Germany's Dauþuz has returned with a new release which is a re-recording of their 2021 album with all clean vocals mixed in with some choirs and keyboard passages and this is a review of their 202 album "Vom schwarzen Schmied: Bergkgesænge" which will be released in April by Amor Fati.
Atmospheric sounding keyboards start off the album which also mixes in with the heavier sections of the songs at times. Most of the tracks are also very long and epic in length while all of the vocals are done in a clean style along with some operatic choirs also being added into some parts of the recording.
When the music speeds up a great amount of tremolo picking and blast b eats can be heard which also gives the songs more of a raw feeling. Throughout the recording you can also hear a decent mixture of slow, mid paced and fast parts and when guitar solos and leads are utilized they are also done in a very melodic style.
Melodies are also added into a lot of the guitar riffing along with the more aggressive side of the vocals also adding in touches of black metal. Spoken word parts can also be heard on a couple of songs as well as one track also introducing classical guitars onto the recording which also b ring in elements of folk music, whispers can also be heard briefly. The production sounds very dark and raw while t he lyrics are written in German and cover Mining themes.
In my opinion this is another great sounding recording from Dauþuz and if you are a fan of epic and melodic black metal, you should check out this album. RECOMMENDED TRACKS INCLUDE 'Mein Berg" "Sagenlieder" and "Sargdeckel". 8 out of 10.
Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording and release of the new album?
Well since the recording we lost Radocunt and Pan2 who disappeared during the pandemic, so we replaced him with Big Chris on the bass, I fired myself from playing guitar as I wanted to focus on vocals so we got a new guy Lex on the guitar too. As well as rehearsals and getting pure mad with it, we have a few new tunes in the pipeline..some acoustic stuff with Scottish Gaelic lyrics that we’ve been working on and some more Nyctopian occult metal songs.
2.Recently you have released your first full length, musically how does it differ from your previous demo?
Well, I was really pissed off with the first demo…In fact that was meant to be released under our earlier incarnation as Moonrape, but we were thrown out the studio in Edinburgh which was upstairs in some church. Apparently, there were too many complaints. Our band members had allegedly threatened the churchgoers as well as allegedly desecrated some items in the church. I do remember Jaan from black metal brewery making drunken speeches from the pulpit. I don’t know what the guy was expected by inviting Moonrape there to record our demo. Anyway we were thrown out and the guy gave me everything on one reel so I couldn’t mix any of it. My vocals were all in one take, I did not have the chance to do them again as we spent 2 days recording the bass. Jaan was hallucinating on some drugs that Pan1 had given him and couldn’t play, so me and Luigi played his parts. At least some band guys robbed the wine from the church before we left. I decided eventually to baptize that demo under the banner of Nyctopia as Moonrape was dead already and we play some of the old songs.
3.Thius is also your first release in 4 years, can you tell us a little bit more about what has been going on during that time frame?
Well we played only 2 shows as there were a few cancelations including a show I was looking forward to with Satarial..I was also banned from some venues then the pandemic hit. We played one private gig in the crypt under my house to a handfull of people and a bigger show ”Full moon gathering“ with our friends from Sturmtiger and Rancor Profundo. Christophe Szpajdel was also there showcasing an exhibition on his art as well as Black Metal Brewery (our old Moonrape bassist) who was doing a “tap take over“ of the pub. It went down great. Our guitarist Barrat managed to lock himself in the toilets before the show then got himself thrown out of the venue, at least after we had played. We had a boa constrictor on stage and some heavy metal pole dancing ladies, good times.
Band wise it was a struggle to record the album which started at least 2 years ago. Our recording engineer disappeared for a year and when we did meet up we were that drunk and high that it was difficult to get anything done.
4.Some of your lyrics cover Occult themes, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in this topic?
I don’t write the lyrics, they come to me. Some of the lyrics can be interpreted as occult but it is subject to interpretation there is a lot going on with the vocals, different people/entities are talking in some songs like the Oracle of Deception. I like to think I have a scientific mind, if not I would go insane for if you invoke the supernatural you are vulnerable to the self destructive madness of your own thoughts, in fact many of the songs are about these tormented horrors of the mind such as in Foray into Madness. For some people these delusions are a reality, if it’s just one person’s delusions you get locked in a mental health hospital, if it’s a group of people sharing these beliefs, it’s called religion. It’s a reoccurring theme in the songs actually.
5.What are some of the other lyrical topics and subjects the band has explored so far with the music?
I don’t really set out to say hey let’s write a song about going ice fishing or anything like that. I or someone else plays a riff and I visualise the vocal melody, and the lyrics just come sometimes quickly sometimes slowly, but if I’m feeling it, the lyrics will come. The new lyrics came to me in Gaelic.
6.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Nyctopia'?
Well after the demise of Moonrape and I started creating dark atmospheric music in my crypt, I needed a name that would not only encapsulate the essence of Moonrape but which covered a wider spiritual spectrum of darkness. We all live for the night and hate getting up in the morning. Nyct comes from the Greek “nyx” meaning night and utopia blended together forms Nyctopia; a utopian world of total darkness.
7.Can you tell us a little bit more about the artwork that is presented on the new album cover?
The artwork was important to me, I had the vision that every song should be reflected by an image which could also tell the story. I worked with a few artists trying explain what was going on. I think they did a great job. Hassan Grim the wizard of Azerbajan and Andrzej Kuziola
8.Has the band done any live shows or open to the idea?
Yes as mentioned before we don’t play often, but our next gig will be the album release show on the 21st May at Audio Lounge in Glasgow together with Ziegenhorn from Estonia, and including support from Glasgow bands Brainbath and Nightfighter. It’s a great venue with no security and no bar so you can bring as much booze and spiritual refreshments as you want.
9.On the album you also did a 'Grand Belial's Key' cover, what was the decision behind doing your own version of one of their songs?
This was a song that Absolute bastard the (co founding guitarist of Moonrape )now in Rancor Profundo brought to the band we used to play this live as well as Graveyard shuffle form The Devilsblood. It was Pan2 that blasted the hell out of that song, making it sound even more chaotic. My solo is pretty good too on that one.
10.On the new album you also had a guest appearance from Hoest from 'Taake', can you tell us a little bit more about his contribution to the recording?
I sent him a message hey you wanna do this part and he said he liked the song and yes. So we sent the track over, he went to his studio in Bergen and recorded it. We’re actually working on a video for that song.
11.On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your music by fans of black metal?
I have no idea!
12.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
Well I’m hell bent on releasing some acoustic stuff in Scottish Gaelic! We’re also looking for a new drummer so if you’re reading this and live in Glasgow get in touch!
13.What are some of the bands or musical styles that the band members are currently listening to nowadays?
I listen to tavern music when I come home and drink ale. Sometimes I go to the opera at night. It depends where I am or what I’m doing. If I’m speeding at 100mph I listen to Marty Friedman’s Dragon Kiss or something like that. In my crypt I love listening to Goblin. Never get bored of it. Big Chris listens to Warduna, Barrat to a lot of obscure black metal and Lex mostly thrash I think.
14.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
Don’t put toothpaste in your eyes.
Finland's Marrasmieli has returned with a new recording which shows the music going for more of a melodic and folk influenced form of pagan black metal and this is a review of their 2022 album "Martaiden mailta" which will be released in April by Naturmacht Productions.
A very nature orientated sound starts off the album before adding in some keyboards which also mixes in with the heavier sections of the songs at times. When the music speeds up a decent amount of tremolo picking and blast beats can be heard which also gives the songs more of a raw feeling.
When guitar solos and leads are utilized they are done in a very melodic style while some songs also bring in accordion's, violins and elements of folk music. Vocals are mostly high pitched black metal screams along with most of the tracks also being very long and epic in length and the riffs also add in a decent amount of melody.
Throughout the recording you can also hear a decent mixture of slow, mid paced and fast parts along with most of the musical instruments on the album also having a very powerful sound to them. Acoustic guitars are also added on some of the songs as well as the nature sounds also returning on some of the later tracks, growls can also be heard in certain sections of the album and spoken word parts, whispers and clean pagan vocals can also be heard briefly towards the end. The production sounds very professional while the lyrics cover nature and paganism themes.
In my opinion this is another great sounding recording from Marrasmieli and if you are a fan of melodic and folk influenced pagan black metal, you should check out this album. RECOMMENDED TRACKS INCLUDE "The Forest Of My Soul" and "The Oaks Of England". 8 out of 10.
Belgium's solo project Ande has returned with a new recording which shows the music going for more of a second wave influenced style of atmospheric black metal and this is a review of his 2022 album "Vehemence" which will be released on March 25th by Naturmacht Productions.
Atmospheric sounding synths start off the album and also mixes in with the heavier sections of the songs at times. When the music speeds up a decent amount of tremolo picking and blast beats can be heard which also gives the songs more of a raw feeling and the vocals are mostly grim yet high pitched black metal screams.
Throughout the recording you can also hear a decent mixture of slow, mid paced and fast parts while melodies are also added into some of the guitar riffing. When guitar solos and leads are utilized they are also done in a very melodic yet atmospheric style and clean playing van also be heard on some of the tracks.
All of the musical instruments on the recording also have a very powerful sound to them along with some of the tracks also being very long and epic in length. the songs also add in a good mixture of both old school and modern influences and as the album progresses a couple of instrumentals can also be heard. The production sounds very professional while the lyrics cover hardship, despair, beauty and gaining knowledge.
In my opinion this is another great sounding album from Ande and if you are a fan of atmospheric black metal, you should check out this recording. RECOMMENDED TRACKS INCLUDE "Cherence" and "Cycles". 8 out of 10.
Bekëth Nexëhmü are a solo project from Sweden that has had music reviewed before in this zine and on this recording goes for more of an atmospheric and depressive style of black metal and this is a review of his 2022 album "De Dunklas Gravrit" which will be released in April by Purity Through Fire.
Acoustic guitar playing starts off the album before going into a heavier direction while all of the musical instruments on the recording also have a very powerful sound to them. Melodies are also added into some of the guitar riffing along with the solos and leads also being done in a very dark y et melodic style.
Vocals are mostly high pitched black metal screams that also adds in a very depressive tone at times while the keyboards also gives the songs more of an atmospheric feeling when they are utilized. A great portion of the tracks are also very long and epic in length and some tracks also add in a good amount of clean playing.
Acoustic guitars also make a return in certain sections of the recording along with a couple of tracks also adding in a brief use of spoken word parts as well as one of the tracks also being an instrumental and all of the music sticks to a slower direction. The production sounds very dark and raw while the lyrics are written in Swedish and cover Anti-Cosmic and Dark Germanic Heathenism themes.
In my opinion this is another great sounding recording from Bekëth Nexëhmü and if you are a fan of atmospheric and depressive black metal, you should check out this album. RECOMMENDED TRACKS INCLUDE "Vid Dödens Rike" "Vargens Stig Evigt Vandra" and "Vision af Hels Prakt". 8 out of 10.