ENDTYMER is the inevitable weekly “music news blog” series I’ve been working to avoid for some time. It hits at the end of every week with the intent of covering notable new releases, sharing news of new releases, and musing over various personal listening habits. It is a largely informal blog, has opinions, etc. so chill out a bit. I do my best to cover as much of everything I receive in some form regardless of genre or representation, don’t hesitate to send anything and everything my way: email@example.com
ALBUM OF THE WEEK
The first week of April brought us a ton of quality records where I’d felt the best of the lot was split between Devangelic‘s ‘Xul’ and Thysia‘s ‘Islands in Cosmic Darkness‘ with the latter eventually winning out. Otherwise don’t miss out on the slightly less hyped releases from stoner doom/heavy metal band Void King with ‘The Hidden Hymnal‘ (part one of a two part concept album) and USDM underbelly slicers Anthropophagous with their second full-length ‘Abuse of a Corpse‘. A ton of other releases came out but these are the ones that’ll stick deepest in craw.
Miksi siis murehtia yhtään mistään…
KRISTILLIS-KANSALLIS-KONSERVATIIVINEN SUUR-SUOMI is the name of the latest album from the fellow from Oksennus who has approached this primitive black metal project with absolute gall, spewing up demo number one in the form of ‘Rakas seurakunta…‘, they’ve named their main inspiration as Antediluvian, Profanatica, Von and such so expect a bestial, anti-Christian slaughter with a wee hit of keyboards here and there. Pure obnoxious cult music from a project named after “Christian national conservative Greater Finland” which feels like a very big, throbbin’ middle finger in general. “Let us exhume the skeleton of Christ and feast on his bones while we willingly burn to death together in the house of the Lord.” Yes, I wholeheartedly support this. Buy this, buy Lucubration‘s tape, and buy all Oksennus releases, completely break your mind until you’ve beaten the living Christ out of it. The tape comes via Sacrificial Dance:
A SUN WITHOUT RAYS
I didn’t know much of anything about Icelandic melodic black/doom metal ultra-symposium project SÓL ÁN VARMA beyond the fact that Ván Records have released their debut self-titled full-length (‘Sól án varma‘) today without much fanfare but I was impressed upon first listen. This project was founded by T.Í. (Carpe Noctem) and D.G. (Misþyrming) and I believe originally commissioned by Roadburn for a bespoke performance circa 2018? This recorded version (see also: Waste of Space Orchestra for a similar situation) was cut between 2019-2020 and finalized in 2021 and just now sees the light of the black sun. The full line-up includes contributions from G.E. (Misþyrming, Naðra, Svartidauði), Á.B.Z. (Carpe Noctem, Árstíðir Lífsins), M.S. (Svartidauði, Drottinn), S.V. (Svartidauði, Drottinn) and H.V. (Wormlust) and of course we are all still bummed out for eternity that Svartidauði have split. They’d prefer you didn’t call it a supergroup, but truly a collective with clear creative direction. A bit too much to take in within just one listen but impressive thus far.
AFTERLIFE / BEFORE LIFE
SCENERY is a cult progressive death/thrash metal band in the style of ‘Unquestionable Presence‘ who’d lit up the Czechia underground from the mid-90’s until the late 2010’s with I believe four full-lengths. Over the years they’ve not been given much credit for what they’d brought to prog-death due to, well, the Czech scene being better known for brutality and grindcore along with avant-garde acts later on and truthfully, the early stuff from these guys wasn’t original so much as it was -great-. Keep in mind progressive metal has never been such a best-selling item even today and the real stuff didn’t truly find widespread love until broader appreciation for Death and comeback records/mass-market reissues/remasters from Atheist and Cynic began to circulate into the greater death metal zeitgeist. Think of Scenery‘s debut as an additional thought given to broadening the taut structures of ‘Unquestionable Presence‘, loosening up the thrashing gait a bit in the same way Chemical Breath escalated the best ideas found on ‘Testimony of the Ancients‘. Anyhow, after 25 years a reissue of the album has been released, no silly remaster needed as this is underground stuff which fully benefits from its original character. Pure support for record labels/bands who are able to release unblemished versions of their original works like this, and in this case I have been waiting at least fifteen years for a legitimate licensed copy of this record in good condition. Here’s hoping their second record is also given its due, since it was the one where they truly broke out of the mold.
THE IN[DI]VISIBLE CULT
Just a quick additional note that Hamburg, Germany-borne classic thrashers (see: ‘Power of Darkness‘, 1988) have released a new single titled “This Too Shall Pass” an anthemic song which fans of late 80’s German thrash, and of course a bit of Kreator, will appreciate right off the bat. If this is a sign of an impending full-length then I am stoked to see what the guys have for us next.
Kansas-based death metal band GAROTED have announced their fourth full-length, ‘Bewitchment Of The Dark Ages‘ will release via Lavadome Productions this coming May 26th on CD and digitally. As the materials suggest these folks have always pushed the envelope of their capabilities on each release, extending themselves in the spirit of death metal which reaches for extremes rather than rests upon easy ideas. They’ve promised aggression and the first first song revealed, “Rites Of Sinister Defilement”, certainly fits the bill:
Helter Skelter Productions/Regain Records have announced May 26th as the release date for Greek death/black metal group HATE MANIFESTO‘s second album, ‘ΑΠΟΣΤΑΤΗΣ’ (“Apostate”) on CD and vinyl LP. This is a band from W.S.P. a brilliant fellowe from Caedes Cruenta, Black Blood Invocation and many more projects and this time be is joined by drummer Simon “Bloodhammer” Schilling (Marduk, Eucharist) to realize this second album. Complete brutality, machine-like precision can be found on “Poison Infliction”:
Osmose Productions and 20 Buck Spin have announced May 26th as the release date for MOURNFUL CONGREGATION‘s upcoming ‘The Exuviae of Gods – Part II‘ on CD, vinyl, and cassette tape. Osmose will handle the record’s release in Europe while 20 Buck Spin will handle its release for North and South America and Australia. Of course this is much anticipated as I’m interested to set each half together and finally enter the greater cathedral they’ve been crafting of brimstone these last few years. The mLP will include two brand-new songs, plus a re-recording of 1995’s “Heads Bowed” from their second demo tape. The preview track is stunning, check out “The Forbidden Absym”:
HELLWITCH have announced their third full-length album ‘Annihilational Intercention‘ alongside the album artwork and some tour dates for early June this year. So, of course folks might realize by now this is one of my all-time favorite bands and one which was important for my obsession with death/thrash metal, technical thrash metal and of course Wild Rags Records in addition to just being obsessed with Florida death metal. You might note from the tracklist that it seems they’re finally recording proper versions of several of their mid-90’s demo era songs. So, the press release is just all about the artwork. Band leader Pat Ranieri comments: “The cover of “Annihilational Intercention” is what is coming in the future of mankind on this wretched planet. The Judge is in the final stages of administering punishment to our race, eradicating every last being. Having biologically and supernaturally evolved to possess otherworldly powers, his psychic assault is manifested in spears of burning energy and levitational force. His apocalyptic “Horsemen” look on with hatred, aiding the cause. The poisoned, decimated world that surrounds tells the tale of man left to his own devices.” The new album will be released digitally on June 2nd and physically on the 30th of that same month.
Edged Circle Productions have announced June 6th as the release date for Norwegian black metal duo EKROM‘s debut album, ‘Uten Nådigst Formildelse‘, on CD, vinyl LP, and cassette tape. The duo includes two old souls aimed at referencing 90’s black metal in an authentic but not-so dull way, this includes drummer Thomas Ødegaard (Nocturnal Breed) and vocalist, guitarist, bassist Kharon who is best known as an early member of Covenant. Plenty of thought and energy going into this one based off the first single “My End”:
French death metal band ATHANATHEOS have premiered another song from their upcoming concept album, ‘Cross. Deny. Glorify.‘ The band’s third full-length will be released on April 14th, 2023 via Lavadome Productions. They make a point of stating that “[…] the mentality that undergirds this record is the same one that allowed Death Metal to evolve and thrive in the exile of absolute ostracism by the mainstream: No trends, no compromise, only pure vision.” And their vision is a live on this record wherein the concept of the album pertains to the fourth century, “a period of significant interest to scholars of Christian history when, over a span of just 80 years, Christianity transformed from a marginalized and persecuted sect to the sole authorized state religion of the Roman Empire. This brought about a profound shift in Roman society and its longstanding polytheistic religious traditions.The historical account of “Cross. Deny. Glorify.” presents the birth of this transformative period through the perspectives of three distinct characters. Gaius, the father – a simple soldier. Flavius, the son – an itinerant merchant. Marcus, the grandson – a philosopher.” And personally this is a huge point of interest for me, so I am looking forward to reviewing this record next week alongside premiering the full album stream. For now check out “You Were Not”:
German black metal band MINAS MORGUL have announced their latest full-length ‘Nebelung‘ will release via Trollzorn Records on June 2nd this year on Digipak-CD, Gatefold-LP and digitally. This will be their eighth full-length and no doubt the band’ve only become more ambitious. This time around they’ve touched upon an aggressive Norwegian flavored sound rather than the 90’s German pagan black metal sound they were originally known for. To get a sense of what this means, check out this lyric video for the new song “Inter Stellas”:
New York City based traditional Heavy metal/rock band TANITH are set to release their latest album ‘Voyage‘ on April 21st by way of Metal Blade Records. Guitarist/vocalist Russ Tippins (Satan, et al.) suggests: “Voyage is the sound of the universe speaking to mankind through the medium of Tanith. Or, if you like, twin-guitar heavy rock with dual singers which, if you grew up in the 1970’s, will make you want to bounce over to the nearest record store. On a space hopper,” This is very much a 70’s heavy rock band in spirit with a bit of the right edge, still bearing some of the folkish roots of Uriah Heep and Thin Lizzy. To keep it authentic the album was “recorded and mastered on 24-track analog tape and was never digitized from recording to pressing,” and of course the songs are quite good too. Of the two singles they’ve released this week “Snow Tiger” is the one that got me:
Stick around for the pink penis candle at the end? Hold both thumbs up ahead of time because black n’ roll teamsters PERSEKUTOR are finally ready with another full-length and they’re having even more fun this time around with “Night Job” per a catchy song and a memorable music video. Their new album will be titled ‘Snow Business‘ and it isn’t that far off from release as it is set for June 23rd by way of Blues Funeral Recordings. About the video, frontman Vlad the Inhaler says: “Some peoples is enjoying the ‘Night Job’ video like it is heist movie, but much shorter and with killer song. Other peoples is thinking is maybe more like documentary: Day in life of PERSEKUTOR — also with killer song. Either interpretations is correct.” Bassist Adam “Hell” Murray adds: “‘Night Job’ takes me back to a simpler time of greasy riffs and bump n’ grind rhythms. It’s easy to party to and hard to forget!” Typical L.A. types, eh? Why go full-on cop shootin’ wild but not go -all the way- for the cop romance? Its like they don’t even want to kiss, bro.
Signal Rex have announced May 5th as the release date for cult Portuguese black metal band ORDEM SATÂNICA‘s fourth album, ‘Perpetuum Satanas‘, on vinyl LP. This group is part of the Aldebaran Circle (Trono Além Morte, Occelensbrig, Voëmmr, and Degredo et al.) none of which you’ve heard of. Build up that familiarity as Portugal’s black metal scenery is well worth exploring, otherwise check out the brand-new track “O Sacrifício Final (para Satan)”:
Norwegian black metal band NATTVERD have released another single, “En Poesende Eim I Vinden”, from their upcoming fourth full-length album. ‘I Helvetes Forakt‘ is set for release on May 26th by way of Soulseller Records and it of course features a classic Norwegian black metal influenced sound. This time around I hear some additional interest in atmospheric feats and more than pure punishment. Check out the song over on YouTube:
Atmospheric black metal trio AODON have announced they will be releasing their third full-length album ‘Portraits‘ once again through Willowtip Records this coming June 9th on CD, vinyl, and digitally. The band comment: “With Portraits, we gave free rein to all the ambivalence of Aodon’s music, both enraged and melodic, hostile and immersive. It was the perfect setting to present these nine dark destinies.” You’ll recall I really enjoyed their second record and, really, they can let their music speak for itself, as this first single ,”Mayerson”, is particularly energizing:
THIS WEEK’S VIDEOS / REVIEWS
Catch up with the latest YouTube video review/features and written reviews here. New videos post Thursday/Friday of each week for the most part. You can click on the link provided to read the review, each review has the related video embedded in the original post as well. Videos are fairly casual and meant to accompany the written review with some extra context and generalized notes.
MESMUR – Chthonic (2023) | REVIEW
MOON ORACLE – Ophidian Glare (2023) | REVIEW
WILD BEYOND – Wild Beyond (2023) | REVIEW
1782 – Clamor Luciferi (2023) | REVIEW
DEVANGELIC – Xul (2023) | REVIEW
THYSIA – Islands in Cosmic Darkness (2023) | REVIEW
LARVAE – Entitled to Death (2023) | REVIEW
Short Reviews | April 6th, 2023
COMING UP NEXT WEEK:
Here is a tentative list of what is coming up next week in terms of reviews. The following records have been listened to extensively, a preliminary review has been drafted (or completed), and I’ve locked them in for coverage. In terms of the “Short Written Reviews + Video” column, these are more tentative, some of them may be cut if I do not have enough time to get around to everything. This week some of these might swap around since a lot of April’s releases are bottlenecked mid-month on the 14th and 21st.
LONGFORM WRITTEN REVIEWS / VIDEO REVIEWS:
BLAZON RITE – Wild Rites and Ancient Songs [April 14th, Gates of Hell Records]
ATHANATHEOS – Cross. Deny. Glorify. [April 14th, Lavadome Productions]
DODHEIMSGARD – Black Medium Current [April 14th, Peaceville Records]
SMOULDER – Violent Creed of Vengeance [April 21st, Cruz Del Sur Music]
DECIPHER – Arcane Paths to Resurrection [April 21st, Transcending Obscurity Records]
HERETIC CULT REDEEMER – Flagellum Universalis [April 21st, III Damnation]
DOZER – Drifting in the Endless Void [April 21st, Blues Funeral Recordings]
SHORT WRITTEN REVIEWS + VIDEO:
HEMPLIFIER – The Stoner Side of Doom [April 4th, Electric Valley Records]
ALTARI – Kröflueldar [April 14th, Svart Records]
BLOOD STAR – First Sighting [April 21st, Shadow Kingdom Records]
GYRDLEAH – Spellbinder [April 21st, Black Lion Records]
ULVEDHARR – Inferno XXXIII [April 21st, Scarlet Records]
BARDITUS – Dein Schwert [April 22nd, Purity Through Fire]
BONGINATOR – The Intergalactic Gorebong of Deathpot [April 20th, Barbaric Brutality]
WOLFNAUT – Return of the Asteroid [April 21st, Ripple Music]
THESE BEASTS – Cares. Wills. Wants. [April 21st, Magnetic Eye Records]
NACHTIG – Eisig’ Romantik [April 22nd, Purity Through Fire]
MARGARITA WITCH CULT – Margarita Witch Cult [April 21st, Heavy Psych Sounds]
<strong>Help Support Grizzly Butts’ goals with a donation:</strong>
Please consider donating directly to site costs and project funding using PayPal.
Make a one-time donation
Make a monthly donation
Make a yearly donation
Choose an amount
Or enter a custom amount
Your contribution is appreciated.
Your contribution is appreciated.
Your contribution is appreciated.DonateDonate monthlyDonate yearly