged right lung nearly collapsed.

“It was just a lyric. I was singing from the point of view of a jaded hippie. It was nothing personal!” Malkmus was referring to his lyrics for the song “Range Life” off of the band Pavement’s classic 1994 album Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain. The Pavement frontman spat a wad of blood at the floor, smiling as some dribbled out of the right side of his mouth. “But, now that you mention it, your band was always really overrated.”

The maniacal president gave a quick glance at his stronger bodyguard before looking back at Malkmus. Since William Corgan was elected President in a supposed landslide victory in 2016 over New Jersey governor Richard Florian, the former Smashing Pumpkins frontman had essentially bypassed the federal balance of power, contracting professional wrestlers to beat members of the House and Senate into doing his bidding; after seeing how well that worked out, Corgan fired his entire Secret Service staff and had them replaced with WWE and TNA wrestlers.

Dwayne Johnson ripped Malkmus out of the chair, picking him up and suplexing him on the hard concrete floor.

“Your band is just hipster nonsense, Malkmus. How do you expect anyone to even take you seriously when you write shitty lyrics like that?”

One of the most sweeping changes in the constitution enacted by Corgan was the outlawing of any U.S. citizen that was considered a “hipster”, as well as so-called “nostalgia acts”: rock musicians well past their prime who continued to rely on their earlier hits to ensure a steady flow of income. Hundreds upon hundreds of musicians had disappeared in the past year alone.

“Don’t make me break out Mr. Thom and Sammi.” Corgan was referring to his two cats, the only things he loved more than bathing in the blood of hipsters and wash ups. Just the mere mention of their dreaded names made Malkmus coil in fear. The Pavement frontman tried scurrying away, hitting the back wall as William Corgan approached a cage in the dark corner of the room and lifted its gate.

Two Siamese cats emerged from the cage, first trying to snuggle the diabolical ruler’s leg before being picked up, carried, and placed five feet in front of the terrified Pavement frontman’s battered body.

“Make them go away!” Malkmus was so terrified he almost wet his pants. Though they were considered to be only rumors, many believed that Corgan’s cats had an insatiable appetite for human blood, a trait that Corgan employed very well when getting rid of his enemies.

Win Butler, frontman of the renowned indie act and hipster band of worship Arcade Fire, was the first musician that disappeared following Corgan’s election. Butler later resurfaced, walking in a battered and dazed state through the streets of Washington, D.C. He was committed to an insane asylum soon after, where he reportedly stayed in a catonic state, only muttering “Mr. Thom and Sammi” repeatedly. Most believed Corgan had let Butler live as an example to others who didn’t renounce their hipster ways. Butler’s babbling was recorded as the vocal tracks for Arcade Fire’s fifth studio album, which was acclaimed by critics as the generation’s The Wall.

“Then tell me, Stephen. What do you really think of my band?”

At that point, Corgan could’ve made Malkmus sing if he wanted to. Even though Corgan really hated Malkmus’s perceived pretentious vocal style.

Siamese Dream and Melon Collie & the Infinite Sadness were masterpieces!” Malkmus shouted. “Adore was a really bold step in a new direction and one of the most criminally underrated albums of the 90’s! I’m one of the only people who actually sat down and listened to both Machina albums… I was always jealous of your success. I just wanted to make an album half as listenable as one of yours!”

Malkmus was panting. Corgan smiled at him, his perfect white teeth almost as shiny as his head.

“I believe you.”

Malkmus breathed a sigh of relief; his urge to wet himself was suddenly gone. Maybe Corgan would just let him go like he did Butler.

“It’s dinner time, my darlings.”

Before Malkmus even had time to react, the two cats pounced the helpless indie rocker’s mangled form. What followed was too gruesome to even begin to explain; you can use your own imagination here.

Satisfied, Corgan picked up his two cats, who nuzzled their bloody faces against his bosom. The President looked at The Rock in utter content.

“Tell Brett Buchanan at Alternative National News Network that the renegade Stephen Malkmus is nothing more than a nostalgic memory for hipsters.” One of Corgan’s other major reforms as virtual dictator was the rebranding of Brett Buchanan’s as a state-sponsored website and television program, with a majority of the news updates being statements coming directly from Corgan himself.

“Yes, my lord.” The Rock picked up whatever was left of Malkmus’s body, slinging it over his shoulder. “What of the core group of resistance fighters?”

For the past several months, Corgan had to deal with repeated guerilla attacks from a group of grunge musicians who managed to survive his genocide. From what he gathered, Eddie Vedder and Boom Gaspar of Pearl Jam, Chris Cornell and Matt Cameron of Soundgarden, Jerry Cantrell of Alice in Chains, and Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters were definitely in the group. There may have been more he hadn’t accounted for, but his undercover intelligence officer was usually correct.

Dave Grohl’s inclusion in the group confused Corgan, considering Grohl wasn’t a hipster or a washup that was marked for death. Grohl and the rest of the Foos, for all intents and purposes, did a great job of staying relevant and keeping up with the changing music industry, just as Corgan had. That meant Grohl was either a hired gun, or he actually felt sympathy for the damned.

“I have a plan that will put an end to them once and for all.”

“When will the plan be put in motion, my lord?”

“Tonight.”  Corgan patted Mr. Thom on the head, much to the envy of Sammi.



Thanks to Jeremy Rudick for the first photoshop

20 Metal Songs With Awesomely Bad Lyrics

It is not unusual for metal to have tongue and cheek humor. Sometimes, the lyrics are so over the top that it goes from tongue in cheek to making the listener laugh a little harder then intended, and/or just say, “what the hell?”. In no order here are 20 of those songs. None of the songs are bad; they just have bad lyrics that add a bit of a charm.


Exhorder – Slaughter at the Vatican

The band some people (elitists) accuse Pantera of “ripping off”. Good thing they didn’t rip off their lyrics.

The tires of the popemobile are slashed


Iced Earth-Reaping Stone

Iced Earth’s song about a rock that kills people!

Come into my world, my child
I will take you home
I’m your Reaping Stone



Wintersun – Death and the Healing

Wintersun’s ballad about how we cannot escape time and death and how Jari cannot learn English.

A snowstorm blew inside a wolf’s eyes
and the frozen tears covered all the mountainsides
But then the time got by and the wolf died
and someday that wolf would be I”



Sodom – Blasphemer

Thrash legends Sodom are so evil they can kill themselves just by masturbating!

I turn the cross upside down
and read Satanic Bible with fucking grown
my life begins at midnight twelve
masturbate to kill myself



Roargh – High Impact Deth Machine

Hudson Valley, NY thrash band Roargh sing about a machine  that destroys everything, including the ability to sleep.

“No rest from a
24-7 attack
I’ll kick your sandman
right in his sack”



3 Inches of Blood – Wykydtron

A song about a killer robot whose name sounds like it could be from a bad anime dub.

“Hey it’s the Wykydtron
It’s the Wykydtron
Hey it’s the Wykydtron


Bloodbath – Eaten

These Swedes talk about how they dream of nothing else but to be eaten alive.

As an appetizer, I let you taste my daughter”


Severed Savior – Fecalpheliac

No need for a comment here……..

You will die and so will you, because you ate my poo”



Mayhem – Chainsaw Gutsfuck

Dead, the original vocalist for Mayhem was one strange guy. He even had a strange way with words.

“Bleed down to the fucking core
You’re going down for fucking more
Screw your slimy guts
Driving me fucking nuts”



Megadeth – Liar

Dave Mustaine really owns his former guitarist, Chris Poland, with his cheesy insults.

“Eat garbage, spit blood
Diseased, health hazard
Scum bag, filthy bastard
Grease face, teeth decay
Hair matted, drunk all day”


Diamondhead – Sucking my Love

Here Diamondhead write the first ever post-grunge lyrics.

“Into her valley, all her charms taste of love
Oh yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah
Fragrance of my dreams, yeah go down, take my love
Oh yeah, yeah”



Death – Torn to Pieces

One of the first death metal albums and one that had a good use of word salad.

“Filled with ignorance
You watch them eat your friends
Ask for evidence
A hook right through your tits”



Sarcofago – Black Vomit

Seriously what is it with early black metal bands and having terrible lyrics?

“I was born by semen of Satan
At a night with full moon
Blessed by priests of evil
Marked with the sign of goat”



Mercyful Fate – Nuns Have No Fun

King Diamond has always been the king of cheesy lyrics. Here he shows you how to spell cunt.

‘C. U. N. T. that’s what you are, you’re C. U. N. T. yeah”


King Diamond – Give Me Your Soul

From King’s latest solo album. Shows he hasn’t lost the cheese!

“Pictures in red Pictures in red
The axe is coming down into his head
Pictures in red Pictures in red
The little boy is dead”



 Immortal – In My Kingdom Cold

Gotta love Immortal!

“unending grimness
these mountains that i heart”



Accept – Son of a bitch

Seems like these guys just learned how to curse in English.

Son of a bitch
Kiss my ass
Son of a bitch
Son of a bitch
You asshole”



Darkthrone – As Flittermice as Satans Spys


Flittermice of Eld they fly to blaspheme yehova
and to build the temple (of the) damned on once holy pleasure ground
A fare to rise the flag (of Satan), to desseminate the races
To build the hall of battle and to live in eternal strife 



Candlemass – Bewitched

Not only does it have awesomely bad lyrics but an awesomely bad video to.

My fingers they dance upon the strings like fire
weaving a spell of my burning desire”


Bulldozer – Misogynists

Last but not least we have Italian thrashers Bulldozer expressing their hatred of woman…and grammar.

“women: why do them exist?
god created that blight then saved the priests
god damned: another mistake!
you’ve gotta pay a lot of money then you get fucked”

13 Underrated Old School Death Metal Albums

The years 1986-1995 were definitely the heyday of death metal. During this period, the genre came into fruition and broke into popularity. Many classic albums were released during this time, such as Morbid Angel’s Altar of Madness, Death’s Human, Suffocation’s Effigy of the Forgotten, and Cannibal Corpse’s Tomb of the Mutilated. But this era also contained a lot of underrated gems that aren’t given enough attention. In no order, here are 13 of those gems.   


Demigod – Slumber of Sullen Eyes (1992)

While Sweden is known for being the death metal capital of the world, its neighbor country, Finland, had a few greats of its own, Demigod’s debut being one of them. The album is very dark in tone and can be really thrashy in some  songs and slow and haunting in others; its definitely an overlooked album in death metal history.


Morpheus Descends – Ritual of Infinity (1992)

Next on the list we have a band from Middletown, New York . Ritual of Infinity is the band’s first and so far only album.  The songs on this are not very technical, but make up for it with atmosphere. The album is very slow at parts, showing the member’s love for doom metal (their bassist, Ken Faggio, now plays in a doom band, Rooms of Ruin). The band’s name is a reference to a chapter in the comic book Sandman where the main character, Morpheus, descends into hell.


Luciferion – Demonication (The Manifest) (1994)

As mentioned before, Sweden is the death metal capital of the world. In the 90’s, the area was most known for the classic death metal bands Entombed, Dismember, Unleashed and Grave, as well melodeath pioneers such as At The Gates, In Flames, and Dark Tranquility. A group that is rarely ever talked about is Luciferion. On this first offering, the band plays very evil sounding death metal, similar to early Deicide, but with more technicality (mainly in the drums).


Fear Factory – Soul of a New Machine (1992)

Known for their later groove metal stuff, Fear Factory were once a death metal band. Soul Of A New Machine is Fear Factory’s first album, but the second one recorded as their intended debut, Concrete, didn’t get released until many years later. The album is very distinct for the era, as it mixes in elements of industrial. It is also one of the first death metal albums to have clean vocal parts.


Malevolent Creation – Retribution (1992)

New York’s Malevolent Creation is well known in the death metal world for their first album, 10 Commandments. However, Retribution rules! Sure, it brings nothing new to the genre, but the album is still loaded with fun, memorable songs with brutal drumming. If you were a fan of 10 Commandments then this album is a must hear.


Darkthrone – Soulside Journey (1991)

Darkthrone are well known by metalheads as one of the pioneers of Norway’s black metal scene. What is overlooked is their debut on which they played death metal. On this album, Darkthrone were a 4 piece (instead of the 2 piece they are now known for) and used fake stereotypical American names such as Dag Nilsen and Hank Amarillo. The album sounds like it could have come out of the Swedish death metal scene do to the use of buzzsaw sounding guitar riffs (common in that scene); the album is also more technical then the average death metal album of the time.


Benediction – Transcend the Rubicon (1993)

England’s Benediction are most known for having Barney Greenway current vocalist for Napalm Death on there first album. Though the band its self is rarely ever talked about. Here on their 3rd album,the band reached its peak. The album combines death metal with punk like drumming and use of breakdowns. There are also not many solos on this album, but the few that are there are memorable and very melodic. The band would now currently has the vocalist for the black metal grindcore fusion Anaal Nathrakh.


Necrophobic – Nocturnal Silence (1993)

From Sweden comes one of blackened death metal’s best releases. The album can also be seen as an early example of melodeath as it contains many elements of melodeath such as melodic riffs. The black metal elements are also very strong on this album do to its haunting atmosphere and use of keyboards. On top of that the album is very catchy though doesn’t hold it back from sounding so evil. Definitely one to check out for both black metal and death metal fans alike.


The Chasm – From the Lost Years (1995)

Next up is the sophomore album from Mexico’s The Chasm. Mexico is a country with a love of extreme music featuring mainly death metal and grindcore acts just as Brujeria. While bands like those focus just on energy and speed, The Chasm’s songs are more drawn out and diverse. Elements of melodeath, prog metal, thrash metal, black metal, and doom metal are all heard in this album’s sound. The band can be seen as a link between the old sounds of death metal and the off shoots from the genre.


Ripping Corpse – Dreaming with the Dead (1991)

The only album by New Jersey’s, Ripping Corpse. The album is very thrashy and contains lyrics mostly about the writings of H.P. Lovecraft. The album is also filled with very original riffs. The guitarist Erik Rutan would later be known for playing on Morbid Angel’s Domination album as well as his own band Hate Eternal.


Demilich – Nespithe (1993)

Another band that only released one album, Finland’s Demlich are on of the very first tech death bands. This album was a very distinct release and to this day still is. The most distinct feature being the vocals. The vocals are gurgled as opposed to growled and are recorded very low. The music is also extremly techical for the time while still remaining extreme and evil sounding. The band will play 2015’s Maryland Deathfest.


Necrophagia – Seasons of the Dead (1987)

Necrophagia are mostly known for their 1998 album Holocausto de la Morte, which is turn is known for having Phil Anselmo on guitar and the track Cannibal Holocaust, which started off with a cover of the films actual score. What the band is not as known for it is the fact that they came out around the same time as Possessed and Death, making Necrophagia an uncredited pioneer of the genre! The album is very distinct from most death metal as it contains more atmosphere then other founding  bands. The album’s production is also very raw. The riffs are very distinct and at times don’t sound like death metal riffs and the vocals sound very demonic. The album is not only a huge influence on death metal, but black metal as well.


Nocturnus – The Key (1990)

Noctornus was formed by singer/drummer Mike Browning after leaving Morbid Angel. This album was very ahead of its time. This album featured something not many death metal albums at the time featured: keyboards, which were added to make space type sounds. While other death metal bands at the time sang about gore, horror, satan and other horror topics, Nocturnus had more space and sci-fi themed lyrics. The riffs even give off a sci-fi feel. The sci-fi space theme is now very common in more modern tech death bands such as Origin. At Maryland DeathFest 2014 Mike Browning’s current band After Death (as Nocturnus A.D) played all of this album and it was awesome. Continue reading

Top 10 Metal Albums From 2004

10 years ago, the forefront of was metalcore bands and desperate attempts by nu metal artists to stay relevant.  That’s not to say 2004 wasn’t a good year for metal. A lot of great albums came out that year including ones that have yet to leave metalheads’ iPods.  Here are, in no order, the 10 best metal albums of 2004.


3 Inches Of Blood – Advance and Vanquish

We start the list of with an album that tributes the 80’s with modern touches. On their sophomore album, these Canadians really perfect the style they were going for.  With King Diamond-esque lead vocals, melodeath-esque backing screams, punk-influenced drumming, and over the top lyrics (according to them we must kill, slay, AND destroy the orcs), this album is just one fun album that’s great for car rides.



Exodus – Tempo of the Damned

The sixth album by thrash legends Exodus and their first after a large 12 year gap. The album was supposed to mark the return of the band’s original singer, Paul Baloff, but Paul sadly passed away. Tempo of the Damned takes the classic California thrash sound the band is known for and downtunes it. This gives it qualities of groove metal, played with thrash speed and energy. After this album, vocalist Steve Souza would leave and be replaced by Rob Dukes. Souza would later return in 2014.


Pig Destroyer –Terrifyer

This is the Virginian grindcore outfit’s transition album. On this album, they go from old school punk oriented grind to a death metal/grind fusion (but still without a bassist). This choice angered a few of the punks, but this album is really great. Terrifyer is very technical, but still has the grindcore energy the first two albums had. The album also comes with a DVD-audio disk that contains one doom metal song titled “Natasha”. In Japan, it’s on a CD instead. This is the band’s second best album, topped only by their previous one Prowler in the Yard.


Leviathan –Tentacles of Whorror

Depressive suicidal black metal (or DSBM for short) is a sub genre of black metal that for the most part is pretty boring. There are a few diamonds in the rough, including this one man band from California. While most DSBM is slow and depressive sounding, Leviathan is harsh sounding with blast beats and weird vocals. There is also a lot of ambiance on this album, giving it a dark surreal feel. This style is usual for Leviathan, but on this album he does it best. Fun Fact: the man behind this project is the kid from the cover of the video game Skate Or Die 2.


Deicide – Scars of the Crucifix

Seventh entry by Satan’s favorite old school death metal band. This album came after 2 albums(Incernatehym and In Torment in hell) that were purposely bad ,just to end the bands contract with Roadrunner records. This album put the band back to doing what they do best. Some songs from this album became fan favorites such as Fuck Your God and the title track. This would be the last album with the classic line up leaving singer/guitarist, Glen Benton and drummer Steve Asheim as the only original members from this point on.


Wintersun – Wintersun

After leaving the Finnish folk metal band Ensiferum, singer/guitarist Jari Mäenpää showed that he didn’t need those guys to make a good album. On this album, Jari had full creative control on songwriting and performed vocals, guitars, keyboards and bass on the recording of this album. The album is melodeath at its core but also has classical music orchestras, black metal atmosphere, prog technicality, folk melodies, a mixture of harsh and clean vocals, and broken English lyrics, making a very distinct record.


Converge – You Fail Me

The band that made bands like As I Lay Dying and Shadows Fall possible. Converge are a lot more badass, playing technical but fast metal-infused hardcore. This fifth installment by the band is what gave them the diverse fan base ranging from Hot Topic kids to extreme metal heads to punks and even noise kids.


Behemoth – Demigod

The album that made Behemoth much bigger (to the chagrin of black metal elitists). Continuing the previous album and Behemoth’s shift from blackened death metal to regular death metal, the band managed to make them selves big enough to play mainstream tours such as Mayhem Fest and Ozzfest. While a little bit of a step down in quality from Zos Kia Cultus (Here and Beyond), Demigod is still a very heavy album with excellent drumming from Inferno.


Necrophagist – Epitah

The album that made tech death what it is today, Epitah is the second and so far latest album by Germany’s Necrophagist. The album is most famous for guitarist/vocalist Muhammed Suiçmez’s insane guitar work and the band’s high level of technicality. This album is highly influential in the tech death sub genre, and hopefully one day this album will finally get a follow up.


Mastodon – Leviathan

We end this list whats arguably one of the most acclaimed metal album of the last decade. This album combines the sound of sludge metal with progressive over tones, jazz influenced drumming and very distinct instrumentation. This album brought Mastodon a larger fan base including those who aren’t into metal. After this album, they would go into a more progressive metal direction. In 2011, Mastodon become more hard rock. To this day, they tend to stay relevant.

Honorable Mentions: Orphaned Land – Mabool, Megadeth – The System Has Failed – The Dillinger Escape Plan – Miss Machine Amon Amarth – The Fate of Norns, Hypocrisy – The Arrival, Behexen – By Blessing of Satan

Edited by Doug McCausland

10 Underrated Slasher Flicks From The Past 40 Years

The conclusion of the slasher trilogy is here! So far we focused on the slashers’ heyday twice: the 1980’s. Now it’s time to talk about the best slasher films from before and after that era. Like before, the list will not include films that star slasher icons like Freddy, Jason, Michael, or Chucky. In addition, since it’s extended to other decades, the list will also not include later icons such as Leprechaun, Candyman, The Creeper, and Ghostface.

Also check out Part 1 and Part 2 of Anthony’s slasher compilation.


10. High Tension (2003)

First on the list is a film from France. The film is directed by Alexander Aja, known for the decent Hills Have Eyes remake and the campy Piranha 3D.  The film is about a woman trying to protect her best friend (who she has a lesbian crush on) from a killer. High Tension is known for its graphic gore as well as its twist ending that has caused people to ether like the film even more or hate it completely.


9. The Tripper (2006)

Directed by David Arquette, The Tripper is a homage to exploitation films of the 70’s and slashers of the 80’s.  The film is about a man dressed up as JFK who goes around killing hippies. Jason Mewes (Clerks) and Paul Rubbins (aka Pee Wee Herman) both having supporting roles in this film.


8. Gutterballs (2008)

One of the more extreme films in the genre. The film is a love letter to both 80’s slashers and 70’s rape/revenge films due to its score, feel and atmosphere. The film stars a group of rapist friends who go bowling and are killed one by one by a guy with a mask made out of a bowling ball bag. The killer looks both stupid yet scary at the same time, and the acts of violence in the film are shown in explicit detail. The film also does a good job of being an 80’s throwback while still being original at the same time.


7. To Sir, With Love aka Bloody Reunion (2006)

Next we take a trip to South Korea, the country that spawned this hidden gem.  The film is about a teacher getting a bunch of her old students who are together for a class reunion. This slasher is very different from most others, focusing on story over gore. It also has a great twist.


6. Hatchet (2006)

Mid 2000’s the American horror scene was polluted with remakes of old horror films, Saw rip offs and remakes of Asian horror films. This film was made as a direct reaction against all of that. Like Gutterballs, the film replicates the 80’s slasher feel. Hatchet is about a group of tourists in New Orleans who get stranded in the woods. They are then killed one by one by an undead man named Victor Crowley (played by horror icon Kane Hodder). Horror actor Tony Todd (Candyman) also has a small role in the film. The film so far has 2 sequels.

5. Tourist Trap (1979)

A very strange installment on the list. The film is about a group of kids who get stranded at a local wax museum. The owner lets them spend the night . The kids are then killed by a masked telekinetic man who smothers them with plastic. Oh, and the wax dummies all come to life and kill some of the kids too. Almost every shot in the film has at least one wax dummy giving the viewer a feeling of always being watched. Yeah it needs to be seen to be believed… unless you’re afraid of dummies, then avoid!


4. The Driller Killer (1979)

One of the most famous of the “video nastys”(List of movies banned in the UK during the 1980’s). The film is about a struggling artist named Reno Miller who lives in the slums of New York City.  He is having trouble paying his bills, can’t get any sleep because of a band practicing late next door, and his two female roommates annoy the hell out of him. As the film progresses Reno is driven further and further into insanity. He eventually snaps and starts killing people on by one using a power drill. The both stars and is directed by Abel Ferrara. It is his first film and showcases his sleazy city style of story telling which would be seen again in his later films such as Ms.45Bad Lieutenant, and The King of New York.   


3. Castle Freak (1995)

Coming out one year before the overrated Scream and its rip offs altered the standards of slasher films, Castle Freak is a loose adaptation of the H.P. Lovecraft story The Outsider. The film is about a couple and their blind daughter that inherit a castle in Italy. They then discover that something else is living in the castle with them!. The film is directed by Stuart Gordon, most know for Re-animator, and produced by Charles Band, who is most known for the Puppet Master films.


2. Inside (2007)

A film from the “New Wave of French Horror” (same movement as High Tension) . The film is about a pregnant woman who is being attacked by a woman who wants her unborn baby and will kill all who get in the way! The film is very brutal in its violence, scares and does not hold anything back! Though it’s very violent, it is also very stylized, making it one of the very few critically acclaimed slashers.


1. Black Christmas (1974)

We end the list with one of the first slashers ever (some even say its the first true one). An import from Canada, the film was directed by Bob Clark, who ironically also made A Christmas Story. The film is about a sorority house getting bizarre sexual and threatening phone calls from an unknown man. The members of the house are then killed one by one (sound famliar?) by this unknown person. The film set up many slasher tropes, and though there’s not too much gore, the deaths are really freaky. Halloween was originally going to be the sequel to this film. In 2008, the film revived a really poor remake titled Black X-mas.

13 Underrated 80’s Slasher Movies

After the box office smash that was Top 10 Slasher Flicks From the 80s (That Don’t Star Freddy Jason Or Michael), a completely unnecessary sequel was quickly greenlit and Anthony Carioscia was forced against his will to write a new list. So here are, in no order, 13 more slashers great slashers from the 80’s that don’t star any popular horror icons. Expect a remake of the first list next week.

13. The Stepfather (1987)

Per IMDB: After murdering his entire family, a man remarries a widow with a teenage daughter in another town and prepares to do it all over again. Simple enough, right?

12. The House on Sorority Row (1983)

After a group of sorority sisters accidentally kill their housemother when playing a prank, they start getting killed off one by one by a killer that uses her cane as a weapon. The movie is a regular slasher for most of the film but then takes a bizarre David Lynch-like turn when it gets closer to the climax. The film was remade as Sorority Row in 2009.

11. Chopping Mall (1986)

Directed by B-movie director Jim Wynorski, this film is about a bunch of teenagers being killed by robots in a mall. The film’s a real cheese fest…. in an awesome way.

10. April Fools Day (1986)

A group of college friends all go to a retreat owned by their friend, Muffy. Muffy loves playing tricks on her friends and her retreat is full of joke traps. Guess what? People start being killed off one by one by an unknown person! This film is not full of gore like most slashers and focuses more on thrills. Also the ending is a real shocker! In 2008, a film with the same title came out. It is usually mistaken for a remake but really has nothing to do with this comedy-horror classic.

9. Slaughter High (1986)

Yet another helping from 1986, this film a bunch of highschoolers play a prank on a shy nerd that disfigures and nearly kills him. 10 years later, he gets revenge! The film brings nothing new to the table but is still enjoyable due to its increasing tension and creative kills. You also feel pretty bad for the killer.

8. Intruder (1989)

Intruder is a slasher set in a supermarket. The director wrote the horror classics Evil Dead 2 and The Dead Next Door. Sam Raimi and Bruce Campell also have small roles in this film. The film is very creative in its kills and in its use of slasher tropes.


7. The Prowler (1981)

Yet another slasher that Tom Savini did SFX for, The Prowler is about a killer in a World War 2 army fatigue killing college students during an annual dance.  Joe Zito, the director, would later be known for directing Friday the 13th, Part 4 as well as the Chuck Norris film, Missing in Action.

6. Nightmares In a Damaged Brain (1981)

A film that got notoriety when it was banned in the UK due to its graphic content. The flick was also marketed as having Tom Savini doing the special effects, though he wasn’t involved with the film at all. The film is about a mentally disturbed man journeying back to Florida where his family lives. On his way there he keeps having nightmares from his childhood that cause him to kill!


5. Dark Night of the Scarecrow (1981)

A made for TV slasher, the film’s about a mentally challenged man who is wrongly accused of attacking a young girl and is killed for it. Since it was made for TV, the film does not really have gore. This does not make it a bad horror film, though, as the film is loaded with atmosphere and suspense.

4. The Funhouse (1981)

From the director of Poltergeist and the first two Texas Chainsaw movies, Tobe Hooper, the film is a slasher set in an amusement park where a small group of teens get stuck in the fun house ride and are attacked by a killer with severe physical deformities. The film stars Elizabeth Berridge, who would later be known for being in the huge hit film Amadeus about the legendary composer Mozart.

3. Hell Night (1981)

It seems like 1981 was the year of the slasher. Hell Night is a fusion of slasher films and creature features. The film stars Linda Blair of The Exorcist fame. The film is about a bunch of college students that do a pledge to stay in an old manor for one night where a whole family was murdered. They later find out that something still lives there! The film is notable for focusing more on scares than gore and nudity (very uncommon in slashers). There are much scarier things in this film than Linda Blair’s acting!

2. Slumber Party Massacre (1982)

A B-grade slasher with an almost all female cast (only male character being the killer). The film is about a bunch of teenage girls being killed by a man with a drill at a slumber party. The movie does not have much nudity (something people assume when hearing about this film). The deaths are pretty gruesome and the film, at times, can actually get pretty tense. Slumber Party Massacre had 3 sequels.

1. Happy Birthday to Me (1981)

A helping from Canada with a kinda weird story. The film is about a young girl named Virginia who returns to school after having experimental surgery that brought her back from death (not making this up). As a side effect of the surgery, she gets headaches and traumatizing black outs. One by one, Virginia’s friends are being killed. The film keeps you guessing who the killer is. It may even be Virginia!

Roundtable Review Of Judas Priest Show In East Rutherford, NJ

Mike Mazzarone:  Let’s get this over with. I have a general rule when it comes to concerts: it is much harder to write up a good review than it is a bad review. Obviously, this is the case because with bad concerts you have way more to go off of. If you see a good show, then you have the task of writing up a long winded, stretched out version of “it was a good concert” and that was the case last night when Anthony Carioscia and myself saw Judas Priest and Steel Panther over at Izod Center in East Rutherford, NJ.

Anthony Carioscia: Yeah, it was an awesome show, this being my second time seeing them. Last time I saw them was 2011 in the same venue with Thin Lizzy and Black Label Society opening. Judas Priest played for three hours!

Mike: Could never get into Black Label Society. Zakk Wylde is a good guitarist but the music does nothing for me.

Anthony: They were boring as hell and Zakk did a 17 minute pinch harmonic solo. 

Mike: A 17 minute long harmonica solo? Sounds not unlike something John Popper would do.

Anthony: Pinch harmonic is a guitar style.

Mike: Oh, I thought you said harmonica. We’ll cut that out. (Or not.) But Steel Panther, and I feel dirty saying this since AlternativeNation and hair metal go together like chocolate ice cream and an onion, but for what they are, an 80’s hair metal parody band that do not take themselves seriously at all, are pretty fun.

Anthony: I’m not one to listen to Steel Panther much but they were fun.

Mike: They were really funny live. The stage presence of the lead singer was comical and entertaining. Im pretty sure he sexually propositioned 90% of the women in the audience.

Anthony: Yeah, it was a very entertaining set. Best was when he made fun of a black guy and Mexican girl in the audience, but then started bashing white people.

Mike: Trust me, this was a whole lot better in person then what we are describing.

Mike: How Rob Halford goes on for nearly 3 hours on a set like that is beyond me. You can tell his voice is going a bit with age but just, my god.

Anthony: Yeah, he killed both times I saw him. And though this time the set was shorter and had less deep cuts being much closer to the band evens out the experience. I was shocked 3 years ago that Judas Priest played “Nightcrawler” and “The Sentinel”.

Mike: Well, I don’t think you weren’t going to get that many deep cuts on a tour to promote a new album.

Anthony: Not saying the setlist this time wasn’t good, I mean it’s always cool to hear classics like “Love Bites” and “Hellbent For Leather live, plus the new songs sounded great too. The reason why they played so many songs last time was because it was their false final tour.

Mike: I mean, I didn’t go in expecting them to bust out “Better By You”.

Anthony: Yeah they probably didn’t play that because it’s a cover.

Mike: I mean, the fact that it’s a cover doesn’t really matter. It’s actually one of the most significant non hit JP songs. Especially because of the trial.

Anthony: It being a cover though kinda makes the trial funnier, since they were being charged with a song having a “suicidal message” and its not even an original!

Mike: Back on topic. It was just really cool to feel that raw energy out of Halford and co. I’m pretty sure he’s going to keep going until high notes are no longer possible for him.

Anthony: Halford will keep hitting those notes till the day he dies.

Mike: And when he does JP will replace him with Adam Lambert.

Anthony: Nah. They did have another singer in the 90’s, Ripper Owens.

Mike: Didn’t stop Queen from touring.

Anthony: Yeah… sadly…

Mike: The hilarious thing was Halford playing dress up every other song.

Anthony: Yeah, during Turbo Love he looked like something out of a Final Fantasy game.

Mike: Was that the silver jumpsuit?

Anthony: Yeah.

Mike: Oh my… yeah, something out of a video game was the first thing that came to mind.

Anthony: Or an anime.

Mike: Well, Halford was always a flashy figure so it didn’t shock me. Towards the end of the set it seemed like they stopped for a minute or so before continuing. I thought they were going to do an encore. That was weird.

Anthony: They did like, three encores.

Mike: I don’t think they ever left the stage. I had an obstructed view so I had a hard time seeing but I dont remember them leaving the stage

Anthony: They never left the stage, but they pretended to end before playing “Living After Midnight” and again before “Defenders of the Faith”.

Mike: Find a way to end this because I got nothing.

Anthony: All in all in was an awesome show, but the first time I saw them in 2011 was a bit better due to a more diverse setlist. Judas Priest is definitely a band to see live whenever you can. To any fans who haven’t seen them yet, I highly recommend you do.

War Pigs
Battle Cry
Metal Gods
Devil’s Child
Victim of Changes
Halls of Valhalla
Love Bites
March of the Damned
Turbo Lover
Redeemer of Souls
Beyond the Realms of Death
Breaking the Law
Hell Bent for Leather
You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’
Living After Midnight
Defenders of the Faith
Beginning of the End

10 Bands That Classic Rock Radio Should Play

Written by Anthony Carioscia and edited by Doug McCausland

Hey, classic rock stations! As much as I love you playing “Stairway To Heaven” and “Bohemian Rhapsody” three times a day as much as the next guy (okay, not really), maybe it’s time to shake things up. There is a wealth of great material from bands that have been shoved to the wayside by you, and Anthony Carioscia has picked ten songs from ten bands whom he thinks should be given a little more love via your airwaves.


10. The 13th Floor Elevators

Hailing from Austin, Texas, The 13th Floor Elevators were one of the very first psychedelic rock bands. They are even credited with coining the term! Very big among fans of 60’s music, they deserve to played on classic rock radio alongside Jefferson Airplane and Cream.

9. Lucifer’s Friend

German hard rock outfit, Lucifer’s Friend,  are considered influential on both heavy metal and progressive rock. They even have a french horn player!

8. The Flower Traveling Band

Japan loves being slightly behind the trends with Western music; in the early 90’s, they had their own thrash bands, and in the 1970’s, they had psychedelic rock bands like The Flower Traveling Band. With Japanese culture being so popular in the states, now is the perfect time for these guys to invade classic rock air waves.


7. Blue Cheer

San Francisco’s Blue Cheer are a one hit wonder known for their cover of “Summertime Blues”. This band has been cited as a prototype to heavy metal, doom metal, grunge, punk rock and stoner rock. Eric Clapton himself even said they “are probably the originators of heavy metal”. Yeah, this should be enough to get at least one of their original songs on the radio.


6. Coven

From Chicago comes a band that sang about Satan before Black Sabbath and employed shock theatrics before Alice Cooper. Coincidentally, they have a song called Black Sabbath and a bassist named Oz Osbourne! After their first album, Coven, became a commercial pop act, but their debut really is the album that truly matters. With modern bands like Ghost and Jess and the Ancient Ones who took obvious influence from Coven, this album should be right at home on classic rock radio.


5. Can

Krautrock was a rock movement from Germany in the 1970’s that included bands with very experimental sounds.  These bands would go on to help shape the music world and influence the creation of genres such as electronic music and indie rock . If any band from this era was to be played on classic rock radio, it would most likely have to be Can due to them being more accessible than most other acts from that particular movement.


4. Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band

Frank Zappa’s best friend who seems to not have gotten as much credit as he did, Captain Beefheart played blues rock with an avant-garde twist. His music contained trippy atmospheres, odd riffs, and nonsense lyrics. He is very popular among fans of experimental music, and though most of his songs might be too weird for radio, he has some that could fit.


3. Goblin

Italy’s progressive rock band Goblin are very popular among horror fans. They are most known for scoring the original Dawn of the Dead, as well as many films directed by the acclaimed Dario Argento. These guys would be perfect to add to a station’s playlist around Halloween. Also, if you like these guys, go see them live. You won’t regret it!


2. King Crimson

It’s a big shocker no songs by England’s prog rock giants, King Crimson, are played on classic rock radio. This band sold out almost every show on their recent US tour and have influenced countless artists, the most notable being Tool. Their song “21st Century Schizoid Man” is often employed in commercials and was sampled by Kanye West on his song “Power”. Editor’s note: King Crimson are also the namesake of the freakin’ Crimson King from Stephen King’s Dark Tower novels. ‘Nuff said. 


1. Velvet Underground

This legendary New York band is definitely one of the most important bands in the history of music. They are considered to be the first true underground rock band, as well starting the “punk attitude”. The earliest roots of noise rock can be heard in some of their songs. Their first two albums appear on countless “top albums of all time” lists by many music publications. The late Lou Reed is currently a nominee for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, yet you rarely ever hear the Velvet Underground played on classic rock radio. Hopefully, if Lou wins that induction into the hall of fame, this will change.

Honorable mentions: BudgieSir Lord Baltimore.

Top 10 Slasher Flicks From The 80’s (That Don’t Star Freddy, Michael, And Jason)

Halloween is right around the corner, and now’s the time of year to be loading up on your favorite horror films. However, you might be trying to discover new ones as well. New contributor Anthony Carioscia is our resident horror film expert, and he’s here to share some of his personal favorite slasher movies from the 80’s. The twist here is that these movies don’t star any of the usual villains like Michael Myers, Jason Voorhees, Leatherface, Pinhead, and Freddy Krueger.

10. My Bloody Valentine (1981)

First up on the list is this gem from Canada. The film is about a Valentine’s Day party that gets interrupted when a crazy guy in a mining mask decides to go around killing teens. Due to its over the top gore, this film had nine minutes removed. An awful looking remake was released in 2009.

9. Alone in the Dark (1982)

No, this has nothing to do with that horrible Uwe Boll film. This film is acclaimed by horror fans for being more intelligent than most other slashers. Instead of one guy killing a group of people in a small setting, this film features a bunch of insane asylum escapees killing people in a town during a black out. The film’s director, Jack Sholder, also directed other horror classics like Nightmare On Elm Street 2 and The Hidden. This was the first ever film to be made by New Line Cinema.

8. Maniac Cop (1988)

A unique fusion of slasher horror and cop action, Tom Akins plays the role of a killer in a cop suit while the legendary Bruce Campell plays the good cop who must stop him.  The film has two sequels, with only one of them being worth watching.

7. Pieces (1982)

Pieces is a Puerto Rican film made by an Italian company, directed by a Spaniard (Juan Piquer Simón), and shot in Boston. The film is more along the lines of “so bad, its good”. The film’s nonsensical plot, bad but memorable dialogue, and cartoonish gore all make it worth the watch. If you enjoy this one, also check out Pod People and Slugs by the same director.

6. The Outing (1987)

The most obscure film on this list, The Outing is actually the shortened version of a film called The Lamp. This version of the film is the only version available in America and is still very hard to find. The plot involves a group of teens being killed by a genie! Like Pieces, this film has over-the-top kills and bad acting, only this film is meant to be funny and is seen by some as a satire of slashers.

5. Stagefright (1987)

From Italy comes this fusion of the slasher genre and the giallo genre (Italian horror mystery fusions). Director Michele Soavi used to be acclaimed director Dario Argento’s co-director, and you can tell as Stagefright‘s imagery and score are amazing. Plus, you get to see a guy wearing an owl mask run around killing thespians!

4. The Burning (1981)

One of the many slashers to be set at a camp.  The film is notable for involving a lot of now famous people: Jason Alexander (Seinfeld) in a supporting role, produced by Harvey Weinstein (now owner of the Weinstein Company), and being studio Miramax’s first film. The film is a loose adaptation of the upstate New York legend “Cropsey”, and has great/explicit gore thanks to special effects legend Tom Savini (Dawn of the Dead).

3. Maniac (1980)

This second helping from William Lustig (ironically director of Maniac Cop) is one of the most brutal slashers of the 80’s. The film is about a killer who scalps woman and nails their scalps to mannequins. The movie was controversial due to its high level of violence and gore. The film is infamous for a scene where Tom Savini (who also did the special effects) gets his head blown off with a shotgun. In 2012, the film received a remake starring Elijah Wood.

2. Sleepaway Camp (1983)

Yet another slasher set at a camp, Sleepaway Camp involves the usual plot of campers being methodically killed by a slasher figure. The film is full of gay overtones and contains themes such as pedophilia and transvestism that add to the film’s bizarre atmosphere. Also, if you don’t know it already, don’t let anyone tell you the ending. The film has several sequels, the only good one being its direct sequel.

1. Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)

Last but not least comes a film that’s perfect for both Halloween and Christmas. The film is about a man who goes on a killing spree dressed in a Santa Claus suit. Due to this concept, and the fact that it was released near Christmas, it was highly controversial and still appears on some most controversial films of all time lists. What makes this slasher so great is the fact that its shown from the killer’s perspective, using his back-story as the main plot of the film. The film has four sequels and a remake….avoid all of them.

Honorable mentions: House on Sorority Row, Slaughter High, April Fools Day, Chopping Mall.