Dec 302012

(As our Listmania series continues for this rapidly closing 2012, we welcome guest writer Fork Tongue and his list of overlooked gems from the underground.)

Hello faithful NCS readers! 2012 was a helluva year in metal. When I hear old school metalheads say that we will never see another era like the mid 80’s through the early 90’s, it gets under my skin a bit. Old school metalheads talk about the days of yesteryear with a gleam in their eye and a chip on their shoulder. As well they should, as it was a great time for the music we all love. But after a bleak period from the mid 90’s through the mid 2000’s (at least in the mainstream) there has been a metal renaissance.

It’s been building and building, and in 2009 it hit what I thought would be it’s pinnacle. I was wrong. 2009, 2010, 2011, and now 2012 have all been unbelievable years that rival or better “the good ol’ days”, and anyone who doesn’t think so isn’t looking hard enough or is just an old fuddy duddy. There are tens of thousands of metal bands, so yes, there is more crap to wade through, but the law of averages tells you there’s also more truly great stuff out there than at any point in metal’s relatively short history. My list will show this, as it’s all about the overlooked gems of the year. Long live the renaissance!

No long-winded descriptions here. I’ll let the music speak for itself.

1. Faustcoven – Hellfire and Funeral Bells

Classic doom mixed with elements of Black Metal, great songwriting, memorable riffs, and a hell of an atmosphere make what is in my opinion the best album of 2012.


2. Anguish – Through The Archdemon’s Head

Picture Candlemass riffs with a sinister atmosphere and a vocal mix somewhere between Quorthon and Tom G. Warrior. Uh huh.


3. Ysengrin – To Endotaton

A little doom, a little death, a little black, a little clean guitar, some organs, an eerie atmosphere, and some superb riffs create one of the best albums of 2012.


4. Tardigrada – Widrstand

My demo of the year. Atmospheric Black Metal that is beautiful, spellbinding, and soul-sucking.


5. Velvet Robe – The Celestial Intelligencer

Fuzzed out, creepy, occult, acid dropping, horror madness. A little drone, a little psychedelic, and a whole lot of doom.


6. Saccage – Death Crust Satanique

An absolutely pulverizing mix of D-Beat, Crust, Crossover Thrash, Death Metal, and Black Metal.


7. Rust – Damned Hellish Voids

Black Thrash had a bang-up year with Aura Noir, Nekromantheon, Desaster, and more cracking my top 40 list, but this band’s debut destroys all the veterans.


8. Bunker 66 – Infernö Interceptörs

Another Black Thrash debut that lays the veterans to waste.


9. Bastard Sapling – Dragged From Our Restless Trance

Yet another debut. Black Metal in the old tradition and one of the best Black Metal releases of the year.

10. Satan’s SatyrsWild Beyond Belief!

Blasphemous, sweaty, Scuzz Rock.

  11 Responses to “FORK TONGUE’S OVERLOOKED GEMS OF 2012”

  1. Lots of good stuff here…that Saccage album was definitely top-notch.

    Anguish has been getting some buzz, but I cant get into them. The music is great, but I really dislike the vocals

    • I generally hate albums with a bunch of songs that are only a minute or 2 but I couldnt help but like it.

    • And I forgot, yea…I can see why people wouldnt like the vocals on the Anguish record. That will be make or break for most but I always wanted to hear Candlemass with harsh vocals.

      • Have you tried Thrown from Sweden…He’s only done one album, but its a mix of traditional doom/heavy metal with a harsher black metal style of vocals

        • Yes! I actually stumbled across them earlier this year. They aren’t active anymore are they? Either way, great shit.

          • He was…he released a demo straight to facebook. It was just one really long song (about 17 minutes) It was a lot more atmospheric that the full length, not nearly as groovy. Right now hes busy with his solo project so who knows when he’ll get back to Thrown

  2. Most old-school metalheads are just stuck in the past and found out about new music through relatively main-stream outlets. The ’80’s and ’90’s era ain’t shit compared to the true diversity and musicianship of modern metal. A lot of old-schoolers are missing out on what makes metal great as music, the constant pushing of boundaries, fusing of styles, technical mastery in musicianship and all with that oh so sweet aggression. I say this as an old-school metalhead.

    Also, I’m really liking Anguish and Bastard Sapling.

    • I think it happens with pretty much everything. Music, sports, etc. Everybody is biased towards their generation for the most part.

  3. If the USPS had gotten that Ysengrin album to me sooner I think it would have been on my list. I’m really loving it right now.

    • Yea it took me by surprise. I wasn’t familiar with them until To Endotaton. I’ve since downloaded all their stuff, now I’m on a mission to buy it.

  4. Somehow I missed the news that Saccage had released a new album. Many thanks for the reminder.

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