I didn’t put together the usual Saturday roundup of new songs and videos yesterday. Partly this was because I got a late start on the day, but also because I wanted to spend more time figuring out what to include in the rollout of our 2022 Most Infectious Song list. I made good progress there, with enough choices to fill segments every day during the coming week. I think they’ll provide more reminders of what a great year for metal 2022 was.
But now on to the task at hand. The collection I assembled for today explains why I chose the name “Shades of Black” for this column too many years ago for me to remember, because most of these songs hover just on the outskirts of the black metal soundscape. They wouldn’t sound the way they do without that influence, but they’re built around other significant interests too. However, I’ve balanced those with a pair of songs near the middle that dive deep back into black metal traditions of yesteryear.
This collection is also more like the kind of “Seen and Heard” roundups that I failed to do yesterday, in that all the songs are advance tracks from forthcoming albums rather than complete new releases (even though one of those advance tracks is 20 minutes long). And I think you’ll find all the songs quite infectious — until you get to the closing pair. Continue reading »