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.
Unleashing incomparable misery, today we have Belgium’s Imber Luminis and their latest full-length release “Same old Silences”. This one-man band from Déhà, of Clouds and SLOW fame, definitely creates one of the most oppressive and bleakest Atmospheric Black Metal atmospheres every recorded. While not technically complex or over the top, the masterful use of bleak keyboards paired with chaotic screams of desperation creates a very unique vibe that will crush your hopes and dreams.
Opening with the behemoth album title track, divided into three movements, the band unleashes 24 minutes of pure misery. Weaving back and forth between excruciatingly bleak passages of clean vocals and simple piano to inhuman growls and shrieks of desperation adorned by punishing riffs, this track completely transports the listener into the bowels of hell. The Doomy elements perfectly blend with the aggressive BM influences crafting a very powerful amalgamation of styles.
As one of the most expected Black Metal releases of 2019, today we have The Deathtrip and their sophomore release “Demon Solar Totem”. Featuring the return of Kvohst on vocals, this is one album we have been waiting for, and it delivers and even surpases all expectations. Unleashing over 55 minutes of punishing eerie music, this release has a bit of everything for BM fans.
The album slowly builds up with the title track as the opener, featuring a throbbing bass guitar line from Thomas Eriksen (Mork) and the insanely hellish screams of Kvohst bringing back memories of his DHG times. Musically, there is a certain catchiness to the band’s pummeling sound, as you can hear in the opener and the more dynamic “Angel Fossils”. Staying away from Black’n’Roll and Melodic BM territories, the band’s melodic aspect shines with intricate compositions and furious riffing.
One man Australian battalion Midnight Odyssey is finally unleashing their newest full-length release “Biolume Part 1 - In Tartarean Chains”, that is by far one of the most captivating Ambient Black Metal releases of 2019. Taking the listener into a sidereal journey with his mastery of atmosphere and pace, Dis Pater delivers over 70 minutes of lush and hypnotic music.
The album kicks off with the spacey and dreamy atmospherics of “Hidden in Tartarus”. This track crafts a very unique ambiance thanks to doomy riffs and very ethereal clean vocal arrangements. Sending chills through your spine, this atmosphere is continued on the heavier “Forever Silenced”, a track with more Doom-ish undertones and contrasting harsh vocals. This song reminded us a bit of the earlier days of Therion, just when they started getting into the Symphonic days of their career.
Unleashing a bestial Black Metal release, today we have Germany’s Dysangelium and their commanding sophomore release “Death Leading”. Featuring pummeling guitars and hellish vocals, the band unleashes over 40 minutes of piercing music that is not for the weak of heart. With many bands focusing on being too ‘kvlt’, this outfit focuses on crafting a crushing sound that will haunt your dreams.
After building an eerie atmosphere with the opener instrumental, the riffing onslaught starts with “Fated”. With a certain old-school BM vibe, this track perfectly introduces the band’s oppressive sound and hyper drumming. Sektarist 0 vocals are quite firm and very fitting to the aggressive nature of the music. We particularly enjoy how the band weaves into their songs slower atmospheric passages, creating a piercing effect of clam in between aural assaults, like on “Homo Larvalis” and “The Great Work”.
Raving everything on their path, today we have Iceland’s latest sensation: Une Misère. With a pummeling sound a certain knack for technical complexity, “Sermon” is one hell of a debut release from this exciting band. Perfectly designed for fans of Post-Hardcore/Metal release from bands like Amenra, Neurosis and their intersection with more modern/groove Metal influences from outfits like Gojira and Hacride.
Opening with the pummeling “Sin & Guilt”, the band means serious business with monstrous harsh screams and crushing guitars. The Grooviness of this release comes as the album title track unleashes its fury. The band does a great job in crafting powerful atmospheres with a few elements and keeps the listener always guessing with powerful tempo changes as we hear on “Overlooked / Disregarded” and “Burden / Suffering”.
The amount of quality Polish bands breaking into the Metal scene in the last few years has been outstanding. Today we have Devilish Impressions and their uniquely Melodic/Symphonic Blackened Metal style. Featuring all new members other than founder Quazarre, the band delivers a very promising and short EP, demonstrating their excellent craftsmanship and promise of what is to come.
Starting with the bleak “Dvma”, the band sets a very enigmatic and oppressive mood. The catchy guitar work is perfectly contrasted by a nice variety of vocal styles and tight drumming. We particularly enjoy the creepy mournful slower sections that are highly atmospheric and pretty eerie. The meaty hooks of “Cingvlvm Diaboli”, give a certain Death Metal vibe to this more intense track, filled with Satyricon-esque guitars and solid headbanging passages.
Ukranian sensations Jinjer are ready to drop a massive release with their crushing “Macro”. After a small taste with their “Micro” EP, this release delivers 40 minutes of high-octane groovy music that is unlike any other band these days. Characterized by their mixture of proggy aggressive passages and both hellish and sultry vocals, the band brings their live energy into the studio on this masterful release.
Wasting no time in blowing away the listener, the album starts with the pulsating guitars of “On the Top”. Tatiana Shmailyuk harsh growls set a very crushing atmosphere, only to be brilliantly contrasted later by her clean sections. This duality of vocal styles between heavy and more mellow instrumental sections is key to the band’s unique style and catchiness, as one can hear on both “Pit of Consciousness” and “Retrospection”.
Hailing from Seattle, Year of the Cobra was one of the revelations during the North American edition of Prophecy Fest back in 2018. This high-powered duo unleashed one of the most intense performances of the fest, and show that this was no fluke with their latest full-length release “Ash and Dust”. Crafting a very unique and powerful sound with a very bare-bones instrumental core (bass guitar and drums), this band unleashes a very Doomy vibe while keeping things fresh and engaging.
With a warm and fuzzy hypnotic bass guitar, the band starts their onslaught with “The Battle of White Mountain”. Perfectly creating a thick psychedelic/doomy atmosphere, Amy Tung Barrysmith’s vocals remind us a bit of Jex Thoth and Rosalie Cunningham. As masters of their trade, this duo crafts slow burning progressions weaving back and forth between droney passages and faster paced sections, tracks like “The Divine” and”Demons” are perfect examples.
Unleashing one of the most unique and unexpectedly awesome releases of 2019, today we have Canada’s Nachtterror with their debut release “Judgement”. Clocking in at over 60 minutes of music, this release has a bit of everything for everybody, from heavy riffs and fast-paced sections to more atmospheric and melancholic passages. As the band’s first full length release, it shows a unique trajectory path between different styles and influences through the tracks presented in this release.
Setting a very dreamy and mellow vibe when starting with “Behold the Terror”, we have a certain Pyogenesis/Decoryah vibe. This track slowly builds up to blistering drumming and harsh vocals, marking a very interesting and yet drastic transition. Settling into an older retro Gothic Metal-ish style with “Sea of Dread”, the band again exploits their multi-vocalist approach and delivers a very harmonious track with excellent distorted guitars and tempo changes.