Three years after terraforming the scene with their excellent 2017 release, today we have Brasil’s Jupiterian dropping the massive “Protosapien”. Pushing the boundaries of the genre and always delivering something interesting and aurally punishing, this band is one of the few that constantly improves over time and morphs into new shapes in each release. If you like punishing riffs, a wide variety of genres, and the feeling of being on a choke hold (by music), then you can’t miss out on this one.
After slowly creating a very dissonant atmosphere with their opening track, “Mere Humans” instantly unleashes a barrage of punishing riffs and a hypnotic pace. As one of their specialties, the band suddenly switches gear into heavier and slower territories with the (newer) Lantlôs-esque “Voidborn” and its waves of pummeling guitars. The growls are a perfect match for such an aggressive and yet subtly melodic onslaught.
All the way from Israel, today we have a very unique and star-studded Death/Doom Metal release titled “Hollow”. With nearly 52 minutes of music, Tomorrow’s Rain's ambitious release pays off as they complement their very traditional sound with the talents of their guest musicians, creating one of the most powerful and refined releases of the genre. If you like melancholic Death/Doom Metal, it surely can’t get any better than this in 2020.
The release kicks off with the mood setting and mysterious “Trees”, a song that slowly builds up to the typical commanding Doom riffs and excellent growls. Featuring Aaron Stainthrope of My Dying Bride, “Fear” sets a darker tone with lush atmospherics, dramatic clean vocal arrangements, and crafty drumming. The only track that does not feature guests is “A Year I Would Like To Forget”, which allows you to actually get a feel for the band’s excellent melancholic sound and solid instrumentation.
Unleashing three gargantuan slabs of soul crushing Funeral Doom Metal, today we have Canada’s Atramentus and their epic “Stygian”. Perfect for the coming months of winter, this release delivers killer atmospheric misery paired with demoralizing growls and some crafty experimentation. Highly recommended for fans of bands like Shape of Despair, Mournful Congregation, etc., this release will turn even the brightest day, completely bleak.
Opening with the 16-minute beast “Stygian I: From Tumultuous Heavens… (Descended Forth The Ceaseless Darkness)”, the band does not fuck arround and quickly establishes riff dominance with punishing slow guitars. The mixture of clean and harsh vocals creates a very eerie contrast that works magically with such a lush and depressive backdrop. The interlude is provided by the noise-ish/atmospheric piece “Stygian II - In Ageless Slumber (As I Dream In The Doleful Embrace of The Howling Black Winds)”.
Unleashing a highly emotional and expertly crafted release, today we have Italy’s Svnth and their third full-length release “Spring in Blue”. Mixing the raw aggression of traditional Black Metal with the subtle intricacies and melody of Post-Rock, this release delivers one hour of hypnotic music. Recommended for fans of bands like Alcest, Deafheaven, Heretoir, etc.
The release opens with the doomy “Who is the Dreamer?”, a song that creates a very depressive and powerful atmosphere with its distorted guitars. After a dreamy intro on “Erasing God's Towers” the band transitions into heavier territories with weeping guitar leads and harsh screams, reminding us a bit of the American band 40 Days Longing from back in the day. The band expertly weaves back and forth aggressive onslaughts and crafty instrumental passages, creating a very chaotic and enjoyable mood.
Unleashing yet another outstanding release this 2020, today we have multi-instrumentalist Déhà with “A fleur de peau - III - A Fire That Does Not Burn”. Featuring over 35 minutes of excruciatingly effective atmospheric/depressive Black Metal, this release creates a very chaotic and yet hypnotic atmosphere that features some cool guest appearances and a very unique feeling of urgency/desperation.
The release starts with the pummeling “The Tree and the Death”, featuring a very melancholic pace combining aggressive harsh screams and dreamy clean vocals. This track also adds the angelic female vocals of Natalie Koskinen to add additional layers of atmosphere and contrast. The saxophone in “Hope for Twilight” makes it a very unique aural experience, as it is nicely added to create a very dynamic contrast to the guest vocals of Tim Yatras (ex-Austere, Germ).
Unleashing a tectonic plate shifting release, today we have Finland’s Convocation and their sophomore release “Ashes Coalesce”. Giving a modern edge to the timeless Funeral Death/Doom Metal genre, this duo delivers one of the most intense and intricate releases we have heard in 2020. Perfect for fans of Mournful Congregation, Dark Buddha Rising, and Waste of Space Orchestra, this release will rock your world from start to end.
Featuring Marko Neuman of Dark Buddha Rising/Waste of Space Orchestra fame on vocals, the release starts with the intense “Martyrise”. For over 12 minutes, this track delivers a web of intricate tempo changes and an onslaught of weird and sinister vocal styles, creating a very chaotic and cavernous feeling. The release turns to doomier and more ‘traditional’ territories with the mournful “The Absence of Grief”, a 13-minute beast that delivers solemn atmospheric elements and crushing riffs paired with Marko's deep and piercing growls.
Blending a plethora of genres, today we have MIGHT and their brilliant self-titled release. Unleashing a barrage of massive guitar riffs and combining influences from High on Fire to Chelsea Wolfe, this release will have you worshiping the band’s creativity and distortion levels in just a few songs. With over 35 minutes of music, the nine tracks presented here develop a very warm and fuzzy sound for this duo that is quite engaging and hard to stop listening to.
Leading the listener with the mysterious and post-rock-ish “Introduce Yourself”, this duo unleashes their full force with the furious guitar and drumming opening of “Pollution of Mind”. This is all abruptly changed into a more traditional Doom/Sludge drawl with meaty guitars, crafty tempo changes, and the sultry vocals of Ana Muhi. The band’s musical core is simple and yet quite effective, particularly in crafty songs like the hypnotic “Vampire” and the crushing “Possession” with waves of intricate bass guitar notes and pummeling riffs.
Usually Doom Metal releases are best for cold and dark days, however, POET will turn your August days quite dark and gloomy with their gargantuan release “Emily”. Delivering over 44 minutes of soul-crushing Doom, this album has a ‘classical’ Death-Doom/Funeral Doom vibe as it spews six anthems of darkness and despair. As one of the densest albums of this summer, this self-released album is a breath of fresh air amongst all the crappy stuff coming out these days.
Opening with throbbing guitar riffs, the first track, “I”, slowly builds up and delivers waves after waves of slow and delicious distortion. The band’s edge comes in the way of the use of truly demoralizing Violin, Viola, and Cello’s through this album, paired with Brighid Wagner’s haunting female vocals. Think of early My Dying Bride with some sprinkles of Sub Rosa thrown into the mix as “II” and “IV” slowly progress.
Hailing from Germany, today we have Doom/Sludge Metal wizards Eremit and their two-song EP “Desert Ghouls”. Aimed at fans of the ‘power of the riff’, this release delivers nearly 20 minutes of crunchy guitars and a sluggish pace. For fans of bands like Conan, Bongripper, and Sleep, this release showcases an up-and-coming band with enough chops to make it.
This 10” vinyl release opens with the crafty riffing of “Beheading the Innumerous”. For around 8 minutes and change the band unleashes a warm and fuzzy riffing barrage that is nicely complemented by Moritz Fabian snarls. On side B we get treated to “City of Râsh-il-nûm” and its hypnotic opening that suddenly transforms into a headbangers paradise with incisive guitars, engaging guitar leads, and superbly crafted drum patterns.
As one of the most fitting soundtracks for weird times, today we have Asofy’s latest release “Amusia”, which takes the listener into a highly experimental and chaotic journey. For nearly an hour, the listener gets transported into this one-man outfit’s world, filled with abstract textures and a highly melancholic atmosphere. If you like weird, this is one of the weirdest (and yet good) of 2020.
Opening with the moody “Agnosia”, we get some Jazzy glimpses with crafty percussions, subtle guitars and trippy vocals. The song feels very free flowing as it progresses between different moods. Continuing with the captivating “Palinodia”, we get a darker and more moody side of the band with minimalist arrangements and very eerie atmospherics. For those looking into heavier and creepier sounds, the album title track has a good kick as it eases into the harrowing madness of “Residuo”.