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 »

Feb 292020
 

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: With just a few modest changes, the following post was an extensive e-mail we received from our valued supporter Speelie, intended as suggestions of black metal we might check out and recommend to others if we liked it. But with his permission we decided to simply pass on his worthy ideas straight from him to you. We’ll have other suggestions for you in the usual SHADES OF BLACK column tomorrow.

While my primary area of historical study is the Second World War, I also study the military campaigns involving Native Americans and the Canadian First Nations. An offshoot of the latter is the colonial history of Quebec.

During the 17th and 18th Centuries, it was a fascinating place. The harsh climate worsened the effects of epidemics and famine from crop failures. The French and the natives generally got along decently, but many natives resisted attempts to Catholicize them. The Jesuits sent reports known as Relations back to France yearly, and these have been preserved. So have many tribal traditions and oral histories.

Both of these sources recount that they saw the other as including dangerous and powerful sorcerers in their ranks. Quebec also faced devastating raids by the Iroquois and invasions by the British. Continue reading »