Sylvaine – Wistful

When Alcest released their 2014 Shelter, there were many dissenting voices among their fans. Originally, it was possible to easily disregard these as the usual detractors of any band which tries to change their sound; we might like to paint metal as a progressive and open genre but we have our fair share of conservatives. However, as further listenings to the album opened up understanding, it was felt by many more that indeed, something was off. It’s not that Shelter was a bad album but there was something, some power that Alcest had in their earlier works. By “earlier works” we do not mean their classical, black metal, heavy albums. We’re not joining those who denounce blackgaze or even the dream pop that Alcest had started making. On the contrary, we love those sounds and were therefore disappointed with Shelter, which felt more like lip service to the power those genres can hold.

Luckily, it appears that a second chance is at hand, in the form of a separate, and yet musically linked, artist called Sylvaine.

So Hideous – Laurestine

There are few things in the world of music — for musicians, critics, and fans alike — that are as much equal parts necessary and frustrating to the point of being counterproductive as genre labels. We use them because they form a convenient shorthand, a way to categorize and file away the…

Starter Kit: Post-Black Metal

Starter Kit analyzes the ins-and-outs of some of the more obscure and niche sub-genres within the metal spectrum and offers a small group of bands that best represent the sound. Read other Starter Kit entries here. Comprised of lilting, reverbial cleans, and hard-hitting, harsh walls of distorted aggression, the disparate…