Posts Tagged ‘black metal’

Ruach Raah - Under the Insignia of Baphomet

Unapologetically raw black metallers Ruach Raah have released their second full length, ‘Under the Insignia of Baphomet’ through War Art Productions, and it is a welcome dose of primal rage in a genre that has tended to spread towards the vast and more introspective of late. Ruach Raah have no such pretensions.

‘Hang Humanity Upside Down’ is probably the quintessential track in an album full of raw as fuck, black metal nastiness. The riffs are poisonous, venom is spat in throat shredding rasps, and the downright filthy production coats each track in a miasmic, toxic embrace. These Portuguese monsters tear your throat out on the savage ‘Funeral Fumes’, and refuse to stop this cacophonic battering until the last, maiming note of the awesome ‘Bodysnatchers’. An album that is really set all at one pace, and that pace is bloodthirsty and manic.

‘Under the Insignia of Baphomet’ is an album of uncompromising, nasty black metal that will appeal to the Darkthrone/Blasphemy fans in all of us. There does not need to be another dimension to it, only more hatred, more bile vomited at the state of the world, and more sickness at humanity’s wretched spirit. Ruach Raah are here to remind you of the blackness running through metal’s veins.


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Lurking deep in the Finnish underground, Black Mass Pervertor have a new record out at the moment through Blood Harvest Records called ‘Life Beyond the Walls of Flesh’, and it is another example of how vital and exhilarating digging into the obscure underground music scene can be. This is really old school black metal stuff!

‘Life Beyond the Walls of Flesh’ takes much influence from early Impaled Nazarene and Behexen, and opener ‘Imbibing the Seas of Darkness’ has a bestial, crawling rawness about it. The guitar tone is prime black metal, a buzzing drone coated in an oily atmosphere of dread that gets kicked up into high gear in the grinding ‘The Golden Spears’. Black Mass Pervertor don’t hang around; the seven songs here barely make up twenty minutes, but none of it is wasted movement. Their brand of black metal is fiery, bestial and ‘Unorthodox Methods of Magick’ summons a gloomy occultism too.

Ancient, traditional black metal magics rise from ‘Life Beyond the Walls of Flesh’, mixing Celtic Frost (complete with ‘uhhs’) and early Venom with a colder, more Finnish black metal attitude. Black Mass Pervertor are almost, well, fun, in a Satanic and evil sort of way. ‘Life Beyond the Walls of Flesh’ is grand, and you should make an effort to listen to this.

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So, when the blurb for a record comes into my email proclaiming that this is not music, these are not songs, these are ‘expressions of the unconscious’, my interest is immediately piqued. ‘To the Great Monolith I’ is the debut of Death.Void.Terror, and Iron Bonehead Productions are releasing this at the start of May. Come with me now on a journey through darkness and the subliminal.

The first track is a mammoth 24 minutes, and opens with a menacing droning, complete with the odd scream from distant abyssal plains. A sort of dissonant, evil thrumming oozes from my speakers, and the intensity starts to build from there. Waves of dense, bleak feedback squalls over your ears as shrieks plummet through darkened clouds into this miasma laid out in front of me. You get flashes of black metal, blasting and screaming, but the main aim of this appears to be to drag your innermost demons out through your ears, in the medium of blackened drone/dark ambient.

The harrowing second track does just that; a cacophonous, clashing monster of sound that will probably haunt you for a long long time. Rasping screams howl from yawning chasms of sheer, abysmal torment. ‘To the Great Monolith I’ certainly explores parts of your psyche you didn’t know were there, and are now probably irreparably damged. Hugely challenging but the sheer nihilistic exhilaration is worth the experience.


‘Unsettling Whispers’ is the full length debut from Portuguese black metallers Gaerea, following their self titled debut EP. Transcending Obscurity is handling this, and it isn’t just your average black metal album. Gaerea aren’t afraid to mix in some more sludgy/hardcore elements as well to create something uniquely abrasive.

Opener ‘Svn’ builds with ominous intent, harsh screams and whispers crescendoing behind cold guitar and glacial tones with serious intensity. Black metal has always been at its best when it plays with your comfort level, and ‘Svn’ definitely does that, as a fiery torrent of blasting follows up. There is a lot to like about Gaerea; their sense of melody and space when their black metal soars, like the glacial ‘Lifeless Immortality’ or their ferocious grandiosity in the raging but regal ‘Cycle of Decay’. The closing ‘Catharsis’ is much more toward the sludgy side, but with definite layers of blackened menace.

Gaerea are a band that can capture the imagination with their brutality, abrasive screams and their blackened majesty. ‘Unsettling Whispers’ is epic enough to appeal to windswept black metallers and raw and bleak enough to draw in the less corpsepainted legions. An album that shows how genre splicing can have superb results, Gaerea are awesome.

Krolok almost became one of those lost gems that people speak of in hushed reverent tones when they released their ‘When the Moon Sang Our Songs’ originally in 2014, in a run of just 24 copies. Containing members of Malokarpatan, and hailing from Slovakia as well, Krolok bring that old black metal mysticism back to creaking, eldritch life. It is out now through Inferna Profundus Records.

The intro is full of horror movie cliches, like thunder and lightning, dark chanting, rattling chains and screaming. It seems a bit tacky at first until ‘Ride a Roan Steed’ kicks in, and the full old school black metal, evil feelings arise from deep within these dusty riffs. This is an ode to early Darkthrone, Mayhem and Burzum, when black metal was fuzzy, clattering and had an aura of danger to it. Like a spirit arising from ancient tombs, Krolok feels like a relic from a bygone era. It is an era that black metal fans constantly return to however, and ‘When the Moon Sang Our Songs’ has that intangible that fits in quitely nicely.

Their early Carpathian Forest cover is adept, and suitably , whilst ‘The Violet Castle in the Sky’ vanishes into heavy, dark ambient territory before once more returning to the scything black metal riffs. The dungeon electronica of ‘Cosmic Rituals’ closes this record in mysterious circumstances. A truly old school album in a time when ‘old school’ is more of a buzzword than a reality, ‘When the Moon Sang Our Songs’ is a masterclass in how to make things sound authentic. Cold, bleak and utterly miserable, it is like the second wave was the final evolution of black metal.


Domedag is the work of Swedish multi-instrumentalist Nicklas Rudolfsson, best known for work in Necrocurse and as the drummer for Sacramentum back in the day. ‘Nu Nalkas Domedagen’ is due out soon on Archaic Sounds Records, and is for fans for apocalyptic Nordic tales through the medium of blasting, and doom laden, black metal.

Opener ‘Nu nalkas ragnarok’ is bestial in its clattering ferocity, drawing you in with black magic and killer riffing that continues in the likes of ‘I Flammor’. These songs are broken up with eerie, folky interludes that are reminiscient of Wardruna or Isengard, and it allows the actual songs a bit of time to breathe. ‘I Flammor’ is magnificent in its ‘summoning’ tone, as if demons were ready to rise to its call, while the ominous chug of ‘Baring at fanders’ builds excellently to the deathly, doomy ‘En bitter forsmak’. ‘Nu Nalkas Domedagen’ is a record that doesn’t stick to genre tropes, instead spreading the net wide to capture just the right kind of metal to express the darkness within. ‘Frost rost dod’ is probably the closest to a traditional black metal song, but even it possesses some sideways steps.

Be it blackened ferociousness, doomy melancholy or deathly crush, Domedag has put together a record here that throbs with a feeling of adventure. Dark and terrible, but also wondrous and wreathed in mysticism, ‘Nu Nalkas Domedagen’ could be a sleeper hit record this year. Seek it out.

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‘Perversión’ is the third in a horrendous trilogy of filthy black/thrash from Swedish/Chilean ragers Corpsehammer, and as you’d expect with a name like that, this four track EP bludgeons past you at such a force, you’ll need to play it a few times to grasp its true greatness. It will be out on the 13th April through Morbid Skull Records.

Opener ‘Reino – Sangro Del’ throbs with this menacing atmosphere, as spoken word descends into howling madness and the barrelling necrosis of the riffs appears. There is definitely an old school Scandinavian vibe here, meshing with an almost Discharge-like d-beat intensity. ‘Rito _ Magia’ is more of the tortuous, blackened death carnage, where cavernous vocals roar beyond ancient and terrible metal. ‘Perversion’ feels like if you touched its rusted, bloodied edge you’d be guaranteed to get tetanus. Or something worse.

This is a excellent completion to the trilogy, and continues to encapsulate a murky, raw sound that Corpsehammer have nailed. An ode to Darkthrone, Hellhammer and the like, Corpsehammer revive the old days and make it feel fun again. Short but ultimately satisfying, ‘Perversion’ is simple, nasty music for nasty people. Superb.