Last week we had a day where I premiered two tracks and an album, one after the other. Not content to let things lie (as metal is about always being more and more extreme, right?) I have decided to premiere two tracks in one post. In all earnestness, this opportunity sort of fell right into my lap; apparently, Vertebra Atlantis (another project from the genius behind the amazing Cosmic Putrefaction and the equally amazing The Clearing Path) and blog favorites Noise Trail Immersion are not only both from Italy but they’re also close friends. Which is great for two reasons: first of all, friendship is awesome! Pretty cut and dry there. But secondly, Italy has always been a massively underrated powerhouse of great music and great metal to boot. From ultra-violent thrash, through creepy and occult post-metal, and all the way to some truly excellent death metal (just to name a few), the country has been chugging out quality releases for decades now with minimal attention from the scene at large. You never really the term “Italian metal” like you hear about “USBM” or “Australian post-rock”.

Well, let’s aim to fix that just a bit, shall we, by premiering not one, but two tracks from Italy. The first is Vertebra Atlantis and if you’ve listened to the above-mentioned projects by G.G, who spearheaded the above mentioned Cosmic Putrefaction and The Clearing Path, you might have a bit of a clue what to expect here. Namely, loaded compositions, dark, oppressive tones, and an overall penchant for unrelenting heaviness. But that’s “only” the beginning of the story; featuring R.R from Homselvareg and Vrangr from Spells of Misery, Vertebra Atlantis has a haunting “size” to it that’s hard to describe. Perhaps akin to Helfró, the band channel their second wave of black metal trappings through large production and an absolutely killer dedication to massive chords to create the sensation of an iceberg collapsing down on you. As per G.G’s other work, there’s a lot of complexity hidden “beneath” and “to the side” of this sound but that doesn’t stop you from appreciating its sheer heaviness.

“Lustral Purge In Cerulean Bliss” comes to us from the project’s upcoming release of the same title which will release on November 12th through the inimitable I, Voidhanger Records. You can pre-order it through the Bandcamp link below!

Noise Trail Immersion seem to channel much of that same darkness on their new track albeit through a more occult and contemplative angle. The track, “Eclissi Unanime”, takes its time in building its aggression, progressing from a hauntingly atmospheric intro, through an unfurling and vocal-centric middle passage, all the way to a crushingly heavy catharsis in its crescendo. That same feeling of oppressive “size”, of being in the face of something massive, is still present but here the object feels internal; what is being expressed is the revolusion, ecstasy, and neurosis at the center of our hearts rather than the bearing down of some external monstrosity or force of nature. This blends excellently with the heart-felt and harrowing vocals on the track as well as with the cavernous quality of the instruments themselves, creating an effective work of blackened, morose expression.

“Eclissi Unanime” is taken from Noise Trail Immersion’s upcoming release, Curia, which releases on November 26th on, you guessed it, I, Voidhanger Records. Head on over to their Bandcamp page to pre-order it.

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