Jan 252016
 

Amon Amarth-Jomsviking

 

On March 25, those Swedish vikings in Amon Amarth will release a new concept album named Jomsviking, and just an hour ago they premiered a video for the first advance track, a song named “First Kill”. And on top of that, they announced dates for a North American tour that begins in April, with Entombed A.D. and Exmortus along for the trip. Before that, the band will play album release shows in four European cities.

First Kill” tells the story of a son’s banishment by his father after he takes his first life, leading him on the bloodstained path of a lone warrior and outcast. The song offers no surprises — it’s another galloping Amon Amarth ear-worm that makes me want to reach for my axe and drinking horn, though not in that order. I have no doubt it will quickly become a live staple, because it will get people fired up at shows in short order. The video is fun to watch, too. Continue reading »

Aug 072015
 

Firespawn video clip

 

I’m getting a very slow start today, having arrived home extremely late last night after going to a hell of a show in Seattle. I dragged my dragging ass to the computer and, while downing the first few gulps of coffee, tried to focus my leery eyes on the NCS e-mail in-box. One of the first things I saw was a press release about a band named Firespawn that I’d never heard of. And then I saw who was in the band, and the names made me sit up straight:

LG Petrov – vocals [Entombed A.D., Morbid, Nihilist]
Fredrik Folkare – guitar [Necrophobic, Unleashed]
Victor Brandt – guitar [Entombed A.D., Six Feet Under (live)]
A. Impaler – bass [Necrophobic, Naglfar (live)]
Matte Modin – drums [Raised Fist, ex-Dark Funeral, ex-Defleshed, ex-Infernal]

I think you’ll agree, that’s a hell of a line-up. Continue reading »

Jul 142014
 

 

Sweden’s Entombed A.D. have recorded a new album named Back To the Front, and it’s finally due for release by Century Media on August 4 in Europe and August 5 in NorthAm. As you can see, it features a great piece of cover art by Zbigniew Bielak. It also features the talents of L-G Petrov, Nico Elgstrand, Victor Brandt, and Olle Dahlstedt. Why this group are calling themselves Entombed A.D. instead of Entombed is a long story that you can read about somewhere else. What I want you to do is listen to this new song “Vulture and the Traitor” from the album.

Actually, you may be listening to it a second time, because it briefly appeared on YouTube last November. That turned out to be an unauthorized posting because it was removed after I wrote about the track back then. If you missed that clip, don’t miss this one. It has a definite old-school feel in its sludgy riff tone and in its mix of d-beat, punk, and hardcore rhythms. L-G Petrov’s completely distinctive throaty vocals are in great form, and the song also boasts a hot-as-hell guitar solo. I really am enjoying the song (again).

You can also bang your fuckin’ head to a previously released single from the album named “Bedlam Attack”, which appeared in late May; it includes some very cool off-speed sections in addition to all the curb stomping — and holy shit, those vocals… Both tracks come right after the jump. Continue reading »

Nov 112013
 

Entombed’s tenth album Back To the Front — which sports the painted cover art by Zbigniew Bielak that you see above — was originally scheduled for release by Century Media last month, but in September its release was postponed until early 2014 due to “unpredictable technical problems”. Today, one of the album’s tracks, entitled “Vulture and the Traitor”, appeared on YouTube. It doesn’t appear to be an authorized debut, so it may not last long. But it’s such a good song that it’s worth checking out while you can.

For those who foolishly continue to hope for a throwback to Left Hand Path, this isn’t that. Yet it still has a definite old-school feel in its sludgy riff tone and in its mix of d-beat, punk, and hardcore rhythms. L-G Petrov’s distinctive throaty vocals are in great form, and the song also boasts a hot-as-hell guitar solo.  Whether authorized or not, this is a damned fine teaser for Back To the Front. Listen next: Continue reading »

Jul 252013
 

Just a few new things in between reviews to help kick-start this Thursday.

HOWLING

Let’s see, where shall we start? How about some death metal? Yes, death metal is always a good place to start, especially death metal inspired by John Carpenter’s 1981 classic, The Thing. And that’s what Howling gave us last night when they released “Shape-Shifting Enemy” on Bandcamp.

Howling, for those who need to catch up, is the horror-themed project of vocalist Vanessa Nocera (Skeletal Spectre, Scaremaker, Wooden Stake), guitarist/bassist Tony Proffer (Beyond Hell), and drummer Elektrokutioner (Encoffination, Father Befouled, many others). This new single comes from the band’s next album, Tear the Screams from Your Throat, which is due out in October 2013. I have high hopes for that album, because the band’s debut, A Beast Conceived, was so fuckin’ good (I explained why I think so at this location).

“Shape-Shifting Enemy” provides even more reason to anticipate the new album with relish. If you’re expecting old-school gore/death, you’ll be surprised. The mainly slow-paced song contrasts Proffer’s melodic guitar leads (and a writhing solo) with Nocera’s carnivorous growls, book-ended by unexpected guitar instrumentals. And for variety’s sake, you’ll encounter a couple of thrashing romps along the way. Continue reading »

Mar 272013
 

 (I wish I had thought of this cool idea for a post. But BadWolf beat me to it — and this is his piece.)

It’s not news to anyone reading this ( I hope) that heavy metal culture has an elitist streak. In fact, read enough comment threads on this blog and others, and you will notice a tiered system of elitism, false barricades that we, as fans, erect to keep ourselves distanced from a perceived wasteland that is ‘the mainstream.’ By virtue of reading a metal blog, I’d wager you’re already a step or two up on the elitism pyramid. By definition, as a metal blogger, I am MORE than a few steps up on the elitism pyramid. But I’m not far enough up to lose my sense of perspective.

There is an appropriate amount of ironic self-distancing when appreciating art. The top of the elitist pyramid? Probably black metal purists, and look how even the mainstream lambasts the true corpsepaint-set as clowns. Those folks would do well to remember that most of the Norwegian attack bands abandoned the strict black metal template quite rapidly. Ihsahn is in a prog band now. Mayhem put electronica all up in their second album.

But at the same time, from where I stand, the lowest rung of elitism is abjectly deserving of ridicule as well. And what constitutes that bottommost rung? Probably the bias against breakdown-centric bands. You can even see it on No Clean Singing—we’re covering a lot more black metal than deathcore these days. Continue reading »

Jan 052013
 

We’ve picked up a lot of new readers over the last couple of weeks, so for their benefit let me explain what others have already figured out about our news reporting: We make no effort to be comprehensive. We don’t cut and paste every press release we get. Actually, we don’t cut and paste any news releases. We write our own thoughts, and what we write about is filtered through my mind and occasionally the minds of our other writers when they message me about something they think is interesting.

So, for better or worse, what you see here is what we think is interesting, according to our tastes. And here are a few items I saw and heard over the last 24 hours that interested me.

CANDLEMASS vs ENTOMBED

Candlemass and Entombed are two Swedish bands who have reached near-legendary status in distinctly different corners of the metal spectrum, Candlemass in the realms of doom and Entombed in the fields of death metal and death ‘n’ roll (though over time Entombed has plowed other fields as well).

Someone at Sweden Rock Magazine, the country’s top-selling music magazine, had the bright idea of asking each band to cover one of the other band’s songs. The result will be a CD single exclusively included with the magazine’s 100th issue that will be sent to subscribers on January 8. For now at least, it won’t be available elsewhere. But fortunately, as of today both tracks are up on YouTube. Continue reading »

Dec 072012
 

Not long ago we reported the awesome news that pioneering metal label Earache Records had established a Bandcamp site, launching it with an interesting mix of both new and older releases from their formidable catalogue. Just days after that, they increased the awesomeness by adding Bolt Thrower’s legendary 1991 album War Master to the site.

That was one of 8 albums we suggested that Earache add to Bandcamp, and guess what? Yesterday they added another album from our list:

Entombed: Left Hand Path (1990)

We pushed for the addition of that album because . . . well hell, if you don’t know why, I don’t know how to begin to explain. It is one of your humble editor’s favorite metal albums of all time, world without end, amen.

And holy shit, that’s not all. When I wasn’t paying attention Earache also added two more albums from the NCS list: Altars of Madness (1989) and Blessed Are the Sick (1991) by Morbid Angel!!!

And that’s STILL not all . . . Continue reading »

Jul 222012
 

Back in June I saw the news that Screaming Records was going to release a limited 7″ vinyl single by Sweden’s legendary Entombed. I’ve been waiting hungrily since then for the music to hit the web, and yesterday some of it did.

This new single is called When In Sodom Revisited and it includes three songs: a remixed and remastered version of the original “When In Sodom” track, which originally appeared on the band’s 2006 EP by the same name; an alternate version of the song composed, performed, and recorded by a Danish artist and sound designer named Klaus “Q” Hedegaard Nielsen (Beta Satan, The Malpractice), and a new studio recording by Entombed of the King Diamond song “Welcome Home”.

This single is the second Entombed release for 2012, the first being a digital release of a variant version of the song “Amok”, which we previously featured here. The recording of “Welcome Home”, however, is the first release by the current Entombed lineup — with Victor Brandt (TOTALT JÄVLA MÖRKERAEONSATYRICON) and second guitarist Nico Elgstrand (who previously played bass for the group) joining L-G Petrov, Alex Hellid, and Olle Dahlstedt.

For those of you who remember the post we ran on the 20th anniversary of King Diamond’s Abigail album (here), it will come as no surprise to learn that I prefer this Entombed cover to the original — mainly because I’ll take L-G’s vocals over King’s. The cover is a cool song. Continue reading »