Feb 212018


I don’t know if I’ll manage to follow through, but my plan for today is to post two round-ups of new music, this one being the first. As the post title suggests, I carved these songs away from the others and pulled them in here because the vocals in each of them aren’t solely of the kind that would suit the (demonstrably porous) rule in our site’s title. That’s right (gasp), there are some clean-sung melodies in these tracks… combined in each song with harsh ones.

Of course, to my ears the tracks have many other things to recommend them or I wouldn’t have asked you to listen. But the varied voices in these tracks are part of what made them stand out to me.


In April of last year I came across and wrote about a song from a two-track demo by a Bay-area band named Ails, whose line-up included two former members of the sorely missed Ludicra — vocalist Laurie Sue Shanaman and guitarist/vocalist Christy Cather — as well as guitarist Sam Abend (Desolation, Abrubt, Scurvy Dogs), drummer Colby Byrn (One In The Chamber, 2084, Aequorea), and bassist Jason Miller (Apocryphon, Cretaceous, Phantom Limbs). At the time, Ails was in the process of mastering their full-length debut and were seeking label support — and they got it, to no surprise of mine or anyone else who heard that demo.

Feb 172018


Still playing catch-up after a week devoted mainly to premieres, I picked the following five tracks to conclude this two-part Saturday round-up. I’m definitely not caught up yet, but this will have to do for now. More catching up will happen tomorrow, with the usual Sunday focus on black metal.


Tamás Kátai has recorded a new Thy Catafalque album, and I could hardly be more excited to hear it. If perchance you haven’t discovered Thy Catafalque, carve out some time this weekend and go explore the Bandcamp page, which I’ve linked below. I think you’ll find the music distinctive and enthralling.

The new album (the eighth one) is Geometria, and Season of Mist plans to release it on May 4Tamás explains that this one includes violins, electronica, occasional saxophone, trumpet, and fretless bass, plus the voices of Martina Veronika Horváth (Nulah, Niburta) and Gyula Vasvári (Perihelion), in addition to his own. Viktoria Varga also provides narration.

Feb 172018

Augury – photo by Mélany Champagne


I made a resolution last night: I resolved that henceforth I will post no more than two premieres a day, and only one per day if it’s a full album stream. During the week just ended, I posted 14 premieres, and two of those were full albums.

I might not care about the volume if I could be content to write little more than, “Here — listen to this!”, and then just provide the music stream. But where’s the fun in that? Besides the fun, I feel a compulsion to include reviews with the premieres, even if only the bands or labels might pay attention to what I write. Given that mindset, working on a big flood of premieres tends to constrict my ability to do anything else — such as compile round-ups like this one.

Full disclosure: I’ve made resolutions like this one before, and couldn’t stick to them. Did I mention that we’ll have another premiere tomorrow? It’s really good!

Anyway, as you can see, this is a two-part round-up. I decided to collect some older arrivals in this first part, organized alphabetically. My colleague DGR suggested all of them for a newsy post that would have been timely if I’d been able to get it done when he made the suggestions. Maybe some of these will still be news to a few of you despite the delay. They also involve higher profile bands; I’ve got some lesser-known groups for Part 2.

Feb 122018


(Grant Skelton returns to NCS with a round-up of new music with a particular stylistic focus, as he will explain below.)

Greetings, friends! It’s been quite some time since I’ve shared a proper roundup of music. The following four artists heavily employ the use of drones in their sound. I used to hate drone music, but have grown quite fond of it in recent months. I’m listing the artists at the beginning of the article while holding my usual lunatic ravings until the end. Why drone? And why should you care? Music first. Lunatic ravings after.


In 2013, our esteemed Editor-In-Chief covered Bismuth’s split with Undersmile (which featured a glorious noisy testament called “Collapse”). For those who, like me, are perpetually late to the party, Bismuth is Tanya Byrne on bass and vocals and Joe Rawlings on drums. Together they create a barbarically slow, deeply entrenched interdimensional wall of sound that is likely to entrance few and repel many. Bismuth’s music is best thought of less in terms of song structure and more in terms of an agonal cycle of musical misanthropy. The unrepentant ugliness of their sound, though, is an aloe for a soul made bitter by the frequent futility of life.

Feb 122018


The flood of outstanding new metal is unceasing. I actually wouldn’t mind a break — not long, mind you, maybe a week or 10 days of absolutely no new music at all. But since that won’t happen, I’ll continue doing my best to tread water and keep my flaring nostrils above the tide.

Here’s a collection of new tracks that I sifted from those that appeared late last week. In genre terms, they’re all over the map.


It has gotten increasingly difficult to predict what Glorior Belli is going to do from album to album, or even from song to song. The one you’ll find below is “Deserters From Eden“, the first single off this French band’s new album, The Apostates.

Feb 102018


Impure Sounds is an appropriately named independent label and recording studio based in Melbourne, Australia. Their past releases have included works I’ve written about at NCS, including a split by Graveir and Mar Mortuum, and the debut album by Dødknell. Impure Sounds now has two new releases on the way, one of which can now be streamed and downloaded in full and the other of which has an advance track up for listening — and both are very good.



Sydney’s Golgothan Remains launched their first demo two years ago and are now following that with a full-length record through Impure Sounds named Perverse Offerings To the Void. A digital version of the album is available now, and a 12″ vinyl is scheduled for April 20.

Vehemence (Through Pain Divine)” opens the album in stunning fashion, with titanic rumbling and booming in the low end, bursts of freakish, swarming guitar dissonance in the upper reaches, and grim grinding in the mid-range, like a bone saw scything through gangrenous limbs. The destructive barrage of sound is segmented by slower cascades of pile-driving brutality. A heartless roaring monstrosity has somehow seized the microphone, venting a tyrannical tirade in the midst of this war zone.

Feb 082018


On February 9th — tomorrow — Cimmerian Shade Recordings will release a new EP by Negative Slug from Zagreb, Croatia. Before this record, the band had released a trio of EPs and a debut album. I hadn’t heard any of them, but I read the song titles before listening to the new release.

As a representative sample, they included tracks named “Horrendously Noxious”, “Black Smoke Atrocities”, “Rotten Existence”, “Thermal Piss Eyes”, and “Blotted Rotted”. I began to expect something foul and mean-spirited was headed my way. And of course the name of the new album is Bliss Of Corpse.

Some of the song titles on the new record can be found on the earlier releases, as well as the title track and an ode named “Slugs & Snails”. I was not expecting happy or polite music. Aural hell was what I was expecting. I mean, look at that creepy-as-shit album cover up there.

Feb 082018


When you have followed, enjoyed, and praised the work of a band for as long as our site has been doing in the case of Eryn Non Dae., there is some risk that objectivity will be lost, or at least as much objectivity as can play a role in the appreciation of music, which some might argue isn’t very much at all.

Our site has been alive since November 2009, and one of our earliest reviews, only two months later, was of this French group’s debut album, Hydra Lernaïa. Since then, we’ve written about them more than a dozen other times, the last of which was a post in which my comrade Andy Synn named the band’s new album, Abandon of the Self, one of his most anticipated albums of 2018. It has been one of mine as well.

Eryn Non Dae. do not hurry themselves. More than five years have passed since their second album, Meliora; and it took roughly three years for Meliora to arrive after Hydra Lernaïa. If you’re a fan, you must be patient, but we’ve learned that the patience is rewarded. We’re about to learn that again.

Feb 062018


All good things must come to an end, and so I must end this Tuesday torrent of tumultuous sound in order to pay a small amount of attention to the rest of my life. If you’ve managed to make your way through all four parts of this round-up, congratulations on your fortitude and thank you (and I’m sure the bands would thank you too), but I assume no responsibility for the cost of medical treatment for your eardrums.

In this final chapter, I’ve ranged far and wide in genre terms, perhaps more so than in the previous chapters. Buckle up for a swerving ride.


Songs like “It Takes Form” make me feel like Pavlov’s dog at the sound of the dinner bell: I start salivating uncontrollably. This kind of utterly morbid but powerfully electrifying vintage death metal, composed and performed this masterfully, always seems to have that effect.

Feb 062018


“Once more unto the breach, dear friends… when the blast of war blows in our ears, then imitate the action of the tiger; stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood, disguise fair nature with hard-favour’d rage….”

And I do have some raging metal in this third installment of today’s new-music round-up. Furthermore, despite how much savage new stuff I’ve launched at your earholes today, I have one final installment planned. And now, cry “Havok!” and let slip the dogs of war.


To begin Part 3 of this round-up I’ve chosen “Windumanouth“, a track from Urstoff, which is the debut album of the Italian black/death band Rust. It will be released in the spring of this year by Dusktone, which characterizes the music as “magical, evocative and enchanting work, as well as tragic, apocalyptic, cruel, painful, fatal, nefarious, violent and deadly….” With one possible exception, I wouldn’t quarrel with any of those adjectives.

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