Colosus – Blestem (Review)

ColosusWell this is a surprise. For some reason I wasn’t expecting to like this release that much. Not really sure why – something just put me off it for some reason. I’m happy I’m wrong though as what we have here is some excellent atmospheric Black Metal from the UK. Just the right combination of feeling, grimness and sound quality to ensure that the album sounds suitably murky but clear enough to make everything out.

We start off with a suitably (un-)pleasant intro, followed by the almost-thirteen minute “Mormant” which is a well-executed chunk of depressive Black Metal. Here Colosus shows the ability to produce a very atmospheric track that draws you in and slowly absorbs you until, before you know it, it is almost over and you are left wanting more. Thankfully the next track supplies.

The vocals scream and wail, almost in the background; almost used as another instrument. Not a million miles away from a band like Vinterriket; such a comparison is a good place to start actually, although it only a starting point as Colosus are certainly no clone.

Interspersed within the pieces of Black Metal are more ambient interludes. Thankfully these are not mere filler though and add to the atmosphere of the album and provide another facet of the journey to get lost in.

Overall a very strong album, and one that I will be enjoying absorbing myself in for some time to come.

Night Heir – A Maze of Evenings (Review)

Night HeirAtmospheric metal from the US. There is plenty of variety and individuality on display here, with varying styles from Black Metal to Doom, and everything in between. The band are not afraid to experiment, so you’ll find plenty to hold the interest on this album if you like your metal with a touch of the Avant Garde/experimental.

I also notice what seems to be an In The Woods… influence, so if you imagine a band like In The Woods… with extra Black Metal, Doom, Folk, etc. parts thrown in you’ll be on the right lines.

This will not be to everyone’s tastes of course, but if you are in the right mood then stick this album on and relax, zone out and just get swallowed up in the atmosphere and the journey.

If you’re looking from something a bit different then give them a listen – you won’t regret it!

Stellar Descent/Aylwin – Farallon (Review)

FarallonThis is a split between Stellar Descent an Aylwin, and long, epic, Cascadian-style Black Metal is the order of the day here.

The songs by both bands are well constructed examples of this particular sub-genre and are positively brimming with atmosphere and feelings that evoke the harsh reality of a beautiful yet potentially deadly landscape.

I think this style of music has a lot to offer, especially when done well and with obvious passion such as is displayed here.  Both bands also benefit from strong recordings and sound, whilst still within a recognisably Black Metal style.

Highly recommended this; for anyone who likes their Black Metal bleak and unforgiving, yet naturalistic and wild.

https://www.facebook.com/aylwinblackmetal

https://www.facebook.com/StellarDescent

Frostbitten – We Feared the Wrath of Lord Lucifer (Review)

FrostbittenFilthy, dirty, primitive, raw Black Metal with teeth and a real bite. Not for the faint-hearted. Primitive or no; there are still plenty of good ideas on display here. Slower songs as well as faster ones, mood as well as brutality, bludgeoning as well as razor blades.

Elements of doom rear their grim heads relatively frequently within the strictly blackened framework and this works extremely well. There is even a welcome variation in vocals; The Hooded Robe demonstrating that clean vocals (in a filth-ridden-doom-kinda-way) definitely have a place in Black Metal.

This is a prolific UK band that is not afraid to try new things and deserves support. Check them out now!

https://www.facebook.com/frostbittenblackmetal

Forgotten Woods – The Curse of Mankind

Forgotten Woods

This exceptional Black Metal album was released in 1996; if you like your depressive/suicidal Black metal then I recommend you track it down and get it immediately.

Considered by many the forefathers of this particular sub-genre, (alongside Burzum of course), their sound is archetypal and much-copied.

The album is typically raw and unpolished, yet still well-recorded  enough, (relatively speaking), so that the songs shine, albeit in a murky, dank, grim kind of way!

This is the kind of album where you can easy drift off and become one with the repetitive guitars and the feeling they convey.  For this reason I find this album very satisfying and worthy of inclusion in anyone’s collection.

A must.

https://en-gb.facebook.com/pages/Forgotten-Woods/90469455587

http://www.youtube.com/artist/forgotten-woods

Hypocrisy – A Taste of Extreme Divinity

A Taste of Extreme DivinityI have been a fan of Hypocrisy since their 1999 self-titled album, and since then I have been hooked. Across their many albums they have been quite diverse; playing everything from brutal Death Metal, to Black Metal and everything in between.

This album, from 2009, can best be described as melodic Death Metal – catchy songs with good choruses are abundant here. Comparisons can be made to bands such as Amon Amarth in this respect; as this album follows in a similar vein to their output.  If you like this style of music, or indeed Amon Amarth; then it’s a safe bet you’ll like A Taste of Extreme Divinity.

With Peter Tägtgren behind the helm you should already know that the sound on this album is suitably huge, with his voice complementing this nicely.

Strongly recommended for some good headbanging fun!

https://www.facebook.com/hypocrisy

Xerath – II

xerathIIElements of djent, atmospheric black metal, and modern metal collide to create a hugely enjoyable 56 minutes-or-so of music.  Like all good albums it’s a grower too and takes its time to worm its way into your subconscious.

Favourite track? The last one – The Glorious Death: I – Divine Rapture, II – A New Awakening – 8:33 of cinematic metal that makes me very happy I discovered this talented band.

Interested?  Check them out  –

http://www.xerath.net/

https://www.facebook.com/xerathuk