Oct 042022

(Last spring we had the pleasure of premiering a song from the fantastic new album by Pennsylvania-based Cultic, a duo consisting of Rebecca and Brian Magar (who have recently expanded into a trio), and now we have the pleasure of presenting Comrade Aleks‘ very informative interview with Brian.)

Cultic is a York-based death-doom duet with a recognizable primordial sound and a dark fantasy concept behind both of their albums. They started as a trio in 2017: Brian Magar (bass, vocals, guitars), Rebecca Magar (drums), and Reese Harlacker (bass) recorded their demo Prowler back then. The full-length album High Command was released by Eleventh Key in 2019, and their most up-to-date album is Of Fire and Sorcery, which saw the light of day in April 2022 with the help of the very same label.

One of Cultic features is grim, absolutely eerie synths which work perfectly with low, distorted riffs and Brian’s raw vocals. High Command offered a plenty of it and Of Fire and Sorcery grants even more! Surely it’s worthy of listening, as this interview with Brian Magar is worth reading. Continue reading »

Oct 032022

(The Spanish band Spectrum Mortis just released their new album Bit Meseri -The Incantation last Friday through Listenable Records, and to remind you of that signal event and provide great insights into it, today we present Comrade Aleks‘ extensive interview of the band’s mysterious members.)

A few weeks ago we published an interview with the Finnish traditional doom metal band Spiritus Mortis, but constant NCS followers rather remember the Spanish secret band Spectrum Mortis!

We promoted the band’s debut album Bit Meseri -The Incantation insistently, and I bet that you remember the album’s remarkable artwork (by Khaos Diktator Design)! I love that macabre Messopotamian twist. They call it “ritualistic doom metal”, and though it’s a more complex blend of genres you can track Spectrum Mortis’ influences anyway.

Honestly, I don’t see a reason to tell you more, as the interview (which I prefer far more than any review) offers the band an opportunity to say it in the most straight-forward way, and Spectrum Mortis’ collective mind does it in detail. Continue reading »

Sep 262022

photo by Nick Richer

(Here we have Comrade Aleks‘ new interview of Nicolas Miquelon from the Québec band Norilsk, who released a new EP this past spring to tide us over ’til the next album.)

NCS’ constant followers should remember Norilsk. It’s a Canadian death-doom band who integrated elements of post metal into their music, and we interviewed Nicolas Miquelon (all instruments, vocals) a few years ago. But in case you forgot that, let me remind you of some facts about Norilsk.

The band is named after the world’s northernmost city and the second-largest city (after Murmansk) inside the Arctic Circle. Norilsk and Yakutsk are also the only large cities in the continuous permafrost zone. So you see the reason why Nicolas and his band-mate Nick Richer (drums) entitled their first album The Idea of North (2015). Then Hypnotic Dirge Records released the albums Le passage des glaciers (2017) and Weepers of the Land (2018). And then… then there was silence.

The Beyond the Mountains EP is the first band’s recording in four years, and that’s quite a long break for such an active act. These two tracks bring the hope that Norilsk are going to get rid of their relatively new passion toward post-metal, as here we have good old death-doom as it was in ’90s. What else could we expect if one of the songs is an Officium Triste cover? So just one really new song after four years? Well, not. This interview was intended for Dark City magazine, but here it is. A chance to dig deeper into the idea of North again. Continue reading »

Sep 202022

(Today we present Comrade Aleks‘ interview of Markus Laakso from the Finnish band Kuolemanlaakso (among other endeavors he’s involved in, which are also discussed below). The band’s newest album Kuusumu was released this past spring by Svart Records.)

Kuolemanlaakso (“death valley” in Finnish) once was known as the “death-doom band with Swallow the Sun’s vocalist”. It was started in 2010 and the band’s line-up didn’t change since then: Mikko Johannes Kotamäki (vocals), Markus Laakso (guitars, keyboards, vocals), Toni Ronkainen (drums), Tuomo Räisänen (bass), and Petteri Ruotsalainen (guitars).

Their first album Uljas uusi maailma (2012) was already too progressive and melodic for any rigid “death-doom” tag. The EP Musta aurinko nousee (2013) and the LP Tulijoutsen (2014) developed Kuolemanlaakso’s eclectic style only further until Markus recorded M. Laakso – Vol. 1: The Gothic Tapes (2016), something like his own gothic Kuolemanlaakso-based spin-off…

Besides that, Markus Laasko is the author of two metal books which we need to mention in this interview, which is focused on the band’s fourth album Kuusumu. Continue reading »

Sep 162022


(The Italian band Burial’s latest album has been out for a while, but better late than never, Comrade Aleks has caught up with Leonardo and Enrico from the band and presents this interview with them.)

So what else is there? Another death-doom band with references to H. P. Lovecraft’s mythology?  SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY! Well, yes, okay, okay… I’m ok, really…

When I see such tags, I send a message to the band immediately but somehow I skipped Burial’s release Inner Gateways to the Slumbering Equilibrium at the Center of Cosmos which saw the light of day through Everlasting Spew Records eleven months ago.

The band itself was founded by Leonardo Bellavista (guitars, bass) in 2012, and soon he got the company of Enrico Fagni (bass, vocals). They worked through Burial’s concept together, recording The Forgotten EP (2019) and the demo Presence from the Beyond (2019). The band remained a duet until 2020 when Samuele Scalise (drums) and Morgan (guitars) joined them in their unholy mess. All of the band’s members have rich experience as they spent many years in the Italian metal underground and played in different bands whose styles ranged from progressive thrash to death metal.

Burial stays far from regular death-doom, as these maniacs prefer its torturous form with a heavy emphasis on dirty and twisted death metal, but you know – Leonardo and Enrico can tell you that better. Hail Burial! Continue reading »

Sep 142022

(Comrade Aleks managed to catch up again with Australian musician Phil Howlett and engaged in a discussion that ranges among a number of his bands and solo projects, including Solemn Ceremony, whose newest album was released this past June.)

Mister Phil Howlett from Adelaide is a dedicated metal warrior, and though he has that blackened thrash project Zlórtcht, he’s well-known mostly because of his doom band Lucifer’s Fall (which we interviewed a year ago) and his doom solo project Solemn Ceremony.

It’s hard to believe but even today playing metal in Australia could be a difficult task, as you’re unable to take part in bigger fests on a regular basis, as European or American bands are. The internet helps but not the way you need if you want to play your metal stuff live!

So Nine Records released Solemn Ceremony’s second album Demise on the 10th of June and we slowly lent a helping hand to Phil and that’s it, another entertaining and in-depth interview. Want to know how to play doom in Australia and not to be depressed all the time? Here we go. Continue reading »

Sep 092022

(The Finnish doom legends Spiritus Mortis will release a new album named The Great Seal through Svart Records on September 16th, and at last Comrade Aleks reached out to them for the following wide-ranging interview.)

Spiritus Mortis wasn’t the most active band of the Finnish underground, but objectively it’s the first Finnish traditional doom metal band, that’s the real fact. Starting as Rigor Mortis in 1987, the band got its longer-lasting name in 1988, but the guys released only demos until 2004 when the self-titled debut seaw the light of day. Years passed, but brothers Jussi and Teemu Maijala have remained Spirtius Mortis’ priests since the beginning, carrying the torch of damn true doom metal.

Their 2016 album The Year Is One was recorded with Sami Hynninen (Reverend Bizarre, Opium Warlords, and a dozen more bands you maybe heard about) on vocals… this album was a killer! Honestly, I was wondering what else could they bring here after that masterpiece of glorious doom? Then Sami left the band according to their agreement, the new vocalist Kimmo Perämäki took his place in 2018, and then Markus Kuula replaced Jarkko Seppälä on drums.

All these changes didn’t distract the brothers Maijala from their holy task and Spiritus Mortis’ new album The Great Seal is to be released through Svart Records on September 16th. And that means that now is our turn to support the band. Continue reading »

Sep 052022

(Comrade Aleks brings us this interview of guitarist Jonathan from the Texas band Elliott’s Keep, whose formidable fifth album was just released last month and will be available on vinyl through NoSlip Records.)

At first I was attracted by the ascetic artworks of Elliott’s Keep, and by the band’s name itself, and they also performed quite original doom, so it was interesting to know what hides deep in the Keep’s cellar.

We kept on communicating with the band each time they released a new album, and I need to tell you that Elliott’s Keep became only stronger with each new release. How many doom bands with progressive, death, and epic influences do you know in the US? So there’s Ellott’s Keep in Dallas, and you’ll learn the rest from this interview with the band’s guitarist Jonathan, who’s ready to tell the story of their fifth album Vulnerant Omnes released on August 19th. Continue reading »

Aug 292022


(Comrade Aleks brings us a very engaging interview with all three members of the Italian death-doom band In Grief, whose excellent debut album will soon be released by Iron Bonehead Productions.)

Sweet heaven! You’ve already read here about the forthcoming release of an album by the Italian death-doom band In Grief on Iron Bonehead Productions, and it’s something! I’m very skeptical towards the “Peaceville Three” definition. Even Peaceville’s chief Hammy speaks against using this term, but what else should I say? In Grief took the best from early Paradise Lost and My Dying Bride, mixed these influences together, added a handful of their own ideas, and that’s it – impressive old school death-doom metal performed at full capacity.

The trio consists of Michele (vocals, guitars, keyboards), Kristian (guitars, drums, keyboards), and Paolo (bass). All of them played in a handful of different bands performing everything from death and grind to black metal and back. So An Eternity of Miserywhich will be out on the 2nd of September, is their debut in a wide sense. We had a nice chat with the guys and I welcome you to spend some time together In Grief. Continue reading »

Aug 192022

(Today we present Comrade Aleks‘ interview of the formidable Lovecraft-inspired Swedish death metal band Puteraeon, who pride themselves on creepiness, catchiness, and aggression.)

The titles of the first demos recorded by Puteraeon in a short period (2008 – 2009) clearly shows the band’s ideology. The demos Fascination for Mutilation (2008), The Requiem (2008), and The Extraordinary Work of Herbert West (2009) formed the foundation of the first full-length, The Esoteric Order (2011)…

And since then Jonas Lindblood (vocals, guitars), Daniel Vandija (bass), Anders Malmström (drums), and Rune Foss (guitars) have kept on providing us their morbid Swedish death metal with a clear and sharp message of inevitable death, unavoidable legions of zombies, and inescapable cosmic horrors.

The Esoteric Order was only a start for a series of a few more EPs and full-lengths, but there was not much news from the band since the release of their fourth album The Cthulhian Pulse: Call from the Dead City in 2020. To allay our concerns about the band’s fate, we contacted Jonas Lindblood. Continue reading »