Jul 312017

 

(Argentinian writer Matías Gallardo rejoins us with this interview of Michael Czerwoniuk, vocalist/guitarist of the UK black metal band Wode, whose new album Servants of the Countercosmos we reviewed here.)

 

After releasing their self-titled debut album last year, British black metal act Wode became one of the most exciting bands around the obscure corners of the underground. With a particular blend of fury and catching melodies that resemble both early ‘90s Norwegian legends and classic heavy metal heroes, the Manchester-based quintet started a path that was followed earlier this year with the release of their sophomore album, Servants of the Countercosmos.

Released by the renowed Italian label Avantgarde Music, Servants… is a massive and violent sequel plagued with some of the best and most extreme riffs you’ll hear this year. In barely 31 minutes, Wode managed to craft another piece of chaotic blackness. Below you can read the chat vocalist/guitarist Michael Czerwoniuk had with NCS.

Jul 312017

 

 

The Brooklyn-based black metal band Arsantiqva took their name from a conjunction of Latin words meaning “ancient art”, referring to European music from the late Middle Ages, perhaps in part because their key members are transplants from France and Russia. But there is nothing antiquated or time-worn about their music, as you’re about to discover through our premiere of a lyric video for “Hellwhore“, a track from the band’s forthcoming debut album, Scavengers.

Thematically, Scavengers explores a post-apocalyptic concept, “a metaphorical expression of a destroyed civilization taken to its primitive state of existence” — and “Hellwhore” is indeed a nasty, boisterous, and primally appealing romp through the wasteland. A big part of its appeal comes from the band’s success in pulling together a diverse array of stylistic elements, making them work in harness together, pulling in the same direction in the service of the song rather than scattering apart like a flock of startled ravens.

Jul 312017


Photo by Carsten Aniksdal

 

(In this July 2017 edition of THE SYNN REPORT, Andy reviews all the albums of the Norwegian band Execration, including their recently released 2017 album, Return To the Void.)

 

Recommended for fans of: Morbid Angel, Autopsy, Blood Incantation

 

With a sound that blends together the most fundamental elements of classic Death and Black Metal – yet which, for various reasons, you’d never describe as “Blackened Death Metal” or “retro” – Norwegian quartet Execration are a hard band to fully pin down.

The fact that their music also incorporates numerous strains of Prog, Doom, Punk, and Thrash only makes this task even harder.

Still, there’s a good chance that anyone who’s a fan of grim, grimy, guttural Death Metal, with a penchant for weird, acid-fuelled atmospherics and moments of spasming dissonance, will find a lot to love here.

Jul 302017

 

I picked advance tracks from three forthcoming albums and two recent EPs for this edition of SHADES OF BLACK and arranged the streams in a way that made sense to me. I had to cut out a few other streams due to the inconvenient encroachment of the rest of my life, so you’ll probably see another one of these collections tomorrow.

GRIFT

In 2015 Grift released a video for a song from the Syner album named “Svältorna“, a song that I included in our list of that year’s Most Infectious Extreme Metal Songs. It was made by Daniel Blomberg and Grift’s Erik Gärdefors near a small mountain named Kinnekulle in the southwestern Swedish province of Västergötland, and it featured Gärdefors‘ father Dag Gärdefors, whose face alone tells a thousand stories.

Now the same trio have collaborated again (along with Simon Blomberg) on a video for a new Grift song — “Den stora tystnaden”” (“The Great Silence”) — which “follows the red thread” from the video for “Svältorna”.

Jul 292017

 

Israthoum put their mission statement right in the title of their new album — Channeling Death and Devil — and that is what they do.

These are grand, fearsome, and mystical subjects, and Israthoum’s music effectively summons all those qualities through a form of occult, atmospheric black metal that’s intricately plotted and relentlessly dramatic, delivering a changing soundscape that ranges from majestic yet chilling stateliness to maelstroms of shuddering chaos. Grandeur, mysticism, and madness are all made manifest in a stand-out performance.

The album was released just yesterday; this review comes later than I had planned, and now serves only as an extended introduction to the stream you can hear for yourselves at the end of this writing.

Jul 282017

 

Although I put together a round-up of news and new music yesterday, I still had a lot of new stuff I wanted to spread around today. As I began picking through a very long list of newly revealed tracks, it dawned on me that a big chunk of what I found attractive fell within the realms of death metal. And that’s what I’ve got for you below — new (or newly discovered) deathly music from 8 bands.

DYSCARNATE

Five years after their superb last album and with a new bassist/vocalist (Al Llewellyn) now in the three-person line-up, Dyscarnate are returning with their third full-length, With All Their Might. Yesterday DECIBEL premiered a new song and video from the album, and it’s  fittingly named “Iron Strengthens Iron“.

Jul 282017

 

Colorado-based Dark Descent Records must be very, very happy with 2017. (I’m talking about their slate of music releases, of course, because many other things about the year suck harder than a shop vac.) Here we are just past the halfway point, and Dark Descent has already served up new albums by the likes of Heresiarch, Undergang, Father Befouled, Bestia Arcana, Ascended Dead, Phrenelith, Ensnared, GorephiliaCraven Idol, Lantern, Excommunion, Sarcasm, and Diabolical Messiah, and a new EP by Devouring Star (and I might have overlooked something).

But with more than five months left in the year, the label has a lot more nastiness up its sleeve, and today we’re getting a big taste of what’s to come. Today Dark Descent has released via Bandcamp and YouTube a new sampler that consists of a whopping 11 track premieres all at once, and they all happen to be from releases we’ve been very eager to hear, or that come as very intriguing surprises. Many appear headed our way before year-end; some may not arrive until 2018.

Below you’ll find some info about those 11 offerings, plus impressions of the music (aided by a bit of a sneak peak we got in advance), and of course streams of each song. To begin, here’s the track list:

Jul 272017

 

The crushing melodic death metal band Mordenial began life in early 2000 in Västervik, Sweden, eventually releasing their debut album, Where the Angels Fall, in early 2015. In just a handful of days they will return with their second full-length, The Plague, via Black Lion Records — but we have a full stream for your listening pleasure today.

The album is a 10-track, 44-minute affair, with all of the songs thematically linked to concepts of “plague”, ranging from the pestilential vectors of the distant past to futuristic scenarios, and the terrors perpetrated by human beings in the name of god or gods. Consistent with this thematic focus, the music is cloaked in darkness, with death looming like a specter in the atmosphere of the melodies.

The music is also immensely powerful in its sound, and immensely punishing in its impact, and those grim melodies prove to be as infectious as the contagions that have inspired the album.

Jul 272017

 

The Canadian trio Riftwalker have received quite a bit of well-deserved attention at our site this year, with Andy Synn lavishing praise on their late-2016 album Green & Black, and then following that review more recently with an interview of the band. Now it’s our pleasure to host the premiere of a drum play-through video for one of the many outstanding tracks off Green & Black — “Engineer Their Consent“.

The video was filmed by Dean Lamb of Archspire, with audio recorded by Dylan Charles of Apprentice.

As Andy explained in his review, Riftwalker’s music is “complex, catchy, and occasionally rather crushing”, the result of “an eclectic fusion of Progressive Death and Thrash Metal in the vein of Sadus/Atheist/Coroner, with a heavy focus on intricate compositions, impeccable musicianship, and refined, focussed intensity”. And I’ll further quote his specific comments about the song featured in this video:

Jul 272017

 

Not long ago I happened upon a song named “The Boats” that hooked me right in the gills, and I included it in a round-up here at our site. It’s the opening track on Blackness From the Stars, the debut album by Planet Eater from Regina in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan, who based their name on that destroyer of worlds out of the Marvel universe, Galactus. And now we get to bring you the premiere of another track from the album in advance of its August 4 release. This one is “Cold Confines“.

There is a bit of a chill in the song, thanks to the spooky, cosmic ambient sounds that accompany a syncopated percussive beat at the outset and reappear again near the end, as the song ascends into darkness before a final bout of brute-force hammering. But there’s a lot more heat in this track than sensations of cold, the heat thrown off by a big turbocharged engine with the throttle wide open.

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