May 212013

(NCS writer Andy Synn still seems to be under the impression that the best way to promote his band Bloodguard is to praise the competition. Go figure.)

So you’re all still voting for us on that Bloodstock poll, right?

I only ask because we’ve been selected as part of a limited number of bands to compete for a slot on that ever-so-badass Northern Darkness Festival which Islander posted about a little while back, and might be needing some more votes for that pretty soon…

So in return for your continued loyalty here’s three more cool bands, one of whom I was already aware of, another I discovered through the competition entries, and the third… well we’re doing some dates with the third band next month, so there’s a little bit more of a self-serving agenda behind their inclusion!


Situated firmly on the thrashier end of the Melodic Death Metal spectrum, Under Blackened Skies (pictured above) are a real workhorse of a band who I’ve seen live several times now, and who always bring their A game. Impressively tight, yet with a savage sound always teetering on the edge of chaos, they’re the sort of band I could see Carnal Forge fans falling head over heels in love with.



Erring a tad proggier on the Melodic Death Metal scale we find Lithuanian troupe Awakening Sun. Theirs is a more introverted heaviness, juxtaposing flashes of extroverted extremity with an overall more layered and atmospheric approach. Their esoteric technicality and twitchy rhythms owe a definite debt to the post-Human era of Death, which is nothing to be ashamed of!



It was through mutual friends Talanas that I came to encounter these metallic lunatics, while looking for a band willing to come do a run of very DIY dates with us next month. Incredibly hard to pigeonhole, their Death/Thrash hybrid sound comes across like Mastodon forcefully copulating with Strapping Young Lad inside a cement mixer. Ball-crushingly heavy, deceptively complex, and more than a little off-the-wall!


  1. That Agonyst video is awesome and the song is great too!

  2. The description of Agonyst’s music is spot-on, and yeah, that video (and song) are 100% off the hook. Loved it. Digging the other 2 bands too.

  3. i’m really digging Awakening Sun, but wow do they look young! or maybe i’m just getting old.

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