Vale – Burden of Sight (Review)

Vale - Burden of SightVale are a black metal band from the US and this is their debut album.

Featuring current and ex-members of bands such as Abstracter, Lycus, Tombs, and Void Omnia, you know there’s a wealth of experience here before you even press play. Continue reading

Mantar – The Modern Art of Setting Ablaze (Review)

MantarThis is the third album from Mantar, a German black metal band.

I’m a latecomer to Mantar’s work, but I can tell you that if you’re looking for filthy, ugly blackened metallic punk that’s still catchy as fuck, then they stand head and shoulders above most of their peers. Continue reading

Tombs – All Empires Fall (Review)

TombsThis is the latest EP from US Post-Black Metal band Tombs.

Tombs continue to be one of the better and more interesting bands in Metal today. Here we have 34 minutes of new music, in equal parts heavy, atmospheric, grand and intimidating, as only Tombs do so well.

Blending Metal, Sludge, Black Metal and Hardcore into a potent brew, their last release Savage Gold is a firm favourite of mine and it seems that All Empires Fall is going the same way, albeit for a few different reasons; Tombs have progressed and changed in some ways since their last release, and the Black Metal component of their sound is much further to the front now, along with added keyboards.

The World Is Made of Fire is a short intro track that essentially sets the scene and sounds quite imposing and epic in scope.

Second song Obsidian showcases the band’s Black Metal side to great effect, with scything screeched vocals and cutting, frozen riffs. Blasting aggression, energetic atmosphere and blackened Hardcore thuggery combine with some deft melody to create a really enjoyable darkened exploration.

After this we get Last Days of Sunlight, which is quite different. Featuring some exotically alluring clean croons, the song stalks along like a hungry predator, all menace and lethal intent. It’s a highly atmospheric slow-burner that showcases a different side of Tombs and once again demonstrates their multi-talented skills.

Deceiver is up next. It’s heavy, memorable and has a catchy, punky, blackened sheen that would do Wolvhammer proud.

The final track is the longest and simply named V. Here we get a mixture of pretty much everything that has come before it, including cleans, blackened riffs, melodic sharpness and catchy delivery.

Like the mighty Rorcal, Tombs are at the top of their game when it comes to modern Post-Black Metal that seethes with power, recognises the past and combines non-blackened genres into its stylistic package.

An essential listen.