I warned you March was going to be a heavy month for new metal releases and this week was determined to prove me right. The month has barely even begun and I’m already overwhelmed with new music. Some of my main picks for the month haven’t even dropped yet. Satan All Mighty, I love the metal. It’s always so generous.

NEW STUFF: (Links in titles)

Sarke – Bogefod
Nocturno Culto! I’ll most likely check out anything the Darkthrone members. Sarke is a more down and dirty, slightly thrash take on black metal with Nocturno’s classic vocals carrying the album. Sarke is pretty traditional and their albums don’t vary in style very much but the music is awesome and Nocturno is awesome, as always so it’s a fucking rad listen.

Goatpsalm – Downstream
Droning, ambient heavy, atmospheric funeral doom style metal. Good for getting lost in a trance like state.

Nokturnal Mortum / Graveland – The Spirit Never Dies
New Nokturnal Mortum? Yes please. I don’t even care that it’s only two songs on a split album. Nokturnal kills their side with their brand of super melodic, infectious, folk, black metal. It’s along the lines of their previous album (which is fucking phenomenal) with maybe a bit more folk infused. I’m not a Graveland fan and I’ve never really listened to much of their stuff but the two songs on here are servicible. If Nokturnal Mortum is an example of how to do folk infused black metal, Graveland probably push it too far. The Nokturnal Mortum sides makes this split and it’s fucking killer.

Rotten Sound – Abuse to Suffer
Finnish grindcore stalwarts Rotten sound are back with 28 minutes of punishing grindcore. These guys don’t fuck around. They just assault you with no reprieve. I’m not a huge grindcore fan but this is one of the bands from the genre I can really get into. Fucking awesome.

Brian Fallon – Painkillers
I’m a big fan of The Gaslight Anthem and think Brian Fallon writes some killer rock n’ roll songs so I was immediately interested in his new solo album. I think he’s mastered that punk infused, americana style that Gaslight is known for and I do prefer the Bruce Springsteen anthem-esque, role down the winders and drive songs, but this one has a more folk tinged, classic rock vibe going on that is pretty awesome. Not to say that working class vibe isn’t here, it’s just subdued more. His lyrics, of course, carry the album but the music compliments the story driven lyrics amazingly. Fallon is a great songwriter and this solo album is a perfect example of that.

Wormed – Krighsu
Get ready for intensity. Wormed’s crushingly brutal and insanely technical death metal is on full display for barely 30 minutes and every second of that is jam backed with sheer, bludgeoning ferocity. A bit of a clusterfuck at times but overall it’s a solid listen. With this amount of sound going on, 30 minutes is the perfect amount of time to be assaulted, collect yourself and go back for more.

Draugnim – Vulturine
Fucking epic, pagan filled black metal from Finland. This is my first encounter with the band, though I know the vocalists other band, Crimfall, and this a pretty vast departure from the symphonic power metal of that band. Soaring riffs, epic structures, and beautiful arrangements, this one is fucking killer.

Ereb Altor – Blot-Ilt-Taut
Ereb Altor, in my band, has always kind of been a Bathory cover band so it makes perfect sense they would release a Bathory cover album. There are a ton of Bathory sounding bands but Ereb Altor has always done it so well and engaging. When covering actual Bathory songs they fucking nail it. They go for the more epic Bathory songs and manage to reach that grand scope. Watain recently released a live Bathory cover set and they mixed up the epic songs with the more fierce songs and also nailed it as well but their sound is less a tribute to Bathory as borrowing elements from the sound. Ereb Altor sound like Bathory reincarnated, and it’s awesome.

Sulphur – Omens of Doom
Another band I’m hearing for the first time. Sulphur is made up of Norwegian players who’ve done time in some other Norwegian black metal standards, so suffice to say, they’re a black metal band but they add some unique phrasings and effects that make this one stand out. There’s weird, adventurous guitar breakdowns that throw you off your expectations. An interesting album to be sure.

Universe217 – Change
This Greek band is making a hodgepodge of doom music. It’s slow dirge, some sludge/stoner stuff in there, some European styled atmospherics and electronics like Anathema do so well, all covered with lead singer Tanya’s incredible smooth and powerful vocals. Usually with singers this powerful the voice takes over the band but she’s never overused and the instrumentation is given enough of the spotlight to blend everything together seamlessly. Not typically my kind of metal, but it’s a intriguing and moody listen that I found captivating.

Other Jams:

Turbonegro – Apocalypse Dudes
Sacrilegium – Anima Lucifera
A Tribute to Slayer – Slatanic Slaughter Vol 1
Sadus – Swallowed in Black
Katatonia – Dead End Kings
Nasheim – Solens Vemod
Ripper – Experiment of Existence
Wodensthrone – Curse
The Gaslight Anthem – Get Hurt
Warlock – Triumph And Agony