Minenwerfer - Feuerwalze (2023)


Delivering punishing World War I-inspired Black Metal assaults, today we have Minenwerfer and their latest release “Feuerwalze”. Featuring seven tracks and nearly 50 minutes of crushing music, this release is both intense and ravaging thanks to the craftiness of the duo behind the band: Generalfeldmarschall Kriegshammer and Wachtmeister Verwüstung. If you like war-inspired themes alongside intense aural onslaughts, you can’t miss out on this one.

Quickly razing everything in their path, “Cemetery Fields” sets a high-octane tone to this release. Filled with thunderous drumming, piercing guitar riffs, and truly hellish vocals, the band belts out anthems like “Feuerwalze”, and “Eternal Attrition”, with the purpose of unleashing chaos. The band’s style is quite intense and piercing, while also refined and well produced, allowing the music to have maximum impact.

Downfall Of Gaia - Silhouettes Of Disgust (2023)


It has been a while since we heard from Downfall of Gaia and their uniquely devastating mixture of Atmospheric Black/Post-Black Metal with some Crust and Sludge elements. With “Silhouettes of Disgust” the band marks their return and they are thirsty for blood. Featuring 45 minutes and eight tracks of crushing music, the band creates a very hectic and demoralizing atmosphere with waves of punishing riffs, blistering drumming, and hellish vocals.

Opening with the powerful and melodic “Existence Of Awe”, the band sets on a crushing path with their signature Atmospheric nature alongside crafty aggression. The Punkish drumming of the opener and “The Whir of Flies” nicely gives that Euro Crust vibe, while perfectly blending in with the more traditional Black Metal elements. We particularly enjoy the band’s relentless tempo changes as they weave between high-octane sections to more introspective and melancholic passages.

At The Altar Of The Horned God - Heart Of Silence (2023)


Unleashing some of the most eerie and ritualistic Atmospheric Black Metal musings, today we have At The Altar of the Horned God and their sophomore release “Heart of Silence”. Released by I, Voidhanger Records, we instantly knew we were in for a totally unique and aurally impressive release. Mixing elements of bands like Urfaust and The Ruins of Beverast, this one-man battalion manages to craft forty minutes of highly magikal music.

Setting a very ritualistic and immersive vibe, “Listen” and “Closing Circle'' create a sinister atmosphere nicely outlined by creepy vocals and highly bipolar music ranging from simple percussions to full on BM riffs. The album title track nicely blends all these elements together with some chilling clean vocals and fierce heavy onslaughts, creating a very punishing and yet cathartic experience.

Úlfúð - Of Existential Distortion (2023)


Hailing from Iceland, Úlfúð delivers one monumentally crushing debut full-length release with the piercing “Of Existential Distortion”. Featuring over 44 minutes and eight tracks of punishing and yet well polished Black/Death Metal, this album showcases the band’s vicious sound and thirst for destruction. With plenty of highly creative and musically proficient bands coming form this tiny country, it is time for Úlfúð to make themselves known.

Unleashing all hell with the brutal opener “Where Strange Lights Dance”, and followed up by “Tears of Terra”, the band sets a very high bar with relentless riffing onslaughts and pummeling drumming. The harsh vocals are quite aggressive, allowing tracks like “Mockery Theatre” and “Faceless” to be relentless aural onslaughts, similar to some of Behemoth’s outburst. However, the band’s core sound is quite characteristic and brutally enjoyable.

Fleshgod Apocalypse - Obscura - Wolfheart - Thulcandra - Oriental Theatre - Denver, CO - 2/23/2022

Making our way to Denver was delayed due to bad weather in Colorado, but luckily this date was not postponed and the show went on. With plenty of tours making their way through North America, this package is definitely one of the most intense with such killer bands that Wolfheart and Thulcandra, are the ‘openers’. With a temperature hovering around 10 degrees fahrenheit, we made our way to the Oriental Theater to escape the cold and enjoy one intense evening.

Funeral Winds - Stigmata Mali (2023)


As to be expected from a Osmose Productions release, “Stigmata Mali” showcases Funeral Winds at their most devastating and demoralizing. Spewing eight tracks and nearly 35 minutes of punishing music, this release is crushing and powerful with a certain pestilent sound of 90’s raw Black Metal. If you are a fan of raw, uncompromising, and punishing music, this is certainly the release for you.

Blasting off with “Open the Wounds”, the first noticeable thing is the buzzing distorted guitars and hellish mixture of vocals, courtesy of the band’s founder Hellchrist Xul. The pace suddenly changes thanks to blistering onslaughts of brutality, particularly as the opener transitions into tracks like “Stigmata Mali”, “By These Hands, by Your Command”, and “Odious Emanations”.

Great Cold Emptiness - Immaculate Hearts Will Triumph (2023)


Creating one of the most majestic Atmospheric Post-Black/Doom Metal releases of recent days, today we have Great Cold Emptiness and their third full-length release “Immaculate Hearts Will Triumph”. Brilliantly blending dramatic atmospherics with crushing vocals and highly melancholic passages, this release is as cathartic as they come. If you enjoy bands like Germ, Violet Cold, Alcest, etc., this outfit should become your new favorite band.

Opening with the brilliant “The Patron Saint of Whalewatching”, we get the traditional lush keyboards and heavy guitars combination but with a very dramatic emphasis on dreamy atmospheres and ravishing vocals, courtesy of Meghan Wood. The Germ vibe is quite high, but it shifts as Doom and purely atmospheric elements are thrown into the mix. The track “To Die for the Ideal” is the perfect example of this, as its moody tempo changes and dreamy atmospherics are unrivaled.

Tulus - Fandens kall (2023)


As one of the most underrated Black Metal bands from Norway, Tulus carved a path with excellent releases in the late 90’s and went on hiatus for a while. With their music being raw and punishing, one can argue that Tulus should have been as recognized as Darkthrone, Immortal, Satyricon and Enslaved. With that signature frosty and incisive brand of BM, the band has nicely baked Black’n’roll elements into their sound to create superbly catchy music, and “Fandens kall” is a brilliant example of this.

Opening with the album title track, Blodstrup and Sarke waste no time to unleash waves of vicious riffs, nicely enveloped in highly melodic passages and a hellish snarl. The band’s core sound is simple and yet quite effective, keeping the old-school Scandinavian Black Metal sound alive while delivering bangers like “Lek”, “Slagmark”, and the chaotic “Allstøtt”. Perfectly balancing funky melodies with the sinister bass guitar of Crowbel, the band creates some engaging and yet powerful tracks like “Isråk” and the Darkthrone-esque “Snømyrkre”.

Oceans of Grief - Pale Existence (2023)


Delivering waves of melancholic guitar leads and demoralizing Doom riffs. Today we have Greece’s Oceans of Grief with the excellent “Pale Existence”. Clocking in at 47 minutes, this release feels like a genetically engineered mixture of Insomnium with Hanging Garden, creating seven crushing songs. If you are a fan of the genre, this band perfectly balances melody, melancholy, and musicianship in one extremely polished package.

Opening with “Poetry For The Dead”, the band sets a very somber mood with atmospheric keyboards and crafty melodic passages. As the band warms up, “Dale of Haunted Shades” and “Unspoken Actions” perfectly deliver that blend of Melodic Death Metal with Death/Doom tempos, creating very cinematic and lush aural experiences. The third track even features Jari Lindholm of Enshine unleashing some excellent weeping guitar leads.

Vermineux / Prieuré - Split (2023)


Delivering a quick and swift blow to the listener's morale, today we have Vermineux and Prieuré unleashing a hellish split release with two tracks from each band. Showcasing some of their most promising bands, Purity Through Fire created a very unique pairing and the perfect teaser with this release. If you like hellish and punishing Black Metal, this release will introduce you to two very interesting one-man battalions.

Opening the split we have Vermineux, hailing from the USA, and its crushing “Ashes” track. With a piercing lo-fi production, the BM riffing in this track is excellent and it pairs wonderfully with Spectre’s intense shrieks. The second track is a pretty decent cover of “Holocaust to the Natural Darkness” from Vlad Tepes, again showcasing raw power around a gritty sound.


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