Dec 042019


Altered State, the debut EP by the California project Xantam, creates dramatically contrasting sensations, but all of them seem separated from the familiar mundane world around us. The music hurls the listener into vortices of unchained madness and diabolical violence, but also pierces through into other haunting dimensions that seem extraterrestrial, or perhaps the nether realms of imagination. There is sweeping, hypnotic beauty to be found here, as well as tyrannical terrorism, but in all its manifestations the music is chilling (as well as exhilarating).

Xantam is the solo work of a California musician who has taken the name of a Beholder from the game of Baldur’s Gate. His first published work was the LifeDeathBeyond demo, reissued by Blood Harvest Records in 2016, and the same Blood Harvest will be releasing this new EP on Friday the 13th of December. We are pleased to give you a stream of the full experience today. Continue reading »

Oct 272019


I would guess that there are more one-person bands in black and blackened death metal than in any other genres of extreme metal. I’m not sure why that is, though I guess it’s in keeping with the lone-wolf, outsider status that second-wave black metal can trace back to its roots.

Of course, there are a lot of mediocre or downright awful one-person projects out there, but some very good ones, too, and you’ll find four of them in today’s collection, along with music from a few more-filled-out groups, who are also very good.


The first of the one-person projects whose new music I’d like to recommend today is Merda Mundi (“shit of the world” — or maybe “shitty world”), the raw black metal vehicle of the prolific Belgian musician Déhà, whose resume at Metal-Archives includes participation in 19 active bands and previous roles in 17 others, spread across numerous genres, as well as guest/session work on two dozen other releases. The latest output of Merda Mundi is an album aptly named Hatred. Continue reading »