Apr 112023

Thanatomass are returning with a new record, and anyone who’s heard their previous material will know what that means: The gates of Hell are about to be blasted open again, and we’re about to be thrown inside.

Imagining what Hell must be like has been a constant theme of heavy metal bands since early days, but the new music of Thanatomass is so deliriously violent and berserk, and so steeped in an atmosphere of the hideously supernatural, that you might begin to get the chilling suspicion that these Russian black metal deviants have really been there.

And thus it’s no surprise that Thanatomass named their debut album Hades, and who could ask for a more gob-smacking visual to accompany it than what Dávid Glomba has rendered for the album cover and the interior artwork. Maybe he’s been there too? Continue reading »

Mar 212021


I guess it’s usually true that I try to put a lot of variety into these Sunday columns, but today’s selections seem to be even more divergent than usual. As a result, I had a devil of a time figuring out how to arrange the tracks, and I don’t think I succeeded in creating any kind of rational flow, probably because all the songs resist that. However, I do think I succeeded in creating a whiplash effect at the end, so there’s that.

There’s only one full release to be found here. The rest are either singles or advance tracks from forthcoming records. Enjoy!

夢遊病者 (SLEEPWALKER) (Russia, Japan, U.S.)

I decided to begin with the most head-spinning track of everything you’ll find here. Although my head has been spun around before by the escapades of this multi-national avant-garde collective, they’ve really outdone themselves this time. Continue reading »

Nov 172019


As promised earlier, Part 2 of today’s column collects music that, for want of a better word, is more demonic than what I chose for Part 1. It also includes music from four obscure bands whose music I had never heard before this past week — mainly because these are their first releases. But before I get to those, I’m beginning with something new from an old favorite.


I have very fond memories of the 2018 album Lightbringer by the Finnish group Black Royal, and in particular of a song called “The Chosen” that I put on our list of Most Infectious Extreme Metal Songs for that year. I didn’t expect we’d have another album so soon, but that seems to be the case.

Word is, that an album named Firebride will be out on February 14, 2020, via Suicide Records. And on November 1st the band premiered an occult-themed pagan video (here) for an advance track (which has been released as a true single) called “Pagan Saviour“. Continue reading »