Initial Descent: May 19 – 25, 2019

Misthryming
Misthryming

Saw Cloak, Withered, and Goatwhore over the weekend. It was ridiculously good. I’m still tired. Alright then, new metal is on tap and plenty of it to go around so let’s do this.

Icelandic black metallers Misthyrming are upon us once again with second full length Algleymi and expect another knockout of an album full of living and breathing personality that is cold, intense, and perfectly temperamental. Next up is a cavalcade of crusty rawness on Hexhammaren, the seventh studio album from Martyrdöd, that comes off feeling larger than anything they’ve done to date – strong words but right around the second track you’ll understand. Steamrolling right along we’ve got New England’s nasty death thrash dealers Rancorous with their second demo Stealth Dominion and if early Slayer and Kreator gets your juices flowing then GET ON THIS. Last up top is debut full length De Val from Dutch black metallers Verwoed and not even their last two EP’s can prepare for this multi layered and heavily atmospheric assault, don’t miss it.

Killer top four and there’s a ton more below. Hop to it. Continue reading

Initial Descent: May 12 – 18, 2019

Paladin
Paladin

Literally no one said ‘hey, I want to read this lengthy ass intro of blah blah’s and yada yada’s’ when there’s a mountain of metal to get to. So, shall we?! I know, it’s Monday. But still, LET’S DO IT.

When I think of power metal, what I really think of is the thrashy classic metal leaning sort that Atlanta’s Paladin provide on debut full length Ascension. After being head over heels with their previous pair of shweeet demos, this surpasses my expectations and brings a mile wide grin. Weeping Choir, the fourth full length from Full of Hell, touches on nearly every facet of the band’s busy history and is one of their most ferocious outings yet; grind, death, noise, experimental, the list could go on but you get the idea and you know they rule so, do that – choirs will definitely weep. Lo-Pan just continue to be one of the most exciting bands in heavy rock today and on Subtle they put an exclamation mark on that statement and are anything but subtle. Last up top is the legendary Saint Vitus with their first full length in seven years and ninth overall, Saint Vitus, AND with Scott Reagers back behind the mic. Personally, I was stoked for this thing and even though it’s not one of their best it is very good and I’m enjoying it. Your mileage may vary, etc etc.

One thing left to do…go and explore. Continue reading

Initial Descent: May 5 – 11, 2019

Idle Hands
Idle Hands

This is one of those weeks that could’ve easily seen double digit albums in the top slots. It’s. That. Good. This year just keeps on giving so let’s cut the chit-chat and get to it…

Following up on the STELLAR EP, Don’t Waste Your Time, is Idle Hands with their full length debut Mana and honestly you just don’t know how much this brand of goth metal is needed until you know so get acquainted with it, this is a freaking masterpiece of soaring anthems drowned in mellow sadness. Next up is the godfathers of death metal, Possessed, with their loooooong awaited third full length Revelations of Oblivion and if initial impressions hold true, this will be one for the ages and one that furthers the intimate brand that Seven Churches laid bare. And then, Spirit Adrift completely seal the deal of trad metal meets majestic doom on third full length Divided By Darkness and it’s a sweet ass album full of old soul metal energy. Last up top but certainly not least is Wisconsin’s melodic black metallers Uhtcearu with their third full length Madness & Creation which finds the band in a forward thinking, progressive frame of mind. Now, don’t get your panties in a bunch as this slight addition works EXTREMELY well so if you were a fan of the last two, this one will blow your mind but if you’re a newb then this is a great jump off point.

What are you waiting for? Get in there…. Continue reading

Initial Descent: April 28 – May 4, 2019

Appalling

Monday. I got nothing. Well, I take that back – I’ve got new metal and lots of it so let’s focus on that…

Up first is a twofer of outstanding death metal. Appalling have a way about them that screams old school death yet sounds forward enough in their brash mix of blackened, thrashened (two in a row, fight me) death and not to mention their outstanding ability to write a killer song so give Inverted Realm a spin at max volume. Once that one’s done take a stroll through another album with incredibly memorable songwriting and death metal thick enough that even a chainsaw couldn’t cut through it, Parasitic Slavery from Body Harvest is one you’ll not want to miss. Kampfar has been around for nearly 25 years and still manage to put out some of the darkest black metal going today and on Ofidians Manifest they do it darker and better than ever. Last but not least is Mavradoxa on their melodic leaning atmospheric black metal filled Nightmarrow which is a beast on several levels and stay tuned for an in depth look at this one in the coming days.

See, I actually did have something. Here. Not elsewhere. Not today. Continue reading

Initial Descent: April 21 – 27, 2019

Lord Dying
Lord Dying – photo courtesy of Alyssa Herrman

New week, new set of circumstances, new opportunities, and new metal which is the one reason we’re here. As some band once said ‘nothing else matters.’ And with that, let’s get on with it.

This week will be remembered for many reasons, I’m sure, but the biggest of which is whatever you thought you knew about Lord Dying forget it and make way for their new, more progressive, more classically psychedelic, and more fantastic look on Mysterium Tremendum – talk about surprises, it’s nearly impossible to tell this is the same band but make no mistake, it IS amazing. Then we’ve got black metallers Murg who moved mountains with their debut Gudatall but return to grab the sky and move it too on Strävan, it’s everything that was great about their debut, just better and particularly so in the memorable songwriting department. Next is everyone’s favorite droners Sunn O))) (say it with me…sun) who return with another slab of frequencies on Life Metal that are so heavy you can feel them, or breathe them – points if you know where that came from and if you missed out on RSD, now’s your chance. Last up top but certainly not least is Spotlights who prove that post-metal as a tag is limiting seeing as how Love & Decay is so much more with its power, haunting melodies, and wisps of granite destroying heaviness – ‘iron tone in a velvet glove’ was part of the promo accompaniments and it couldn’t be more accurate.

Beyond that you’ll just have to explore for yourself. Get in there… Continue reading