Feb 182023

Today I woke up late and moved lazily. For most of my life, and probably yours, that’s the way Saturday mornings always were. Except in my case I had the lunatic idea when I started this blog in the fall of 2009 that I’d post something about music I liked even on Saturday and Sunday, and every holiday.

I thought of that as a way of underscoring that NCS would never be a business, and would consider none of us here as “workers”, because people working “jobs” almost always get weekends off. I think I also believed we might get more visitors due to the lack of competition on the weekends from the somewhat more-established metal sites that were beginning to dot the internet landscape.

And I probably thought the lifespan of NCS would be about a year, so how tough would it be to listen and write on the weekends for a year? Who knew it would go on like it has? I sure as shit didn’t.

In the last 13+ years I’ve failed to make some weekend posts, after a long stretch of never failing, though the number of failure days is still small. So now when I wake up late and move lazily it doesn’t take long before I start to feel like I’d better get my shit in gear, even if the lateness of the morning hour means I’m not able to make the Saturday roundup as extensive as I’d like (which is true today). But… no failure today at least…. Continue reading »

Aug 262020


Although we believe that our site covers a pretty broad range of music, most visitors know when we’re stepping outside that range, climbing over the fences to take a look at something that lies on the other side. What’s usually inside the fences is a landscape of extreme metal, most of it with vocals that aren’t meant for tender ears, and most of it not meant for tender souls either. And to be honest, what lies on the other side is a universe of sounds far more vast than what’s inside.

It’s fair to say that we’ve climbed over those fences today — though maybe keeping one hand on the fence. Or maybe we’ve just pushed the fence a bit further out. The new album by Upcdownc that we’re premiering today definitely has connections to metal — the music does get plenty heavy, and picks its moments to make abrasive assaults on the senses. And as you’ll discover, some of the moods it channels (and there are a wide range of them) become very dark indeed.

But the album undeniably goes places we usually don’t, and for that it has become a refreshing discovery, one that’s persistently tantalizing and transportive. Continue reading »