I’ve come up with some crazy combinations of metal and beer over the last several weeks, and this week is going to be no different. At least on the surface. But there is a definitive connection between the two items I’m consuming this evening, something I’ll be getting into shortly. The styles may clash, but there is an overlapping inspiration. Well, for me. And as usual, that’s all that matters. I have things to do (no I don’t), so I’m going to kill the intro here. The Metal: Agalloch – Marrow of the Spirit. The Booze: Moat Mountain Brewing Company’s Miss V’s Blueberry. Continue reading →
The debut LP from Vow of Thorns, titled Farewell To The Sun, was one I initially opted to bypass. Yet, despite the recent inundation of atmospheric black and doom metal in my listening periphery, curiosity still pulled me into this record. Turns out that was a good thing. Within the expansive tracks of this album, the Ontario-based group define a certain unique personality to their music that calls upon a number of influences. With this debut, it all comes together to create a sound as progressive as it is emotional. Continue reading →
The guys return from a slight Father’s Day layoff with a whole lotta podcast. News from Nails, Agalloch and Nuclear Blast Records, new albums from Gojira, Wayfarer and Thrawsunblat, and a whole bunch more banter in between. Plus, SportsTalk® returns to The Nine Circles Podcast!
All that and much, much more in Episode 47, so check it out!
The metal scenes in Europe and the United States have always had a symbiotic relationship. When one scene moves in a particular direction, the other one begins by emulating and then transcending that direction. The New Wave of British Heavy Metal was a profound influence on the American thrash metal scene, a scene which would greatly influence musicians all over Europe (e.g. Swedish death metal), and so on. To make a (very) broad generalization: Europe tends to bring the mythology and romantic mystique; America tends to bring a more self-oriented, personal touch.
This is true of the American black metal scene as well. A good introduction to United States Black Metal (USBM) requires an appreciation for the bands that began by directly emulating the stylistic giants of Scandinavia, Switzerland and elsewhere. True, the American scene has gone in all sorts of directions since its development in the mid-to-late 1990s. But listeners should have a sense of context before moving into the specialized realms occupied by death-laden heroes like Goatwhore and Hod, along with the indie/alternative influenced sounds made famous by Wolves in the Throne Room. So with that in mind, enter the Nine Circles ov USBM. Continue reading →