Sunday, 30 December 2012

Memories Yet To Come 2012

Another year is passing by and hopefully we are still here, 
so these are my suggestions for some of this year's releases that kept my ears busy:

1. A Forest Of Stars - A Shadowplay For Yesterdays (Full-length 2012)
2. Absum - Odz Manouk (Split 7'' EP 2012)
3. Acrimonious - Sunyata (Full-length 2012)
4. Aluk Todolo - Occult Rock (Full-length 2012)
5. Arcana - As Bright As A Thousand Suns (Full-length 2012)
6. Bilskirnir - Der Wolkenwanderer (7'' EP 2012)
7. Borgne - Royaume des Ombres (Full-length 2012)
8. Burial Hordes - Descent (7'' EP 2012)
9. Dala Sun - Gegenschein (Full-length 2012)
10. Dead Can Dance - Anastasis (Full-length 2012)
11. Die Antwoord - Ten$ion (Full-length 2012)
12. Eïs - Wetterkreuz (Full-length 2012)
13. Elysian Blaze - Blood Geometry (Full-length 2012)
14. ForestMuse - The Land of Tall Trees (Full-length 2012)
15. Formloff - Spyhorelandet (Full-length 2012)
16. God Seed - I Begin (Full-length 2012)
17. Hail Spirit Noir - Pneuma (Full-length 2012)
18. Hexvessel - No Holier Temple (Full-length 2012)
19. Igorrr - Hallelujah (Full-length 2012)
20. Kawir - ΙΣΟΘΕΟΣ (Full-length 2012)
21. Mgła - With Hearts Toward None (Full-length 2012) 
22. Netra - Sørbyen (Full-length 2012)
23. NettleCarrier - NettleCarrier (Full-length 2012)
24. Open Grave - Fear (Full-length 2012)
25. Skygge - Knokkelkraft (Full-length 2012)
26. Svartidauði - Flesh Cathedral (Full-length 2012)
27. Tatir - Cave of Ephyras... To the Infernal Fields (Compilation 2012)
28. The Ascendant - The Spiritual Death (7'' EP 2012)
29. Vattnet Viskar - Vattnet Viskar (10'' EP 2012)
30. Vemod - Venter på stormene (Full-length 2012)

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

Grimm – Nordisk Vinter (Demo 1993)

Country: Norway

1. Intro: Darkest Depths 03:27
2. The Embrace Of The Cold 03:50
3. Born In The Hands Of Doom 04:49

Pre-Carpathian Forest demo featuring the two main founders of the band Nattefrost and J. Nordavind.
Some of the other Grimm members also participated in "Journey Through the Cold Moors of Svarttjern"
demo release as guests (Grimm and Damnatus).
Well this is a very good demo pointing the direction that the future relases of Carpathian Forest would follow.
With very few words what you get from this cult release is one intro, a black'n'roll track (in Carpathian Forest style)
and a more slow-atmospheric-black metal composition.
Re-released as a bootleg 7" EP in 2001 by Vinyl Maniac Records (sublabel of No Colours Records).


Thursday, 20 December 2012

Skrol – Martyria (10'' EP 1998)

Country: Czech Republic

1. Soaking / Movie Martyr 10:22
2, Insomnia 08:00
3. Dei Irae 07:18

Skrol is a Czech avant-garde martial industrial band from Prague, formed in autumn 1995.
Bands activity started to evolve in 1996, consisting of composer, instrumentalist and sound alchemist Vladimir Hirsch

singer Martina Sanollova and lyricist and producer Tom Saivon.
The creative principle of the band is based on neo-classical concepts with a congregation of martial industrial, 
with an attempt to attain an organic amalgam of the two on rudiments of rock music patterns.
Martyria was released as a 10-inch LP on the LOKI Foundation/Power & Steel label 

in August 1998 as a limited edition of 300 copies. 
These tracks were also included in their later full-length album Insomnia Dei, released in 2001.


Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Bethel – Northern Supremacy (Demo 1997)

Country: Finland

1. Ave Inferno... 01:53
2. Wandering in the Lands of Dark and Frost 07:19
3. Triumph for the lost Azure 07:18

First and only release from Finland's Bethel playing melodic-atmospheric black metal
with a lot of variety in their compositions.
Keyboard parts,clean vocals,fast black metal,mid-tempo-acoustic parts
all these under a very good productions for a Demo release.


Friday, 30 November 2012

Pan.Thy.Monium ‎– Khaooohs (1993)

Country: Sweden

1. I Månens Sken Dog En Skugga 01:50
2. Under Ytan 03:56
3. Jag & Vem 05:54
4. Lava 07:37
5. Lömska Försåt 06:55
6. I Vindens Våld 00:50
7. Klieveage 02:48
8. Ekkhoeece III 00:44
9. Khaoohs I 04:47
10. Utsikt 08:12
11. Khaoohs II 00:40

Pan.Thy.Monium was a Swedish progressive/avant-garde/death metal band created in 1990 
and led by Dan Swanö with several members from another project of his, Edge of Sanity
Swanö constructed as a concept of the albums the fight between the virtual god 
Raagoonshinnaah (god of darkness, rain and emptiness) and his opponent Amaraah (god of light).
The first demo …Dawn was never released to the public. There are only a few copies in the possession of Dan and friends. Dawn of Dreams was released 1992 and neither had any track titles nor a list of band members. 
At this time nobody knew who Pan.Thy.Monium was. The first trace to Dan Swanö was a greeting 
in the booklet of the album The Spectral Sorrows from Edge of Sanity from Benny to Pan.Thy.Monium
After that the identity of Pan.Thy.Monium was revealed. In 1993 Khaooohs was released.
 After its release the band fell silent. Khaooohs & Kon-Fus-Ion was recorded 1996 in which 
Amaraah wins over Raagoonshinnaah in a last fight. This marked the end of the band.
Pan.Thy.Monium never played live, even if there is a track on Khaooos which sounds like that. 
Also it is said that none of the songs has lyrics, and that the vocals were used mostly as an instrument. 
The band members were: Derelict (Robert Karlsson), Aag (Dag Swanö), Mourning (Robban Ivarsson), 
Day Disyraah (Dan Swanö) and Winter (Benny Larsson).


Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Proscriptor ‎– The Venus Bellona (1995)

Country: United States

Act 1. An Initium For You 00:58
Act 2. I Am The One 02:49
Act 3. Our Blood And Veins From The McGovern Regiment 02:28
Act 4. Hi Ri Ri Tha E Tighinn 02:06
Act 5. Lady Day Eve 04:34
Act 6. Madeleine 05:06
Act 7. Kiss Of Shame 01:38
Act 8. Tractatus 01:24
Act 9. My Legacy: A Crysknife 00:51
Act 10. Serpentine Of Six-Fold Stars 05:52
Act 11. The Barren Stones Of Lughnasadh 02:40
Act 12. Far Away From Balkan Hills 01:27
Act 13. De La Fletus Des Athroll (After The Massacre Of Glencoe) Part II 02:34
Act 14. Chomere! 01:02
Act 15. Commanding The Dragon Of Keppoch 02:03
Act 16. Ground's Afire 00:51
Act 17. Defeat 01:24
Act 18. We Raise Our Silver Goblets In Triumph 01:48
Act 19. We Procured The Non-Existence Of Xalteun 01:43
Act 20. Finem Habere: Flames For You / I Ran (So Far Away) 06:55

Proscriptor is more known as the drummer/mainman of Absu
His project as Proscriptor is more than a little different to what Absu explore musically. 
"The Venus Bellona" is a wonderfully strange & unique album based around the superstitions, folklore & mythology 
of Proscriptor's ancestral bloodline which hails from Glencoe, Scotland.
Combined with occult themes, & Proscriptor's mystical being, this collection of songs is nothing short of interesting.
At times hypnotic, as evidenced in "I Am The One" with its verbal assault, & chimes, 

while "Our Blood & Veins From the McGovern Regiment" is a more militaristic affair, with marching snare drums, 
bag pipes, & the sinister Proscriptor injecting verbal hallucinations. 
The diversity of  "The Venus Bellona" is one of its impressive features, & the incorporation 
of an extensive range of instruments (synths, percussion, acoustic guitar, grand piano, organs, mellotron & fife) 
is both appealing as well as contributing to this fact.
The 20 Acts presented here range in sound from ambient/darkwave to experimental/acoustic/folk.
For a bit of "new wave" nostalgia, a twisted version of "I Ran (So Far Away)" (originally by A Flock of Seagulls

is covered & given a bracing, & thoroughly entertaining, extreme metal treatment!
Released on golden CD as a multi fold-out digipack by Cruel Moon International (sub-label of Cold Meat Industry

& also as a red vinyl on a limited edition of 726 copies.


Thursday, 1 November 2012

Fleurety ‎– Min Tid Skal Komme (1995)

Country: Norway

1. Fragmenter Av En Fortid 09:37
2. En Skikkelse I Horisonten 11:33
3. Hvileløs? 05:24
4. Englers Piler Har Ingen Brodd 12:33
5. Fragmenter Av En Fremtid 05:38

Popular music styles like "post-black metal" or "shoegaze-black metal" owes very much to mid 90's Norway's scene.
Back then there were terms like "avantgarde-black metal" or "progressive-black metal
for releases like Ulver's "Bergtatt", In The Woods "HEart Of The Ages", Ved Buens Ende "Written In Waters"
 and of course Fleurety's debut album "Min Tid Skal Komme".
The band was formed in 1991 by Svein Egil Hatlevik and Alexander Nordgaren 

and released their first demo Black Snow in 1993. After that came the 7" EP A Darker Shade of Evil in 1994. 
Both of these were in a fairly traditional Norwegian black metal style, with very high-pitched screaming vocals, 
giving the band a characteristic sound.
In 1995, the band released the album Min Tid Skal Komme, as a cooperation between Aesthetic Death Records 

and Misanthropy Records. This recording, that was ahead of its time on many levels, featured a rock/progressive/psychedelic/jazz black metal style with atonal harmonics, folk music elements and enchanting female vocals 
by Norwegian pop singer Marian Aas Hansen.
In 2000, Fleurety released the album Department of Apocalyptic Affairs

This album showed an even more eclectic musical style, spanning metal, progressive/jazz and electronica, 
and featured an array of guest musicians from the Norwegian avantgarde and black metal scene.


Saturday, 27 October 2012

Jacula ‎– In Cauda Semper Stat Venenum (1969)

Country: Italy

1. Ritus 04:06
2. Magister Dixit 10:30
3. Triumphatus Sad. 03:34
4. Vereficium 02:21
5. Initiatio 06:48
6. In Cauda Semper 10:05

Jacula is an Italian progressive rock band founded in 1968 in Milan as an experiment by Antonio Bartoccetti (Antonius Rex) , Doris Norton (also known as Fiamma Dello Spirito), organist Charles Tiring and medium Franz Porthenzy.
Jacula's music was considered innovative for the time in progressive circles but considered dark and strange by most fans and analysts of the genre, especially in an era that included the development of groups such as Pink Floyd

Genesis and Gentle Giant, bands which were the basis of the new progressive rock scene.
Because the band was experimental, and had been labeled by founder Antonio Bartoccetti 

as a youth mistake, Jacula's discography is relatively small.
The group completed two albums: In Cauda Semper Stat Venenum which has a superposition of an organ, 

piano and other sound effects, and Tardo Pede In Magiam Versus which features Doris Norton's vocals, 
with a sound influenced by bands of the Italian underground scene such as Le Orme.
In Cauda Semper Stat Venenum was supposedly recorded in 1969 in London and released in extremely limited numbers (some of them were sent to different religious sects and occult communities!), 

however no original copies have surfaced in collectors circles.This record was released on cd as late as 2001. 
The atmosphere is sinister and haunting based on church organ parts and electric guitar 
with recited vocals, female humming and male chants in Italian and Latin.
After nearly four decades, Jacula released their third studio album Pre Viam in May, 2011.


Sunday, 21 October 2012

Fire + Ice ‎– Gilded By The Sun (1992)

Country: England

1. The Horseman's Word 00:43
2. Long Lankin 04:51
3. Corpus Christi 03:57
4. Ljósálfar 05:26
5. Fire Above 03:03
6. Sir John Barleycorn 04:01
7. Blood On The Snow 05:15
8. Basilisk Abode 04:54
9. Gilded By The Sun 06:25
10. Long Lankin Threshing 04:18

Ian Read founded Fire + Ice in 1991. Gilded By The Sun is his debut CD, originally issued on Douglas P.'s NER label.
Read was already familiar to many for his work on Current 93's "Swastikas For Noddy" and Death In June's "Brown Book", later forming Sol Invictus with Tony Wakeford
The album is a mixing of some of Ian's songs with a selection of traditional folk songs. 
Most of them are acoustic based, with some exceptions. The music reflects Read's keen interests in magic lore, runes, tradition, renaissance medievalism, Nordic mysticism and other esoteric and occult mysteries.
His work as Fire + Ice have had a large amount of influence on neofolk music.
Some of those who have appeared on Fire + Ice albums are: Michael Cashmore, Michael Moynihan,
 Annabel Lee, Joseph Budenholzer, Douglas Pearce and Freya Aswynn.


Sunday, 7 October 2012

Imperium ‎– Imperium (Demo 1996)

Country: Norway

1. Eternal Pain 04:33
2. Awaiting The Decay 04:23
3. Trollmannens Vrede 04:42
4. The Ravens... 04:16

Imperium existed between 1995 - 1997 and recorded two demo tapes.
The band got dissolved when two of its members moved away from Stavanger.
Their second selftitled demo was re-released in February 2004 on the Norwegian Lyderhorn Records 
as a limited piece of 12" EP in transparent packaging, with designs by Stephen O'Malley.
Their style is fast, raw and epic black metal with a sound not unlike early Emperor but with less use of synth.
Featuring Trym Torson (ex-Emperor, ex-Zyklon, ex-Enslaved etc.) on drums, Boreas (ex-Dismal Euphony) on bass-vocals, 
Shulak (ex-Dismal Euphony, ex-Gehenna) on guitars and Mysterion (ex-Theatre Of Tragedy) also on guitars.


Sunday, 30 September 2012

Luboš Fišer ‎– Valerie A Týden Divů (Valerie And Her Week Of Wonders) (1970)

Composer: Luboš Fišer

1. The Magic Yard 05:46
2. Talk With Grandmother 03:55
3. The Letter 01:07
4. The Sermon 02:56
5. Losing The Way 01:14
6. The Visit 02:13
7. The Work Of Death 01:02
8. Dinner 01:09
9. Dense Smoke 01:38
10. The Contract / The Wedding 01:49
11. The Punishment 01:09
12. Disquiet 01:36
13. Awakening 00:59
14. Brother And Sister 00:57
15. Sacrifice 02:15
16. The Letter 2 / Friends 01:52
17. In Flames 01:23
18. Puppets 01:40
19. Homeless 01:26
20. Questions And Answers 02:05
21. Confession 00:50
22. Forgiveness 01:28
23. And The Last 05:07

Release of the delicately haunting and sacred score to Jaromil Jires' essential 
Eastern European hallucinogenic-baroque-witch-flick 'Valerie And Her Week Of Wonders'.
Lubos Fiser provides what is perhaps the greatest musical score of all the maligned Czech New Wave feature-films 

with a gossamer-fragile blend of pastoral-orchestral folk songs and clockwork harpsichords. 
From the very first delicate chord to the final crescendo this joyous sound is as addictive 
as the bizarre imagery seen in this seldom celebrated cinematic gem.
Naturally the list of musical pioneers who freely confess their allegiance to the score 

verifies it's elevated place in contemporary pop. Birmingham's dedicated concrete-pop-psych combo Broadcast 
recently paid homage to the soundtrack on their 'Ha-Ha Sound' LP while groups such as Espers, Fursaxa and Marissa Nadler recently contributed to a live performance of the soundtrack as a homage to its unwaning influence on their music. 
Echoes of the score can also be heard in recent music by Vashti Bunyen and it has been cited as a huge influence 
to the likes of Tim Burton who based the carnival scene at the end of 'Big Fish' on the original film.
Previously unprepared for public consumption the immaculate release has been compiled in close accordance 

to the original storyline which was released in 1935 as a surrealist novel by Vladislav Nezval
The orchestral suites of music have been separated into 23 chapters with titles derived from the controversial novella.


Perished ‎– Kark (1998)

Country: Norway

1. Introduksjon 01:45
2. Imens Vi Venter... 06:17
3. Stier Til Visdoms Krefter 07:12
4. Pa Nattens Vintervinger 06:27
5. Iskalde Strommer 08:38
6. ...Og Spjuta Fauk 03:46
7. Befri De Trolske Toner 08:56
8. Renheten Og Gjenkomsten 05:06

Debut full-length album by Perished playing great melodic Black Metal 
in the vein of early Troll, Satyricon, Kvist, Dimmu Borgir etc.
Released by Solistitium Records.


Juno Reactor ‎– Bible Of Dreams (1997)

Country: England

1. Jardin De Cecile 07:03
2. Conga Fury 08:07
3. God Is God 06:47
4. Komit 08:13
5. Swamp Thing 05:16
6. Kaguya Hime 06:38
7. Children Of The Night 07:57
8. Shark 09:36

9. High Energy Protons (Orion Mix) 06:28

Juno Reactor was originally formed by Ben Watkins as an art project in 1990. 
Watkins wanted to create experimental music/non musical soundtracks that would work with installations, 
art pieces and film projects. Since then Juno Reactor has evolved to become a musical 
and performing act known for the cinematic fusion of electronic, orchestral and global music.
Watkins remains central to the project, along with his collaborations 

with a constantly changing ensemble of musicians from across the world. 
He also collaborated with composer Don Davis for the musical score of the film The Matrix.
In 1997 Juno Reactor's fourth album entitled "Bible of Dreams" was released. 

It had a much different sound than their previous albums, and moved away from the traditional dance beats
 by implementing more aggressive thematic styles and a more diverse range of influences such as world and tribal. 
Watkins collaborated with Amampondo, a traditional South African percussion act, on the single "Conga Fury".
All tracks made by Ben Watkins with the assistance of various collaborators 

(featuring among the others Mike Maguire and Natacha Atlas).


Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Krzysztof Penderecki - Rękopis Znaleziony W Saragossie (The Saragossa Manuscript) (1965)

Composer: Krzysztof Penderecki

1 - 29 Untitled 42:45

'Rekopis Znaleziony w Saragossie' ('Manuscript Found in Saragossa') by the famous Polish director Wojciech Jerzy Has 
was originally released in 1965 and since then has become a mile-stone of the avant-garde world cinema.
The haunting and downright bizarre score was composed by Krzysztof Penderecki in 1963, 
a famous Polish contemporary/avant-garde composer. All the special effects and sound treatments took place at the Experimental Studio of Polish Radio in Warsaw (one of the first studios of this kind in Europe) 
under the supervision of Bohdan Mazurek in 1963-1964. 
A great example of music concrete, free tape manipulation and a head-on trip 
into the analog music technology on the early 60s. Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola, Luis Bunuel and Jerry Garcia have at various times described The Saragossa Manuscript as their favorite film. 
Based on the book by the highly-esteemed Count Jan Potocki, the film version is reputedly a respectful, mostly faithful adaptation of this literary cat s cradle set in the weird fantasy landscapes of arid 17th-century Spain. 
The film creates a magical, sometimes disturbing, world of the supernatural.
Jerry Garcia, along with Martin Scorsese, put up part of the money to have it restored to its full length.
 Besides the convoluted structure,(stories within stories, and again stories within stories) 
characters pop in and out of each others tales with the random logic of a trip. 
The characters includes sexy ghost princesses, gypsies, scientists, occultists, demon-possesions. 
The intriguing stylistic flourishes sit against the wonderful soundtrack of Krzysztof Penderecki,
famous for the scores of The Shining and Inland Empire.


Wampyre ShadowWolf – Wampyricon (1996)

Country: Greece

1. Invocation Of My Demon Brother 03:43
2. In My Dominion I Am All 05:19
3. We Shall Rise 04:48
4. Deepest Sea Swallow Me 07:34
5. Princess Of Darkness 06:38
6. Stargates 05:40
7. In My Dominion I Am All (Funeral Mix) 06:11
8. Demeter / Frost 04:21

The band consisted of Magus Wampyr Daoloth (Necromantia, Diabolos Rising, Thou Art Lord, NAOS etc.), 
Wolf (aka Vassilis Zobolas of Vanity), and Shadow (aka George Florakis chief editor of Greek Metal Hammer 
back in the early 90's, chief editor of Razor Magazine in 2000 and strongly involved in the underground scene.
Together with Magus Wampyr Daoloth they released the one and only issue of Sub Terra zine in '96
and also he did guest vocals in the promo version of "Snowing Still" track of Rotting Christ).
"Wampyricon" was the last CD recorded at Storm Studio, therefore the sound quality-production (done by MWD
is very good reminding the production of the Greek bands that had already used it 
(Nightfall, Septic Flesh, Rotting Christ, Varathron).
Their music is a mixture of ambient-dark wave with gothic rock. 
Ian Read (Fire And Ice, ex-Current 93, ex-Sol Invictus)  is also participating
as a special guest on the opening track's vocals.
The lyrics, mostly written by Shadow, deal with the dark side of human nature and the black-vampire culture.


Sunday, 19 August 2012

Upsland – War (1994)

Country: France

1. Awake 04:08
2. Iron Will 04:46
3. Mission 04:00
4. Dream 05:02
5. Solitude 03:02
6. Love 06:21
7. The Cross 04:42
8. Fall Out 04:55
9. Purple Wave 03:56

Beautifully arranged Martial Industrial by French band Upsland.
The band consisted of four members for this recording: Prince Éric, Freddy K. Junior, Hervé Love and Laura Move.
Released in 1994 by Cthulhu Records in a gold-embossed black digipak with booklet.

Friday, 27 July 2012

Black Sunrise ‎– Under A Moonlight Sky (Demo 1996)

Country: Italy

1. Black Sunrise 03:33
2. Silvanthropy: A Tale from the Dark Woods 06:25
3. Armageddon 02:51
4. Bad Moon Ballad 06:36

First Demo release from Italy's Black Sunrise a band i recently discovered 
through a link in the blogspot's shoutbox. (thanx mate!)
The group created in 1994 by the Basile brothers 
(drummer, keyboard player, vocalist Walter and bassist, vocalist Valerio
with guitarist Valerio Vitolla.
 This is melodic black metal very well executed and with a very good production for a Demo, 
mostly played in mid-tempo speed, including excellent keyboard parts, 
reminding me in places of Empyrium's "A Wintersunset..." atmosphere.
The cover is from the re-released version.

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Throne Of Ahaz ‎– On Twilight Enthroned (1996)

Country: Sweden

1. Fenris 04:02
2. The Forlorn 06:23
3. With Shadow Wings 06:14
4. On Twilight Enthroned 05:24
5. Where Veils of Grief Are Dancing Slow 05:06
6. Let Blood Paint the Ground 06:55
7. Blackthorn Crown 03:41
8. Black Sabbath (Black Sabbath Cover) 05:38

Throne Of Ahaz was a Swedish black metal band formed in 1991 in Umeå.
On Twilight Enthroned is the bands second album, and their last one, 
incorporating grim Scandinavian black metal, early 90's style, with influences from Bathory and Venom.
Featuring members from Ancient Wisdom the album recorded in the Electric Room Studio in September 1995
 and also contains a cover version of Black Sabbath.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Mortiis – Crypt Of The Wizard (1996)

Country: Norway

1. Ferden Og Kallet 05:50
2. Da Vi Bygde Tårnet 08:01
3. Under Tårnet's Skygge 05:49
4. En Sirkel Av Kosmisk Kaos 07:30
5. Vandreren's Sang 08:00
6. Den Bortdrevne Regnbuen 05:39
7. Trollmannen's Krypt 06:09
8. Stjernefødt 04:54
9. I Mørket Drømmende 05:58
10. Fanget I Krystal 03:36

Crypt of the Wizard is a compilation album by Norwegian solo artist Mortiis
though it is largely recognised as a complete album.
Recorded in Norway, it was initially released in 1996 as a series of 5 12" EP singles.
In Crypt of the Wizard Mortiis sounds more varied from his Dark Ambient repetitive material of his earlier works, 
using a larger scale of sounds.
 The number of the tracks and their length this time are helping in the variety of the album.
Crypt Of The Wizard also contains a very beautiful artwork of John Bauer
a renowned Swedish painter who's artwork was used in several children's books.
 Arranged, produced, recorded, engineered, mixed & mastered by Mortiis.


Saturday, 30 June 2012

Danse Macabre – Totentanz (1998)

Country: Belgium

1. Dust Of Centuries 04:02
2. Totentanz 03:52
3. Death Is Midsummer 04:22
4. Gott Ist Tot (Where Science Prevailed) 04:06
5. Jester's Farewell (Solitude) 05:06
6. Decline Of Romanticism 04:01
7. Tristesse (Of Cardinals And Skeletons) 04:57
8. Ignorance Is Bliss (Di Talem Terris Avertite Pestem) 03:36
9. Overture To The Sun (Finsternis) - Instrumental 01:47
10. Megalomania 03:40
11. Psychopompos 02:28
12. A Dream Within A Dream 04:28

Gothic metal with Gunther Theys (Ancient Rites) on vocals 
and Jan "Orkki" Yrlund (Lacrimosa, Two Witches) on guitars, bass, programming and keyboards.
A band that started as a TransEuropean project with Gunther Theys, Magus Wampyr Daoloth (Necromantia) 
and Sotiris Vagenas (Septic Flesh).
There were some past interviews stated that Mortiis was going to participated 
in this project (or maybe another?) but this never came true.
With this line up they recorded in 1995 two amazing tracks (Psychopompos and A Dream Within A Dream) 
that were supposed to be released as a 7" ep on Molon Lave Records 
but since the label ceased to exist the record never saw the light of day.
(These were included in Totentanz as bonus tracks).
Since then the project was put on ice until 1997 where Gunther introduced to musicians 
interested in continuing Danse Macabre's work.

:wumpscut: ‎– Embryodead (1997)

Country: Germany

1. Golgotha 06:26
2. Embryodead 05:27
3. Down Where We Belong 03:39
4. Slave To Evil 04:23
5. War 04:43
6. Is It You 05:19
7. Pest 04:38
8. Womb 04:54
9. Angel 04:25
10. Stillbirth 06:24

:wumpscut: is an electro-industrial music project from Germany.
It was founded in May 1991 by Bavarian disc jockey Rudolf "Rudy" Ratzinger.
Embryodead features high quality dark-industrial (also some dancy EBM parts to it) 
with lots of harsh vocals, killer music and distorted beats.
The Memory link is for the 2004 re-release and contains two bonus tracks.


Sunday, 3 June 2012

N.A.O.S. ‎– The Final Harvest (1995)

Country: Greece

1. Cyberwar 05:54
2. Brother Satan (Eshatologia Part I) 05:40
3. The Final Harvest (The Rebuilding Of Ur) 05:48
4. Invictus 04:17
5. Eshaton (Eshatologia Part II) 05:16
6. Foetus Of A Lunar Dimension 05:03
7. The Black Opal 04:25
8. Survival 03:50
9. The Sorrows Of Satan 05:01

N.A.O.S. is an one-man-project of Magus Wampyr Daoloth of Necromantia.
The debut album "The Final Harvest" was composed, performed, recorded and mixed 
at Storm Studio in autumn '93 - winter '94. 
It was released in 1995 through German label Itsemuhra Arts and the LP version by Dark Side Records.
The music here is not Black Metal but Gothic - Darkwave
The vocals are mostly spoken words varied from clean ones to more deep or distorted ones 
and the lyrics are dealing with satanism and individualism. 
The atmosphere is a very dark one, based mainly to the haunting keyboard melodies 
(once more some eastern influences are noticeable) of Magus Wampyr Daoloth and the slow beats. 
The album is very close to the haunting atmosphere of the first Diabolos Rising album "666",
if you remove the guitars and the vocals of course, and also both of these albums
are sharing a common track "Eshaton (Eshatologia Part II)", known as " Χ - Ξ - ΣΤ' " on the Diabolos Rising album.
All lyrics are written by Magus Wampyr Daoloth except "Invictus" by W.C. Henley.


Saturday, 2 June 2012

Kode IV ‎– Best Of... Compilation (1996)

Country: Belgium

1. Fearless (Original Mix) 08:17
2. Dissolve (Vapour Space Mix) 06:03
3. Possessed (Voodoo Mix) 05:55
4. Disobey (Vagator Mix) 05:53
5. Scratch Attack (Final Cut) 05:37
6. Accelerate (Anjuna Mix) 06:46
7. Faust (Erster Teil) 06:17
8. Utilize (Hidden Powers Mix) 06:07
9. The Ultimate Goal (Silicon Civilisation Mix) 06:08
10. Near To The Divine (Official Doof Mix) 07:20

Kode IV formed in Belgium in the late 80's by Hans Schiller and Peter Ziegelmeier as an electro-industrial band.
They began releasing rhythmic sample-laden industrial dance as Kode IV on Belgium’s KK Records in 1990.
 Their signature sound was the extensive use of samples layered upon heavy drum machine loops in each song. 
The samples were used not only to create a good dancey track but also a distinct message and theme in each song. 
Hans Schiller passed away in 1994, but Peter Ziegelmeier continued the band adding Ariane MacAvoy and Goa Gil 
for a short time, developing it into its current goa trance style without the dominant use of samples.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Monumentum ‎– In Absentia Christi (1995)

Country: Italy

1. Battesimo: Nero Opaco 02:38
2. A Thousand Breathing Crosses 02:06
3. Consuming Jerusalem 04:51
4. Fade To Grey 05:06
5. On Perspective Of Spiritual Catharsis 07:40
6. ΣελυνηΣ ΑγγελοΣ 04:13
7. From These Wounds 07:07
8. Terra Mater Orfanorum 03:40
9. Nephtali 04:27
10. La Noia 09:01

Monumentum is an Italian atmospheric dark Rock band that was formed in 1987 in Milan 
by Roberto Mammarella (owner of the Avantgarde Music label) and Anthony Duman.
With the intent to create dark music inspired by the likes of Celtic Frost and Christian Death, a demo was recorded in 1989. Although only a limited number of copies of this cassette were made, it impressed the underground metal scene 
and became a cult item, regardless of this fact, the band broke up for a short period of time in 1990.
In 1991 Obscure Plasma Records (subsequently Avantgarde Music) picked two tracks from the band's demo
 and released a split single with Rotting Christ - this release garnered particular acclaim in Norway 
where the band was set to sign with Euronymous' Deathlike Silence Productions for the release of their debut album, unfortunately Euronymous' murder made any record deal impossible for the band.
The album, recorded and mixed between August 1994 and May 1995, 
finally saw the light of day through the British label Misanthropy Records. The recording line-up featured two vocalists, 
in the form of Andrea Zanetti (of Italian act Iconoclast) and Francesca Nicoli (of Ataraxia), 
alongside Mammarella ("strings, keys and vibes"), Cristadoro (drums) and Paolo Mauri ("samples and artistic production"). The band claimed the album was influenced by the poets Iginio Ugo Tarchetti and Giacomo Leopardi
and included a cover of "Fade to Grey" by Visage and a cover of "Nephtali" by The Dead Relatives.
The Memory link is for the 2009 reissued version and contains one bonus track "In Misery Front Row", 
recorded in Milan in 1997, with Niklas Kvarforth (Shining) on vocals recorded in Sweden in 2008.

Mundanus Imperium ‎– Ode To The Nightsky (MCD 1997)

Country: Norway

1. Ode To The Nightsky 05:06
2. Winds Of The Frozen Stars 05:36
3. Ridende På Nattens Vinger 05:13

Mundanus Imperium  initially started out in Hamar, Norway in late 1994, 
when Lars "Grond" Wiik (drums, bass, guitars and vocals) and Bent "Draug" Holm (synths), 
created the band Nattefall. In 1996 they recorded their first and only demo tape "Ode To The Nightsky
at X-Ray Studios that in May 1997 released as a MCD by Velvet Music.
Their style is great atmospheric Black Metal in the vein of early Arcturus.
The band agreed for the release knowing that this was a good opportunity 
to promote their new band name Mundanus Imperium and also their new musical direction.
 Changing their style to Progressive Metal, they only released one album in 1998 before disbanding. 

Monday, 7 May 2012

Sopor Aeternus & The Ensemble Of Shadows – Voyager-The Jugglers Of Jusa (1997)

Country: Germany

1. The Inexperienced Spiral Traveller: A Fragment II 05:06
2. Ein Freundliches Wort Hat Meine Seele Berührt (Defined and Fragile) 05:11
3. Memalon II 07:25
4. The Innocence of Devils: Alone 06:28
5. Modela Est 04:35
6. Birth (Instrumental) 02:50
7. Feralia Genitalia (Arrival of the Jugglers) 06:30
8. Menuetto 01:29
9. Saturn-Impressionen (Jusa, Jusa) 02:48
10. May I Kiss Your Wound? (Saturn: Orion) 06:05
11. Alone II 06:57
12. The Inexperienced Spiral Traveller: A Fragment II (Instrumental) 05:05

Sopor Aeternus & the Ensemble of Shadows is a darkwave musical project based in Frankfurt, 
founded in 1989 by Anna-Varney Cantodea.
Their sound is rooted in renaissance and baroque music, with main use of brass instruments, woodwinds, strings, pipe organs, bells, and guitars. While earlier works used drum machines, later albums feature live percussion. 
Cantodea's work has shown a progression towards livelier arrangements and more wall of sound production, compared to earlier works. Though considered by genre a darkwave band, Cantodea has stated that she creates 
"...-music for dead children (and otherwise wounded souls)".
Major themes of their music include death, unrequited love, karmatic pain, loneliness, sadness, 
spirituality and failure, occultism, sexuality and romance. 
A strong recurring theme is transexuality, especially the removal of male genitalia.
Many allusions to spirituality and Roman deities appear in her lyrics; aside from Jupiter and Saturn, Morpheus, Hades, Uranus and Charon have been addressed by name. Other supernatural figures mentioned include 
the Sister of Self-Destruction, the Goat, the Old Man and the Lord of the Darkest Side.
"Voyager: The Jugglers of Jusa" is the bands first remix album. It was released as a companion to 
"The Inexperienced Spiral Traveller", also released that year, 
and primarily features alternate versions of songs from that album, accompanied by some newer songs.
Most of the remixed songs have had either their backing tracks removed, 
or had extra percussion and drum machines added. "Never trust the Obvious" receives two remixes: 
"The Innocence of Devils: Alone", which contains a recitation of author Edgar Allan Poe's Alone; and "Alone II". 
The signature piece "Birth - Fiendish Figuration" is also featured as an instrumental; 
a remix of "Saturn-Impressionen" from "Todeswunsch - Sous le soleil de Saturne" also appears on this album.
The newer songs include "Modela Est", a cover version of Kraftwerk's "Das Model", sung in Latin; 
and "Feralia Genitalia", another ode to transgenderism as Anna-Varney Cantodea describes her 
"genitals rotting off" and her transformation into a woman.
A band that you either gonna love them or hate them, there is no middle road.


Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Ragnarok – Arising Realm (1997)

Country: Norway

1. Intro 02:21
2. God Is Wasted 04:18
3. Searching For My Dark Desire 04:49
4. En Verden Av Stein 04:00
5. Time Before Birth Of Light 05:30
6. My Hate Is His Spirit 03:02
7. My Refuge In Darkness 04:58
8. The Reflection From The Star World Above 04:20
9. The Fall Of Christianity 02:38
10. The Predicted Future 07:12
11. For The World I Am Blinded 04:37
12. Outro 02:06

Arising Realm is the second studio album by Norwegian Black Metal band Ragnarok
it was released in 1997 through Head Not Found Productions
Shagrath, most famous as a member of Dimmu Borgir
occasionally appears on this album, playing synthesizers.
This is great fast paced Black Metal with hellish vocals, amazing guitar riffs 
and with the proper use of keyboards when needed.
Skål for Helvete!

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Brendan Perry – Eye Of The Hunter (1999)

Country: England

1. Saturday's Child 04:30
2. Voyage of Bran 05:33
3. Medusa 06:10
4. Sloth 03:32
5. I Must Have Been Blind 05:07
6. The Captive Heart 04:00
7. Death Will Be My Bride 05:46
8. Archangel 07:35

Debut solo album from Brendan Perry, best known for his work as the male half 
of the duo Dead Can Dance with Lisa Gerrard.
The album contained songs written by Perry and a cover of Tim Buckley's song 
"I Must Have Been Blind" from his 1970 album "Blue Afternoon".
Boasting lush production sensibilities and a boundary-defying spirit, Eye Of The Hunter offered
an immediate familiarity to fans of Dead Can Dance’s unique sound world.
But there were difference in the manner the music was made, and also how it was presented.
Eye Of The Hunter’s vignettes were written – crafted – using a more traditional singer / songwriter process.
The music, centered around Brendan’s thoughtful and restrained guitar playing, 
provided a backdrop for his deep, gentle vocals.
And while much of Dead Can Dance’s work eluded categorization, Brendan embraced it, making a folk record
in the truest sense: these songs, each one its own story but each also contributing to an overall theme,
 were rooted in his life experiences.
Dead Can Dance’s music often suggested a search for meaning and sense in the world, 
and Brendan has taken up a similar journey.
But instead of looking at the external world, he has decided to explore the inner world of his own private universe.
People have multiple personalities which are always evolving,” he says. 
This record deals with the different facets of my own personality.”
Eye Of The Hunter’s deeply personal songs explore the theme of loss, both of life and love, 
but they are not bereft of hope.
Recorded at Brendan’s Quivvy Church Studio in County Cavan in Ireland and released from 4AD.


Elend – Les Ténèbres Du Dehors (1996)

Country: France

1. Nocturne 04:51
2. Ethereal Journeys 14:29
3. The Luciferian Revolution 10:57
4. Eden (The Angel In The Garden) 04:17
5. The Silence Of Light 08:05
6. Antienne 06:46
7. Dancing Under The Closed Eyes Of Paradise 09:36
8. Les Ténèbres Du Dehors 04:23

Elend's work can best be described as very dark and oppressing symphonic music influenced by Krzysztof Penderecki, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Iannis Xenakis, Pierre Henry and Peter Eötvös
Their method of structuring pieces of music does not follow any dogmatic rules and their use of arrangements reaches peaks in terms of orchestral density and vocal diversity. 
They have kept the traditional instrumentation of post-romantic orchestras but taken the limits much further by multiplying the number of instruments in each section and extending it by integrating modern elements 
such as ambient and industrial sounds and percussion instruments.
Les Ténèbres du Dehors is a black haunting release. It is the second in their highly acclaimed, 
very dark and violent Officium Tenebrarum Trilogy.
Elend confirm their originality and their will to gather the Black Metal fans and the fans of classical music. 
Les Ténèbres du Dehors seems to be more complex musically, more refined,
where Iskandar expresses his suffering while Eve and Nathalie haunt that symphony of divine voices, led by Renaud.
Music for the fallen angels.


Saturday, 14 April 2012

Zyklon-B – Blood Must Be Shed (MCD 1995)

Country: Norway

1. Mental Orgasm 02:54
2. Bloodsoil 02:25
3. Warfare 05:35

One of the first Norwegian Black Metal projects to arise in the scene featuring , back then, 
Frost (Satyricon) on drums, Samoth (Emperor) on guitars-bass, Ihsahn (Emperor) on keyboards  
and Aldrahn (Dodheimsgard) on vocals.
The bands only release is this EP and their style of course is straight forward, aggressive and misanthropic Black Metal.
Tracks 1 and 3 consists of inspirations and actual quotations by mass-murderers and serial-killers.
The memory link is for the re-released version and contains one bonus track "Total Warfare (Sea Serpent Remix)".


Solefald – Neonism (1999)

Country: Norway

1. Proprietors Of Red 06:34
2. Speed Increased To Scaffold 08:27
3. CK II Chanel N°6 03:32
4. Fluorescent (The Total Orchestra) 05:20
5. A Motion Picture 01:56
6. Omnipolis 05:36
7. Backpacka Baba 05:25
8. Third Person Plural 04:03
9. 04.34 PM 03:23
10. The New Timelessness 06:00

In 1999, Solefald released their second full-length, entitled Neonism which is incorporating 
black metal, pop, classical music, punk, and progressive metal.
Neonism also featuring more vocal techniques from each member.
Singing in English and French, Lazare brought back his clean vocals while Cornelius is still using his high pitched shrieks and his lower grunting, but also a style of spoken word singing.
The lyrics are unconventional for metal in general and black metal especially, 
dealing with socio-political issues and pop culture criticism in songs like "Backpacka Baba" and "CK II Chanel no. 6".
Recorded at the famed Sunlight Studios the band stated that they used this quality of sound because of the multi-layered song structures demanding a thinner sound to allow the many facets of the music to shine through. 
Another reasoning was that they wanted to achieve the "old school black metal" sound.
The band coined the term "Radical Designer Rock 'n' Roll", for this release.
A really "crazy" and "enjoyable" album in all terms.
The memory link is for the remastered-reissue and contains one bonus track (Cosmophony).


Sunday, 25 March 2012

Arcana – Cantar De Procella (1997)

Country: Sweden

1. The Opening Of The Wound 03:32
2. Chant Of The Awakening 04:22
3. The Song Of Solitude (The Cry Of Isolde) 02:57
4. Void Of Silence 03:23
5. Cantar De Procella 06:26
6. Aeterna Doloris 02:55
7. The Song Of Preparation 00:43
8. God Of The Winds 04:45
9. The Dreams Made Of Sand 04:43
10. Gathering Of The Storm 04:15
11. La Salva De Profundis 05:29
12. The Tree Within 03:38

Arcana's follow up to their one year old debut album. 
The band here consisted of founder Peter Bjärgö (then Peter Pettersson) and vocalist Ida Bengtsson.
A great album with a mixture of industrial elements, beautiful female vocals, 
classical power and medieval atmospheres.
Released on Cold Meat Industry.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Sacramentum – Far Away From The Sun (1996)

Country: Sweden

1. Fog's Kiss 04:47
2. Far Away From The Sun 05:13
3. Blood Shall Be Spilled 04:42
4. When Night Surrounds Me 06:04
5. Cries From A Restless Soul 05:10
6. Obsolete Tears 04:40
7. Beyond All Horizons 06:32
8. The Vision And The Voice 04:41
9. Outro - Darkness Falls For Me/Far Away From The Sun (Part Two) 04:10

Formed under the name Tumulus in 1990 and changed it to Sacramentum in 1992,
Far Away From The Sun is their first full-length release.
This is cold atmospheric furious Black Metal at its best.
Recorded and mixed at Unisound studios.

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Necromantia – Scarlet Evil Witching Black (1995)

Country: Greece

1. Devilskin 05:49
2. Black Mirror 06:30
3. Pretender To The Throne (Opus I: The Usurper's Spawn) 05:27   
4. The Arcane Light Of Hecate 04:20
5. Scarlet Witching Dreams 05:23
6. The Serpent And The Pentagram 05:17
7. Pretender To The Throne (Opus II: Battle At The Netherworld) 07:50
8. Spiritdance 06:25 

Scarlet Evil Witching Black is the second album by the Greek black metal band Necromantia.
Recorded and mixed at Sin Ena Studio as the band states "No rhythm guitar is used on this album",
instead, there is an 8-string bass (by Baron Blood) that plays that part,
therefore you should expect a unique orchestration and strange sound 
as Necromantia has its own point of view about black metal.
Nothing of the grimness and coldness, of the typical Norwegian black metal can be found here.
Magus Wampyr Daoloth with his haunting keyboard melodies creates an evil atmosphere, 
inspired from classical and jazz music.
The use of piano, acoustic guitar and even a saxophone combined with the epic and violent riffs,
that varies from extremely fast to more slow and doomy, sets the boundaries of a brilliant album.
This is for sure Necromantia's magnum opus.