Mare Cognitum – Luminiferous Aether (2016)

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Author: Crono
Artist: Mare Cognitum
Album: Luminiferous Aether
Label: I, Voidhanger Records

Mare Cognitum is a band that has been around for a little bit and is fairly well known within the atmospheric black metal scene. It’s the creation of Jacob Buczarski from California, and he writes and records all the music himself. Now, one-man black metal bands are not new, and the frequency that Mare Cognitum releases music is not new either, but the quality of each release is something to behold. I don’t think Jacob has ever released a song that he isn’t completely satisfied lives up to his amazing standard. Luminiferous Aether is the band’s fourth album and continues this trend of extremely high quality music.

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Ecferus – Pangaea (2016)

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Author: Crono

Artist: Ecferus

Album: Pangaea

Label: I, Voidhanger Records

 

Somewhere along the way, black metal bands specifically dealing with space became a thing. I suppose it must have started with Darkspace, but there seems to be a lot more these days: Mare Cognitum, Spectral Lore, Moon, and of course Ecferus. This is their second album, Pangaea. I really enjoyed their first album, Prehistory, for its spacey atmosphere and its cold production values. This time, however, I feel that Ecferus has bumped up the production values a bit more, and it has resulted in an altogether more aggressive sound on Pangaea. Continue reading

Spectral Lore- Gnosis (2015)

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Author: Crono

Artist: Spectral Lore

Album: Gnosis

Label: I, Voidhanger Records

 

 Wow has Spectral Lore ever been busy these past few years. Starting in 2012, they have released a string of monstrous pieces. Starting with their third LP, Sentinel, my personal introduction to Spectral Lore, then following with two splits, the better of the two being the mind-blowing Sol, a concept album about space where Spectral Lore and the equally space-y Mare Cognitum each wrote one track and then co-wrote a third. To follow this up, there was the brilliantly titled III, their fourth album (obviously), which was nothing short of a triumph, cutting away some of more ambient work in favor of 90 minutes of pure atmospheric black metal greatness. Continue reading

Howls of Ebb – The Marrow Veil (2015)

Author: Bloodshot Grub

Artist: Howls of Ebb

Album: The Marrow Veil

Label: I, Voidhanger Records

A metal fan in 2015 is faced with a true embarrassment of riches. There is far more metal being released every year than I’ll ever be able to listen to. Even if I restricted myself to the albums I expect to really enjoy, I doubt I would ever be able to get through it all. This scenario makes album art an invaluable tool in finding new music. Over the course of over 20 years of metal exploration, I’ve cultivated what I believe to be a very accurate sense of what an album will sound like based on the name and album art, and that helps me hone on the music that I find most interesting. It’s not a perfect system, because while I might be able to make a good guess of what a band sounds like, I still have no idea whether it will actually be any good until I get it into my ears. And that brings us to Howls of Ebb. Continue reading