Nov 182017

 

The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men gang aft a-gley, and sometimes they’re just naturally daft and glazed, which is a good description of myself this morning.

As I mentioned in yesterday’s round-up, I’m now deep in the heart of Texas for a high school reunion tonight, and spent last night catching up with some old friends over a bottle of whisky. I then slept 11 hours, which I don’t think I’ve done since the year of my high school graduation. And so, this Saturday round-up includes fewer items than I had originally planned.

MIGRATION FEST

The first Migration Fest (organized by Gilead Media and 20 Buck Spin), which took place in Olympia, Washington, in August 2016 was fantastic. The next one is now set for July 27-29, 2018, at Mr. Smalls in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. And this morning the festival announced the first round of confirmed bands:

Nov 172017

 

I didn’t do a very good job keeping up with e-mails or occurrences in the interhole the last few days, so I crawled through those fetid swamps last night and came up with a big list of intriguing new songs and videos to add to my previous big list. And then I began exploring what I found. I have a little time this morning to round-up a few of the good things I discovered in my listening, with more to come soon.

I have to fly to Texas this morning (for a high school reunion rather than my fucking day job), but I do plan to finish a further SEEN AND HEARD for Saturday. And unless the reunion crushes too many brain cells (or my soul), there will be a SHADES OF BLACK feature on Sunday before I fly home.

AOSOTH

This first item will be regrettably brief — regrettable only in the sense that I have failed to write a review of the new Aosoth album prior to its full streaming debut, which happened yesterday. And so all I can do now (and maybe ever) is to give you a strong push to listen to V: The Inside Scriptures as soon as you can. You won’t regret that decision. The stream is below; the album is being released today (November 17).

Nov 112017

 

You can go long or you can go short. You can pound your musical erogenous zones or you can shrivel up and go dry from something far outside the rim of your bullseye. You can fragment your mind or feel it coalescing in configurations that become receivers of new visions. Every day there are new opportunities.

I’m speaking of metal, of course. I got doses of all those experiences this week, but bit off almost more than I could chew with this week’s flood of premieres, and got squeezed by my fucking day job on top of that, so I failed to compile a round-up until now, and hence it’s a big one.

Catching up is an impossibility, of course, and this time it happens that my choices (all the way up to the last one) are mainly indulgences in a particular mood rather than my usual effort to throw darts all over the metal dartboard. The one thing I haven’t done is incorporate black metal, because I have tomorrow’s SHADES OF BLACK column for that.

AETHERIAN

We’ve been writing about this Greek band for years, beginning with their first single in 2013 and including their second one in 2015, their debut EP released the same year (and reviewed by DGR here), their amazing single and video from last year, “The Rain”, the first single (“Seeds of Deception”0 from their debut album, The Untamed Wilderness, which will be released by Lifeforce Records on November 24th, and the second one (“Shade of the Sun”). And now there’s a third, accompanied by a video.

Nov 042017

 

I have a big bulging list of new music I’d like to recommend, but rather than try to stitch them all together, which would probably take all day, I just picked one new EP and two singles. As usual, the selection of these three bands off the list was pretty random. But as usual, I like the music a lot and I wanted to provide some variety, and as you’ll discover, there sure as hell is some variety here.

CRUCIAMENTUM

I wrote no fewer than four posts about Cruciamentum’s 2015 debut album Charnel Passages, including one in which I picked a song from the album called “Piety Carved From Flesh” for my list of 2015’s Most Infectious Extreme Metal Songs. Cruciamentum have now returned with a new EP called Paradise Envenomed, which was released digitally via Bandcamp and other platforms (and on 7″ vinyl by Profound Lore) just two days ago.

Nov 012017

 

As explained in Part 1 of this gigantic mid-week round-up, I’m trying to catch up on the flood of new videos and songs that were released on Halloween and the few days leading up to it (although a few of the items I’ve selected are a bit older than that).

Because there are so many things I want to throw at your eyes and ears, I alphabetized everything by band name, beginning with Apophis in Part 1, continuing through Heart Attack in Part 2, and now ending with Watain in this final part. And because I chose so many songs and videos for this round-up, I resorted to a tactic I’ve used occasionally in the past: Although I have dribbled a few words here and there, I’m mainly presenting everything with just basic release info and no reviews. Onward to Part 3:

INFERNAL BLAST

This is a French one-man project, and the song below (“Destruction Process“) comes from its debut EP. You can’t accuse this band of false advertising. “Destruction Process” is exactly the process of this song — kill everything, let dog sort ’em out.

Nov 012017

 

As explained in Part 1 of this gigantic mid-week round-up, I’m trying to catch up on the flood of new videos and songs that were released on Halloween and the few days leading up to it (although a few of the items I’ve selected are a bit older than that).

Because there are so many things I want to throw at your eyes and ears, I alphabetized everything by band name, beginning with Apophis and ending with Watain, and divided the list into three parts. I’m posting them as fast as I can get them ready to go. And because there are so many songs and videos, I’m resorting to a tactic I’ve used occasionally in the past: Although I may dribble a few words here and there, I’m mainly presenting everything with just basic release info and no reviews. Onward to Part 2:

CATTLE DECAPITATION

Cattle Decap put up a video for “Prophets Of Loss” last week, mostly a live performance video using a bunch of tour footage from the group’s recent European run. Great song from a great album. Random comment by my comrade DGR: “It looks like their bassist has cut his glorious mane of hair…. This is most unfortunate. RIP really tall bassist guy’s hair.”

Nov 012017

 

Halloween, and the few days leading up to it, always seem to be a hot time for the release of new metal, for obvious reasons I suppose. This year’s Halloween season sure as hell proved to be busy for hapless metal bloggers like me who were trying to keep up with all the new stuff rushing out into the world. Because I had a lot of premieres to write yesterday (which in themselves added to that Halloween torrent of new metal), I didn’t have time to compile a Halloween round-up. So I’m doing it today instead.

Now, you may well think this is ridiculous, but I have 17 new songs and videos to recommend. A few of them are 7-10 days old, but the rest were all released on the last couple days of October. Rather than trying to boil that list down to the size of an average SEEN AND HEARD post, I just decided, fuck it, I’ll throw ’em all at you.

Because there are so many, I alphabetized everything by band name, beginning with Apophis and ending with Watain, and divided the list into three parts. I’m going to post them as fast as I can get them ready to go. And because there are so many, I’m resorting to a tactic I’ve used occasionally in the past: Although I may dribble a few words here and there, I’m mainly presenting everything with just basic release info and no reviews. Here we go:

APOPHYS

We have some history with this band, whose line-up includes a lot of talented Dutch musicians with impressive resumes — I wrote no fewer than six posts surrounding the 2015 release by Metal Blade of their debut album Prime Incursion, including an interview and a track premiere. Now they have a new album coming out, and on Halloween they released the first single, “Retaliate“.

Oct 292017

 

This is Part 2 of a three-part SHADES OF BLACK feature for this week. As I explained in Part 1, I assembled a dozen items, all but one of them consisting of new music. I arranged them in alphabetical order by band name and then divided the list into three parts. I’m going to try to finish Part 3 in time to post it on Monday morning.

EWIGKEIT

James Fogarty has a long and impressive list of bands and solo projects on his resume, including The Meads of Asphodel, Old Forest, Svartelder, and In the Woods…. But his longest-running project, the one that came first, is Ewigkeit. The first album under that name was Battle Furies, released in November 1997 by the Eldethorn label, and now it’s being released again — but this isn’t a mere reissue.

Oct 282017

 

(Andy Synn wrote this piece, reflecting on the passage of roughly seven years after the publication of his first piece at NCS — this one.)

…yada, yada, yada, you know the rest, right?

Seriously though, I recently passed the seventh anniversary of my coming onboard to write for NCS, and it’s caused me to reflect on my time here, and how lucky I am to have a platform where what I think and what I write can make a difference – if only a small one – to so many bands.

Oct 272017

 

Happy Friday. And if you actually happen to be happy because it’s Friday, instead of boiling with rage because you’ve just endured four-plus days of bullshit, you may not relish the music you’re about to hear. On the other hand, maybe your preferred means of matching your happiness (or your rage) to music involves abrading your ear drums, losing your mind, and mercilessly kicking open the spigot on your adrenaline glands. In which case, brothers and sisters, you’re right where you need to be — right here.

This is Part 2 of a round-up I began yesterday (here). And even though I didn’t finish this in time to post it yesterday, it’s exactly what I intended to post then. In other words, I decided to close my ears to the flood of other new songs that surfaced between then and now. There’s always time to catch up with that on Saturday, though I have a bad tendency to wound myself with intoxicants on Friday nights, so I ain’t promising nothing.

HOODED MENACE

The fifth Hooded Menace album will arrive on January 26 via Season of Mist, with the title Ossuarium Silhouettes Unhallowed and cover art by Adam Burke, who continues to kill everything this year. The first advance track, “Carnal Reflections“, debuted at DECIBEL two days ago. Or was it three?

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