If you ignore the weird side-step that was “ Vampyr”, “Tocsin” is the perfect continuation for the band’s previous masterpiece “Ausserwelt”. Year of No Light arrives from France with a pummeling dosage of Instrumental Doom/Sludge Metal that will make melt your faces. Crafting over 57 minutes of music, this six-piece outfit delivers one of the most intense and complex Doom/Sludge releases we have heard in quite a while.
The album title track kicks things off with a heavy atmospheric intro that slowly melts into a full-on Sludge riff-aton. We particularly love how the track around the 5th minute takes a turn to the Doom side of things with some think melancholic guitars. The band’s versatility is pushed further with the Post-Metal/Rock-ish anthem “Géhenne”. The guitars are pushed to the limit and so is the pulsating bass guitar line on this one. The band keeps the intensity going and instead of being the typical band that climaxes and then slowly drifts away, they keep pushing the intensity of their sound further and further.
Delivering what is probably the most punishing Funeral Doom Metal release of 2013; today we have France’s Monolithe and their one-track behemoth: “Monolithe IV”. In this 57 minute release, the band captivates the listeners with an immersive soul draining single track release that features all the good stuff of Funeral Doom minus the mind numbing endless droning sections and adds a bit of flairs with keyboards and female vocals here and there.
Divided in a certain way in multiple movements, this release features great melodic passages and demolishing riffs. We have to say that this release is a lot more dynamic that what you usually get with bands like Shape of Despair, Esoteric, and Mournful Congregation. Featuring constant tempo changes and very well placed atmospheric sections, the band avoids any monotony in this release – quite a feat for a Funeral Doom Metal band. The growls are superb and they fit the powerful riffing perfectly. The drums are perfectly executed and the bass guitar is nicely mixed to deliver power in the right moments.
As the second stop in their chilling and somewhat perplexing 777 trilogy, today we have Blut Aus Nord and “The Desanctification”. In this release, the band continues their journey with “Epitomes VII to XII”, featuring very interesting compositions that take their unique and very imaginative sound to new heights. If you are expecting a crushing Black Metal release, we strongly advice you skip this one (and the previous one), but if you have an open mind and you are ready to be transported, you should keep reading.
The band has always been pushing the boundaries of Black Metal, and Metal itself, but with this 777 trilogy we find them even further down the spiral into an abyss of solid music but with sometimes doubtful directions. The riffing and the overall songwriting are very typical of the band, but some of the industrial/electronic elements felt a bit weird on the first few times we played this album. However, as with any Blut Aus Nord release, there is always something lurking in the songs that will surprise the listener and keep it engaged.
Today we got a very raw and nihilistic split from Debemur Morti. Featuring two of the best Atmospheric Raw Black Metal bands of the recent years (unluckily Tenebrae in Perpetuum has decided to split-up). Clocking over 42 minutes of pure unadulterated atmospheric brutality, this split release features three songs from each band, and interestingly enough, almost every song is 7 minutes long (give or take).
Kicking off the proceedings, we have Krohm and their three songs of very atmospheric and darkly constructed blasphemy. We particularly like how this one man band creates buildup in the first few minutes of each song and then it keeps the tension throughout the end. The vocals are a bit raspy and not extremely raw for us (unlike Tenebrae in Perpetuum), we also like that the music has many ‘traditional’ elements and keeps things on the Black Metal side of things but with a tick atmosphere.
October Falls is one of our favorite bands of all time and they have returned with their 3rd full-length album “A Collapse of Faith”. The band plays a mean mixture of Black/Dark Metal with Folk elements unlike anybody else these days, just imagine if early Ulver, Empyrium and Tehni had a genetically engineered of spring.
As in the same vein of “The Womb of Primordial Nature”, the band crafts epic songs that will transport you to a dark world filled with nature, helplessness and pain. All through a hefty dosage of distorted guitars, surgically precise drumming and majestic acoustic passages that will haunt you till the rest of your life. The atmosphere created for “A Collapse of Faith” is very haunting and unique, and when paired with M. Lehto’s shivering vocal performance you will surrender your soul to this majestic aural experience.
Who ordered a cup of bad and uninspired Black Metal?, apparently Debemur Morti did when signing up to release “Blood Revelations”. This is another example of a band that sounds amazing on paper: Dario Derna from Abazagorath, Evoken, Funebrarum, etc on ALL instruments, Herb Burke (Drawn and Quartered) on ‘omega’ voice and Mike Nihilist (ex-Abazagorath, etc) on the ‘alpha’ voice.
All of these names sound good on paper, but then you actually listen to the album you see that things don’t quite work out that way. Maybe it’s the annoying ‘out in the woods’ shitty sound with the intention of sounding more grim and ‘evil’. It can also be the aimless direction most songs take making them feel like bits and pieces pasted together for the sake of releasing something.
This Aussie band is back after one year to spread their musical sickness through another very solid and release. “Front The Final Foes” feels like the perfect continuation to “Cauldron”.
The band’s guitar sound is what drew me to their last album “Cauldron” and it’s still one of the first things that stand out when listening to this release. While all the songs do not sound extremely original, the band does a great job at creating a thick sounding Black Metal that is neither technical or complex, but it’s highly effective in achieving that ‘in your face’ effect that many bands fail at.
As the album title states, this is a true journey into a very complex and multi-layered released that reeks of brilliance. Starting with a pretty weak intro I imagined I was in for another boring and pointless release, but once the first song it’s done, “A Step Into The Void” hits you in the face like a bag of bricks and the album never let’s go.
There are some many things going on at once to fully understand what’s going on, but once you settle with the bands sound (kind of like Deathspell Omega at points), you are ready to fully digest the complexity of this deranged trip.
Hailing from Italy, Tenebrae In Perpetuum plays (as you can imagine) old school Black Metal. As you can also expect there is nothing ground breaking about this band or the album itself, but…. I don’t think that the band has never set out to re-shape a musical genre or be pioneers in anything. This review is also not a bad one, so keep reading.
The band manages to re-create that bone chilling old school BM sound with perfection and throw a few things here and there to complement it. The traditional tremolo picking riffs are present from beginning to end of the album and they are very efficient in creating a bleak atmosphere.