Second Circle: Arkheth and Apostle of Solitude

Second Circle

In Dante’s Inferno, the second circle begins the proper punishment of Hell, a place where “no thing gleams.” It is reserved for those overcome with Lust, where carnal appetites hold sway over reason. In Nine Circles, it’s where we do shorter reviews of new (ish) albums that share a common theme.

Do you feel it yet?  The slow, agonizing crush of new music?  It’s not even the end of February and it feels like we’re being bombarded with releases left and right.  I made a personal resolution this year to dig a little deeper and check out more bands I’m not familiar with, and while the beginning of the year is a bit of a dumping ground when it comes to movies, for film it’s a perfect opportunity to unearth some gems.  Also, like last time, this particular edition of Second Circle has the ill-fitting theme of two bands that begin with “A” so without further ado let’s jump into the insanity of Arkheth and the melancholic death of Apostle of Solitude…   Continue reading

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

Album Review: Djinn and Miskatonic – “Even Gods Must Die”

Djinn and Miskatonic - Even Gods Must Die

You wouldn’t normally think of India as the first place for some heavy, Lovecraftian inspired doom metal.  After all, the country has a rich history and mythology ripe for the metal picking.  Nevertheless, something dark and otherworldly must be peeking behind the veil of reality because Djinn and Miskatonic have crafted a bowel shaking, Great Old One stomping record in Even Gods Must Die, their second foray into the eldritch dark.  Carrying the torch of bands like Electric Wizard married to the stoner groove of The Obsessed, the album hybrid works and shows that the cyclopean eye of doom can cast its baleful gaze from any corner of the globe.   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: September 17 – 23, 2017

Ufomammut
Ufomammut – pic courtesy of Malleus

It’s been all over the place as of late: I’ve had good news, bad news, unfortunate events and fortunate events. BUT, who cares as long as we have another Saturday crammed with great metal. And we have exactly that this week on Initial Descent. What you ask? Well, leading off this week’s festivities is the psych doom trio Ufomammut with their latest and eighth full length (Oro was technically one, who’s counting anyway) and as good as their discography has been thus far they’ve gotten even better – oh yeah. Next up, and the second outstanding album in this list, is Satyricon‘s Deep calleth upon Deep and this is where the band gets back to doing what they do best: killing it. Moving on is another return of sorts as Wolves in the Throne Room brings back some of their fury on Thrice Woven (psst – Chris was busy this week and covered both of these last two, make sure to click through and read up). Last but not least is the jaw dropping doomgaze of Mindkult on Lucifer’s Dream and if you’re keeping count, this makes two stellar efforts that command attention. Anywho, hard to top those four but there is a laundry list that follows that will keep you going until next time so get comfy. See you back here next week and good luck getting through all these by then. Continue reading