Some death metal albums succeed in delivering a level of destructiveness so electrifying, so technically impressive, and so unrelenting in their explosiveness that they send adrenaline levels off the charts. Scordatura‘s new album is one of those. It’s the embodiment of a death lover’s thrill ride.
Self-Created Abyss is the name of this new piece of scorched-earth barbarity, and it will be released on March 24th (today!) by Gore House Productions. To make sure you don’t miss it, we’ve got a full stream of the album at the end of this verbiage.
(This is Andy Synn’s review of the new album by Germany’s Heretoir.)
“Post-Black Metal” is a funny old term. Its relatively amorphous nature means that no-one can really fully agree quite what it refers to, or quite what its defining characteristics are as a (sub)genre.
But, to my mind, in order to be considered “Post Black Metal” a band has to have at least some actual Black Metal in their sound (yes, I know that, strictly speaking, “Post” implies after/beyond, but no-one expects a Post-Metal or Post-Rock band to NOT have any Metal/Rock in them, do they?).
It’s not enough to just have a little bit of blackened DNA left over in your system, or just to count certain bands among your influences… if your music doesn’t contain at least some of the sonic markers of Black Metal, then why even bother referring, even obliquely, to it at all?
The reason I’m saying all this is that there are a lot of bands out there, particularly in these Post-Alcest years, who could be considered as Post- “Post Black Metal” at this point, and a full 666 degrees of separation removed from the genre from which they (supposedly) derive their sound.
And while there are those who still think/act like using the words “Black Metal” gives whatever they’re talking about a certain amount of instant credibility, the truth of the matter is that the over-use of terms like “Black Metal” and “Post Black Metal” has not only diluted their meaning in a frankly rather unhelpful manner, but also led to many otherwise worthwhile artists being judged (and found wanting) by a wholly inappropriate set of standards.
So please, don’t think of The Circle as a “Post Black Metal” album. It’s not. But if you judge it on its own merits, by what it is, rather than what you think it should be, I think you’ll find that it really is a great album on its own terms.
We discovered the Spanish death metal band Morbid Flesh in 2014. During that year we had the pleasure of premiering a stream of their EP Embedded In the Ossuary, which was a stunningly accomplished infliction of death metal cruelty and pestilence in the old Swedish style. Morbid Flesh are now returning with their second album, Rites of the Mangled, which will be released by Unholy Prophecies on April 24. We have already vomited our enthusiasm for one track from the album (“Circle Cursed”), and now it’s our ghoulish pleasure to bring you a second one — “Heretics Hammer“.
“Circle Cursed” was perhaps less an example of classic Swe-death than a firestorm of disease and destruction, its riffs and pacing turning from rapacious savagery to festering decomposition, and back again. And you’ll get a good headbang going as the song romps and gallops. What then does “Heretics Hammer” hold in store for you?
The monstrous cover art of the maestro Paolo Girardi is what first put Beyond This World’s Illusion on our radar screen, and the music from the album has kept it there, moving quickly in an upward trajectory. We’ve previously written about two songs from this new album by The Sarcophagus and now we can bring you the premiere of a third one, “Dymadiel“, in advance of the album’s April 4 release by Satanath Records and a consortium of other international labels.
The origins of The Sarcophagus can be traced to 1996 — their first demo was released in 1997 — making them one of Turkey’s earliest black metal bands. Their discography lists two releases by Osmose Productions that featured the participation of Shining’s Niklas Kvarforth, including the band’s debut album Towards The Eternal Chaos. Seven years have passed since that full-length debut, and Kvarforth’s role is now capably filled by vocalist Mørkbeast from the Russian black metal band Todestriebe.
It’s still soon, but not too soon, to forecast that the new album of the Lithuanian post-black metal band Au-Dessus will become one of this year’s best albums. The first two advance songs from the album are that good. The first one appeared earlier this month, and the second one is here for you to discover today.
The band’s first release was a self-titled EP (albeit a 30-minute EP) released in 2015. Its five tracks were labeled “I” through “V”. The new album is named End of Chapter, and the song titles pick up where the first release left off, beginning with “VI” and closing with “XII: End of Chapter“, which is the enormously powerful song we’re bringing you today.
If you are a fan of dark and danceable EBM, you may know the name Coutoux. I know less about that genre than I did about the helicoprion, which was nothing at all before embarking on this premiere. But if you are familiar with Coutoux’s previous recordings, you should probably just put them out of your mind, because the song you’re about to hear and the album from which it comes are different beasts.
Coutoux is the solo project of Mathias Eugène Pierre Coutoux, originally from Saint Raphaël, France. His first metal album is Hellicoprion, and it will be released by by KILL ALL MUSIC on March 31. The song you’re about to hear is “Six Gills“.
As you can see, I have been a busy blogger — but a tardy one. On Monday night I moved through a lot of news and new music, all of which I came across solely from the Monday arrivals in our in-box and my own surveillance of Facebook. I selected these items to recommend, intending to post this on Tuesday, but my fucking day job prevented me from finishing it in time and since then other things have gotten in the way.
At least I resisted the temptation to make this longer by including more things I’ve discovered since Monday night. I’ll pull together some of those for another round-up as soon as I can.
After the first two bands in this collection (who are among my favorites), all the rest are new discoveries for me, making their first appearance at NCS.
On Monday, Century Media announced that it will release a new album by Vallenfyre on June 2nd. The name of the album is Fear Those Who Fear Him.
For my comrades and I here at our putrid site, WarCrab’s album Scars of Aeons was one of the biggest, brightest, and stupendously heaviest discoveries of 2016. Grant Skelton named it to his list of the year’s best death metal albums. I included a track from the album on our list of 2016’s Most Infectious Extreme Metal Songs. And Andy Synn praised the album in his review with these pungent words:
“With a sound that can best be described as a humongous hybrid of the chugging, churning assault of classic Bolt Thrower, the swaggering, sludge-soaked grooves of Crowbar, and the sheer, merciless morbidity of Autopsy at their doomiest, Scars of Aeons is one heck of a weighty listen. There are riffs here which are heavy enough to break an elephant’s back, and slithering grooves as thick and meaty as an anaconda on steroids.
“In fact I’m surprised this album doesn’t come with an attached safety warning and a recommendation that listeners wear a hard-hat at all times in order to prevent cranial trauma. It really is that [expletive deleted] heavy!”
(Austin Weber introduces our premiere of a new music video from the French band Michel Anoia.)
A bit over one year ago from now, Islander premiered the song “Two Mountains” from French metal maniacs Michel Anoia off their album Plethora, and the utterly demented and brain-melting experience of that song had me instantly hooked on their impossible-to-categorize and unique style of extreme metal. When premiering it, Islander astutely described it as “..like a musical Frankenstein’s monster assembled with bits and pieces of grindcore, technical death metal, psychedelia, and jazz. But simply stitching those words together falls short as a means of trying to capture the sound.”
If you missed it then, you’re going to want to check out today’s music video premiere for “Two Mountains”. It’s not a typical band performance music video. The well-shot black-and-white video for “Two Mountains” has a very rich and cinematic look to it, with choppy frenetic scenes to match the equally disturbing music. Hit play, and give in to the madness contained within, both visually and aurally.
Last fall we had the pleasure of premiering Interitus, the new album by the Brazilian band Escarnium, in advance of its joint release by Redefining Darkness Records in North America and Testimony Records in Europe. And now both labels are bringing out a limited vinyl edition of the record. To pave the way for that, we’re helping premiere a new lyric video for a song off the album named “While the Furnace Burns“.
As vibrantly and viciously manifested on Interitus, Escarnium have developed a truly impressive, sure-handed mastery of evil, primal, old school death metal.