In all, Gateways to Eternity makes for a strong introduction to The Solemn Curse, mixing elements of metal’s past and present, and providing hints to the band’s future direction.
As promised last week, here are the Top 10 metal albums of 2012 according to the writers of Hellbound.ca. You will notice that, in comparison to our previously published Top 10 Canadian albums of 2012 list, a few Canadian artists actually ended up charting higher here than on the Canuck top 10. The reason for this is simply because we had more writers submit top 10 lists here than did for the Canadian list.
Collected, compiled and edited by Sean Palmerston
Today we published the TOP 20 ALBUMS OF 2012 list, as voted by the writers of Hellbound.ca. Here are the individual Top 10s that were submitted by our writers for your personal enjoyment…
Embers and Revelations draws from a thoroughly Luciferian lexicon, and is a magnificent deluge of ungodliness. Weapon prove, once again, that an abundance of sinister creativity can be dredged from the quagmire of blackened death and masterfully butchered upon the altar.
A Great River is raw and jagged, and yet beautifully serene in parts. It’s as incongruent and temperamental as any of our hearts, and Hall tears his chest wide open on the album, unafraid to express his own shortcomings and fears in the hunt for peace and fulfillment.
Spyhorelandet comprises the kind of unrelenting hopelessness you’ll experience stumbling naked and bleeding though a blizzard after seeing your family devoured by wolves. However, where much of black metal concentrates on diabolic or fantastical pursuits, Formloff are interested in the “ugly personal histories each of us carries”.
A Godlike Inferno is a grand, cloven-footed romp. Having one foot in the metal camp, and one in the alt-folk and rock camp, gives the album wider crossover appeal—although potential listeners might struggle somewhat with Opposition’s satanic fervency
Sparseness and minimalism play a large part in Constantinople’s allure, and the space within the tracks leaves room for darkly spiritual reflection.
As a neurotic and obsessive metal fan I struggle to cope with the number of magnificently malevolent black metal releases I’m missing out on. It’s a depressing thought—which I suppose is quite apt really. Such is the enigmatic nature of the underground scene, coupled with the fact that I am essentially a troglodyte, for every excellent black metal release I get to hear, five other worthy contenders pass me by. However, there are a few releases of late that I have been fortunate enough to hear and think deserve some praise-heavy wordage. Continuing my never-ending multi-album review series, this time I’m focusing on a few rough-edged gems (and one notably polished one) from black metal’s inhospitable climes.
Metal Blade celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2012. While the label has already released a plethora of classic and genre-defining albums, and fostered and supported our dearly loved heavy metal community, it remains, to this day, as active and energetic as ever. What the metal realm would have looked like without Metal Blade’s steely presence over the past three decades is a frightening thought indeed.
To help celebrate this, here are four new reviews of new Metal Blade titles by our New Zealand based writer Craig Haze, who tackles the new releases by Angel Witch, Exhumer, Ram and OSI