Upcoming Metal Releases 4/8/2018-4/14/2018
Here are the new metal releases for the weeks of April 8, 2017 – April 14, 2018. Release dates are formatted according to proposed North American scheduling, if available. Expect to see the bulk of these records on shelves or distros on the coming Fridays unless otherwise noted or if labels and artists get impatient. Blurbs and designations are based on whether or not I have a lot to say about it.
See something we missed? Goofs? Let us know in the comments. Plus, as always, feel free to post your own shopping lists. Happy digging.
As a little bit of a challenge, include your own opinion about anything you want to add. Make me want to listen to it!
Please note: this is a review column and is not speculative. Any announced albums without preview material will not be covered. Additionally, any surprise releases which are uploaded or released after this column is published will be excluded.
Omit - Medusa Truth, Part 2 | Secret Quarters | Atmospheric Funeral Doom Metal | Norway
Finally, the sequel to Medusa Truth's first chapter, which was released four years ago. Following in the classic Norwegian funeral doom style, Omit is romantic in excessum, preferring melodic tragedy over slow, monolithic disgust. These three long songs are beautiful and orchestrated on a massive level, but this is not the kind of music for just casual listening. Both parts of Medusa Truth unfold like a good novel, worthy of your full attention.
Autokrator - Hammer of the Heretics | Krucyator Productions | Black/Death Metal | France
From Ivan's premiere of "Inquisitio-Denunciatio-Exceptio"
Cascading toms intermingle with cymbals that sound more like factory machinery than musical instruments. The stifling downbeat-driven guitar chugs evoke the monotonous mass footfalls in unison of an army on parade. The militaristic nature of the guitars is given a surprising twist halfway through, when Autokrator urge the song into a march-inspired bridge. Kevin Paradis’ nimble snare drumming matches the percussive chugs, and after a few iterations, the march is reimagined as a full-on breakdown. Throughout the song, vocalist David Bailey is a gruesome beast, his sopping wet growls burbling up like noxious pitch deposits to sour a once-pristine landscape.
Wallachia - Monumental Heresy | Debemur Morti Productions | Symphonic Black Metal | Norway
From my premiere of "So We Walk Alone":
Though undoubtedly blackened and furious, this long-standing Norwegian (featuring members from across Europe) band's melodic, pagan swagger looks to a timeline before black metal for inspiration. In short, it is black metal, but it feels much more epic and triumphant, not unlike a classic heavy or power metal band. There is this energy, be it in the bouncing rhythms or melodic bombast, which goes beyond Wallachia's previous efforts and more adequately represents original member Lars Stavdal's pagan ideals and thematics. As such, the pagan or anti-christian themes become a little more obscured as the band begins to move further into grandiloquence (as is the case with each release featuring multi-instrumentalist Stefan Traunmüller's orchestral hand), but maybe the monumental aspect isn't meant to be a signifier of Wallachia's heresy. In this case, though maybe some might follow the "only the old material is better" route, Monumental Heresy physically towers over Wallachia's back catalog -- the band's strongest and most consistently powerful release.
Møl - Jord | Holy Roar Records | Black Metal/Post-Hardcore/Shoegaze | Denmark
From Ivan's premiere of "Bruma:
The group’s purgative blackgaze is aggressive while uplifting -- as cathartic as it is scorching to the soul. With two EPs under their belt, Møl are poised to release their debut full-length Jord. Slip into their soothing embrace with the new music video for the album’s second track “Bruma” premiering exclusively below:
Skeletal Remains - Devouring Mortality | Dark Descent Records/Century Media Records | Death Metal | United States
"New old school death metal" could learn a thing or two from Skeletal Remains. Devouring Remains actually possesses the vitality and variety (gasp) which defined the era of death metal discovering itself. Death metal wasn't about being a buzzsaw or wearing animal skins in a cave emblazoned with upside down crosses -- Devouring Mortality hearkens back to when death metal was an actual part of metal's lineage. There are so many riffs. So many riffs.
FOR THE ADVENTUROUS
Leila Abdul-Rauf - Diminution | Cloister Recordings US/Black Horizons/Malignant Records | Ambient | United States
Death metal guitarist extraordinaire Leila Abdul-Rauf continues to explore the softer, more meditative side of music in her eponymous project's third album. Much like former collaborator Tor Lundvall, who painted the cover for debut Cold and Cloud, Abdul-Rauf balances delicate, abstract pop with ambient delirium.
Chaos Echoes with Mats Gustaffson - Sustain| Utech Records | Drone/Doom/Avant-Jazz | France/Austria
From my premiere of Sustain:
In an unexpected pairing, legendary avant-jazz saxophonist Mats Gustafsson (The Thing, many collaborations) lends his pointillist brasswind sounds to Chaos Echoes in the band’s first collaborative outing, Sustain. If Mouvement presented the aforementioned death metal with a jazz backbone, the Sustain collaboration is avant-garde/free jazz with the weight and spirit of death metal at its heaviest. A bizarre melange of chiming tension and clattering discord, the album’s two halves complete Chaos Echoes’s prismatic approach, exposing new elements of their creativity and musical mastery. With Gustafsson’s practiced hand and grasp of extra-instrumental sounds at the helm, Sustain‘s long tones balance nightmarish sounds within a dreamlike expanse.
RLYR - Actual Existence | Flenser Records | Post-Rock | United States
RLYR could be considered a "supergroup" if you looked into their individual parts, but this psychedelic cerberus looks to distance themselves from their respective pedigrees. Though expectedly introspective and experimental, there is a joy which defines Actual Existence's droning, experimental rock psychedelia.
FROM THE GRAVE
Krolok - when the Moon Sang Our Songs | Inferna Profundus Records | Black Metal | Slovakia
Atmospheric, ferocious Slovakian black metal madness from the celebrated Malokarpatan drummer.
Our Place of Worship is Silence - With Inexorable Suffering | Translation Loss Records | Death/Black Metal | United States
Don't get me wrong, I liked the first Our Place of Worship is Silence album, I just hoped they would write new riffs for this new album. With Inexorable Suffering is heavy, sure, but listening to the full album in one sitting reveals the band to be a one-trick pony -- dissonance with punctuated chugging riffs. Something was ultimately lost with the consistent "changing of the guard" in their lineup, ultimately leaving the duo of Tim and Eric (no, really).
Carpathian Forest - Likeim | Indie Recordings | Black Metal | Norway
I normally don't cover singles on here, but the first new, standalone Carpathian Forest release in years is worthy of attention. The masters of leather-clad black metal sleaze are back, plus, they cover Turbonegro.