Mar 092018

Reykjavik wall art


The second night of the third and final installment of Oration Festival took place at the Húrra bar in Reykjavik, Iceland on the night of March 8, 2018. It proved to be just as thoroughly enjoyable as the first night (reviewed here), although the music took more deathly turns, and ultimately concluded in a marvelously bewildering and beguiling way.

Last night the bands who performed, in the following order, were these: Mannveira (Iceland), Devouring Star (Finland), Abominor (Iceland), Abyssal (UK), Slidhr (Ireland/Iceland), Sortilegia (Canada), and Virus (Norway).

As before, the group of friends from Seattle and elsewhere who’ve been sharing this experience with me convened for food and drink about two hours before the first band was scheduled to begin the night. Yes, two hours, because our group has a proven tendency over the course of many previous festivals to talk like there’s no tomorrow, lose track of time, and arrive late if we’re not careful. Which of course is what happened last night even with the two-hour head start.

Mar 272015


(Responding to my constricted blog time, our Norwegian friend eiterorm has graciously compiled a round-up of new music and news for your entertainment and edification.)

The winds whispered in my ear that Islander has a lot of news to dig through (and a wife to persuade) before he can resume his passionate blog work. Here’s a guest entry to keep you slightly occupied in the meantime.


Because I decided to do this in alphabetical order, the news about Abbath is first out. Some of you may already know that the members of Immortal have been involved in a legal dispute over the band’s name. Due to musical disagreements, the long-running black metallers and weather forecasters have decided to go separate ways. Apparently, Abbath wanted to continue his career under the old monicker, something the rest of the band wouldn’t allow.

Aug 172014


This is a collection of new (or newish) songs I heard yesterday that I wanted to recommend. The music is quite diverse, yet each song contains elements of black metal — hence the “Shade of Black” title. Lots of creativity on display in what you’re about to hear — and a few things that will hit you like a semi-truck with the pedal all the way down.


San Antonio’s HOD will release their new album Book of the Worm, on September 9 via Arctic Music. The cover art, which I like a lot, was created by Jon Zig. Earlier this week Revolver (Revolver???) premiered a song from the album, and I finally caught up with it — or more accurately, it caught up with me and rode me down into the mud.

The song is “Where Are the Demons”, and the answer is — right here, in this song. It’s one of the best things I believe I’ve ever heard from HOD  — a slashing, galloping, ravaging powerhouse assault, loaded with writhing, head-whipping riffs, frenzied chord progressions, and blistering percussion. It’s a hellish inferno with tremendous surging power, but a very interesting and technically impressive  song at the same time. And the vocals will bring the grizzlies down from the hills.

The album can be pre-ordered here. A previously released track can be heard at this location. And this is where the demons are:

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