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Ixion – Return (Finisterian Dead End)

Ixion – Return (Finisterian Dead End)

There have always been two elements to Ixion’s sound – the funeral doom slog and the uplifting keyboard vibes to balance it all out. It worked nicely on Into the Void, which was more what most would consider to be an outright doom album even.. Read More
Caïnan Dawn - F.O.H.A.T. (Osmose)

Caïnan Dawn – F.O.H.A.T. (Osmose)

Caïnan Dawn’s last opus hit me like a lorry load of corpse paint. Rumbling, muscular black metal with a mission to drown you in wave upon wave of bass-heavy sound that requires nothing more of you than to stop, listen and give yourself up to.. Read More
Nazghor - Infernal Aphorism (Non Serviam)

Nazghor – Infernal Aphorism (Non Serviam)

It, quite rightly, takes a lot for a black metal album to impress these days. So when one lands from a Swedish band with five albums already under their belt, you can’t help but brace for a journeyman effort with plenty of corpse paint and.. Read More
The Spirit – Sounds From The Vortex (Eternal Echoes)

The Spirit – Sounds From The Vortex (Eternal Echoes)

If you’re used to judging a band by its name and album cover then you may already have decided to skip past The Spirit – but that, my friend, would have been a mistake. Because Sounds From the Vortex is actually some pretty solid black.. Read More
Saiva – Markerna Bortom (Nordvis)

Saiva – Markerna Bortom (Nordvis)

Swedish melancholy folk metal band Saiva have been out in the wilderness somewhere or other concocting the strange old brew of pagan melodies for a few years now. Until now, they’ve dropped the odd single and a split with Grift – which turns out to.. Read More
Mekigah - Autexousious (Aesthetic Death)

Mekigah – Autexousious (Aesthetic Death)

There’s some solid stuff coming out on label Aesthetic Death whether it’s the sludgy, blackened doom of Ketch or the equally highly recommended quirky black metal of Lashblood. Indeed, it’s a label that’s becoming known for its appreciation of the avant-garde. That in itself is.. Read More
Monarch - Never Forever (Profound Lore)

Monarch – Never Forever (Profound Lore)

Monarch sets new lows when it comes to depressive, harrowing doom. Often only sparsely populated with what you might dismissively call music and more often bordering on ambient ‘noise’, this is a band that is intense, emotionally testing but clearly rewarding for those willing to.. Read More
Portrait – Burn The World (Metal Blade)

Portrait – Burn The World (Metal Blade)

Anyone who loves speed metal, but can’t stand the lashings of cheese usually served up by the speedier Euro brand of power metal, should love Portrait. The first album back in 2008 was a blast – a fantastic band still finding their feet. But it.. Read More
Hands of Orlac / The Wandering Midget - Split (Cruz Del Sur)

Hands of Orlac / The Wandering Midget – Split (Cruz Del Sur)

I don’t know if there’s some cryptic message here that only truly makes sense when you’re seriously stoned, but something feels so fitting about the collaboration between The Wandering Midget and Hands of Orlac as if the two, albeit imaginary and abstract characters, might have.. Read More
Drudkh / Paysage d’Hiver – Somewhere Sadness Wanders / Schnee (IV) (Season Of Mist)

Drudkh / Paysage d’Hiver – Somewhere Sadness Wanders / Schnee (IV) (Season Of Mist)

Drudkh’s recent wave of splits feels like they have been a liberating experience for the band. Free from the relative confines of producing a full crop’s worth of Ukrainian grief and solitude, the Drudkh frontman Roman Sayenko et al have been spending time cultivating and.. Read More
Lęk – Shadows of Black Souls (Wolfspell)

Lęk – Shadows of Black Souls (Wolfspell)

While I had a soft spot for Lęk’s first release Sweven a few years ago (time flies, it was back in 2014) it didn’t achieve enough across its 40 minute span to raise itself clearly enough above the pack. This time round we’ve seen a.. Read More
Wolvenguard – Elemental Reclamation (S/R)

Wolvenguard – Elemental Reclamation (S/R)

Here’s a tempting treat for anyone whose tastes linger at the blackened end of the melodic death metal spectrum – Amon Amarth, Kataklysm, Immortal. Yes, you say, but I’ve listened to all that Viking death metal stuff a thousand times, moved on, had a few.. Read More