This is the second installment in a big collection of mostly new black metal that I listened to yesterday, making my way through a list of music I had compiled during the last week as I saw things in our e-mail and my Facebook feed. The following collection includes further tracks from some releases I’ve written about before in this column, plus two new discoveries — one for a forthcoming release and one that appeared earlier this year. To listen to the music collected in Part I of this post, click this link.
Two Sundays ago I wrote about a 2015 EP named Travesty of Light by the Finnish band Kyy, plus excerpts from a couple of tracks that will appear on their forthcoming debut album Beyond Flesh – Beyond Matter – Beyond Death, which is due for release on November 4 through Saturnal Records. Now we’ve finally got a full track stream to share with you from the album.
This new song is “Legio Serpenti”, and man, it rocks damned hard at first — and then it finishes with a more deeply occult section in which the unhinged vocal savagery of the opening turns to a near-chant and the drummer launches a tumbling progression that contrasts beautifully with the grim solemnity of the music.
I do have more to say about this album, because it’s a standout, and hopefully I will find the time to say it. “Legio Serpenti” exclusively premiered at DECIBEL, so you’ll need to go here to check it out:
In August I wrote about the first single from the debut EP of a new Polish band named Horn Impaler. The name of the EP is Deforming the Imperfection, and the entire EP is now available for streaming.
The song I wrote about earlier, “Schismophrenia”, is one of three on the EP. It’s preceded by the instrumental title track and followed by a song called “Desanctified By Sacrum”. With a big pulsing riff and a jolting drum rhythm, the opening song seizes you by the back of the neck right away, but “Schismophrenia” changes course by moving into a deeply melancholy but also spellbinding stagger — and then begins to rock really hard, with highly infectious melodies and rhythms, as well as caustic vocal ferocity and a hell of a guitar solo in the second half.
As powerful and powerfully catchy as “Schismophrenia” is, “Desanctified By Sacrum” is a fitting follow-up. With a hard-driving drum beat to launch the song, it features a needling tremolo riff that bores its way into the skull, alternating with a bleak, heavy chord progression. It manages to be both grim and uplifting at the same time. And once again, it includes a scintillating guitar solo to go along with a riveting drum performance and more of those panther-like howls of rage.
Really good songwriting on this EP, as well as a powerful production. In a word, it’s excellent.
Horn Impaler consists of musician Adam Goryszewski, vocalist Paulina Gołda, and drummer Paweł “Pavulon” Jaroszewicz (Hate, ex-Vader, Antigama), with Łukasz Wójcik and Adrian Pisarek as session musicians. They plan a physical release of the EP, though the details of that haven’t been disclosed. I’m not sure if there will be a digital release. More info will be released through the band’s Facebook page:
One week ago I included in another installment of this series a debut demo called Nocturnal Mysticism by a one-man California band named Surtr. Little did I know that on October 6 Eternal Frost Records would release another Surtr release. This one is entitled Nights Return and it includes two tracks, “Winter” and “Death Devout”.
I continue to be seduced by Surtr’s music, though these songs reveal a bit of a different side than Nocturnal Mysticism — more rocking and riff-driven and lacking the prominence of the keyboard melodies that were present in the earlier release. But the music is still damned infectious (and damned chilling). Both songs also include clean vocals as well as goblin snarls, and maybe it’s just me, but there’s a psychedelic, hallucinatory quality to the music as well.
You can download Nights Return at Bandcamp, and it’s also available from Eternal Frost on black tape, limited to 33 copies.
Now it’s time to turn to a couple of bands we haven’t covered before at NCS. The first is a group from Verona, Italy, named Eternal Samhain. They released a debut EP in 2011 named Obscuritatis Principium, Proxima Est Omnibus Damnatio, and now they’ve completed work on a first full-length called Storyteller Of The Sunset And The Dawn, which will be released by RNC Music at the end of this month.
What caught my attention was a video for a song off the new album, “Ode Al Vento”. The rippling keyboard melody and absolutely furious drumwork that hits at the beginning grabbed me immediately, and the soaring, wistful symphonics of the song are as gorgeous as the vocals are scorching. On top of all that, the song includes a combination of pile-driving jabs (with the drums and riffs operating in sync for extra impact) juxtaposed against a simple piano motif that’s riveting.
And did I mention that the drumming is completely off-the-hook insane?
For the final item in this two-part Shades of Black installment I’m taking kind of a peculiar turn — peculiar in the sense that this last item is an EP that seems to exist only on YouTube by a band for which virtually no information is available; I don’t even know the names of any individual tracks, though this sounds more like a single long song with a few different movements than multiple tracks. I learned about it through a recommendation from my Italian friend Tito V., who described the music as in the vein of Akhlys, Nightbringer, and The Great Old Ones.
The EP’s name is La cour des voraces, it appeared on YouTube last May, and it was recorded by a French one-man project called Triste Terre. It’s a 17-minute trip that’s well worth taking, an offering of atmospheric black metal with a heavy, thundering undercarriage and unsettling, otherworldly melodies that are both oppressive and strangely mesmerizing. It’s like being enveloped in a choking fog that barely conceals monstrous predators coming for your throat. Yet the music also becomes sweeping, revealing a kind of terrifying but awe-inspiring infernal majesty. And speaking of throats, the strangled, splintered lead vocals are as utterly vile as the monsters you imagine looming within these deep shadows.
I hope this EP will become available someplace, because I’d really like to have it for my very own.
UPDATE! My wish has been granted. Triste Terre has made this EP available on Bandcamp. I’ve included the link below, as well as the Bandcamp stream.