Wonderbox Metal End of Year List – Best Metal of 2020

Almost every year I think about how challenging it is to compile a definitive best of list, and how subjective it is, etc. Although that’s still true for this collecting of albums, this year, however, has been easier than most. 2020 has been heavy on the black metal for me. It’s been my most reviewed genre, in all its myriad permutations, and this is reflected in the below list.

For the longest of times the bands in positions 5 and 6 vied for top position, but then October and November happened. All of a sudden, unexpectedly, these two months unleashed a wealth of quality, and stole the top four positions in a rampant display of blackened supremacy.

I hope you enjoy the below recommendations of mine and find something new to obsess over. Let me know how you get on.

Let’s dig in… Continue reading

Void Paradigm – Earth’s Disease (Review)

Void ParadigmHailing from France, this is the second album from Black Metallers Void Paradigm.

Here’s a band who come from the Deathspell Omega school of Black Metal. They’ve learned from the masters and have now applied what they know to their own creation. This is music that’s hypnotic and warped.

Straight from the start the band show that this is abrasive, discordant Black Metal that sings to its own twisted hymn sheet set to music that shouldn’t rightly exist in our reality.

Corrupted riffs spread their strange melodies and nefarious, atypical sounds abound throughout these five songs. The creative flair of a flawed genius is clearly on display, clashing with the ingenuity of a madman.

Speaking of madmen, the singer would certainly seem to qualify. His emotive-but-jarring shouts will be an acquired taste for some I’m sure, but his performance level and passion of delivery cannot be doubted.

So, this is not your standard Black Metal affair and Void Paradigm should be applauded for this. Earth’s Disease features a treasure trove of interesting ideas and different sounds. The songwriting of the band is unusual but the result is very pleasing.

The aesthetics of the band are familiar even if the music is not. That these have been filtered through the prism of a very creative and aspiring band makes Earth’s Disease a release to be savoured and enjoyed at length.

The dark, swirling core of the music is augmented by Avant-Garde elements and there’s enough stimulating and inspired flourishes here to really impress. Progressive and Experimental elements also combine with these aforementioned aspects of their sound, firming up Void Paradigm’s mastery of their chosen dark art.

It’s an off-kilter and disturbing world that the band have carved for themselves across these 39 minutes, and one that cries out to be explored; just be wary on your travels.

For Black Metal that’s individual, charismatic, esoteric and wonderfully obtuse, look no further, for Void Paradigm are here.