Vesperith - Vesperith (2019)

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Unleashing a truly transformative and trascendental release, today we have Finland’s Vesperith and her self-titled full-length release. As a one woman entity, Sariina Tani has crafted a unique experimental release that will transport the listener to the bowels of hell with waves of aural dissonance and will bring them back to the surface with angelic chants. Not for the impatient listener, this release will grow on you with time, but once it does, it is unrivaled when it comes to cinematic experiences.

Setting a very dramatic and enigmatic mood, “The Magi” gets the journey started with eerie atmospherics and haunting vocals. After some moments of peace and clarity, “Fractal Flesh” unleashes crushing drums and harsh vocals to infuse uneasiness on the listener. The mixture of Black Metal and atmospheric elements works magically on this track.

Lunacy - My Favourite Dreams (2019)

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Returning with a dreamy Deampop/Shoegaze release, today we have Lunacy and their sophomore release “My Favourite Dreams”. Hailing from Belarus, this band delivers wave of moody music perfectly paired with lush female vocals. As one of our favorite singers, Morena, elevates Lunacy’s music to ethereal realms thanks to her subtle and fragile singing style. If you are a fan of bands like Amesoeurs and Malenuit, you cannot afford to miss out on this release.

Opening with the lush “Paints and Pictures”, the mood is set to be quite lively with Pop-ish arrangements and very melodic vocals. The surprise in this track is that out of nowhere we are treated to BM screams and a Alcest-like tempo change that perfectly contrasts this unique song. Building up on the ethereal vibe the release has, “The Road” has that Post-punk/Synth Pop edge that very few bands can pull off authentically.

Nachtig - Nachtig (2019)

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Brilliantly blending elements of some of our favorite bands like Ellende, Advent Sorrow and Woods of Desolation, Nachtig unleashes an excellent self-titled debut release. As a one-man entity, helmed by V. V., this band delivers some of the most demoralizing and misery inducing 55 minutes we have heard in quite a long time.

After the traditional atmospheric opening, “Der Tag bricht an…” blasts away with harrowing vocals and that crispy metallic sounding guitar distortion we love from bands like Ellende. The song structure is perfectly designed for some furious headbanging passages through killer tempo changes. The moody “Der Kreis Des Sterbens” is our favorite track in this release, particularly the second half, where we get some truly depressive atmospherics that set Nachtig apart.

Hanging Garden - Into That Good Night (2019)

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Continuing the band’s brilliant rise as one of the best Melodic/Atmospheric Doom/Gothic Metal outfits, Hanging Garden delivers their latest opus titled “Into That Good Night”. Featuring eight tracks and nearly 46 minutes of highly addictive music, the band perfectly blends elements from their heavier earlier days and their more dynamic and Gothic Metal influences of later days. Full of melancholy and expert songwriting abilities, this release is yet another highlight on their already storied career.

Opening with the playful riffs of “Of Love and Curses”, we got a certain Lacrima Profundere vibe as the more enigmatic atmospheric interludes nicely contrast the heavier parts of the song. The more traditional Melodic Doom Metal roots of the band can be found on the dreamy “Fear, Longing, Hope and the Night” which has a certain Insomnium vibe. We particularly enjoy the crafty guitar melodies and the combination of growls and clean vocal arrangements, making it a superbly catchy song.

Avslut - Tyranni (2019)

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Proving that their killer debut release was no fluke, today we have Sweden’s Avsult with “Tyranni”. Unleashing a demoralizing opus of 47 minutes of crushing Black Metal, this band combines old-school BM antics with a superb production and a thirst for blood. With a relentless attitude and the skills to deliver punishing aggression, this band is certainly one to keep following as their evolve their craft.

Opening in full force with the album title track, the listener is instantly immersed in the band’s aggressive sound. Pairing twing guitar assaults with relentless drumming, this outfit crafts a violent atmosphere with just a few moments to breathe. With a melodic core as their foundation, tracks like “Stigens ände” and “Likvidering” gives us flashbacks to Dark Funeral earlier years.

Tragediens Trone - Tragediens Trone (2019)

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Making a huge comeback in the underground Metal scene, Osmose Productions has unleashed some of the foulest and most crushing Black Metal releases in the last few years. As one of their golden findings, Tragediens Trone unleashes a punishing self-titled debut release. Featuring members and ex-members of enigmatic Slagmaur, this two-man batallation delivers nearly 40 minutes of excruciating BM filled with power and hate.

With Skard handling all the instruments (minus the drums) and vocals, we hear a very punishing and despondent style as soon as “Entrance” warms up. The combination of dramatic vocal arrangements and styles with hellish riffs and massive drumming, make up for a killer opening piece. The band settles into a pummeling grove as tracks like “The Bornless One” and “Stygian Fluke” deliver waves of crushing guitars alongside thick and sexy bass guitar lines. Other tracks have more atmospheric components like the cavernous passage of “Cold Depths of Solitude”, creating a very tense and eerie atmosphere.

SLOW - VI - Dantalion (2019)

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The highly productive Déhà is back with his Atmospheric/Funeral Doom Metal project SLOW and their latest masterpiece of sorrow with “VI - Dantalion”. Crafting monolithic atmospheres around soul crushing riffs, this release unleashes nearly 80 minutes of powerful music. Just when you think the boundaries of the genre cannot be pushed further, an album like this comes along and shatters them completely.

Warming up the listener with the bleak soundscapes of “Descente”, the album slowly gets fired up as you come across the 17-minute behemoth of “Lueur”. The slow growls lead to monumental riffs and tense atmospherics, creating a very unsettling mood. The dramatic arrangements created by the synths perfectly complement the ravaging guitar structures. However, what really captures the listener is the dramatic tempo changes and mood swings within songs like the later and “Futilité”. Alternating a ‘shorter’ song between 10+ minute pieces, Slow explores darker territories with the harsher vocals and more sinister atmosphere of “Géhenne”.

King Diamond - Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats - Idle Hands - 11/4/2019 - The Tabernacle - Atlanta, GA

Halloween might have passed, but every King Diamond live show we have attended in the past feels a bit like Halloween. With plenty of people dressed up for the occasion, the King dropped by Atlanta a couple of days ago with his new tour promoting his up-coming release “The Institute”. With huge expectations for this release, we made our way downtown for the show on a Monday night.

Dimman - 152 (2019)

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Because playing traditional Melodic Death Metal is just too easy, Finnish outfit Dimman throws some unique elements into the mix and creates a superbly catchy sound in “152”. Comparable to offerings by bands like Silent Descent, this EP present a refreshing take on the genre and showcases the quality of this promising band. If you like Melodic Death Metal and don’t mind a few extra added elements, this EP will surely surprise you.

Starting with the Turmion Kätilöt-esque “Capsized Reverie”, some people might be instantly put off, but it is just part of the band’s unique combination of elements to create a completely distinctive sound. After the initial show, this track is quite a Melodic DM staple with killer guitar leads and catchy passages. The mood suddenly turns dark and doomier with the album title track, filled with melancholic passages and dramatic piano sections.

Djevel - Ormer til armer, maane til hode (2019)

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This 2019 has been an excellent year for Black Metal releases and Djevel put throw their hat in the ring for best genre release of the year with “Ormer til armer, maane til hode”. Unleashing over 50 minutes of massively destructive music, the band brings forth an unrivaled brutality and rawness, perfectly produced to sound as crisp as possible. If you like bands like Whoredom Rife and One Head, One Tail, make sure to not miss out on the fun.

Without wasting any time, the album track opens these devastating proceedings with sheer brutality and intensity. Trond Ciekals, the band’s vocalist and guitarist unleashes waves of pummeling riffs and very effective shrieks throughout this release, making tracks like “Et menniskes hele korpus og legeme” and “Den gang jeg banket paa helvedes tunge doer” feel quite oppressive and massive. We particularly enjoy the melodic tempo changes within the songs that nicely break up the linearity of the track and keep the listener fully engaged and eager for what is to come next.

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