Oct 172014

In this post we bring you the premiere of the title track from the forthcoming debut album — All Sights Affixed, Ablaze — by a band from Ontario, Canada, named Idol of Fear. But first, a bit of background information.

The band took their name quote from a quote in Ingmar Bergman’s 1957 movie Det Sjunde Inseglet (The Seventh Seal): “We must make an idol of our fear and that idol we shall call God.” They recorded a three-song demo in 2013, and now plan to release their debut full-length on November 18, 2014.

The album includes 8 tracks, its total length is 44 minutes, it was mixed by Jeff Wardell, and it was mastered by Tore Stjerna at Necromorbus Studio. The cover art is by the viciously talented Mark Riddick.

Okay, enough background. What about the music?

Oct 162014


About 10 days ago we had the pleasure of premiering (here) a lyric video for “The Final Outcome”, the title track to a new EP by a Roman band named Black Therapy. Today we’re bringing you the official stream of the entire EP in advance of its official release tomorrow — preceded by this review.

There are four tracks on the EP, three of them original songs and one of them a cover. I already wrote about the title song that it was one of the most satisfying injections of Gothenburg-style melodic death metal I’d heard all year, and that turns out to be true of the second track as well, “Black Crow”.

Both songs are high-voltage gallops, with jolting verse riffs, sweeping choruses, and the kind of rapidly swirling lead guitar melodies that may cause you to form your hands into claws and lift them toward the heavens — while you bang your head like a crazy person.

Oct 102014

Eighteen months after the release of their debut album Fires of Life, Chicago’s Starkill have come roaring back with their second album Virus of the Mind, scheduled for release next week by Century Media, and today we’re giving you a chance to hear it from start to finish.

Speaking of starts, the fast-paced orchestral introduction to the album’s first song, “Be Dead or Die”, is about as blood-pumping a start to an album as you’re likely to hear this year. And the adrenaline rush doesn’t let up. Whether the band are ripping like razors or vaulting into the stratosphere with soaring choruses, they keep the energy in the red zone.

Oct 102014


Prepare yourselves for a big departure from our normal fare as we present a full-album stream of Be All End All, the new release by Norway’s Manes.

You would be hard-pressed to find a band who have led as many diverse musical lives at Manes. At the time of the band’s genesis in about 1992, and through the release of their 1999 debut album Under Ein Blodraud Maane, they were a black metal band. And then there was a hiatus — until the second album Vilosophe was released in 2003. It sounded nothing like what the band had been creating prior to the break, and it defied categorization. More releases followed, including a third album (2007′s How the World Came To An End), and then another hiatus followed.

Now the band have, in effect, begun a third life with Be All End All, which will soon be released by Debemur Morti. This follows a two-song single named Vntrve released at the end of the summer (reviewed here), and it’s the first full-length from the band in seven years.

Oct 072014

Eternal Khan came to life in Providence, Rhode Island, about five years ago. By 2012 they had released a two-song demo and then followed that in 2013 with an EP entitled A Primitive History, which appeared on several year-end lists posted on our site, including this one from our friend SurgicalBrute (and another one of our contributors, KevinP, wrote about it for Metal Bandcamp here).

After these auspicious beginnings Eternal Khan have now finished a full-length album, A Poisoned Psalm, and have scheduled it for release on October 21. In this post we bring you the premiere of one of the new songs — “Raging Host” — as well as a stream of a second one that is now up at Bandcamp.

As they’ve done before, Eternal Khan bring an interesting mix of styles to bear in “Raging Host”, and the result is a powerful and engrossing piece of very dark music.

Oct 062014


“Contempt” is a boiling cauldron of interesting extremity. I’m referring to the song we’re about to premiere from the third album by Florida’s Inferion, which is entitled This Will Decay and is scheduled for release by Horror Pain Gore Death Productions on October 21.

The music is seething in its ferocity, a flurry of scything riffs, weaponized drum and bass work, and scathing vocal vehemence that ranges from sulfurous black metal shrieks to cavernous death metal roars. And if that were all, this hybrid of black and death metal would be fine enough, but that’s not all.

Without missing a step, the song also includes an undercurrent of melody that, when it fully surfaces, proves to be quite entrancing. It adds a layer of depth and texture to an already dynamic, well-executed piece of music — one that still does an effective job just tearing your head off.

Oct 062014


Given my near-pathological affection for old-school death metal, and particularly the curriculum taught in old European schools, I was kind of stunned to realize that I’ve failed to write about Finland’s Decaying since reviewing their debut album (Devastate) back in 2011. Since then, they’ve released two more albums — Encirclement (2012) and The Last Days of War (2012) — and now their fourth album is almost upon us. The new album’s name is One To Conquer, and based on the song from the album we’re about to premiere, it should be another strong one.

Decaying have a penchant for including longer, doom-suffocated tracks in their military-themed albums, but they’re fully capable of rolling right over you in a crushing assault as well — and that’s the style of “Zero Hour”. If you like your old school death metal in the form of a smoking tank attack with a howling, rasp-voiced commander exhorting the battalion to show no mercy, “Zero Hour” is your thing. It’s definitely my thing: The song is a gassed up, heavy-grooved headbang trigger with a beautifully morbid melody — death metal militarism that will put a charge into your brainstem.

Especially with the timbre of the voracious vocals, you may think of Asphyx or Hail of Bullets, but fans of Bolt Thrower should eat this up, too.

Oct 062014


The two-headed Italian entity known as Fides Inversa released their debut album, Hanc Aciem Sola Retundit Virtus (The Algolagnia Divine), in 2009. At last, they have readied their second full-length assault. Bearing the title Mysterium Tremendum et Fascinans, it will be released by W.T.C. Productions on October 31, 2014. Included within are seven songs identified only by Roman numerals, of which we bring you the premiere of “VI“.

“VI” burns like a bonfire blazing under a black sky, riffs flickering and roaring, with crackling drumbeats and zealous infernal incantations rising over the conflagration. It’s a monument to the cleansing light of chaos that explodes from the void, fueled by an infectious guitar melody that peals with the sound of ritual bells.

Or, to put it in more prosaic terms, this is hot-blooded black metal that’s both scathing and charismatic.

Oct 062014

Well, I didn’t expect I’d have to visit Rome to get one of the most satisfying injections of Gothenburg-style melodic death metal of the year, but that’s what Black Therapy have delivered via the song we’re about to premiere — “The Final Outcome”. It comes in the form of a lyric video.

The song is the title track to a new EP that will be released on October 17 by Revalve Records. The EP follows the band’s 2013 debut album, Symptoms of A Common Sickness.

You’d better limber up your neck muscles before listening, because “The Final Outcome” is a high-voltage gallop, with jolting verse riffs, a catchy-as-hell chorus, and the kind of rapidly swirling lead guitar melody that may cause you to form your hands into claws and lift them toward the heavens. To top off all this goodness, the song also features expertly crafted, hard-driving drums and vocals that are acid enough to etch glass.

Plus, the EP was recorded by Stefano Morabito (16th Cellar Studio), who seems to produce the majority of high-flying extremity to come out of Italy these days. Not surprisingly, the music sounds great.

Oct 032014

According to Metal-Archives, UK-based Emit put out its first demo in 1998, and almost every year afterward the band released something new — demos, splits, an EP, an album — until 2007, when things went dark. Five years later Emit surfaced with another album-length demo, Spectre Music of an Antiquary, and an altered sound. It was a very limited cassette release brought forth by Glorious North Productions.

Fast forward to 2014: Crucial Blast Records plans to re-issue Spectre Music in remastered form later this month as both a digital download and in digipak format, with the new cover art you see above. To help spread the word of this event, we agreed to premiere a song from Spectre Music named “Beneath Carvings Linger”.

The cover art could hardly be more fitting, given the sounds on “Beneath Carvings Linger” and on the album as a whole. That’s not to say that all the songs are cut from the same cloth — they aren’t — but one constant is the sense that you’ve left the physical world and have been set drifting in a black ether inhabited by phantasms.

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