Aaron Lariviere

Comments from Aaron Lariviere

Thanks, Darren. The limitations of column space (not to mention those imposed by, like, time and space in the larger sense) always make me feel guilty about leaving out all the awesome stuff that hits my ears in a given month. So many of these bands work incredibly hard to make excellent shit, and so many labels and PR folk work hard to get the stuff to the right ears, it just seems unfair not to try and share it all with the world somehow, even if it's only in a comment posted a few days after the fact. Anyway, I'm glad you guys put these to good use!
+2 |
July 9, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – June 2017
Apologies for the bonus tracks delay. It's been one of those weeks/months/years, and unfortunately I don't have time to write about these individually. Regardless, here's the raw list of potentially decent stuff I've encountered in the past month. As in prior months where I don't have time to aggregate links, I recommend searching for bandcamp links first, then YouTube or SoundCloud, and metal archives is a good fallback resource when in doubt. The Haunted Less Art Entrench Progenie Terrestre Pura Temple of Void Solstafir Blood clot Jorn Slow Death Ursinne Goatwhore Perished (reissue) Evil Invaders Septicflesh Limbonic Art Invocation Spells Death Yell Integrity Sannhet Execration Der Weg Einer Freiheit Portrait Atriarch Samael Stallion Gravdal One Master
+1 |
July 4, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – June 2017
just a heads up—there will be a short delay on bonus tracks, but I'll try to get something up tonight.
+6 |
June 30, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – June 2017
Also see my follow-on version of the same thing, which is thoroughly derivative and decidedly non-definitive, not unlike my interests and life in general. http://www.invisibleoranges.com/leading-a-non-metal-friend-to-the-slaughter/
+6 |
June 30, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – June 2017
Correction: the Blind Guardian live thing is actually THREE DISCS. Triple yay. And, uh, I guess you can see that Weregoat cover without clicking through. My apologies.
+1 |
May 31, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – May 2017
BONUS TRACKS: Lots and lots and lots to unpack this month. Some incredible stuff, some notable but less good stuff. I can't help myself either way. Enjoy. Vesicant War metal from the land of the kiwi. Excellent riff articulation for this genre, which makes me an instant fan. Beyond the requisite blasting, these guys slow things down for some arpeggiated doom madness and it makes all the difference across an album length slab of black/death insanity like this. Doug is not a fan. - - -https://soundcloud.com/iron-bonehead-productions/vesicant-blood-miller Divine Element This one came really damn close to making the cut this month, but I insisted on doing Mutoid Man instead. Here’s a Greek take on melodeath from Ayloss of Spectral Lore, so you know the guitars are phenomenally pretty. You can hear some of that classic Hellenic splendor in the dorian-mode leads, ala Rotting Christ, Macabre Omen, and their descendants (like Obsequiae). Overall rather excellent. https://divineelement.bandcamp.com/ Walpyrgus What a weird, wonderful record from dudes from similarly excellent trad-ish/doomy bands like Twisted Tower Dire, Daylight Dies, October 31, and While Heaven Wept. The catch is that this isn’t quite metal. More like hard rock with a serious fixation on pop punk, but this thing goes all in on the hooks. https://walpyrgus.bandcamp.com/album/walpyrgus-nights ALSO SEE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gdpXtGfyezY&feature=youtu.be Heresiarch Even more kiwi war metal that gives Doug chills of boredom. There’s not a lot to say about this style—these guys basically embody the tank on their album cover. Out on Dark Descent in July. https://darkdescentrecords.bandcamp.com/album/death-ordinance Father Befouled These guys were one of the first bands making Incantation worship a thing about a decade ago; they’re still here doing the dark work. I saw ‘em at MDF and they were solid, but the set really came to life when they busted out some of the new material. This is almost certainly their best album, with much better riffs and “hooks”, if you can call them that. 2 of these guys also play in the death/doom band Encoffination. http://decibelmagazine.com/blog/2017/5/19/track-premiere-father-befouled-desolate-gods Svartsyn Gloriously ripping black metal, as dark as they come. It’s basically one dude, but the sound is pretty goddamn huge. I’ve been listening to this for a few months now and it’s holding up surprisingly well. https://agoniarecords.bandcamp.com/album/in-death Weregoat Viciously thrashing black/death from these Portland perverts. I was shocked that these songs are actually pretty goddamn good. You’ll be shocked when you see the album cover. https://soundcloud.com/iron-bonehead-productions/weregoat-osculum Attic Do you like King Diamond? Good, because this sounds exactly like KD. It’s pretty damn good for what it is, but, you know, it is what it is. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAuNXL8yDqw Edguy Huh, there’s a new Edguy LP on the horizon and it’s not awful. Part of me (the lame part) liked their last LP for a few minutes, and this might be slightly, slightly better than that one (but it’s no Mandrake or anything). Not a bad take on hard rock-influenced power metal. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BzjxZ0JBasU Jorn Even MORE goofy trad / heavy metal with the absolute silliest cover art of the year (seek it out and ye shall be rewarded). If you like Striker, this is like a more authentic version of the same style, only with waaaay more epic cheese in the middle (not a bad thing). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l8QOk3xLSvg Blind Guardian Apologies if I just got your hopes up for a new album—this is a live track (of one of their best songs, off one of their best albums), but it sounds fantastic with the enthusiastic crowd chants. The band sounds absurdly tight (even if the keyboards are as loud and corny as ever), and now I’m actually excited to buy a damn 2-disc live album, goddamn. And yes, there is a new Demons & Wizards album in the works with Jon Schaffer, which will probably slow down the production of the next BG album, but whatcha gonna do. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SVg8eP7KPNQ Iced Earth Speaking of Jon Schaffer… I’ve never liked Iced Earth all that much, but there’s a new one. Artwork isn’t bad, so there’s that. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_VbMVwVuhw Vallenfyre The new Vallenfyre is… half amazing and half less so, but the amazing half is really damn good. These current Paradise Lost dudes plus ex-My Dying Bride dudes recorded with Kurt Ballou once again, so the production is essentially perfect; it’s just that the fast songs just feel a bit too tossed off, extremely punkish (seriously, it sounds like a heavier Discharge), and slightly odd up against the doom tracks. But the slow songs… it’s like the heaviest possible version of the slowest and heaviest Paradise Lost stuff (off Gothic and Lost Paradise) and it’s as good as anything either band has ever touched. Here’s one of the best tracks. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k44yrZy2eUU Broken Hope I have a seriously weird level of affection for these guys. Semi-brutal death, but not quite to the level of the shit Ian and Doug usually write about, which means I can still listen to it without hating myself. I like this quite a bit even in spite of the absurd gore video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qRZRRxLxCMM SEE ALSO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eJuwGdZVB3E Suffocation I’m only tagging this because they were once an incredible band worthy of the deepest respect. Sadly the new one honks. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iiSvg6SVZvs Decrepit Birth Not really my style of tech death, but folks loved ‘em at MDF. This one sounds passably hellacious. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nILVpu1R5kU Origin Yeah, it’s kinda like every death metal worth a damn decided to drop singles at the same time. I’ve always loved these guys, but I have yet to sit down with the new one. Sounds like… Origin, which is a good enough start. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FmhcNVUa8Xs Entrails MORE DEATH, but at least this one’s Swedish. These guys always stride the line between generic Entombed worship and something interesting, but I like em just the same. Solid, reliable, still pretty sharp. They do write choruses better than most of their peers (like that absurd one off the last album: “MURDER… all I need is MURDER”). Good shit. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c7ppvoeEKK8 God Dethroned And here’s one last plug for the album I’ve been blabbing about forever but never got around to officially covering. I’ve always loved these guys, and their latest fully embraces the Bolt Thrower / Hail of Bullets vibe, filling the void that Memoriam just couldn’t fill earlier this year. Grim melodies abound, with kill riffs strewn like mortar fire, all that good war-inspired stuff you’d want from a band like this. You can stream the full album here. https://goddethroned.bandcamp.com/
+3 |
May 31, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – May 2017
Probably tied with Morbid Angel (in my mind) for best set of the fest. I love the records, and I agree with Doug: they were even better than the records.
+2 |
May 31, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – May 2017
In before anyone can dispute my claim: Morbid Angel with Steve Tucker, playing exclusively Steve Tucker material and precisely zero Morbid Angel "hits", was the best fucking thing ever.
+4 |
May 31, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – May 2017
PS yesterday I stumbled across a handful of fb posts by Vindsval of Blut Aus Nord just raving about White Ward, which is definitely in that same camp avant-black mode as his band. Act accordingly.
0 |
April 30, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – April 2017
Yep, can confirm he is one and the same. Pretty incredible to see what he's capable of, and his comic book art rules to boot. Fun fact: back when I ran IO, I once checked to see which commenters had the most posts. Cosmo was #1 back then, for obvious reasons, Helm was a surprisingly close #2, and my old Wash Jones alter ego was just below at #3.. Nerds, all of us.
+1 |
April 30, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – April 2017
And at the end of the day, that's all that matters. I listen to piles of stuff others would consider "bad" (e.g. Mission UK). Life's too short to care—If you like it, blast that shit!
+1 |
April 30, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – April 2017
I'm not sure I can accurately do this without being harsh, but I'll try. Honestly... I think Ghost Bath embody everything the intro is talking about in the worst way. The album titles lift directly from better bands (Moon Lover? Starmourner? ugh). Rhythm riffs are recycled from Woods of Desolation and the major key leads are pulled wholesale from Deafheaven. (Doug refers to this stuff as "Mega Man" metal, which is hilarious and pretty accurate.) Hell, the new album art is an almost exact recreation of a Midnight Odyssey cover; it may not be directly lifted like the Relapse stuff above, but the stylistic theft is pretty egregious (especially paired with their sketchy past). And it just looks like a shittier version of something that already exists from a better band. That's honestly my biggest issue with Ghost Bath: all the theft in the world is forgivable if the tunes deliver, but I find most of it be pretty subpar overall. The shift from black metal rhythm parts to mega man leads is more often than not really clunky and weirdly incongruous, and the vocals... they're really bad. Add it all together, mix in the gross backstory, and I find the whole project kind of offensive to my being. Also not convinced they're not just trolling, like a 21st century Velvet Cacoon without the talent to back it up. I guess that was still pretty harsh :-)
+5 |
April 28, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – April 2017
Apologies for the laziest bonus tracks entry ever, I just don't have time to pull together the links or write much. Let's treat this as the DIY edition: I'll post a list of bands that I was stoked on, and interested parties can google em. Here's my method for finding streaming tracks: first google "band name + bandcamp". If that fails try "band name + youtube" and see what's newest. Worst case, google "band name + metallum", and check metal archives to see what the latest release from the band is, then try googling "band name + album name + streaming". One of those should work. Again, sorry for de minimis blurbage. I'll just say up front that Oranssi Pazuzu has a new 2 song EP and it's sweet. The new God Dethroned is exactly what I wanted Memoriam to be (in terms of filling the Bolt Thrower / Hail of Bullets shaped void in my heart, though you'll catch a whiff of melodeath ala Amon Amarth and even a little black metal ala Dissection or Necrophobic), and it's possibly the best thing they've done since Lair of the White Worm (possibly ever). Jordablod is really cool, wiry black metal that makes me think of Negative Plane, without sounding derivative. Ides of Gemini keep getting better; I'm also hugely biased as my best bro forever Adam now plays bass, but they've honestly gone way beyond their humble "femme doom" origins and landed in the Siouxsie Sioux-like goth/post-punk-gone-heavy stratosphere on the new record. Saule is a nifty post-everything hybrid-whatever from the pacific northwest, and I really like em. Medusa1975 are hilarious old timers who may or may not predate Pentagram, and their latest comeback record reminds me of the lost Manilla Road album "Mark of the Beast" in the best way. Wolfbrigade does ripping metal-inflected d-beat properly; the new Vallenfyre weirdly sounds very similar, way more crust than death metal. Excommunion is basically the members of Nightbringer playing gnarly death metal; solid but surprisingly straightforward. Similarly, Necrot is excellent OSDM featuring peeps from Vastum and other likeminded acts. Apologies if any of this shit appears in the list proper; I'm not bothering to edit. Enjoy the madness. Bonus Tracks: Oranssi Pazuzu Sabbath Assembly (expect more from them here soon) Ides of Gemini Unaussprechlichen Kulten (best name ever ripped from HP Lovecraft) God Dethroned Necrot Bestia Arcana Crypt Rot (blackened death clearly played by guys from hardcore bands; still good) Medusa1975 Wolfbrigade Jordablod Coltsblood (deeply unpleasant death/doom; pretty satisfying) Acherontas Excommunion Saule Ensnared (sick Dark Descent stuff) Svartsyn Dødsengel Ustalost (Yellow Eyes dude playing awesome weirdo one-man BM; think this is a repress) Triumvir Foul (Ash Borer dudes playing filthy, cavernous death) Impetuous Ritual (highly impenetrable death from Portal dudes) Tombs (you know em; they have new shit coming; I didn't love it, but you might) White Ward Vallenfyre Unleash the Archers (this is bad, but i found it entertaining) Penile Aidsjuice (this is REALLY bad [it's pornogrind] but i found it even more entertaining)
+4 |
April 28, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – April 2017
FYI, gang: I was too busy to contribute blurbage this month due to school pains, but the other guys killed it even harder than usual. (Note the hilarious uptick in grind and slamz in my absence). I'll try to throw together a bonus tracks post (sans microblurbs due to time constraints) later today or tomorrow, so keep your eyes peeled if you're interested.
+8 |
April 28, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – April 2017
hell is real and it lives inside that Extreme song
+4 |
April 5, 2017 on 36 Essential ’80s Pop Metal Tracks
Same. Occasionally interesting riffs set to non-compelling vocals that sound slightly 'off'. I like the overall vibe better than the actual music.
+1 |
April 4, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – March 2017
To my ear, it's very good pagan-sounding stuff that will scratch a certain itch, but it didn't bowl me over to the extent it did Joseph. I love Obsequiae but don't care as much about Nenochwen, and this seems to split the difference between the bands. The clean singing isn't quite my thing, though the riffs are pretty great. Give it a spin over at IO before you shell out for it, but if the description sounds good to you, by all means. Our rating system is also an imperfect measure of quality since it's really just a combination of our own individual favorites, and we can only write about so much in a given month. Only so much time in the day, we all hear things differently, sometimes a record catches us at the right or wrong time, etc. Metal is a harsh mistress.
+1 |
April 4, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – March 2017
FYI - I posted the longest bonus tracks post ever, but it will probably be a bit before it gets moderated. Check back if you're interested.
+4 |
April 1, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – March 2017
As requested, here's a mountain of bonus tracks for the diehards. My original list was even longer, if you can believe that. HIDEOUS DIVINITY https://youtu.be/wqX3RQ0vydY We don’t often cover modern, cleanly produced death metal (or at least I don’t), but sometimes it scratches the itch. Brutal and fairly technical but still catchy, there’s a moody stream of melody beneath all the blasting. Think Nile, Hate Eternal, or Hour of Penance. (Doug thinks these guys are generic; I think Doug’s amygdala is blown out from too much Pyrrhon exposure.) DEMONIC DEATH JUDGE https://demonicdeathjudge.bandcamp.com/album/seaweed Ian sold me on these dudes: highly excellent Finnish sludge with some of the best Big Dumb Riffs you’re likely to hear this year. There’s a psychedelic edge that pushes this from “good” to “great”; even if it’s a style you’ve heard a thousand times, these guys are about as good as it gets. MASTODON http://www.stereogum.com/1932829/stream-mastodon-emperor-of-sand/music/album-stream/ Not a fan of the singles, but I haven’t been a fan since Crack the Skye, and they were already sliding off the rails by then. Other folks claim this is their best since Leviathan; I’ll let you decide. LANCER https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Hm7mN7NPjM Do you like dumb heavy metal bordering on dumb power metal? Look no further. STRIKER http://loudwire.com/striker-striker-exclusive-album-stream-interview/ I think this got missed because they decided to self-release, which is a shame. These guys are one of the better traditional heavy metal acts going, even as they dabble with 80s cock rock and even some crossover thrash. It’s a weird hybrid but the songs are sick. TRIAL https://youtu.be/x3vzPX8OoRw?list=PLy8LfIp6j3aLVZUw5F96Ecwc2bbd8PlOY All right, all right, ONE MORE trad band then we’ll get back to the extreme stuff. Trial are a bit weirder than Lancer or Striker, drawing more from cooler stuff like Mercyful Fate and US power metal like Omen or early Fates Warning. Dig the ridiculous vocals. ISENORDAL https://isenordal.bandcamp.com/ “Pagan black/doom from Seattle”, reads metal archives. To be honest, I don’t know what this is: stylistically it jumps around quite a bit, and it might be a bit too schizo for my tastes, but there’s something cool going on here. LOSS https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ihpen9zimiw Their last album, Despond, is a latter-day death/doom classic… this track didn’t jump out at me in the same way, so we’ll see how the album turns out. To my ear, this is more in line with Pallbearer “light doom” with harsh vocals. Hmm. VIRUS https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5AwjwbKXduo New Virus! Ridiculously fast turnaround from these guys; I haven’t even listened to this yet but I don’t doubt it’s decent. CULT OF ERINYES https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KhS5Jb8QlfA&feature=youtu.be I hate album trailers but like this band a lot: excellent, under-the-radar Belgian black metal. This isn’t the best sample but keep an ear out for it when this drops in May. SAULE https://avantgardemusic.bandcamp.com/album/saule PDX band mixing anything and everything, from tribal drumming straight from best-era Neurosis to clean dream-pop/post-punk guitars, Primordial-style vocals, and post-black/post-metal crescendoes. weird one but a good one. ENSNARED https://invictusproductions666.bandcamp.com/album/dysangelium Co-release by Invictus and Dark Descent and it sounds like it. Black/death/thrash from Gothenburg, featuring two dudes from Trial playing against type (see above). I like the details in the playing: they occasionally use vibrato on the rhythm guitars to make for a weird layered tone. Fun for the whole family. GAOTH https://gaoth.bandcamp.com/releases Killer Irish atmospheric black metal, originally released in 2016, getting the repress treatment from Northern Silence. LOCK UP https://listenable-records.bandcamp.com/album/demonization Death/grind supergroup featuring Shane Embury of Napalm Death, Anton Reisenegger of Pentagram (Chile) and Criminal, Nick Barker of… everything, and now with Kevin Sharp of Brutal Truth filling in for the recently departed Tompa Lindberg. I love this album way more than I thought I would, especially the absurdly heavy title track, “Demonization”. AZARATH https://agoniarecords.bandcamp.com/album/in-extremis Tasty black/death mastery from the long-running project of Behemoth’s absurdly talented drummer, Inferno. It’s not all that different than Behemoth, just gnarlier, more vicious, more my speed. FUOCO FATUO https://profoundlorerecords.bandcamp.com/album/backwater Stellar long form death/doom from Italy, courtesy of Profound Lore. This one just missed the cut this month. Don’t miss out on the suffocating joy. COLDFELLS http://www.invisibleoranges.com/coldfells-coldfells-album-premiere/?trackback=fbshare_top_flat_4 Most excellent pagan stuff from Nenochwen and Obsequiae dudes. I know Joseph Schafer of Inivisible Oranges is a huge fan, and I dig it too. ABIGOR / NIGHTBRINGER / THY DARKENED SHADE / MORTUUS split https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ND0C3lALzrs What a wild combination of bands. This is a weird record, one I need to spend more time with. Expect this to be a collector’s item down the road. GRUESOME https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bSajhtRAKHo&feature=youtu.be Gruesome sounds like Death. That’s it. They exist for one purpose, which is so Matt Harvey of Exhumed can channel Chuck Schuldiner to revisit one of the best death metal styles ever. Past records have focused on Leprosy-era Death; here they’re tackling the weirder and much more distinct later period (ala Human, Symbolic, or Individual Thought Patterns) and it’s probably the best song they’ve done yet. LANTERN http://www.nocleansinging.com/2017/03/10/ncs-premiere-lantern-lucid-endlessness/ Here’s a Dark Descent goodie I’ve overlooked for awhile now. Riff-forward black/death magic that isn’t quite as sick as I was hoping, this still rules pretty hard for what it is. WEEPING SORES https://weepingsores.bandcamp.com/releases Don’t forget to check out (and buy) Doug’s latest record, where he plays guitar and bass in service of gloriously filthy death/doom.
+3 |
April 1, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – March 2017
I can't promise when they will appear, but I'll try to dump some on here this weekend. The torture chamber is real. Regardless: Hails (and thanks for the support)!
+5 |
March 31, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – March 2017
I wish there was recorded output from the van Drunen period! He's one of my favorite singers, and as much as I love Asphyx, I always wished he had some perfect Bolt Thrower riffs to sing over (tho old Pestilence riffs are equally perfect in a different way). I've come to appreciate Dave Ingram's vox on Honor—Valour—Pride, but BT to me is still all about Karl's voice, Jo's bass, those perfect dual guitars, and the mid-tempo-groove style of drumming that Andy Whale developed and Martin Kearns perfected. Timeless, perfect band.
+1 |
March 1, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – February 2017
I resisted those vocals for at least a year, then something broke inside my head, and now I'm all for 'em. They're also ridiculously fun to mimic around likeminded metalheads.
+1 |
March 1, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – February 2017
Phil's a fellow writer so I'm guessing he's talking about the same digital promo I got. Boggles the mind how labels in 2017 can avoid digital, but I suppose that's part of the obscuritan charm. I don't think they realize they're actually incentivizing piracy, but I suppose luddites gonna luddite.
+2 |
March 1, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – February 2017
sadly, yeah, he does it for most of the album. some tracks have more of a hardcore punk approach to the riffing, and I can see what he was going for, but it's not my favorite approach. definitely a minor bummer, since he's the reason 99% of care. The best I can say is that I still very much enjoy the record, but it's pretty far from the top of this particular style. Hopefully the new Hail of Bullets featuring Dave Ingram will deliver the goods later this year.
+3 |
February 28, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – February 2017
yeah... that line comes off unnecessarily harsh, my bad. I don't like Muni at all these days, but Iron Reagan are fine, if not really my thing. I was more trying to distinguish Power Trip's mastery of a particular strain of serious crossover from (what I perceive as) the sillier rethrash strain that Muni and IR have made so popular. The other guys all think I'm insane for some of my genre distinctions (including this one), so it is what it is. Let's all just recognize that I'm the weirdo here
+3 |
February 28, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – February 2017
If I remember correctly, our array of metal shirts was beyond SICK
+1 |
February 1, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – January 2017
agh, yeah—that was in my next tier down, which includes another 10-15 bands I just couldn't summon the energy to write about. How do you like this one compared to their prior work? I know it's a bit of a departure (seems kinda tribal, less overtly "metal," almost world-music-ish? I dunno). I listened once or twice and moved on, but I should probably give it another spin.
+2 |
January 31, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – January 2017
Here we go—two whole months worth of bonus tracks. Sorry (not sorry) for the length of this one: GOREPHILIA: https://darkdescentrecords.bandcamp.com/album/severed-monolith Killer Finnish death from the ever-trusty Dark Descent. The "gore" name is deceptive; this has more of an old-school + cosmic death vibe. IMMOLATION: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lOUh2ctYZFE Immo's been in a holding pattern for a few records now, but cmon, they're still a personal favorite. Angular but immediate, this reminds me of a much more straightforward Ulcerate (as in: Ulcerate with songs), and even if it's not mindblowing, it's still plenty great. ANOMALIE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fWJzbMoYGTo If you like Harakiri for the Sky, you'll like this. Another Austrian band composed of two guys from Harakiri, the overall effect is pretty similar: post-black, atmospheric, you know the drill. Maybe a little heavier / less-emo than Harakiri. MIDNIGHT: https://midnight-ohio.bandcamp.com/album/shox-of-violence Black, speed, proto-thrash, whatever: it's fucking Midnight, and it's exactly as dumb as you think it's gonna be, and exactly as much fun. The new "album" is a monstrously huge compilation of stuff from EPs and splits released since the prior Midnight comp, Complete and Total Fucking Midnight. This one has 4 new songs and an awful lot of sweet covers included. Always a joy. MEMORIAM: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nmucoieg2Lc First non-demo offering from Karl Willets' (of Bolt Thrower fame) new band, also featuring dudes from two dudes from Benediction and the original drummer of Bolt Thrower. Musically it sounds like you'd expect from a Bolt Thrower/Benediction hybrid, though Karl's doing a borderline weird speak/sing thing which is noticeably less awesome than his Bolt Thrower work. Still awesome; I'm nitpicking cuz I'm a BT stan. EMPTINESS: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wCnK3jKeX0A For months I've been dreading this thing—prior Emptiness records were some kind of insane fusion experimental black and death, and they were thoroughly amazing. Hearing bits and pieces of the new one, it sounded like an awkward hybrid of 90s mall goth and murky black metal, which, it turns out, is exactly what this is; somehow in the context of the full album, I really like it. And yes, Twiggy Ramirez produced this thing, so the Marilyn Manson textures are legit. I realize this is one of those blurbs that actively repels most folks, but that's probably for the best anyway. NIGHTBRINGER: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZaalrhlvPAE Easily one of the best American black metal BANDS (as in: not one-man USBM), the new Nightbringer seems like it will rule hard. I've only heard the first single, and it sounds as strong as everything else they've done, which is to say it's, uh, very strong. Dig the squirrelly upper-fret tremolo mastery. LORN: https://i-voidhangerrecords.bandcamp.com/album/arrayed-claws Technical, grinding avant-garde black metal from… Italy, I presume? Another one of the great bands from I, Voidhanger; wholly unpleasant to listen to, still awesome. BATHSHEBA: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M5kQjOu_mIc&feature=youtu.be And a second track (maybe even better): http://www.cvltnation.com/premiere-streaming-bathsheba-end-everything-review/ Mammoth, monolithic, wonderful doom from a newer band made up of members of Death Penalty. You get female vocals, but unlike the bluesy wail we’re used to: instead we get a little of that, plus a death-rock wail, weird possessed harsh witchy vox, and some schizophrenic voices that somehow don’t suck. The album is wonderful, and it came very close to making this month’s list. PALLBEARER: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WmfKPB7AGDc New Pallbearer, but you already knew that. This dropped after we had already assigned blurbs, but I’ll probably cover it properly next month. Proggier, less explicitly doom, better vocals than ever before, and one hell of a closing riff. Excellent stuff. AU CHAMP DES MORTS: https://dmp666.bandcamp.com/album/dans-la-joie Phenomenal atmospheric black metal from a French scene veteran known for playing in one of the classic symphonic black metal bands of the late 90s, early 2000s: Anorexia Nervosa. Very weird to see such a contemporary rebirth, but the album is an incredibly strong example of the style. REBEL WIZARD: https://rebelwizard.bandcamp.com/album/triumph-of-gloom Man, this one’s weird. Some kind of bastard fusion of bedroom NWOBHM + occasional black metal + noise(?), yeah, I don’t know what the hell this is. I think it was self-released last summer and Prosthetic picked it up for a proper release next month. The traditional metal leads sell this one. LUMINOUS VAULT: https://soundcloud.com/profoundlorerecords/luminous-vault-charismata Here’s another strange hybrid: obvious drum machines, synths, frantic melodic riffing, on top of something approximating primitive death or black metal. Kinda sounds like a weirdly gothic version of Godflesh. Coming your way from Profound Lore this March.
+5 |
January 31, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – January 2017
Just popping in to comment on that wonderful Kairon; IRSE! record. Ian and I had a running joke in the Black Market locker room that this is already 2017 AOTY: technically we were joking, but only kinda sorta. It's hard to make sense of what you're hearing by only hearing a single track, so I would urge anyone interested to pick it up. They also share members with Oranssi Pazuzu, sort of—I think one or two of the OP dudes plays live with K;I!—and both bands apparently share the same producer. You can kind of hear it, too. Anyway. You guys want some bonus tracks? I've got a pile to sift through
+6 |
January 31, 2017 on The Black Market: The Month In Metal – January 2017
my mother in law is a New Zealand native--I'll spring it on her and see what happens.
+1 |
December 14, 2016 on The 40 Best Metal Albums Of 2016