Delivering a complete ‘holy shit’ moment, today we have the legendary Dødheimsgard returning with their first full-length release in eight years with “Black Medium Current”. While the band has continued to play live and deliver some truly enthralling performances, this release shows that the years of waiting were not in vain as it is their best release to date. Featuring nine tracks and nearly 70 minutes of masterful Avantgarde Black Metal music, this release will blow you away from the first couple of minutes.
The madness commences with the mellow opening to “Et smelter”, a slow momentum building couple of minutes until the relentless waves of BM riffs make their way. With Vicotnik and Tommy Guns handling the guitars, this opener oozes melancholy and intensity, perfectly paired with unique vocal arrangements and a very oppressive atmosphere. This unique and chaotic vibe is nicely continued with the ravaging and temperamental “Tankespinnerens Smerte”, a track that nicely leverages dreamy vocals and brilliant melodic interludes.
As the brainchild of Thomas Eriksen, Mork is one of those well polished bands that perfectly blends melody and catchiness with traditional Norwegian Black Metal. With “Dypet”, the band’s sixth full-length release we get 47 minutes spread out in eight tracks filled with sinister melodies and a very dark and eerie vibe, exactly what the doctor ordered for a cold and rainy day.
The release sets a dark and melancholic tune with the opener “Indre demoner” and it nicely transitions into typical Mork melodic madness with “Forført av kulden” and “Svik”. Keeping the band as a one-man outfit, the music is well honed into their signature style and every detail is quite polished to create a signature experience that the earlier releases have delivered, but with a slight forward push into darker territories.
Black Metal parody bands is something that one does not usually encounter, so it was quite interesting to hear Luteøks and their debut release: “Barely True Norwegian Black Metal”. Upon doing more research on the band and the release, we found out that the label, Nordic Mission, is an ‘extreme Christian Metal’ label and all members of Luteøks are also members of Grave Declaration, a fully Christian Metal band. However, moving that aside since we don’t care one bit, the music is actually really good and with plenty of familiar influences.
After a pummeling Old Man’s Child-esque intro with “Dritfjell”, the band fires up their old-school Norwegian BM chops with the very familiar opening minutes of “Sekken”. Every connoisseur of the genre will immediately pick up the familiar sounds the band manages to blend in together, particularly the Dimmu Borgir-esque nature of “Langbortistan” and its playful antics. We believe that some of the parody aspects might get lost in translation as almost all lyrics are in Norwegian.
Creating a totally unique and extremely well crafted intricate atmosphere, today we have Poland’s Entropia and their latest opus “Total”. Intelligently blending elements from Black, Sludge, and Post-Metal with avant-garde weirneds, the band unleashes five tracks and nearly 50 minutes of excellent music. If you are a fan of bands like Code, Ephel Duath, and Mord'A'Stigmata to name a few, you will love this release.
Opening with the crafty tempo changes of “Retox”, the band sets a very playful and yet intricate tone with lush atmospherics, masterfully layered guitars and intricate drumming. Weaving back and forth brutal onslaughts, the screams fit perfectly with this contrasting musical style as tracks like “Mania” and “Orbit” demonstrate. The band’s ability to merge dissonance with avant-garde weirdness is quite masterful.
Just one year after releasing their first full-length release in 16 years, Germany’s Mystic Circle is back again with another crushing release: “Erzdämon”. Filled with the same energy and retro-ish vibe from their last release, this album unleashes 47 minutes of superbly crafty and catchy Melodic Black Metal with the signature Mystic Circle style. If you loved the band’s triumphant return, this release is along the same lines of brilliance.
Opening with the high-octane album title track, Graf von Beelzebub and Aaarrrgon deliver crafty atmospheric elements, epic melodic guitar riffs, and tight drumming. This track immediately makes the listener want to headbang with its engaging mixture of melody and aggression. With that retro Horror Metal edge that the band blends into their sound, tracks like “From Hell”, “The Unholy Trinity”, and “Scarecrow” keeps things lively with their catchiness.
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.
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.
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.
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”.
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.