Archive for Black Metal

Anaal Nathrakh reveal new album details

Posted in Grindcore, Metal, Misc., News with tags , , , , on 7th August 2018 by izaforestspirit

Good news for fans of Anaal Nathrakh. Two years after the well received ‘The Whole of The Law’, the British black metal/grind-core act return with ‘A New Kind Of Horror‘.

Here’s what their vocalist Dave Hunt (a.k.a V.I.T.R.I.O.L.) had to say about it:

This is not a happy album, it is bitter, vengeful, sarcastic, sardonic, violent, terrified and horrified, terrifying and horrifying in equal measure. Above all, it is human, and all that that entails. It’s as sincere as we could make it.

You can check out the art-work and track-listing below:

. The Road To…
2. Obscene as Cancer
3. The Reek of Fear
4. Forward!
5. New Bethlehem/Mass Death Futures
6. The Apocalypse Is About You!
7. Vi Coactus
8. Mother of Satan
9. The Horrid Strife
10. Are We Fit for Glory Yet? (The War to End Nothing)

‘A New Kind of Horror’ will be out worldwide on 28th September 2018 via Metal Blade Records.

In the main time you can catch Anaal Nathrakh live in Europe on the following dates:

09/08/18 DE – Schlotheim – Party.San Open Air
11/08/18 UK – London- Blackheart
02/11/18 DK – Aalborg – Aalborg Metal Festival
03/11/18 UK – Leeds – Damnation Festival
05/11/18 NL – Rotterdam – Baroeg
06/11/18 FR – Paris – Backstage
09/11/18 NL – Deventer – Burgerweeshuis
10/11/18 DE – Oberhausen – Helvete

For more details visit:

http://www.anaal-nathrakh.com
https://www.facebook.com/Anaalnathrakhofficial

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Hanzel und Gretyl – Satanik Germanik

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , on 31st July 2018 by izaforestspirit

Hanzel Und Gretyl
Satanik Germanik
Released 6th July 2018
Industrial Metal / Groove Metal / Extreme Metal
Released via Metropolis Records

Hanzel und Gretyl - Satanik Germanik

The New York -based industrial metal duo Hanzel und Gretyl have been around since the mid-90s. They’re often hailed as the only non-German band in the Neue Deutsche Härte scene. Their music has evolved a great deal since the beginning, ranging from experimental-industrial to industrial metal, groove with even hints of black metal and melodic death metal. Their latest opus ‘Satanik Germanik’ promises to be their darkest and most metal-sounding album.

This is essentially picking up from where Hanzel und Gretyl left off with ‘Black Forest Metal’ – the first part of the so called ‘Grimm Shiza’ era. As the title suggests there are some satanic themes plus references to stories by the brothers Grimm. So if you enjoyed that album, there is a good likelihood that you will like this one too. However, if you were hoping for the more wacky German space metal from their ‘Fukken Über’ -era, then I would suggest you skip straight to the party track Trinken Mit Der Kaizer (Die Bierz From Hell). Good to see that these two haven’t lost their sense of humor.

As far as the style goes, most of the songs have a dark, gritty black metal tinge that is particularly audible in the guitars while the industrial elements are not as prominent as they were in their previous works. Singer Vas Kallas’s voice makes this eerie, croaking sound, like the old witch from the Grimm stories, which combined with the coarse guitar riffs gives the music a creepy feel. They also occasionally slow down the pace like on the groove metal styled track I Am Bad Luck, which puts the emphasis on the bass guitar. Speaking of the bass, it also comes into the fore on 13 Moons; a track that is probably the closest they have ever come to producing a black metal song.

In summary, ‘Satanik Germanik’ can easily be classed as Hanzel und Gretyl’s heaviest album to date. In many ways it sounds exactly like I expected it to. It is not another ‘Über Alles’, in fact it is very similar to ‘Black Forest Metal’. And yet it’s darker, haunting and more serious than the earlier works; even moreso than their previous album. Luckily there’s still the odd party track to please fans of their older material.

4/5
Iza Raittila

Immortal – Northern Chaos Gods

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , on 1st July 2018 by izaforestspirit

Immortal
Northern Chaos Gods
Released 6th July 2018
Black Metal
Released via Nuclear Blast Records

Immortal - Northern Chaos Gods

Immortal doesn’t need much of an introduction. They’ve been a part of the Norwegian black metal scene since the early 1990s. Three years ago they parted ways with their original vocalist who has since released an album under his own name. Following Abbath’s departure, Immortal decided to continue as a duo with guitarist Demonaz taking over vocal duties. Personally I like Immortal’s old works, but I wasn’t too impressed with their last offering ‘All Shall Fall’. I’m quite curious to see how this albums compares to the Abbath album. Can there still be Immortal without Abbath at the helm? There’s only one way to find out…

Without even pressing the play button, it’s pretty evident that this is an Immortal album. All the usual themes are here including references to all things grim and frostbitten and not forgetting the words ‘Blashyrkh’ and ‘Ravendark’ in two of the song titles. In many ways Gates to Blashyrkh feels like a continuation of ‘Blashyrkh (Mighty Ravendark). The guitar patterns are very similar and it is definitely one of the more catchy tracks on here. I also enjoyed Grim and Dark which, despite the title, is anything but grim. Aside from the harsh vocals, the song it itself is actually rather uplifting at times thanks to the rocking guitar melodies. It reminded me of the mid-career works, particularly ‘At The Heart of Winter’.

The title track deserves an honorable mention as one of more coarse-sounding black metal songs on here, hankering back to the band’s early days. If it’s pummeling drums, harsh vocals and shredding guitars you were looking for, then Northern Chaos Gods is definitely the track for you. Obviously Demonaz’s vocals take some getting used to, but that should not be a problem for Immortal fans.

In summary, ‘Northern Chaos Gods’ is far more memorable than its predecessor. In fact, it’s quite possibly the best album the band have produced in years. It proves once and for all that Immortal have a future without Abbath.

4/5

Iza Raittila

Karma Violens – Serpent God

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , on 29th April 2018 by izaforestspirit

Karma Violens
Serpent God
Released 13th April 2018
Black Metal/Extreme Metal
Released via Growl Records

Karma Violens - Serpent God

Serpent God’ is the third album from the Greek extreme metal band Karma Violens. These guys have been around since 2002 and they have toured with bands such as Judas Priest and Arch Enemy. They initially started out playing metalcore but this album marks a shift in style towards black metal direction with a “gloomy and dark atmosphere” and it is recommended for fans of Emperor, Behemoth, Mayhem and Batushka. That description looks promising, let’s see how it sounds…

This is one of those cases when it’s fairly easy to detect where these guys are from even if I hadn’t read the information about them. Greek black metal has a rather distinctive sound – it tends to be fairly atmospheric and usually has at least some melodic parts. Rotting Christ, Astarte and Naer Mataron are good examples of this style. So Karma Violens are in good company.

There’s more than just a hint of black metal. There’s the slower, gloomy, atmospheric tracks like Serpent God which reminded me of early Mayhem due to the raspy vocal style. Then they occasionally pick up the pace with more aggressive-sounding, faster songs such as The Constractors where the guitars and the pummeling drums really take the reins. A Letter to the Worthless Chamber caught my attention as one of the more memorable songs on here, it’s got this “still creepy but almost catchy” black metal feel to it that made me think of the later works of Immortal mixed with some elements of Naer Mataron.

Overall, I am relieved that this wasn’t metalcore. Karma Violens were clearly aiming to create an atmospheric black metal album, and in that they have succeeded. ‘Serpent God’ isn’t a ‘flawless album’ but it definitely has its moments.

4/5

Iza Raittila

True Black Dawn and Behexen live in Tampere

Posted in Gig, Live, Metal with tags , , , on 14th January 2018 by izaforestspirit

Kyy, True Black Dawn, Behexen
Olympia, Tampere, Finland
13th January 2018

My first concert of 2018! It’s been over a year since I’ve been to a black metal gig – not since Tampere Black Mass two years ago. Behexen is one of the big names within in the Finnish black metal scene and this was their first Tampere show in ten years.

Unfortunately I arrived too late to catch the first act, another Finnish black metal band called Kyy. I did however, see all of True Black Dawn’s performance. By then the venue wasn’t just full but officially sold out. Massive queues to bar and the tightly packed hall were just some of the challenges one had to face to catch a glimpse of the bands. I really struggled to get some decent-looking photos. But enough of that, let’s talk about the show…

True Black Dawn are an established black metal act who have been around in various guises since the mid 1990s. I knew them under their old name Black Dawn and only recently did I discover that they released a new album under the new name not so long ago. Music-wise they reminded me of old Marduk, Funeral Mist and most prominently of Enochian Crescent. The last band name shouldn’t come as much of surprise, since up until recently they shared the same singer. Good show but it sounded a little too familiar, almost as if I have heard similar bands before. 3/5

 

Behexen were worth the worth wait. Though not flawless, their performance was memorable. I particularly enjoyed hearing an old classic ‘The Celebration of Christ’s Fall’ and ‘Rakkaudesta Saatanaan’ from the new album. They also played ‘Kiss of The Dark Mother’ but sadly that didn’t sound quite as good as it does on the record. 4/5

In summary, black metal isn’t always the best genre to see live. Some bands are better than others. Out of all the black metal gigs I’ve been to, only a handful have been memorable. I cannot comment about Kyy; True Black Dawn were fairly average live but Behexen put on good show.

Iza Raittila

Iza’s Highlights of 2017 part 1: Metal

Posted in Editorial/Opinionated, Metal, Rock with tags , , , , , , , , , on 29th December 2017 by izaforestspirit

2017 is almost over which means that it’s now time for my annual “Best of” or “Highlights” as I prefer to call them. This year’s edition will be in two parts – metal and industrial. So without further ado here are my top ten metal releases of 2017:

1. Kreator – Gods of Violence
Genre: Thrash Metal

godsofviolence_zps28ifmxs8

 

2. Cradle of Filth – Cryptorina: The Seductiveness of Decay
Genre: Extreme Gothic Metal

 

3. Lacrimosa – Testimonium
Genre: Gothic Rock/Symphonic Metal

Image result for lacrimosa testimonium

4. Lord of the Lost – Swan Songs II
Genre: Dark Rock/Gothic Rock/Classical

Image result for lord of the lost swan songs ii cover

5. Ex Deo – The Immortal Wars
Genre: Symphonic Death Metal

Ex Deo - The Immortal Wars

6. Cannibal Corpse – Red Before Black
Genre: Death Metal

7. Mono Inc.- Together Till The End
Genre: Dark Rock/Gothic Metal

Together Till The End

8. Doyle – As We Die
Genre: Heavy Metal

Doyle - As We Die

9. Barathrum – Fanatiko
Genre: Black Metal/Doom Metal

Barathrum - Fanatiko

10. Eisbrecher – Sturmfahrt
Genre: Industrial Metal

EISBRECHER - Sturmfahrt

 

Marilyn Manson’s ‘Heaven Upside Down’ didn’t make my top ten list but it’s still a good album which I would recommend. I haven’t been to too many gigs this year but out of the metal shows I’ve attended my favorite would have to be Destruction live in Tampere.

Biggest New Discovery: Mono Inc.

Most anticipated albums of 2018

New albums by Powerwolf, Devilment and hopefully Behemoth.

That’s all for now. Stay tuned for the industrial/other non metal edition coming soon.

Vecordious – Anthropogenic Deterioration

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , on 9th December 2017 by izaforestspirit

Vecordious

Anthropogenic Deterioration

Released 1st December 2017

Black Metal/ Blackened Death Metal

Self-Released

Vecordious - Anthropogenic Deterioration

‘Anthropogenic Deterioration’ is the debut album from the Norwegian blackened death metal band Vecordious. The band has been around since 2009. Some of my favorite black metal bands are from Norway so I have high expectations for this…

The opening track is essentially just a dark ambient -style intro which does not really give the listener any indication of what’s to come. All is calm before the storm, then it starts… The barrage of abrasive guitar riffs, pummeling drums and ferocious shouts. Oh yes…Make no mistake, this is definitely black metal, not dark ambient. Purging marks the real start of the album and it is an aggressive beast. Vercodious’s overall take on the genre feels like it is influenced by the likes of Belphegor and perhaps to some extent the blackened death metal of early Vesania. Yet despite the aggressive stance these guys are not quite as relentless or as fast as Marduk nor is the music as technically complex as some of the other bands within the scene.

If it’s fast and angry black metal you’re after then The Lycan is the song for you. It’s easily the fastest and the most fierce-sounding track on the album and the probably the closest the band has come to reaching Marduk levels of speed and vehemence. Then there’s the bizarre, experimental dark ambient track ‘The Apparition’ sandwiched between the bombardment of guitar riffs and aggravated shouts. It’s just about long enough to give the listen a short break to take a few deep breaths before the onslaught resumes. Ready or not here they come!! Ghastly Septicity caught my attention for all the wrong reasons, mostly due to the terrible backing vocals. It’s a shame because without those it would have been a decent black metal song.

Overall, ‘ Anthropogenic Deterioration’ is a decent effort; however I think Vecordious still have some work to do in terms of developing their style. The black metal scene is very saturated and there are a lot of similar sounding bands out there. This doesn’t offer anything particularly unique.

3/5
Iza Raittila