Resonance - Nercophagous, Plum Green, Dead Space Chamber Music, Abyssus, Arch Of Hell, Astrophobos
Nercophagous – In Chaos and Death 9/10
Creating a sound that is rooted in pure death metal Sweden’s Necrophagous have delivered an intense unrelenting slab of pure intense mayhem. At times it might sound a little over familiar especially if you’re a fan of the Covenant album but that’s not a bad thing. Horns of Seven is pure intense down tuned riffing and manic double kicking that takes that American first wave of death metal and brings it forth, lurking and chaotic into the modern era. The Title track In Chaos And Death is thick intense and dripping in loathing, Blood on the Stone of Thee Mountains takes the Floridan influence to its zenith to create and album that contains dark grooves that are memorable and yet incredibly heavy.
Such a fantastic debut album that is mature and loves its source material Tommy Carlsson (Visceral Bleeding, ex-Entrails) provides the throat that condemns and questions especially on Traitors And The Pendulum whilst The Vile Embalmed provide more death metal excellence. In Chaos and Death is a pure brutal death metal for the pure death metal fan
Dead Space Chamber Music - The Black Hours 9.5/10
Dead Space Chamber Music aren’t so much a band as they are a musical force of nature that draws melodies and influences from the Renaissance and intertwines them the dark contemporary format that involves 80’s style rhythm’s and then fuses them with the noise and unsettlement that comes from Avant artists.
Bryd One Brere (Bird on a Briar)” takes it source from 1300AD and conveys the thought of a man hopelessly in love and its transformative effects. The vocals are both orchestral and haunting, ethereal and yet tender. Bold in its originality this is artists expressing themselves and their love for music that transcends 1000 years of history, encapsulating it with their own unique vision.
It is at times melancholy and dark; Ion II takes the cello of Liz Paxton and uses Ellen Southerns vocal accents to create a haunting musical dreamscape that is foreboding, organic and terrifying. The prayer like annotations, to reference the last year globally. The Liturgy of the Hours from which the album title takes its name is the catalyst for an album recorded in a live environment. The result is staggering. Listen to ‘Mari Lwyd / Morfa’r Frenhines and revel in the maturity and sublime musicianship, unique, dark yet uplifting, The Black Hours is an album that eschews all typical musical troupes and delivers a work of art that the more one invests in it the more they receive. Stunning
https://dscm.bandcamp.com (Vinyl, CD, Cassette, Digital)
ABYSSUS - Death Revival 8.5/10
Greek maniacal merchants Abyssus taker all the glory of late 80s early nineties thrash and combine it with glorious raw primordial death metal to create Death Revival an album that is uncompromising raw and brutal.
Death Revival rips and punishes at every turn Konstantinos Analyti’s vocals are reminiscent of Icon Chuck Schuldiner and they are harsh yet understandable. The whole album has a familiar vibe that is welcome and pure in its honesty. Splitting eardrums since 2011 ABYSSUS have perfected their sound yet let it evolve without compromise. When Wolves Are Out to Hunt is lurking and predatory, The Beast Within is a mid-paced attack that is lean and aggressive with its kicks and twin solo, whilst Metal of Death is exactly that. The combination of Sodom style mania with Death metal flourishes delivering a speed attack that is unrelenting and celebrates all things true and heavy , with a beer in hand and shaking of the head .
Gloriously old school without being redundant the traditional Greek opener to Genocide provides a brief respite before the chaos and the TheWitch keeps the momentum going with tight chaotic riffing and excellent drumming. Death Revival is pure metal cranked to 11.
Plum Green – Somnambulistic 9.5/10
Somnambulistic is Victorian Plum Greens third full length release and sees her sombre, hymns reach new heights delivered simply yet beautifully.
Plum Green defy normal description, her voice is alluring almost sensual in its subtlety. From dark hymns to a lullaby dreamlike state. Its neo dark Folk, Ambient, Doom. Dark Gothic, acoustic gospel. Everything yet nothing. Somnambulistic is beautiful yet haunting, a sinister undercurrent lurks within the melodies the simple acoustic tones rich in texture, drawing you into her cinematic sounds, conjuring images that remain long after the first listen. Yet there are screams hidden within the sonnets, the layers of sound to assist and create a genuine uplifting experience.
“White Kitten”, “Grave Snuggler” and “Walk Against the Wind” are bright stars that stand out, eerie and emotive, combining classical acoustic guitar and the invaluable contributions of musical partner Daniel Cross, but it is “’Belleza Nocturna’’ and its closing serenade that lingers long after its finished. A lullaby to say goodnight and a vocal line to carry with you in your dreams
Dream Like ethereal and intangible. Somnambulistic is a genuine labour of love where nothing is overlooked and everything is intentional, it adds to the mythos that is Plum Green, mysterious, deeply personal, and epitomizing power in its silence, presence in its restraint and a unique talent that is in complete control of its destiny
Astrophobos – Corpus. 9/10
Stockholm’s Astrophobos return with their third full length release, Corpus is not only the Swedish trio’s new album but is also part of a larger multimedia art project.
Delivered in its native tongue Corpus is not just a great Black Metal album. It is a terrific Black Metal album that is enticing and horrifying. From the 18 second vocal tirade that is the opening to Corpus, Astrophobos delve completely and utterly in the darkness and deliver a mid-paced attack that loses none of its power and intensity over the duration of the record. Some artist claim to be Lovecraftian but Astrphpbos invoke the unearthly spirits so completely it is tangible on first listen. They use this to move and evolve to the inevitably of life and its decay. Corpus is Dynamic and involving, the fury is not tempered by melody but uses it to literally hammer their purpose and intent.
‘’Utrotning’’(extermination),’’Svarta” (Blackness) ‘’Liktal’’ (Funeral Sermon) are more moments of great primordial Black metal greatness, lurking powerful passages that emerge from the darkness, to taunt and terrify. Astrophobos take all the elements of mid 90s Black metal and take it to its zenith one that is memorable and lingers long after the initial first assault.
Corpus is a collaboration where sculpture, photography and music combine. On November 12th the full project is revealed, with artists Lisa Wallert and Morgan Norman. Intelligent, dignified yet utterly brutal Corpus is compelling and inspired and barbaric.
Arch Of Hell- Arrival 8.5/10
Arrival is the latest release from Arch of Hell a Czech seven piece that since their formation in 2006 have taken the sound of modern metal to new heights whilst maintaining their unique Mediterranean flavour.
Big powerful crunchy riffs that are driven by Malášek’s clean vocals and Štěpán Fiala’s growls, Arrival is a huge modern, metal delivered flawlessly. ‘’Follow the Sphinx’’ is a symphonic metal moment that really shines with dual clean vocals and dynamic keyboard flourishes. ‘’Curse of Re-incarnation’’ is pure metal, taking some cues from Arch Enemy and adding massive breakdowns and excellent drumming from Marty. The musicianship on here is simply stunning especially when each instrument is given its own moment to shine. Stardust is more metal, big thumping kicks before the harmonious vocals arrive and take it into new directions with a fantastic solo. ‘Ungrateful’ is more musical excellence.
‘’Chariots of the Gods’’ is an electronic instrumental more on the EBM side of things whilst Sachment is the musical moment that combines demanding keyboard lines with excellent syncopated drumming, great vocals and a little Rammstein. The dreamlike moments conjuring the Importance of Egyptian culture that are tempered by heaviness of reality.
Arrival is a thoughtful accomplished album that is incredibly focused and the trade-off between both sets of clean vocals to vocal fry and growling makes them more diverse and dynamic than their peers. Adventurous and mysterious as per their subject matter Arch of Hell have delivered a finely crafted album that is thematic and pure of spirit.