Nov 182022

As long-time fans of metallic extremity are well aware, the revival of old school death metal that began in all its many shapes over the last decade or so has reached the proportions of a flood tide. Like other kinds of retro revivalism the results have been mixed, ranging from bland nostalgia worship to music that manages to authentically breathe new life into the old traditions without morphing them into something unfamiliar. Updated production values may be added to the mix, or a sprinkling of new ideas capable of seizing attention.

And in some cases, current bands are just so outlandishly good at what they’re doing that your thoughts don’t drift away into “hell, I’ve heard this a hundred times before”, because you’re too busy getting your head wrecked and your nerves ignited.

Which brings us, as a prime example of that, to the criminally under-noticed Faithxtractor from Cincinnati and their new album Contempt for a Failed Dimension, which will get a January 20th release through Redefining Darkness Records. Continue reading »

Mar 172014

(Our long-standing supporter and guest writer Black Shuck turns in this report on the inaugural Blood of the Wolf Fest, which took place in Lexington, Kentucky, on Feb 22, 2014. All photos are by AnnSydney Taylor.)

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of experiencing the dark, mysterious ritual known as the Blood of the Wolf Fest. What’s that, you haven’t heard of it? That’s because this was the first one to ever take place. I’d be very suspicious if you had. (For any reader who had heard about it, take your scrying pool and begone, wizard. We’ll hold no truck with your starry-hatted nonsense here.)

This festival was the brainchild of those Kentuckian warriors of chaos, Tombstalker. Primarily organized by vocalist/guitarist Anton Escobar and bassist Chuck McIntyre, the lineup featured several bands from a group known as the Wolven Brotherhood. The Brotherhood was founded several years ago by Tombstalker and Dawn of Wolves (now Valdrin), when they released their split Cemetery Wolven Ritual (are you sensing a theme here?). The Brotherhood has now expanded to include many other bands from across the country. Presumably their collective subject material has also expanded to cover things that are not wolves, although I hold out hope that I will have a place there once my one-man black metal band, Death to the Three Little Pigs, gets off the ground.

Anyways, on with the fest. Note: All of the excellent photographs that appear here were taken by one AnnSydney Taylor. The festival poster and banner were designed by Lucas Ruggieri. Continue reading »