Jun 102018
 

 

As you can see, I’m resuming this column after failing to get it done the last two Sundays due to other commitments. As a result of the hiatus I’m even more awash than usual in new music from the black realms. So much to choose from… and so perhaps there’s an even greater element of randomness in these choices than usual as well.

FUNERAL MIST

This solo project of the man who goes by Arioch here (and Mortuus when he fronts Marduk) has a habit of surprising people. After a trio of demos and an EP between ’95 and ’98, five years passed and then the Salvation debut album appeared — a record that a great many people still swear by. Six more years passed, and then Funeral Mist released Maranatha without warning. As I recall, it garnered a more mixed response than the widespread praise provoked by Salvation, but I’m one of those who thoroughly enjoyed it. And then so many years passed with nothing new that most fans probably concluded, sadly, that Arioch had laid Funeral Mist to rest, permanently.

Surprise! Continue reading »

Feb 262018
 

 

The fifth edition of Culthe Fest will take place on March 31, 2018, in the city of Münster, Germany. When the festival’s organizers invited us to help spread the word about the event as a co-sponsor, the answer was a no-brainer, based on one glance at the line-up. Feast your eyes upon these names:

UADA (USA)
THE GREAT OLD ONES (FR)
VERHEERER (DE)
HEMELBESTORMER (BE)
TURIA (NL)
ALBEZ DUZ (DE)
BELTEZ (DE)
VYRE (DE)

With only one exception, these are all bands whose music we’ve enthusiastically praised at our site — and the one exception (Vyre) are a band we’ve happily discovered for the first time as a result of their confirmed appearance at Culthe Fest 2018. So it wasn’t a difficult decision to lend our own putrid name to the event. The difficulty is that we’re far away from Münster and haven’t yet gotten the teleporter operational, because this would be a hell of a show to attend in person. If you can be there, you damned well should! Continue reading »

Jan 092017
 

 

The Dutch black metal band Turia made a powerful first impression with their debut album Dor in 2015. Much of the music (which was recorded live) could be characterized as propulsive atmospheric black metal, with teeth — barbed with melodic hooks and relying on sequences of repeating movements that drove the music into your head like railroad spikes. But the album revealed other dimensions as well, including slower and gloomier ones, all of them equally seductive.

The band’s second album, Dede Kondre, will be released on January 23 by Altare Productions (12″ vinyl) and Haeresis Noviomagi (cassette tape). Its title track was released near the end of last year, and today we have the pleasure of bringing you a second song, “Waterzucht“. Continue reading »

Dec 242016
 

sol-invictus-daniel-gautier

 

Once upon a time everything seemed to slow down during the holiday season… or at least everything other than the consumerist frenzy of gift-buying. But now in many ways the final weeks of the year seem as busy and eventful as all the other weeks, both at work and almost everywhere else. This year we even got announcements of a new nuclear arms race that no one asked for — what better way to celebrate peace on earth and good will to men!

I did notice a fall-off yesterday in the flood of messages arriving in the NCS e-mail in-box, but there were still a lot of new-music announcements, and I found even more in my Facebook news feed. There’s a risk that much of what I saw and heard will be overlooked, with many metal-oriented sites and blogs taking time off and many fans diverted from their phones and computers by holiday activities. So I decided, for the hell of it, to devote this Christmas Eve round-up exclusively to news and music streams that appeared (or that I discovered) for the first time yesterday.

Mind you, what follows isn’t everything I noticed, or even everything I enjoyed. I’ve made these selections to provide diversity of sound, and I’ve saved a few nasty things for tomorrow because NCS always does its best to reduce Christmas Day to a smoldering ash heap — praise and glory to Sol Invictus! Continue reading »

Nov 252015
 

Turia-Dor

 

Four days ago I included a review of an excellent debut album named Dor by the Dutch trio Turia in one of our new-music round-ups, and today it’s our pleasure to bring you the premiere of a video for a song from the album called “Zuiverheid“.

For me, Dor was an unexpected encounter, but it has proven to be very seductive. As I wrote in the review, much of the music (which was recorded live) could be characterized as propulsive, atmospheric black metal with teeth, barbed with melodic hooks and relying on sequences of repeating movements that drive the music into your head like railroad spikes. Continue reading »

Nov 202015
 

Lycus-Chasms

 

I came across a ton of new music yesterday that lit me up, too much to cram into a single post. So I made some hard choices, and selected this grouping from six artists with an eye toward creating a diverse listening experience. The last item, of course, isn’t metal — except it kind of is. You’ll see. If I have time I might be able stitch together some more new songs for later today, and if not, tomorrow (because tomorrow is the glorious sixth anniversary of our site’s birth).

LYCUS

January 15 is the date set by Relapse Records for the release of the new album Chasm by Oakland’s Lycus. As you can see, it features cover art by Paolo Girardi. The band’s last album, 2013’s Tempest, was fantastic, and I’ve been curious to see what Lycus would do next.

The new record consists of four long songs, and one of them, “Solar Chamber”, debuted yesterday. Drummer Trevor DeSchryver described its concept this way: Continue reading »