Hey! Thanks for coming! Check out the premiere we released this week of the incredible new single from The End of Six Thousand Years. Oh, and the Spring 2023 updating playlist is now up. And, more importantly, keep safe.

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1. IER – "日​本​の​都​市​伝​説 Vol​.​1," from 物​の​怪 (Avant-Garde Black Metal – Independent). The unrelenting wellspring of creativity and powerhouse of, ah, power that is the one-man glory of IER is back again with another heart-stopping, ruthless and beautiful release. Giving free reign to his more black metal black metal impulses, the album still teems with that dynamic wizardry that makes IER of the best, most consistently creative and accomplished black metal acts in the universe. Oh, and the shredding! The shredding! FFO: Esoctrilihum, Woe, Defacement.

2. Smoulder – "The Talisman and the Blade," from Violent Creed of Vengeance (Heavy Metal – Cruz del Sur Music). As repeatedly mentioned, nay, spilled all over the pages of this page-less blog, I'm not the hugest heavy metal fan. I was never super into Maiden, I kind of enjoy Priest, but I'm not going out of my way to explore that realm, outside some noteworthy exceptions (Wytch Hazel being one). But this track is so fucking awesome, and everything about it is so fucking awesome, that it almost immediately feels like not really something super cool that came out in 2023 but something amazing I was fictionally super into in 1989. I wasn't, and Smoulder didn't exist, but it has the power of planting false memories into my brain, like some leather-clad Blade Runner shit. Wow. FFO: Galloping atop a steed, I think.

3. Scenario – "Tracers," from When All is Said And Done (Screamo – Zegema Beach Records / Ghost Is Clear Records / Mishap Record).  Chaotic, feeling, and pretty sure emotionally wrecked screamo from the screamo capital of the universe, I think – Ohio. This has all the shit you like in your "my emotional life is tumbling around me" – the weird riffs, the vocal delivery. All of it. Including that added magic of people who seem to be completely in control of their out-of-control medium. Very well done. FFO: atameo, Frail Hands, Demersal.

4. Agriculture – "Look, Pt. 1," from Agriculture (Blackgaze/Post-Black Metal – The Flenser). Not sure what it is about this that makes me so fuckin' happy. I mentioned Agriculture here following the release of their excellent EP last year. I mentioned Deafheaven there, and I'm going to mentioned Deafheaven here now too. Not for the sake of saying Agriculture are DH clones or something, which is very much not the case. Only as a way for me to say a) FFO; and b) It makes me that kind of happy. As great as this short track is, it's obviously the preface to some larger statement. And it's a statement I cannot wait listening to. FFO: You get the point.

5. Dione – "From Obliteration to Macrocosm," from Cosmosphere (Black Metal – Independent). Jesus fakin' christ, what have we here? That gravelly tone that is so associated with the Polish black/death tradition, the nasty production style that makes everything feel like actual gravel, and a whole truck load of the disso vibes emanating from bands as disparate as Ulcerate and Ad Nauseum. It's a glorious amalgam of shit I like, is what I'm saying, and it sounds and feels so good it must somehow be bad for me. Time will tell. In the meantime, more of this, please. FFO: Yellow Eyes, Batushka, Hræ.

6. Void ov Nihility – "Descending from the Heavens," from Above the Stars of God (Death Metal – Independent). There's quite a bit of black metal in these two tracks from the upcoming debut from New Jersey's Void ov Nihility, but this is basically a death metal monster that feels like both the death monster of today as well as the tech-y death metal monster of the 2000s as well as a straight FUCKIN' ripper from the golden age of bands like Morbid Angel and, ah, Morbid Angel. So amazingly ruthless, so unrelentingly maximalist, and so fucking awesome. FFO: Suffocation, Morbid Angel,

7. Smellcorpses – Slaughter Still Continues (Punk – Inhuman Assault). I mean, I could have, I guess, picked one track from this fantastic release, but: a) I physically can't, since they're all clumped together; and b) who the fuck needs to discuss individual track when a six-track release has the whopping runtime of, ah, eight minutes? Nasty, filthy, often unhinged punk that sounds like it was recorded inside a literal transistor. Awesome. FFO: You know who you are.

8. Fires in the Distance – "Crumbling Pillars of a Tranquil Mind," from Air Not Meant For Us (Doom/Sluge – Prosthetic Records). One of the things most people who don't like miss about doom is that they think it's lazy and basic to play one chord for six straight minutes. And while I would not dispute that idea, basic, I think the best doom comes at it not from stripping something down but, in the spirit of the Romantic tradition, going small in order to go VERY BIG. And, to be completely honest, sometimes the bands themselves miss this very important point – that we're going BIG. Fires in the Distance is not afraid of big – big sounds, big sounds, big atmosphere, and the result is basically some of the very best doom around. FFO: My Dying Bride, Sigh, Disillusion.

9. Lanayah – "Knife, Mirror," from I'm Picking Lights in a Field​.​.​. (Noise Rock/Doom – Drongo Tapes). Trying not to oversell how I feel right now, but this feels like the first time I listened to the Chat Pile EP (the reacton to which is documented here, and, yes, I will harp on being early to them forever, deal with it) with how I felt listening to Oranssi Pazuzu and/or Liturgy. Why? Well, first of all because I'm an idiot. But mainly because this is how music sounds like when it lights up my brain. I have never heard of these fine folk, and now intend to buy everything and anything they have ever made. Update: It's basically all sold out. I will not give up. FFO: Intercourse, Chat Pile, being one with the universe.


ONE: Listen to the Lunar Chamber album. Now.

TWO: Krallice teased new music, and it's sounding ambient-y.

THREE: For all you Marxist black metallers – There's a new MarxThrone album.

FOUR: I keep stressing my stress, and yet at the same time am always envious of people actually going out and doing shit. I think it's time for me to recognize that a big part of my stress is the fact that I'm actually going out there and doing shit. Good for me.


ONE LAST THING, PROMISE: New Misanthropæ! Loved their/his debut.