Jun 192022


After a lapse last week this column re-takes its usual place on the weekly calendar to blacken the sabbath. I’ll quickly confess that I bit off more than I can chew in the writing, and more than most of you will have time to hear in the listening: I’ve picked two complete albums and mixed them together with four new singles. Despite the challenges to myself and to you, I felt so strongly about all these choices that I couldn’t resist.

As is often the case, I haven’t lived with either of the albums long enough to do more than provide scattered notes about them. That’s the consequence of needing to write about something new every day. Settling in gives way to scurrying. But you’ll have a better chance to settle in with these releases, and I hope you will. All the singles sound fantastic too.


Death Siege is the fifth full-length from this talented band, who are charging toward us after a six-year interval following the last album. The new one is 40 minutes long, and the cover art by Abomination Hammer alone would make most people want to find out what’s going on in the music. My friend Andy‘s Synn Report about the band’s discography back in 2016 would provide more reasons.

What Hierophant say about the music is this: “”With Death Siege, we crossed the gateway to the abyss. Nihilism will overcome, when the sky will burn in fire. Death, Chaos, Annihilation.” Continue reading »

Mar 152019


I wonder what’s in the water in Utrecht, or whether the taps only stream some combination of alcohol and paint stripper. I wonder whether it will be possible to play this 7″ vinyl more than once, or whether it will simply ignite and melt down on the first spin. I wonder whether there’s any way I can teleport into Utrecht the next time Grafjammer and Wrang take the stage to destroy some local venue. Questions, questions, so many questions.

Any questions, or any other thoughts, will only come after listening to this new split we’re premiering today. While the songs are streaming, it’s hard to think at all. The music on these two tracks is such a wild, raucous, riotous experience, so full of blazing carnal vigor and blood-lusting ferocity, so supercharged with neck-wrecking rhythms and contagious riffs, that pumping your head like a piston or picturing yourself careening into other human beings in some sweat-soaked mosh pit become the immediate instinctive reactions. There’s no room left for rational thought.

The two bands on this split, Grafjammer and Wrang, are indeed both located in Utrecht, that ancient city in the center of the Netherlands. They share a drummer, and also a strong taste for sordid, filthy black metal. They recorded these two songs in a live setting at dB’s, which seems to be a combination bar, music venue, and practice space, and the energy of a live performance certainly emanates from these recordings. Continue reading »