Necrolust: Argentinum Astrum, Beyond, Cosmic Church, Zemial


Necrolust 08_21_2013

I don’t have a theme this time, so here’s a sick American doom band, a weird German death metal band, a depressing Finnish black metal band, and another, weirder Greek black/thrash/heavy metal band for you. Just you wait, my next post is going to be half Taylor Swift, half Maniac Butcher.

Argentinum Astrum

The first and only time I’ve seen Knoxville’s Argentinum Astrum play was five years ago, in a tiny, filthy West Philly basement. The ceiling was low, illuminated by a single naked bulb, and empty forties littered the concrete floor. The force of their amplifiers made the smudged mattresses “soundproofing” the walls go jittery, and the sight of the band themselves, howling and beating and tearing at their instruments, was mesmerizing. Black metal, doom, and sweat poured off of them in a noxious haze like Burning Witch chasing the dragon with Mayhem, and man, was I into it. They haven’t released anything since 2009, but have finally completed a new record that I highly recommend you hunt down when the time comes. For now, this blurry Youtube video will give you an idea of what you’re in for:


To be honest, I was initially unimpressed with this record. With bands like Bolzer, ZOM, and Tribulation putting in serious work and the long-awaited Grave Miasma debut in the can (as well as the continued existence of Drowned) my death metal itch was good and scratched for the time being, but in his infinite wisdom, though, my dude insisted that I give it another shot, and I’m glad I did. Beyond has packed a lot of crazy shit into The Fatal Power of Death, and every time I listen, I notice something new. They’ve got a serious jones for reverb (the album sounds like it was recorded in a really spacious, well ventilated burial vault) and, while their love for vintage Morbid Angel and Autopsy is pretty obvious, they incorporate a certain level of chaos that recalls Revenge on a good day and gritty thrash on a bad one. Nice one, Germany. Stream the record here and grab it from Iron Bonehead here.

Cosmic Church

Just discovered this lot after reading about Siege Engine’s vinyl release of Absoluutin Lävistämä. They’re Finnish (duh) and sound like it, though they’re definitely more Clandestine Blaze than Beherit. I’m exactly 0% surprised to find out that the album was originally released by Shatraug’s now defunct Grievantee Productions, too. To their credit, Cosmic Church have really nailed that melancholy, subtly melodic sound while eschewing the more typical “Finnish filth” groove that so many black metal bands cling to.  Give it a listen below and throw them a few bones here.


These Greek weirdos have finally recorded a new record, and judging from the song samples on Bandcamp, it’s gonna be a doozy. In my head, Zemial always end up on the shelf near Master’s Hammer, Root, and even Mortuary Drape because of the way they blend black metal, thrash, occultism, and epic-ass heavy metal to create something purposefully strange but altogether intriguing. You’re going to either love it or hate it, but if you go with the latter option, you’re missing out. On a side note, Master’s Hammer sneakily released a new 7” without telling anyone, so go listen to some samples from that, too (spoiler alert: shit is super weird, as one might expect).

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