Arcturus

In Tormentata Quiete – Finestatico Review

In Tormentata Quiete – Finestatico Review

“I don’t know any bands that sound quite like In Tormentata Quiete. The vocals are the heart and soul of the band, but where this often indicates an accessible band with a single, capable vocalist, ITQ uses everything but the kitchen sink in its range of styles. Two equally capable ladies bring harmonic symphonies that without context might have befitted a progressive Nightwishcore band, but here they balance out Marco Vitals. The only male listed in the vocal department, I am forced to conclude this one man is responsible for the grandiose, operatic clean vocals, the hushed whisper of the spoken sections, the occasional guttural growl, and the absolutely caustic black metal screech.” Many tongues, few spit-ups.

Dødsengel – Interequinox Review

Dødsengel – Interequinox Review

“How much stock do you place in authenticity? Do you opt for subtitles over the dub? Will you only reach for your wallet if a suit was hand stitched by a broom closet-dwelling tailor in Milan? And even if you can’t believe it’s not butter, do you push it aside for the original, anyway? When it comes to music, when one hears the word “Norway” invariably the next words that follow are “black metal” so it may be comforting to know that Dødsengel — with their own brand of svart metall — hails from the land of frost and cod.” For cod and country.

Winterhorde – Maestro Review

Winterhorde – Maestro Review

Winterhorde is why labels want bands to release every two years. Back in September of 2010, I reviewed the band’s album Underwatermoon and really enjoyed their well-composed, interesting melodic black metal. My only complaint was that the lyrical tropes felt a little paint-by-numbers coming from an Israeli band; but the music was incisive and gripping. That was, however, six years ago. In that time Winterhorde got signed by Sweden’s ViciSolum Productions—moving on from being the only good band on their previous label’s roster—turned over four members of their band, have continued to develop their sound. I also managed to forget that they exist in the rush of my everyday life, which is why putting out a new album every six years is probably a bad strategy.

Sulphur – Omens of Doom Review

Sulphur – Omens of Doom Review

Sulphur (or sulfur in the States) is ungodly, foul smelling shit. This isn’t exactly news to anyone but you don’t know the half of it until you have actually jousted with the likes of benzyl or ethanethiol. There aren’t many chemicals I’ve worked with that linger on your mustache and penetrate your clothes like sulfur. It’s pungent, it’s offensive, and it’s fucking nauseating. While I’ve had my fair share of encounters with sulfur, I have never encountered its black-metal equivalent—which is odd considering I’ve been a fan of Øyvind Madsen’s other project, Vulture Industries, for years. With a name like Sulphur, I had expected some unsettling, engulfing black metal to match the stomach-turning feelings I get when “sulfur” is mentioned.

Bloodway – Mapping the Moment with the Logic of Dreams Review

Bloodway – Mapping the Moment with the Logic of Dreams Review

“Not many people know Costin Chioreanu musician. Most metalheads know Costin Chioreanu artist. Since the artist appears to have quite the workload, it’s not surprising that the musician is an “ex” member of most his musical endeavors. Lucky for us, the musician is back with a debut full-length filled with unsettling avant-garde black metal.” Sounds suspiciously like another strange case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde!

King Heavy – King Heavy Review

King Heavy – King Heavy Review

“When perusing the AMG Upcoming Crap We Need to Review List™ of new releases, it’s easy to judge bands based on their names. King Heavy and their self-titled debut album apparently fell into the doom metal category, and I immediately made the connection with King Giant‘s recent release – the two similarly titled bands within the same genre would surely broadly equate and offer a convenient comparative review?” Nothing is as it seems on the Crap List.

Spock’s Beard – The Oblivion Particle Review

Spock’s Beard – The Oblivion Particle Review

“What do you think of when I say “progressive metal?” Well, if you’re anything like me, you think of early ’90s wanks from New York, nerdy band photos of cheap sunglasses and bad haircuts, masturbating guitar solos, cheesy keyboard theatrics, and lengthy double-albums longing to be The Wall or The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway.” Nobody wanks in New York!