Album Review: Spirit Adrift – “Divided By Darkness”

Spirit Adrift - Divided By Darkness

Fashions may come and go, but everything popular has a thread stretching back to the foundation, the root if you will.  Metal is no different, and it’s heartening to see bands more and more proudly display that connection back to the roots of the genre.  Spirit Adrift have never been a band to mask their influences, and on new album Divided By Darkness they take the torch of what outlets have been calling “traditional metal” and burn away the quotation marks, leaving a raging, unbridled classic sound that can only be called heavy metal. Continue reading

Album Review: Elizabeth Colour Wheel – “Nocebo”

Elizabeth Colour Wheel - Nocebo

Last night I had a dream.  I was back in college; it was 1993.  I was hanging out at the local used record shop (it was Last Vestige in Albany, if you’re familiar with the area).  As per usual I was pouring through the CDs and records and this loud, hazy wash of sound slipped through the air, grabbing my attention.  “What is this?” I asked aloud.  “Oh, you don’t know Elizabeth Colour Wheel?” a haughty voice responded.  Even then and in my dreams folks who work in record stores can be real dicks.  Anyway I woke up and realized Nocebo, the band’s debut full length after a number of singles and EPs, has that timeless quality that marks a unique and vital voice in the music world. Continue reading

Second Circle: Wolvennest and Arrebol 

Second Circle

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.

Let’s have a moment, you and I. I want to come clean, because if we’re going to cultivate a relationship and earn a modicum of trust between us then I have to share some of the secrets of this gig with you. So, a little honesty: I’m slightly drunk (“slightly” being relative in this case). Also, and perhaps more to the point: sometimes I don’t know what the hell I’m going to write about an album before I sit down and start hitting the keys. Even now I can tell (even if you can’t, though my former admission may give it away) I’m stalling for time, trying to think my way to a hook to describe what I want to talk about in today’s Second Circle. In the music of both albums there’s an intangible quality I’ve been trying to get at, and maybe the only way to catch it is to just write, let the words fall out and see where they take me.

So let’s spend some time puzzling out our thoughts on the latest from Wolvennest and Arrebol. Continue reading

Album Review: Mindkult – Witch’s Oath (EP)

Mindkult - Witch's Oath

Mindkult‘s debut EP Witch’s Oath is a four track doom rocker that brings to mind Alice In Chains’ darker and emotional salad days as much as it does the broad stable of artists residing on Riding Easy Records. True, that’s a mouthful and big shoes to fill but Mindkult is more than up to it with this dark, moody collection of songs. Just one listen to these 24 plus minutes and two words come to mind; fantastic and mesmerizing. Continue reading