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Necrology 2015:

Among the inhumane amounts of releases that 2015 have offered, many albums have met the unjust fate of being left out in silence. I have received enormous quantities promos, well for just one man to deal with anyway. Thanks to everyone who has supported Gorger's Metal both as promoters and as readers, and thanks to everyone who support the creative souls that give life meaning to both stalwart and hardy metalheads as well as dark spirited and antagonistic music lovers.

I reject a lot of promos by not downloading them, since they stylistically falls outside of my preferences. Yet I download more than I have time to process. Despite good intentions of listening and describing all these, time does not suffice to delve deep enough into every release in between other commitments. The autumn of 2015 in particular took me by surprise, and many albums were left standing at the station when the train went on into the winter land.

This is an attempt to correct some of this, under the motto “It's better to present an album scarce, inadequately, imprecise and taciturn, than not at all.”

In addition, there's all the countless releases from labels I don't receive promos from. As I have a policy of giving actual promos top priority, I have tried my utmost to avoid the many temptations out there. Many things are said to be or not be metal, of all these, avoiding temptations is definitely not metal. Thus, a few non-promos have snuck in, occasionally. I have, however, been digging far less in the deep underground than I'd like to admit this year. Yet, my wanted-list has gradually grown, and it is with a sigh I must also leave these releases behind like a vague, misty memory.
I will add them below the neglected promos, partly to relive them for a short while, but also to share with you some (hopefully) kick ass music.

tomb stone

Dearly beloved. We are gathered here today to pay our final respect to 2015, and to lay a great year in metal to rest.
As this is an obituary, it also feels natural to send a thought to a very well respected veteran and metal god by adorning the headstone with Snaggletooth. We salute you, and drink our toast with Jack Daniel's. Thank you for everything.
Even if 2015 have drawn its last breath, the music will still live forever in the memory. Something the enormous amounts of top lists found all over the interweb can testify to. I prioritize to say a few words, albeit very few, about these previously ignored discs, rather than working on my own “best of” list. I have 199 candidates written down, but only Lemmy in heavenly VIP-section of Hell knows if I'll ever get around to narrow it down to a presentable list.


Neglected spirits ov 2015, haunting my frail and dilapidated mind:

PS: I'm a real fucking moron for committing myself to this ridiculous project. All in all it consists of 70 promos, and a little more than a hundred other releases. This is just self-fucking-torment. Thus I intend to do the only reasonable thing: become more selective, and keeping it short.

Mini Reviews:

22.10.16

BLOT - ILDDYRKING

Blot - Ilddyrking

Independent, 13.10.15
Sound of the Horde opens Ilddyrking (fire-worship), an album I've had on my wanted list since it was released a year ago. The song is reminiscent of a mixture of Viking tones and Maha Kali, and it will later be evident that Blot have fascinations for the Swedes. The moniker refers to the old ceremonial of sacrifice to the pagan Norse gods, Blót.
The band from Kristiansand blends elements of black metal with melodic, combative folk-inspirations, and borrows some of the folkloric Sogna-metal (Windir et al.) in the process. Especially the gorgeous melody lines in the title track shows a band with great flair for song-writing.
Two of the three men who constituted Blot on this release, otherwise reside in Mental Disaster, while the third man have a past in Apostasy. Until now, they've reinforced the live-crew with Stig Reinhardtsen of In Vain and Osvald Egeland from Blood Red Throne, but by now, Stig has become a permanent member, and the bass duties have been taken care of by new employee Robert Barajas. The band came together in 2007 and released the EP Blot in 2009. On this, the debut, it's evident time and again that the lads have an impeccably eminent flair for Norse melody and structure, with black vocals and spices of acoustic guitars and harmonica. God of War being one of the highlights.
As mentioned, the trio display their respect for Dissection. This by making an exquisite version of Where Dead Angels Lie.
I shall attempt to resort to brevity, although it's tempting to elaborate far and wide, for Blot has delivered a brilliant debut in the form of Ilddyrking.
Hopefully the guys are already working on new material, for I look forward to the continuance.
EDIT 24.11.16: A small correction. I just learned that neither Robert nor Stig are permanent members.
Metal Archives may be the most available source of information, but the database is certainly not flawless.

piggtråd
13.10.16

THE PSALM - I (EP)

The Psalm - I

Screaming Victims Distro, 24.06.15
Coincidences reigns, but that's just spices of life. I thought this EP, simply called I, was a new release, but it turned out that it was released last year. These Greek death metal mongers will soon have existed under this moniker for three years and they consist of former Nocturnal Vomit members. Hardly a year ago The Psalm released two heretical psalms which we hereby take a closer look at.
I is the first declaration of war from the trio, and barely seven minutes long A Mass For The Bereaved is their first sign of potent fatality. The start is occult and ominous, while guitar and drums are warming up. When one is warmed up, it's beastly riffs and angry vocals that thunders out of the catacombs. The expression is tough, but I do have time to notice that repetition drags out before the band takes action. When they do, we get another thing coming. After a breathless sprint-session, the guitars takes over and howls at the moon like a desperate coyote throughout the two last minutes.
Ascetic is the title of the next song, and it stretches out to 30 seconds longer than its predecessor. This shows The Psalm's inherent exotic touch, where the death metal acquires a fairly strange and peculiar expressions which is certainly suitably. In melody, this emerges as monotonous and black/white. At times it feels a bit monotonous too, but rhythms and riffs go through different sequences and all in all the song dances as shadows on the rock wall in the primitive cave.
It'll be interesting to see how this band evolves, as this is a good EP from an already talented band. I have one wish: Don't ever hold back on the howling flamboyant guitars. Let the demons dragon loose.
Check out the Greeks first sign of life for a voluntary price: The Psalm - I.

barbed wire
13.09.16

THE SHIVA HYPOTHESIS - PROMO 2015

The Shiva Hypothesis - Promo 2015

Independent, 01.12.15
The Shiva Hypothesisfrom the Netherlands was created as a trio in 2012, and spent some time trying to find a voice that matched the band's expression. They have found their man, and released their first demo. Promo 2015 could, with its three songs totalling just over 20 minutes, just as well be defined as EP. Especially considered that the sound is more than acceptable.
The music blends elements from the various extreme-metallic neighbourhoods and the guys mention classic Norwegian black metal and renown extreme metal bands as their main influences. The band has still staked out their path without stepping in someone else's footsteps. It's most convenient to associate the band with the genre hybrid black/death, with undertones of satanic occult alchemy.
I've taken my time with this release in a vain attempt to find the right words to describe the band's architectural nightmare in three acts. The band construct tracks with technical and progressive principles in mind, but preserves the spirit of maddened black death. The music is raw as an insidious eeriness that manifests, surround you and go to physical attack before you have time to prepare. Moreover, I have a taste for the way the band adds unexpected transitions, although the contrasts might not be innovative. A good recipe is still good, as long as it's followed sporadic, and not pedantic.
The band's vocal find is something of a catch. MvS helps to preserve the band's ominous expression, as well as increase and renew its beastly character of insanity. The way the man warps and distorts his voice with gurgling and snarling result, gives occasional associations to Attila Csihar.
How The Shiva Hypothesis develops from here on, as they're hopefully soon picked up by a reputable label, I clearly want to keep updated on. For seldom have I heard such a talented and delightful first demo as Promo 2015!
The three songs can be found separately on Bandcamp for an optional price.
Check out the lyric videos too: Caduceus, Praedormitium & Maze of Delusion.

barbed wire
04.07.16

SERPENT SEED - DEBRIS OF FAITH

Serpent Seed - Debris of Faith

The End of Time Records & Under The Tyrant’s Banner Prod., 25.11.14
Rules are made to be broken. Or rather; I have difficulties saying no. I did indeed say no when at first being presented for the psychedelic doom metal band Doomster Reich's debut The League for Mental Distillation, but my Polish “correspondent” had another ace up his sleeve, and I can of course not to say no to thorough polish black/death, for Debris of Faith is a barely 40 minutes long debut that smells reasonable scorched.
Serpent Seed delivers nothing new, but they put all traditional means to good use, and maintains the musical legacy in a way that should guarantee acceptance amongst genre fans. With satanic faces, are snarled blasphemous phrases, vocalist Aryman throw around raging loud-mouthing in a hybrid of blackened guttural tirades. The same man deliver, along with Jatssa, swarming cascades of fierce riffs and sizzling melodies, where the moods are spitefully glowing. Wojtass controls the sticks with steady hands, and knows to make use of alternating strokes and good transitions with a deftly relation to all elements of the kit. Jakub's bass surrounds the poisonous elixir like a thundercloud of steam as the band's corrosive cocktail makes its way through the bloodstream, toward the body's vital organs.
With great tunes and ditto instrumentation, along with aggressive metal with adequate melodic brutality and an atmosphere of uncompromising dismayed infuriation, the newcomers in Serpent Seed might not offer on anything new, but they present quality in all aspects, and the music is about as memorable as it gets, depending on how much time you spend with it. When the band (just to top it of) lets you decide what you want to pay for the digital version, I see no reason why genre fans shouldn't examine the album closer. I consider Debris of Faith as a strong debut, and thus I assume that most black/death fanatics will be more than satisfied. (As I obviously consider myself the template of which you should look to for calibrating your own taste.)

barbed wire
13.06.16

TOD HUETET UEBEL - MALÍCIA

Tod Huetet Uebel - Malícia

Possession Productions, 06.06.15
In connection with Finnish Devouring Star's debut Through Lung and Heart, I mentioned my fear of inflation within kaleidoscopic landscaped black metal. Now, a year 'n a half later, a shitload of generic mediocrities have fortunately not occupied the genre. At the very bottom of that Impression, I also briefly mentioned Portuguese Tod Huet Uebel, fearing that I'd never get the time to write anything about them.
The moral? Fears are groundless - be fearless!
Tod Huet Uebel has probably more in common with the roots of this sizzling variety of black metal, as they remind more about Paracletus era Deathspell Omega than Icelandic and other successor. With Malícia, even the Portuguese exhibits an ability for individual thinking and ditto relatively unique music. Frenetic atonal savage drift with maximum propulsion and engine speed through the roof, turns out to be fairly normal, but the breathless duo constantly shifts gears in unpredictable patterns, while adding amounts of dystopic moods. The guitars offers lots of disturbing and unpleasant sounds, and the musical details shifts so often that a danger of repetition never becomes an issue.
Tod Huet Uebel is admittedly not quite on par with its closest relatives, but if this is a sub-genre of pitch-black landscapes that lights your fire, than check out Malícia straight away.
Make sure you take a closer look at the distinctive cover art in the process as well.

piggtråd
13.06.16

ARALLU - GENIEWAR

Arallu - Geniewar

Selvutgitt, 18.02.15
Time to return to the past to submit a few safe sport betting coupons.
We're going to Arallu, an underworld kingdom, a realm of death, portrayed by the Israeli black/death band Arallu, that blends melodic extreme metal with a Mesopotamian folk musical heritage. Where Orphaned Land blends corresponding elements with gentle metal and Nile spice their death metal with elements of the powerful Middle East, Arallu mix a bit more aggressive blackened tones, where the rhythms of local culture is incorporated into the metal part while folk elements are entangled naturally without becoming a dominant element. They have used authentic instruments, such as baglama, oud, kanun, goblet drums, bongos and other traditional instruments.
The band turns 20 next year and this is album number five, which is also available on CD via Raven Music. They're also releasing a DVD named Middle Eastern Battlefield these days. Those who have seen Sam Dunn's documentary Global Metal, or the equivalent French documentary Un Monde de Metal, may very well recognise the Israelites.
The band's music has a primitive feel, where even other genres, like punk/rock inspirations, can be traced. The music feels a touch unrefined, and might not be on the same level as the compatriots in Melechesh, but it feels real, genuine, and it definitely has a charming touch. If a more diabolical version of Iron Maiden's Powerslave, stronger marked by regional tones, sounds tempting, you can find it here. Not bad at all.

You can find videos on YouTube, and the band has uploaded Geniewar and other albums to Bandcamp.

barbed wire
02.04.16

STORMY ATMOSPHERE - PENT LETTERS

Stormy Atmosphere - Pent Letters

Total Metal Records, 14.09.15
I was honestly rather unsure about delwing into this one. The song Afterlight, which opens the 71 minutes(!) long album, at first appears to be rather pretentious female-fronted epic rubbish meeting rock opera. Eventually however, the Israeli quintet appears to have a flair for melodies and progressive structures. They call their music “Progressive Art Metal”, which I don't see any reason to bicker about.
The album is based on a somewhat unusual concept, where the protagonist is imprisoned and bids his time reading books. Pent Letters is built on classics such as The Count of Monte Cristo, Stranger in a Strange Land, Faust, Dostojevskijs' Crime and Punishment, etcetera.
The music has a dramatic and theatrical flair that is enhanced by gothic and symphonic elements and a dash of circus, and Ayreon, amongst other things.
71 minutes is definitely in excess, but Stormy Atmosphere still gets away with it relatively good. It should also be said that the last 14 minutes consists of the bonus song Time, an elaborate medley. The music will probably appeal to fans of Pink Floyd, Meat Loaf and/or Nightwish etc. more than those who share my fairly rawer taste, but for the target audience or those having an open mind, this is certainly a release that should be checked closely.

See the video for Historical Adventure, and the lyric-videos to The Menippeah (with Tom Englund of Evergrey fame) and Gothic Dread. The two latter can also hear below, along with Outcome.

piggtråd
22.03.16

FESTUNG NEBELBURG - ZWISCHEN DEN JAHREN

Festung Nebelburg - Zwischen den Jahren

Selvutgitt, 28.12.15
After having said yes to check out this album, I've received several promo requests from the German PR agency Metalmessage. By then, after hell knows how long, I hadn't yet scribbled down jack shit about Festung Nebelburg, and so I promised to prioritize Zwischen den Jahren on my next return to 2015, the year I keep revisiting in an endless effort to terminate. A year that currently has 6803 full-length releases registered on metal-archives. That's 18 fucking albums every single day. Hahaha... Bloody Hell.

Festung Nebelburg plays black/pagan/folk according to the same page. Forget about antipathy and blunt brutality. The inspirations from the black spheres found here are simply musical elements, and not part of the music's vile soul in that sense.
The band consists of one man, Nattulv (Scandinavian for Nightwolf) but with drums, bass, both one and two guitars, dual vocal tracks and rich sound, a believable illusion of a full band is created. Especially the vocal effects created by black underlying vocal along with clean vocals creates a distinguished touch, and Nattulv's clean vocals have a very “grown up” feel with a manly voice.
The music is melodic, and can in structure and melodies be reminiscent of the little I've heard of German music outside of the metal genre, whether it's classified as folk, rock, pop or simply song. Wrapped in a thick layer of droning guitars and flanked by acoustic spices, it creates a somewhat distinct expression.
The music is relatively gentle, and may even be perceived as a clue toothless, but it has good melodies, and the ten years old one-man band shows a descent signature with this sophomore album. Certainly not mandatory, from my standpoint, but a very nice slice of heathen metal nonetheless.
The albums theme revolves around Rauhnacht, that in Bavaria in south-eastern Germany is surrounded by mystery and superstition. The album was released on digipak in 500 copies. Listen to an album teaser on Bandcamp, and hear Thomasnacht via SoundCloud:

piggtråd
20.02.16

THEURGIA - ANTI PERPETUO (EP)

Theurgia - Anti Perpetuo

Worship Tapes, 24.06.15
This 25-minute EP is Venezuelan Theurgia's first sign of anti-life. Anti Perpetuo was created by Daemonae, but the band has now grown into a quartet. The only thing Daemonae can't take all the credit for, is the song Oscurantis, or the 27-second introduction to this, containing a quote from Friedrich Nietzsche's The Joyful Science, signed actor/director Werner "Akizur" Ruzicka.
When coming across releases with illustrations by French Gustave Doré, chances are that black metal is on the menu. So also here. The release contains five tracks with swift and warlike black metal built on a foundation of gloomy melodies. Oscurantis shows great flair for both melodies and variations in the five songs, and especially the song Ausencia emerges as evocative and powerful.
When the last song, Su voz entre las sombras arrive, the sound is suddenly reduced to a shadow of the former material, although everything is mixed and mastered in DAE Home Studio, Venezuela.
Anti Perpetuo consists of good, fierce and often frantic black metal, and is thus a very good start. The band has recently released one song, Transformation (Descend to the night of Hiperboros) , from an upcoming EP. This bodes well, and I look forward to following this new South American ensemble onward. Worship Tapes self-evidently offers tapes, but Anti Perpetuo is also available on digipak via Uno Producciones, and of course digitally.

If you master Spanish, you can certainly check out the lyric videos for Anti Perpetuo and Su voz entre las sombras. Below you'll find both EP and the new song.

barbed wire
18.02.16

EMPHERIS - YE OLDE VARSOVIA (Live)

Empheris - Ye Olde Varsovia

Bestial Invasion Records, 12.09.15
Dark clouds lies ahead of us all, but even perils of the past hangs threatening as malicious ghosts over us. This section has been neglected in favour of new releases and a touch of leisure in well over a month. It's time to revisit a bygone era once again.

In 2013, the Polish band Eris was laid in ruins, after a brief reunion. The band was mainly active from 1995 to 1997. From the ashes arose Empheris. Two full-length albums, a good handful of demos, and a huge gym bag full of EPs, splits etc. later, the band now consists of five men, and the three Eris members are now all out of the picture. This live document from last year tells of a fierce ensemble that performs black speed metal or rather speedy black metal.

The sound is quite thin and scanty, but also a little bit charming, and the quintet do get their message across.
After the intro, they perform a set list of 10 songs, and the concert is over after less than 25 minutes. Then follows two tracks from a different indoor gig, providing a total duration of just over half an hour. We're talking short and concise songs with fierce attitude, but enough embedded melody to make the songs distinguishable from each other. There ain't any depth in the material, naturally enough. Not surprising, as none of the songs lasts for more than 3.5 minutes, and the average is less than 3.

The band is allegedly working with new material, including stuff for the upcoming full length album. I would have saved my money for that one, but considering it's been eight years since the last album, I wouldn't hold my breath.
The live album was in fact the last release from British Bestial Invasion Records.

barbed wire
09.01.16

POKERFACE - DIVIDE AND RULE

Pokerface - Divide and Rule

Molot Records, 13.09.15
“Holy Hell, that girl can fucking bellow as a bull!”, was my first impulsive impression when Miss Delirium Tremens opened her mouth and roared in my ear.
The Russians released an EP in 2014, while 36 minutes long Divide and Rule is their first full length album. Aggressive thrash is the name of the game, although female vocals give some crust-sensations. The pace is high, whilst headbanger-friendly and it thrusts hard. Sometimes the sheer speed might give a risk of dislocated neck vertebrae. Some of the songs seem to have melody-lines, solos and other memorable hooks, while others feel a bit more anonymous. Whether these have the capability to grow, or will remain filling mass, I leave to you to figure out. Time you lift a fucking finger around here too, damn it.
Longest song, with both tenacious moods and infernal energy, Into the Inferno, becomes an instant favourite.

piggtråd
09.01.16

DECEASED - CADAVER TRADITIONS (2Cd Compilation)

Deceased - Cadaver Traditions

Hells Headbangers, 11.09.15
Ain't the market saturated with metal bands who cover metal songs yet?
If you're young and inexperienced, and in search of old classics, than here's a bunch of obligatory songs, but also lots of nonessential stuff. Deceased are veterans with over 30 years experience, and this is a double-disc with 53 cover songs. This two hours and forty minutes long thing is a re-release of Zombie Hymns (2002) and Rotten to the Core (2004), with 17 additional renditions. Most are probably picked from 80- early 90s, or thereabouts, and we're primarily talking heavy, hardcore punk (or crust), thrash and death metal.
But damn it, wasn't I supposed to be more selective? This is a completely unnecessary release. Deceased don't bring anything new to these songs with their pointless interpretations. Except perhaps chlamydia, after raping our subcultural heritage.

barbed wire
09.01.16

AORNOS - ORIOR

Aornos - Orior

Symbol of Domination Prod., 05.09.15
Aornos is a Hungarian black metal one-man band defining it-selves as noetic black metal. Architect Algras appears to be an active songwriter, 9 new songs, as well as various cover songs, remastered songs and a remake has appeared on the man's Bandcamp over the past five months.
When a one-man band debuts with an hour of music, I sort of smell a rat, but the guy knows what he's doing. The songs are extremely well designed, with lots of content and variety, and the music has pleasing undertones of alchemical medieval and mysticism on the one hand, and a hypnotic atmosphere of cosmos on the other.
The sound is my biggest objection. With steadier production Orior would have become a very powerful and evocative work of extreme metal art.

barbed wire
07.01.16

EXHORTATION - ORACLE OF BONES (EP)

Exhortation - Oracle of Bones

Independent, 30.08.15
This is the first release from the Cleburne, Texas quintet Exhortation. Stylistically, mainly thrash and deathcore is being mixed, but the guys are diverse in their behaviour. The music is often energetic, but the pace and intensity at times calm down completely. Eerie moods, melodies and thrilling riff are largely present in the boys' cauldron.
Even if I have well developed allergies against most deemed as anything core, I think this fresh ensemble succeed very well both with single songs and entirety. Instrumentation and good sound also passes easily through the needle eye.
Even the cover is stylish.
Other this'n'that-core groups have something to learn from these young brats.
That the teens are influenced by Christianity is probably the most negative I have to say about them.

barbed wire
07.01.16

JUNE 1974 - ATLANTIDE (EP)

June 1974 - Atlantide

Visionaire Records, 28.11.14
This EP from Italian June 1974 represent two exceptions to my own rules, and an anomaly on this page. Besides from at the opening of a year, I avoid writing about last year's releases, and I consistently don't write about releases older than one year. Not because music goes out of date, but because I want to process current releases, to keep the reader up to date in the presence, and because I need boundaries to not go completely bananas myself. The acceptable exception is re-releases.
When so owner of Visionaire Records, Federico Romano, ask nicely if I can make an exception, because June 1974 is his own musical playground, I accept to spread the word and give the EP a chance.
The guy has diverse taste, far beyond what I have, and he gladly blends everything from pop and rock to classical and hip hop into the mix. On Atlantide he fortunately moderates the expression down to a post-rock potpourri, although it also contains elements of pop and electronica.
The two tracks flows naturally from sequence to sequence, constantly focusing on melody. Fortunately we find dissimilar acoustic strumming and picking along with some electric guitars. Far too little of the latter, though. And so, this can't be qualified as metal, thus breaking another of my rules. These 24 minutes are best suited for those with open minds, and I'm afraid that excludes me.

barbed wire
07.01.16

FUNEBRIA - DEKATHERION: TEN YEARS OF HATE & PRIDE

Funebria - Dekatherion: Ten Years Of Hate & Pride

Satanath Records, 29.08.15
The title may suggest one of two possibilities, that this is a “best of” compilation, or that Funebria celebrates the ten-year anniversary of their very first release, and mark the occasion by launching brand new music. The latter is the case, although they've let the song Tormento, apparently taken from previous album, end this album.
Not unexpectedly, considering the primitive, noisy, feverish and reckless expression, the band comes from South America. From Venezuela, to be more specific.
Not surprisingly either, the menu consists of black/death metal, performed with cascading adrenaline pumping blood and headless, rapid and firm disregard.
The music is, albeit not original, fast, tough and at times filled with poisonous atmospheres. The screaming high-pitched vocals can possibly be an ordeal for some, though.

piggtråd
05.01.16

COLD RAVEN - EQUILIBRIUM AND CHAOS

Cold Raven - Equilibrium and Chaos

Sliptrick Records, 25.03.15 (Europe), 05.05.15 (Elsewhere)
Just as I try to get rid of the rotting carcass known as 2015 by burying it at 6.66 foot in my backyard, someone insists on bringing to my attention three ripping promos from the belly of the dead fucking best.
It's a new band we here encounter. The Italians started up in 2013 and has wisely waited until they've accumulated enough material for a full-length, and recorded it on adequate manner, before they share their infamous vision with the world.
The band swear to pristine black metal, with influences from the originators of the second wave and the bands that followed, but is not afraid of using melodic aids to create songwise divergence.
The result is a bit pagan and quite moody. Not mandatory, admittedly, but Equilibrium and Chaos is a barely forty minutes long record that seems to be the sort you could easily come back to regularly. The songs have distinct nuances in barren terrain, which makes them easy to follow from the start. Meanwhile, the music seems to be versatile enough to create continued interest through repeated listening sessions.
It sounds relatively gentle for being black landscapes, but it's atmospheric, fittingly bombastic and well played. The vocals are grim, and the sound is fashionable, with more than descent dynamics.
I choose to characterize Cold Raven as “bewitching melodic pagan black metal,” though it sounds almost nauseatingly romanticizing. It emits a few vibes of Dissection, albeit in a more pagan suit, and yes, I like it.

See the video for No Mercy.

barbed wire
03.01.16

DULIA - HIC CONTENDIMUS (EP)

Dulia - Hic Contendimus

Symbol of Domination Prod., 23.08.15
Italian Dulia has, by all appearances, not favoured the world with anything before this 6-track EP, consisting of 26.5 minutes of music at the crossroads between black, death and doom.

In accordance with old Italian and Greek black metal, the sound carries a little touch of cassette player with weak batteries. There is something in the simple savagery and the seedy and shady melodies that grabs me. (The word catchy just sounds so commercial.) The expression may be slightly in excess primitive, and it's possible there's a bit too much doom in the mixture, for I would have preferred a bit more delirious expression.

I think I'll recommend this to tactless grave desecrators and other vulgar vandals on Prozac or other zombie pills.
The prim and über prudent can just take their fastidious bitching elsewhere

piggtråd
03.01.16

MISSA MORTVM - ET LUX PERPETUA LUCEAT EIS...

Missa Mortvm - Et Lux Perpetua Luceat Eis...

Satanath Records, 22.08.15
Ah, yes ... This album is just as delightful as I suspected.
After just having ignored two other albums from the same label, it feels nice to be able to enjoy and endorse another one. Having listened to black metal for 20 years in a row, you can probably call me a little bit picky.
Missa Mortvm is a Chilean duo, and Et Lux Perpetua Luceat Eis... is actually the band's début. The band focuses on moods, both the melancholic, the gloomy and the proud and stand tall atmospheres. Thankfully, that doesn't mean that the other factors of the music takes second place.
Of course you can't compare this album with the genre's classics, but even though the album can't be said to be mandatory, and each and every one of the 41.5 minutes doesn't feel as necessary, this is still a dark and dreary album that can provide peace of mind for dark souls in a godforsaken winters night. I like this!

piggtråd
03.01.16

MY SILENT WAKE - DAMNATIO MEMORIAE

My Silent Wake - Damnatio Memoriae

House Of Ashes, 29.06.15
If I'm to be picky, then I might as well skip this one, right? Wrong! Although British My Silent Wake at very first sight/listen emerges as a smaller brother of the bigger bands in death/doom context, there are some things hidden under the hood that's not revealed during the first lap.
The first two songs might appear a bit generic, but throughout the album, things emerge that is worse to sweep under the carpet. The song Now It Destroys has some groovy rocking rhythms, which along with comfortable suggestive guitar playing spellbinds me, and then I haven't even mentioned the hypnotic Black Oil.
Generally, My Silent Wake feels a little lighter on the foot, and not as mournful as a number of genre-mates. Not all songs are equally good this time, but it's like a comfy chair, once you're caught by the undertow, it's hard to get loose.
The band has been around for just over a decade and they're already out with their eighth disc, so we're talking efficiency.
I endorse this album, despite some debris.

piggtråd
03.01.16

THRASHOLE - BLASPHEMY!

Thrashole - Blasphemy!

Selvutgitt, 13.06.15
Thrashole was conceived in 2012, and released a demo the same year. This EP is their second release, and if they continue like they do here, these guys can go far.
As the title reveals, they play thrash. What you're not necessarily prepared for is that the band crafts very strong songs that'll take your mind back to a time when the distinction between thrash and heavy metal was not as pronounced.
The melodies are very good, the transitions unexpected but fully moulded and the rhythms are varied. I would like to say galloping, but hey, that varies. I like the diversity and the skilful structure of this half-hour EP, and I hope the band gets signed to a reliable label asap.

piggtråd
03.01.16

DELIRIOUS - MOSHCIRCUS

Delirious - Moshcircus

Independent, 01.05.15
This is one of the few promos I for some reason or another haven't heard at all. Selectivity or not, curiosity is victorious.
After a psychotic circus intro, it's thrash of the melodic variety which flows out of the speakers. Moshcircus is the fourth album from this German quartet. The band has excised since 1990, but didn't début before 1999.
Delirious seems to make all right songs and the music is clearly inspired by more conventional heavy metal, such as Accept.
It's unfair to judge an album by just one single spin, so I won't. If this got growing potential it can prove to be quite so pleasant and entertaining. Otherwise there is a great danger that the Germans will drown in the crowd.

piggtråd
03.01.16

INFERNUS - GRINDING CHRISTIAN FLESH

Infernus - Grinding Christian Flesh

Moribund Records, 14.04.15
Among the bands that have chosen to call themselves Infernus, we find these blackened thrashers from Oregon, USA. The band's sophomore album lasts for almost 50 minutes (including two bonus cover songs), and diverge a bit in style, from threatening and moody to hellish, blasphemous and dirty.
Do you like the horrid and obscure that lies as fetid, rotting and plagued poison in the subsurface sediment of the underground? Okay, that's perhaps blowing it a bit out of proportion. This might not be that warped, but it's still a bit depraved and profane. I think it's pretty cool at times, but it's not among the year's best.

Hear the title track, Grinding Christian Flesh:

piggtråd
02.01.16

GHOST BATH - MOONLOVER

Ghost Bath - Moonlover

Northern Silence Productions, 10.04.15
I've heard a few discs several times, without having gotten around to scribble down a single word, as in the case of Corpus Christii. Other albums, as Moonlover, I've heard some times, without quite knowing how to describe the music.
The band calls themselves 鬼浴 in Chinese, all members identify themselves collectively as 无名 (Nameless), and the band has in interviews given the impression of originating from China. That this blanket of mystery vanished when it was revealed that the lads hail from North Dakota in the United States, doesn't really matter in my eyes.
The music alternates between calm, melodic post-metal, and a little more intense post-black. The music is of melancholic, while the “vocals” are screaming in agony in the background. There's not really much more to reveal.
In my mind, Moonlover is probably a love/hate-object, but for me personally, I just feel indifferent to Ghost Bath. The music is fine enough, highly audible, but it gives me nothing I couldn't do very well without.

Hear Golden Number.

piggtråd
02.01.16

CORPUS CHRISTII - PALEMOON

Corpus Christii - PaleMoon

Folter Records, 30.03.15
Portuguese Corpus Christii should not be unfamiliar to those who have an intimate and unhealthy relationship with coal-black metal. On their seventh album, the band is reduced to a duo, while the drums are handled by hired forces.
Corpus Christii have occasionally had a whiff of Norwegian black metal earlier, but among what I've heard, nothing has had such as strong odour of Darkthrone's Panzerfaust as PaleMoon. Especially considering the vocals.
As expected the album consists of elements we know well, but Corpus Christii are able to create and convey new material that still does not feel dated or exhausted.

I won't say that PaleMoon is Corpus Christii at its best, but I would argue that they still manage to surprise, for this is probably the most primitive and primordial black metal I've heard from them, and that's definitely a compliment.

piggtråd
02.01.16

NYSEIUS - DE DIVINATIONE DAEMONIUM

Nyseius - De Divinatione Daemonium

ATMF, 30.03.15
If 66 minutes of frantic contempt and disgust in the form of French black metal sounds tempting, Nyseius has what it takes. The band preserves faithful allegiance to the Scandinavian roots, while providing a natural evolution to the raw, foaming and breakneck pace. In an intense spiral of monotony and antisocial, introvert journey, the influence from bands like Deathspell Omega ain't difficult to trace.
Be it furious pace or quieter passages, De Divinatione Daemonium holds seething mood of pure insane loathing.
Sure, you've heard it before, and yes, they could probably have reduced the duration by cutting some needless sequences, but the atmosphere and the pouring aggression are authentic wares and Nyseius second full-length is thus approved.

piggtråd
02.01.16

SARPENTRA - SUPERNOVA

Sarpentra - Supernova

Independent, 20.03.15
This album I've had on the wish list for quite some time, so when a promoter not long ago offered the opportunity to check it out, I could of course not resist the temptation. Unfortunately, time is a cruel mistress. Now, about nine months after the release, I have to realize that prioritizing not only promos, but also topical “perishables”, has its price.
No source tells of who is behind this Russian band, but the music they play is majestic and symphonic death metal. I can almost guarantee that those of you who enjoy bands like Nile, Necronomicon, Melechesh, Septic Flesh and Behemoth also will be impress by Sarpentra and their 40 minutes long Supernova.
As with Nile and Melechesh there rests an epic aura of bygone greatness from areas around the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf. Simply magnificent, powerful and majestic.

Sarpentra has uploaded numerous songs on YouTube, and the single from the end of 2013, which can be streamed below, contains two tracks that are also to be found on the album.

piggtråd
02.01.16

AU-DESSUS - AU-DESSUS (EP)

Au-Dessus - Au-Dessus

Witching Hour Productions, 27.02.15
I came across this deubting quartet (later reduced to a trio) by chance not long ago. By further coincidence, I got access to the promo just a few weeks ago.
The band comes from Lithuania, and embark on the onset of their journey by releasing a half n hour EP consisting of filthy and hateful black metal. We find lingering moods, with rapid guitars and ditto drums, which in a sense combines pure black metal with post-black as a perfect missing link.

I would like to spent more time in the dim, dystopic landscape that Au-Dessus paints in black, but I'm afraid I'll have to wait until the next opportunity arises.

piggtråd
02.01.16

COMANIAC - RETURN TO THE WASTELAND

Comaniac - Return to the Wasteland

Independent, 27.02.15
Comaniac comes from northern Switzerland, and the four guys play melodic thrash, characterized by lots of hefty guitar works. If I were to compare with others, I would choose to mention Megadeth, Heathen, Annihilator and Anthrax by rather impulsive means.
Tough riffs, frantic solos and varied rhythms... Hell yes, if the melodic branch of thrash appeals to you, this cool slice of licks is probably 50 minutes which will readily please you.

Check the video for Secret Seed.


piggtråd
02.01.16

AURON - AURON

Auron - Auron

Metal Scrap Records, 05.02.15
Auron is a debuting Russian quartet. Their musical work is of the gentle kind. The guys play slightly progressive heavy metal in a rather harmless manner, but the music has a mild intricate, if not very progressive feel, and the quality ain't to bad. The clean vocals is a bit to soft for my likings, but they fortunately don't tip completely over into typical neutered power-vocals.
Fans of mild metal in heavy/power/prog-landscapes can probably find something to appreciate here. For yours truly, this becomes a little too toothless, however.

The guys have recorded videos for the songs Moonlight Trail and Prelude in H-moll (or B minor), while the video for Spring (or Весна, as it is called in Russian) has received 18-year rating due to NSFW content.

piggtråd
















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