Wednesday, December 23, 2015

ANTICOSM – Anticosm

Anticosm – Anticosm (2015, Born of Chaos Records)

In the vein of the Thrash metal revival of the five last years, Anticosm is a New Jersey band that likes to mix genres and use the template of Black/Thrash metal. With melodic riffings and fast songs like the opener ‘’Kill or Be Killed’’ they set a pace for fans of Destruction, Sodom, and many other early German Thrash metal manifestations.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

ABYTHIC – A Full Negation of Existence [EP]

Abythic – A Full Negation of Existence [EP] (2015, Metal Inquisition Records)

Coming from Germany, Old School Death metal band, Abythic, has released an interesting EP containing four songs of pure growls à la Bolt Thrower, Asphyx, and Grave. With a melodic guitar riffing accompanying their simple but yet effective pounding sound of a perfect blend between American Death metal and European melodic oriented acts, Abythic represents a little bit of everything every Death metal fan is looking for.

Monday, December 21, 2015


Heervader / Ancestor’s Blood [Split] (2015, Heidens Hart Records)

Originally announced many years ago as a 7" EP split, this was upgraded to a full length album split, featuring over 20 minutes of unique music for both bands. It was expanded for two reasons: the first for not wanting to split up the three Heervader tracks, as they were originally written and recorded as three songs part of a whole. The second reason was the high quality recordings that were made of Ancestors Blood's last ever live appearance at the 2014 Veneration Of The Dead festival in the Netherlands. Three songs were picked from this magical ritual, as they are way too good to be left on the shelves.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

BONE GNAWER – Canale Di Carneficina [EP]

Bone GnawerCanale Di Carneficina [EP](2015, Metal Inquisition Records)

This EP of crushing Death metal from Bone Gnawer comes in a time when Rogga Johansson just left the band to form other projects like Echelon’s strong first offering. Here we are in the Incantation, Cannibal Corpse, and Suffocation Death metal territories with Bone Gnawer.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

SADIST – Hyena

Sadist – Hyena (2015, Scarlet Records)

Legendary Italian Death metallers of Sadist have done it again with another really tight record that keeps this genre that is mixing early Death metal and Thrash into a progressive territory.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Best Metal of 2015

This is a companion piece to my Top 10 Best music of 2015.

Best Music of 2015

Here it is the mandatory year end list; my own top 10 of the best music of 2015. Surprise, no Adele!

Enjoy and please share your picks!

IL VUOTO - Weakness

Il Vuoto - Weakness (2015, Satanarsa Records)

This North Italian one-man project by Matteo Gruppi (Chiral) is a 2015 phenomenon that is in vein with Bell Witch, Skepticism, and other Funeral Doom metal new projects.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

COSTIN CHIOREANU – The Quest For A Morning Star

Music Review : Costin Chioreanu – The Quest For A Morning Star (2015, Avantgarde Music)

Written and recorded to raise funds for the victims of the Bucharest fire that happened on October 30 2015 at the Collective nightclub that killed 60 people and injured 151. The profits of this release will be donated to pay medical bills and funeral expenses of those who have been affected by the fire.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

GRAVE FORSAKEN – The Fight Goes On

Music Review : Grave Forsaken – The Fight Goes On (2015, Soundmass)

Just like Iron Maiden and New Wave equal the 1980’s, thrash metal more often than not is the same case if not a nostalgia of a time or a form of music once iconic but now a shadow of itself. In fact, don’t even get me started about power metal. However, when I discover a band worth my notice I won’t stop at its genre or music boundary in any form.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

NEURONIA – Under The Same Sky

Music Review : Neuronia – Under The Same Sky (2015, Self-released)

Straight out of Poland, Neuronia have released their third full lenght record on December 14th and are preaching the Heavy/Thrash metal flag high and loud. In the vein of Trial or Trivium, Neuronia makes contemporary thrash metal of short songs and orthodox song structures for the genre.

Monday, December 14, 2015

ECHELON - Indulgence over Abstinence Behind the Obsidian Veil

Music Review : Echelon - Indulgence over Abstinence Behind the Obsidian Veil (2015, Metal Inquisition Records)

With frontman Dave Ingram (ex-Bolt Thrower and ex-Benediction) and Rogga Johansson of numerous projects on all instruments, Echelon is an old-school Death metal monolithic band of grand scale. The familiar Bolt Thrower vocals of Englishman Ingram are one thing that helps the familiarity of the sound of Echelon while Johansson pounds on the drums and plays all the instruments just as good as any four piece band.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

MGLA - Exercises in Futility

Mgła – Exercises in Futility (2015, No Solace | Northern Heritage)

While it almost felt into my blindspot category of 2015, the third full length album by Polish black metallers, Mgła, is one of the most celebrated releases of the genre this year. With six intense songs of pure black metal with a melodic undertone of a solid yet typical guitar riffing. Typical but above the rest in contemporary black metal. Exercises in Futility unravels as this complete and dense album that delivers a true to the best of the heritage of the genre but also with a contemporary production that give justice to the grandeur and depth of their music.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

SIVYJ YAR – Burial Shrouds

Music Review : Sivyj Yar – Burial Shrouds (2015, Avantgarde Music)

Highly prolific band or one man band, Sivyj Yar (an ancient deity of Slavs) and its sole member Vladimir from Russia, has released five albums since 2009. With lyrics recalling the early times of Varg Vikernes in the infamous Norwegian black metal scene, Sivyj Yar is navigating between thrash metal, black metal, avant-garde, and even post-rock. There’s also a huge sensibility of progressive rock of the 1970’s and a bit of distant shoegazing that the music evokes.

Friday, December 11, 2015

ABSOLUTUS - Pugnare in iis quae obtinere non possis

Coming out of Belgium, Absolutus are a nihilistic black metal band that has evolve from a traditional black metal sound to a more experimental ensemble creating eerie atmospheres and out of this world darkness. As a contemporary black metal release at 33 minutes this is a concise record. This really pays off as the band shows tenure and a great use of editing.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

CRYPT SERMON – Out of the Garden

Crypt Sermon – Out of the Garden (2015, Dark Descent)

Getting into the album Out of the Garden took me a while and despite all the praise and positive buzz around the album, I was not able to complete a listen of the entire album since it came out. So in an attempt to complete my year end lists I revisited earlier releases of 2015 and I fell on Crypt Sermon and saw that Pitchfork, Angry Metal Guy +1, and even Fenriz even put it on their essentials. So like the good sheep that I am I followed those shepherds to finally find what they heard that I didn’t.

HEIMSDALLS WACHT – Der Untergang der alten Welt

Music Review : Heimsdalls Wacht – Der Untergang der alten Welt (2006-2015, Heidens Hart Records)

Rising from the earth of Gemany in 2004, Heimsdalls Wacht are a duo performing solid revivalist black metal from the early 1990’s à la Gorgoroth, Satyricon, and Ulver. Without falling into the corny Darkthrone or Emperor wannabe easy path that too many trve Norwegian black metal acts have fell into, Heimsdalls Wacht have a solid and well produced piece of metal.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

CULT LEADER - Lightess Walk

Music Review : Cult Leader -  Lightess Walk (2015, Deathwish)

The label Deathwish of Converge member Jacob Bannon has been releasing iconoclastic underground bands since its debuts. With the latest release of Cult Leader’s Lightless Walk, we are into Converge-like territories of the Jane Doe era. Read here : a hardcore band that is playing on the boundaries of many genres of metal.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015


Beaten to Death - Unplugged (2015, Mas-Kina)

Back in my college years I had a huge grindcore kick and I spined bands like Brutal Truth, Spazz, Soilent Green, Anal Cunt, Agoraphobic Nosebleed, Swallowing Shit, Pig Destroyer, Rotten Sound, and Nasum. When Mieszko Talarczyk, Nasum frontman died in the infamous Thailand tsunamis back in 2004, my interest kind of slowed down a bit. Mainly because Nasum was the best grindcore band of the moment and the genre was getting a bit tired on me.

Monday, December 7, 2015

WINDHAND – Grief’s Infernal Flower

Windhand – Grief’s Infernal Flower (2015, Relapse)

With the explosion of doom metal bands of the recent years, Windhand have maintained a slight advance in their popularity even when they went too into their own music with Soma. However, with the much awaited Grief’s Infernal Flower they finally release an album that has depth, flavor, and uniformity.

What stands out the most in this mastery of the Black Sabbath genre is the presence of singer Dorthia Cottrell with her hypnotic exact voice. She is haunting and she is the reason this album might be the best doom metal release of 2015 and without a doubt the best Windhand record to date.


Sunday, December 6, 2015

CORRECTIONS HOUSE – Know How To Carry a Whip

Corrections House – Know How To Carry a Whip (2015, Neurot)

Formed of Scott Kelly (Neurosis), Bruce Lamont (Yakuza), Mike IX Williams (Eyehategod), Sanford Parker (Minsk) and Seward Fairbury, Corrections House is the cohesive collaboration of those great minds in the making of the sophomore album that is Know How To Carry a Whip.

With Industrial sonorities and the perfect balance of aggressivity and heaviness, Corrections House developped a grey coloured album that is bleak and uninvinting. Upcaling all the Ministry wannabes, the Neurosis sound and the groove of Eyehategod produce a nice effect to counter the repetitive blandness of the Industrial genre. Merging noise and sludge and the ever influence of Swans, KHTCaW is certainly a must for 2015.

At my first listen I was not sure about the album but as with the repeated listens I dived more and more into the qualities and themes that CH have brought with their second album.


Saturday, December 5, 2015


Royal Headache - High (2015, What’s Your Rupture?)

Not being a fan of garage rock doesn’t make me repulsive about it at all. This is why I plugged into Royal Headache’s High with not much expectations. It was probably for the best. With the first song I got hooked and I liked every song with pretty much the same appreciation. This is the kind of record I would put on repeat in my car while driving the nine hours ride to NYC that I do countless times.

This is also a record I would recommend to many of my musician friends that are vinyls aficionados. In fact, I bet this record is fantastic on a turntable. Worth mentioning, I listened to the digital version of this album.


Friday, December 4, 2015

The Body & Krieg

The Body & Krieg (2015, At a Loss)

According to Wikipedia The Body is a sludge metal band. Well, if you take this source as the unique way to be informed you may be wrong and when on bandcamp we learn that Chip King is the voice and Neill Jameson from the American black metal act Krieg adds harsh vocals. Just like the description aforementioned, The Body & Krieg is the result of long recording sessions. It sounds like songs devopped out of repeated beats and sound explorations. You may add the terms industrial and noise to the mix.

With structures reminding of Godflesh and even Swans, the screeches are rougher than many black metal outfits. It might not be the most accessible record of the Industrial revival but probably an interesting offering for the genre.

Personally, I doubt I will be repeating my listens of this record even if I find it to be unique and genuine. It lacks of real evolution and appeal.


Thursday, December 3, 2015

BJÖRK - Vulnicura

Björk - Vulnicura (2015, One Little Indian)

Iceland’s musicians have a sobriety and a dark approach to music that few artists have achieved. Just look at the wide audience of the masters of Sigur Ros. While established and world reknowned Björk is one of Scandinavia’s most praised artist.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015


Horrendous - Araneta (2015, Dark Descent)

In the recent years many genres have stagnate and left fans biting again and again in their old classics saying : they don’t make them like this anymore. Even the greats like Iron Maiden and Slayer have more or less missed the mark this year. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

KRISIUN – Forged In Fury

Krisiun – Forged In Fury (2015, Century Media)

Technical death metal can be brutal and satisfying in its way of tight, fast changes of tempos and aggressive mastery of instruments.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015


Thy Catafalque - Sgùrr (2015, Season of Mist)

Avant-Garde mastermind Tamas Katai from Hungary has been forging a kind of music originally closer to black metal but evolving in a way that transcends genres and labels. Using a large array of instruments and sonorities, the experiments of Thy Catafalque are fast, engaging, and have enough time to unfold as the songs evolve and unveil their labyrinthine structures. At some point, there’s a eerie sense of contemporary but also timeless experience with Sgùrr even more than with Rengeteg.

Monday, November 2, 2015

VHOL – Deeper Than Sky

VHOL – Deeper Than Sky (2015, Profound Lore)

The supergroup that is VHOL delivers again the product of a real supergroup and not just a record of big known names making average music that will sell. With Mike Scheidt (YOB) on vocals, two ex-Ludicra of John Cobbett (Hammers of Misfortune) and Aesop Dekker (Agalloch) together with bassist Sigrid Sheie (Hammers of Misfortune, ex-Amber Asylum) we are in for what a metal album should sound like.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

THE NEGATION - Memento Mori

The Negation -  Memento Mori (2015, Kaotoxin Records)

Coming out of France, The Negation is probably the best incarnation of the extreme metal that the Swedish, self labeled as a black metal outfit, Dark Funeral has started back in 1993. It took me many listens of Memento Mori to be able to really grasp their sound and really make my mind on their music. In many cases when an album has to be repeatedly listened to be fully chewed, it is a positive sign.

Monday, October 19, 2015

THE ORDER OF APOLLYON – The Sword and the Dagger

The Order of Apollyon – The Sword and the Dagger (2015, Listenable Records)

The genre of death metal has been saturated for years with hundred of bands releasing hundreds of records every year. Honestly, it is not my usual cup of tea except for obvious acts like Nile, Cryptopsy, Possessed, Suffocation, and Dying Fetus. Other than that, I have struggled with my allegiance with the genre.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

TEMPLE OF BAAL – Mysterium

Temple of Baal – Mysterium (2015, Agonia Records)

Coming out of France, the blackened death metal act of Temple of Baal has been active since 1998. We often hear the mix of the genres that are black and death metal, done so many times, and almost as a single formula. With that in mind, I entered into this album with no real expectations. Added to that, I am more a black metal fan than a fan of death metal, so I can be very critical when it comes to those genres. Especially when mixed together.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

GODSPEED YOU! BLACK EMPEROR – Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress

Godspeed You! Black Emperor – Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress (2015, Constellation)

The outfit of Godspeed You! Black Emperor has never hidden its allegiance to their positions, politics, or views on the world. However, the post-rock group never really caressed the desire to break into mainstream or the music business. Without any announces their most recent releases ‘Allelujah! Don’t Bend Ascend! and Asunder, Sweet and Other Distress were good records but not groundbreaking as Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

HORNA – Hengen Tulet

Horna – Hengen Tulet (2015, World Terror Committee)

Interestingly enough, lately I’ve been catching on black metal bands that I’ve been ignorant of and that have been around for a good time; first with Tsjuder and now Horna. Both were formed in 1993, Tsjuder from Norway and Horna is from Finland. Surprisingly enough, both bands have been at their craft and kept it true to its origins without overselling to other genres or to reach a wider audience.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

GORGOROTH – Instinctus Bestialis

Gorgoroth – Instinctus Bestialis (2015, Soulseller Records)

After a series of Black Metal Hall of fame potential records, Norwegian band Gorgoroth has been a ridiculous caricature of itself. Aligning a huge criminal record from its members and a legal dispute over the band’s name, it is almost an historic worthy of soap opera.

Friday, October 2, 2015

DEAFHEAVEN – New Bermuda

Deafheaven – New Bermuda (2015, Anti-)

It was not until last year that I discovered Deafheaven’s sophomore album Sunbather and their mix of my favorite genre in music black metal with a genre I’m not that connoisseur of, shoegaze. It was around October that I immersed myself in songs like ‘’The Pecan Tree’’ and ‘’Dream House’’. I gave them a somewhat high score but not the highest I ever gave to a new album. Why?

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

BRANDON FLOWERS – The Desired Effect

Brandon Flowers – The Desired Effect (2015, Island Records)

Stuck in the 80’s since his debut in music, Brandon Flowers who’s also the lead singer of dream pop, alt rock, post-punk band The Killers, who released two of the best albums of the 2000’s Hot Fuss and Sam’s Town. While Flowers with his first solo album, Flamingo has digged more into his influences and use the easy hooks and 1980’s pop populate his album.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

OBSEQUIAE – Aria of Vernal Tombs

Obsequiae – Aria of Vernal Tombs (2015, 20 Buck Spin)

Released in June this year, the second album of Obsequiae, Aria of Vernal Tombs, is a rich metal album that blends medieval music without being folk, viking, or out there too much. The parallel with Ophtalamia and early Ulver albums is quite obvious for a black metal fan. But for the common metal enthusiast, Obsequiae is a different offering in the sounds and blend of music and textures.

TSJUDER – Antiliv

Tsjuder – Antiliv (2015, Season Of Mist)

In this era of saturated genre albums, especially a genre where evolution or departure from the original guidelines is often quickly discarded. In the black metal genre, many good records are released each year. However, a few are or are potentially labeled as great.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

NILE – What Should Not Be Unearthed

Nile – What Should Not Be Unearthed (2015, Nuclear Blast)

To state that I am a fan of the Ancient Egypt themed Technical Death Metal band Nile would be an understatement. For more than fifteen years I’ve spined each and every one of their albums endlessly. Trying to play them on the drums, as a soundtrack to my many hours on a snowboard and skateboard. And in the spring of 2014 I finally had the luck to watch them live in my hometown. I was in trance for the whole show and knew every song, every riff, and every drum combo.

Monday, September 7, 2015

BEACH HOUSE – Depression Cherry

Beach House – Depression Cherry (2015, Bella Union / Mistletone / Sub Pop)

The dream pop duo of Beach House formed in 2004 has release a series of widely celebrated albums. With their latest, Depression Cherry, they are doing a return to their original form of more minimalistic music and a more guitar oriented wall of sound. 

LEVIATHAN – Scar Sighted

Leviathan – Scar Sighted (2015, Profound Lore)

From criminal to rehabilitated metalhead, Jeff Whitehead or Wrest is coming back with another album on the excellent label Profound Lore. 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015


Myrkur - M (2015, Relapse Records)

After making a burst into the black metal community with her EP in 2014, Myrkur, or Amalie Bruun, has united forces with producer and member of Ulver, Garm, Teloch from Mayhem and Sir of Nidingr to make one of the most idiosyncratic metal albums of 2015.

Thursday, August 13, 2015


Music Review : Krallice – Ygg Huur (2015, self-released)

Since ten years or so, American black metal has been revigorating the metal world with new band tenures and new extremity in a music that is probably the most repellent for the occasional listener. Of all those American bands, Krallice might be the most unique in sound with an almost metalcore clarity and a death metal intensity.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015


Tame Impala – Currents (2015, Interscope)

Kevin Parker’s band, Tame Impala has been on a series of successes since its debut in 2007. First with Innerspeaker and then with Lonerism with which he earned a lot of money with the song Elephant only. The much awaited Currents is, to me, reaching in the spheres of Daft Punk’s Random Access Memory. In the way that it is far from the usual records I would listen by myself. It brought me out of my comfort zone, which is underground extreme forms of metal.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

LOCRIAN – Infinite Dissolution

Music Review : Locrian – Infinite Dissolution (2015, Relapse Records)

While most Black metal bands are centered about the dark themes in human nature, the new generation of American black metal bands have taken an approach near light and the human introspection. This anti-conformism of a very conformist and hermetic genre is giving a fresh breath to a genre that could have stayed deeply rooted in its origins of Satan worshipers and underground influenced bands like Discharge and Black Flag.

Friday, June 12, 2015

AKITSA – Grands Tyrans

Akitsa – Grands Tyrans (2015, Hospital Productions)

While opening with Dévoilé like most of the primitive black metal origins of the vein of early Ulver and Darkthrone the Montréal based band led by O.T. pushes its listener into a path that black metal territories have been visited for almost thirty years of lo-fi recordings, distant drumming, scratchy strident guitars, and desperate screams. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

IRON MAIDEN – The Book of Souls

Iron Maiden – The Book of Souls (2015, Parlophone, Sanctuary Copyrights/BMG)

Of the few bands that can be the best introduction to Metal music in general, Iron Maiden along Metallica are the two sure shots that almost anyone knows and loves or hates. For me, Iron Maiden represents Heavy Metal and the band that stayed true to its roots despite success, waves of grunge and alternative rock, line-up changes, etc. So to have a new record in 2015 is precious and intriguing. After such a huge career, aging, sickness, and more, Iron Maiden still make new music and will embark on a huge world tour involving their singer/pilot Bruce Dickinson taking the lead in both positions.

Friday, May 1, 2015

BELL WITCH - Four Phantoms

Music Review : Bell Witch – Four Phantoms (2015, Profound Lore)

Following their first effort of 2012, Longing, the funeral doom duo of Dylan Desmond on bass and Adrian Guerra on drums delivers one of the greatest piece of music of 2015 with Four Phantoms.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

TRIBULATION – The Children of the Night

Tribulation – The Children of the Night (2015, Century Media)

Coming from Sweden, the black/death impersonating of progressive rock metal of Tribulation might be the next Ghost B.C. but with greater depth the quartet brings aggressivity and hanger to a genre that seemed to be topped by Katatonia and the likes.

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