ROTTING CHRIST – Κατά τον δαίμονα εαυτού

I have noticed that there is a large variety found in heavy metal. Yes, I understand this is probably completely breaking news to you, but there is a lot of it out there. What I really mean is that, aside from styles and thematic qualities, metal, like other forms of music, has more specific aesthetic attributes. The past year’s albums have been a wide array of musicians who live between being more tied to the realm of reality or a part of a fictional universe. Previously, the newest Darkthrone feels…

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PAYSAGE D’HIVER – Das Tor

Paysage d'Hiver - Das Tor (2013)

And this is how the world ends — under the soft howl of windscapes. In a conversation last week I was describing the Swiss act Paysage d’Hiver as a popular black metal band. Certainly this is true as the one man project and offshoot of Darkspace has gained an impressive following due to a string of demo releases and splits. Most certainly, Paysage d’Hiver could be thought of as popular within the very small microcosm of atmospheric black metal. Even commercial by some standard. However, if one were to step a…

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XANTHOCHROID – Blessed He With Boils

XANTHOCHROID - Blessed He With Boils (2012)

California quintet Xanthochroid’s debut album “Blessed He With Boils” is a combination of everything that’s right with modern Metal. It is sophisticated yet savage, theatrical without being silly, virtuosic but not self-indulgent. It takes all of the best aspects of forward-thinking bands like Emperor and Opeth and executes them marvelously while maintaining an original artistic voice. The modern Metal landscape is saturated with bands trying to be as loud and/or technical as possible in a desperate attempt to be noticed, but Xanthochroid elects to set themselves apart from the crowd…

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MORS PRINCIPIUM EST – …and Death Said Live

Oh melodic death. It has been awhile. Though your style offers many positive qualities, like catchy guitar solos and songs rife with energy, I tend to always miss the high points in your release history. I seem to always be caught up over at the black metal bar or looking for old heavy metal from the 70’s or getting beat up by old school death metal in an alley. We have not sat down and talked in a while, so I am here. I am clearing my schedule just for…

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LIGHTNING SWORDS OF DEATH – Baphometic Chaosium

Image is important in heavy metal. In fact, the whole history of heavy metal can be thought of as suburban kids pretending to be badasses. Okay, that sounds terrible, but it is true that image is an important aspect in heavy metal as it can either be used well or terribly. When attempting to sell ideas of darkness, damnation, and lawless evil, it takes a well crafted pitch. A well crafted pitch can carry a record to greatness. Perhaps a suit and a powerpoint is necessary. Perhaps the complete breakdown…

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