Jess and the Ancient Ones – Second Psychedelic Coming: The Aquarius Tapes (2015)

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Author: Jan Jakobsen

Band: Jess and the Ancient Ones

Album: Second Psychedelic Coming: The Aquarius Tapes

Label: Svart Records

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Skepticism – Ordeal (2015)

Author: Bloodshot Grub

Artist: Skepticism

Album: Ordeal

Label: Svart Records

Skepticism, one of the founding funeral doom metal bands, has taken an unexpected approach in recording their fifth full-length album, Ordeal. This isn’t a live album in the traditional sense, because, excepting the last two tracks (“Pouring” from Stormcrowfleet and “The March and the Stream” from Lead and Aether), the material has never appeared before on a recording. It was, however, recorded live before an audience in a concert venue. According to interviews, this was done to capture what they felt was an ineffable magic and energy present at their live shows. It’s an interesting idea, and I’m convinced it has the potential to capture a band’s music in a raw and authentic but also very effective way. That’s certainly the case with more traditional live albums, where the nuanced audio control possible in a studio environment is sacrificed in favor of pure live energy. Perhaps, then, this album would be best taken as a case study in how not to approach a live recording. Continue reading

Bathsheba – The Sleepless Gods (2015)

Bathsheba - The Sleepless Gods

Artist: Bathsheba

Album: The Sleepless Gods

Label: Svart Records

Okay, total disclaimer: I picked Bathsheba’s latest EP to review for two reasons, one being that I sorely needed some doom in my life, and the other and more important being that my black metal project shares its name (sort of) with Bathsheba. And I promised to myself and the rest of the Fetid Dead crew that I was absolutely not going to give them a negative review out of some weird sense of competition.

… Unless, of course, it turned out that The Sleepless Gods totally blew. Continue reading