Dec 302015

VHOL-Deeper Than Sky


Welcome to the 7th Part of our list of the year’s Most Infectious Extreme Metal Songs. To listen to the other songs that have been named to this list so far and to read about the criteria for the list as a whole, go HERE.

So far, our list hasn’t included any thrash, but I’m remedying that deficit today. One song comes from an outstanding album by a group of outstanding and well-known American musicians, and the other comes from a much more obscure but very talented Turkish band.


The first song I’m adding today comes from an album we didn’t manage to review this year. It’s not the first or the last entry of that kind. Try as we might, we often fail to pay proper attention to excellent albums due to lack of time or congenital mental deficiency. And VHÖL’s Deeper Than Sky really is excellent. Continue reading »

Oct 132015

Ad Nauseum-EP


Well, I’m back in the saddle after getting repeatedly thrown off my horse by an exhilarating ride at California Deathfest over a long weekend in Oakland. I do plan to finish writing about the event and posting more of my crappy cell phone photos, but just to prove that things are getting back to (ab)normal here at the site, I thought I’d collect some outstanding songs and eye-opening videos that I discovered over the last 24 hours while recovering from a cataclysmic hangover-and-bangover. Presented in alphabetical order by band name…


The very cool cover art that appears at the top of this post attracted me to a new EP that has just been released today on tape by Broken Limbs Recordings for a Floridian band named Ad Nauseum. Two of the songs from this four-track release — “Walls” and “Locked In” — are currently streaming on Bandcamp, where the EP is available as a “name your price” download, and the cassette can be ordered HERE. And those two songs are hellishly good. Continue reading »

Sep 112015

Speedtrap=Straight Shooter


(Here’s Part 3 of Leperkahn’s round-up of new music for this Friday. Part 1 is here, Part 2 is here.)


Prior to finding a full stream of their new album Straight Shooter on Noisey, I hadn’t heard of Finnish troupe Speedtrap. If you’re in the same boat that I was in, I’ll tell you that these guys sound pretty much exactly like you think they will, in that they love Motörhead, as everyone should. This thing is chock full of blazing riffs and cheesy lyrics sung by an oddly bluesy power-metal-type singer — I’m in love. Continue reading »

Aug 262015

Aevangelist-Enthrall To The Void Of Bliss


I haven’t been able to pull together a round-up of news and new music in five days, and you know what that means: I’ve got a backlog that’s so big I’ll never catch up. But instead of just uttering a big sigh and looking ahead instead of behind, I decided I should at least pick some of what interested me out of the last five days’ discoveries (in the hope that they will interest you, too).

The entries in this first part of a two-part post are almost all news items — and they include a ton of great cover art — but since this feature is called Seen and HEARD, I’ve tacked on one new song at the end that you can stream right here. Part 2 will be all music.


This interests me greatly: Through 20 Buck Spin, Ævangelist will release their fourth album on October 9 in the U.S. and October 23 in Europe. A vinyl edition is projected for December. The name of the album is Enthrall To the Void of Bliss. I have to find out who created the cover art, because it’s very good. (UPDATE: I’ve learned that the wonderful art was created by Stephen Wilson [FB page here], and more of his work will appear in the digipak of this album.) Continue reading »

Aug 072013

Metal has a weird streak a mile wide. If you’re honest with yourself, that’ s a big reason you like it so much. But yesterday I saw a new level of oddity. It was a premiere of a new song by Dream Theater. That’s a band I’ve never gotten into, so the news about the premiere of a new Dream Theater song wouldn’t have made me pause — except for where it premiered. If you didn’t already see the news, I could give you 100 guesses, and I’d bet a stack of money the height of your colon, if unraveled and nailed to a telephone pole, that you couldn’t pick the right answer.

Don’t waste your time. I’m telling you, you’d lose, even if you guessed the Kazakhstan Death Metal Observer and Livestock Market Journal. “The Enemy Inside” premiered at USA Today.

That’s right, that full-color organ of shallow American journalism made for people who don’t like to read much, found in printed form in motel rooms and airplane seat-backs across the length and breadth of Our Great Land. This is the same underground publication whose last story about metal was a report about a Black Sabbath concert in Bristow, Virginia, that began with this lively prose:

“The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees (Class of 2006) took the stage here to flashing red lights and the sound of sirens, thundering drums and a devilish laugh — “Ha, ha, ha!” — emitted unmistakably by frontman Ozzy Osbourne.”

Ha, ha, ha! Yes, the kind of sound that only Ozzy Osborne could make unmistakably, that’s the sound I made when I thought about what this means. Continue reading »

Feb 232013

When it comes to music debuts and hot breaking news, Friday’s aren’t usually very eventful. But yesterday was an exception. I posted a lot of new things yesterday as they were happening, but still didn’t cover everything, due to day-job bullshit. Today I’m catching up, with a collection of more sweet new items.


These Greek heavyweights have been rolling out many new songs from their new album Kata Ton Daimona Eaytoy, which Season Of Mist will be releasing next week. But yesterday, the entire album became available for streaming on several sites, including Metal Hammer.

I’m completely sold on this album, though I’ve been holding fire on explaining why because we do have a review in the works. I will once again merely say that you should hear this album. And now you can — via the player I’ve embedded right after the jump. Continue reading »

Feb 202013

As I write this (which was the night before it will be posted), I’m sitting in a hotel room in Texas with a crap-load of day-job work ahead of me on the day you will read this. Actually, I have a crapload of work I should be doing right now. And so this will be the fastest NCS round-up ever — more like an index than anything else.

So, with few words, here are news items and new music I saw and heard that I want to spread around.


Yesterday Profound Lore unveiled the cover to the VHÖL self-titled debut album, which you can see above. The artwork is by band member John Cobbett with design by Kevin Gan Yuen. The release date is April 16. Why do I care about this album? Because the band is composed of the aforementioned John Cobbett (Hammers of Misfortune, ex-Ludicra, GWAR, and Slough Feg), Aesop Dekker (AgallochWorm Oroborus), Sigrid Sheie (Hammers of Misfortune), and Mike Scheidt (YOB). For more about this band, see my previous posts. Continue reading »

Dec 112012

EDITOR’S NOTE: Please welcome a new guest writer who calls himself stop_arcturus. He brings us the following review of the second-ever live performances by a “super group” about whom we’ve been quite intrigued since we first found out about the band’s formation — VHÖL. At the same show, stop_arcturus also caught a rare performance by Bosse-de-Nage (whose most recent split we reviewed recently), as well as the opening set of another Bay Area band whose debut demo we reviewed hereLawless.


VHÖL played the Elbo Room in San Francisco with Lawless and Bosse-de-Nage.

Despite an apparent lack of local promotion, San Francisco’s Elbo Room, an intensely intimate venue, was packed by the time newly minted Profound Lore act VHÖL took the stage. No wonder, considering three of the four members have deep roots in the Bay Area metal scene. Aesop Dekker (Agalloch, Worm Oroborus) was a member of the now-disbanded SF black metal band Ludicra, while Sigrid Sheie plays keys and sings in Hammers of Misfortune. VHÖL guitarist John Cobbett was an integral member of Ludicra and still is with Hammers, as well as having been involved with GWAR and Slough Feg. Only vocalist Mike Scheidt (YOB), VHÖL’s ostensible leader and frontman, hails from outside the Bay. Continue reading »

Sep 032012

Here’s another daily round-up of metal things I saw and heard this morning that I thought were worth sharing. Fair warning: there is clean singing in the first two items, but it’s counter-balanced by harsh vocals and an overlay of darkness.


I came to metal relatively late in life. I’ve devoted a lot of effort catching up on what I missed in the decades preceding my initiation. One of the bands I missed was Wichita-based Manila Road, though judging from the enthusiasm that greeted our report about the band’s scheduled appearance at MARYLAND DEATHFEST 2013, it seems many of our readers are quite familiar with them.

This item, however, is not about Manila Road. It’s about a side project created by Manila Road’s Mark “The Shark” Shelton. The band is called Hellwell, the album is named Beyond the Boundaries of Sin, and it will be released this month by High Roller Records and Shadow Kingdom Records — though it’s already up on Bandcamp. Shelton describes it as “like Manilla Road’s evil twin”, with a sound that resembles “a cross between Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Uriah Heep, early Metallica and Manilla Road.”

The band is named after Ernest “Ernie” Cunningham Hellwell, who Shelton says is a writer of horror-themed fiction and plays keyboards, synthesizers, and bass on Hellwell’s debut album. I am somewhat skeptical about whether Hellwell is a real person as opposed to the alter ego of someone else, because I can find nothing about him in my net sleuthing, either as a writer or as a musician.

In any event, I was attracted to the music by the awesome cover art (above) by Alexander von Wieding, and this morning I listened to about half of the album on Bandcamp. Continue reading »

Aug 302012

You know, if I owned a kvlt metal record label (and therefore, by definition, did not care about food or running water), I would do something like this.

The phone would ring one day, and someone would say, “Would you be interested in signing a band composed of these folks?”

Mike Scheidt (YOB)-Vocals

John Cobbett (Hammers of Misfortune, ex-Ludicra)-Guitars

Sigrid Sheie (Hammers of Misfortune)-Bass

Aesop (Fucking) Dekker (Agalloch, Worm Ouroboros, ex-Ludicra)-Drums

I’d think on it for about two seconds, while wiping the drool off my mouth, and while the inner me would be squealing like a little girl, I’d try to play it cool and ask if there was any music to hear. And upon being told Not Yet, I’d just go ahead and give up and ask where to send the contract, and then excuse myself to go change my shorts.

I’m not exactly sure it went down like that in the offices of Profound Lore. All I know for sure is that this band is a real thing, it’s called VHÖL, they’re recording an album, and Profound Lore plans to release it. Continue reading »