Monthly Overview – the Best of October 2018

So what do we have for you this month? What new batch of metal delights has been unleashed upon the world in October? Let’s find out… Continue reading

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Outre – Hollow Earth (Review)

Outre - Hollow EarthOutre are a Polish black metal band and this is their second album.

After 2015’s Ghost Chants and 2017’s split with Barshasketh, it’s safe to say that Hollow Earth has been much-awaited by me. I have not been disappointed, not at all. Continue reading

Animus Mortis – Testimonia (Review)

Animus MortisAnimus Mortis are a Chilean Black Metal band and this is their second album.

This is an intriguing blend of Progressive and Post-Black Metal that lasts 40 minutes and makes a very good impression. It’s Black Metal for the modern age, taking influence from the aforementioned sub-genres to add to their Blackened pot, creating something unusual.

This sits nicely alongside albums from bands like Entropia, Thaw, Outre, Hope Drone, Tempel, Decline of the I, Wayfarer, Deafheaven and many others that play Black Metal with a non-standard spin on things. Bands such as these take up the mantle of Post-Black Metal, (willingly or not), to expand their musical horizons and add to their Blackened palette.

Chants, screams, growls and all manner of other vocalisations are used to great effect to provide a rich vocal performance. These are multifaceted and varied, allowing the singer ample avenues for exploration and experimentation. Wailing, shrieking and moaning torment appear to be his choicest methods of delivery; these are frequently layered on top of each other to create a nightmarish juxtaposition against the more resplendent music. I imagine it could be somewhat of an acquired taste for some people when confronted with his style, maybe rather preferring the more standard screams that appear less often.

The music is highly emotive and has an understated epic feel to it. It has a heart that’s twisted and warped though, kind of like Deathspell Omega with added Shoegaze. The music can be quite beautiful, with uplifting sections as well as parts that are more barbed and dangerous. The vocals supply the main ugliness and horror to the music, with the singer frequently sounding inhuman or possessed, adding a disturbing aura to the songs.

This is a compelling release due to the fact that it attempts to do something a little different from the norm and largely succeeds. The ubiquitous blast beats, the gleaming guitar melodies and the corrupted vocalisations all merge together to produce something greater than the sum of its parts.

This is music to become entranced by. Let Animus Mortis lift you up and help you explore the less-travelled paths that they wander. It may seem a daunting proposition, but it’s one that’s worth it.

Outre – Ghost Chants (Review)

OutreOutre are a Black Metal band from Poland and this is their début album.

After their début EP and their split with Thaw, this has been an eagerly awaited release from these talented Black Metallers.

Theirs is a form of Black Metal that combines Atmospheric Black Metal with a Post-Black Metal sensibility to create transcendent Dark Art.

This is a band who are no stranger to pure Blackened brutality either though, as there are plenty of faster and heavier sections in their music as well as the more atmospheric and considered ones.

Ghost Chants features sophisticated and modern Black Metal that’s more Deathspell Omega than Darkthrone. The songs are exemplars of the style and this is a very professional and well-recorded album that nonetheless loses none of Black Metal’s inherent venom or antagonism.

The exceptional vocals this time around add an entire other layer to Outre’s sound, especially with the extremely talented vocalist they have employed. The vocals on Ghost Chants are diverse and brilliantly performed. Taking in pretty much all aspects of a Black Metal performance that you can think of, these are a crowning addition to an already superb band.

Ghost Chants is an exceptional release by an extremely gifted troupe of Black Metallers.

A must.