Bathory

Daeva – Through Sheer Will and Black Magic Review

Daeva – Through Sheer Will and Black Magic Review

Daeva carries some serious post-2000 metal credibility among its ranks. Guitarist Scott Jansson and drummer Enrique Sagarnaga are longtime members of Crypt Sermon, and bassist Frank Chin joined Crypt Sermon in 2019 after spending eight years laying down rhythms for progressive thrash titans Vektor. Joining these fine instrumentalists is Infernal Stronghold vocalist Eddie Chainsaw, and together, these four nefarious gentlemen produce some of the most violent blackened thrash I’ve ever heard.” Strange sermons in the brutality vektor.

Ensanguinate – Eldritch Anatomy Review

Ensanguinate – Eldritch Anatomy Review

“I’ve listened to a goodly amount of death metal this year, and seem to be at a place mentally where I just want more and more of it. When I saw the name Ensanguinate in the promo sump, it spoke to me of wet, gruesome things and horrid death sounds most unappetizing. Naturally, I took it home to pet and cuddle.” Draining blood!

Serpent Ascending – Hyperborean Folklore Review

Serpent Ascending – Hyperborean Folklore Review

“Knocking about since 2008, Finland’s Serpent Ascending is the solo handiwork of Slugathor bassist Jarno Nurmi, formerly of Desecresy and Nerlich also. It wasn’t until 2016 that Nurmi released this project’s full-length debut, Aṇaṅku. A slab of blackened death metal in the vein of Desecresy and with more than a little Cruciamentum in the mix, Aṇaṅku packed a decent punch into its pleasingly trim 30-minute run. Another six years slithered by before the reptile resumed its climb to the surface, appearing now for second full-length outing Hyperborean Folklore.” Snakes on a fjord.

Vanum – Legend Review

Vanum – Legend Review

“When I reviewed Ageless Fire on this very site, I described Vanum’s sound as “black metal without cross-genre bells and whistles,” and this is absolutely still true. It’s a different beast than Yellow Eyes or Ash Borer,, principle members M. Rekevics and K. Morgan’s other bands, in that it has never tried to be anything but a love letter to black metal days of yore. Bathory has always been a touchpoint, but perhaps the most noticeable change on Legend is just how hard Vanum lean into their Quorthorniness.” Quorthorn the raven, eat my sword!

Fer De Lance – The Hyperborean Review

Fer De Lance – The Hyperborean Review

“From the mean streets of Chicago come the epic doom metal warriors in Fer De Lance, out to conquer the world and fly the banners of trveness for all the world to see. Featuring members of Satan’s Hallow and Professor Emeritus, Fer De Lance rock a sound blending elements of Atlantean Kodex, Visigoth, Crypt Sermon, and Bathory, with folk elements woven through reminiscent of SIG:AR:TYR. If that sounds like a winning stew of influences, you aren’t wrong.” Boots n’ Lance.

Lifvsleda – Sepulkral Dedikation Review

Lifvsleda – Sepulkral Dedikation Review

“What is the essence of “purity”? Because, really, very few things are as “pure” as we would like (or suppose) them to be. Not the water you drink. Not the air you breathe. Not the hobo wine in the AMG canteen. And certainly, not the line your pal Tony snorted off that toilet in that club one time. So, when bands claim to play “pure” anything, I wonder what they mean. Livfsleda, an anonymous black metal band from Sweden, proposes that they play black metal in its “purest form.”” Purity through propaganda.

Cirkeln – A Song to Sorrow Review

Cirkeln – A Song to Sorrow Review

“Some things enter human culture and just don’t leave. What could be a better example than the epic fantasy spearheaded (in the West) by J.R.R Tolkien, spawning countless other artworks and fuelling many an obsession to this day. Similarly, the rise of solo projects within black metal is seemingly indefatigable. Cirkeln combines these two strands—the mainstream and the counter-culture—through a discography inspired by genre heavyweights of each. Tolkien and Moorcock on the one hand, Celtic Frost and Bathory on the other.” Ring of sour.

Kvaen – The Great Below Review

Kvaen – The Great Below Review

“What’s there left to say about Kvaen beyond five little words, four of which are “fire?” Back in early 2020, Jakob Björnfot came out of seeming nowhere with a fully formed meloblack/speed metal aesthetic and a keen songwriting ear to deliver one of the the most vital sounding throwback records of the year. The Funeral Pyre had something going for it that a lot of good, even great records don’t. Beyond technical musicianship—which Björnfot most certainly has—beyond reverence for a genre’s history, that record was fun. As. Hell. It didn’t matter that no new ground was being broken, it only mattered that Björnfot was driving it like it was stolen.” Hell Alone 2: Electric Burning You.

Hammr – Eternal Possession Review

Hammr – Eternal Possession Review

“I’m kind of obsessed with hammers. Write a song about hammers, and I’ll probably like it. Include “hammer” as part of your band name, and I’ll probably like your band. In a roleplaying game, make hammers a wieldable weapon, and, by god, I’m going to wield one (or two). I don’t know how to build shit, but I own a framing hammer and sleep with it next to my bed for personal protection. I use a twenty-pound sledge for my conditioning workouts, often while Asphyx’s “Deathhammer” plays in the background on repeat. Anyway, now you know why I felt so compelled to give Cleveland’s Hammr a swing.” Hammr time.

Ereb Altor – Vargtimman Review

Ereb Altor – Vargtimman Review

Bathory was a touchstone act for multiple metal genres, and though Quorthon has been gone since 2004, his influence still looms large in black and Viking metal. No more proof of this is needed than the 12-year career of Sweden’s Ereb Altor. Their entire output is heavily referential to classic Bathory albums like Hammerheart and Twilight of the Gods and the spirit of mighty Quorthon is never far from their writing. Vargtimman is their eighth platter of classic Bathorycore, and very little is left to chance.” Oversized swords, blackened hordes.