Swedish Metal

Yer Metal Is Olde: Nifelheim – Servants of Darkness

Yer Metal Is Olde: Nifelheim – Servants of Darkness

“There’s something immensely satisfying about listening to musicians who are utterly devoted to their craft. In the realm of blackened thrash, you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who fits that description more than Nifelheim‘s founding members, Swedish twins Erik “Tyrant” and Per “Hellbutcher” Gustavsson. These are the guys who apparently kicked out their first guitarist for being “wimpy” enough to have a girlfriend, the guys who once claimed that Venom is the most recent band they actually like.” Trve darkness.

The Funeral Orchestra – Negative Evocation Rights Review

The Funeral Orchestra – Negative Evocation Rights Review

“As just the second full-length from The Funeral Orchestra in 18 years of existence, to say that Negative Evocation Rights has been long in the making feels like a massive understatement. The follow up to 2003’s Feeding the Abyss, and given the band’s nom de plume and the fact that this Swedish trio do actually specialize in an ultra-slow, stripped back form of doom – it should be my opportunity to hold forth, at length, on the funeral doom genre.” Charnel knowledge.

Kingnomad – Sagan Om Rymden Review

Kingnomad – Sagan Om Rymden Review

“My fine friend El Cuervo is an old soul. Not an olde soul, mind you, but getting there. We both enjoy deeply of the 70s prog scene, and one release we both dig is the late Bo Hansson’s debut from fifty years ago, Music Inspired by Lord of the Rings, or Sagan om Ringen in Swedish. Who cares? Well, we do, and so do the four Swedish individuals who comprise the psychedelic prog-doom act Kingnomad.” One prog to rule them all.

Vampire – Rex Review

Vampire – Rex Review

“When we last heard from Swedish vampires, err… Vampire, they impressed me in 2017 with their Castlevania II/80’s inspired With Primeval Force, and although it didn’t crack my Top Ten(ish) that year, it still worms its way into my listening sessions on a continual basis around these parts. I was beginning to worry that the merry (undead) quintet would lay dormant, so imagine my surprise when the higher-ups threw Rex at my lap and told me to get on that shit, pronto.” Rex the necks.

Sorcerer – Lamenting of the Innocent Review

Sorcerer – Lamenting of the Innocent Review

“Sweden’s Sorcerer has had a bouncy ride through the ages. They released a series of demos I really enjoyed back in the early 90s and then completely vanished from the metal scene for some 20-plus years. They reappeared in 2015 with a comeback album I slept on, then knocked me flat, silly and senseless with 2017s stupendous The Crowning of the Fire King. That album’s expertly crafted blend of traditional and doom metal was impossible to resist and Fire King seized my Record o’ the Year glory easily. Naturally I was quite stoked to receive the followup, Lamenting of the Innocent. With a concept based around the Inquisition and witch trials, all signs and omens pointed to another big dose of classy metal with hooks by the boatload.” No one expects the Swedish Inquisition!

Sodomisery – The Great Demise Review

Sodomisery – The Great Demise Review

“Sweden’s Sodomisery began as a project that included live members from the monstrous Diabolical, as well as Katatonia‘s Niklas Sandin on bass and Netherbird‘s Johan Fridell on vox. At the completion of their 2017 self-titled EP, Fridell and Sandin left and a new lineup formed. Borrowing from their experiences with Diabolical, Sodomisery unleashes a crushing mix of black, death, Swedeath, thrash, and melodeath for their debut, The Great Demise. I know what you’re thinking: that’s a lot to digest. Well, at least the record title sounds uplifting?” Big death, big prizes!

Henry Kane – Age of the Idiot Review

Henry Kane – Age of the Idiot Review

“It’s been nearly two months since I last wrote a review for a Jonny Pettersson project, so I’m long overdue for another one. I’m beginning to think that we should probably give Pettersson and fellow Swede Rogga Johansson a cool team name like ‘The Teeming Twins,’  ‘The Boys of Bounty,’ ‘The Copious Corps,’ or my favorite, ‘The Patriarchy of Profuseness.'” Snatch and jab.

Naglfar – Cerecloth Review

Naglfar – Cerecloth Review

“These Swedes have been around a long time and, I’m sad to admit, I kinda gave up on them after 2007’s Harvest. Yet, here we are, some thirteen years later, with Naglfar‘s newest record plopped in my lap. Upon initial inspection, Cerecloth looks, feels, and smells like Naglfar. Former bassist, Kristoffer W. Olivius, is still at the mic, after replacing the mighty Jens Rydén on 2005’s Pariah. And, as it’s been since ’95’s Vittra, each instrument is as crucial as the next. The result is some of the strongest songwriting in the genre. Never groundbreaking and never meant to be, Naglfar is a true purveyor of that melodic black metal sound.” Olde and still colde.

Then Comes Silence – Machine Review

Then Comes Silence – Machine Review

“For starters, one of the weirder batches of name drops that I’ve ever whipped together: Then Comes Silence sound something like the frolicking gloomchild of The Cure, MGMT, Eurythmics, and Impure Wilhelmina. Machine is a strange thing of bouncing electronica and sullen prog, a 45-minute dance through the tears—or maybe it’s with?” Auto-saboi.

Head of the Demon – Deadly Black Doom Review

Head of the Demon – Deadly Black Doom Review

Head of the Demon, were unknown to me when I picked up what is their third full-length outing. Thus far in their career, the occult-themed doomsters have kept a healthy four years between releases, dropping their self-titled debut in 2012 and its follow up, Sathanas Trismegistos, in 2016. Can 2020’s Deadly Black Doom deliver on its oh so tantalizing title?” Demon doom.