The Cure

Hours of Worship – The Cold that You Left Review

Hours of Worship – The Cold that You Left Review

“I was born in the mid-90’s, so neither it nor the 80s are decades I remember. Hours of Worship’s second LP, The Cold That You Left, however, is so soaked in that era’s signature gothic electronica that it gives even me nostalgia. The duo’s professed touchstones of Type O Negative and early The Cure are pretty much on the money. This is pure aestheticized depression that goths everywhere would clamor to inject directly into their veins. I’m no Wednesday Addams wannabe, but listening to this makes me want to dye my hair and paint my nails black, apply heavy eyeliner, and start hanging around in graveyards.” Goth in a dark place.

Hooded Menace – The Tritonus Bell Review

Hooded Menace – The Tritonus Bell Review

“Finland’s Hooded Menace are lords of death-doom. Their back-catalog is a veritable boneyard of fatal furors that crawl at a corpse pace and exist on the edge of an undead pulse. Indeed, their last album, Ossuarium Silhouettes Unhallowed, made a grave impression on many an end-of-year list, mine included. Now, sixth album The Tritonus Bell prepares to resound, and one thing is certain; Hooded Menace are masters of their craft. But this record’s new stylistic choice excludes heft in favor of history and the implication is almost unrecognizable.” Bells to the wall.

Crawl Below – 9 Mile Square Review

Crawl Below – 9 Mile Square Review

“For being a metal review site, an awful lot of barely-metal promos sneak past our guard gorilla and land in the laps of unsuspecting writers. Staff more senior and wily than myself have learned to decipher their signs and avoid them like that guy at the party who wants to tell you about his Battlestar Galactica fan fic. However, because these promos are most often generously tagged as “doom,” yours truly unwittingly walks right into them. Only after I’ve committed do they tear off their fake mustache, throw down their prop cane and gleefully shout, “Ha ha! It is I, unrelated genre!” Thankfully, I’m an open minded metal head, and these things have worked out splendidly in the past. New England’s Crawl Below caught my attention with the “doom” tag, but also because their album 9 Mile Square is a concept piece about the historic and contemporary region of Norwich, Connecticut. This decidedly non-metal theme should have tipped me off, but here we are.” Broken gates and square mileage.

Ulver – Flowers of Evil Review

Ulver – Flowers of Evil Review

“Off the back of 2017’s The Assassination of Julius Caesar and the Ulver Primer which we ran a few weeks ago, 2020 has bequeathed unto us a new full-length title from Norway’s Ulver. Flowers of Evil sits in an unusual place as successor to the most poppy Ulver release, an album which I underrated at the time but have come to love. Rarely simple and never expected, Ulver has built a career out of subverting expectations and always pushing into new territories. How does such a band follow the most accessible album of their story?” Just look at the flowers.

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.

Drown – Subaqueous Review

Drown – Subaqueous Review

“Funeral doom was never a genre I willingly embraced or ever truly “got,” but as I grow older I seem to be finding more and more affinity for it. Perhaps that’s because I’m getting closer to picking out caskets for my own funeral, or maybe age has slowed me to the point where I can better appreciate other slow things, like turtles and the US legal system. Whatever the case may be, Subaqueous, the second album by Drown, is helping bring me around on this most niche of genres.” Death in the water.

GosT – Valediction Review

GosT – Valediction Review

“Unusual genre crossovers are a tricky thing to get right. Done well, by bands like Diablo Swing Orchestra, they can produce brilliant music that sounds like nothing else. Done poorly, they certainly sound like nothing else. When we last saw 80s horror-themed black metal/synthwave crossover act GosT on their previous album Possessor, Eldritch Elitist noted the combination was sometimes awkward, but great when it worked.” GosTed.

The Exploding Boy – Alarms! [Things You Might Have Missed 2018]

The Exploding Boy – Alarms! [Things You Might Have Missed 2018]

“As we approach the Days of Lists, you can expect to hear writers complain and/or praise the year in metal for what it gave us. I lean toward the camp that thinks 2018 wasn’t a banner year for the genre, and as partial proof of that, I spent more time spinning a non-metal album than almost anything else I came across. That album is Alarms! by the Swedish post-punk, Goth-rock act, The Exploding Boy.” Sound the Alarms!