Best of 2021: Rainbows in the Dark Edition

Best of 2021

You know I had to do it, so here it is.  As I’ve already said, this year was a year that was cram-packed with excellent releases, and the world of non-metal and metal adjacent was no exception, so much so that I almost considered doing another, separate honorable mentions list just for non-metal.  The only reason I didn’t is because free time and sanity are at something of an all-time-low, so you’ll forgive me if anything feels like it got left off, because, well, it did.  Still, there are plenty of worthy releases here, and if that stirs up your appetite for more, there is plenty else to be found out there.  Now, without further ado, here are my favorites, in almost no particular order.

Continue reading

The Nine Circles Playlist Vol. 206 (11.20.2021)

playlist - mixtape

That’s it: we’re officially in End of Year™ territory now. The big guns are coming out, as Decibel Magazine preemptively shared their Top 40 of 2021 prior to publication in the vain hopes of staving off blogs who simply post the list for views. I’d rather give them the props and the views, so head over there to check it out. In the meantime I’m on my fifth listen of the new Stormkeep and debating how high to have it on my own list. Because yeah…it’s gonna be there.

But enough of that. Welcome to Volume 206 of the Nine Circles Playlist, where we may or may not have some music that will appear on own own lists. In addition to our fearless editor Josh priming the pump with Stormkeep he’s heavily digging the latest from Hypocrisy and Sanguisugabogg. Angela has fallen hard for the hardcore punk coming from Fucked Up and the murky psychedelic cosmic stoner sounds of Tortuga. Buke never fails to bring the classic heavy to the list, so buckle up for some new retro courtesy of Haunt and Traveler as well as old school flavor from Judas Priest. Jon emerges from the snowy depths of the Great North to champion new stuff from Archspire and Every Time I Die. Vincent wallows in the despair of heavier fare from Emma Ruth Rundle, Lantlôs, and Dream Unending. As for me? I’m sitting here in the CLOUDS with Enslaved, digging the skramz of Warren of Ohms, and am in hook line and sinker with Josh about the new single from outlaw country bastard Paul Cauthen.

Country as Fuck, folks. No better way to close out the playlist this week. See you next time!

Chris

The Nine Circles Playlist Vol. 205 (11.13.2021)

playlist - mixtape

We’re kicking through November, and I’m here with my usual: a steaming cup of coffee in a cup big enough to swim in, and a playlist of all the metal I’ve listened to in 2021 to start sorting out end of year stuff.

It’s a loooong list.

So to make it easier OF COURSE I’m going to kick it off with some Darkthrone. But the rest of the crew is definitely going to bring you to some uncharted corners for Volume 205 of the Nine Circles Playlist. I don’t know who Thangorodrim are, but they’re bringing the dark vibes on their debut. Jon just has a birthday, so he’s letting loose with some faves like Dethklok and Strapping Young Lad. Josh is over the moon over the news that Death Breath are coming back, and The Halo Effect, aka In Flames 2.0 seem to be moving in a good direction with their debut single. Vincent crosses the border into pop with some good good CHVRCHES but quickly hops back over with the long awaited new song from Nechochwen. And Ian closes us out this week with some Spiritbox, Owen, and Coheed and Cambria. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg in this week’s list, so settle in and give your ears a workout.

Chris

The Nine Circles Playlist Vol. 204 (11.6.2021)

playlist - mixtape

The cold weather’s finally kicked in. I’ve got a steaming cup of coffee so big I need two hands to bring its caffeinated goodness to my lips, and I’ve spent the past hour fiddling with parametric EQs to kick my headphones into high gear while listening to newest single by one of my favorite guitarists on this great glob of a world, Wata from Boris. Wherever you are I hope you’re finding some kind of aural and chemical comfort (feel free to pick your own poison; I’ll stick with coffee) right now.

Of course that’s not the only thing we’re blasting in Volume 204 of the Nine Circles Playlist. After thinking they were done Porcupine Tree is back in the saddle and released a new single which feels like Steven Wilson bringing his pop sensibility into the band and the band fighting back, and I love it. Josh brings the filthy death metal with Under the Church and Concrete Winds, while Vincent splits his time between the grace of Alcest and the brutality of Atræ Bilis. Anton revels in the swirling symphonic chaos of Dessiderium, and Buke? Buke is living in the glory his (and my) youth with classics from Twisted Sister, Down, and even some Spinal Tap. Finally, Angela brings it all home with the latest from 9C favorite Emma Ruth Rundle and some new stuff from Monolord. In other words it’s a stacked house, so settle in and enjoy the tunes.

Chris

CANTO: Cannibal Corpse, Igorrr, Khemmis, and More

Cannibal Corpse

One more day…

  • Emma Ruth Rundle, who had just been announced as a performer at FITM 2022, dropped a new track titled “Blooms of Oblivion”. That’s another one taken from Engine of Hell, which is out on November 5th through Sargent House.
  • Khemmis have announced some West Coast dates next January, supporting Deceiver. Not a thing I can do unfortunately, but tickets go on sale Friday for those that can. As a reminder, that album is out on November 19th through Nuclear Blast.
  • The primary tour announcement of the day, however, came from Cannibal Corpse, who announced a run of shows in February and March with the likes of Whitechapel, Revocation, and Shadow Of Intent. Tickets go on sale this Friday.
  • American Teeth have announced that their debut album, We Should Be Having Fun, will be out on October 29th through Fearless Records, along with a new video for the track “Kickflip”. Give that a listen right here.
  • And we’ll wrap up the day with the new live video from Igorrr for “Camel Dancefloor”. That footage is from the Pol’And’Rock Festival from back in July. Give it a watch below.

“Ein Bier… bitte.”
cmb