BELL WITCH: Seattle Doom Metal Duo Announces US Tour Dates With Monarch!; Mirror Reaper Movie Trailer Posted + North American Tour With Primitive Man Draws Near

 

BELL WITCH: Seattle Doom Metal Duo Announces US Tour Dates With Monarch!; Mirror Reaper Movie Trailer Posted + North American Tour With Primitive Man Draws Near

Seattle doom metal duo, BELL WITCH, will join French doom metalists/labelmates Monarch! for a stretch of US live dates this December. The tour will commence on December 1st and run through December 7th with additional performances to be announced in the coming days. The trek follows BELL WITCH’s previously announced North American tour with Denver doom troupe Primitive Man from October 25th to November 17th. See all confirmed dates below.

Additionally, BELL WITCH will bring their devastating odes to the stages of Roadburn Festival 2018. Set to take place in Tilburg, The Netherlands, the band will perform two sets, the first on Saturday April 21st at the 013 venue and Sunday, April 22nd at Het Patronaat. BELL WITCH will be recreating their soon-to-be-released, eighty-three-minute offering, Mirror Reaper, in its crushingly exquisite entirety. The feat requires the input of honorary member, vocalist Erik Moggridge (Aerial Ruin), who will be joining the band to complete the performance. Expect his fragile yet evocative vocal style to lend an even more ghastly and ethereal quality to BELL WITCH’s already otherworldly sound.

The anticipated Mirror Reaper is set for release worldwide via Profound Lore Records on October 20th. With their latest output BELL WITCH has created a truly enormous work – one continuous, eighty-three-minute piece unfolding as a single track. Engineered and mixed by veteran producer Billy Anderson (Swans, Sleep, Neurosis), the duo of Dylan Desmond (bass, vocals) and Jesse Shreibman (drums, vocals, organ) have pushed the band’s sound further beyond their landmark 2015 LP, Four Phantoms. While retaining the colossal heaviness of their previous releases, Mirror Reaper sees the band explore the more meditative, melancholy, and introspective aspects to their sound through the introduction of long, lonely organ passages and the return of Moggridge, offering a prominent presence.

In conjunction with the release, BELL WITCH has created a feature-length music video. The film is a video collage comprised of dozens of archival films. Each of these clips are woven together with the album to build a patient, heavy, and haunting narrative. The film aims to hold the viewer in the state of a lucid dream, feeling trapped as a specter drifting through places of darkness. Mirror Reaper will be a projection for the band’s live performances, as well as a standalone cinematic experience.

View the stunning trailer at  THIS LOCATION.

Issues director Taylor Bednarz, “I was given the opportunity to work with Dylan and Jesse on their incredibly ambitious new project, Mirror Reaper. I had started making small fan music videos by chopping up old archival film originally as editing practice. I started to find that you could craft these visceral narratives by weaving these different films together with the context of the music. What developed were deep and mysterious stories that were framed in the tone and rhythm of the music. I noticed how much symbolism and atmosphere I could pack into these four-five minute songs that I knew it had very unique cinematic potential.

When I met Dylan and Jesse, they were just finishing up the last of the album and had been kicking around the idea of a music video. I mentioned I was a filmmaker, showed them some of my work, and they extended the opportunity to make a film with them. After listening to the album and talking with the two, I started collecting dozens of old horror movies, anatomical films, historical documentaries. I am so honored to have gotten the opportunity to be a part of such an incredible project.”

BELL WITCH’s Mirror Reaper will be available on 2xCD, 2xLP, and digital formats. Preorder your copy today at THIS LOCATION

BELL WITCH w/ Primitive Man:
10/24/2017 Diabolical Records – Salt Lake City, UT * no Primitive Man
10/25/2017 Hi Dive – Denver, CO
10/26/2017 O’Leavers – Omaha, NE
10/27/2017 Cobra Lounge – Chicago, IL
10/28/2017 Rock Island Brewery – Rock Island, IL
10/29/2017 The New Dodge – Hamtramck, MI
10/30/2017 Ace Of Clubs – Columbus, OH
10/31/2017 Brillobox – Pittsburgh, PA
11/01/2017 Coalition – Toronto, ON
11/02/2017 Bar Le Ritz – Montreal, QC
11/03/2017 Geno’s – Portland, ME
11/04/2017 Cop Frat – Oneonta, NY
11/05/2017 ONCE – Boston, MA
11/06/2017 Saint Vitus Bar – Brooklyn, NY
11/07/2017 Kung Fu Necktie – Philadelphia, PA
11/08/2017 The Meatlocker – Montclair, NJ
11/09/2017 Sidebar – Baltimore, MD
11/10/2017 Strange Matter – Richmond, VA
11/11/2017 Drunken Unicorn – Atlanta, GA
11/12/2017 Exit/In – Nashville, TN
11/13/2017 White Water Tavern – Little Rock, AR
11/14/2017 Growlers – Memphis, TN
11/15/2015 Santos –  New Orleans, LA
11/16/2017 Lost Well – Austin, TX
11/17/2017 Ridgelea Lounge – Fort Worth, TX
11/19/2017 Club Red – Mesa, AZ w/ Thra, Ceremented * no Primitive Man
w/ Monarch:
11/30/2017 Cobalt – Vancouver, BC * Bell Witch only
12/01/2017 Highline – Seattle, WA
12/02/2017 Tonic Lounge – Portland, OR
12/03/2017 Old Nick’s – Eugene, OR
12/05/2017 Blue Lamp – Sacramento, CA
12/06/2017 Golden Bull – Oakland, CA
12/07/2017 Five Star Bar – Los Angeles, CA

“The title ‘Mirror Reaper’ is indicative of the Hermetic axiom ‘As Above, So Below,’ written with two sides to form one whole,” notes the band of the themes surrounding the concept and lyrics of Mirror Reaper “The song is both its own and its reflection, as an opposite is whole only with its contrary. Our focus as a band has always been the perception of ghosts and the implied archetype of the dichotomy of life/death therein. ‘Mirror Reaper’ is a continuation of that concept. During the writing process we were devastated by the loss of our dear friend and former drummer, Adrian Guerra. In love and respect to his memory, we reserved an important yet brief section in the song for him that features unused vocal tracks from our last album. This specific movement serves as a conceptual turn in the piece, or point of reflection. We believe he would be proud of it as well. ‘Mirror Reaper’ was the first collaborative writing project with the new lineup, and Adrian’s death during it brought extra emotional weight. We sought to match the complexity and weight of these events within the composition of the piece.”

Formed by Desmond and ex-drummer/vocalist Adrian Guerra, BELL WITCH released their first self-titled demo in 2011 and partnered with Profound Lore Records for their debut album, Longing, in 2012. The duo’s second LP, 2015’s acclaimed Four Phantoms was recognized as one of doom metal’s triumphs of the year. The band extensively toured in North America and Europe, securing notable festival appearances including Roadburn, Basilica Soundscape, Sled Island, and Psycho California.

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Album Review: “Isolated Evolution”- Necrolytic Goat Converter

Necrolytic Goat Converter is probably one of the most interesting band names I’ve stumbled upon in recent years but do not let a name deter you. Isolated Evolution is a treasure trove combining all things Black Metal into a cauldron of memorable tunes and goats… just kidding about the goat part but if converting them is a form of creating solid musical composition then mastermind Chris Voss has achieved just this. 

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Cloak of Skies: Drug Honkey

Imagine reaching into the dark crevices of the mind and mulling through every emotion that drives an individual into oblivion Cloak of Skies by Drug Honkey would be the soundtrack. Combining elements of Doom, Death, and Atmospheric Black Metal with darkened synth infused industrial passages the band has created a plethora of feeling proving the point that Drug Honkey is the only drug you need. 

Dabbling in various territories Drug Honkey does not give in to the typical sound you would expect with the different genres, instead they encompass each one breathing in the atmosphere of a sickening trip and this is most definitely not a bad thing. Pool of Failure fills the ears with synthesized doom ladened riffs transporting the listener into the ruins of the mind, and throws in a psychedelic brew of unforgiving vocals. This song acts as a great introduction, paving the way for the rest of the album. Apocalyptic synths give Sickening Wasteoid an almost haunting presence and opens up the door to an industrial wasteland. 

While this album stays true to the vision it does not tread lightly, there are aspects of pain and unforgiveness here. There is no safe space and Outlet of Hatred serves that purpose. The distorted vocals mingled with the swelling sounds feed into a feeling of catharsis. In a true psychedelic fashion (It’s Not) The Way seperates itself from the other songs leaning more heavily into the noise aspect while not straying too far from the curve. The title track Cloak of Skies feature impressive saxaphone work by Bruce Lamont of Yakuza which add more depth and mystery to this album. If “psychedelic doom jazz” was a real thing Drug Honkey have made it so. Normally remixed songs are something that are casually listened to in passing but Pool of Failure remixed by Justin K. Broadrick give the salutary nod to early Godflesh material which is definitely a big factor within this band. Drug Honkey transcends the genres presented making their unique sound an escapism from reality. If music is to be experienced it can be done with Cloak of Skies, but not only that it can be felt. Within the realm of metal there are plenty of bands that stand out but Drug Honkey are in a league of their own, pushing boundaries and bringing emotions forth to break barriers… highly recommended. 

CORMORANT: Decibel Premieres “Preserved In Ash” From Progressive Blackened Death Unit As Diaspora Full-Length Nears Release

CORMORANT: Decibel Premieres “Preserved In Ash” From Progressive Blackened Death Unit As Diaspora Full-Length Nears Release
 


Preorder Diaspora at THIS LOCATION.
 
Slated to drop this August, Diaspora is the imminent new full-length from progressive blackened death collective CORMORANT. Recorded and mixed by Greg Wilkinson (Vastum, Graves At Sea, Noothgrush, Brainoil) at Earhammer Studios in Oakland, California, the expansive four-track, sixty-one-minute offering features the band’s longest, most detail-oriented compositions to date – the result of two years of collaborative writing.
 
In advance of its release, today Decibel Magazine offers up first single, opening track “Preserved In Ash,” for public feasting at THIS LOCATION.
 
“‘Preserved In Ash’ is the last song we wrote for the album,” elaborates guitarist/vocalist Matt Solis, “but as it was coming together it became clear that it fit perfectly as a lead-off track. Lyrically, it’s about the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79, which buried the city of Pompeii in volcanic ash. There’s a lot of psychedelic black metal and funeral doom stuff going on in this song, and Greg Wilkinson’s crushing production allowed us to establish a good balance between those two tonalities.”
 
Diaspora will be released independently on 2xLP, CD, and digital formats on August 11th with US and European distribution through War Crime Recordings. Preorders are currently available at THIS LOCATION.
 
Musically, CORMORANT‘s Diaspora features familiar elements of black, death, prog, and folk metal, but pronounced psychedelic and funeral doom influences can be heard throughout as well, particularly on the twenty-six-minute closing epic, “Migration.” Diaspora also features dynamic performances from renowned cellist Jackie Perez Gratz (Grayceon, Giant Squid, ex-Amber Asylum). Mastered by Brad Boatright (Sleep, YOB, Gatecreeper) at Audiosiege, the album is a crushing statement from one of the Bay Area’s most consistent extreme metal bands.
 
Additionally, Utah-based visionary artist Jeff Christensen created the album’s vivid four-panel artwork. Issues Christensen, “The idea was to create four panels of artwork based on a migration theme. I thought it would be interesting to have the panels run consecutively to form an expansive, evolving image where the eyes can just roam. We wanted each painting to be able to hold its own as a standalone image but also be a link to the wider image of the migratory theme. The original artwork was done with oil paints on four 16″ x 16″ panels. The entire process was a challenge, and the finished images are really different than anything I’ve done before. I was given a lot of reign to just do my thing and I’m very happy with the way it turned out.”
 
Oakland dwellers can catch CORMORANT live this August. Future CORMORANT performances are in the plotting stages.
 
CORMORANT:
8/11/2017 Oakland Metro Operahouse – Oakland, CA w/ Inanimate Existence, Wrvth, Logistic Slaughter
 
CORMORANT is a progressive black/death metal band from Petaluma, California. Forged in 2007, the group consists of bassist/vocalist Marcus Luscombe, guitarist Nick Cohon, guitarist/vocalist Matt Solis, and drummer Brennan Kunkel. In addition to performing numerous shows throughout the Bay Area with notable acts like At The Gates, Wolves In The Throne Room, Ne Obliviscaris, and Pallbearer, CORMORANT has completed full US tours with Primordial, While Heaven Wept, YOB, Norska, and others.
 
 

Hope Attrition: Woe

When a band can leave you feeling voidless and empty but not in a negative fashion you know they possess something special. Woe delivers an unforgivable brew of USBM that will tug at your emotions and dig into the core. After the 2013 album Withdrawl Woe was silent for a time and now they have returned full force with Hope Attrition. They have definitely brought forth an amazing album but with more power and finesse than your typical run of the mill Black Metal. 

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Winter’s Wake: Up and Coming Viking Metal Band from New York

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I first heard of Winter’s Wake through Instagram, so I decided to give them a listen. This Viking Metal group from New York manages to combine powerful vocals and beautiful melodies that are a staple in bands like Equilibrium, Moonsorrow, and others in the genre. Their new single “Awake” is now available through ITunes, Soundcloud, and Spotify, so please do yourself a favor and check this band out.

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Carach Angren Brings the Haunt to Los Angeles

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©Photo: Dave Boccuzzi©

When Carach Angren announced that they would be joining Italian Metallers Fleshgod Apocalypse on a USA tour I knew this would be a treat! This was a sold out show and the band absolutely delivered. The ominous intro track “Once Upon a Time…” set the mood for what would be an energetic “hauntingly” epic set. The crowd gave them a warm welcome and once the first notes of “There’s No Place Like Home” echoed the audience was instantly hooked. Mingled with the harsh vocals of Seregor, the beautiful yet looming presence of Ardek’s orchestrations, Namtar’s pounding drums, and Diogo’s guitar the next songs flowed into motion. “The Sighting is a Portent of Doom”, and “Lingering in an Imprint Haunting” soon followed. By this time there was already a hefty amount of moshing going on but this was not enough.

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