Upcoming Metal Releases: 2/14/2021 – 2/20/2021
Here are the new (and recent) metal releases for the week of February 14th, 2021 to February 20th, 2021. 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.
Send us your promos (streaming links preferred) to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Do not send us promo material via social media.
Things We Missed
Camera Obscura Two -- D.Ö.D. | Selfmadegod Records | Grindcore | Poland + Italy
Camera Obscura Two is a Polish/Italian combination of all things grind, crossover, and infectious grooves that keep you guessing all throughout their debut D.Ö.D. ‘To Bleed to Feel Alive’ is a righteous jam with fast and furious riffs properly showcasing CO2’s raw speed and aggression, which should come as no surprise to fans of both Schizo and Cripple Bastards. ‘Stalked By the Eye of No God’ is a slow burn with fat bass riffs met in the fracas by disturbing vocals and an overall dirty hardcore vibe that continues to sharpen its attack from beginning to end. Closer ‘Deathstress’ is chock full of what makes the rest of the album slay; having the tempos turn on a dime only to introduce more riffs that set completely different tones, think Soilent Green, especially with how you can rock out after being torn apart.
Suffering Hour -- The Cyclic Reckoning | Profound Lore Records | Black + Death Metal | United States
Super cool black/death metal that builds in the weirder, melodic side of black metal and the expansive density that death metal offers. As a bonus, it's got a few dudes from Wicked Inquisition in it, whose debut album I liked so much back in the day that I still have the CD, tucked away in a drawer for the day that I get a CD player again.
Gravesend -- Methods of Human Disposal | 20 Buck Spin | War Metal | United States (New York)
Fucked-up, gnashing death-filth that goes the extra mile to churn your head and emotions into a sewer stew.
Coronary -- Sinbad | Cruz del Sur Music | Heavy Metal | Finland
In my experience, smoking nuns on album art are (with a limited sample size) proving to be a pretty good indicator of release quality. Sinbad reminds me of Diamond Head's dramatic proto-metal, taking bombastic, mysterious riffs and powering them with expressive vocals and a massive snare sound (very important). There's a decidedly speed metal edge to this, too, where it's just a little grimier and faster than you might have expected.
Spire -- Temple of Khronos | Sentient Ruin | Black Metal + Ambient | Australia
From Cheryl Carter's review:
Temple of Khronos is another shift away from the sounds Spire have previously wrought from the depths and with it, the band have become something new, something fascinating, something terrifying. The record takes in ambient soundscapes, towering screams (alongside some of the most fascinating vocal patterns of recent years) and layered guitars which churn with anguish. The atmosphere is one that allows you to believe you are at the centre of a world in turmoil and that it is your destiny to find this temple of time, enter its sacred grounds and become all powerful—to control the future by destroying the present.
Qwalen -- Unohdan Sinut | Time to Kill Records | Black Metal + Punk | Finland
From Ted Nubel's track premiere of "Polku":
Qwälen's punk-laden black metal, like much of the overarching genre, could be described as "cold": sharp guitar tones transcend brightness into lacerating distortion and raw screams wash across them like frosty gusts of wind. But while coldness often implies a deadness, or at least an icy separation, their upcoming album Unohdan Sinut pulses with life: the sickening heartbeat of a maladjusted being, perhaps, but life nonetheless that draws the listener close enough to detect the pallid sheen of its flesh. At that distance, the chorused tremolo riffing that constructs these songs sticks in the mind, almost like being possessed—it will require significant relistening to exorcise.
Overneath -- A Tribute To Overneath EP | Independent | Rock + Alternative + Stoner Rock | United States (California)
Alternative rock and alternative metal, specifically during their reign in the 1990s and 2000s, had a uniquely catchy, irreverent approach to rock that I always felt could have been incorporated more into underground music, such as stoner rock. Overneath is a promising new example of this, drawing from alternative rock and metal as well as the high-concept loudness that sprung up afterwards to forge their own spin on the mixture. There's a lot going on in their debut EP A Tribute To Overneath, self-described as "collage rock," but the riffs are great, the energy behind it is pervasive, and the band's sense of humor gives it an endearing self-awareness.
The styles that influenced this EP don't dominate it, and neither does it rely on nostalgia as a crutch. I did find myself thinking back to the past, absolutely, but the constant introduction of clever riffs and heavy-hitting passages makes this a release firmly grounded in the present. Speaking of the present, we're premiering the whole EP right here, right now, in this very column. Enjoy!
Lair -- At Our End | Hand of Death | Doom + Sludge Metal | United States (Richmond)
Heavy, heavy doom out of the wellspring of heavy doom that is Richmond, Virginia. It's "just" a two-song EP, but when each song is far past ten minutes long, there's hell to pay within. This band knows how to go low and slow while keeping your attention and building an emotional missive out of walls of creeping sludge.
Stay tuned for our full premiere of the EP plus a Q&A with the band tomorrow!
Black Autumn / The Mountain King -- Rauhnacht MMXX | Cursed Monk Records | Ambient Black + Doom Metal | Germany
Two slices of experimental, exploratory metal that go together extremely well. Black Autumn crushes and saddens with massive waves of despair and soft interludes that poignantly reflect on the empty space within them; The Mountain King introduces vocals and progressive elements to refine on that sadness/heaviness intersection.
Phantom Druid -- Stages of Twilight | Off the Record | Doom Metal | Netherlands
Crushing doom that jams. It's like a twice-as-slow take on proto-doom's groovy and memorable riffing.
Senyawa -- Alkisah | Phantom Limb | Experimental Metal + Folk + Other | Indonesia
Extremely experimental music that feels metal in its use of heavy tones and disconcerting textures, but it also weaves in noise, Indonesian folk elements, and a host of unusual vocal and instrumental approaches. It's a rewarding listen that explores and expands the already-massive surface area of heavy music. Singles aren't gonna do this one justice, but the one out there is worth hitting nonetheless -- just understand you're witnessing only a portion of what's to come.
Dopelord -- Reality Dagger EP | Green Plague Records | Doom Metal | Poland
Polish doom unit Dopelord is simply incapable of slowing down these days. With a four-way split with Major Kong, Weedpecker, and Spaceslug in 2019 and their fuzzed-out full-length Sign of the Devil in 2020, Dopelord is already back with their three-song EP Reality Dagger and plans for even more in (hopefully) the near future. If you're a fan of sludgy, stoned doom that brings more to the table than your usual Sleep and Electric Wizard ripoffs, this is for you! Especially if you're in the mood for one hell of a closer, as Dopelord provides exactly that with the nearly-10 minute title track that seeks only to bury you in smoke.
Reality Dagger was recorded, mixed, and mastered by Haldor Grunberg (Behemoth, Blaze of Perdition) and is out February 19. No public streams for this one yet, but keep an eye on the band's socials for more info.