Writing a standout doom metal album is a difficult task nowadays. This isn't due to an overall lack of quality within the genre's modern progenitors, but because of the antithesis; more and more excellent doom metal albums seem to enter the running for our year ends lists with each passing year. MONARCH! (Monarch from here on out) has never struggled with this endeavor over the course of their 15-year career, particularly when it comes to their recent output with the eminent Profound Lore Records. Yet, while Sabbracadaver was certainly a doom highlight in 2014, Never Forever sees the band returning this year with their most colossal and grandiose album to date, presenting a masterful synthesis of drone metal with doom's more macabre characteristics. We sat down with the band to discuss the process of writing their latest epic, as well as a handful of other topics related to their past, present and future within the shifting landscape of modern doom.
Black metal is a curious beast; it can either be really beautiful and transcend the five senses we are born with and expose us to new pleasures previously unknown, or it can unlock seething vitriol and hatred, eschewing the misanthrope, violence, and racism for which the genre is notorious. Whatever the case, it’s easily one of the most controversial and centralized of all metal sub-genres. Every brand has its clique: trve kvlt, atmospheric, post, experimental, progressive, etc. All of these separate sub-sections stay within their limits, and so do the fans. Now there are some exceptions to the rule, of course, and there will always be overlap for those who love all metal, but as a whole metal fans --- and fans of music in general --- tend stick to their own little sphere. Krallice fall in the gray area; an area in which all boundaries are knocked down and the music encompasses far more genres and influences than ever thought.