Welcome fall with the selection of black and doom metal releases, which includes the albums by Névoa (Portugal), Harakiri for the Sky (Austria), Sojourner (international project), Numenorean (Canada), Zhrine (Iceland) and the EP from Pallbearer (USA).
Numenorean — "Home"
"Home" is a very promising debut release from the Canadian band Numenorean. The terrible cover artwork hides five tracks for a total length about 44 minutes, which represents a curious mix of post-rock and black metal, complete with depressive extreme vocals. The songs’ themes also do not add iridescence to overall picture:
"The central theme, music, and image for 'Home' revolves around a longing for something that we as humans will never achieve. We are all empty and broken in some form or another, so we look for fulfilment through things like money, sex, relationships, drugs, religion, and a variety of other things, but we in the end ultimately remain void of any true happiness. What we are really searching for, is the innocence of a child, which knows nothing about this world and since we are incapable of ever getting that back, the only place we can find this comfort is inevitably only through death. The little girl on the cover represents this final resting place for us – beyond our existence in this world."
Harakiri for the Sky — "III: Trauma"
"III: Trauma" is the third album from Harakiri for the Sky. Keeping to the style, set with a debut release, the Austrian duo presented a new melodic work full of progressive, depressive black metal and post-rock elements. Atmospheric music, setting the listener on a melancholic mood, stylistically most resembles Agalloch’s compositions. Those, whom "III: Trauma" came to taste, be sure to check out the band’s previous albums "Harakiri for the Sky" and "Aokigahara".
Sojourner — "Empires of Ash"
"Empires of Ash" is the debut full-length release by an international project Sojourner. The group features four musicians from Spain, the UK and New Zealand. The debut album recording also took place in several countries, some parts were recorded in New Zealand, as well as in Scotland and Sweden. The album was mixed and mastered by the producer from Italy, who also recorded the acoustic guitar for one of the LP’s tracks.
"Empires of Ash" is an atmospheric black metal with beautiful instrumental inserts, including parts played on the piano, whistle and synthesizer, which create a pleasant melodiousness of this release. Man growling mainly dominates on the album, but clean female parts vocals performed by Chloe Bray (guitar, tin whistle) also present here. High pitched and melodious Bray’s voice creates allusions to medieval music and most clearly helps to feel these references in the minor composition "The Pale Host". All the above makes the "Empires of Ash" an excellent musical background for events of the fantasy world.
Névoa — "Re Un"
After the successful last year's "The Absence of Void" release, the Portuguese duo Névoa presented its second album "Re Un". This atmospheric LP sounds like it was conceived as a single work, and only for the listener’s convenience divided into separate numbered compositions. Slow and dominant tempos, which are typical for doom metal, give way to the increasing high-speed guitars and drums. In a couple of songs, such an emotionally charged atmosphere reaches its height, turning into real instrumental madness, accompanied by shouts, growling or even shaman chants. You will like "Re Un" for its originality and passion for experiments, mixing of genres and a deep immersion into its bizarre, but so attractive atmosphere.
Zhrine — "Unortheta"
"Unortheta" is the debut album by black/death metal Reykjavik-based band Zhrine. The release came out on August 8 via Season of Mist. Some critics, describing Zhrine’s music, say that probably this is how Ulcerate and Deathspell Omega would have sounded, if they had organized a joint project. "Unortheta" turned out into very interesting release with a deeply dark, cold and intense atmosphere.
Pallbearer — "Fear and Fury"
The American doom metallers Pallbearer released their new EP "Fear and Fury" on August 10. The new release includes the single "Fear and Fury", presented in last year’s February, as well as two covers for Black Sabbath’s "Over And Over" and Type O Negative’s "Love You To Death". The title track, for my taste, is the most interesting and catchy composition on this EP. The covers are performed almost in the same manner as its original versions, but I think that Brett Campbell’s singing talent is much more suitable for a measured track "Over And Over". In general, Pallbearer’s versions of Black Sabbath and Type O Negative’s songs won’t surprise you much while listening to "Fear and Fury", but they’ll certainly delight the doom metal fans during a live performance.
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- Selection of releases in black metal genre
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