Album Review: Wolves in the Throne Room — “Primordial Arcana”

Wolves in the Throne Room - Primordial Arcana

The essence of the landscape of the Pacific Northwest has always been one that is deeply romantic, in the traditional sense.  Intense emotions and deep wonder often leave one changed after visiting those wilds, and that is exactly why we fell in love with both the place and the musical scene that emerged from the area.  We adore the folky, atmospheric and entrancing black metal of Cascadia, and fortunately the masters of the style are back with another choice offering.  Grab your cleansing herbs and bottle of red wine, it is time to ready the stage for Wolves in the Throne Room and their latest release Primordial Arcana

Continue reading

Album Review: Flame, Dear Flame — “Aegis”

Gliding into the metal scene with grace and beauty is German band Flame, Dear Flame with their debut album Aegis.  The band can be labeled as doom metal but holds strong influence from folk music and hard rock.  Containing stellar riffs, atmospheric sounds of nature, acoustic guitar, and enchanting clean vocals, Aegis brings something a little different and magical.  The album is comprised of two suites; “The Millennial Heartbeat” and “The Wolves and the Priorless.”  Each movement stands on its own as a solid song but are best heard together to experience the complete story told in Aegis and the full effect of what Flame, Dear Flame has to offer.

Continue reading

Album Review: Vouna — “Atropos”

Doom metal is typically comprised of the same elements and instruments to create the foggy dark sound of the genre’s namesake, but some bands like to change the game a bit and add in new sounds and instruments to make unique and dynamic compositions.  While traditional doom metal is one of my favorite things and I adore the classic elements, it is fun to see bands experiment and add their own signature to the genre.  Vouna is a musical project that does just that with their latest release Atropos

Continue reading

Second Circle: Withered and Diabolizer

In Dante’s Inferno, the second circle begins the proper punishment of Hell, a place where “no thing gleams.” It is reserved for those overcome with Lust, where carnal appetites hold sway over reason. In Nine Circles, it’s where we do shorter reviews of new (ish) albums that share a common theme.

It’s almost July and we’ve eclipsed the mid point of 2021. It has been one hell of a year thus far in the world of metal and as usual, it has followed the hellish landscape we’ve all been trying to live in, but no news there as music generally follows whatever fresh hell we find ourselves in and rides the anger and angst surrounding it all. We’ve definitely weathered some pre-apocalypse type shit and somehow, the world still turns. So, enough small talk. This edition of Second Circle focuses on the likeminded obliteration of Withered and Diabolizer who both find a way to sever any thoughts of happy endings.

Continue reading

Rainbows in the Dark: Great Dismal Swamp — “Virginia”

I can’t say I’m overly familiar with harsh noise, especially considering the harshness of said noise is not something that I’m always in the mood for.  It’s different than listening to extreme metal, despite what some might say.  You have to be willing to put yourself into something that throws out any sense of musicality in favor of pure atmosphere.  However, picking up this column last year did me well in terms of broadening my horizons, and Great Dismal Swamp have the kind of name that immediately draws me in, so I took a chance on Virginia.

Continue reading