Initial Descent: January 7 – 13, 2018

Corrosion of Conformity
Corrosion of Conformity – pic courtesy of Dean Karr

I was quietly hoping we’d get, at least, through the first quarter without losing another good one but with the passing of ‘Fast’ Eddie Clarke the heavens will be louder than they’ve ever been before and the classic lineup will rule over us all. We do have quite a good amount of metal to get to this week and quite alot of it is outstanding — Corrosion of Conformity gloriously return to their Deliverance/Wiseblood selves on No Cross No Crown, Hamferð weave tales of their homeland through stunning death / doom on Támsins Iikam, Djinn and Miskatonic‘s doom rockin’ Even Gods Must Die shows us that India is churning out some amazing metal and Ohio’s Pillärs absolutely KILL IT on their crusty, noisy and vicious album Abandoned. With those we’ve already got a seriously packed week but we have more, much more. So pull up a barstool, or whatever sitting device you prefer, and hang around with us for awhile. Continue reading

Initial Descent: December 31, 2017 – January 6, 2018

Sinistro
Sinistro

Not even a full week into the new year and I’ll be damned if there’s not already some amazing music laid bare across our laps. And the rest of the next couple of months is looking tasty as well. You know, 2018 might not be so bad after all. Anyway, it’s cold — too cold. Many of you are blowing snow out of your mouths as this goes to press while many others are just trying to wrap up as tightly as possible. Winter is upon us, like it or not but new tunes, we got them, so onward march. I had planned a completely different lead off album but a few spins of the latest, Sangue Cassia, from Portugal’s Sinistro turned my sails in a different direction. This is some of the most majestic and powerful doom I’ve heard since Amenra’s Mass VI last year and putting this band in that same category means this is an absolute must for you. Next up is black metal’s nastiest concert troop Watain with their latest Trident Wolf Eclipse which finds the band back to their biting and vicious roots but is it enough? Find out shortly. Last up in the opening slots is Norway’s power trio Magick Touch with their amazingly fun heavy metal chops on Blades, Chains, Whips & Fire and honestly if you don’t at least break a smirk to this you’re already dead and cold. We’re still in the low quantity time of the year but fear not as the quality you’ve just read about continues on just inside so snuggle up with a fire or blanket and turn it up. Continue reading

Initial Descent: December 24 – 30, 2017

Pissboiler
Pissboiler

And the countdown to another year begins. Time is always something that mystifies me, particularly how fast it goes. Seems like just yesterday we were all researching our most anticipated albums for 2017 and here we are again, getting ready to seal off the chamber and dive knee deep in more research. Anyway, hope you had a good holiday and cheers to a Happy New Year. This week’s list is quite short but fear not, there’s enough quality to make up for the minimal quantity. First up is some ferocious funeral doom and from a band with a name like Pissboiler I totally expect nothing but some sludgy, nasty and downright sickening doom and with In the Lair of Lucid Nightmares this is precisely what is offered. Next up and quenching a ten year silence is Nortt with the sorrowful, intimate and depressive doom of Endeligt, one must get their mind right to enter here but those that do will be rewarded. Rounding out the top slots and lightening the mood a bit is Morrow on their long player Fallow which is full of hardcore, crust, punk and a ton of killer (look for the LP release in the spring of 2018 on Halo of Flies and Alerta Antifascista). Short week but good stuff to wrap your ears around here so get in there… Continue reading

Initial Descent: December 17 – 23, 2017

Greytomb
Greytomb – pic courtesy of Natalie Morgan Photography

To those of you reading this we hope you are ready for, and have, a good Christmas/holiday/whatever and if you don’t celebrate we hope you have a good…Monday. Whether good, bad or indifferent by the time you read this next week the holiday will have come and gone but the metal will continue on. Speaking of, this week’s metal offerings may be light in the quantity department but there might be a few here that stand to bust your best of 2017 list plans. With that said, let’s get to it — leading us off is the completely captivating atmospheric black metal of Greytomb on Monumental Microcosm. Next up is a blast furnace of death and grind on Combat Grind from Sonic Poison and closing out the opening slots is The Howling Void‘s continued evolution in melancholic doom metal on The Darkness at the Edge of Dawn that truly must be heard to be believed, and yes I know the digital version has been out for a month or so but with the digipack version out this week let this stand as a reminder. Super strong openers here, but there’s a few more just inside that are equally as strong. Dive in… Continue reading

Initial Descent: December 10 – 16, 2017

midnight 2017
Midnight

We’re another week closer to slamming the book on 2017 and we do hope you’ve been enjoying list season thus far. For what it’s worth, we certainly have been and our staff lists will start rolling out in the coming days so stay tuned. But for now it’s another jam packed week of metal and the quantity here squashes any thoughts of new releases slowing just because it’s December. Leading us off this week is the metal / punk / let the good times roll Midnight on Sweet Death and Ecstasy. This band just continues to rule and have always reminded of the era when rock n’ roll was considered dangerous and an instrument of Satan himself — this album amps up that feeling and is one hell of great time. Next up is Ghastly Sound with their second EP of the year, The Bottom — think 90s hard rock mixed with death, sludge and stoner metal but with a killer singer. Moving on, the mechanized and industrious black metal attack of Iperyt‘s The Patchwork Gehinnom reminds us that industrial and black metal do indeed make the perfect pair. Rounding out the opening slots is Deathmarch‘s Dismember EP and in case the chainsaw on the cover doesn’t give it away, it’s full of gnarly death metal that will appease even the most hardened death metal fan. What’s next? You know the drill, get in there and explore. Continue reading