Dropping one of the most surprisingly awesome releases of 2020, today we have Chrome Waves and their latest amalgamation of Post-Black Metal with all kinds of extra genres, under the title “Where We Live”. Featuring nearly 45 minutes of brilliantly intricate and nicely layered music that will appeal to fans from bands like Deafheaven, Abigail Williams, to Mountaineer or Alcest.
Opening with the dramatic “Hallow Dreams”, the band leads with lush instrumentation and suddenly escalates to dreamy riffs and catchy passages, all rounded up by harsh vocals. This track instantly showcases the band’s unique musical proposal as the vocal harmonies further elevate the already imposing atmosphere. This bleeds into “Gazing Into Oblivion”, a track that gives us that playful and in a way a bit pop-ish sound of bands like Amesoeurs.
Featuring members of Falaise, Morwinyon is an Italian outfit crafting soothing Atmospheric Black Metal tunes in the same vein as Saor and similar bands. With “Pristine”, the band unleashes nearly 40 minutes of atmospheric brilliance divided into four powerful tracks. While this genre is getting a lot of competition in the last few years, bands like this one clearly stand out from the rest thanks to their creative musical ideas and excellent execution.
The release opens with the dreamy “The Intangible Void”, a song filled with mystical synths and a good dosage of incisive riffs. The atmospheric components are a bit overpowering in the production of this release, but they still allow the ‘heavier’ elements to shine as this mid-tempo track unleashes a good amount of harsh screams alongside the very hypnotic vibe. “Sea of Stars” takes a more dramatic and darker turn with crafty drumming and some very solemn and effective passages that provide respite from the overpowering atmosphere, similar to what is found on releases by Lustre.
Always delivering the sickest and unique releases, I, Voidhanger unravels Kosmovorous and their punishing EP “Glorification Sermons”. Perfectly suited for those that love the black arts and enjoy Black Metal that is both chaotic and bloodcurdling, this release delivers 22 minutes of unparalleled brutality. Filled with atmosphere and chaos, this release will keep you at the edge of your seat.
The madness begins with the brutal “The Perilous Flesh And The Devouring light”, a track that sets a very chaotic and devastating tempo from the first minute and never lets go. Mixing hellish growls and desperation screams, this brand of BM does not require your typical shrieks. The massive drums and guitars create a very cavernous and intense vibe, with blistering riffs and incisive guitar leads as this track pummels through nearly 11 minutes of total aural destruction.
As one of the most awaited releases of 2020, today we have Norwegian Vikings Enslaved and their latest musical opus: “Utgard”. Continuing their musical evolution into more textured and proggy territories, this release delivers over 45 minutes of captivating music that perfectly blends their signature heavier onslaughts with their more delicate and intricate experimental constructs. If you have enjoyed everything the band has put out since “Axioma Ethica Odini”, this release continues this awesome transformation.
With a very mystical opening, “Fires In The Dark” delivers the band’s signature interplay of guitars alongside a combination of multiple vocal styles, creating a very lush and expansive melodic sound. Grutle’s signature snarl, nicely blends with the clean counter parts of Håkon Vinje and Iver Sandøy, particularly on tracks like “Jettegryta” where the heavier passages lead way to crafty and elegant melodic and proggy interludes. Other songs deliver the band’s traditional catchiness like the melancholic “Sequence”, which combines some funktastic bass lines alongside generous atmospheric elements.
Hailing from Sweden, today we have Trident’s sophomore release “North”, featuring nearly one hour of crushing Black/Death Metal. With a firm and pummeling style, the band’s ability to Blacken their Death Metal roots oozes both melody and brutality sprinkled with over the top atmospherics and lush arrangements creating a very elegant and devastating release. If you are a fan from bands like Dissection to Necrophobic to Dimmu Borgir, you will greatly enjoy this release.
Making a grandiose entrance, the lush intro track perfectly sets the stage for the Thulcandra/Dissection-esque antics of “Death”. The band quickly showcases their full power with incisive guitar riffs, a thundering bass guitar line, and hellish screams. The band’s ravaging pace continues through intense tracks like “Imperium Romanum” and its sharp guitars leads, and the sinister melodies of “Summoning”.
Unleashing frosty waves of intense atmospheric Black Metal, today we have Ukraine’s Eskapism and their latest EP titled “Reminiscence”. Delivering a brilliant balance of melody, rawness, and old-school atmospherics, this trio creates very dynamic and engaging songs that are both uncompromising and expertly crafted. Recommended for fans of early Dimmu Borgir, Old Man’s Child, Kampfar.
The release leads with the mystical “A Cry into Oblivion”, a song that slowly builds up into a superb headbanging session thanks to its melodic nature alongside lush and dramatic atmospheric keyboards. The blistering album title track captures that timeless mystical sound of late 90’s Black Metal, similar to Tartaros, Limbonic Art, and Emperor, with its dramatic synths and crafty tempo changes. The mood suddenly shifts with the ambient instrumental “Whisper of Ancient Times”, a very nice piece to come full circle in this release.
Creating a very punishing and miserable aural experience, today we have Finland’s Blood Red Fog and their very aptly titled “Fields of Sorrow” release. With a vibe similar to bands like Mortualia, this release unleashes over 50 minutes of exciting Black Metal with tons of experimental atmospheric elements and a very demoralizing mood. Only for masochists, this release will turn any day into a bleak ordeal.
The hypnotic “Before The Cold Light” sets a very trippy metaphysical mood that is instantly ravaged by the blistering BM onslaughts of “Gallows Poles and Shallow Graves”. With such a fierce tempo change, the band delivers a punishing blow with brutal guitars and hyper fast drumming, we love these types of contrasts. The depressive mode of “Abode of Shadows” gives you that certain Doomy vibe that perfectly blends with BM harshness, creating an immersive wallowing experience, this brilliant misery bleeds into the eerie “Ever-Returning Genocide”.
Hailing from Austria, today we have the pummeling Theotoxin and their latest hellish offering “Fragment: Erhabenheit”. Delivering a dynamic mixture of Black/Death Metal, the band unravels nearly 45 minutes of ravaging songs filled with brutality and dissonance. For fans of bands like Behemoth, Belphegor and Old Man’s Child, this release balances a brilliant production and waves of brutal onslaughts.
The ritual begins with the blistering opener “Golden Tomb”, a very punishing track filled with demonic vocals, waves of ravaging guitars and bestial drumming. Combining shrieks with deeper snarls, allows the band to create a very effective vehicle to deliver their lyrics while the world seems to crumble with the relentless intensity of the band’s music, as we can hear both in “Obscure Divinations” and the commanding “Prayer”, which give that Behemoth vibe but with a different twist.
Unleashing a wave of ritualistic Black Metal, today we have Finland’s Ordinance and their sophomore release “In Purge There is No Remission”. With nearly 50 minutes of music, this release covers a wide gamut of BM styles with some tracks being more traditional, others being quite old-school, but an overall sense of brutality and destruction is nicely conveyed by the band. If you like fast, raw, and punishing music, this release is certainly for you.
Opening with the blistering “Obstructed Paths”, we get a hefty dose of buzzsaw like guitars, blistering drumming and slower incisive passages with a certain ritualistic vibe. And that was just in the first five minutes. As the band pummels through pieces like the eerie “Diabolopathia” and its hypnotic riffs, the more traditional “Gathering Wraiths” with its savage intensity, and the pummeling “Credo Sceleratum” with its Philippines-style Thrash/Black Metal guitars and heavy metal screams, there is a clear indicator that this band is full of creativity and a knack for brutality.
Unleashing what is most likely the most explosive and melodic Black Metal release of 2020, today we have Uada and their third full-length release “Djinn”. Slowly refining their craft over time and gathering wide acclaim over the last few years, this North American outfit delivers almost 60 minutes of non-stop high-octane music that will have people headbanging from start to finish. If you like bands like Mgła, Pilorian, Inquisition, etc. you will love this exciting release.
Opening the release with the album title track, the band sets a relentless pace with superbly catchy riffs and a very engaging and energetic vibe. The dual guitar attack of James Sloan and Jake Superchi, works magically as their intensity and craftiness is quickly evident, creating a very powerful mood and the perfect environment for furious headbanging, as shown in the opener and the blistering “The Great Mirage”. Other tracks like “No Place Here”, show a mellower and yet still incisive side to the band’s superbly melodic musical approach.