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Upcoming Metal Releases: 1/5/20 — 1/11/20

Upcoming Metal Releases

Here are the new (and recent) metal releases for the week of January 5th to January 11th, 2019. Releases reflect proposed North American scheduling, if available. Expect to see most of these albums on shelves or distros on Fridays.

See something we missed or have any thoughts? Let us know in the comments. Plus, as always, feel free to post your own shopping lists. Happy digging.

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Upcoming Releases

Lotus ThiefOresteia | Prophecy Productions | Post-Metal | United States (California)

From my song premiere and interview with lead vocalist Bezaelith:

Lotus Thief first captured my attention with their 2014 debut Rervm, a delightful exercise in postmodern space-rock which felt psychedelic sans pretense. Above all, though, it was resolutely a dark album despite its occasional shimmer and glimmer, seating it perfectly in my genre-sorted library of albums under the category of “night music.” I reserve this category for music which sort-of defies categorization any other way; sure, Lotus Thief’s upcoming third full-length Oresteia crosses paths with doom, post-rock, and post-metal, but how it weaves within and throughout all these varied cornerstones is the real story. It does so again under the darkness of night, through the veiled shadows in and out of which mysterious spectres appear and fade. But now, musically and vocally, the band has absolutely blossomed into so much more.

vvildernessDark Waters | Black Metal | Hungary

Dark Waters is sublime “soft” black metal (deep blue metal?), not giving itself fully to blackgaze but also not harshing anyone’s mellow with fury or aggression. It thrives on atmosphere, of course, of which vvilderness provides much, but also does well slowed down, ambient and obtuse during its moments of retreat. Dark Waters turns out to be fairly dense despite the ease of digestion that the production, arrangement, and style provide; in short, a lovely balance indeed.

Empire of the MoonΕκλειψις | Iron Bonehead Productions | Black Metal | Greece

From Jon Rosenthal’s music video premiere of “Devi Maha Devi”:

While still firmly rooted in classic second-wave black metal (make no mistake, Empire of the Moon has been around for a very long time), “Devi Maha Devi” follows the Hellenic path: big riffs, even bigger guitar solos, and a metallic swagger which can’t be beat. Of course, this is still black metal, and so there is a blasting might and second-wave sense of atmosphere, but Empire of the Moon’s knowledge comes from a more ancient source, be it their mystical influences or the classic music which fuels them. Instead of trying to create music which sounds black as pitch, this is black metal, and Empire of the Moon are one of the select few practitioners of this dark art.

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HauntMind Freeze | Shadow Kingdom Records | Heavy Metal | United States (California)

Fuck yeah, what decade is it again? Who cares, there’s always time for the timeless. And the style that Haunt represents is for sure timeless. Just call it heavy metal. Nothing bombastic or insane or hyper-concentrated or dense, just metal-‘n’-roll. Mind Freeze is as much music for your Bic lighter as it is for you.

UnreqvitedMosaic II: la déteste et la détresse | Prophecy Productions | Blackgaze | Canada

Unreqvited has been fairly prolific since 2016’s Disquiet, the solo project’s debut (which also sees re-release this week, scroll below), but nothing from the band to date feels this seamless and effortless and, well, patient. Mosaic II: la déteste et la détresse is an album which will definitely reward your patience, but allowing the music to expand and blossom in your mind is the right way to go here (or with any Unreqvited release for that matter). Basically, this is blackgaze worth listening to.

Sylvaine / UnreqvitedTime Without End | Prophecy Productions | Blackgaze | Canada / Norway

For even more Unreqvited, a split is also out this week with Norwegian composer Sylvaine (who we last heard from on the new Alcest record).

Ether CovenEverything is Temporary Except Suffering | Century Media | Sludge | United States (Florida)

Modern, punchy sludge makes up Ether Coven’s third full-length Everything is Temporary Except Suffering. The album’s mood, based on its title at least, is as expected: dismal, full of decay, and savagely destructive. And it’s a heavy one too, almost capturing the trappings of deathcore, even, as chugs galore surge across the wavelengths. Everything is Temporary Except Suffering is decisively sludge, though, thanks to its muddy-thick churn and penchant for aggressive grooves.

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From the Grave: Reissues and Re-Releases

Lotus ThiefRervm | Prophecy Productions | Post-Metal | United States (California)

The original Lotus Thief record (from 2014) sees re-release at last. Compared to the band’s newest release Oresteia, Rervm feels more prototypical, albeit heavier and more grounded in rock. It pairs super-well with Oresteia, actually, showcasing two sides to what’s surely a multifaceted band.

UnreqvitedDisquiet | Prophecy Productions | Blackgaze | Canada

Unreqvited’s 2016 debut Disquiet is given new breath. This was the year after Deafheaven’s New Bermuda, a turning point for blackgaze as a whole, but also an opportunity for underground artists like Unreqvited to make their mark. And sure enough, Unreqvited made a mark: Disquiet. Beautiful and devastating all at once, this release should never be forgotten.

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