This week, for some reason, I saw numerous posts, not of music, but about music. You know, those weak, tired, lazy posts that are “music was better in my day” sort of thing, or “there’s no good music any more.” Posts from people who think they’re saying something profound but are just being fucking lazy or refuse to acknowledge anything that doesn’t come within the parameters of their tiny radar. It’s weeks like this that make me wonder how anybody can have that idea.

This week provided not one, not two, but fucking THREE albums that are fucking beyond amazing. Those being the new Witherscape, Old Graves, and Descendents albums. One of these albums alone would make this entire year of music tremble but we get three in one fucking week. One’s not even metal so don’t give me that, “oh it’s just noise” excuse. The other releases this week were no slouches either. Toughen up and try something fucking new. If not, I’m sure there’s a Led Zeppelin song that you haven’t heard 80 billion times.

NEW STUFF: (For fuck’s sake, click the titles)

Seedna – Forlorn
Disparaging atmospheric black metal with a heavy dose of dark, dismal doom, layered with a bunch of post-ness. Good headphone, contemplative black metal with some long, introspective songs and beautiful passages.

Ghoul – Dungeon Bastards
Ghoul is always a good time. Theatrical, humorous, thrash, gore infused metal. This time around the band loses a lot of the surf rock elements instead focusing on more of an old school death metal/thrash sound which makes for probably the heaviest Ghoul album to date. The content is still the same. There’s a loose concept to this album involving their hometown of Creepsylvania’s election but it’s not overpowering. Good fun, good band, and a hell of a live act.

Pestilentia – Where the Light Dies
Fairly straightforward, nasty black metal from Belarus of all places. Reminds me a bit of Inquisition, musically, not vocally. Fairly solid.

Witherscape – The Northern Sanctuary
I can’t even begin to describe how fucking extraordinary this album is. The insanely talented Dan Swano may have crafted a masterpiece of progressive death metal here but only using those two labels is a discredit and disservice to the albums multi layered and styled production. This is year end good. This is any year end good.

Descendents – Hypercaffium Spazzinate
When there’s new Descendents in the world all is right. My affection for this band knows no bounds and you might say that makes my opinion biased but I don’t care. The Descendents are amazing in all they do and this one is them firing on all cylinders. I burned through it twice before writing this and it’s easily my second favorite release of theirs. Nothing can top Everything Sucks but god damn if they aren’t trying their best.

Hammers of Misfortune – Dead Revolution
I’m a fan of John Cobbett and his various projects, Hammers of Misfortune probably being my favorite of them. Yes, I think Hammers progressive take on metal is overly pretentious but dude and his sort of supergroup band (current members are also in Death Angel, Castle, Vastum, and Cardinal Wyrm) can write some killer tunes. This one is a little less unintentionally silly than the last one with a return of more metal elements and you know what, I fucking dig it.

Dust Moth – Scale
A bit different for me but I liked their EP so I was curious about their first full-length. This is like an atmospheric/shoe gazey/sludge sort of thing, which is me trying to grasp the eclectic nature of this album. It’s not metal, in fact it’s not heavy really, it’s more dreamy, airy and flowing with beautiful echoing, vocals provided by Irene Barber. There’s great moments of beauty on this one.

Pestifere – Hope Misery Death
I read a review of this album that describes it as “ear candy” and I can’t put it in a better way. Pestifere are a melodic/black/death band from Minnesota and their melodic guitars are just that. Ear Candy. Dissection worship abounds but you can hear a band trying to find their own identity amongst all the influences they’ve crammed on to this one. Hopefully they’ll get there but until then, this is fucking infectious.

Old Graves – Long Shadows
If you’ve heard the previous two EPs (and split with Paths) you fucking new that when Old Graves laid down a full-length it was going to be fucking incredible, and guess what? It is. It’s going to easily be the atmospheric black metal album of the year for me. It’s beauty is beyond comprehension. This was worth the fucking wait and more.

OTHER JAMS:

Castle – Welcome to the Graveyard
Grabnebelfürsten – Dynastie oder wie man Herrschaft definiert
Carcass – Heartwork
Vex – Sky Exile
Carcass – Symphonies of Sickness
Ghoul – Splatterthrash
Ghoul – We Came for the Dead & Maniaxe
King Diamond – Fatal Portrait
Unlord – Lord Beneath
Q5 – Steel the Light

Until next time, listen to something new…

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