Revel in Eternal Death with Bog of the Infidel & Grue
As much as we’d all like the contrary, Dissection is dead, buried, and settled into a nice two-story condo in downtown Hell – and they ain’t coming back. Yeah, Reinkaos was lame, but when you’ve come out swinging with The Somberlain AND Storm of the Light’s Bane and provided the foundation for an entire sound, I think you’re allowed a clunker or two. I’m a Dissection apologist in the way that some folk are Metallica apologists, armed with an attitude that’s very “Yeah, but what about the awesome stuff?!”
Luckily for me and everyone else who’s down with icy, melodic black/death metal, there are a few bands out there paying homage to Big Daddy Nödtveidt, and doing a damn fine job of it. Case in point: Providence, RI’s truly excellent Bog of the Infidel. I was introduced to these lot (as well as the equally rad Grue, who we’ll get to) thanks to a chance email from Eternal Death founder Valder, and am still so happy he reached out, because I haven’t been able to stop listening to To Corrupt Your Sons and Lust After Your Daughters. It’s still a little rough, but there’s a vast well of potential for them to tap into. Bog of the Infidel steer clear of full-on Dissection worship but definitely take a few cues from the band’s finest work when crafting their hooky, memorable tunes. There’s a fast, thrashy influence, too, buried under a beautifully cold, open atmosphere reminiscent of the Ukrainians (think old Drudkh) and shades of old USBM like Grand Belial’s Key (without the sketchiness, of course). In short, it’s fucking great, and you can listen to their newest album in its entirety here.
Grue are a horse of a slightly different color: still black, but without quite as much of Bog of the Infidel’s melodic focus. Rather, these Bostonians are far more concerned with black metal at its most aggressive. The songs spend a lot of time churning out ragged black/thrash a la vintage Absu, but their real power lies in the moments of mid-tempo intensity (see “Calling Down the Stars”) that hint at greater things. Grue’s strength lies in their willingness to deviate from the script, taking a more refined dynamic approach that leads them from wintery Finnish riffs into phlegmatic doom and starry melodic passages. There’s an aura of controlled chaos about the songs on Casualties of the Psychic Wars, and Grue are masters of their domain. Listen to the album here.
Get physical with Eternal Death, and buy ‘em both here.