Black Metal

Artist: 
Zeal and Ardor
Label: 
MVKA Records

Zeal and Ardor has been described as slave folk metal, folk mixed with black metal, and more. I think the slave narrative mixed with black metal with rpm influences is more accurate. However you want to describe this album, it’s beautiful. A lot of metal albums aren’t beautiful, they’re brutal, rough, adrenaline kicking and more. But this is chilling and empowering. This metal blends so well with the folk that you almost forget that its two different genres. The rpm is not distracting or overpowering, it adds to the creepy yet intriguing beauty of this album.

Sounds Like: 
slave narratives mixed with black metal and folk
Name: 
Alexis Walker
Date Reviewed: 
02/24/2017
Artist: 
Ex Deo
Label: 
Napalm Records

Of the album's I've looked at this semester, this is by far one of the heaviest. My initial attraction was for the appeal to Roman antiquity, and I was gratified when I heard the opening chords of heavy, bloodthirsty, and war-driving music. The lyrical content is based around the concept of Roman warriors during the times of antiquity, and the heavy, incessant riffs give one the feeling of being on the battlefield.

Sounds Like: 
Kataklysm
Sounds Like: 
Alestorm
Name: 
Kenny Bartz
Date Reviewed: 
02/22/2017
Artist: 
Mayhem
Label: 
Self-released

Mayhem has released a live version of De Mysteriis  Dom Sathanas and it’s fantastic. There really isn’t much to be said about Mayhem that hasn’t already been said. They’re the black metal band. For a live album it doesn’t sound distant, far away and doesn’t have a lot of crowd interference. When there are bits of crowd sound bites, it only adds to the beauty of the album. With powerful and trembling double bass and overwhelmingly loud guitars, this album rocks you to your core.

Sounds Like: 
Immortal
Sounds Like: 
Emperor
Name: 
Alexis Walker
Date Reviewed: 
02/08/2017
Artist: 
ONI
Label: 
Blacklight Media/ Metal Blade Records

This album was thrust upon me by my good friend Andrew and honestly, I'm happy to have come across it. Oni's new debut album "Ironshore" is a technical metal masterpiece, mixing both the sounds of black, heavy metal, with the blustering sounds of upbeat pop and technical sound. This album features only nine songs, but each song is a different journey, and a different sound.

Sounds Like: 
The Human Abstract
Sounds Like: 
Protest the Hero
Name: 
Kenny Bartz
Date Reviewed: 
11/30/2016
Artist: 
Arkona
Label: 
Sound Age Productions

Vozrozhdenie was Arkona's debut album, and was recently re-released by Sound Age Productions. Not wholly a bad decision, because for a debut album, Vozrozhdenie does well in encapsulating Arkona's sound. The album begins with more windy and synthetic sounds, clean vocals accompanying those, but progresses into their heavier and more well-known metal sound. Masha Scream of course presents beautiful female vocals as well as her surprising ability to growl like a demon.

Sounds Like: 
Korpiklaani
Sounds Like: 
Fleshgod Apocalypse
Name: 
Kenny
Date Reviewed: 
11/09/2016
Artist: 
Polyptych
Label: 
Polyptych

Defying the Metastatsis by Polyptych is definitely an intense metal album with very heavy instrumentals and vocals. I really enjoyed the lyrics because they fit perfectly with the title of the album by being very deep and emotional as well as describing a lot of their thoughts on the state of the world. But overall I wasn't too interested in the actual music. The vocals and instrumentals often sound droning and very similar. With only unclean vocals, it was difficult for me tell one song apart from another.

Sounds Like: 
Black Metal
Sounds Like: 
Death Metal
Name: 
Danielle Perry
Date Reviewed: 
11/06/2016
Artist: 
Anaal Nathrakh
Label: 
Metal Blade Records

British Extreme Metal group Anaal Nathrakh have returned with a brutal and only occasionally tuneful record that seeks to return metal to it's essence of sheer brutality. The style of the tracks vary in style with straight bone-crushing grindcore and jackhammer industrial rhythms mixed with screeching black-metal style vocals and tremelo picked guitars . One of the things that I really appreciate about this record is how it hones in on brutality and discomfort instead of flashy guitar solos and self-aggrandizement.

Sounds Like: 
Napalm Death
Sounds Like: 
Dimir Borgir
Name: 
Paul Lackey
Date Reviewed: 
10/18/2016

Sky

Artist: 
Taiga
Label: 
Symbol Of Domination Prod.

The sounds throughout the album are generic and heavily repetitive. It progresses with little variation, almost making me forget what band I was listening to. Although if you’re looking for a decent sound that achieves what it sets out for while not really pushing for anything new, this could be a nice stop for you.

Sounds Like: 
Psychonaut 4
Name: 
Nathan Gosnell
Date Reviewed: 
10/10/2016
Artist: 
Vorgrum
Label: 
Vorgrum

I've only recently gotten into the more heavier folk metal bands that my good man Andrew has introduced me to, but Vorgrum is one of the heaviest I've heard so far. This album was Vorgrum's final project, as the band underwent many changes to thir personnel, but I'm glad to see this album as a result. It's heavy, it's hard, and it's got it's own unique folk sound to it. The band did very well intermixing the elements of folk and black metal to create something that is at once aggressive and great to listen to.

Sounds Like: 
Northland
Sounds Like: 
Skyforger
Name: 
Kenny Bartz
Date Reviewed: 
09/21/2016
Artist: 
Ghost Bath
Label: 
Nuclear Blast

This nine minute song is an extremely amazing journey.

Sounds Like: 
Leviathan
Sounds Like: 
Deafhaven
Sounds Like: 
Gris
Name: 
Breeana Gonzalez
Date Reviewed: 
03/09/2016
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