Black metal is having a fantastic two years. Besides the sheer volume of great releases, the best tell-tale of this prolific outburst is the sheer variety of sub-genres actively contributing to the main genre. This year alone, we've seen more "straight-forward" contributions (like Orm's excellent, self titled release), atmospheric releases (like Somnium Nox's excellent Terra Inanis), and more avant-garde experimentation (like Dodecahedron's death metal tinged kwintessens or netra's weird Ingrats). To this latter category, of black metal blended with unusual influences, we can now add White Ward's Futility Report, a third release from a relatively unknown band which should, hopefully, garner them more attention.
Let me just say out front that I don't think many people, myself included, would pin me as the person here most likely to write up a recommendation post about a black metal group. It's not that I don't enjoy some black metal or blackened music, but it is definitely not within my musical wheelhouse and area of expertise. And yet, here I am, about to recommend an obscure experimental black metal band to all of you! The reason I am doing so is because this band, Balance Interruption, prominently features an instrument I do know an awful lot about and have written about here at great length: the saxophone. It is the inclusion of this instrument that not only makes this band an interesting novelty within experimental black, but turns it into one of the best examples of how intelligently including a non-traditional instrument and influence can completely lift a band's music from pretty good to really damn great.
So, you all may have seen the absolute unbridled rage against Allegaeon's Patreon from last week. I thought this was pretty unfounded and ridiculous, so I invited Riley McShane of Allegaeon to talk about how he views this situation, and whether some of the accusations made in the articles are founded or not. We ended up having a great chat about the band's situation and crowd funding. I recommend listening to this one, regardless of what you think about the situation! Then Eden and I talk about news and stuff. The new Metallica song, the new Shokran video, the upcoming Soen album, the new Thy Catafalque album, the new Disillusion video, the new... I got tired of going "the new X". Instead, listen to this really dumb but amazing mashup of the Space Jam tune with the new Meshuggah album by Analog Staple. Oh, also, Dominic Forrest Lapointe joined First Fragment. Balance Interruption is an awesome saxed-up black metal thing. Alkaloid are on Season of Mist, officially making it the best label ever. Facebook added integration with some music services. Our underrated album of the week is Rad a Trest by !T.O.O.H! - I wrote about them years ago. Then we talk about how song order is a really hard thing to pick.