This is Part 2 of a mountainous round-up of new songs and videos that surfaced during the last week. If you haven’t perused Part 1, it’s here. Before cutting these 16 offerings into two pieces I arranged them in alphabetical order by band name, and so here we have L – Z. Musically, this one might be even more wide-ranging than what you’ll find in Part 1.
“Although the song begins with spacey ambience, it quickly falls forward into a mighty chug that’s then handed off to vocalist-guitarist Christian Bonnesen‘s stone-scraping howls. It only gets heavier from there, as avalanching bass rumbles and violent drums bash the groove into the ground with the force of King Kong punching the earth.”
That’s what Revolver’s Eli Enis wrote in introducing the premiere of this next song two days ago, presented through a video that depicts an entity from beyond our solar system swallowing our planet whole. And it is indeed a humongously heavy track, and a creepy one.
“Obsidian” is from LLNN’s third LP, Unmaker, set for release on September 24th via Pelagic Records. I’ve also included a stream of the previously released track “Interloper“.
This Hungarian duo have long resumes, including their own joint participation in Tyrant Goatgaldrakona and Coffinborn. In Rothadás they’ve turned their talents to a particularly mortifying brand of doom-cloaked death metal, as demonstrated by the next song in today’s roundup.
Ghastly and frightening the music surely is, and it’s easy to think of it as a musical rendition of a beast — a multi-ton one that staggers forward, roaring, shaking the earth, and radiating the kind of quivering, otherworldly aura that chills the skin. Eventually, despite its titanic size, the beast undergoes a seizure of extreme violence, like a screaming and scathing tornado of teeth, claws, and fire. The song is ruthlessly crushing, steeped in misery, and capable of igniting your nerves too.
The song is off the band’s debut album Kopár hant... az alvilág felé, coming out on October 12th via Me Saco Un Ojo Records.
Most of you probably know that during the pandemic Sepultura recorded a live album named SepulQuarta from the safety of their own living room studios – together with different guest musicians. They also filmed many of the recording sessions, and yesterday they released a video for “Slave New World” that features guest vocals and guitar by Trivium’s Matt Heafy.
The song is a great one from Sepultura’s 1993 Chaos A.D., and thus is undoubtedly familiar to many of you, so I’ll save my own words.
SepulQuarta is being released today by Nuclear Blast.
This new Skepticism song is… vast. And haunting, and magnificent. And of course, tragic. The music is crushing, with drum blows that feel like they could smash boulders and enormous heaving low-frequency undercurrents, but like the birds in the lyrics, it also makes you feel as if you’re leaving the earth and soaring far above it. The band also make space for some reflexively headbangable riffing, which is always welcome.
IO presented the premiere of the song along with a mysterious video. It’s from the album Companion, set for release on September 24th by Svart Records.
SÚL AD ASTRAL (New Zealand)
The next song I’ve chosen is a single track by this New Zealand duo that lasts for 20 minutes. The releasing label, Flowing Downward, characterizes it as an “amalgamation of Harakiri for the Sky, Astronoid, and Swans“, which was certainly enticing enough to pull me into it. But once pulled, would I stick around until the end? Oh yes, and not once did I think about departing.
The riveting opening rhythm and rapidly darting riffage set the hook, and the band just dig it in deeper and deeper before beginning to morph the music and the vocals in multiple ways, bringing both progressive and post-metal ingredients (and some post-punk accents) into a black metal framework. It’s an extravagant experience that’s jolting and head-spinning, savage and sublime, heavy and ethereal, dire and exultant. The rhythm section shine throughout, and all the other instrumental and vocal permutations prove to be persistently captivating. What an enormous surprise….
Heritage was released on August 5th, both digitally and on CD.
SWELLING REPULSION (US/Australia)
I’m cheating a bit with this next one, simply focusing on a single song from a debut album (The Severed Path) that’s been out in full digitally since June, but with a CD edition destined for release on September 17th by Spirit Coffin Publishing.
That particular track, which opens the album, is “Enslaved“. It burns with fearsome intensity from start to finish, but includes rapidly changing (and unnerving) fretwork permutations to go along with caustic vocals and turn-on-a-dime drumming. As the press materials accurately claim, the music is “abrasive yet melodic, technical yet raw – and a bittersweet quality persists throughout the experience”. “Mind-boggling” would be another word for it.
You can listen to the rest of The Severed Path via the Bandcamp link below — or just let the player continue running.
UNTAMED LAND (US)
Napalm Records describes the music of the new album by this solo project (of Patrick Kern from Akron, Ohio) as a shifting form of atmospheric metal that evokes “the ambiance of classic Ennio Morricone/Spaghetti Western soundtracks and traditional old western instrumentals”. Concerning the song I’ve chosen next in this collection, Patrick Kern says:
“This song is probably the one most similar to the ‘epic’ atmospheric black metal approach taken by bands such as Summoning and Caladan Brood, but lots of other strains found their way in, such as doom metal, minimalism, and European/Celtic folk music. The title of the track, like the title of the album itself, is a phrase from McCarthy‘s novel Blood Meridian, one of the darker western stories out there, and it perfectly fits the foreboding and mounting dread the music seeks to express.”
“Clothed In Smoke” plays out like a multi-faceted musical suite. It makes great use of fiddle music and varying keyboards throughout (including a repeating piano refrain at the end, paired with a dancing fiddle tune and big booming drums). It will jolt your spine and spin seductive, swirling spells through your mind. It opens the inner eye to primeval panoramic vistas and sorrowful moods. It reaches zeniths of electrifying intensity and creates soundscapes of heat-baked desolation, and the twanging arpeggios do channel Morricone.
The song comes with a video that’s absolutely beautiful in its use of landscape panoramas and dramatic skies.
Kern describes the album that includes the song (Like Creatures Seeking Their Own Forms) as “a cinematic journey into a dark and fantastical old west setting”. It’s set for release on October 8th.
THE ZENITH PASSAGE (US)
Finally we reach the end of the alphabet and the end of this big two-part roundup. And we reach the end with sounds of… skittering… something like a hive of busy but demented and potentially hostile insects. It’s a weird but infectious riffing sensation. Other things happen in the song, including start-stop percussive attacks, barbaric vocal assaults, and magical swirling melodies that are as fluid as everything else is jittery. (I think of insects, but based on the song title, it’s probably more a representation of computer calculations.)
The song, “Algorithmic Salvation“, is a new stand-alone single recorded by a revised lineup that includes the addition of two former members of The Faceless — Derek Rydquist and Brandon Giffin. I saw on the band’s Facebook page that they have two albums’ worth of material under their belt, but no album announcements have surfaced yet.