Jun 182014
 

I never got around to posting a second round-up yesterday, as I had planned, so I’m loading up this one not only with what I had intended to feature yesterday but also with some other items I discovered last night. Yeah, that makes this a really long post, but what else have you got to do?

As you’ll see, I’m indulging my taste for blackness, death, and deathly blackness, though for those of you less interested in slaughter and depravity, you can skip to the more melodious song at the end. There’s actually a bit of clean singing in that last one.

BLOOD OF KINGU

Earlier this month I reported that Ukrainian black metal band Blood of Kingu (started by Roman Sayenko of Drudkh) would be releasing their third album via Season of Mist on September 2 in North America (and August 29 everywhere else). The title is Dark Star on the Right Horn of the Crescent Moon. Yesterday, thanks to my friend Vonlughlio, I learned that Terrorizer has now premiered the first advance track from the album, “Enshrined in the Nethermost Lairs Beneath the Oceans”.

The song wastes no time unleashing a torrent of blasting drums and rippling tremolo runs that carry a seductive melody behind gargantuan vocal proclamations. An aura of infernal darkness radiates from the music in waves, but man, it’s also highly infectious. You’ll need to go HERE to listen. Blood of Kingu have a Facebook page at this location. Continue reading »

Jan 202014
 

We present Part 7 of our list of the year’s most infectious extreme metal songs. For more details about what this list is all about and how it was compiled, read the introductory post via this link. To see the selections that preceded the two I’m announcing today, click here.

BLOOD RED THRONE

Norway’s Blood Red Throne greeted 2013 with a new self-titled album featuring a new line-up of talent. Andy Synn summed it up as follows in his NCS review:

“Marrying the demented aggression of Cannibal Corpse to the teeth-grinding groove of Pantera at their most abrasive, shot through with touches of subtly complex guitar work a la Death at their most focussed and hostile, BRT’s seventh full-length album captures every aspect of their sound in microcosm, while also being their shortest, most refined, record since 2003’s Affiliated With The Suffering….

“…For all their extremity – and there are moments on this album where the mind-bending blast frenzy, the ravenous banshee howls, and the crushing meltdown riffage combine into an eruption of absolute face-melting extremity – Blood Red Throne are a band with real character. That, along with their monstrous, inhuman tightness (and unbelievable ability to consume alcohol) is their key strength.” Continue reading »

Sep 062013
 

(Here’s the third and final part of Andy Synn’s review of 2013’s edition of the SUMMER BREEZE festival in Germany. Part 1 is here, and Part 2 is here. Once again, Andy provides video that he filmed at the performances.)

The third, and final, day of the festival was a funny one. It seemed (at the time) that this was going to be the day when I only saw a few bands – particularly as I had a long gap planned at one point to do some shopping and eating and such. But, now that I look back on it, I see that I actually watched a good seven full sets, most of them pretty long, five of them from bands I absolutely adore. So, all in all, actually a very, very good day.

 

Oddly enough the first band of the day was to be Portugese goth-metal masters Moonspell, a band I’m not really a fan of, per se, but whose stellar performance at Inferno earlier this year definitely made me want to check them out again.

Consummate showmen, with an enviable brace of infectious songs and killer riffs, the group managed to turn a brightly-lit early afternoon slot into something of a gothic mecca, their passionate performance crafting a clear and well-received connection with the crowd before them.

We were also treated to one of those wonderful “festival moments” when current Tristania singer singer Mariangela Demurtas came out to add her vocals to a fantastic run-through of “Raven Claws” (although her awkwardly sexy dancing and casual clothes felt oddly at odds with the song’s darkly seductive vibe). Continue reading »

Apr 032013
 

(NCS writer Andy Synn has returned from Oslo’s Inferno Festival, held on March 27-30, 2013, and brings us a multi-part report of what he saw and heard, along with photos. Check out his Opening Day report here.)

Kicking off the festival-proper at the early time of 17:30 Horned Almighty were like a veritable boot to the face of the assembled audience. Nasty, brutal, and brimming with feral punk aggression, the group come across as a bad-boy version of the Misfits, raised on black metal nihilism and death metal misanthropy, and kick up a hell of a racket, with a truly demolition-strength guitar tone. Material from across their four albums bulked out the set, with the strongest focus being on Contaminating The Divine and Necro Spirituals.

Frontman S. didn’t let the fact that the band were opening the festival proper intimidate him, spitting necrosadistic venom at the crowd with his spiteful, belligerent snarl, while the aptly-named Carnage on bass was a stalking, twisting revelation of spindly fingers and malevolent contortions. Give these guys a longer set and a bigger stage someone! Continue reading »

Mar 152013
 

I caught a slight break from the daily work grind last night, long enough to find three items I think are worth your time, and then NCS writer DGR added a fourth.

HACRIDE

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: Hacride’s new album is in my “highly anticipated” category for 2013. As in, I get high thinking about it. It’s not simply that the band have proven their worth with their past releases, it’s that they’ve proven they’re unlikely to stand still and simply deliver more of the same (though I would be happy enough with that). So, curiosity is one reason I’ve been eager to hear Back To Where You’ve Never Been.

The first taste came yesterday when Metal Sucks premiered a song from the album named “Overcome”, and man, it’s really strong. It’s loud, it’s brash, it’s packed with energy, it’s built around some killer grooves, and it’s interesting. I even dig the clean singing. Don’t waste time, go here to check this out. Continue reading »

Jan 312013
 

(In this post, NCS writer Andy Synn reviews the new album by Poland’s Hate, which is scheduled for release in North America on February 5.)

Ok, let’s start by acknowledging the elephant in the room, shall we? For years now (more than I’d care to count, in fact) it’s been de rigeur to punctuate any review or feature on Hate with references to… that other band. You know the one. The ‘other’ blackened death metal band from Poland. Begins with a ‘B’…

Anyway, I think that’s been done to death. We all know the similarities by now, just as we should all realise there’s more than enough room in the world for both acts to be taken and judged on their own merits. So I’m going to conduct this whole review without even once mentioning the ‘B’ word, or making reference to ‘they who shall not be named’. In fact, I’m going to pretend they don’t even exist.

Now Solarflesh is Hate’s eighth full-length album, and offers up a more refined – and perhaps even more crushing – take on a sound that the band have been developing since (at least) 2003’s Awakening Of The Liar, a hybrid of black atmospherics and brutal death metal aggression, which has slowly taken on more and more of a spiritual, metaphysical aspect as the years have gone by. Added to this is that, as opposed to… some other band… there’s always been something more intimate about Hate’s approach, something that works to set them apart, even as they give rapturous voice to their own inner demons. Continue reading »

Dec 072011
 

When I had my head in the clouds on vacation last month, the French label Listenable Records compiled a sampler of music for free download that I completely missed. Fortunately, it’s still available, and it’s quite a collection of music. There are some bands on the list whose names I don’t recognize and a few whose music doesn’t do anything for me, but on the other hand, it includes songs from some bands that are as strong as horseradish. Just to name a few:

GOJIRA

SVART CROWN

HATE

PANZERCHRIST

CAVUS

DARKANE

LIVARKAHIL

THE RED SHORE

There are 22 tracks in all. After the jump, you can check out the full track list and get the download link. Continue reading »

Sep 172011
 

As a public service, I thought I’d let you know about two North American tours I just noticed yesterday, plus two others announced earlier but not previously mentioned at NCS. The first of the newer ones is advertised by the poster above. What caught my eye, in addition to the name Korpiklaani, was the fact that Russia’s Arkona is on this tour. Arkona is a recent discovery for us here at NCS, thanks to our friend Trollfiend, who provided a guest review of the band’s new album Slovo. Also included on the tour are Polkadot Cadaver and Forged in Flame. I don’t yet know anything about those two bands, but I’m very tempted to see this show simply because of Arkona (though I like Korpiklaani, too), especially because the Seattle stop will be at a relatively small club.

The second tour is the 2011 edition of Thrash and Burn. This has been a summer tour since its inception, but it was a no-show in the summer just past and now appears to have emerged as a re-branding of Winds of Plague’s fall headlining tour. Following in the footsteps of Summer Slaughter, Winds of Plague and the promoters of this tour nominated a group of bands to fill the last tour slot and let fans vote for a winner. A couple days ago, the winner was announced, and it’s Volumes. Interestingly, Volumes was also one of the nominated bands on the Summer Slaughter ballot, but didn’t make the cut that time and instead were included on the Slaughter Survivors Tour. Volumes has a new album called Via that’s getting some buzz, though I haven’t heard it yet.

The rest of the bands on this version of Thrash and Burn are Chelsea Grin, As Blood Runs Black, For the Fallen Dreams, Upon A Burning Body, In the Midst of Lions, and Like Moths to Flames. In other words, the tour should be renamed Deathcore and Burn. No tour schedule has yet been announced.

I must admit that among the fall tours we haven’t yet mentioned at this site, I’m personally more interested in the Mastodon/Dillinger Escape Plan/Red Fang tour and the Mayhem/Keep Of Kalessin/Hate/Abigail Williams tour (which will be joined by Woe on 13 dates not yet specified). The schedules for the Korpiklaani tour and those others I just mentioned are after the jump. Continue reading »

Jan 152011
 

It’s January, not December, so many months will pass before we turn again to compiling a list of the year’s most infectious extreme metal songs. But if we were to do it now, ten songs on the list would come from Hate‘s new album, Erebos. It’s death metal heroin, a charged syringe of addiction, a heatseeking missile headed for the hottest part of your brain.

Hexen can flat-out fly on the drums, creating an aura of chaos without losing control, rumbling and rocking, inflicting the blasts and the double-bass at just the right moments, jolting you hard as he marks the time signatures.

Adam the First Sinner and Destroyer are galvanizing guitarists — dextrous, fiery, capable of generating a variety of tones with a variety of techniques, applying hacksaws to your spine, triggering helpless convulsions, swarming, swirling, sawing, whining, but never veering far from a foundation of industrial-strength hammering.

Mortifer‘s playing is taut and icy, his bass running underneath in a rumbling thrum and then syncing up with the guitar rhythms to infect those quasi-industrial riffs that won’t let you stay still.  (more after the jump, including a track . . .) Continue reading »

Sep 182010
 

I’m a bit behind in my reading of Blabbermouth, and therefore missed some orgasmically good news that appeared late yesterday. But thanks to some info last night from my collaborator IntoTheDarkness and then a pathetically sad post today by DemiGodRaven at The Number of the Blog, I now know that Rotting Christ is coming to NorthAm in a headlining tour next spring. And may I say just how fucking happy I am?  I believe I will.  I am just soooooo fucking happy!

This almost makes up for the deep depression I experienced when learning that THE DECIBEL DEFIANCE TOUR, featuring Suffocation, The Faceless, Through the Eyes of the Dead, Decrepit Birth, and Fleshgod Apocalypse would be playing Tulsa but not Seattle — the sort of mortification that DemiGodRaven expressed upon learning that Rotting Christ would be playing Seattle but not Sacramento.

Brother, I feel your pain. Well, not really.  It’s more accurate to say that I would feel your pain except that I’ve managed to get over THE DECIBEL DEFIANCE TOUR’s snubbing of Seattle and I’m now in a painless state of bliss just thinking about the chance to see Rotting Christ in about six short months when they stop here.

There are some other bands on that tour — Melechesh, Hate, Abigail Williams, and Lecherous Nocturne — and that’s a pretty strong set of supporting acts. I’m especially interested in listening to Melechesh play their unique brand of Mesopotamian metal in the flesh. But — and no disrespect is intended to any of those other bands — I would gag my way through a supporting lineup of Katy Perry, Justin Bieber, and Nelly as long as Rotting Christ was waiting at the end.

I am soooo fucking happy. (The tour dates and places are after the jump.) Continue reading »