Initial Descent: February 5 – 11, 2017

nidingr
Nidingr

You know, my Dad was right; “son, as you get older time will pass like a fleeting breath and you have to take advantage while you can.” Truer words were never spoken as here we sit almost halfway through February and closing in on Valentines Day so I sure hope all you metalheads have thought about that. And if you haven’t GET ON IT, the wonderful love of your life won’t be happy if you’ve spent all your money on metal. Disclaimer: we are not responsible for your spending habits, we merely show you what’s out there so no complaining. Comprende? Cool, now lets get to it; Nidingr return with their fourth full length The High Heat Licks Against Heaven and its another beautiful notch in their avant-garde take on black metal but more than likely the best album title of the year, Wiegedood return with De Doden Hebben het Goed II and fully pull away from the atmospheric black metal pack by building a bigger and better beast than what we had with part I, right on cue and right when we need it the most Overkill return with their eighteenth full length The Grinding Wheel (EIGHTEENTH FULL LENGTH!!) and honestly they haven’t lost a step — if anything they just continue to get better so if anyone asks “what is metal” you can point them right here to this phenomenal album, and Dead Witches are upon us with their occult doom metal debut Ouija which is packed with all the goodies that discerning doom fans will love. All that and much more after the jump.

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Album Review: Wiegedood – “De Doden Hebben het Goed II”

wiegedood_cover_web

You can argue all day about “atmospheric black metal” as a genre tag, the signposts that mark one band or album as indicative of the label or movement and another not. Is it merely an increased emphasis on melody? Keyboards (but of course without treading into symphonic territory)? A slower pace, better production? Some mix of all of the above? Oh shit…am I talking about post-black metal now?

I kid (a little bit…), but one of the things I’ve come to understand and respect about black metal over the years is how versatile it can be while simultaneously being clearly identifiable as such. It’s a facility with this musical language Wiegedood is intimately familiar with, and new LP De Doden Hebben het Goed II takes the credit earned from their debut and doubles down on everything that worked to great results. Continue reading

Initial Descent: September 11 – 17, 2016

High Spirits
High Spirits
Welcome to another Initial Descent and yet another stacked batch of releases. Hopefully you spent yesterday getting a head start because there’s enough on tap here to keep most anyone busy. We all could use some happiness so do yourself, and those around you, a favor and check out High Spirit‘s latest full length Motivator. On the opposite spectrum, if you just recovered from Subrosa’s latest dive into Light Falls from Wrekmeister Harmonies and keep that heavy yet somber feeling alive. Blister your eardrums with Cara Neir and Wildspeaker‘s latest Split on Broken Limbs Recordings, who actually have several out this week that warrant your time. Sumerlands debut Sumerlands deeply satisfies the traditional heavy metal craving and Mare Cognitum returns with their hypnotizing take on atmospheric black metal with Luminiferous Aether. All that and much more so click that “continue reading” link. Continue reading

Album Review: CHVE – “Rasa”

CHVE - Rasa

Most will recognize CHVE mastermind Colin H. Van Eeckhout from his work as the vocalist of Amenra. Amenra’s outstanding output focuses on the darker aspects of life and is thunderously heavy. CHVE on the other hand  comprises only Van Eeckhout, a hurdy gurdy, and entrancingly tribalistic percussion. Where Amenra is physically heavy, his debut as CHVE, Rasa, is emotionally heavy, with ambient and droning soundscapes all throughout. Continue reading

Album Review: IIVII – “Colony”

IIVII_Colony_Cover_sm

With all the complications that surround our existence on a regular basis, sometimes it takes the simplest of situations to understand what really matters… and what our minds are capable of. To that effect, 2015 has, on occasion, brought me into a world of ambient simplicity. With all the ferocity that is contained in the multi-dimensional art we call heavy metal, there is a need for something far more minimalistic from time to time. With all that said, the debut work from IIVII, Colony, is an exploration of the far reaches of our musical awareness, all while keeping things as simple as possible.

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