Best of 2016: Vincent Martinek’s List

Nine Circles Best of 2016 Standard

Hey all. This has been a great year for music, made better because I got to share so much of my thoughts about what I was hearing with you, alongside the rest of the Nine Circles crew. It’s been a pleasure to work with some of the most talented people I’ve had the honor to know. Thanks to Dan and Corey for getting me started, to Josh Stewart for being a phenomenal editor, and to all the amazing people I do this with whose writing inspired me to better my own. Here’s to many more. And now that the sap is out of the way, on to the tunes.

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Initial Descent: October 2 – 8, 2016

Meshuggah
Meshuggah

 

First full week of October is upon us and, in case you missed it, there’s a hurricane that has ripped a swath of destruction everywhere it has touched. Our hearts and thoughts are with everyone that has been affected by this. But thankfully it’s moving on, so GOOD RIDDANCE to Matthew. Now, onto Initial Descent. Which means new metal by the truckload. Actually this week isn’t quite as stacked as previous weeks but what it lacks in quantity it makes up for in quality. We’ve got Meshuggah‘s The Violent Sleep Of Reason which has a more organic sound to it but nonetheless as alienesque as they’ve ever been, Gatecreeper have released their debut Sonoran Depravation which is arguably the catchiest death metal of 2016, Endalok is terrifyingly atmospheric on their black metal album Englaryk, Ortega gives us a fantastic doom album in Sacred States and Swampcult dedicates the entirety of their latest dark doom album The Festival to the H.P. Lovecraft short story of the same name (it translates very well in case you were wondering). Those and many more await after the jump. Continue reading

Album Review: Endalok – “Englaryk”

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If you know me personally, you already know how hard I ride for anything coming out of the Icelandic metal scene these days. Ever since my first taste of Svartidaudi’s menacing and psychedelic Flesh Cathedral I have been obsessing over the tremendous amount of quality output of this relatively small scene. From the crushing riffs of Sinmara, the jazzy death metal tinged nuances of newcomers Zhrine, to the new darlings of the metal world Misthyrming it seems that Iceland can do no wrong these days. Enter Endalok — a band with a sound as mysterious as their persona — who keep this tradition of excellence alive on their debut demo Englaryk. Continue reading