Profound Lore

Portal – Hagbulbia Review

Portal – Hagbulbia Review

“There are a number of cool things about Hagbulbia, but on my first listen, I figured the coolest was that Portal won’t ever have to make it again. By my fifth, I was convinced that they should. After two decades muddling death metal and noise, the release of thirty-eight minutes heavily skewed towards the latter is not just obvious; it’s almost required. As such, Hagbulbia is a burning distillation of Portal’s less musical humors, but the band have chosen a canny strategy for its release. As an unannounced companion to the more traditional Avow, it can be at worst a novelty rather than nuisance for fans, who may be far more receptive to the cocktail than a shot.” There may be cake.

Suffering Hour – The Cyclic Reckoning Review

Suffering Hour – The Cyclic Reckoning Review

“The dreaded sophomore slump is always a concern after a band bursts out of the blocks with a stellar debut. Expectation and pressure mounts, at least from a fan perspective. In the case of the mysterious Suffering Hour, 2017’s debut LP, In Passing Ascension, created a deserved underground buzz and well and truly placed Suffering Hour on the map as a band to keep a close eye on. With just the intervening Dwell EP in 2019, Suffering Hour took their time in fine tuning and honing their signature sound in preparation of unleashing The Cyclic Reckoning.” Vicious cyclic.

Wayfarer – A Romance with Violence Review

Wayfarer – A Romance with Violence Review

“Violence is as American as cherry pie, or so the great MLK Jr. once said. The genesis of this hunger for bloodshed has many roots, but an obvious one is the Wild West. A perfect storm of technological force, an insatiable desire for expansion, a fondness for guns, and laws that were… flexible. It was a violent time, and black metal is violent music, so it seems curious that these have never really been combined before.” of gunsmoke and corpsepaint.

Vanum – Ageless Fire Review

Vanum – Ageless Fire Review

Vanum caught my attention with this gorgeous image of a violent geological process–a particular interest of mine–that is both legibly pictorial and pulling at the edges of abstraction. Tasteful typography and minimal framing compliments rather than competes with the painting. Interest piqued, I dug further and discovered this to be a project of K. Morgan and M. Rekevics of American black metal bands Ash Borer and Yellow Eyes, respectively, both of which I enjoy. Now firmly on the hook, my main question is: does the musical carpet match the visual drapes?” For lavas of fine art.

Insect Ark – Marrow Hymns Review

Insect Ark – Marrow Hymns Review

Insect Ark‘s debut, Portal/Well saw a warm, if not enthusiastic, welcome at AMG by our staff’s very own card-carrying Illuminati member. Such is Roquentin‘s power that the one-woman, drone-doom project didn’t blow up despite its extreme catchiness and party-ready bangers. Never one to allow the powers that be (other than myself) to dictate a band’s future, it was with great curiosity that I reached into the murky waters of the promo pond to retrieve Marrow Hymns, a sophomore effort which sees founding bassist/multi-instrumentalist Dana Schechter joined by drummer and synth-wrangler Ashley Spungin. At forty-four minutes, it’s hardly a marathon, yet the staid oddness of the whole thing proves to lengthen the listening experience.” Swarm drone.

Pallbearer – Heartless Review

Pallbearer – Heartless Review

Pallbearer‘s last album, the stellar Foundations of Burden, not only provided the soundtrack for the memories of broken promises and lost friendships, but also became my favorite album of this past decade. So needless to say, a lot is riding on Heartless, the third full-length from the Arkansas doom kings.” When expectations and fanboyism meet reality.

Worm Ouroboros – What Graceless Dawn Review

Worm Ouroboros – What Graceless Dawn Review

“The San Francisco music scene is nothing if not creative. With oddball acts like Hammers of Misfortune, Vhöl and Slough Feg calling the area home, creativity is in abundant supply. Worm Ouroboros is yet another off-kilter act providing local color to the Bay Area, lesser known but no less interesting. The brain-trust of Lorraine Rath and Jessica Way, the band’s unique blend of dark ambient goth-rock, doom and neo-folk is as interesting as it is offbeat.” Bay Area goth-waves are rising.

Disma – Towards the Megalith Review

Disma – Towards the Megalith Review

At last, an album that’s the musical equivalent to falling face first into a cesspool. Crusty, endlessly filthy, unspeakably nasty and no amount of showering will ever get you truly clean. That’s what you can expect when you press play on the debut by New Jersey’s toxic swamp denizens Disma. Towards the Megalith is eight grueling sojourns through the terrifying underbelly of old school death metal a la Autospy, Grave and Entombed. Featuring several members of the brutal death act Funebrarum, this is not the least bit “modern,” nor does it bear the slightest trace of “melo-death.” If you’re familiar with the level of corpse grinding heaviness Funebrarum delivers, then you have an idea where this is going, but this is even murkier and more corrosive. Yes, these songs are the dregs stuck to the bottom of the musical septic tank. Appealing to the current lust for old school Swedish and American death and joining acts like Entrails and Blood Mortized in the crusty scab sweepstakes, Disma shows just how raw and ugly things can get while still being thouroughly enjoyable, though this will be too much for many to digest (ewww). If you haven’t already gotten up to find this, kindly wait until you finish reading this stellar piece of prose.