July was packed with strong releases. With some quality highly anticipated albums seeing the light of day in July, (Defeated Sanity, Gaerea, Imperial Triumphant), I decided to focus on some of my favourites from last month that were less likely to get loads of media coverage, (and it was a struggle to limit the selection to five). So, with that in mind, my highlights are below. What are yours?
Northern Crown’s In a Pallid Shadow combines traditional doom metal with progressive flourishes to craft a very enjoyable album. Packed with damn good tunes that stick in the brain, this is a great album through and through.
Another sterling doom release in July was Premonition by Empress. Mixing doom, progressive, and post-metal elements into a thoroughly engaging and emotive collection of songs, this is an album that easily stood out from the crowd. So very good.
I was really looking forward to the first full length from Draghkar, and I was not disappointed by At the Crossroads of Infinity. Playing a charismatic brand of blackened, thrash-injected, old-school death metal, Draghkar’s music rips and tears into your flesh with glee. Hideously satisfying and enjoyable.
Only Ashes Remain by Sepulchral Curse was another debut album I was strongly looking forward too, and like At the Crossroads of Infinity above, there’s no disappointment to be had here. Filled with crushing riffs, macabre melodies, grim atmosphere, and monstrous vocals, Only Ashes Remain is a blackened death metal feast of delights.
The Orb Offers Massive Signals by TOOMS is one nasty sludge metal album. Although probably somewhat of an acquired taste for most, it’s a very engaging slab of ugliness that has repeatedly drawn me into its sludgy embrace. This is an album of variety and heaviness that revels in using multiple ways to smother you in murky darkness.