Midnight Odyssey - Closer to the Sky (2024)

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Always consistent and oozing creativity, Dis Pater and Midnight Odyssey return with an epic EP titled “Closer to the Sky”. In this five track, thirty-three minute outing, the listener is treated to magical ambient soundscapes that are masterfully adorned with harsh screams and relentless Black Metal onslaughts. Filled with quality music and engaging atmospherics, this is yet another triumphant release from the band.

Hail Spirit Noir - Fossil Gardens (2024)

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Masters of Progressive/Avant-garde Black Metal weirdness Hail Spirit Noir are back with one of the most unique and engaging releases of 2024. With “Fossil Gardens”, the band further expands their sound into weirder territories with seven tracks and nearly 44 minutes of pure madness. With some familiar elements from outfits like Arcturus and more modern Dødheimsgard, this Greek outfit has managed to carve a totally unique style to themselves and continue to push the boundaries of Metal music.

Opening with the trippy “Starfront Promenade”, the vibe is instantly set to weird, but highly melodic and always unexpected. Clean vocalist, Dimitris Dimitrakopoulos, provides a very interesting counterpart to the harsh vocal and the wide palette of sounds this band unleashes. Things gradually get weird, with the Psychedelically magical “The Temple of Curved Space” and its superb melodic catchiness.

Tsatthoggua - We Are God (2024)

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As one of those bands that we never expected to have a comeback form, Tsatthoggua always stood up with their sadomasochist/bondage image. With a couple of excellent albums in the late 90’s, “We Are God” marks the return of this German outfit to the scene with a highly vicious mix of old-school Black Metal with some Thrash elements. For over forty minutes, the band unleashes a healthy mix of sleaziness and brutality on this one.

Opening with all their fire-power, “Master Morality” shows a band that did not lose step and it means business. The fast-paced riffing perfectly pairs with crafty drumming and North Wind’s sinister vocals. The onslaught continues with the furious “Vorwärts Vernichter” and its incisive riffs, the weirdness of “The Doom-Scrawl Of Taran-Ish”, and the more melodic and engaging “I Drive My Dogs (To Thule)” featuring some intensely hellish drumming.

Aran - Maahan laskettu (2024)

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Unleashing the perfect mixture of harsh rawness with lush atmospherics, today we have one-man Atmospheric Black Metal outfit Aran, with their latest opus “Maahan laskettu”. Delivering five tracks and nearly 50 minutes of music, this band reminds us of a mixture of early Empyrium meets Horna. The mixture of styles creates a very powerful amalgamation of beauty and darkness.

Things start on a high note with the piercing “Hiljaisuus” and its journey between harsh Black Metal onslaught between atmospheric keyboards and some nice slower Doom influences. The track nicely weaves back and forth between different moods, creating a very powerful experience that perfectly bleeds into the melancholic opening of “Poltettu maa”. Full of cathartic moments, this track gives us some nice Luster/Midnight Odyssey vibes.

Fellwarden - Legend: Forged in Defiance (2024)

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Featuring a lively Folk/Atmospheric Black Metal, today we have UK’s Fellwarden and their third full-length release “Legend: Forged in Defiance”. As a one-man project from Fen’s The Watcher, this outlet channels a more epic and fantasy influenced side to his musical talents, unleashing six tracks and nearly one hour of music. With a sound similar to outfits like Enid, Saor and Sojourner, and even some Agalloch, this album is full of great ideas and excellent craftsmanship.

Opening with the regal “Exultance”, the listener is quickly treated to a very lively and engaging vibe that keeps getting better and better as more layered elements come into play. The Watcher is a mastermind when it comes to crafting intricate melodies and lush atmospherics in Fen, so it is only natural that tracks like “Despair” and “Renewed Hope” have his stamp all over the place as they slowly build up to cathartic moments alongside energetic guitar work.

Shivered - Existential Mourning (2024)

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Unleashing a very melancholic and bleak sounding Gothic Doom Metal release, today we have a one-man outfit from Iran named Shivered. In “Existential Mourning”, Mohammad Maki delivers ten tracks and nearly one hour of music, in the vein of bands like Katatonia, Fall of the Leafe, Shallow the Sun, and similars. If you are a fan of the genre, this is a very good addition to your collection as each track oozes melancholy and sadness, in a brilliant way.

Opening with “Paranoiac”, we get a very bleak mood right out the door with weeping guitars, subtle keyboards and very mournful clean vocals. The clean and harsh vocals are very well interwoven, making songs like “Ashes of Innocence”, “The Lighthouse”, and “Existential Mourning” remind you of older My Dying Bride, but with a heaty dose of Katatonia. We love the balance between the aggressive part with lush and solemn instrumental passages.

Königreichssaal - Psalmen'o'delirium (2024)

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Delivering a completely nightmarish experience, today we have Poland’s Königreichssaal and their sophomore release “Psalmen'o'delirium”. Creating a sickening atmosphere, this release unravels seven tracks and over 40 minutes of truly hellish music. Like a more atmospheric and decadent version of Mgła, the band’s music is incisive and punishing, just like unleashing hell on earth.

Creating a very eerie atmosphere, the opening “Iskarja” is both chilling and suffocating. The band’s riffing is commanding, perfectly paired with piercing riffing and completely hellish vocals. The is something just magical and demoralizing on the simple and yet incisive riffs of tracks like “Rubikon”, where the madness behind the vocals just further elevates the music to a completely new level of misery.

Nel Buio - Nel Buio (2024)

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Unleashing a pretty nifty and weird Black Metal adjacent release, today we have Nel Buio and their eponymous EP. Led by Claudio De Rosa with members of Blasphemer and Electrocution, this outfit pushes the boundaries of the genre with their futuristic five tracks and 22-minutes long release. If you like electronic/darkwave elements in your music, you are in luck as this release perfectly blends them with a very aggressive BM core.

Aussichtslos - Schicksalstotschlag (2024)

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Delivering nine excruciatingly brutal tracks, today we have Germany’s Aussichtslos and their latest onslaught “Schicksalstotschlag”. Featuring nearly 50 minutes of fierce and punishing Black Metal, this outfit flattens their opposition with intensity and raw power. Not for the faint of heart and weak of mind, this is one of the most pummeling releases of 2024.

Immediately setting a very commanding and ravaging pace, “Am hohen Ross” delivers waves of intense riffs and pounding drumming, setting a high bar for this release. Both “Verwoben” and “Im Schützengraben” further elevate the all-out-war vibe with sinister guitar melodies and piercing snarls, perfectly paired with additional vocal arrangements to create very eerie and devilish atmospheres.

Black Sorcery - Plummeting into the Hour of the Wolf (2024)

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Being old enough, we miss those days of our youth when we purchased a random cassette tape with a cool looking cover and were pleasantly surprised that the band’s music was actually good and intense. Luckily for us, Black Sorcery revived those moments with their crushing release “Plummeting into the Hour of the Wolf”, which coincidentally is also released on tape by Eternal Death. Featuring three tracks of pure fucking destruction, the band’s Black Metal sound is magical.

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