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Lebensnacht/A Rging Storm Of Apocalypse/Naturmacht Productions/2016 CD Review

lundi 1 février 2016 à 18:16

  Germany's  Lebensnacht  have  returned  with  a  new  album  continuing  the  atmospheric  black  metal  sounds  of  previous  recordings  with  the  album  being  called  "A  Raging  Storm  Of  Apocalypse"  which  will  be  released  on  February  20th  by  Naturmacht  Productions.

  Rain  sounds  and  synths  which  also  use  a  variety  of  many  different  keys  start  off  the  album  giving  the  recording  an  atmospheric feeling  and  once  the  music  gets  heavy  it  retains  the  atmosphere  while  also  adding  in  grim  black  metal  screams  while  also  taking  the  heavier  parts  into  more  of  a  darker  and  rawer  musical  direction. 

  A  good  portion  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  clean  playing  along  with  acoustic  guitars  can  also  be  heard  in  the music  at  times  as  well  as  a  small  amount  of  spoken  word  parts  while  some  of  the  riffs  also  bring  in  more  of  a  modern  and  melodic  atmospheric  sound  and  when  the  music  speeds  up  a  great  amount  of  blast  beats  can  be  heard.

  In  the  faster  sections  of  the  songs  the  music  goes  for  more  of  a  raw  style  of  black  metal  and  throughout  the  recording  you  can  hear  a  great mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  as  the  album  progresses  nature  sounds  also  start  making  a  return  at  times  along  with  one  of  the  tracks  being  all  instrumental  and  later  tracks  also  bring  in  a  brief  use  of  guitar  leads  that  stay  away  from  solos  while  one  song  also  adds  in  melodic  chants.

  Lebensnacht  creates  an  album  that  has  the  perfect  balance  between  rawness  and  atmosphere  while  also  adding  in  a  small  amount  of  melody  to  create  a  very  dark  atmospheric  black  metal  album,  the  production  sounds  very  dark  and  raw  while  the  lyrics  cover  nature,  humans,  life  and  death  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  album  from  Lebensnacht  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  atmospheric black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  recording.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "The  End  Is  Near"  "Frostbitten  Ashland's"  and  "Into  Cosmic  Eternity".  8  out  of  10.

 

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2016/02/lebensnachta-rging-storm-of.html


Alastor/Wladmark/Winterblast Halls2016 12 Inch Review

lundi 1 février 2016 à 06:34

  Alastor  are  a  band  from  Austria  that  has  been  around  for  20  years  and  plays  a  very raw  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2016  album  "Waldmark"  which  was  released  by  Winterblast Halls.

 A  very  fast  and  raw  black  metal  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  a  great  amount  of  blast  beats  as  well  as  a  great  amount  of  grim  screams  and  the  songs  also  bring  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  the  music  is  very  heavily  rooted  in  the  90's  second  wave  style  of  the  genre.

  You  can  hear  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  in  the  guitar  riffing  along  with  some  melodies  also  being  utilized  at  times  as  well  as  classical  and  acoustic  guitars  which  also  use  a  great  amount  of  finger  picking  and  full  chords,  spoken  word  parts  are  added  into  certain  sections  of  the  recording  while  the  guitar  leads  are  done  in  more  of  a  melodic  style  and  a  couple  of  the  tracks  are  long  and  epic  in  length  and  as  the  album  progresses  clean  singing  can  also  be  heard  briefly  and  you  can  also  here  all  of  the  musical  instruments that  are  present  on  the  recording.

  Alastor  plays  a  style  of  black  metal  that  is  very  raw,  traditional  and old  school  without  sounding  out  of  date  and  also  adding  in  a  good  sense  of melody,  the  production  sounds  very  raw  yet  powerful  while  the  lyrics  cover  darkness  and  nature  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Alastor  are  a  very  great  sounding  traditional  black  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Old  Glacial  Lakes"  "The  Battle   Of  Infernal  Hymns"  and  "Fellwood".  8  out  of  10.

http://winterblasthalls.bandcamp.com/album/waldmark

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2016/01/alastorwladmarkwinterblast-hails2016-12.html


Snogg Interview

lundi 1 février 2016 à 05:15
1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?

Ulv: Snøgg is based on experimentation in improvisation within the dark genres such as black metal, drone, death metal, post metal… We are a duo and you never know what exactly to expect from us. We freeride through the wast musical fields not knowing the conditions of the weather and the snow, racing from the avalanches and jumping over cliffs. 


2.How would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the ep?

Ulv: As I have said Snøgg is an experiment. This EP was also created in this manner. Firstly we recorded the drums, without knowing what the exact melodies and arrangement would be. Than I composed and recorded the guitars and most of the synths and Køzhl composed and recorded the bass guitar. At the end I added additional synths and vocals. The melodies and arrangement kinda represented my personal feelings, or should I say I recorded the melodies that felt right at the time. I think the main influences on that EP are early Ulver, late Darkthrone and Myrkur. The production is kept dark and dirty as we believe our music should be.


3.What are some of the themes you bring out with your musical style?

Ulv: Our musical style is very open. On the concerts we mostly improvise, using the themes from our released songs, videos and EP-s but never in the same manner, so practically our every show is different. I also experiment with my onstage equipment. That way we have a lot of room to fill with our personal feelings and reflections on the momentary situations. I don’t have the lyrics for the shows. I only wrote lyrics for the released songs, but on stage I sing what comes into my mind. So I sing about mythology, troubles of the modern world (politics, religion, the direction where we as a society are heading), my private life or sometimes I don’t even bother and just scream in anger or chant like a monk. Practically you and even us don’t know what to expect from next show. But nevertheless we mainly stay in traditional black metal with a lot of jumping into other styles of extreme music particularly drone/noise which in my opinion represents the duality more and more witnessed in today’s world (poor-rich, good-evil, capitalism-socialism, etc).


4.originally the band had a different name, what was the cause of the name change and also the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Snogg'?

Ulv: The first few songs were released under the name Black Trail, which was written with 11 black boxes  - █████████████ .It was what you could see, a black trail. That was when I was still a one man band. Then I decided to make a multi person band out of it and during that process someone pointed to me that there already exist a black metal band representing itself with black boxes. To avoid being mistaken for that band and due to change in the functioning of Black Trail, we decided to change our name. Right at that time I went on a mountaineering trip in Norway, where I noticed a sign for a soccer club called Snøgg. The name immediately got my attention, because phonetically it sounds like slovenian word ‘sneg’ which means snow. When I googled it, I found out, this is a icelanding (and also, I believe old norsk) word for being swift. All the references seemed just right and when I came home I discussed about that name with Mørke and Køzhl (who was a full time member at the time) and they agreed with the idea, so we became Snøgg.


5.Currently the band is a duo, are open to bringing in other musicians again in the future or do you prefer to remain a duo?

Ulv: After one-man-band period I wanted to have a full line-up band with 5, 6 members. I had problems with finding the right people, but I found Mørke and Køzhl, so we were functioning as a trio for a while. When Køzhl had to leave the band due to lack of available time, Mørke and I decided to remain a duo and that opened the doors to experimentation. For the time being we like it that way, because it is easier to improvise with less people. However new ideas are always coming and we are open for collaboration. We already had Bagot from Cvinger featured as a theatrical performer on some of our mutual concerts. We also had Køzhl rejoining the band to record the bass lines for the ep and in beginning wanted to have some featured vocals there, but in the end decided not to.


6.What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and also how would you describe your stage performance?

Ulv: I guess our best performance was at Vratolom festival in our hometown Velenje last june, which was actually our first open air show and it was a blast. The show in Postojna last february was also really good, as I was really satisfied with the keyboard settings I used. Of course I must also mention the tour of Snøgg & Cvinger in december 2014, where the last show in Belgrade where we joined forces with two serbian black metal groups in a packed underground club Blue Moon was really exceptional.
On the stage we are both pretty much on the same spot throughout the gig, Mørke behind the drums and I on my workstation, where I have keyboards, computer, pedals, microphones… But we use other theatrical things, such as corpse paintings, candles, featured theatrical performances etc.


7.Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?

Ulv: For now we have booked the ep presentation which will be held in club eMCe place in our hometown Velenje together with another local black metal band Kholn on february 27. and a spot on Noise festival in Trbovlje, Slovenia in beginning of June. We are looking for more shows to represent this ep, there is an option of a balkan tour in the summer. However Mørke is just before releasing an album with his death metal band Carnifliate and they are having and planning quite a lot of concerts and I am currently working on the new album of my industrial band The Stroj, beside that we both play in a punk band Mr. Van Punk, that also has some shows booked in the summer, so we will see how much time will be left for Snøgg.


8.Currently you are unsigned, are you looking for a label or have received any interest?

Ulv: Yes we are looking but not really actively. In Slovenia most of the underground bands are unsigned or we have labels that put you on their list with all the work left for you to do it. All our work is available for free on the internet, although we appreciate donations if you like the music.


9.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal?

Ulv: I must say that it was better than I expected. I felt like many black metal listeners would find this mixing of genres not ‘trve’ because we are not a typical black metal band. I think in every city we have been to there were some people extremely excited with our music and the way we are performing it. The ep hasn’t had much of a feedback yet, but thus far it has been mainly positive, but I have heard criticism about quality of production, about which I don’t care much about, because dark, dirty production was what I was aiming at while producing this ep.


10.Are any of the band members also involved with any other bands or musical projects these days?

Ulv: Yes, of course. We are both in a punk band Mr. Van Punk which is special because we arrive with the van, we start the generator, guitarist and bassist get out of the van, drummer stays inside and we begin to play. We can pack in less than 5 minutes and move to another location. This is great for performing on various locations in the summer, not so great in the winter. :)
Beside that Mørke plays in a death metal band Carnifliate that are about to release their first full album. They have won Natečaj Botečaj, a competition for young bands last may and are performing heavily since.
I am working on a new album of my industrial band The Stroj. It has been a very good year for this band, we had quite a few shows and a video that stayed on the top of video charts called Točka, held by Slovenian national television. I am also active in a dark electro group of djs called Sikk.ru. As a matter of fact, today Mørke plays with Carnifliate in Postojna, I play with The Stroj in Ljubljana and other members of Sikk.ru perform in Velenje, so yeah, we are pretty active.


11.When can we expect a full length album and also where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

Ulv: Maybe next year. With Snøgg it is always a mystery. We wanted this to be full album, but we created an ep due to lack of time. When the stars will be right and when we will have enough time, we will release our next thing but I cannot tell if it will be a full album or just another ep. I think the amount of genres we experiment with is quite huge already so I think we will stay in this improvising direction. But it might happen that the next thing will be something completely different.


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

Ulv: As I mentioned before I guess early Ulver, late Darkthrone and Myrkur influenced the most on the ep. For the life performances, there are of course many other influences. Mørke has huge knowledge about death and black metal and I know a lot about experimental rock, sludge metal, drone, post rock/metal, so I guess our influences are somewhere around these boundaries. I am listening to many different genres not only in rock and metal but also in electronic music, hip-hop, ethno so it really depends on how I am feeling.


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

Ulv: Experimentation is a key to novelty.

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2016/01/snogg-interview.html


Vargstuhr Interview

lundi 1 février 2016 à 05:08
1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the musical project?

It is an atmospheric black metal project linked with nature and environmentalism, and in which tracks are full of contrasts.





2.In April of 2015 you had released your first demo, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording?

First of all, the music evokes landscapes and, therefore also the sound plays a crucial role in the atmosphere. I opted for a raw, cold and sharp sound, because the scene takes place in an icy landscape where life has to struggle to survive.



3.Each track on the album has a concept involving wolves, can  you tell us a little bit more about your song lyrics?

First of all, it´s a conceptual album that tells a wolves pack story which fights to survive the hard Winter. The first song, “Howling 1: The Wolf Pack, Sköll´s sons”, is the main character´s presentation: the wolf pack and its social spirit. Musically, this song has a folk and pagan touch that realize the connection between nature and wolf.

“Howling 2: Running on the Snow”, it´s the presentation of the scene where the action take place: a frozen landscape covered by the snow.

“Howling 3: Howlings in the Night”, Here the wolves greet to Winternight with their howlings.

Howling 4: Winter Hunger, The wolves are possessed by hunger, and then they cross their huntzone border.

“Howling 5: The Hunt, in Search of the Prey”. Once there, they find prey traces and then the hunt starts: they follow the trace, encircle the prey, but it belongs to a sheperd.

“Howling 6: The Hunter Becomes the Hunted”. Turn the tables, and the hunter becomes the hunted. The sheperd follow the wolfpack with his shotgun.

“Howlings 7: Wolf blood”. The sheperd shoots and the bullet hurt the alpha wolf, which dies over the snow.

“Howling 8: Wolf Cup, a New Era”. A wolf cup born in the wolf pack.

“Howling 9: Wolf Lair” This track is instrumental, but it imagines how the wolf cup grows and plays.

“Howling 10: Running Between the Trees”. The Winter ends and it closes the circle.



If you want, you can read the lyrics in the next link: http://www.metal-archives.com/albums/Vargstuhr/Howlings/523176



4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Vargstuhr'?

It is a mix between "Varg" (“wolf” in Swedish) and a variation of my real name.



5.With this project you record everything by yourself, how would you compare working solo to a full band?

I´ve weighed up the pros and cons. On the one hand, when you're alone only depend on yourself, so you can work at your own pace and do what you like, without give any explanation. But on the other hand, you can´t enjoy the variety of ideas as if you were in a band where several minds are synchronized, nor there is the coexistence of rehearsals, neither the possibility of gigs, so everything is more personal and introspective.



6.On the album you also bring in a good amount of folk instruments but also keep in the aggression, do you feel this makes your music stand out a bit more?

As I said, it is a project related to environmentalism, hence I confront the mechanical and technocrat future/present with a traditional past, whereon the human beings were more rooted in the nature (romantic idealization of the past), then, composing with a touch of folk music is relevant to achieve that goal.



7.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal?

I can not answer this question because I have left the distribution to the records companies which have released the album: Depressive illusion (CDr) and black death productions (cassette), but I have facebook and youtube pages and I can tell you that the followers´ nationalities are varied and balanced, in other words, the Spanish audience has lesser weight.



8.What is going on with your other musical projects these days?

Muert are composing their third LP and Schwarzwald are recording their first LP. But also, I 'm writing new stuff for the second album of Vargstuhr



9.Where do you see yourself heading into as a musician in the future?

I´m going to record the Vargstuhr´s second album, under the title of “Dystopia”. It will be, again, a program music and a conceptual album, but focusing in the impact of the human being over the nature, and in a dystopical and technocratic future society.



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

Bands: Ulver (early), Agalloch, Wolves in the throne room, Enslaved, Taake, Satyricon (early), Shinning… Musical styles: atmospheric black metal, blackgaze, depressive black metal, avantgarde black metal…



11.Does Paganism pay any role in your music?

More precise than paganism, rather it is to speak over an anti-technical, ecological and unscientific view; in other words, a vision on which the nature were not an object that you could handle at will, nor broke up in simplifications which do not allow that it moves us.



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

Thank you very much for your work and effort; and greetings to the readers of your webzine.

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2016/01/vargstuhr-interview.html


Frostbite Interview

vendredi 29 janvier 2016 à 17:25
1. For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?

Frostbite is a band active in the Montreal metal scene since 2012. We were initially more of a classical typical Black Metal band but as we progressed and line-up changed, we evolved into a more progressive Black n' roll genre.


2. So far you have released an ep and a full length, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on both of the recordings and also how do they differ from each other?


They are both completely different in my opinion, The EP was made with the initial line-up. The full-length album was initially supposed to come out a year or so after the release of the EP but right after it's release, our drummer was forced out of the country due to a visa problem and the other guitarist quitted the band. So it took quite some time to reform under a different line-up, the project almost died at some point, also had to part our ways with the original singer/bassist. In the end though, we reformed with new musicians who all had different musical backgrounds and influences, which brought us to redo all the songs a bit differently, also approaching composition a different way. Which explains the difference between the 2 releases.


3. You label your music as 'progressive black'n'roll' can you tell us a little bit more about this term?


To be honnest, I'm not a fan of having to label everything. I wouldn't say we're Black Metal, we also don't really fit the melodic death metal genre in my opinion. We put a little bit of all our influences in the writing process and don't really care what people will call it. Progressive Black'n'roll is sort of a made up label that I feel resumes the best what we do but people can call it whatever they want!


4. What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?


The lyrics mainly revolve around the brutality of society, inhumanities, inner struggles and the existence that is beyond us. Lyrics are also intentionally a bit abstract and could be interpreted a different number of ways.

5. What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Frostbite'?


The band's name was our original singer's idea, I don't really think there is a huge story behind it, except maybe inspired by our harsh Quebec winters...


6. What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and also how would you describe your stage performance?


We have had the opportunity to play with some very amazing bands like Abigail Williams and Negura Bunget, as well as some up and coming like Dreadnought from Denver, The Visit from Ottawa and of course all the local bands. We enjoy every show we get to play. It is great to share the stage with talented musicians no matter if they are a small local band or a bigger touring band.


7. Do you have any touring or show plans for the new album?


So far we have a few shows planned but nothing major yet as of a tour.


8. Can you tell us a little bit more about the deal you have signed with 'Tmina Records'?


We are happy to have good European representation joining Tmina and currently have a deal for the release of Etching Obscurity. We have also been joined on with the PR team Black Element out of Ontario for our North American representation.


9. On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal?


At this point it is too soon to tell really. It really depends on what genre of black metal you refer too. I don’t think we are going to do as well with people that just enjoy raw black metal. We would be more in the melodic, ambient or atmospheric black metal area fan. With those we have had a very positive response so far. It will be more telling once the full album is out.


10. Are any of the band members also involved with any other bands or musical projects these days?


I play live for Bane (black/death metal originally from Serbia) But right now we are looking for a live drummer so the band is a bit on the ice as for live performances but we have a 3rd full-length album coming up. The other members are not currently in any other active projects.


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


Definitely more progressive, probably more clean parts, but only time will tell. We only just started writing stuff for the second album.


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


We are influenced by many musical styles, everything from metal, punk, rock to classical, jazz and prog and a lot in between and far beyond. Each of the band members have many different influences they bring to the table and each of us bring a different side of the spectrum to it.


13. Does Occultism play any role in your music?


Not really. We did have more of a Satanic imagery in the past but nowadays we don't really focus on that. It is an interest of mine amongts others but I wouldn't say it really influences the writing. I find the human being much more interesting.


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


Thanks for listening, feel free to reach us  on facebook (facebook.com/frostbitemontreal) or our official websitewww.frostbitemetal.com.

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2016/01/frostbite-interview.html