Jun 152016

Opeth 2016-photo by Stuart Wood
Photo by Stuart Wood

This is Part 2 of a round-up of newly discovered things that I began earlier today (here). As expected, between posting Part 1 and getting ready to post Part 2, I spied more developments that happened this morning and have added them (the first two items are in that category, as is the last).

I nearly didn’t add the first two news items because I thought that, by now, everyone who had any interest in the bands — Opeth and Insomnium — would have learned about the news already. Those names are so big that there was probably even a news flash in The Wall Street Journal. And then I thought that adding the announcements might help ease the day for those people who are afraid that metal will run out of things to argue about before the year ends. To them I say, don’t worry, Opeth and Insomnium are releasing new albums.

OPETH

Yes, Opeth will be releasing a new album late this year (named Sorceress) on a new label, Nuclear Blast Entertainment. Actually, it seems to be a partnership between Nuclear Blast and Opeth’s own imprint, Moderbolaget Records, which I believe is Swedish for “your arguing sounds like a motorboat”.

The press release we received characterized Opeth as “always an unstoppable force for uniqueness amid a sea of generic swill”. Beyond that, it provided no real clues about the musical direction of the new album or how it will distinguish itself from all the generic swill with which the rest of us are forced to feed ourselves in between Opeth releases.

Oct 212015

hotel photo

 

I had to make a whirlwind trip to Dallas, Texas, for my fucking day job, leaving Sunday morning and returning to Seattle late yesterday. I didn’t have much time to myself, which means I fell behind in listening to new metal. On the plus side, I was put up in a swanky hotel, the corridors of which were lined with large framed photos from ’60s and ’70s fashion magazines. Every time I walked past the one above, I did a double-take. And that wasn’t the only one that stopped me in my tracks. So there’s that.

Anyway, last night and this morning I enjoyed the following new music streams and videos, presented here in alphabetical order by band name except for the last one, which is a twist on what I usually feature in these pages.

ABIGAIL WILLIAMS

Thanks to Andy Synn, we’ve previously reviewed the excellent new album by Abigail Williams, The Accuser, which will be released by Candlelight Records on October 30. Yesterday CVLT Nation premiered a video for one of the new songs named “Nuumite”. It’s the track that ends the album, and takes a sharp turn from what preceded it (though if you listen closely to the preceding songs, you’ll realize that the twist was forecast all along). Here’s what Andy wrote about the song:

Oct 062015

Swallow the Sun-Songs From the North

 

Yesterday and today brought yet another flood of very good new song and video premieres, many of which I’ve collected in this post. This is another instance where there’s so much music I want to share that I’m having to throttle my tendency to spill great piles of words on top of the music. Instead, there will be only small molehills of words.

SWALLOW THE SUN

Yesterday Finland’s Swallow the Sun premiered a lyric video for one of the vast number of songs on their forthcoming three-disc album on Century MediaSongs From the North I, II & III. We’re trying to figure out how to review this album. Current thinking is to divide it among three different writers here at our site. We probably need to think more.

Anyway, this song is “Heartstrings Shattering” and features guest vocals by Aleah (Trees of Eternity) The title is well-chosen.

Feb 272015

 

(In this post BadWolf reviews the live performances by Mayhem, Watain, and Revenge at El Corazon in Seattle on January 27, 2015, with photos by Madison Lieren.)

For a minute there I was so inundated with European black metal, its tropes, and its lyrical hullabaloo, that I forgot about the genre’s troubled, violent, church-burning past, and in a sense that’s where I wanted to be from the get-go, since unlike some people I actually found the genre’s flirtations with homicide and terrorism to be a turn-off before I actually listened to the music.

Leave it to Norway’s Mayhem, original purveyors of quote-unquote dangerous black metal to drag me back into my discomfort zone by headlining the Black Metal Warfare tour, a nationwide trek wherein the second generation provocateurs, alongside Watain and Revenge, inspired mosh pits, threw blood on the crowd, and peddled tee shirts lionizing “Panic, Terror, Arson, Metal, Chaos.”

“Oh yeah, that’s right,” I thought to myself, looking at the merch rack hobbled in the corner of Seattle’s El Corazon, “I fucking love blowing stuff up. Silly me, where *did* my balls go?” A prescient thought, as the night wound up being a testament to testicular fortitude.

Oct 132014

 

Today Norway’s Mayhem and Sweden’s Watain announced that they will be mounting a co-headlining North American tour together this winter. Named Black Metal Warfare, the tour will also include support from the Canadian black/death band Revenge.

Mayhem are touring in support of their new album, Esoteric Warfare, while Watain are touring in support of their most recent full-length, The Wild Hunt. I really enjoyed the live performances of both bands the last time they separately ventured to our shores, and I have high hopes for this tour. I’m also very interested to see Revenge.

The full schedule appears right after the jump (it neglects the South and Southwest, among other regions):

Sep 082014

I thought I’d pass along a few more recently discovered items before calling it quits for the day. Obviously, I think everything in here is worth your time.

FISTULA

I’m about as peace-loving a soul as you could ever meet, yet much of the music I enjoy is violent. Maybe listening to violent music helps me keep cool most of the rest of the time. But I really don’t listen to violent music for therapeutic purposes — I listen to it because I get off on the power and the energy.

Violence in metal takes many forms. Fistula’s new album Vermin Prolificus (released by To Live A Lie Records) is the kind that just wants to beat you senseless with grotesque sludgy riffs and tear your throat out with raw, shrieking vocal extremity.

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