Jun 262023

(Andy Synn would like to recommend this gourmet feast from long-time NCS favourites Krigsgrav)

Recipe for success:

  • Start with a base of moody, atmospheric Black Metal – ideally with overtones of Agalloch and undertones of Enslaved
  • Add a dash (and a half) of doomy darkness of the post-Paradise Lost or Daylight Dies variety (other, equivalent substitutes are acceptable)
  • Top it off with liberal layers of majestic (ideally Finnish-flavoured) Melodic Death Metal melancholy

And then, if you’re very lucky, you might just end up with something half as good as Fires in the Fall.

Continue reading »

May 242023

(In the article below Todd Manning introduces our premiere of a song from a new album by the band Krigsgrav, which will be released next month through Wise Blood Records.)

We may be entering the summer here in the States, but there’s a bitter chill in the air thanks to the latest from Texas-based black metal outfit Krigsgrav. Fires in the Fall, available June 23rd courtesy of the excellent Wise Blood Records, picks up where 2021’s The Sundering left off as Krigsgrav continue to perfect their particular brand of melodic black metal.

An Everflowing Vessel” kicks off with a masterful melody, possessing an epic grandeur, but it is also unquestionably heavy when paired with the drums. The main vocal line, once introduced, is scathing, but soon clean vocals arrive in the background to reinforce the song’s scale. At first glance, the sound sits somewhere between Dissection and Wolfheart, but ultimately it is difficult to pigeonhole Krigsgrav. Continue reading »

Jul 202021


One of our favorite bands, Krigsgrav, will be returning on August 6th with a new album named The Sundering, to be released through Wise Blood Records. This is their sixth full-length since 2004 and features a revised line-up that now includes not only David Sikora (drums, bass, backing clean vocals) and Justin Coleman (vocals, rhythm guitars, ambient noise), but also new lead guitarist Cody Daniels, whose name will be familiar to many of us as a member of Giant of the Mountain.

If there is a spiritual center to Krigsgrav’s amalgamation of black metal and melodic death/gloom, it is the portrayal of bleakness. In Justin Coleman‘s words, “Krigsgrav is based around beauty in darkness, our stoic internal reflection and just the smallest amount of hope that can still be found, even at life’s darkest moments.” He further explains that The Sundering in particular “is based around the dread of a natural event occurring and having no control, but trying to find the means to pull yourself together to get through it all. It is about personal perseverance in the face of absolute crushing odds that should not allow it. Our lyrical content is almost consistently about our place in this world, and how finite and fragile our existence is.”

One concrete source of this thematic focus was the devastating hurricane that decimated the then-thriving island city of Galveston in Krigsgrav’s home state of Texas in 1900 — a stunning assault of nature than left 8,000 dead in its wake. If only that were a never-to-be-repeated event, but as we all know, extreme weather events have become relentlessly more common and are likely to be an ever-present part of our experience for a long time to come. Continue reading »

Sep 112018


I first learned of Krigsgrav almost four years ago when Panopticon’s Austin Lunn included their third album The Carrion Fields on his 2014 year-end list at our site, praising it as “a fantastic release” with “the unique sound that American folk/Black metal has become known for, but with some Brave Murder Day thrown in there for good measure”. Two years on from that well-received third album, we had the privilege of premiering their next full-length in 2016, Waves of Degradation, which moved me to write: “As you listen to this largely mid-paced music, it’s not hard to imagine weary souls crossing the plains, hiking through rain-drenched primordial forests, or crossing ice-bound mountain passes. The music is both earthy and mystical, storming and plaintive.”

Krigsgrav have undergone some changes since then, amicably shrinking their line-up to guitarist/vocalist J. Coleman and drummer/bassist David Sikora, and they’ve recorded a new album named Leave No Path to Follow. The changes go beyond the line-up, as reflected in the music on this new record. But the emotional power of the songs is undiminished, even as the band’s musical evolution has continued.

Two songs from the album have been made available to the public so far, and we’re adding a third one today, the last original track on the album before a closing cover of Katatonoa’s “Brave” (a choice that itself will tell you something about the band’s current direction). Its name is “The End (Forever Mourne)“, presented here with video accompaniment. Continue reading »

Mar 302016

Krigsgrav-Waves of Degradation


I had not really explored Krigsgrav’s music until Panopticon’s Austin Lunn included The Carrion Fields on his 2014 year-end list at our site, praising it as “a fantastic release” with “the unique sound that American folk/Black metal has become known for, but with some Brave Murder Day thrown in there for good measure”. Now, almost two years on from that well-received third album, this Texas-based band have signed with Bindrune Recordings, which will soon be releasing their new album Waves of Degradation. In advance of its April 1 release date, we bring you a full stream of the new album.

Krigsgrav’s partnership with Bindrune is a natural one. The label has released excellent albums by such bands as Panopticon, Alda, and Falls of Rauros, and Waves of Degradation will undoubtedly appeal to fans of those bands. Though Krigsgrav’s early works embraced a raw, vicious form of orthodox black metal, they have now well and truly left those days behind. Although the band still amplify the intensity of their sound by integrating the vibration of tremolo chords, blast-beat flurries, and high, agonizing shrieks (along with arid roars), the strength of their music (and its emotional power) now lies in the somber yet sublime atmospheric quality of their folk-influenced melodies. Continue reading »