Dissection

Wyrms – Sarkhral Lumænor – La Lueur Contre les Fléaux Review

Wyrms – Sarkhral Lumænor – La Lueur Contre les Fléaux Review

“Let’s get one thing straight with these guys: avant-garde, avant-schmard. Unlike many French compatriots, wacky innovation is not the name of the game here. Wyrms stick rigidly to the melodic template which has been honed to a fine sheen since Dissection and Sacramentum first did their thing. Sarkhral Lumænor is about as modern as a jousting contest, and as subtle and flexible as chain-mail armor.” The wyrm you know.

Epoch of Unlight – At War with the Multiverse Review

Epoch of Unlight – At War with the Multiverse Review

At War with the Multiverse is a familiar, yet fresh take on their established formula, featuring a re-jinked line-up that has tirelessly honed the material comprising this long-awaited return. Whereas Epoch of Unlight’s sound has previously featured a technical, thrashy black metal core embellished with melodeath and progressive elements, At War with the Multiverse flips the tact a little.” Run to the Unlight.

Mimorium – The Route of Haeresis Review

Mimorium – The Route of Haeresis Review

The Route of Haeresis gave me a rare opportunity to nab a band that earned praise from the mighty Grier. The angrier doc gushed about Mimorium’s second release Blood of Qayin in 2020, comparing it favorably with Dissection’s classics. Mimorium is back with another album of energetic melodic black metal that tries to scratch the same itch as the iciest Swedish bands of the mid-90s. Many have tried this, and few have succeeded.” Theft in the autopsy suite.

Cruentus – Fossilized Review

Cruentus – Fossilized Review

“I stare up into the desert sun, already exhausted from the thought of searching the pit for something to review. Covered in sweat and reeling from the hangover induced by the hourly AMG hobo wine IVs, I approach the pit. I close my eyes, anticipating the bite and venom in my veins, and grab the first promo off the top. It reads: CruentusFossilized – black/thrash metal.” Gems in the bone pit.

In Slumber – While We Sleep Review

In Slumber – While We Sleep Review

While We Sleep’s cover art is creepy but striking. Even in its edited monochromatic form, this 1890s painting piqued my interest. Looking at the shadowy whispering figure with billowing hair and the wide-eyed woman, shrouded in darkness but with her face glowing, I expected While We Sleep to sound evocative and mysterious. This was largely wrong. Austria’s In Slumber plays “direct melodic death metal” (their words, not mine), the least mysterious of genres.” Blue clues.

IATT – Magnum Opus Review

IATT – Magnum Opus Review

“The title of IATT‘s third LP is not as ballsy as you might think. “Magnum opus” is one of those phrases that tends to be carelessly tossed around in art criticism without really meaning anything, so let’s break it down: literally, the phrase means “The great work,” specifically referring to the alchemical process of creating the immortality-granting philosopher’s stone. While some use the phrase as a placeholder for “masterpiece,” IATT is here wielding it with its proper connotation, as evidenced by much of the record’s subject matter. Taken this way, the title also serves as a metaphor in the context of IATT‘s career.” Magnum force.

Vital Spirit – Still As the Night, Cold As the Wind Review

Vital Spirit – Still As the Night, Cold As the Wind Review

“Back in 2020, around the time Wayfarer were turning heads with their black metal of the Old West on A Romance With Violence, I discovered an EP seemingly out of nowhere by a Canadian two piece who, in my humble opinion, one-upped that admittedly good album. From the Navajo sand painting cover art to the Ennio Morricone spaghetti western passages to the lyrical focus on pre-colonial Americas, Vital Spirit threw their hat into that incredibly small ring with their Coloradan brethren with In The Faith That Looks Through Death. Consisting of Kyle Tavares and Israel Langlais, both of crusty meloblack band and AMG darlings Wormwitch, Vital Spirit continue their self described “saccharine black metal of the West” on their debut full-length Still as the Night, Cold as the Wind.” Black is the new spaghetti.

I Am The Night – While the Gods Are Sleeping Review

I Am The Night – While the Gods Are Sleeping Review

“There’s absolutely nothing wrong with pining for the olden days of yore. Retro-gaming is a lucrative, enjoyable hobby that not only fires the synapses of Those Who’ve Been There, but also introduces a new generation of gamers to legendary titles. Classic movies get remade and reworked all the time with varying degrees of success. And in metal, people romanticize about a time when being evil required more than initials-for-names and ominous hooded sweatshirts. Two of those people are Markus Vanhala, guitarist for both Insomnium and Omnium Gatherum, and his OG ex-bandmate, bassist Janne Markannen. Yearning to dive into the classic 90s wave of black metal, they enlisted members of Abhorrence, Horizon Ignited, and Paradise Lost to pay tribute to the Black Wizards via their new project, I Am the Night.” Lease the night!

Fiat Nox – Demanifestation (Hymns of Destruction and Nothingness) Review

Fiat Nox – Demanifestation (Hymns of Destruction and Nothingness) Review

Fiat Nox is a German black metal quartet, having released one full-length, a demo, and an EP. Second “EP” Demanifestation (Hymns of Destruction and Nothingness) offers thirty minutes of second-wave shenanigans, citing acts like Dissection, Mgła, and Svartidauði as influences. While black metal influences pretty much end up being the umpteenth reiteration of Transilvanian Hunger, some nicely melodic touches grace Demanifestation as well as a take-no-prisoners attitude.” Nasty, brutish and short.