If you were only allowed to pick one black metal album to hear for the rest of 2019, I would strongly suggest you choose False's Portent. A dizzying leap forward from an already very talented and rightfully well regarded act, it does not take long into ten minute opener "A Victual to Our Dead Selves" for the song to grab your undivided attention and never let go. Dedicated to the memory of several friends, the record is professional, passionate, heartbreaking and exhilarating. "Rime On The Song Of Returning" is an exceptionally poetic ode to natural abandon that seems to question our size in the scope of the march of time. The band have never sounded more precise, empowered and fiery, like there is a fortune teller at band practice urging them to claim destiny's heights. If this album holds significance of metal's future it is one that honors the best of the past while boding very well for the genre's horizons.
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Hey metal fam. Besides work I have been spending the day discussing with people or listening to people about who really invented metalcore and driving around enjoying the new Pig Destroyer. It was good to also have an excuse to listen to Starkweather at my morning job today, though you don’t really need an excuse to hear the Crossbearer / Into The Wire reissue. “Mainline” is so fucking sick.
As for the new Pig Destroyer (which I have finally been returning to and absorbing more), I can’t imagine why anyone would be unhappy with Head Cage. There is not a wasted note on the album (despite many of them), the tones are massive and beyond devastating, the performances are manic and yet super precise but organic and adrenalized. The band sound excited with the material. And the low end is frankly fucking unreal, it sounds so heavy and awesome.
I think some people just perpetuate the myth that higher end production means a band sucks now, but that is actually toxic to bands. Not that music is gonna always make you “a living” or that should be the prime reason for making all art but if you love an artist it isn’t fair that you demand their work be super raw or commercially barely viable to the average person. It’s already fucking Pig Destroyer, lol, not SZA (who I stan). I don’t have a problem with bands I love succeeding either. I mean, you should try and pay attention to what you are hitching your wagon too as far as big companies go, but it is cool to have good music out there in the world. Every weirder band that gets bigger helps just maybe make the most mainstream heavy bands a little less shitty, haha. Did I just do what I said I hate? Lol.
Anyway, “Terminal Itch” finds a relentless kinship between guitar and drum obscenity while “Circle River” reminds me of Pig Destroyer taking a crack at noise and Melvins influences within a framework of their usual punishing aesthetic touches. I fucking loved every minute of it. “Army Of Cops” is going to prove itself to be a big song within their body if work over time as well, I’d wager. This shit will be standing after whatever dust settles, one hundred percent. The riffs on this record are fucking brutes brootal brootiful. And you HAVE to love that two minute mark hardcore break in “Cops”. It spells M-O-S-H.
Blackened Death Records have released the second edition of the important anti-fascist metal comp W.O.M.A.N. today.
Worldwide Organization of Metalheads Against Nazis II deserves support and features a killer variety of acts from Ghoul (“Nazi Smasher”) to Redbait ( “Dick Punch” studio version!) to other awesome acts we love and have mentioned in the past like Immortal Bird, Jucifer, Stormland and Suicide Wraith.
Pay what you want for over 40 songs.
— Josh (@CVRSEDBREATH) October 16, 2018
October’s Surpise (besides my Queen Taylor Swift helping register thousands to vote and endorsing a blue candidate before midterms, go girl!) was today’s This Will Destroy You second album of the year drop! Love the energy this record kicks off with, like the grandiosity of Muse channeled through something completely opposite and more underground like UOA or something, ha . Undeniable passion! Very cool! Check out the impressive New Others Part Two HERE!
Thanks to those that took the hint and stayed up with us last night to listen to the surprise… This is the beautiful black vinyl version. We’ll have it for all tour dates starting tonight in Phoenix and we left a few with @dark0perative for folks that can’t attend. pic.twitter.com/ERMXV2AQMi
— THIS WILL DESTROY YOU (@_TWDY_) October 16, 2018
Mercyful Fate (aka the band I kind of spend half the time thinking is the best metal band ever) have re-issued some of their lesser heralded yet of course worthy as heck efforts on 180g picture discs. Time in particular looks outstanding in that format. YES! Go! Purchase! Consume! And yes you can also get more well known albums like Melissa and Don’t Break The Oath in this killer format option HERE.
“You can spiral yourself into darkness with these classic Mercyful Fate albums, or you can exhibit them on your wall like I will. Either way, enjoy.” – King Diamond
Lastly, After nearly four years of absence, ENSIFERUM has announced a full North American headlining tour. Set to begin January 5th and run through January 29th, support will be provided by mighty Septicflesh as well as an additional opener still to be announced. My mouth is watering hoping it is someone really cool, especially since I missed that awesome Amorphis/Moonspell package coming through my area and wanted to cry.
Comments bassist Sami Hinkka, “It’s been way too many years since we rocked with our North American warrior brothers and sisters. So early 2019 we will set sails and head to your shores and we are not coming alone. We will join forces with a brilliant and ass kicking band, Septicflesh, and a special guest. What a way to start a new year! This tour will leave its mark on the history of metal so get your ticket in advance and get ready to mosh with us like there is no tomorrow. On this tour, we have no chance to play in every city that we would want to, so we are doing our best to return to North America for a second time in 2019. Stay tuned and see you soon!”
ENSIFERUM w/ Septicflesh, special guest TBA:
1/05/2019 Baltimore Soundstage – Baltimore, MD
1/06/2019 Irving Plaza – New York, NY
1/07/2019 Brighton Music Hall – Boston, MA
1/08/2019 Imperial Bell – Quebec City, QC
1/09/2019 Corona Theatre – Montreal, QC
1/01/2019 Opera House – Toronto, ON
1/11/2019 Harpo’s – Detroit, MI
1/12/2019 The Forge – Joliet, IL
1/13/2019 Skyway Theater – Minneapolis, MN
1/14/2019 The Riot Room – Kansas City, MO
1/15/2019 Oriental Theater – Denver, CO
1/17/2019 El Corazon – Seattle, WA
1/18/2019 Rickshaw Theatre – Vancouver, BC
1/19/2019 Hawthorne Theatre – Portland, OR
1/20/2019 Metro Opera House – Oakland, CA
1/21/2019 The Regent – Los Angeles, CA
1/22/2019 Club Red – Mesa, AZ
1/23/2019 Rockhouse Bar & Grill – El Paso, TX
1/24/2019 Gas Monkey Bar & Grill – Dallas, TX
1/25/2019 Come And Take It Live! – Austin, TX
1/26/2019 White Oak Music Hall – Houston, TX
1/28/2019 The Masquerade (Hell) – Atlanta, GA
1/29/2019 The Orpheum – Tampa, FL
1/31 – 2/04/2019 70,000 Tons Of Metal – Fort Lauderdale, FL
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On September 15th, Ensiferum will release their anticipated seventh full-length, Two Paths, worldwide via Metal Blade Records. Produced by Anssi Kippo, the master was recorded on tape. In anticipation of this sure to add to their already hearty legacy release, the band has now launched a fun live acoustic version of “Two of Spades” for their true fans (from their previous album, One Man Army). Frankly, this performance, especially the sing-a-long at the end is friggin’ awesome.Add to My Radar
On September 15th, Ensiferum will release their seventh full-length, Two Paths, worldwide via Metal Blade Records (order HERE now). Produced by Anssi Kippo, the master was recorded on tape, for a true analog experience. Ensiferum has now launched a video clip for the 2nd single “Way Of The Warrior”.
Ensiferum comments: “Hi folks! So here it is, our brand new video of the song ‘Way Of The Warrior’. Like our music combines metal and folk elements so does this video. It was really great to be involved in the process more than we ever have been before and the result turned out to be fantastic! We hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed recording the song and shooting the video. So turn the volume up to eleven, move your furniture a bit so that you have room for moshing and press play!”Add to My Radar
Helsinki heavy metal band Ensiferum may look like they need a little more sun, but that is because Finnish people are usually pretty darn pale and also because the respected band recently entered the Astia studio in Lappeenranta, Finland to begin work on their seventh full-length, produced once again by Anssi Kippo (Children Of Bodom, Impaled Nazarene, Entwine etc.)! Set to be released September 2017 via Metal Blade Records, the quintet has now issued an update about the recording process for the follow up to the bloody excellent One Man Army from in the studio.
Sami Hinkka (bass) comments: “Hi, folks! Greetings from the Astia studio!
For this album, we wanted to catch our live energy on a totally new level with the best possible sound. So every song was played together while recording drums. Most of the bass lines were also taken from those live takes to guarantee the maximum groove. There are songs on the album we recorded without a click so get ready for some serious rocking, people!
Since Anssi Kippo is such a studio wizard, he has synced his legendary Otari MTR-90mk2 2” 24 -tape recording machine (recognizable, for example, from Metallica‘s ‘Nothing Else Matters’ -video) with his computer, so we will record drums, bass, rhythm guitars and lead vocals on tape, and the rest that can’t fit on the tape, we’ll record on computer. Also the mixing will be done the analogue way on tape to make sure that the sound will remain as raw, punchy and as unprocessed as possible.
The second week is almost over and we are perfectly on schedule: drums, bass lines and half of the rhythm guitars are done.
We are doing ~12 hour long days, so unfortunately this time there won’t be ‘beer of the week’ or any fooling around video diaries, but there will be plenty of time for that after the album is done and the touring starts again. 😉
Stay tuned for more news! Cheers!”
Before the album’s release, European fans will be able to catch Ensiferum at various festivals this summer. See below for all dates, with more shows to be announced soon!Add to My Radar
The drums sounded. The horns blew. Battle paint adorned, bladed weapons drawn, beer upon their breath, the tribesmen of Finland and their Norwegian allies charged through Chicago, laying waste to the those who sought to oppose them, raising their fists proudly in mutual purpose to those who joined them in the sounds and revelry of battle lust.
The Trolls zealously feasted upon the slain and fallen. The Forest Clan danced upon bloodied flesh and crippled bones. The Sword Bearers left nothing in the brutality of their crushing wake. All those who witnessed the carnage and what remained will surely remember the day Trollfest, Korpiklaani, and Ensiferum came marching through their town.
For further details of the Bottom Lounge Battle of Chicago, click here.Add to My Radar
Ensiferum‘s One Man Army is a melodic folk metal fan’s delight if you don’t mind higher end production with still gritty sounding guitar. That said, there is still a raw and very real attack to the material. Think at times of a trace of
Slaughter Of The Soul sped up through symphonic Helsinki bombast and warcry screams mixed with folk metal. A thirst for history, warmetal and spirited endeavors will be quenched but an at times thin guitar sound but you’ll also experience a lot more variety in material and even genre as the record progresses through epic to speed to folky dreams.
“Axe Of Judgement” gets things off to a determined gallop after the intro mood setter “March Of War”. Ensiferum play a lot of their strengths right on “Axe…” with a short but lightning lead, seeming black metal influence and speed paired with epic metal touches. “Heathen Horde” is one of the best songs from the band yet and would surely appeal to fans of Hammerfall or Turisas, easilly. The mid section quiet “traditional” part of the song is glorious while the drums thunder beneath spoken shouts and a riff that’d make Estonia’s Metsatoll jealous. Man, I’d kill to see those two live. “Lady Of The Slain” by Tyr comes to mind asanother recent battle field epic that kindles the spark of heroism in the heart of the epic metal fan in a similar way.
Click HERE for the full review.
Finnish folk metal titans, ENSIFERUM, will return to North America this Spring on a co-headlining tour with country-mates, Korpiklaani. Scheduled to commence on May 6th in Los Angeles, the band will level nearly two dozen cities with the trek coming to a close on May 29th in New York City. Additional support will be provided by Trollfest. The tour follows the band’s European march alongside Insomnium and Omnium Gatherum next month. Tickets are on sale today. See all confirmed dates below.
ENSIFERUM will be touring in support of their One Many Army full-length, set to drop in North America this Tuesday via Metal Blade Records. Crowned “warlike and fiery” by MetalSucks, ENSIFERUM’s predominantly analog-recorded One Man Army wields eleven stunning tracks of the band’s signature synthesis of Viking, folk and power metal swathed in fantastical themes of Scandinavian lore, captured by award-winning producer Anssi Kippo (Children Of Bodom, Impaled Nazarene, Entwine etc.) at Astia-Studios in Lappeenranta, Finland.
In anticipation of its release, the band recently partnered with Spotfiy to bring fans a stream of the record in its entirety. Hosted by Decibel Magazine, each day Spotify added an additional One Man Army track to their player leading up to the record’s final descent. Listen to One Man Army, now streaming in its entirety, at THIS LOCATION.
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Finnish folk metal masters Ensiferum are preparing to release a new album in the new year. This, their sixth studio album, will be entitled One Man Army. It will be the bands first album since signing to Metal Blade Records. Sammi Hinkka, bassist, had this to say about recording the album:
“Recording process was long, hard, rewarding and full of incredible moments. Instruments were actually played and left as they were instead of creating tracks from hundreds of different takes, moving them to the grid and modifying things. Of course computers were used but overall we made everything as analog as possible. Listeners can experience a better sound and natural groove, something that we think most metal albums lack these days. Overall, the album sounds much more like a band playing live rather than ‘midi-metal.'”
Hinkka went on to say:
“On the new album, we took many things musically to the next level so we decided also to try something new graphics-wise. Gyula Havancsák did a phenomenal job! For the first time it was really nice to be more involved with designing the cover and all details. Our humble gratitude to Gyula for all the patience and really amazing results. We couldn’t be more satisfied!”
One Man Army will officially be released on February 24.
Check out tour dates here as Ensiferum hits the road (and sea) with the likes of Insomnium and Omnium Gatherum.Add to My Radar
Finnish folk metal stalwarts Ensiferum have been confirmed as headliners for this years North American Paganfest 2013 and are set to hit the road March 30. are going to headline 2013’s North American Paganfest 2013. The band recently stated:
“Finally, Ensiferum will to return to North America! It’s been way too long since we shared wild Paganfest nights with our brothers and sisters across the ocean. We will not come to pillage your cities alone; it’s a great honor to join forces with Týr, Heidevolk, Trollfest and Helsott for this once-in-a-lifetime tour.”
To find all the dates etc. click right here.
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Welcome to Metal Riot’s Cover Art Battle! Every week we try and show the best-of-the-best in metal cover art, ranging from the fantastically illustrated to hauntingly photographed and everything in between.
Another week, more album cover art to discover. New bands. Tenured bands. Enough shenanigans. Time for you to go and vote.
That is all.
Don’t forget to like us on our Facebook page to stay up to date on this and future Cover Art Battles and look through our gallery of past winners with comments from the bands.
***WINNER*** Evil Entourage – The Opposition (Chaos)Add to My Radar
Finnish pagan/folk metal legends Ensiferum are streaming their brand new album Unsung Heroes for 24 hours only, so get to listening. The album was released today on Spinefarm Records, is the band’s fifth album and the follow up to 2009’s From Afar.
Click here to listen to Unsung Heroes.
A recent press release had the following to say about the album:
(Unsung Heroes)”sees the Finnish five-piece — founded in 1995 — pushing their signature sound to bold new heights of drama and excess. A cinematic experience from first note to last, ‘Unsung Heroes’ takes the listener on a journey of genuine light and shade, with the 16 minute-plus ‘Passion Proof Power’ showing that when it comes to the epic statement, Ensiferum are very much in the front-line, swords at the ready.”Add to My Radar
Pagan/folk metal legends Ensiferum have released the first single from their upcoming album Unsung Heroes. The song is called “Burning Leaves” and definitely sounds just like Ensiferum so fans should not be disappointed. The album is set for an August 27, 2012 release date under Spinefarm Records.
You can click here to check out the song and a large picture of the album cover.Add to My Radar
This collectible comes in a stylish “Hard As Iron” cardboard box.
And don’t forget the warning: “NOTE! We don’t take any responsibilities of functionality of this product!”Add to My Radar