Jun 112018


In April when I came across the first two tracks released from Wolfcult Domination, the debut EP by Salt Lake City’s Goat Disciple, I wrote: “You will read that the band’s music is war metal, and it is indeed a rapacious hybrid of black and death metal worthy of a name like Goat Disciple — but it’s so much more multifaceted, and executed with so much more technical acumen and creative exuberance, than most offerings in that bloody field that the ‘war metal’ label seems inadequate. At a minimum, if these two songs are a reliable indicator of the EP as a whole, it should vault them into the upper echelons of the field. And I don’t say that lightly.”

It turns out that those first two songs — “Oreb Zaraq” and “Mammon” — were rock-solid indicators indeed. The EP as a whole is a stunningly strong debut, all four tracks abundantly proving that Goat Disciple’s talents go beyond a capacity to engage in breathtaking musical slaughter (though they’re certainly very good at that, too). And thus we’re very happy to present a full stream of the EP in advance of its June 15 release by Blood Harvest Records and Helter Skelter Productions. Continue reading »

Apr 012018


As usual, I had a rough time trying to decide which songs to pick for today’s SHADES OF BLACK column; as usual, there was a lot to choose from. If I’d known when I made the selection that (as announced here) this would be the last NCS post after 8 1/2 years of effort, it would have been a whole lot rougher.


I thought the self-titled debut release by the Portuguese black metal band Gaerea was one of 2016’s best EPs.. We featured music from it repeatedly at our site, both before and after its release (including a post in which we named “Void of Numbness” to our list of the year’s “Most Infectious Extreme Metal Songs“, and our premiere of a bonus track that appeared on the vinyl edition).

Not surprisingly in light of all that, I have very high hopes for Gaerea’s follow-on release, a debut full-length named Unsettling Whispers. Based on the first single from the album, it seems likely those hopes will be fulfilled. Continue reading »

Mar 072017


Well, for those of you who actually pay attention to such things, I obviously failed to post Part 2 of this week’s SHADES OF BLACK column, which I began (here) on Sunday and said I would continue on Monday. And in the meantime, of course, more new metal in a blackened vein has appeared, and it happened to be new music that I really like. So I’ve adjusted my plans (i.e., I’m making this up as I go along so what else is new).

Part 1 of this feature included full album streams, and my intent for the original Part 2 was to focus on individual advance tracks I’d picked from forthcoming albums. I still intend to do that, except that has become Part 3. What I’m doing here is focusing on the new tracks that grabbed my attention yesterday.


I’ve been very curious to hear Dysangelium, which is the debut album of Sweden’s Ensnared. Dysangelium will be jointly released by Invictus Productions and Dark Descent on May 12. The first track, which debuted yesterday, is very promising. Its name is “Apostles of Dismay“. Continue reading »