Apr 222014

Here are five items I found yesterday that I thought were worth sharing. The first and last items will tear you a new one. In between those you’ll find some tantalizing news and a song that’s an exception to our “rule” but will rock you all night long.

MIASMAL

Miasmal are a Gothenburg death metal band who share members with Agrimonia and Martyrdöd and whose self-titled debut album came out in 2011. Their second album, Cursed Redeemer, is scheduled for a May 13 U.S. release by Century Media (April 28 in the EU). Last month we featured a song from the album named “Until the Last”. Yesterday Noisey/Vice premiered a second track, “Call of the Revenant”. In a word, it’s stupendous (and, as noted, it will tear you a new one).

Seriously, there’s something about this song. On the one hand, it sounds utterly familiar — voracious vocal howling, heavy-drilling down-tuned riff grisliness, death/crust grinding and crawling, punk-inflected Swedeath rhythms. On the other hand, it not only captures this old-school radiance terrifically well, it sounds… vibrant and new. The rapacious, marauding energy is explosive and it begs to be played over and over again.

Apr 182014

Between pulling my hair out two days ago because our site was down and then frantically trying to catch up yesterday with posts we had promised to do on the day the site was down, I haven’t been as on top of new happenings as I’d like. So, to catch up a bit, here are a trio of new-ish things I’d like to share. There will be another round-up later today.

FUCK THE FACTS

My NCS comrade Austin Weber sent me the photo you see above. Hiding behind that absurdly large, absurdly metal mask is Mel Mongeon of Canada’s Fuck the Facts, putting on her metal face for a show in Chicago last night.

If you don’t know, the band have just begin a North American tour. Even without a mask of such epic qualities, Ms. Mongreon,  Topon Das, and their brothers in arms will still shake you to your core. Here’s the tour schedule as it now stands:

Apr 142014

You might think that having posted 23 very recent song and video premieres over the weekend (here and here), I’d be fresh out of new material to toss your way. But you would be wrong.  Here are four more that surfaced over the last 48 hours that I’ve been enjoying, and the music is so varied — including two exceptions to our Rule — that I’m betting you’ll find something to like as well.

KAMPFAR

As I previously reported, on May 27 in NorthAm (and May 23 in Euope) Season of Mist plans to release a special 2-disc compilation entitled One And All, Together, For Home. The project was initiated by Drudkh’s  Roman Sayenko and it will consist of 17 songs by eight excellent bands performing traditional song interpretations from their native countries, cover versions of folk songs, or the use of themes and melodies from their musical heritages in original compositions. All of the songs will appear exclusively on this release.

I’ve already streamed the track by Primodial (here) and today I bring you the song contributed by Norway’s Kampfar.

The song is called ”En Hymne Til Urd” (A Hymn for Earth)”. Here’s the band’s explanation about the song:

Mar 312014

Here are a handful of new songs and videos I found this morning that I thought were worth passing along.

WRONG

I got interested in this new two-man black metal band because the vocalist and drummer is Phlegeton from the excellent Spanish metal band Wormed. His partner, who plays guitar, bass, and piano, goes by the initials DP and is a member of The YTriple Corporation and Neverdie. Their second album, Pessimistic Outcomes, is coming out in April.

In January I featured a Wrong video for a song from their first album, and what I found today is a just-released video for the new album’s title track. The song is slow-moving and depressive, with squalling tremolo guitars and methodically pummeling percussion that moves between rock beats and rolling thunder. Incorporated within this bleak, atmospheric music are two contrast points — ugly, distorted, bile-spewing vocals and eerie, ethereal piano notes.

Mar 292014

This is the second round-up of newly discovered music for this Saturday. One just wasn’t enough for what I found yesterday.

CONDUCTING FROM THE GRAVE

My comrade DGR rightly praised this Sacramento band’s self-titled 2013 album in a review last September. And how, we wondered, might the band follow up that monster of a disc? Well, now we have our answer: by covering a West Coast rap song from 1994 by Dr. Dre and Ice Cube. I’m not lying.

Actually, “Natural Born Killaz” is a pretty natural choice for a metal cover if you think about it. To quote The Font of All Human Knowledge: “The song has satanic and occult undertones and covers such subjects as mass murder, Sarah Connor from the Terminator films, Al Cowlings’ tight bond with O. J. Simpson, schizophrenia, Charles Manson, the attack on Reginald Denny during the Rodney King riots, strychnine poisoning, flagellation in Singapore, Jeffrey Dahmer, Kurt Cobain’s suicide and psilocybin mushrooms.”

Mar 272014

(It is always such a treat for us to bring you the investigations of Professor D. Grover the XIIIth. They come in the night, when you least expect them, and they open your eyes, and your ears. Blessings be upon his wizard head.)

Greetings and salutations, friends. I return to bring to your undoubtedly overcrowded attention new releases from a quintet of artistic purveyors of the Devil’s Musick. You may be familiar with a few of these artists, and that in itself is laudable. If, by some odd confluence of fate, you are familiar with all of them, then I warmly shake your hand and wish to know more about you, as clearly we are of a similar mind when it comes to music. And now, let us commence.

SOCKWEB

If there is one of these musical groups I would expect most of you to know, it would be Sockweb. After all, they have been widely discussed in the annals of No Clean Singing before. Still, for those of you a bit slow on the uptake, Sockweb are a grind duo comprised of multi-instrumentalist Adam “Blackula” Young and his now seven-year-old daughter and vocalist Joanie “Bologna” Young, and it is that initially gimmicky quality that has gained Sockweb their notoriety. At any rate, the duo’s debut album Werewolf is finally available for purchase, and as many had hoped, it’s actually quite excellent.

Mar 262014

(Austin Weber brings us another round-up of music and metal news, featuring The Conjuration, D’Arkestra, Divine Realm, Winter of Sin, and Posthumous Blasphemer.)

THE CONJURATION

After a long wait, The Conjuration’s new album, Surreal, has finally emerged—and it’s a gloriously twisted avante-garde beast that lashes out in progressive and schizophrenic fits. This is death metal turned upside down. Corey Jason has proved once again that he doesn’t need a band, only himself. He composed all of it, played all the instruments, did the vocals, and handled the production himself, too.

On Surreal, Corey skillfully pushes the limits of what a one-man death metal act is capable of creating. Most acts of this nature that play death metal are lacking compositionally and all too often create music that is too samey in the songwriting, and too often lacking a vital creative spark. By contrast, Surreal really does sound like the work of multiple people whose different ideas and approaches led to a diverse group of songs.

Mar 232014

To make your Sunday more metal I’ve collected here a handful of recommended songs and videos I discovered yesterday in my tramping through the interhole and a quick skimming of emails we recently received.

ACHREN

I first discovered Achren (from Glasgow, Scotland) in a June 2011 MISCELLANY post and have written about them a couple more times since then. The last time was more than a year ago, when I featured an song from their excellent debut album The Forgotten King in a round-up of metal from Scotland. I’ve now learned that they will soon be releasing a new EP entitled The White Death, and yesterday they began streaming one of its three tracks.

“The Eschatologist” is a memorable song, made all the more compelling by its powerful production quality. It reminded me immediately of the Norwegian black metal band Byfrost, blending a lot of thunder in the low end with a driving, dramatic guitar melody, which at times seems to draw upon the folk traditions of the band’s homeland. It’s a rocking, romping, slashing song that makes me anxious to hear the rest of the EP.

Mar 202014

I’m not a musician. I’m just a fan. When I watch a play-through video, I’m not capable of critiquing the fine points of a performance, especially a drummer’s performance, because almost all drummers amaze me. Having made that confession, I’m now going to offer a few thoughts about Morgan Berthet’s drum play-through for “Abyss”, a song by his band The Mars Chronicles.

There are times in the play-through when what he’s doing looks simple — and then he’ll twirl a drumstick through his fingers in mid-beat so fast that you wonder if you really saw it. Those drum twirls having nothing to do with the sound on the song, but they’re still really impressive. The actually drumming is impressive, too.

Mar 062014

Grey Skies Fallen are a New York band who trace their roots back to 1996. Since then they’ve released three full-length albums and two EPs, all of which are available for free download at the band’s web site (here). Along the way, they’ve made changes in their sound, as well as changes in the line-up, and they’re now set to release a new album entitled The Many Sides of Truth. Today we’re giving you a glimpse into the new work through our premiere of “Ritual of the Exiter”.

When I first heard this long song, I was left bedazzled, and grasping at straws in thinking about how to describe it. Just when I thought I understood what the band were up to, they crossed me up. As the title suggests, there is indeed a ritualistic quality to its progression, with the parts of the rite segmented by unexpected guitar interludes that break the building tension before the intensity begins to build again.

The song is anchored by a really good rhythm section, with both the bass and the drums getting their hooks into you. But the bleak melodic motifs in the music are the key to its success, along with the vocals, which are both clean and agonizing. Genre boundaries are ignored, with elements of doom, prog, black metal, and melodic death metal in the mix.

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