Album Reviews

  • Inferno - Paradeigma (Phosphenes of Aphotic Eternity) (2021)

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    Providing a very enigmatic and expansive aural experience, today we have Czech outfit Inferno and their latest opus of decadence: “Paradeigma (Phosphenes of Aphotic Eternity)”. With a very oppressive and hard to describe style, we can just say that the band amalgamates elements of Blut Aus Nord and YERÛŠELEM, but still managed to create a truly immersive and punishing unique style. If you want to be mesmerized and subdued for over 35 minutes, this release is just what you are looking for.

    After the playful intro, “The Wailing Horizon” delivers a wave of furious riffs, massive drumming and crafty atmospherics. The immediate vibe is quie oppressive and it only gets more dominant as the harsh vocals roll into the picture. This blistering onslaught is nicely flanked by some catchy melodic passages and moody tempo changes. By the time we get to “Descent into Hell of the Future” we feel like a bag of bricks just hit us, and then the weird and playful industrial-esque elements of this track continue delivering an imposing hellish vibe.

  • Djevel - Tanker som rir natten (2021)

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    Unleashing a fierce and yet haunting offering of Norwegian Black Metal, today we have Djevel and their latest opus “Tanker som rir natten”. Slowly improving with each release, this outfit explores more atmospheric and eerie territories with the nearly 60 minutes of music unleashed in this album. Having the blistering BM core in the bag, this release showcases the band’s knack for enigmatic and creepy atmospheres surrounded by interesting vocal arrangements and slower and more melodic onslaughts.

    Opening with the razor sharp distorted guitars of “Englene Som Falt Ned I Min Seng, Skal Jeg Sette Fri Med Brukne Vinger Og Torneglorier” alongside some epic drumming, the release sets a very moody and yet sinister vibe. Just before the blistering tremolo-picking onslaughts, we love the eerie clean vocal atmospherics. The band’s sound is as vicious as ever, but with more playful and melodic passages as “Maanen Skal Være Mine Øine, Den Skinnende Stierne Mine Ben, Og Her Skal Jeg Vandre Til Evig Tid” and “En Krone For Et Øie Som Ser Alt, Tusind Torner For En Sønn Som Var Alt” punish the listener with aggression and creepy vocals.

  • Psychonaut / Sâver - Emerald (2021)

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    Featuring two of the most interesting and genre bending bands in Pelagic Records roster: Psychonaut and Sâver, “Emerald” is a massive 35-minute long EP. With each band doing just one long song, we get to perfectly enjoy the moody Post-Metal antics of Belgium’s Psychonaut, and the lush atmospheric intro to the punishing sound of Sâver. If you like Post-Metal and adjacent styles, you can’t miss out on this

    Opening with the introspective and slow-building “The Great Realization”, we get a very nice warmup to when the vocal arrangements quick in and the tempo changes go in full effect. This gives a certain dreamy and mellow effect that suddenly transforms with waves of heavy riffs and harsh vocals. The band’ perfect timing and elegant evolution creates very lively and mellow passages that are nicely contrasted with more dominant and loud yet also melodic sections.

  • Hymnr - Far Beyond Insanity (2021)

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    Unleashing a very frosty and devastating 44 minutes of harsh Black Metal, Hymnr’s debut full-length release “Far Beyond Insanity” is quite punishing. Combining crafty atmospherics with traditional tremolo-picking BM and some Doom elements, this release is by far conventional as it envelops the listener in a sinister shroud of mystery. If you like dense and demoralizing music, this release has plenty to offer.

    The release kicks off with the melodic riffing of “Part I”, a track that changes gears between blistering BM onslaughts and more catchy melodic passages, perfect for intense headbanging. What stands out of the band’s style is the deep vocals, that break away from your traditional BM shrieks, alongside heavier and slower riffs, giving it a certain Doom-esque edge, at certain times. However, blistering pieces like “Part II” and “Part III” are there for fans of shrieks and subtle atmospherics, creating very immersive experiences.

  • Odal - Welten Mutter (2021)

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    With a very well curated roster of artists, Eisenwald surprises us today with Odal and their highly melodic release “Welten Mutter”. Featuring over 47 minutes of crafty Pagan Black Metal, this German outfit manages to carve a unique style out of combining traditional elements with unconventional instruments. If you are into bands like Thyrfing and Månegarm, this is a band that will catch your attention.

    Opening with the melodically intense “...um Ewiges zu schaffen”, the band sets a very lively and intense mood with piercing guitars and catchy tempo changes. We particularly enjoy the band’s superbly melodic core, as waves and waves of riffs make tracks like this, and “Hellwach schwelgend”, and “Schattental” very enjoyable. The additional string instruments nicely give that Pagan/Folk BM edge to the music, breaking any monotony and keeping things interesting.

  • Cannibal Corpse - Violence Unimagined (2021)

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    Unleashing one of their most crushing and ravaging releases of their long career, today we have the legendary Cannibal Corpse and their latest effort “Violence Unimagined”. Clocking in at 42 minutes over 11 tracks, with the addition of Erik Rutan as lead guitarist, the band sounds refreshed and ready for blood. Rarely disappointing over the years, Cannibal Corpse manage to blow past expectations due to the sheer brutality and effectiveness of this release.

    As “Murderous Rampage” kicks off this release, we immediately see the fantastic interplay of Corpsegrinder’s signature growls alongside blistering guitar work, including some intense leads. With tracks like “Necrogenic Resurrection”, “Inhumane Harvest”, and “Condemnation Contagion” featuring the traditional meaty hooks, crafty tempo changes, and violent drumming, we found ourselves furiously headbanging most of the time.

  • Lunar Mantra - Psychosomatika (2021)

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    Unleashing a very interesting Ambient-infused Black Metal release, today we have Lunar Mantra and their latest EP “Psychosomatika”. With a completely crushing and nicely layered sound, this band reminds us of Decline the I, Nightbringer, and Blaze of Perdition, thanks to their ferocity and intricate atmospheric layering they craft. If you like dense and punishing Black Metal with some Ambient elements, this release is a solid candidate for your collection.

    After a short intro, “Nexicthon” quickly delivers waves of ravaging guitars, firm harsh growls, and very unique and anxiety inducing tempo changes. The band’s sound is quite elaborate, with tons of underlying atmospheric elements that create an enigmatic aura around tracks like the ritualistic “Azothic Pyres” and its hypnotic guitar work. While not as straight-forward as some would expect, we love that the band challenges the listener with complex layering and crafty songwriting.

  • Paysage d'Hiver - Geister (2021)

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    Delivering eleven piercing icicles of frosty Atmospheric Black Metal, today we have one-man battalion Paysage d'Hiver and their latest full-length release “Geister”. For the uninitiated, this band is Tobias Möckl's (Darkspace) solo-project that mainly focuses on Winter-inspired raw and punishing music. Captivating the scene with countless demos, this is just the second official full-length release, and it is one hell of a pummeling ride.

    With the typical samples of eerie winds, “Schattä” takes a bit to blast off into infamy with razor sharp screens and violent riffs. The band’s core sound is raw and savage, while the trippy atmospheric undertones allows it to create a captivating experience. As the release pummels through “Bluet”, “Wüetig”, and the more mellow “Undä”, the listener experiences various levels of intensity under the same intoxicating atmosphere.

  • Kardashev - The Baring of Shadows (2021)

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    Creating a very unique and distinctive sound, today we have Kardashev and their latest EP “The Baring of Shadows”. Self-proclaimed as “Deathgaze”, the band’s music merges elements from bands like Deafheaven and Alcest with proggy Deathcore elements. We have to say that this mixture is quite excellent as it delivers over 25 minutes of lush and melancholic music, while keeping a nice dose of heaviness.

    Opening with “A Frame. A Light”, we instantly got the Deafheaven “Sunbather” chills as the track starts with very dreamy guitars. Slowly building momentum, we get lush clean vocals and sweeping guitars to serenade you into submission. The tempo changes are subtle and nicely contrast the harsh vocals and more distorted parts with richly atmospheric clean vocals and mellow passages. Right after the first song, “Snow-Sleep” shakes things up delivering a more traditional Deathcore aggression with nice mellow interludes.

  • Les Chants du Hasard - Livre Troisième (2021)

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    It has been a while that we have received an interesting neoclassical release like “Livre Troisième” from Les Chants du Hasard. Channeling a mixture of the turmoil of Elend’s music and the sinister side of the orchestrations and vocal arrangements of Devil Doll, this release unleashes nearly 45 minutes of a very cinematic and harrowing aural experience. Filled with dramatic and moody arrangements, this album is quite interesting and lush.

    Opening with the dramatic and quite regal “Le Moine”, a very epic and somber backdrop is set. Followed by “Les Prismes”, a piece that establishes a cinematic experience with its tempo changes and very dramatic vocal arrangements. “Le Reflet” has to be one of our favorite tracks thanks to its over-the-top operatic vocals dueling with creepy harsh screams and a very tense orchestral backdrop, raising our heart rate as the track reaches its climax.

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