Second Circle: Hammers of Misfortune and Arrayan Path

In Dante’s Inferno, the second circle begins the proper punishment of Hell, a place where “no thing gleams.” It is reserved for those overcome with Lust, where carnal appetites hold sway over reason. In Nine Circles, it’s where we do shorter reviews of new (ish) albums that share a common theme.

If there’s a theme to this edition of Second Circle, it’s that I’m so bogged down trying to get my usual massive and way overdone end of year list(s) ready that I can’t find the time to do proper in-depth reviews for both of the albums featured today. Which happens to be the latest from Hammers of Misfortune and Arrayan Path.

So let’s do this.

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Second Circle: Heads for the Dead and Trial

In Dante’s Inferno, the second circle begins the proper punishment of Hell, a place where “no thing gleams.” It is reserved for those overcome with Lust, where carnal appetites hold sway over reason. In Nine Circles, it’s where we do shorter reviews of new (ish) albums that share a common theme.

It’s no secret we have a weird way of writing here at Nine Circles. I’ve been spouting nonsense here since…shudder…2016 and still the primary way I learn about music is by texting Fearless Editor Josh™ along the lines of “hey, what’s coming out that you think I’d like?” Because while I can barely keep up with the bands I love, Josh keeps up with EVERYTHING. I have yet to surprise him with a new band where he hasn’t gone “Oh yeah, I checked out the single it’s great!” So this week when I had a blank schedule for the site and asked what I should be listening to, Josh immediately shot back the latest releases from Heads for the Dead and Trial.

When the Boss lays down the law, you listen. So let’s dig in.

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Second Circle: Boris and The Halo Effect

In Dante’s Inferno, the second circle begins the proper punishment of Hell, a place where “no thing gleams.” It is reserved for those overcome with Lust, where carnal appetites hold sway over reason. In Nine Circles, it’s where we do shorter reviews of new (ish) albums that share a common theme.

Good things come in threes…or is that celebrity deaths? Let’s go with the former, since despite being relatively skeptical of all things mystic and supernatural I don’t want to put out any bad karma and hear that tomorrow there’s a pile up and we lost whoever was on the most recent season of The Celebrity Dating Game. Instead for this edition of Second Circle let’s take a look at the latest from Boris, who this week release their third entry in their Heavy Rocks series, and The Halo Effect, who solve the equation of In Flames + Dark Tranquillity on their debut.

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Second Circle: Nechochwen and Predatory Light

Second Circle

In Dante’s Inferno, the second circle begins the proper punishment of Hell, a place where “no thing gleams.” It is reserved for those overcome with Lust, where carnal appetites hold sway over reason. In Nine Circles, it’s where we do shorter reviews of new (ish) albums that share a common theme.

Black metal continues, as it has from the first time I got my ears around it, to be my favorite genre of metal. For all the trappings and headaches it can offer, there is truly nothing like black metal when it is at its best, so I’m always happy to talk it up when I find stuff that speaks to me, and today we’re having yet another two-for-one sale on this here website. Nechochwen‘s Kanawha Black and Predatory Light‘s Death and the Twilight Hours are very unlike each other in style and ethos, but bound together under the sign of the black mark.

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Second Circle: Hath and Egregore

Second Circle

In Dante’s Inferno, the second circle begins the proper punishment of Hell, a place where “no thing gleams.” It is reserved for those overcome with Lust, where carnal appetites hold sway over reason. In Nine Circles, it’s where we do shorter reviews of new (ish) albums that share a common theme.

Within the last two years or so, I’ve come to enjoy taking a long, hard look at my own biases when it comes to music I like and don’t like. I have a long-form rambling manifesto on the topic of progressive metal from a while back to that effect, but that is not where this self-interrogation begins or ends. I have been finding a lot of albums lately that I love despite their being played in a style of metal that I don’t generally gravitate towards, and this brings me another chance to shine a light into the cobweb-strewn corners of what’s left of my brain and grill myself about two albums that could each conceivably be called ‘blackened death metal’, although both choose to do something wildly different with that prompt. With that, I bring you something old, and something new…

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