Book Review: Margaret Atwood’s “Surfacing” by Tom Coles of Sail

Margaret Atwood - Surfacing

Over the next few months Nine Circles is very pleased to bring you a new series of book reviews written by musicians throughout the metal scene. As much as they love to write their own blast beats, discordant riffs and swirling maelstroms they also love to read and, for all of our benefit, discuss. The first post in this series features Tom Coles from the progressive sludge metal band Sail with his thoughts on Surfacing by Margaret AtwoodContinue reading

Initial Descent: September 11 – 17, 2016

High Spirits
High Spirits
Welcome to another Initial Descent and yet another stacked batch of releases. Hopefully you spent yesterday getting a head start because there’s enough on tap here to keep most anyone busy. We all could use some happiness so do yourself, and those around you, a favor and check out High Spirit‘s latest full length Motivator. On the opposite spectrum, if you just recovered from Subrosa’s latest dive into Light Falls from Wrekmeister Harmonies and keep that heavy yet somber feeling alive. Blister your eardrums with Cara Neir and Wildspeaker‘s latest Split on Broken Limbs Recordings, who actually have several out this week that warrant your time. Sumerlands debut Sumerlands deeply satisfies the traditional heavy metal craving and Mare Cognitum returns with their hypnotizing take on atmospheric black metal with Luminiferous Aether. All that and much more so click that “continue reading” link. Continue reading

Album Review: Pensevor – “Klothod”

pensevor_klothodThere’s a certain Catch 22 that comes with being a reviewer: You rely on promo sheets to give you at least a rough idea of what to expect for a release, only to find that the material at hand has very little to do with the accompanying hype. Any promo write-up needs to be taken with a grain (fine, a pillar) of salt –– after all, the point of promotion is to cast something in a positive light –– but sometimes, nothing can quite prepare you for what you’ll endure. In the case of the UK-based sludge/doom outfit Pensevor, their debut Klothod is a head-scratcher; a few songs show shreds of potential, but the album as a whole has too many negative points to make it noteworthy.  Continue reading

Album Review: Terra – “Untitled”

terra untitled

Today’s black metal exploration takes us to the United Kingdom. Since its early days in the 1990s, the genre’s seen plenty of quality and diversity arise out of this scene. And even today, bands like Winterfylleth, Saor and—as we touched on yesterday—Crom Dubh, have done their part to ensure the isles remain a vibrant, consistent source of black metal that is consistently on notice. Terra, however, is a recently developed project out of Cambridge that has only just emerged onto the scene with their impressive debut EP, Untitled. I’ve gotta say, calling an album “Untitled” is awesome; after all, what’s the most brutally dark gift ever? NOTHING. Plus, my curiosity’s automatically piqued at anything that remains nameless, as the potential contents that lie within are infinite…

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