Initial Descent: June 9 – 15, 2019

Beheaded
Beheaded

With summer in full swing, families overcrowding vacation destinations and the rest of still toeing the line, some things change yet others stay the same. Such is life. Make the most of it or someone else will…and make you pay for it. The more you know right? Speaking of things that DON’T change, metal keeps toeing the line but man has it ever been a banner year. As long as it keeps toeing THIS kind of line I’m all about it. With that said, we’ve got tons MORE new stuff this week starting off with death metallers Beheaded’s and their best album to date, Sadistic Ritual holds a class on how thrash is done in Hotlanta, Temple Koludra bring the tribal to blackened death metal, and Baroness continue to ride the skinny rail between metal and rock. Wait, you’re surprised? Surely not. But rest assured, if the last couple of “colors” were your bag, this “double dose of color” will be too.

Shorter and sweeter is what this intro is. Love it? Hate it? Tell us all about it in the comments section below. Or don’t. Continue reading

Initial Descent: December 2 – 8, 2018

Graf Orlock
Graf Orlock

Sickness sucks. I’ve been fighting a damn cold for what feels like an eternity and it just won’t quit. YAY ME. Ugh. But, you know what makes me feel better? Hey WHAT, you don’t care?! FINE. But, I’m saying it anyway because I can: new metal makes me feel better and there’s another heaping load of it this week so let’s hop to it, shall we…

Graf Orlock, who define DIY hardcore punk these days, returns with their fourth full length (and 11th release overall) Examination of Violent Cinema, Volume 1 which features inspiration from, you guessed it, violent films released in 2017 and autopsied corpse packaging but really it’s another notch in the belt of a band that defines its own genre in 2018. Viscera/// return with a quick hitter EP in the form of City of Dope and Violence and it’s a twisted rail of hardcore, sludge and experimentation but a fast trip you’ll want to take. Svartidauði have been through a whirlwind of life happenings in their short existence but that didn’t stop them from releasing a stunning sophomore effort of epic black metal on Revelations of the Red SwordLast up top this week is the labyrinthine maze of progressive / technical death metal from Zealotry on At the Nexus of All Stillborn Worlds which is the band’s maiden voyage for Unspeakable Axe, perfect fit.

After that opening four I’m already feeling better. Thanks for your concern…or not. Anyway, you know what to do next. GO. NOW. Continue reading

Initial Descent: December 3 – 9, 2017

cleric band
Cleric

I was just talking about how we had crossed into December and BAM! it’s cold and snowing a little. For those of you up north, feel free to make fun of me for my thin blood and thin skin. Me and cold don’t get along very well anymore but as the weather cools down the metal heats up so let’s get to this edition of Initial Descent. Leading us off is Retrocausal which breaks a seven year silence from Cleric and they waste no time showcasing their ability to effortlessly bend sound at will as well as stretch their jagged experimental legs with longer tracks. Next up is the mysterious DSKNT with their debut album PhSPHR which can best be described as bleak and chaotic black metal. Moving along is a three way split, Shades of Sorrow, between Suicide Wraith, Necrolytic Goat Converter and Uncanny Reality — expect a wonderful black metal ear bashing here. Last up in the opening slots is The Line Between from Blood Oath which saw cassette release earlier this year but is being reissued on CD this week so there’s no reason not to get your hands on this amazing blast of raw and pure death metal. That’s a killer opening four but as usual we have way more to discover so slap a hoodie on and cinch up the headphone cords, it’s time. Continue reading

Initial Descent: November 27 – December 3, 2016

Ash Borer
Ash Borer

We’ve officially breached December which means Christmas is right around the corner and I assume you’ve gotten your Abbath snow globe? WHAT…no? Do it. A new month and another week of great metal here on Initial Descent. And if you’ve been paying attention we have had almost a years worth of stacked releases each week. Which should make this years round of best of lists very interesting. Anyway, on to this week which has Ash Borer back with the ridiculously good Irrepassable Gate and honestly what this band does with black metal is jaw dropping, Maligner gives us a thrashingly good time on Demon, Obscure Evil is still plying their massive death metal chops on Void Fumes, progressive metallers Arriver bend time and ears on Emeritus, and Flidais fly the flag for power metal on Kazador. If that was all we had it would be a huge week but we have so much more for you to dive into and dissect so hop to it, after the jump. Continue reading

Second Circle: Maligner and Obscure Evil

Second Circle of Hell

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 albums that share a common theme.

Was it really more than 10 years ago everyone started proclaiming thrash was back? When Municipal Waste blasted out with Hazardous Mutation ¹ (which you can argue is more Crossover than Thrash ²) and unleashed a glut of Exodus and Testament clones, most of which weren’t old enough to remember the dirt glory that was the 80s? I admit I may have reinforced some of the more questionable aspects of the movement (though I’ll never apologize for Toxic Holocaust and S.S.S.) but the reality is the genre never really went away — just ask Overkill. And despite being claimed “dead” by a number of online sites and magazines look across the border and things look just fine, particularly when you look at two great releases coming out this week from Maligner and Obscure Evil. Continue reading