Woods of Ypres

Eric Wagner – In the Lonely Light of Mourning Review

Eric Wagner – In the Lonely Light of Mourning Review

“I truly hate posthumously released albums. Whether they ultimately end up good or depressingly bad, there’s always so much inherent sadness hanging over the final product making it impossible to avoid the whole “music from the grave” effect. When the deceased in question is Eric Wagner, long-time vocalist of legendary doom act Trouble, it cuts extra deep. Still, it’s hard to deny that the grim context only enhances the kind of downtrodden music the man is famous for. In the Lonely Light of Mourning, Mr. Wagner’s second solo outing, plays almost like a goodbye to fans of the man’s 40-plus years in the metalverse.” At the end of my daze.

Inner Missing – Dead Language Review

Inner Missing – Dead Language Review

“I’ll be honest, my expectations for Dead Language were low. First, wow, that is a terrible name. Second, Inner Missing are a two-person gothic metal band releasing album number nine in twelve years. You have to give them credit for persistence, but nine albums without a breakout isn’t promising. Third, my first impression of the lead single “The Quest” was entirely dominated by the inexplicable near-monotone vastly over-inflected bass vocals. It was not looking good. Expectations and first impressions are funny things, though.” Lost and found in translation.

Kolossus – K Review

Kolossus – K Review

“As I do with all bands that have a discography, I started from the top. It was only last year that Kolossus dropped their debut record, The Line of the Border. In those forty-plus minutes, my lips would involuntarily mouth, ‘What the fuck?’ Each song is nothing like the last. Each brings something new to the plate, and none cared what came before or went after. It refused to follow the rules—it’s own or anyone else’s. And, to an extent, K is no different.” K is for Klosers.

Bell Witch/Aerial Ruin – Stygian Bough Volume I Review

Bell Witch/Aerial Ruin – Stygian Bough Volume I Review

“Dylan Desmond and Jesse Shreibman’s decision to make official their partnership with Erik Moggridge, the man in Aerial Ruin’s one-man dark folk band, made sense. Moggridge’s guest vocals on Mirror Reaper conveyed grief and loss on a frequency that Bell Witch couldn’t have reached alone. Stygian Bough Volume I pries those mournful dimensions wide in a symbiotic give-and-take quite unlike anything either act has produced before.” Witch in flight.

Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn Review

Winterfylleth – The Reckoning Dawn Review

“Wtf’s occur in everyday life. I’ve broken a thumb of one hand under the hammer held by the other and exclaimed the same betrayed question. Hell, I’m sure my mother pinched me out and exclaimed those same three words to my father. I sure did whisper it when I heard Winterfylleth’s The Hallowing of Heirdom. An acoustic album was not what I expected. I had hoped, instead, for a strong release to balance out the mediocre The Dark Hereafter. Upon the first spin of The Reckoning Dawn, my mouth hung open once more and I exclaimed, ‘what the fuck.’ But what kind of ‘wtf’ is this? The good kind? Or the bad?” You can’t spell Winterfylleth without WTF.

Obsidian Tongue – Volume III Review

Obsidian Tongue – Volume III Review

“It’s six years since this Maine duo dropped their sophomore effort, A Nest of Ravens in the Throat of Time, a time when we still linked to Myspace pages in reviews. How time flies! A Nest of Ravens was a great record, atmospheric black metal, sprawling, blisteringly heavy in places with folky elements too. Their debut, Volume I: Subradiant Architecture, wasn’t too shabby either. That Obsidian Tongue mainman and multi-instrumentalist Brendan Hayter did a brief stint in the much-missed Woods of Ypres and currently mans the bass for metal-infused folksters Thrawsunblat maybe gives some sense of where Obsidian Tongue are coming from.” Tongue on the third date.

Fvneral Fvkk – Carnal Confessions Review

Fvneral Fvkk – Carnal Confessions Review

“If there was ever a case of a band’s name totally not fitting their style, we’ve found it here with Fvneral Fvkk. When I see that godawful moniker all I can think of is some lo-fi garage black thrash band that sounds like a demon in a metal trash can getting thrown down steel fire stairs. Luckily, this is not what you get here. Made up of members from Crimson Swan, Ophis and Fäulnis, the band operates under Ghostly aliases, and on their debut full-length they deliver a stunningly effective slab of bleak, despondent doom metal in the vein of Warning and Solitude Aeturnus, with a heavy Woods of Ypres influence making it all the more gloomy and glum.” What’s in a name?

Deadwood Lake – Immortalised in Death Review

Deadwood Lake – Immortalised in Death Review

“Sparkling cool water gently thrums against a piece of driftwood. A tiny squirrel scurries through the underbrush. I sit atop a picnic bench beside the rock strewn shore of Diamond Lake in southern Oregon mulling over how to articulate my heavy thoughts regarding an album by a band with a similar name to the very lake I overlook. When asked how they got their name, melodic atmospheric black metal band Deadwood Lake’s response is simply “we just thought it sounded cool.” It turns out that there is in fact a body of water in northern Wisconsin with the same sinister name as this relatively new yet prolific addition to the UK’s atmoblack scene.” Death at the lake.

Phlebotomized – Deformation of Humanity Review

Phlebotomized – Deformation of Humanity Review

“Following the spate of fantastic death metal records released in the twilight months of 2018, my new year’s resolution was thusly engraved: listen to more death metal. Admittedly, last year was absolutely bananas when it came down to average release quality across all varieties of death metal, rendering wishes for the streak to continue borderline pointless. I can at least continue to expand my horizons in a genre that I have always somewhat neglected, and what better way to start than with—Jesus fuck, what is that?” Ugly to be bone.