May 122020


(At the end of February we published a guest edition of our SHADES OF BLACK column [here] which began as an e-mailed group of recommendations by our valued supporter Speelie. It included music from the Québec black metal scene. Just a few days ago Speelie e-mailed additional recommendations that focused entirely on black metal from Québec, and with our encouragement he turned that into the following post.)

The Métal Noir Québécois guys sure like to keep busy. NCS has posted plenty of news and links about the Quebec scene, including some from me previously. But Quebec continues to take a leading place among the flood of 2020 Black Metal releases.

Forteresse were always the standard bearers for the Métal Noir Québécois movement, but I suspect the band is on hold for the moment. The guys are all involved in other projects right now, and these are starting to see the light. There seems to be an unwritten rule that the cooler the old, colonial-era painting that a Quebec band can find, the better the album it is used for. Guitarist Moribond has a new solo project called Serment, with this amazing cover art: Continue reading »

Jan 052020


Welcome to another edition of this column, the first of the roaring ’20s. I’m a bit late getting this one finished, so I’ll dispense with any further introductory words and just go right to the music.


When I see the phrase “cult album”, it often seems to refer to something only about five people ever heard, and isn’t all that good. But sometimes it means the kind of thing that made an out-sized impact by a band that then simply disappeared. Lurker of Chalice‘s self-titled album, released in 2005, is one of those. It was that project’s only full-length, and nothing more came after it, but it is vividly remembered by many listeners to this day, more than 15 years later.

Now, there will be another Lurker of Chalice album, though it may not be exactly what people were hoping for. Continue reading »