Angst and Loss in Acceptance: A Discussion of Swallow the Sun — “Moonflowers”

Swallow The Sun - Moonflowers

When I first started writing this piece, I thought I would end up writing a review where I would discuss how Moonflowers, Swallow the Sun’s newest release, was a departure from the grief we saw and heard previously. However, the more I listened, the more this evolved into something that needed to be discussed within the context of going through the stages of grief. I also felt that it was appropriate to make a call back to a piece I wrote many years ago that also dealt with doom metal and loss, but in a translated context. After all, being constantly surrounded by pain, grief, and loss makes someone introspective and reflective of where they are in this current time. This is the case with Moonflowers, an album that shows that hope and acceptance can bloom from the darkest of places.

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Album Review: Omnium Gatherum — “Origin”

Omnium Gatherum - Origin

In a previous review, I had mentioned that melodeath has been enjoying a renaissance, as both new and old bands continue to play and reinvent themselves in order to remain consistent within the genre. However, despite the newer additions and slight reinventions over the years, Omnium Gatherum continues to stay the course, creating music that still sounds fresh and poignant to this day. When Omnium Gatherum announced that they were going to release a new album after the very excellent The Burning Cold, I was stoked. I knew that whatever the band had planned, the album was going to be an enjoyable time. After all, Origin was one of the three melodeath albums I was looking forward to in November, and they clearly exceeded my expectations.

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Album Review: Vildhjarta — “måsstaden under vatten”

They say good things come to those who wait, and while it’s true that, despite the culture we live in, delayed gratification is more often than not the sweeter option, there are a couple of notable examples in the music world of the wait not quite being worth it, to say the least.  Chinese Democracy surely takes the cake, but (at least in this writer’s humble opinion) Fear Inoculum deserves a mention in the “did it really live up to the hype” category.  What, then, of a band like Vildhjarta, who so dramatically changed the game with their debut Måsstaden and then, besides an EP in 2013, remained suspiciously silent until now, with the long-awaited release of måsstaden under vatten?  I guess the answer to that question depends on what you’re expecting.

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CANTO: Mono, Insomnium, Armored Saint, and More

Alright, after a some time off I think I’m finally getting the wheels turning again. Not at work, of course. But everywhere else, for sure.

  • This is from last week, but since I can’t get enough of Insomnium I’m going to share it anyway. The Finnish melodic death metal legends announced a new EP, Argent Moon, which is set for a September 17th release through Century Media. In conjunction, they also dropped a new track and video titled “The Antagonist”. Personally, I love the melancholy vibe of the last few singles I’ve heard. This band can do no wrong.
  • Armored Saint have announced fresh tour dates with Black Label Society and Prong. It’s a very brief run of five shows, all out west, from December 27th through the 31st. The only band I’ve seen live out of this bunch recently was BLS, and based on that alone I can confirm these shows are worth attending if you can manage it.
  • Bastardur, the crust punk project from Aðalbjörn Tryggvason (Sólstafir), has officially signed on with Season of Mist and announced new album details. Satan’s Loss of Son will be out on October 29th, and you can preview what’s to come with the new single titled “Viral Tumor”.
  • Let’s close out a very weird day with the new single and video from Mono, who I love dearly. This track it titled “Riptide”, which is taken from Pilgrimage of the Soul. That album is set for a September 17th release through Pelagic Records.

“Ein Bier… bitte.”
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CANTO: Portrait, Spirit Adrift, Fire In The Mountains, and More

Well, I head out to California tomorrow and that’s a crazy concept to me.

  • Portrait have unveiled details surrounding a new album, titled At One with None. That will be out on September 3rd through Metal Blade Records, and you can check out the new single, “Phantom Fathomer”, right here.
  • Weedeater have announced the second leg of their 2021 U.S. tour. Those dates run from September 3rd through the 18th, and support will be in the form of The Atomic Bitchwax, Joe Buck Yourself, and Rebelmatic. Tickets can be acquired at this location.
  • Fire In The Mountains rolled out the first round of bands for the 2022 festival, which includes the likes of Eternal Champion, Obsequiae, Dreadnought, Haunter, Dbuk, and Ghosts of Glaciers. This is gonna be good. And I already have a ticket!
  • Spirit Adrift are releasing a new 3-song EP titled Forge Your Future on August 27th through Century Media. Pre-orders for that are available here, and you can check out the lyric video for the title track immediately below. What a great way to close a work week.

“Ein Bier… bitte.”
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