Album Review: October Tide – “Winged Waltz”

Winged Waltz Cover SmallFor the longest time, the elephant in the room with Sweden’s harbingers of doom and gloom October Tide was that their identity as “the other band that guys from Katatonia play in” was hard to shake. Their first two albums were important for the melodic death/doom scene at its peak in the 90s, but it was hard to envision them as anything beyond Dance of December Souls 2.0 or Brave Murder Day Redux. It was only with 2010’s A Thin Shell that they came into their own identity, and 2013’s Tunnel of No Light, while still a good death/doom album that showed mature and tasteful songwriting, didn’t hold up much against bands like Daylight Dies. Their newest, Winged Waltz, however, is a very strong album that demonstrates the band’s growth in identity, songwriting, and band chemistry.  Continue reading

Sepulchral Saturday: Atten Ash – “The Hourglass”

attenash_thehourglassI’m not one to fawn over things unless they are worthy of praise. As PR cycles for bands and releases get more aggressive and fast-paced, it’s inevitable that some great releases fall by the wayside only to be unearthed after some time passes and the dust has settled. (For non-writer folks, that means after the carnival that is EOY lists.) Thanks to Metal Bandcamp Gift Club, Atten Ash‘s absolutely stellar melodic death/doom displayed on The Hourglass won me over very quickly and is worthy of all the accolades I can throw at it. The whole point of Sepulchral Saturday is to cover things that were we missed, and this certainly fits –– it originally saw release in 2012 and was brought back to the light after Hypnotic Dirge Records did a physical release last February. I’m so behind.  Continue reading