Akitsa – Grands tyrans [Canada, Black] (2015)

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Hospital Productions | 6-2-15

Hospital Productions | 6-2-15

There is a certainly which comes with Akista. One knows before they get into the record that things will most likely come with little refinement and most likely sound like a brick being dropped down the middle of an empty stairwell. This is what Akitsa is and probably will ever be. With all of that said, Grans tyrans sounds nasty like previous records and never disappoints.

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Eternal Valley – Ascend To The Unknown [US, Black / Ambient] (2015)

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Self Released | 3-18-15

Self Released | 3-18-15

Sometimes one knows they are going to enjoy a record. A one man black metal project who self releases black metal records about cosmic themes and obliteration? Yep, this should be simple. Eternal Valley was already halfway in the door just by glancing at previous records and album artwork. The deal was sealed however at the oozing synth which washed over the album’s opener “Path To An Astral Existence.” Sometimes riding on convention allows like minded people to flock in droves to a star which just about to collapse and die.

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Seme Konj – The Promise of Coffins [Slovenia, Black / Noise] (2014)

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Self Released  | 2014

Self Released | 4-7-14

For the most part, I really enjoy reviewing new material specifically things that are in the current year. As I have found with lesser known and underground metal releases, dates are sort of flexible when it comes to when an audience will hear it. Take for example and their debut The Promise of Coffins. This release is unmistakably a 2014 record coming out in the early months of Spring. The Promise of Coffins went unheard by the majority of the world until this year seeing a tape / cd release by Glossolalia Records. Make no mistake, Seme Konj will probably be only heard by a few more people but suffice to say that many more people will reveal in chaos.

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Spectral Voice – Necrotic Doom [US, Death / Doom] (2015)

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Self Released | 1-15-15

Self Released | 1-15-15

Sometimes one just needs the sound of pummeling death/doom to get them through the week. Spectral Voice represents a small piece in a yet to be recognized Colorado metal scene. Spectral Voice is connected to a series of death and doom bands including Abysmal Dimensions and Blood Incantation. While there are of course other bands from Colorado, this small blanket of misery is what is currently most interesting. Perhaps this is the first experience, for many, with Rocky Mountain Death.

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Ekranoplan – Demo [Germany, Sludge / Crust] (2014)

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Yehonala Tapes | 11-8-14

Yehonala Tapes | 11-8-14

Whenever a release starts out with a clenched fist feeling, one knows it is going to be a good release. Ekranoplan supposedly has members of the funeral doom metal band Ahab in it but I can not find any relevant information regarding this project. All evidence of Ekranoplan is in the form of a 5 song demo which is aptly titled Demo. I do not think I need any further introduction.

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Terra Deep / Hyperborean Skies – Mariposa [US, Black] (2014)

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Manicidic Black / Mysterious Stranger | 11-30-14

Manicidic Black / Mysterious Stranger | 11-30-14

I have stated before that one of the best ways to look for new bands is through splits. Usually splits will showcase two or even three bands you may or may not be aware of. Sometimes, splits will showcase a couple of bands as well as a new label. Mysterious Stranger lives up to its name as a new label that has one release to their name, which is this one. What Mysterious Stranger lacks in experience they make up for in potential. If future releases are as interesting as the Mariposa split, then I would be more than willing to start collecting libraries of their cassettes.

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Wederganger – Gelderse Drek [Netherlands, Black] (2014)

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Self Released | 1-1-14

Self Released | 1-1-14

I believe, more than anything, it was the aesthetic which drove me into the rotting arms of this Danish black metal band. Though this band’s demo only comes in two songs, the combination of decent black metal, low baritone crooning, and shrill banshee vocals was enough to sit down and listen to whatever they were saying. Add to this the absolute devotion to Germanic folklore and undeath and they could say anything they wanted and I would be enthralled. Gelderse Drek was released earlier this year but is now seeing release by a small company called Daemon Worship. Thank the floating crypt ghasts this release did not go unnoticed.

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Space Witch – Space Witch [UK, Sludge / Doom] (2014)

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Self Released | 7-3-14

Self Released | 7-3-14

I mean, come on. Why not? Space Witch’s debut full length begins with a shlocky sci fi clip of a maniacal overlord wishing destruction on earth. Afterwards, a slow deluge of stoner doom floods the landscape while effects dance in the air. By looking at the tracklist, Space Witch’s self titled release has two songs both coming in at 30 minutes. It does not take a genius to figure out what the next hour will be and smell like. With all of that said, this British band manages to make the best of expectations and give its listeners a wild ride through mind melting cosmic space.

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Aureole – Alunar [US, Black / Ambient] (2014)

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Fallen Empire Records | 9-29-14

Fallen Empire Records | 9-29-14

I count my blessings each day that I stumble across a label like Fallen Empire. Here is a label that has consistently been proven to put out, if at the very least, interesting black metal. Additionally, the releases from Fallen Empire are usually either lesser known or completely new talent. Take for example Markov Soroka, who goes by the name M.S. in the project Aureole. Here is a very young newcomer who has taken the past couple of years to seclude himself in a castle of solitude. If the brilliant cover was not enough indication, the album Alunar is an institution dedicated to loneliness in the reaches of mystical space.

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Khthoniik Cerviiks – Heptaedrone [Germany, Black / Death] (2014)

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Iron Bonehead | 8-12-14

Iron Bonehead | 8-12-14

If one thing I am thankful for with Heptaedrone, it is the minute long introduction which precedes the actual music. Not only does the introduction set the mood with atmosphere and sound effects but it also gives a brief pause before the world comes collapsing in on itself. Take whatever you can get because there will be no room to breathe for the next 43 minutes.

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