God, I fucking love this band. When I first found out about Blut Aus Nord in the mid 2000’s, something made them stick out from the rest of the more traditional black metal acts I was into at the time. Now, over a decade later, I’m no longer listening to the older bands and have been addicted to these French black metallers. I’ll even go out on a limb here and say that the 777 series is hands down the best thing to come to black metal in the past few years. Each of the chapters is unlike the last and yet, the symbols and songs somehow tie together.
Their latest release under the 777 guise is Cosmosophy and it plays larger than life. Huge, swooping riffs undulate before crashing against cymbals and percussions. This is not your Pure Norwegian Black Metal. It’s more intelligent, even more solitary and by all means less self-aware. The Epitome tracks arise from the darkness and pick off right where they left off, at “Epitome XIV”, before finishing at “Epitome XVIII”. And the only critique is the female vocals threw me off a bit. Pick up this record at your local shop. It’s well worth it. I only hope they release the entire 777 series in a box set.
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Up next is a bit of a no-brainer. Cult of Youth‘s music is far from metal but is right there alongside the chasm and in a lot of ways, more dark than the other two albums reviewed here today. Plenty of other media outlets will label Sean Ragon as many things he is not, but one thing’s for sure, Cult of Youth is one of the most talented bands to transverse punk, folk and industrial music. You needn’t look further than Ragon’s record store “Heaven Street” for Di6 references and their sound is strikingly British for being from Brooklyn.
And I digress, but after falling in love with their S/T release on Sacred Bones, I knew I’d be in for a treat with “Love Will Prevail”. The entire album plays in around 35 minutes and at not a single point am I ever tempted to raise the needle. Just listen to the first track “Man and Man’s Ruin” for a good taste of what they have to offer. Other tracks like “Garden of Delights” (embedded above) dive into the darkness. Don’t miss out on this one! $15 gets you the LP at Sacred Bones and I’m sure your shop has it in stock.
Eagle Twin‘s first LP, The Unkindness of Crows didn’t really do it for me. It wasn’t that the album itself was bad or lacked anything in particular, I just didn’t vibe with it. So when their new 2xLP was announced on Southern Lord, I wasn’t exactly rushing to the record shop to pick it up. But I should have been. The Feather Tipped The Serpent’s Scale is one of my favorite albums of 2012.
Why? Because suddenly, the story of The Unkindness of Crows makes sense. Sometimes it takes the second half of the story to bring the tale about. The Feather Tipped The Serpent’s Scale is filled with Biblical symbolism but not the New Testament kind of stuff, I’m talking the Old Testament. The juicy shit. In all honesty, the Bible can be a scary place and Eagle Twin taps into this imagery with tales of pestilence, good, evil and the greatest deceiver of them all: the serpent.
The Feather Tipped The Serpent’s Scale is an epoch. It’s massive, larger than life and fucking crushing. The cacophony is just too large to escape. Check out “Snake Hymn” and “Horn Snake Horn” for the ease of ending all hope in other bands. This shit kicks into high gear so don’t sleep on this one. Order the 2xLP from Southern Lord or crawl over to your local shop.