Containing 44 minutes of material, Flowers Fade mixes together atmospheric, depressive, and post-black metal into a compelling vision of blackgaze darkness. Continue reading “Stygian Love – Flowers Fade (Review)”
Formed around a central artist who is Bizarrekult’s driving creative force, he’s joined by a range of other musicians, (including a member of the mighty Adliga), who round out the band nicely. The end result of their efforts is Den Tapte Krigen, a 42-minute slice of expressive modern black metal. Continue reading “Bizarrekult – Den Tapte Krigen (Review)”
We turn now to solo act Glyph for a 37-minute trip into a black metal underworld that’s a work of individuality and obvious passion. There’s a special sort of mysterious, esoteric magic that surrounds The Time of Peril, one that’s quite intoxicating to delve into. Continue reading “Glyph – The Time of Peril (Review)”
Following on from 2021’s Monolith of Light, The Impending Fall of the Stars brings us 43 minutes of mood-rich black metal. Bolstered by additional musicians on drums and piano/keyboards, the artist behind Inherit the Void has crafted an album to fall deeply into. Continue reading “Inherits the Void – The Impending Fall of the Stars (Review)”
Ψευδομένη contains 38 minutes of experimental avant-garde black metal. The artist behind Ὁπλίτης has combined a lot of different styles and influences into this record. Imagine Blut Aus Nord, Jute Gyte, and Deathspell Omega crossed with Frontierer, Converge, and Sectioned, along with a touch of Ephel Duath and Oranssi Pazuzu, and you’ll have a rough idea of what you’ll encounter here. Continue reading “Ὁπλίτης (Hoplites) – Ψευδομένη (Review)”
Across 47 minutes Всё provides a compelling and utterly absorbing journey into dark feelings and blackened emotion. Honestly, this is not one to miss if you enjoy highly emotive blackened immersion. Continue reading “Рожь (Rye) – Всё (Review)”
I first met Axioma back in 2016 on their debut EP Opia, which seems like an age ago. Well, since then they haven’t been idle, and their second album Sepsis came out earlier this year. Let’s dive in. Continue reading “Axioma – Sepsis (Review)”
Last year’s Éclosion came out of nowhere and hugely impressed me. I ended up enjoying it so much it appeared on my end of year list too. I wasn’t expecting another album so soon, but here we are with Tensions, which contains 61 minutes of new material. Continue reading “Jours Pâles – Tensions (Review)”
So here we are again. It’s December, and year end lists are flying around like shrapnel. Due to the inherent subjectivity of music it’s always interesting to see what people have made of the preceding year.
For me, I made a concerted effort to drag myself away from the depths of black metal’s always-enticing abyss to spend some more time with other genres and styles that I also love. I said something similar last year, but I feel this year I was more successful in achieving that end. Of course, I still love black metal, still listen to it constantly, and you’ll still find some great examples of the blackened arts in the list below.
2022 was a strong year for death metal for me, and I enjoyed more death metal bands in a deeper way than I have done for some time. In every year there are standout releases, but I felt this year the standard was raised throughout. Possibly I was simply more receptive to it. Either way, you’ll find more death metal-related acts, and in higher spots, in this selection than you’ll have seen in my lists for a while.
As with last year, grindcore was largely absent from my year, disappointingly, as was hardcore. Additionally, the sort of lengthy, ugly, abyssal doom that I love so much has been largely lacking too. It’s all probably out there somewhere, but I didn’t catch it.
The top two spots this year are both claimed by albums/bands/styles that I simply could not have predicted would be at the pinnacle of my list by the year’s end, (one of the bands I hadn’t even heard of in January). I hope you enjoy these excellent records even half as much as I do.
Lastly I just want to say a big thank you to any and all that might read this site. It’s only a small endeavour, and I do it purely for the love of all things METAL and to support bands that I enjoy in whatever minor way I can, but if this is you, a heartfelt thank you for enduring my scribblings.
Diversum contains 50 minutes of avant-garde metal that takes elements of the progressive, pagan, doom, and post-black metal styles into its sound to produce a compelling collection of tracks. Continue reading “In the Woods… – Diversum (Review)”