Another hectic week of anxiety-filled living, and another great week for metal! Gee, I wonder if there's a connection there. Also, this was a huge week for me personally, since I got to interview the wonderful and brilliant Renato Gallina (diSEMBOWELMENT, Tribe of the Bow) a second time (first time here), and not only that but receive the absolute honor and privilege of premiering his beautiful rendition to one of the diSEMBOWELMENT demos. I complain a lot about a lot of shit, but this one's very special to me and I am very grateful to Renato, the cosmos, and for you all for reading it. On with the show. Keep safe.

As always, check out my various interview projects and other cool shit. And if you'd like to keep abreast of the latest, most pressing developments follow us wherever I may roam (TwitterFacebookInstagramSpotify and now also a tape-per-day series on TIK TOK!), and listen to my, I guess, active (?) podcast (YouTubeSpotifyApple), and to check out our amazing compilation albumsYou can support our unholy work here (Patreon), if you feel like it. Early access to our bigger projects, weekly exclusive recommendations and playlists, and that wonderful feeling that you're encouraging a life-consuming habit.


1. Bell Witch – The Clandestine Gate, from Future's Shadow Part 1: The Clandestine Gate (Doom Metal – Profound Lore Records). To be absolutely honest here, I wasn't especially excited at the prospect of a new, one-track, 83-minute Bell Witch album. I was a fan of Mirror Reaper, but a bigger fan of Four Phantoms and I was afraid that whatever it is that was stretched out in the former, to the detriment of the latter, would just keep on going until we're left with a Bell Witch album that's clean bass going "plunk" every 30 minutes for two straight years. I was, however, mistaken. This isn't just a masterclass in making me feel very sad for very long, this, to me, is their best work yet. Emotional, nuanced, and just dynamic enough to keep you listening despite the fact of effectively losing the will to live around minute two. A doom metal masterclass. FFO:

2. portrayal of guilt – "Devil Music," from Devil Music (Black Metal / Hardcore – Run For Cover Records). A lot of water has come crashing under bridge since PoG's excellent debut full-length Let Pain be Your Guide, which was and remains one of my favorite albums of that year, as visible in this ill-compounded summary. They went from screamo/hardcore, to black metal, to some interesting iterations of the two, and landed on what I think may be their genesis of their current, yet probably temporary sound, in the awesome Christfucker in 2021. What was special about that album, and what continues to impress with Devil Music, is that they seem completely and utterly in control of the whole chaotic mess. They know what they're doing, they now how and in what new ways to terrify you, and they just keep better at it. It's not often you encounter a band this good, this ambitious, and this just fucking ruthless with their execution. Great shit. FFO:

3. Fen – "Scouring Ignorance," from Monuments to Absence (Black Metal – Prophecy Productions). The Dead Light is three and a half years old, but it feels like it was released last decade, or something. Oh, wait, it was. Anyhow, it feels old, and I think it feels that also because of how unconcerned Fen are in updated the world about their every move, but also because my own personal favorite Fen record, Winter, is somehow six-years old. So, when a new Fen was announced I just about booked a ticket to the English midland marshes I was so excited. And, frankly, listening to this wonderful first single only made me more excited for the release. This is much more "straightforward black metal" than I remember Fen being, but still has all those wonderful melodic and atmospheric touches that make them such a landmark black metal band. FFO: Woe, Falls of Rauros, Wiegedood.

4. Torture Rack – "Decrepit Funeral Home," from Primeval Onslaught (Death Metal – 20 Buck Spin). I mean, I'm pretty sure most funeral homes are, to an extent, decrepit. But we're not here to discuss semantics, we're here to get out brains dashed out by pointy guitars. I was late hopping on the slippery boxcars of the Torture Rack train, with my first real encounter being 2018's Malefic Humiliation, but once I was on that metaphoric train I found it hard to disembark of this cheesy metaphor. But, setting my writing skills aside, this new track sounds like anything and everything one has come to expect from these fine gentlemen: mutilated limbs and poisonous riffs. Addictively good. FFO: With Vomit, Cerebral Rot, Undergang.

5. Teitan – "Insectoid," from In Oculus Abyss (Avant-Garde Black Metal – Onism Productions / Void Wanderer Productions). Imagine an alternate universe in which Imperial Triumphant continues on the disso/modern classical part they embarked in Abyssal Gods instead of taking a "jazz-fest" right, and you have a pretty good idea of how to locate this kaleidoscope of very dark gems in your mind. An imperfect comparison, naturally, for many reasons, but if you love that adventurous, avant-everything spirit of early IT or current SkyThala then this track will perk your pretty heard faster than an incoming train. I loved their 2021 EP. This I love even more. A lot more. AOTY alert, you have been warned. FFO: Weird, heavy, bent, creative, shit.

6. Grave Pleasures – "High on Annihilation," from Plague Boys (Goth Rock – Century Media Records). The dreamy-yet-disturbing second coming of Beastmilk are back to boogey-and-strobe-light your problems away, while, somehow, really making you ponder your problems even more, only under the incessant boogey and covered in strobe lights. Magical, poppy, and kind of like being trapped in that Silence of the Lambs scene and you can't/won't get out. You know which scene I'm talking about. FFO: Drab Majesty, Fotocrime, Rope Sect.

Grave Pleasures "Plagueboys" - Deathwish Inc

7. Phononoid – "Cosmonauta Eterno 1," from Phobonoid​/​Dominion of Suffering (Atmospheric Black Metal / Doom – Necroeucharist Productions). One of the truly underrated and interesting black metal projects around, Italy's Phobonoid perform what musical connoisseurs such as yours truly will only describe as "freaky shit done motherfuckin' right." But, aside from that temporary lapse into the technical jargon of music criticism, this has so much of that missing element (X) that makes music, any music, great. It's weird, it's mysterious, its parts seem both to not really fit together and, at the same time, work together like magic. It's just phenomenal black metal, nay, music, performed by just one of the true masters of mind-melting black metal working today. What a damn treat. FFO: Abstracter, Loss, Mizmor.

8. Vale – "Mother," from A Senseless Procession (Post-Rock / Atmospheric Black Metal – Independent). A funny one this. I was quite enamored with Vale's 2019 The Folklore of Man, a poignant, beautiful example of melodic atmospheric black metal. This one, it seems, goes much more post-rock, but still mixing in all that delectable depression into that general framework. I find it, in fact, useful here to include a quote from a Bandcamp comment by the person who seemingly owns all of Bandcamp at this point, YomaBarr, who said what I think is all that ought be said here: "I wouldn't call this metal anymore, not even post-. But this is like nightly rain in April." I would heartedy agree. FFO: Withering in the rain, or something.

9. Abyssal – "Sepulchorporeal (Ipatiev I)" from Sepulchorporeal / Amore by Abyssal / Ellorsith (Death/Black Metal – Dark Descent Records). Boy am I split on this one (PUN ALERT!). Not because the track isn't great, it's fucking fantastic. It is, in fact, one of my favorite Abyssal tracks since their absolute masterpiece Antikatastaseis, which just so happens to be an official Machine Music Album of the Decade™. So, the track isn't the problem. It's majestic, chaotic, and brilliant. The problem is that it was apparently recorded quite a while ago, in a time actually closer to that of Antikatastaseis than the present day. Which means that my own, very personal and very selfish hopes that this means there's a new album coming in that general style are, at least temporarily, dashed. Having said all that: ON REPEAT. So good. FFO: Infernal Coil, Portal, Hissing.

Sepulchorporeal / Amore | Abyssal / Ellorsith | Dark Descent Records


ONE: Glacial Tomb have finished recording their long-awaited follow-up to their brilliant debut. Death metal excellence.

TWO: Speaking of death metal excellence, there's a Temple of Void/Solothus split coming!

THREE: Speaking of amazing death/black metal musicians putting out a techno album…. Wait, I wasn't speaking of that. Anyhow, a new techno album from a member of two of my favorite black and metal bands – Aywlin and Civerous. If you're into that type of thing. Techno.

FOUR: Can't seem to get anything done, and yet here I am writing metal posts! What HAVE I BECOME?!

FIVE: Wormrot drummer + Siege vocalist = Check this two-song promo out if you like hardcore (shout out Timmy for this one).

ONE LAST THING, PROMISE: I think I have found the best metal podcast ever, and not just because the three-part series on Megadeth is basically perfect. AndVol4All. Search for it. Do it. Now.