War Anthem Records, 29.04.16
The Spaniards, or perhaps we should address the Barcelona based band as Catalans(?), has been around since 2007 and has
gradually piled up a solid stack of splits on their path.
The band's first album, One With the Dead from 2009, was a proper dose of death metal. The second album,
The Sea Grave from 2013, have unfortunately slipped beneath my radar.
With their third full length album, the guys shows some hefty progression, behind a somewhat more interesting cover than
the usual morbid black and white drawings.
...For Thine is the Darkness is located on a completely different level than the debut. Where that one
consisted of good, yet quite ordinary death metal, the new album showcase a band with music-artistic ambitions far beyond
the minimum requirement of simplistic, straightforward death metal.
The album consists of 17 tracks, but still lasts no more than 43 minutes. Besides intro and outro, the band has included
short interludes titled Threshold I to Threshold VII between each track. These include
snippets of ambient, oriental or guitar-driven variety. Whether the intention is to reset the listener, much like coffee
beans act neutralizing for the smell, and thereby “restore the mental white balance”, or whether it is to separate the
songs apart, or to add atmosphere, each one has to interpret on their own.
This death metal has strong variation, and some unusual approaches. The foundation is a good, traditional blend of punch
and speed with unholy moods, where the references and inspirations are numerous. This album still stands out slightly. Graveyard never quite let go of the moods. There's always some occult and obscure undertones lurking in
the shadows. When the music has surrounded the listener, the secret alchemical fraternity comes out of the shadows from
every corner, takes off their cloaks and reveals their true, scarred faces. Their eyes glowing red, and swirling hot winds
comes sweeping as telepathic spells of witchcraft and black magic.
The albums eight tracks have ass-kicking drift and constant changes in restless progression. Swirling melodies in the style
of Amorphis, or evocative despondency à la Type O Negative appear and disappear as psychedelic mirages.
My favourite song becomes The Mighty Colums of Irem, where diabolical moods fills the air as steam from
Wonderful guitar work and hard-hitting dark sound adds the finishing touch and ink the deal with the devil in blood.
There are albums that goes the extra mile in pursuit of that little extra that make the music truly exciting and special.
...For Thine is the Darkness is shrouded in such a mysterious smoke of artistic integrity.
I'm admittedly not going to claim that this album is an outstanding compositional work. At its most ordinary, it is
“just” tough, while at its very best, it's very well executed and profoundly killer.
Every death-eater with self-respect should definitely check out this album.
Begin with With Fear and Thirst and Defy & Conquer:
Soulseller Records, 29.04.16
After HansFyrste and HaaN started Svarttjern in 2003, it didn't take
long before a full line-up was assembled. Besides from a few replacements on bass, the crew has remained remarkably stable.
The quality however hasn't been quite as stable.
When reviewing Ultimatum Necrophilia two years ago, I presented my view on the past, but since that was
in Norwegian only, we might as well start with a quick tour through the days of yore.
It comes natural to compare Svarttjern (meaning Black Tarn) a bit to Ragnarok, and not because HansFyrste
did the vocals on two of their albums, but because they in turn has has their share of similarities with
Marduk et al.
The bands debut album Misanthropic Path of Madness from 2009 featured some serious ass-kicking black metal.
2011's Towards the Ultimate was another good album, even if it didn't leave quite as strong an impact. Ultimatum Necrophilia had more of a mixture between moody and frenetic black metal, and whilst holding a
steadily good quality, there were parts that I loved and others that felt more middling. I ended up with 4/6 points.
Dødsskrik (Death-scream, or Scream of death) kicks of in slaying manners with
All Hail Satan, honouring Old Nick in a proud Norwegian way. Svarttjern has traditionally conducted
their black misery in a hybrid borderland between Norwegian and Swedish, but on this album they show where they really belong.
Admiring Death continues in good drift, with a somewhat misanthropic attitude and some unexpected rhythmic
transitions. Blessed Flesh follows, with some discordant dystopia and interesting use of bass in a genre where the
instrument has traditionally been bound, gagged and silenced.
By the end of these, it is clear that not only is the aggressive and frenzied pedal-to-the-metal form of black metal
with strong traditions in Sweden left behind. The band has also put some of the traditional cold and hostile black
metallic moods of disgust on the shelf, in the sense that the band has incorporated a mindset of mid-tempo black'n'roll
and a bit more odd rhythms on Dødsskrik. This music is situated more in the neighbourhood of bands
like Tulus and Khold, with some distant kinship to Plaguewielder era Darkthrone
At first listen, I was a bit disappointed. I'm not over the moon about this style. The band certainly doesn't repeats
themselves, though. My view on this genre approach is just a matter of taste anyway. Purely subjectively,
Dødsskrik remains a pretty good album that unfortunately becomes a little too ordinary and characterless to
arouse particular excitement, even if the material has grown and settled.
I would still recommend bigger fans of the kind to check out Dødsskrik on their own, for Svarttjern
has done a decent job of filling the songs with riffs, transitions and rhythmic variety. Perhaps this is right up
Below, you can hear All Hail Satan and Admiring Death.
Non Serviam Records, 25.04.16
My first encounter with Italian Darkend is their fourth album. Teasers from previous albums on the band's
YouTube profile, indicate that I have only “missed out on” fairly cheap and cheesy symphonic black metal.
They also suggest that the Italian has matured, and with The Canticle Of Shadows probably have come
up with their best material to date.
Backed by Non Serviam and adorned with a cover graced by one of Zdzislaw Beksinski's disturbing creations
and most likely also a sticker informing about participation from renowned artists, I vividly imagine that
Darkend, almost independent of the actual music, can reach out to a significant larger audience than what the
three previous albums have done all together.
Fortunately, the music is also deserving of a wider audience. Unfortunately, the sound doesn't provide the music full justice.
The music can pretty much be categorized as symphonic black metal at this point in Darkend's career. The
synthetic remedies are toned down, but the melodic aspect emerges as far stronger. As said, I'm just basing this on a quick
impression of the band's past, but as long as I favour the present I'll probably be forgiven. The orchestral elements that's
been found a place worthy, seems more meticulously selected to fit into eerie tunes with a touch of insidious sadism. Some piano
keys here, some fiddle strings there and evocative use of saxophone in A Precipice Towards Abyssal Caves...
With seven songs from barely five to nearly eight minutes in length, The Canticle Of Shadows obtains a total
playing time of just under 50 minutes. There's also a version out there with a cover of Fearbringer.
Fairly long songs raise the need for proper content, which I think Darkend succeed very well with. The
songs have strong melodies and abundant diversity of variation through clever transitions. The structure is good, and the
orchestra, along with other additives, works well as a spices.
There's no way around the vocal contributions. The band has received a generous helping hand from the acclaimed throats
of Niklas Kvarforth (Shining) in the fifth song, Atilla Csihar (Mayhem) in the second
and sixth song, Labes Necrothytus (Abysmal Grief) in the fourth song and Sakis Tolis
Christ) in the seventh song.
I have no doubt this will provide attention and interest, and perhaps even boost record sales, but as I see it, this is
but a portion of the seasoning, and don't give or take that much, even though all those involved complements the
music with their efforts. The music is entirely dynamic and rich on its own.
What unfortunately ain't dynamic, and that becomes the album hairy wart rather than beauty spot, is the sound's utter
lack of dynamic range.
With unimaginable low DR3, which surpasses Fleshgod Apocalypse's Labyrinth in compression, and sink down
to Metallica's squash level on Death Magnetic.
Although there is some difference in volume, it appears a bit narrowed, flat and less natural sounding than desirable.
The music is not as intense as said Labyrinth was. Which prevents a total disaster. Another drawback with this
brickwalled sound is clipping, that erase punch and timbre in the upper amplitude peaks and seemingly generates vague
crackling noises. Certainly not very dominant, but once you notice it, the effect is unfortunately irreversible. Some
will have bigger problems with this than others. I find this a bit damaging to the overall impression, but with a bit
of goodwill I can to some extent ignoring it. It is still sad to see such good material suffer the purposeless faith
of a poor mixing/mastering.
It needs to be said that the actual production/pre-production basically has got a pretty good sound. It's only the
dynamic aspect that is convulsively compressed. Malokarpatan below, for example, have significantly worse
sound, despite its DR6.
I choose to reward The Canticle Of Shadows for quite killer song-writing and dynamic music with exciting
ideas, rich ingredients and unpredictable twists.
The entire album is available on Bandcamp as of today, and you can also see the grotesque video for
Of The Defunct,
including vocal contributions from Attila.
Invictus Productions, 25.04.16 Malokarpatan debuted on their own with this album last fall, but Invictus Productions was charmed,
and now releases the Slovaks work on a jet black circular format. Meanwhile, Hexencave Productions has also been
seduced, and released it on mirror-like circular plastic pieces and a coil of plastic tape wrapped in an ancient square relic.
The trio from Bratislava has been inspired by Venom and other bands from the first black wave, and performs their
work in Slovenian, seasoned with local culture.
They must surely be allowed to do that, even if the whole point of the sample in the fourth track, showcasing some speech,
goes completely over our heads.
Local flavour is always welcome, this time in the form of certain short and odd samples, pretty much serving as song intros
et al. It still doesn't prevent this listener from not being charmed by Stridžie dni.
The sound is lamentable lo-fi. Fair enough, the band may have recorded this album themselves, with limited resources. What
do I know. You can still get away with such, just as long as the music has enough value by itself.
There's been many exciting metal bands erupting from Eastern Europe, but if one expects marble, one will be disappointed
by granite. As it turns out, this is mostly rubble and gravel.
The music, a primitive and simplistic form of proto black'n'roll, has no noteworthy melodies, and otherwise just drives
straight ahead without any attempt at any kind of subtlety and substance. The album does feature a few transitions that
are so whimsical that they almost could pass as distinctive, but they might just as easily be dismissed as quirky.
The most prominent melody here comes at 4:26 into the first real song, and consists of theft loan from some
classic piece which I'm unfortunately not able to pinpoint. Otherwise, I find some alright eerie moods at times, as in
Na kríllach cemnoty do horských úbocí zostupuje posol moru a hniloby and Z jazera ozruta, s volíma
rohama a telom chlapiny. (Some nifty titles right there.)
The dark, barking vocals ain't too bad, but when the guys starts howling at the moon, I shake my head slightly. The
instrumentation also seems to be at an early stage of evolution, besides from a few sequences where the solo guitar
actually impresses slightly.
Stridžie dni ain't excruciatingly bad, but the album is so far below par that I don't quite see the value.
Godz Ov War Productions&Krucyator, 22.04.16
The French band named Autokrator is a rather peculiar band. Which helps in creating originality. The
band plays a somewhat monotonous and droning form of industrial death metal, albeit not as monotonous and droning as
thy used to. When the debut Autokrator was released via various underground labels last year,
I just had to pass it up. The album was simply too roaring and clamorous, with no noticeable variation in its deafening
monotony. On The Obedience To Authority, the two remaining Frenchmen has toned down both madness
and the infernal loudness.
With lyrics dealing with authority via authoritarian suppression with violent punishment as effective means, which at best
can be interpreted as critique toward certain parts of society, the duo delivers a suggestive piece of music with moods
of a totalitarian futuristic dictator regime in a nihilistic and Orwellian future. This is a dystopian and industrial
vision for better or worse.
I react to nobody being credited for beating the buckets, for there's a hellish pace and good variation, without the drums
sounding typically synthetic. If the drums are programmed, they have at least done a thorough job. The gentlemen
Loïc.F (guitar, bass, and sampling) and David Bailey (vocals) has even been responsible for the
recording, while L.F has mixed and mastered. The sound has a muffled reverberating feel of abandoned
factories that fits the music well. Ævangelist's live sound effect maker Auditor, has by the way contributed with ambient sounds on the last song.
The music consists partly of aggressive, misanthropic and relatively militant extreme metal, but also incorporates fairly
unpleasant samples and moods along the way. The sound and expression still has a powerful and noisy character, but ain't
nearly as thundering and rumbling as the debut. Some, like fans of Sunn O))) and similar, might be a bit
disappointed with the development. I, however, am pleasantly surprised. The Obedience To Authority has fierce, warlike temperament, performed with a blazing passion. Try it on
Edged Circle Prod.&Unspeakable Axe Rec., 22.04.16
From Baltimore and Delaware respectively, south of New York, between Philadelphia and Washington, comes Putrisect
and Scorched, two young and promising death metal band with a hunger and taste for blood.
Both consist of five men; drummer, bassist, vocalist and two guitarists, and both have yet to record a full length album.
Behind a ravishing cover we find five proper songs. On the promo from Edged Circle, Putrisect's
contribution consists of separate intro and outro, but I notice that other versions have integrated these in the first
and last song. Intro and outro of approximately 40 seconds each, consists of collages of indeterminate sounds, and doesn't
really fill any specific need. The barely ten minutes of real music manage to set the mood perfectly fine on their own.
The band sounds like the name suggests, as putrefaction. The music has, like several bands on the label, an insidious
malignant hint of Autopsy. It's also got, unless I remember wrong, a little Obituary in the screeching
guitars. Furthermore there is also a ceremonial occult touch in style with the cover.
Scorched uses almost 50 seconds on ominous plucking and alternative usage of the guitar strings, as if
someone drags a coin along a wrap wire guitar string, along with merry whistling from the inner corridors of the torture
chamber. Creepy. The intro is followed by two tracks with just over eight minutes of gloomy, varied, dynamic and primitive
death metal with the scent of ancient tombs in the vocals, poisonous spiders in cobwebs between the drums, rough riffs
and weeping guitars.
Not much of an explanation, perhaps, but a complete sample is attached, and a phonetic taste says more than a thousand
words after all. With 20 minutes available, you have enough time to get in the mood before you have to press play or move
the pick-up again. Both bands come up with a lot of tough and evocative songs with interesting twists. Both have this
frantic and delirious touch, while both also makes me think of devilish spiritualism. If you like both Incantation
and Necros Christos, you'll most likely come to enjoy Final State of Existence.
Norwegian Edged Circle takes care of the vinyl version, pressed in 500 copies, while Unspeakable Axe
deals with CD and digital version.
Agonia Records, 22.04.16
The Swedish death/doom veterans of October Tide have just released their fifth album. The band was
formed in 1994 by Katatonia-veterans Fredrik “North” Norrman and Jonas Renkse. The
latter resigned in 1999, but is still active in Katatonia and Bloodbath.
Many have come and gone. Current bassist, Mattias “Kryptan” Norrman also has a past in Katatonia.
Since the former album, the band's gotten a new drummer, Jocke Wallgren from Valkyrja et al.
In 2016, I suspect hardly any expects that bands in general frequently delivers top-notch melodies to the table.
Winged Waltz doesn't take my breath away, but without the strongest expectations, it must be allowed
to claim that the album surprises in a positive sense. October Tide has always been a somewhat peripheral band on my part. The music has tilted between good
and very good, without climbing to the very top. Here, the band offers good, if not tremendously strong melodies,
fairly strong emotions of isolation, disappointment and bitterness, and clean, rich sound with punch and force. I scarcely
bother to mention the dynamics of the sound. It rests on a time typically medium-low level.
Mattias handles his bass in a dynamic way. The bass does its own thing, which shakes the foundations
just enough to ripple the surface of the water. These tremors and shades creates pleasing details that clearly contributes
to a richer expression. Which is enhanced by the bass also being equipped with comfortable, organic and rich sound.
Singer Alexander Högbom (Centinex) has a deep powerful growling voice, with a tough tinge
of rusty, rasping and cutting megalomania. He thrusts his voice so hard at times that the uvula must be fluttering
like a pennant in the gale.
The guitars, led by Fredrik and Emil Alstermark, swarms and hovers. Seemingly without
a worry in life, but up close you can see the chains of captivity depriving their freedom, and the sorrow that the mirror
of the soul is not able to hide.
Having lost count of the number of spins (not that it takes a lot to do so), it's still not much of Winged Waltz
that remains in memory, unfortunately, but again; while the album is playing, the rest of reality holds its breath.
At least, reality should keep its fucking mouth shot. Otherwise, I'll punch reality in the mouth for disturbing me.
It should be noted that the songs A Questioin Ignite og Nursed by the Cold, both located
in the middle of the album, can be remembered a bit better for their beautiful melodies. All the songs have good internal
variation, although the structures are not dumbfounding. The alternation between heaviness, sadness and melancholic
stripped-down segments works optimally of course, and all instrumentation is executed spotless. The rhythmic part is in
good hands, and needless to say suits the music superbly.
Very beautiful and comfortable from the universe of October Tides yet again.
High Roller Records, 22.04.16
German Minotaur is yet another band that flatly refuses to put the '80s behind them. My first thought
is the question of whether yet another retro-thrash band has anything new to offers in 2016, but Minotaur
has actually stood by their axes since 1983. At least, that commands respect!
But still, the year is 2016, and on the question of whether the Germans have anything new to report, the answer is
I'm not one to judge a genre to damnation just because it's well-worn. That doesn't mean that it's worn-out.
Value creation nevertheless requires more than generic riffs.
To be more specific on the background, it's drummer Jörg Bock and singer/guitarist Andi Richwien
that has endured for over 30 years. The guys have apparently acquired a new bassist after the recording of this
EP, while Jan Bünning from Paragon has assisted on Beast Of Nations.
Otherwise, Wes Rhodes (Dekapitator) has contributed with a solo on 27 Dead and backing
vocals on the title track.
The band makes no equally huge blunders, except from pushing recycled, run-of-the-mill thrash. I'm frankly rather tired
of talking about hooks on a daily basis, but if a band is supposed to get somewhere, they have to offer something that
the listener will notice, recognize and relish. Lack of such is an regular problem that becomes particularly evident in
a genre like straight-forward speed metal. In this case, as a listener, I remain completely indifferent.
Four songs. 14.5 minutes. In one ear. Out the other.
Of course, the band plays good enough and the sound is okay.
It's quite fast and it's fairly tough.
The potential is there. But the guys MUST work harder with their material!
Cyclone Empire, 22.04.16
With melancholic, gothic-sounding, heavy doom that may be tempting to refer to as melodic post-death/doom, though free
from shoegazing in this regard, the Italians in The Foreshadowing brings their fourth album to the table.
The sextet offers 55 minutes and a concept. Seven Heads Ten Horns plays with the idea of Europe as a new falling Babylon. I don't have the lyrics,
nor do I have much knowledge of the biblical story of the Tower of Babel, so you probably might as well explore the
thematic aspects on your own.
The band debuted with grandeur on splendid Days of Nothing in 2007. An album crammed with strong melodies
and clever structures that the Italians haven't been close to touching upon ever since. Seven Heads... have beautiful melodies, but lacks the final little piece. The structure, especially, ain't
really very complex. The record basically rests on the melodies, in addition (of course) to performances and sound. I've
got no nits to pick with the execution. The instrumentation is very good. The band's latest addition, drummer
Giuseppe Orlando (with long experience, amongst other from Novembre), puts down a solid effort. The music
is becomingly seasoned with moderate synth and violin, emulated via keyboards, along with what sounds like simulations of
As expected from this band, it sounds professional. The album was recorded in Polish Hertz Studio, and it sounds
very clear and full-bodied, albeit low-dynamic, with mournful sound.
The melodies are seldom quite as memorable as they aught to be within a 100% melodic form of music which is pretty much
at mercy of these melodies. Most of them are beautiful whilst the album lasts, but without the aesthetic gravity and
friction required to leave deep ruts in the cerebral cortex.
I don't want to punish the band too hard, though. Partly, missing memorability is a problem many bands are struggling
with in this darned age (or maybe it's just me struggling?), and although few come up with golden grains, you
will always get an artistic work under the skin if you are willing to sacrifices enough time on the task.
Besides, I've never said that Seven Heads Ten Horns don't contain any diamonds. The album is not
rich on hidden treasures, but they do exist. My favourites thus far, and I am confident that the album must have been spun
almost ten times in all its' 55-minutes glory, are these three; Two Horizons, which has up to several good
lines of melody and nice rhythmic changes in a mournful drift. Until We Fail, which reminds me a bit of the
Rednex song Wish You Were Here, (boy, did I spend forever figuring out what song it was) that later was covered by
Night, and amazingly not the other way around. Finally, the highlight; 14-minutes long closer
Nimrod, which admittedly is composed of five movements, but which flows almost seamlessly. This one is made up
of a number of different, and at times brilliant melodies.
The song Martyrdom, also has its bright sides, where the stylish Egyptian-sounding theme in the middle in
particular stands out. Still, they could have left out the rather unfavourable ending with childish sounding children's choir.
The band performs music that is comfortable and atmospheric, but that despite fairly harmless melancholy has plenty of
weight and impact. This is music that is relaxing, stress-relieving and pleasant to listen to. If one doesn't focus
exceedingly on the “catchy” hooks, but rather aim attention to musical delight in the now, it's not difficult to
come to terms with mournful The Foreshadowing, although they don't live up to their debut this time either.
I am to such a degree pleased with Seven Heads Ten Horns that I'm not entirely comfortable with
sticking a minus to the rating, for despite some song writing that ain't very tight, and a curve of excitement that doesn't
peak remotely close to the ceiling, this is indeed a good album.
See the lyric video for
17, and stream Two Horizons and 17 here.
Edged Circle Productions, 22.04.16 Iscariah and his Edged Circle is again looking to spread morbid youthful madness from his godforsaken
rural region of habitation.
Three out of four reptiles seem to be located in the frantic thrash outfit Inculter, unless I'm way off. The first
release from both bands was a split between them in 2013.
I'm pretty sure there's even some line-up overlaps with Sepulcher.
The swamp gators performs a more controlled form of the frantic approach to the Autopsy-style than what
Sepulcher went with.
The band blends nicely into the ranks of good Norwegian bands with a penchant for good old frothing rabid death metal.
It reeks of kinship to Obliteration and Execration, and the stench of tainted meat and coagulated blood
fills the room. The press letter also mentions Norwegian Cadaver, a band I had completely forgotten about, but
yeah, the last album, 2004's Necrosis certainly had style-wise similarities, and there's no way round naming
Diskord. After all, they are the Reptilian Ancestry.
On the quartet's debut one can easily pick up a sensation of four armed maniacs with swamp fever running 'round the swamps
in a state of complete trance-like delirium.
The guitars are effective tools for spreading black voodoo magic. The hypnotic effect of hypnotizing riffs echoes through
the jungle. The vocals, a victim of the black voodoo, is completely obsessed, whilst malaria and lack of knowledge of what
kind of mushrooms to stay the fuck away from has driven the poor hysteric souls utterly insane.
Primitive drumming on hollow tree trunks and abandoned tortoiseshells is still the most effective jungle telegraph. Rhythms
and tempo changes are stylishly and confidently controlled, whether it's consisting of bizarre strokes or breathless sprint
with mud splashing all over the place. The bass, with dried mud on slack strings could have been a bit more noticeable in the mix,
for it fits superbly into this strange landscape.
As the cover art and partly the title suggests, there's also a few otherworldly vibes hovering over Reptilian's
ethereal requiem. I sort of miss some riffs and sequences with a more “catchy” effect, which could have secured its grip like
screws into my Teflon-treated memory-area, but Perennial Void Traverse is a very good album anyway, performed
with youthful zeal.
Prophecy Productions, 22.04.16
The two German gentlemen Konstanz and Schwadorf, both vampires judging by pictures and
rather decadent gothic horror flair, releases their new album titled The Unknown on June third.
The EP The Kindred Of The Sunset is a preview and warm-up, consisting of four songs, two of which are
exclusive to this release.
The title song The Kindred Of The Sunset and subsequent The Wine Of The Cemetery Hound
are excerpts from the band's sixth album. The first consists of fairly fast-paced and energetic, but also melodic, dark,
mysterious and evocative metal in good The Vision Bleak tradition. I note good melody, spooky interlude,
dynamic transitions and nice drift.
The latter ticks in on 6:38, and drag the pace down in a gothic melancholic mud. The song seems to revolve around the
graves in the cemetery at night, both in mood and lyricism. The song features some moderate vibes of Type O Negative
and My Dying Bride.
With these teasers it looks promising for the upcoming album.
The last two and exclusive tracks on a barely 20 minutes long EP, available on digisleeve in 1000 copies and vinyl in 500
copies, is a cover of the Tiamat song The Sleeping Beauty, as well as the instrumental
Purification Afterglow. Both of melancholic nature. The last is a short track where the guitars sound a little bit
baroque, unless I'm picking up two instruments at the same time, in addition to featuring piano and violin. The last six
minutes bear witness to a very synthetic fiddle, though. Where's the reverberations, guys?
Diehard fans may as well place their orders. I like this EP, but considering the two most interesting tracks will appear on
The Unknown, I'd think others who's into this sort of metal may just as well wait a month and a half. For
curious newcomers to the band's relatively idiosyncratic universe, the compilation Timeline - An Introduction to
The Vision Bleak will be released on the same date as the album. Meanwhile, it's also possible to explore the band
Osmose Productions, 14.01.16
It's been three months since Norwegian Nordjevel's self-titled debut hit the shelves, thus this
rather redundant review might as well stand as a reminder to black metal fans who hasn't gotten their finger out.
Even if you haven't bought it yet, you might have detected the buzz the band has created.
The core question is clearly “what distinguishes this band from all other black metal band?”.
Impressive enough, we don't have to venture further back in time than to last year to find the band's origins.
Vocalist Doedsadmiral from Svartelder and bassist/guitarist Nord from Tvangeste
founded the band, and were joined by drummer F.Widigs of Marduk and Rage Nucléaire.
The line-up was completed after the recording of the album, when DezeptiCunt from Quadrivium and
Vidsyn (ex-Ragnarok) came in as permanent bassist. Said band names only represents a fragment of each
A team of highly respectable members of the elite series may tell something about the cause of success, but not what the
success consists of.
With warlike temperament, Nordjevel goes to a merciless frontal attack that hits hard and leaves everything
in ruins in a restless and untiring bombardment. The drums is as machine guns when they are not being recharged in a
rhythmic fashion. The axe strings fires deadly lightning bolts, as in a duel between Thor and Zeus. Sharp, inhuman shrieks
contribute to psychological warfare that fills the enemy with mortal agony.
Simultaneously, a rich variety of atmospheric, subtle melodic gems creates gloomy or possibly mighty shades which allows
copious new hooks with barbs to penetrate your pale, scarred skin. The melody lines are partly of Norse sort, but also to
some degree of stubbornly proud and satanic type, or even of evil and misanthropic nature.
The music is authentic black metal, without any urge for renewal, but the production doesn't try to mimic teenage Satanists
who take refuge in humid bunkers from the war. Rather than sounding artificially necrotic, this sounds full-bodied and intense
with rich bass. The sound is clear and cold as an Arctic glacier. The dynamics are however largely omitted, and the mix is
very loud. Under the best of circumstances it doesn't matter, but as soon as background noises forces you to crank up the
volume to compensate, it feels like sticking a 4-inch nails in each ear and push them in until they meet halfway. Thus, the
sound remains painfully abhorrent, and not in any way polished.
Much more could have been said about the music in each individual song and sequences, and of facts such as the lyrics of
Det Ror Og Ror (It rows and rows) being taken from Norwegian poet and novelist Tarjei Vesaas' poem by the
same name, or that the ten minute monument Norges Sorte Himmel sees guest performances by Nagash
and Archaon. But we might as well leave something for the listener to explore on his own.
The mixture between combative aggression in frenetic pace, frozen antipathic distrust and elements of pitch black Nordic
folklore, works excellent in Nordjevel's hands. Whether this “separates” Nordjevel from
other bands is another matter, but at least it elevates them into the top elite division.
The wonderful illustrations are otherwise made by Stefan Stefan Todorovic.
You can choose to see the animated semi-lyric videos for Djevelen i Nord and Denne Tidløse Krigsdom, or you can hear them
below along with mentioned Det Ror Og Ror and Norges Sorte Himmel.
Dirge Records, 11.04.16
Russian Negative Voice is a band in the crossfire from many neighbouring genres.
Imagine a busy intersection where flickering headlights fly by while sun and moon chases each other rapidly across the
screen in a time-lapse video.
In a small enclosure in the middle of this crossing, however, time passes slowly. There, Negative Voice
performs their progressive form of dark doom.
With elements, partly of a technical nature, partly in mood, from death/doom and post-metal, with hints of black in the
vocals, the Russians blends their doomy pot-pourri, seasoned with progressive vibes.
I mentioned the possibility of music best suited after dark when discussing Nazghor a few days ago. Cold
Redrafted is for me definitely an album that works best in the wee hours, when the world lowers its pulse. I can
also vividly imagine early birds who quietly turn the pages of their newspaper over a steaming fresh cup of coffee or tea
next to the kitchen window as daylight gradually rise on the horizon at dawn. This is quiet music with a resting heart rate.
Purely subjective, I'm not necessarily particularly excited about calm and soaring music without heaviness and punch, but
Negative Voice still stands out in a positive way among others sleepwalkers by bidding on nice melodies
and good variation via smooth transitions. Lulling bass and dreamy guitars meets contrasting vocals and adequate percussion
than can occasionally be quite vital.
My suppressed unbiased tastebuds, and the midnight owl in me endorses Cold Redrafted. Especially
when both inner and outer night mode is activated.
My bright awake, adrenalin seeking and navel-gazing side, on the other hand, sneeze somewhat at this fairly ambulant,
melancholic, rather “puny and jazzy post-doom” metal.
If you have a taste for serene and relaxing, almost frail music of this kind, I doubt you'll regret setting aside
roughly 46 minutes to hear the album underneath before you decide whether to buy it or not.
Cacophonous Records, 19.02.16
The four British plague doctors in The Infernal Sea released their second album on cassette almost a year
ago. When the label Cacophonous (who many will remember for classic releases from bands like Primordial,
Gehenna, Sigh, Bal-Sagoth et al.) re-emerged last fall, one of the first acts on the agenda was
to sign this quartet. They ensure that The Great Mortality will get the distribution on the various formats
it undoubtedly deserves.
The album has already received tremendous positive response, and it is well deserved, for the album contains brutality
with depth and barbed hooks. Albeit the band is situated in the black corner of the metal map, they don't hesitate to
mix into whatever inspirations and gut feelings that comes to mind. Riff-wise we find elements of the black/death
intersection, which again is a nod to the album's concept about the Black Death. The songs also incorporates a lot of
melody, without deviating an inch in punch and mercilessly grotesque discomfort. The melodies has to a great extent an
utterly delightful creepy and ominous touch accompanied by musical diversity and meticulously structuring that permeates
the songs. They form a cohesive whole, but pretty much all eight tracks retain strong independent identity.
The vocals sound like a malignant, pitch black necromancer, shrieking his last curses after drinking considerable amounts
of battery acid, while the man behind the battery seems to be connected to something providing a stronger current than
what a car battery is capable of. The riffs tear, cut, bite and claw holes in the eardrums and the bass paints the sky
black with a wide brush.
The record also contains several guest artists that contributes to further depth with traces of clean vocal etc., but
I don't see it as necessary to enumerate everyone. I need to mention the violin contribution of Baalrath
(Sidious) on The Bearer though. This helps to create a gorgeously gloomy and ghostly mood.
In 1349, the Black Death came to Norway. It's easy to remember thanks to 1349. However, it was the year before
that the plague wrapped huge areas of the European continent in under her black veil. Equipped only with a cane and a
custom masks filled with herbs and similarities to, simply put, “drown” the miasmic air and prevent infection, the plague
doctors quickly became victim to the epidemic they themselves tried to cure. The cover, made by Richey Beckett,
also portrays an infected doctor who realize that all hope is lost.
The lyrics deals with the inhumane behaviour that many adopted to save their own skin. History apparently shows a great
deal of “acts of violence and atrocities” committed in the state of emergency that occurred. In addition, the Church
would of course take benefit from such a golden opportunity to stereotypically abuse their power by spreading fear.
That's probably been an integral part of the church's meticulously rehearsed routines for centuries.
I've drooling for The Great Mortality for a long time and I've finally gotten the opportunity to gorge(r)
myself with this album. Despite high anticipation, The Infernal Sea meet the expectations to the letter.
It's an album filled with sadistic metal and dreadfully eerie moods in exemplary discordant coexistence. The sound is
most becomingly; rich, clear and dark. It's admittedly nowhere near as dynamic as the music, but that's not enough to
put spokes in the wheels of an otherwise extremely strong album.
If you haven't picked up the album yet, it might be about time you do so. After allowing this album to spin on repeat
since last night, I've sort of become blinded by it to such a degree that I'm currently not sure which of the top two
gradations is the most adequate one, so I'll rather give the defendant the benefit of the doubt.
Thus I give The Great Mortality the horns up!
Nuclear War Now! Productions, 15.04.16
Nearly 30 years after Autopsy started their career, guitarist and veteran Eric Cutler can now
also be found in a 'fresh as blood' band. It was actually started three years ago, but this EP is the very first time
they present their musical works.
The band don't consists of fresh blood, though. The rest of the crew are also rather experienced people, but with his
experience and name, Eric is a natural focus of attention. Stylistically, Autopsy ain't too
wrong as a musical reference either.
Christian La Rocca, former member of Gravehill etc., also handles guitar. Like vocalist
Sean McGrath, residing in Impaled and Ghoul, he's been active on the release front
approximately since the millenniums-shift.
Bass-chick Erika Osterhout has been involved in Lycus, and is now to be found in a few
other band, while drummer C. Koryn has visited VoidCeremony, whilst now hammering for
Ghoulgotha, Funebrarum et al. These two have admittedly only participated in various releases for about
five years' time, but even they've had many irons in the fire.
Doesn't Eric Cutler get the needed outlet for venting his vital guitar needs through Autopsy
since he's started a new band, located up roughly the same alley? Oh well. More death metal for us to feast on. Putrid Decimation is an EP released on 12" MLP, with four songs and a total duration of 18 minutes.
Vomit Transmutation and Squirming in Your Guts opens side A and B respectively. Both
being fairly good song, clocking in at a little over three minutes. They do however have a fairly simple touch, and
ain't really that much to write home about. The two longer songs Spawn of Radiation and My
Casket Drains on the other hand really exploits the playing time to create stronger moods. Koryn delivers a solid beating with nice variation, while Erika thunders as storms in
the background, besides from the sequence in Spawn... where she actually leads the way following a short
interlude. The bass also becomes very audible in My Casket... As expected, the guitar carcasses
Christian and Eric deliver thrilling riffs, juicy solos and other hefty string bending, while
Sean sounds like an un-dead, with his grunting, yet articulate vocal form.
There's nothing ground-breaking about Necrosic, but the band still deliver solid death metal
with emphasis on death, as this oozes of restless souls having broken out of their coffins n' tombs.
Fans of the genre hereby have a new band to take notice of.
Satanath Records, 15.04.16 Death's Withered Chants sounded quite slaying based on the very first previews,
but turned out to be no small challenge when attempting to penetrate deeper into the matter.
On the fifth full-length since their inception in 2012, no less, the Swedes offer approximately 55 minutes of melodic,
but fierce black metal with a somewhat special sound; resounding, round and bright.
At my first casual meeting with the album, it was thus a harbinger of potentially good melodies and moods, draped in a
black shroud. Whence the album were to be digested, something ended up being stuck in my throat. Admittedly not chronic,
but still. The rounded soundscape provides an atmospheric touch that is not entirely in sync with the music.
As if Skogen were to play a cover of Dissection in a reasonable monotonous and soaring way. Nazghor's music has admittedly a rather atmospheric mood in itself, but the sound feels a little
too round and hovering, which disarms the aggression and pacifies the coldness of the music. The melodies
also blend the ice cool with feelings touching on contentment.
After several spins, and especially in the right setting, things came more or less into good shape, even if I could
never completely fathom Death's Withered Chants. The melodic aspect measure up, and both
guitars and bass does their utmost to keep the listeners attention through an excessively long album. The vocals are
at the forefront and snarl angrily, and the music's got good drive and a lot of great melodies. Sadly, the sound lacks
a little punch and coldness, while an ever so tiny hint of post-metal creeps into the expression. At least, that's
about how it feel when I'm not in the most receptive corner.
I do have a taste for the album, though. There's a lots of good music here. Sometimes, especially late at night, when
calmness has descended, and music of a bit more quiet, dark and atmospheric kind would hit home even more, the album may
really come into its own. In the daytime, when I'm wide awake and ready for an energetic powder keg of music, this just
doesn't sit perfectly. In the daytime I would have said that a weak approval is issued under doubt. Now that the darkness
of night has enshrouded me, I'm practically willing to raise the ranking. Maybe it's just me there's something wrong with.
If Nazghor were to drop the careless, aerial post-monotony and the swaying moods in favour of hatred
and darkened aggression, I think it's likely my second personality would be more content the next time. Not a bull's eye,
mayhap, but definitely no bummer.
Hopefully I've triggered your curiosity, for the mystery concerning Death's Withered Chants' inherent
qualities, and its effect on you, can only be solve by you, so take the embedded album for a spin.
A newly formed theory in my mind is that if you look at some of the rather calm and middling stuff I've been absorbing
lately, my subconsciousness might just be overripe for some ace energetic kick ass aggression. Maybe I'm just a bit restless(?)
Sun & Moon Records, 18.04.16 Svoid is a band from Hungary who now combines black metal with more commercial approaches.
Someone has decided to send along a few songs as samples from previous releases together with the bio in the promo package.
A good idea, whether one wants to write a detailed biographical review or just form an impression of the band's development.
Svoid took shape seven years ago with the intention to seek the link between Everything and
Nothing, as these extremes are doomed to converge when the end is no longer just near, but the universe actually
collapses. That's how I interpret it, anyway. The band has evolved considerably in the years that have faded away in the
Their first release was the EP Ars Kah, which supposedly means chaotic art, released exactly
five years ago. The title song is definitely an ethereal black metallic treat, infused with dystopia. While this brings
an appetite, the subsequent album To Never Return, released early in 2013, don't sound quite as thrilling.
The three songs I've been presented with thereof still had much potential, though.
Last year the band released a single with a cover of Watain's Devil's Blood, partly to mark changes in
the line-up and the collective awareness, but also to show musical depth. Watain's song must be said to be mixed
with Svoid's newer expressions in a good way.
Their development is nevertheless even stronger fortified on Storming Voices of Inner Devotion. This album
sees their black base being mixed with more poppy, partly light-industrial shoegaze. The music has a more melodic touch, but
the melodies got an indifferent mood. Leaning more towards emo-monotony than biting misanthropy, unfortunately. The mixing
ratio makes Storming Voices... a bit more interesting than many other post-black outfits, but it never
becomes especially exciting.
The album is not completely toothless. The vocals are bitter and the guitars are at times reasonable refrigerated.
Other times, on the other hand, it slides into a pop-mud pothole of cotton candy floss, as in the revolting Eternal
and in rather awkward Forlorn Heart. For me, a large part of this album becomes to soft. Some
parts are better, and I value the endeavour to create something a bit peerless. In general, I'd say I'm left with a middling
The band mostly consists of experienced guys, and they're doing a fine job. The trio mixes different expressions in a
relatively idiosyncratic way and the sound is good, with nice bass. If this style appeals to you, there's a good chance
you'll come to like the album a lot more than I do.
Watch the lyric video for
Never to Redeem, or hear it along with Eternal and A Mind in Chains right here.
Parts of the discography can be explored on SoundCloud.
Hells Headbangers, 15.04.16
Moniker, album title, cover artwork and not least the label, should tells something about what to expect when these three
Italians pick up their instruments. But even if we can grasp the stench of octane already before the guys fire up the amps,
plug in the fuss pedals, put the pedal to the metal and turn the volume to eleven, the guys also offers a fresh take that
could take you by surprise.
That guys offers both thrust and punkish attitude as expected, but the expression ain't as brutal as one might be lead
to believe. The legacy of Venom is noticeable, especially in the song Absolute Metal, but
Barbarian doesn't solely mixed it with extremity. In fact, in pace and performance we actually find
more proto-extreme metal. Hard, speedy, rough and satanic heavy metal of the '80s, that is.
Just as much surprise as predictability from the Italians.
The songs are not so darned strong that I'll be branding Cult of the Empty Grave as a compulsory purchase,
but the album is pretty tough. The songs have a touch of nostalgia, without sobbing sentimentality. The performance is
at least as expected; dirty, primitive and raw. The solos won't impress anyone, but at least they're present.
Barbarian is like a new wave of british speed/heavy/proto-black metal band that never got as much
attention as other underground bands.
I'm not completely head over heels about this, but I am pretty sure that there are some out there who will embrace this.
In other words; for bigger fans of primitive, reckless, barbarous, really old school blasphemy, this may very well
come as manna from Hell.
Satanath Records, 15.03.16 Bestial Deform, now a quartet, plays Russian death metal. The band's history goes as far back as to
1990, and the band's been inspired by the Florida scene.
On their fifth album, they serve barely 40 minutes of (death) threats to healthy mental health. At least if the band
is traditional what lyrics are concerned.
It's obviously rather hard to tell as the vocalist gurgles and foams like a hungry beast. With genre-faithful vocals and
a song title as Severed to Pieces, all indications at least point to the band not forsaking grotesque
The music is fairly brutal and characterized by aggression and punch. Although the band's expression is impregnated with
blood and powdered glass, the songs got good renewal of riffs and rhythms, along with a few gloomier portions where the
intensity shifts from the musical to the mental.
...Ad Leones isn't original in any way, but with the amount of variation within each song, and the unusually
compressed audio, it stands out slightly anyway. For better or worse. The dynamics, or lack thereof, is mainly reduced to a
squalid DR3. the production generally has a somewhat unusual sound, and all in all the sound gets a fairly peculiar touch
that score on individuality if nothing else.
Despite the mentioned variety within each song, it doesn't create huge diversity throughout the album, unfortunately. The
band operates within a strictly limited range of musical landscape. Although not exceptional, I would still call the songs
pretty good, but I almost find the music too sating in the long run. After a few hours I practically feel stuffed.
If you live and breathe death metal, you should check out the Russians no matter what I might think. There's no certainty
you are as finicky and difficult as me. You may be worse. Bestial Deform's misshaped carnality has a higher
resemblance toward Morbid Angel than Cannibal Corpse, just to give a tiny stylistic clue.
Independent, 01.03.16 Malus is a one-man project, and one of several other bands that German Wargrath is involved in. Malus has reached its third album, whose style can best be described as symphonic horror metal.
Disillusioned by piracy and hoping for a little attention, Wargrath has chosen to let the digital version
of Looking Through The Horror Glass be downloaded free of charge.
I have no knowledge of the man's earlier exploits, but based on what little I've found online, his music has evolved quite
a lot. Malus evidently began the career with more traditional black metal, while this album, however, at
times reminds me quite a lot of the melodious and horror-influenced style of Morgul on The Horror Grandeur.
We're talking haunted melodic black metal that lures you into some abandoned mansion that it obviously cursed by a presence
from the other side. Among antique furniture and ancient documents covered by cobwebs, there's a palpable sense of restless
energies and there are strange noises coming from the next floor. In the corner stands a piano that keeps playing by itself
whilst the old rocking chair just won't stand still.
With violins and piano as key ingredients, the music adopts a somewhat gothic touch. Although with stronger moods of
eeriness than of romance. The music admittedly alternate slightly between ghostliness and idyll, a bit like in Twin Peaks,
but the emphasis lies on the foreboding.
In addition to Morgul, bands like Carach Angren and a hint of early Cradle of Filth may form
a basis for a vague reference points for you to navigate the metal landscape by.
Wargrath has used samples to make the orchestral instrumentation sound authentic. With
fresh in memory, Looking Through The Horror Glass still has a certain texture of the home made expression
that one-man-bands are often characterized by. The sound may come across as slightly artificial at times, especially in
the metal department, but it's never worse than what we can write off as charm.
Some of the songs have solid melodies with good individuality, but not all the material on the almost 45 minutes long album
is just as strong. The album ain't as strong as the aforementioned The Horror Grandeur either, but I consider it
quite enjoyable nonetheless. At least as long as Wargrath don't attempt to sing with clean vocals, as on
the song Now.
There's not too much melo-black with a Gothic horror flair being made these days, and Malus contributes
a breath of fresh cold air that aims to freeze blood.
Get spooked by the album in its entirety on YouTube, and download it for free from Malus.
When € 1,200 are collected through donations, a CD version will be produced and sold at a reasonable price.
Heidens Hart Records, 10.02.16 Cultus is run by Dutch Arjan, from Heimdalls Wacht and more, who simply
calls himself A. on this release. The drums are however left to the man with the rather hollow
pseudonym F., who proves to be one Floris Velthuis. Arjan is an active man, seemingly concerned with everything but Cultus. It is nine years
since new material saw the light of day, and more time will eventually pass before fresh tunes is presented again.
Gezeteld in Zegeruïnen is a rework and re-recording of the debut A Seat in Valhalla
from 2004. The songs are rearranged in both meanings of the word. In addition to being reworked, the order of song
appearance has been (re)shuffled too. Also, the names are replaced with Roman numerals and two of nine songs are left
out. But apart from all this, this is quite simply a re-recording.
I can see the need. A Seat in Valhalla has sold quite good for being a seemingly rather flawed debut,
but the sound was rather flimsy and raspy. I've done my research on YouTube only, which is of course no good source
for examining sound, but the shrill sound can't be explained away by compression alone.
The metal is black, semi-melodic paganism with moods of dejection and a fairly monotonous touch. As all too often within
this form of metal, it's written and performed with few, if any, signs of distinctiveness.
The song material feels familiar in the sense that it sounds like any other recycled assembly of cliché riffs within
the genre. I've heard this album several times over the last few days without it ever growing into more than absolutely
listenable. The melodies are alright, but leaving neither memories nor an appetite for more. If the album had been one
of a kind, I would have recommended it for its ability to tread new paths and create an unique atmosphere, but that's
not the case.
This is yet another forgettable album that I would consider redundant for anyone except die-hard fans of black/pagan.
Decent songs with passably pleasant melodies still creates okay listenability, and so I don't want to be too strict
either. Gezeteld in Zegeruïnen is by the way downloadable for a payment of your choice.
Symbol Of Domination, 27.02.16
Costa Rica in Central America is not exactly well known for its vibrant metal scene. This split between two of the country's
approximately 135 known active bands is thus appreciated. Especially since the quality is so damned good, which surprises
me slightly considering Bringers Of Delusion is the first release by both bands. Assailant
admittedly have one
demo behind them.
Both bands offer metal with technical whims. The biggest similarities stops there, though. Bringers...
is a bit over half an hour long document where both bands presents themselves via four tracks.
Assailant makes me wonder if time has stood still in Costa Rica. The band plays thrash of the
technical/progressive kind, somewhat in the style of Atheist. Their retro approach sounds so authentic late-eighties
that it puts contemporary retro-thrash to shame.
The quartet offers four good songs with abstract sci-fi moods in riffs and a proper amount of changes in pace and style,
albeit not too far out. Here we find organic-sounding bass picking and vigorous guitars, with touches of melodic
sequences. The vocals are half-pitched, with a becoming rabid touch that complements the genre. This hungry ensemble smells
To highlight only one favourite among these vital songs ain't entirely easy, given that all offers lovely instrumentation.
I nevertheless give my vote to Suspension of Disbelief, as the last half consists of orgasmic guitars!
Ubiquitous Realities makes me realize that time has moved forward even on Costa Rica. Not that we are
exposed to “modern metal”, thank goodness. After a funny sample with tough scolding from Tropic Thunder, hell breaks loose via energetic,
raw and pulverizing technical death metal with frantic growls bordering on faecal sludge sewer sucker. There's only
one solo admittedly, but it is indeed wonderfully morbid. Unlike some technical bands, this trio prioritize coherent
tunes with lots of atmosphere. Here we find small links to both Autopsy and Obliteration, as well as tiny hints of
Alkaloid, but Ubiquitous Realities is probably a bit between these and “normal” death metal,
with bands like Morbid Angel as a reference point. The Ticos are admittedly not on par with the aforementioned
bands, but hell do they deliver the goods anyway.
It sounds unearthly and eclectic, and the mood reflects the feeling of being in a limbo between the cosmos and portals
conjured by that dreaded book the Necronomicon. The guys brutality is hefty, but not excessive, and they deliver juicy
explosives with a hypnotic effect. Especially the last song, Alterated Perception ll, offer beautiful
moods and fiery guitar works.
With an average length of 4.5 minutes, Assailant steal the bulk of the playing time, while
Ubiquitous Realities are satisfied with songs of about 3.5 on average. Both bands have been awarded a good
production on their material. Assailant may come across as somewhat thin in the sound, but as I've
mentioned it provides a trustworthy flair of the '80s, helping to create a cool cult-touch. I really have a liking
for both bands.
If any of this sounds alluring to you, I think you should go ahead and just purchase it. Simple as that.
The physical version is released on 500 CDs in cooperation with Cavan Records.
If you're in a hurry, at least make sure you check the teaser/preview.
Naturmacht Productions, 02.04.16
I believed for a while that the Finns of Havukruunu was already ready with the successor to last year's
that was released in October. If I had read the attached statement, I would have learned that this is actually a one year
old 25-minutes EP that for the first time is being released in physical format. With four bonus tracks the 45 minutes
duration sure looks like an album.
I liked the album that came out last year and gave it my approval, although I was not over-enthusiastic.
A slight nitpick-discount is occasionally awarded to débutantes. With the sophomore album, however, I will expect a little
bit more. But again, this ain't it.
For those not familiar with the duo, Havukruunu plays pagan metal with roots firmly planted as trees in
dark forests, but also with musical roots dating back to the Vikings and other ancestors. Rautaa ja Tulta has received praise from various areas. I like the music, but I nevertheless hold back
somewhat. The song material is not extremely strong, the hook leaves no permanent memories and the originality is so-so.
Nevertheless, the music is pleasant to listen to, and none of the objections are strong enough to undermine the album.
On the contrary, there's many alright melodies and quite appealing sequences, like evocative guitar and male chorus. I
must have heard this almost ten times, partly while I was busy with misc., and I didn't refrain from switching music
because I don't enjoy listening to Rautaa ja Tulta.
When the duo eventually do commence work on their second album, I want some development, and I wouldn't mind more of the
acoustic guitars from Verta Ja Tuhkaa. The four new tracks show signs of slightly stronger song-identity,
which bode well.
The music chiefly has a pretty vital touch with much lively instrumentation and decent variation, while the sound is
relatively sharp and rough. It's a matter of opinion, but I think a slightly clearer sound would have suited their pagan
shamanism better. The album emits pleasurable moods, but several aspects, especially among the original EP songs, lacks
the final icing on the cake to really shine.
If forests-metal à la old Vikings witch enjoys retirement in the Finnish woods is your cup of sap, I see no reason not
to checked out Havukruunu's new old EP that got less attention when it was released independently.
Eisenwald Tonschmiede, 08.04.16
The quartet from Portland, Oregon has taken their name from the Latin word for haunted and plays a relatively
melodic, slightly ethereal and vital form of black metal.
We don't need to create new genre designations all the time, but the label's choice of words, “... unique approach to
combine raw black metal and spectral melodies” makes it tempting to mark it with the appropriate tag spectral black
The moods in the band's tunes are partly exploring, and not largely marked by contempt or despondency. We find instead
stand tall attitudes, like for example the fearless courage of the Vikings in their exploration of unknown territory, or
later, the Europeans unwavering faith in themselves after voyages to foreign lands, such as the unexplored continent;
the new world.
Melodies and moods have a mild touch of the epic, along with subtle folk moods, which is also enhanced by vague brass
instrumentation. This helps to make the band's melodic black landscape so appealing. Neither vocals, guitar nor drums are
performed in a gentle manner, though, and there are even some similarities with Mgła but the melodic
moods prevents the band's black metal from appearing as particularly raw.
The title song has melodies that contains certain similarities with Inquisition, and perhaps especially Inversion
Of Ethereal White Stars from the last album, Obscure Verses for the Multiverse. Musically,
the similarity between these bands ain't substantial, but the two partly exhibits related moods. Uada's
appearance with a somewhat rounder sound, practically allows the good melodies to come more to their right, and these are also
in constant motion just like a continuous roller coaster. There's a lot of fresh and variable flickering guitar drift on
the album, and some rather frenetic solo works towards the end of the last song. More of that, please.
The bands five songs lasts for 34 minutes that seems to be over in a flash as they blow past like a mesmeric föhn wind that
puts the listener in a dreamy state. Devoid Of Light does not require as much time to seat as Zhrine's album, but has rather got a more
immediate effect. Albeit, after quite a few rounds, the nuances grows, while the album still don't show any signs of
A very good album that borders on a higher rating.
Season of Mist, 08.04.16 Zhrine is a new Íslenska svartur/dauða (black/death) metal band which is hereby predicted a dark eclectic
future, well supported under the dirty wings of Season of Mist.
The band began its journey under the moniker Gone Postal, but after seven years in existence and fairly
prosperous success, I can't remember having heard about them. The band played death metal before changing the name to
Shrine last year. The band has recently replaced the first letter, and have hopefully found its niche;
a distinctive witch's potion, so fitting of the fairly obscure and cryptic name Zhrine.
Someone has to be the first to take on the pretentious task of formulating the inevitable, and I feel that the burden
lays on my shoulders: post-kaleidoscopic. Remember where you read it first.
Joke aside. Zhrine has much of the kaleidoscopic maelstrom in its expression, but they are not quite
as frenetic as other Icelandic bands. Moreover, they blend different expressions into a welcome eccentric signature.
When the first notes of Utopian Warfare reveals itself, it's with very soft music and melancholic
melodies that drag my thoughts towards French post-metal. When the drums after a little over two and a half minutes slams
in as a cue to the swirling guitars, it's suddenly clear that there is a lot of bitterness behind the grief. When the
vocals emerge, no doubt of the festering discontent that lies smouldering is left behind. Despite heavy drums and two
swarming guitars, and disregarding fierce vocals, it's still mostly in moods and ominous melodies that these feeling
The music has a fairly angrily, hard and harsh character, but the lust for revenge is still on the drawing board.
It's calm before the storm.
This half-quiet, semi post extreme metal sensation of something afoot, is admittedly not the only aspect we find. The
band sometimes conjures up swarms of possessed souls, through seething infernal drumming and guitars that imitates
post-apocalyptic glowing comet fragments from the planet Tellus. (To use a slightly pompous portrayal).
The music is constantly changing, which is a big plus compared to the album below. It has a dark and ominous mood
throughout, which I have pretty much already mentioned, but that can hardly be stressed strongly enough. Parts of the
aforementioned eclectic moods consists furthermore of surreal, but not synthetic sounds, which sort of brings an
atmosphere of mystifying occult alchemy.
Although the band has its seat in Reykjavik, and guitarist/vocalist Nökkvi is also a long-time member
of Svartidauði, Zhrine's music must speak for itself. It took some time to convince
me. I felt a form of ambivalence, between pretty good post-metallic expression and terrific kaleidoscopic appearance.
Gradually the music grew to a stronger overall which rather than two-folded, became a diverse coherent alloy.
Good sound with fairly spacious dynamics (DR8) and songs with strong unpleasant melodies and moods, as well as constant
variation and fierce drift did obviously help, but also makes it difficult to secede after a while.
The album has grown steadily throughout several spins today and I want to “finish up this job” today, both to have something
to present on this date, and to progress in the program. (Admittedly, translation and proofreading pushed the publication
to just over midnight CET, but what the hell, it's still April 5th in Iceland et al.) From approved minus, via clean
thumbs up, to approved plus. It's entirely possible that Unortheta has what it takes to climb to the very top.
I have otherwise set off some time today eliminating some promos from the list, as limited time and mediocrity makes me
demoralized. Unortheta is a great moral boost in that respect. Spend some time on this. It'll pay off.
I'm sending you to noisey, who's been awarded the honour of premièring the entire album.
If I know Season of Mist right, the digital version will likely appear on Bandcamp on Friday.
EDIT 09.04.16: And so it did.
Independent, 08.04.16 Bloodred gives German Ron Merz outlet for his musical passions and creative ideas.
On the first EP, the band, then with guest-drumming by Joris Nijenhuis (Atrocity etc.), played
a form of fierce melodic black/death that admittedly didn't have the largest hooks or the most clever structures, but that
still had an appealing character and potential to evolve into something quite hefty.
I ended up approving The Lost Ones, as the EP was called. Revised 05.04.16
The professional cover and a quick previews of Nemesis, the band's first album, carried signs of changes
immediately. Not a full reform, mind you, but something was new. This promised well. During a few spins however, a sense
of disappointment eventually grew forth.
The style is still the same, but the juiciest riffs are toned down slightly in favour of a little more monotonous pagan
appearance. The melodies and nuances the album's got is largely subtle. It's quite possible there's a hint of atmosphere
Ron has approached, but although the music has melody in its foundation, it doesn't succeed entirely in
its attempt at hypnotizing this listener. The music, the riffs, hell, even the rhythm has a greater touch of repetition. This
despite the fact that Joris guests this time too. Something I didn't believe until I read the promo leaflet.
I've always had a taste for extreme vocals with fairly distinct pronunciation, such as Mannevond in
Koldbrann, but here, the vocals becomes excessively distinct in an insistent narration-wise sense. In addition
to a somewhat horse and grunting voice, conveyed, just as the music, fairly monotonously.
Again, Bloodred has visited Alexander Krull (Atrocity, Leaves' Eyes), that
has produced the album. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with the sound, even though the dynamics are relatively low
despite a very quiet mix. It's also possible that it becomes a bit too smooth.
The thing is that I am unable to befriend Nemesis no matter how hard I try, and I can't put my finger on
exactly what the problem is. I have a suspicion that this album falls a bit between two stools. It kind of attempts
to combine ferocity with atmosphere, which means that the two meet in an unfortunate compromise. The riffs are diluted while
the savagery shakes the atmosphere too much to keep it soaring.
I actually don't know. I only know that I'm tired of trying to untie this Gordian knot.
The result simply feels a bit generic.
The most enjoyable on the whole album is the title of the first song, Tragedien i Svenskehuset,
Norwegian for the tragedy in the Swedish house. I wish I knew what the Hell that's all about.
The last track, eight minutes long Im kalten Licht der Ewigkeit, starts of very good. From the first
second, the mood dominate, as the atmosphere is free to unfold its wings. When it starts to feel repetitive, halfway
through the song, the intensity increases. Then we get a couple of small transitions even in the second half. Sadly,
they cling on to each riff a bit too long, which in turn gives a rather dogged expression.
I'd still claim that Bloodred has potential. Ron just needs to add a little more
variety into the song-writing, and it may be an idea to find another way to blend the serene with the brutish.
I would not go as far as to call Nemesis bad, but I'm definitely rather disappointed.
I normally never go back on a rating, but I sensed that something was wrong shortly after posting this Impression.
Some of the songs weren't that bad, were they? Thus I make an exception. I didn't have time to do anything about it
until hours later. In the silence of the night, I put on the headphones and crank up the volume for one last spin.
The two first real songs, including Tragedien i Svenskehuset, is in fact rather killer. It's The
Hail-Storm that first kills the drift in a monotonous and staccato manner. Collateral Murder ain't
too bad, but struggles a bit to correct the impression of the latter. The next two songs also strive a great deal with
monotony, before aforementioned Im kalten Licht der Ewigkeit again lifts the impression a bit.
The expression is actually slaying. The sound come better into its own with headphones and complete silent surroundings.
Even the vocals feels more apt. But there's still not much to be done about lack of variety.
Resignation, disappointment and frustration led me to publish this with a bit lower, and undeserved poor rating, as well
as a bit more whining than strictly necessary. I take the responsibility and blame for this mistake. The grade is corrected.
The remainder will be left as it is.
Prophecy Productions, 01.04.16
I have a principle of only discussing metal, hence the name Gorger's Metal. But rules, as you all know,
are made to be shat upon. I will, however, refrain from evaluating this with a grade.
It's almost funny how some bands, albums and styles without metallic elements have a strong tendency to be marketed to
metalheads, which in turn often embraces it, whether we're talking Psychedelic Noisy Instrumental Stoner Ambience, Avant-Garde
Industrial progressive Folk Electronica or whatnot.
Iron Mountain, according to Prophecy Productions, plays “Psychedelic, Kraut and Post Rock [...]
with Irish Folk”. I even find other assorted inspirations on Unum too.
The people behind Iron Mountain comes from Limerick in Ireland, and has been involved in folk music,
film music and the heinous phenomenon known as Riverdance and more. The album consists of five songs and a total of 50
minutes with everything from soaring atmospheric passages to lively sequences. In Bonfires we especially
find a lot of the latter, which in addition to Irish folk music is reminiscent of Native American Indian music with its
touch off high spirits and frequent use of flute.
Enthralldom offers a bit more sneaking moods, including monotone bagpipes (of the traditional Irish
elbow-inflated "Uilleann" type) that creates some of the same droning background reverberation as we're used to getting
through guitars. When a segment with flute comes after just over 6.5 minutes, it is impossible to get the picture of
Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson standing on one foot out of the head.
With trumpet blasts and more chaos, the short Blitz becomes an ever so short jazzer in only scarce 6
minutes before Powow amplifies the mentioned Indian moods with floating flute trills and close to ritual
drum beats. The fiddle alone tells us that we're not on the prairie. But perhaps in a saloon? The song moves through
different stages, and contains sequences of '70s progrock and lots that could have been incorporated into such genre.
Finally, Opium rounds of with close to 14 minutes consist of a bit of everything.
You won't find any noise, electronica or industrial vibes here, but you can find just about everything else mentioned in
the preamble. Imagine a progressive rock/jazz ensemble that performs a concept based on Irish immigrants who meets an
Indian tribe and commence work together to jam out some music. Does that sound like something for you?
If so, you are destined to enjoy Unum.
Iron Mountain released this debut themselves in limited edition early last year. Prophecy Productions has just released it on Digipak CD and 500 copies of gatefold LPs.
Naturmacht Productions, 02.04.16
In the metaliverse, fairly small nuances may separate wheat from chaff and distinguish between gold and coal.
Minor changes may be all it takes to make a big difference. Immersion, a debut released at the very end of 2013, was not bad, but still somewhat more
mediocre. It also had a relatively protracted and uneventful form that left me quite restless. At the time, I rated
albums by only two categorizations; Approved and Not Approved. Hence, the Russian's debut, marked
by maritime themes, ended in the last section.
The grief-stricken duo plays atmospheric and doomy depressive black metal with touches of funeral. The compositions,
this time five in numbers, are located mostly around ten minutes, give or take a few.
On his sophomore album, the band has left the sea, and ventured into more urban areas. They have retained their grieving
moods, and this time exposes their tearful wretchedness with slightly stronger melodies and more varied progression in
the songs, something that creates a better drive. That's something I really missed last time. Also the sound has undergone
favourable changes. It sounds clearer and more professional of this production, and the dynamic range has increased from
DR7 to DR8. The band has also retained the clear bass, whilst also making it sound rounder and more comfortable.
You don't need any background info to hear that this is a Russian band. The vocals are relatively clear, and in my ears
the Slavic languages suits a mourning expression very well. The wailing vocals can admittedly be a bit excessively
hoarse-howling, although as I wrote in my early 2014 review of said Immersion, it does provide a
flattering “French touch of hopelessness”. When the vocals are sung in clean forms, they convey unconcealed distress
and despair superbly.
The album also features touches of programmed orchestral sequences and segments with wind noise, weeping and gnashing
of teeth. Something that helps reinforce the album's gloomy aspect and add depth. Hear for instance the passages from
eight minutes in the songs Shelter and Gathering.
With Passage, Depicting Abysm grows from a rather middling debutant, into a solid act
within the slow and woeful musical interpretation of suffering. A very pleasing 48-minute surprise from St. Petersburg,
which is available for an optional payment on Bandcamp.
Hellthrasher Productions, 18.03.16
American Chaos Moon has all in all been active for about ten years. In between, from 2011 to 2013 the
band was working under the moniker Esoterica for a few years, where they released the album
The men have released three albums and more under the name Chaos Moon. They have apparently evolved
from a black/funeral style to pure black metal, and they have moved physically from the country mecca of Nashville to
the EP Amissum is a sign of life in between the albums Resurrection Extract (2014) and
the work in progress Æschaton Mémoire. It was independently and digitally released back in September,
and is now available on CD via Hellthrasher Productions with two previously unreleased tracks as bonus, extending
the playing time from just over half an hour to three quarters of an hour.
The music has an intense unpleasant mood that feels rather appealing, but at the same time, they performs this musical
work with a touch of monotonous post-black that does not fascinate as much. However, they also give the music an
otherworldly feel with dark ethereal ambience that I find spiritually comfortable. Another aspect that pulls my
impression down is prolonged repetition, where the music do change over time, but very slowly and gradually.
It is Alex Poole from Krieg and Skáphe et al. that has written this material, and that
plays all instruments, whilst Eric Baker from Manetheren delivers anguished guttural snarls.
I unfortunately can't quite make out whether this is just a guest appearance on the title track, as the press release
indicates, or if Baker is a permanent vocalist, as other sources seem to suggest. I am inclined to
believe that the latter may be cemented in reality.
After having spent large parts of yesterday in the claustrophobic embrace of Amissum, I end up with a
somewhat ambivalent impression, which admittedly is more positive than negatively charged. If you, unlike me, are still
captivated by black shoegaze, this may be just the thing for you. This is bordering on a higher rating even with me.
*I couldn't find anything nice to say about Aseity when reviewing the re-release for
Duplicate in November 2014. The Norwegian label, by the way, released a free
compilation today. Awareness courtesy of No Clean Singing.
Altare Productions, 01.04.16
Yesterday began with a mediocre split, (as the Emperor scam was posted the night before) and the first thing I
have time to scribble a bit about today is also a somewhat middling split. Today's two-course menu consists of black metal.
Finnish Serpentfyre, who released their first album Bestial Mysticism last year, is first
out. The name seems familiar, but I can't remember having heard anything from the album. The black metal the trio here
perform is the over 6 minutes long track Kointähti.
Kointähti is a mid tempo, fairly dark matter (not the cosmetic substance, mind you) with good percussion
and rhythm. The song begins quietly and somewhat evocative before frantic vocal and more punch arrives with a moderate
melodic touch from fast tremolo guitars and surprisingly audible and pleasant bass. The song is rather varied and generally
quite good, although it doesn't lit me completely on fire.
As always, I feel that a few minutes ain't enough time to establish a mood, unless we're talking utterly killer classics.
When Portuguese Dolentia is up, it's with a slightly different sound.
Dolentia, that I disapproved about ¾ year ago, here contribute with the five minutes long song
Servo Além-Dor. This shows no direct signs of change since last time. The style and expression is about
the same, but the band is still not the type who only writes the same song over and over again.
I was probably a little bit strict when I slaughtered the album. Yet, when I see no reason to have the release
in my own collection, there's no point in recommending it to others either.
The song starts quite rapid with rhythmic trotting and pagan mood, but goes through several twists during the first minute.
The various aspects work fine separately, but something in the combination of vocals, guitar and sound still don't work
optimal for me. After a few minutes, the mood of the music drops abruptly. It gets colder, more eerie (although the
guitars don't quite manage to mimic creepiness) and the vocals resort to growling. During the very last minute, the song
returns to whence it came from. With such good variety, I am willing to consider this track a notch niftier than said album.
I think we'll land a bit above average this time. Maybe some music will show up on-line some day.
Until than, I suggest you save your money unless these two bands already makes your pulse sky-rocket.
Moribund Records, 26.02.16
With their seventh full length album out on the store shelves, it's about time Unhuman Disease gets a
little more attention. The band is admittedly not looking to revolutionize the black sphere, but rather choose, as an
intentional sore spot, to preserve the genre's genuine black footprint.
The band plays traditional black metal with dirty, thorny sound, repulsive moods of concentrated discomfort and spiked,
horrid vocals, like a saw blade with rancid organic deposits.
With moods that combines evil in its purest form, with an anti-social, inhuman mindset and barbaric brutality, one can
almost expect that De Templi Autem Veteris Serpentis must have been fostered by degenerate scum in the
depths of secluded and abandoned sewers. Who known. The band comes from Oklahoma, but whether they dwell above or below
ground, I can not comment on.
I could have been stricter, as Unhuman Disease isn't exactly original, and there are always
better bands. But that's always the case, isn't it? I have a higher desire to move up a notch in this respect. The band
namely exhibits a form of signature. At least on this album. I have no knowledge of the earlier releases.
This album's so brimming with pure black malicious disgust that the moods flows and drips like tar along the outside
of the speakers. Combined with stabbing vocals and cold, cutting guitars, as hangman's knots made of piano wires,
this forms an expression of pure, unadulterated coal-black metal. And then I see no reason to complain. At least not
about anything but life.
Pulverised Records, 01.04.16
The music hardly have time to get started before the smell of rotten flesh and early '90s Swedish death metal greets me
like a shovel to the face. Internment are no shameless copycats. This is the real thing. The band hails
from Sweden themselves, a few hours north-west of Stockholm, and started up under the name Beyond in 1988.
After a few years and ditto changes in the line-up, the guys started afresh with a new moniker in autumn 1990.
In 1993, a few years and demo recordings later, the band was dissolved. In 2002 the guys began practising together again,
but it took another four years before new material was recorded. In 2010 the Swedes finally released their first album. Scent Of The Buried is the band's second album, and the band has collected ten songs with a total duration
of about 40 minutes.
In my own case, there's quite a few years since Entombed were a regular part of the rotation list on my stereo.
Thus Interment now gives me a sort of nostalgic feel. I nevertheless miss the exceedingly strong melodic
structures of said band on Scent Of The Buried.
The band offers eerie moods, aggressive punch and the sound of grim Swedish riffs with classic HM-2 sound (named after
the Boss distortion pedal). It's a very audible session the band offers, and I'm enjoying myself, but I also feel that
the Swedes are missing the final finishing touch to sink its claws in and leave permanent scars.
The album was recorded and mixed in Sunlight Studio with SweDeath pioneer Tomas Skogberg at the helms,
before mastering was entrusted to Demonical og Diabolical front-man Sverker 'Widda' Widgren.
The sound is rich and thick as the forgotten remnants of porridge after the three bears ate Goldilocks instead. The guitars
imitates chainsaws and grisly vocals are reminiscent of Swedish forest trolls.
Even if the band lacks the very strongest hooks, let there be no doubt that they deliver relatively ripping death metal of
the “Stockholm-calibre” with enough melodic flair to keep the listener's attention for 40 minutes. Repeatedly.
Relapse Records, 01.04.16 Tombs from New York, like many other bands from the Big Apple, stands a bit out from the masses within
their genre. The band, which got their breakthrough with Path of Totality (2011), are referred to by
some as black metal or post-black, but the Brooklyn band offers more than just semi-monotonous and introvert black metal.
This EP consists of five songs that clocks in at 24 minutes, and that sees the band becoming a little bit sharper
around the edges.
The music has pace and lack of confidence from post-black, the warped view of the surroundings as black metal proselytize,
and a somewhat vain hipster-touch of sludgy hardcore. The music is semi-melodic, with something that rather contradictory
nearly resembles light-hearted dystopia with a little frivolous and indifferent touch. A bit like Britpop, actually.
The vocals are dangerously close to screamo at times, only to sound like Billy Idol or Danzig in the next moment.
I've never been captivated by Tombs, but I thought I'd give them a fair chance.
After six rounds I dislike the band more than ever. But then again, we all have different taste.
Get a seizure of the video to V, hear the EP in its entirety, and judge for yourself.
Swedish Turbocharged and Polish Ragehammer, both in a kind of dirty thrashing black/death
landscape, delivers a song each on this just over 7 minutes long split released on vinyl.
The split can even be downloaded for free.
Turbocharged deliver deadly thrash with blasphemous fuck-all attitude and reckless black/thrash vocals.
It smells a little bit like Entombed of the thick, almost physical guitar sound. Despite fairly fast music, the
guys adorn the song with a rather slow solo.
The Swedes have 16 years' experience, and their third full-length album was featured here.
Ragehammer is located more in the black/thrash terrain. This track is also fast and furious, but with
slightly sharper guitars. The song is recorded in Mgła/Kriegsmaschine's No Solace studio with
M. taking care of the technical stuff. The song kicks like a mule, without becoming much more than one in the crowd.
The Poles releases their first full length, The Hammer Doctrine on April 8th.
Both songs are cool enough, but the simple, straight in your face punk orientated structure poses no classic in any case.
This thus remains a release mostly for those with special interests in these bands.
The digital version is
free, whilst the physical version can be
obtained on black 7", limited to 300 copies.
Candlelight Records, 06.06.16
Today I have the most thrilling news to share with you all. Thanks to a few buddies, I were invited to a very
exclusive pre-listening session today. It was at first only “by the skin of my teeth” that I was at all given admission,
and it was with greater difficulty that I managed to get the permission to spread the news that will not be officially
spread until Monday, unless plans are now being altered.
But let's get a move on. I'm in a hurry to get some sleep as it is. I've only got time to present these news in one
language, and so I prioritize the international language.
I am truly exhilarated to present to you: the return of the great Emperor!
What you are about to read is based on just one spin of a not entirely completed production of Hoc Est A
Iocum, the first Emperor album since the band said good bye with Prometheus some fifteen
So why haven't this news leaked before? There's been more secrecy than in Fight Club, and the journalists and reporters
who have been initiated have (for once) managed to keep their mouth shut. (If it wasn't for a couple of good
colleagues in other 'zines and musicians pulling strings , I'd been as perplexed as you.) This hush-hush operation's been
tighter than the thighs of a female security officer in the Kremlin.
25 years since the birth of what is perhaps the most acclaimed black metal band, comes a bomb with 6 grenade-songs
and two landmines in the form of intro and interlude, ready to detonate. I hardly know where to begin, for Hoc Est
A Iocum is no easy matter to describe. Samoth, Ihsahn and Faust
has not only worked together, they've offered blood and sweat along the way. They have also towed almost every former members
in to the studio to aid in creating the most massive sound ever produced. Or, honestly, it may have been the studio monitors.
Remember, I didn't check this out on my own sound system. It nevertheless felt like getting hit by not one truck,
but a convoy of 666 semi-trailers. And the sound provides an illusion that they're driving side by side!
Hear for example Qui Legitis Flores, where as much as three drummers blasts as synchronous machine
guns, making that old Sepultura-video with several drummers on the scene seem rather dated.
To really make this massive wall of sound into a sound barrier that even an F-16 would struggle to break, they have
incorporated no less than twelve medieval instruments, five ancient African instruments, as well as a full philharmonic
The song Collaudate Canticum can blow out my brains any day with its intricate and progressive rhythms.
This must be the decade's most refined composition. The majestic melodies just keeps snowballing until I'm certain it'll
be completely impossible to get bored of this song. And when Credula Deceptam kicks off next, they just
keep raising the bar with beautiful melodies and moods.
The lyrics also makes for an extra dimension. From the little I've been able to absorb, we're talking a conceptual album
that'll make Ayreon's sci-fi stories seem like a Hardy-book.
Hoc Est A Iocum is just rich on details. While listening intensively, I kept hearing something new all
the time, yet I always felt that there were things out of reach that I just couldn't grasp. This must be the most intricate,
original and in depth work of art I've heard since I don't remember when. Emperor performs sophisticated Black Metal Art exclusively, indeed!
My excitement doesn't seem to have no end. I'm shaking as a leaf, I feel like ending every sentence with an exclamation
mark, I don't know if I can sleep now, and I can't fucking wait to hear this again. I check out a lot of music in between
what I actually write about. I listen to a shitload of new stuff. Yet rarely(!) am I floored like this.
Ten years after the magic date 06.06.06 (when no churches was burned to the ground, I'm afraid) the almighty
Emperor shall return to set the heavens on fire. Mark the date 06.06.16 by writing it backwards on your forehead,
and alert all your friends and fiends. Thus say this longing nightspirit.
EDIT 02.04.16: ~EPILOGUE~
As it turns out, this was just wishful thinking. Devil made me do it.
Also, I hope I managed to fool some of you on April 1st, even if I doubt that anyone really fell for it.