I’ve reviewed a decent amount of metal records, I’ve made four Black (Metal) Mixmas mixes, and last year’s non-genre list had a few metal records in it, but I’ve never done a full metal-only list (except for the little thing in Black (Metal) Mixmas IV), so I hope this doesn’t seem too out of place, but honestly I listen to wayyyyy more metal than I ever write about on AGB, so this sort of makes up for that I guess. I’m not as deep into the metal scene as I am the drone one, so I’m sure there’s way more awesome obscure metal records that would’ve made it onto this list had I heard them, but whatever. If you’ve got any recs, let me know in the comments or email!
And in case you’re not a huge metal fan, know that there’s plenty of stuff on this list that A: is only debatably metal (see: numbers 15, 13, 12, 1) and B: has plenty of AGB friendly elements aka drone, noise, etc (see: numbers 9, 6, 5, 4, 1).
Have fun. Thanks for reading/listening/appreciating.
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Locrian – Chalk Point (Fan Death)
Locrian have found themselves firmly in the “If you haven’t heard them yet STOP EVERYTHING” category. Every album they put out seems like it’s the best thing they’ve ever done. Which is true. But I don’t know how they do it. And The Clearing is no different. It is literally the best thing they’ve ever done. It’s massively evil & evilly massive. Sticking with the genre mixing (doom, noise, metal, ambient, everything else) but making sure to throw a hefty dose of BLACK all over it. Although this time around they’ve juiced on the electronics, ground up some psych in there as well, and upped the bleak shrieks to a more noticeable level, maybe because everyone’s been digging on The Body lately?
The first track is like a blackened Barn Owl, opening with a lurching looped piano and moving to streamlined feedback, slow thunderous drums, and cult monk moaning. Evil. Massive. Then shit gets even bigger, a fury of blast beats, power electronics, and horrific howling. Totally massive. Bringing things down for the third track with depressed acoustics laid over a rumbling feedback, sparse drums, eeriness abound, less massive, just as evil. The final sidelong piece is a motherfuckin burner, Goblin like pulsed electronics, everything seething a wretched tension, foreboding as hell, some awful shit on the horizon. Slow, methodic, and as evil as it gets. Building but never getting anywhere, relentless tension. Like running up the down escalators of hell, finally getting to the top and finding Locrian screaming at you with an eternal wall of speakers behind them and they kick you in the face back down. Unbelievably massive & evil & fucking AWESOME. Do not miss this.