Cruciamentum

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.

Viande – L’abime dévore les âmes Review

Viande – L’abime dévore les âmes Review

“Many of us know, I guess, that moment of extreme disappointment when you unwrap a prime steak you’ve been looking forward to, only to be greeted by the putrid smell of gone-off meat. “It makes no sense, I only bought the fucking thing yesterday,” you mutter darkly to yourself. That steak should have been good for another couple of days at least. “How could this have happened? Why did it have to happen to me and why today?” I can’t answer any of those questions—quite frankly, I have my own problems—but that foul whiff of putrefaction reminds of the rancid filth that emanates from the debut record of French four-piece Viande.” Meat tragedy and death woes.

Vertebra Atlantis – Lustral Purge in Cerulean Bliss

Vertebra Atlantis – Lustral Purge in Cerulean Bliss

“Mastermind behind such acts like Summit, The Clearing PathCosmic Putrefaction, and Turris Eburnea, G.G. or Gabriele Gramaglia’s resume is vast and varied, and sets a pretense for new project Vertebra Atlantis. Working with drummer/vocalist R.R. from Homselvareg and Vrangr from Spells of Misery, debut Lustral Purge in Cerulean Bliss offers a fusion of dissonant death metal and atmospheric black metal, not unlike labelmates Prometheus‘ debut.” Dissonance dissidents.

Temple Nightside – Pillars of Damnation Review

Temple Nightside – Pillars of Damnation Review

“Readers of this site will not find it surprising when I say that I love blackened death metal of the chaotic and brutal variety, with groups like Impiety, Archgoat, and Angelcorpse being some of my favorites. In the last decade, however, a new strain of blackened death metal came to prominence that seemed to prioritize atmosphere and uneasiness above all else. Some of the more notable bands in this category are Portal, Abyssal, and Teitanblood—groups whose work I respect, even if it doesn’t resonate with me as deeply. When I grabbed Pillars of Damnation, the fourth album by Australia’s Temple Nightside, I had no idea what strain of blackened death metal it would be.” Cavern kegger.

White Stones – Kuarahy Review

White Stones – Kuarahy Review

“Martin Méndez always appeared the most metal of the Opeth crew, with his cool stage presence and thrashing headbanging style. As his main band continue spiraling down a vintage progressive rock rabbit hole, Méndez has decided to reconnect with his death metal roots with brand spanking new project, White Stones. Combining with some like-minded and suitably talented buddies, Méndez and co have crafted debut album Kuarahy.” Morepth.

Ignivomous – Hieroglossia Review

Ignivomous – Hieroglossia Review

“I hate being sick. I recently recovered from a cold that I received from my year-old nephew that me and the Mrs. Hollow kept passing back and forth to each other ad nauseam. If a cold can be that frustrating, puking is even worse—breaking out in cold sweats and chills while worrying about keeping any form of nutrition down is truly frustrating because nothing seems to make one feel better. It’s probably even worse vomiting fire, which apparently is something Australian death metal group Ignivomous has on their mind because that’s what their name means. Must hurt.” Burning throats and ears.

Gravewards – Ruinous Ensoulment Review

Gravewards – Ruinous Ensoulment Review

“Now if there’s one thing I love more than needless pedantry, it’s death metal, and since this band knocked off the first without playing so much as a note, I’m particularly well-disposed towards Ruinous Ensoulment. But Gravewards hardly need the boost. The Greek trio’s winding riffs and gritty, old-school attitude makes Ruinous Ensoulment an engaging debut and earns them a respectable spot among this year’s bevy of solid underground death metal releases.” Death in Greece.

Grave Upheaval – Untitled Review

Grave Upheaval – Untitled Review

“Much like their countrymen countrypeople fellow Austral beings in Portal, the only thing Grave Upheaval cherish more than cavernous production is their own obscurity — though this could be because PortalImpetuous Ritual, and Grave Upheaval are the cast of a half-dozen or so shadowy musicians. Call them kvlt, call them private; the result is the second Grave Upheaval album once again untitled and once again filled with indecipherable moaning, squealing terrors, and suffocating doom-death.” In a cavern, no one can hear you spelunk.