Nine Circles ov…”Fixing” The Metal Hammer 40 Best Black Metal Albums…Ever?

fixing black metal

* 8/29 mea culpa: After some robust discussion online I’ve added a new paragraph addressing in part the thorny issue of including “problematic bands” in a list such as this.  Providing proper context is always important, and I failed to do that.  The fault is mine, and I hope the added commentary helps clarify the choices made.

Ah, social media…where would we complain and spit our vitriol over “Best Of” lists if we didn’t have you? Last week’s ire in a buttercup came from Metal Hammer‘s list of “The 40 Best Black Metal Albums Ever” — a post that at its heart really just outlined 40 really good to great albums influential to the genre over the course of three decades. Compiled and with commentary by Dayal Patterson, a man that knows a thing or two about black metal, the article (I’m guessing titled by parent company Louder/Future Pic to generate more clicks — successfully) instead served as fodder for other sites to call out and complain over as well as get the always sensible metal community to froth at the mouth over what was and wasn’t on a list that in all reality serves as a pretty nice introduction to the early evolution of a now expansive and diverse genre.

Well, for this edition of Nine Circles ov…. we show that we’re not above our own cheap commentary, even if it’s at our own expense…   Continue reading

Nine Circles ov…FRANCE

mbappe
Intentionally terrible Photoshop job courtesy of yours, truly.

By now, most of y’all are probably aware that the 2018 World Cup has concluded. On Sunday afternoon, France capped off a dominant tournament run by beating Croatia, 4-2, in the final. And while we’re not still dopey enough to commemorate the occasion with something like the “World Cup of Metal,” (Remember that? Gross.) we also weren’t going to let it go completely unnoticed. Hence, here we are with The Nine Circles ov France!

Side note before we begin: as much as I wanted Croatia to win it all, I also know exactly one Croatian metal band. (This one.) So, having preemptively claimed this post before the game, I’m low-key THRILLED that France and its comparably enormous metal scene ended up victorious. Okay, I’ll shut up now. Here we go… Continue reading

Column: The Path to Paradise Begins In Hell – Black Metal

The Path to Paradise Begins In Hell

Last month, I discussed my penchant for symphonic metal and how its fandom eventually led me to listen to it with a lot of caution. Now, the three albums I chose for that segment weren’t my first gateway albums, but are three that remain close to my heart and are underappreciated by a lot of listeners. Anyway, for this chapter of the column – and for the sake of a timeline – I decided to talk about a subgenre that has remained controversial despite the claims of apolitical affiliations and people making terrible decisions.

It’s time we talk about black metal. Continue reading

The Nine Circles Playlist Vol. 5 (8.22.2017)

NINE-CIRCLES_LOGO-Light Background_SQUARE

Happy Tuesday, Metal Internet World. Yes, I realize this most recent edition of The Nine Circles Playlist is coming at you a day late and a dollar short, but there’s a very good reason for that. Well, actually, I guess not really. I was camping all weekend and Sunday night found me preparing for a 19 mile day of hiking and climbing in the White Mountains. So yeah, this fell down the pecking order. Regardless! We have 17 delicious tracks from all over the map for you to enjoy on this fine morning. If you want to check out our old playlists, I encourage you jump on our YouTube channel here. Otherwise, do that thing where you press play after the jump. Continue reading

The Nine Circles Playlist: Vol. 3 (8.7.2017)

NINE-CIRCLES_LOGO-Light Background_SQUARE

Happy Monday everyone. It’s currently Sunday afternoon here in sunny Portsmouth and Josh and I are starting to get ourselves together for the Neurosis/Converge/Amenra show down in Boston tonight. So, I’m going to make this pretty efficient for you today because 1. There’s shit we need to do in a little while and 2. I’m slightly hungover and don’t have a ton to say. A brand new edition of our playlist is available for your listening pleasure below. Miss a playlist from either of the past two weeks? Fret not, you can check out all the playlists on our YouTube channel. That’s it from me. Have a good week! Continue reading