Aug 292021


Time to blacken the christian Sabbath again, as is our want. I decided to be lazy yesterday rather than compile the usual Saturday round-up of new songs and videos, but I did devote some time to browsing blackened metal, including some music that’s been out in the world (but not in my head) for many months, and you’ll find the results below.

I would say there’s a more disturbing and depressive feel to these choices than might usually be the case. I’m not in therapy so I don’t know for sure if this is a reflection of changes in my usually sunny mood, though I wouldn’t be surprised if that were true. It might just be that the first song took me down that path, and everything else simply fell into place.

DEADSPACE (multinational)

We lamented the split-up of Deadspace when that was announced last year, but celebrated their final album, A Portrait of Sacrificial Scars, as the band’s best work of all. Happily, however, Deadspace have reunited, though I somehow overlooked that announcement, first disclosed in March, until yesterday. I also overlooked that in June the band released a video for a new song named “Moksha“. Continue reading »

Aug 052020


(Andy Synn introduces our premiere stream of a new EP by Exitium Sui, the solo project of ex-Deadspace frontman Chris Gebauer, and presents an interview of him as well.)

Exitium Sui may be a relatively new name, but if you’ve been paying attention to this site over the last several months you’ll no doubt have spotted our coverage of the band’s debut EP, Nuclear Sundown, as well as our preview of “Eviscerate My Withered Soul”, the first song from their upcoming album, Ad Personam (which I’ve heard in full, and it’s a suffocatingly dense and doom-laden slab of grim, blackened filth, make no mistake).

Today we’re bringing you an exclusive stream of The Sinister Business of Selling Hope, which finds the band’s sound pivoting away from the more doom-inflected approach of their first EP in favour of something more closely related to the pulsating blackened belligerence of Leviathan or Blut Aus Nord.

That’s not to say that these four tracks are a total departure from what has gone before – in fact, when the full album is released you’ll likely gain a much better appreciation of  …Selling Hope’s role in the band’s overall development – but suffice it to say that those looking for some seriously oppressive, shockingly aggressive, and crushingly claustrophobic Black Metal will do well to check this one out at the earliest opportunity.

So, please, read on for a full stream of the entire EP accompanied by a short but illluminating interview with band mastermind ES. Continue reading »

Mar 092020


(This is Andy Synn‘s review of the final album by the Australian black metal band Deadspace, released on March 2nd.)

It’s always sad when a band you love announces that they’re calling it a day, especially when the band in question are currently producing the best work of their career.

Such is the case with Australian Black Metal crew Deadspace, who recently declared that, due to a variety of reasons, this year would be their last as an active band.

Before their final dissolution, however, they’ve thrown themselves into a flurry of activity, including multiple national and international tour dates (they recently performed their last ever show in their home country and are set to begin an EU tour alongside Lebenssucht at the end of this month) as well as the release of their sonic swansong, A Portrait of Sacrificial Scars, just last week.

And, let me tell you, if the band truly does have to come to an end this year, then they couldn’t have asked for a better way to bring down the curtain. Continue reading »

Sep 282019


(In this week’s edition of Andy Synn‘s series devoted to lyrics in metal, he presents the responses of Chris Gebauer, lyricist/vocalist of the Australian post-apocalyptic black metal band Deadspace.)

Having the platform I have here at NCS is both a privilege and a responsibility, and one I don’t take lightly.

The best thing about it, of course, is being able to introduce our readers, whoever and however many of them they are, to new bands, new albums… new music in general… that they might not have otherwise stumbled across or thought to check out if left solely to their own devices.

In the case of Australian Black Metal crew Deadspace I think I’ve definitely done my part to raise their profile (on this website anyway) as I have, over the course of the last two years, written about the band no less than five times, covering five different releases (two EPs and three albums).

And so, with their most recent full-length record, The Grand Disillusionment, being released just last month, now seemed like the perfect time to make contact with the band’s frontman, Chris Gebauer, to find out exactly what fuels the group’s prolific output and how their story, and their message, has evolved as a response. Continue reading »

Aug 162019


(Here’s Andy Synn‘s review of the new album by the Australian black metal band Deadspace, which was just released today.)

It’s been both a pleasure and a privilege to observe the musical progression of Australian DSBM collective Deadspace since I first stumbled across their Gravity EP in 2016, watching with ever-increasing interest as the band shifted, slowly but surely, away from the goth-inflected anguish of their early days towards a much more aggressive, much more “pure”, Black Metal approach in recent years.

However, it seems like the group’s steady transition away from their gothic/depressive roots has caused some consternation in their fanbase, to the point where they took the unexpected step of releasing a lengthy statement alongside their new album explicitly stating that they’d outgrown or moved beyond the “DSBM” label of their youth, and that The Grand Disillusionment shouldn’t be considered or judged as such.

Which is a little ironic when you realise that there are moments on TGD where the group hearken back towards the DSBM side of things more than they have done in quite some time… Continue reading »

Jun 302019


Man, I have so much new black metal to write about this week (like what else is new?), but not enough time to write about all of it (that’s not new either), in part because of the time I spent on a rare Sunday premiere (which you really should go listen to if you haven’t already), though it’s a shade of black too.

Despite the temptations, I know better than to call this post Part 1. We know what the Scottish bard said about best-laid plans. Better to just see what happens, better to be pleasantly surprised than disappointed by another broken promise.


When the first song in this collection appeared last week my friend Mr. Synn quipped on FB: “Like Nachtmystium but worried that by doing so you’re in danger of having your canoe stolen and sold for drug money? Well, worry no longer!” Continue reading »

May 292019


(We missed our usual Sunday appointment for the SHADES OF BLACK column, but Andy Synn has stepped in to fill that void with this selection of new releases from the black realms.)

Even though we’ve just come off several days of relative quiet here at NCS (due mostly to a certain Deathfest) we’re already at risk of entering another quiet period as Islander (and various others) gets drawn into the day-to-day running of this year’s edition of Northwest Terror Fest.

However, as luck would have it, I’ve got a massive backlog of artists/albums I’ve been meaning to cover, and so have promised that I’ll deliver something new every day this week so that he doesn’t need to worry about juggling both NCS and NWTF at the same time.

So to kick things off I’ve decided to publish my own version of “Shades of Black” to make up for the lack of one this weekend, featuring short reviews of a bunch of bands, taking in a mix of well-known and (reasonably) obscure names, beginning with… Continue reading »

Feb 272019

Carrion Mother


(Andy Synn chose three recent albums for this collection of reviews and complete music streams, stretching from Germany to Australia to the Upper Midwest of the U.S.)

The word “triage” is a medical term, most frequently deployed in cases of war or natural disaster, which describes the process of prioritising individual cases of illness or injury based upon the severity of their condition and the likelihood that treatment is going to be effective.

And, unfortunately, this often means that difficult choices need to be made about who lives, and who dies, for the greater good.

Now, thankfully, my current situation is nowhere near as serious or as severe as that, but I am increasingly finding myself in the position where I’m having to choose what bands do, and what bands don’t, get written about, due to the combined pressures of limited time and seemingly unlimited music to cover.

So, with that in mind, here are three selections from my ever-growing list of albums which I think deserve some extra effort and attention, with apologies to those many, many bands, who didn’t make the cut. Continue reading »

May 092018


(Andy Synn reviews the new EP by the Australian band Deadspace, released on April 11, 2018.)

One thing I’ve learned over the years is that, no matter how purportedly mainstream or well-known a band is, every review (or interview, or article, etc.) is going to be someone’s first exposure to them.

Of course there are always going to be those who are keen to brag about how they knew so-and-so or such-and-such before everyone else, and crap all over anyone who doesn’t share their intimate connection with what they consider the “true” underground… but I try not to let this discourage me from writing about music I think people might find interesting, regardless of whether it’s considered to be “big” or “cool” or “kvlt” (though I’m not sure if anyone even uses that last one anymore).

Because in the end, that’s what we’re all here for. To find new (and sometimes not-so-new) music we might have missed elsewhere. To seek out new bands and new recommendations, to boldly go… sorry, sorry, got a little bit off-course there… anyway, all this is just a long-winded way for me to say I hope that at least some of you enjoy what you’re about to read/hear. Continue reading »

Feb 232018


(In this post Andy Synn reviews three 2017 releases, by Coraxo (Finland), Deadspace (Australia), and Succumb To Demise (Kentucky).)


Despite the fact that I’m already overwhelmed by new and upcoming releases – next week alone I have Slugdge, Ancst, and Rites of Thy Degringolade lined up to review – I’ve decided to take some time out of my busy schedule to catch up on three albums which were released late last year and which, as a result, didn’t necessarily receive the coverage they deserved. Continue reading »