Album Review: Bhleg — “Ödhin”

I’m a simple man.  I see a Nordvis promo and I click it.  We all have our labels that we’ve come to instantly associate with quality in our heads, and for me it doesn’t get much better than the Swedish label’s self-styled brand of “poor music for poor people.”  I haven’t yet met a release of theirs that I didn’t appreciate, and I certainly didn’t see that trend stop when I picked up Ödhin, the newest release from Swedish folk/black metal duo Bhleg (who may just have the best name on the scene right now). 

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Chaos is Me: Best of 2020

envy live

Welcome back to Nine Circles’ monthly screamo-focused column, Chaos Is Me.  With the end of the year in sight, in lieu of a December roundup I wanted to take some time to highlight the best of the best releases that 2020 had to offer in this realm.  Despite listening to less music overall than in previous years, the albums I loved this year have been some that I’ve been more drawn to than ever before, and I want to remember all the good things I found this year instead of focusing on all we lost.  Consider this a montage episode before the new season of Chaos is Me starts back up next month.  Until then, check out the best screamo 2020 had on offer, according to one humble man.  Continue reading

The Nine Circles Audio Thing: Best of 2020

Best of 2020

For this episode we go all in with most of the staff for our best of 2020 picks. We hit the high notes of what tickled our fancies for the year that was a shitstorm and even welcomed in a new member to the family. So, buckle up for an epic episode that has a wealth of stuff you may have missed and be sure to take notes, artists we mention need your support so open up those wallets and purses.

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Best of 2020: Zyklonius’s List

Best of 2020

In 2020, time became a melting flat circle and the concept of eternal recurrence became far too real, mundane and inescapable. Thankfully the high quality of metal released during the year provided solace, perspective and inspiration that helped endure the blizzard of blurring days, weeks and months. Time lost all structural integrity and meaning also in the sense that you will find full-length albums, EPs and even single-track releases on my list, owing to their excellence, innovation, enjoyability, distinct identity and sound as well the evolutionary leaps the featured bands took. The fact that I could omit from my list so many fantastic releases, from the likes of Afterbirth, Havukruunu, Mare Cognitum & Spectral Lore, Serocs, Sweven, Wake and Wills Dissolve, is simply indicative of the sheer quantity of stellar-grade metal in 2020. The list is long and full of flowery prose elaborating why these particular releases resonated with me, so enough with the prefacing.

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Rainbows in the Dark: Ian’s Best of 2020 List for Nonmetal

Best of 2020

This past year has seen some of the most exhilarating and emotionally deep metal that I’ve seen in a while, but what about the non-metal side of things?  Well, fortunately we’ve had just as many pleasant surprises on that front, and just as much music that will ultimately be talked about for years to come.  It bears repeating that I am humbled that I am in the position to be able to talk at length about all of this, and boy there sure is a lot to talk about.  From deep, brooding atmosphere to technical wizardry to lo-fi indie glory, polished folk and everything in between, there’s a lot to get into, so strap in as we bring you the very best of all things non-metal and metal adjacent.

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