Oct 152021


The German black metal band Dauþuz, whose musical tales have largely focused on mining in the Old World, have readied an hour-long fourth album for release by Amor Fati Productions on November 12th. The name of this new one is Vom schwarzen Schmied (“Of the Blacksmith” in English). All-consuming darkness and lyrical despair, which ultimately leads to fatal realization, characterize this fourth full-length from Dauþuz. And yet the music is very much a fantastic and even mythical experience.

Take for example, the song we’re premiering today. “Zauberwerk / Bergschmied IV” is a grand blaze of sound, all-consuming in its heart-pounding power and dazzling melodic extravagance. Continue reading »

Oct 152021


The video we’re presenting today includes stunning scenes of sunrise and of cold flowing waters, of haunted souls, the descent of winter, and of graveside grief. The words tell of emotional wounds that won’t heal and of the approach of a time to die.

Like the video, the music brilliantly soars like the sun, and ebbs and flows like tidal waters. It has the majesty of nature in its vast ringing sounds, and the gloom of hopelessness and death in its gripping melodies. Its stately rhythms are viscerally compulsive, its heaviness is crushing, and its feelings of resignation and despair are heart-shaking. It casts a spell that penetrates deeply, and the spell survives the end of the song.

The name of that song is “Fractured“, and it comes from the third album by the Spanish band In Loving Memory. Entitled The Withering, it will be released on January 14, 2022, by the Funere label. Continue reading »

Oct 142021


“The Lights of Zetar” was the 18th episode in the third season of Star Trek, originally broadcast in January 1969. It clearly made an impact on R.G., the central Texas musician who chose Zetar as the name of the metal project he created in 2019, choosing to carry forward (as he has written) “the name of a planet of telepaths who’d transcended into a roaming mass of pure psychic energy to curtail their own meteoric extinction”.

Sci-fi inspirations have also carried forward into the band’s striking debut album, Devouring Darkness, for which R.G. enlisted the aid of French vocalist T.P. and Ecuadoran drummer David Lanas to help realize his vision for Zetar. And it is indeed an arresting vision, both thematically and in the unusual and unpredictable amalgam of influences which make their way into the music, including ’90s death metal, synth-laden and thrashing black metal, and classic science fiction scores.

Today we invite you to experience those visions of horror and wonder through our complete premiere stream of Devouring Darkness in advance of its October 15 release by Spirit Coffin Publishing. Continue reading »

Oct 132021


Before listening to a note, I loved the idea of Crystal Coffin‘s new album, The Starway Eternal. So let’s begin with that idea, which also helps explain the cover art and the adventurous sensations afforded by the music. As presented in the press materials:

“Cast against the historical realities of the Chernobyl power plant meltdown of 1986, the assumed protagonist – an operator at the power plant – discovers the portalway behind an inoperable console and soon finds that her longing for meaning in this chaotic world answers the opportunity to seek out the purported gods and angels that live among the cosmos in our known solar system.

“To find such entities would be to imbue a sense of importance in our collective existence beyond the daily disorder and existential despair that one accepts. Her trips into various corners of space reveal little to no such beings, and during one such fruitless endeavor, her portalway back to earth is shut permanently; reactor 4 at Chernobyl back on earth has suffered its meltdown during shutdown operation.

“Frantic, she makes the decision to return to earth by falling through the fiery atmosphere as a lonely, final and futile act of desperation. Of course, survival is impossible, and such an act becomes a metaphor for our time, wandering the earth with little connection to anything beyond the physical world”. Continue reading »

Oct 122021


Glimmering Veil is the second album by the Irish band Superstatic, and you’ll have difficulty finding a 2021 record that’s as simultaneously unnerving and fascinating. It’s a work of extravagant and unpredictable imagination, labyrinthine in its movements, fantastically textured in its sounds, and both deleterious and awe-inspiring in its moods.

It extends through seven long tracks across one hour and 12 minutes, but never allows the listener’s attention to wander. To borrow from the following review, we can recognize downcast and distraught human emotions in the music, but really, nothing sounds truly eartb-bound.

“Death/doom” is the simplest label one might affix to the music, but it would be an absurdly simplistic label, unless perhaps you add “avant-garde” or “experimental” as another descriptor, as a way of hinting at how wide-ranging the experience becomes.

We have a lot more to say about the album below, but beyond the torrent of linguistic impressions we also have a full stream of the album in advance of its imminent October 15 release by Solitude Productions. Continue reading »

Oct 122021


We have yet another silver lining to the immense black cloud of our pandemic existence, and the silver here is shaped by a band whose name sent us scurrying to the dictionary. What might “vaticinal” mean? Authoritative sources explain that the word means “having the nature of or characterized by prophecy; prophetic”.

And yes, this UK band was formed in 2020, in the midst of a global pandemic, social upheaval, and isolation. As the band themselves explain, they “play a visceral form of death metal inspired by the classic Floridian bands of the early – mid ’90s, with a special homage also paid to the European underground sound” and with lyrical and visual themes that “explore spirituality, loss, the occult and escapism”.

The debut EP of Vaticinal Rites is a self-titled four-track affair that arrested the attention of three highly-regarded labels — Redefining Darkness Records, Caligari Records, and Dry Cough Records — who will jointly release it on November 12th. Today we present the first two tracks on the EP, and when you hear them it will become obvious why the band’s debut release attracted such support. Continue reading »

Oct 112021


At last, the diabolical death metal band Conjureth from San Diego, California will be releasing their debut album on October 25th, via a label conspiracy with Memento Mori and Rotted Life.

In fashioning this beastly offering, emblazoned with the name Majestic Dissolve, Conjureth (whose line-up includes current or former members of such stand-out groups as Encoffination, VoidCeremony, and Ghoulgotha) creatively rooted themselves in the filth and fury of DM classics from the late ’80s, ranging from Florida to Finland, and the results on display in Majestic Dissolve are electrifying…

…and “electrifying” is definitely the word for the well-named song we’re premiering today: “An Occult Mosaic“. Continue reading »

Oct 112021


The titles of the five tracks on Mors Verum’s new EP The Living consist of single words — but they collectively create a sentence: “Inside Death’s Womb Purge the Living“. As this Canadian death metal trio explain, The Living is a concept EP “that beckons the listener to inspect life as an artifact of death and its infinity”, and that sentence is “a statement reflecting our observations of conscious existence”. “Though the subject matter is grim”, they say, “the music implores the listener to seek beauty in the vast emptiness of mortality.”

Dissonant and dizzying, the music does indeed create a kind of terrible and transfixing beauty, a mind-warping and continually jaw-dropping vision of delirious exultation and ruinous destruction. As to how they do this, the press materials invite you to consider a collision of such bands as Artificial Brain, Fuck the Facts, Imperial Triumphant, Plebeian Grandstand, Morbid Angel, Incantation, and Ulcerate.

More to the point, we invite you to listen to the second single from the EP that we’re premiering today in advance of its November 5 release, a track named “Purge” that will send your head somersaulting. Continue reading »

Oct 112021


The Absence of Light is the kind of recording that first sells itself by the names of the people who participated in making it.

It’s the work of the Brazilian death metal band The Troops of Doom, whose line-up includes guitarist Jairo “Tormentor” Guedz, a former member of Sepultura’s original lineup playing author and co-author to classic Sepultura albums Bestial Devastation and Morbid Visions, alongside bassist/vocalist Alex Kafer (Enterro, Explicit Hate, ex-Necromancer), drummer Alexandre Oliveira (Southern Blacklist, Raising Conviction), and guitarist Marcelo Vasco (Patria, Mysteriis, and an acclaimed graphic artist for the likes of Slayer, Kreator, Machine Head, Soulfly, and Hatebreed).

Moreover, Jeff Becerra of Possessed shared vocals on the track “The Monarch”; Lars Nedland of Borknagar, Solefald, and White Void performed bass on the first three tracks; and Dave Deville conducted the orchestral introduction. As additional icing on the cake, the songs were mixed and mastered by Øystein G. Brun (Borknagar) at Crosound Studio in Norway.

All these names draw attention by themselves, but of course the music must ultimately win people over. The music here is guaranteed to do that, because it’s absolutely electrifying, written and performed with the kind of veteran skill and spirit  you would expect. And you’ll have the chance to experience it through our premiere stream of the EP’s three original tracks today, presented through a video (made by Wanderley Perna) as a single work. Continue reading »

Oct 082021


Last summer we had the pleasure of premiering the title track from No Center, the latest album by Graveslave from the Minnesota Twin Cities, which was subsequently released on July 30th by TRVASFUK Music, adorned by the terrific cover art of Adam Burke. In an effort to sum up the music, we called it “a rich and relentlessly dynamic mix of sounds and sensations, which underscores the progressive elements of Graveslave‘s brand of death metal… intense in different ways and highly memorable”.

If you overlooked the album, today we have a reminder of just how good it is. What we’ve got today is a new music video for the album’s epic and unnerving closing track, “In the Mouths of Giants“. Continue reading »