SEEN AND HEARD: THE SLOW DEATH, KHONSU, AETHERIAN, INFINITE DEATH
I put together one round-up of newly discovered music in today’s first post, but I have more discoveries I want to share with you.
THE SLOW DEATH
The Slow Death is an Australian doom band whom I first wrote about last fall. I paid attention to them at that time because I had learned that they would be joining with the awesome Majestic Downfall in a forthcoming split, to be released by Chaos Records (the cover art is above). Yesterday, the band released a complete version of their contribution to the split for streaming, and it’s mighty good.
“Criticality Incident I” begins slowly, drifting like clouds lit from above by the sun, casting deep shadows but edged by a radiant glow. Shimmering, chiming guitar melodies swirl around the power of stark drumbeats and booming bass notes, and effervescent soloing adds more light to the darkness. The singing varies between soaring clean expressions (Mandy Andresen) and ultra-deep guttural growls (Gregg Williamson). As the song progresses, it accelerates into a hammering drive. It’s a beautiful kind of sorrow.
Beginning on March 1, Norway’s Khonsu began streaming one new track every Saturday from a forthcoming EP entitled Traveller, and we’ve now featured every last one of them. So far we’ve heard an original song named “Visions of Nehaya”, a combination of “Traveller” and “Ix”, which Khonsu’s S. Grønbech either originally wrote or co-wrote for Keep of Kalessin, and a cover of a Bjørk tune named “Army of Me”. S. Grønbech recorded all the instruments (and additional vocals) on those, and Terje Olsen contributed lead vocals.
Yesterday we got a stream of the fifth and final track, a song named “The Malady (Traveller Mix)”. This one is an entirely instrumental electronica piece. It’s driven my an immediately foot-tapping beat, with spacey synthesizer melodies shimmering overhead. Torbjørn Schei’s voice floats here and there through the cosmic mists like a soulful poltergeist. The song has more in common with cool electro-jazz than metal, but I’ll bet it gets stuck in your head, as it has in mine. Listen below.
The entire Traveller EP is now available for download at this location. It includes all five tracks in a variety of formats, plus lyrics, artwork, photos, and a video clip from the studio.
I’ve written about this two-man Greek band named Aetherian once before (here) when they released a song called “Drops of Light” in December. Now they’ve released another new song, this one entitled “Scar of Despair” — and it’s great.
The jolting riffs and bass/drum rhythms will reach out and grab you by the brain stem right away, the hoarse harsh vocals will clamp down on your jugular, and the pulsing/swirling melody will infect your gray matter like a virus. This is top-notch dark melodic death metal, blanketed in an aura of doom but charged with an electrifying vitality. Beautifully written, beautifully performed, and highly recommended. With two excellent songs in a row, I’m really looking forward to an EP or album… and I hope it comes soon.
Infinite Death hail from the slums of south Whittier, California. A week or two ago our sometimes writer and consistent supporter Leperkahn urged me to check out a song by the band destined to appear on their new EP, Beyond the Gates. As it happens, the EP was released just yesterday and can be ordered at this location.
The song’s name is “Realm of Darkness”, and if you happen to be dozing when you press play, the cauterizing howl that starts the song will jolt you wide awake; it may make you wet your underoos, too. The rest of the song will then get the adrenaline pumping nicely. After a mid-paced launch, it turns into a racing, thrashing dervish of melodic death metal with a blackened veneer. With teeth bared and armed with blazing axes, it comes at you in a galvanizing rush. Good stuff.
The Slow Death and Aetherian are some awesome discoveries.
The Slow Death is going to rule. Bought their previous full length ‘II” last year. And i still spin it once in a while.
i love the Aetherian and Infinite Death tracks! 🙂
I am really hyped on that Aetherian track. I liked the previous one a lot too, so here’s another one hoping they can get in gear.