Oct 232017


Altarage

 

(Andy Synn brings us this compilation of six reviews.)

I’ve said it a few times already… but it bears repeating here… there’s just SO much music to listen to that even I can’t keep up with it properly.

But hey, trying is half the battle, right? So here’s my attempt to make some sort of dent in the ever-growing pile of albums which we have yet to review here at NCS… some of which are several months old, some of which are very new indeed!

Sep 112017

 

Up to a point, you may detect a pattern in the arrangement of the music I’ve selected for this eight-band Monday round-up.

The new Spectral Voice song put me in a certain frame of mind, and that influenced the next three selections after it (my ever-burgeoning list of good new things to write about is so mammoth that I look wherever I can for inspiration to overcome the agony of having to make choices). And then I made a radical change of course for the fifth item, and it in turn inclined me toward the sixth one.

And then we have a video for a song that’s off on a different tangent that was inspired by the writing of our own Grant Skelton, followed by a finisher that’s off on another tangent again (but has a connection to something that precedes it in this collection).

SPECTRAL VOICE

The debut album by this Colorado band (with the same line-up as Blood Incantation, apart from the drummer) is entitled Eroded Corridors Of Unbeing. Based on their previous releases (a sequence of demos and splits) and the staggering live performance I witnessed at California Deathfest in 2016, this album has been on my personal list of most eagerly anticipated 2017 releases for a long time. It’s now set for release by Dark Descent on October 13.

Jul 282017

 

Colorado-based Dark Descent Records must be very, very happy with 2017. (I’m talking about their slate of music releases, of course, because many other things about the year suck harder than a shop vac.) Here we are just past the halfway point, and Dark Descent has already served up new albums by the likes of Heresiarch, Undergang, Father Befouled, Bestia Arcana, Ascended Dead, Phrenelith, Ensnared, GorephiliaCraven Idol, Lantern, Excommunion, Sarcasm, and Diabolical Messiah, and a new EP by Devouring Star (and I might have overlooked something).

But with more than five months left in the year, the label has a lot more nastiness up its sleeve, and today we’re getting a big taste of what’s to come. Today Dark Descent has released via Bandcamp and YouTube a new sampler that consists of a whopping 11 track premieres all at once, and they all happen to be from releases we’ve been very eager to hear, or that come as very intriguing surprises. Many appear headed our way before year-end; some may not arrive until 2018.

Below you’ll find some info about those 11 offerings, plus impressions of the music (aided by a bit of a sneak peak we got in advance), and of course streams of each song. To begin, here’s the track list:

Oct 162016

cdf-sunday-morning3

 

I started this Sunday morning in Oakland earlier than I would have liked, but it had its compensations. Grabbing coffee and my smokes, I sat for nearly an hour along the Oakland waterfront enjoying the peacefulness of it, with no one else around except a hopeful seagull and a swooping flock of starlings.

Yesterday was not peaceful, but it was electrifying. It was the second day of this year’s edition of California Deathfest. Between a late lunch, a dinner break, and my inability to physically make it to the bitter end, I only caught about two-thirds of the 12 bands on the line-up. And as was true of yesterday’s write-up on Day One, I’m not going to take the time to write reviews of the performances. Instead, here’s what I’ve done:

Feb 102015

 

Yesterday delivered a bonanza of new metal discoveries, so many that I’m resorting to minimizing my own verbiage in order to roll out everything I found in one post without turning it into War and Peace. I realize this will strike many of you as a tragedy of near-mythic proportions, but I do not wish to dim the reputation of Tolstoy, him being dead and all, and unable to restore competitive balance with a sequel.

UNLEASHED

Yesterday Nuclear Blast announced that this spring it will release the 12th studio album of Sweden’s Unleashed. The title is Dawn of the Nine and it features cover art by the talented Pär Olofsson. There’s a story behind the artwork, as recounted by founding member, bassist, and vocalist Johnny Hedlund:

“The artwork represents the continuation of our previous album, which ended with ‘The Great Battle of Odalheim.’ The battle took place at Uppsala Fields in Sweden, and you can clearly see the king’s grave in the cover art work which also represents the future. You can also see the bombed out church in the far distance, the place of blood in the front, and the rune stone with the runic symbol of courage of the new dawn.”

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