May 112018

Hundred Year Old Man

(Andy Synn delivers another installment in a series focused on recent releases by UK bands.)

There’s not going to be too much preamble for this edition of “The Best of British”, mainly because I’m currently very busy with work for my day job, work for my band(s), and work for a certain other music magazine, all of which are collectively conspiring to monopolise most of my time at the moment.

Be that as it may, however, I’m hoping there’s enough variety contained within these three albums – some of which you might say are a little bit off our regularly beaten path here at NCS – that most of our readers will be able to find something they can engage with and enjoy. Continue reading »

Nov 132015

Damnation Festival 2015


(Andy Synn provides this report on the 2015 edition of Damnation Festival in the UK.)

It’s been a few years now since I last attended Damnation Festival, the annual celebration of all things dark and metallic hosted (as always) at Leeds University Student’s Union. But this year I knew I simply couldn’t miss it, as not only were a number of my favourite bands playing (hello Sólstafir, hi there Primordial) but also two bands I’ve been a fan of since their very first albums, but whom I’d never actually managed to see live before (The Ocean, Altar of Plagues).

Oh, and some band named At The Gates. Who are apparently pretty famous or something. Continue reading »

Jul 142014

Here’s just a short little something something that may make you smile, as it did me.

Akercocke may sadly be no more, but the spirit of the band lives on… in Legos. What you’re about to see is an animated video made by Akercocke fan “LegonardoDaFinci“, using Legos. It stars Darth Vader (aka Blast Vader) in the role of Akercocke’s drummer David Gray in a “drum play-through” of part of the song “Eyes of the Dawn” from Akercocke’s Words That Go Unspoken, Deeds That Go Undone (2005). LegonardoDaFinci did something like this before, in a Lego-ized tribute to Cryptopsy (here).

David Gray, of course, is still alive and well and performing in the UK black metal band Voices along with former Akercocke members Peter Benjamin and Sam Loynes. Their debut album From the Human Forest Create a Fugue of Imaginary Rain was released in March 2013 by Candlelight — and, what the hell, I might as well embed the player for that album right after the video. Continue reading »