Dec 232011

EDITOR’S FORWARD: I’m a big fan of Portland-based Arkhum and have written about them multiple times at NCS, including this fairly recent post. The band includes two brothers — lead vocalist/lyricist Kenneth Parker and guitarist/vocalist Stephen Parker. Recently, each of them has provided NCS with guest interviews — Stephen interviewing Jason William Walton (Agalloch, Self Spiller) and Kenneth interviewing Izedis of apocalyptic black noize merchants Enbilulugugal.

As part of our year-end Listmania series, I asked each of them if they would let me publish their personal lists of the year’s best albums, and they agreed. Both lists include albums I’ve never heard before — which is a big part of why this Listmania thing is fun — and so at the end of this post I’ve randomly included some music from the albums that were new to me. Here we go:


1. Light BearerLapsus

If anyone out there is a fan of the sludge/neocrust titans Fall of Efrafa, you know who Light Bearer are. The first track I heard was ‘Prelapsus’, and it was amazing. The track starts with the signature vocal magic from Alex CF. His harsh but emotional vocals really set the tone for this entire track. After a lengthy but necessary buildup, the track busts into an orgasmic display of bassist Tom Watson’s vocal range. When you hear Watson and Alex sing/scream the lines “We are the sons of fire, we are the daughters of light”, prepare to have chills from your head to your toes. Continue reading »

Dec 202011

EDITOR’S FORWARD: Beloved readers, allow me to make a few introductions. Kenneth Parker is the vocalist for Arkhum, a Portland-based metal band we’ve written about frequently (most recently, here). Izedis is the vocalist and bass player for Enbililigugal, a self-described apokalyptic black noise band from the nether regions of California with “an insane vision of Frostfucked Black Metal Goatsodomy.” His bandmates are known as KumSlinger and Alcoholonomicon. Recently, Kenneth Parker interviewed Izedis for NCS, because, to be brutally honest, I was too fucken scared to do it myself.

Kenneth: It’s been quite a length of time since the release of your full-length, Noizemongers for GoatSerpent. Any plans, immedidate or otherwise, to unleash a second album?

Izedis: When the GoatSerpent commands, there is a feeling in which you get where you spontainiously combust in orgasmic fecaltude. The Full Length is called “The Day After” and in which it shows the destruction of this thing in the world called human beings, there is a sense of calm in the deaths. This is why there are many ways to interperate this blank expression of cunt noise. To tell you the truth, there is nothing that can be done to passify the trends from within the scenes of the mules known as consumers, so we just give it to the public the way they see it, no sense of hope. After this, the full length has no name but is in the works with Alcoholonomicon. KumSlinger made “The Day After” into a. And within this the senses will tell you to pull away and take the high road with The GoatSerpent. Run for the mountains now. Continue reading »

Aug 202010

We first stumbled across an unsigned Oregon band called Arkhum about six weeks ago. We were intrigued by the striking cover art for a yet-to-be-released album and included the band in one of our occasional EYE-CATCHERS features (here). At that time, the only music we had available to us were rough mixes of two songs for the forthcoming album and an earlier 2009 track. But those three songs certainly grabbed our attention in  a big way.

Much has happened to Arkhum in those six weeks. Today, the band officially releases its debut album, Anno Universum, and we can now report that they have been signed by the Vendlus Records label (home to such talented bands as Agalloch and Wolves in the Throne Room), which will begin distributing the album worldwide later this fall.

Arkhum was kind enough to give us an advance copy of the eight songs on Anno Universum and we’re happy to report that our earlier instincts about the band have proven to be correct: Anno Universum is stunning — one of the best debuts we’ve heard in 2010.

We got so excited about the music that we pestered Arkhum for an interview, and brothers Stephen and Kenneth Parker patiently answered our meandering questions. In the post immediately below this one, you can read that interview, which turned out to be pretty damned interesting.

In this post, we’ll try to explain why Anno Universum has made such a strong impression on us and why we think you’ll be hearing lots more about Arkhum in the months to come.  (more after the jump, including a song from the new album . . .) Continue reading »

Aug 202010

Arkhum promo

ARKHUM (photo by Jessica Stover)

We were so excited about the just-released debut album by Oregon’s Arkhum — which we reviewed here — that after we got the chance for an advance listen, we asked if the band would subject itself to an e-mail interview.

Proving themselves to be kind-hearted as well as talented artists, guitarist Stephen Parker and his brother, vocalist and lyricist Kenneth Parker, agreed. They didn’t even try to back out after they saw our questions, which included such penetrating inquiries as what it’s like being in a band with your brother and whether they ever try to beat the hell out of each other.

In addition to getting the answer to that question, we also learned details about how Arkhum’s label-signing came about (which is breaking news all by itself), the science-fictional topics addressed in the album’s lyrics, Kenneth Parker’s recommendations about other bands, Arkhum’s future plans (including the next album), and more.

We thought the answers to our questions were interesting, and might be interesting to you, too. So, what follows after the jump is our interview of the brothers Parker from Arkhum. Continue reading »