Wiegedood – De Doden Hebben Het Goed II (Review)

WiegedoodWiegedood are a black metal band from Belgium and this is their second album.

Wiegedood play black metal that’s as brutal is it is caustically atmospheric. There’s an acerbic hatred here that powers the songs forward, while at the same time showing an awareness of dynamics and Continue reading “Wiegedood – De Doden Hebben Het Goed II (Review)”

Obscure Devotion – Ubi Certa Pax Est (Review)

Obscure DevotionThis is the third album from Italian black metal band Obscure Devotion.

Obscure Devotion play sophisticated occult black metal with a mature, yet still fiery approach to extreme music. Continue reading “Obscure Devotion – Ubi Certa Pax Est (Review)”

Fides Inversa – Rite of Inverse Incarnation (Review)

Fides InversaFides Inversa are an Italian black metal band and this is their latest EP.

Featuring almost 20 minutes of black metal art, this EP is occult, Satanic black metal that’s littered with dark incantations and grim atmosphere. Continue reading “Fides Inversa – Rite of Inverse Incarnation (Review)”

Omnizide – Nekroregime (Review)

OmnizideThis is the second album from Swedish black metallers Omnizide.

As the follow up to 2014’s very pleasing debut album Death Metal Holocaust, Nekroregime continues the band’s blackened assault on the senses, added to and infected by some good old-fashioned death metal influences here and there. Continue reading “Omnizide – Nekroregime (Review)”

Arkona – Lunaris (Review)

ArkonaHailing from Poland, Arkona are a veteran black metal band and this is their sixth album.

Lunaris boasts 48 minutes of the kind of second wave black metal that would be right at home had it actually been released in the 90s, probably about the time that Arkona actually formed.

This is an album based on the classic black metal template of the time, forged through experience and the hands of people that have been doing this long enough to know how to write good black metal. And it is very, very good.

Blackened riffs of frosted hate seep Continue reading “Arkona – Lunaris (Review)”

Sov – Aklamerad Kalamitet (Review)

SovSov are a Black Metal band and this is their début album.

Sov play underground and honest Black Metal that might superficially seem like the standard fare at first glance, but a deeper scrutiny reveals a band with impressive creative power and a lot of raw talent.

This is an interesting release in that it manages to cultivate an air of both natural forest-dwelling and sophisticated blackened art. The music is suspended between the more naturalistic elements and the modern, progressive influences so that these six tracks are a pleasing blend of the early second-wave style and a more up-to-date interpretation of the genre, à la Watain and Deathspell Omega. Continue reading “Sov – Aklamerad Kalamitet (Review)”

Mephorash – 1557 – Rites of Nullification (Review)

MephorashThis is the third album by Swedish Black Metallers Mephorash.

Throughout the four extended tracks on this release Mephorash demonstrate their approach to elite, sophisticated Black Metal art. Theirs is Black Metal that conjures effective atmospheres without neglecting the rest of the music; the band have both heaviness and bite to them when they need it.

Managing to create music that’s both resplendent and uplifting as well as drenched in the occult and mysterious is no mean feat, but this album manages to juxtapose those two aspects of Black Metal quite nicely.

The band fuse the style’s core delivery with influences from Atmospheric/Post-Black Metal to create a contemporary spin on the genre that nonetheless has all of the essential elements in place to produce something both recognisable and special.

Featuring all kinds of additional enhancements, (keyboards, choral singing, guest vocalists), that work well within the music to add layers of depth to it, these songs are strong exemplars of the style of Black Metal that bands like Watain/Deathspell Omega pioneered so well.

There’s a vibrant unlife pulsing through these songs and they bristle with dark energy. It’s a joy to hear and the strong production allows them the space to do what they do unfettered.

Mephorash have created something really impressive with this album and I know I’ll be listening to it and trying to unravel its dark secrets for some time to come.

Blaze of Perdition – Near Death Revelations (Review)

Blaze of PerditionBlaze of Perdition are a Black Metal band from Poland. This is their third album.

The music on this album combines malevolent atmospheres with occult stylings to create a masterpiece of supreme Black Metal art. Blaze of Perdition manage to simultaneously remain true to Black Metal’s heart of darkness while being bold enough to fashion it to their steely will.

If you worship bands such as Deathspell Omega, Watain, Marduk and Funeral Mist then this is for you. Like the aforementioned bands, Blaze of Perdition take the listener on a journey through Blackened soundscapes and rarely-explored musical vistas.

It’s not that the band are wildly innovative, very few bands are; it’s more that they have a gift for twisting Black Metal into shapes that are perfectly recognisable yet still manage to impress and have their own warped personalities and identities. Bands like this manage to create their own dark worlds that you seem to fall into, emerging once again only when the journey is complete and the music has had its way with you.

Near Death Revelations succeeds in capturing the essence of what makes Black Metal so exciting and provocative. The band infuse this with their unique vision without losing the core identity of the style. The songs are compelling and engaging compositions that are diverse enough to retain interest without straying too far from the central stylistic themes.

Black Metal is an ever-mutating beast that throws up challenging new interpretations almost as much as it pumps out those who seek to recreate the core style of the genre. Bands like Blaze of Perdition are exceptional in that they not only create their art at the precise point where both avenues of exploration overlap, but they also use this point to diverge into their own full-fledged existence, and take up the mantle as leaders, not followers.

Near Death Revelations may have been born out of tragedy but its coming of age will be a thing of dark, resplendent beauty. As the phoenix arises, all shall cower from its terrible, glorious form.

Rejoice, for Blaze of Perdition has come.

Kaosophia – The Origin of Extinction (Review)

KaosophiaKaosophia are a Ukrainian Black Metal band and this is their début album.

Kaosophia play occult Black Metal with plenty of speed and bite that’s inspired by the likes of Gorgoroth, Watain and Marduk.

The riffs are Blackened and the melodies evil. On top of this though the band also use some tasty Thrash-inspired riffs on occasion. It’s not a huge part of their sound but it’s there.

The vocals are hateful croaking screams that may be the norm for the genre but are still performed well.

Kaosophia operate at all speeds and manage to create dark atmospheres regardless of whether they’re blasting out at full throttle or creeping around much slower. Either way, the Blackened melodies and writhing riffs give an impression of grandeur and horror.

This is a really enjoyable 46 minutes of music. This is the kind of Black Metal that it’s easy to like; a well-recorded and well-written slice of apocalyptic hymnals.

Check them out.