Album Review: Joyless Euphoria – “Dreaming In Ultraviolet”

Joyless Euphoria - Dreaming In Ultraviolet

Blackgaze can be joyous, although I don’t go looking for it very often. While my tastes tend to go for the atmospheric and off-kilter, I sometimes find something that catches my eye that really makes me want to sit and listen. Whether it’s how the album sounds or how it’s constructed, my brain always tries to fill in the gaps of what makes something tick. In the case of Joyless Euphoria’s Dreaming In Ultraviolet, what made me sit down and take notice was how inherently colorful and joyous it is. Even though the genre it comes from is not known for its levity, this album has something that makes me want to get up and weep in joy. Continue reading

The Path to Paradise Begins in Hell – Gothic Metal

The Path to Paradise Begins In Hell

Last month, I was just sad – it was one of my first Christmases without my entire family – so I thought it would be fitting to discuss one of the saddest genres in metal, much to my chagrin and (possibly) tasteless jokes. It got personal, as I tend to closely associate with the music I listen to on an emotional level once my tendency to intellectualize it is stripped away. The music I chose to discuss last month were albums I deeply connected with – particularly Created in the Image of Suffering – and they needed to be revisited to see if they still hit as hard as when I first encountered them…some still do and others hit harder.

Enough about that. That was all in the past, and now we get to move on to something I have wanted to talk about since I wrote about symphonic metal many months ago.

On the darker side of symphonic metal exists another genre, one that tends to be overlooked due to its association. After all, it’s always easier to lump two genres together when they have a similar tendency to showcase female operatic vocals.

It’s time we talk about Gothic MetalContinue reading

Scholar of the First Sin: Hera’s Best of 2018

EOY 2018 Header 9C

Yes, that title is a Dark Souls reference, and it’s a title I would like to have some day.

Anyway, it’s that time of year where we all just want to enjoy the last vestiges of holidays before the new year begins and we all decide to make lists. Whether it is for presents, things to throw out, or just a general shopping list for Christmas, we are bound to make one.

However, here in the hallowed halls of 9C, we are making one better: It’s time for EOY list season!

2018 was an impressive year for music in general. The sheer amount of releases this year was mind-blowing – so much so that I decided to make it into a top 20. That’s right: I expanded my list because 10 ain’t gonna cut it. However, there were a lot of albums left out from this list because they weren’t being as heavily played as they were supposed to be or they came out too late for me to actually put on this list (sorry Within Temptation!). I also decided to cut EPs from this list, as they deserve their own separate thing that won’t be explored until I have some more time. Let’s get started… Continue reading

The Path to Paradise Begins in Hell – Doom Metal

The Path to Paradise Begins In Hell

Last month, we dove into power metal and talked about how it was essentially foreign for me until I decided to step outside of what I knew. I also talked a lot about vocal envy and voice mimicry, which has somehow worked for me in learning how to sing. Essentially, power metal is fun, somewhat cheesy, and comforting – like a good chicken noodle soup — it will lull you to sleep and think happy thoughts, or it will amp you up to get stuff done.

Now, for many of us, it’s the holiday season. We spend time with family, friends, and other loved ones to bask in the good things that the year has brought us, eating good food, and having a great time watching movies or doing whatever normal people do during the holidays. However, because of my sense of humor and my rather interesting year, I decided to become the ultimate Grinch and give you all something to cry to. After all, nothing says “Happy Holidays” more than reminding you that we are all, fundamentally, sad people. Let me tell you something: this genre is definitely the opposite of chicken soup.

It’s time we talk about Doom Metal. Continue reading