As I mentioned earlier today, I returned to Seattle very late last night after a 4-day road trip for my day job. While away, I didn’t have time to pull together round-ups of new music that I was noticing, so I have some catching up to do. This is the first installment of that catching-up exercise, which will continue with at least one more part either later today or tomorrow. The music here is organized in alphabetical order by band name, and I’ve tried to provide variety in each of these installments.
I wasn’t familiar with Anima Nostra before hearing this first song, but I’ve learned that it’s a collaboration between Henrik Nordvargr Björkk (Sweden) and Margaux Renaudin (France). The two of them released an album named Anima Nostra last year, and now they’ve taken that as their band name.
Their second album, Atraments, will be released by Malignant Records (digitally and on digipak CD) on June 2nd. I gather from press announcements that the sound now differs from their first collaborative effort, “taking the more intimate ritual ambient aspects of the debut, and incorporating them as part of towering constructs that blur the line between death industrial, doom metal, and neo-classical”.
The song below is “Blameless“, and includes the bestial, growled refrain, “We are blameless toward Him; we have not sinned”. The enormous boom of the ritualistic drum rhythms and the abrasive, heaving chords of the song generate an ominous atmosphere, verging on apocalyptic, and the vocals are terrifying enough to stiffen the hairs on your neck.
When they formed Ashcloud in about 2013 (the outgrowth of an earlier project named Skinbag), Jonny Pettersson and Gareth Nash took their inspiration from both old school Swedish death metal and the crust movement. But it seems to me that labeling their new music with just those genre identifiers would be misleading, as I think you’ll agree when you hear this next song.
The name of this new song is “Suspended In Death” and it will appear on the band’s third album, Kingdom of the Damned, set for release by Xtreem Music on June 20th. It strikes with the earth-cracking power conveyed by immense riffs and shuddering bass lines, and the melody carries an atmosphere of doomed grandeur. A dramatic, melancholy, and very memorable song.
Our site has given considerable (and favorable) attention to the multinational band Enshine and to the French band Fractal Gates. Sebastien Pierre, who has been the former band’s vocalist and the vocalist/keyboardist for the latter band, has his own solo project named Cold Insight. In 2013, Cold Insight self-released a pre-production promo version of an album named Further Nowhere, and on May 28 it will finally be released in final form on CD (with a new track) by Naturmacht Productions.
On this finished album, Pierre‘s Enshine bandmate Jari Lindholm performed guitar solos (and handled mixing and mastering), and Christian Netzell (Volturyon, Exgenesis, Vholdghast, Spasmodic) was the drummer.
I missed Further Nowhere when it originally appeared, but really like the song that’s available on Naturmacht‘s new Bandcamp page for the album. “The Light We Are” is an offering of doomy melodic death metal that gets the head nodding and keeps it moving all the way through, with layers of cold, mystical keyboard and guitar melody swirling around the monstrous growls and heavy riffing. Chilling, beautiful, and heavy music… and hard to forget.
The next song in this collection is “Eschaton“, the title track to the debut album by a black metal band from Vancouver named Kafirun. The album will be released by Seance Records on June 26th. I thought this band’s last EP Glorification of Holy Death (2015) was very good, yet this new song seems a further step ahead.
The warped, twisting arpeggio at the outset of the song quickly sinks its serpentine tendrils into the head almost immediately, and from there the band build an even more deeply felt and convincing atmosphere of unearthly peril and claustrophobic gloom. The music twists the tension, while injecting elements of verging delirium that then spill over into bouts of pestilential swarming, as if spreading plague vectors have suddenly converged in a firestorm of disease and death. Eerie and unsettling music that exerts a powerful fascination….
In 1995, the long-running Italian progressive death metal band Sadist released their second album, Tribe. They have now chosen to collaborate with a classical ensemble called GnuQuartet to create a new version of one of the songs from Tribe, and they’ve just released a new video to accompany it. The song is “Den Siste Kamp“.
It was a very good song to begin with, and both the band and GnuQuartet have done a great job arranging it for the integration of classical and metal instruments. In addition, the video is lots of fun to watch, and I suppose the message of the video is “there is no honor among thieves” (or murderers). The video was directed by Beppe Platania and Andrea Larosa for Lucerna Films (www.lucernafilms.com).
This new collaborative version of “Den Siste Kamp” has been released digitally via iTunes, Amazon, and Google Play, and it’s on Spotify as well. The band also have ambitions to produce an entire live version of Tribes, turning it into “a true orchestral metal opera”.
Well, there’s an album cover you can’t un-see once you’ve seen it. It graces the cover of the debut album, Pestilential Rites of Infernal Fornication, by Portland’s Weregoat, which will be released on June 30 by Iron Bonehead Productions and Parasitic Records (vinyl and tape), with Vault of Dried Bones handling the CD release.
The advance track below is “Osculum“, and it’s as foul, as bestial, and as primitive as you would expect, even if you weren’t familiar with the band’s previous releases. But the pummeling drum propulsion, the lashing / pulsating riffs, and the frenzied leads are damned infectious. It’s an orgy of sound that gets the blood pumping and engorges the… well, you probably get the idea.