May 202018


If you haven’t listened to the new songs by Uada (here) and Gaerea (here), you should go do that. That’s all the attention I’ll give them here, because those tracks got plenty of attention when they debuted last week, and we’ll have some more things to say about the albums soon-ish. Today I’m going to focus on some music that could use more attention.

As you can see, I have enough music (and had enough time) to make two parts of SHADES OF BLACK this Sunday. Most of the music in the next part rips and tears, often at roughly 1000 mph (or 1609.34 kph). The music in this part is harder to sum up. Of course I’ll try, one by one, but not in a single introductory sentence.


The first item I’ve chosen is a four-song demo that has been buried a long time. The band no longer exists. It’s an example of music that in retrospect sounds ahead of its time, and sounds damned fine here in 2018, too. For reasons unknown to me, one of the members finally decided to share it after roughly 7 years. You never know, maybe some seeds are being watered, maybe something new will bloom. Maybe this post will add a few nutrients to aid the growth. But if not, this demo should still bring pleasure to more than a few ears. Continue reading »

Nov 232017


If the analytical stats about the composition of our visitors are correct, about half of you will be observing Thanksgiving Day while for everyone else it will be just another day. It’s sort of just another day here at NCS — as you can tell, we’re still posting about metal — but it’s also Thanksgiving Day here in Seattle. And inevitably, I’m feeling thankful.

To give thanks, you need someone or something to thank, don’t you? In the tradition of this holiday, the idea is to express gratitude to some higher power, but if that seems like a fantasy (as it does to me), you become mindful of the thanks you owe to other people instead. Since our eighth birthday was only a few days ago, I’ve already thanked all the people (including you) who have contributed to the perplexing longevity of NCS. Today, I’m feeling especially thankful to the bands who help make life pleasurable, even during the dark days when it’s a struggle to find anything else that makes you feel thankful.

And so, voila, here’s a random selection of recent news and new music for which I’m grateful, with few words (because I’m headed off soon for a Thanksgiving get-together with family and friends).


I was late in getting around to checking out Amenra’s new video for the song “A Solitary Reign” off their new album Mass VI, which is out now via Neurot Recordings (and was reviewed here by Wil Cifer). It is a captivating video, made by Tine Guns, the mother of Amenra guitar player Mathieu Vandekerckhove’s son, Wolf. The song is completely captivating as well, perhaps the high point of Mass VI. The music was described in this way by the band’s Colin H. Van Eeckhout: Continue reading »