Atmospheric Black Metal

Vspolokh – Помре Review

Vspolokh – Помре Review

““In mainstream literature, the anti-hero dies. In Ural literature, everyone dies.” This cheery adage is not only the plot of Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus, but also the philosophical basis for the music of Russian black metal group, Vspolokh. The band makes no bones about its admiration for its Ural heritage, playing a form of music it describes as “Ural Chthonic Black Metal.” Color me intrigued.” Blackness and death in a Russian winter.

Fellwarden – Wreathed in Mourncloud Review

Fellwarden – Wreathed in Mourncloud Review

Fellwarden is an atmospheric black metal project created by Fen frontman, the Watcher and joined by fellow Fen drummer, Havenless. Much like many black metal projects we know (think Agalloch or Panopticon), Fellwarden‘s music is inspired by the nature that surrounds them. For the Watcher and Havenless, the nature that surrounds them means the rearing landscapes and quiet, understated majesty of the fells of North-Western England.” Mournclouds in your coffee.

Irae – Lurking in the Depths Review

Irae – Lurking in the Depths Review

“Black metal has a weird reputation. If you ask anybody walking down the street about it, given its nuances of church burning and Satanism, they’ll shudder and tell you “that stuff is scary, man.” However, if you ask a person who regularly listens to it, it becomes a different beast entirely: using Burzum‘s self-titled as an example, you’ll hear an angsty Ewok grumbling about his mom taking away his Satanic Bible while abusing a Walmart guitar.” Fear and loathing in Portugal.

Naxen – Towards the Tomb of Times Review

Naxen – Towards the Tomb of Times Review

“This German black metal trio is relatively new to the scene, having released a single EP, 2018’s To Abide in Ancient Abysses, which, while not particularly unique, was a solid two-track, eighteen-minute foray into cranky darkness. Now we’re greeted with their first full-length, Towards the Tomb of Times, which, while also offering an awesome and epic oomph of alliterative accomplishment, equals more of the same darkness and black metal shenanigans that we came to expect with its predecessor.” Action Naxen.

Golden Ashes – In the Lugubrious Silence of Eternal Night Review

Golden Ashes – In the Lugubrious Silence of Eternal Night Review

“Black metal is great at it, as its entire purpose is to conjure blasphemous and decrepit images of icy forests and iconoclastic rituals, but there are twists to your snow-crusted Norwegian fjords and the sounds of Hail Satans: Austere‘s desolate Australian deserts, Blut Aus Nord‘s hellish industrial landscapes, and Saor‘s Scottish highlands, to name a few. While images painted are up for grabs, the general consensus is one of darkness, bleakness, and spiritual desolation. But what happens when the black metal is, ya know, not that?” Bright darkness.

Argesk – Realm of Eternal Night Review

Argesk – Realm of Eternal Night Review

When I
“When I’m unsettled, I retreat to what I know; to what I’m comfortable with. And while there’s a global pandemic locking down the planet, these are profoundly unsettling times. When the promo bin threw some atmospheric black metal my way, I was completely on board for that. This is the genre, after all, that got me into metal, and it’s where I feel most at home. No matter the time of day, or my mood, I can always spin some atmoblack. The icy embrace warms my cold heart and calms me. Which is all to say that Realm of Eternal Night, the debut album from British outfit Argesk, is precisely the kind of music I was looking for this week.” No escape.

Hohenstein – Weißer Hirsch Review

Hohenstein – Weißer Hirsch Review

It was said of the author, Michael Crichton, that he was unusually cursed. By some Faustian bargain, he was able to come up with exceptionally good ideas for his novels, but then cruelly denied the ability to see any of them through to satisfying conclusions. It’s why most movies of his works (Jurassic Park, The […]

Membaris – Misanthrosophie Review

Membaris – Misanthrosophie Review

“I am worried. I find myself in the midst of an unfamiliar situation that I am not sure I am equipped to handle. I am not talking about the global pandemic—I know I am not equipped to handle that. No, the situation I am talking about is that I am staring down the barrel of awarding another 4.0. You need to understand that, when March began, I had awarded a total of three 4.0s across my whole time at AMG. Now, I am very seriously considering awarding a third this fucking month!” The struggle is real.