Aug 022014


To pick up where my last post left off, the aircraft that I boarded yesterday in Seattle did in fact land in Denver, where I and my personal security detail spent the evening drinking beer, eating pizza, and air-guitaring at the Black Sky Brewery in preparation for the sonic holocaust that will begin today (otherwise know as the Denver Black Sky fest).

Because time is short (or more accurately, the time not spent drinking, eating, jawing, and sleeping), this little round-up will be less fulsome than I would like — but still worthwhile, I hope.


We’ve been writing about the Elemental Nightmares project since early days, and it is now a reality. Today Elemental Nightmares released the first of seven 10″ vinyl splits for digital download; the physical copies will start shipping on August 7 or 8.

The first split includes songs by Wildernessking (South Africa), Oak Pantheon (Minnesota), Kess’khtak (Switzerland) Liber Necris (UK), and it features that stunning artwork you see at the top of this post (all of the individual pieces of art for the seven splits, when placed next to each other, will eventually flow together to form one large piece of art). The work was created by Düsseldorf artist Alexander Leybovich (whose web site is here). Continue reading »

Jan 262012

I’m ridiculously far behind in listening to EPs and albums that bands have sent to NCS over the last couple of months. Hell, I’m embarrassingly far behind in even answering the e-mails from bands who sent us music to hear, which is just plain rude. But I’m going to make an effort to catch up, beginning today.

Long ago, in dog years, we started this EYE-CATCHERS series as a way of unscientifically testing the hypothesis that if album art is cool, the music on the album is probably going to be cool, too. Of course, that hypothesis doesn’t make much logical sense, but then again neither does turning water into wine and lots of people seem to buy that, so who knows? Since we started, this series has branched out to include features on metal artwork, in addition to music, but today I’m going back to the original idea.

Liber Necris (“book of the dead”) is a UK band who wrote us in December. The first thing I noticed, even before reading the words, was the cover art you see above for their debut EP/demo, The Immutable Aversion. I thought it was really well done. The artist is Drew Millward, who has created album covers for other bands, in addition to many shirt and poster designs and much else besides (you can see more of his creations via this link), and we’ll have more of his art for Liber Necris at the end of this post. As soon as I saw the art, I resolved to listen to the EP. That was a good decision. Continue reading »