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Arctos/Beyond The Grasp Of Mortal Hands/Northern Silence Productions/2019 CD Review

dimanche 4 août 2019 à 03:54

  Arctos  are  a  band  from  Alberta,  Canada  that  plays  a  melodic  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2019  album  "Beyond  the  Grasp  of  Mortal  Hands"  which  will  be  released  in  September  by  Northern  Silence  Productions.

  Water  sounds  start  off  the  album  along  with  some  tribal  style  drumming  a  few  second  later  as  well  as  some  epic  sounding  synths  also  being  used  briefly.  When  the  music  speeds  up  a  great  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  the  vocals  are  mostly  grim  sounding  black  metal  screams.  Throughout  the  recording  you  can  also  hear  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  most  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length.

  Clean  playing  can  also  be  heard  in  certain  sections  of  the  recording  as  well  as  some  melodic  vocals  also  being  added  into  some  parts  of  the  music  and  as  the  album  progresses  a  brief  instrumental  can  also  be  heard  before  returning  back  to  a  heavier  direction  on  the  following  songs,  spoken  word  parts  can  also  be  heard  briefly  and  one  track  also  adds  in  a  small  amount  of  operatic  female  vocals.  The  production  sounds  very  professional  while  the  lyrics  cover  nature,  misanthropy  and  solitude.

  In  my  opinion  Arctos  are  a  very  great  sounding  melodic  black  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Shattered  Tomb"  and  "A  Realm  Beyond".  8  out  of  10.

https://youtu.be/0qxuFug2sUo   

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2019/08/arctosbeyond-grasp-of-mortal.html


AnKou/Confessions Of Purgatory/Ft Tahazu/2019 Single Review

samedi 3 août 2019 à 22:56

  France's  AnKou  has  returned  with  a  new  song  which  is  in  more  of  an  atmospheric  direction  and  features   Tahazu  and  this  is  a  review  of  his  self  released  2019 single  "Confessions  Of  Purgatory".

  Clean  playing  starts  off  the  track  along  with  a  mixture  of  clear  vocals  and  grim  black  metal  screams  a  few  seconds  later  which  also  takes  the  music  into  a  heavier  direction.  The  riffs  also  add  in  a  decent  amount  of  melody  as  well  as  some  spoken  word  parts  also  being  used  briefly,  melodic  guitar  solos  are  also  used  in  some  parts  and  the  music  and  during  the  faster  sections  of  the  song  blast  beats  can  also  be  heard.

  On  this  track  AnKou  brings  in  more  of  a  melodic  and  atmospheric  style  of  black  metal  with  a  touch  of  death  metal. The  production  sounds  very  professional  for  being  a  self  released  recording  while  the  lyrics  cover  dark  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  track  from  AnKou  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  atmospheric  black  emtal,  you  should  check  out  this  single.  8  out  of  10.

https://ankou1.bandcamp.com/track/confessions-in-purgatory-ft-tahazu   

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2019/08/ankouconfessions-of-purgatoryft.html


Synteleia/Ending Of The Unknown Path/Hells Headbangers/2019 CD Review

samedi 3 août 2019 à 22:24

  Synteleia  are  a  band  from  Greece  that  plays  a  classic  form  of  Hellenic  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2019  album  "Ending  Of  The  Unknown  Path"  which  will  be  released  on  August  30th  by  Hells  Headbangers.

  Synths  start  off  the  album  and  also  mixes  in  with  the  heavier  sections  of  the  music  at  times.  When  the  musical  speeds  up  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  blast  beats  can  be  heard  which  also  gives  the  music  more  of  a  raw  feeling  along  with  all  of  the  musical  instruments  having  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them.

  Vocals  are  mostly  grim  sounding  black  metal  screams  while  the  riffs  also  add  in  a  great  amount  of  melody  along  with  the  songs  also  adding  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  as  well  as  the  music  being  very  heavily  rooted  in  the  90's  Greek  style,  at  times  the  music  also  gets  very  atmospheric  and  epic  sounding.

 When  guitar  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  are  done  in  a  very  melodic  style while  the  spoken  word  parts  when  they   are  utilized  they  also  gives  the  music  more  of  a  ritualistic  feeling  and  as  the  album  progresses  a  brief  use  of  operatic  female  vocals  can  also  be  heard  and  one  track  also  introduces  acoustic  guitars  onto  the  recording.  The  production  sounds  very  professional  while  the  lyrics  cover  Cthulu  Mythos  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Synteleia  are  a  very  great  sounding  Hellenic  black  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out t his  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Daemonica  Infernalium"  "Three  Oaths  To  Dagon"  "Missioner  Of  Sorrow"  and  "The  Black  Goat  Rites".  8/5  out  of  10.

http://synteleia.bandcamp.com/album/ending-of-the-unknown-path      

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2019/08/synteleiaending-of-unknown-pathhells.html


Keys Of Orthanc/A Battle In The Dark Lands Of The Eye/Naturmacht Productions/2019 CD Review

samedi 3 août 2019 à 10:45

  Keys Of  Orthanc  are  a  duo  from  Quebec,  Canada  that  has  had  music reviewed  before  in  this  zine  and  plays  a  Tolkien  inspired  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2019  album  "A  Battle  In  The  Dark  Lands  Of  The  Eye"  which  will  be  released  on  August  31st  by  Naturmacht  Productions.


  Dark  soundscapes  start  off  the  album  along  with  some  nature  sounds  and  synths  a  few  seconds  later  which  also  mixes  in  with  the  heavier  sections  of  the  music.  Folk  instruments  can  also  be  heard  in  some  parts  of  the  music  and  the  vocals  are  mostly  grim  sounding  black  metal  screams.

  Growls  can  also  be  heard  in  certain  sections  of  the  recording  while  the  faster  sections  of  the  songs  also  use  a  great  amount  of  blast  beats  and  tremolo  picking  which  also  gives  the  songs  more  of  a  raw  feeling.  The  riffs  also  use  a  decent  amount  of  melody  as  well  as  clean  vocals  being  added  into  certain  sections  of  the  recording  and  as  the  album  progresses  acoustic  guitars  and  spoken  word  parts  are  also  added  onto  the  recording,  the  album  also  closes  with  an  isntrumental.

  On  this  recording  Keys  Of  Orthanc  remain  true  to  the  Tolkien  inspired  black  emtal  style  that  was  established  on  the  previous  release.  The  production  sounds  very  professional  while  the  lyrics  are  abased  upon  the  writings  of  J.R.R.R  Tolkien.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Keys  Of  Orthanc  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  Tolkien  inspired  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "At  The  Gate"  and  "Lord'sBane".  8 out  of  10.

https://youtu.be/rMaJTMBUTKY


Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2019/08/keys-of-orthanca-battle-in-dark-lands.html


Finsterforst Interview

vendredi 2 août 2019 à 08:57

1.Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording of the new album?

Simon: Much time passed until we finally finished mixing the album. After that we had to organize the video recording of the title track „Zerfall“. Besides this and a few promotional matters, we simply went on with our usual day lives. Family, working and whatnot.

2.In August you have a new album coming out, musically how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past?



Simon: I think it is on the same path as „Mach dich frei“. But it simply could gain much more experience throughout the last few years – composing and production process made a big step forward. The song arrangements are way clearer now, no matter there are some progressive aspects or however you wanna call it. Within the music there is more variety now since we also use a wider source of sounds and instrumental elements – complex synth and orchestral arrangements, experimenting with effects and different guitars, trying new stuff with any kind of vocals. I'd say that „Zerfall“ tops our previous releases by far.

3.This is also your first full length since 2015, can you tell us a little bit more about what was going on during this time frame?

Olli: A lot of stuff happened on the personal side, marriages, a baby, job changes and so on. As a band we had some changes in regards to our second live guitar. Everything else is just the typical Finsterforst chaos, so nothing out of the ordinary happened to keep us from doing the album. It just takes time to make an album that sounds like Finsterforst without simply repeating what we´ve done in the past.

4.You refer to your music as being 'black forest metal', can you tell us a little bit more about this term?

Olli: Well, we don´t view ourselves as pagan, folk or even black metal, but you need some kind of brand so people can wrap their minds around what you do. Black forest metal does just that for us. The band derives from the black forest region, it is our source of inspiration and a lot of the lyrics are about nature while also using a lot of phrases you could find on black metal albums, so we thought that this would describe our music in the best possible way.

5.One of the tracks shows an influence lyrically from the works of Nietzsche, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in his work and what are some of the other philosophers that have had an influence on your world view?



Olli: Most people so far thought of the bible, funny you realized the Nietzsche influence. Nietzsche is a big and very misunderstood philosopher who is way too often linked to national socialism because he phrased the word "Übermensch". But he did that way before anyone heard of Hitler and his following and meant nothing like this herd mentality that leads to fascism. His little poem "Ecce Homo" describes the potential brilliancy of the human species as well as our self-destruction tendencies and to this date it seems like one can only exist with the other. So the title felt fitting for a song that is just about that, humans following a seemingly greater idea and in the end they destroy themselves and the world as we know it. In terms of other philosophers I don´t really know. Maybe Rawls would fit in that category, but I´m more into sociology, reading the likes of Goffman or Bourdieu, so my biggest topic is social justice. It just so happens that we make music that doesn´t fit that style of lyrics.

6.What are some of the other lyrical topics and subjects you have explored over the years with your music?



Olli: I can´t really speak for Weltenkraft and ...zum Tode hin, since I wasn´t part of the band On Rastlos we tried to capture the thoughts of somebody who has to leave behind everything and get his act together in a new country or region In hindsight we kind of captured the whole migration topic three years before it really hit Germany. Mach Dich Frei was like being pissed and writing about it. It was about hate, personal freedom, not giving in to false authorities and so on. In the end there was the song Finsterforst which was more of a fantasy thing writing about the mighty forest in which everybody would die upon entering uninvited. After that we made the #YØLØ EP which was just about drinking and having fun with it With Zerfall we´re back on a more serious note, describing different layers of society and our planet as a whole falling apart because of us.


7.Can you tell us a little bit more about the artwork that is presented on the new album cover?



Simon: Again we worked together with Pär Oloffson who has done also some previous artworks for us. We explained him a bit about the album title and what we as a band would imagine. He came with this dark, sad, but also romantic and beautiful idea with this deceased couple that holds hand forever. We simply liked this idea and went with it. I think it is the best artwork we have had so far.

8.Out of all of the shows or tours the band has played over the years, which one stands out the most?



Olli: The obvious thing would be to say Wacken Open Air or the biggest tour so far with Equilibrium, Heidevolk and Nothgard. But the gig I actually enjoyed the most was the #YØLØ release gig. That was just a fun thing with a lot of friends and very loyal fans who actually got the EP and didn´t whine and complain that Finsterforst sold out.

9.Do you have any touring or show plans once the new album is released?



Olli: There are some festivals planned for the rest of summer and autumn and a little tour with Skyforger, Enisum and Helsott in late October/early November. We are also in conversations about a really cool tour later in November which we can´t talk about right now. So watch out, we´ll definitely hit the road and maybe we´ll just be around the corner sooner than you think.

10.On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your music by fans of black, pagan and folk metal?



Olli: I really can´t dissect between genre fans. But in general I feel pretty confident about the niche that Finsterforst have carved out for themselves over the years. We might have lost some fans with #YØLØ, but they should be back with us once they listen to Zerfall. I don´t think our music is meant to be mainstream, so I got no expectations to rise to a much bigger level. At the same time it would be awesome to take another mini step or two, so we might play on some main stages on bigger festivals and actually make enough money so we won´t have to bring our private money to make ends meet with the band. Other than that we´re good.

11.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?



Olli: Up to Simon as he is the composer, but I´d like to just grow in an organic way. But you better believe it, if we ever feel like doing an EP that has nothing to do with normal Finsterforst we will do just that.

Simon: Haha, yes! If we would feel stupid again one day, then why not to have fun for ourselves and produce again some madness. But seriously, we will see what the future might bring. Right now I could only guess that we stay on that same road as we are right now with „Zerfall“ - simply big, wide, deep, dark, heavy, aggressive, sad and beautiful. 

12.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your newer music and also what are you listening to nowadays?



Simon: That's not really easy to answer today since I do not listen to much metal music anymore. But I was simply marked by certain atmospheric metal bands that have this feeling for wide music that needs its time to simply evolve and grow before you can entirely understand its whole picture. Nowadays, I'm listening to electronic music, haha. But still also to some metal, don't worry. 

13.What are some of your non musical interests?



Olli: I actually like my normal job and I also have a family, so there isn´t too much time to spare with other stuff. So aside from Finsterforst I´m just a normal guy. I like to hang out with friends, have a beer, talk shit and relax.

14.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?



Olli: You mean something like this: Listen to Zerfall and we´ll meet you on the road? No, we won´t do that cheesy stuff, sorry.



Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2019/08/finsterforst-interview.html