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Here are the new (and recent) metal releases for the weeks of May 24th to May 30th and May 31st to June 6th, 2020. 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: editors@invisibleoranges.com. Do not send us promo material via social media.

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Surprise Releases + Things We Missed

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Protosequence -- A Blunt Description of Something | Lacerated Enemy Records | Technical Death Metal | Canada

Blistering tech-death with a proggy edge that doesn't quite feel like tech-death but most definitely is. I champion these sorts of bands who can go the extra step to distinguish themselves from the albeit still-interesting melting pot of tech-death bands. Instrumental skills are dope, but songwriting is what counts: here, Protosequence saturate their tunes with breakdowns, brutal death metal vocals, and hyper-mind melodies in a not-overbearing way. It's fast, duh, but doesn't burn out all your brain cells at once.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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Killitorous -- The Afterparty | Fuck-You-Up Metal | Canada

Here's a party… er, the afterparty. On its face, The Afterparty looks like a joke, and inside with the music, it very well may be. Songs like "Married With Children" (haha) don't sound like, well, what you'd expect -- you should expect pissed-off death metal with hardcore and techy twists. Have some fun with this one. It actually rips.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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Last Week's Releases

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Carach Angren -- Franckensteina Strataemontanus | Season of Mist | Symphonic Black Metal | Netherlands

This powerful symphonic black metal act is back for the first time since 2017's Dance and Laugh Amongst the Rotten and, well, it sounds like Carach Angren. The collector's edition even comes with glow-in-the-dark tattoos, and that should say enough.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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Sorcerer -- Lamenting of the Innocent | Metal Blade Records | Epic Doom Metal | Sweden

Lamenting of the Innocent comprises quintessential Swedish doom from one of the biggest names in the genre -- if you're a Candlemass fan and somehow not acquainted with Sorcerer, here's a good opportunity to dive in (Johan Langqvist features on a track). The staples are there: vibrato-packed vocals as the defining element, huge riffs to back them, and a smattering of orchestral backing to add gravitas to the mix. Personally, a lot of the tracks here remind me of Tony Martin-era Black Sabbath -- which happens to be a very good thing.

-- Ted Nubel

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Akolyth -- Akolyth | Amor Fati Productions | Black Metal

From Jon Rosenthal's premiere of Akolyth:

Shades of the classics are found here, but through the looking glass they are malformed and reshaped into unspeakable horrors. Corpse paint becomes ritualistic garb and the music itself an invocation, summoning monstrous entities from beyond the pale. Akolyth's hypnotic, thrumming black metal turns traditionalism on its head and manifests itself as something completely different, a beautifully corrupted vision of the early 1990s evinced as the horror before you.

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Many Blessings -- Emanation Body | Translation Loss Records | Electronic + Ambient | United States (Colorado)

Strange, eerie, ambient electronic noise from Primitive Man's guitarist/vocalist. Don't expect the sonic onslaught of that band, though, but instead just the raw energy they put out albeit filtered through a smoother, more digestible lens. Primitive Man is raw noise, in many ways, and so is Many Blessings' Emanation Body. The former rattles your body, this one rattles your brain.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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Lesser Glow -- Nullity | Pelagic Records | Doom Metal + Atmospheric Sludge | United States (Massachusetts)

Carefully controlled chaos, but chaos nonetheless -- thick atmospheric sludge with impossibly heavy passages and a mix of grating screams and haunting clean vocals that add a delightful creepiness to the already-unsettling and unpredictable music.

-- Ted Nubel

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Xibalba -- Años en Infierno | Southern Lord | Metallic Hardcore | United States (California)

Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Headbang. Fuck.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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Blood Star -- The Fear EP | Shadow Kingdom Records | Heavy Metal | United States (Utah)

This debut EP is a quick affair, but it effectively generates an appetite for a longer release. On side one, "The Fear," a speed metal rager, displays the band's chops and maximum velocity; on the B-side, "Tortured Earth" offers vintage 1980s heavy metal, an expressive mid-tempo expedition. Visigoth guitarist Jamison Palmer provides the riffs, but there's not many similarities to his main project: this avoids the sinewy strain of traditional metal in favor of a sleeker, moodier feel.

-- Ted Nubel

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Mountain Witch -- Extinct Cults | This Charming Man Records | Doom Metal | Germany

From Ted Nubel's premiere of Extinct Cults:

Balmy and dynamic, Extinct Cults displays the exuberance and downright righteousness of that "early doom" sound like precious little else, all without dabbling in camp or shtick. There's more than a few ways to get your fill of soul-crushing doom these days, but when it comes to the joyously badass stuff, Mountain Witch may be your best bet.

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Heads. -- PUSH | This Charming Man Records | Post-Punk + Noise Rock | Germany

From Ted Nubel's premiere of PUSH:

The indignant spoken-word diatribes of guitarist/vocalist Ed Fraser, whose disaffection is ever so infectious, weave around the sinewy core of the band's sound: Chris Breuer's dominant, fascinating bass work and Nic Stockmann's immutable grooves, laid out with clockwork precision and signature intensity. Ed's guitar, oscillating between ambient pads and critical riff-deliverance, clatters and clangs according to its own timeline, serving as melody or dissonance where needed.

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Cosmovore -- Into the Necrosphere | Black Metal + Death Metal | Germany

The latest darkened, psychotic blackened death from Germany's Cosmovore. Into the Necrosphere achieves the same sort of black metal atmosphere of many of the underground greats, but an oftentimes much more chaotic one. This is space metal, but instead of a vast and empty cosmos, you have every star going supernova at once.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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Rannoch -- Reflections Upon Darkness | Eulogy Media | Progressive Death Metal + Post-Metal | United Kingdom

Here are some unusual tunes -- mixing everything from djent and deathcore to progressive and post-modern death metal, Rannoch have concocted a smorgasbord of delights for anyone who just can't make up their mind what sort of metal to listen to. Reflections Upon Darkness might be a lot, but it's a lot in a good way, and these songs jam as hard as they riff, which is always a great thing indeed.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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Upcoming Releases

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End -- Splinters From an Ever-Changing Face | Closed Casket Activities | Metallic Hardcore | United States (New Jersey)

From Andrew Rothmund's interview with End mastermind Will Putney:

End's music makes sense in light of the project's overtly straightforward name: this concoction of blackened hardcore and grind is totalizing, complete, and downright savage. It feels like the end; or, it's hard to listen to other music after listening to End. While most bands modulate the intensity knob to add dynamics to their music, this band is hell-bent on finding nuance beyond the cranked limit. It all started as a side project of Fit For an Autopsy guitarist and producer for many great albums Will Putney -- now, on the verge of their debut full-length, the band comprises talent from Counterparts, The Dillinger Escape Plan, Fit For An Autopsy, Misery Signals, and more.

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Descend into Despair -- Opium | Funere | Funeral Doom | Romania

Opium is some of the freshest doom I've heard in a damn while. This is funeral doom but drawn out over a million miles of space; these three tracks move so slowly but with such might and power that you almost forget you're listening to music. You're meditating by the point Descend into Despair's masterpiece is halfway through. Stay tuned for a full review.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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-(16)- -- Dream Squasher | Relapse Records | Hardcore + Sludge | United States (California)

Peak sludge energy: white-hot aggression compressed into raging bangers that pulse with the incensed blood of caustic hearts. If you're looking for an outlet for your rage today, I'd suggest this and/or punching drywall.

-- Ted Nubel

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Death Courier -- Necrotic Verses | Transcending Obscurity Records | Death Metal | Greece

From Andrew Rothmund's premiere of "Pillars of Murk":

You might be thinking: "oh, old-school death metal by veteran players, it'll be good but more of the same," and you wouldn't be entirely wrong. You'd just be missing a bigger point: Necrotic Verses is absolutely to-date, and not just because death metal is in vogue, but because the sharp cut of Death Courier's style slices through any OSDM overgrowth which may have existed.

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Blight -- Temple of Wounds | Svart Records | Black Metal | Canada

I found the mid-paced blackened slime of Temple of Wounds to be most appealing, especially the razor-slice of the vocal performance that's both over-the-top and well-composed.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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Haken -- Virus | InsideOut Music | Progressive Metal | United Kingdom

Haken's prog has always had a riffy, straightforward edge which aided in the digestion of their music for anyone who, well, doesn't listen to a ton of prog. Their latest release Virus is a ton of fun as the band continues their decade-plus jaunt.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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Gruesome + Exhumed-- Twisted Horror | Relapse | Death Metal | United States (Florida + California)

On Twisted Horror, two powerhouse death metal bands come together to slam five rip-roaring songs right down your throat. I'll take it. And the cover art, by the way, says all you need to know.

-- Andrew Rothmund

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