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Archive for May, 2011

Morbid Angel, Illud Divinum Insanus (2011)

Inexplicable horrors lurk within, and not in a good way

Morbid Angel’s first album in eight years, and first with vocalist David Vincent in fifteen years, is bound to be the year’s most over-analyzed album.  Once all the dust has settled, I’m fairly confident the shitstorm over the atrociously-named Illud Divinum Insanus will eclipse even the furor over Liturgy’s Aesthetica.  I square off with my brother in metal Jim Brandon over at MetalReview to level a dual onslaught at this bafflingly bad album.  Even if you had written off Morbid Angel after Heretic, or if you left the fold following Vincent’s original departure after 1995′s Domination, there’s almost nothing to prepare you for this singularly misguided attempt at musical diversity.  Head on over to MetalReview to check it out, and please join in the shit-flinging.  Also, be sure to be on watch for the first inevitable, “Oh, man, this universally reviled album is actually totally fucking awesome” review.  Hard to say from whence it will come, but friends, trust me, it will come.  Just not from me.

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Ulver, Wars Of The Roses (2011)

Brilliant, as always

My review of the new album from Norwegian dark rock sorcerers is up now at MetalReview.  A preview: Wars Of The Roses is a brilliantly crafted and meticulously detailed album, full of surprisingly catchy hooks and wonderfully non-standard instrumentation and programming.  The first six songs are in some ways a warmup for the emotionally exhausting and sonically exhilarating closer, “Stone Angels,” which is a spoken recitation of a poem by the same name by the American poet Keith Waldrop.  There are plenty of albums that will rock you harder this year than Wars Of The Roses, but perhaps none that will cradle you as gently.  Wars Of The Roses is out now on Jester Records/Kscope Records.

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Septicflesh, The Great Mass (2011)

Gorgeous dark classicism

My review of the new album from Greek symphonic death metal sophisticates Septicflesh is up now over at MetalReview.  I have tried to justify my somewhat ambiguous critical stance toward the album with a whole lot of words.  Early responders to the review are having none of it, so check it out and make up your own damn mind.  The Great Mass is out now on Season Of Mist.

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Endstille, Infektion 1813 (2011)

1813, 1913, whatever

German black metal blasters Endstille are back with their seventh album in a shade under a decade.  Infektion 1813 is out shortly on Season Of Mist, and my review of said infection is up now over at MetalReview.  A spurious linguistic joke is made regarding Hitler and the musical Grease.  Apologies are owed all around.

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Across Tundras, Sage (2011)

A perfectly dusty sage

My review of the latest album from Western doom/Americana rockers Across Tundras is up now at MetalReview.  It is quite excellent, and speaks, most likely, to the latent ’49-er within us all.  Sage is out now on Neurot Recordings.

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The Axis Of Perdition, Tenements (Of The Anointed Flesh) (2011)

A Blacker Art

My review of the new album by British black/industrial miscreants The Axis Of Perdition is up now at MetalReview Tenements mercifully dispenses with the dark ambient radioplay approach of 2009′s Urfe in favor of the corrosive nihilism at which this band so excels.  Tenements is out now on Code666; lovers of tidiness and quietude, shield your delicate selves.

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Acephalix, Interminable Night (2011)

Crusty occultation

My review of Acephalix’s Interminable Night, which will be released later this month by Southern Lord, is up now at MetalReview.  The album kicks ten kinds of ass.  That is all.

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