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Mixtape: FF/RW #3 – Best of Cassettes for April & May

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This installation of FF/RW for April and May looks north, both to Québec’s Les Productions Hérétiques, a label that has appeared on FF/RW before, and to a variety of UK labels- most notably Legion Blotan, an outfit that specializes in murky and sinister black metal. Legion Blotan releases are not to be missed, and this month’s long overdue slew of LB tapes sees the label continue to push the limits of modern black metal, bringing in elements of punk, noise, doom and downright weirdness.

— Wyatt Marshall

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Déliquescence – Antinomisme
Old school and obscure suffocating black metal with atmospheric elements that occasionally border on the grandiose, Déliquescence’s Antinomisme is the latest from Monarque (Sui Caedere, Carrion Wraith, Ephemer, and Monarque) and his label Les Productions Hérétiques. Riffs are both trance-y and powerful, and ambient passages overlaid with spoken word French bridge together the three menacing tracks on Antinomisme, the two-man band’s first demo.
Buy: Les Productions Hérétiques

Sorcier des Glaces – Monuments Anciens
Sorcier des Glaces’s Monuments Anciens is one of three releases SDG has put out this year, and it’s a blueprint for how to play menacing old school-ish black metal without falling victim to imitation. Sorcier des Glaces is an important mover and shaker in the thriving Québécois black metal scene along with the likes of Forteresse and Monarque.
Buy: Les Productions Hérétiques

Neftur – Diversis : One : Unfurl
The UK’s Neftur plays straightforward epic and pummeling depressive black metal. Diversis : One : Unfurl contains material dating back to 2007, only just released now. The tape is part one of six—keep an eye open for the next installment.
Buy: The Gloaming

C.S.B. – Bend Over That Bench you Wicked Wench
Vile noisy black metal punk from the UK featuring a member of the like-minded Sump. Dreary and chaotic, C.S.B.’s (Cryptic Salve Band) debut Bend Over That Bench You Wicked Wench is the first release on Dew Crux, a label with three tapes to its name and loosely affiliated with Legion Blotan.
Buy: Dew Crux

Auldfeud – S/T
Auldfeud’s debut is powerful and hypnotic, the result of a collaboration between members of Legion Blotan labelmates Rife and White Medal. Auldfeud’s sludgy and melodic black metal/doom is pierced by distant distorted cries, resulting in a sound that is dense yet light on its feet.
Buy: US – Fallen Empire
Buy: UK – Legion Blotan

Vanyar – Leaving…
Vanyar plays Tolkien-inspired black metal that avoids some of the clichéd over-the-top qualities of other bands that cite the author as their muse. Perhaps it’s due to the lo-fi sound, replete with raw pummeling drums and skuzzy drowned vocals that clash nicely with the melancholic up-front guitar.
Buy: US – Fallen Empire
Buy: UK – Legion Blotan

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