Jul 032020
 

 

I’m mindful of the fact that today Bandcamp is waiving its revenue share, which means that more of the money you throw at Bandcamp releases today will land in the pockets of bands and labels. So I’m trying to make a lot of recommendations, many of which were included in Part 1 of this post. But I’m also mindful of the fact that time is running out. And so although this Part 2 of today’s collection consists of complete releases rather than individual songs, I’m not attempting anything close to reviews, just a few words of description and recommendation.

Needless to say, there are dozens of other recent releases I could have included here (2020 has been ridiculously strong for metal, IMO), so there’s more than a bit of randomness in the choices I made. Nevertheless, I back each of these wholeheartedly. (I should add that this collection is heavy on the black and blackened metal, because that’s where I’ve spent a lot of my recent listening time.)

ADORA VIVOS / AMIENSUS  (U.S.)

A beautiful and ravishing split that includes not only a great Amiensus song but also the magnificent return of Adora Vivos after a 7-year silence, a band that includes former Amiensus multi-instrumentalist J. Waller (on both Restoration and Ascension) and Amiensus vocalist/guitarist James Benson. This one won’t leave you the same way it found you. Continue reading »

Mar 242019
 


Cold Black Suns

 

I’m assuming everyone knows that Darkthrone will be releasing a new album named Old Star through Peaceville Records on May 31st. Fenriz says that he and Ted will be continuing in the style of Arctic Thunder — “BLACK OLD HEAVY METAL with slow thrash, classic doom and slow death metal” — which is just fine by me. The album is available for pre-order HERE.

With that piece of news out of the way, I’m devoting the rest of this post to things we can hear right now.

ENTHRONED

Cold Black Suns is the new album by the almighty Enthroned, their 11th full-length in a career that stretches back a quarter-century. Their new label Season of Mist will release it on June 7th. The first song in today’s collection, “Silent Redemption,” comes from that album and premiered a couple days ago at Ghost Cult Magazine. Continue reading »

Jul 152018
 

 

It’s always difficult to choose songs for these Sunday columns, not because the pickings are slim but because of the constant abundance of music from the black realms that catch my fancy every week. This week I thought I might have time to make the choosing a bit easier by making more choices. I haven’t written Part 2 yet, and it’s conceivable that I won’t finish it in time for posting today before I have to turn to other activities. But if not today, then you’ll see it on Monday.

DAUÞUZ

Before we turn to the music of this German duo, let’s have a small lesson about the band’s name and its pronunciation. “Dauþuz” is a Proto-Germanic or Norse word for death. In its spelling it includes a letter (þ) from Old Norse called thorn, which (as The Font of All Human Knowledge tells us) originated from a rune found in Icelandic and Norwegian rune poems. That rune is called Þurs in Old Norse (“Thurs”) or Þurisaz (“Thurisaz”) in its Germanic variant, and it appeared in the old rune poems as a name for giants.

The letter thorn (or þorn ) survives in only one modern language — Icelandic — where it’s pronounced something like th as in the English word thick, but not exactly. And so now, when you tell your friends how amazed you are by this band’s music, you’ll be able to do so without mutilating the pronunciation of their name by sticking an unwelcome “P” sound in the middle of it. But you probably knew that already. Continue reading »