(Orange Goblin. Image borrowed from this location.)
(We present today the first part of a year-end list prepared by one of our Norwegian readers, who will introduce himself, and who has been a valuable source of musical recommendations to our site. Part two will follow tomorrow.)
I guess this is the part where I introduce myself, seeing as this is the first post I’m writing for No Clean Singing. My name (pseudonym) is eiterorm, and I’ve been following NCS for about two years. At first I only visited the blog occasionally, but about a year ago I subscribed via RSS, and I’m pretty sure I haven’t missed a single blog post since then. NCS has introduced me to a lot of great music, and to offer what little I can in return, I’ve been e-mailing news tips to Islander every now and then. For this blog post I wanted to write some words about a few releases of 2014 which haven’t been featured on NCS, and Islander kindly allowed this. Here is the first part of that list.
Orange Goblin – Back from the Abyss
The first item on my list is Orange Goblin’s latest album, entitled Back from the Abyss, which was released in October. This excellent album hasn’t been featured on NCS, but seeing as it is on my personal top-three-list of albums of 2014, I decided to do something about that. Orange Goblin is, of course, an exception to the rule of “no clean singing”, but considering how infectious the entire album is, I’d say it fits NCS perfectly nonetheless.
The album starts off with the song “Sabbath Hex”, whose title is based on the (perfectly appropriate) idea of putting a curse on everyone who rejects Black Sabbath. A short while after, the Motörhead-esque tune of “The Devil’s Whip” rumbles along with vigorous intensity. The entire album is crammed full of grooves that cause irresistible movements of the head (and possibly other body parts), as well as chorus-inducing vocal lines. The best example of this is perhaps “Heavy Lies the Crown”, which ends with thundering chants—destination: Valhalla. My personal favorite, though, has to be “Bloodzilla”, which starts off with the line “Action! Action! Add a little chemistry, wait for the reaction”. It makes little sense, but it is ghoulishly infectious. I’ve also had the pleasure of seeing the band live in Oslo after the release of the album, and I can confirm that the songs are no less infectious when experienced live. (As a true Lovecraftian, however, I was a bit disappointed to discover that “The Shadow Over Innsmouth” is only an instrumental.)
Below you can find a Bandcamp stream of the entire album. All that is left for you to do in order to commence the infection, is to activate that triangular icon.
Naðra – Eitur
2014 has seen a lot of black embers from Iceland, both due to the eruption of the Bárðarbunga volcano and due to all the blazing black metal releases. NCS has previously featured new music from Svartidauði, Sinmara, Misþyrming, and Abominor, but the collection isn’t complete without Naðra. Naðra released their demo, Eitur, in April, and it is available for download via Bandcamp. “Eitur” means ‘poison’/’venom’, and “naðra” means ‘adder’. By sheer coincidence, these names reflect my own pseudonym, eiterorm (meaning ‘venomous serpent’). Were I deluded by superstitions, I would maybe say that I was “meant” to discover this demo. However, I’m sure the demo is just as enjoyable if you are a black goat, a frothing wolf, or a hungry hippo. No matter what type of animal you are, you should submit to the triangular symbol below and let the black embers consume you.
Blodhemn – H7
November 10, the Norwegian black metal band Blodhemn (meaning ‘blood vengeance’) released their sophomore album, entitled H7. The title refers to the monogram of King Haakon VII, who was the king of Norway during World War II. When the Germans invaded Norway, the royal family fled to the UK, where King Haakon VII led the Norwegian resistance movement. Thus, the H7 monogram became a symbol of resistance and patriotism.
The album has gathered undeservedly little attention so far, which may be a result of poor promotion and strictly limited opportunities for streaming. The full album was made available for streaming two weeks prior to the release date, but was taken down after a meager five days. Since then, only two songs have been publicly available, and they have been embedded below. If you like rhythmic, riff-driven, no-bullshit, head-bashing, Norwegian black metal, this should be right up your alley. Make sure you check out the two songs before they, too, are taken down.
Arkodaemik – Cult of Hollow
Arkodaemik is a black metal project of Mark R., the man behind Ov Hollowness. Although both are black metal projects, Arkodaemik is more aggressive and riff-based than its cousin, Ov Hollowness. If you enjoy Ov Hollowness, you probably won’t like Arkodaemik for all the same reasons (and vice versa, if you’re not already familiar with Ov Hollowness). However, that doesn’t mean you can’t apprieciate them both, as both projects have distinct qualities. Arkodaemik is a perfect example that Mark R. knows how to make solid music (at least metal) of different types. A new, digital EP, entitled Cult of Hollow, was released in August and is available for download via Bandcamp. Check it out below.