We’re doing something a little different for this, our 240th edition of the Nine Circles Playlist. Around the 9C offices the jibberjab has been about mid-year favorites (maybe you’ve read a few of ourposts), and so I decided to ask each of the folks on staff to supply me with a track from their favorite metal (or metal adjacent) album this year.
I’m not gonna say who picked what, but I can say all of these choices righteously rock. And there was one album that was a three-way tie among the staff (what can I say, Corey, Josh and I have excellent – and similar – taste) so in instances of duplicates we let one person pick the track and the others would choose from their second favorite album. So settle in and crank it LOUD, and enjoy some of the best music to come out so far in 2022, including cuts from Saor, Pyrithe, Zeal & Ardor, A Pregnant Light, Nite, Kreator, Wilderun, Tzompantli and a bunch more…
Okay, so I may have only formally reviewed 11 albums by the mid point this year, but that’s one more than I was at last year, so victory! However, that doesn’t count the 30 other albums covered in earlier editions of Nine Circles ov (like the Stoner Metal one, or the promo pile one, or the non-promo pile one) or Second Circle. Not to mention my folders telling me I’ve listened to 151 metal albums so far this year. It’s scratching the surface, I know…but at least there are quantifiable metrics for you to assess whether or not I’ve met my acceptance criteria to mark this feature as Done.
And now that my work life has completely blended into this post, let’s talk about how massive 2022 has been so far. We’re once again turning this edition of Nine Circles ov… into a dozen and I’m even going to throw some bonus mentions into the mix. Are these my absolute favorites of the year? Kind of: I wanted to highlight some albums I haven’t seen a lot of coverage on as well as some definite big guns I really dig so far. So what I’m saying is, here’s a big list of stuff I love. Maybe you’ll love it, too.
Happy Walpurgisnacht. That’s a thing with the metal community, right? I can’t keep up with your predilections. I think I hit the wall a few days ago listening to new music, stuff bouncing off me with little to no connection. Does everyone go through this? I’m sure it will come back, but for now I think I’m going to leave the 229th edition of the Nine Circles Playlist to the staff who have been going slow, hard, and deep into the metals for your weekly listening pleasure.
Vincent takes the lead this morning with some new Terzij de Horde and a little nugget from the last Deafheaven album. Then a surprise appearance from our Literati Overlord who has been over the moon with the new single from Saor. He also throws in some Nite, Dark Funeral, and a cut from site fave King Dude. Have you ever known Josh not to bring the ridiculously heavy? This week he comes in hot with Scepticflesh, Black Void, Unholy Pestilence, and Kanine. Anton can always be relied on to present new music, and he doesn’t disappoint with tracks from Spook the Horses, Final Light and Path of Might. Angela looks to challenge Josh for heaviest music with something from the new Mizmor/Thou collaboration, some Primitive Man (making its second appearance in two weeks), and a buzzing dose of punk and hardcore from the great Fucked Up before wrapping with some Astronoid. Finally Buke takes us home with a bevy of songs, including Iron Maiden, Pharmacist, Power Trip, Tom Waits, UFO, and some new Rammstein to close it up.
There are bands that ape the NWOBHM era, and there are those who breathe it. There are those who take the requisite notes about song structure, harmonized leads and banging choruses and simply emulate, and there are those who absorb the HEAVY METAL™ into every atom in their being, and via some heavy metal fission burst it back out into the ether where you can sense the building blocks but the thing before you? This is new. This, ladies and gentlemen, is bitchin‘. That’s the kind of fist pumping, head banging rock and roll Nite once again bring forth on their sophomore release Voices of the Kronian Moon. Its cover art may be brooding fantasy, but its heart is clad in denim and studded with spikes, ready to envelop you under its dark spell.
We can start with a new tour announcement, featuring Bewitcher and Nite. Those dates out west run through April, kicking off on the 17th in Boise. Tickets can be purchased here.
Danish collective Slaegt unveiled a new lyric video for “Deceived By An Amethyst” (technically Friday, I believe), which you can watch here. That’s a track taken from their new album, Goddess, which is out now through Century Media.
Why yes, we will close with the new video from Cradle of Filth. Taken from Existence Is Futile, check out the clip for “How Many Tears To Nurture A Rose?” below. That video premiered as part of their “Infernal Vernal Equinox Deadstream”, and now it’s available to everyone, which is cool.