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With Belphagor. Saturday, February 10, at Peabody's.


On the epic "This Is Our World Now," singer and bassist Johnny Hedland lets us know "The age of the warrior has come." And his razor-blade snarl gives us no reason to doubt him on this or any other song from Unleashed's new disc, Midvinterblot. This isn't safe music. Proudly hailing from Sweden, Unleashed jams full-on Viking metal.

Then again there's evil too. The initial seconds of "Triumph of Genocide" sound like the first wooosh of air escaping the gates of hell as they open up. What follows is the aftermath: ascending guitar solos and machine-gun double bass played with pure malevolence. Put it this way: Midvinterblot, the group's eighth studio album, guarantees Unleashed a seat alongside such metal legends as Cannibal Corpse and Death. Heavy metal fans already knew hell was way cooler than heaven, but Unleashed is further icing on the leather.

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