Sh*t That Comes Out Today: January 22, 2021
I’m writing this on Monday, so hopefully by the time this is published we’ll have a new president and a lot less anxiety. At any rate, here are some fresh metal albums to help decompress from the last five years.
Necroceros (Century Media)
The latest from Dutch death metal legends Asphyx takes a strange lyrical turn — who would’ve expected a concept album about a zombie rhinoceros*? Points for originality there! No other surprises here, other than how satisfying their monolithic death/doom remains ten albums in. These songs hit like a one-ton horned mammal. Hell, Asphyx’s unexpected renaissance may eclipse their initial run at this point. Brutally good.
*yes, I know it’s not actually about a zombie rhinoceros
Here Lies Man
Ritual Divination (RidingEasy)
Here Lies Man’s “Black Sabbath meets Afrobeat” thing felt dangerously close to gimmicky at first, but by their fourth album it’s pretty clear that they’re serious about their heavy rock by way of West Africa. They prove equally adept at both, exploring the connection between Sabbath swing and African polyrhythms extensively on this hour-long ethnic metal journey. The dedication to the one sound means the songs all feel a little same-y, but at least it’s a very satisfying same-y.
Godslastering Hymns of a Forlorn Peasantry (Iron Bonehead)
“And behind door number three, we have — a brand new black metal album!” Gotta love that one-woman black metal act Hulder enlists generals of Hell to present her presenting a forest on the cover of her debut full-length. This seductive forest creature from Scandinavian mythology entices listeners with icy riffs and hideous shrieks. There’s a lot of second-wave here: Immortal, Darkthrone, etc. She makes it her own, even if we’ve heard this sort of thing before — normally this stuff gets an instant deletion from my inbox, but Hulder’s hymns stand out from the corpsepainted crowd.
Perpetual Chaos (Napalm)
If you’re looking for something that isn’t Carcass but sounds like Carcass, this multinational conglomerate of thrashers got you covered. A proudly all-woman band of musicians who’d put any other lineup of any gender combination to shame, they’re guided by sole remaining original member, guitarist Prika Amaral. Amaral’s Brazilian roots (bloody roots) shine through in the sheer ferocity she attacks her politically-motivated melodic death/thrash with. While the sheer intensity may seem chaotic, you’ll want to listen to these killer riffs perpetually.
I never bothered listening to Therion’s last album, the three-hour rock opera Beloved Antichrist, because why would I do that to myself? Their latest, Leviathan, clocks in at a relatively lean 45 minutes — practically an EP by their standards. The symphonic metal group’s stated intent was to create an album filled with hits, and in an alternate universe where anything this bombastic could get played on the radio, well, these guys are still very much an acquired taste. At the very least, it’s nice to hear them focusing on crafting individual songs again rather than unwieldy epics, making this a good place to try to acquire said taste.
OTHER SHIT THAT COMES OUT THIS WEEK
The Dead Daisies – Holy Ground (SPV/Steamhammer) Listen
Ektomorf – Reborn (Napalm) Listen
Jason Bieler and The Baron Von Bielski Orchestra – Songs For The Apocalypse (Frontiers) Listen
Labyrinth – Welcome To The Absurd Circus (Frontiers) Listen
Phantom Elite – Titanium (Frontiers) Listen
Wardruna – Kvitravn (By Norse Music)
Wig Wam – Never Say Die (Frontiers) Listen