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Author Frank Allain

A dedicated Whitesnake enthusiast and a man who has been embroiled in the London extreme metal scene for the last fifteen years or so, I have been providing my self-important musings on metal for Ave Noctum (formerly Metal Team) for a few years now. Pomposity, harshness and a general distaste for beige ‘extreme-metal-by-numbers’ are my primary traits although I have been known to show the odd moment of weakness in the face of suitably muscular power metal. I’m also quite pretentious and will happily waffle on about electronica, classical music, neofolk and all that sort of stuff in an effort not to come across like a narrow-minded metal git. Which is clearly what I am.

Ghostbound – All is Phantom (ATMF)

Originally conceived as a solo project by Brooklyn-based musician/actor (actor?) Alec Head to deliver themes of loss, grief and isolation via the medium of atmospheric black metal, Ghostbound has since expanded into a ‘full’ band and now presents the world… Continue Reading →

Abigor – Hollenzwang (Chronicles of Perdition) – Avantgarde

I have a bit of a confession to make – I absolute love early Abigor. From ‘Verwustung/Invoke the Dark Age’ through to ‘Supreme Immortal Art’, the Austrian trio managed to encapsulate everything that was intoxicating to me about black metal… Continue Reading →

Aosoth – V: The Inside Scriptures (Agonia)

Has it really been four years since the last Aosoth full-length (IV: Arrow In Heart)? Man, time flies. It seems like only the other day that that record landed and further cemented Aosoth’s position as being one of the more… Continue Reading →

Blaze of Perdition – Conscious Darkness (Agonia)

Blaze of Perdition really had a point to make with their last album, 2015’s ‘Near Death Revelations’. Coming off of the back of a terrible road accident in which one member was killed and two others injured, it was doubtless… Continue Reading →

Blut Aus Nord – Deus Salutis Maea (Debemur Morti Productions)

In my (perhaps not-so-humble) opinion, Blut Aus Nord mastermind Vindsval is one of the most under-heralded geniuses within the black metal scene. For over two decades, he has quietly gone about his business under the BaN moniker to craft some… Continue Reading →

Mausoleum Gate – Into A Dark Divinity (Cruz de la Sur Music)

I really quite enjoyed Mausoleum Gate’s 2014 self-titled debut – it was a spirited serving of 70s-inspired ‘proto metal’ with enough of a whiff of hammer horror ghoulishness and deftness of songwriting touch to elevate it above much of the… Continue Reading →

Ofermod – Sol Nox (Shadow Records)

Well over a decade or so ago, Ofermod were much discussed in hushed, whispered tones throughout the underground. Their ‘Mysterion Tes Anomias’ EP had been doing the circuit for some time and – highly regarded piece of art as it… Continue Reading →

Windswept – The Great Cold Steppe (Season of Mist)

Windswept represents yet another outlet for the prolific mind behind some of the most renowned acts to have emerged from Ukraine over the last fifteen years (Hate Forest, Drudkh, Blood of Kingu) – one Roman Saenko – to engage in… Continue Reading →

Hetroertzen – Uprising of the Fallen (Listenable Records)

Fifteen years in and the Swedish-via-Chile outfit Hetroertzen show no signs of reigning back on their committed, transcendental approach to blasphemic black metal. ‘Uprising of the Fallen’, their sixth full-length (and first for Listenable) continues in the tradition of previous… Continue Reading →

Rome in Monochrome – Karma Anubis (Wintersleep Records)

Now I’m sorry but this is just incredibly frustrating – a band comes to the table with a lengthy biography, extensive details on the band members’ past activities and some bold pronouncements of blending post rock, shoegaze and doom. Sounds… Continue Reading →

Klimt 1918 – Sentimentale Jugend (Prophecy)

Every now and then, a record comes out of the blue that takes you totally by surprise – and Klimt 1918’s first album in eight years is very much one of those releases. The initial signs were not hugely promising… Continue Reading →

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