Sunday, 8 June 2014


Brayden pretty much summed it up in his own top ten, we're at the halfway mark for 2014 and gat dang son there has been some great stuff that's been released this year-

So here are my own top ten favourites for the first half of 2014 (in no particular order).

Conan - Blood Eagle
Genre(s): Doom Metal, Sludge Metal
I had been looking forward to this one for ages and it did not disappoint. Conan remains to be one of the heaviest bands around and Blood Eagle sets a new standard in doom metal in my own opinion.The production and mixing on the album worked out perfectly as the guitars, which are much more riff oriented than Monnos, blare to perfection while the bass and drums go by crushingly at just over a snail's pace- perfectly emulating the epic battles and their barbarous namesake that their music draws from. Bandcamp

Forhekset allé - VINTERBÆST 
Genre(s): Post Black Metal
Hailing from Denmark, Forhekset allé (Norwegian for "Bewitched Avenue") released this EP just a few weeks ago but its made an impression on me as one of the best things I've heard yet this year. Symphonic elements are nothing new to black metal but Forhekset allé have done it really strangely by having it clash back and forth with frantically fast pieces of lo-fi, raw black metal with very crispy high noted keyboard segments and strange voice sampling. Bandcamp
u n s e e n f o r c e - FORCE_XXXIV DAISOUJOU "II" c88
Genre(s): Noise, Power Electronics, Industrial
Slithering through this three track release as hisses of distorted noise create an aura of self-described "claustrophobic electronica" which sounds about right, u n s e e n f o r c e have created a broody, unsettling piece of work here as the aforementioned hissing resembles the distant cries of some creature while waves of minimalistic industrial manage to quiet, but probably distress, your mind. Bandcamp

Nervewrecker - EP
Genre(s): Blackened Grindcore, Doom Metal
With an intro that reminded of cliche sci-fi warp speed sound effects, Nervewrecker have released a refreshing little EP that I've been listening to quite a bit lately. I was expecting a space rock-ish sort of album with the first guitar riffs after the intro- and then I heard the vocals.. and the rest of the album. Nervewrecker walk a fine line between the realm of grindcore and doom but do it wonderfully, their EP is definitely worth checking out. Bandcamp
Sunn O))) & Ulver - Terrestrials
Genre(s): Drone, Ambient, Experimental
Terrestrials received pretty mixed to downright mediocre reviews from what I saw, but I guess I'm just a sucker for all things Sunn O))). I liked Terrestrials a lot because it was a bit of a departure from Sunn's broody, loathsome atmosphere to a more enlightened (get it? Sunn, light, hahaha...sorry) spin on their traditional sound with the help of Ulver. I particularly liked the use of horn instruments on tracks such as "Let There Be Light". Bandcamp

Altar - Plague Pit
Genre(s): Sludge Metal
Taking a few cues from Conan and Lord Mantis, Swedish sludge metal act Altar released this droning, fuzzy as hell monster of an album. With cumbersome bass riffs and powerful drumming reaching into the realm of black metal at times, Altar have done a great job here with what appears to be their first release. Although similar to Conan in instrumentation, Altar opted for a more deep, guttural brand of vocals that suit the overall atmosphere and image of the album perfectly. Grab one of their demo tapes here at their Bandcamp.

Black Houses - Demo
Genre(s): Blackened Sludge Metal, Atmospheric Black Metal
If you read my previous review of Black Houses' debut release it should come as no surprise that they made my top ten of 2014 (thus far). With a flair for post-punk that really shows in their approach to atmospheric black metal, Black Houses have made something pretty unique here- I honestly have not been able to get the melodic guitar solo on "d'Hiver" out of my head lately which is definitely pretty telling as to their outstanding ability as musicians in my own opinion. Bandcamp

Godcage - Albatross of Faith
Genre(s): Blackened Noise, Power Electronics, Harsh Noise Wall
As I write this I'm starting to realize I have a fetish for all things musical that start with "Black/Blackened" which has manifested itself once again in Godcage. Coming from Massachusetts, Godcage released this album which sounds vaguely like the digital equivalent of Nyogthaeblisz which I usually describe to others as the background noise to Hell- so if that sounds appealing whatsoever check them out here: Bandcamp

Naught - Tómhyggjublús 
Genre(s): Blackened Sludge Metal, Drone Metal
I always find it kind of fascinating to see the different extremes that a city, region, country, etc can produce. On one extreme of Iceland's music scene you've got Sigur Rós; the majestic and uplifting post-rock group, and on the other extreme you've got Naught; the abysmal and irritating sludge band from "a shithole in Akureyri" in their own words. It doesn't get much slower and melancholy than this in terms of sludge, so if that's what youre after, then check this one out for sure. Bandcamp

Winter Depression - Journey to the Horizons of Human Depression 
Genre(s): Atmospheric Black Metal
Holy SHIT. I threw on this album expecting a bland, run-of-the-mill DSBM band and I was fucking blown away by what I heard instead. Ukrainian band Winter Depression have created the best atmospheric black metal album I've heard in ages here. Their highly experimental approach to the genre paid off really well. You should seriously check it out for yourself, 'Journey to the Horizons of Human Depression' is definitely one of the best albums of 2014. Bandcamp

Most Anticipated Releases for the latter half of 2014:
Incantation - Dirges of Elysium
Bongripper - Miserable
Full of Hell/Merzbow Collaberation
Earth - Primitive and Deadly (can't wait for this)


  1. Great list, lots of things for me to check out as well!

  2. Cool list. I haven't heard most of these records, but I'll definitely check them out.

  3. You might appreciate my Noise,

  4. thanx for you Support!
    I am A. from Winter Depression.