Sep 122021
 

 

Yesterday a combination of factors prevented me from posting the usual Saturday round-up of new songs and videos that appeared during the week. I did spend a big block of time surveying the field and making selections, but by the time I finished doing that it was mid-day and I decided to fuck off instead of beginning to write.

It has become clear to me that I can’t do the usual writing today either, if I’m to have any hope of preparing a SHADES OF BLACK post today. So I’m resorting to the format of just throwing all this stuff at you without artwork, or most of the usual links, or my usual commentary, just a few scattered notes.

But trust me, I did exercise some judgment about what I thought was worth sharing. It’s just that I thought A LOT was worth sharing — 16 songs and videos, to be precise. I alphabetized the collection by band name and then divided it into two parts.

ANOMALIE (Austria)

This is a very welcome return after a four-year hiatus between albums. The new full-length features Nornagest of Belgium’s Enthroned on harsh vocals. The new album, Tranceformation, is coming on November 5th from AOP Records. Continue reading »

Aug 062021
 

 

Over the last few days my NCS comrades (well, mainly DGR) have been shoveling links at me for new songs and videos, in anticipation that I would put together a round-up by today — which is a Bandcamp Friday. Most of those links were for music by bigger-name bands. The thought was that I could also add more obscure names, and that the allure of the bigger names might help introduce the lesser-knowns to more fans.

The problem is that the pile of links has grown to gargantuan proportions, which has made it tougher for me to insert as many other discoveries as I might want and still write up some thoughts about everything. Ah well, there’s always tomorrow. Here’s the A-to-Z deluge I have for today, in alphabetical order.

ARCHSPIRE (Canada)

Prepare for relentless high-speed bludgeoning and crazed fretwork mania as a big rabid mastiff barks in your face at equally high speed. Exhilarating! Continue reading »

Apr 022019
 

 

I never learn. I have music from 10 bands that got me very excited this past weekend (on top of the 7 I wrote about in SHADES OF BLACK on Sunday). Ten is too many for a single post, which means I’m splitting this up, and the thing I never learn is that my best-laid plans always get dashed on the rocks by other life pressures. In my head, I feel that if I put my back into it, like a shackled oarsman on a Roman galley, I can get the second part done. In my head, I also think the odds are that the vessel will ram some Macedonian pirate vessel and sink like a stone.

The music of these 10 bands is all over the place. I usually have inspirations about how to organize the music in these round-ups so there’s some kind of flow. This time, I came up short. It’s all just so different. So I arranged everything in alphabetical order by band name, for want of a better idea. We have A-M here; maybe we’ll have the rest of the alphabet later. Ramming speed!

ACRITARCH

I got quickly addicted to this new release by Acritarch, before the archaeological ministry of my memory could excavate the recognition of who was behind it. Fortunately, Rennie of starkweather, whose mind is so much more agile than my own, knew who it was immediately, and told me. No wonder the album is so damned good. Continue reading »

Jun 252018
 

 

I wasn’t able to post a SHADES OF BLACK column or anything else yesterday, but fear not, all is well here in NCS land; I was just wholly consumed all weekend with activities related to my fucking day job, almost all of them quite pleasurable but nevertheless not conducive to my listening to new music or writing about it. I did manage to go through some of the songs on my ever-burgeoning list of new releases last night, and what follows are the ones I chose to recommend on this Monday morning.

I also have in mind presenting a collection of three new EPs that made an impression while I was listening last night. Don’t know if I can pull that off today, but I do know that before the day is out we’ll have a review of Craft’s new album and premieres of two other albums that I’m confident you’ll enjoy.

ALLFATHER

My colleague Andy Synn gave quite a positive review to the debut album by UK’s Allfather in 2016, which concluded as follows: Continue reading »

Sep 252017
 

 

I realize this is the third day in a row when I’ve compiled a round-up of new music. Some of you who don’t check in with us over the weekends are going to find a truckload of new tracks that have appeared since the end of the day Friday. Moderation, however, has never been our thing. I guess you could say we’re extreme in more ways than the music we tend to prefer.

It also gives me ghoulish pleasure to say that we’re not pausing after this: Three track premieres will be following this round-up today. And  there will be another round-up tomorrow (which will be my effort to complete the SHADES OF BLACK collection that I began yesterday but couldn’t finish due to a vicious hangover).

CRYPTIC FOG

To begin, I have a nearly 12-minute song from the debut album of Cryptic Fog, which at the time of this recording was a two-man operation consisting of guitarist/bassist Dave Bennett and drummer/vocalist Dan Klein. The name of the album is Staring Through the Veil, and the Swedish label Blood Harvest will release it on October 27. Continue reading »

Nov 022016
 

cultes-des-ghoules-coven

 

Getting kind of  a late start on today’s post — yes, “post”, in the singular. I got slammed at my day job yesterday afternoon, and today will be no better. I’m now sitting on an airplane after leaving my house at 5 a.m. to start a cross-country trip, and as soon as I finish writing this thing, I’ll have to put my nose to the grindstone again.

Last night I did make my way through a bunch of new music and videos that have appeared since the weekend, and culled from them this collection of goodies.

CULTES DES GHOULES

The mysterious cult of ghouls from Kielce, Poland, are returning with a new album named Coven, or Evil Ways Instead of Love, which is set for a double-CD release by Hells Headbangers on November 25, 2017, with a triple-LP vinyl version coming later. All that extra physical room is needed because this new immensity is nearly 100 minutes long. Continue reading »