At different points yesterday and early this morning I listened to a lot of randomly chosen new and newly discovered songs, some that I spotted via links by Facebook friends, some that were lurking in the NCS e-mail box, some that were implanted in my head by transmissions from space when I forgot to put on my tin foil hat when I got home from work. I liked enough of what I heard that I’m splitting the collection into three separate posts that will be scattered throughout today.
Where Dead Dreams Dwell is the second full-length by this Swedish band. It’s due for release by Cyclone Empire on May 29. I was initially drawn to it by the fantastic cover art, created by one of our site’s favorite artists, Costin Chioreanu (click the image above to enlarge it). And then today the band released a lyric video for a song named “Swallowed By Darkness” that really grabbed me by the throat.
There’s a lot of smoking chainsaw riffage in this song and a bunch of hopped-up, groovy rhythms, and when the band hit the 2:00 mark in the song I thought my head was going to come off, so vigorous was the headbanging that it induced. And what remains of the song after that includes some slithery guitar leads that are convincingly reptilian. Nice vocal howling, too. In other words, Feral are churning out some Grade-A Swedish death metal.
I’m pretty sure that I heard about Unmercenaries last year, but for some reason I didn’t explore their music until this morning when I saw a press release about them. The band was noteworthy to me because its ranks include members of Who Dies In Siberian Slush (Russia), Decay Of Reality (Russia), Forbidden Shape (Russia), and My Shameful (Finland/Germany). Their debut album, Fallen in Disbelief, was released in late December 2014.
The album is available on Bandcamp, and when I landed on the album’s Bandcamp page its 11-and-a-half minute third track “Circle of Disbelief” was queued up for streaming, so I went with that. It begins with a sublime combo of acoustic guitar and keyboard melody, slow and entrancing. Then the big, glacial riff monsters arrive, in the company of a grim minor-key guitar lead and gargantuan vocal roars that quickly pull the mood into a state of wretchedness. Clean vocals and piano notes arrive later, and the melody evolves into something beautiful (and memorable), but still thoroughly freighted with misery and gloom. Easy to get lost in this offering of funeral doom.
I’m going to include a stream of the entire album below.
Githyanki are a three-man Seattle band who released their self-titled EP on Bandcamp earlier this month. The song that’s set to play first on Bandcamp is the fourth of five tracks, named “Two Minute Warning” — and it’s two minutes long. That’s the song I checked out yesterday. It’s damned infectious right from the start, a brawling, grungy gallop with raw, braying vocals and gut-punching riffs. I get why it had to be two minutes long, but I could have used two more minutes of this.
I decided to listen to the song that followed “Two Minute Warning”. “We Charge Genocide” is a change of pace, and at 7:03 the EP’s longest track. There are lots of vocal samples, harrowing yells, meandering bass notes, a hooky drum rhythm, and the squall of noise in the song’s first half, and then it becomes a slow, sludgy steamroller capable of flattening skulls. Stylistically, it’s something close to stoner/doom territory, with dissonant, pounding riffs that work their way into your head through repetition and a guitar solo that squirms uncomfortably, like ants under the skin.
I’m definitely going back to run this EP through my head from the beginning. It’s a name-your-price download.