Okay, so I may have only formally reviewed 11 albums by the mid point this year, but that’s one more than I was at last year, so victory! However, that doesn’t count the 30 other albums covered in earlier editions of Nine Circles ov (like the Stoner Metal one, or the promo pile one, or the non-promo pile one) or Second Circle. Not to mention my folders telling me I’ve listened to 151 metal albums so far this year. It’s scratching the surface, I know…but at least there are quantifiable metrics for you to assess whether or not I’ve met my acceptance criteria to mark this feature as Done.
And now that my work life has completely blended into this post, let’s talk about how massive 2022 has been so far. We’re once again turning this edition of Nine Circles ov… into a dozen and I’m even going to throw some bonus mentions into the mix. Are these my absolute favorites of the year? Kind of: I wanted to highlight some albums I haven’t seen a lot of coverage on as well as some definite big guns I really dig so far. So what I’m saying is, here’s a big list of stuff I love. Maybe you’ll love it, too.
Welcome back to your regularly scheduled Nine Circles Playlist. The 232nd, in fact. And the metal has been flowing here at 9C. Some really strong music coming out lately, both from heavy hitters like Cave In and Blut Aus Nord as well as some smaller but really killer bands like Predatory Light and Kvaen, who I just got turned onto thanks to the awesome staff here at Nine Circles. So let’s kick it off with some of that and then get to the crew.
Have you been knocked to the floor yet? If so, pick yourself back up, because Anton’s back and he’s got new music coming from Warforged, Greylotus, and Inanna. Then Josh barrels into the room (careful not to spill a drop of his choice bourbon) with Tombs covering Motörhead, Abaddon Incarnate, Dismorphic Demiurge, Periphery, and some killer new cuts from Wormrot. Next up it’s Vincent over the moon with news that Imperial Triumphant is back with new music. He’s also bringing the variety with Cocteau Twins, new Nechochwen, A Pregnant Light and some Martyrdöd – I just picked this up on vinyl and it is indeed vicious. Buke alternates between old and new with some classic Rainbow, Amon Amarth,Sanctuary, and Opeth before following it up with some new music from Master Boot Record. Finally Angela makes sure we all go home satisfied with some Alexisonfire, Sowulo, and Ethel Cain.
I think at this point we’re all aware that the last few years of Cave In’s career haven’t been the easiest. 2019’s Final Transmission looked to be just that: the closing of the final chapter of the seminal hardcore band and the end of a remarkable era. However, as fate would have it, the act of coming together to put the band to bed ended up convincing the foursome that there was still more musical territory to tread. Heavy Pendulum is more than just the first “proper” Cave In release since 2009; it is a celebration of everything the band has accomplished and a showcase of the tricks they still have up their collective sleeves.
Here’s hoping no more devastating news this week. You know how this works, it’s Monday which means it’s new metal release time and we kick things off with a long awaited album from Cave In that hits all the right buttons, Mortal Thrall very successfully trip the post-black metal trigger, Stjärnfält warps the typical black metal tropes with an excellent effort, Sadistic Ritual keeps the thrash fires burning oh so high, and, as always, a hefty list follows. If we missed anything, let us know and if your band or label wants to be feature here in the future, hit the about page and send us an email. Happy hunting and we’ll see you here throughout the week…
And, of course, we’re going to wrap up with the new track and video from Cave In, this one being for “Reckoning”. But that’s not all! They also have some live dates that unfortunately I won’t be able to catch. But you should! Anyway, Heavy Pendulum is out on May 20th through Relapse Records. Everyone at Nine Circles preordered it. Pretty sure at least.