Withered – Grief Relic (2016)

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Author: T.K. White

Band: Withered

Album: Grief Relic

Genre: Black/Death Metal

Label: Season of Mist

Withered is an odd band considering they fell apart, yet managed to hang on by a thread which happens to be named Mike Thompson. Thankfully, after everyone left Thompson he was able to find other prominent artists (Colin Marston, Ethan McCarthy) to help cauterize the wound; however, that is not so much the case, but I will get that in a moment.
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Zhrine – Unortheta (2016)

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Author: Jan Jakobsen

Band: Zhrine

Album: Unortheta

Label: Season of Mist

Genre: Black/Death Metal

Born from the ashes of brutal death metal band Gone Postal, rises Zhrine as a dissonant and highly experimental death metal phoenix. With a member from Svartidauði and ex-member of Naðra you can probably tell what they’re going to sound like if you’re somewhat familiar with the Icelandic black metal scene that’s been growing and become famous in the underground metal scene in the last few years. What Zhrine brings to the table is a highly technical, dissonant and experimental sound that’s unlike most others. I reviewed Devouring Star early last year and gave them a fairly favorable review and Zhrine seems to have added a more death metal edge to the sonic explosion, but there certainly are elements that they both share. Continue reading

Black Cobra – Imperium Simulacra (2016)

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Author: Bloodshot Grub

Artist: Black Cobra

Album: Imperium Simulacra

Label: Season of Mist

Genre: Sludge/Doom Metal

 

Black Cobra is one of those bands with a consistent, distinct, and immediately identifiable vision for their music, and they deliver on it every single time, without fail. If you like your sludge fast, aggressive, and filled to the brim with outstanding riffs, you can select any one of the San Francisco duo’s five albums and find great satisfaction.  Continue reading

Rotting Christ – Rituals (2016)

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Author: Gay For Gary Oldman

Artist: Rotting Christ

Album: Rituals (2016)

Label: Season of Mist

 

 

Rotting Christ have always held a particularly notable place in my music library. At the end of my middle school days, after discovering new music and bands primarily through early 2000s horror movie soundtracks, I felt that I had discovered the pinnacle of aggressive and evil music in Lamb of God. Expressing this discovery to another student in the first few weeks of high school, he returned the next day with five CDs. Although nostalgia may play a factor, among them, My Arms, Your Hearse is still my favourite album of all time; Dechristianize is still my favourite death metal album, and Rotting Christ’s Sanctus Diavlos is consistently tied with De Mysteriis and the bands own debut Thy Mighty Contract for my personal peak of black metal. Continue reading

Deströyer 666 – Wildfire (2016)

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Author: Jan Jakobsen

Band: Deströyer 666

Album: Wildfire

Label: Season of Mist

 

K.K. Warslut and his merry gang of satanic thrash metallers have finally returned with fresh material seven years after the somewhat disappointing fourth album Defiance. We did however get the excellent compilation To the Devil His Due in 2010, but now with Wildfire we get 9 brand new tracks. Let’s make this clear right at the start, Deströyer 666 are one of the finest bands in the entire heavy metal genre and their three first albums are seen as legendary for a reason. The vicious riffing, the pummeling drums and the songwriting in general showcased by the mighty Deströyer 666 serves as a reminder of how mind-bogglingly awesome thrash metal can be. With these superlatives thrown around I expected great things from Wildfire and my hype level reached unfathomable levels after they released their first single, Live and Burn, back in January. It was everything I wanted in a Deströyer 666 song. Continue reading

The Lion’s Daughter – Existence is Horror (2016)

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Author: Bloodshot Grub

Artist: The Lion’s Daughter

Album: Existence Is Horror

Label: Season of Mist

 

 

And here it is, my first new release of 2016, the sophomore full-length from Missouri’s The Lion’s Daughter. I’m not superstitious, but some ancient part of my brain seems to worry that my selection might prove prophetic with regards to the year ahead. If that were the case, the title alone would indicate that this would make an especially ominous note on which to start the year. There are some significant similarities to one of the last releases I caught in 2015, and the subject of my last review, The Tomb of All Things by Un. It’s slow, it’s bleak, it’s violent and unwholesome, and it doesn’t quite hit the mark. Continue reading

Revenge – Behold.Total.Rejection (2015)

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Author: Jan Jakobsen

Artist: Revenge

Album: Behold.Total.Rejection

Label: Season of Mist

 

Revenge is the gift that keeps on giving. After fifteen years of writing and playing some of the most bestial and aggressive black metal out there, Revenge still manages to up the extremity on Behold.Total.Rejection. James Read and Vermin are the two men behind all the music, and James Read in particular is somewhat of a legend in the War Metal scene considering his work with Conqueror in addition to Revenge. With War Metal, or Bestial Black Metal as it’s also called, many bands often fall into the mistake of simply plagiarizing or mimicking Blasphemy, and of course Revenge takes a lot of influence from them, but they have managed to find their own identity and sound. Continue reading