In a period replete with an incredible number of black metal permutations, your soul often yearns for something raw and basic that lies at the heart of the genre. While there are plenty of bands out there who have released albums in that vein (think Orm or Imperium Dekadenz), it's hard to get enough of good, black hearted or epic black metal. That list checkbox stands to be filled by Vaivatar, a Finnish band which creates a symphonic brand of black metal steeped in the influences of the second and third wave of the genre. Head on down below for hands lifted to the sky, screeches piercing forested landscapes and the distant sounds of glaciers crashing.
A wave of bands who reconstruct the genre seems to be emerging for black metal these days. Bands like Imperium Dekadenz or Thrawsunblut are making, amidst a flurry of post black metal and blackgaze bands, black metal that is truer to the source of the genre. Which is not to say there is nothing modern about their sound; rather, it's that we're talking of an alloy, a mix of metals of different qualities, containing a hint of the source material that binds it together (quite an apt metaphor, right?). Enter Orm, a band determined to etch out a place for themselves in the ranks of black metal bands appealing once again to the root of what make the genre tick.
For those who missed our last installment, We post biweekly updates covering what the staff at Heavy Blog have been spinning. Given the amount of time we spend on the site telling you about music that does not fall neatly into the confines of conventional “metal,” it should come as no surprise that many of us on staff have pretty eclectic tastes that range far outside of metal and heavy things. We can’t post about all of them at length here, but we can at least let you know what we’re actually listening to. For those that would like to participate as well (and please do) can drop a 3X3 in the comments, which can be made with tapmusic.net through your last.fm account, or create it manually with topsters.net. Also, consider these posts open threads to talk about pretty much anything music-related. We love hearing all of your thoughts on this stuff and love being able to nerd out along with all of you.
Black metal is not currently, nor has it ever been, known for being easily digestible listening. Walls of sound do not engender such a quality; harsh, biting production and maximalist output defy the existence of such a trait. This isn't to say bands within the blackened realm have never been known to play with such a concept - there are plenty of bands that bring a melodic or calmer approach to the genre - but few and far between are the black metal bands that actively encourage such a trait or let it define their music. Songs tend to be monochromatic in character, all furious sound and gnashing teeth, and little is explored in the way of accessibility or an inviting nature to those unacquainted with the genre's tropes. As if specifically to shatter this statement, along comes the new album from German black metal veterans Imperium Dekadenz: Dis Manibvs is as close to the "easy listening" descriptor as any artist has yet to get.
I actually enjoyed the "don't really bother to put stuff in the description" format as it makes my life easier, but hey, I guess I can make an effort once a week. Just kidding, we have new music or related stuff from: Oddland, Orphaned Land, Mephistopheles, Jimmy Pitts and Equipoise, Imperium Dekadenz, Drudkh, Inquisition, Periphery, Gojira, Hadal Maw, Iron Maiden, Exotype, Ayreon. We talk about the split between Obscura and Tom Geldschlager getting heated (check out his new song by the way!), this interesting article on language in metal, Insomnium cancelling their show in Turkey, and the recent trend of sexual assaults at festivals. Then we do the long-awaited Balls Deep on In Flames, hence the episode title (it refers to the band, not us)!