Did you know that it’s our tenth anniversary this year?
That’s right, come October/November (I’m not sure exactly when) NCS will have been in existence for a full decade.
And while I’m sure that, closer to the time, Islander will publish his own thoughts (and some fun factoids) about the last ten years of blood, sweat, toil, and graft which have brought us to this point… I thought I’d get my piece in early (and help cover for the fact that the boss is busy helping out with Northwest Terror Fest this weekend).
So the question I’d like to ask is… paraphrasing Monty Python a little bit… what has NCS ever done for you?
Just to be clear, this isn’t just an exercise in stroking our ego (I can do that myself, thank you very much). I’m honestly really curious (and hopeful) that NCS has made an impact on some of your lives over the years.
It’s certainly changed mine, after all.
Maybe we’ve introduced you to a new favourite band or caused you to revisit an album you’d initially dismissed?
Maybe we’ve helped you appreciate a familiar artist in a different way or taught you something new about a scene you thought you already knew top to bottom?
Maybe you’re in a band and we’ve helped get the word out about your music?
Or maybe you’re a fan who found the love of their life through our comments section (though, I’ll grant you, this seems less likely than some of the others)?
Whatever it is, I/we would like to hear from you.
Because while we don’t do this for praise (obviously) or for money (double-obviously) it would still be amazing to know that what we’ve done (and plan to continue doing) has made a difference to people out there.
And, to say thank you, and to sweeten the deal even further, here are three more albums/artists for you all to check out that you might not have heard of before!
ARBORICIDIO – WHAT WE LEAVE BEHIND
Did you know that it really IS a small world after all?
Case in point, the new album from multinational D-Beat Crust-Metallers Arboricidio, which I stumbled across entirely at random recently, was actually recorded here in Nottingham at Stuck On A Name Studios, the same place where I record my own vocals when the times comes.
Great taste in studios/engineers isn’t all the band have going for them however, as the five tracks presented here provide a bombastic blend of feral fury and melancholy melody that’s sure to catch the ear of fans of bands like Oathbreaker, Ancst, and Fall of Efrafa.
CTHULUMINATI – RELIQIDEUS
As well as having probably THE best name in all of Metaldom (seriously, just sound it out, it rolllllls off the tongue), Cthuluminati are also a band in possession of a sound not quite like anyone else.
Sure, there are certain similarities here and there – imagine a mix of Yob, High on Fire, and Dødheimsgard, if you can, and you’ll hopefully be in the right ballpark – but I can honestly say that the self-described “Psychedelic Blackened Doom” that makes up these six tracks easily stands out from everything else I’ve heard this year.
So if you’re looking for something a little off the beaten path, something not afraid to throw a few crazy curveballs at you along the way, than give this one a listen ASAP.
SUSPIRAL – CHASM
Last, but by no means least, the second album from Spanish Black/Death duo Suspiral is four tracks of raging, skin-scraping distortion, rampaging, ramshackle percussion, and raving, snarling, shrieking, vocals that pulls no punches and offers absolutely no quarter.
The aggressively raw and reverb-drenched production job brings out only the best/worst in the band’s sound, and makes you feel like you’re listening to the album in a wind-tunnel filled with razorblades… which, if it wasn’t clear, is a goodthing… and the whole ungodly affair just bleeds visceral intensity and grim atmosphere throughout every morbid minute.
Check this one out if you’re a fan of similarly grim and grisly acts like Teitanblood, Archgoat, and Dead Congregation and I promise you won’t be disappointed.
Congratulations on a decade of metal! I still can’t get over how much this site has changed through the years.
This website has actually given me a chance, on the occasions when I actually get off of my ass, to share a lot of the great music I’ve discovered over the years. Writing my end of the year list, and the once in a blue-moon article, has actually been kind of a novel experience for me as I’ve really enjoyed turning people onto music they may not have heard before.
I also appreciate it’s one of the few metal sites still out there that’s more interested in talking about music than trying to focus everything through the lens of the political or discussing whatever stupid controversy has everyone’s underwear in a knot. I think overall it’s made for a much nicer, more enjoyable community, and as sporadic as my posting has been in recent years, I’m glad there’s still a site out there like that, that I can come back to just get away from all that.
So thanks for ten years, guys…Here’s to ten more!
Happy birthday NCS!
The band you have included in this post – Cthuluminati – shows exactly what NCS is for me: a source of great music to listen to, which I’d otherwise never have even heard of. And not only music – as they proclaim on their website, “…Cthuluminati ultimately strives to evolve from a band into a functional collective, creating an environment in which a number of selected artists -skilled in various different forms of art- will help to develop new varieties of content…” (https://www.cthuluminati.com/manifesto/)
Coming to NCS I was complete tech-death head, mostly because I was dissapointed by new releases from other genres. Your articles greatly broadened my horizons, especially to doom which I was never a fan of, now very much in love with the genre. Now my ‘to listen’ playlist is ever expanding with full spectrum of metal.
Also you’re the reason I’m annoying the ever living shit out of my metalhead friends with constant messages about ‘this cool new album’ they have to check out.
This site has meant so much to me and I’m glad you allowed me to cover so much for so many years! Wishing you the best. -Austin Weber
Happy anniversary, NCS.
No Clean Singing has introduced me to a lot of great bands, and also introduced my own music to NCS readers, for which I’m eternally grateful.
Looking forward to many more musical discoveries and hopefully being included among them somewhere down the road.
NCS has exposed me to so many new bands over the years that its ridiculous. It has also been cool watching you guys grow as writers over the years. Looking forward to the next ten years!
I really miss that sexy motherfucker Phro. Anyone know what became of him?
Thank you man. I miss Phro at the site too, but I’m in touch with him, and he’s living in Colorado and doing well.
Glad to know the ol’ boy is doing well!
I’ll have to echo the other comments in saying that I wouldn’t have discovered some of my favourite bands if it wasn’t for NCS. The dedication of this site to spotlighting newer and lesser known bands is nothing short of admirable. Every time I visit (which is several times a day), it’s with a sense of excitement about what you’ll be premiering and writing about.
On a personal note, I’m also extremely grateful that I’ve gotten the opportunity to give back in some small measure, whether it’s through passing on recommendations or writing the occasional roundup to help out Islander when he’s deluged with work. I never thought I’d ever actually get my writing published on this site and it still feels a bit surreal that it’s happened at all. If nothing else, NCS has rekindled my love for writing and I hope to continue contributing in whatever capacity I can (and maybe even realize my dream of writing a year-end list for you this year).
Ten years is a long time to be active and it’s been a privilege to see you guys grow and develop over the past decade. Here’s to another ten and many more beyond!
Hey congrats on a decade! I have only been frequenting the site for about a year, but it is without a doubt my favorite website on the internet for the discovery of new metal. You guys provide so much coverage of bands that other sites miss. Great job.
Like most everyone here, one of the biggest impacts NCS has had on me is the broadening of my musical horizons and the discovery of many amazing new bands I might never have heard of otherwise. But I also have to give props to Islander for taking a chance on, and giving me confidence in, my writing, by letting me pen an article or two for this fine site. Thank you for ten amazing years of ass kicking! Here’s to ten more! Maybe eleven!
Hi from the UK!
I gotta say a big thankyou to this site.. a visit is now part of my daily routine and I’ve hated, so-so’d and loved the new stuff you post for a few years now. A lot of the artists you feature don’t get a look-in on the shall-we-say ‘trendier’ metal sites so please carry on with what you do.. until I die, at least!
Thank you NCS. Among a handful of music sites it is No Clean Singing that I check in with first. I’ve said to friends “If I could visit only one site it would be NCS”. Continue to be indispensable.
Best thing you guys did for me: introducing me to the music of Rebel Wizard !
Wait, there was an opportunity for graft all this time and I never took advantage of it?
Damn. Now what am I going to do with all this money?
Can I bribe you to let me keep lurking and occasionally posting? This is just about the only metal site I check regularly anymore, and it’s still the best one by a mile.
Thanks for helping me bang my head for the past ten years. You’ve really brought me a ton of good music over the years and I’ve done nothing in return. So let me at least say thank you!
(I guess I’ll keep my money)
NCS has shown over the years that there are many intelligent, thoughtful people who listen to metal.
First of all, you published a review I wrote (waaay back)! And a clean singing one too: the one about the Armenian ethno-metal band Dogma. I may not be as present as I used to be but that does not mean NCS has lost that special place in my heart. Far from it. I love the attitude over here and I still check in to listen to new stuff.
To the next ten years!
Very cool. Happy birthday NCS!
NCS is the only website I visit for new music at this point. You guys have done a great job of posting a ridiculous amount of links to new music, and I admit I often can’t even keep up with it all. That’s a good thing. I’ve discovered and bought stuff from many bands posted here. And what I love most is that this website is all about music. Not gossip, not politics, not any of the bullshit contaminating other metal websites.
Simplest way to put it: my favorite albums of the last years were all discovered on NCS. 10 years is astonishing for a site with no revenue. Keep it simple.
Greetings from Portugal.
Happy birthday, NCS! Thanks for the incredible amount of high quality content – and for always keeping it classy! This is one of the very best sites within the series of tubes. Keep the good stuff coming.
I think you would be hard-pressed to find more cherished or coveted websites than NCS and The Obelisk I reckon. Both sites have adhered to clear philosophies about the music you cover; the earnest, and positive approaches towards that music, and frankly being good and decent people. There was never a mission statement, other than NO CLEAN SINGING lol, and I think all the readers enjoy that the posts feel like organic checkpoints through the terrain of modern underground metal.
And then there’s the kicker, the artists NCS covers is basically unheard of, it’s like a fountain of youth unbeholden to covering the established artists, and it’s always surprising. In a metal media landscape where you will see the same overly-wrought review of the same record, for 10 FUCKING YEARS NCS has always been unique. I am a big fan, and have been since maybe 2010ish, and I can’t imagine where I would find bands like Cthuluminati without NCS. Thanks for all the work you do!
I discovered NCS about 5 years ago and it has been part of my steady metal diet since. This is one of my favorite sources to learn about and discover metal, both new and old. This site has introduced me to probably hundreds of bands I wouldn’t otherwise know, which is good for me and I think for the bands too. I love the different features on this site, from interviews, to talking about lyrics, to shades of black, to regular reviews and all else. NCS is unusual from many metal sites in that it only reviews and includes metal that you guys like; there are no real negative reviews and I always respected that. You don’t come to NCS to find out what NOT to listen to. Here’s to another 10 years (for you and for me!).
Happy Birthday NCS!! You guys have been instrumental in helping to continue to fuel a lifelong pursuit of the zaniest and silliest distorted guitar music to grace ones life with.
Thanks for being an ever flowing tap of both quality and positivity!
Salutations! So much has been said above, sentiments that run in line with how I feel about this site, and I don’t need to repeat those.
I do however need to second what Bas mentioned up there (for how can one not run paradoxical to one’s tenets like NCS has, and for the better?): If I can deconstruct what this site means to me in sonic form, it would have to be the sorcery of Rebel Wizard, not to mention the fan-fuckin-tastic interview you guys did with him.
And what I meant above by tenets is the infrequent breaking of the ‘rule’, which is refreshing and more often than not rewarding beyond measure as can be found to be the case more regular than Hellhammer’s double bass.
Music covered that is untouched, invigoratingly infectious, mind-warping, metamorphic, shattering of the status-quo, authentic
Writing that is sincere, thought-provoking, heartfelt, and goddammit; tasty too. The metaphors you insidious lot come up with is beyond what any other site can deliver.
Lastly, I’ve been struggling with depression for some time and music really helps me (read ‘metal’) to get through most days. Some of the albums I’ve ‘discovered’ through NCS have been nothing short of cathartic. And it certainly helps that all your writers are so self-aware and unpretentious.
I’d offer to write a review or a piece myself, but alas, what I find here usually slays anything I can come up with and I’ll happily continue to just give thoughts now and again on what is on offer.
Thank you so so much for what you do.
To ten more years and ad infinitum!
I haven’t chimed in yet, but now I just want to say thank you to everyone who’s commented. I’m sure Islander appreciated all the kind words (I know I did).
Hopefully some of you enjoyed the music too, and will still be around in October/November when our actual birthday is and when I’m sure Islander will publish his own thank yous and some interesting factoids from the last ten years!