SYNCHRONY: Music News, Week in Review & Upcoming Releases (2/28/2020)

SYNCHRONY is a weekly feature focusing on relevant heavy music news, new releases, upcoming releases, as well as a week in review to help folks keep up with all of the content on Grizzly Butts. This’ll also include a list of upcoming releases and some preliminary notes on upcoming reviews or coverage. If I can’t hear it, I won’t cover it! If you have New Releases, show announcements, or important heavy music news that’ll be relevant or interesting to folks contact me at:

THIS WEEK IN NEWS (2/22/20 – 2/28/20)

  • Blood for… more blood! A raw and vile flurry of viral horror awaits those brave enough to witness April 27th, the day that Memento Mori will unleash a wave of ripping crimson upon the streets by way of Cleveland, Ohio death metal band KURNUGIA whose debut full-length ‘Forlorn and Forsaken’ rides that wave to victory over those unworthy. These guys have kicked around in all the best Ohio death metal bands you’re too much of a wimp to listen to: Decrepit, Nunslaughter, Embalmer, December Wolves, and Delusion. Bit o’ that early Broken Hope kinda stuff, or maybe ‘Eaten Back to Life’? I’m into it. Try out the first preview song, “To the Cursed Depths”, on Memento Mori‘s YouTube: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • The incredible evolution of  heavy psych/prog metal band ELDER continues with their fifth full-length, ‘Omens’. This glorious transmogrification from a Massachusetts based stoner-doom metal band into a Berlin-based proggy psychedelic rock band in the space of fifteen or so years is stunning and now feels complete when firing up “Embers”, a 10+ minute epic the first single from the album. A total jam and I love the unique guitar sound, gritty and resonant. Armageddon Label are putting the record out April 24th on CD and double-vinyl LP. Probably the most unique and kinda accessible stuff from the band to date, check out “Embers” on Bandcamp: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • What would have become of New York based death/doom progenitors Winter if they had stayed the course and continued to evolve beyond 1992? Well, I’d actually bought a copy of Stephen Flam‘s band Thorn ‘Bitter Potion‘ and well, it was cool but that wasn’t it! Today we are gifted some remarkable anomaly, a portal to return to the wastes thanks to Svart Records who have signed GODEN a new manifestation of Winter intending to pick up where they’d left off — A spiritual successor at least. Goden’s debut album ‘Beyond Darkness’ will release on May 8th, alongside with definitive double LP/CD reissues of ‘Into Darkness’ and the ‘Eternal Frost’ demo. Either I am a magnet for doom, or 2020 is in fact shaping up to be the ultimate year for the craft. Learn more, check out the album art, and grab a pre-order over on Svart‘s website: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • After their brilliant split LP with Verfallen and Hyrgal in 2018, French atmospheric black metal act BÂ’A were hard at work on their debut album ‘Deus Qui Non Mentitur’, which Osmose Productions have announced for an April 24th release. A refined classic black metal spirit approached with the grace of modern atmospheric black metal Bâ’a offer a testament to many of the elements that’ve long made France a brilliant epicenter for the artform. The first single from the album, “Titan”, shows some impressive depth within the guitar work, woven and still streaming its consciousness with aggressive intent. Listen to “Titan” over on YouTube: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • The long, merciful sigh inside my mind when those glowing synths hit could only mean one thing… That the trees will part and the rivers will steam as LUSTRE passes through the realm into the clearing for the seventh time. Today the watchfires signal us in preparation for the streaming will of the Östersund wilderness, ‘The Ashes of Light‘ by the will of Nordvis Produktion on April 24th. Having spent countless hours listening to the overworld theme of Final Fantasy IX, Eldamar, and enjoying ‘Still Innocence’ quite a bit, I’m looking forward to this next chapter of the ambient/black metal maestro. Breathe in the pine-scented lace and ecstatic gaze of “Part 3 (Like Music in the Night)” on Nordvis Produktion‘s bandcamp: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • Splattered, erupting, grinding as clicking bones articulated by arcane magicks as the incense of death rises a second time from the crack in the Earth that is RIPPED TO SHREDS who’ve risen for a mess, an undoing in the form of ‘亂 (Luan)’ the second full-length from the southern California project now featuring drummer Justin Bean (Trenchrot, Daeva) and Tom Warrior (Death Fortress, Siege Column). If that wasn’t exciting enough, members of Gridlink, Chthe‘ilist and Horrendous contribute guitar solos on the record which Damien Herring (Subterranean Watchtower) mastered, and Greg Wilkinson (Earhammer) mixed. Did he finally go full deathgrind? Will there even -more- riffs? Whatever dude, of course. Pre-order it right now, seriously, shit always sells out fast. Pulverised has some new shirts up too. Listen to the first preview-w-w-uurrrghh, “Opening Salvo”, over on YouTube: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • Taken any acid lately? No, I can’t hook you up but I can recommend something very 80’s that SABÏRE describes as ‘acid metal’ with their latest 7″, the standalone single for “Mistress, Mistress” through Listenable Records who’ve posted a music video for the song. The B-side is a cover of The Eagles’ “Life in the Fast Lane”. There are a shit-ton of 70’s androgynous pre-glam rocker attuned metal bands out there today, wait no there isn’t… Scarlett Monastyrski is appreciably unique and a fine songwriter. Check “Mistress, Mistress” out on Listenable RecordsYouTube: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • Bear the weight of their cudgel! Belgium death metal crew BONES have banged out big songs just a few at a time, every few years but that slow going means quality over quantity in reaching this point of readiness for their second official EP, ‘Gate of Night‘, which will release as a 12″ vinyl LP through the always kick-ass Blood Harvest Records on April 24th. Love the cover art for this one, lots of texture. The first preview track on this two song EP is “Utterance Beyond Death”, a trippy Autopsy-esque coffin kicker. Check it out on Blood Harvest‘s Bandcamp: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • While you spend the next month planning your escape from the coming annihilation by way of virus-based death Nuclear War Now! Productions have announced their nukes are ready and will press the button hell-or-high-water on April 25th to decimate the Earth with BLASPHAMAGOATACHRIST‘s full-length debut ‘Bastardizing the Purity‘. If you missed their declaration of war last year, this band features members of Blasphemy, Antichrist, and Goatpenis and their style is a blast…ing war metal tank from folks who are masters in their own right. The preview track is raw as hell, a fuckin’ garage shaking invocation of Hell! Listen to “Death Alchemy” on Nuclear War Now! Productions‘ Bandcamp: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • Dying Victims Productions have announced they’ll be releasing the vinyl version of the debut mini LP from Swedish old school speed metal tyrants TØRONTO this May 22nd. So far we know ‘Under Siege‘ kicks off with an absolute metal-punk’d shredder “Fast and Filthy”, a very direct credo of what these guys are all about. Raw and ripping early 80’s style speed metal from ex-members of Morbus Chron and current members of Lethal Steel and Temisto. Love the preview song and the album artwork, absolute class record from the look/sound of it. Check out “Fast and Filthy” on Dying Victims‘ Bandcamp: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • The repugnant stench of meat, weak and pink in the eyes and teeth of the elite, repulses the violent mind of THE HOLY FLESH who teams with the venerable Caligari Records for ‘Emissary & Vessel‘ a singularity achieved by the solo entity in the form of a demo tape to be released on March 27th on cassette tape. Shaking and boiling in its reverberations this psychedelic black metal tape is a shower of downward-facing resentment and wonder a full ~40 minute plunge into their enemies’ skin, bone, and meat in very limited quantities! This is an excellent demo, I figure they could do a lot with a producer — My third eye fixates! Listen to “Emissary I” on Caligari Records‘ Bandcamp: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]

  • Pennsylvania based black metal band AUTOMB strike a second glance upon the skull with their second full-length ‘Chaosophy‘, which will be released through Witching Hour Productions this March 27th. Automb features drummer Scott Fuller who is best known for his skills on Morbid Angel’s most recent record ‘Kingdoms Disdained’, alongside Serge Streltsov (ex-Necrophagia)  and vocalist/bassist Danielle Evans. Their style is as brutal as expected, clearly influenced by the classics of late 90’s black metal but also carrying some interest in pagan and occult themes. The first preview track “Chaosophy” reminds me of Vesania a bit, though it is not symphonic. They put a bit of lava on that solo, too. check it out on Witching Hour‘s Bandcamp: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • It is awesome that so many great Polish death metal bands from the 90’s and early 2000’s are not only still around but so many of them still rule! When NOMAD released ‘Demonic Verses (Blessed Are Those Who Kill Jesus)’ back in 2004 I have to admit I only got it because it was blasphemic but I still try to follow this sort of brutal, machine-drummed style of death metal as much as possible. This is the band of guitarist Seth who has been a fixture for Behemoth live shows since what… the ‘Demigod’ tours? Anyhow, Nomad have been very consistent over the years and have a sixth album coming out on March 27th through Witching Hour Productions entitled ‘Transmogrification (Parthus)‘. It makes a brutal first impression with “In the Hands of Progression” which you can listen to over on Witching Hour‘s Bandcamp: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • This year marks the 25th anniversary for HAMMERHEART RECORDS and they’ve started a series of video logs over on their YouTube channel where founder Guido Heijnens (Bifrost) details some of the more recent and upcoming releases on the label. Some insight on the remaster of Malevolent Creation’s ‘The Ten Commandments’, the cassette version of Hooded Menace’s ‘Never Cross the Dead’ as well as reissues of Vile’s debut, a free exclusive Dead Head disc with orders and some mention that folks didn’t buy up their reissues of Holy Terror’s albums. It blows my mind that folks didn’t freak out for ’em, I bought ‘Mind Wars’ because it is my favorite! Actually, my third favorite of all time thrash record. They also announce they’ll be releasing the latest Grey Skies Fallen record ‘Cold Dead Lands’ around June this year. Great news! They deserve it for such a fantastic record. Here’s hoping they make many more vlogs, follow and watch on YouTube: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • Progressive, symphonic, extreme, blackened, psychedelic and brimming with ethereal energy the debut full-length from KHÔRA, ‘Timaeus’ will see its release through Soulseller Records this April 17th. Featuring members/ex-members of Autrokrator, Dødheimsgard, Wilderun, and even Profane Burial there is surely a mix of prog-insanity and brutality available throughout this mental work. Check out the first preview track, “De Vetus Ad Novum”, over on Soulseller‘s YouTube: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • BOMBS OF HADES rules! I remember buying ‘Atomic Temples’ based on the cover art and relation to God Macabre back in 2014 and they’d gotten me a little bit more into the Swedeath/crust sound. They’re not exactly the same on any two albums, though, and ‘Death Mask Replica’ was unexpected and after some years working on The Lurking Fear, At the Gates etc. the members are united for a new EP after signing with Black Lodge Records. ‘The Phantom Bell‘ will feature four new tracks including a cover of Flower Travellin’ Band (“Kamikaze”) and Townes Van Zandt (“Lungs”). Couldn’t be more excited for those covers and a look at the new material after so long. In the meantime, whip your eyes over to YouTube and check out the video for “Phantom Bell”: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • Canadian heavy/speed metal band TRAVELER return for a second ride around the sun with ‘Termination Shock’ which Gates of Hell Records have announced for release on April 24th. Still think Abboud is one of the best true metal vocalists I’ve heard in years and the first single from the album, “Termination Shock” is a skyblazer full of warbly leads and harmonized howls that one-up the previous album without losing that classic mid-80’s rehearsal hall presence. Reminds me of one of my favorite speed metal records, Martyr’s ‘For the Universe’. Check out “Termination Shock” on YouTube: [Click/Tap HERE for more info]
  • A cursed revelation, and what a work of art it is! Inspirational death dealers Memento Mori have announced they will release the debut full-length ‘…of Deceit and Utter Madness‘ from Swiss death-doom band FUNERALOPOLIS on April 27th. Holy hell the bass on this first song, “House of West”, is making my ears bleed and the fantastic cover art from Mark Cooper is blowing my mind. : [Click/Tap HERE for more info]

  • NOTABLE ALBUMS AT PRESS THIS WEEK FROM: White Nights, Ripped to Shreds, Lustre, Azath, Kurnugia, Sandstorm, Bones, Blasphamagoatachrist, Duivel, Karloff, Winter Deluge, Head of the Demon, Traveler, Borgne, Elder, Oath of Damnation, Nocturnal Prayer, Walk Through Fire, Blaze of Sorrow, Golden Light, All My Sins, Ulvdalir, Destroyed in Seconds, Enepsigos, Goden, Drown, Perdition Temple, Nite, Warlust, Gaytheist,  and several more. Look for coverage in the near future. Don’t see your album listed? Send it to me:

GRIZZLY BUTTS‘ WEEK IN REVIEW (2/22/20 – 2/28/20)


  • …From the Tomb 2/24/20: “Sleeping for years.”
    • This year Ten From the Tomb changes to …From the Tomb and is no longer limited to ten releases. It will post every Monday with a list of at least ten new releases coming out during that current week and a short review will be included for each one. This week features reviews for sixteen new releases.
    • Favorites: Blood Spore, Human Impulse, Abhomine.
  • Bring out your dead… Part II | 2019
    • The final (somewhat delayed) entry of this two part list of short reviews for several overlooked or “didn’t have time for…” reviews of 2019 albums. These are mostly making good on November and December releases. There are a few I’ve left out (Child Bite, Into Coffin, and Mosaic) which I am still going to review, I swear!
    • Includes: Apognosis, Blot & Bod, Cult of Erinyes, El Abismo, Flamekeeper, Horrified, Kosmokrator, Lot Lizard, Lord Mantis, Nova, Revel in Flesh, Skullcrush, Sargeist, Suppression, and a bunch more.
  • The Top 20 Albums of February | 2020
    • Placeholder — Drops tonight or 2/29 depending how fast I can finish the write-ups. I have a headache.

REVIEWS: Big releases this week from Today is the Day, Exhumation, Blood and Sun, The True Werwolf, and don’t think I missed Fluisteraars or Drown‘s albums: I’d written the wrong release date for one and the other arrived just a few days ago. Both will be reviewed soon. I don’t care about new records from Intronaut, Beneath the Massacre, and Tombs (they’re all painfully average) but I’m interested in that new Dark Fortress record despite it being painfully average as well. This weekend I’m working on a list of requests from independent bands and I’ll hopefully finish reviews for Blood and Sun and The True Werwolf.

UPCOMING SHOWS:  [That I’ll likely attend]

  • LORD DYING w/Black Label Society, Obituary March 3rd, @ Showbox SODO – Seattle, WA
  • VASTUM March 20th @ The Highline – Seattle, WA
  • TODAY IS THE DAY w/Child Bite March 24th @ Funhouse – Seattle, WA
  • ORIGIN w/Defeated Sanity, Wake etc. April 6th @Club Sur – Seattle, WA
  • GAYTHEIST w/ Pinko, Post/Boredom April 11th @Substation – Seattle, WA
  • FU MANCHU August 14th @ Neumos – Seattle, WA



NOTE: This small sample includes overlooked releases that are either not yet reviewed or covered but nonetheless recommended. Some of these will still be featured in other coverage. An asterisk (*) indicates that a review is drafted or in preparation. A plus (+) indicates that the album has already been reviewed. Click/Tap on RECORD LABEL name for preview, stream, or store.

UPCOMING RELEASES (2/29/20 – 3/06/20)


NOTE: This is not a comprehensive list, some titles are already reviewed and/or covered and some have yet to enter the final queue for consideration and processing. An asterisk (*) indicates that a review is drafted or in preparation. A plus (+) indicates that the album has already been reviewed. Click/Tap on RECORD LABEL name for preview, stream, or store.

Did I miss something important this week? Send me an e-mail and tell me about it. It is always worthwhile to speak up for the lesser known stuff. Please remember you can donate to help keep me in front of the computer writing about metal. Thanks.

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