We’ve been following the music of the Italian death metal band Valgrind for many years, and for good reason. But if you happen to be discovering them for the first time, despite how often we’ve written about them, they released four demos and an EP between 1995 and 2002 — and then seemed to go into hibernation until the appearance ten years later of their debut album, Morning Will Come No More. Another four years passed, and then Valgrind’s second album, Speech of the Flame, was released by Lord of the Flies Records. The wonderful 2017 EP Seal of Phobos tided over Valgrind fans until the 2018 appearance of the next album, Blackest Horizon, via Everlasting Spew Records.
And then came their Condemnation album released in 2020 through the Spanish label Memento Mori, followed by their From the Viscera of Darkness EP in 2021. Now, the same Memento Mori is poised to release Valgrind‘s mind-blowing fifth album, Millennium of Night Bliss, on April 24th, and we’re able to share the title track with you today. BUT… before we get to that song, we want you to lend your ears to the new album’s previously released opening track “Teshub“.
Across their many releases Valgrind‘s veins have been transfused with the blood of old Morbid Angel, Pestilence, Death, Nocturnus, Possessed, Monstrosity, and Immolation, but there’s something else going on within “Teshub” — something otherworldly, and freakishly adventurous — which won’t come as a big surprise to anyone who heard their last two releases.
The flesh-crawling creepiness of the song begins to radiate at the outset, and even when the band start booming and battering, and assaulting the senses with swarming guitars, that feeling of dreadful eeriness persists — it just sounds orders of magnitude more deranged. The bass undulates like a venomous subterranean serpent; the drums inflict beatings in variable ways; the guitars roil and writhe in diseased and demented harmonies; and the raw and ravenous vocals sound no more tethered to sanity than anything else.
The intricacies of the songwriting and the technical aplomb of the execution vividly come through, thanks to the clarity of the production, and so the head-spinning ecstasy of the extended soloing erupts from the music with dazzling brilliance — it’s well worth all the time allowed to it. And just when you think the song couldn’t become any more riotously unhinged, the vocals explode in the kind of screams near the end that send shivers down the spine.
You might wonder how Valgrind could top that adrenaline-fueled spectacle, but they make a damned strong effort on “Millennium of Night Bliss“. It too is a super-heated vortex of lunacy (like a tornado of fire), and even more disorienting because of all the sudden starts and stops, and the multitude of twists and turns. The rhythm section put on an electrifying show, and the bursts of blaring and contorting guitars are equally eye-popping.
At certain points the music also seems even more menacing, mauling, and mercilessly cruel than on “Teshub“. At other times, the music has a feeling of delirious grandeur, and this time the soloing creates visions of black magic sorcery.
These two songs are so attention-grabbing and nova-like that we expect hot anticipation for the album as a whole. Memento Mori will release Millennium of Night Bliss on CD. To get more info about the release as it materializes, follow the locations linked below.