Via Nocturna

Malphas – The 39th Spirit Review

Malphas – The 39th Spirit Review

“With a concept album comes even more pressure than a typical release. Not only should the music be good, but it should seamlessly blend with the story. And it’s gotta be convincing. When I listen to King‘s The Puppetmaster, I can feel myself hanging from a hook at a long-forgotten puppet shop in “Living Dead.” I can feel the battle brewing in the barren wasteland of Iced Earth‘s “Desert Rain.” And I can feel the weight hanging on Immortal in Unleash the Archers‘ “Cleanse the Bloodlines.” What’s it feel like to make a pact with a demon to obliterate organized religion?” 39 spirits and a Grier ain’t one.

Slaughterer – Conjurer of Realities [Things You Might Have Missed 2017)

Slaughterer – Conjurer of Realities [Things You Might Have Missed 2017)

“Despite being a huge fan of death-thrash, I wind up feeling and sounding more like a curmudgeonly Goldilocks when I write about the stuff. It’s not fast enough, it’s not thrashy enough, it’s not death-y enough, there aren’t enough of those devastating Slayer-style slowdowns, and on and on ad infinitum. Naturally, I began to worry: was it me? Have I outgrown death-thrash?” No one outgrows death-thrash until death.

Uburen – Fra Doden Fodes Liv review

Uburen – Fra Doden Fodes Liv review

“Listening to Enslaved, Deathspell Omega, or Immortal now makes it obvious that an evil tone and master is something you can achieve without sacrificing sound quality. A dynamic production suited for black metal can actually increase and enhance the inherent unease of the genre. Yet, there are still persevering atavists like Uburen, whose primary goal seems to be emulating the aural mutilation of Norway ca 1993.” Behold the Tree of Strife.

Vorgrum – Last Domain Review

Vorgrum – Last Domain Review

“Somewhere along my personal timeline of listening to extreme music I formed an imaginary line dividing two equally valid camps of folk metal. On one side, you have your bands of brooding boys who like to pose next to frozen streams for their promo shots in between discussions of just how great Windir was; on the other, you have your gangs of drunken revelers, crowding into the nearest tavern to relate raucous tales of wenches and trolls to any half-willing passersby.” Is that a troll on the cover or are you just happy to see me?

Zørormr – The Aftermath Review

Zørormr – The Aftermath Review

“Poland’s been the source of some great metal over the years. Behemoth probably comes to mind first, being that Nergal’s the master of controversy and the court room. But putting that aside, there’s Vader, Decapitated, Hate and Lux Occulta, who along with many others have been delivering the goods and then some. Somewhere in the throng, the talents of one-man, black metal or dark ambient artist, Fabian Filiks (Moloch) of Zørormr became a little obscured.” One does not simply hear all the bands in Poland.

Bedowyn – Blood of the Fall Review

Bedowyn – Blood of the Fall Review

“For better and worse, sludge metal has branched out considerably beyond the abrasive and uncompromising early years of the genre, defined by the likes of The Melvins, Eyehategod, Grief, the underappreciated Iron Monkey and boundary busting legends Acid Bath,. Increased diversity and scene saturation has polluted the genre pool, leading to interesting yet inconsistent results and mixed feelings from yours truly.” Sludge is as sludge does.