I've been a huge proponent of the recent explosion of more and more heavy metal bands who emulated the traditional style pioneered years and years ago, as there are several bands out today who continue to create genuine and fantastic albums whether their preferred style of choice is the Iron Maiden and Judas Priest worshiping, or the darker sounds of the Mercyful Fate/King Diamond rendition. But, then we have Black Absinthe, a new band from Canada who prefers the heavier and more aggressive side of heavy metal, as their debut five-track EP "Augusta" has plenty of Motorhead influence, as well as plenty of inspiration from their Canadian forefathers in Anvil and Exciter.
The EP kicks off with the track "Disgraced" which is a decent song that shows off the basic sound of the band, but the next track "Twisted Past" is definitely a step up from the derivative riffage on the preceding song. There are plenty of cool riffs on this song that range from melodic, yet thrashy sections that are entirely reminiscent of early power metal bands like Omen or Jag Panzer to catchy midpaced riffs that sound more akin to Maiden. The singer's gruff vocals are also a nice touch as they add some aggression to the gritty, demo quality production that suits the band's style perfectly. "Gangster" and "Keeps Me Rolling" are both fun tracks that are more or less similar to the first song. They're not incredible, but they're good enough to not be skipped or dismissed. The real ear-catcher for this EP, though, is the spectacular "Rivers," a song that is full of stellar riffs and some punk-inspired passages that are a lot more violent than your typical heavy metal band. Overall, Black Absinthe appears to have a bright future ahead of them and "Augusta" serves as a great building block for these guys to join the ranks of Canada's finest.
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4.3/5 or 86%.