Jan 232018


(Andy Synn wrote this review of the new album by Crow Black Sky from Cape Town, South Africa.)


If there’s one thing I’ve learned in all my years of writing about music (and that’s a big “if”), it’s that you should never completely write a band off, as they can always surprise you.

Such is the case with South African quartet Crow Black Sky, whose debut record, 2010’s Partheion, proved to be a not-unenjoyable slab of highly melodic, keyboard-inflected Black Metal in the vein of Kolossus-era Keep of Kalessin and early Dimmu Borgir which, despite its obvious merits, largely failed to set the music world on fire, and was soon lost in the shuffle.

Eight(!) years later, however, the band have returned with a new sound, a new outlook, and a brand new album which completely blows its predecessor out of the water. Continue reading »

Mar 122013

(NCS writer TheMadIsraeli, who is not exactly an ardent fan of black metal, has found a black metal band from South Africa that has captured his affections.)

Black metal, I think it’s safe to say is one of THE most over-saturated sub-genres of metal EVER, or at least that’s what my personal experience tells me.  I’m sure those of you who pirate can agree with me. Go on any torrent site that deals in music specifically, and under metal you’ll see five black metal albums for every album of a different genre.  That may be understandable, considering that most of it is plain boring dreck that’s only been made possible by the advent of home recording.  We live in the age of the bedroom musician; sometimes it hurts my soul even thinking about it.

Don’t get me wrong, sometimes those projects turn out to be good, even great.  However, for me nothing beats a unit of musicians uniting to create wondrous audio ecstasy.  Black metal is a style that, in my estimation, especially benefits from the organic nature of a BAND writing the music, especially given the last decade where the best black metal seems to have relied on an intense layering of textures — when the bands aren’t taking an outright savage approach.

This is all by way of preamble to Crow Black Sky, an interesting discovery that I’m pretty sure the NCS readership will be able to get behind. Continue reading »