Dec 032021


(Comrade Aleks has brought us the following interview with guitarist Dragos of the fine Romanian black metal band Genune, whom we’ve praised repeatedly here at NCS.)

Genune means “chasm” or “abyss” in Romanian. It’s a fitting name for a black metal band but this trio isn’t one of those straightforward acts who praise the joys of nihilism and hatred. Dragos (guitars), Cosmin (guitars) and Istvan (vocals, bass) are rather into this modern melancholic way of interpreting the genre which helps to stream their energy not only through common aggressive channels but also through more fragile and elegant “atmospheric” decorations.

Placed somewhere in-between Bacău and Cluj-Napoca, Genune released their second album Inert & Unerring in April 2021 and it sounds like a reflection on themes of feeling and being in this very place. It’s easier to understand Genune when you watch the band’s official videos and, of course, when reading this interview we made with Dragos. Continue reading »

Nov 232021


(The music, the artwork, and the lyrics of Vancouver-based Crystal Coffin are fascinating in and of themselves, but reveal themselves to be even more fascinating and alluring with the additional info furnished by this excellent interview of the band conducted by Comrade Aleks.)

Oh modern black metal scene! A cabinet of curiosities! You can find everything here from old school die-hard true and evil devils to Cascadian naturalists, from true / untrue occult visionaries and charlatans to bands who are hard to categorize. And as many bands say, they don’t care about categories and genre definitions, it’s for labels, for listeners and for us “journalists”.

Crystal Coffin is another blackened riddle one could notice due to the premiere last month of their second album at NCS. This Vancouver-based trio performs (crazy or intellectual – choose for yourself) progressive and melodic black metal with truly authentic stories behind their albums.

Crystal Coffin is carried on the shoulders of Rob Poirier (drums), Aron Shute (vocals, bass), and Lenkyn Ostapovich (guitars, keyboards), and well, it seems we spoke with Lenkyn, but most of the time his voice did sound like the voice of Crystal Coffin’s collective mind, and that’s not bad as far as it works. Continue reading »

Nov 042021


(In this fascinating new interview Comrade Aleks talks with Geoffroy “le Veuzou” from the distinctive French folk/black metal band Paydretz, whose debut album was released by Antiq Records in early October.)

I hope our constant readers are used to long interviews because for our luck there are a lot of both new and old bands who have something to tell and to open our eyes on the things previously unseen.

When I received a new promo pack from Antiq Records there was a new name on it – Paydretz — and again the cover art did its work, making me play their debut album Chroniques de l’Insurrection and try to search for the story behind it.

This French trio consists of Sven Avel Viz (guitars, bass, drums), Michel de Malvoisin (guitars, backing vocals), and Geoffroy “le Veuzou” (vocals, bagpipes, whistles and keyboards). Geoffroy explains the name of the band: “Paydretz” was the nickname given to the fighters of the Vendean general Charette, who came from the region of Retz, in French “Pays de Retz” which gives us “Paydretz”.

“Vendean” what? – you wonder as I did. Yes, this black / folk masterpiece tells the story of the Great Vendean Insurrection (1793-1796) from the point of view of the Vendean insurgents… And yes – this interview will reveal more about it, so lads and lasses take your copybooks and pencils and be ready. Continue reading »

Oct 272021


(We present Comrade Aleks‘ interview of Philip Howlett, guitarist/vocalist of the  Australian doom band Lucifer’s Fall, whose newest album is out now on Sun & Moon Records.)

Finally I return to the doom-laden path and partly that’s because of a new Lucifer’s Fall album, III –From the Deep, released by Sun & Moon Records two months ago. That’s right, here we have their third official full-length but there are a dozen other releases in Lucifer’s discography. The band keep this old-school ongoing ethic so their followers have an opportunity to support this quintet from Adelaide on a regular basis.

Philip Howlett (guitars, vocals) knows how to make doom great again and leads his band towards the highest point on the Australian Doom Metal pedestal. III –From the Deep is an excellent example of traditional doom metal with some punk attitude and imagination, and thus our conversation with Phil about Lucifer’s Fall stuff turned out to be pretty constructive. Continue reading »

Oct 142021


Today we have a translated conversation between two Russians, one of them our ally Comrade Aleks and the other a member of the impressive sludge/doom band Ил (IL), and a very extensive and interesting discussion it is.)


Okay, it’s time to learn one more word in Russian and it’s IL. Il / Ил translates as “slit”, and as you can guess that fits right for a sludge band… But you know this band started back in their early days as a drone doom band, then they turned onto a hazy stoned doom path, and now ∫ performs an amalgam of hard-boiled doom metal with a tight delivery, a sludgy vibe, and authentic (!!!) pagan atmosphere.

Their fifth album Heresy / Ересь was published in December 2020, and sometimes you need time to sort things out and find how beautiful the world is around you! Il was always here, but I guess it was the video for the title song from Heresy that opened my eyes. This album is one level higher than its predecessor, Nechist / Нечисть / Evil Spirits (2017), but at the same time it’s a logical development of the grim images that Il channeled through Heresy’s forerunner.

I welcome you to research Russian sonic-chthonic ritualistic life together with Vlad Stepanenko, who has performed vocals and guitars in the band since 2013. If you ask me (and if you don’t) Il seems to be one of the three most solid and impressive Russian doom bands nowadays. Continue reading »

Oct 132021


(Comrade Aleks connected with Pim Blankenstein to discuss his band Extreme Cold Winter and the impending release of their debut album World Exit by Hammerheart Records, plus the latest news concerning his main band Officium Triste, the Dutch Doom Days festival, and a lot more.)

I learned about Extreme Cold Winter from Pim Blankenstein some years ago, I think. We’ve done interviews with Pim on a regular basis; it’s almost routine, as it seems that I’m the biggest fan of his main band Officium Triste here in Russia. And in some of these interviews he told about Extreme Cold Winter, the promising doom-death band he takes part in alongside A.J. van Drenth (guitars, bass) and Seth van de Loo (drums).

A.J. played in one of the first Dutch doom-death bands, Beyond Belief, he took part in Asphyx, and now he does deafening deathly noise with Beast of Revelation. Seth played with ten bands or so, and most of the time it was death metal. He even sang in Deicide during their tour in 2007. You see? Serious stuff.

But long story short: the trio proclaimed the start of Extreme Cold Winter in 2009, recorded the EP Paradise Ends Here in 2015, and… and… and I did check from time to time to see if there was some news on their side and didn’t find any. So I was surprised to see in my main box a promo pack with their debut full-length album World Exit some weeks ago. There was no chance to avoid it, so we get in touch with Pim and pretty swiftly this interview was organized. Continue reading »

Oct 112021


(Comrade Aleks delves into the dark Italian roots of Gargoyle with vocalist/guitarist C. Conqueror. It’s a very extensive, very revealing, and very congenial dialogue, and a tantalizing teaser for the band’s 2021 debut album Hail To the Necrodoom, out now on Sun & Moon Records.)

Gargoyle’s nest is the blessed land of Calabria, the very “toe” of the Italian “boot”. So fed with the Italian past horror stories, local traditions of horror movies, and dark underground music, the beast was born!

Their demo Reborn In Blasphemy (2016) was something promising but the full-length album Hail to the Necrodoom (2021) is something exceptional! This mix of early black, doom, and a bit of death metal has this strong Italian flavour and is simply charming! It’s all about Necromantia, Nosferatu, Nihilism, Night, and Nightmares, embodied in grim and gloom metal.

The names of those who are responsible for this act of wicked insubordination are known well: Krommak (bass, vocals), Malumbra (drums), C. Conqueror (vocals, guitars), and Helkaar (synths, organs). Serious guys… But I was lucky to get in touch with C. Conqueror and in the dead of an unholy October night We managed to do this nice interview. Continue reading »

Oct 082021


(Comrade Aleks continues his streak of fascinating interviews with this very extensive one with Para Bellum of the long-running Russian black metal band Blackdeath, whose latest work Also sprach das Chaos is officially being released today.)

Saturn Sector, Fucking Fullmoon Foundation, Satan Macht Frei, and more… Blackdeath have recorded nine full-length albums since the late ’90s and a bunch of smaller releases, and they have done much more for the underground black metal scene besides recording and performing their blasphemous incantations.

Blackdeath’s line-up had just a few minor changes for years and its core since the first day, built by brothers Colonel Para Bellum (aka Dmitry, bass, vocals, lyrics) and Abysslooker (aka Denis, guitars, songwriting), has been accompanied by Polar Maya (drums) since 2007, and it seems like this line-up works in the most productive way one could expect. Being founded in 1995 under the name Draugwath, this band remain one of the most stable and creative black metal acts in Mother Russia’s territory and they prove their status once more with a new tenth album, Also Sprach das Chaos, coming out on the 8th of October via End All Life Productions.

We made this interview with Colonel some time ago but the decision was made to wait for the new album’s official release, and so the day has come. If the words “True Black Metal” mean something for you still, here we go. Continue reading »

Oct 052021


(If you’re not fascinated by this interview and eager to give this band’s music a chance, there’s something wrong with you. There, we said it, and mean it. We thank Comrade Aleks and Kris Clayton for the time they devoted to this discussion.)

Kris Clayton, who did some strange things with his experimental doom project Camel of Doom, wasn’t satisfied with the level of its authenticity. Those things weren’t strange enough for him. But believe me or not, his latest Camel of Doom long-play Terrestrial is worthy of listening. However, in order to raise the level of his doom experiments to new heights Kris invited doom death psycho magician Greg Chandler (Esoteric) into his new band Self Hypnosis and a year ago their first album Contagion of Despair saw the light of day.

This album presents a beast of another kind, grotesque sometimes, built of abstract forms and ideas and yet alive, breathing and amusing. Kris and Greg combine in one vessel not only emanations of their own bands, they add more and more, holding the right balance which keeps Contagion of Despair coherent to some degree and exciting.

We do invite you to take a part in a Self Hypnosis séance together with Kris. Continue reading »

Oct 012021


(Comrade Aleks has again brought us a very interesting conversation with a very engaging personality, and this time it’s George Gabrielyan, the man behind the black metal band Gloosh from Siberian Russia, whose new album is being released today.)

Gloosh means “thick forest” or “backwoods” in Russian, a fitting title for  a black metal band from Siberia, isn’t it? It’s a one-man band / studio project started by George Gabrielyan just two years ago, and there are already one EP and two full-length albums in the Gloosh discography. This black metal has a strong “atmospheric” aspect and the lyrics are written and performed into Russian, though you can find the translations in Metal-Archives or Bandcamp, ‘cause George cares for the band’s followers.

Well, actually the second album named Sylvan Coven is just being released today, and it’s a good reason to interview George. But besides that news, George has much more to tell, as he does play nowadays in two more black metal bands – Eoront and Frozenwoods — so he seems to be the right person to know about a few more subjects, and not only about his own path to the blackened underground but also about the Siberian scene in general. Continue reading »