By Bob Nalbandian

The Venom Devine
Burning Skies
Murder By Means Of Existence
Lifeforce Records

Labeled as "Germany's heaviest new hardcore sensation" Deadsoil prove just that on "The Venom Drive". Grind-core meets thrash metal accurately describes the music on this disc. New singer Freidrich Weber has a surprisingly distinct vocal delivery, displaying the typical (and bothersome) growls but unlike other grind-core bands, it's tolerable and, dare I say, soulful. Highlights include the opening "Enemies Will Suffer" and "Helsphere." The band has interesting dynamics, knowing when to shift from a fast and furious riff to a slow grinding groove. Recommended for fans of Hatebreed and the like, but should also appease fans of old-school thrashers Exodus, Slayer and Kreater.

Burning Skies debut "Murder By Means Of Existence" asserts more of a death-metal edge to hardcore, labeling themselves as "death-core." Hailing from the UK, the band displays harsh guitar riffs with yet again certain elements of old-school thrash. Unlike Deadsoil, the vocals become intolerable after the first couple tunes. It's no secret that I'm not the biggest fan of grind-core, or death-core, or whatever the hell they call it these days, but if this type of music is for you, I highly suggest you check out these discs, along with the new releases from "Cipher System" and Sunrise. Lifeforce certainly has the potential to become the new reigning label for hardcore metal.

In For Sin
Arclight Records

Amplified Heat consists of the Ortiz brothers - Jim (guit/vox), Gian (bass), and Chris (drums). This Texas trio (originally hailing from Houston but later moved to Austin) has nothing in common with either ZZ Top or King's X. Amplified Heat combine the raw power of old Motorhead, the hillbilly-ness of Reverend Horten Heat and garage punk of...well, your typical garage-punk band. I would say this band leans more on the bluesier side of garage-punk yet on the punkier side of Stoner rock, if you follow. A horrible, yet applicable, trashy production is further razed by Jim's uninspired vocals that are thankfully buried in the mix. Thankfully again, Jim churns out some impressive slide guitar work. Influenced by classic metal legends such as Sabbath, The Who, Hendrix, Cream, Purple, Blue Cheer and Megadeth (I guess since Dave is soon retiring, we can consider them Classic Metal too) the band claim they never played covers. Trashy, low-budget, and amateur, this is garage rock at its best.

Shockwaves CD REVIEWS ISSUE 10 Page 4