Thus Spoke

Words of (questionable) wisdom
Pyrithe – Monuments to Impermanence Review

Pyrithe – Monuments to Impermanence Review

“Cover art can be misleading, but here it’s a clue. Reflecting that twisted marine merging of human and coral, Pyrithe‘s sound is chaos, artfully displayed. To their sludgy post-metal concoction, they add the use of coconuts, egg-shakers, kantele, and literal trash as musical elements. They also favor a disjointed, dissonant approach to songwriting, taking a leaf out of the more experimental edges of death metal, and beyond. In fact, they’ve even roped in Doug Moore of Pyrrhon and Seputus, the influence of which acts is quite evident. It’s heavy, it’s multifaceted, it’s a tiny bit mad, but is it any good?” Permanence and impetuousness.

Void Dancer – Prone Burial Review

Void Dancer – Prone Burial Review

“Metal as a genre is still relatively young. This means both that the meanings and definitions of sub-genres are constantly evolving, and that musicians are continually combining them in novel ways. Void Dancer‘s debut Prone Burial purports to be melodic death metal, but is actually more a blend of metalcore and tech death. I’m not mad about it, in spite of being misled, because Void Dancer hit upon something. They manage to do on their debut album what many fail to achieve after several: fuse technicality with punchiness. And they do it in an enjoyable, fairly unique way.” Burn, baby, burn, disco abyss.

Faceless Entity – The Great Anguish of Rapture Review

Faceless Entity – The Great Anguish of Rapture Review

“The Ancient Greek philosopher Epicurus maintained that fear of death is irrational, for while we exist, our death is not, and when death comes, we do not exist. This hasn’t convinced Faceless Entity, whose brand of black metal they describe as “audial thanatophobia” (fear of death). The Great Anguish of Rapture represents an extension of their dour meditations to their most broadly philosophical release so far, following the more straightforwardly depressive early demos and 2017 debut In Via Ad Nusquam (On the Road to Nowhere).” Fear and loathing in The Netherlands.

Cirkeln – A Song to Sorrow Review

Cirkeln – A Song to Sorrow Review

“Some things enter human culture and just don’t leave. What could be a better example than the epic fantasy spearheaded (in the West) by J.R.R Tolkien, spawning countless other artworks and fuelling many an obsession to this day. Similarly, the rise of solo projects within black metal is seemingly indefatigable. Cirkeln combines these two strands—the mainstream and the counter-culture—through a discography inspired by genre heavyweights of each. Tolkien and Moorcock on the one hand, Celtic Frost and Bathory on the other.” Ring of sour.

Vermörd – Nostalgic Predictions Review

Vermörd – Nostalgic Predictions Review

“What could it mean to be Nostalgic about a Prediction? As the one implies backward-looking longing, and the other forward-looking anticipation, the suggestion is of a mysterious, conflicted deja vu. Vermörd may not have been aiming for anything other than a cool-sounding quasi-oxymoron in titling their debut LP Nostalgic Predictions. Nonetheless, it provides a suitable metaphor for this album.” Prediction of trouble.

Anachoret – Syndrom Review

Anachoret – Syndrom Review

“An anachoret—anchorite in English—is someone who has committed to live an ascetic life in solitary confinement in order to devote themselves to prayer. In this way, they reflect the notorious stereotype of the solo black metal musician. Anachoret is no exception, being the solo black metal project of the mysterious K.C. This debut LP has apparently been three years in the making, following a demo, two splits, and an EP over a span of ten years.” Life in a lonely grave.

Sarcasm – Stellar Stream Obscured Review

Sarcasm – Stellar Stream Obscured Review

“If you like old-school Swedeath, old-school black metal, old-school doom, then, sorry, you won’t like this album at all. That was my pitiful attempt at sarcasm. The Sarcasm in question here are a Swedish melodic blackened death metal group who have been knocking about since the late ‘80s. Their veteran status in the scene shows they take their craft a whole lot more seriously than their name might let on. It also prompts the question of whether music that follows a blueprint now 30 years old can still be exciting and compelling, particularly to those too young to feel the nostalgia factor.” Don’t cross the streams.

Oar – The Blood You Crave Review

Oar – The Blood You Crave Review

“In the multiform sea of interpretations permitted by the tag ‘post-black metal,’ Oar direct their course towards singularly grimy, doom-laden waters. The band borrows from the likes of Amenra and Vous Autres in sinister and savage feeling, though eschewing smooth, reverb-laden tones in favor of a more suffocating vibe.” The real question is whether we can make it through a post-black metal review without a reference to Deafheaven.