Jan 242020


I’ve been following the activities of the Greek solo project Primeval Mass since having my eyes opened wide by Karmazid‘s cover art for the band’s third album, To Empyrean Thrones, in 2016. After hearing only one song I described the music there as “a treasure chest of riffs, one jewel after another”: ” When the music accelerates into a white-hot fury, it’s a mainline injection of pure adrenaline, but its’s just as gripping when it courses like shimmering streamers of lights. The inflamed vocals — a combination of demonic barking and head-back howls — are a perfect match to the molten, cyclonic surging of the music.”

In a subsequent review accompanying our premiere of a full stream of that album I summed up its atmosphere as “one of chaos made manifest in sound”, yet observed that “within these thrashing maelstroms lurk tantalizing melodies, booming grooves, white-hot solos, and well-timed changes of pace”, as well as surprising diversions and digressions that made the album fascinating and also highly infectious.

Now, Primeval Mass is returning with a fourth album, Nine Altars (with equally stunning cover art by Martin from LGN Art), that’s set for release on February 21st by Katoptron IX Records, and today we get the chance to share a track from it, fittingly named “Burning Sorcery“. Continue reading »

Jan 192016

Primeval Mass-To Empyrean Thrones


Tomorrow (January 20) is the release date for To Empyrean Thrones, the remarkable new album by the Greek black metal band Primeval Mass. This is the band’s third full-length and the first on which the musician known as Orth handles all instruments and vocals.

The first song I heard from the album, “For Astral Triumphs”, was released for listening well in advance of the album last spring. It made an immediate and powerful impact; if it weren’t attached to a 2016 album, it would easily have made my list of 2015’s “Most Infectious Extreme Metal Songs”. And it turns out that the song has strong competition from seven other excellent tracks. Continue reading »

May 032015


Over the last week I came across a lot of music I thought was worth sharing that could all loosely be labeled “black metal”, so much music that I’ve divided this collection into two parts (Part 1 is here). Part of what interested me in all this music was the diversity of the sounds. In some cases, the main connection to the label “black metal” is simply the spirit I sense in the songs, and in other instances simply the presence of certain musical elements in combination with others that aren’t typically associated with this increasingly amorphous genre.

And so, some of what you’re about to hear in this two-parter may be quite different from what you’re expecting, but I thought it was all very good and I hope you enjoy it.


I haven’t written about this one-man project from lovely San Antonio, Texas, since the spring of last year, when I repeatedly featured tracks from Goatcraft’s last album The Blasphemer — as well as Lonegoat’s answer to this question (which I still find remarkably perceptive and eloquent): “What in your opinion are the essential elements – instrumentally, emotionally and philosophically – that comprise the heart and essence of Metal?” (reprinted at the end of this post). Continue reading »