Nine Circles ov…What Didn’t Make My 2020 End of Year List…(But Could Have)

Next week I’ll be posting Part 1 of my annual glut of end of year posts, but there’s usually so much I enjoyed I like to spread the wealth a little bit and put some beloved but odd-man-out entries out there for you to consider.  In a dumpster fire of a year like 2020, putting anything out is kind of a miracle, but the amount of quality music – let alone metal – is kind of astounding. It served as a balm when I needed to calm down, as an ignition switch when I needed to get fired up, and as a wail of despair when I didn’t think I could take much more of what life was throwing at me.

So similar to years past, any one of these could have made my final list.  Maybe it was a lack of time, maybe it was something that stood as a taste instead of a meal…maybe it’s just that what I needed was served elsewhere.  Doesn’t make this list any less righteous.  So for this edition of Nine Circles ov…, let’s stop talking and get into the good stuff.
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The Nine Circles Playlist Vol. 149 (10.3.2020)

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Welcome back one and all to another weekly mixtape installment. On deck this Saturday (uh, Sunday…sorry!) morning, we have a smattering of Ulver for you, some Sun Kil Moon, an appropriately themed cut from Siouxsie and the Banshees, plus a ton more at the link below. Thanks as always for tuning in.

– Vincent

Best of 2018: Chris’s Honorable Mentions List

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We’ll save the long-winded rhetoric for the final list.  There’s fifteen albums listed here that are categorized as “Honorable Mentions” because that’s typically how these list things work.  But in reality it’s a disservice to relegate the incredible music contained herein to a tier of “also ran.”  I spent much of the year thinking about what I needed music to do for me, and hunting for the songs, the bands, and the albums that worked – selfishly – for me.  All of the albums listed below work on me and for me: pushing me to move further, holding me back when I’ve gone too far.  I can’t ask for much more than that.  Last year I titled my honorable mentions albums #40-26, but in truth a number can’t define the reinforcement and excitement this music provided.

So let’s dive in and talk about them for a spell. Continue reading

The Nine Circles Playlist Vol. 45 (6.18.2018)

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In the next few days the solstice will arrive, marking the longest day of the year before making its inexorable tread back to darkness.  So why not listen to some of the music the Nine Circles staff have been blasting in an increasingly futile attempt to impose some semblance of order into our chaotic lives? There’s a mix of a number of different sounds this week, running from hardcore and black metal to country and whatever we’re classifying Zeal & Ardor these days (besides excellent).

Grab a beverage, make sure your sunglasses are snug, and don’t forget to subscribe to our channel here so you can treasure these playlists forever like a parent with severe attachment issues.  As a creepy dude on an island once said, “Be seeing you.”   Continue reading

Initial Descent: June 3 – 9, 2018

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YOB

Another week full of stuff, things, happenings and more stuff. Whatever. But now, a fresh start in the form of new releases and even though the massive quantity of recent weeks has waned a bit, quality takes a front seat. So, what’s up this week?

Oregon’s (and the world for that matter) favorite doom sons, YOB, return with their eighth full length Our Raw Heart and in case you’ve somehow missed it to this point, this is some of their most heart wrenching yet fully realized work to date. Yea, I said it. Feel free to have your own opinion. Nearly as massive but on the death metal front is Tomb Mold with their second full length Manor of Infinite Forms which rides even higher than their debut — is it possible? Yes…and again, insert opinion here. Moving right along with Lago, a band I discovered and developed a huge affinity for back in 2014, return with their second full length Sea of Duress and honestly I didn’t expect this much death metal maturity but I’m fully engrossed once again and happier than a pig in sh…you get the idea. Last up in the opening slots this week is Zeal & Ardor with their amazing combination of black metal and spirtuals with Stranger Fruit and this is where you’ll find something way different from the norm yet something to completely lose yourself in — love this band. We’ve had an already massive showing but as usual there is soooo much more. Stick around as long as you like and by all means, leave those opinions in the comments section below.  Continue reading