Apr 112021
 

 

To the extent writing about music matters at all as a form of guidance, it clearly matters more in the case of complete albums or EPs than single tracks. Particularly when a writer is as verbose as I am, it doesn’t take much more time to just listen to a song than to read some goofball’s frothy impressions of it. But it obviously takes a much bigger investment of time for a listener to absorb an album or EP, and so getting some kind of overview can be useful, at least if you trust who’s providing it.

Therefore, the fact that I’m not providing a completely comprehensive overview of the six records collected here (all of them released between late March and last week) is a miserable failure. Much as I hate to be so brief, I’ve still attempted to at least give you a flavor of what each album brings. Given my time constraints, the alternative might be to say nothing about them at all, which I guess might be even worse.

FROSTNATT (Russia)

Frostnatt‘s debut album Det kommer til å bli kaldt, which follows a run of EPs that began in 2019, is a largely instrumental work (with a scattering of vocal samples and a few harsh expulsions) that’s both rugged and scintillating, combining primitive, earthquaking percussive rhythms and brilliantly vibrant ringing melodies of varying moods that stick in the head like hot spikes, plus a well-placed and sublime piano piece. And thus it generates an unusual shamanistic spell, delivering primal, visceral punch as well as ancient and mystical atmosphere, enhanced by moments of poignant beauty and piercing heartache. My favorite track: “Til sydpolplatået“. Continue reading »

Nov 082020
 

 

I spent a joyful day yesterday, though I was rooted in front of the TV instead of listening to metal. But the good feeling carried over into this morning as I began listening to things, and in rapid succession found music that just seemed to fit together beautifully for this column. The arc of sounds as I’ve arranged them here was almost exactly the sequence in which I heard them, and I’ve kept it that way even though not everything here qualifies as black metal.

What made the experience even more thrilling was that five of the seven bands here were new to my ears (some of the music comes from debut releases).

STORMKEEP (U.S.)

I don’t have to spend a lot of time formulating words to describe Stormkeep’sGlass Caverns Of Dragon Kings“, because Jon Rosenthal did his usual excellent job in writing about it when Invisible Oranges premiered the track two days ago: Continue reading »