Russian Metal

Gloosh – Timewheel Review

Gloosh – Timewheel Review

“One man atmospheric black metal projects. You know ’em. You love ’em (or you love to hate ’em). They’re everywhere. Precious few manage to make it into the annals of great acts, but there are notable ones such as Mare Cognitum and Aquilus whose output have made diehard fans out of me. Newcomers have it pretty rough now that those two, among several others, have set the bar as high as they have. Russian multi-instrumentalist George “Foltath” Gabrielyan stands bravely in front of that bar with his atmoblack project Gloosh (a transliteration of the Russian word for “wilderness,” “Ãëóøü”), determined to bring the genre to the next level with debut album Timewheel.” Put on yer Glooshes.

Quiescency – Message for Lamb Review

Quiescency – Message for Lamb Review

“Metalcore. Deathcore. The ever nebulous ‘melodic metal.’ These are tags that discomfit discerning metalheads like myself. In those rare moments where I experience the excitement for a new release in these genres, as I did with Russia’s Quiescency, the worst case is that my anticipation overinflates. Since the band announced Message for Lamb roughly forever ago, my expectations for their debut record swiftly reached an unreasonable altitude. Alas, what goes up must come down.” Lamb stewed.

Dominia – The Withering of the Rose Review

Dominia – The Withering of the Rose Review

The Withering is the follow-up to 2017’s Stabat Mater, which represented another slab of heavy gothic metal in Dominia’s catalog, as violins and keys did battle with harsh vocals and doomy riffs. Does the latest offering from Dominia see further growth or, well, a withering on the vine?” Roses are dead.

Tardigrade Inferno – Mastermind [Things You Might Have Missed 2019]

Tardigrade Inferno – Mastermind [Things You Might Have Missed 2019]

Mastermind is one odd duck. Put one way, this album is literally my personality written into a metal record. Put another way, it’s a circus-tent nightmare from clown hell, and Frontierer happened to play there once and left their chunky guitar tone there by accident.” What the hell did you miss??

Bewailer – Where My Demise Dwells Review

Bewailer – Where My Demise Dwells Review

“Do you remember the first time you heard Swallow the Sun‘s The Morning Never Came? How those crushing tones and shattering gutturals hit you like the saddest ton of cement ever and you thought that, indeed, the light would never grace your world again? How the subtle, folky elements added a sense of longing, while the sound of waves crashing made you feel lost in a sea of hopelessness and never being found? And above all, how fucking evocative that feeling was? And how you had to go bask in the sunlight to recover from it? That’s the feeling I had when I popped in Bewailer‘s debut album Where My Demise Dwells.” Swallowing more sadness.

Second to Sun – Legacy Review

Second to Sun – Legacy Review

“The 25th of July was a day of air conditioning, Danish Christmas cookies, and Christmas Vacation. Those days may be gone forever, as the family no longer exists as it once did, but a new tradition exists for old Grier. One that sees a year-end release that has, for two straight years, made my heart race in anticipation. A year later, almost to-the-date, comes another Second to Sun release. Lo and behold, the greatest annual tradition of them all. My present to you: Legacy.” Season’s beatings.

Grima – Will of the Primordial Review

Grima – Will of the Primordial Review

“Being in forests for extended periods makes me uneasy, because 50 feet of visibility feels claustrophobic when you’re used to seeing the point where the Earth curves away. Russian atmo-black duo Grima have no such qualms. Hailing from Siberia and that same boreal forest, ‘taiga’ to them, they make music to ‘worship the elder forest…where the Grima is a supreme god…who protects only those who live in a forest, and punishes everyone who does not respect nature.’ To which I say, backing away slowly, ‘Whoa fellas, we’re all nature lovers here. Forests, amirite?'” Tree mugger.

Intothecrypt – Vakor Review

Intothecrypt – Vakor Review

“I’m always interested in bands that rise from the ashes of other bands. We hear about it all the time: four original members from one band go onto form their own band, bringing fans of the original band untold joy, because that band hasn’t put out a record in twelve years. In the case of Russian doom act Scald, it was the unfortunate death of the band’s lead vocalist that led its remaining members to Tumulus, which plays folk metal based on Slavic mythology. Fast-forward to 2016, and those same original Scaldians have now formed Intothecrypt, fusing these styles together by playing blackened death-doom in English and Ancient Russian, with Finno-Urgic influences informing both the story and the language.”

Epitimia – Thread Review

Epitimia – Thread Review

“There are few things that pair with black metal quite like dark ambient, but one of them is folk music. This goes double for the somber folk music of the more frigid Slavic regions. While tried and (sometimes) true acts like Drudkh are around, they aren’t the only stalwart Slavs to play in this sandbox. Enter Russian hybrid act Epitimia, fielding a formula mixing folk, dark ambient, and black metal for four albums now. Like many Russian bands, they smartly write only in their mother tongue (always a positive in my book). But at Angry Metal Guy Headquarters, lyrics are only a small slice in the rankings.” Pull the Thread and see what happens.

Malist – In the Catacombs of Time Review

Malist – In the Catacombs of Time Review

Malist‘s In the Catacombs of Time – the album in question, for the contextually challenged – is about as joyful as an AIDS diagnosis. One-man blackened army Ovfrost leads a 10 track charge against cheer, skulking through an expansive spectrum ov sombre and sullen sounds along the way.” Bleak, blackened and miserable is no way to go through life, yo.