Kings Destroy – Fantasma Nera

Brooklyn-based band Kings Destroy has chosen a different approach to create the new album “Fantasma Nera” resulting in an intriguing sonic ensemble with an experimental edge and a stoner rock soul.

“The Nightbird” constantly maintains a smooth melodic core as the bluesy guitar work holds a dominant role following the subtle positive energy of the rhythmic section and delivering extra crunchy riffs as well as crispy harmonies.

The title track sometimes amplifies an atmospheric melancholia adding a darker depth to the rich melodic textures which benefit greatly from the dreamy nuances of the guitar work and the compelling solo destined to stand out through the groovy moments.

“Barbarossa” has a groovy rock spirit embodied by the cohesive guitar riffs naturally leading to an entertaining solo while the catchy melodic aspects are amplified by the soulful vocal delivery of the chorus.

“Unmake It” feels significantly darker and slightly heavier as guitars acquire doom tinged tonalities matched by the bittersweet vocals and the rhythmic patterns slow down to create a dramatic mood.

“Dead Before” favors an emotional approach as guitars follow a slower pace with contemplative serenity and carefully weave loads of melancholic melodies with warm bluesy tonalities accompanied by particularly heartfelt vocals.  

The fascinating sound of “You’re The Puppet” is generated by the extra darkened doom nuances embedded in the skillful guitar work that effortlessly shift from trippy melodic progressions to bewitching heavier riffage.

With “Fantasma Nera” Kings Destroy deliberately leave behind their hardcore roots to focus mainly on fascinating melodies that render all the songs quite accessible and absolutely  enjoyable.

The Sabbathian – Latum Alterum

Formed by multi-instrumentalist Chad Davis and vocalist Anette Uvaas Guldbrandsen, The Sabbathian is ready to embark on the darkest music journey to deliver the arcane nuances of the debut full length “Latum Alterum”.

The darkened aesthetics of “The Brightest Light” hold a fundamental role within the brooding sonic realm fueled by the dismal doom tonalities of the monochromatic heavy guitar progressions while Anette’s enchanting vocals create surreal harmonies flowing through mysterious melodic waves.

The Nordic folk atmospheres of “Liti Kjersti” emphasize the profoundly melancholic melodies generated by the hazy guitar tones and the spellbinding classical vocal delivery while the rhythmic core of the song showcases a primordial creative force often inspired by traditional black metal.

On “Head Of A Traitor” vocals become exquisitely alluring with a lavish operatic delivery featuring the iconic Liv Kristine Espenæs as guest vocalist while the instrumental progressions revolve around steady obscure doom oriented guitar riffs embellished by elegant gothic atmospheres and melodic accents.

On “One Night Of Cruelty” guitars focus on a monumental heavy riffage channeling impending doom and occult rock vibes while spellbinding vocals enhance the pure darkened melancholy of the dreamy melodic phrases.

The enigmatic tonalities and the mystical aura of “Latum Alterum” will definitely attract lovers of dark melodies and doom metal as with evident songwriting skills The Sabbathian craft an hypnotizing music opus that demands your utmost attention.

Witchthroat Serpent – Swallow The Venom

French stoner doom band Witchthroat Serpent is ready to embark on a spacey sonic journey with the esoteric vibes of the latest full length “Swallow The Venom”.

Full blown psychedelia takes over “Lucifer’s Fire” as guitar dynamics are characterized by gritty tonalities and retro vibes supported by a massive series of heavy bass lines and embellished by vibrant melodic guitar soloing.  

The super psychedelic beginning of “Pauper’s Grave” introduces the occult atmospheres that will deeply influence the whole instrumentation leading to heavy rhythmic sections, doom worshipping guitars and some hazy moments generated by a slower tempo and calmer guitar phrases.  

“Scorpent Serpion” doesn’t deviate from the whole album’s mood so the overdose of fuzzy guitar riffs is certainly expected and also enigmatic tonalities amplify the mysterious vibes that surround the rhythmic crescendos.

“Red Eyed Albino” begins with monolithic bass tones swiftly followed by another round of dirty guitar riffs with a prominent sludge/stoner approach interrupted only by the spacey melodic guitar solo and additional super fuzzy segments.

On “No More Giant Octopuses” guitars naturally enhance the psychedelic temper maintaining a steady series of stoner oriented grooves that will later acquire a quite ominous heavier doom quality while the soloing revolves around dizzy melodies.

Psychedelia and the black arts are the key elements behind “Swallow The Venom” as Witchthroat Serpent here are evidently inspired by classic doom and stoner rock and diligently follow such music formula to deliver a trippy collection of songs.

Urarv – Argentum

Norwegian avant-black metal band Urarv definitely dwells in a profoundly dark sonic realm and it is from this abyss that the latest effort “Argentum” emerges as an enigmatic entity.

“Krakekjott” instantly unleashes feverish guitar riffs that follow an increasingly punishing speed with steady fierce drum blasts inevitably creating nightmarish soundscapes matched by an insane raucous vocal delivery.

On “Aurum” nightmarish atmospheres introduce dissonant somber harmonies and vocals become howls in the darkest night foreshadowing the creepy nuances embedded in the desperately frenetic guitar riffs which are certainly inspired by old school black metal.

From beginning to end  “Sannhet” tends to favor fast & grim rhythmic dynamics as we are still stuck in a realm of undiluted darkness but the palpable ferocity often leaves space for melodic yet uneasy moments.

“Soloppgang” begins with a surreal sense of serenity expressed by graceful  arpeggios but it’s just a matter of occasional calm segments that eventually will be almost erased by bursts of chaotic fury offered by relentless blackened guitar riffs and diabolical growls.

Once again Urarv demonstrates to have a unique creative force that naturally leads to the monumental blackened force and the unsettling mood of “Argentum” which, despite being a mini album, stands out as one of the most avant-garde releases of the year.

Pelagos – Revolve

Finnish band Pelagos just started a multifaceted melancholic music journey that aims to enchant the listeners with the enigmatic nuances of the debut full length “Revolve”.

“Code” opens the album with eclectic arrangements that naturally shift from futuristic ambient style to ethereal harmonies fully embracing the soft vocal delivery yet guitars will eventually emerge through the calm atmospheres to create a smooth melodic crescendo.

The minimalist guitar melodies on “River (Proxima Centauri)” hold a primary role in the creation of serene soundscapes where luminous atmospheric arrangements and electro accents effortlessly evoke a moody emotive whirlwind.

Everything flows like in a daydream on “Aphrodite’s Shore” with the elegant rock tonalities of crispy guitars gently surrounded by intricate atmospheres that will often acquire a darker solemn energy.

The soothing atmospheres on “Sea Of Tranquillity” certainly match the song’s title as gentle guitar phrases with subtle prog rock vibes appear to be immersed in spacey electronic layers leading to cosmic relaxation.

“Muted Stars” offers delicate aesthetics as the band skillfully blends polychromatic arrangements, whispered narratives and polished guitar melodies that seem to float freely through hazy soundscapes.

Overall, far from being an average debut album “Revolve” shines for the surreal cinematic arrangements as all the music carefully composed by Pelagos seem to emerge spontaneously from a limbo between space and water.

 

Witch Mountain – Witch Mountain

There has been some drastic line up changes but Portland based doom stalwarts Witch Mountain return with the new singer Kayla Dixon and renewed obscure energy in the latest self titled full length.

“Midnight” is an instant heavy hitter that clearly draws inspiration from the darkest tonalities of doom with a traditionally monolithic rhythmic ensemble keeping a steady intense groove while the guitar solo offers raw classic rock variations and Kayla’s vocals add a lovely bluesy melodic touch but the inner fierce darkness often emerges with creepy screams.

A loop of fuzzy guitar riffs create suspense and an aptly sense of impending doom on “Mechanical World” which will eventually undergo a heavily trippy rhythmic crescendo mixing slower melodic guitars and enigmatic vibes enhanced by Kayla’s enchanting voice that effortlessly floats through the mysterious rhythmic maze.

“Nighthawk” is the most challenging song on the album running for about fourteen minutes with several mind bending moments. In the beginning guitars gain the spotlight with trippy melodic grandeur swiftly followed by slow & monumental doom riffs and an overdose of hazy bluesy harmonies that intentionally channel epic vibes as well as intensely enigmatic atmospheres while Kayla’s vocal performance offers decadently darkened nuances and esoteric charisma.

Certainly on this new album Witch Mountain successfully maintains a delightful darkened mood and pays homage to the band’s strong doom roots creating a bewitching sonic experience dedicated to lovers of such genre.

 Witch Mountain

Malady – Toinen Toista

Finnish progressive rock quintet Malady invites you to experience the unique ‘70s influenced music journey of the new album “Toinen Toista” which showcases extraordinary musicianship and is conceptually based on the basic questions of being human and the transient nature of things.

The title track has an enigmatic beginning with minimalist chords and surreal atmospheric accents while the vintage vibes embedded in the guitar work will soon acquire highly energetic dynamics and exciting rhythmic variations accompanied by sweet retro organ layers to achieve those ‘70s rock flavors that characterize the whole album.

“Laulu Sisaruksille” is a short magical music piece as atmospheric layers channel a profound melancholy further enhanced by the otherworldly beauty of strings melodies that introduce the vintage sonic realm of “Tiedon Kehtolaulu”.

The epic opus “Nurja Puoli” closes the album with hypnotizing nuances and great music diversity as the band is clearly exploring prog rock territories with a desire to create something original. The result of this adventurous spirit leads to soothing instrumental passages dominated by lovely & talented guitar work that offers meditative breakdowns as well as powerful melodic textures and several enthralling intricate solos.

“Toinen Toista” is an excellent progressive rock effort on which Malady skillfully crafts relaxing soundscapes and complex melodic textures that deserve the listeners’ full attention.

Hard Action – Hot Wired Beat

Following an explosive debut in the underground scene young Finnish rockers Hard Action return with the sophomore release “Hot Wired Beat”, an album devoted to straightforward authentic rock dynamics with an entertaining vintage essence.

Listening to “Free Fall” will reminisce of bands like Hanoi Rocks because of the up-tempo guitar action full of licks and sleazy hooks that basically take the lead throughout the song.

“Nothing Ever Changed” can display mellow melodic vibes in the midst of another round of solid mid-paced rhythmic patterns and guitars are again very dominant in the mix accompanying the punkish rebel vocals with the right amount of traditional rock dynamics.

On “The Losing Side” the adrenaline blasts are definitely toned down as the band favors a melodic approach with inevitable radio friendly tones but guitars do maintain the retro gritty energy that becomes more empowering in the entertaining guitar solo.

“Tied Down” returns to focus on high impact rhythmic dynamics fueled by traditional rock aesthetics as guitars deliver tight riffing jamming towards a lovely guitar solo but there is still space for softer melodies.

“Tunnel Vision” is all about loads of gritty guitar riffs & solos executed in bold rocker fashion with the welcomed addition of fuzzy tonalities that accentuate the irresistible vintage mood resulting in a particularly delightful anthemic rock groove.

On “Hot Wired Beat” Hard Action pays homage to decades of catchy rock n’ roll successfully crafting all kinds of melodic hooks and focusing on enthusiastic guitar driven grooves.

 

Anguis Dei – Ad Portas Serpentium

Self-proclaimed True Satanik Black Metal secretive collective Anguis Dei are ready to unleash the spine chilling debut EP “Ad Portas Serpentium” and already the title gives you an idea of the absolutely arcane vibes that linger throughout this demonic opus which will be followed by the band’s first full length.

“Maythorns Over Uroboros” opens the gates of hell with triumphant orchestral glory swiftly followed by inhuman screams and all kinds of blackened flavors borrowing a familiar primordial black metal formula with breakneck speed and crunchy guitar riffing but always enriched by baroque arrangements and creepy atmospheres.

“Angela Krudeliis Ambitiosa Nokturniis” relentlessly follows a similar damned pathway with vampiresque atmospheres and unrestrained guitars shifting from traditional blackened riffing to diabolically refined melodies surrounded by ominous horrific growls & screams and generous symphonic layers leading to a grotesque theatrical breakdown.

“The Lionel” is another hymn to darkness and irrational untamed black metal force with brutal drumming and painfully fast rhythmic guitars that simply support the omnipresent devilish gutturals and the occasional dramatic clean vocals surrounded by the dark orchestral incantations.

If you’re in the mood for flamboyant sinister black metal and are willing to enter this perilous Black Magick realm then you should feel comfortable with the overwhelming obscurity of “Ad Portas Serpentium”.

Jess And The Ancient Ones – The Horse And Other Weird Tales

Finnish psychedelic rockers Jess And The Ancient Ones deserve to be recognized worldwide as an exceptionally intriguing band in fact on the newest album “The Horse And Other Weird Tales” they fully embrace a unique musical identity & creative force that will inevitably surprise the listeners.

Opening the expected magical portal “Death Is The Doors” takes you back in time with slow burning guitar melodies that suddenly become exquisitely vibrant as longing for refined psychedelic energy the soft rhythm acquires a bolder groove accompanied by Jess’s impressive vocal abilities.

“Your Exploding Heads” offers a quite entertaining groove with a generous dosage of thick bass lines, melodic guitars and an extremely catchy chorus while Jess’s warm vocal delivery leads you through an unrestrained trippy journey back to the ‘60s.

“(Here Comes) The Rainbow Mouth” follows a remarkable melodic fluidity provided by a winning combo of flamboyant organ layers and spacey guitar tonalities while vocalist Jess moves sinuously like an ethereal enchantress through the intricate web of bewitching rock grooves.

With an altered state of mind “Minotaure” can become particularly obscure with spiritual emphasis yet the colorful moody guitars & organ grooves stand out for the impeccable retro flavors and often hold the lightheartedness of youth and wild outdoor festivals.

“Anyway The Minds Flow” shines for the great psychedelic instrumental variety as things are easily getting spacey and rather surreal with detailed vintage melodies & arrangements that feel just like unconsciously riding a cosmic wheel (or a horse) and, once again, Jess delivers a charismatic heartfelt vocal performance.

“The Horse And Other Weird Tales” is often filled with rare sincerity and profound passion plus it seems simply impossible to resist the alluring quality of the band’s charismatic vintage sound. Do not miss the opportunity to enter the magical sonic realm of Jess And The Ancient Ones!