Initial Descent: March 11 – 17, 2018

Slaves BC
Slaves BC

Lots of things happening this month: March Madness, warmer weather (sort of) and the time change. So if you’re into any of that, have at it. Around here, new metal is what’s happening and if you came here looking for it you’re definitely in luck. Long list ahead so let’s get to it — first up is the absolutely vicious yet cuttingly personal black/death of Lo and I am Burning from Slaves BC. As you are all aware (or not) Josh Thieler writes for us from time to time and we love him dearly but that has nothing to do with top billing this week, this band has grown exponentially and have put their best foot forward here. Next up is Where Owls Know My Name by Rivers of Nihil and this is another album where a band has put their best foot forward, technical death metal that bleeds forward thinking and rules. Moving along is the extremely soothing dark folk of Ulvesang on The Hunt, this is the one you need while contemplating life or just trying to get through it — perfect soundtrack. Closing out the top slots this week is the EP Question from the Mexican quartet of the same name Question, this thing is ultra-aggressive, extreme and with four tracks it steamrolls the senses in the best way possible. Plenty of fodder already for end of year thoughts but there’s much more to get to. Stick around and bask in the rest… Continue reading

Initial Descent: March 4 – 10, 2018

vile creature band
Vile Creature

March. Already. Seems like yesterday we were regaling you with our favorite albums from last year. Then again, five years ago seems like yesterday to me so I’m a horrible judge of time. Be that as it may, 2018 has had a strong start musically and there’s no denying that regardless of taste and seemingly no let up in quality either. Which leads us right into this week with the absolutely riveting Cast of Static and Smoke from Vile Creature and its not only a great doom album but it’s centered around an excellent post-apocalyptic. Next up is Judas Priest with Firepower which, quite frankly, is the best thing they’ve done in a long time — you be the judge but for me, this is the heavy metal I wanted and needed to hear from the almighty Priest. Moving along, Eviternity from Kosmogyr is an unpredictable yet overwhelmingly powerful black metal debut that demands your attention but gives so much in return — not to be missed. Closing out the top slots this week is the debut, Purge, from India’s Killibrium which strikes a wicked balance between old and new school death metal with some killer grooves. As you read through and discover the rest of the list below you’ll understand how hard it was to not include at least 10 or so more up here so dive in and enjoy. Continue reading

Initial Descent: February 25 – March 3, 2018


Crossing the threshold of March and this dumpster fire we’re living in just burns hotter and hotter with each new day it seems. Of course each of us can choose how we handle it but it’s infinitely difficult to crawl into a hole and just be. So, we turn to music for an escape. I’ve been doing it for eons and without it…well…I’d surely go insane. Another week and another long list of metal to keep the insanity at bay, thankfully. Kicking things off in grand fashion is Slugdge, the UK’s answer to some of the best progressive death metal you’re likely to hear in the foreseeable future on Esoteric Malacology and somehow this is even better than their last. Next up is Kentucky’s nihilistic and downright vicious doom duo Nest with their debut Metempsychosis. Moving right along with more soul crushing doom is Sixes on their debut Methistopheles and rounding out the opening slots is Oceans of Slumber who do the opposite of crush your soul and instead invite you to search it on their progressive and intriguing The Banished Heart. Just those four alone offer shelter from the raging fires around us but there’s so much more to explore this week and just in time for the weekend. Score. Dive in and enjoy. Continue reading

Initial Descent: February 18 – 24, 2018

WAKE – photo courtesy of Mike Wells

So, we’re back again. How was the week? Busy here and at one point I actually got to see the sun for once — made me happy. What’s got you excited this week? Nothing? Well, this week’s list of new metal is longer than the line waiting on summer vacation and hopefully this will lift the spirits. Leading us off this week is grindcore phenoms WAKE with their latest bunch of brutal, Misery Rites. Next up is Dead Empires who added a singer and managed to make their best hardcore / heavy as balls album yet with Designed to Disappear. Rolling on is Insect Ark with their stunning and unique horror soundtrackish / doom metal on Marrow Hymns and closing out the top spots is Huntsmen with American Scrap, an album that really surprised me with how it combines King Dude’s type of dark americana with razor sharp doom metal — trust me, this thing just works. There you have it, the intro is done but we are FAR from finished so keep reading, keep clicking and keep discovering. Continue reading

Initial Descent: February 11 – 17, 2018

Harakiri for the Sky
Harakiri for the Sky

Did you spend some quality time with your valentine? Yea, it was in the middle of the week…and work…and stuff. But, it’s the weekend now so no excuses right?! Take them camping, start a fire, go for a hike but whatever you do, don’t forget your headphones and might want to bring a splitter so you both can enjoy what this week’s new releases have to offer. Kicking off this week of heart’s is Austria’s Harakiri for the Sky as they continue to mix post-metal melancholy with black metal aggressiveness on Arson, thought provoking black metallers Eignelicht offer up their highly anticipated full length debut Self-Annihilating Consciousness and even though it’s only five tracks its all consuming nature makes it feel so much more expansive, Chaos Echoes successfully trump their own astounding debut on Mouvement and further prove that they are the reigning champs of extremely complex and contextual music, rounding out the opening slots: punk attitude meets hardcore intensity on The Good The Bad and The Zugly‘s third full length Misanthropical House. As you can clearly see, buying that headphone splitter is a great idea so you can share all the good stuff this week has to offer. There’s more to follow so head inside and enjoy. Continue reading