Avant Garde

Altarage – Succumb Review

Altarage – Succumb Review

“I’ll just come out and say it; I have no clue what is going on in this record. As The Guy Who Explains Why Shit Like This Is Good, that really puts me in a bind. As a result, I’ve spent weeks putting off this review. But hey, maybe we can try something new; instead of me telling you what’s the point of Succumb, how about you tell me. For once, I’m going to read your comments and entertain the idea that your opinions are as valid as those of my own self, The Guy Who Explains Why Shit Like This Is Good. Go wild down there.” Late hit.

In Tormentata Quiete – Krononota Review

In Tormentata Quiete – Krononota Review

“What a profoundly odd band In Tormentata Quiete is. Plenty of Italian bands are grand, pompous, cheesy, and theatrical, but few do it like this one, sporting three vocalists in a range of styles but remaining light on orchestral elements. Their first foray into the halls of AMG was shot down with a 1.0 from Grymm for being unstructured and containing baffling, out-of-place elements like rap breakdowns in the middle of their semi-symphonic avant-garde drama metal. Their second, Finestatico, earned them a 3.5 from yours truly, seemingly fixing everything its predecessor did wrong. Krononota sees another change of the guard in the vocal department, but can they maintain the high standard of before?” Pomp in a weird place.

Völur – Death Cult [Things You Might Have Missed 2020]

Völur – Death Cult [Things You Might Have Missed 2020]

Völur is a thing that I too nearly missed this year. The Canadian folk/doom trio received a strong recommendation from Akerblogger some years ago, and returned this year to unleash their third full-length, Death Cult, upon the Angry Metal Masses this past November. Unfortunately, life got in the way, and the album was never picked up for review. Now I’m here to rectify the issue, because as far as doom metal goes, Death Cult is one of the best albums I’ve heard in some time.” Drinking the Kool-Aid.

Gargoyl – Gargoyl Review

Gargoyl – Gargoyl Review

“Ever since the early seeds of the Gargoyl project came to public light, I have been anticipating a debut album. Lo and behold, the band, featuring Revocation‘s Dave Davidson (guitars) and Luke Roberts (vocals/guitars) from the underrated Ayahuasca, has arrived with their self-titled LP. Blending dark, brooding, unsettling atmospheres, Gargoyl play off-kilter progressive metal with avant garde tendencies and a strong ’90s grunge vibe, most notably drawing influence from Seattle rock legends Alice in Chains. On paper the combination has a hell of a lot going for it, however, nailing the execution and establishing a strong identity are challenges to overcome.” Super groups, man…

Creature – Ex Cathedra Review

Creature – Ex Cathedra Review

“A mere six months ago I wrote a TYMHM piece on the second Creature album Contes Funèbres, noting that while that album had a black metal base and clear elements of 70s prog, it also contained an anachronistic theatricality, like a corpse-painted staging of Les Misérables. If Contes Funèbres was broadway, Ex Cathedra is opera.” Shock me, Amadeus.

Pyrrhon – Abscess Time Review

Pyrrhon – Abscess Time Review

“Where do Pyrrhon go next? It’s a question that, to my surprise, I had not truly considered. In pushing the walls as far out as they would go with 2017’s stunning What Passes for Survival, the band became torch-bearers in death metal’s unexplored corridors. The quartet synthesize techniques from technical death metal, noise rock, and free jazz to craft ungainly structures and cut winding new paths through the labyrinth, resulting in two of the most original and contentious records of the 2010s. In Abscess Time, the band have a chance to explode into the new decade with a bold new direction.” Time, tide, and transformation.

Creature – Contes Funèbres [Things You Might Have Missed 2019]

Creature – Contes Funèbres [Things You Might Have Missed 2019]

On Contes Funèbres, Fournier’s second as Creature, there are sounds and styles that can be found in our world, but they’ve been arranged by a mind that surely originates elsewhere. Yes, this is black metal at a foundational level, but there is so much synth prog, electronic trickery, odd vocals and anachronistic choral arrangements that calling it any one thing is pointless.” Creature features.

Öxxö Xööx – Ÿ Review

Öxxö Xööx – Ÿ Review

“To begin, Öxxö Xööx sits most comfortably under the doom metal umbrella, tending towards (but not exclusively using) slower rhythms and riffs, and leveraging gothic instrumentation such as organs, harpsichords and string sections. But Ÿ is far from any ordinary doom release with which you may be familiar. It’s a distinctly singular release, a patchwork of textures, timbres and tempos with the words “AVANT GARDE” metaphorically stitched over the top.” Ÿ no Igorrlips mumblepants.

Life Right Now – Avant Garde Review

Life Right Now – Avant Garde Review

“Let’s start with the title of the band’s debut, Avant Garde. I guess it’s conceivable these lads genuinely don’t know what that phrase means. After all, it’s French. Then again, the band claims to be from the entire world, so. Point is, Avant Garde doesn’t test the outer edges of anything except this reviewer’s patience.” Is this real life?

Thief – Map of Lost Keys Review

Thief – Map of Lost Keys Review

Thief is the pet project of Dylan Neal, a dulcimer player (dulcimist?) for the unconventional experimental black metal band Botanist. Thief’s music takes on a different theme entirely, however, from Botanist’s quirky style of environmentally themed “green-metal.” Map of Lost Keys, Thief’s sophomore album, swaps the hammered dulcimer for a myriad of electronics to produce late night music designed for haunted ballrooms and electric churches. While no traditional black metal demon shrieks or vicious tremolo picking can be heard on Map of Lost Keys, Thief remain obstinate in their attempt to appeal to fans of heavier genres.” Mischief managing.