* 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 →
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 →
Last one of these before Halloween. So, who are you parading around town as? I’m going as myself, straight from work. Should be fun. Get your horror movies on this weekend people, seriously. I tip my hat to all of you that I see on social media getting it done — handful of nights left to go, DO NOT let us down. Anyway, lots of metal here on Initial Descent this week: All Pigs Must Dieplace a nasty drillbit made of hardcore squarely in the temple on Hostage Animal, Blut Aus Nord slice the rib cage wide open with a machete of black metal on Deus Salutis Meae, DeathCrawl peels the skin back painfully slow with sludgy fingertips on Acceptable Level of Misery and Mendacium severs limbs then uses them to beat the blackened dead to a pulp on Decimating Titans. Sounds fun right? Of course it does. But that’s not all, we have much more fun lying in wait. Head inside and see for yourself — you never know what might be lurking around the corner… Continue reading →
Upon the arrival of each new Blut Aus Nord album there’s a moment of questioning. What are we getting this time? Is it the industrial tinges fueled the maelstrom of The Work Which Transforms God? The progressive leanings of the band’s 777 trilogy of albums? Or the lean and mean traditional blasts of the Memoria Tretusta series? Unsurprisingly, the answer is something different, and the results in new album Deus Salutis Meæ are a bit of a mixed bag. Continue reading →
Los Angeles based experimental black metal act Crowhurst are back with a vengeance on their new album II. Fans of last years self-titled album or even the act’s older works will have much to rejoice about. Continue reading →