UNSIGNED AND UNHOLY: BLOOD LABEL, HORDES OF THE MORNING STAR, THOSE WHO LIE BENEATH
- Blood Label: The best way I’ve come up with to describe bands like this is “Danish metal.” It seems silly to categorize a band solely by their country of origin, but Danish bands just seem to have this certain sound that’s unmistakable — it’s a mix of thrash and groovy, post-hardcore with crunchy, maximally overdriven and saturated guitars. Kinda first-gen American metalcore-y at times (early Shadows Fall and Killswitch), but without any cheese or clean vocals. Fellow Dane and Ex-Hatesphere vocalist Jacob Bredahl produced this effort, which could help explain the “Danish” sound I alluded to. Anyway, this shit is heavy and it rules.
- Hordes of the Morning Star: It’s been a while since I really dug a new black metal band, but these guys are totally doing it for me. Press release copy boasts “Haunting, ominous black metal in the vein of Dissection, Watain, Dark Funeral, Belphegor, etc.” and I’d say that pretty much nails it. Bands on micro labels still qualify for this segment as far as I’m concerned; Consummatum Est will be released by MetalHit Records later this year, date TBA. Stream “to Sire a Slave” via Metal Injection:
- Those Who Lie Beneath: Proof that there is hope for today’s children, Those Who Lie Beneath have completely rejiggered their lineup and sound since releasing an album on Rise Records (lol) in 2009, and it’s definitely for the better. Here’s one of the lone remaining members via email: “Being older, more weathered and depressed, and now having full creative control of the band I was finally able to drag this band out of the trenches of deathcore and put together what I feel to be, well, not the trenches of deathcore.” I completely agree, and while it’d be easy to slam these guys for taking a crack at real death metal now that their balls have dropped, I’d say they’ve got something interesting to offer and they’re better than simply “competent.” Stream the Antichrist EP via Bandcamp below: