Jera – Jera [US, Black] (2017)

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Self Released | 3-26-17

I think at one point, I will do an article or feature of local Baltimore / DC metal bands that I inadvertently have contacts through or at least see at multiple shows. Jera was something that I have see really early in their career with even a live show without a singer. This first demo (?) represents the start for a band who is trying super hard not to wipe their shoes before entering the house.

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Nornír – Urd [Germany, Black] (2017)

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Northern Silence Productions | 3-3-17

Hopefully you are ready to run becasue whatever is chasing you is getting closer. From the not so ice bitten lands of Germany comes a band that is less innovative as they are aged in experience. With a decent sized EP to follow their 2015 demo, Nornír steps onto the stage to offer entertaining black metal with the jaws of hades.

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Cioran – Bestiale battito divino [Italy, Black / Punk] (2017)

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Caligari Records | 1-13-17

Oh fuck, this is goddamn gross. Already from the support from Caligari Records, I knew that Italian act Cioran would be horrid sounding. Named after the turn of the century Romanian philosopher who espoused pessimism and misery, Cioran has constructed an anthem of decay. With the tags of hardcore punk sitting next to black metal, imaginations run wild as Bestiale battito divino shapes up to be one of the more blistering releases of the year.

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Mort aux Gueux – Beuverie, Musique du Diable et Misère Crasse [Canada, Black] (2017)

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Self Released | 2-3-17

I feel I am going to have a good handle on some of the darker works in various languages. From what I can surmise, Mort aux Gueux means “Death to the Beggers (?)” and the album title starts out with “Music of the Devil” and then gets really patchy from there. It could have something to do with misery or mother Earth. Whether or not I would actually do well in France or the French Canadian territories is one thing, the tone and theme of Mort aux Gueux is quite another.

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Funeral Chant – Funeral Chant (US, Black / Death) (2017)

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Self Released | 2-3-17

Funeral Chant is already experiencing a small queue of interest from the internet and this can be directly related to the feature from Cvlt Nation. Aside from that however, the interest for Funeral Chant and the growing popularity for this bay area black death act seems to be catching like fire die to other reason. Perhaps this is an example of a quality record that is gaining popularity through its own merit. I am still skeptical.

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Imperceptum – The Eternal Path to Nothingness [Germany, Black / Funeral Doom] (2017)

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Self Released | 2-1-17

I believe that it is in the interest of most metal to capture a theme or feeling. whether simple or complex abstract or concrete, most heavy metal intends to fill the listener with a focus. The second album from German black / doom outfit Imperceptum does an admirable job at wrapping in the various emotions of existential obliteration. While this sounds like a very niche focus, the sound of stars collapsing and ceasing to be apart of the material world seems to be a destination for this particular band.

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Myotis Occultus – Of Weeping Spells & Wounded Shrines [US, Raw Black] (2017)

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Self Released | 1-27-17

In the world of underground and lesser known heavy metal, newness is a relative term. To some the Arizona based one man act Myotis Occultus could be new with the weight of raw black metal making its first introductions. To others, the songs on the Of Weeping Spells & Wounded Shrines demo are just a recollection of past works that have been spread out on singles and demos released in 2016. If it sounds like I am complaining, I am not as Myotis Occultus was a mystery to me until today. Perhaps every once in awhile one needs new introductions as there will be more people coming in at various times.

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Ose – Rituum [US, Black] (2017)

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Self Released | 1-30-17

I love the tag of NCBM as if I am missing some big North Carolina black metal scene. Ha. Wait. I am not am I? Please tell me if I am and I will be down there in less than 10 hours. Rituum just came out and by the looks of it, I am the one of the few that showed up super early to this party. With no Metal Archives and a Facebook page that hasn’t been updated in years, I can safely wonder if Ose actually exists. If they do not then I have this near amazing demo to show for my efforts.

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Noctis – Gamaliel [US. Black / Noise] (2017)

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Self Released | 01-26-17

One song releases are difficult to assess in terms of potential. For the most part single and 1 track demos are made by the dozen but hardly ever covered due to their insubstantial nature. there just isn’t that much one can do with 1 track that is even less than 5 minutes. what one can do is look at past works and compare the single track to surmise where the music could potentially travel. If one was doing that for Noctis, the answer would be the depths of chaos.

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Tome Of The Unreplenished – Cosmoprism [Cyprus, Ritual Ambient / Noise] (2017)

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I, Voidhanger Records | 2-3-17

Back in 2015, Tome Of The Unreplenished sounded different. It isn’t that much of a change but the Cypriot born now British band’s debut was much more geared towards atmospheric black metal that frayed at the edges of concrete. Cosmoprism: The Theurgy – Act I shatters all bonds with the material world and travels towards the celestial nothingness with an EP that attempts to fathom the unknowable and reign in the horror of the indescribable. This, of course, will not be done in 4/4 time or with any sort of musical structure.

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