Apr 212016

Alaric-End of Mirrors


(Wil Cifer reviews the new album by Oakland-based Alaric.)

In my assessment of what makes a band heavy, darkness is an integral component of the equation. Dialing in the gain and tuning lower are easy first steps toward this woeful abyss, but it really takes the ability to convey life experience stained by addiction, mental illness, and deep loss to capture convincing sonic shades.

This band from Oakland is more than convincing when it comes to diving into the shadows. They caught my ear when the whole hipster death rock revival came into my consciousness, though these guys are much rougher around their serrated edges than other bands that rode in on that wagon. Now five years later they have made a very welcome return with End of Mirrors thanks to Neurot Recordings.

All the things that have worked for these guys in the past are in place as they plow into the post-apocalyptic wasteland their music conjures. Their bassist provides varied levels of gloom-ridden melodies that are trod upon by the guitarist, a member of the sludge band Noothgrush. Some of the hypnotizing grooves here take multiple listens to fully sink in. Continue reading »

Aug 012012

Here’s the second part of the two-part feature we began here, spotlighting a slew of new videos and new songs from some of our favorite metal bands that surfaced over the last 24 hours.

In this Part 2: release information and a brand new song from Krallice (U.S.), a new video from Alaric (U.S.), and a new song/video from Archspire (Canada).


Well, this is the third of our posts about Krallice’s forthcoming album since July 15, which is an indication of our enthusiasm for what’s coming.  And what’s coming is Years Past Matter, a collection of five songs totaling about one hour of music. The album, which is being self-released by the band in a limited edition, will begin shipping on August 25 and is now available for pre-order here. We’re told that a double LP version of the album will be released by Gilead Media soon after.

There will be a record release show on August 25 at St Vitus in Greenpoint Brooklyn, NYC, where Krallice will be performing with Ancient Wound and Sea of Bones.

And today, we are beyond stoked to stream for you one of the new songs from Years Past Matter. The title is “IIIIIIII”. It’s a whirlwind of slashing/ringing guitars, bounding basslines, and percussive pandemonium that rumbles and thunders. It’s a lightening strike, sizzling with electricity. It’s also a black dream of rushing clouds, the kind of music that’s hypnotic as well as violent. Dense, dynamic, atmospheric, compelling — this is a long song that well-justifies its length. So much happens that the song rewards repeat listening – indeed, demands it. Here it is: Continue reading »