Apr 082017


I had planned to conclude an ever-expanding round-up of new music and videos yesterday, but missed my target. Based on the gagging and gurgling sounds, I think my arrow hit someone in the throat.

So here we are, a day late, and late in the day also. Plus, it’s a Saturday, which means damn few people will even discover this post, and to exacerbate the problems I’ve thrown in music from ten bands, which is probably more than most people have patience for. Oh, but it could have been so much longer! I still have much more music to recommend, some of which will be in tomorrow’s SHADES OF BLACK feature.

Because this third part of the week-long round-up has metastasized to such a great extent, I’m dividing the tumor evenly into two parts, which means there will be a Part 4 a bit later today — and I’ll also be brief with my own words. Enjoy the music… and do share your own reactions in the Comment section if you’re so inclined.


Vallenfyre‘s new album is Fear Those Who Fear Him, set for release by Century Media on June 2nd. This is an eagerly awaited return from one of our favorite bands, and the video below is for the album’s first single, “Kill All Your Masters”.



The album was recorded by the band’s new core line-up consisting of Gregor Mackintosh (vocals and guitar), Hamish Glencross (guitar and bass), and Waltteri Väyrynen (drums). It was again produced by Kurt Ballou.

Prepare for bruising, battering, gut-busting death crust, and don’t forget to kill all your masters.

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Thanks to DECIBEL, another excellent track has surfaced from the Italian death metal band Hideous Divinity’s new album, Adveniens, but the band still haven’t released what our reviewer DGR says are the three best songs on the album. Maybe so, but “Sub Specie Aeternitatis” is a damned good detonation, with a blast front that mainly moves fast and is incinerating. When the pace does diminish (somewhat), the song becomes no less violent; it just gives you a chance to bang your obliterated head.

Adveniens will be released on April 28 by Unique Leader.

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Hideous Divinity:









The same DGR mentioned above lavished praise on the last album by the long-running Chicago gothic/doom/death band Novembers Doom, 2014’s Bled White. They are now returning with a new album named Hamartia. I haven’t yet listened to all of it, nor received any impressions from DGR about how it stacks up against the band’s massive preceding discography, but I’m already hooked by the first single, “Zephyr“, and perhaps especially by its clean-sung chorus.

The video for the song is quite good, too. Some people are getting very creative in their approach to making lyric videos, and this is one of those examples. Of course it helps if the lyrics are themselves worth reading… and these are. Hamartia will be out on April 14 via The End Records.

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Novembers Doom:









Since I’ve drifted into doom territory with that last song, I’m going to stay in the territory, though in a different part of that shadowy landscape.

The next song in this collection is “Feast of Fools“. It comes from A Sleepless Grey, the new album by Adrift For Days from Sydney, Australia. The music is so dismal and traumatized as to be calamitous, and almost relentlessly crushing (they do relent in the middle of the song, but no light pierces the gloom even then). There’s a bit of clean singing here, which alternates with tortured shrieks, but the haunting clean vocals are as desolate as the music.

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Adrift For Days:








The French band Direwolves made a very strong debut with 2014’s Aegri Somnia, and they are now returning with The Great Year, a six-track EP that blends melodic crust and screamo-influenced hardcore. I have high hopes for this EP, based not only on what the band have accomplished before but also because the new album’s first single is so gripping.

The song below is “Oaths & Duality“. It’s a heavyweight bone-breaker, with a very bleak outlook, but the ringing melodies get their hooks in too.

The Great Year will be released by Throatruiner Records on May 26.

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  1. Vallenfyre, Hideous Divinity, and Novembers Doom in the same update? My earballs are loving this!

    That Vallenfyre is just nasty as fuck. Awesome.

  2. Albeit fewer might read NCS on a Saturday than other days, I bet all those who really matter (them regular readers, that is) will discover earlier posts whence their back on track whence done pouring beers and nursing their hangovers.

  3. This Hideous Divinity release is shaping up to be a very tasty dish.. and they’re saving the best 3 for dessert? Mmmmmm…. drooool….

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