Receiving the Evcharist is our weekly feature where we pair choice albums with our favorite libations. Drink from the cup of heresy. This week’s offering: Nusquama’s Horizon Ontheemt and Simpler Times Brewery’s Lager.
The Metal: Nusquama’s Horizon Ontheemt
As much as I talk about Iceland being a hotbed for black metal these days, I have to give it up to one other geographic region that’s been continually providing me with the most exciting black metal I can find these days: the Dutch. Where Iceland pushes limits of aggression and psychedelia, the Netherlands seem to excel at black metal that takes on more emotive qualities and adds a fair bit of progressive flair. It’s from this mighty lineage that Nusquama is born, composed of members from luminary acts like Laster, Turia, and Fluisteraars. Horizon Ontheemt is this group’s first album, but given the experienced nature of the members involved, it’s a strong and well-crafted first statement. Eschewing traditional black metal convention, Nusquama creates music that is droning and lush with melody, content to let its riffs swirl around the listener’s ears like fine wine mellowing in a glass. The music here is definitely black metal at its core, yet a kind of black metal that might be thought of as more romantic and almost gentle, given further romanticism by the lyrical content, which draws inspiration from the poetry of Elizabeth Maria Post. In bucking the traditional ‘darkness and evil’ tropes of black metal and forging their own path, Nusquama have created another of my favorite black metal albums of this year. If you’re going to Roadburn Festival, their debut performance is surely not one to miss.
The Booze: Simpler Times Brewery’s Lager
Picture this: work is draining all your energy, so you have no time to make an extra trip to the liquor store. Even if you did, you’re going on vacation next week and you don’t want to buy something that’s just going to sit in your fridge anyway (beer can’t go bad in a week, but your panic-addled brain doesn’t understand that). So today’s offering is going to be something that was dug out of the back of my fridge: Simpler Times’ Lager. Ordinarily lagers aren’t really my thing, as people who may be following this column have heard me talk about before, but Simpler Times’ Lager is one I feel is worth mentioning here. Yes, it is a pretty cheap, no nonsense lager, but it is a step above what you would expect from a cheap, no-nonsense lager a la MGD or Budweiser. For one thing, the horrible aftertaste of the aforementioned is gone here; this finish is clean, sweet, and just a little yeasty and floral. It’s more complex than beers at its price point, and offers a nice 6.8% ABV kick to boot. Sometimes it may be all you’ve got, but tonight it’ll do nicely.
Cheers, and be good to each other,