Dec21

Charnel Altar – Abatement of the Sun Review

Charnel Altar – Abatement of the Sun Review

“Aussie trio Charnel Altar faces the dual challenges of releasing a debut album in mid-December and standing out among a crowded field of label-mates, joining Blood Harvest’s packed December offering with their unique toxic sludge of blackened death-doom. While not always to the album’s benefit, black metal instincts pervade Abatement of the Sun, propelling their filth and gore-covered Holden hatchback through the deepest doom-filled muck.” Destroying the Sun.

CMPT – Krv i Pepeo Review

CMPT – Krv i Pepeo Review

CMPT (“Death”) is an anonymous black metal project from an unspecified Balkan nation. (The band smartly chose their name based on visual similarity to the Cyrillic “смрт,” instead of transliterating the giggle-inducing pronunciation “smrt.”) Krv i Pepeo (“Blood and Ash”) is their debut full-length, impressively being released on Osmose Productions.” Death and bread lines.

Aquilus – Bellum I [Things You Might Have Missed 2021]

Aquilus – Bellum I [Things You Might Have Missed 2021]

Griseus by Aquilus was the best metal album of the 2010s never reviewed by AngryMetalGuy.com. It is a wonderful, ethereal, expressive, other-worldly experience tied to the metal genre by its atmospheric, blackened qualities, but spending just as much time and energy on its classical ones. It is, in short, symphonic black metal, but is so much more than this implies. This brings us to December 2021 and its long-overdue sequel, a decade in the making.” Music of blackened socialites.

Avskräde – Det stora tunga sjuka Review

Avskräde – Det stora tunga sjuka Review

“It’s perhaps not without reason that romanticizing so-called “trve black metal” has become a meme. Avskräde seem to take seriously the idea that the more blistering, raw, and crusty-sounding music is, the more worthy it is of the black metal moniker, all else be damned. This mysterious Swedish duo presents their debut as an uncompromising slice of the past, containing “nothing but traditional BLACK METAL exclusively.”” Cult is for closers.

Wombbath – Agma Review

Wombbath – Agma Review

Wombbath is a band that seems ruthlessly intent on making up for lost time. Lying dormant for 20 years after an initial run in the early 90s, the project was revived in 2014 by longtime guitarist Håken Stuvemark and the omnipresent Jonny Pettersson. Two albums saw the light of day in the band’s first four years back together, but then things went into hyperdrive following the additions of drummer Jon Rudin and guitarist Thomas von Wachenfeldt.” For Womb the bell tolls.

Paul Gilbert – ‘Twas Review

Paul Gilbert – ‘Twas Review

“As official Lore Keeper of the First Age of Metal, Steel is well acquainted with Paul Gilbert and his classic heavy metal band Racer X. Unfamiliar with either name, I was surprised to find I know his work from my junior high days of listening to Mr. Big cassettes. As a guitarist, Gilbert is a throwback to that heady era of hard rock when wheedly-wheedly was king, and few could wank a guitar to completion quite like him. ‘Twas is his holiday gift to an indifferent unsuspecting world.” Christmas cannon.

Krolok – Funeral Winds & Crimson Sky Review

Krolok – Funeral Winds & Crimson Sky Review

““Delve deep in and listen… listen to the atmospheres of an arcane night and return within your thoughts into bygone times.” So goes Krolok’s description of their second offering of ESL-inflected black metal. The band, hailing from a literal Carpathian forest, bills itself as “atmospheric.” Their actual sound, however, riffs on the age-old question: “What if trve and kvlt, but also having of dungeon synth keys?”” What would Krolok do?

Mega Colossus – Riptime Review

Mega Colossus – Riptime Review

“You might be surprised to hear that even in a position of relative music authority, more than a handful of my recommendations fall flat. Case in point: Riptime. I’ve preached the virtues of this album more than a handful of times on Twitter to zero fanfare. My AMG colleagues, caught in the fever of the 2021 list season, essentially shrugged it off. Now here I am, in full clown makeup, writing a few hundred words to apparently nobody at all. And that’s okay, because even if it’s for my own amusement, there’s no other band I’d rather be writing about right now than Mega Colossus.” Mega ginormous.

Ethereal Shroud – Trisagion Review

Ethereal Shroud – Trisagion Review

Trisagion, at its core, fits the mold of atmospheric black metal to a tee. However, only fools suggest that Ethereal Shroud settle for that core sound without layers upon layers of extracurricular influence to flesh it out. In 2021, that influence takes the form of a most depressive subset of doom, a network of melodic leads which alternate between chilling and radiant, and crafty drumming that handily combines post-metallic defiance of standard beats with traditional blasts and double-bass runs.” Ephemeral glory on the precipice of oblivion.