Feb 192018


(This is Andy Synn’s review of the new album by Sweden’s Necrophobic, which will be released by Century Media on February 23, 2018.)


There was a time, way back in 2009, when the constant kvetching and complaining about what constituted “real” Black Metal – mostly fuelled by a bunch of obnoxious elitists online desperately trying to portray themselves as the true heirs to a half-baked ideology cooked up by a bunch of disaffected Norwegian teenagers – started to take a real toll on my ability to appreciate it.

More and more it seemed that, despite being long associated (in my mind at least) with creative freedom and primal emotion, the Black Metal scene was becoming just as ignorant, insular, and cluttered with impotent keyboard warriors and perpetual adolescents, as any other.

Thank God Satan for Necrophobic then, who swept in at just the right time to help reignite my passion for the genre. Continue reading »

Feb 052018

(This is the second part of a new-music round-up compiled by DGR. You can find Part 1 at this location.)


The Kennedy Veil – Bloodletting North America Full Set Live

We ended the first part of this collection with a live music video from Rotting Christ, and speaking of live shows, let’s check in with a Sacramento death metal crew who also wound up with a recorded live show in 2017. This one is courtesy of The Kennedy Veil, whose label Unique Leader recently uploaded the twenty-some-odd-minute full set from when the band were on opening tour duties for the tech-death-packed Bloodletting North America tour, which saw them playing alongside the likes of Origin, Archspire, Dyscarnate, and Defeated Sanity. Continue reading »

Dec 102017


I didn’t expect I would be able to prepare this round-up. I’m still on vacation (through December 15), and have been pretty faithful to the promise I made to She Who Must Be Obeyed that I would not blog (much) during this trip. For example, we had nothing on the site yesterday, which is a rarity.

But, I had a small amount of time to myself this morning, and there didn’t seem to be any harm in checking out some new music. I’ve barely glanced at the NCS e-mail box during the last week, so I decided to start making my way through the mail that arrived over just the last two days (more than that would have devoured my limited blog time this morning). What you will hear in this round-up is the result of that limited and hurried survey.

First, however, I want to share a piece of news that I had missed until Andy Synn indirectly led me to it.


On Friday I posted Andy’s list of his favorite 2017 EPs. One of his choices was inadvertently omitted from the text he originally sent me for posting, and when he caught the error, he sent me some further text, and the omission happened to be a 7″ EP called Pesta that Necrophobic distributed during a tour. Continue reading »

Feb 072016

Rearview Mirror


Sweden’s Necrophobic was formed in 1989 by drummer Joakim Sterner and guitarist David Parland (who left the band in 1995 to concentrate on Dark Funeral and took his own life in 2013). Their debut album, The Nocturnal Silence, was recorded with Tomas Skogsberg at Sunlight Studios and was released by Black Mark Productions in 1993. It really has not aged in 23 years; it’s still a great album. Six more albums followed, the most recent of which is 2013’s Womb of Lilithu, and it’s a very impressive discography, with a sound that blends ingredients from black metal and death metal while incorporating memorable melodies into a framework of undeniable savagery.

Not surprisingly given the band’s longevity, there have been many line-up changes over the years, with Sterner being the only constant member. In recent years the band has included guitarist Fredrik Folkare (Unleashed, Firespawn) and bassist Alex Friberg (Firespawn).

One of the most recent changes was the ouster of long-time vocalist Tobias Sidegård in 2013 on the eve of Womb of Lilithu’s release after being convicted of domestic violence and sentenced to prison. He has been replaced by none other than Anders Strokirk — the man who was Necrophobic’s vocalist when they recorded The Nocturnal Silence but left the band not long after its release. Continue reading »

Aug 072015

Firespawn video clip


I’m getting a very slow start today, having arrived home extremely late last night after going to a hell of a show in Seattle. I dragged my dragging ass to the computer and, while downing the first few gulps of coffee, tried to focus my leery eyes on the NCS e-mail in-box. One of the first things I saw was a press release about a band named Firespawn that I’d never heard of. And then I saw who was in the band, and the names made me sit up straight:

LG Petrov – vocals [Entombed A.D., Morbid, Nihilist]
Fredrik Folkare – guitar [Necrophobic, Unleashed]
Victor Brandt – guitar [Entombed A.D., Six Feet Under (live)]
A. Impaler – bass [Necrophobic, Naglfar (live)]
Matte Modin – drums [Raised Fist, ex-Dark Funeral, ex-Defleshed, ex-Infernal]

I think you’ll agree, that’s a hell of a line-up. Continue reading »

May 162015


(Our man Andy Synn was lucky enough to attend the second annual Incineration Festival in the UK and turns in this report, with videos.)

Let me preface this review with a quick round of thanks to the people who made the festival, and my presence there, possible.

My main thanks go out to Daniel of London Metal Monthly (for whom I also write on a semi-regular basis these days) for arranging my press pass and feeding my ever-expanding ego (though at no point did I have to utter the immortal words “do you know who I am?”… which was a shame).

I also want to thank Steve and Stephen for dealing with the masses of people queuing for wristbands and for sorting my access on the day itself, as well as for all their work behind the scenes in booking the bands, venues, crew, and everything else that must have gone into a mammoth undertaking.

However, they, along with Nimai, are only the names I know of the people who were involved. For an undertaking this big – one that’s only in its second year no less – there must have been a host of other helpers and organisers working alongside them. And although I don’t know their names, I thank them as well. Continue reading »

Feb 062014

I decided to add two trios of songs to the list today, this being the second installment. For more details about what this list is all about and how it was compiled, read the introductory post via this link. To see the selections that preceded the three songs I’m announcing today, click here.

For this current threesome of songs I’m going back to the rough and the raw, to the kind of music that hungers for your flesh and wants your teeth as souvenirs. And man, the grooves on these babies…


I almost overlooked Sorcery’s Arrival At Six as a source of candidates for this list. My faulty memory was telling me this veteran Swedish band’s comeback album was released in 2012, but after double-checking Metal Archives, I saw that it was a January 2013 discharge. What a pleasant discovery — because there’s a song on that album that has become one of my go-to head-wreckers — “Warbringer”. Continue reading »

Oct 232013

Sweden’s Necrophobic trace their roots back to Stockholm in 1989, right in the heart of an explosion of creativity when a uniquely Swedish brand of death metal was beginning to take the world by storm. Yet Necrophobic followed a different path. Along with Dissection (which was also formed in 1989), they began combining elements of death metal and second-wave black metal, helping establish the foundation that would go on to influence a multitude of other bands over the following decades.

Now Season of Mist is on the verge of releasing Necrophobic’s seventh album and their first in four years: Womb of Lilithu. Combining razor-sharp riffs, eerie melodies, progressive lead guitar work, and striking vocal variations, it’s a blend of the vicious and the spellbinding that will stand as one of the band’s strongest works to date.

Today we’re privileged to bring you a full-album stream of Womb of Lilithu. The album is due for release on October 29 in North America and October 25 everywhere else and can be pre-ordered here. Continue reading »

Oct 082013

Ævangelist album art by Andrzej Masianis

“Music has charms to soothe a savage breast,” or so wrote William Congreve (not William Shakespeare) in his play The Mourning Bride (1697). This is in fact true of some music, but what charms your humble editor is music that’s savage rather than soothing. I have four recent examples of metal savagery for you, in the order in which I heard them this morning.


The new album by ÆvangelistOmen Ex Simulacra, will be released on November 29 by Debemur Morti. This is a later date than first reported. Based on the band’s previous output and the first two songs released for this album, it will be worth the wait. In July, we featured the first of those two advance tracks (“Abysscape”), and today Debemur Morti began streaming a second one — “Relinquished Destiny”.

This song takes no prisoners. It shoots the wounded in the head and then rips the corpses into small pieces before consuming them. It delivers an atmosphere of alien horror, and the corrosive distortion can’t disguise the experimental-sounding nature of the riffing and drum progressions, which make the song interesting as well as frightening. As icing on this maggot-ridden cake, death/doom descends at the finale. Continue reading »

Sep 262013

Here’s a round-up of noteworthy things seen and heard over the last 24 hours.


The organizers of MDF XII have been slowly announcing the names of bands who will appear at next year’s edition of the best metal festival in the US. The most recent announcement came earlier this week with four new names: Cancer, from the UK, who will be making their first US appearance since 1993; Sacrifice from Canada, who will be making their first appearance since 1992; Nocturnus (who for legal reasons must call themselves Nocturnus A.D.), who will be playing the entirety of their debut album The Key; Crowbar; and Death Toll 80K from Finland.

I have several friends who are especially hot over the return of Nocturnus, including NCS writer BadWolf, who reviewed The Key in retrospective back in July 2012 (here). There seems to be some uncertainty about which of the band’s original members will be appearing, other than drummer/vocalist Mike Browning. However, Nocturnus performed songs from The Key live in Mexico City last April. Photos of that show can be found here, and videos are on YouTube, too. I wouldn’t recognize the performers, but presumably it will be the same line-up at MDF.

Here’s one of those videos: Continue reading »