Jan 282021


And now we have arrived at the lucky 13th Part of this list, which happens to demonstrate three different ways, out of a great multitude of ways, in which extreme music can be highly infectious — though it must be said that all three of these create the effect with some damned potent grooves (some more punishing than others). But the ability of the songs to vigorously apply a crowbar to the crest of your lizard-like head isn’t all that goes on here.


Over the course of a decade working on NCS I’ve developed a pretty good idea about the tastes (even as they have evolved) of our longest-running writers, along with my own of course. If I imagine them as a grouping of Venn diagrams, there are definite regions of intersection, and Poland’s Koronal happens to fall within one of those. Which is to say that all of us old-timers thoroughly enjoyed their 2020 album, A Gift of Consciousness. Continue reading »

Aug 202020

Atræ Bilis


(Andy Synn has prepared and packaged together these four reviews for your reading pleasure.)

As every good Metalhead knows, Thursday is the day that the Lord dedicated to Technical Death Metal.

After all, was it not written “and on the fourth day, he shredded”?

So, as the scriptures command, I’ve elected to use today’s column to focus on a handful of bands, each one a disciple of death in one form or another, who choose to worship… at the altar of tech. Continue reading »

Jun 202020


In many weeks the title of this round-up hasn’t been entirely accurate, because although I post them on Saturdays, sometimes I’ve listened to the songs before Saturday has arrived. Not this time.

This time I let the entire week go by without listening to much new music other than what I had agreed to premiere. My day job has been unusually annoying this week, and I continue to be distracted by the unnerving daily news of what’s happening in the world around us. This time, after gulping a couple of cups of coffee, I started the day by trying to catch up, and these selections survived that Saturday morning sifting process.

Needless to say, I didn’t make much headway in my giant list of things I wanted to check out from the past week (and the weeks before), but I had really good luck with what I did decide to check out.


I contend that there’s no better “intro” to a Primitive Man song than the gashing of ears with feedback, because what usually happens next is an ugly and unnerving experience. Why sugarcoat it? Continue reading »

Jun 082017


The last time we encountered the German death metal band Cytotoxin was in 2012, as they released songs from their then-forthcoming second album Radiophobia. The music made a strong impact, provoking impressions at our site such as these: “sonic insanity… vicious, pulverizing, technically off-the-hook… thoroughly body-slamming… radioactive… blistering… a brutal tech-death-metal flamethrower… hyper-speed riffing… high-bpm drumwork… heavy on the groove and laced with ominous melody.” Naturally, we’ve been very interested to hear more from this band, and now we can — and so can you, because we’re premiering the title track to the band’s new album, Gammageddon. It will be released by Unique Leader Records on July 28th.

Thematically, Radiophobia took as its subject matter the horrifying accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine that began during the night of April 26th, 1986, a catastrophic reactor meltdown that spewed a cloud of poison into the atmosphere and across large swaths of Europe and devastated the region around the plant. Gammageddon is connected to the same terrible incident, its conceptual focus described as follows: Continue reading »

Oct 012012

I’ve been missing in action more than usual over the last 4 days, having been kidnapped by work-related travel and activities that were fun, but  cut deeply into blog time. I’m now back home on this Sunday night and have been trying to find out what I missed in the world of metal. Of course, I missed a lot that interested me — too much to capture in a single post — so I’m going to pick out just a few of the items I thought were worth spreading around.


I first came across Portland’s Atriarch through their 20 Buck Spin split release with Oakland’s Alaric — and that whole split release is just chock full of win. If you haven’t heard it, check it out on Bandcamp here.

Atriarch is now on the Profound Lore label and their first PL release will be Ritual of Passing, scheduled to hit the streets on October 30. The cover art up there is by Stevie Floyd (Taurus). I saw that Pitchfork recently premiered the album’s third track “Altars”, and then I saw that PL had put the song up for streaming on SoundCloud as well. And I checked it out. Fuckin’ glad I did, too. Continue reading »

Aug 132012

This is a fairly random collection of new music I heard over the last two days from forthcoming albums. Of course, it’s wildly divergent, because that’s the nature of metal. The bands are Krampus (Italy), Cytotoxin (Germany), and Project:Abomination (U.S.)


Krampus are an Italian horde (eight members!) whose last EP was reviewed for us by Trollfiend (here), and he followed that with a band interview (here). They’ve now completed a full-length album, Survival of the Fittest, which is slated for release on August 24 by Noise Art Records, and yesterday brought us a new song: “Unspoken”. Previously, the band started streaming another track, “Kronos’ Heritage”, which  if I’m not mistaken also appeared on the last EP.

Krampus bill themselves as a folk metal band, but “Unspoken is much more straight-ahead, Scandinavian-styled melodic death metal, with a metalcore flavoring of both bestial and clean vocals. The bestial vox are indeed beastly (and excellent), and although you know what I think of clean vocals, I admit that they do have a fitting place in this song. The music is an infectious gallop — not ground-breaking by any stretch, but a lot of fun to hear.

A stream of the new song is right after the jump, and I’m also including “Kronos’ Heritage”, a song in which folk influences are more pronounced. Like “Unspoken”, it’s very catchy.  Continue reading »