Jul 082021
 

 

(A couple months ago we published (here) a “dirty black summer” playlist compiled and written by Neill Jameson (Krieg, Poison Blood), and now we’re happy that he’s followed that with a second installment of recommendations for your summer listening, presented below.)

Normally for me summer means a change of listening habits to old Swedish death metal, Danzig I-IV, and early Queens of the Stone Age, but this year’s been a little different; seasonal listening hasn’t really come into play for me in the way that it has in years past. I understand there’s a bit of a stigma attached to the idea of seasonal listening anyway but that’s the sort of shit boring people with boring existences have to come up with to shit on people with richer emotional lives. Anyway, if you’ve got a moment here’s another list of things I’m listening to.

You’ll see a batch of Death Kvlt Productions releases in nearly any list I put together these days, which I understand can be a little frustrating if you’re into owning physical releases since the label tends to sell out within minutes only to be flipped to kids who won’t actually listen to the fucking records but post pictures of them incessantly on their social media feeds, almost like a roadmap to letting people know they’re assholes without actually getting to know them, saving everyone a lot of time. Continue reading »

Jul 022021
 

 

I’m scurrying. I was all ready to launch an album premiere and review, but the provider of the stream code seems to have been swallowed by the earth. So, to fill the gap I’ve quickly pulled together a bunch of new songs I encountered this morning, most of which come with entertaining videos. I’m pretending I’m a DJ and just inserting some very brief comments before each one, and adding some release info below the clips.

OBSCURA

The tech-death arms race shows no signs of diminishing, and, with manes and drapery blowing in the wind and fingers and limbs flying at blinding speed, Obscura rejoin the melee. Minds will be boggled…. Continue reading »

Jul 022021
 


Photo by Jørn Steen

(Today we launch what we hope will be a long-recurring column by our contributor Gonzo in which he spotlights favorite releases from the month just ended.)

No matter how much ground we cover at NCS on a daily, weekly, and even monthly basis, there’s always some music lurking in some dark corner of the metal universe that gets overlooked somehow. Some of that is, of course, by design – we don’t typically highlight the bigger names you’ll see in larger publications; we tend to reach farther down the smoldering depths of the metal underbelly for the stuff that doesn’t get as much exposure.

Earlier this year, I tried to keep up with a New Music Friday weekly column that was, unfortunately, all too short-lived. I blame my day job, in which I also write for a living (though it’s much less satisfying than heaping profanity-laced praise upon my favorite music.)

So, given the aforementioned constraints, Islander has been kind enough to green-light my latest idea: A monthly column dedicated to the bands, songs, and albums that I want to highlight from that month, without double-dipping into territory that’s already been covered.

Enough backstory – let’s dig into what kicked ass in June (and late May, since this is post #1.). The lead band was once in a deep, dark corner, but no longer is. Continue reading »

Jun 282021
 


Craven Idol

This is another SEEN AND HEARD collection, but I decided to give the title a twist today because I’ve leaned so heavily into death metal with the following four songs. The first three come from forthcoming records, and the fourth seems to be a stand-alone single.

CRAVEN IDOL (UK)

I could have sworn I’d already written something about the first single from the new Craven Idol album, but can’t find any evidence that I did. So, time to make up for lost time. But first, gaze upon the full gatefold cover art created by Eliran Kantor — which is stunning: Continue reading »

Jun 232021
 

 

Lots of good stuff in today’s round-up, with a variety of new black metal, death metal, and thrash, plus a towering exit song. All of the songs are off forthcoming records, with the exception of a just-released EP that I’ve sandwiched in the middle. You’ll see some really good cover art in this collection too.

Even though I and most of the NCS writers are in the U.S., the preponderance of the music we cover (along with half our readers) seems to emanate from outside U.S. borders. Thus it’s unusual that (coincidentally) almost all of the following music comes from U.S. bands.

MODERN RITES (U.S./Switzerland)

The opening song today, “Self Synthesis“, swells in sound, like what you might hear if gradually approaching an industrial metal-mangling machine, and then erupts in a hammering, searing discharge of instrumental and vocal intensity — with eerie, wraith-like tones swirling in sorrow above. It revisits those mangling sensations, which begin to seem apocalyptic…. Continue reading »

Jun 212021
 


Netherbird

 

Lo and behold, I had time this morning not only to prepare a round-up of new songs and videos but also (unlike the last few I’ve done) to add some completely unnecessary commentary. What you’ll find is a bit of this and a bit of that, with some well-known names and a couple you’ve possibly never heard of. Everything I chose today consists of advance songs from forthcoming records. And with that, let’s begin:

NETHERBIRD (Sweden)

First in today’s collection is “Towers of the Night“. Packaged with a lyric video, it does indeed become towering. Initiated by rumbling and battering drums and by whining, wailing guitar harmonies that radiate anguish and despair, the song further includes sinister fanfares, doses of slashing and jolting savagery, and scalding snarls. The song also reveals a dreamlike yet menacing interlude and anthemic soloing that’s primed for arenas filled with headbangers (whenever such a thing is possible again). Quite a thrilling experience…. Continue reading »

Jun 192021
 

 

As America’s reopening progresses, yesterday my work place re-started the in-office, in-person Friday afternoon happy hour event that had been a weekly mainstay for decades… even though our workplace is still officially closed to the public and employees are not required to be there, but permitted to be there if they’re fully vaccinated. Some people have taken advantage of that permission, for various reasons. But even people who haven’t chosen to do that showed up for the happy hour party late yesterday. We miss each other, and we have missed this alcohol-fueled tradition.

I wasted no time in getting hammered, and didn’t make it back home until close to 11 p.m. I don’t feel terrible this morning, just a bit groggier than usual, but I did sleep in. So I’m late in getting to this roundup, with almost no time to do the usual searching around for new music to recommend. Fortunately, my NCS co-conspirator DGR did that for me. He recommended everything I’ve collected here, except for the first item, which I knew I wanted to feature anyway, and he knew I was already aware of it.

Because I’m so late getting this thing together, I’m again (mostly) dispensing with my usual commentary, links, and artwork. In a couple of instances I’ve included what DGR wrote in recommending the thing, and I did identify for you the record that’s the source of each song, plus the release info. As it happens, all of these selections arrived with videos. Continue reading »

Jun 162021
 

 

We’re not paid by the word around here (we’re not paid anything around here). But if we were, I wouldn’t make enough from this post to buy a cheap beer. Being short on time today, I’ve resorted to what I seem to be doing with increasing frequency in these round-ups, i.e., just foisting music and videos on you without commentary, artwork, or links.

Rest assured, however, that I’m foisting the following songs and films for a reason — because I think they’re worth your time. Or at least some of them will be worth your time, while others might not be your genre-cup of tea. I don’t expect that everyone out there will be as small-c catholic in their tastes as I am.

I did have enough time to briefly summarize the release info for the records that include the music I’ve chosen — or, regarding the first item, the artwork I’ve chosen, because there’s no music yet from that album. Continue reading »

Jun 122021
 

 

Well, this didn’t go at all like I expected.

First and foremost, I didn’t expect to write anything for the site today. Thanks to the revival of the Waxing Lyrical series by Sir Andy Synn (no, he hasn’t been knighted yet, but surely it’s just a matter of time, innit?), we had a Saturday post. No need for me to make one. I thought I’d just spend some time listening instead.

It happened that the first thing I explored was a new song and video by the Siberian shamans Nytt Land — and then unexpected things began to happen. I noticed a new Behemoth video in the YouTube sidebar that I hadn’t known about, so I watched/heard it. And then I noticed a new Lorna Shore video in the YouTube sidebar and thought, what the hell why not? And then the YouTube sidebars led me to Zeal & Ardor and Slaughter To Prevail. And now here we are. Continue reading »

Jun 102021
 

 

In between bouts of activity driven by my fucking day job today, I had just enough time to pull together this relatively short round-up of new sounds — two tracks (both with videos) from forthcoming albums, and one recently released EP.

WOLVES IN THE THRONE ROOM (U.S.)

WITTR’s new album has been officially announced. Entitled Primordial Arcana, it’s set for release on August 20th by Relapse Records. Coincident with that they released a video for the song “Mountain Magick“. The band made the video themselves, and filmed it “in the northern reaches of the Olympic Mountains and the ancient forests that shroud the foothills”. They also recorded, produced, and mixed the album themselves. Continue reading »