Nine Circles ov…Vince’s Mid-Year Favorites

Hello. Been a while, hasn’t it? Every year feels like it’s passing us by faster and faster, but the overwhelming amount of things to process this year has already made it impossible to fathom that 2022 is halfway over. If you are curious as to what music has been keeping me grounded for the last six months, now is as good a time as any to check in and see what the standout albums of the year are, as far as one humble author is concerned. Down to business then…

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Absent In Body’s CHVE and Mathieu on new album “Plague God,” skateboarding, Belgium, and much more! 

Absent In Body are the absolute epitome of a supergroup with membership spanning Amenra, Neurosis, and Sepultura. Just the thought of these souls coming together for a project brings to mind some of the heaviest, most emotional and spiritualistic filled music on the planet. And that’s exactly what they’ve cooked up on debut Plague God. It’s not unlike anything this group has done before yet it’s entirely its own thing with an industrial tinge that‘s pointed with sludge and doom and seismic levels of suffocating atmosphere. Buke sat down with Colin H. Van Eeckhout and Mathieu J. Vandekerckhove to discuss the new album, how it came to be, what brought the band together, and the multitude of ideas behind it all. They also discuss how it felt for these two artists to branch out a bit musically in the Absent In Body mindset, skateboarding and the joys, and pain, of the sport, the Belgian metal scene and how they both were first exposed to metal, their friendship with Scott Kelly and Igor Cavalera, working with Relapse Records, the decision to have Amenra’s last album in their native tongue, and so much more.

This is an epic conversation with two legendary artists, so grab your beverage of choice and settle in for another edition of the Nine Circles Audio Thing.

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Album Review: Absent in Body — “Plague God”

Absent In Body - Plague God

Some things just go together naturally, without force or coercion, like they were simply made for each other: peanut butter and chocolate, oysters and hot sauce, pepperoni and cheese, a nice cabernet and just about any red meat.  Such is also true for the likes of Absent in Body, a true supergroup combining the brainpower of members of Amenra, Neurosis and Sepultura.  If it seems like a natural, organic fit, you’d be right.  If you think it sounds cool as hell, you’d also be right.  Plague God is exactly like what you think it would be in all the best ways possible.

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Initial Descent: March 20 – 26, 2022

Absent In Body

Churchill once said “Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip.” I’ll leave you with that to ponder and apply at will. Moving on, new releases this week are yet again on fire with a much anticipated debut from Absent In Body that features none other than a mix of Amenra and Neurosis and is, as expected, amazing. We’ve also got new stuff from Abbath which is always fun, Kontusion offer up a devastating debut death metal EP, Falls Of Rauros continue to reside on top shelf in the progressive black metal genre, and a whole host of other stuff hiding in the list below. Seek and destroy…your wallet.

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The Nine Circles Playlist Vol. 222 (3.12.2022)

playlist - mixtape

Weird random though for the morning: although we’re often nostalgic for things from our youth, sometimes the things from our youth are not things from our youth, you catch me? I don’t know; I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately. Maybe it’s the music, so many new albums coming out that capture so succinctly the signatures of the sounds that came before it (*cough* Ghost) I’m caught in a revelry of the past. Don’t fear, though: I won’t let it influence the 222nd edition of the Nine Circles Playlist too much…

…but I will a little, kicking it off with a certain massive popular band who finally went all in on the hard rock/pomp of the 80s (*cough* Ghost). But man, if you haven’t also heard the latest from Drug Church get thee to a computer and rectify that post-haste. Hits the 90s indie hardcore rock so good, and they’re from my old stomping grounds of Albany, NY to boot. Elsewhere Anton brings up Siberia, Vital Spirit, and Autarkh III to get the nasty flowing. Vincent continues to champion site favorite Absent in Body and throws in some new music from Devil Master and Egregore as well as Bootblacks. Josh takes a break from his non-stop listening of Impera to get down with the OTHER site favorite Zeal & Ardor but also manages to make room for Corpsessed, King Dude, and a pair of outlaw country tunes, including the latest from Paul Cauthen. Buke can always be counted on with some choice classic cuts, and he does not fail this week, serving up some vintage KISS and Rainbow, but also hits with new cuts from Rammstein and Deathwhite (there’s some Anvil in there, too). And Angela comes in to remind that if the first quarter of 2022 was already stacked tooth gills with great music, we just got the new Messa, a new single from Conjurer, and the latest from Chelsea Wolfe.

Get listening. Stay safe. See you next week.

Chris