Posts

Liträo - Fardo Eterno and Egomorte

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I have a theory that most  bands are a mix of genres, even if some of the genres are subtle, and the secondary, more submerged genres often make a difference as to whether or not you like something.  For example, I like a lot of sludge and post metal, but a lot of the (big scare quotes, here) "big sludge bands" aren't the ones I like (for example, I can't really get into The Melvins). I think the reason why is that I'm just, frankly, not that into a lot of the submerged genres that lots of the big sludge bands are built on and which seem to be a lot of people's way in to listening to that sort of thing. Grunge, prog rock, dessert rock, etc., none of those genres do much for me. So if you're a sludge or post metal band that has an undertow (see what I did there?) of one of those genres, I'm almost certainly not going to like it. Nothing personal, you do your thing, but it's just not something that resonates with me. Liträo, on the other hand, are sl

Cairns - Keening

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  Keening, the first EP by UK-based, atmospheric black metal band Cairns, is a genuinely powerful debut release. Between the artwork, song titles, and sound, it evokes a sort of naturalistic, otherworldly, occultic vibe, like you've gotten lost in a particularly grey forest in the British countryside at dusk. The music has a misty, ethereal feel which reminds me of the best of contemporary blackgaze and atmospheric post metal, namely bands like Numenorean, Violet Cold, and Vukari. The song writing on Keening is really top notch, and Cairns are quite good at breaking songs up with a nice combination of melody and dissonance, shifting between parts that can feel quite different even as they all remain drenched in walls of shimmering distortion and reverb. They even make really effective use of sporadic singing vocals alongside of more throat-ripping screaming.  If you're into atmospheric black metal, I would definitely give Keening a listen. I'm looking forward to more by Cai

...But the Shadows Have Foes - A Great Variety of Morbid Symptoms

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  The awesome website DIY Conspiracy has dropped a premier of my hardcore band's new album A Great Variety of Morbid Symptoms. It releases everywhere else on Friday. Enjoy. 

Beculted - Arcane Manifestations

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Germany's Beculted sound, to me, like what would happen if Thou was a black metal band. They have these ugly, crawling sludge riffs that just tunnel into your brain which alternate with blast beat driven grind reminiscent of something like Vanum or Panopticon . A truly dirty guitar tone gives the album a raw and churning vibe, and with only 3 songs (despite each clocking in at over 10 minutes), it's a relatively quick listen that leaves you wanting more. If you're into contemporary, blackened sludge, I would absolutely give this record a listen. I enjoyed it a lot.  Arcane Manifestations by beculted

Screwed - Terror Cycle

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I tend to think that musical barriers that are highly pronounced in one generation tend to fall in the next because young people are musical sponges, soaking up all kinds of different influences that might seem antithetical to older generations. For example, I can't imagine trying to explain to someone who is 21 now that there was a point where mixing metal and hardcore was controversial. Whether  to incorporate metal and, if so, how  to incorporate it into hardcore were open questions when I was a kid. Now, a band like Portland's Screwed just throw chainsaw grind, metalcore, d-beat, sludge, and thrash in a blender like there'd never be a question all those things should go together and we're all better for it. On Terror Cycle, Screwed churn their way through eight menacingly ugly songs, reminding me of something like Moral Void, on the hardcore end, or Primitive Man, for the sludge influence. The guitar tone is spot on HM-2 worship, but they tend to be slower and chugg

Dark Circles - Frantic Death

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  Out of nowhere, one of my favorite dark hardcore bands just dropped a new album and it's exactly what I want from them. Dark Circles put out a number of fantastic, raging crust albums about six or so years ago. I remember the timing explicitly because, when they were dropping albums, it was when I was living somewhere I wasn't thrilled about living and Dark Circles where one of the bands that really got me through that time. This album picks up exactly where they left off, with a punishing chainsaw-crust sound that manages to keep an undercurrent of melody running through the songs to keep them interesting, even as they pummel you with noise. I would liken them to bands like Barren, The Secret, and Trap Them. I would also note that they were a direct influence on my hardcore band, in particular the first album which was written while I was mainlining their first two albums. Please, please check out Dark Circles. It's PWYW so you have no excuse not to.  Frantic Death by D

Mist of Doom - Revenge of the Ancient Gods

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I mean, come on. Look at that album cover. You know exactly  what you're getting here. And yes, it shreds.  Mist of Doom is an absolutely ripping mix between raw black metal and crust. I would compare them to a more hardcore-influenced version of bands like Bütcher, Hellripper, and Bewitcher, with the same kind of driving, raw, blackened attack, but a little less-NWOBHM in the mix and a little more dis-crust going on. If you listen to those bands and wish they sounded more like Wolfbrigade or Martyrdöd, Mist of Doom is your band.  The songs on Revenge of the Ancient Gods are short, the beats are fast, the vocals are throat-ripping, and the riffs are catchy and anthemic. This is really everything I want in blackened crust, up to and including a furious album closer called "Black Metal Nazis Must Die." It's the kind of quick, brutal listen that makes it hard not to bob your head along as it pummels you.  The album is free on Bandcamp, and given that I've listened to