Nov 262021

(Andy Synn encourages you all to embrace change with the new album from Anomalie, out now on AOP Records)

In a lot of ways the music scene is like an ecosystem.

From the apex predators to the bottom feeders, every band/artist has their particular place, their particular niche, in the natural order of things.

Some of these niches, of course, are more fertile – creatively speaking, I mean – than others, and some of them are simply… overpopulated… but, either way, it’s still fascinating to watch all the inner workings of the scene, from the macro down to the micro level, as bands and artists are continually dying and being born in a seemingly endless cycle.

It’s even more interesting when you start being able to map and follow the evolution of various bands, and Anomalie’s progress in particular has been truly fascinating to observe.

Continue reading »

Sep 122021


Yesterday a combination of factors prevented me from posting the usual Saturday round-up of new songs and videos that appeared during the week. I did spend a big block of time surveying the field and making selections, but by the time I finished doing that it was mid-day and I decided to fuck off instead of beginning to write.

It has become clear to me that I can’t do the usual writing today either, if I’m to have any hope of preparing a SHADES OF BLACK post today. So I’m resorting to the format of just throwing all this stuff at you without artwork, or most of the usual links, or my usual commentary, just a few scattered notes.

But trust me, I did exercise some judgment about what I thought was worth sharing. It’s just that I thought A LOT was worth sharing — 16 songs and videos, to be precise. I alphabetized the collection by band name and then divided it into two parts.

ANOMALIE (Austria)

This is a very welcome return after a four-year hiatus between albums. The new full-length features Nornagest of Belgium’s Enthroned on harsh vocals. The new album, Tranceformation, is coming on November 5th from AOP Records. Continue reading »

Sep 072018

Anomalie – photo by Sunvemetal


We’ve thrown a gigaton of new music at you on this Friday, but the way I think about, why should we be the only ones who feel like we’re drowning in a sonic flood? The answer is, we shouldn’t. You should feel the same way.

And so here we have Part 3 of today’s gigantic round-up. The bands my NCS comrades and I decided to feature in Part 1 and Part 2 are among extreme metal’s better-known names. The ones I’ve included here (again presented in alphabetical order) are lesser-known, but worth more attention.

You might notice that this 3-part round-up is a bit light on black metal, but that’s only because I’ve pushed those selections a bit further down the road… until Sunday’s SHADES OF BLACK column.


We’ve devoted a fair share of attention to the previous releases by this Austrian band, including Andy Synn‘s devotion of one of his SYNN REPORTs to their discography last year and our premiere of a video for a song off their last album, Visions. Although that album was only released last year, Anomalie are back already with a new four-song EP named Integra. Continue reading »

Mar 022017


Visions is the third album by Anomalie, set for release on March 17th by Art of Propaganda, and it is the most distinctive, the most ambitious, and the most engrossing and enthralling Anomalie album yet. It’s our pleasure today to bring you the premiere of a video for the album’s opening track, “Vision I: Towards the Sun“.

Something about a wood-burning fire under a night sky is spellbinding, perhaps because it invokes ancient memories from our most distant and primitive ancestral past. The sight of flames draws us in, and sends our minds wandering. Time passes, without our even realizing it. The experience can be mystical. It’s thus entirely fitting that the video you’re about to see puts the song in such a setting — because the song itself draws the listener in, fires the imagination, and becomes a mystical experience. The time passes without realizing it. Continue reading »

Feb 272017


(For the 82nd edition of THE SYNN REPORT, Andy reviews the discography of Anomalie, including the new album Visions, which is set for release on March 17 — and from which we will be bringing a very special premiere… soon.)

Recommended for fans of: Harakiri For The Sky, Insomnium, Ghost Brigade

As I’ve mentioned before, there’s a certain clique of bands based in and around the Germany/Austria area who, because they’re influenced by Black Metal but don’t fit neatly into that particular box, are often mislabelled as “Post Black Metal”, either through a misapprehension of what that term actually refers to, or through sheer laziness on the part of the writer/reviewer.

This loose collective of acts, many of whom are frequent touring partners and who often share live members, exists on a spectrum, with the most overtly blackened artists (Der Weg Einer Freiheit, Agrypnie) occupying one end of the scale, while the other end of things is home to acts like Post-Metal/Post-Hardcore types Thränenkind and the sadly underrated Todtgelichter.

In between these two extremes we find bands like shimmering shoegazers Heretoir (whose new album I’ll be reviewing very soon) and NCS-favourites Harakiri For The Sky, along with today’s featured artist, Austria’s own Anomalie, whose mainman Marrock has performed live with several of the artists mentioned above, and whose latest album – scheduled for release on the 17th of March – goes some way towards finally justifying the “Post Black Metal” tag which has dogged the band ever since their first release. Continue reading »

Jan 102017


I have a large collection of new songs I want to share with you, large enough that I’ve divided it into two parts. The second part (coming tomorrow) will be even longer than this one, especially because the odds are high that by the time I write it, more good new things will have surfaced that I’ll want to add.


In 2015 the German band Cranial made their debut with an EP named Dead Ends released by Moment of Collapse Records. The release initially drew attention because Cranial’s line-up includes connections to the late, lamented Omega Massif through the presence of guitarist Michael Melchers. And then it drew more attention because of the impressive quality of the music.

On February 10, Moment of Collapse will release Cranial’s new album Dark Towers, Bright Lights, and yesterday brought the debut of an immense advance track that we’re now able to bring you right here. Continue reading »

Oct 062015

CD Digi Wallet.indd


On November 20, Art of Propaganda will release Refugium, the second album by Austria’s Anomalie, a band founded in 2011 by multi-instrumentalist Marrok (Selbstentleibung, Harakiri for the Sky). As a further sign of what the album holds in store for listeners, today we bring you the premiere of Refugium’s second advance track, “Untouched Walls“.

The ringing chords and low-end thunder that launch the song in dramatic fashion seize the attention immediately, with Marrok’s flesh-scarring howl magnifying the music’s chilling intensity. But that’s just the start of what becomes a changing, multi-hued musical journey — one that never loosens its grip even as it moves through a dynamic array of sounds and moods. Continue reading »