Initial Descent: May 19 – 25, 2019

Misthryming
Misthryming

Saw Cloak, Withered, and Goatwhore over the weekend. It was ridiculously good. I’m still tired. Alright then, new metal is on tap and plenty of it to go around so let’s do this.

Icelandic black metallers Misthyrming are upon us once again with second full length Algleymi and expect another knockout of an album full of living and breathing personality that is cold, intense, and perfectly temperamental. Next up is a cavalcade of crusty rawness on Hexhammaren, the seventh studio album from Martyrdöd, that comes off feeling larger than anything they’ve done to date – strong words but right around the second track you’ll understand. Steamrolling right along we’ve got New England’s nasty death thrash dealers Rancorous with their second demo Stealth Dominion and if early Slayer and Kreator gets your juices flowing then GET ON THIS. Last up top is debut full length De Val from Dutch black metallers Verwoed and not even their last two EP’s can prepare for this multi layered and heavily atmospheric assault, don’t miss it.

Killer top four and there’s a ton more below. Hop to it. Continue reading

Initial Descent: May 12 – 18, 2019

Paladin
Paladin

Literally no one said ‘hey, I want to read this lengthy ass intro of blah blah’s and yada yada’s’ when there’s a mountain of metal to get to. So, shall we?! I know, it’s Monday. But still, LET’S DO IT.

When I think of power metal, what I really think of is the thrashy classic metal leaning sort that Atlanta’s Paladin provide on debut full length Ascension. After being head over heels with their previous pair of shweeet demos, this surpasses my expectations and brings a mile wide grin. Weeping Choir, the fourth full length from Full of Hell, touches on nearly every facet of the band’s busy history and is one of their most ferocious outings yet; grind, death, noise, experimental, the list could go on but you get the idea and you know they rule so, do that – choirs will definitely weep. Lo-Pan just continue to be one of the most exciting bands in heavy rock today and on Subtle they put an exclamation mark on that statement and are anything but subtle. Last up top is the legendary Saint Vitus with their first full length in seven years and ninth overall, Saint Vitus, AND with Scott Reagers back behind the mic. Personally, I was stoked for this thing and even though it’s not one of their best it is very good and I’m enjoying it. Your mileage may vary, etc etc.

One thing left to do…go and explore. Continue reading

Initial Descent: April 28 – May 4, 2019

Appalling

Monday. I got nothing. Well, I take that back – I’ve got new metal and lots of it so let’s focus on that…

Up first is a twofer of outstanding death metal. Appalling have a way about them that screams old school death yet sounds forward enough in their brash mix of blackened, thrashened (two in a row, fight me) death and not to mention their outstanding ability to write a killer song so give Inverted Realm a spin at max volume. Once that one’s done take a stroll through another album with incredibly memorable songwriting and death metal thick enough that even a chainsaw couldn’t cut through it, Parasitic Slavery from Body Harvest is one you’ll not want to miss. Kampfar has been around for nearly 25 years and still manage to put out some of the darkest black metal going today and on Ofidians Manifest they do it darker and better than ever. Last but not least is Mavradoxa on their melodic leaning atmospheric black metal filled Nightmarrow which is a beast on several levels and stay tuned for an in depth look at this one in the coming days.

See, I actually did have something. Here. Not elsewhere. Not today. Continue reading

Initial Descent: April 21 – 27, 2019

Lord Dying
Lord Dying – photo courtesy of Alyssa Herrman

New week, new set of circumstances, new opportunities, and new metal which is the one reason we’re here. As some band once said ‘nothing else matters.’ And with that, let’s get on with it.

This week will be remembered for many reasons, I’m sure, but the biggest of which is whatever you thought you knew about Lord Dying forget it and make way for their new, more progressive, more classically psychedelic, and more fantastic look on Mysterium Tremendum – talk about surprises, it’s nearly impossible to tell this is the same band but make no mistake, it IS amazing. Then we’ve got black metallers Murg who moved mountains with their debut Gudatall but return to grab the sky and move it too on Strävan, it’s everything that was great about their debut, just better and particularly so in the memorable songwriting department. Next is everyone’s favorite droners Sunn O))) (say it with me…sun) who return with another slab of frequencies on Life Metal that are so heavy you can feel them, or breathe them – points if you know where that came from and if you missed out on RSD, now’s your chance. Last up top but certainly not least is Spotlights who prove that post-metal as a tag is limiting seeing as how Love & Decay is so much more with its power, haunting melodies, and wisps of granite destroying heaviness – ‘iron tone in a velvet glove’ was part of the promo accompaniments and it couldn’t be more accurate.

Beyond that you’ll just have to explore for yourself. Get in there… Continue reading

Initial Descent: April 14 – 20, 2019

Dead To A Dying World
Dead To A Dying World – photo courtesy of Kathleen Kennedy

Didn’t we just do this? Just confirmed and it has indeed been a week. Anyway, much metals to tend to this week and since I can’t manage to figure out where the hell a week went let’s just get to it.

You know, I haven’t had an album completely captivate me as much as Dead To A Dying World’s third full length Elegy has, it’s like listening to GY!BE In one ear and blackened doom in the other but as the minutes tick off it transports your mind to some decaying world that’s all too familiar. And that production, hoooo boy – get this in your ears. Moving on to a pair of albums that excite and charge me; the first is Mork’s Det Svarte Juv which brings the early Norwegian black metal strain roaring back to life in a way that is as cold and chaotic as it is warm and vibrant, yea I know that may be impossible to understand but once you hear it, you will. The second of these is Finnish black metal vets Förgjord who lay down a viciously scalding 41 minutes on their fourth effort Ilmestykset – why do these excite me? Mostly due to this pair being what I want to hear when I want to hear black metal, period. All this leads us to Allegaeon’s fifth outing of technically busy, progressively minded, melodically leaning, and best may I add, Apoptosis. They shed some of their shell here but add so much more depth, Charles has the run down so click the full review link when you get there.

So much more to go and I’m just surprised another week hasn’t gone by already… Continue reading