So as everyone from the southern hemisphere has apparently noticed, a record of the month for February has not actually be chosen. This is, honestly, because the month really didn’t shine like one would hope it would have. Not to say that none of the records were good or even very good – they were! — but while others at the blog were fairly enthusiastic about certain releases, none of them really reached the heights that I think they should have to be awarded with the Record o’ the Month with ease. Still, a tradition is a tradition, and Angry Metal Readers have been pestering me non-stop about it. So, here it is.

The Record o’ the Month of February, 2013 is Cnoc An Tursa The Giants of Auld. While some have smeared this record, accusing the band of sounding like a band of unworthy Swiss galavantars (who shall go unnamed here out of my disdain for them), I prefer to think of them as free-thinking Scottish nationalists who finally have taken up kilts and decided to declare their independence from God and Queen. I’ll take that over any group of faux-Germans pretending to be from Scotland and just ripping off Dark Tranquillity riffs. Anyway, beyond defending Cnoc An Tursa‘s honor against needless smears, this is just a damned fine melodic black metal record. It is recommended that you check it out. Boom. Passive form. How do you like them apples, bitches?

Cnoc An tursa

Runners Up: 

Audrey Horne - YoungbloodAudrey Horne // Youngblood — According to the honorable (and venerable) Steel Druhm, Audrey Horne‘s latest release grew on him and he’s since continued to come back to it. I, too, like the old school, playful feel that these Norwegians break out on this rowdy romp of rock n’ roll rebelliousness and return to it regularly. Sure, it’s old school – and therefore by its very nature dated – but it’s hard to argue with such righteous songs. Pop this one in on a Friday night at a party and you will be guaranteed a good time. Even if the vocalist does remind me of the band Atomic Boy.

Steven Wilson - The Raven that Refused to Sing (and Other Stories)Steven Wilson // The Raven that Refused to Sing (and Other Stories) — Both Alex and I agree that Steven Wilson really hit a homerun with his new record The Raven that Refused to Sing (and its Overlong Title). The prog is good, and while it’s not pushing the boundaries of what we understand prog to be (a hard thing to do if you think about it since it’s prog… oh god, my head hurts), but it’s still a motherfucking rad record with a lot of really cool stuff on it. Seriously, buy it on vinyl, play it through your nice system and enjoy it.

The Fall of Every SeasonThe Fall of Every Season // Amends — Alright, this record definitely belongs on this list and I should have put it here. For fans of proggy doom, this record really hit the sweet spot. It was like a sweet mixture of old Katatonia and Opeth with seriously immense growls. The songs are long, but depending on who you are that probably works well for you and the tracks are melodic as shit. The big problem is that it’s so over mastered that you can’t listen to it in any speakers that don’t suck. So, put your cans away and pull out your ‘ear buds,’ otherwise you’ll get too much crackling.

Omnium Gatherum - BeyondOmnium Gatherum // Beyond — It has been brought to my attention that I am the only person who thought that Omnium Gatherum‘s new record was meh. Everyone else around here thinks that it was a really great record and that while it wasn’t quite living up to the fresh and enrapturing New World Shadows, it was still a damned fine record. While they’re wrong, they do highly recommend this record and suggest that you go out and check it out. I think you should buy the new Mors Principium Est instead. But that’s just me, I guess.

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  • re: The Raven that Refused to Sing (and Other Stories)

    Not every album sounds better on vinyl.

    This one makes up for every single one that does not, with its singular awesomeness and beautiful sound. Analog truly shines with this kind of music. Dynamics and poetry of sound and crystal-clear production do not go unnoticed, from the first rumbling bass tones to the last whispers of “Raven.”

    Pure musical enjoyment.

    • Steven Wilson is one of the best producers I can think of. When you buy his shit on vinyl it is worth every cent.

      • Ernesto Aimar

        I’m not that much into Steven Wilson solo works, but this album amazed me a lot. And the artwork it’s mesmerizing, don’t know why. I will be buying the vinyl exclusively just to see that painting with the size it deserves. Digibook edition looks nice too

  • “Audrey Horn‘s latest release” Funny typo.

  • It seems like trying to pick the least worst record instead of a unanimous best record.

    • Zadion

      In other words, it’s just like January. This year really has *not* started off very well.

      • I’m not superstitious or anything like that, but I’m getting the feeling that 13 IS an unlucky number.

        • I beg to differ. We’re only into March and there have been some great records already, such as October Falls, or Katalepsy. I personally recommend Rings of Saturn – Dingir. A record of the month for me.

          • I’m personally not a fan of ‘technical deathcore’ (or ANY deathcore), so I don’t have any expectations from Rings of Saturn. And I haven’t heard October Falls yet due to monetary issues (and lack of online streaming), so I can’t give an opinion on that.
            But despite the mediocrity we’ve seen recently, I do believe there will be some great stuff out this year.

  • Good choice.

  • Colin Stuart

    I’ve been listening to the In Vain album nonstop since you guys reviewed it. My record of the month for sure and probably for the first quarter of 2013.

    • That was a March release.

      • Colin Stuart

        Oh was it, gotcha.

  • Eryops

    The background looks a lot better all of a sudden.

    • Hahaha.. oh god. Last month was terrible.

    • Amelia

      That Voivod cover was one of the most agressively ugly pieces of album art I think I’ve ever seen.

      • Check out the cover of Rings of Saturn – Dingir. And the album itself, too. The best technical death I’ve heard since Obscura’s Comogenesis.

  • Too bad Portal’s Vexovoid wasn’t reviewed here, I would have loved to read your opinions on it, you think it could have taken a spot on this list? Also, any take on latest Arkona?

    I’m a bit surprised to not see neither Darkthrone nor Omnium Gatherum making the list though.

  • Cnoc An Tursa is an excellent and awesome choice. I can hear the similarities to those dude’s AMG mentioned but I think it’s distinct enough.

    I also enjoyed Hatriot, Thyrfing, and Omnium Gatherum a good deal. Waiting to see if Beyond will grow on me like New World Shadows did.

  • Eryops

    Eluveitie. There. I said it. Elephant in the room. And while the style isn’t exactly the same, the vocals are just as horrible. Granted, I’ve only listened to most of the album once on YouTube, but c’mon, can you vary your voice at all? That scream is an exact (and I’m sure unintentional) replica of Eluveitie’s “singer”. Awful. Just awful. And it really takes away from everything else, which is quite good.


      • Ernesto Aimar

        If any, I think their sound is closer to Suidakra than Eluveitie

        • Eryops

          I’ve gotta go with what I know…

        • Good call! Suidakra is also a great band.

          • Ernesto Aimar

            Yeah! Even If their latest efforts are not mind blowing, they make pretty good celtic themed melodic death.

  • I appreciate the new website design. I’ll definitly check out this band. Saw them in metal observer with a classification of 8 / 10 and I was very interested.


    I’m just going to state, for the record, that I heart both OG’s and MPE’s new albums…

  • I’d probably give album of February to either Vreid or Darkthrone. Enjoyed them both a good deal. January was a really strong start IMO…Helloween, Voivod and Stratovarius all put out killer albums.

  • The new Omnium Gatherum is exceptional. Give it another change. I am actually somewhat disappointed in the new Mors Principium Est. Not that it isn’t good, but I’d hoped for more of something new…

  • harley_d68

    Not a bad choice, but I probably would have gone with Heimdall. Underrated Italian Power Metal.

  • RU63

    Finally received the CD after waiting a month, and . . . it is BORING. I’ve already stopped listening to it (gave it 3 spins).