Sep 162018
 

 

As you can see, I had enough time yesterday and this morning to pick twice the usual number of selections for this Sunday’s column. Maybe this will make up for the likelihood that there will be no S.O.B. column next week because this SOB will be going on a short vacation next weekend with Ms. Islander and some friends.

Although I had time to assemble a two-part collection this week, that only somewhat eased the agony of picking from among such a massive number of deserving advance tracks and new releases. I wish I could have done more.

CARPE NOCTEM

I christened May 2012 “Iceland Metal Month“, calling attention to a series of posts I wrote which exclusively focused on metal bands from Iceland, a country that I wrote was “starting to seem close to Finland in the ratio of killer metal bands per capita of population”. Now, almost five and a half years later, it no longer seems like a close call, particularly in the genre of black metal. Continue reading »

May 012017
 

 

This is the second part of a large post I began yesterday (here). It reflects why I chose SHADES OF BLACK as the name for this series many years ago, in that all of the music has connections to the traditions of black metal, but those connections vary, sometimes significantly.

Two of the songs in this post come from forthcoming albums, and one is a stand-alone single, but I picked all the rest from recent albums or EPs. Lacking the time to review most of those full releases, I thought it better (with one exception) to confine myself to specific songs rather than neglect the releases altogether. But they’re all good, and you’ll be able to stream them in their entirety if you like what you hear.

ACHERONTAS

The sixth album by the formidable Greek black metal coven Acherontas is named Amarta अमर्त (Formulas of Reptilian Unification Part II), and thereby draws a connection to the band’s last album, 2015’s Ma​-​IoN (Formulas of Reptilian Unification). It includes participation by Naas Alcameth (Nightbringer, Akhlys, Bestia Arcana) (synths) and Indra (Naer Mataron) (additional guitars). The cover art was created by Karl NE/Nachzehrer (Ex-Nastrond/Shibalba), and W.T.C. Productions plans to release it on Walpurgis Night (May 31st). Continue reading »

Jan 082017
 

 

I was again torn between writing a “That’s Metal!” post, which I foolishly promised to do on the first Sunday of each month and still haven’t done for December — or January — and compiling another collection of recent music in a blackened vein. You can see how that internal struggle ended.

KJELD and WEDERGANGER

This split by these two distinctive Dutch bands was released on December 16 by Ván Records and is now available on Bandcamp. It includes three tracks by Kjeld and two by Wederganger. I had intended to write about it prior to release, but failed. It’s very good, and deserves more extensive discussion than I’m able to give it now. But with a full stream now available, it can speak quite well for itself. Continue reading »