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:
STEPHEN PARKER’S TOP 11
1. Light Bearer – Lapsus
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.