Satyricon

Acârash – Descend to Purity Review

Acârash – Descend to Purity Review

Descend to Purity is the band’s sophomore effort, following 2018’s In Chaos Becrowned. Doc Grier thought that effort was a promising debut, but with songs that tended to meander and ultimately go nowhere. He also nearly started a riot in the comments section by stating that Ghost kinda suck. Now, I have no wish to further inflame a world that has enough tension as is, but whatever your feelings about Ghost, you have to admit that the band members at least sound like they’re having fun. Acârash is aiming for the same aesthetic.” Good metal fun?

Blight – Temple of Wounds Review

Blight – Temple of Wounds Review

“Montreal’s Blight have been around over a decade, having released a slew of EPs and demos, but never a full-length… until now! Temple of Wounds brings the quartet’s Luciferian onslaught to the masses, and in doing so, it made me feel even grimier than before.” Filthy wounds and dirty medicine.

Deliverance – Holocaust 26:1-46 Review

Deliverance – Holocaust 26:1-46 Review

“Like Amenra, they have the ability to suck you deep into tension-building ascensions before coming down on the front of your skull like a sledgehammer. But, the biggest difference between Amenra and Deliverance is that the latter prefers the accompaniment of rasping vocals and black-metal song structures. Combining this foundation with Amenra-like builds and Gojira-esque, concrete-cracking riffs, 2020 finds Deliverance releasing their most-impressive work to date. But, good luck looking beyond the haunting artwork, the heart-sickening album title, and a band name that reminds one of hillbilly butt sex. Now, everyone, open your books to the chapter of ‘Holocaust’ and let’s begin.” End times.

Abigail Williams – Walk Beyond the Dark [Things You Might Have Missed 2019]

Abigail Williams – Walk Beyond the Dark [Things You Might Have Missed 2019]

“Manned by the dark mind of Ken Sorceron, Abigail Williams has come a long way in the last decade. Surviving lineup changes, relocations, and changes in musical directions—as well as fandom—Sorceron pushes on, refusing to settle on a path created for him by others’ expectations. Up ahead is another bend in this path. So, take my hand and let’s Walk Beyond the Dark together.” Abby normal

Negator – Vnitas Pvritas Existentia Review

Negator – Vnitas Pvritas Existentia Review

“You know that feeling when you’ve entrusted someone you don’t know to do a job, and you realize early on that they are capable and competent and that, for this particular task at least, you don’t have to worry? Listening to Negator’s latest effort, Vnitas Pvritas Existensia, is a lot like that. Within the first 5 minutes, you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into: furious, no-nonsense Germanic, occult black metal (with a distinct paucity of U’s in the song titles).” Goats til Sunday!

Stellar Master Elite – Hologram Temple Review

Stellar Master Elite – Hologram Temple Review

“Though everything SME has released is solid, III brought with it a new vocalist and direction. Building atmospheres now reign supreme over the band’s early days of traditional black metal. The result, as I mentioned in my III review, was something spontaneous, borrowing from a variety of black and death metal influences. Though III concluded the trilogy, there’s still loads of fun to be had on Hologram Temple.” Diversity stings.

Paragon Impure – Sade Review

Paragon Impure – Sade Review

“Founding member and driving force Noctiz has only managed one full length release thus far, 2005’s To Gaius! (For the Delivery of Agrippina), with technical and personal setbacks apparently stalling efforts around 2009 to release a follow-up album which was to be titled Fall of Man. That unreleased material has been reworked and incorporated into this—their second full length in thirteen years—Sade. No, not that Sade, the English singer of “Smooth Operator” fame; Sade as in the Marquis de Sade, that cheeky French noble whose sexuality and writings thereof have been an inspiring, deep, rich vein of perversity for metal artists to plunder ad infinitum.” Sade songs say so much.

Vreid – Lifehunger Review

Vreid – Lifehunger Review

“It was June 2006 and I was helping a friend move into a downtown apartment. It was hot and we were scrambling up and down two flights of stairs as fast as possible before a cop could ticket us for taking up half-a-lane of traffic with our truck. When it was finally over, we grabbed lunch and went to my favorite record store down the street. This place had the strangest collection of albums I’d ever seen and a surprisingly large metal section for a town full of hippies and reggae fans. The album I selected that day was something I had heard many things about. From a band that rose from the ashes of Windir.” Vreid it and weep.

Dalkhu – Lamentation and Ardent Fire Review

Dalkhu – Lamentation and Ardent Fire Review

“Wow, it’s been three years since I reviewed Dalkhu‘s Descend… into Nothingness? Where in the hell has the time gone? When I reviewed it, a new life had just begun for me, right when this fantastic black/death record dropped in my lap. Ever since then, I’ve come back to Descend… with regularity. Not only is it an exceptional piece of deathy Dissection but it marked a huge progression for Dalkhu. Within one release, the band morphed from the sharp—and, sometimes, unpleasant—attacks of the blackened Imperator to the polished, passioned, and death-centered Descend… As one would expect, I had high hopes for more of the same treatment from this year’s Lamentation and Ardent Fire. But, it seems, the band is incapable of sitting still.” Mud, fire, death.

Sear Bliss – Letters from the Edge Review

Sear Bliss – Letters from the Edge Review

“In my mental compendium of underappreciated metal treasures, Hungary’s Sear Bliss holds a somewhat unique position. Though they’ve only released one truly great album in my eyes (2007’s The Arcane Odyssey), they have a relatively extensive back catalog of solid records, making them an easy selection whenever I want to throw on an uncomplicated black metal album that offers a few unique instrumental twists. The band’s incorporation of trombone had always delivered a distinct sense of heavy, brassy atmosphere that effectively combined second wave tropes with Summoning-esque majesty. With Letters from the Edge, the latter has stayed intact, but the former has fallen to the wayside in favor of something a bit more absorbing and melancholic.” Blackened trombone.