Harakiri for the Sky – III: Trauma (2016)


Author: Crono

Artist: Harakiri for the Sky

Album: III: Trauma

Label: Art of Propaganda

Genre: Post-Black Metal



The follow-up to 2014’s amazing Aokigahara has finally come! III: Trauma is Harakiri for the Sky’s third full length album. Their second album, Aokigahara, was an amazing piece of music, and it made my top 10 albums list for that year. There are some really gorgeous riffs on that album, and Harakiri for the Sky was able to iron out all of the issues in production and pacing that held their debut back. The question that I was constantly asking while waiting for this album to drop was: will it live up to AokigaharaContinue reading

A Pregnant Light – All Saints Day (2015)


Author: Arvind

Band: A Pregnant Light

Album: All Saints Day

Label: Colloquial Sound Recordings

Damian Master, the troubled mastermind behind A Pregnant Light, once told me that “pure black metal must have riffs” (http://kwur.com/five-songs-to-listen-to-curated-by-damian-master-of-a-pregnant-light/). It’s an epithet shared by many, a simple idea in principle that nonetheless provides a stark guideline for how to gauge and interact with this genre of music. It’s rather fitting, then, that A Pregnant Light, Master’s long-running project, straddles the line between blown-out atmospheric black metal, charging post-punk, and straightforward heartache. Continue reading

Deafheaven – New Bermuda (2015)

Author: Crono

Artist: Deafheaven

Album: New Bermuda

Label: Anti Records


Someone had to write this review, so I stepped up. I might have the most history with Deafheaven, but I’m probably not the ideal candidate to review New Bermuda. I got off the Deafheaven train a little while ago. When Deafheaven first released Roads to Judah, I was on a huge atmoblack kick. Like huge, much more than I am now. Roads to Judah was like a combination of a few of those atmoblack albums of the time (Wolves in the Throne Room probably being the blueprint), and mixed in was Explosions in the Sky crescendos, or maybe Japan’s Mono. I enjoyed it, but it was just another atmoblack band in a sea of others. But I turned back and listened to their demo as well. If you are interested in learning why I loved Deafheaven so much at that point in time, go listen to Daedelus. This is where they demonstrated that they had some kind of vision that could take them outside of the atmoblack box that so many bands were starting to put themselves into. At the beginning of Daedelus, they come out with this riff that is just so catchy, so upbeat, so amazing, and they pair it with a tambourine. Seriously. It sounds brilliant! That song still gets me. So Deafheaven was willing to try something different. Then they released Punk Rock/Cody, a Mogwai cover, once again really solidifying that post-rock influence. I was sure that Sunbather was going to be some kind of glorious combination of the forward-thinking of Daedelus, the vicious black metal riffs, and the beautiful post-rock moments. And it was; at least, I think it was. But it didn’t sound good to me. In fact, after listening to the album ad nauseum, I decided I hated it. The production sounded off, their riffs were too happy, even the black metal ones, and it was full of too much crap. All those filler tunes, the bland moments. Yes, I was ready to get off the Deafheaven train. Continue reading