Mar 212023

In a search for analogies it’s tempting to compare Milan-based Vision Deprived‘s new album to a musical roller-coaster ride. It’s packed with twists and turns, ups and downs; it gets the adrenaline flowing; it frequently pops our eyes wide open; and it’s scary. But it’s not the kind of trip that’s likely to leave riders laughing it off when it’s time to dismount, and the twists are… twisted… in ways that can become unsettling because they’re so unhinged. You can hear and feel the rails under a roller-coaster car, but what would happen if that sense of being attached were to vanish?

Self Elevating, Deep Inside The Void is the album’s name, and even the title suggests leaving the rails and any other tangible boundaries, which is pretty much what happens as you make your way through the record. What you might not expect from the title is that the music is usually firestorm-fast and decimating, as well as completely dazzling in its madhouse instrumental escapades through a dystopian hellscape. Continue reading »

Mar 202023

In April the Greek band Heretic Cult Redeemer will see the release of their third album, Flagellum Universalis, via the label III Damnation. Now featuring a lineup consisting of vocalist/bassist Funus, guitarist/bassist Tempest, guitarist N3, and drummer C. Docre, the band have created a nearly hour-long work that represents a spiritual and philosophical journey, one that explores “the primeval human urge of opposition to law and structure”, in which the band have used themselves “as the means, harbingers, and vessels of Luciferian and Promethean teachings, as expressed through the frenzy, of the touch of Echidna.”

The music is unconventional and often uncomfortable. It operates on multiple planes of experience, as elaborate and strange as it is visceral in its effects. It maintains linkages to second-wave black metal, but inventively spirals off into other directions and dimensions that become head-spinning… and ruinous. It won’t go too far to say that this is avant-garde black metal of a high order, even if that’s a term the band themselves might not use

It’s not music that’s easy to sum up. We’ve struggled to conceive of words sufficient to even a single song, but that song — “Grave Sophia – Breath of Nightside” — is so startling that it compels us to try. Continue reading »

Mar 202023

Nethermancy brandish their devotion to evil black metal right in the title of their new album Worship Evil Sacrifice, not to mention the cover image, and they do a damned effective job carrying their devotion into the hellish nightmare realms their music creates.

These Portuguese practitioners have not hurried their blasphemous work. Their discography shows a decade-long gap between their first and second albums, and six years have passed between this new full-length (their fourth album) and the last one before it (2017’s Magick Halls of Ascension). Not surprisingly, there have also been some line-up changes since the band’s birth in 1996. But Nethermancy‘s devotion to the oldest black metal roots hasn’t changed. They’ve only sharpened the cutting edge of their blades, re-fueled their torches so they blaze even brighter, and supercharged their venomous rage. Continue reading »

Mar 172023

Many of you will be familiar with the decades-old Colombian death metal band Vitam Et Mortem, in which Julián “Thánatos” has been the composer, vocalist, and guitarist. What we have for you today is the music of a side project of Thánatos that he has named Jaue, which we’re told is the name of a spirit that can take the form of any animal.

We’re also told that the purpose of forming Jaue, as revealed in the project’s debut album Cantos del Sur Salvaje, was to “explore ancestral sounds and voices from ancient cultures of the world and puts them in relation to metal”. Organized as a trio of triptyches, the songs interweave many styles, with results that could broadly be summed up as “Colombian epic melodic pagan black metal”.

But summing up is a difficult thing to do with this album, because the journey through it is so varied. As evidence of that we’re presenting a heart-bursting song called “Guerrero Mapuche” today, as well as a juxtaposition of it with the new album’s first single, the majestic “A vuelo de cóndor“. Continue reading »

Mar 172023

Our fidelity to the Greek band Burial Hordes is of long standing — not as long as the band’s own existence, which stretches back roughly 22 years, because they were practicing their black craft well before our site came into being in 2009, but we’ve been steadily writing about their music for a decade. And for good reason. Over the course of four albums (with a fifth one on the way) and a handful of shorter releases, they’ve established themselves as premiere purveyors of hellish musical visions, while refusing to just keep doing the same thing over and over again.

The band’s pronounced tendency to use their music as a vehicle for continuing exploration of dark subjects is one reason for our eagerness and sense of intrigue every time they release something new. What’s new now, as mentioned above, is Burial Hordes‘ fifth full-length, Ruins, which is set for release on June 9th by Transcending Obscurity Records. That feels like a long way off, but we already have exciting signs of what the album presents — two songs that have already debuted, and the third one we’re presenting today. Continue reading »

Mar 162023

We had some favorable things to say here about the Dutch band Witte Wieven‘s 2016 debut EP Silhouettes of an Imprisoned Mind (available here):

“Perhaps best summed up as an offering of somber, atmospheric black metal, the songs combine low, gravelly riffs and grumbling bass lines with waves of guitar melody that shimmer and mesmerize, accented by beautiful, haunting clean vocals and such things as keyboard notes that sound like a harmonica (or perhaps an accordion) and spectral ambient tones.

“The songwriting is very good — the three songs are each quite distinct and memorable — and so is the production. It’s easy to lose yourself in this otherworldly dreamscape of lost souls and restless spirits.” Continue reading »

Mar 162023

Let’s be clear: We have no private info about why a trio of Swiss musical collaborators chose Vomitheist for their name. Mainly, all we have to go on is the name itself and a rudimentary understanding of words. The name looks like a conjunction of “vomit” and “theist”, which suggests that vomit is their god. Which raises the question, what does the worship of vomit sound like? We’ll come back to that.

We say that linguistic analysis is “mainly” what we have to go on, but there’s a bit more, before we get to the music itself. There’s the name of their new album – NekroFvneral – and song titles such as “Putrefaktor”, “Symbiotic Putrefaction”, “Chapel of Abhorrent Reek and Festering Slime” (in case you’re wondering where the worship of vomit takes place), and “Epidemic Disembowelment” (which sounds like a pithy summing up of what a few years of life under covid was like).

All of this points the way to a death metal band who kneel at the altar of disgusting musical extremity, with no pretenses to any higher calling and no problem joining a long lineage of other DM bands who have made their “ethos” out of steaming piles of the nastiest stuff the human body is capable of producing, in life or in death. The kind of extreme metal themes that might be the hardest to explain to the kind of people whose listening choices get nominated for Grammy awards.

So now you’re already pretty well-prepared for what you’re about to hear. You probably already can guess whether Vomitheist are going to be in your personal wheelhouse. But even if you have a taste for the most foul and regurgitative death metal, maybe it’s a refined taste. Maybe you know that there are gradations of quality in this kind of thing (and there most certainly are), so you still insist on getting some filthy tastes before taking the plunge on NekroFvneral. We’re here to help. Continue reading »

Mar 152023

On March 17th, the Danish post-metal band Late Night Venture will release their new album V: Bones Of The Extinct via Trepanation Recordings and Vinyltroll Records, and today we present it in its entirety, along with many words of introduction.

But before we get to our own words, we want to share what the labels and the band themselves tell us about the album’s conception, because it adds useful insights into the multi-faceted power of the music. For example, this:

“‘Bones Of The Extinct’ is a text excerpt capable of containing all the album’s songs, which individually are images of unforeseen occurrences with irreversible consequences. The lyrics cast their gaze upon the world and can be characterized as grounded doomsday stories about conditions, which more or less concern all beings on the planet. This gaze is directed towards mankind and its nature, all our efforts in this world – and the consequences of our urge.” Continue reading »

Mar 152023

Graugeist is the solo project of Sarghas from the southwestern German state of Saarland, a musician and vocalist who is also a member of Immorior, Nýr Gata, and Stardust. Graugeist is the new name of a project originally called Mirai. Under the Mirai name Sarghas released a four-song debut EP entitled Makkura in 2020. Under the new name, Graugeist will release a debut album named Heaven Denies near the end of April through Void Wanderer Productions and Kvlt and Kaos Productions.

That Makkura EP (here) is startling to hear. With hyper-voltage power it combines electrifying riffing that’s both scathing and sweeping, thunderous rhythmic momentum, the kind of torrential screaming that puts the hair up on the back of your neck, and monstrous roaring — but part of what makes it startling is that Mirai brought into play a kind of elaborate elegance in the guitar- and keyboard-work.

The music was thus simultaneously a breathtaking maelstrom with a lot of visceral punch and a near-theatrical pageant, interweaving glorious and enthralling melodies that sometimes seemed connected to traditions of many centuries past. The sound was raw and scorching, and the vocals were also relentlessly incinerating, but the music also rang almost clear at vital moments, and the intricacy of the songcraft made every song an eye-opening trip.

That experience would be enough to kindle anticipation and intrigue for the debut full-length of Graugeist, and we have the first sign of Heaven Denies in the song from the album we’re premiering today — “Forward the Doom“. Continue reading »

Mar 142023

Two years ago Transcending Obscurity Records released the humorously named Sharing Is Caring, the fifth album by the Czech brutal death metal band Cutterred Flesh. We got the opportunity to premiere a very interesting video for the absolutely bludgeoning and eviscerating song “Good Boy” (again proving that these dudes have a twisted sense of humor). That song alone, and the album even more so, demonstrated the band’s capacity for inflicting bombastic, mind-mauling, and terrifically brutalizing punishment, while also throwing in unexpected changes that keep listeners perched on their toes.

Now Cutterred Flesh are returning with new music via the same Transcending Obscurity label, and once again we have the chance to reveal a new song and a lyric video from a forthcoming release. This one is named “Symptoms of Parasite“. As usual, we want to give you a little preview of what’s about to happen to you. But where to start? The bamboozling animated video or the bamboozling brutality of the music? Continue reading »