Astrophobos, a Lovecraftian term for the fear of space, isn't related to the actual condition of agoraphobia. Rather, it's fear on a much larger scale, about the cosmos and what lies beyond them. On their upcoming third album Corpus, the Swedish black metal outfit Astrophobos step away from their Lovecraftian namesake and instead examine death and decay as inevitabilities. Oddly enough, this brings their thematic focus closer to agoraphobia as they pontificate on impermanence. Check out how the group frames their mortality through crippling vocals and melodies on our premiere of their new track “Utrotning":

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“Utrotning” remains within well-tread ground, as Astrophobos package everything you’d expect from black metal - ballistic blast beats, vicious tremolo picking, and necrosis-causing vocals - into a skin-tight melodic offering. Instead of orchestrating an instrumental maelstrom where every instrument clobbers each other, Astrophobos are synchronous with each other, shaping the ripping and tearing into a greater musical cohesion between the three band members. It’s still repugnant black metal, but the band’s interplay and melodic ear impart a groove that’s often forgotten in favor of inhumanity.

The melodies take on a special significance within the chorus, where they dice through the chaotic verses and contrast them with momentary order. Instead of using melody to dial down their ferocity, Astrophobos implement them on “Utrotning" as a means of shaping and structuring.

The track, and Corpus as a whole, are multi-media collaborations with artists Lisa Wallert and Morgan Norman. The partnership will climax in a Stockholm-based art exhibition taking place on November 13, right after the album's release. It’s hard to determine the exact impact of Wallert and Norman’s contributions on any single track—something that’s doubly true for the compact “Utrotning,” which is cited as being inspired by a photograph in the project. Regardless of how Corpus’ interdisciplinary roots are woven into the album’s narrative and sound, “Utrotning” is a clean slice of melodic black metal, eschewing egregious theatrics in favor of fundamental expertise.

Vocalist Micke comments:

"Utrotning" is one of the faster and more aggressive songs on the album. Both the music and the lyrics were inspired by Morgan Norman's photograph "Bränd", which is another part of the Corpus project, and the cover photo for the single. The Swedish title means "Extermination" and refers to the end of humanity as a species. Something that feels long overdue, but maybe isn't so far away.

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Corpus will release on November 12 through Triumvirate Records.