New Zealand Metal

postcards from new zealand – Nin-an-ak Review

postcards from new zealand – Nin-an-ak Review

“What does New Zealand have to do with Ancient Sumeria? Not a damn thing, but then again, the Brits didn’t play much of a role in the conquests of Alexander the Great and no one batted an eye when Maiden wrote a track about him. So the subject of choice for Nin-an-ak, an ancient Sumerian goddess of kink and war, doesn’t require much justification. Not as much as the name postcards from new zealand, anyway, nor their preference for not using capitals. And definitely not as much as the genre this promo came tagged with: post-sumerian-chamber-death-prog-core.” Dead tongues, dead letters.

End Boss – They Seek My Head Review

End Boss – They Seek My Head Review

“I’m not gonna lie, I grabbed this one based on the band name alone. While I don’t consider myself to be a hardcore gamer, I’ve still played enough to have the name End Boss give me an immediate feeling of nostalgic mental arousal. The name makes me want to head to the nearest merchant to stock up on healing potions, buffing elixirs, and specialty arrows before listening. But who am I kidding? I’m lazy. You know perfectly well that I Instacarted the hell out of that shit.” All your head are belong to us.

Blindfolded and Led to the Woods – Nightmare Withdrawals [Things You Might Have Missed 2021]

Blindfolded and Led to the Woods – Nightmare Withdrawals [Things You Might Have Missed 2021]

Blindfolded and Led to the Woods, is a band from New Zealand with a bit of a storied past. Originally starting off as a humor-centric deathcore group with bizarrely titled offerings like Armed to the Teeth with Jellybeans or My Vaseline Diaries, the song “Atop the Wings of a Magpie” changed everything. Dissonant interplay, ominous tempos, speedy riffs, and even a guest spot from Nile‘s Karl Sanders replace mindless breakdowns and Psyopus-inspired wankery. Nightmare Withdrawals may not be their debut, but it’s their breakout album, and for good fucking reason.” Deliverance to quality.

The Temple – The Temple Review

The Temple – The Temple Review

“I’d be willing to put down money that The Temple is or contains a piece of Ulcerate. This New Zealand duo consists of P.K. on guitar, bass, and vocals (Paul Kelland? Sure sounds like him) and J.W. on drums (former Ulcerate vocalist James Wallace?), and to make matters worse, the self-titled debut was mixed and produced by J. Saint Merat. But this feeling of limbo, that maybe it is or maybe it isn’t, is what The Temple dwells in.” Crouching temples, hidden tech-death.

Miasmata – Unlight: Songs of Earth and Atrophy Review

Miasmata – Unlight: Songs of Earth and Atrophy Review

“The epic and atmospheric, fantasy-inspired black metal stylings of Sojourner continue to go from strength to strength, with 2018’s very good outing, The Shadowed Road, matched by last year’s Premonitions, which – if not actually better – was, as Eldritch Elitist said in his List, “a far more consistent effort” than its predecessor. But, wherever Sojourner’s travels take them next, they will be going there without New Zealand bassist, Mike Wilson, who has set off into the back metal wilderness for a sojourn of his own, with his new solo project Miasmata.” Participation atrophy.

Vassafor – To the Death Review

Vassafor – To the Death Review

“The band sport a Mitochondrion or Adversarial styled take on death/black metal with a thrashy assault-heavy relentlessness combined with eldritch melodies and passages of doomy ominousness. These New Zealanders laid it on thick with 2012’s double LP The Obsidian Codex, expertly balancing relentless blackened death with ritualistic atmosphere and dense doom to create an experience that felt far shorter than its immense hour-and-thirty-five-minute runtime suggested. Enter 2017’s Malediction, which wasn’t… that. While offering a “shorter” listen at fifty-four minutes, it never managed to truly escape the doomy drudgery and wallowed in uneventfulness for nearly an hour. Enter 2020’s To the Death.” Death be not quick.

Unruly – Unruly Review

Unruly – Unruly Review

“Look, I’m not saying I judge books records by their covers but, come on, everyone likes nice artwork, right? When I’m plumbing the murkier depths of Bandcamp, a cool cover can lure me into that one extra purchase that I swore I wasn’t going to make. It’s just as well for Te Whanganui a Tara, Aotearoa (or Wellington, New Zealand) trio Unruly then, that I didn’t see the cover of their self-titled debut before I hauled it out of the promo pit.” Ugly is as Unruly does.

Beastwars – IV Review

Beastwars – IV Review

“Aside from the fierce sporting rivalry, cross Tasman cultural banter, and endless sheep-fucking jokes, we Aussies generally hold our New Zealand pals from across the ditch in high regard. So sharing in the artistic success of our neighbors is not uncommon. In metal terms, powerhouse act Beastwars are one of the finest bands to emerge from the New Zealand metal scene in recent years.” Stronger than death.