Apr 222022


(On May 14th Floga Records will release the second album of the Greek black metal band Synteleia, and in anticipation of that Comrade Aleks got in touch with the band’s vocalist and lyricist Nyctelios, and we present their conversation today.)

According to the official press release, Synteleia’s new album The Secret Last Syllable is the natural successor to their debut album Ending of the Unknown Path. You maybe heard it back in 2019 – an honest example of mysterious Hellenic black metal. Now the band return with “nine mystical songs thematically based on the Cthulhu Mythos by H.P. Lovecraft and The Necronomicon”, and that’s enough for me. Cthulhu R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn, brothers and sistres! Cthulhu fhtagn!

So we have these new nine hymns in the name of macabre gods and we have their author Nyctelios (vocals, lyrics) here, to spread Synteleia’s blasphemous knowledge. Continue reading »

Mar 202022


As you can see, I have ambitions for a two-part SOB this Sunday. Part 1 is obviously done, so I can confidently state that it includes singles and advance tracks from forthcoming albums. My plan for Part 2 is to recommend a collection of complete albums that have recently been released, albeit without proper reviews. Let’s get to it:


Blut Aus Nord‘s mastermind Vindsval has characterized his creations under that name as a “process of perpetual regeneration”. In introducing BAN‘s last album Hallucinogen, he observed: “Music is a fascinating quest without end… and it would be a mess to express the same range of emotions, a mess to remain frozen in the same aesthetic, the same energy, a mess to compose and release the same thing again and again… and again.” Continue reading »

Aug 072019


“Hellenic black metal” could be misunderstood as simply a geographic descriptor, nothing more than a reference to black metal bands located in Greece. And if you were to survey music released over the last five years by the many fine black metal bands practicing their art from that ancient country, simply encompassing them in a straight-forward geographic category might be understandable, because that music displays considerable stylistic diversity.

But “Hellenic black metal” isn’t merely a geographic reference point. The phrase has another meaning, which refers to a distinctive combination of musical ingredients, and a certain undaunted spirit, reflected in the classic early releases of such bands as Varathron, Rotting Christ, and Necromantia. Last summer, Bandcamp Daily published a primer captioned “A Brief Guide to Hellenic Black Metal”, which included this description:

“Hellenic black metal,” as it’s often called, became a force in the cradle of Western civilization around the same time as the most infamous happenings in the Norwegian scene. Yet the bands associated with Hellenic black metal were worlds apart from the church-burning hordes—not just aesthetically, but also sonically and philosophically. The Hellenic sound was defined by an embrace of traditional heavy metal riffing, elements of Greek folk music, a reverence for epic stories rooted in the country’s history and mythology, and a sun-dappled atmosphere that places the music firmly next to the Mediterranean Sea rather than a freezing fjord”. Continue reading »