Gaerea – Unsettling Whispers

Black metal is formulaic in nature. The tropes of the genre have been recycled and reused on an endless spectrum. Bands have been integrating strange things into the style for a long time, yearning to breathe life into the cold and desolate sound beyond the standard helping of meat and…

Bridge Burner – Null Apostle

Anyone who followed metalcore in the mid-to-late-2000s and early 2010s (e.g. me) remembers the movement of bands who declared in unison “we’ve heard some extreme metal and want to be like Converge and Entombed.” Whether their persuasion lied with the black metal, sludge or elsewhere, the key for bands who succeeded (Gaza, Trap Them, etc.)…

KHôRADA – Salt

KHôRADA has a strange property for a group made up of two of the most beloved metal bands of yesteryear: any thought related to them that strikes me is pretty much entirely independent of their pedigree, which is fairly impressive when you consider the members of KHôRADA. Formed in the aftermath of Giant…

ASG – Survive Sunrise

Scenes are a funny thing, right? They’re basically just another form of narrative, an attempt by human brains to quench their hunger for patterns. Reality is often a lot more complicated but narratives (with scenes among them) give us a pretty little diagram that we can refer to when trying…

Wayfarer – World’s Blood

“World’s Blood is black metal of the American West.” Thus begins the description of this album by Profound Lore records, and I’ll be damned if it isn’t accurate. Another descriptor I’ve heard of this record from a friend is “Cormac McCarthy black metal.” I’ve been telling anybody who will listen that this…

Nervosa – Downfall of Mankind

Some people strongly bemoan the downfall of thrash metal. Once it was the juggernaut of the underground scene, but it quickly rose and fell in terms of its popularity and domination in metal culture. It simply could not keep up with the extreme lengths of its brother, death metal. It…

YOB – Our Raw Heart

Dear reader, I am going to be straightforward and brutally honest with you: objectivity will fail you. There may be times when you feel as though you can truly step back and objectively appraise a work of art; there may be times where you are certain that your opinion on something is…

Panegyrist – Hierurgy

I’m not exactly unveiling a deep or hidden truth when I say that the occult has been one of – if not the – most prevailing lyrical themes of metal music since its inception. In fact, I’m pretty sure  being a metal band and not having at least one song about Satanism…