Bandcamp Misanthropy – Volume 22

The bottomless wellspring of Bandcamp is overflowing with great shit just waiting to be discovered. This series aims to shine light on the freshest emanations and foulest incantations from its darkest corners, a few artists at a time. Here’s the twenty-second installment for your vulgar delectation. Enjoy.

~

Artist: Crépuscule d’Hiver

Year: 2018

Cast your mind’s eye back to the 20th December last year. What were you doing? Yeah, I can’t remember either, but it was probably shit. What I do know happened that day and can safely say is not shit, however, is that Songes Hérétiques – the debut album of French outfit Crépuscule d’Hiver – was set loose upon the earth.

Songes Hérétiques consists of three lengthy tracks of great dark-ages inspired black metal by a man who goes by the name of Stuurm (and usually produces dungeon synth in his day job, Gargoylium). Crépuscule d’Hiver is his first attempt at black metal and the raw and melodic ’90s worship that sounds pretty much exactly how the cover art suggests it should – you really can’t tell this is his first effort, either. Equal parts grandiose and suffocating, his sound is exactly the right degree of raw as everything comes together into an ancient blend of intoxicating, crumbling evil and the nobility of a bygone era; it’s one of those nicely transportative projects that will have you totally immersed in the darkness of medieval times. The tracks are also bookended by a pair of very nice atmospheric synth pieces that clearly show his experience on the ivories, and might even have you questing to discover his work in Gargolylium.

A noteworthy debut that definitely calls to mind the days of yore. Not name-your-price but it is only .50c, with a second run of tapes (the first lot sold out in pre-order) on the way.

~

Artist: Azator

Year: 2019

Next up, some Argentinian black thrash with a faint Lovecraftian slant to it. This one dropped early January and was submitted to me months ago, but I’m a billion years behind as usual… so was it worth the wait? In short: fuck yes.

Horrors From Ancients Past may be billed as black thrash but a surprisingly satisfying old-school black metal heart pumps the blood of the elders through its veins. Even better, it’s a vibe that only gets stronger as the album progresses – by the time you arrive at final EP track Ritual of Blood this thing is almost straight up ’90s homage glory, right down to some great symphonic flourishes. There is, of course, also a healthy helping of thrash in the mix and tracks like Gods of Nagash show a masterful use of the energy this provides. The band consistently show great compositional nous throughout the work; every song is a gripping journey and evidences the fact that these men have been summoning the darkness for quite some time (the project formed in 2006, but was on hiatus from 2008-2015).

All good so far but I also mentioned a Lovecraftian feel, which manifests as a vague sense of creeping terror – imagine the thing on the cover just ouside your field of vision, omnipresent and adding an extra layer to an already compelling EP that you’d do well to check out. Plus, as a nice black cherry on top there are two bonus tracks too – demos from 2008 that both hold their own and also show how far the songwriting skills of this demonic horde have come. What are you waiting for? Name-your-price download, but there’s also a tape available through UK label Corpse Torture Records if you wanna get a little more physical with it.

~

Artist: Miserist

Year: 2019

A single, short track to serve as a taster of Miserist‘s upcoming full-length of crushing experimental blackened death, featuring guest throatwork by a certain Brendan Sloan of a little project called Convulsing. This track by Australian Ryan H may lean more towards the death-ier side of carnage but the bleakness in its heart is sure to captivate any self-respecting fan of the miserable and violent. Oh and Forge of The Amenta / Norse / Somnium Nox is beating the skins here too. Name-your-price, just like the also-excellent previous self titled demo, so check ’em both out. Quality.

~

Artist: Staurophagia

Year: 2019

Do you cowards even re-amp? Pfft – the entire works of this project are transmitted through a short wave radio and re-recorded to tape in order to make them sound more raw. But that’s ultimately inconsequential as what really matters is the music itself, and Staurophagia‘s Sacrifice Of The Wind also knocks it well out of the park in that department.

The Italian one-man project’s debut album Abysses Above Us was released in November 2018 (and if you haven’t heard it, please do), but the material on Sacrifice Of The Wind is much older than that. Forged of main man Staurophagus‘ lost demo tracks going as far back as 2015, this collection is coherent enough to be considered an album in its own right. Scathing raw black meets cosmic ambience; droning synth and static gloom to wash over your lifeless form as it drifts away into the endless void… the thing that really sells Staurophagia to me however, is the melodicism of it all. Oozing through the viscid dread is a deep sense of sonorous, almost alien melody, aided by the use of microtonal guitarwork on a couple of the tracks (played by Katsunosuke Tanaka).

This is one of those great new projects that deserves more attention, so grab a copy of this bleakness at name-your-price download on Bandcamp or on cassette from great underground US tape label Realm and Ritual – pick that up here.

~

Artist: Raat

Year: 2019

Calming ambient sounds and bird calls, acoustic guitar melodies that reach in and soothe your heart… yep, it’s the opening moments of Once And True, the latest release from Indian post-black alchemist Raat.

I say alchemist because the man behind it is Sushant Rawat, known for creating a wonderful blend of kaleidoscopic influences with his other projects Nightgrave, Kouros and probably another one or two that is slipping my mind right now. Released in January there’s a yearning beauty to these songs, offset by the faint tortured howls and gruff rasps of his vocals. The EP gets darker as it moves down its weathered paths and runs a gamut of emotions, sorrow, hope, painful reminiscence… it touches you like a lover’s caress, and then leaves you with only the dull ache of memory.

Many of you will probably listen to this and whinge that it isn’t black metal, but wipe the corpse paint off your balls for a minute and listen: this is simply gorgeous. Available for one measly dollar from Bandcamp, something else that makes me especially chuffed is that this is also out on cassette – a label has finally noticed this guy. Grab one from the already mentioned Realm and Ritual, both label and artist deserve your patronage. Ace.

~

Artist: In Autumnus

Year: 2019

Care for a little atmospheric one man black/gaze from Scotland? Please, try a little In Autumnus.

I don’t know anything about the man behind this but I do know that Madison County is his second full-length album; and for a developing project it does quite an admirable job. Throughout the eight tracks on offer the genre-staple airy, ephemeral guitars that echo throughout are the highlight, spectral tremolo lines pulsing in and out as the music ebbs and flows. The vocals are the sound of someone tearing their insides out in desperation and there’s enough variety to hold your attention with ease – when he turns to flat out depressive-mode such as the first half of the gorgeous Ruralvida, the results are crushing.

It’s unpolished, but it has great heart; if you’re in the mood for some introspection and soul-searching this will hit the spot nicely – just like a warm cup of tea on a cold and lonely evening. Name-your-price. Check it out.

~

Artist: Hastio

Year: 2019

A quick few words about a quick release: here to fuck you up is some nasty Argentinian black with a thrilling punk fire to it. The tracks on Hastio‘s eponymous third release are all short (the longest is the comparatively “epic” two-minute closer Los Ojos Eternos) and will spit in your face and freeze you to death in equal measure; this gets in and out with a flurry of quick (albeit very, very nicely melodic) punches to the face and leaves you with black eyes that won’t fade for weeks. Talk about a lasting impression.

Name-your-price download, go get you some. There was also an ultra-limited sold out tape version but I’m sworn to secrecy about any further information on that, if you know, you know… or you may have Forgotten over the Centuries. Anyone still super keen for one, keep an eye on the Hastio Facebook page and you might be able to score an artist copy in the near future.

~

Artist: Mäleficentt

Year: 2019

Another gem from Y.E, the mysterious entity behind Yohualli, Winterreise and all the Night Of The Palemoon bands. This man has ancient blood in his veins and it shines through in his work – Mäleficentt‘s Night Of The Crimson Stars is a glorious ode to times of old and the core of darkness at the heart of all black metal. Relentless in its crepuscular melancholia, bewitching in every sense… and it all culmanates in a great cover of Transylvania by French legends Mütiilation. Top stuff. Name-your-price.

~

Artist: A Vintage Death

Year: 2018

This little inbox submission was actually released late last year, but I missed it and you might have too – so here’s Acrid Death Fragrance, the debut demo EP from Italy’s solo blackened death/doom entity A Vintage Death. A gentleman named Carmine is at the helm here and what he creates is surprisingly quite good, a solid blend of the aforementioned genres as seen through the veil of the afterlife. Death (as in the end of life, not death metal) reigns supreme here and casts a pallor over everything, melodies indeed toll like a death knell as tracks roll inexorably forward through moroseness and misery, a crushing emotional weight and great classic doom-influenced guitar tone pressing on your chest and burying you beneath the dirt.

It’s apparently inspired by and dedicated to a dear friend of the artist who sadly committed suicide; in my opinion it’s a fitting tribute. Grab this at name-your-price.

~

Artist: Burden of Ymir

Year: 2019

Canadian blackened folk metal project Burden of Ymir is a prolific one; this little mini-review was sent in by reader Steve Glover a while back and since then there have been not one, but two further Burden of Ymir releases. All three are inspired by old Norse cosmology and folklore, and Steve says about the one man project’s debut album Wanderer Borne on a Northern Wind: Seed of Yggdrasil –

“Wanderer Borne on a Northern Wind by Burden of Ymir is an album with a bit of an identity crisis. It has the blastbeats of black metal. It has elements of folk metal. Nothing is done badly, but it’s just a mish-mash. If they can work out what they’re trying to do on their next album they could be a force to be reckoned with in the scene.”

Did he work out what to do on the next album? Well, they all sound pretty good to me: wonderfully melodic, often rockin’ as hell and with an authentic feel many projects would envy, but Wanderer Borne… is definitely the blackest of the bunch. Check them all out at name-your-price download.

~

Artist: Wyrmwoods

Year: 2019

And to finish us off on the traditional strange note: dazzling one man project Wyrmwoods.

The debut album of the Finnish project Earth Made Flesh was lowkey one of my favourites of last year, so I’m quietly pleased as all shit to see the follow up has already arrived; Spirit & Teeth dropped a couple of months ago and has also been picked up by the good people at Inverse Records for a proper CD release. Anyway, the music: as with the debut, Spirit & Teeth is a truly inventive beast and arguably swerves fairly close to the very definition of avant-garde; just listen to opener ‘The Sun Will Radiate Its Light Through The Scenes Of Horror’, two minutes of black/lounge/jazz that immediately lets you know this is not a normal album. It then proceeds to travel through a progressive myriad of alternately transcendent/mind-altering scenarios and expansive textures, before landing at the titular final track – ‘Spirit & Teeth’, a monolithic 31+ minute cosmic assault that frequently dissolves into outright chaos.

I should give this a bigger write up, but all I can say in this short allocation of space is: listen to it. Name-your-price download, so you can’t go wrong… more people need to be getting around this project, it really is something else. Hails.

~

Submissions for possible inclusion in future Volumes are welcome.

Like Black Metal Daily on Facebook for more kvlt sounds and tonal blasphemy.

Email: blackmetaldaily@outlook.com

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Bandcamp Misanthropy – Volume 21

The bottomless wellspring of Bandcamp is overflowing with great shit just waiting to be discovered. This series aims to shine light on the freshest emanations and foulest incantations from its darkest corners, a few artists at a time. Here’s the twenty-first installment for your vulgar delectation. Enjoy.

~

Artist: Night Crowned

Year: 2018

Feel like kicking off with some Swedish black death? Well we are, so fuck you if you don’t and listen anyway – this is a great little EP.

Humanity Will Echo Out serves as the first stirrings of life from Night Crowned, an unholy union betwixt members of The Crown, Dark Funeral (session), Nightrage and Cipher System and will scratch any itch you could ever have for that blistering, heavy-yet-melodic Swedish sound. Imagine all the old masters given a modern workover and a polished production and you’re swinging in the right ballpark; they’ve done exceptionally well here and I’ll be keeping an eye on them for more. CD available through Black Lion Records or you can snap it up for name-your-price download.

~

Artist: LORE

Year: 2018

Next up, the sophomore effort from impious US triumvirate LORE (an acronym for “Litany Of Ruinous Entities”). I’m a little late to the party on this one, I finally checked it out when it was recommended by my good man Clayton of Indy Metal Vault on his excellent end of year list, and to say I’m a little miffed at myself for dropping the ball so hard would be an understatement.

Gateways: Between The Scales Of Destitution and Ascension is a massive album. And I mean literally massive; it’s over an hour long, so you have to invest some of yourself in it. Luckily, it’s worth it. I could wax lyrical about the entire album and its tormented, grim delights but in the interests of keeping the word count low I’ll just say: Sonder. If you only listen to one track on this whole thing, at least let it be Sonder. Female spoken word leads into the kind of intrinsically superb raw black metal that will make you stop dead in your tracks and listen; it’s an unbelievably good song, haunting, harrowing and captivating in equal measure. And then yeah, do yourself a favour and listen to the rest of it, of course. Name-your-price download, tapes through Red River Family Records, CD coming soon through Narcoleptica Productions… now excuse me, I’m off to listen to their previous album.

~

Artist: My Deathbed

Year: 2018

“Okay, so you came here voluntarily?”

“Mmhmm. So I could stop from killing myself.”

“…and what was going on that you felt like killing yourself?”

“It was three o’clock in the morning, I couldn’t sleep, all of the same thoughts kept racing through my mind over and over and over again, I just wanted them to stop. Period. And I thought well if I kill myself I’ll stop thinking.”

And thus is the pain of insomnia. An artist we’ve covered a few times on the reeking pages of BMD, Greece’s Void returns with another mesmerising slab of “monotonous black metal” (as he calls it) rawness from his compelling project My Deathbed. This is a man who suffers, as evidenced by his tortured and droning creations, all summoned in the early hours of the morning when everyone else is in peaceful slumber. October 2018 EP The Thin Line Between Sanity and Insanity is as great as ever, and he’s since released another album on January 1st too – a 48 minute single track (!) entitled Mirrors Of Depression, recorded “under the influence of alcohol and insomnia”. Check this project, for real. He’s a great guy that deserves your support. All releases at name-your-price.

~

Artist: Wardra

Year: 2018

This Russian atmospheric four-piece formed back in 2016 and have just released their second EP, Ancestor Of The World. It’s only two tracks long but they do a lot with what they present; both compositions are lengthy structures that wind and flex, straining to break free and destroy us all as vocalist K bellows and proselytizes with conviction. The Sergey “Lazar” production on this is also quite noteworthy as both tracks possess a thunderous sound with clarity, resonance and power which gives their cataclysmic material every chance to shine. My pick of the two is the title track, but they’re both great. Cassette available through Slowsnowrecords or grab yourself one of those sweet name-your-price downloads.

~

Artist: Shibboleth

Year: 2018

Okay yeah this dropped in March last year, but I just got around to listening to it and it’s so good I had to include it: British Columbian trio Shibboleth have returned to the fold after a three year silence with a fantastic new album of their noise-adorned black metal, Kairoscuro.

What makes this so special? Press play – while being disturbing and menacing as hell, this shit also rocks like a bastard and fucking grooves. This is the best sound they’ve had with the best collection of songs; here’s hoping we don’t have to wait another few years for another one. I slept on this one for far too long, don’t do the same. Name-your-price download. Nod your head.

~

Artist: Amuleto De Calamidades

Year: 2018

A new atmospheric project featuring Rafn of Hermóðr and Gris from Över? Why certainly, I’ll check that out, sincerest thanks. Their debut album The Homeless, They Exist By Your God is inspired by a painting by Thomas Kennington, ‘Homeless’ (1890). For some reason I tend to enjoy black metal that takes inspiration from the arts, and this proves to be no exception as they express their interpretations of Kennington‘s powerful work.

Rafn‘s compositions are as on-point and affecting as ever, although I’ve seen a couple of people slamming on the vocals – I for one dig them, they convey the deep sadness associated with the subject matter with appropriate gravitas. It’s thematically heavy stuff (just look at the depiction of mother and sick child, tell me that doesn’t rend your heart), and the two men create a perfect expression of it, taking particular aim at the Church for doing nothing to help the situation.

Should you listen to it? Yes. It isn’t up for name-your-price, but it is only one dollar. I’m sure you can spare some change.

~

Artist: Ermengrond

Year: 2019

Interesting Dutch atmospheric/post black trance with a raw vibe and driving, droning, almost industrialised pulse to a large portion of it. Men Amongst Wolves is the second release from this one man project and there’s some great things going on here; the use of tension and authentic, earthy melodies makes for a compelling listen – especially when it heads into the darkness of tracks like Death Freeze Every Soul, with its multiple layers of discombobulating mania and rage. It’s the second Ermengrond release, his first album is apparently slightly lighter in tone (although admittedly I havent heard it yet, I’ll be checking it out shortly) and both are available at name-your-price download from his Bandcamp. Oh and he’s also on the hunt for a label, so interested parties… hit him up.

~

Artist: Charnel Altar

Year: 2019

Cavernous black death seething upwards from the broiling hell pits of Adelaide, Australia. Three-piece Charnal Altar have only recently crawled out of the abyss and this is a mighty strong opening statement; the guitar tone sounds like it’s disintegrating, the vocals have been scraped off the interior walls of a crematorium… in general this is just one very fucking nasty demo, and I can’t get enough of it. Pick it up now at name-your-price. Unsettling shit.

~

Artist: Strick

Year: 2018

In the mood for some violence? Who isn’t, right? Strick‘s Selektion is exactly what you need. With an intensity and boiling rage that will sandblast your face off, only one track of the German’s crusty blackened grind carnage makes it past the two minute mark, which is probably a good thing as I’m doubtful the human body is designed to withstand such punishment. Nicely done stuff, for fans of Ancst and the like (who I believe they toured with a couple of years back).

Dropped in September, was made name-your-price on Christmas day. Grab it now. Tapes also coming soon through Coxinha Records.

~

Artist: Sardonic Wrath

Year: 2018

And to aaaalmost take us out, an avant-garde raw black/death concept album about the life and death of a black hole. Cosmic Tenebrism is the prolific Sadistic Blasphemer‘s thirty fourth (yes, you read that correctly) release under the Sardonic Wrath moniker.

Straight up: this is raw as hell, convoluted and definitely will not be for everyone, but there is a lot to like for those who want to brave the journey. Musically, his main strength lies in his compositional adventurousness; while occasionally the album does come off a bit less holistically coherent than I’d like, he does have some truly excellent ideas and when a track like my personal favourite Quantum Æternus (10^66+ Years Of Darkness Existence) finally ends up at its primal peak, it’s a belter. The throatwork is solid and ranges from deadpan disembodied spoken word to snarls and guttural roars, while delving deeper into the neat science based lyrics can also reap reward.

Will you dig it? Only one way to find out. Self released on CD, or name-your-price download.

~

Artist: Morrowdim

Year: 2019

And finally… it’s not often Dungeon Synth appears on these pages, but this closing piece is in small tribute and great sorrow for the wonderful artist Maria Rice, who tragically opted for a permanent solution this past weekend. She leaves behind many that care for her and her beautiful Morrowdim demo album Wandering Songs, released mere weeks ago.

BMD extends sincerest sympathies to her family and all who knew her. Our scene is home to many troubled souls (as even evidenced earlier in this article), so remember – if any of you are struggling, reach out. To anyone. And remember to always check on those you love.

Vale Maria.

~

Submissions for possible inclusion in future Volumes are welcome.

Like Black Metal Daily on Facebook for more kvlt sounds and tonal blasphemy.

Email: blackmetaldaily@outlook.com

Bandcamp Misanthropy – Volume 20

The bottomless wellspring of Bandcamp is overflowing with great shit just waiting to be discovered. This series aims to shine light on the freshest emanations and foulest incantations from its darkest corners, a few artists at a time. Here’s the twentieth installment for your vulgar delectation. Enjoy.

~

Artist: Striborg

Year: 2018

To kick things off, some good news – the Tasmanian demon has returned to black metal. Well, briefly and not entirely to his enjoyment, but anyway: new EP Introverted Transparency is his side of a forthcoming three-way split with Drakonhail and Bosc Hosc, and sees Sin Nanna take a few steps back from the warped shores of his self-created genre ‘blackwave’ (which is better than most people say it is, give it a shot) to altogether more familiar fields.

A two-track offering, opening composition Transparency In An Inverted World is a lengthy journey through varying shades of raw black metal/gaze/wave and even a little goth rock, while closer The Blue Ghost is an almost more traditional Striborg-esque number (but not quite). Both are fantastic; I’ve been a fan of this project for a long time and don’t mind the direction Sin Nanna has forged his path in lately at all, but in my possibly-nostalgia-tainted opinion this could be the strongest material he has released in a while and I’d love to hear more of this hybrid terror. Which is admittedly unlikely considering his less-than-pleasant feelings towards creating black metal, but hey – never say never.

Disconcerting, dysphoric and vaguely lysergic; grab yourself a copy of this great EP at name-your-price download and dive in. After all, “what really is reality?

~

Artist: Sørgelig

Year: 2018

If you missed Apostate, the debut full-length of old school Greek wraiths Sørgelig when it dropped back in April, don’t be too hard on yourself. I won’t judge you for it. The album sadly flew under far too many radars and was deserving of a heap more attention than it ended up receiving. However, the good news you can still correct this oversight, and at a perfectly opportune time too – their next album Devoted To Nothingness is being unleashed on 20th January through Iron Bonehead Productions and Les Fleurs Du Mal Productions. See? Great timing.

They’re pretty much the whole package: perfect sound, incredible songs. You could swear you’ve been transported back in time to the best part of the ’90s, and not in a derivative way – everything clicks in magical fashion and sounds fresh as the scent of burning church embers on a brisk winter morning. Pick any track at random and it’ll prick up your ears – Denying Everything is magnificent, soaring raw majesty before Worthless And Dead whips out the sort of black doom-ish riffs that’ll hit you like a revelation, leaving you wondering just why the hell you’ve never listened to these guys before. They’re all great.

So, before the next record drops, get on a CD through Perkun Records, a tape through Goatlordth Records and/or a name-your-price download from their Bandcamp – if you fuck up and miss them this time around, you’ve nobody to blame but yourself. And yes, I will judge you.

(EDIT: Just realised the price is now €2. Buy it anyway.)

~

Artist: EmptyLife

Year: 2018

“This is a depressive, suicidal black metal project, with influences from the post punk and goth scenes. Through the lovely melodies I try to cheer up my depression.”

So says main man Dimitris about his project EmptyLife, which recently released its debut album Dark As A Starless Night. The project is not a one man band however, he has help creating this woebegone art from three gentlemen by the names of Sörjande, Apathy L, and SM. For a debut album they’ve done some solid work, the tracks at times have great dynamics while others centre around cyclic repetitions and mild evolutions of frankly quite catchy riffs – you can immediately check the great mid-paced repeater in opener Absence Of Life for proof of this.

There’s a nice little acoustic interlude towards the middle of the album, but one of my favourite moments is The Coward and the Trail beginning with some heart-wrenching dialogue from the 2002 romantic drama film A Walk To Remember, wherein one of the characters tells her boyfriend she’s dying from cancer and is angry at God. The inclusion of that clip kind of sums up the release; tragic, depressing as hell but with the faintest touch of naievety and innocence.

Not bad at all for a first full-length. You will enjoy being miserable to this. Name-your-price download, CD also available through Share Your Pain Records.

~

Artist: Kommodus

Year: 2018

Alright, this is definitely shaping up to be one of my favourite raw Australian projects. Lord Lepidus Plague returned back in October with the third Kommodus demo From The Ashes Of Empire and it (like his previous two) utterly fucking slaughters.

If you haven’t discovered this project yet then boy oh boy are you are in for a god-damned treat. A wonderful intro with peaceful melodies and ambient horse sounds give barely a hint of what is to come… then the stirring, glorious filth assails your senses. Kommodus creates something primal, something designed to reach down inside and grip you tight as you scream with a voice you didn’t know you had. Don’t believe me? Sit through this demo from beginning to end. What follows that intro are seven of the most ripping tracks to appear on any demo this year, and I’ll fight you on that.

I’m not going to go through every track (or delightfully surprising and effective interlude) here, that’s a journey you need to take alone. With disgusting production, riffs that could make the dead rise up and bang their heads plus tracks that are a veritable call to arms for the wolf in man – this project really, truly is something else and is borderline mandatory listening if you like the rawer side of black. Oh and the penultimate track is a cover of Emperor‘s Lord Of The Storms. Fucking excellent. Name-your-price. Buy or die.

~

Artist: Orphanofkos

Year: 2018

Brutal, primal, savage black death sorcery from the depths below. Canadian occultists Orphanofkos (Bloodborne, anyone?) are here to flay the skin from your face in the name of the old gods with debut demo Arcane Worship, six tracks of pure arcane carnage. I don’t know much about these guys but if you’re a fan of any of that sweet, sweet bestial death you’ll find a lot to like here; with some great, dissonant moments and juuuust enough blackness to warrant inclusion in this column, their first offering shows plenty of promise (and has an ace snare sound too).

So gaze into the abyss, grab this at name-your-price-download, and as the band say themselves: “SACRIFICE YOUR MORTAL COIL TO THE CYCLOPTIC AMORPHOUS GODS AND BE ONE WITH THE MASS OF BEING.”

Hails.

~

Artist: Omgeving

Year: 2018

Here’s one I originally wanted to write a full review of but I’m running out of time to get everything done before the end of the year, so alerting you to its presence here will have to do.

Why did I want to write a full review of it, you may ask? Well, here’s an extract from the promo blurb:

Omgeving is an experimental musical project from Dutch musician Franck Johanson (Distillator) where the listener is meant to interpret the sound as auditory landscapes, every texture part of a broader perception that has been created. The first Omgeving album crosses the boundaries of black metal, space rock, ambient, and doom. It is an entirely instrumental work based on conjuring imagery through soundscapes, through tones and frequencies that transport you through inner and outer space.”

…all of which is utterly spot on. Omgeving means “surroundings” in Dutch, and debut album Wijde Wijdte really does force you to look at your musical surroundings as each track places you in a different scenario – that list of genres in the PR extract even sells the record short, from post-punk to all sorts this album is a veritable cornucopia of tones that expertly blend into captivating paintings you can lose yourself in with ease. Far from being a mess, it’s also a remarkably coherent journey to take; everything tied together by an otherworldly bleakness as though you’re viewing each of the creations through the same opaque and slightly distorted lens.

Released both digitally at name your-price and physically in the manifested form of a beautiful digital CD mere days ago through the great Hypnotic Dirge Records, head over there and feast your ears on this wonderful aural tapestry post-haste. Oh and to help with the immersion (if you’re somehow struggling for some reason) there’s a great video clip for the track VI – Eenzaamheid In Exstase that you can zone out to here.

~

Artist: Koldyssey

Year: 2018

Yet another solo project of the prolific Australian multi-instrumentalist Baelathvan (also of Byrhtnoth, Altar Defecation, Farrore and Ascensions Fall), come hither if you dare, and enter the frozen darkness of Koldyssey.

Debut album Under The Moonlight Rising is atmospheric black neatly enclosed in a prism of spacey, eerie synthwork. I describe it thusly because the rhythm guitars really are often just tucked away in the background while the keys have all the spotlight and act as the lead; this could all go horribly wrong if it wasn’t for the fact that the synths are, thankfully, very well played. Capable of drawing you in and becoming almost transcendent, they conjure images of otherworldly nightscapes and mist-swathed pathways through forests and mountains unknown. The title track is particularly immersive due to this; throughout the album I find the sections where he switches almost wholly into dungeon-synth mode to be the most effective.

It ain’t perfect, but it is an entrancing listen and you’d do worse than to snap yourself up a copy at name-your-price download.

~

Artist: Supplices

Year: 2018

Released back in June, French six-piece(!) Supplices‘ eponymous debut demo landed in my inbox quitea while back. Took me a minute to get to it, but here we are – and it’s an intriguing one.

Opening track La Danse des Martyrs has a simplistic but great raw neofolk vibe that I’d easily listen to an entire album of (I’m serious), before Âmie Impie kicks in to some earnest, raw-ish black with folky, dramatic and melodic blood pumping strong through its veins. I say this is intriguing because I like everything about it except for one thing- the tracks are all solid as hell and they sure know how to play and write a tune, but it does sound like a demo. They recorded and produced it themselves and it isn’t bad by any means, I just believe their compositions would benefit immensely from a fuller/more vivid production so it will be interesting to see where they take things for their next recording. Which, in excellent news, is dropping early 2019 – their first EP, Alogie Funebré. So get off your ass and check this out at name-your-price download in preparation. One to watch.

~

Artist: Tractatus

Year: 2018

Supreme, serpentine kinetic dissonance from Greece’s Tractatus. Somewhat astonishingly this four piece (featuring members of Diatrekhon Aster, Nekra, Overcliff, Tartarus Depth and Diablery) only materialised into mystic existence in the year of 2018. Yes, this year; the fact that they have been able to assemble a first offering this fucking good is frankly ridiculous. Or, given the pedigree of their members and the already excellent bands they hail from, I guess it isn’t – their debut album Ὀφιολατρεία certainly pulls some influence from all the members other projects but it becomes it’s own glorious beast.

The production is perfect, retaining just enough murk but with a touch of class as the compositions emanate frantic despondency and desperate, melodic sorrows – not quite as brawny as some of their countrymen, but not entirely without that extra sinewy feel. Fantastic rasped vocals swirl upwards through the mix like acrid smoke from a sulphurous brazier. The dramatic tension conjured is subtly miraculous, skittering drums and a well-placed ritualistic ambient piece heightening the sensation whilst vague symphonic undertones run throughout the peaks and troughs of the album.

This really is a superb debut, and there’s nothing more I should say than you need to hear this thing. Download now – name-your-price.

~

Artist: Heresiarch

Year: 2017

This release is really just jammed in here as a public service announcement. If you haven’t yet been burned by the consecrating fire of NZ war machine Heresiarch, now’s your fucking chance – to celebrate ten years of their existence on this pitiful planet they’ve set their entire discography to name-your-price download for the month of December. Blackened death pulverisation of the utmost quality, everything these men do is lethal in the extreme and that includes the rabid, relentless carnage of their apocalyptic-themed 2017 album Death Ordinance, which is worth any price of admission alone.

Remember, for December only… you know what do.

~

Artist: Kyrkogård

Year: 2018

I seem to be stumbling across a shitload of black or blackened bands drawing strong inspiration from old doom masters lately, and with their debut demo Empathie Fatale the duo of Gabrihell Blasphodomy and Cheyenne Sparrow have proven emphatically that their project Kyrkogård (“Graveyard”) is one of the most intriguing.

And by “proven emphatically”, I mean “screamed from the rooftops”. With early Katatonia noted as the main influence but by no stretch the only one, this thing is a beautiful, blackened, compositional triumph; captivating layered guitars intricately duel under male and female vocals as the production that tastefully sits just on the right side of murky (mixed and mastered by Bradley Tiffin of Haunter, no less) both calls to mind the glorious scent of early ’90s doom and almost demands of you to give it every iota of your attention. Which is great, because according to the band, the demo’s lengthy single track is “twenty minutes of ritualistic mystical perversion — to be listened with full attention and sincere devotion, exclusively.”

Majestic and expansive yet infinitely affecting at the smallest personal level as well, to say the sheer magnetism of this demo bodes well for the future would be a gargantuan understatement. It’s up at name-your-price download, so there’s no excuse: enter the tomb of insomnia through gateways of bereavement, and experience the sorrow.

~

Artist: Ancient Morass

Year: 2018

And because a Bandcamp Misanthropy article is barely complete without a raw black offering from Kaffaljidhma/Himelvaruwe/etcetera’s main man T, here he shows his more visceral side with a quick three tracks on the debut Ancient Morass demo Bog Barrow.

It may be the project’s debut demo, but it has already taken part in two great split tapes over the last couple of years (with Vestibulum Vacüii and Rosicrucianism) so it’s nice to finally hear some stand alone material. Whilst from the droning wash of the guitars and the production in general you can indeed tell that it’s unmistakably T‘s work; where say, Kaffaljidhma may aim for the stars, this stays rooted in flame and earth. Or the bog, perhaps. This dropped back in August but it’s another great release from the prolific Dutch maestro… Name-your-price download. Do it.

~

Artist: Pierre Noir

Year: 2018

And finally, to finish off on a strange note as usual with one you’ll either love or hate: Some black techno from anonymous one man project Pierre Noir. If you haven’t already run screaming to the mountains of north at the idea of that, you may be pleasantly surprised as the vibe on Liliths Arrival And The Beginning Of The Dance is quite surreal in atmosphere and deeply immersive. Which is my pick of the three tracks on offer (go and listen directly to that one first if you know what’s good for you), but the entire release is uniquely rapturous. As the tag line says –

“The Sabbat and the Rave come together to create a unique celebration.”

And if that isn’t enough for you, his latest release Mau Mau Blues is another adventurous effort: A trancey chain-gang stomper of heavy experimental electronic black metal blues against colonialism. Yes, you read that correctly. An interesting project, both releases are available digitally and physically through Spanish label Grabaciones Autobombo so grab a super limited DIY tape while you can or pick up a name-your-price download. Techno hails.

~

Submissions for possible inclusion in future Volumes are welcome.

Like Black Metal Daily on Facebook for more kvlt sounds and tonal blasphemy.

Email: blackmetaldaily@outlook.com

Bandcamp Misanthropy – Volume 19

The bottomless wellspring of Bandcamp is overflowing with great shit just waiting to be discovered. This series aims to shine light on the freshest emanations and foulest incantations from its darkest corners, a few artists at a time. Here’s the nineteenth installment for your vulgar delectation. Enjoy.

~

Artist: Convulsing

Year: 2018

Boy, are we starting off with a fucking monstrous bang this time around. If you’re unaware as yet of the sheer maelstrom created by bleak Australian one man black/death/everything carnage lord Convulsing, drop what you’re doing and get to know: 2016’s ‘Errata was absolute sonic obliteration, his 2017 split with Siberian Hellsounds was immensity personified and now with ‘Grievous‘… Holy shit.

As I type this I haven’t spent nearly enough time with it as it only dropped a few days ago, yet I’m already more than comfortable making the call that it’ll occupy a high spot on a ridiculous amount of end of year lists. Yeah, it’s crushing. It’s dissonant. It’s disgusting. It’s utterly monolithic. But most of all, it feels like the most personal thing he’s ever released.

This time around, more than ever, you can hear main man Brendan splitting himself open and letting all the black bile pour out and splatter on the barren earth at his feet. He speaks of loss, despair, rage and hopelessness while the music matches his every emotion; one minute seething and boiling, the next driving you into the dirt with almost incomprehensible weight (there are some seriously “ugh” moments here, christ) then even ebbing into the kind of introspective, breathtaking stillness where the only thing that disturbs the grey waters is your body as it slips beneath them to drown in the cold, black depths. That killer Jef Whitehead cover art really is a perfect visualisation of the sounds contained within.

Anyway if I don’t shut up this entire article will be about this album, so just head over to his Bandcamp, throw him some hails and grab this at name-your-price, would you? Cheers.

Oh, and just to throw you one final curveball: the final track is a superb Porcupine Tree cover too.

~

Artist: Himelvaruwe

Year: 2018

Finally, after four top-notch EP’s/demos, Dutch mastermind T (of Kaffaljidhma and more) drops the debut full-length of his experimental project Himelvaruwe with ‘Hemelpoort‘. Was it worth the wait? You bet. The fully realised evolution of his transcendent, synth-tinted, droning hypnosis; I’ve been listening to this since it arrived at the death of July and it only gets better each time. Gorgeous unseen details ascend through the washed-out black static haze with every spin (another where the cover art is a stunningly accurate depiction of the album itself) and as is the case with much of his work, total immersion yields best results.

There’s not too much out there that sounds or feels like this and it won’t be for everyone, but for those who do already connect with his unique mystical emanations or want to devote the necessary time (read: those who are not scared of progression), it borders on sheer bliss and continues to push raw black metal into barely explored and much needed territory. Name-your-price download. Support.

~

Artist: Sanguinary Trance

Year: 2018

Blood spurts toward the ceiling, spattering the severed arm hanging precariously from the chandelier. Maniacal howls of laughter fill the hall as the bacchanalian slaughter reaches feverish levels… Next up, the debut three track EP of demonic revelry from Austrian newcomers Sanguinary Trance.

Showing more promise in their first three tracks than many established acts can manage across several releases, ‘Wine, Song and Sacrifice’ imbues their raw-ish black assault with equal doses dissonant horror, Dionysian madness, vampiric melodrama and rhythmic tribal intoxication. The overall effect is a menacing and overwhelmingly sensual high that can be quite dizzying if it hits you just right; I really don’t know much about this band at all but I do know their full-length will be one to look out for… if they ever release one, that is. In the meantime, sink your teeth into this at name-your-price download (or grab a tape from Caligari Records here) and drink deeply. A great first impression.

~

Artist: Euthanized

Year: 2018

Keeping it varied, a quick hit of some raw black crust from Canada. Euthanized spat out their second EP/demo back in March and if you’re a fan of the punkier, newer Darkthrone or maybe stuff like Hellhammer then step right this way, sir; ‘Riches Among Refuse‘ has what you need. Four tracks and an intro of grim, filthy fun with great riffs and garage intensity… What’s not to like? Get your sweaty palms on a name-your-price download now. Top work.

~

Artist: Kommodus

Year: 2018

I originally wrote about this in the first edition of ‘The Antipodean Flame‘ column over at Indy Metal Vault, but I’m sharing it here too because it’s just that great:

One Thousand Years of the Wolf‘ is the sophomore demo from Australian one-man act Kommodus. Does ancient Roman themed pestilential black power imbued with a thrilling primal immediacy, liberally scattered with glorious headbanging moments and forays into lo-fi neofolk with tranquil ambient bird noises sound good? This is utterly gripping stuff that main man The Infernal Emperor – Lepidus Plague says is intended to “…ignite a flame deep within, a flame that harkens back to the old world, to establish a connection with your ancestors. To have you feel inspired by the blood in your veins, the blood of those who have conquered with strength and honour, those who have contested the very same conquerors with bravery and resilience, those who have lived and fought and died during a time when our species was true to itself.”

Hails to the ancient Roman Empire I guess. Incredible stuff for connoisseurs of the rawer delicacies that black metal can cough up; available for name-your-price download with tape and vinyl through Goatowarex.

~

Artist: Euclidean

Year: 2017

Progressive, sludgy black doom released way back in December. Yes, this one fell into my lap a long time ago and I’m only just getting to it; I hate it when great things get lost or forgotten about in the seething miasma of the BMD inbox. This is compelling stuff that should have been covered much earlier.

Anyway, a little longer may actually not have even mattered too much to these men as the Swiss quintet took all the time they needed to deliver their debut full-length ‘Quod Erat Faciendum‘. Their last demo was released back in 2012, but the long break has only ensured they have delivered an extraordinary album of the utmost quality. Sporting a couple of members of Borgne‘s live band their sound is vaguely reminiscent of Schammasch and the like but much more their own thing, as emotionally affecting blackened post-metal/rock, sludgey doom and a few other tasty surprises swirl together with mathematically charged themes to create a cerebral experience that aims to transcend far more than destroy.

Nice tones, powerful vocals and unhurried, considered songwriting render this quite refreshing or even beautiful to listen to (‘Obstinatio‘ is a personal fave) and instil a feeling akin to slow-burning lava passing through your being, enflaming both mind and body. Seriously, give this a spin as it deserves far more attention than it’s been getting. Name-your-price download; now I just hope we don’t have to wait five years for another one.

~

Artist: Heift

Year: 2018

“While you wait for new music from Auðn to surface, expose yourselves to Heift, a new project featuring members of Auðn and Lucy In Blue!”

And with that brief message, a new Icelandic black metal project arrived. Possessing a killer sound with fantastic drums in particular (that snare does it for me, ugh) debut EP ‘Gyðingurinn Gangandi‘ launches Heift as an interesting prospect; rather than the usual psychedelic dissonant stylings often coming from their countrymen the three short songs on offer have an almost post-hardcore feel to them. But don’t let that paint the wrong picture; this thing still rips like an absolute bastard with kinetic, high energy blood running through its black veins.

Different from both Auðn and Lucy In Blue, I personally enjoy this more than either. Bring on more. Available at name-your-price download, but fellas if you’re reading this: a tape of this would go down very nicely.

~

Artist: Bones of Ausos

Year: 2018

Getting more traditional now with Bones of Ausos‘ debut demo ‘Manifestation Nocturnal‘, some raw, volatile and frostbitten chaos from Finland.

The grim, physical violence on display here is tasty as hell. It’s easy to tell what school this is from as savage yet often barely discernable vocals rasp and howl along with some fucking great second-wave tremolo work and a hammering percussive assault; this wants to forget anything after the ’90s ever existed and is honestly all the better for it. First track ‘Essence of Gaping Wounds‘ is more ancient groove oriented in its blistering attack while the second ‘Hibernation Under the Ice‘ just hits that glorious, claws-to-the-sky vibe that only the finest of true black metal can instil. And that’s what this is: True black metal.

It’s thrilling stuff, if you crave a quick hit of irrepressible black metal power then these two tracks will scratch that itch and then some. Name-your-price download. Frostbitten hails.

~

Artist: Penance Stare

Year: 2018

And finally, something hidden and beautiful to take us out. Penance Stare is the darkwave/ambient black project of a UK based woman known only as ELN, and to make a loose comparison sounds (to my ears, anyway) like the gorgeous, introspective and tormented lovechild of Lycia and Striborg.

I could ramble on about her latest release ‘Scrying‘ for hours too but I’ll try to keep the word count low: Every single track on this is great. Her mesmerising, dysphoric conjurations transport you through the mirror into the darkest recesses of your mind with the utmost of ease. Haunted guitars drone and die slowly under darkwave drum patterns, spectral, miasmic synths and dissociative vocals that resonate from repressed agonies buried so deep in your psyche that they’ve ceased to feel like anything at all except utter numbness. Even with a different approach this is up there with acts like old Xasthur or Moon for sheer bleakness, so if you’re a fan of that sort of thing you really do need to hear this.

Love what she does. Released back in April it’s up for name-your-price download too, so click that link below and immerse thyself… Stare into the abyss, for the abyss is you.

Please listen after dark for best results“.

~

Like Black Metal Daily on Facebook for more kvlt sounds and tonal blasphemy.

Submissions for possible inclusion in future Volumes are welcomed.

Email: blackmetaldaily@outlook.com

Bandcamp Misanthropy – Volume 18

The bottomless wellspring of Bandcamp is overflowing with great shit just waiting to be discovered. This series aims to shine light on the freshest emanations and foulest incantations from its darkest corners, a few artists at a time. Here’s the eighteenth installment for your vulgar delectation. Enjoy.

~

Artist: Bovary

Year: 2017 / 2018

Does starting off with an all-female depressive trio from the French Alps sounds good? Good. ‘Mes Racines dans le Désert’ (‘My Roots in the Desert’) is the debut demo from Bovary, and a ridiculously promising debut it is. Queen Thrash‘s hateful, impassioned vocals virtually bleed over Petri Ravn and Gwen de Bovary‘s raw, black misery; which itself is perfectly and liberally adorned with somber acoustic melodies and passages of ambient melancholia they also show a wonderful knack for. The overall effect is one of haunting atmospheres and violent desolation, and there truly are some fascinating moments to be found within. The band are also rather fittingly named after the central heroine of Gustave Flaubert‘s famous work of literary realism ‘Madame Bovary’ (the reasons of which are too numerous to dive into here, but are worth looking into if you have the time and inclination).

This probably deserves more space and attention than I can give in these few short paragraphs. So, let your ears do the work: these women are on to something very good already and I for one can’t wait to see what they do next. Originally released on CD last year from Nar Production (available here), it’s also up for name-your-price download and reissued on gorgeous limited “Edelweiss” cassette edition (containing traditional incense, textile pouch and dried Edelweiss flowers) from the always astonishing Solar Aescetisists Productions.

~

Artist: Snorlax

Year: 2018

Next up: nihilistic black death by a member of Australia’s Siberian Hell Sounds. For a project named after a Pokémon this goes hard as shit; Snorlax‘s debut, unmastered demo wants nothing more than to rip your arms off and beat you to a twitching pulp with ’em, possibly while vomiting blood on you for good measure. The intensity and punishment levels are through the roof with a blatant (and probably intentional) disregard for human safety, while some utterly savage throatwork caps it all off deliciously. And just listen to that drum sound… Ugh.

I really enjoyed this, hope he whips up something else post-haste. Up for one dollar download. What else are you gonna do with that dollar?

~

Artist: Skognatt

Year: 2018

Next up, some mystical atmo-black from Germany’s Skognatt. A one man project seething with mystery and dramatic darkness, debut album ‘Ancient Wisdom’ sounds like exactly that: You’ve stumbled across a hidden room deep in the bowels of the ancient earth where gnarled, hooded figures beckon with crooked fingers, ready to impart the esoteric and long forgotten knowledge of the ages.

There’s a feeling that main man DZ has attempted to pull off something unique here, and for the most part, he achieves it. Unlike the majority of atmospheric releases these days he goes the slow and eerie/menacing melodic approach, peppered with flashes of mid-paced strength and even some solid grooves provided by assistant drum beast Gerileme (of Asche der Welten) creeping in.

The production suits the album well, everything sounds great. Lush eastern instrumentation and melodies lend a mystical vibe and are utilised far more effectively than I’ve heard in a while. I’m not entirely sure of this man’s musical background but he brings some good ideas to the table and has executed his vision convincingly; this is an entertaining and adventurous debut and you’d do a lot worse than to cop this at name-your-price download. Oh, and throwing in a little spoken word of 19th century romantic poet Lord Byron‘s work is a plus for me too. Nicely done.

~

Artist: Woeful Echo

Year: 2018

Howling back at you from the darkness inside, Woeful Echo is one man DSBM from the USA and ‘Dreaming In Eternal Sleep’ is his sophomore EP. Now when you see the DSBM tag and that cover art, for better or worse you automatically have a rough idea of the sound in mind, right? Wrong. Hurl that right out the window.

Opener ‘Sounds of Despair’ begins innocuously enough with fairly familiar sombre melodies and a hefty dose of melancholy. However, you’ll soon notice things start to switch up. There’s a symphonic leaning to proceedings and the layered guitars have a satisfying crunch to them, slightly unusual and very welcome; although still raw-ish it’s apparent a relatively fair amount of production work has gone into this. The vox are also varied, often layered and with a range far from the archetypal howls or shrieks.

All of which will make the astute listener’s ears prick up already, but something small I also noticed while idly researching: on the band Facebook page, the only bands listed in the ‘artists we also like’ section are Ukrainian project Bezmir and Finns Ajattara. Now, this strange (although they’re both great) combination could at first seem inconsequential, but with more thought it’s possibly quite informative as by the time we get to third track ‘Hymns of Sorrows’ he has eschewed completely the traditional trappings of the genre and goes for the throat with Bezmir-like intensity. In a word (or three): It’s fucking excellent. This definitely isn’t your typical ‘tortured wailing into the abyss’ raw misery, this is a furious hurt, lashing out with rage and strength and if he has indeed taken inspiration from the likes of the violent space project then I completely applaud him, he’s pulled it off in spectacular fashion.

The last two tracks then go off on their own equally great tangents but I’ll let you discover that on your own (especially the final/title track). I really dig this, it wasn’t at all what I was expecting. Physical copies are available from Share Your Pain Records or support with name-your-price download. You may just be surprised.

Side note – He also now has a much better logo courtesy of the “Lord of the Logos” himself, Christophe Szpajdel.

~

Artist: Turia / Vilkacis

Year: 2018

Finally unleashing their long awaited split, US werewolf Vilkacis and mysterious Dutch act Turia have generously thrown their respective tracks up on Bandcamp at name-your-price, and PSA: you need to jump on this shit without hesitation.

Vilkacis (the solo project of Michael Rekevics of Yellow Eyes) has already released one of the records of the year with the killer ‘Beyond the Mortal Gate’ and he continues that stellar form here with two absolutely essential tracks. Sorrow-filled and powerful, opening track ‘Into the Night’s Grip’ is worth paying any price for alone before ‘Final March Into Flame’ only becomes even more majestic and agonized. At this rate this is fast becoming one of my favourite projects, I could honestly listen to this all day.

Now for Turia. Are their two tracks any good? If you’ve checked out any of their past work you’ll already suspect the emphatic answer to this: Fuck. Yes. They’re part of the Haeresis Noviomagi collective, who along with many others in the Dutch scene are riding the forefront of the modern metamorphosis in experimental black metal sound. A core of subtle, transcendent rock-influenced melody shimmers within the black fury; this band is much more than appears at first glance and if you’ve never experienced them, then what better place to start than here?

CS and LP are also available through Psychic Violence Records and Altare Productions. Top notch stuff. Do not miss this.

~

Artist: Revelation None

Year: 2018

When Myrdin Cerphas of US cosmologists Synodic isn’t blasting through the vastness of space and hailing Sagan, he’s plundering the depths of hell and throwing infernal hails at Satan with solo project Revelation None. ‘Feasting Upon The Cosmos’ is his irresistible new single and this time around some fresh blood has been injected directly into the black vein via the capable throat of Harslingoth from Maeskyyrn, who proves himself a great fit for the Rev None sound and seems to understand well what Myrdin has been trying to achieve. Good phrasing accentuates the riffs and he has a surprisingly solid clean voice to boot; the two men appear to work well together so here’s hoping this is the merely the genesis of a long and heretical partnership.

Some good news too, for those who like their black metal a little more vivid: when compared to previous album ‘Blasphemy & Pain’ a bolder production style has also come into play. This is thanks to Noctis of Nachteule/Alkymist/Maeskyyrn fame, who has done some killer mixing and mastering work on this particular track. The tremolo leads are clearer for example and shimmer almost crystalline over a more physical bottom end. The whole thing ‘pops’; less kvlt, more power and it works well. There’s an irrepressible rhythmic/almost industrialised pulse to the track that’s catchy as fuck too, so be prepared to find yourself humming this one for hours after, which seems to be a phenomenon attached to much of Myrdin‘s work.

The B-side of the single is ‘The Mirror’s Pale Reflection’. An atmospheric instrumental number, it’s a solid, almost melancholy piece and I kinda hope to hear it complete with vocals on a future album. Those who have purchased the single also get two additional versions of it in a solely acoustic run-through and the original 2015 demo recording of the track. Both are interesting inclusions, with the original recording especially giving you a good idea of the evolution of a composition before it ends up the final product. I actually strangely dig the beefy, raw sound on this one myself; definitely a nice little bonus for paying supporters who sling them the required $1.50 and help them get the next album done. Support.

~

Artist: Maeskyyrn

Year: 2018

“Thoughts of Shattered Dreams is about sight, blindness, self-elevation and denunciation of modern society.”

…And following on from Revelation None, it would be remiss of us to not check out ‘Thoughts of Shattered Dreams’, the debut three track EP from Harslingoth‘s main project Maeskyyrn.

Kicking off with ‘Tainted Shores’, you’re immediately struck by the sound: this is some heavy stuff from the Canadian trio. Despite still semi-adhering to traditional black metal ideals the riffs have some meat to them, low tuning and a few palm muted chugs creating a memorable point of difference while thankfully keeping just the right side of the border to deathcore-town. It’s a good track, but the following ‘My Path (No Longer Linked)’ is where it’s at for me and contains both my favourite and least favourite moments of the EP; my least favourite being the first couple of minutes (it isn’t bad, however something about that early mournful guitar noodling just doesn’t sit quite right for me and the track could easily start at 1:50 or so and still be equally as impactful) and my favourite being Harslingoth‘s clean harmonizing with himself over the acoustic break. It’s exactly what the song needs and ties the whole composition together, providing both brilliant contrast and startling emotional connection to the fury and melancholia that permeates the rest of the track.

Aptly-named final piece ‘Wretched Sounds from Below’ takes us out on an ambient/noise inspired note, disembodied screams echoing from planes unknown and capping off a neat first offering that leaves you suitably intrigued to hear more.

Worth the $3 asking price. Anti-human, anti-life, anti-innocence. Hails.

~

Artist: Himelvaruwe

Year: 2018

Warped, ancient and almost tribal vibes waft fuzzily from your speakers as this offering from enigmatic Dutch (see what I mean about the Dutch scene?) maestro T begins its 16 minute journey. But Zwaluwenvesting doesn’t stay there; before you know it everything has descended into a beautiful, washed out and trancelike rhythmic drone that reaches in and caresses your deepest soul. As always, the devil is in the details as each subtle movement in the immersive piece is stunning, the overall intended effect less cosmic than his main project Kaffaljidhma but not an ounce less devastating.

I know it seems I spurt effusive praise all over the place whenever this man so much as sneezes, but he really does take black metal to wonderful places and if you have any interest at all in how far the boundaries of this incredible genre can go, you need to give this project (and his many others) your attention.

EDIT: Because I am extremely slow at wading through submissions and compiling these things the prolific genius released another great track while I was writing this; listen to the equally as compelling ‘Het Onkenbarehere.

Both releases at name-your-price.

~

Artist: No Lower Place To Fall

Year: 2018

Tasty fresh post black/blackgaze from the talented Tasmanian Sam Dishington of Départe. Inspired by seeing a news report on a little girl named Malak who was orphaned in the Syrian conflict, he picked up a guitar and thus the solo project No Lower Place to Fall was born. Written and recorded over the space of four cold evenings, debut single ‘Lost in Sinai’ is a beautiful, sincere piece filled with heart and spirit. Everything about this is sublime; if he can knock something out at this level in just four days I really hope he continues with it and there’s a full-length somewhere on the horizon. Or new Départe. Or both, I wouldn’t complain.

Up for name-your-price and because he is a genuinely great guy proceeds from all paid downloads will also be donated to the Preemptive Love Coalition to aid in their work providing emergency food, water, and medical care on the frontlines of conflict and disaster. A wonderful and much needed cause. Support.

~

Artist: SVRM

Year: 2018

Another favourite here at BMD, Ukrainian S. Tkachenko has done it again with his latest release ‘Лихиї вітри стогнуть без упину’ (‘The Wicked Winds Moan Without Incline’). Longer than his usual efforts at five tracks and an intro, few artists do this type of melancholic autumnal fury as effortlessly well and songs like the title track are simply exquisite, demanding replay after replay. You’ve heard me bang on about this project more than enough already, so if you’re even remotely a fan of the elemental Ukrainian atmospheric style… Why the fuck are you still reading this? Hit that name-your-price download below. Total support.

~

Artist: My Deathbed

Year: 2018

And finally, a new/old offering from Greek raw depressive artist My Deathbed. You may remember I covered the project’s last self-titled album ‘My Deathbed’ a short time ago and gave particular praise to the album’s mesmerising final piece ‘Sleep Paralysis’, which was a unique and powerul journey achieved with only one guitar. Well the shadowed creature behind it all (known only as Void) has just released ‘Disease’, a two-track preview of sorts for that piece; he originally recorded these tracks at the same time as his first demo ‘Sickness’ and they’re more of the same harrowing, experimental, single-guitar horror.

I asked him about his inspirations for the tracks: “There is only one inspiration behind My Deathbed, and this is my own struggle with my demons. The demos are how I feel at the moment I am recording.” he says.

“Have you ever been lost in your own thoughts? When you get lost, you don’t hear good sounds. I mean, you get drowned in your thoughts. You can’t stop thinking about things. That’s why My Deathbed is Monotonous Black Metal. It’s like a stucked head.”

Listening to the two tracks on offer here, this makes perfect sense. Both are a challenging and rewarding listen, one that it’s easy to spiral down into if you’re of the right (or wrong) state of mind… But be careful, you might not know where you’ll end up. Name-your-price download and as always, check out the rest of his superb output while you’re there. Hails.

~

Submissions for possible inclusion in future Volumes are welcome.

Like Black Metal Daily on Facebook for more kvlt sounds and tonal blasphemy.

Email: blackmetaldaily@outlook.com

Bandcamp Misanthropy – Volume 17

The bottomless wellspring of Bandcamp is overflowing with great shit just waiting to be discovered. This series aims to shine light on the freshest emanations and foulest incantations from its darkest corners, a few artists at a time. Here’s the seventeenth installment for your vulgar delectation. Enjoy.

~

Artist: Blodigel

Year: 2018

Kicking off: I’ll give you one single guess which style of black this is based solely on the cover art. If you guessed melodic post-black, well congratulations for being hideously wrong and I hope your head injury heals soon. Blodigel is a one man war metal wrecking machine and debut ‘Folly Of Abram’ is exactly what it aesthetically says on the tin: Blasphemy and Archgoat worship. If you’re slavering for a quick fix of bestial carnage you can’t go wrong here; great riffs and a short run time mean this thing is a long way off outstaying its welcome. Released by Witchcult Records on 3rd April in a limited run of 30 tapes, it’s also available at name-your-price download. Bring all your black goats.

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Artist: Bròn

Year: 2017

Next up, a one man atmospheric/ambient project created by Krigeist, who you may recognise from the great Barshasketh and Belliciste. ‘Where the Leaden Dawn Meets Iron Shores’ is both the project’s sixth release plus my first exposure to his solo work; and I have to say, as a belated introduction, it’s more than impressive.

If you like the sort of immersive ambient worlds conjured up by Ukrainian maestro Severoth for example then you’ll find lots to like here. Unhurried songwriting, three 20 – 30 minute tracks and strong ambient synth blood flowing in its veins; it’s incredibly easy to get lost in this tryptich of grandiose compositions. And you will, opening epic ‘Nebula Burial’ alone is a superb astral-tinged journey that begs several repeat listens before you can even move on to the stirring soundscapes and surging blasts of ‘Through Obsidian Teeth’. Each track is a rich vein of shimmering black gold, meticulously crafted and emotionally affecting.

Up for name-your-price download, while digipack CD’s have just released through Wolfspell Records and Sigillvm Tenebrae Records this past February (with a nice cover art update too). Very worth your time, and I’ll definitely be checking out the rest of his discography.

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Artist: Entropy Created Consciousness

Year: 2018

Next level avant-garde black doom madness. Released back in February, the intriguing ‘Impressions of the Morning Star’ is the product of one man, but no other information has seeped out into the infinite void as yet.

Which is almost a shame as I’d love to know who to give due respect to; this is up there with the most compelling albums you’ll wrap your ears around this year. Masterfully weaving together an immense cosmic miasma with alien constructs and the furious vacuum of a black hole, the end result is a gargantuan, oppressive yet strangely hopeful exploration of every corner of the internal and external universes. Blistering speed seamlessly becomes otherworldly beauty at will. The album shifts forms incessantly, constantly transmuting and reshaping, in a necessary state of flux yet always perfectly and unwaveringly coherent.

A track-by-track breakdown of this would result in thousands upon thousands of words; so just download this at name-your-price below and experience it for yourself. Well-deserved vinyl also coming soon through Throne Records. Take the journey.

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Artist: Dark Habits

Year: 2018

A brief moment of static heralds the impending carnage… before ‘Scaphism’, the second EP of blackened powerviolence from Scottish four piece Dark Habits, tears from your speakers. Five short tracks like blows to the face with a blunt object while having a knife held to your throat, there’s good news and bad news about this project: The incredibly shithouse news is they released this EP as a parting shot and are currently split up. The good (well, consolation) news is you can pick this up at name-your-price download below (alongside their other violent stab of an EP ‘Cave Paintings’) and all donations from the sale of this will be passed along to Glasgow Womans Aid. Nice.

Pure Hm-2 powered annihilation. Destroy everything.

~

Artist: Aludra

Year: 2018

A new project straight from the interstellar oven. US duo Aludra play raw cosmic black metal, have a debut album on the way entitled ‘Moons’, and present the first teaser single ‘Enceladus’ freshly prepared for your consideration.

With all music/production taken care of by Taryck (ex Rituals of a Blasphemer) and the lyrics, vocals and overall concepts by Imber (ex Synodic), ‘Enceladus’ is science-based cosmic black metal with a twist: instead of the dense and droning fury often associated with the style, the track largely comes at you from a stripped back and depressive angle. The sparse production and desolate riffing took me by surprise at first but provides a great eerie backdrop for Imber‘s trademark rasps; given that the subject matter is Saturn’s sixth-largest moon the solitary, distant harshness is perhaps fitting. The final act of the track then sees it explode into more familiar territory and it’s all far more than enough to pique your inquisitive curiosity as to what may possibly come next.

I personally hope they explore more of the raw angle; keep an eye on their Bandcamp or Facebook for further release info and snap up this worthy single at name-your-price download.

~

Artist: Valaraukar

Year: 2018

Scottish hostile black metal power summoned from the abyss. Don’t let the Tolkien referencing name throw you off; this isn’t an epic journey through lands of might and magic, oh no. ‘Harnessing Hostile Forces’ is the debut EP from Valaraukar and as the name suggests it’s two tracks of storming, rearing and crackling black might.

Expertly wielded by the duo of Vagath and Sovereign, some slivers of thrash or chunks of Venom-esque heaviness may lash at your skin as the maelstrom moves through, but that only adds to the convincing strength of this offering. Both tracks are wonderfully accomplished, equally as good as each other and seething with electric atmosphere, but I’m personally going with ‘Conquering the Void’ as my pick of the two. Can’t get enough of those galloping riffs.

Released in conjunction with Rat King Records it’s also up on both the label and band’s Bandcamp pages as name-your-price download, so grab yourself a digital at the very least and get these men even more motivated for the full length that’s apparently rearing its head later this year. Killer stuff.

~

Artist: Raat

Year: 2018

And here we have the latest EP from Raat, the post-black/blackgaze project of S.R. from Nightgrave, featured in the last Bandcamp Misanthropy. Based in Delhi, India and with almost no black metal scene around him he’s been forced to create his own, churning out releases at a startling rate between his projects.

‘Ethereal Twilight’ is the second from Raat so far and straight off the bat continues his immediately recognisable lush-yet-raw sound with opening track ‘Ataraxia’. A gorgeous, dreamlike instrumental that shimmers and builds, everything then really shifts into gear with second track ‘Intemerate’. Hitting a more depressive note through the use of his tortured, echoing vocals and darker riffs the track still posesses deceptively intricate instrumentation, layers of beautiful sound effortlessly drawing you in and wrapping you in a comforting warmth, despite the melancholy.

However, don’t get too cosy. That comforting, warm blanket of vague mamelancholia begins to constrict as the first half of ‘Stygian’ plunges into the blackest and most disturbing material on the EP, shaking you from any pleasant dream. Icy, warped tremolo slithers through the mix before descending into sludge and attempting to crush you… then the black clouds part, dawn arrives and one of the nicest acoustic passages on offer here finally caresses you back into peace, having weathered the nightmare. The ultimate track ‘Wash Away’ is just that; a cleansing of your soul as all sins, all hurt, all sadness and anger is gently washed away as you dream. Or… is it? A creeping realisation, too late. Perhaps it is you who is being washed away? Has the dream always been your death?

A wonderfully composed and dynamic EP that really ‘tells a story’ to the listener, so to speak. The more I hear of this man’s work the more I like it. Available at name-your-price download.

~

Artist: Brood In Black

Year: 2018

You may recall I checked out the first Brood In Black demo ‘Arrival of Death’ back in Bandcamp Misanthropy Volume 14, said it was “raw, totally primitive, black-fucking-metal” and was extremely interested to see how the project would develop. Now the time has come for a second serving of unholy fury: sophomore demo ‘Blasfemas’ is here. Well, it was here two months ago. I’m just extremely behind on my listening list as usual.

This time Count Cor’inth has picked up a likeminded collaborator in the mysterious Bulgor, who provides hellish battery on three of the 5 tracks on offer and fits in perfectly to the Count‘s vision. Pressing play, you’re hit with a gloriously broken and lo-fi introduction before the title track hisses venomously from your speakers. Thankfully, it’s more of the same and even better than the first demo; I fucking love the sound quality on this whole thing. Perfectly terrible and not for the faint-hearted but black metal as fuck. The first two tracks are smashers, but I’m going to skip forward a little and say one thing: ‘Journey Into the Shadows’. This third rite and demo centrepiece absolutely nails it in every way for me. Perfect classic vibe, if you only listen to one thing on this demo, let it be this.

Which isn’t saying the rest of the songs aren’t great, ‘Evil Lives’ is an uptempo ripper and ‘Abyss’ closes out proceedings like nobody does anymore. The whole thing feels like the last bastion of the necrotic old-school; as long as bands like Brood In Black exist in the deepest shadows then the raw spirit of black metal will never die.

With a handful of physical copies left this isn’t up for name-your-price, but this man does everything DIY, from the music to the hand drawn and photocopied artwork. Even tape duplication. Total dedication to the cause, total respect. Show your support.

~

Artist: Vonlaus

Year: 2018

Three tracks of raw, raucous Icelandic decay released back in January. Vonlaus is Icelandic for “Hopeless”, but this first demo proves anything but and seems to be the embryonic stirrings of another great project.

The only information I can find about this is it was recorded, mixed and mastered by a certain K. Wntl. So, it’s lucky the music speaks for itself and every one of the three tracks on offer is a masterful display of biting guitars, devastating, languid darkness and a little rock thrown in for good measure. Superb vocals and great riffs too, check the brawny dissonance in second track ‘Mein’ and the excellent, harrowing howl/hollering at the end of ‘Í blindbyl ótta og haturs’.

Tape out now through Mystískaos and Vánagandr, name-your-price download from their Bandcamp. More please.

~

Artist: Benthik Zone

Year: 2018

As usual, we save the strangest until last. Over the course of their four releases to date the experimental Portuguese duo of Benthik Zone have been on another world entirely, crafting bizzare and high-concept albums that follow a tale about underwater worlds, alien sharks and leaving the planet for one of Jupiter’s moons. About latest release ‘Causa Modicum Temporis Spatium’, they simply say this: “We ceased to be matter. By achieving enlightenment we became something that transcends both space and time.”

What does that mean? That you as the listener are now on the frontline of a metaphysical journey as they tear through dimensions along pathways never before dreamed of. Through the course of two gargantuan, seemingly infinitely expanding compositions the two men shatter both your mind and space-time into millions of pieces and reassemble them together, as a new form of superconscious reality. Black annihilation, ambient sounds of the universe being torn apart, instrumentation and melodic twists that attempting to describe with mere words would be doing a disservice to are all apparent in equal measure. You become the void. The void is all.

All wordy hyperbole aside: This is stellar experimental black art. Available for a mere dollar along with all their other outstanding releases, just download for yourself. Experience. Appreciate. Evolve.

Hails.

~

Submissions for possible inclusion in future Volumes are welcome.

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Email: blackmetaldaily@outlook.com

Bandcamp Misanthropy – Volume 15: Holiday Edition

As I’ve been slacking off a little with these and in an attempt at keeping with the spirit of the season, here’s the very first holiday edition of Bandcamp Misanthropy: Twenty artists, all name-your-price download so you can bag yourself a load of fresh sounds either free or supporting the artist however you like. Due to the sheer amount of releases I’ve kept my word count to a minimum; I also ran out of time and had plenty more releases to put in than this, so expect another Volume soon. Anyway, here’s the fifteenth and final 2017 installment of Bandcamp Misanthropy for your vulgar delectation. Enjoy. 

~

Artist: Chaos Moon

Year: 2017

Kicking off proceedings in the best way possible, USBM masters Chaos Moon have returned with their fourth full length ‘Eschaton Mémoire’ and without any fucking about with unnecessary words: it’s incredible. 

Created by men whose pedigree includes KriegManetherenSkapheMartröđ and more with superbly symbolic cover art by Jef Whitehead of Leviathan, this release is utterly bewitching and the haunting fury of it will affect you for days. The band have this to say about it: 

Eschaton Mémoire is finality: from invocation to ruin. It spans each phase of this death from multiple perspectives and through various planes. Each passage further opens the cosmic wound, weaving other realms into the present; bloodletting the metaphysical plague. The end consummated, may the mists of Niflheim shroud forevermore.”

This really is ultimate quality USBM and the fact that it’s up for name-your-price download simply blows me away. Many thanks to the excellent Blood Music (who will also be stocking the CD and vinyl versions) for that. 

You know way back at the beginning, when you first heard black metal? The magic it had? Well, this release is the physical manifestation of that feeling. Seriously. If you don’t already own it: download this now.

~

Artist: Entheogen

Year: 2017

And in a neat segway from Chaos Moon we have another related project, this time Alex Poole handles all vocal intonations/strangulations while fellow Mooner Steve Blackburn is the main songwriter. Both of these men have clearly struck creative gold this year. ‘Without Veil, Nor Self’, the otherworldly debut of US experimentalists Entheogen, will split your mind off into several simultaneous perceptual tangents allowing reality to become both an entirely new proposition and completely inconsequential all at once. 

Bleak, delicate and furious; this exercise in dissonance and metaphysical catastrophe is making a shitload of end-of-year lists for good reason, and for a sneak peak if I ever get around to posting it: it may just be on mine. Pick this up at name-your-price download without hesitation. LP coming next year through Fallen Empire Records and cassette through Mystískaos.

~

Artist: LVTHN

Year: 2017

A blazing occult orthodox rite from the Belgian LVTHN. Two tracks, twenty five minutes; a conceptual mini-album about Arachnidia Lilith, the spider goddess of Sitra Ahra. 

Is it good? Yes. This time around they aim to honour the arachnid aspects of The Dark Mother and those aspects come across in the music well. Shifting, sliding guitars skitter in anxiety laden mania as the infernal power rises. “Power from the living, power from the dead” are some of ZD‘s vocal intonations on opening track ‘Arachnidia’ and that proves a sinister omen, as by the end of the vehemently venemous, irresistibly devotional and downright monolithic ‘Akkawbishia’, everyone and everything has been sacrificed for the life and glory of The Queen. 

A strong release that reminds me I need to spend more time with this often overlooked band. Worship through name-your-price download, or pick up physical tools of ritual from Fallen Empire RecordsAmor Fati Productions and Rat King Records – UK. Oh, and the cover art is nice.

~

Artist: Jassa

Year: 2017

Fog and stillness; the True God resides in The Abyss, where there is no past and no future.

Toiling away in the darkness, subterranean Russian black death esotericists Jassa continue to produce higher works of such ferocious alchemy they could transmute flesh into black gold. With deranged riffs, skin-searing vocals, tribal flourishes and streaks of creative experimentalism surging throughout their ritual offerings, it may lean more heavily on the ‘death’ part of their descriptor than previous efforts but I’m still slightly taken aback that ‘Incarnation of the Higher Gnosis’ isn’t popping up on at least the deep end of a few end of year lists. It probably would if more people had heard it, who knows. If you haven’t yet, be ashamed and rectify this at once with a name-your-price download below and/or snap up an LP from Fallen Empire Records if there’s any left.

~

Artist: Aura Mortis

Year: 2017

Next up, a quick fix of hatred and the voice of Satan himself from Serbian duo Aura Mortis. ‘Proclamation of the Sardonic Flame’ is two stirring tracks devoted to extinguishing all life in the name of the Dark Lord and acting as an audial vessel for His will.

The first paean is composed of an intro and the title song itself (‘Tartarus Rising/Proclamation of the Sardonic Flame’); and whilst it’s more dynamic and the riffs and atmosphere are undoubtedly top notch, in my opinion it’s the b-side ‘In Being Engraved’ that’s an absolute fucking stormer. A fire hit of full blistering orthodoxy, this emanates the glory of Satan in wretched obesiance before lurching into a morbid, mid-tempo outro hymnal filled with awe and rotting reverence.

Good songwriting, savage vocals and the guitars have that satisfying buzz. You can’t go wrong at name-your-price download; tape out through Zły Demiurg with a CD version coming soon. Total death. 

~

Artist: Sol Lustitiae

Year: 2017

And lo, we witness the birth of something beautiful. The instrumental raw demo recordings for what is apparently an upcoming full-length, this could easily be left as-is and would still be pretty great. Sol Lustitiae (‘Sun of Righteousness’) hail from Italy and play liturgic black metal; equal parts stunning bleakness, ephemeral dissonance, bright atonal intricacies and brilliant post-scapes. The compositional skill on display here is nothing short of dazzling and it will unquestionably be something truly special once polished up, but for now, immerse yourself in what our forsaken souls can reach of the light shining from ‘Iam, Christe, Sol Lustitiae’. Name-your-price download.

~

Artist: Agonie

Year: 2017

Some Canadian black metal done the old way. The duo of Agonie summoned their sophomore slab of death worship way back in January and ‘Culte Funèbre’ sounds exactly how you’d want it to. A sombre soliloqy from the crypt in six parts, this drinks deeply from the veins of masters past and each ode stands alone as a grim piece of dark art. Sepulchral and vampyric atmospheres are conjured with ease, dripping in blood; while special mention must be made of the dual throat attack containing some killer variety from hopeless, agonized howls to demonic low growls. And I’m not usually a fan of ambient closing tracks, but absolutely satanic final ambient piece ‘Funérailles d’un monde’ is a suitably horrifying and theatrical way to close out proceedings, pitch-shifted vocals and all.

It’s up for name-your-price download, as well as their first release. Oh and if you purchased the tape from Solar Asceticists Productions it came with a vial of real bone ash and a handwritten French poem on parchment scroll, which is a lovely touch. Hails.

~

Artist: Eskapism

Year: 2017

A neat little pair of new tracks from Ukrainian atmospheric duo Eskapism. The first is single ‘Lost Land’; a masterful and marvellous example of how these men manage to pack so many emotions into one track. From the lush synth intro to the epic finish this track is a dynamic rollercoaster and gold star testament to their songwriting abilities; if you don’t want to press play again immediately after hearing it you may be dead. The only thing that may stop you from flogging that one track on repeat for hours is the B-side: a killer rendition of Swedish act Skogen‘s track ‘Aska’, that captures and may even improve upon the feeling and power of the original well. 

Free download, but it’s a little tricky; you’ll have to pay $3 to grab both tracks together (well worth it, support if you’ve got the coin) or you can download each track separately for free. 

~

Artist: Kaffaljidhma

Year: 2017

‘Alphecca of the Northern Crown, Sequestered in an Alcove of Lustrous Spires’ is the evocative title of the single 12 minute expression of raw Dutch anti-cosmic transcendentalism that comprises one man project Kaffaljidhma‘s fourth emission, ‘IV’.

Spectral melodies, drum patterns and howls echo around inside a cavernous wall of sound, although “cavernous” isn’t really the right word. It’s more a space inside a higher plane of existence created by the music itself, drawn from the mind of the enigmatic (AKA: Olibanum) who also brings us Himelvaruwe and other wonders. It’s haunting stuff; one track isn’t nearly enough but luckily he also has another three exemplary Kaffaljidhma releases all up for name-your-price, with a new one coming early 2018. Fingers crossed for an eventual full-length.

~

Artist: Hyperborean Skies

Year: 2017

US artist Ben Stire released an exceptional full-length for his solo atmo-black project Hyperborean Skies back in June, and to tide you over until the next album of melodic mastery, he’s dropped a surprising little curio: a cover of ‘Walking In The Air’, originally by Howard Blake and featured in the 1982 short animated film ‘The Snowman’.

Now I unashamedly/unironically love that song so I was extremely interested to see what he’d done to it; and what he has done is completely fucking nailed it whilst totally making it his own. Translating the entire song into blasting black metal would have been almost predictable, instead he works the dynamics of the original composition perfectly and even aces the clean vocals.

If he’s going to cover obscure and unexpected songs this well, part of me hopes his next full-length is a covers album. Superbly done. Name-your-price download.

~

Artist: Witch Trail

Year: 2017

Belgian three-piece Witch Trail have cooked up a delicious brew of sludgy post-black post-punk goodness, just for you. On latest EP and 8th release overall ‘Thole‘, they effortlessly genre-hop at will in a breathtaking display of raw talent and somgwriting capability. 

Every track on this is a winner. Riffs with attitude, the vocal attack roared from a place of power. The black metal influence may be buried deep sometimes, but it’s never far away and always ready to pounce back and grab you by the throat at any second. Couple this with a frequently raw, careening punk vibe that threatens to either derail or lash out with kicks to the head and you have one of those tense albums that sounds gloriously dangerous even in the quieter moments. Of which there are many, often tightly wound and seething with barely hidden intent. 

For those feeling a little more adventurous than your standard black, get in here and grab a name-your-price download now; this is some seriously rocking shit. They’ve been through nine levels of hell trying to get vinyl properly pressed so if they ever successfully manage that you’ll be able to pick up some wax too, but in the meantime you can also purchase physical support in the form of a CD through Babylon Doom Cult Records.

~

Artist: Macerie

Year: 2017

And now an Italian blackened crust post-hardcore trio that revel in slow-burning yet manic wretchedness. When Macerie‘s two track EP ‘To K***’ gets moving it absolutely crushes your bones to dust; but almost absentmindedly, as though either unaware or uncaring. Bleakness and brutality in equal measure.

Good news and bad news. The good: If you like what you hear, they have another four track release also available at name-your-price, that was also once released on tape through Sentient Ruin Laboratories and may still be available from a few select distros. The bad: I’m not entirely sure they’re still active, so these may be the last releases you hear.

~

Artist: Ovnev

Year: 2017

A year after the release of his debut album ‘Cycle of Survival’ which popped up way back in Volume 3, one man USBM wilderness walker West returns with another excellent offering inspired by the harshness and grandeur of the natural world. 

‘Incalescence’ is a solitary and emotional album, but not in a depressive sense. No, West is instead adept at implanting feelings that ebb and flow naturally betwixt a sense of awe, introspection and quiet wonder. An improved production gives new power to the compositions, the layered guitars take on almost elemental force while the frequent acoustic breaks remain an atmospheric highlight. I’ve previously mentioned this already but Ovnev remains very much a project with deep artistic integrity; you’ll be drawn in with ease, totally believing in his vision and feeling it. 

A perfect accompaniment for your own trip into the wild unknown, be it physical or a mental flight of fancy whilst curled up on the couch at home. Grab a name-your-price download or a physical copy from Naturmacht Productions today.

~

Artist: Funeral Harvest

Year: 2017

Raw Norwegian Satanic occult death rituals. Interested? You should be. ‘Bunker Ritual Rehearsal’ is the debut demo from the shadowy Funeral Harvest and for an embryonic first effort, it definitely shows a hefty amount of potential. 

Listening to this is like the last thirty years of genre progressions never happened; it’s simply nothing less than raw, live-recorded black metal played with spirit like days of yore. Scandinavian riffs abound (the main one on opener ‘Nihil Sub Sole Novum’ is a sinister scorcher) and they balance out and enhance that approach quite well with an obscure tone that permeates all. The guitars are often in a slightly lower register than you might be expecting, packing more body blows and menace whilst the vocals are ripped straight out of the early ’90s playbook. Then there’s the even rawer fourth track ‘☧’ which takes things to abrasive new heights but remains no less compelling, as all foul ingredients swirl together to create an intoxicating breath of fresh but ancient air from the crypt. 

Pure black metal. Available at name-your-price download, or grab a slice of evil in cassette form from Iron Bonehead Productions.

~

Artist: Deadwood Lake

Year: 2017

You may remember UK atmo/melodic fellows Deadwood Lake from the ancient times of Volume 2 when we checked out their debut EP ‘Remembrance’, based on the tragedy of vocalist Bruce Powell losing his brother in an accident. The band itself was formed in tribute to him and it’s a theme they intend to continue; which they have done surprisingly well on first full-length ‘Forest of Whispers’.

Continuing the same theme, no matter how well-meaning and honest, could still easily feel like rehashing the same material. This avoids that by means of being a step up from the EP in just about every aspect and Bruce himself possibly going through a kind of gradual evolution as the days pass. I’m loathe to even imagine what he must still be going through so I don’t want to be presumptuous, but it feels somehow different. Whereas it was mesmerising and heart-wrenching to hear the raw pain on the EP, now it’s still there but seems almost tempered in a way and the songs feel more vital overall. He still speaks of it all from many different angles but I find that this time around it’s when he fights back or gives in to rage that the songs are their strongest. ‘Forest of Whispers’ has some great moments and when he screams “Eye for an eye, life for a life” in ‘Vengeance Will be Mine’, you fucking believe it.

Not that the rest of the album isn’t great. All performances have stepped up a notch and the songwriting taking some bold steps; the first time I had the album playing in the background I had to stop and check it at one point that it hadn’t somehow skipped artists to an old Steven Wilson demo or something, so make of that what you will.

A solid listen and at name-your-price it’s worth your support. I still admire what these gents are doing. 

~

Artist: Voidsphere

Year: 2017

I don’t know how the hell I missed posting about ‘To Call / To Speak’ a couple of months ago when I first heard it, so luckily it slots nicely in here. I only even remembered to actually purchase it when I was writing this article which is frankly fucking inexcusable as it’s easily one of the greatest EPs to drop this year. Featuring the same anonymous person(nel) as the excellent Arkhtinn, prepare yourself for a raw 40 minutes of total USBM abyss worship over two expansive, savagely grandiose tracks. 

Opening with ambience that indeed sounds like the maw of the Void beginning to split open in the vacuum of space, before you know it the universe rends apart and the horror begins. The lo-fi cosmic howl hits you; you’re done. There is no escape. This EP has its own hypnotic gravitational pull and will rend you limb from limb once you’re helplessly lost in its violent magnitude.

I could wax lyrical about this one for ages, but just download the thing and let the music speak for itself. Released through the umbrella of Prava Kollektiv with physical copies also available from Fallen Empire Records and Amor Fati Productions.

~

Artist: SVRM

Year: 2017

I don’t believe this man has ever released a dud note let alone a bad song, but the unsung master of autumnal atmospheres is back with what may somehow be his strongest material yet.

I first covered Ukrainian solo artist SVRM back in Volume 9 and on his fifth EP he’s still not wasting a single note; push play on any of the three tracks on offer throughout ‘Останнє Сонце’ (‘The Last Sun’) and you’re immediately swathed in gorgeous, perfectly placed layers of spine-chilling melodies, driving percussion and his roaring, impassioned vocals.

Boasting a slightly cleaner sound than previous efforts, everything honestly feels just right. Have you heard a similar kind of thing before? Likely. But (barring the already established masters), seldom done this well. I listened to it ten times in a row when it was released the other night and you should too, this project deserves far more exposure than it gets. Up for name-your-price download with all his other great releases. Support.

~

Artist: Inner Suffering

Year: 2017

This release (which isn’t even his latest) by prolific Ukranian solo artist Inner Suffering was recommended to me by Kimberlee of the now defunct Synodic, who gave an eloquent description of what ‘It’s All The Same In The End’ means to her:

“I’ve listened to this album countless times and it conveys a melancholic emotion that I was able to apply to my life situation which suited my mood perfectly. This is an instrumental album so it’s easy to get lost in the music and interpret it the way you see fit. I love it because of that fact. Most everything from Inner Suffering takes me to a place within myself that is very real.  Perfect ambient depressive black metal.”

Perfect ambient depressive black metal it is. It doesn’t even depress you, just makes you numb. We could delve deeper into technicalities like the interesting dissonance between the 7 string rumble and the etherial melodies, but over-analysing would take away the magic so just grab it and experience it for yourself. Lithium in audio form.

~

Artist: My Purest Heart For You

Year: 2017

Unearthing gems like this is both why I love Bandcamp and why the Bandcamp Misanthropy Volumes began in the first place. On third release ‘Isolation and the Ward of Internal Abuse’, US experimental DSBM Artist My Purest Heart For You effortlessly creates a unique and captivating atmosphere through the oddly perfect duality of gorgeous, choral keys and hyper-raw distorted DSBM that occasionally borders on noise. Melancholy guitar work, throat shredding screams and magical, almost peaceful synth layers; it’s incredibly easy to lose yourself in this release and it may be quite unlike anything you’ve heard before. 

Highly recommended. A beautiful, zen-like flower in the darkness. 

~

Artist: Krampusnacht

Year: 2017

And to wrap things up poorly like your drunk parents pretending to be Santa on Christmas eve, I don’t delve into pure dungeon synth very often on these pages but in the spirit of the season (and because it’s actually pretty great), here’s a name-your-price Christmas dungeon synth covers album.

Fuck Christmas, enjoy the holidays. Hails.

~

Submissions for possible inclusion in future Volumes are welcome.

Like Black Metal Daily on Facebook for more kvlt sounds and tonal blasphemy.

Email: blackmetaldaily@outlook.com 

Bandcamp Misanthropy – Volume 14

The bottomless wellspring of Bandcamp is overflowing with great shit just waiting to be discovered. This series aims to shine light on the freshest emanations and foulest incantations from its darkest corners, a few artists at a time. Here’s the fourteenth installment for your vulgar delectation. Enjoy. 

~

Artist: Ashen Throat

Year: 2017

And with a depraved, hellish howl; we’re off. UK atmospheric/depressive project Ashen Throat has conjured its first demo and it’s a capable debut offering. Not much is known about these enigmas, but the duo of J and Luke Powell describe their work as “Belching draconian fire in open revolt against nihilism, self doubt, depression and the modern world as we know it“. Sounds good to me.

While there isn’t too much here that you haven’t heard before, what is here is done well. ‘Breathing Black Fire’ is four solid tracks of raw, cold second-wave influenced melody with vocals echoing from the womb of the earth itself. When the depressive elements are in full flight it’s akin to experiencing emotional death, but it’s also possessed of an icy elemental fury that bursts pleasingly from your speakers. The production is great for a demo, with just the right amount of oppressive density versus chilling instrumental clarity. Third rite ‘Axis’ brings surprises in the form of a short folksy intro with sounds of someone walking through a woods and faintly triumphant synthetic horns buried deep in the mix; both work well and help with immersion into the oppressive nature of the material while closing track ‘Temple’ proves to be the most furious on offer and eventually devolves into some chilling throatwork. The screams at 4:45 onwards are notable too. I particularly dig the vocals on this entire release; when they experiment further than the usual DSBM howl or echoing, black-as-pitch rasp they often succeed, coming across as genuinely unhinged and tortured.

Overall, a well balanced debut demo that you can tell is a cathartic experience for both artist and listener, and that at name-your-price download is worth the 20-odd minutes of your time. Support.

~

Artist: Mylingar

Year: 2016

I’m full of rage, father. Murderous urges. I don’t just hate this man. 

I hate all men. 

I hate life.

This shrapnel-blast of utter destruction came out amidst the dying embers of 2016, shortly before BMD was birthed into painful existence. I wanted to include it now not only because it absolutely fucking murders and the fact that it’s up for name-your-price download is unbelievable, but also because upon recently revisiting it I made the exciting discovery that they have a new album in the works, and the gentlemanly thing to do is to alert the general public so women, children and those of a weak constitution can take the necessary precautions. 

I’ll keep the warning short: Mylingar’s ‘Döda Vägar’ (“Dead Roads”) is five abusive tracks of grinding black death punishment that want nothing more than for you and everyone around you to take a dirt nap. These Swedish beasts reach a similar level of disgust and hatred as Anaal Nathrakh or Dragged Into Sunlight, final blow ‘Friheten’ alone will make you want to take on the whole human race and commit genocide with a blunt shovel.

Pulverising drumming, savage riffs and contemptuous vocals; it has it all, and I love this shit. If you missed it when it first dropped you have absolutely zero excuse to not check it out now and get acquainted. Grab it for whatever you like from their Bandcamp, or snap up a physical copy here from Amor Fati Productions. Sheer brutality in audio form.

~

Artist: Brood In Black

Year: 2017

Sometimes, unfortunately, things fall through the cracks. I get a lot of mail here, my list of releases to check out is never shorter than Gary Ridgway’s victims list, and despite my best efforts sometimes a release or recommendation slips by unintentionally. The demo from fresh USBM act Brood In Black is one of those things; it was sent to me many months ago and I only rediscovered it in my inbox the other day whilst searching for something else. Sincerest apologies.

Anyway. After an industrial pitch shifted intro, titular opening track ‘Arrival of Death’ kicks into what this release is all about and will stick to through the entirety of its length: Raw, totally primitive, black-fucking-metal. Like listening to early 90s demos style raw; no flashy shit, just archetypal blood-dripping evil for the sake of it. Each track is like unearthing an old rehearsal tape from some hitherto unheard of obscure band at the birth of their existence. Seriously, if you want a nostalgia trip back to when the earliest bands full of youthful exuberance picked up their instruments and just bashed it out in the name of the dark lord, you might just find it here. They even have hand copied and hand drawn tapes for sale.

It may seem like I haven’t really touched on the actual music or songs themselves, but if you know what I’m talking about so far then you know what to expect. I’m interested to see where this project goes, are we seeing the embryonic stages of a new great act? Who knows. Bring the hell, fellas. Up for name-your-price download. Hail Satan.

~

Artist: Sadness

Year: 2017

I’m throwing this in here real quick because prolific DSBM/post-black melancholist Sadness has a freshly released new EP for your ears, and is also running a handy promotion: All 18 of his top quality releases are set at name-your-price download until the codes run out. 

‘Sun Into Water’ is his latest EP that was released on October 24th and will apparently serve as a lead-in to a future full length release, but it’s an exquisite piece all on its own. Still heading in the more blackgaze direction of his recent work, it’s comprised of two lengthy, beautiful tracks slathered lavishly in airy melodies and ethereal synths simply made to carry you away into the mists of reminiscence.

In the interests of keeping this short, I’ll just say: everything this guy has done is fantastic. If you enjoy the soothing and soul-rending sounds of melancholia but haven’t yet immersed yourself in this stunning project; rectify this immediately and snatch all of those releases before the downloads run out. Perfect for those lonely, introspective nights. Or anytime at all, really.

~

Artist: Waal

Year: 2017

The Icelandic scene really has become the modern-day version of the Norwegian ’90s. A veritable torrent of ultimate quality black metal releases seems to pour from the region in a near constant stream; I’ve no idea what’s in the water over there, but it’s fucking great and seems to go from strength to strength. One of the latest acts to blossom from the fertile soil is Waal, and presented here is their debut two track EP ‘Ruminations’ for our consideration. 

Posessed of an earnest, cold rawness and atonality, the opening salvo ‘Stoned By Reflection’ lashes from the gates in hypnotic, undulating fashion while second track ‘Void and Passion’ writhes in a seething, menacing consternation. Both the song and EP titles themselves aptly describe the tumultuous descent and violent introspection contained within this release, as it worms its way into your mind it instigates an internal regression to a deeper darker state where you can’t be held accountable for your actions.

Short though it may be, I can’t praise this release highly enough. From the songwriting to the sound it strikes an obscure chord within and is incredibly addictive. I’ve often found myself listening to both tracks on loop for hours on end and never once tiring of the experience. Whatever your secrets are, I hope you’ve made peace with them because this EP will drag you in and spiral you down to depths you never wanted to reach again. 

Embrace it.

A limited cassette edition in folded black card is available through Mysterion, or you can drop a measly couple of dollars on a digital copy from their Bandcamp below.

~

Artist: Croc Noir

Year: 2017

I had an odd moment when I received this EP in my inbox; being Australian, the word ‘Croc’ calls to mind crocodiles. Up to this point in my life, crocodiles are not something I’d naturally associated with black metal. Perfunctory Googling did not shine any further light on the matter aside from the information that Croc Noir is a jungle level on World of Warcraft and also translates to ‘Black Croc’ in the band’s native French tongue; so failing the possibilty that they’re hardcore gamers perhaps Croc Noir really are working to thrust ancient reptiles into the misanthropic gloom of the black metal spectrum. If so, hails to them.

Linguistic differences and rambling digressions aside, the duo have created an interesting release in ‘Nuit’ (“Night”). A shamanistic introduction does in fact conjure images of the jungle before ‘Charogne’ kicks in to stoic yet disaffected second-wave style darkness. It’s enjoyable, but it’s on tracks like the following ‘Ruine’ where they really shine for me. Touching on a sedate-yet-tormented DSBM style which allows the disaffected, distant nature of the production to come into its own, it’s easily my favourite track on here and when they return after a couple of hate-filled diversions to a more depressive style on final track ‘Décharné’ it’s also astoundingly good and virtually drips with despair. An excellent way to end the EP, with both tracks in particular deserving of many repeat listens. 

Out for about four months now and their second release overall, it suffers a little from appearing a slightly disjointed collection of good ideas rather than a coherent killer journey, but there is definitely a lot to like here and subsequent releases will only improve in that aspect. The more I hear it the more it creeps its way into my brain. I’m sure it’ll do the same to you in no time. 

The gentlemen generously have both of their EP’s up at name-your-price download from their Bandcamp below, or you can perform a death-roll on a CD compilation of both until it dies at Wolfspell Records. Tapes are also covered through Corde Raide Productions.

~

Artist: Kralle

Year: 2017

Straight up: If you want to hear why I’ve included the debut demo from US one man raw atmospheric project Kralle in this Volume, go directly to third track ‘A Cold Burial’ and press play. 

Released back in June the rest of ‘Demo MMXVII’ certainly has some good moments (bar the intro, which doesn’t really add too much value and I’m not a huge fan of well known film/comic villain dialogue samples in black metal; the quote itself may be fitting but you can’t help but picture the character saying it which detracts from the experience) and closing track ‘Frozen Nights in the Tundra of Isolation’ is also a decent slab of icy northern blackness, but he totally nails it on ‘A Cold Burial’. 

A dysphoric, detached waltz through wastelands of hopelessness and agonies so deep-seated they’ve become a dull ache; it’s moving stuff that honestly feels like you’re wandering through monochrome dead forests searching for a place to lay down in the snow and die. Think a rawer, more depressing version of Burzum’s ‘Dunkelheit’ and you’re heading in the right direction.

Overall, not a perfect release but there’s a certainly lot of of promise here and if he can bottle the magic of ‘A Cold Burial’ or decides to go even rawer on further offerings it will be a sight to behold. There were a limited run of tapes available but they’ve since sold out; luckily it’s also up for name-your-price download.

Edit: Just found out he has a fresh new split release dropping on Halloween. More Kralle incoming.

~

Artist: Blattaria 

Year: 2017

Nightmare tumbling through unfettered kaleidoscope dreamscapes, slashed by a thousand knives as the rivers of blood raining from your wounds crystallize into whirling spiral galaxies around your flailing form. If this sounds appealing, by all means dive right in to the maniacal debut full length from hellish US psychedelic/experimental project Blattaria (“Cockroaches”). 

This self-titled slice of insanity is the work of sole sadist Manuel Garcia, whose vocals roar like a man constantly being torn apart and violently reassembled incorrectly over and over again in an infinite loop. Atonality and dissonance are key here as he wields tumbling, paranoid horrors to induce a state of near constant anxiety and fear; have you ever seen Dario Argento’s classic Suspiria? It’s a masterfully done film  where even something as simple as a character walking across a room can have your heart in your mouth and eyes wide in terror, and he achieves a similar effect here. Even the quieter passages are infused with a subversive, skittering panic. It’s nihilistic in the extreme; we are all nothing more than cockroaches and Blattaria know it. Something of a nice surprise too is the fact that Jacob Buczarski of Mare Cognitum fame was behind the mixing desk on this one, and he’s done an exceptional job; every note of the avant-garde mayhem sounding crystal clear as it tears strips off your grey matter. 

Released on October 19th this isn’t an album you simply listen to, but one you must live through or endure, and it’s refreshing to hear a release that inspires such genuine psychological fear in the listener. Both a cassette and LP edition are available here from Fallen Empire Records, but it’s also up at name-your-price download from his Bandcamp below. Enter if you dare. Pure art.

~

Submissions for possible inclusion in future Volumes are welcomed.

Like Black Metal Daily on Facebook for more kvlt sounds and tonal blasphemy.

Email blackmetaldaily@outlook.com

Bandcamp Misanthropy – Volume 13

The bottomless wellspring of Bandcamp is overflowing with great shit just waiting to be discovered. This series aims to shine light on the freshest emanations and foulest incantations from its darkest corners, a few artists at a time. Here’s the thirteenth installment for your vulgar delectation. Enjoy. 

~

Artist: Void Tendril

Year: 2017

First up in a cluster of releases I’ve been immensely enjoying: Uk blackened doom duo Void Tendril have just dropped their first ever demo ‘Ensnaring the Demiurge’. For an embryonic first recording it’s a doozy; the four tracks as a whole are a raw, crushing experience with a great sense of melody and an inherent theatricality or ‘storytelling’ vibe to both the vocals and composition that captivates for the entire 30 minute length. 

‘A Crone’s Reptilian Eye’ is a suitable introduction to the wiles of their ways with some absolutely killer riffs massaging your mind, before the misery really begins to hit home on second track ‘Shivering Residue’. Everything gets darker and more intense, the harmonized vocals between the two are a noteworthy addition and when that flows into the artfully morose layered guitar that closes out the track you know these fellas are on to something special. It only gets better from there too as the last two tracks ‘The Vampyric Embrace of Flame’ and ‘The Hourglass Catacomb’ pull you deeper into the abyss; the latter taking my pick for tune of the bunch.

I should also mention the cover art is a great evocative piece from Stephen Wilson/Unknown Relic, superbly meshing the demo’s concept with an expansion of the tarot card ‘The Tower’. I’m already a huge fan of his work, go check it out if you haven’t already. The whole package is soon to be released on cassette by Rat King Records UK, but for now grab yourself a name-your-price download and be ensnared by the searching grasp of the Void Tendril.

~

Artist: Prison of Mirrors

Year: 2017

Pure satanic devotion in black metal form. Occult Italian triumvirate Prison of Mirrors released their first great EP ‘Nothing’ back in 2014 and they’ve now followed up with an reverential new two-track of unholy vehement rites, ‘Unstinted, Delirious, Convulsive Oaths’.

From the very first seconds of opener ‘Wounds of Radical Abnegation’, their statement is perilously clear. Spectacularly impious riffing spider-crawls under a percussive assault so thick you can almost feel the blows, weaving a sorcery both horrifying and irresistibly mesmerising. Lord Svart’s vocals are also a feature as his otherworldly, haunting rasp seeps from the abyss behind the cacophony; delivering paeans, curses and dark blessings alike.

The EP, over the course of its two lengthy compositions, feels laid out like a ritual. If the first track is worship and calling the dark light into you, then second offering ‘Litany of Consecration’ is the feeling of having entered into the necessary transcendent state. It crackles with diabolical essence. The powers have been drawn, the work must be done; welding and weaving the forces, bending them to your will and that of the master. It takes the honours of track of the EP for me, the atmosphere and fury inherent in this is nothing short of electric.

Recorded at Sonic Temple Studio and mastered by Stephen Lockhart at Studio Emissary, everything sounds incredible and I highly recommend you spend some time immersed in its intricate arcane mysteries. Released on cassette through the dual forces of Signal Rex and De Essentia Diaboli you can grab a physical copy through either of those esteemed establishments; or score a name-your-price download through Signal’s Bandcamp below/support them directly for 2€ through their own Bandcamp here

~

Artist: Nowhere

Year: 2017

You may recall I featured raw one-man US destroyer Wojtek’s project Nowhere on his split with Dead and Grey (who also has another EP on the way at the end of October in a little cross-promotion for those interested) back in Volume 9; well, the new single from his upcoming album ‘Eternal Black, Infinite Void’ landed in my inbox a short time ago, so I figured I’d squeeze it in here.

The track ‘All Hail the Void’ represents two significant changes: a revamp to a somewhat denser, more chaos inducing sound and someone else behind the producer’s desk for the very first time. Myrdin Cerphas from Revelation None and Synodic is twiddling the knobs here and the result is noticeable, the raw essence of Nowhere’s assault is still very intact but now it’s a blistering skin-flaying maelstrom. Wojtek’s creative and at times disturbing guitar work sounds great and his vocals have never been better; the song itself is a muscular, serpentine hell-trip that flows into a bleak, warped acoustic section for the last minute and a half. A suitable close out for the scathing pandemonium that preceeded it, the cherry on top of a track that’s probably the best material I’ve heard from him yet.

All in all it’s an interesting development from the Nowhere camp and one that leaves me intrigued to hear the rest of the album when it drops next year. If you’re into raw chaos, show some support for a single dollar from his Bandcamp below and help him get this thing made.

~

Artist: Ulg

Year: 2017

If you’re in any way a fan of atmospheric black don’t even bother reading this, go straight down and hit that download link at the bottom. If for some reason you still need convincing or just have some time to kill while you’re in the waiting room at the clinic or something, then by all means, read on.

Ulg’s debut release ‘Windark’ is one I didn’t know I was craving until I heard it. Released back in January but somehow escaping my attention until now, sole member J. Marshall has crafted four “odes to mystic naturalism and the folklore of the wilderness” and each and every one is simply stunning. He spends the majority of his time in the wild and it shows, his compositions bleed sincerity, reverence and awe from every note. If I had to draw a lazy comparison I’d say it’s similar to Russians Walknut or possibly Ygg, but that would be doing the material a disservice. Artfully restrained rhythmic drumming from session man Vladyslav Usyk provides the perfect backbone and induces a trancelike state while the majestic layered guitars effortlessly tap into the spirit, danger, shadow and mystery of the natural world. The sound is simple and effective, raw but not totally underdone. Both repetition and melody are utilised with skill, all tracks will likely have you spellbound from beginning to end. Hell, I could listen to ‘Eternal Winter’ alone for days on end and not get tired of it.

I’d hurl my wallet at any label without hesitation to get my hands on a physical of this and I’m sure many others would too, so hopefully someone steps up to the plate and gives this release the treatment it deserves. He’s also as I type this putting the finishing touches on his follow up album due out in January 2018, so rejoice; not long to wait for more of this goodness.

Oh and did I mention he records all his vocals outdoors, immersed in the solitude of the forest? He does. If I haven’t convinced you yet, just grab a name-your-price download anyway and let the music do the talking. Hails.

~

Artist: Graveflowers

Year: 2017

Enigmatic raw USBM act Graveflowers released their third bouquet of scented laudations ‘The Hyacinth Garden’ just over a week ago. I don’t know much about these artists (or artist?), but they call their sound ‘experiments in nocturnal sound and energy’. Well, they’ve nailed the nocturnal part: What instantly came to mind listening to this was Ulver’s seminal classic collection of hymns to the night, ‘Nattens Madrigal’.

Which isn’t saying it’s a straight rip. I mean that more as as compliment. There are many similarities between the two: from the short acoustic interludes to the almost nakedly harsh sound, to the composition of the tracks themselves (tracks like ‘Fear Death By Water’ definitely hark back to the old Norwegian style). Even the folksy natural undertones are present, although switch out Ulver’s Norwegian woods for a more Americana-infused influence. 

They have the experimental part of their descriptor covered too. Their last EP ‘Oleander’ (released four years back, also good) had a heavy noise influence which they’ve toned down this time, but ‘Then Spoke the Thunder’ for example waltzes into earthy post rock/black territory and fucking owns it. On the flip side of that, ‘April is the Cruelest Month’ is total, intense, paranoia inducing terror.

Whoever they are, they’ve sucessfully upped the ante from their previous releases in every aspect; this is an excellent EP. Or mini album, the eight superb tracks on show clock in at a total of twenty-one minutes combined. Check it out at name-your-price download from their Bandcamp with their other releases, tapes are also available from Path of Silence. Great stuff.

~

Artist: Voidcraeft 

Year: 2017

This is pure quality. German microtonal mentalist Voidcraeft has just conjured his fifth slab of furious insanity, ‘Indoctrination of Emptiness’; up for free download as usual. This time around he’s collaborated with US ambient/black metal artist Agonanist and the result is nothing short of mind blowing.

Taking a similar path as Jute Gyte (but far blacker sonically), he also has some interesting and detailed diary-like liner notes on his Bandcamp, describing the release and its creation. I’ll lift some of them here: 

“…I was fascinated by the idea of using dreams as a source of inspiration because I was also reading lots of psychoanalytic drivel by C.G. Jung at the time – most of which I consider highly pseudoscientific in nature, I must add. In fact, I tried to imitate him for a while and started making notes on my own dreams, right after waking up at night. This process is supposed to preserve the narrative of the dream with greater accuracy. I can attest to its necessity. 

My most vivid account from that period was a dream in which a procession of people were accompanying me and a brown cow to a table that resembled the one in the painting The Last Supper. Somebody had placed a colourful crown of flowers on the head of the cow. Nobody spoke a word. Other than the shuffling of our feet, there was no sound to be heard. The expression on their faces was one of complete apathy. It was an eerie atmosphere. They had me take the seat of Jesus in the painting. One of the women milked the cow and placed the bowl of milk in front of me. Then she took the crown and placed it on my head. It seemed like a festive moment but nobody applauded or said a word. I knew they were honouring me for something but I was unable to tell what it was. I drank the milk and placed the empty bowl before me. 

At that point, the dream ended and I could not sleep for another four hours. What does it mean? Are these the religious delusions of an atheist? Hardly so…”

They get far more technical and weirder than that too, just like his music. He has several other releases of intense atmospheric black experimentalism also up for name-your-price download on his Bandcamp, all with fascinating backstory (his previous release ‘Dogma’ is based on a set of composition rules he imposed upon himself after an email exchange with Luciano of I, Voidhanger Records about the Dogme 95 Manifesto of Lars Von Trier and Thomas Vinterberg). A compelling artist that’s well worth investigating; I won’t say much more, start here and dive in.

~

Submissions for possible inclusion in future Volumes welcomed.

Like Black Metal Daily on Facebook for more kvlt sounds and tonal blasphemy.

Bandcamp Misanthropy – Volume 12

The bottomless wellspring of Bandcamp is overflowing with great shit just waiting to be discovered. This series aims to shine light on the freshest emanations and foulest incantations from its darkest corners, a few artists at a time. Here’s the twelfth installment for your vulgar delectation. Enjoy. 

~

Artist: Insanity Cult

Year: 2017

Kicking off, we have what could end up being my favourite Hellenic black metal release of the year. Insanity Cult formed in 2011 and I’ve just discovered their second full-length ‘Of Despair and Self-Destruction’ that was released into the ether about six months ago. To be honest, I wish I’d discovered it earlier. 

This album is a brooding, violent, elegant and somber beast with a deep, dark emotional intensity that grips your soul. Everything has been stripped back, each note drips with passion distilled down to its purest and most potent form. Just try not to feel something while listening to this; it’s a truly moving piece of black art.

The five piece includes Sacreligious from Sores (who were featured in Volumes 2 and 10) on vocals and he absolutely nails it here, sounding both distraught and envenomed in one. The lyrics are despairing and introspective, nihilistic and beautiful. The acoustic introductions and interludes are exquisite and some of the best I’ve heard of late. The production is perfectly done, the songwriting almost flawless.

I could continue to spew superlatives, but I’ll just say: check this album out. Every track here is a winner, they have created something bordering on breathtaking. Name-your-price download with limited tapes still available from Unholy Forces Productions and CDs from Ogmios Underground.

~

Artist: Bubonic Cult

Year: 2017

Another cult, but this time we sink down in a different direction: Sri Lanka’s one man orthodox occultist Bubonic Cult channels total raw death and Satan worship inspired by the horror and destruction of the bubonic plague. 

Not by any stretch is this your typical raw black metal foray. ‘The Grotesque of Desolation’ is two tracks imbued with a twisted sense of wretched melody that truly embodies the despair and inevitable decaying consumption of life caused by the disease, and revels in it. The desolate yet almost jaunty riffs weave a captivating death incantation, ensnaring mind and flesh alike as depraved vocals swathed in reverb devolve on occasion into otherworldly guttural croaks. The overall effect is both haunting and immediate, an esoteric and irresistible evil.

Total death, total support. Up for name-your-price download, as are his other two great releases. Hails.


~

Artist: Crafteon

Year: 2017

You may have seen this one getting a bit of coverage already, unsurprisingly for good reason. USBM four-piece Crafteon self released their debut album a couple of weeks ago and it’s eight tracks of excellent Lovecraft worship with Swedish-style finesse. 

The man HP and his tales of dread have provided inspiration to countless bands since the dawn of heavy music but seldom has it been done this convincingly. Melodic atmosphere reigns supreme here, the exquisitely crafted assault deftly conveying the eldritch horror and dark wonder of the subject matter. You know how it feels when you read Lovecraft? Crafteon is the audio equivalent of that feeling. The moment ‘The Outsider’ bursts from the gates like a storm you’re drawn into this world; from the intensity of the aforementioned opener to the glorious, brooding ‘The Colour out of Space’ and the creeping riff-fest that is ‘From Beyond’, each track has a life of its own and captivates from go to whoa. 

While the savagely mellifluous guitar work is a major strength, it isn’t the only thing that shines. Vocals that vary wildly between commanding rasps and a malignant Abbath-like croak tell the tales with suitable intrigue. The audible bass pulses with nefarious life, pumping blood through the tracks while the driving mostly mid-paced rhythmic drumming provides a powerful backbone for the great old one as it rises from the murky unknown depths to rend your mind asunder, gibbering in incoherent cosmic terror.

Another release where it’s frankly hard to believe it’s their debut due to the level of quality on display, I’d wager these wraiths get picked up by a label fairly shortly. If you’re a fan of Lovecraftian mythos and/or good Swedish black/black metal in general, pick this up without hesitation. If not, you’re a weirdo but pick it up anyway. Name-your-price download with a few physical copies also remaining if you’re quick.

~

Artist: Void Terror

Year: 2017

Who doesn’t like a bit of death metal, blackened, old school as fuck and reeking of the crypt? Nobody, that’s who. US cult Void Terror’s first demo ‘Soul Harvest’ is a two track tour-de-force of sick riffs that will flay off your skin and crush your bones to dust.

With a sound verging between pure headbanging pulverisation and tomb-rotting miasma rattling from decaying ribcages, the four piece have summoned an absolutely killer as fuck demo. I’m a huge fan of everything about this, from the drums to the vocals to the actual songs themselves. And it isn’t just a nostalgia trip, oh no; while it pays homage to the greats it more than holds up in the modern death/black arena. Play this for anyone and you’re almost guaranteed a result.

At name-your-price, get on this shit stat. And to these gents: Kindly hurry up and release a full length, I’ve played the shit out of this already. Cheers.

~

Artist: Intrinsic Light / Expurgatory

Year: 2017

And finally in the tradition of keeping the most challenging release ’til last, we have the experimental split between Australians Intrinsic Light and Expurgatory. Both of these artists have a few releases behind them, but I’ve only recently discovered them with this split… And what a split it is.

Intrinsic Light have the first side and the duo label themselves ‘Blackened Zen’, saying they “alchemically meld exploratory entheogenic improvisation with sporadic shakra-surges of blackened mantra metal vibrationally filling the air with necromindfulness so dense it blasts directly into the Third Ear, forcing one’s spirit to simultaneously ascend North of Nirvana and descend South of Hell”. What that means is over the course of their two tracks it sounds like you’re riding a wave of consciousness in raw black metal form that devolves and reconstructs through transcendental stages, varying in intensity.

When I say transcendental, I don’t mean the polished or cosmic transcendentalism prevalent in many acts; it’s more raw, the “earthy meditating Buddhist monks in a forest temple” type. It isn’t rushed or immediate, it’s made to alter your consciousness and reach new inner planes of existence; and it balances the knife edge of it’s proto-black Jekyll and Hyde side perfectly.

Expurgatory however, are a whole different proposition that somehow still works and flows seamlessly on from Intrinsic Light’s already mind-blowing side. The seven piece’s first track ‘Grand Union’ is blackened noise rock, dreamlike female vocals over a harsh concoction of laconic whimsy. Great stuff, swathes of distortion helping the etherial quality of the music wash over you and tangibly loosen all your muscles, both mental and physical as you relax into the noise.

If Intrinsic Light’s side is more meditative in its black intentions, Expurgatory’s is like a daydream that becomes progressively more disturbing. It eventually culminates in their second track: a spectacularly dark, disassociative ambient spoken word cover of a track by a deceased pop artist (!) that I won’t say too much about as it simply has to be experienced for yourself.

A raw, authentic and exploratory release, it’s like nothing I’ve heard before and for those who aren’t afraid to listen to a wider scope of darkness than just blast beats, quite mind expanding. At first glance it may not be for the faint at heart simply by way of the stratospheric tangents it fires itself off into, but spend some time with it and you’ll find it incredibly rewarding. The sheer range of emotion and styles this release goes through in four tracks is spectacular, unfolding like a flower hidden away for centuries that you discover at the perfect moment as it blooms and then dies; a captivating and humbling event only your eyes have ever seen, and ever will. And you’ll never be able to adequately explain it to anyone.

Released through label YNTPM (You Need To Practice More) there’s only one single physical copy left for purchase; if you miss out console yourself with a name-your-price download available from Expurgatory’s Bandcamp below, or Intrinsic Light’s here.

EDIT: All physical copies now sold.

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Submissions for possible inclusion in future Volumes are welcome.

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