Hidden in plain sight, there is some fine metal being released- even in recent years. Nestled in the convoluted release schedule of one of the most popular indie rock labels (although in fairness, Profound Lore has gotten death metal right before) is a rare foray into dissonant death metal grandeur that is certainly worthy of praise. The newest solo project by Numinas/Crom/Dario Denerio, whose well-ventured resume also includes Infestor, Khrom, and Evoken, Ritual Chamber’s 2016 full length debut Obscurations (to Feast on the Seraphim) masterfully imports the lost wisdom of classic death metal spirit into a contemporary flesh of sound and production. Suffering from poor marketing through mainstream channels and tired aesthetic trends that mask its originality, this cultured release flew well off the radar of the audience it was most suited for and was not digestible enough for the retro/rehash death metal crowd of hipster swine it mostly reached. But although it initially evaded the underground’s most trustworthy mediums, Death Metal Underground’s undying commitment to unearthing the best in the genre now gives us a late opportunity to acknowledge a great work of elegance. (more…)
A growing trend among some metal and rock bands is the aggressively enforced ban of cell phones during live performances. While their motivations are not unlike those of Metallica at the height of the Napster controversy (as these bands want their only live footage to be sold at dying retail stores in the form of $40 DVDs) they are actually doing their fans a great service by mitigating the amount of millennial vanity happening in the live concert environment. Nobody likes the hipster douchebag belligerently sticking a phone in front everyone’s view to pad his YouTube stats, and young people are better off liberated from the soul consuming cell phone screen for awhile.
After a decade of nothingness and decay, Denmark’s Nortt re-emerges in the form of a third full length on pt. 2 of the Avantgarde Music canon (the rock n’ roll/new wave edition). Rising to prominence in the early days of the suicidal black metal wave but vanishing just as the Thy Lights and Nocturnal Depressions of those days brought the movement to self-parody black and white Myspace-metal, Nortt returns to a world that has mostly forgotten their existence. As fate has seen their fellow Total Holocaust Records peers of that time fall into the pits of post-rock (Hypothermia), drug addiction (Nachtmystium), or straight up oblivion (Blodulv), will Nortt’s funeral doom foundation lead to a more desirable outcome? (more…)
Twas the 5th day before Christmas, and all through the house, the creatures stared concerned and suddenly in need of psychiatric therapy. My wife said I have that crazy look in my eye, as my boss had jipped me on my Christmas bonus- the holiest thing of the American middle class baby boomer. The urge to kill left me trembling, barely able to stand, and I frantically raced to the garage and grabbed my chainsaw and son’s hockey mask. As the voices got louder, I found myself speaking in tongues- vocalizing a string of obscenities as if possessed by otherworldly entities. In an attempt to quiet the deafening commands to kill, I remembered that death metal was an outlet that had saved me years before. But it was 2017, and I did not know what the new death metal sounded like. But I had heard that Bandcamp were going to save the world with their social justice, so I thought I would listen to the top selling death metal bands on the first page of Bandcamp. Surely they had the most sales, and therefore were the most trustworthy, and true to the old death metal sound. I decided to download all 8 albums and burn to CD to listen to on my Walkman CD player. But when I heard…. when I heard… when I heard…
Continuing the path of a storied band, Inferno mixes re-recorded versions of older tracks with new material in what seems to be a band redefining itself. Blood started as a grindcore band with more of a death metal attitude, then adopted an outlook closer to black metal for its opus O Agios Pethane, but since then has struggled by being caught in the middle of three genres.
It has been twenty years since Formulas Fatal to the Flesh first graced record store shelves, which still existed back then. That comeback album was the strongest statement from Morbid Angel after their initial surge of genre-defining creativity. It may have also been their high-water mark because everything since has shown a downward trajectory.
Vouïvre has published their EP which was announced a year and a half ago with a neat teaser. Au Gouffre is a result of one-time collaboration between (among others) members of Peste Noire and Malsaint, grounded in more humane individual experiences that were shaped by black metal ideas.