Feb 082024

(Andy Synn praises the new album from this German quintet, out Feb 16 on Lifeforce Records)

So far this week I’ve covered a moody “Doom-gaze” album and an ostentatiously melodic piece of bombastic Prog Rock by an ex-Death Metal band… and I’m worried people might be starting to think I’ve gone soft.

Well, to make up for it, here’s a few thoughts about the bleak ‘n’ blistering new album from German Blackened Sludge crew Praise the Plague.

Are you happy now?

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Aug 042021

(Andy Synn draws your attention to four more albums from last month which he feels went overlooked)

Just like the month before, July was absolutely packed with new releases, from bands both new and old, many of which we simply didn’t get around to devoting as much time and attention to as we might have wanted.

As a result, picking just four albums to write about for this article was a serious headache, only slightly alleviated by the fact that the big man himself (Islander, not god, though I’ll forgive you for confusing the two) has written a little something about several of the bands I was considering featuring here – Anatman, Codex Nero, Serpentrance – in the last week or two.

It still wasn’t an easy decision though and so, if I have time, I may end up doing a second one of these columns just to assuage my guilt over not having written about so many new and up-and-coming artists this last month.

In the meantime, however, please enjoy this distinctly blackened edition of “Things You May Have Missed”.

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May 292021


To improve your Saturday, and quite possibly your whole weekend, I’ve collected a baker’s dozen of new songs and videos (including a couple of previously hard-to-find tracks from forthcoming reissues).

I grouped these 13 offerings in ways that I thought made sense. As usual for these kinds of posts, I didn’t take time to track down and upload artwork or purchase links, and I decided to organize my meager introductory comments by the categories I’ve arranged. (Don’t punch me too hard because of the category labels I chose, because I do realize they’re not 100% accurate.)


The first two choices here were recommended by DGR, and the above label clearly applies to both. Andy Synn recommended the third one, and although most people wouldn’t categories Agrypnie as melodic death metal, I do think their new song fits well alongside the first two. Continue reading »

Oct 252019


We would like to offer two rounds of applause to begin this premiere. The first goes to Berlin’s Praise the Plague for the wrenching emotional power channeled by their song “Torment“. The second is for Sven Liebold, whose surreal video for the song is a nightmarish feast for the eyes, one of those ever-changing visual collages that you can’t look away from, and which in this case integrates frighteningly well with the music.

The song comes from a two-track EP by Praise the Plague that was released digitally, and on vinyl by Argonauta Records, on September 13th. Entitled Antagonist II, it follows the band’s debut full-length Antagonist, which was released last year. Both tracks are powerful mood-changers, amalgams of black metal and doom that have the capacity to make you forget about whatever you were doing or feeling before listening, and to transport you into the indigo-dark dimensions where this band dwell. Continue reading »