Aug 042020


We’ve already seen abundant evidence that pandemic shutdowns and searing economic calamity haven’t crushed musical creativity. Those two ruthless giant hands may be doing their best to choke the life from artists (along with the rest of us), but they haven’t succeeded. In fact, rather than becoming numb or being struck dumb, many musicians have continued to record new music, and for many of those the work has itself become a mental and emotional survival mechanism. Horse Drawn is a case in point.

This Ohio-based duo — multi-instrumentalist Jonny Doyle (Coldfells) and vocalist Bryce Seditz (Plaguewielder) — haven’t been prolific, but their output under the Horse Drawn name has for this writer become must-listen material. While in the midst of the giant mess we all now find ourselves in, they’ve recorded a new EP named Amongst Ghosts that’s being released today, and we are happily spreading the word through this premiere. Continue reading »

Aug 032020


On the 21st of this month the death metal band Recorruptor, who are based in Lansing, Michigan, will release their second album The Funeral Corridor, which follows their well-received 2017 debut full-length, Bloodmoon. Pulling from inspirations both old and new, they’ve created a brace of well-conceived and well-executed songs that collectively make for a dynamic experience, showing themselves capable not only of discharging sensations of monstrous menace and electrifying savagery but also packing their onslaughts with melodic and rhythmic hooks that dig deep and are difficult to dislodge (even if some of them are seriously unsettling).

We have a prime example of these talents in the song we’re premiering today through an official video, a track named “Moribund” that’s pure undiluted evil. Continue reading »

Jul 312020


Vampiric lore, especially in popular culture, has been dichotomous. On the one hand, vampires are depicted as ruthless predators capable of bestial savagery, rending human flesh in feeding frenzies of seemingly insatiable blood lust. On the other hand, there has also been a persistent aspect of dangerous romance in the canon, especially in more modern times — a side of the undead that is magical and seductive (if no less lethal), perhaps a remnant of humanity and perhaps merely a different stratagem for successful predation.

Of course, there are more aspects than these two which are revealed through the many centuries of vampiric legend and art, but these two may come to mind first in listening to the song we’re premiering today from the new third album by the Massachusetts black metal band Unholy Vampyric Slaughter Sect. Continue reading »

Jul 312020


From album to album the Belgian band Marche Funèbre have marched from strength to further strength, becoming more assured in their songwriting and more expansive in their incorporation of varying ingredients into their core musical framework of doom and death. Through three albums and a small group of shorter works dating back to 2009, they’ve proven their ability to intertwine crushing heaviness, gloomy moods, up-tempo intensity, and distinctive melodies — and to make full use of the striking versatility of Arne Vandenhoeck‘s voice.

What is also evident, and pleasing to fans who have been following Marche Funèbre from the beginning, is that they have evolved, stretching their talents to come up with new and increasingly powerful ways of standing out from the pack of doom/death bands that surround them — not radical revisions, to be sure, but natural changes that suit and strengthen the myriad appeals of their creations.

It is perhaps a measure of the self-confidence that has accumulated over more than a decade of working together that Marche Funèbre have chosen the longest track from their new hour-long album Einderlicht to introduce the record to the public. That song, “When All Is Said“, is the one we’re premiering today through a lyric video in advance of the album’s joint release on September 25th by Hypnotic Dirge RecordsSolitude Productions, and The Vinyl Division. Continue reading »

Jul 302020


Time brings change, sometimes unexpected, sometimes planned. When multi-instrumentalist Muttaki Shafayath and vocalist Ruzlan Safat created Necrolepsy in Sylhet, Bangladesh during 2012, they dedicated themselves to goregrind. They launched an EP named Exhibition of Mutilated Apparatus in 2014, and followed that with a sequence of split releases from then into 2016. In that year, Necrolepsy fell silent, though its members continued to create together in the stoner doom band Moonshiner, which released a self-titled demo on 2017.

But the ensuing years brought even further changes. Muttaki moved to Toronto, and Ruzlan moved to Dhaka. And when they decided to resuscitate Necrolepsy across the span of thousands of miles, they decided to focus more heavily on death metal than they had in their earlier goregrind-rooted music. With that new focus, they’re at work on an EP projected for release in 2021, and today we’re premiering its first single, which will be released for download on July 31st.

Today we’re presenting a stream of that single — “Clot Over Concrete” — and it is a spectacularly wild ride. Continue reading »

Jul 292020


As we wrote at time of our last premiere for this Roman band two years ago, in genre terms they were hard to pin down. At the time of that 2018 release (an EP named SVNTH) one could tick off references to black metal, post-rock, and Pink Floyd-inspired psychedelia, with a nod toward experimental flourishes — and you could also hear ambient sounds and folk-oriented digressions with a dark cast.

As we observed then, just making a list like that might make you think of a juggler feverishly trying to avoid dropping any of the multi-colored spheres he’s whirling through the air, but Seventh Genocide (who have begun shortening their name to SVNTH) made their amalgamation of myriad influences sound effortless. All those changing colors weren’t distracting; they just made the music more engrossing.

Which is one reason why we’ve been so curious to see what they would do on their next release. That next release turns out to be an album named Spring in Blue, which will be released by Transcending Records on August 28th. The band have previously released a first single called “Wings of the Ark“, and today we present a second one — “Erasing Gods’ Towers“. Continue reading »

Jul 292020


“Darkness fell on the village. The night scattered silver stars across the sky shining with blackness. Harvest Night. The Night of the harvest of souls. Among the stellar myriad, one of the stars is the brightest One. The One that is the essence. The One which is the key. The One which is the Lord of the harvest of souls. On the waves of steppe grasses They wander without haste. Those whose will is the Star. Those whose blood is the Star’s light. Whose eyes keep its reflection. Whose ghostlike flesh will reap some primitive lives. The sickle is raised to reap. It is the Harvest Night!”

Those words are the backdrop fashioned by the multi-national trio Burnt Offering to the song we’re premiering today from their debut album Harvest (“Жатва”), which will jointly be released by Casus Belli Musica and Beverina on August 20th. Those words, and the song, also channel the inspiration of the band members Nameless Enemy, Blind Idiot God, and Asbath (from Darkestrah) to pay tribute to the raw archaic black of the early ’90s Scandinavian scene, and early Ukrainian black metal groups such as Astrofaes — a time “when Black Metal was a source of terror and sorcery”. Continue reading »

Jul 282020


A little more than two years on from the release of their Awakening Inception debut album, the Ontario-based death metal band Æpoch are on the verge of releasing a new EP named The Scryer, a six-track, 30-minute offering that diverges in some ways from that full-length debut. The band themselves state that when these songs were originally written, their main influences were Death, Through The Eyes Of The Dead, and Abysmal Dawn, and they pursued musical ideas that were “much less progressive and technical than our more recent influences”.

But these are relative comparisons, because The Scryer is still home to a lot of full-throttle technical virtuosity and an unmistakably adventurous instrumental spirit. Yet the EP’s appeal also significantly derives from its exotic melodic qualities, which provide a unifying theme throughout this extravagant thrill-ride of an EP.

Today we’re happy to present a full stream of The Scryer in advance of its July 31 release, along with some detailed notes about what you’re about to hear. Continue reading »

Jul 272020


Both New Zealand’s Heresiarch and Canada’s Antediluvian have already elevated themselves high up in the global pantheon of ruinous blackened death metal. It seemed inevitable that the day would come when they would join forces, and that day has arrived. They have combined their terrifying talents in a new split release named Defleshing the Serpent Infinity, which will be released on July 31st by Iron Bonehead Productions.

The split reveals both bands at the height of their powers, and displays what makes their particular forms of assault on the senses different from each other. Moreover, the split has been used as a vehicle for both bands to engage in experimentation, coupling forms of nightmarish ambient music to their more unhinged and apocalyptic sonic attacks. Today we make public the split in its entirety, preceded by a slightly revised version of a review we published weeks ago. Continue reading »

Jul 252020


In 2018 Houston-based Wills Dissolve released their debut album, The Heavens Are Not On Fire…. Conceptually and lyrically, it was based on the Leonid meteor shower of November 1833, the first great meteor storm of modern times, in which hundreds of thousands of extraterrestrial projectiles blasted through the atmosphere per hour. In rural West Texas (as in other locales), it was mistaken as a sign from God, followed by destruction.

As fascinating as the concept was, in its meditation on religion, violence, and cosmic chaos, so too was the music. As our own Andy Synn wrote, it is “a phenomenal piece of Prog/Death wizardry….” “Clocking in at a mere five tracks but still supplying over forty-five minutes of spellbinding metallic magic, Wills Dissolve have produced something here that’s equally influenced by Edge of Sanity and Opeth as it is Isis and Neurosis, yet which effortlessly stands out as its own unique entity through a delicate blend of ambitious songwriting and artful execution.”

And now Wills Dissolve are returning with their second full-length, Echoes, which is a single 31 1/2 minute track. No sophomore slump here, once again the album turns out to be both conceptually and musically fascinating. Continue reading »