Initial Descent: January 3 – 9, 2021

Definitely not the news any of us wanted to hear: Children of Bodom front man and one of metal’s best guitarists, Alexi Laiho, has passed away. No doubt the reverberations of this will be felt for a long time and he will certainly be missed, 41 is way too early to go. Our hearts go out to his family, friends and fans. RIP.

Tough to muster new metal speak but here we are. First up is the full length debut from Frozen Soul who were on Maggot Stomp (this is your “quality” hint) but are now on Century Media and as good as their demo was, this is not only better but more of it. Second, we’ve got a physical release from Exsul by way of Caligari (again, quality) and if you missed the digital, rectify that now. Beyond that, another short list of entries to follow.

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Initial Descent: September 27 – October 3, 2020

EnslavedEnslaved
Enslaved

Not much small talk to be found. It’s early. And, I’m only on my second pot of coffee. So, let’s skip it. Now, if you’re an Enslaved fan, this is the week you’ve (we’ve) been waiting for as their fifteenth full length lands on Friday. It’s epic but that’s a surprise to literally no one. Anaal Nathrakh return with their most varied output to date and dare I say their most…progressive? On first blush it seems that way but you’ll have to decide for yourself—you know, your own opinion. Gorephilia nail the 90s death metal aesthetic and Fate plug into some seriously high voltage metal and punk to close out the top slots with a BANG. You know the drill by now but just in case, there’s a ton more to dig into below so go shuck cash at these artists and support them.

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Initial Descent: July 12 – 18, 2020

Väki
Väki

I know you missed me yesterday. Or, was it the new metals? Ah yes, the new metals; that you did indeed miss, more than me. Anywho, as usual, we’re overflowing with good picks so let’s get to it… back in 2017 Finland’s Väki put out a blistering EP of fierce yet cold black metal and with this week’s debut full length they up the ante in almost every aspect—expect utter chaos. The Czech Republic’s Oči Vlka offer up a scathing demo that defies any sort of easy categorization and it’s out on Caligari so you know it’s quality, Battalions continue their sludgy ass-kicking trajectory, and Mystras form of black metal is as fascinating as one might expect coming from Ayloss who you may know from Spectral Lore. So, several winners already and many, many more to follow. Enjoy. Continue reading

Initial Descent: June 14 – 20, 2020

Aversio Humanitatis
Aversio Humanitatis

And, we shall march forward. Forward to an unknown future. Forward to an unknown new norm. Forward to some more bullshit. How about forward to some new metal? That’s my jam, so let’s roll. Aversio Humanitatis grace us with their second full length and I say grace us because it’s an epic level outing of black metal that cracks skulls as easy as it mesmerizes with grandiose skill and songcraft; dark, atmospheric, and sharp as an axe so, do the thing. Then we’ve got Zebadiah Crowe with an excellent name, excellent album cover, and equally as excellent blackened thrash with an industrial tinge, do this one too. Moving along, Ritual Mass offer up a quick ass kicker of death metal and honestly since it’s on Caligari that should tell you all you need to know about its quality. Last but far from least is a vinyl issue of one of the filthiest death metal names in the game, Cryptworm. No excuse to not have this on your turntable. And there you have it, the top four this week but there’s so much more below that awaits your hard earned dollar. Keep your heads on straight and keep trudging, we’re all in the same stinking ass boat. Continue reading

Initial Descent: February 23 – 29, 2019

Tombs
Tombs

Last week’s Cirith Ungol announcement got me all sorts of giddy. Which prompted me to pull out my dusty copies of their classics and go crazy. It also reminded me of having to rely on some dude named Gutted Stench to come through on a tape trade way back in the day…I digress. Anyway, the only trading nowadays is hitting the ‘buy now’ button and trading green backs for files or physical media and since it’s Monday, we’ve got a plethora of releases for you to do just that with. We’ve got new stuff from Tombs that might be their most incendiary yet, true swamp death / doom from Muscipula, speedy black metal from Kvaen, and crusty fun from Hot Graves and with a bonus to boot if you splurge for the physical copy. You know what to do folks, click those buy buttons and get the music. All of it.
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