Jan 232018

Oslo 05072017. Photo: Marius Viken


I guess it’s not a bad time to take stock of where we are in the rollout of this 2017 edition of our Most Infectious Song list, since this is the 10th Part. With the three songs I’m adding today, we’re up to a total of 32 tracks. I had planned to finish the list by the end of this month, so we can finally close the book on last year (or mostly close it) and focus our time more exclusively on the flood of new metal that’s been coming our way in 2018. If I follow through on that plan, it really just means I’ll be calling an arbitrary halt… because I’m still just figuring this out as I go along.

I suppose if I really feel that calling a dead halt on January 31 would leave too many gems behind, I might edge into February, but on the other hand, that could become a very slippery slope. I do have 8 days left in the month, and if I knock out an average of three tracks per day, I can make it to 56 songs… which would be about 20 fewer than usual for this series. We’ll see. Continue reading »

Nov 012017


As explained in Part 1 of this gigantic mid-week round-up, I’m trying to catch up on the flood of new videos and songs that were released on Halloween and the few days leading up to it (although a few of the items I’ve selected are a bit older than that).

Because there are so many things I want to throw at your eyes and ears, I alphabetized everything by band name, beginning with Apophis in Part 1, continuing through Heart Attack in Part 2, and now ending with Watain in this final part. And because I chose so many songs and videos for this round-up, I resorted to a tactic I’ve used occasionally in the past: Although I have dribbled a few words here and there, I’m mainly presenting everything with just basic release info and no reviews. Onward to Part 3:


This is a French one-man project, and the song below (“Destruction Process“) comes from its debut EP. You can’t accuse this band of false advertising. “Destruction Process” is exactly the process of this song — kill everything, let dog sort ’em out. Continue reading »

Sep 212017


(We present Andy Synn’s review of the new album by Satyricon.)

Back in 2013 it seemed as though I was one of the few people – at least of the ones I knew and regularly interacted with – who genuinely enjoyed and appreciated Satyricon’s self-titled opus.

And although, in the years since then, I’ve seen more than a few of them come to appreciate the album’s proggier, more introspective, charms, it remains a divisive and frequently (though not always fairly) criticised entry in the band’s extensive catalogue.

But that doesn’t mean it’s not also a vitally important one.

As a matter of fact, I said at the time, in light of lines like “the stage is yours / I can no longer rule”, that the album was either going to mark the end of the line, or the beginning of a new age, and that only time would tell which was true.

Well, four long, hard years later, we finally have our answer. Continue reading »

Aug 012017


In this past Sunday’s regular episode of this feature I explained that I had more new music in a black vein that I wanted to share and expected I would do it on Monday. So, I’m a day late, and with the delay I’ve expanded it a bit. The result is divergent music by seven bands from seven countries, but we begin with a news item.


Today we got some additional information about the new album by Satyricon. As previously reported, it is entitled Deep Calleth Upon Deep and will be released by Napalm Records on September 22. The cover art is an obscure 1898 drawing by the famous Norwegian artist Edvard Munch. The album has been described by the label as “a wholesale reinvention and a brand new era in SATYRICON history”. And with that titillating pronouncement we also have this statement by frontman Satyr: Continue reading »

Dec 302015

Integrity-Orgasmatron cover


Like a lot of people, I spent most of my music-listening time yesterday with Motörhead. For the hell of it, I also spent time listening to metal bands covering Motörhead songs. A lot of bands have done that. Out of the many covers I listened to,  damned few of them are quite as good as the originals, and at least to my ears, none of them is better.

However, having invested the time hunting for covers that breathed some kind of different life into the classic originals, I decided to put them all here — the good ones and the so-so ones — by these bands: Satyricon, Sepultura, Ringworm (with guest vocals by Barney Greenway), Korpiklaani, Sodom, Machetazo, Avulsed, Overkill, Metallica, Horna, Kvelertak, Warbringer, and Krisiun.

But before I get to those, I’m starting with one that’s definitely a success. It’s a cover  of “Orgasmatron” that Integrity released just yesterday on Bandcamp (here). Continue reading »

Oct 082015

Satyricon 2013


(Andy Synn presents yet another list of his favorite things that come in fives.)

With the recent news that Satyricon frontman Satyr has been diagnosed with a (hopefully benign) brain tumour, I felt now was as good a time as any to wax poetic about my love for the band, and pick out five of my favourite tracks from across their back catalogue.

Once again I’ve tried to stay away from the obvious choices, so you won’t find any mention of “Hvite Krists død” or “Mother North” here, and likewise you’ll also note a distinct absence of the big singles like “Fuel For Hatred” and “K.I.N.G.”.

Still, it’s a testament to the band’s longevity and songwriting prowess that it’s just as easy to pick out any number of other songs that hit the same heights, from across the length and breadth of their creative catalogue, as it is to focus in on their most famous numbers. Continue reading »

Dec 122013

(In this post Andy Synn expresses some opinions that I suspect will not be universally shared. Sound off in the comments… )

Metal and the concept of maturity, if you believe all that you’re told, don’t exactly make for the most common of bedfellows.

Even the kindest of mainstream media outlets still have a tendency to treat the genre as one solely of interest to angsty teens, disaffected Gen-X types, and adults stuck in a perpetual state of arrested development.

I can’t entirely blame them. After all, the majority of metal that hits the mainstream does dwell on the same sort of vapid and generic themes that most narcissistic pop/rap music features as well (raising the question, of course, as to why these genres aren’t also singled out as “just for kids”… liking something “ironically” is no excuse, nor is it believable to be honest).

Still, it’s even more galling when the same sort of questions and vague insults come from inside the scene. Continue reading »

Nov 122013

(Andy Synn reviews the concert delivered by Norway’s Satyricon and Taiwan’s Chthonic last weekend in Manchester, England.)

One thing I have learned this past week is that gigs in the US and the UK run on different time-scales. Whereas our American cousins like to start late and run long, more and more I’m seeing British gigs start early and run to a merciless time-scale.

I’m also seeing more and more shows without an “opener”, as such, relying on the main bands to provide all the necessary draw (a decision which makes clear sense in a lot of ways, as tonight’s sold-out crowd demonstrated).


Case in point – tonight’s doors opened at 7:00, and Chthonic hit the stage at 7:30 on the dot, proceeding to pummel us all with 30 minutes of streamlined melodic black/death metal, augmented by oriental keyboard orchestrations and some righteous Taiwanese ire. Continue reading »

Nov 112013

Here are three new recommended videos that premiered in recent days, two of them this morning. Recommended by me, because I like them.


When Andy Synn reviewed Satyricon’s self-titled 2013 album for us, he wrote this about the song “Phoenix”: “Instantly divisive, seemingly designed to be hated, its clean, almost bluesy vocals (courtesy of Sivert Høyem) and ringing guitars initially like a step beyond all bounds of the group’s history. But look closer. Those drums, those slow-blooming riffs, they retain the essence of the band. Listen to what the song represents. They have rediscovered their spark, their fire, and their roots – but not perhaps in a way that they, or any of us, would have thought. It’s strange. It’s unexpected. It’s provocative… It’s Satyricon through and through.”

On September 8 Satyricon performed “Phoenix” as part of their concert with the Norwegian National Opera Chorus in the Norwegian Opera House in Oslo. That performance has now become the first official music video from the new album, and it again features Sivert Høyem on vocals. I love this song (and yes, I know it’s nothing but clean vocals), and the video is damned cool, too. Watch it next. Continue reading »

Aug 122013

(Andy Synn reviews the forthcoming, self-titled album by Norway’s Satyricon, and we also include a brand new song at the end of the review. We are so early with this that the album art still hasn’t been unveiled. What you see above is a place-holder.)

I can already tell that this is going to be a divisive record. Some will love it. Some will hate it. I don’t doubt that a few will simply have no interest in what it’s trying to say. And I doubt very much the band will care either way…

You see, their part is effectively done. Satyr and Frost have spent their time away from the limelight experimenting, exploring, and re-evaluating what they do. Branching out into other areas (both musical and non-musical) has clearly given them a chance to clear their minds and sharpen their thoughts. It’s no surprise then that they’ve chosen to inaugurate their return – and indeed, a new chapter in the tale of Satyricon – with a self-titled album.

And what an album it is. Challenging. Difficult. Resolutely uncommercial, yet subtly, insidiously compelling. Continue reading »