Album Review: Insomnium — “Argent Moon” (EP)

Insomnium - Argent Moon

Do you smell that?

Fall – the sun is starting to set earlier, everything is becoming slightly darker, and we are now barreling towards the last quarter of 2021 while we try to understand how time has passed so quickly. However, this also means I can get my hands (and ears) on some of the most anticipated releases I have been waiting for most of the year. This includes three (!) upcoming melodic death releases, one of which I have been waiting for quite a long time. One such anticipated release is Insomnium, whose newest EP, Argent Moon, is what I would describe as a (softer) melodeath metal campfire story split into four parts.

The melodeath metal renaissance is upon us, and it’s not stopping for anyone.

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Album Review: Torchia — “The Coven”

Torchia - The Coven

Bands don’t have to reinvent the wheel to be good at their craft. Or, at least, that’s what I tell myself when I listen to a new album and am oddly disappointed when it fails to capture my attention. While disappointment tends to be the feeling du jour when it comes to certain genres, there are still nuggets of music here and there that bring joy because some aspects of a particular genre are still thriving. This is the case with Torchia, whose newest release, The Coven, seems to stick with the powerful riffing we see in a lot of early melodeath, but they also add a little groove to their sound. Continue reading

Album Review: Ad Nemori – “Akrateia”

Ad Nemori - Akrateia

When it comes to music, we tend to go for things we already know. Humans are creatures of habit and we enjoy what we like because it’s familiar and it doesn’t require a lot of processing power. After all, it’s easier to listen to an album that we know for sure we are going to like than dedicate time to something that we aren’t sure we are going to enjoy. This was my dilemma with Ad Nemori’s Akrateia, an album that on the surface sounded like something I would enjoy but was hesitant to do so because traditional death metal is not a genre I seek often. However, I enjoy atmosphere on an album — especially when done correctly — so I decided to give this album a go. Continue reading

Album Review: Iapetus – “The Body Cosmic”

Iapetus - The Body Cosmic

It’s hard to stick out in the melodic/progressive death corner of this thing we call metal.  So many bands are cramming so many notes into so many songs it’s easy to get lost in the shuffle.  So knowing what you want out of music is essential to picking through the noise and static.  And Iapetus seem acutely tuned into what I’m looking for in a standout album: The Body Cosmic revels in intricate riff construction that refuses to bow to soulless technicality, instead focusing on melody and song craft to create an epic aural journey that’s a standout for the year. Continue reading

Profile: Melodic Death Metallers The Last Reign

The Last Reign

Last week we featured an early look at The Last Reign’s powerful new EP, Prelude, in which the band offers up three tracks of top shelf melodic death metal yanked straight from the 90s highlight reel. To be clear, it’s not a knockoff nor does it ride any coattails. Instead, it puts an exclamation mark on the melodically epic side of things while leaving just the right amount of heft and harshness so that one facet doesn’t outshine the other. This EP has made a huge impression here at Nine Circles so we reached out with our Profile questions to find out more about the band. Read on to see how it went down and don’t leave without snagging a copy for yourself. Continue reading