Mar 162024

A hell of a party awaits below….

All the “big” names in this Saturday roundup of new songs and videos were suggested by my old friend and fellow NCS slave DGR — “big” in quotation marks because no surface-dwelling listener would remotely consider the music “radio friendly”.

But I still decided to throw in a few more subterranean offerings of my own choosing, all of it presented in alphabetical order by band name. That arrangement turned out to create some big twists and turns in the music.

ABORTED (Belgium)

First up, feast your eyes and ears on the music video for “Condemned To Rot” from Aborted‘s guest-studded new album Vault of Horrors. The guest stud on this one is Francesco Paoli from the NCS house band Fleshgod Apocalypse (does anyone remember when I used to call them that every time I mentioned them?). I’ll crib from my friend Andy‘s review of this album: Continue reading »

Jul 022021

Photo by Jørn Steen

(Today we launch what we hope will be a long-recurring column by our contributor Gonzo in which he spotlights favorite releases from the month just ended.)

No matter how much ground we cover at NCS on a daily, weekly, and even monthly basis, there’s always some music lurking in some dark corner of the metal universe that gets overlooked somehow. Some of that is, of course, by design – we don’t typically highlight the bigger names you’ll see in larger publications; we tend to reach farther down the smoldering depths of the metal underbelly for the stuff that doesn’t get as much exposure.

Earlier this year, I tried to keep up with a New Music Friday weekly column that was, unfortunately, all too short-lived. I blame my day job, in which I also write for a living (though it’s much less satisfying than heaping profanity-laced praise upon my favorite music.)

So, given the aforementioned constraints, Islander has been kind enough to green-light my latest idea: A monthly column dedicated to the bands, songs, and albums that I want to highlight from that month, without double-dipping into territory that’s already been covered.

Enough backstory – let’s dig into what kicked ass in June (and late May, since this is post #1.). The lead band was once in a deep, dark corner, but no longer is. Continue reading »

Jun 062021


I nearly didn’t include the new Mayhem and Darkthrone songs in this column, because I thought anyone who would visit us today would have already heard them. Plus, as is generally true of NCS as a whole, I tend to focus on less-heralded bands than the ones whose names are household words. On the other hand, those are two of black metal’s most influential bands, and getting new songs from both of them in the same week seems like something especially noteworthy, especially for a column like this one. So, they’re both here.

After that I shifted the focus to more obscure names, and by coincidence almost all of them are UK groups.


Atavistic Black Disorder/Kommando is a Mayhem EP that will be released on July 9th by Century Media. The dual title signifies that the EP includes three original tracks (“Voces Ab Alta,” “Black Glass Communion,” and “Everlasting Dying Flame”) as well as covers of classic punk tracks from Discharge (“In Defense Of Our Future”, Dead Kennedys (“Hellnation”), Rudimentary Peni (“Only Death”), and the Ramones (“Commando”). The song that emerged last week is one of those original tracks, which was initially recorded during the band’s Daemon sessions. Continue reading »

Apr 242019


I didn’t expect to prepare another new-music round-up so soon, since I posted one of these just yesterday, but I found myself with enough free time — just barely enough — to do it. Without further ado:


Yesterday brought us the debut of a track called “The Hardship of the Scots” from the new album by Darkthrone, Old Star. Unsurprisingly, the news of a new Darkthrone song spread like wildfire, and predictably provoked reflexive praise. The thing is, such reflexes have been conditioned by decades of praiseworthy work by this band, and in this instance (more importantly), it really is a hell of a good song — which I have had serious difficulty getting out of my head so I can focus on other things. Continue reading »

Sep 052016

Diego Rivera-Detroit Industry mural


I checked the store of data about our putrid site at Google Analytics today and learned that over the last year 41.32% of our visitors were located in the United States, which means that 58.68% came to us from other lands. Which means that on average, most of you reading this won’t be observing a holiday today. It is, however, a holiday here in the U.S. Which means that I’m just lying around in two-day-old underwear enjoying the pleasures of doing not a goddamned thing. This is how we celebrate Labor Day — by not laboring.

The Labor Day holiday was created by an act of Congress on June 28, 1894. According to the U.S. Department of Labor (of course), the holiday “is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.” Continue reading »

Aug 182016

Darkthrone-Arctic Thunder


This harried compiler of new music is especially harried today. I’m in the middle of a quick trip to Denver with not much free time on my hands. But the last 24 hours have brought so many good new songs that I want to throw them your way even at the cost of not getting to spill as many words about them as I would like.

And I’m concluding this collection with a somewhat older song debut that I’ve only just discovered.


As we previously reported within an hour of the announcement, Norway’s Darkthrone will be releasing a new album entitled Arctic Thunder (named for an old Norwegian band of the same name). Based on comments by Fenriz about the album, as well as its cover art, I speculated that we might be on the verge of an enticing return to the sound of the band’s earlier days. Well, now we have more than speculation to go on, because at 11:00 Eastern time here in the U.S., Darkthrone debuted a song from the album — the name of which is “Tundra Leech“. Continue reading »

Aug 082016



As you know, we don’t try to keep you abreast of the many breaking news stories in metal every day, but this announcement from an hour ago on Darkthrone’s Facebook page elevated my pulse rate in a way that usually happens only when I discover a hole in the electrified fence at the loris compound and all the knives have disappeared:

“Hi folks, it’s time to talk a bit about our new album – and as I don’t like to talk or write about music much I can say that it is more serious and primitive than usual. Vocals are only done by Ted as I thought this would create a more solemn/introvert atmosphere. The album is called ARCTIC THUNDER because it is my fave bandname (old mega-obscure Norwegian band from the 80s that I asked the permission from to use as an album title). Continue reading »

Jan 072014

At long last, we begin our list of 2013’s Most Infectious Extreme Metal Songs. This is the fourth year I’ve compiled such a thing. With each year, the list has grown longer — last year I made myself stop only after the list had mushroomed to 56 tracks. I don’t know how long the 2013 list will be, because I’m still working on it. But I know what the first 3 songs will be, and if you continue reading you will know, too.

I will continue posting a pair of songs more or less daily until reaching the unknown end. The songs are unranked and appear in no particular order, because ordering them would be too difficult. If you’re wondering what this list is all about, go HERE.


Heaven Shall Burn are what you get when you force Earth Crisis and Bolt Thrower to conceive a child, and then have that child raised by At The Gates and Carcass, while supplementing their intellectual development with a steady diet of Kant, Marx, and Baudrillard.” That’s what Andy Synn wrote when he reviewed this long-running German band’s 2013 album, Veto, and it does make a kind of demented sense. Continue reading »

Jun 072013

At the end of this post are two metal videos. You should watch them and listen to the music.

The first one is for the song “Lesser Men” by Norway’s Darkthrone. It appears on the band’s latest album, The Underground Resistance, which is out now via Peaceville. For my tastes, the song is one of the best that Darkthrone have produced in the last five years. It’s part black metal, part punk, part thrash, and heavy as hell. If you haven’t heard it yet, it’s the kind of song that you’ll have trouble getting unstuck from your head.

The video is damned cool, too. Directed by Lowe Seger, it’s a black-and-white montage of urban images. The film has no story or footage of a band performance, but it somehow suits the music.

The second offering here is a lyric video from The Amenta (Australia). The song is “Sewer” and it appears on the band’s 2013 album Flesh Is Heir. In the words of the band, it “shows off the creepy, dirty side of The Amenta. These lyrics are one of two songs written by vocalist Cain Cressall and describe the use of sex to obliterate the self.” Continue reading »

May 072013

Are you like me?  Have you felt an emptiness in your life because no one has ever made a Black Metal Viking Biker-film With Zombies?  Have you given up hope that this void will ever be filled?  Well, don’t give up!  Stop thinking about opening your femoral artery with a straight razor and just bleeding out with tears in your eyes over the cruelty of life — a brighter day is just around the corner!  Your hopeless dreams may yet come true.

Yes, it’s true. A Black Metal Viking Biker-film With Zombies is in pre-production. Its title is Saga, and it stars none other than Ted Skjellum, better known to metal fans as Nocturno Culto, one of the Darkthrone duo, a member of Sarke, and a former stalwart in Satyricon. This isn’t Skjellum’s first adventure in film-making — in 2007 he released a documentary film about black metal and life in Norway called The Misanthrope — but as far as I know, it’s his first turn as an actor. He will be collaborating with writer, producer, director and photographer Jorn Steen.

In Saga, Culto will play a director of metal music videos who makes a feature-length Viking movie based upon the northern classic Eyrbyggja Saga. In the story, a dead Viking breaks out of his tomb during filming and terrorizes the locals at the shooting location. Culto will also get to ride a Moto Guzzi in the film.

Is your heart skipping a beat over this news?  Well, don’t get too excited just yet, because although all the actors are lined up and the locations are being prepared, there’s still a need for money. Isn’t there always. But you can help! Continue reading »