We have two new reviews for you today, Allen Griffin's take on Thaw's epic trance black metal album St. Phenome Alley, and my own review of Devil Doll's classic, incredibly influential gothic art rock swansong, Dies Irae. While expressing very different head spaces, these albums share a hardcore dedication and focus when it comes to transporting their audiences to far off places. Enjoy!
Since launching his solo career, Ihsahn has given the world a handful of post-black metal gems. His latest, 2013's Das Seelenbrechen, is an unusually solid, dense and multifaceted one, considerably more daring and less streamlined than some of his previous efforts. Lefteris has been kind of enough to offer this own succinct thoughts on the album in his review.
For this Avant-garde Metal update, I would like to introduce the latest brave audionaut to join our team of music explorers, Allen Griffin. Allen is a lifelong metal fan, musician (playing bass for Coffinworm and Black Arrows of Filth and Impurity) and writer (fiction and non-fiction), and brings his unique insights as both a creator of music and genre writer to his exploration of the bold outliers of metal. For his AGM debut, Allen has written a review of Romanian psych-metal band Bloodway's excellent Mapping the Moment with the Logic of Dreams. Enjoy!
As we enter the crisp fall and the sunny distraction of summer falls away, AGM writers have been busy producing fresh content for your autumn afternoon reading pleasure. Veteran writer Lefteris has reviewed Wrathage’sDiscipline and Alien Syndrome 777’sOuter. A.E. Fraser has offered her take on Edenwar’s epic self-titled debut. I have reviewed two new albums, Armadillo by Iceland’s blistering, fun Strigaskór nr. 42 and the ice cold Kald Krig by the collaborative ambient noise project Sturmgeist & The Fall of Rome, as well as a certifiable experimental metal classic, Flower Travellin’ Band’s magisterial Satori.
We also have some great new content from our latest writer, Melt Kruger. Melt hails from South Africa, and in his own words, enjoys "ravenously devouring the weird, wonderful and woefully obscure." We need more daring audionauts like Melt, and I’m proud to have him on the team. Please take a gander at his review of the debut self-release album of Norway’s positively off-the-wall INI, and his interview with the band here.
Greetings again everyone! I'd like to begin this update with an apology to our latest writer, A.E. Fraser. I introduced her last week with a link to her first review, but a technical database issue turned my introduction into a gobbledygook of code. The issue has been temporarily addressed and a more comprehensive solution is in the works.
A.E. hails from the great U.S. state of Virginia and specializes in the heavier, more theatrical end of Japanese music, a scene that is as diverse as it is bottomless, and one I hope A.E. will bring some much needed focus to. So once again, I'd like to welcome A.E. to the website and present her first review: Gothic metal stalwarts Moi dix Mois' forth album, the rhythmic, industrial tinged Dixanadu. Enjoy!
We also have Jackson's considered take on Sri Lanka's musical extremists, Genocide Shrines, a band that has taken the horrific realities of genocide and mass slaughter and fused them with the more esoteric corners of Hindu scripture and eschatology in a black-death metal onslaught. Go head, stare into the abyss.
In this update, David Sano discusses at length Vallendusk's eponymous 2012 debut EP,a release that further advances Indonesia's position as a major player in the global metal scene with an elegant, bright, all-enveloping sound. At a glance, their music may suggest an affinity for other atmospheric bands like Alcest, Lantlos or Deafheaven, but Vallendusk draws on personal and local cultural influences to create something that is all theirs, and theirs alone. Read David's review here:
Hola amigo/as, in this update AGM veteran Lefteris offers an intriguing take on The Love Album - Volume I, As Light Dies' latest collection of bleak experimental metal. This Spanish band has added more melody, finesse and direct emotion, but still packs a punch, taking the listener on a convoluted psychological journey down the corridors of the aching heart called love. Check out the review here:
If you're in the mood for something a little out of the ordinary, a little more cinematic than usual, Italy's Thee Maldoror Kollective have spent the last decade or so wandering down a path much more colorful and exploratory than the black metal road they started on, but no less bleak, eccentric or oddly atmospheric. I have reviewed their latest album, Knownothingism, for your pleasure. Enjoy the sensory overload!
Please enjoy another short but sweet update, this one a review of SubRosa's mighty 2013 album, More Constant Than the Gods. With only six songs, it represents a gloomy milestone in the world of sludgy doom, offering more mammoth riffs, dissonant violins and intoxicating melodies than you can shake a gem-encrusted staff at. en son hd pornoları indiryeni pornofilm hdvideo hd xxxtube hd hd tv sinema
We have but one update for you this week, but it's a review of the latest album by one of the classic bands that helped define what this website is all about. After years of Icelandic odysseys and Nordic explorations, art metal legends Solefald have returned to the wild frontiers of globalized extreme metal with one hell of a wild and entertaining ride: World Metal. Kosmopolis Sud. Those hoping for Neonism Part Deux may be disappointed, but why waste tears when World Metal is so fresh, original and remarkably good?
Greeting loyal readers and general web denizens, for today's update we're taking off into a more spacious ethereal sphere, somewhere in the hazy layer between Terra firma and the vacuum of space, with a brand spanking new effort by Dutch ambient occult artists URFAUST, and SÓLSTAFIR's latest expansive rock epic, Ótta.
Read Lefteris's review of URFAUST's sometimes catchy but mostly eerie Apparitions.
After you've had your fill of sinister, cavernous vibes, you can read my glowing review of Ótta, 2014's best atmospheric hard rock release.
Now a little something to bring you back down to beautiful Earth.
For this update, we have two fascinating, atmospheric U.S. projects. One band explores the melodic and percussive potential of the hammered dulcimer in a black metal context, while the other tugs hip hop beats down the darker, more mysterious corridors of ambient and noise music.
I review the latest Botanist record, an album that pushes out the boundaries of metal instrumentation, creating a bright, resonant atmosphere without relying on gimmickry or pleasant guitar hooks.
David Sano reviews 3:33's Bicameral Brain, a double album of dreamy and nightmarish instrumental hip hop that offers violent noise, blissful drifting, occult intonations, strange interludes and bad vibes, sometimes anchored to powerful beats.
Welcome to the first official update of the year. Soon we will unveil the results of our 2014 readers' poll, but right now let's dive into our first offerings of 2015. Jackson has continued his arcane exploration of the feminine divine with this review of the latest EP from Iceland's Svartidauði with a piece of writing that is nearly as atmospheric and esoteric as the music itself.
And now for something completely different: resident cosmonaut David Sano delivers his report on PSUDOKU's latest, "Planetarisk Sudoku." Summary: Still loopy and dense, but not as frenetic or crazed as the spaz-jazz of "Space Grind." Conclusion: Awesome.
Today on Avant-garde Metal we have polar opposites of U.S. metal. Taking up magnetic north, we have Kayo Dot's wildly ambitious "Hubardo," their 2013 return to the phantasmagorical metal experimentation that defined their Maudlin of the Well years. On the other side of the musical magnetosphere we have Young And In The Way's vicious, stripped down, blood-encrusted stab of pure blackened crust metal, "When Life Comes to Death."
While the former provides strange and beautiful sounds you've probably never heard before, the latter serves up raw and bruising sounds on the platter of tradition with a smattering of left-field atmospheric moments to throw the inattentive listener off their game. Here at the end of 2014, metal seems to encompass a whole musical world, and one wonders whether or not it even constitutes a genre anymore. Does it actually matter? Probably not. Just listen, and enjoy the sweet sound in your ears.
For this rather low-key update, we have a review of the new album by the masters of left-field black metal, Blut Aus Nord. "Memoria Vetusta III: Saturnian Poetry" is a fine return to the more epic, musical and pagan-oriented terrain of the Memoria Vetusta trilogy. Jackson gives his detailed rundown here:
We also have two very interesting self-releases, albums that might not be as polished or perfected as Blut Aus Nord, but demonstrate that the painful process of innovation in metal always begins on the margins of the scene. David Sano reviews the first of the pair, Orbseven's "ismos", a textured, warm and melodic take on space metal.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, Human Services' sometimes painful, often crazed and generally inventive brand apocalyptic sludge lurches forward on "Animal Fires", which I tackle here:
Enjoy with your favorite beverage and snack of choice!
At Avant-garde Metal we like to keep it eclectic. On occasion we're fortunate enough to roll the dice and land on a pair of albums from two equally deranged, but very different, bands. In this update we offer something theatrical in the mid-nineties Norwegian art metal vein, and something a bit heavier and completely crazed from the depths of U.S. death metal.
We'll start with Manimalism, the descendant of the long-defunct Taarenes Vaar. The band has released a new album with re-recorded versions of their demo songs from the halcyon days of Norwegian post-black metal. Lefteris describes their crooner-meets-black metal sound in his review, arguing for the band's place alongside the esteemed likes of Ved Buens Ende and Fleurety, right here:
Now for Jackson's review of AEvangelist's latest, most twisted foray into atmospheric horror-oriented death metal, "Writhes in the Murk". This is a band that focuses their considerable energy, precision and dissonance on one task: placing the listener in a unsettled, paranoid and dissociative frame of mind. Talk to a doctor to find out if AEvangelist is the right medication for you, here:
As we enter the fall, productivity is up and Avant-garde Metal is on track to meet all non-existent quarterly revenue targets in the 2014 fiscal year. In internal discussions among executive board members (who shall remain nameless) some have expressed a desire to diversify our stock options somewhat and introduce to our portfolio more prog, kraut and electronic music, as well as more contemporary bands that skirt the line between unambiguously weird metal and the noisier frontiers of rock, punk and jazz. This doesn't mean we're going to change course (this company was established to provide consumers with the freshest selection of avant-garde metal after all), it just means you can expect the Beyond section to expand its fall line-up. We must think about the future in these economically fraught times, and strengthen our company profile by adding a more diverse array of strange and unique music options for our customer base.
To this end, we offer you two new reviews. First up is David-Alexander's take on Scotland's epic folk metal band SAOR's latest album, Aura, an engrossing saga that will take you on a journey into the heart of the Celtic world.
Second, we have on hand my review of the latest from Japan's Boris. The aptly named Noise reveals how beautiful distortion and feedback can be when tethered to strong, structured songwriting. This is a fantastic album, and I was lucky enough to see it performed live in its entirety a few weeks ago. If you have a chance, see Boris live. It will make you a true believer.
Well, it appears that Avant-garde Metal had an impromptu summer break as most staff writers went on vacation or were distracted by the vicissitudes of life. Summer has a way of throwing a monkey wrench in our best designs with warm, distracting weather, and depending on what country we live in, generous vacation time. But just so you know, we haven't gone anywhere and we plan on maintaining a regular schedule for the rest of the year, making updates as fast as we can generate new content.
One writer didn't slack off and managed to review the magnificent new Blut Aus Nord/P.H.O.B.O.S. split, showcasing the French mindfuck black metal masters and their doom industrial compatriots. The reliable Jackson, staying true to his beat, delivered a detailed dossier on this great, if slightly unbalanced, split. Read how Blut Aus Nord used the split to reach new unnerving heights and how P.H.O.B.O.S. ultimately stacked up here:
In other news, the late great Norwegian psychedelic doom rockers In the Woods... have returned to the Isle of Man. Though no new material has been recorded, the band's return is cause for excitement--in the late 1990s they defined what atmospheric metal should sound like, and if whatever they come up with contains even a fraction of the mysterious and wonderful mood of Omnio, I will be ecstatic.
Another band back from the unquiet grave is Empyrium, Germany's grandiose ex-doom, ex-folk band of latter day troubadours. Once again they have pushed in a new direction, abandoning the gloomy pastoral folk of the last few albums for a bold orchestral sound with trace elements of Arvo Part, Philip Glass, Dead Can Dance and the theatrical sturm und drang that is 100 percent Empyrium. They cut an EP back in 2013, and have now released a full-length called "Turn of the Tides" I highly recommend. Check out a song here.
As we approach summer in the northern hemisphere, we're tempted to shed layers, take long sunny strolls around town, celebrate longer days with crisp beer and friends late into the evening, and swim, sport and hike our way back to photogenic levels of fitness. But as this week's pair of reviews make clear, this is folly. For on the horizon dark clouds hang low, and aeons-buried eldritch horrors shall be exposed once more.
First up, a cold Antarctic wind bellows forth on the second album of France's The Great Old Ones, "Tekeli-li". David Sano journeys to the mountains of madness to reveal cyclopean ruins of an alien civilization and manages to scrawl his surprisingly cogent findings here in the form of a review. The Great Old Ones is a personal favorite of mine, and I'm glad to see they're keeping their creepy ambient black metal sound majestically bleak.
Speaking of bleak, Satyricon's 2013 self-titled album reintroduced the stolid gray guitars and grim, impassive vocals from an earlier time, bringing a simple grandeur back to a band that had become perhaps a bit to comfortable with heavy rockers. Lefteris breaks it down for us--both the peaks and valleys--and reminds us that despite a warming planet, the cold glacial months will assuredly return and put summertime pleasures to rest.
In other news:
Avant-garde metal veteran Thanasis Lightbridge (of Dol Ammad and Dol Theeta fame) has released the first album under the banner of his new project, Dol Kruug. Fans of wild and crazily tight electro-death are invited to check it out, along with its appropriately hyperactive accompanying videos here.
Experimental metal legends Godflesh are back after a long hiatus (a break that included the entire Jesu discography up to this point) with a new EP called "Decline and Fall" released last week, and a full-length due in September. Justin Broadrick hasn't taken Godflesh in any radical new directions, but you can't really argue with the pulverizing riffs available here.
Devin Townsend has a new project called Casualties of Cool. A uniquely haunting variety of ambient Americana, this has little to do with metal and a lot to do with atmosphere. Settle in by the fire with a hand-knit quilt and check out a song.
This week's update brings a fresh pair of darkly experimental metal reviews by the prolific David Sano. One explores the shadowy recesses of the psyche and the other the bleakest expanses of space, and both push the limits of their respective genres: black metal and technical death metal.
First up is "Teethed Glory and Injury," the 2013 swansong of Ireland's cryptic black metal consort Altar of Plagues. David explores the album's harsh soundscapes and inner meanings, and defends the need to push boundaries even at the cost of alienating traditional black metal fans. Evolution demands it.
This week's second review gives the musical and lyrical rundown on Artificial Brain's technical, half-crazed and kind of incredible science fiction death metal epic "Labyrinth Constellation." David holds our hands and takes us on an interstellar journey. Get spaced.
The editorial triumvirate isn't the only new thing at Avantgarde-Metal.com. We also have a new writer! David Sano began his tenure back in March with his excellent review of Preludium's Redemption, and returns this month with a two-pronged assault of classic art grind.
First up is Psudoku's 2011 instant classic, "Space Grind." David pores over data assembled by deep space astronomers to make sense of the band's crazed rhythms and frenetic jazz-warped sound, taking us all into the farthest reaches of that little corner of the Hubble Deep Field first explored by Sun Ra and Hawkwind.
Requiring little in the way of introduction, Discordance Axis' 2000 release, "The Inalienable Dreamless" took grindcore into hazier, more abstract frontiers without sacrificing brevity or ferociousness. David reveals why it's not just a grindcore classic but a work of art, and does it in verse because sometimes prose just isn't good enough.
Speaking of loud and innovative music, I had the privilege of seeing the industrial metal titans Godflesh and Norwegian jazz-metal warriors Shining within mere days of each other. Accompanied by a bevy of complementary, top-shelf openers (including Cut Hands, House of Low Culture and La Fin Absolute Du Monde), Godflesh revisited their classic material with punishing precision. Standing in the front row next to a bass amp, I didn't listen to the music so much as drown in it, each successive groove like waves crashing over me, letting up just long enough for me to catch my breath and prepare for the next wave to hit. Godflesh's music holds up so remarkably well because it's a pure, undiluted force. The Godflesh sound is often described as urban or industrial because of the repetition, precision and programmed beats, but in fact it's so elemental that it defies those narrow categories. Live, it's sublime noise, so loud and abrasive that it becomes more like a primitive religious experience than a proper rock show. Godflesh is the subconscious animal lurking beneath the robes of the civilized Jesu, and just as beautiful in its harsh and unremitting way.
Shining are currently touring with a host of metalcore/hardcore bands in the U.S., including the highly regarded Dillinger Escape Plan. This is great for raising their band profile in the States but also shortchanges them. With the level of experience, skill and charisma Shining possess, making them the first opener in an evening of focused male aggression loses all sense of proportionality. At any rate, Shining delivered a short but concentrated set that demonstrated their ability to reproduce their album material with convincing acuity. What I enjoyed most about their set, other than the obvious enjoyment they took in playing it, was their jazz-honed ability to move riffs around at will, inserting an extended sax solo here and adding spaces to build tension there, freely shortening and expanding each section to create unexpected moments for the audience. Their take on King Crimson's "21st Century Schizoid Man" at the end of their set wasn't a cover; it was an epic deconstruction of the song that added bursts of nearly free jazz mayhem, blasting grind, Sabbathy doom and some interesting diversions that misled the audience into thinking the song was over before coming back swinging with a new take on the song's memorable main theme. Overall, a fantastic show by a band that knows what they're doing. As for the other bands, well I'm sure you can find plenty of reviews elsewhere.
Greetings, and welcome to the first Avantgarde Metal site update since the reins were handed over to the new editorial triumvirate--Lefteris Kefalas, David Wassermann and me! We hope that this transition goes as smoothly as possible, and apologize in advance for any hiccups along the way. Of course this transition would not have been possible without the dedicated work of Andreas Johansson, the brave audionaut who graciously manned the update duties before me. I'd also like to thank the rest of our staff and the old-timers. You know who you are!
Without further ado, let's jump back into the gloriously weird musical content that Avantgarde Metal is known for, starting with the latest from Czech band Cult of Fire. The album continues the tantric metal outfit's ongoing meditation on Kali, Goddess of time, change and, in keeping with their blistering black metal attacks, destruction. Writer Jackson gives his rundown on their metallic brand of trance right here:
Next up, Lefteris examines the haunting Swedish soundscapes of Stilla. Join him on his mental adventure into the somber depths of the northern wilderness with the evocative "Emsamhetens Andar."
It's a great pleasure to welcome to the Avantgarde-Metal.com fold our newest member, David Sano! His first descent into the maelstrom of avantgarde metal music is this review of PRELUDIUM's Redemption. Enjoy!
And with this brief text I take my leave - I, aVoid, Andreas, am today resigning from my position as chief editor of Avantgarde-Metal.com. It has been a good 3,5 or so years of running this webzine of webzines, but all things reach their terminus and this is where I get off. The position as chief editor will be filled not by one, not two, but three bosses - Lefteris Kefalas, David Wassermann and James Slone - a triumvirate whose benign rule will become a new springtime for Avantgarde-Metal.com.
My deepest gratitude goes out to Chrystof the boss, Katja & Bernd for taking care of all the boring technical stuff all this time, the whole crew for their hard work, and most of all you readers who've kept coming back for more obscure, extreme and experimental metal for almost seven years now! Here's for another seven years of Avantgarde-Metal.com!
A bit quiet in here, don't you think? While the exterior of your favorite source for experimental metal music may be dead silent, we can assure you that there's a heap of activity behind the scenes. New features are being created, new paths and new plans being forged at this very instance. We cannot say too much right now, but rest assured that you will be the first to know what the future will be for AGM.com!
In the meantime, enjoy a revived blast from the past! The highly original Finnish weirdling death metal squadron DEMILICH's first, last and only full-length Nesphite recently turned 20 years old. To celebrate this, Svart Records finally managed to coax Antti Boman & crew to unleash their whole discography - album and the full four demos preceding it - and it was released as a 2CD and 3LP edition in January this year, with new artwork and all (not shown above). In 2011 we published a review of Nesphite, written by Simon Brand, so why not take a closer look at it today and see if this cult classic lives up to the test 21 years down the perilous streams of time and entropy? Read it here!
One final blow from 2013: the EINDHOVEN METAL MEETING, the mid-December indoors festival, topping off what became an intense festival year in metallic realms. From ARCTURUS to ABORYM to, ehm, SABATON...? Regardless, a massive feast in the name of METAL, and as always our city correspondent Mystery Flame made herself present! Read about her experience right here - including a graphic encounter with the AGM.com chief editor...
On a late November evening in Berlin, cult folk metal-turned-acoustic EMPYRIUM made a performance in the Passionskirche. Embraced by their dark melancholy, Dominik Irtenkauf traces their Romantic roots two centuries back in his insightful chronicle of the event. Within, you will also find words on their upcoming album, "The Turn of the Tides" - their first in over a decade!
For many years in a row, the Aurora Infernalis Festival in Arnhem, the Netherlands, have served enthusiasts of black metal and beyond a wide array of tantalizing line-ups. From the up and coming to the legendary, specialized old-school and all-star sets, reunions and one-offs - it seems no booking is impossible for the organizers. The 2013 version was not a departure from this tradition: from DÖDHEIMSGARD to MGLA to LUGUBRUM and so on and so forth, it is clear that no black metal obscuritanist should stay at home the last weekend of October.
Winter is coming, and with it the traditional summarizing of the past year's treasures and plagues. And as you devout readers know, it is also a tradition at the Avantgarde-Metal.com HQ to offer you a chance to make your voice heard, and nominate your five favourite releases a spot at the top ten.
The bewitching evilness of ARMAGEDDA, the withdrawn dark folklore of LÖNNDOM, the eerie outburst of bronze age black metal by STILLA and the – comparably - "easy accessible” shades of melancholy by DE ARMA: what have these individual bands and their creations in common? There's one musician with obviously strong visions behind them all, namely Andreas Pettersson. Thor Joakimsson emptied some bottles of whiskey while waiting for the answers of the "wilderness freak” who btw. runs his own label some of whose fantastic releases have already been presented on Avantgarde-Metal.com. Here we go:
Another week, and the second part of Mystery Flame's massive in-depth interview with Davide Tiso of EPHEL DUATH, this time looking more into the creation of their latest opus, Hemmed by Light, Shaped by Darkness.
Elsewhere, in another time and another space completely, aVoid sees the world through the eyes of LOCRIAN. Return to annihilation
EPHEL DUATH are on the verge of releasing their fifth studio album Hemmed by Light, Shaped by Darkness. In celebration of that, main mastermind Davide Tiso offers the Avantgarde-Metal.com readership a deep and personal insight into his artistry and life. This is the first half. Committed to bits and words by Mystery Flame.
By the same author: a first communion with VYRE. Enjoy.
Finland psychonauts ORANSSI PAZUZU, having their third album due any minute now, are interrogated by Mystery Flame on their journey out of the solar system. On an opposite trajectory we find NEOKHROME, delving in towards Helios himself, interpreted by David W.
Like our last update, this week is also based on the equation Septikemi + Scandinavian capital + underground extreme metal - this time heading over to Copenhagen for some sheer death metal madness. No musical vanguardism perhaps, but a true dedication for underground culture which should always be saluted. Hear it for KILLTOWN DEATHFEST 2013!
Miss the summer that has just left us, and the festivals you enjoyed so much? Or longing for cold winds and hoarfrost? Regardless what you choose, today we close off the warm season with something perhaps not very "avant", but definitely metal - and black, too! Åsa Septikemi flew up to Oslo, the undisputed capital of svartmetall, to experience the second BUNKER FESTIVAL: with bands like Aura Noir, Infernö, Negative Plane, Nidingr, and so on. Black thrash attack!!!
And a little notice for all you interweb socialites hanging out in the One True Social Network: we have a group for Avantgarde-Metal.com over there, everybody's welcome so get in and get down.
Two fine premieres this week!
First we have the delighted honour of welcoming Camille to the crew - you all know him from his many musical projects, now make his acquaintance as a writer! His first contribution to AGM.com is none the less than the new, masterful GORGUTS album Colored Sands!
Second, a first and a last in the sphere of print: a promo for our comrades Thor's and Mystery Flames' epic work with their individual and heathen 'zines Mørkeskye and Wyrd's Flight! Enjoy!
After more than two decades in the extreme metal business, as a musician and a producer, Dan Swanö has a CV that outranks basically any metal musician in the world - having formed or joined almost 30 bands, and played with twice as many, Swanö's prolific career has swayed back and forth from violent death-grind to Gothic rock all the way to the most obscure avant-garde experiments. So what's left to do then, than to start another band? A couple of weeks ago he released the debut album from the duo experience WITHERSCAPE - read here what he had to say to our scribe Dominik Irtenkauf.
Summer is a time for feasts, and while death was celebrated in Prague (covered last week), the Metal Magic Festival unleashed its forces for the sixth year in a row in Denmark. Your loyal Swedish field reporters could only heed the call and get on the bus, and today we serve you a run-down of the first day. Feel the power of True Metal Magic!
There has been a resent insurgence of diabolical feasts in tribute to the horned one and his favourite rock'n'roll... fly away with Mystery Flame to the mysterious alleys of Prague, for the DEATH MASS!
...and when you're done, enjoy some German necrodepressive bastard metal, with VALBORG! Written by Thor.
We're not dead! Yet, at least. But in the smoldering summer blaze, we prefer to stay in the shadows, worshipping death and chaos. And what do we find lurking in the shadows, whispering (or rather, screaming at the top of their lungs) about darkness and damnation? Åsa Septikemi has heard: CULT OF ERINYES, ZIFIR and ZOM!
Now that you all - in the Northern hemisphere at least - are enjoying the summer sun and life in general is good and pleasant... why not take a pause from all that life-affirming, music-expanding frolicking, and reconsider that old saying that "only death is real"? Lefteris Kefalas is ready to serve you a trinity of brief but violent explosions of unaldulterated death metal that will leave you bludgeoned.
As they say: death (metal) is certain, life is not.
The now-legendary U.S. chaos mongers DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN have returned with their fifth LP, One of us is the killer - ever-shifting, ever-twisting - promptly our correspondent Dominik Irtenkauf arranged a cellphone conference with bass player Liam Wilson to see what was up, and what was down. Punch the logo.
Elsewhere, we find Lefteris K. listening beyond the horizon of black metal for the echoes of WAY TO END.
ROADBURN FESTIVAL has passed once again, leaving the mouths and ears of alternative heavy music fans drooling with anticipation and yearning. For those unlucky, unchosen many of us who were not able to attend - enjoy this splendid report from our peregrine scribe, Mystery Flame (and if you did attend, enjoy a moment's reminiscence!)
Oh, you ask, were she only there the first two days? Of course not. But to protect you from sensory overload, we did as King Solomon and split it in two. When oh when, you ask, will it be concluded? Tomorrow.
Now is the winter of our discontent
Made glorious summer by this sun of...
...whom? It seems the horned one is in our vicinity. With spring comes many musical treats, tours being one of them. And starting this Sunday, you may come across US heathens AGALLOCH roaming the Old World, together with FEN. What better way to prepare than reading this steaming fresh interview with frontman John Haughm? Interrogated by Mystery Flame.
One of the most awaited AGM releases of 2013 must be split between the astral trappings of SMOHALLA and the monumental dirges of OMEGA CENTAURI. Find an in-depth examination, written by Lefteris K., right here.
Today we offer you nothing less than a world premier: the first sneak (p)review of the infamous industrial diabolists ABORYM's 6th album, simply titled Dirty.
In addition to this exclusive, written by MysteryFlame, we are also proud to present you with an in-depth interview with Malfeitor Fabban. Get down, get dirty...
....and as if that wasn't enough, there's still one more text in store for you: French avantgardesters PRYAPISME offer to aVoid the musical rollercoaster ride of the century, on the Hyperblast Super Collider.
Is death the only thing that's real? It does seem so, and it comes in many shades and timbres, some less predictable than others. Wearing a necklace of bones, meet CHAOS ECHŒS.
Interrogated by Dominik Irtenkauf.
There is a kind of coldness that keeps our hearts frozen even under a blazing sun… There is a kind of sadness that clouds our soul even when our lips smile broadly… There is a kind of pride that makes us human but often eludes us…
Coldness, melancholy and pride unite here under the banner of Scandinavian underground music with brotherly STILLA (review, interview) & DE ARMA (review), two brand new and particularly bright blazes across blackened northern skies which you simply cannot ignore.
Wandering amongst the boglands, across the marshes, through the mist and the dust, we reach the fens. And not any fen, but theFEN. Hark the words of the Watcher, hear his ghastly tunes, as mediated through the Mystery Flame.
We have also the joy and honour to introduce you to a new member of the AG-M.com crew: Jackson! Guided by this erudite scribe, we travel south-east from the Nepalese mosh pits, ending up in Singapore, where RUDRA combines modern extreme music with the religious and cultural traditions of the Indian subcontinent. Vedic Death Metal, anyone?
Continuing: Thor digs some ultra-bizarre music in the shape of STOLEN BABIES, and aVoid consumes and critiques two entities similar at least on a theoretical level: the self-released albums of ABSTRUSE and ABSTRUSA UNDE. Enjoy, or don't...
Ever considered just how global a phenomenon metal is? Are there any corners left untainted by the force of distorted guitars? Tag along as David Wasserman, our correspondent in a land far away, gives us the first of four installments on the metal scene in Nepal: Majestic Mountains and Metal Madness, part 1!
First proper story of the year: Bjeima is one of the most prominent Avant/post-Black Metal musicians coming out of Norway today. His second album as YUREI scored a respectable position in the Readers' 2012 Poll last week, and is among many other projects involved with THE GHOST CONSPIRACY and ALFA OBSCURA. Lefteris Kefalas did an interview, and you can read it here.
2013 is only a week old, but let's frolic in the memories of its forerunner just a little while longer. In the past two months you have all cast your votes - and in the past week, we have counted them. And now, we have the results.
THE POLLS ARE CLOSED! Two months later, and the final count has begun. Thanks to ALL of you who voted to promote your favourite Avantgarde Metal album of this past year! We're all eager to see the results, which will be presented next week, at the very onset of 2013. For now, you can see right here what some of our crew members have enjoyed over the year...
And as if that wasn't enough to round off 2012... Mystery Flame recently delved deep into the spiritual blood and soil of the Romanian hills and highlands, enchanted by the calling of DOR DE DUH. Enjoy!
Right now, in Kristiansand, Norway: GewaltKunstWerk. An art exhibit exploring spheres of extreme music, involving among others musicians and artists from the extreme metal sphere. Dominik Irtenkauf reports.
2012 is drawing to an end, tomorrow the Mayan calender ends, but remember that you can still vote for your favourite Avantgarde Metal albums - you have exactly one (1) week left!
So, from all of AGM.com to all of you, an exuberant Yuletide and midwinter solstice / frohe Weinacht / happy Hannukah (a little late, but whatever) / merry Christ Mass, or whatever you heathens are celebrating!
As the Northern hemisphere is draped in frost and darkness... here's some philosophical black metal (and beyond) for you to pitch down your day: a split between AENEON and STIELAS STORHETT, reviewed by Lefteris Kefalas.
Now don't forget to cast your vote for the Avantgarde Metal top list of 2012, look right & push the button! And when you're done celebrating your favourite bands this year, go out into the night and watch the stars fall.
Two French orchestras rearing their ugly heads in the ash-grey abysses, lurking and exploring the outer fringes of metallic sounds and consciousness. ALUK TODOLO, performing occult rock exclusively, and CHAOS ECHOES, setting the tone of things to come. Experienced by Andreas Void.
And don't forget to cast your vote - use the button to the immediate right! The polls close December 27th, so only three more weeks...
Dysrhythmia, Gorguts, Krallice, Behold The Arctopus, the Thousand Caves studios... New Yorker Colin Marston seems to be somewhat of a restless fellow. Three of these four mentioned bands released new albums during the past six months - more so due time to hook up with him for a conversation on musics, sounds and related things. To be read here.
Ah, yes, there is of course a review connected - find Test Of Submission by Dysrhythmia right here.
And finally, for something completely different: the Obsidian Kingdom's Mantiis.
In the wake of modern metal and the shift of focus to rhythmic patterns in metal, there occured a departure from the all-too-classic epic viking choirs and a castrate’s screams. Despite metalcore bands pressing on aggression and a shredding wall of guitar sound, GOJIRA from France developed their own brand of what they call "death metal"... Joe Duplantier was not hesitating to use the phone machine to answer some questions from overseas AGM.com contributor Dominik Irtenkauf.
It's that time of year again... if you thought Romney vs. Obama was a juicy fight for the throne of the empire, you've ain't seen nothing yet. Even though there's approximately 7 weeks left of 2012 (or a bit less if those Mayans really were on to something), it is still a good time to start voting.
[It] sounds like randomly throwing shit, piss, vomit and blood (some paint, too) on a giant canvas on the floor and all falling right into place and making sense over it, creating a disgusting but appealing picture.
Quoth Adryuu upon his first exposure. William Blake told us to expect poison from standing waters, but is it really fair to compare Svein-Egil Hatlevik to Bret Michaels...? Opinions here, interrogation here. All texts by aVoid.
Though it's not uncommon today to see and hear metal bands that hark from the Middle East/Arabic world, we have yet to see a united wave of metal from that vast and versatile region, from Tangier to Teheran. That might however be a subject of change, at the hands of Kobi Fahri, vocalist of the legendary ORPHANED LAND.
Recently he curated and released an anthology of metal bands from the Orient, simply called Oriental Metal. Thor Joakimsson hooked up with Kobi, the result of which you can read here. His review of the album is found here!
Today we celebrate the first decade in the flesh of TODTGELICHTER: as these German post-black metallers reached their tenth year, with their fourth studio album approaching, they commemorated the occasion with a concert in their native Hamburg, joined by all past vocalists. Thor went there, and here's what took place...
Furthermore, a clash with all nocturnal why's and you's: YUREI's Night Vision explored and excavated by Adryuu. Enjoy!
The cosmos-faring Vikings of ENSLAVED really shouldn't need any introduction: they have probed the deep soils of Yggdrasil's roots and the human psyche for well over two decades now, and with their twelfth album RIITIIR it seems like they are just picking up pace. MysteryFlame got in touch with Ivar and delved into the new album respectively. Enjoy!
3 days of underground death and doom metal? Is that really something proper for Avantgarde-Metal.com, the vanguard of everything eclectic and anti-traditional? Maybe, maybe not. Read more about Åsa's and Andreas' Copenhagen trip HERE.
A call from the wild beckoning: DORDEDUH have finally finalized their debut full-length. After the mitosis of NEGURA BUNGET in 2009, there are not few who have been eagerly awaiting what Hupogrammos and Sol Faur have been brewing, cooking and invoking since their 2010 teaser EP "Valea Omului". Dar De Duh, eight spells opening portals to the fields, valleys and woodlands of not only the Carpathians, but to the spirit. Mystery Flame guides the way...
...and as you might notice, our enigmatic foreign corresponder has created a blog for her writings, whence this abridged review is lifted, where she delves even deeper into the heart and soul of extreme metal music: Wyrd's Flight!
Two weeks ago we introduced you to the first episode of noble space travellers DOL AMMAD's "Cosmic Gods" saga, Hyperspeed. Ever the investigating and curious, Chrystof ventured through hyperspace to catch hold of that elusive mastermind Thanasis Lightbridge to shed some stellar light on his cosmic creations... HERE!
In other news, some of you maybe remember the head's up for the Heavy Days In Doom-Town some months ago in the capital of Denmark. Well now it's time again for their main festival KILL-TOWN DEATHFEST - four days dedicated to blasphemous and filthy old school Death Metal and the heaviest, slowest and most cavernous of Doom Metal. You might say that bands like General Surgery, Morbus Chron, Master and Esoteric have very little to do with AGM.com, and though you maybe right, there are good reasons for us, the purveyors of the subterranean left-field of metal music, to care about what these Copenhageners do. In a time where multinational car companies arrange extreme music festivals, a statement like this is refreshing, and should be encouraged:
"Our goal is to create a festival that puts focus on the music and the bands, not money and prestige. The festival is based on D.I.Y. ethics, meaning that the festival is non-commercial so neither, we the organisers, nor the bands playing the fest, are making money. Thats also why we don’t want to do headliners and all the bands will get the same treatment."
By the underground, for the underground, within the underground. We will be there. Will you?
Septikemi presents "Mundus Numen" of the German Blackened Doomers ESSENZ. And aVoid steps beyond the border to introduce an album that reeks of whiskey and dried vomit: "Romance of Misanthropy" by O.B.E.Y!
Can't believe it's already been five years. Five years, half a decade, since Chrystof, Katja & the Avantgarde-Metal.com ur-crew opened the gates to what would become the haven for all kinds of left-field metallic experimentalism. Writers have come and gone and come back again, but still we've always been here for you, our readers, to serve up all new perspectives on metal music - big or small, accepted or not, there is no beast no weird for Avantgarde-Metal.com. More than 700 reviews and nearly 200 articles and interviews.
So hip hooray to us, and to all of you followers! Now register/log in to the Freakzone and have opinions! Bicker, bicker, bicker!
Oh but first, you must read this. IHSAHN, the one and only, has released a new album, and Herr Dominik Irtenkauf chatted him up. Read it here!
Hm, seems like they found the Higgs boson. Pretty rad, don't you think?
While the foundations of existence are being mapped out in Switzerland, Andreas Void has done some exploration too. In music. First into the imagined deep sea beds with FAVNA ABISAL, and later setting the controls for the heart of the Moon with psychic cosmos dirge-kneller FURZE.
I've been sick for a week, so I won't bother writing something witty or enigmatic. Mystery Flame has watched a DVD with FOSCOR, where this Catalan black metal explorers celebrate their first decennial. Click the cover to read the text.
One within the confined borders, safe and warm in their snuggly crypt, the other far outside among the cold desolate stars. And vice versa - THE GREAT OLD ONES dancing madly to the unseen flutes of the, uhm, greater older ones in the shadows of what we stand for around here, while JESS & THE ANCIENT ONES simply fall outside - or beyond - the arbitrary borders with their left hand dad-rock.
After some silent weeks we return with two premium headliner stories, both featuring exclusive video content! Enjoy two articles where metal research meets research metal!
Chrystof went to Switzerland to witness the HARD WIRED II SYMPOSIUM, where academics from Austria, Germany and Switzerland presented their Metal Research projects.
And Thor video-interviewed the prog-fessors of JOLLY, famous for creating a "therapeutic auditory experience scientifically designed to bring the brain to a state of pure happiness”. Never has headbanging been more cerebral…
Some Polish avantgarde metal for you today, in the shape of IBLIS' debut album. If something smells fishy, it's just my percolator.
For something completely not-avantgarde, and even less metal (take some time to discuss the legitimacy of that statement tonight with your spouse/band mates/pets will you), here's a new ULVER video. And this time it's for realz, not just for lulz.
As you can see, we're taking a bit of a vacation here, or just having slightly better things to do with our lives than to feed you new delicious music from the fringes of metal insanity - yeah right, as if that was possible. But anyway. Go out and enjoy the pre-summer sun, or whatever is happening outside of your window.
Some guys are working restlessly though, here's a brand new video from CHRYST:
Together with 2499 lucky sods, Alex Mysteerie went to Roadburn 2012. Curated by VOIVOD. Nothing needs to be added to that, I think?
While some people travel around, meet people and have fun, others stay at home and listen to mind-blowing music. avoid for example. Some stay at home and make mind-blowing music. Jussi Lehtisalo for example.
Everybody is enjoying the coming of spring, as should you be, so no texts today - why don't you go back to last week's WATAIN review, which is now augmented with the illuminations that Thor envisioned from the beginning.
And a recommendation for those of us unfortunate ones who didn't make it, couldn't make it, or just weren't to cool enough to be allowed on the premises of the Inferno and Roadburn Festivals: the Danish association that goes by the name of "Undergrundsmusikens Fremme" - purveyors of underground music - will in early May stage the first version of HEAVY DAYS IN DOOMTOWN, a happening in Copenhagen dedicated to underground heavy rock and doom metal. Just like their other festival, the old-school death metal orgy Kill-Town Deathfest (held in late August), HDDT is arranged according to DIY ethics: everyone works for free, there are no profits, no trends, no bullshit - a mindset & attitude we at Avantgarde-Metal.com appreciate highly and will always support, in a world of pay-to-play tours and corporate megafestivals posing as subcultural outlets. All done in unadulterated love for bloody heavy music, and line-ups to die for. Check it out.
One night, one country, four bands - and what might be the highest concentration of AGM.com crew members ever at a venue - meet a triptych on stage whom you should be familiar with at some level: FARSOT, TODTGELICHTER and AGRYPNIE. Narrated by MysteryFlame.
By the same mysterious wanderer comes 2/3 of this week's phonogram harvest: the English heathens of WODENSTHRONE and the surprising explorations of GERM. Last and, in certain aspects, the least comes BEASTMILK. Care for a drink? Then enjoy...
It shouldn't come as a surprise to our enlightened readers that today is, by decree of the UN, the International Women's Day, illuminating all the bullshit women are put through around the world by, well, the patriarchy of all kinds of cultural, religious and political variations, in the shape of a slighter paycheck or organized trafficking or whatever. So if you consider yourself a woman (by birth or by realization), cheers!
Anyway, there's some music to read about here as well today. Envisioned & writ together by Alex Mysteerie, two text.
LES DISCRETS, the French soft-spoken trio of nocturnal visionaries, we met them on stage about a month ago. Their frontperson and main artist Fursy speaks.
The eternal return is as true within metal as with Nietzsche. Arising from a half-decade hiatus, the exploratory Bavarian duo LUNAR AURORA return with their Hoagascht.
And, it continues. Seth's interview with Daniel O'Sullivan. Right here.
And as you shouldn't become too complacent now that you've been served more or less the same (but how tasty!) meal two weeks in a row, here's something to wrap your pretty heads around. Something new, something interesting (and decidedly dark) comes Suleiman's way from San Francisco. Read his thoughts on this promising debut EP.
DANIEL O'SULLIVAN is one of the most versatile and intriguing musicians today, in the crossroads where night meets dawn. Known to the audience from acts like ULVER, GUAPO, MOTHLITE, AETHENOR and MIASMA & THE CAROUSEL OF HEADLESS HORSES, to name a few, this multi-instrumentalist has proven to be not only an important artist today, but even more so in his works to come.
It is therefor an honour to give you this first half of this exclusive, intimate interview with Daniel, covering everything from 80's pop music and fanboyism to parenthood and magical dreams. Conducted by our sea-faring scribe Seth Beaudreault.
SYVEN from Finland is a stunning example of how far musicians can be taken if they follow their inner voices. Thor talked with Aslak Tolonen about the journey starting with the beautiful debut album "Aikaintaite".
Dominik Irtenkauf journeys deeper into the frothing soil of what has become known as Black Metal theory, here with an interview with Nicola Masciandaro, publisher of the Hideous Gnosis anthology. For the KVLT ACADEMICK ov the AGM.com audience, from the pulpits of post-structuralist abominations...
EL SCHLONG, a unique and vibrant power trio are slowly taking over the world, one country at a time. A band of headbanging gypsies, or victims of international visa laws ? Suleiman finds out all this and more in a detailed chat with vocalist/guitarist Leah Hinton.
No visuals here, but the ones within the text are freaking huge! Just a head's up.
Among the reviews today: Åsa Septikemi explores the symphonic ramblings of GROMTH's The Immortal. Suleiman dissects the Greek human-lovers THIS IS PAST's new album. Finally, Marco Guerra Avitabile reacts... somehow... to... KUBARK.
And on a completely different note: hardly anyone can have missed the US debacle of the SOPA / PIPA acts. If you value a free Internet in any way, sign all the petitions you can find - especially the US citizens among our readers. Check it out, and why it matters for all of us who care for any culture besides major corporation commercial bullshit.
FINALLY it is here! Your votes, your tastes - and now, your results! Not the five, or the ten, or the thirteen best Avantgarde-Metal albums of 2011, but the TWENTY sovereign phonograms amongst which you dwelled throughout the past year! Complete with an exclusive interview with the proud winner... Did your own choices match with the peoples' votes? Have a look!
Now let's kick off the dirt and grime of the old, and wander into a new year filled to the brim with amazing musics. And what better way than to let Åsa and Suleiman lead the way with, respectively in that order, the pan-European debutants of OMEGA CENTAURI and the science fictionists of UMBAH?
As you may notice, the weekly updates have moved more and more unto Thursdays, rather than the habitual Wednesday routine (technically this is written on Friday the 13th, which is cool but irrelevant). Well, expect no change in that department; from now on, mark your AGM calenders for the day of Thor! New year, new bad habits!
As we await the results from the Reader's Poll, where the best albums of the past year are elected democratically and tastefully, a few of us contributors to AGM.com wanted to present our top 10 of 2011. Highlights in musics and else onomatopoetic and geographical pseudogenres be damned! - things you might have missed, and things you mustn't miss for the world!
The New Year is a-coming, and the AGM.com HQ is silent in preparations for the first weeks of January, when not one but two summaries of the past year will be presented. First, as an opener, a choice selection of contributors' personal top 2011 lists, and then, more importantly: YOUR lists!
You can still vote, and if you haven't yet it's about time, the polls close this Sunday so, for the last time... Go vote!
Well... holiday season coming up - merely three weeks to the Chinese New Year for example - and things are slowing down a bit. Another bunch who enjoys slowing things down are ISOLE, the Gävle-based SweDoom orchestra, whose guitarist/vocalist Crister Olsson was greeted by Mystery Flame in Madrid some weeks ago. Oh, he's also in EREB ALTOR, and here is an interview with him.
Merry Yuletide, happy Hanukkah, hail Satan, cheers! And vote, all of you who haven't yet!
Into the dark we ride with our ever-itinerant metal correspondent MysteryFlame, and what can be darker than Madrid, mid-December? An array of death-doom-to-black-and-beyond bands inside; PRIMORDIAL, ENSLAVED, ISOLE, KATATONIA... and so on, and so forth. Plenty of pictures too.
Another in a long row of 2011 comebacks: aVoid dips his feet into the ebony lake to catch a whiff of the brooding lights....
M.G.A. floats between perceptions, experiencing the unbelievable. Read what the new DYSKINESIA record is about.
A double headliner for you all this week! WOLVES IN THE THRONE ROOM are once again unbound and at loose: equally heralded as the originators of a supposed new sub-subgenre of Black Metal and indeed one of the more important and exploratory units of the genre in the late 00's, as derided for, well who knows, stepping out of the mainstream of evilness? Mystery Flame hooks up with Aaron Weaver for a lengthy (to say the least!) chat about... well, everything it seems. Read it!
The second part of this week's program relate to the fact that the year of 2011 is speeding up towards its end. That's right folks, it's time to VOTE YOUR TOP 5 AGM ALBUMS OF 2011!
And finally, some reviews. aVoid reacquaints us to the unsettling world of DIAPSIQUIR, back from the grave to spread some nice & nasty negativity. Out of Poland, an ominous bass rumble is heard. Suleiman investigates this primordial industrial emission, known as WHALESONG...
Last week, we had the honour of presenting a forerunner impression on the new ALCEST album, penned down by the elusive MysteryFlame. After some more focused listening, as one of the chosen few in metal media, she laid a more rational gaze upon the new visions of Neige, and... well, read it yourself.
Yesterday, the first statements of VACANTFIELD was released, in the shape of a digital disc. aVoid heard it.
In other news, our heathen comrades in HEXVESSEL have been blessed with a short film, made by Justin Oakey. Witchin'. Enjoy!
A special treat for you tonight! Poke the "NEWS" banner to the immediate left of this text, and you'll see a little something MysteryFlame whipped up: an exclusive pre-view (that's right - RE-view will appear soon!) of French mystico-nostalgists ALCEST's upcoming album "Les Voyages de l'Âme"; indulge in the dream-mists...
Unfortunately, ThanatoSchizO called it quits this year but fortunately they disbanded on a high note, and Suleiman reviews their fitting swan song to let you know why.
Two weeks ago we mentioned a little musical event set to take place quite soon. Mystery Flame roams across The Netherlands, finding Hell & Heaven in Arnhem @ the AURORA INFERNALIS FESTIVAL: a three-dayer with a line-up to die-for! Up for a visual treat...?
Adryuu took the dog for a walk too far and arrived at Norway's Black Mental Asylum where he recovered a rare gem in the lost and found: a message in a bottle caught in the Plutonian Shores, describing a new interpretation of the Alfa Obscura without its Omega Luminosa.
Today, we are very happy to announce the return of an old comrade - Suleiman is back! And with his return, greeting us with a run-down of inscrutinably named post-metal outfit the DRX, and their Deepening Hole EP. Enjoy!
Whilst powering up for the massive Aurora Infernalis festival in the Netherlands, of which we are soon to be treated an equally massive coverage, Mystery Flame digs into the upcoming DARK SUN album. They clearly enjoy a bit of extravaganza in their lives, and so does our Mystery Flame, who did not miss her chance to "get tangoed" (in the orangey way, most certainly not on the dancefloor)!
Little can be said. The beings known to some as Tentakel P. and aVoid have been blown away.
The former by the rebirthing of the seminal CowKillers of Austria CHRYST and its ChronoPhantasms.
The latter by the hypnotizing vistas of the Francophone stargazers of SMOHALLA and their Résilience.
One tries to abuse Joyce, the other tries to refer to Proust. Little else can be said.
Tonight we welcome a new member to our staff of voyeurs of the bizarre and metallic: Andreas Müller! First offering to the table that he brings: the multidimensional eclecticists of UNEXPECT, who recently released their Fables Of The Sleepless Empire. A lot of stuff going on, both on the album and in the review - enjoy!
And if you think things have been slow around here the last two weeks, things are changing. It's just a small case of October malaise, as the temperature and leaves start to drop. Next week we have another bunch of avantgarde smash hits for you all, once you've made heads and tails of those crazy Canadians above...
It's like a never-ending story, seemingly, when it comes to Norway's musical potential. Recently, the band LEPROUS brought out their now third album "Bilateral" on Inside Out Music and they still don’t lack in freshness. They maintain relations to the Norwegian extreme metal scene yet keep a more progressive coinage of their own. Guitarist Tor Oddmund Suhrke interviewed here by Dominik!
Spiritual black metal is just as plausible as spiritual science: mythology, philosophy, art and cosmology have often intersected paths because, ultimately, it is the mystery of the heavens that we are trying to unravel: man has always looked at the stars as his own personal paradise lost, his intimate chimera. Have we been barking at the moon for no reason throughout the millennia? Is there a perhaps a third way to look at the world and interpret our own existence? With two of physicist and astronomer Marcelo Gleiser’s books at hand, "The Dancing Universe: from Creation Myths to the Big Bang” (1997) and "A Tear at the Edge of Creation: a Radical New Vision for Life in an Imperfect Universe” (2010) Mystery Flame approaches three much awaited releases (two of which will see the light at the end of October) in a heroic trilogy. Strictly in alphabetical order: LANTLôS' "Agape", FARSOT's "Insects" and WOLVES IN THE THRONEROOM's "Celestial Lineage".
Back again on archaic course: Simen Hestnæs talks about his solo debut, his plans with Arcturus and Borknagar, and albums that he will probably never record.
"A human being is a part of the whole, called by us "Universe", a part limited in time and space and in the midst of this Septikemi finds a LOVEPLANET with a Transmission Failed, and continues with seeing if it is easier to denature PLUTONIUM's Devilmentertainment Non-Stop than to denature the evil spirit of man."
Two new special releases by ENSLAVED surprise even longtime fans of the band because with "The Sleeping Gods” EP – available for free as download – the North men move into very different directions at once, while on "Thorn” the band reflects its early days. Ivar und Grutle were kind enough to give us an insight into their still strong enthusiasm, their motivation and their aims.
The doom and misery of o.68's release Elend costs approximately 8 - 20 Euros, depending on where you buy it. Septikemi is showing you, what you'll get for your money.
Today it's a pleasure for us to introduce a new writer to you, who will open your horizons considerably with his essays: word traveller & world traveller, Art Militia Corporal & founding member of the "Orden fuer okkulte Kunst e.V." Dominik Irtenkauf. He will guide us into the lands of BLACK METAL THEORY, a revealing academic meta-discourse about Black metal, one of the most influental roots of modern avant-garde metal.
The human being writing this text is fatigued by encroaching warmth and a lid-like headache, so no witty remarks or word juggling today. Just one text for a nice album you should buy: Marco Guerra Avitabile dreams to ULVER's most recent drama, Wars of the Roses.
The Trojans Attack the Ships:
Zeus turns away from the battle; Poseidon secretly helps the Achaeans, talks to the two Ajaxes and other warriors; Hector keeps advancing until stopped by close packed Achaeans; Poseidon talks with Idomeneus; Idomeneus and Meriones meet at the huts, then return to battle; Idomeneus' exploits in the fight; Aeneas moves against him; Menelaus on the battle field; Polydamas gives advice to Hector; Hector insults Paris; Ajax and Hector exchange boasts; the armies resume the fight.
Unrelated but relevant to us all, in light of recent events this past decade: the united voice of AGM.com wishes to give our full condoleances to all victims of terrorism across the world. Whether driven by religious indoctrination, political delusion, sectarian insanity or corrupt governments, there is only one way to defeat them: never let in to their disturbed wishes to spread fear and hatred. Never remain silent, always remain respectful. Don't let them grind us down. Take care of yourselves, and control of your lives.
NADER SADEK. American-Egyptian artist, recently releasing the extreme metal all-star concept album of the year, "In The Flesh". Interviewed by MysteryFlame. There is little more to be said.
Further on, Åsa examines the metaphysical journeys of MORD A STIGMATA, subsequently letting go of avantgarderies for the benefit of some straight-forward brutality, in two short bursts: black metal purveyors LEGIONES and death metal crucifiers MASADA.
Necks, throats and heads sore from last weeks birthday celebrations, this week's update will be slightly less... wordy. Here you go:
- Far East Cyborgs BLOOD STAINED CHILD: Epsilon.
- The exuberant Gothic witchery of THE TRAGIC TANTRUM: Mirror, Mirror.
Blood Stained Child through Can Baskent, and The Tragic Tantrum through Kevin Reichel.
Indeed! Tomorrow Friday, on the 8th day of July, it is exactly four years ago since the birth of AVANTGARDE-METAL.COM. Who would have thought then, in the summer of 2007, that the interest for the experimental sides of Metal would be that great? That AGM.com would continue to grow steadily, almost every week for nearly half a decade? And we are far from done, as it seems that we are riding on the crest of a global resurgence of the metal avant-garde; new visionary projects keep surfacing, all ambitious and eager to expand the borders of the metal music we love to deform.
Over the years, the Ur-crew of a handful dedicated writers has grown to encompass nearly 40 contributors, each passionately adding their unique take on even more unique music, situated from the sunny beaches of California all the way to the Middle East. Almost 800 (!!!) reviews have been published, over 600 of which are straight up avant-garde metal. Who even though a few years ago that there were even half as many released? And over 200 stories have been published; interviews, live reports, etc. These thousand documents attest to one indiscriminate truth: avant-garde metal is more alive than ever, and the future seems nothing but bright. And if it weren't for YOU, all our dedicated and loyal readers and Freakzone inhabitants, this 'zine would be nothing but an empty shell and ruin.
To the future of AVANT-GARDE METAL and AVANTGARDE-METAL.COM!
...and of course, we have a few new texts for you to enjoy - just because it's our birthday doesn't mean we can be all lazy and complacent!
First, Thor Joakimsson takes us on a nostalgic trip down among THE CREVICES BELOW. Secondly, aVoid dodges the cosmic encumbrances of COMBAT ASTRONOMY in a two album-one text feature.
Make Love and War, stay strange! Never stop the madness!
/the AVANTGARDE-METAL.com crew
If any of you heathens survived celebrating the summer solstice yesternight, we can all rejoice that the sun cycle has finally started fading towards wintery darkness again. And to do that, we have some fancy reviews for you, in what will be known as the ADVERGEISTER update:
Tentakel P. gets engulfed by the darkness of the massive masterpiece "Barbarian" by VALBORG. Being confused from that experience and in a feeble attempt to cover lack of creativity, the only thing he can come up with for a review of the new Zeitgeister project, OWL, is a collection of silly puns and dumb jokes which you must absolutely not read. Go listen to the album instead - this you must.
Norwegian label Adversum has two new releases out and approaching: .. Aided by a presskit, he pulls off barely enough to connect us to other "Plutonian Shores" media. aVoid on the other hand has enjoyed the long lost but now resurrected musings of I LEFT THE PLANET.
Finally, though neither related to Adversum nor Zeitgeister, aVoid offers a brief recollection of ACHENAR's sonic disturbances. Kthnxbai.
In early May, Mystery Flame caught up with the combine DORNENREICH + ALCEST tour as they swept across the Old World with their fancy frontmen and romantic tunes. Not only did she report on the stage event; in the far side of the tour bus, she caught Eviga of DORNENREICH off guard, with her profound and personal probing inquiries. Enjoy!
In between her frequent trips to metal venues near and far, said Flame also enjoys music pouring from the stereo. Sometimes more. As in the case of KAMERA OBSKUR. aVoid has given his best shot at traversing the open landscapes of AVERSE. And finally, Marco Guerra Avitabile offers a clear and thought-provoking analysis of the crystal worlds of LOCRIAN.
One of the albums of 2010 which flew the deepest below the radar was the equally outrageously titled and sounding Outrageous Reverie Above the Erosion of Barren Earth, from the German "black metal" (though they explore a bit farther than that signum has it) orchestra ODEM ARCARUM. At a slow and steady pace it seems, Thor Joakimsson interrogated spokesperson Ar, sharing his ideals as both Creator and Producer, and the result... you'll find here.
As the summer warmth encroaches the Occident, the Orient and the New World
(and surely elsewhere too), we have also a massive bundle of reviews for
you. First, Can Baskent explores two most recent outings from the most
Canadian in metal, Devin Townsend: Deconstruction and Ghost. The conclusion: ain't worth it.
Two weeks ago, we offered you no less than four texts mapping a few areas of the stunning back catalogue of PARADIGMS RECORDINGS. As that just didn't feel like enough, Adryuu felt compelled to lend his ears to the soothing and beautiful audial landscapes of two separate (yet perhaps also rather connected?) entities... the haunting tunes of BOOK OF SAND and the lush brevity of VENA, respectively.
As you can see right nearby, today is the first day of June. Perhaps not the cruellest month, but indeed the first true month of summer. What would be better then, than to celebrate the Invincible Sun together with the godfathers of the Neofolk culture SOL INVICTUS? Experienced by Simon BRand.
Mystery Flame time-travels to incredibly interesting Victorian Yorkshire to witness one of the much-talked about séances performed by the secretive members of a Gentlemen’s Club going under the spell-binding name of A FOREST OF STARS: a mesmerizing and vastly rewarding experience she is extremely eager to repeat. On her time-travels she also enjoys instrumental avant-garde post-rock duo KHUDA and meets Norse/Celtic black/death metal bards OLD CORPSE ROAD.
After such an intense spiritual experience, it is only natural for Mystery to fall head-first into the unfathomable universe of quantum entanglement: if the degrees of freedom in KRALLICE’s new album Diotima are linked in such a way that the quantum state of any of them cannot be adequately described independently of the others, could perhaps Melpomene, muse of Greek Tragedy, come to rescue?...
Septikemi dissects and analyzes the innards of two european extremes - the second demo of the Swedish progressive metal hive FORLORN REMEMBRANCE, and the first full-length of Italy's ambient black metal warriors WARNUNGSTRAUM.
Of the contemporary labels spreading their wings across a multitude of genres, from ethereal ambiance to post-rock through modern art music to avantgarde extreme metal - preferably by the same band, on the same album - few are as aesthetically accomplished and uncompromising with their ideals as UK based PARADIGMS RECORDINGS. As if they were many to begin with. Regardless if you actually enjoy the sounds or not - serving a disparate audience is standard practice of theirs - there is no denying Paradigms' complete integrity in handling with interesting, esoteric and mind-expanding music purely out of passion.
Thus it is a great pleasure for us at AGM.com to be able to introduce you to not one, not two, but three releases Paradigms Recordings' iridescent palette. Delving into some deeper and much heavier waters, aVoid has been spending a lot of time dreaming in gold about the past, drifting from the reverie of the Danish heathens SOL & BLODTRU to the chasms of US heavy-weights MOURNER.
After that, the same writer felt he needed some cheering up: enter DEATH AESTHETICS. Despite the not-so-cheerful name, this sampler is actually pretty uplifting. And more than anything, a resounding proof of Paradigms Recordings' raison d'etre - aesthetic, eclectic, and pretty awesome musics.
"My friend," replied Ulysses, "you are very positive, and very hard of belief about your master's coming home again, nevertheless I will not merely say, but will swear, that he is coming.
Do not give me anything for my news till he has actually come, you may then give me a shirt and cloak of good wear if you will.
I am in great want, but I will not take anything at all till then, for I hate a man, even as I hate hell fire, who lets his poverty tempt him into lying.
I swear by king Jove, by the rites of hospitality, and by that hearth of Ulysses to which I have now come, that all will surely happen as I have said it will.
Ulysses will return in this self same year; with the end of this moon and the beginning of the next he will be here to do vengeance on all those who are ill treating his wife and son."
The dungeons of London’s Infernal Damnation VIII opened up to Mystery Flame’s errant spiritual quest revealing, amidst blazing tongues of fire and sulfuric vapors, a parade of devilish/angelic bands pouring their venom/ambrosia over an audience looking for salvation: Dornenreich, Alcest, Wodensthrone and many more offered in turn their highly individual rituals.
Preparing for the ravenous feasts of Easter among the witches and demons, aVoid took the opportunity of getting sucked into the vortices of the two Francophone purveyors of darkness and miracle that the past couple of weeks have plagued the European continent: MENACE RUINE and ALUK TODOLO. Read his ramble right there.
When you're done with that, or before, read Adam McAuley's review of CULT OF ERINYES A Place To Call My Own. Bleak and atmospheric, perfect to cool yourself off in the soon-scorching spring sun...
Today we at AGM.com are proud to introduce our latest recruit - Åsa Hagström a.k.a. Septikemi, enthusiast of extremism in metal as well as nature. She procured two approaching slabs of different Norwegian types of doom: the towering maelström of SOLSTORM, and the grave-desecrating filth of EXECRATION.
Continuing his odyssey across the forgotten backwaters of outstanding and exuberant Avantgarde Metal - the "too weird to live, too rare to die" section - James Slone has now arrived at the bizarrest Finns you'll ever see - WALTARI (AND AVANTI!), and their Death Metal Symphony...
(Pen)ultimate. Ken Mode. Lento. By Marco Guerra Avitabile. Enough.
(oh, and a written apology on behalf of all concerned parties concerning the hideous attempt at MS Paint collage above will be issued upon request.)
After nourishing her infatuation with Britain's new stars in the post rock / black metal crossover field, the sepia-teeming marshland-dwelling melancholics FEN, for some time since their 2009 debut, MysteryFlame had little choice but to come in touch with the mystics themselves. Take a stroll through landscapes manifesting internal fields with The Watcher in this interview… and read the Flame's evaluation of their album Epoch.
About a month ago, we featured an exclusive video interview with Austrian histrionics ANGIZIA, filmed at the listening session for their newest offering, Kokon. James Slone has the words on what is new and what is not… here. The same Mr. Slone has also dug up a long-forgotten gem of, well, whatever it is, lost in the labyrinths of modern metal history - EVEREVE.
American "are they prog or are they emo I don't even know what that means" orchestra BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME have, it seems, hit it even bigger. Can Baskent reports.
The Norwegian Wolves, ULVER, invaded London for the opening date of the first part of their European raid, escorted by VIRUS and ZWEIZZ: Mystery Flame rushes on location to sniff around and soak in the whole concert experience.
Chrystof fought his way through the "Stuttgart 21" demonstrations to meet the legend himself - Markus Stock aka Ulf Theodor Schwadorf, the well-known brain behind bands like EMPYRIUM, THE VISION BLEAK or NOEKK and star producer of many bands inside and outside the avant-garde metal scene. Enjoy the competition for the lowest voice in the VIDEO INTERVIEW.
Speaking of ZWEIZZ - coinciding with the European tour, the long expected collaboration album between him and Joey Hopkins was released. Finished by Zweizz after Hopkins' tragic death in 2008, it reveals the imagination and creativity of both of the artists in its bizarre and upheaving sonic almagamations - and the loss of a brilliant young musician. Reviewed by aVoid.
VOID are back. After 8 years of silence, the (ex-)electronic post-black metal heralds, led by Matt Jarman, return with their self-titled second album, as fervent and energetic as can be, reviewed here by aVoid. The time following the release of "Void" were turbulent for the band, in the worst possible way - read more about it in this interview with Matt, Joe and Rob, conducted by the same aVoid.
The best informative description of the HEXVESSEL album was given in the introduction to the in-depth interview with Mathew "Kvohst” McNerney (vox for DHG, <code>, etc.) fashioned by aVoid back in November 2010, which you are urged to read again here. Mystery Flame adds her personal insights on one of the best surprises of early 2011 with a weather-influenced review of Dawnbearer.
Virus' live debut is happening in less than two weeks from today, as you ought to know already. And well, our writer Adryuu has been hassling Virus (especially Einar who gave some thoughts into the process of writing their brand new album) while they were shaping up for their first ever live performance, and extracted some bits (maybe bites?) out of the rabid barking and turned them into actual conversations, interesting ones actually.
Disclaimer: no writers were harmed during these interviews. No interviewees, either; none that we can think of, at least. We didn't send the boars. Really.
One year has passed since the last video interview on our avantsound youtube channel. Hence, it is time again to present you not one, but two clips of the great Austrian project ANGIZIA. With their 6th album KOKON they showcased their first mind-blowing drama. As long-time friends and fans, Chrystof and Katja luckily got invited to join ANGIZIA's first listening session and release party in Vienna enjoying an evening with musicians and fans. They took the chance to record Michael Haas introductory speech about the making and the plot of the new album. Right after the listening session they also video-interviewed the passionate head of the project Michael Haas and guitarist and composer Emmerich Haimer. Watch the art experience this ensemble offers. And check out this new masterpiece of avant-garde theatre!
Remaining on the theatrical note: Can Baskent has joined the Czech vagabonds FORGOTTEN SILENCE retelling their not-really-latest explorations of space and sound - perhaps not perfect, but it definitely beats slides.
No, it isn’t, for sure it isn’t. Nevertheless… "Time has come for some forest-humping whimsy fiddle-tunes of yore", our chief editor aVoid wrote some days ago, "or what the heck PAGAN stands for these Nuclear-Blast-Live-Roleplay-ridden times. Prove me wrong. Please." Dear aVoid, dear readers: we do our best.
Thus we present you a first wild mixture of music and artists all of whom dance on the edge of metal music, and "avant-garde" is maybe not the first association when facing names like HELHEIM or HELJAREYGA, and at first sight and listening bands like FEJD and STORMSTERK surely fit the "folk" category much better than metal, not to speak of avant-garde – well, do they? Without metal music, new – and thus somehow at least a tiny bit avant-garde – folk music of these kinds simply wouldn’t exist. Without any distorted guitar STORMSTERK is obviously inspired by metal music through and through, first of all by a band called Otyg, whose vocalist VINTERSORG is famous indeed for his many avant-garde experiments in metal music and who just returns with the encouraging new album "Jordpuls" that resonates with planet earth short before collapsing, drifting towards the shores of the end. We can find another echo of this frightening heart beat on the record of a fallen man who knows how to stand up again and whose performance still fascinates the crowds. Without BURZUM, the whole wide world of black metal and its epigones would sound, look and act much different. It is questionable whether a band like BERGTHRON would even exist, still this band’s latest development impresses…
You think this mixture turns out a bit chaotic? Well, in times when Bathory isn’t sincerely honoured by a young generation of "fans", and Sabbat’s "Dreamweaver" is only remembered by older maniacs, "pagan metal" might be reduced on the dull stereotypical songs of stupid Finntroll clones, but for us this makes no sense at all. Still there are many strong free-thinking artists with various serious perspectives on the ever-spinning circle of life and death who reflect this in their deeply personal music. People who know they act, live and perceive the world as outsiders… that at least they have in common with any avant-garde.
Adryuu's worthless essay on latest Virus' album The Agent that Shapes the Desert proves unuseful until the conclusion, which should have been the first and only paragraph, as the rest is just speech against haters, but everybody knows those doesn't exist.
Anyone wondering what the ever-so-busy bee crazy person from Canada Devin Townsend is up to these days? Or, at least, one and a half year ago. Can Baskent knows, and right here you can read whatever he has to say about THE DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT's more-kind-than-not album Addicted.
Draped in black and completely discombobulated, aVoid tries to make heads and tails of NERNES / SKAGEN's most recent Confession, and the review is torn to pieces before even being written. Oh well.
We are already much inside February and the engines of pulling forward are already working at full capacity, it has started again! A new year full of avantness has come and some very special content will prove it very soon, starting today with a set of interview plus a review where our reviewer splits herself in two, just to dissect both a peculiar album and a peculiar persona.
Prophecy Productions wisely chose February 14th as release date for LIFELOVER’s new album Sjukdom, and indeed pure "sickness” is what the Swedish band offers to its devoted lovers through its narcotic blackened indie punk metal. Mystery Flame, after falling haphazardly for the unique charm of his voice (album review here), tried to dig deeper into the mind of wildboy ( ) a.k.a. Kim Carlsson, only to find herself gently but firmly pushed back into the grey void of limbo.
And we also have our writer Can Baskent not compare the latest BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME album The Great Misdirect with other quite known avant-garde bands, in a very succesful manner.
Stay tuna for future updates! Always further into the uncharted!
Short before a small tour through German clubs we present you the next generation of British crossover rock music by the mavericks of PURE REASON REVOLUTION who succeed to attract more and more freaks from the metallic edge and who make every open-minded audience bang their heads to the multitude of earwigs of "Hammer And Anvil".
Simon Brand then takes you far away to the lands of Ambient Drone Metal, where all is drenched in beautiful fuzz and the landscape shifts before your very eyes in his review of THE ANGELIC PROCESS' emotional masterpiece, "Weighing Souls With Sand"
Whilst waiting for some kick-ass interview answers from all your favourite bands of today and tomorrow - I assure you, we have some pretty rad stuff falling down our sleeves the coming months - the AGM.com crew is relaxing a bit from all the eclect-o-vision bizarreries commonly inhabiting our ears, heads and pencils(fingers). Relentlessly thrashing, aVoid got hold of the new album of some violent Norwegians called NEKROMANTHEON, which is Greek for "beer-binging neck-wrecking metal". Enjoy, or not.
They ended up 4th in AGM.com’s own annual readers’ poll, and topped many other polls internationally: ALCEST were one of 2010’s biggest sensations, but the shoegaze black metallers seem to be misunderstood by fans and detractors alike. Mystery Flame set up a face-to-face with Neige in Madrid to dig deeper into the mind behind one of the mysteries of the metal universe: how can any music be so accessible and yet is so otherworldly that nobody can see it for what it really is?
Two sets of reviews, polarised in their respective seats on the extreme metal teeter-totter...
Simon Brand has had his mind warped and realities altered, bent, levitated and down-right fornicated with by two stalwarts of -90's Avantgarde Death Metal: the blasphemously jagged pillars erected by GORGUTS and DEMILICH.
Hovering on the far side of said playground monstrosity, feet dangling in the air begging to be let down is the not so dynamic duo of SILENT STREAMS OF GODLESS ELEGY and THEATRES DES VAMPIRES. Both just released upon the suspecting cliché-thirsty middle-of-the-road metal audience, today making Can Baskent feel slightly unenthusiastic.
A few weeks ago (or was it months? - how swiftly time flies!) we had a sort of "Italian connection" special, with at least three, or maybe even four, reviews related somehow to Davide Tiso, musical vagabond and explorer of EPHEL DUATH, and lately also of the solo project MANUSCRIPTS DON'T BURN. Set to coincide with this, but slightly delayed, we are now very happy to present this interview, conducted by Oliver Side.
For the second time, let's make up some stuff about Italian bands and musicians always being connected. Well this time it's merely a case of nationality. In the deep end of the Cliché Pool - where the above mentioned barely dips his toes - Can Baskent finds the blood sucking unisex orchestra THEATRES DES VAMPIRES. Sick and tired of all decade shift hysteria the past weeks, Can rolled back the tape to 2008 and the vampires' Anima Noir album. Supreme Vampiric Evil? You decide.
The populace has had its say, democracy has spoken - the votes are cast, counted, and counted again. The moment of truth is upon us. Which albums lured the majority of our readers into its grasp? Which albums did YOU vote for? Find out here...
Since MGA heard THE SECRET's music, he couldn't sleep at night, worried about all the evil living inside those four hardcorers from the Italian peninsula.
Is it some sort of demonic possession? Is it because of all the repressed rage coming from Italy's bunga bunga political situation (check out any newspaper on earth from the last few months to know what I'm talking about)? Maybe because of both.
Find out in this week's special dedicated to them, featuring an in depth psychological / eschatological talk with Michael Bertoldini and a double review of their last two albums, Disintoxication (dated back to 2008) and Solve et Coagula, out this year.
After all this violence and secrecy, something more pleasant may be nice. Can Baskent floats off in the eloquent and mysterious undulations of SUBTERRANEAN MASQUERADE's Suspended Animation Dreams.
Last but far from least, Adam McAuley get's entangled in the Indian technothrashers ESCHER'S KNOT's debut EP, Tesselations, whereby he closes the door of 2010 with their promise of great works in the near future - a promise extending to all of Avant-garde Metal's innovators and revolutionaries. Another year, an untold number of surprises awaiting. Join us!
In a celebration of the Midwinter Solstice and the simultaneous full lunar eclipse, Mat "Kvohst" McNerney brings us an offering, in the shape of HEXVESSEL. Psychedelic and darkly spiritual experimental folk music abound... Inside, you will find not only an interview (conducted by aVoid), but also a (nearly) exclusive promo teaser for HEXVESSEL's upcoming debut, Dawnbearer, to be released come February.
Alongside the HEXVESSEL, the dark winter moon brought along three Ghosts of metal past, present and future...
What has been: ...
What is now: aVoid was tantalized by the Old Norse maelstrom which is the new NIDINGR album.
And what will be: DORNENREICH teased Mystery Flame with the PREVIEW of a stirring new work which will set the world ablaze at the beginning of February. An official warning of high flammability is issued: the heat of the firestorm that is to fall upon us will be all consuming! Delirious evocations and frantic melodies will instantly purify our souls on the altar of an avant-gardeness which can alchemically turn music into towering flames.
That was all the Yuletide goat carried in his burlap sack this year (week). We at Avantgarde-Metal.com wish you all a festive midvinterblot, a happy Hanukkah, a merry Jebus-birthday, or whatever you heathens choose to celebrate.
Holidays are coming, and while you have probably been warm, safe and sound at home while out there there's only the voice of falling snow, or even while you have been enjoying the summer (if you are in the southernmost half of the planet), we have been enshrouding ourselves in coldness with very coldish music these days! Well, at least three of us have been.
Reminiscing on ages long gone, on countries (perhaps not so) far away, Can Baskent revives once again the glorious and - ahem - forgotten legacy of FORGOTTEN SILENCE and, more specifically, their massive epos Senyaan.
And this week, Adryuu stands still, immovable between the rifts of time and space, admiring the harshness of nature itself, as it reduces landscapes to Mounds of Ash.
Don't catch a cold and have a hot tea (or a heat-providing vodka / refreshing vodka on the rocks) while enjoying what lies beyond the edge of the musical blade.
And don't you forget to vote! Did you vote yet? Uh?
Odd one out! Four bands, four albums, four reviews - one doesn't fit in. Answers at the bottom of this text.
Maxwell Rock struggles to delve as deeply as possible into the whirling waves of DEATHSPELL OMEGA's new opus Paracletus - the crowning enclosure of their mighty trinity - and the question is, will he ever return safe and sound from the mayhem of this their metaphysical maelström?
Beyond the cemetery gates, aVoid tries to interpret the directions given in the subconscious guide, finally finding the Reaper celebrating the blackest of Sabbaths whilst debating witches and folklore with... is that a bone next to him?
On a slightly lighter note after all this darkness and damnation, Can Baskent turn to Sweden's own DSO - namely DIABLO SWING ORCHESTRA, and their sophomore album Sing Along Songs For Damned And Delirious. Everybody is invited to this eclectic freakshow!
Speaking of melodies you can hum along to - it seems like British libertines CRADLE OF FILTH released a new album. Can Baskent - the same as above - went beyond the border and examined the endless routines of Darkly Darkly, Venus Aversa. Same procedure as last year? Same procedure as every year!
Oh, the answer: DIABLO SWING ORCHESTRA should go; their album released in 2009. FURZE should go; the band name holds only one word. CRADLE OF FILTH should go; they live on an island (and simply aren't experimental). DEATHSPELL OMEGA should go; their native language isn't Germanic. Seems like all bands are odd at Avantgarde-Metal.com... (and don't forget to vote!)
Anno Domini 2010 is slowly and frostily creeping towards its unavoidable end, and the annual rituals of closure are beginning to take place; the spirit of Janus is evoked, gazing wisely in both temporal directions. So also at your favourite webzine Avantgarde-Metal.com. Our world is still full of surprises, and now we at AGM.com want to know which You hold most dear! What releases of 2010 took You, dear Reader, by storm the most? What left-fielded metallic curve-ball ravaged Your ears the most unexpectedly, reigning most supremely in Your playback devices? Let us know in the 2010 poll!
With a hangover, Tentakel P. sits listening to SOLEFALD in an empty bar where everything just has been destroyed by Japanese schoolgirls, wondering if that too is part of the Norrøn Livskunst he has heard so much about.
Our EP-reviewer Adryuu has been spending quite a long time in quite a short EP and the result is a successful invocation of beasts and/or breasts. Thank who? FLEURETY are back with new music!
Massimo Pupillo (ZU) and FM Einheit (Einstürzende Neubauten) teamed for a devastating series of shows down the Italian Peninsula. As our very unique avant-garde Dale Cooper, Marco Guerra Avitabile went to investigate on the case, in Pisa. He's now back from a drilling migraine with a visionary report. Check it out.
Have you noticed how, in the extreme metal scene, all musicians are somehow connected to each other? Everyone is intertwined with someone else, in a sometimes rather incestuous and downright dirty way. The artists featured today are no exception, in what the Collective Voice of AGM.com has chosen to call, the Italian Connection. You all know ABORYM, the grotesquely psychotic promulgators of electronically enhanced Black Metal? Well they have a new and quite demanding album out, and MysteryFlame caught up with the Romans to see what was up: read the result HERE.
Among many guest musicians on aforementioned ABORYM album, you find none the less than Mr. David Tiso, whom you all know as the mastermind behind EPHEL DUATH. While Marco Guerra Avitabile sinks into the bizarre oneiric angles of 2005's Pain Necessary To Know, MysteryFlame gains an insight into the man's wordless ventures into sound under the banner of MANUSCRIPTS DON'T BURN.
"OK" you think, "so Tiso collaborated with ABORYM. Big deal, who hasn't?" Sure. But this is AGM.com. It doesn't stop there. It never does. You know NEGURA BUNGET cracked into two separate entities a while ago? Hupogrammos and Sol Faur continued as DORDEDUH, who have finally released their debut 7" EP (what a wonderful format that is!), Valea Omului, the experience of which was here put to words by MysteryFlame. Once, a Sergio Ponti played drums for EPHEL DUATH. Now he's the live drummer of DORDEDUH. Shit figures.
Leaving the Southern parts of Europe to the northernmore, calmer shores and musicians of Norway, our final text this week comes from none the less than a new addition to our crew, Mr. Can Baskent! His debutant offering comes in the
shape of a study of NAERVAER's so far only album Skiftninger. So, to tie up the bag of this far too long update text: NAERVAER contains several musicians from GREEN CARNATION, whose sole current member is Terje Vik Schei, a.k.a. Tchort, who made a brief stint as a bassist in EMPEROR in the early 90's. Who was the second half of that notorious rhythm section? Bård Faust Eithun. Who has for the past five years been the drummer of... ABORYM. This is almost too easy. It never stops.
Technical difficulties abound.
After trying and ultimately failing to listen to ARKTIKA's Heartwrencher, Thor felt so broken-hearted that he needed a good dose of good ol' ANTI ANTIANTI Avant-garde Metal and thus played I Nifelhels Skygd, an album by a band so sinister that its name won't be revealed on our front page.
For the second time, we at Avantgarde-Metal.com have the honour to present to you all readers-and-supporters-of-the-weird, the mighty CYNIC! These heralds of spiritual, progressive Death Metal hardly need any introduction after carving their legacy back in the early 1990's... Mystery Flame met up with Paul Masvidal in Barcelona and had a chat with the man himself, found here.
Thus we are also happy to announce the return of this prodigal Flame, who while roaming the deep fields of nameless horrors encountered the soon-to-be-unleashed psychogrotesqueries of Italonorwegian squadron ABORYM, read her interpretations of the sounds from a world not like ours...
Continuing on "international line-up" thread: gathering of more than talented musicians doesn't neccessarily make a masterpiece of an album, as Thor reveals in his review of IN LINGUA MORTUA's second effort Salon Des Refusés.
Many artists featured here - well, most actually, eclecticism be our name - venture from inside of METAL to the outside of OTHER MUSICS, for the sake of evolution and experiment. But what happens when an experimental composer from "the Outside" looks the way of distorted riffs, violent drums and sore necks? Oliver Side investigates the results heard in the 104th unnamed composition of Francisco Lopez.
Lastly, but not leastly, J-Lig presents a seasonally bound, minimalist multimedial song-by-song interpretation of a DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN album. Again.
Dear fellow readers,
more than 3 years ago the adventures of AGM.com begun. What started as a small idea, soon developed into a huge vital place for all the weirdos and freaks, scientists and philosophers, libertines and mavericks of metal music all around the world. It always has been an inspiring task for me to serve this ship of pirate fools as captain. But sometimes things need a change to remain fresh and novel. Therefore I’d like to pass the wheel onwards.
Today it’s a big pleasure for me to forward the chief editorship to Andreas Johansson (aVoid), who always has been an important backbone of AGMcom already since the early founding days. Together with the best crew in the world he will continue to sail you to all the sparkling new islands out there in the metal seas. You surely will enjoy this journey!
Never stop the Freak Show!
...and the Freak Show rolls ever on; abreast with his steadfast crew of insane asylum alumni aVoid steers firmly towards deeper depths of uncharted wildernesses and elsewheres, to stir and drag into light what is hidden beyond, below and beneath. Harsh winds tear at the heart of the Western World, dark clouds and narrow minds loom on the horizon; yet we will remain a beacon of other(worldli)ness and kaleidoscopic strobes; respect nothing, love everything!
It is so with great honour we welcome our newest recruit: Morchiant! This master musician of the East Coast introduces himself formally by travelling a bit to the north, engaging in a study of COLD NORTHERN VENGEANCE and their unique take on New World Grimness.
In the eye of every storm; silence. David attempts a re-evaluation.
With his three reviews, Oliver Side would like to salute a fellow Finnish composer, Jussi Lehtisalo, who is sometimes going retro in order to redefine Metal at its simplest and most basic degree of existence. Either it's with MERCEDES HELL, TRACTOR PULLING or MOTORSPANDEX, NWOFHM represents the so-called dirty work which most other contemporary composers wouldn't want to be active within the restraints of.
Adryuu, mighty reviewer of amazing EPs, celebrates The end of the summer in his own private Island trying to solve the Enigma of the Stars.
What some of you readers might not know, is that some of our writers have activities outside of Avantgarde-Metal.com.
Yes, it's true.
One of them is Thor Wanzek. Ever the busy bee, he's not only contributing to your favourite webzine (i.e. this) and a few others, but he has also one of his own, titled SOUNDS UNDER THE SURFACE. Recently, he published the sixth issue of it, and as we thought you might find it interesting (it does have a few parallels with AGM.com, as you may notice)... But before you go elsewhere, consider the marvellous bouquet of articles we have in store for you this week:
Tentakel P. has delved into the chaotic mysteries of SAVNOCK.
Crushed under a thousand tons of pure black ash, Marco Guerra Avitabile has transmitted his impressions of PENTEMPLE from somewhere beyond.
And finally, the ubiquitous Lignano has soberly composed a lengthy in-depth semiotic analysis of some old guy wearing make-up.
For the few passionate readers of our website or any other partner in crime from the Freak Zone or not, who would like to argue in the name of AGM, please visit the discussion on the Avant-Garde Metal page of Wikipedia. We have been denied a link on this page because, according to some guys, we are not a reliable source. Isn't it ridiculous? The more people who will participate, and the more chances we will have of keeping our links to the page. For now only two or three persons are holding the website from being publicly featured on Wikipedia.
Every once in a while there is that one band who, just when you think you've heard it all, turns your musical cosmos upside down and provides fresh blood to the Metal scene. This is just what happened to Tentakel P. with Swiss BLUTMOND, whose second album Thirteen Urban Ways 4 Groovy Bohemian Days is just the right mix of modern, old, straightness, crazyness, polish and dirt to keep you entertained for a loooOooong while. Sure, this update can't cope with sweet little kittens, but maybe you'll find the interview Tentakel P. felt compelled to conduct at least near as entertaining.
It is with a great honour we at Avantgarde-Metal.com (in collaboration with Metal.de) present this week's update to You, our dear readers: TOM GABRIEL FISCHER, of TRIPTYKON, CELTIC FROST and HELLHAMMER.
This Swiss has over the past three decades wrought a legacy casting a great shadow over all of Extreme Metal - including that ephemeral uncategorization we indulge in here. Indeed, today's subject was the co-creator of not only avant-garde metal back in 1987, but of black and death metal as we know (or don't) the genres. But let's not get caught in history and past achievements.
TOM GABRIEL FISCHER says he doesn't aggrandize himself and enthusiasts that we are, we follow suit and stay modest: here’s a small interview with this inspiring and inspired musician, composer and artist. And a small review of the new Shatter EP of TRIPTYKON, a brief epilogue to their first full-length Eparistera Daimones.
The cat to the left is called Tabou, you might have seen it somewhere on myspace the last couple of years. It recently told aVoid what PRYAPISME is truly about. Let it let him tell you. The cat to the right knows where Lignano has been shoving his head the past twelve years or so. Touch her. She likes it.
Using our biological and technological distinctiveness for the profit of AGM, we once more manage to invest in the figurative vessels of the bizarre. The rebounding landscapes therefore stand endless before your very being, readers, and once in a ghostly while, perhaps you even follow us while we try to provide you with some instruments to explore the countless tho quite rare extrapolations of so-called Metal music.
Lately we have received a few e-mails asking us whether this webzine should be taken seriously, or not. Well, might you feel confused by or uncertain with the content of AGM, that's the whole point, inasmuch as you are concerned. Where the Others find delight and meaning, the Priests of convention will search for senseless boredom and absurdism. That's the way it's always been, buddies, so this week is yet another new opportunity to get in better musical shape, so to speak.
Lost in his own nostrils, aVoid is haunted by British ghosts of black metal past across the misty moors, finding himself by the shore of the EBONYLAKE.
Last time Maxwell Rock went AKERCOCKE, he resisted for a few days before opening to the Antichrist in his Heart.
From the Spanish dunes and AS THE LIGHT DIES, walks an enthusiastic and intrepid Adryuu, smiling at the cameras of the leopardian paparazzis.
IT'S THE END of the day, and Thor Wanzek gives you a free ticket to the behind making of his work with the Norwegian band.
Vieux updatum, sac à pomme et brie de vache, comme tu nous as manqué!
Some of us have been away, hiding in the closet where we would unashamedly find new assets for inner rebirth and outer re-launch. Mission Impossible, or was it not? Reality speaks: while driving their way back from one of the largest massgrave black holes found in the Milky space, few members of the AGM space crew could actually still breath enough to carry even a single thought out of their heads. According to our official reports, there seemed to be no heads anymore, so to speak, but only bioplasmatic pulsing and your typical AGM feverish unsanity. Published this week are portals to what happened to these four brave gentlemen as they were catapulted back on to Earth, and these portals are written under the misguidingly exquisite (dis)guise of four reviews.
Might Holden now be in Japan? When we ask him whether he is, he can only sigh. He keeps saying he now wants to direct a new movie called Scenario IV: Dread Dreams.
Whenever he fuses his mind with these deranging pensées nocturnes, Adam McAuley then mimics the word Grotesque with his toes.
Now that he hangs out at the hip night club Les Discrets, Simon Brand can only think of one thing, and that's his new girlfriend's full name, Septembre et Ses Dernières Pensées.
Dear readers, have you heard the news? Not many people know about this, but it seems like some govern-mental Russian evolutionary psychiatrists, who have been following a large international group of multicultural & authentic metalheads in their day-to-day eco-systems, have recently diagnosed 88% of them with various epiphenomena of severe AGM-choly and AGM-phobia, while the remaining 12% showed clear evidence of AGM-phrenia and AGM-thropy.
With the warmest of hearts, thank you for reading.
Simon Brand adopts a newcoming tantalizing band from France which he considers to be more than worth it - WAY TO END.
Marco Guerra Avitabile combines Italo Calvino's literary imagination with another hard-hitting band from France - TANTRUM.
Oliver Side manages to escape the pull of gravity with an American band who went beyond his brain waves - CLAIR CASSIS.
On behalf of AGM, Aleister Crowley himself wrote:
"The joy of life consists in the exercise of one's energies, continual growth, constant change, the enjoyment of every new experience. To stop means simply to die. The eternal mistake of mankind is to set up an attainable ideal."
An epic voyage of a AGM Wednesday at the heart of a G-type main sequence Star comprising about 99.8632% of the total mass of our Solar System. As the Sun only exists in a plasmatic state and is therefore not solid in itself, it rotates faster at its equator than at its poles, which means that the three (p)reviews presented today will shake your equatore more thoroughly than they will pump your pole. This could be fun, right! So much fun, actually, that we're welcoming a new space cadet to celebrate the occasion. His name is Maxwell Rock, and this week he loses his self in the middle of the sea, seeing and hearing nothing but HORN's distance. AGM welcomes you on board, submarine explorer! From his mental shooting studio, while smoking a cigar as large as his hairy fingers, Marco Guerra Avitabile enjoys a private blowjob, in the South of heaven, to feel again and again this FOG IN THE SHELL. And to complete today's update, Oliver Side is seen screaming his joie de vivre at some night-time waterslides where KKOAGULAA hides in the water for those who know it to feel its presence.
With the summer's canicule at its highest degree of thickness and humidity, and while older people from all over the world are dying of breathing failures, the AGM crew hides in the unknown spots of chilling darkness, waiting for the appropriate moment to publish their mind-shattering spells. We've often heard the saying that summer is not Metal-related at all, but we're here to prove you otherwise: in fact, no one on Earth ever said that AGM doesn't fit with summertime. Quite the contrary, as extreme sun beams and experiMetal deliriums effortlessly go hand in hand whenever H2O is lacking. Try it at home if you're still unsure!
For this quite unusual update, we welcome back from the dead, a long-time gone golf player eccentric, our dear Dr. Lignano! As to impress our readers, he/it goes back to 1995 with the post-nuclear intention to study the dead orchids of OPETH. With water up to his waist and numerous Loch Ness Monsters swimming around, Holden salutes the stars with an heliocentric review of THE OCEAN's last album. Driven by his mustache's unsane guidelines, our very own AGM movie director, Marco Guerra Avitabile tries to capture the perfect mood for AT THE SOUNDAWN. Traveling between the Id, the Ego and the Super-ego, post-disco countess Katja Honeywine dances her way, like an anatomic bomb, into JEKYLNHYDE. How sexy!
Last weekend, when asked to draw up a genre that would promote its ideas, AGM laughed and answered to the crowd:
"Metalheads like their masters to stay put, whereas I should think anyone a fool who wanted AGM to say the same thing tomorrow as I said yesterday. If you really want to be my follower, look into musick for yourself and tell the world honestly what you see."
Who might be ready for another huge update? Who could ever bear it? We think you are! We think you do! So here we come your way, once more, with another lesson in unknowable Metal & all. There is no better way to start an update than with an interview. David knows that very well and consequently brings another great in-depth interview on the table, with one of the few AGM bands from Israel - ORPHANED LAND. Come find out about these warriors of light! We could say this is getting close to a tradition - this week, a new Hungarian writer, who goes under the name of Holden, salutes his readers with a review of the dreamy Sequenzen Einer Wanderung, by NOCTE OBDUCTA. Welcome to the space crew! In his quest for the most eerie and emotional band in town, Simon Brand goes to France and comes back with ALCEST's moon scales, which is quite an accomplishment in itself. Sitting under the Spanish sun, someone we hadn't heard of in a great while, Adryuu, finds peace in the Beyond zone with ELUVIUM's pianos and beauty. And finally, Marco Guerra Avitabile, who's been crying all week long as if it was his final storm so to speak, suggests a great album to cry to - by KHOMA. So if this week you don't really know what to do of your free time, this update pretty much wraps it up!
While the black gold gods are still destroying centuries of natural equilibrium, by the way only for the money involved, we AGM people have sailed into ourselves en route to higher standards. Our batteries, so to speak, have never fired as much energy as they do nowadays. We basically ignite sparkles everywhere on Earth just by looking into the wind, the breath, the musick and the unknown. We really hope that with the last few updates, we have picked up where our AGM momentum had left us. Join us on our quest to explore reality without shame and beyond fear.
For this week, another new writer comes in and his terrestrial name is Matthew Kinne. If you look closely enough at Mr. Kinne's picture, you will soon notice that he has the unique power to deodorize farts. We wish him the best of smell, as he introduces himself with a review of YOGA's Megafauna. Hey metal.de, long time no see! Falk comes back from the grave and offers us a translated review of the highly psychedelic Metal band, SEMEN DATURA. Read it at your own risk! More imaginative than ever, cinematic reviewer Marco Guerra Avitabile goes for one of the few border-pushing Metal bands from the States, namely NACHTMYSTIUM, actually molding his own Lynchian scenario on their addictive black meddle. And at last but not least, in between his experiments with Jodorowsky's psychomagic and Gurdjieff movements, and assisted by a proud sun & moon descendant of Aleister Crowley, Oliver Side examines CHROME HOOF's otherwordly funkiness. This is one hell of a weekly update, isn't it!
This week's update can get, under some guidance, both musical and astrological, or the other way around, depending on your system of beliefs. From afar, a spaceship is descending towards you, readers, with three spacemen on board. Remember number three. As it happens, the AGM tempo grows larger with time but in space, only to loosen its extra-atmospheric conflagrations. Remember number three. Up and sound, free and high, wide and far, the AGM tempo pushes the envelope of life and death. Soon a door opens - is it in the spaceship, or both in your mind and your heart? We are not sure. But in the AGM room's first corner, stands Techno-Buddhist David in the Bhuja Vrischikasana position, literally stinging his reviewing spirit into NAGELFAR's Hünengrab Im Herbst. In the AGM room's second corner, stands musical pro-evolutionist Thor Wanzek in the Yoganidrasana position, which obviously has given him a much deeper view into KAILASH's new album, Past Changing Fast. And in the AGM room's third corner, stands blue-eyed romantic sociopath Simon Brand in the Bhujangasana position, once more showing his love for the ladies ultimately by reviewing one of his favorite bands now re-making their well-known past with CYNIC's Re-Traced. Question: which geometrical figure is made of three corners? The triangle, of course. Now think about it: AGM is the Cosmick Triangle of Musick - and we just demonstrated this very simple fact with today's written triptych. Oh, the spaceship is leaving us behind already, and so is the AGM tempo... until next time, friends and foes!
Oh la la! What a week it was! How did we survive to this, we have no idea. We want to say thank you to everyone who actually sent us their applications for the job - this was greatly appreciated. As usual, we had to make a choice and not one, not two, but three new writers have joined our cosmic asylum! They have been carefully selected and we believe that AGM will be most grateful to their otherwordly skills. Please say HELLO! to Mystery Flame, the European feminine explorer of clouds unknown to manhood; Marco Guerra Avitabile, the screaming cookie monster from ancient Pompei; and Klearhos, whose (un)clear Greek head is on par with the most post-bizarre acts out there. Welcome to the space crew!
To celebrate our new era, we have one massive update. Mystery Flame, for one, lost her way between Pluto and Earth, where she nevertheless managed to interview NEGURA BUNGET, already a very popular band among our readers - so enjoy! Come find out for yourself but, apparently, Marco Guerra Avitabile enjoyed ROSETTA's own brand of metal for astronauts. While teaching us the Way of the Dead, Klearhos explored YAKUZA's own proggy-meth madness. And it wouldn't be an AGM update without any old-timer in, so Oliver Side further investigated into what Jazz can be, with an underground 4TET from his hometown, Pierre Labbé's own Manivelle.
Once more, the AGM space crew has been wondering and wandering up and down in the ether, like a wobbly, unresolute starship. These last few weeks were indeed dedicated to our middle life crisis, but our website's ending scene was nowhere to be found, as usual we might say. More than ever, though, we are looking for new, inspired writers with great English skills, an avant-garde imagination and a willpower to explore musick in the name of AGM. This website is bound to turn into something even bigger and wider, so if you feel like you could bring your own scent to our journalistic madness, count yourself in! So much is in the pipeline as we speak. But still, we are looking for reviews, articles or interviews - the strangest, the better! In the case you should decide to join our ranks - believe us, you will never be the same again.
Now, for this week's update, we have two special reviews. First off, after weeks of raw, unadulterated debauchery and nimiety, the handsome Simon Brand marks his return to our website with SORGELDOM's Inner Receivings. Most of our female readers will instantly recognize his sexy writing style, and fans of epic dissonance should be interested! Secondly, one of the most hard-working drummers in the history of Germany, and also one of the few bald ones, Tentakel P. explores the new, long-awaited BORKNAGAR album - who apparently went Universal this time around, wasting none of their singularity along the way.
The sun is setting and the moon is nigh, because AGM travels by the stars...
after some weeks of ethereal contemplation (also called "laziness" by simple-minded people) Thor broke the bonds of Morpheus. And he returns with a big sensation: He asked God for help in case of reviewing "Eparistera Daimones" by TRIPTYKON. Guess what happened...?!
Having lost all sense of direction in the volcanic ash cloud, Thor felt like beaming to Norway while listening the mini album "Phenomenon", although AENAON communicate with their ancient papas of philosophy right on their local doorstep.
And finally Kevin discovers new pearls at the horizon – NOXIUS CORP.
As our more Eurocentric readers might have noticed this past week, there is a mighty cloud of volcanic ash covering a vast amount of European airspace, regurgitated from the Abyss by the portal Eyjafjellajökull. The miniscule particles fountaining into the air, dislodged Planck-length Agharta glass fibre, has not only disabled all flight in Europe, but does also impede upon the doings of the AGM.com crew. In fact, this subatomic grain has ripped to shreds the HydrAetherWeb through which we communicate, subsequently isolating each contributor in their individual pockets and bubbles of space-time continuum.
These past two weeks, merely two text artefacts have been decoded from that incessant white noise, both harking from the timeless quark-gluon-soup at the beginning of the Universe: the dirty sun did burn Adryuu's eyes so he had to allow himself some Latitudes to learn Braille just to read how he became the Agonist of his own story. aVoid on the other hand regressed into a slightly more juvenile state of mind, having some Endwarfing dirty grind-fun at the diffenately abledd at the Paralympik Sessions. NB: reader discretion is adviced. This is nasty stuff.
Meanwhile our cleansing drones clear away the rubble of this unprovoked attack of the Vril, remember that the AGM.com tentacles are spreading far and wide these days: the Myspace has recently been heavily updated, and you can stalk us on Twitter, watch us at Youtube, and do something else on Last-FM.
Summer blowout! The time is ripe for some special adventures into sounds. This week some of our crew members came back from Hell with a pretty nice tan, while a few others experimented far beyond the sun - into Paradise? - some sort of post-luciferian revelation. To be more than straightfoward, we could never really be sure about any of this. The thing is, we like to expand, despite the dangers and risks that this might imply. So we salute our fellow experimenters and wish them the best of luck, for luck is what you will need, once you travel into the bizarre netherworlds of overloaded Metal.
Once more, agm.com wants to diversify its quest. So instead of undertaking true avant-garde endeavours and grasping for the stars, Thor payed once more tribute to his nature and small brain, and entered a dripstone cave nearby his own troll home to witness two ultimately different performances by AMENRA and Steve Von Till. Still in Seattle, right between two exotic cocktails, rebellious drag king James Slone consulted the psych powers of ORPHANED LAND - the results of which should (un)please most of their fanatic fanbase. And finally, after many oddly disturbing nights spent spying the atmosphere and studying PSI phenomena such as ESP and EVP, believe it or not, Oliver Side was literally contacted by THE WHITE TIGER PREPADE, a new sacerdotal caste that every AGM fan should be aware of.
AGM needs more AG than M and more A than G - or is it the other way around?
Needless to insist, last week has been an extremely draining period for our crew. After many therapeutic trials and errors, the key to our health was found not exactly where one would have expected it to be! So, now that everyone is more or less back to normal, and with the spring fever titillating our exploding nerves, it is with much excitement and anticipation that we bring you some new written explorations from your favorite writers.
In the vast world of art, there are many surprises beyond AGM's flourishing navel. One of them got the attention from our crew. To prevent oblivion - that is the aim of STILLE (which translates to Silence), an 'audio-visual memorial' published last winter. At least Editor Marcus Stiglegger described it this way and hinted in his foreword to the multimedia book at an absurdity: silence might be photographed - but turned into music? Facing the unspeakable horror of the mass murder of so-called "ballast existences" in the Third Reich, our writer Thor forgot any music categories and asked himself whether this ambitious project lacks substance. Furthermore, while from his jetset manor in Seattle, sarcastic polemicist James Slone decided to run after IHSAHN's progressive grey, Adam Matlock has been using the same IHSAHN all along to satisfy his aural addiction for free-jazz saxophones in metal. No, we haven't been paid by the guy to subtly overpublicize his new endeavours - we simply dig it.
A strange weekend if there ever was one, most of our writers came back deadsick from it. Without going into the ugly details, Dr. Chrystof and his Post-Modernist witch-wife Katja have been working days and nights to gather about just enough medicinal plants for the crew. Many unprecedented side-effects include painful seizures and spasms, diarrhea, paresthesias, itching, headaches, nausea and vomiting, as well as episodes of mania and psychosis. Everything should be back to normal next week, at least we hope so. Only two writers could stick to their job in spite of the situation. At the peak of his violent symptoms, Adam Matlock felt like he travelled to outer space ("or perhaps a dingy basement on hallucinogens", as he kept doubting his own visions) with TOUGH TROUBLES' debut release. At the other end of the spectrum, while reviewing ODEM ARCARUM's impressive new album for some German print magazine, Thor got lost in a nightmarish maze of majestic Black metal that he could only leave by writing a translation of his too fast approach which you can read here. So please support us, either with AGM prayers or by visiting our Youtube channel and leaving a message down the road. We will be back stronger.
... or how to promote unprobabilistic indeterminism?
After years of dreaming and months of intense organizational work, Kim Sølve finally launches his very own asylum for the dumbfounded music freaks and maniacs alike - Adversum Records. Based in Oslo and Belgium but with an international reach, what we have here is a new label focusing on both individuality and uniqueness in contemporary Metal and Rock (etc.) musick. For the event, faithful to his third ear, mystical troubadour Oliver Side entered in communication with Kim Sølve, as together these two x-men tried to define, to the best of their capacities, the mysterious nature and purpose of Adversum Records. Among our colleagues, this is now referred to as The Adversum Conversations. To add to your excitement, soon Adversum Records will be releasing two albums, YUREI's Working Class Demon and DELIRIUM BOUND's Delirium, Dissonance and Death, which have been very carefully tested and exclusively reviewed by Oliver Side, more than one month before their official release date. We hope you feel kind of teased.
Now, to cream the cake, aVoid turns his tape deck on, eats some soup and indulges in the lamest and most pretentious comparisons this site has seen, while aurally consuming the latest release from our favourite noise-maker ZWEIZZ: a split c30 shared with RU-486. And as a special bonus, this week also brings you the useful cyber operation of the new SEARCH function on agm.com! As you can see on your right, it is now more than easy to browse through our bottomless website and look for whatever is on your mind at any given moment. You don't want to waste your time trying to find what we have written about this or that? Just enter your key word, and everything connected to it which has been published on agm.com will show up. Sweet, isn't it? It's now time for some serious exploration. There is still so much more to uncover.
Another week, another universe of sounds! Between two meditative sessions, Tibetan David wanted to know more about the spiritual powers at work behind the German band DARK AGE, and came back with a great interview. Go enjoy it! Well, with Jung, Fromm and the likes as good night literature, it didn't surprise us that Thor was obsessed by the idea to lift masks and to uncover the truly evil beings we all are surrounded with. But what did he hear when behind one extremely ugly mask he discovered a faceless phenomenon? It's up to you to understand his discovery as we still remain unsure regarding its true nature. Furthermore, while Adryuu spent the shortest hour of his life with GREEN CARNATION, Oliver Side laughed out loud during three hours with ETRON FOU LELOUBLAN's discography, and lost his mind once more along the way.
Also, AGM.com has never featured any ad banners so far. We want to remain independent from the common industry structures and denied all requests of companies so far. This week we decided for the very first time to host a banner here to support a great festival in Poland, fully dedicated to the weird and experimental sides of metal. We are giving patronage to the ASYMMETRY FESTIVAL in Wroclaw to support this innovative project. If you should live somewhere within a radius of 20.000 km around Wroclaw, be sure to be there!
We have received tons of comments and e-mails regarding last week's update: we are always proud to surprise you in some way or another, dear readers! Following through, we come up today with another special event in and of itself, something we have never featured here before, our very first video interview! In fact, behind-the-crowd groundbreaker and R-rolling specialist Dr. Chrystof had a seat with Folk Metal pioneers DORNENREICH's frontman Eviga. Hopefully, this will start a new trend at AGM.com, and more and more video interviews, whenever it is possible for our crew to do so, should be presented online. Thank you for watching!
ZEITGEISTER - does that ring a cowbell? We certainly hope so. Not quite an interview, not quite a conversation, the new ISLAND album is playing in the background as Christian Kolf and Tentakel P. will take anyone clicking here on a fantastic journey. You enjoy your Death metal crossed with some prog music and a pinch of avant-garde? Walk no further, as Adam McAuley uncovers CEREBRUM's latest album, Spectral Extravagance. It's been an inside joke at our offices, there is nothing Simon Brand likes more than finding bands no one has ever heard of heretofore. Come discover his most recent discovery, the Czech AGM band HARMONY BAY.
Apparently, in many European metal clubs, "I love AGM" is now the most used pick-up line...
As spring awaits us just around the corner, we at Avantgarde-Metal.com are proud to present to you the least holy trinity in the history of this site. Three shades of black, three mighty emperors, three awe-inspiring resurrections.
First of all, we are the most proud to present the Czech lords of symphonic Black Metal experimentalism: MASTER'S HAMMER. Last autumn, they suddenly returned from 14 years of silence, to release their fourth full-length album, Mantras. As they are regarded by many as one of the first Avantgarde Metal bands ever, thanks to their awe-inspiring 1992 Black Metal operetta The Jilemnice Occultist, aVoid couldn't resist contacting the MH boss Franta Storm for an interview; read what he has to say here. Meanwhile, he also received a copy of aforementioned Mantras; read the review here.
Though ABIGOR made their comeback already back in 2007 with the highly acclaimed Fractal Possession (according to you, last decade's twelfth best album), it is now time for them to prove their worth as a stalwart of modern, post-apocalyptic abstraction. Adryuu mounts a black-metallic time machine to discover both the primitivism and the end of the world unleashing the sulphur in the veins of the saint.
If you haven't been sleeping under a grim rock in the misty forests of the Northern Pagan Winter, you've probably noticed that a certain prolific Black Metal phantom from Norway has returned from a 17 year long absence. Yes, Varg Vikernes has returned from Helheimr and indeed crafted a new BURZUM monolith. Read Olivier Side's enthusiastic review of the White Black Metal runestone Belus, beyond the border where music and only music matters.
Many of you will remember Oliver Side's interview with Espen Ingierd, which was quite successful and popular among our readers. What you didn't know yet is that Mr. Side was also interviewing Einar Sjursø aka Einz from BEYOND DAWN fame, an artist playing in countless other respected bands such as VIRUS, LAMENTED SOULS and TWO TRAINS. This week's update is therefore dedicated to this 'been there done that' veteran of the Norwegian AGM scene. In fact, Einar Sjursø is the mastermind behind Duplicate Records as well, so it was easy to learn a bit more about the label's behind the scenes and future.
Now to the reviews. Quite on par with this week's update, James Slone visited the first TWO TRAINS full-lenght album from 2004, and once more charmed by the singer's unique tones, he discovered that BEYOND DAWN perhaps isn't so much dead as we are normally led to believe. During some monstrous manoeuvres in Germany, Tentakel P. dangerously got his mind splitted into shizophrenic wavelengths as he returned from WOBURN HOUSE's Mushroom Maze. And looking for the HAIKU FUNERAL's assassin from a secretly ritualized basement in downtown Montreal, Oliver Side meditated out of his body in a grand cathedral full of hashish.
Indeed, it is a wonderfully experimental update that we are able to share with you this week. It seems like AGM will never stop to mesmerize our writers! Between you and us: we are very proud to know that you are of course going to read ALL of the update quite effortlessly, since the new articles are so much interesting. To warm things up right away, Adam Matlock braved street lines 60-strong to see KAYO DOT perform their first album, Choirs of the Eye, and their latest, Coyote. He also managed somehow to talk composer and bandleader Toby Driver into answering long winded and highly-specific questions about his music. You know you're curious.
We also have three more otherwordly adventures to put on the map to your musical self-enlightment. To begin with, father extravaganza Glenn Doom investigated into a unique American AGM band that almost no one remembers nowadays though everyone should, DAZZLING KILLMEN. Please be careful listening to their music as it's not for the faint of heart! From his ice castle in Sweden, aVoid took a trip with MoRKoBoT, flying beyond the border and back again - and now you can see his slides! And to conclude with a spicy pinch of pop noir weirdness, underground detective Adryuu illegally passed through the borders of Norway to gather more information on the unexplainable risks and investments of DU.
Since last week, many strange events have kept our writers busy handling their heavy duties. The strangest of all, let's face it, must have been when AGM gathered its crew on to conquer YOUTUBE! No, you're not going blind, avantgarde-metal.com can now be found on youtube.com, where the most AGM videos we can discover will be displayed. If you find something missing on our otherwordly channel, never hesitate to tell us about it on the forum or directly to our writers! This is a project we strongly believe in. We want to present the most thorough cybernetic AGM Video Club online, which will be specifically dedicated to the bizarre and cinematic experiments in relation with Avant-Garde Metal music. Join us on our quest!
Back to business, we also have a great, multi-forms slice of reviews to share with you today. What is it that we're hearing, uh? "You can't listen to this noise!" "This is no music any longer!" "That album is no fun, it just hurts!" – Well, our writer Thor got used to arguments like these while talking with friends and metal bro's about SHINING's fourth album Black Jazz. When noticing the "professional" German metal media's reactions on this marvellous album, he felt the urge to answer back. And we're glad he did! After three days living exclusively under the Ancient Celtic code of mental behavior, underground traveller Adam McAuley has not only reached new esoteric planes of existence with PRIMORDIAL's 2005 album, The Gathering Wilderness, but he has gently reviewed his experience for us. Finally, his critical sarcasm zoomed on to the recent and quite over-hyped documentary on Norwegian Black metal, Until The Light Takes Us, radical freelance writer James Slone brings his grain of salt to an otherwise rather popular plate.
Go on for a voyage among the highways to visual and hearing expansion...
It seems like we never stop discovering new pearls among the weekly junk. This time around, we have decided to serve you another plate full of new AGM space mutants. A few weeks ago, programming Spanish overlord Adryuu gently informed you about FLUORYNE, this new, expressionist quintet from Germany, a band he got so interested in that he now has a mind-revealing interview with mastermind Falk for you to enjoy.
Simon Brand, forever faithful to his sniffing nose, kept his eyes wide open to witness the wordly fall of icons, which under the influence of he suddenly felt like he had to investigate further into the latest IKUINEN KAAMOS - the first 2010 album, by the way, to be featured on our website. Last but not least, as there's not much snow left in his living area, for three nights in a row Oliver Side literally believed that summertime was back in town, so only wearing bermudas he pulled out his BEYOND THE VAULT series, went subconscious and ended up in an emergency room, almost completely frozen to death, where he managed, against his nurse's controlling insistence, to write the blueprints for this article. The series has never been reviewed before anywhere online so this is a rather exclusive offering.
Once again, another special update is on its way towards you! It's getting harder every year to discover newcomers in the AGM scene who do not simply sound like newcomers. As it is, even the AGM scene is becoming full of traps one has to avoid in order to move further from the genre's clichés. So Oliver Side was very determined to get in touch with ORANSSI PAZUZU from Finland, a fresh new AGM band only busy doing their own thing. First off, he did interview them and then felt like he definitely had to review Muukalainen Puhuu, their first album from 2009. We hope you will enjoy this most alien entity! Also, continuing the tradition established between agm.com and metal.de, Tentakel P. was equally enchanted by GRUENEWALD's II as Thor, and as he found nothing else to add to Mr. Wanzek's praise of the album on metal.de, he limited himself to translate it. Finally, to put a dreamy end to this week's dream sequence, Simon Brand traveled to an Electro Jazz Metal dimension made of structured diamonds and odd timings to review CANVAS SOLARIS' last tornado-album from 2008, The Atomized Dream.
Until next week, try pushing yourself beyond the limits of humanity.
Still relaxing from the many hours of work which went into the most popular POLL in the history of agm.com, we come back stronger than ever with a very special Wednesday's delivery. To begin things with, Adam Matlock is back from the grave with a fresh new interview with Japanese gentleman Mirai from SIGH. Needless to say, we are very excited to feature such an important band for the avant-garde fields of metal music. Come find out about their upcoming deranged album, Scenes from Hell. Long live Japan!
We also have new reviews for you to enjoy. Spending his darkest hours under the Spanish snow falling, Adryuu tells a chronicle of a Black Old Journey he regularly takes still nowadays accompanied by BLACKDRONE INC., an international formation originating from Cesena, Italy. While his last few months were close to comatose sleep and depression, Oliver Side could barely hold a pencil when he discovered LUUSIFERIININ ARMOSTA, the band which literally saved his life and got him back on track, at least until his next visit to the local asylum.
Ladies and Gentlemen, not only a year has passed, but also a whole decade. So today we present you the BIGGEST AVANT-GARDE METAL POLL EVER. Thanks a lot to all the participants. You did a great choice. This day is fully dedicated to YOUR favourite bands and YOUR favourite albums. Enjoy what moved you most during the past year as well as during the past decade.
LAST CALL FOR VOTES! The annual agm polls will close this Saturday. Drop your vote and help deciding about the highlights of the year, the decade and the eternity!
Today we have the joy to introduce a very promising agm newcomer to you: Adryuu falls deep into a German Expressionist landscape turned to black metal, courtesy of FLUORYNE. We are also happy to welcome back our old fellow: David, formerly known as Trident, returns from a year long journey without music and sees the future of metal music in DARK AGE’s new masterpiece! Suleiman enlights his rocket pipe for HYPNOSIS. Kevin jumps beyond the border for HAYLEY JANE.
In reaction to Dr. Liguano's top-notch journalistic coverage of Metallica's discography, Oliver Side answers with an appreciation of the first, second, third and fourth Megadeth albums, which he considers to be their magnum opuses. Indeed, Mr. Side favours Megadeth over Metallica. Is this the starting point to a new rivalry between two of our writers? How suspenseful!
LIGNANO IS DOCTOR! Mr. Jonny Lignano, one of our most foremost writers, celebrated his University promotion last Saturday. Now you have to call him "Dr. rer. soc. oec. Jonny Lignano” or simply "Dr. Lignano”. So it’s time for a big reading party. Tonight the Doctor himself shares his overwhelming scientific intellect with us:
”Jingle Hells”, "Merry Antichristmas”, skull Angels and Christmas trees with pentagrams and inverted crosses – this is what you would have found here if Lignano was a normal metalhead writing for a normal metal magazine. But he isn’t. Instead, as exquisite Christmas presents, he brings you two contemplative specials with all in all 14 (!!!) new articles!
In the first special he introduces a legend of countertenor avant-garde pop to you: (Santa) KLAUS NOMI. And in the second special he deeply investigates the life work of METALLICA (as deep as it can get...).
Enjoy this trip beyond the border. And don’t forget to send Dr. Lignano your salutes & congratulations!
With snow flakes dancing in the wind and J-Christ's death rebirth process getting closer every day, we think it's the right time to once more bring you some fine instances of AGM lunacy. That's why we have four new reviews to feed your outborn souls with, hoping to keep your hunger for the AB-NORMAL worlds of Metal music quite fully satiated. Also we want to remind you to keep participating to our READER's 2009 POLL!
Out of the blackest of cosmic black holes, poet aVoid follows JHVH into the dark cellars of the soul, where everything is turned backwards. On her return from Nowhere Zero, veteran Jobst regressed back in 2001 to unfold the great mysteries of ENSLAVED's classic album Monumension. Then the Troll of Thor, due to his most recent transhuman mutations (which we didn't quite expect, to put it bluntly), encountered the strange vellum-bound bones creature and/or spectre of the new BERGRAVEN album. As if that wasn't enough, Tentakel P. checked out the New Kids avant the Block, NEBELKRÄHE, and tell us why we should keep an eye or two on them.
Don't be afraid, it's not going to hurt you - or is it?
Not only 2009 has nearly passed, but also a huge decade full of information, a decade that turned our lives into screens – the ”Twothousandzeros”. So this year we are not only searching for YOUR TOP 5 AGM ALBUMS 2009. We are also looking for YOUR TOP 10 AGM ALBUMS OF THE DECADE 2000 – 2009 and, to complete the trinity, for YOUR TOP 10 ALLTIME AGM BANDS. Click the banner above to read more about it.
Of course you can also find some exquisite reviews this week: aVoid goes for a walk in the dark parks of life, until he finally reaches a Crossroad. Then nothing is left in him but confusion and despair, which he kind of likes, though. Simon dances Sitaki in a Zorro costume with ZORRAS. Our friend Ulv returns from the wild south with PROD. And Kevin dompteurs MY FLEA CIRCUS.
Now that we're calming down from the huge Ulver update we have published last week (thanks for your great comments!), it is time to relax with another well-known Norwegian band among the AGM circles, BEYOND DAWN. If there ever was an ex-metal band paving the way for the post-metal regions, that was it. In fact, Oliver Side got in touch with their guitarist and singer, Espen Ingierd, who also happens to be the mastermind behind TWO TRAINS, another great band, to dive into his mostly secret history as a musician and also to know a bit more about his current and future activities. For those of you who are going to read the interview with Espen, there is a VERY SPECIAL treasure to download somewhere along the way. Find it yourself!
We also have three reviews by three different writers: James Slone explored BEYOND DAWN's 1999 classic album, "Electric Sulking Machine", Suleiman worked his way into the new RED SHYFT album, and finally Adryuu shared a trip with a most underground agm album by KARABOUDJAN.
This night is fully dedicated to one of the most legendary avant-garde heroes ever: ULVER. We proudly present one of the most monolithic and meandering interviews ever done with maestro Kristoffer Garm Rygg, Jørn H. Sværen and Daniel O’Sullivan. Our Seth Beaudreault made a pilgrimage from Fairbanks/Alaska to Lillehammer only to catch their words for you... and to bear witness to the very first live performance of ULVER’s history in May 2009. Enjoy their intimate and illuminating conversation to get beneath the pelt of these perennially mysterious wolves.
Today we’ve got a surprise for you: Avantgarde-Metal.com starts an exchange program with Metal.de, one of Germany's biggest Online Magazines and second home for some of our vampire fools here.
With over 14.000 reviews and 1.600 interviews in the database as well as many other features Metal.de covers everything concerning, well, Metal. Their occasional looks over the rim of the tea cup might prove interesting insights for our readers as well. So from now on, Metal.de will feature some reviews from Avantgarde-Metal.com, translated into German; and vice versa AGM.com will feature some Metal.de reviews translated into English.
And now please warmly welcome our first guest writers from metal.de: Falk, together with our Tentakel P. one of the major heads and driving forces behind this cooperation, debuts with MADDER MORTEM. Mathias Klammer deeply contemplates into the latest audiovisual masterpiece of DORNENREICH. And Metalgreg sets sails with BORKNAGAR.
We write the year 1889. Two years ago three British gentlemen and a woman who are known only among dubious folk as music group with the even more dubious moniker "A FOREST OF STARS” achieved to record a self-composed musical piece by magical technique. Since then this piece, namely "The Corpse Of Rebirth”, has hypnotized poor lost souls with its psychedelic darkness. With a quick fix of melancholy and heroine one of our detectives left Baker Street behind for the sewage-ridden streets of a not particularly fair city and found three men gentle enough to answer some of his questions.
Today we are happy to introduce a new writer to you – the man from La Mancha – Adryuu. Some of you already may know him from "The Freak Zone”. Today he debuts with a review of ORGAN:. And grandmaster Suleiman returns with MEATHOOK SEED.
Tonight, there seeps in from the Beyond-Cosmos three visions of the Numen, three visions dissected and vested in words by our noble Glossa-Jugglers.
James Slone finds himself tumbling in the trombonic ramblings of an early BEYOND DAWN - namely their debut album Pity Love.
Retaining the melancholy of the grey Norwegian coast-lines of progressive Extreme Metal, Adam MacAuley intercepts the mighty ENSLAVED when at the crossroads of Then and Now found themselves at the crossroads of another Then (Progressive Rock) and another Now (Black Metal). The subject, or object if you will, is Mardraum: Beyond The Within.
Not on the surface of their colourful appearance and their sometimes outspoken happy melodies, nevertheless in more than one creative detail THE BRIMSTONE SOLAR RADIATION BAND is a neighbour of ENSLAVED, hailing as well from Bergen Rock City, working closely together with design wizard Asle Birkeland who helps both bands on the visual side of things, being musically socialized in the metal underground of the Nineties. With sunshine in his heart Thor tried to point out the quality of the band’s third delicious album called Smorgasbord.
With fall settling in, the leaves going down and the soft rain turning into flickering snow, we have decided to warm you up and continue with the fantastic Cornelius Von Jakhelln’s (SOLEFALD, STURMGEIST and G.U.T.) in-depth interview brought to you by Tentakel P. As announced, this is the second and final part from the conversation these two gentlemen shared in a club last month. As a bonus, we offer you three reviews which will help you know a bit more about Cornelius' recent discography. In order to do so, Tentakel P. was put in charge of Sturmgeist's electro Thrash Meister Mephisto (2005) and straight Black metal Manifesto Futurista (2009), while Oliver Side tested his hardcoreness with G.U.T.'s My Only Drug is Madness (2007).
This week, much of our crew can't stand in place for more than a minute, because at long last, after almost one year of trials and errors, German pitbull drummer and videogames specialized reviewer Tentakel P. came back from his meeting with writer, poet, singer and multi-instrumental music composer Cornelius Von Jakhelln from Solefald, Sturmgeist and G.U.T.. A very prominent figure in the Avant-garde portions of Metal music, and rightfully so! We present you now the first part of the interview, which will be followed next week by a second and final part. To cream the cake, Oliver Side dived head first into the new, apocalyptic 7" by Fleurety, Ingentes Atque Decorii Vexilliferi Apokalypsis. He definitely was surprised by what this (un)famous Norwegian band seems to be occupied fucking around with these days, musically speaking.
What is common to Ulver, Darkthrone, Mayhem, Virus, Enslaved, Arcturus, DHG/Dødheimsgard, Ihsahn, Manes, Solefald, Ved Buens Ende, Guapo, Gallhammer, organ:, Fleurety, Abscess, She Said Destroy, Code, Ephel Duath, G.U.T., Thou Shalt Suffer, Skumring, Audiopain, Moon Lore, Vesen, Peccatum, Zweizz, Wåttamezz, In Lingua Mortua, The Kovenant, Ansur, This is Past, Trinacria, Umoral, Havoc Unit, Konstriktor, Madder Mortem, Amok, The Konsortium, Anti-depressive Delivery and Sturmgeist? Some of their covers were carefully designed by Trine + Kim Design Studio, the Norwegian duo of visual artists synonymous for dark elegance and classy weirdness. See it for yourself. They have been operating for a little while already, and soon it will be their 10th birthday! Oliver Side wanted to know more about the Decade celebrations they have organized and suggested we should all click on this gentleman's chest.
As for this week's reviews, we are very proud to offer you some of our writers' finest material...
Tired of reading Descartes and Kant, rookie reporter Kevin Reichel thought about selling his paper dolls down in Mexico city. Needless to say, he was immediately diagnosed 'bipolar cheerleader'. For his defense, he got suspicious and insisted he was only addicted to hard noise.
Nine months ago, in New York, jetsetter Glenn Doom accidentally made pregnant a lady he had a passionate affair with. So this week he went back and surprise, she has given birth to the cutest babyhead ever. The little girl's name is Panoply and already she belches in agm fashion.
Finally, as busy as only he can be, Thor Wanzek did two things instead of just one. First, he landed his ship from Sverige far to the great northern hemisphere, exactly 50 degrees into Compilation #4, where he heard someone saying that something else was coming from Sweden. Second, comme il n'a pas le coeur dans sa bouche, he publicly implored France's Nicolas Sarkozy for the bigger picture, to which absurd demand the French President burst into laughters before answering an equally demented joke about ambient and electronica.
Avantgarde Metal on tour: our Swedish writer aVoid enters a dungeon with overpriced beer in Copenhagen, Tentakel P. cleaves his way through a sold-out venue in Hamburg and Thor dares to visit a metal festival in Oberhausen with bands he never wants to get in touch with again – so what’s going on?! Read about the occult travellers of the Avant-Garde, namely CODE, SECRETS OF THE MOON, SÓLSTAFIR and BORKNAGAR from three different angles!
Adam Matlock watches in fear and wonders as DYNAHEAD struggles to maintain a thrash attitude against their creeping Avant-Garde tendencies. See the horror for yourself here.
Trumpets, milk cans and uncountable other instruments, Norwegian female power, music that is not metal but definitely Avant-Garde: KATZENJAMMER is still on tour as well.
And grandmaster Suleiman returns with a golden shot on experindustrialists ID:VISION
Today we proudly present a fresh experiMetal attack from Middle Europe. Tentakel enters the wood house of KLABAUTAMANN to shed some obscurity upon these young German Progfolk Blackers. And Chrystof invites you to the current "Nachtreisen” tour of Austrian extreme metal pioneers (and forefathers of modern folk metal) DORNENREICH.
For the first time in a while, avantgarde-metal.com which you love so well introduces a brand genre-spanking new writer by the name of Kevin Reichel, coming to you from a village hidden in the depths of Germany. Thinking that it would gain him friends in the world of AGM, he has also bribed us with four (read; lots) of new articles for readers to feast their eyes on. Please accept his concise ideas with courtesy and read his writings on ANIMAL ALPHA, ATROX, AYIN ALEPH and STOLEN BABIES.
Simon Brand compares antipodean Death Metallers SARSEKIM to the genre's pioneers and they hold up nicely in his review of the band's first full-length, Fathom The Spheres.
Adam Matlock joins the self-replicating cyborg of MAGNUM CARNAGE for an apocalyptic tour of Honolulu. Find out his thoughts by moving your pointer over these words and clicking the bit at the left of your mouse.
Avantgarde-metal.com presents to you a very special occasion today in the revealing of the latest and greatest piece by Avant-Gardite, Olivier Side. He welcomes you to read on as he lays open the mind, heart and soul of Norwegian mastermind BENNY BRAATEN in his exhaustive interview, nearly a year in the making.
Adam Matlock gives us the sister review to his exploration of VELVET CACOON's Atropine of two weeks back. Follow the link-shaped white rabbit to gain understanding of their latest album, P Aa Opal Poere Pr. 33 in all its meandering glory.
Last but not least, Simon Brand tries his hand at systematic genre creation and proceeds to fail for your entertainment in his review of the awesome BLUE DEERS full-length, guest featuring some unprofessional vocabulary. It's awesome.
This week, on behalf of all lovers of Neofolk around the globe, Simon Brand kidnapped the mind behind the recently reviewed MUSK OX and subjected him to a series of questions to be answered on pain of death. I think he answered pretty well under the pressure. Click here to read the resulting dialogue.
Over on the less morbid side of things, Adam MacAuley has an interrogation free listen to the semi-Avant Garde, semi-robotic and semi-lengthed demo of Frenchmen, OMAINEN. He semi-recommends them.
Tentakel P finally finds something he can agree with a record label on in the form of the apt genre description designated to British Industrialists, MINE[THORN]. Click the link to receive your prize of the knowledge of this newfangled useful labelling nonsense.
One of Norway's best and least selling acts, if their long-dead website was to be trusted, was BEYOND DAWN. From their earliest proto-AGM explorations, to the electronic weirdness of Frysh, BEYOND DAWN kept to their guns, exploring their own melancholic corners of the musical dimensions. In the first of three (or more) rather unplanned BEYOND DAWN specials, aVoid lends his ear to the re-release of 1999's In Reverie, and the recently released pre-album retrospective Bygones.
A few other inspections that might interest our weekly subscribers:
After some listening sessions Thor feels so spellbound by the sprawling songs of A FOREST OF STARS that he's actually unable to leave the sparkling trees behind and remembers his first encounters with dark British music(k).
Adam Matlock manages to stay clothed at a NAKED CITY concert, while Tentakel P. destroys his living room while trying out fighting moves to Need The Needle from the Textbook of Modern Karate.
Showing us the power of the solitary Canadian in their first full length release this week are one-man Neofolk project, MUSK OX, lovingly explored by Simon Brand. He beseeches the reader to watch this band, they could go far.
Adam McAuley delves into Progressive Death titans, OPETH's fifth album, Blackwater Park; placing it against their previous releases and finding it slightly wanting despite the high quality expected and delivered. We implore you to enjoy his thoughts nonetheless.
The dreamers are still asleep...
The ever so busy bee Tentakel P. is wide awake though. To keep himself company, he put on German prog-deathsters UNSOUL's Magnetic Mountain, touch the title to see what he thinks about it.
Slowly rising dark star of the virtually non-existent Swedish AGM scene BERGRAVEN recently returned from his cavern to present his third and to this day strongest album, Till Makabert Vasen. aVoid caught up with the macabre master himself in sunny Malmö to have him shed some light on this most recent offering; join the grand macabre dance here...
Tentakel P. gazes into the kaleidoscope to discover the tantalizing beauty of AMESOEURS' self-titled first and last album.
What I suspect is the first South American band to be featured here is AS DRAMATIC HOMAGE, an eclectic extreme metal orchestra whose EP Atmosphere of Pain/Anthems of Hate is reviewed by temporary ex-pat Simon Brand.
Another four-tracked mini-album is discovered and shared by Suleiman; Italians PAVOR NOCTURNUS and their electronic metal treatments on Diazepam.
Finally (yes, this week carried a heavy load), Thor Wanzek goes for a walk beyond the borders, quite far from losing himself in the ice blue labyrinths of JÄÄPORTIT's Voimasuo.
A gash of reviews unveiled today; Tentakel P. completely loses his journalistic credibility as he struggles for objectivity with KLABAUTAMANN's Merkur and fails miserably.
Jobst eloquently explores the many depths and hidden secrets of THY CATAFALQUE's Roka Hasa Radio.
Elsewhere, Ulv regards spideresque country men AVICULARIA's Born To Be Vile to be the real deal, the shiznit of modern Death Metal.
Caught elsetime in a fold in the continuum, aVoid traverses into deep space and rocks out with pseudonostalgics MEKANIK to their Mekanik Grooves. Returning to Earth, he lands beyond the border with LOCRIAN in the Drenched Lands, rejoicing very little at the fact that he missed the apocalypse.
This week, out from the silver blue buzzing summer sky, comes an even bluer astral buzz, which will hopefully entertain if not most of you, at least some of our readers. Ever since the AGM webzine took a life of its own, there has always been a most peculiar question resisting the passage of time, and that is - as simple as it appears to be at first sight - what is avant-garde metal?
A forum thread was created for the purpose of elucidating this enigma, and now that we can all look back at it, isn't it quite easy to see just about how irreconcilable were the multiple opinions displayed? A few weeks ago, a new growing forum thread, however, started giving signs of a new vitality, though as usual, nothing is yet for sure.
Even among our crew, there probably aren't two identical views on what is avant-garde metal, which is obvious when you acknowledge the major differences keeping apart the bands featured on our website. While you enjoy some bands and reject others, we may only follow our own instincts. So one of our crew members, malicious clown wannabe and holy-dirty philosopher Oliver Side, decided to put his mind at work by trying to venture at his own risk into the world of avant-garde metal. This is neither supposed to present the webzine's ultimate identity nor to definitely close the discussions at hand, but only to share Mr. Side's so-called "night-time explorations" with you.
Therefore we can only hope you will have a good time running after his thought patterns...
Until then, weird-toes and weird-asses – fist in the air!
My, haven't we been busy this week. Tentakel P. and Simon Brand are here on behalf of all of you video game geeks, breaking down their favourite pieces from retro soundtracks in their Video Game Madness special.
Glenn Doom searches for answers to the ultimate question of "what kind of music are these guys playing anyway?" in his review of the latest offering from the weird and wonderful CALLE DEBAUCHE.
Thor Wanzek tests his skills as a reviewer and fails at our pleasure. He obviously didn't pay attention in school music lessons while the rest of the class were being enlightened by the marvellous sounds of Norwegian avant-rockers, WOBBLER.
Simon Brand divulges his feelings about genre-creation and his contrasting views on SCALE THE SUMMIT's second opus as he gleefully types away while having this newfangled "Adventure Metal" gently rubbed into his ears.
Some may know Suleiman Ali through his work on this website, picking apart loved and not-so-loved records for the pleasure of readers everywhere and with the 7th release from his solo project, BURZUKH , he is set to grace your ears as he has your eyes for some time. Simon Brand tells you about this remarkable project and gives you the download link at the end of his review.
Another downloadable peal is provided: the Serbian Band AMARANTH with their demo "You Shine, Beyond Dawn", also appraised by Simon Brand.
A work of emotional beauty is capable of being crafted by IN THE WOODS... who hold such a great sway over their trajectories on "Omnio"…believes Adam McAuley.
Adam Matlock gives you something to read about Suzanne Sterne, the songwriting mastermind, bassist and studio guitarist for RUBY BULLET .
The prolific Justin Broadrick may well be one of the most influential men in the world of metal. Helping forge a path for Grindcore with his work with the infamous Napalm Death, pioneering Industrial Metal in Godflesh and bringing joy and woe to anyone willing to listen in his many other projects such as JESU, reviewed by Simon Brand.
Any new package from ASMODEE - the gaellic masters of extreme metal - makes Suleiman being excited.
One swallow does not make a summer but a DEERHUNTER - CD a tree house fantasy for Jonny Lignano.
AGM as it is lovingly known has always blurred boundaries between previously unconnected styles, and perhaps it has fused no other genres more than it has Metal and Jazz. Many metal bands have incorporated Jazz into their metal and vice versa, so three handsome guys (in particular Sir Brand, Sir P. and Sir Matlock) of the avant-garde metal crew wrote one fine story about JAZZ METAL to outline some of the major players in the field and help other's understanding of where it all started.
We have a great treat for all you fans of eclectic Black Metal this week in the form of avant-garde phenoms, <CODE>. Olivier picks the brains of guitarist Aort in an in-depth delve into the machinery with his interview and Thor gets a huge dose of evil alongside the main dish of ingenuity while he performs an autopsy on their latest offering, "Resplendent Grotesque".
On the other side of the colourful spectrum of AGM, Simon Brand reveals whether you should pick up the sophomore effort of RON JARZOMBEK or not. Prepare to be judged!
This week we have the pleasure to introduce a real freak to you who will introduce a real freak to you. A new crew member is welcomed with champagne, known under the mystical name of SRB. This gentleman from Alaska wrote the longest review ever about one of avant-garde metal's highest skilled virtuosos: FREDERICK THORDENDAL
Simon Brand tells us about the intense chemistry between the members of one of the greatest and most influential bands called EXIVIOUS .
Glenn Doom integrated a personal message for the guitarist of THE SIN COMMITTEE into his review.
SCHIZOPHRENIA is a band you'll get dry water and a milkshake from when following Suleiman`s directions at the end of the review.
Do you hear that? That is the sound of... a dozen AGM scribes taking a nap in the spring sun, scoring sillier-than-thou results on Facebook quizzes, or just chilling in their own Epicurean favourite manner. Only the ever-vigil Brand, Simon Brand keeps burning the midnight oil, this week lending more than one ear to the Americano electro-prog-metallers of obscurely named orchestra ANIMALS AS LEADERS, and their self-titled debut album. Apparently it's quite a treat for anyone who enjoys their metal to be not just modern and electro-infused, but also breath-takingly technical, even though it seems to leave a bit more to hope for in the future. But you'll get that once you read the review, here somewhere.
Today we have a sparkling rainbow of avant-garde metal's varied faces for you. First of all Simon Brand reviews your TOP 4 avant-garde metal album of 2008 - "Traced in Air" from Jazz Metal pioneers CYNIC. Glenn Doom heads for the apes of SLEEPYTIME GORILLA MUSEUM.
We also have two promising newcomers of Elektro Metal - Grandmaster Suleiman returns from his extensive trip to Pakistan with KHADAVER. And Adam Matlock travels 3 years into the future for VYRMN.
Glenn Doom noticed that SILENTIST gets more stripped down the older they get.
An anonymous source provided avantgarde-metal.com with a worksheet to Tentakel P.'s latest review of VALBORG ; arising the question whether he really is as objective as he claims to be or whether he abuses his position by flattering promising bands to lay his greedy hands on promos for free.
Thor Wanzek isn't quite sure if Kevin Moore from OSI suffers from permanent root canal treatments by his dentist. Why?: read here..
Master Lignano has once again ventured above and beyond his dwelling, and has returned with the most spectacular analytic comparison of a Latin-American thrash/death metal band gone angry brothers gone very tall front-man with a Dutch painting of a snowy landscape this automatic AGM.com persona printing these words have seen for... well, weeks. No, SEPULTURA was never and will probably never be the vanguard of metal as we know it, but this is.
Grazing amongst the reviews today, we find Jobst revelling in the not-so-happy music of Italians NERONOIA.
Simon Brand enjoys some Canadian ultra-talented extreme metal mongers avoid their true element to invoke the haunting beauty of the universe in HUMANOID.
And ultimately, Thor Wanzek experience something new in the shape of GOD IS AN ASTRONAUT.
In order to further ensure our high quality and writing standards Thor Wanzek presents to you the ultimate analysis - SOLSTAFIR. Jobst returns with "Death Metal for people who don't like it" - MEIN GANZES HEER. Simon brings another cerebral overload with BEHOLD...THE ARCTOPUS, by the way using the 15-stringed Warr guitar for their sonar escapades.
And finally Lignano gives you something already promised two weeks ago: KOPENHAGER GEBAECK
Alas, the master plan came to naught, and we now return to our original programming.
...not much happening there. But, at least our good fellow Simon Brand went ahead, and offer an exhaustive review of antipodean (I learnt that word last week!!) sophisticated black metal neophytes NE OBLIVISCARIS' 2007 demo "The Aurora Veil". It's perhaps not as pretty as the octopus right here, but they're close!
Today, we present unto thee the final musical update of Avantgarde-Metal.com. Because of a recent decline in interest for criticising music at all, especially metal, amongst the staff, we have agreed upon turning this site into an etnographical survey centre focusing on the traditional making and consumption of regional Swedish and Danish pastries. We make an early start by showing this image of a delicious "spettekaka" (spit cake) from Lonsboda. Expect more of these mouth-watering wonders in the future!
Ah, yes, the reviews... Two debutantes are showcased today, this first day of the fourth month of the tenth year of the third millennium after an Israeli carpenter got nailed to a piece of wood next Weekend. The first is Greek electronically imbued Greek Black Metal eclectics RHEINKAOS, whose atmospheric weirdness is reviewed by Simon Brand. The second newcomer is the elusive British duo EBONILLUMINI, whose spellbinding mysteries are more or less divulged by aVoid.
The same aVoid have also laid his filthy paws on the second album of the Finnish supernatural prophets of doom, UMBRA NIHIL, who took him on a spectacular journey through time and space. Or something. Seriously, who cares about metal any more? It's so 2008.
Tune in next week, when Lignano unveils all the mysteries of the Kopenhager geback!
Verweigert euch der Konformitat!
Today we have a big surprise for you. Thor Wanzek dug through his archives and found an enlightening interview with PRIMORDIAL's mastermind Alan.
Enjoy the interview and of course Thor's review of "Imrama".
Simon once again discovered a masterpiece of Avantgarde Metal hardly known so far: BLOTTED SCIENCE with "The Machinations Of Dementia".
After three updates featuring new writers, it feels a little empty having no new names to showcase today. Ah well, AGM.com needs some rest too. Meanwhile, treat yourselves to some fancy metal anti-muzak:
The fanciest guitar teacher the Norwegian BM scene could ever offer stands now, as you all know, on his own, but Tentakel keeps him company for a while in his review of IHSAHN's angL. Mr. Brand performs a vivisection upon the first-born of more or less versatile Belgians EMPTINESS, all the while Lignano confuses avant-rockers STOLEN BABIES with some guy with a penchant for aviation.
Today we present you a fine selection of Meta-Metal to help you over the last frosts of winter (Northern hemisphere) or the last rays of summer (Southern hemisphere). Also those living near the equator will enjoy it:
Simon Brand unearths Cyberprog newcomers ANABIOSIS. Adam McAuley orders some mighty houses at the SPIRAL ARCHITECT. aVoid meets the Fool beyond the border - NARR.
And last but not least we are happy to welcome a new writer to our camp: Glenn Doom from Seattle further investigates your absolute Avant-garde Metal album No. 1 of 2008: The Black Flux of VIRUS.
A humongous update for all this lovely day! Adam McAuley sets his teeth into the early progressive metal of PSYCHOTIC WALTZ, whilst Thor illuminates the forgotten greatness hiding in DARK MILLENIUM - Death Metal gone ambitious to the level of oblivion. Beyond the border Suleiman dissects the new SATANOCHIO.
Getting back to Thor, he has discovered this awesome band from the British Isles called PURE REASON REVOLUTION, of course he couldn't resist getting in touch with
them rock alchemists.
And finally, if you thought we had too few writers and your head and record collection just too little ultra-technical (and how!) music, this might just be your lucky day. Our new colleague and Scotsman Simon Brand has reviewed hyper-skilled THE FRACTURED DIMENSION's debut album.
Today we are pleased to introduce a new writer to you: Adam McAuley from Ontario joins us with his debut review of CELTIC FROST.
And there are even more reviews of bands consisting of one adjective and one substantive: aVoid tells you why he didn't enjoy enjoying a newcomer band, that could become enjoyable in the future: LIQUID GRAVEYARD. Thor Wanzek gave an inverse euthanasia to an old, charming DECREPIT SPECTRE. And finally Mr. Lignano turns romantic and gives flowers to Peter Steele of TYPE O NEGATIVE.
A week of wondrous odysseys and adventures! Recently, Lignano went to a concert. He thought it was a blast, and decided he should do his damnedest to assure you that you - should - have - been - there.
If we look elsewhere today, we find ourselves returning to the mid 1990's, slaying software demons and dragons in dark dungeons with Tentakel, listening to GOLDEN DAWN.
"Don't talk to strangers" - everybody had warned him before, but it didn't help: Thor disappeared after meeting the high priests of a new doom order and thus he wasn't able to review the debut album of THE WOUNDED KINGS in time.
Finally, we found that TRANSCENDING BIZARRE? review; Suleiman apparently had to wrestle about a bit before deciding if it was worth his time. Go read!
BIRCHVILLE CAT MOTEL, BLACK BONED ANGEL and OUR LOVE WILL DESTROY THE WORLD - three acts - one man: Campbell Kneale from New Zealand brings us plenty of shocking audio delights. Olivier walked and talked with him down the post infernal path of drone ambient blissful doom heavy darkness.
Today we are proud to present you a very special album: "The Universe expands" is the marvellous debut full-length album of DOL THEETA - second band of DOL AMMAD mastermind Thanasis Lightbridge. Don't miss this masterpiece of mindblowing Electro Metal Psychedelia!
Jobst va in Italia per copularsi gli orecchi con i magnificiosi ASOFY. Lignano finally found a band as nuts as himself - STEEL REGIMENT.
Three facets of the Ideal of Music are revealed today.
1. Esoteric mediaevalism made metal in the shape of MENACE RUINE, through Olivier.
2. Joyous cannibalist celebrations via NATIONAL SUNDAY LAW, through C.L. Edwards.
3. Four alloys and compounds of monochrome extremities as black noise, through Suleiman.
And somewhat of an aberration by Lignano (poke him! poke him now!).
Lovers of contemporary post-metal movement, authentic sludge/doom tunes and its oppressive, intensive atmosphere could aquire a taste of the American project BATTLE OF MICE. The amazing female singer Julie Christmas spoke very openly with Martin about the creation of their debut album...
In the name of experimental music, we decided to hail, with respect and admiration, one of the few who have actually contributed to the expansion of Extreme metal and Electronic music altogether. His career, which lasted for many years, ended in a most tragic string of events, when Joey Hopkins, 26 years old, was found dead on 2008's New Year's eve. Our writer Olivier had been collaborating with the man for an interview throughout last year, and so as a respectful gesture, both to underline his unique talent and to salute his friends and family, we offer you what he told us about his art. Rest in peace!
Under War-Broken Trees and a Staggering Moon, far away from Barren Stars stand with Ares in their Poisonous Eyes the Infernal Beauty Emperors: ELEND. In the 1990ies they revolutionized the metal scene with their monumental soundscapes of expressive classical music. Two cycles have passed since then, delivering us six of the most heavy and profound masterpieces of modern metalesque music - Umbersunwar the Dead World in their Screams!
Martin Cermak interviewed Renaud Tschirner, one of the two masterminds of ELEND, about Ardour, Laceration and the Plain Masks of Daylight.
Tentakel Skywalker lightspeeds to Darth Vader Metalsoldiers MENCEA. Thor stares into the northern eyes of KERBENOK. And Suleiman unearths a great hidden treasure from the avant-garde metal undergrounds: EL SCHLONG.
Finally, please do not forget to mail us YOUR OWN TOP 5 AVANTGARDE-METAL ALBUMS OF 2008 LIST!!! Deadline is the 31st of December! So only a few last days left before the final AGM CHARTS 2008 will be revealed. Take your chance and join the polls!
THE KONSORTIUM is the name of a newly-spawned, highly secretive quartet, haunting at the fringes of the New Wave Of Norwegian Avantgarde-Metal... Join Olivier as he tries to peek behind the masques of these nameless upstarts.
Tentakel P. goes a pretty long way defining what's fresh and new in CRONIAN's second release with regard to the band's apparent connections, while Suleiman discovers a new star in the shape of HERITECH in the welkins of the Electro/Metal Third Stream Movement. Beyond the border, or rather beyond all conceivable borders, aVoid and Lignano resurrect a long overdue take on an album as impossible to make sense out of as the review is to read... ZWEIZZ!
Finally, for the last (but not least!) time: do not forget to mail us YOUR OWN TOP 5 AVANTGARDE-METAL ALBUMS OF 2008 LIST!!! Deadline on the 31st and last day of December!
One of the very few things that you can expect from the Canadian avant-garde metal shooting starts UNEXPECT is to be featured on a site like avant-garde-metal.com. What else can you expect or unexpect? Martin Cermak interviewed Syriak, one head of this seven-headed soundmonster. We're very proud to open the curtain for it...
With such a heavy agm weight today we need some really hard stuff on the other side of the balance. So beyond the border await the truest and the blackest of testosterone metal - enjoy Thor's gaze upon ORLOG and Jonny Lignano's cultic devotion to MANOWAR. In the avant-garde section Nofar reviews the mighty storms of THE VISION BLEAK.
Today we are happy to introduce a new writer: Adam Matlock from New Haven debuts with a SIGH classic.
And please don't forget to send us a list of YOUR TOP 5 AVANT-GARDE METAL ALBUMS 2008 via email! Deadline is 31st of December.
Once again a year has nearly passed, a year full of splendid new albums. So the time is ripe to ask you: What are your TOP 5 avant-garde metal albums of 2008? Send us your TOP 5 list via the contact area.
Finnish Avantbards AARNI (not to be mistaken with the nickname of Arnold Schwarzenegger) are one of the most peculiar acts in the entire metal scene. Imagine Moominpapa copulating with Aleister Lovecraft and C.G. Pratchett in a parallel universe of Sirius B dragged by seven Pyramids, three mushrooms and an old grandma with a cat tail, seen when playing backwards a movie of Alejandro Jodorowsky dreamed by the young Luis Bunuel. Then you may hear a picture of what Aarni is made of. Jobst dared to enter this world and meet Aarni's headless head Markus Warjomaa for a cultivated conversation.
Also Monsignore Lignano was in the mood for cineastic orgies and brings you "Santi's Nightclub" of JEAN-PIERRE MELVILLE.
Contrary to some frightening rumours about the specific dangerousness of ENSLAVED , there was no need to hire bodyguards for a meeting with the extreme metal band after a concert on its recent tour. With a scalpel at hand, Thor tried not to cut himself while taking a closer look at the musicians' backbones and dissecting the chaotic innards of some of their projects.
A real Must-Have-Album is the "Must" Album of Estonian youngsters LOITS . Jobst tells you more about the "Flak 'n' Rollers".
With songs like "Spit! Spider-Spit!" and "My Goat Is Bigger Than Yours !!" Finnish scallywags SPIDERPACT make Tentakel P. see how the cat jumps (or better how the sperm flows).
After a break of nearly 15 years one of the most legendary foreriders of innovative metal return: CYNIC. Their new masterpiece "Traced in Air" illuminates the scene these days. And while their all-time top avant-garde metal classic "Focus" (1993) was largely misunderstood back in the 1990ies, it seems that the scene has become more open-minded today. The reunited Cynic are celebrated enthusiasticly by media and live audiences.
So it was a honourable pleasure for Martin to interview frontman Paul Masvidal - Enjoy!
And Tentakel takes a walk through the green forests of GRUENEWALD.
The winds blow fiercly across Europe; scattered as leaves we face the following reviews...
Lignano tries to comprehend the many facets of Mr. BUNGLE's seminal Disco Volante. Beyond all physical borders, Olivier and aVoid receive the mystical channelings of gentlemen Aidan Baker's & Tim Hecker's parastatic phantasms and KATHARSIS' endless vvorlds...
New stories this week are scarce like the leaves on the trees of the Northern hemisphere. Only two saviours bring fires from the skies: Jonny Lignano evokes cineastic daemons upon KOROVA. And Suleiman lashes Hans and his Horses to the stone deserts of P.H.O.B.O.S.
Filthy extreme metal from two pissed-off Brits soiling themselves in Jobst's presence. Norwegian cell physiologist's bizarre cut-up experiments dessicated by aVoid. Transcontinental green cave float felt by Olivier. All for your reading experience.
A new (to the unenlightened outside world) facet of the new (to the unenlightened outside world) Norwegian metallically avant-gardist sphere; multi-dimensionally multi-talented multi-lingual multi-instrumentalist BJEIMA, (un)known from more bands than you've heard, flirting with more genres than you know, has been sought up and questioned by our restless cross-interrogator and strangeness-purveyor Olivier. What?
Pseudo-Greek pseudo-crust epic black metal from Italy? Don't ask me. Ask Suleiman what SPITE EXTREME WING is about. Not living up to their glorious (?) past are KAMPFAR. At least that's what Thor thinks. Donald Duck, fruits, long drinks, crazy Germans - KNORKE SUDFRUCHT. I won't even comment on that.
More than a year ago DOL AMMAD mastermind Thanasis Lightbridge proclaimed the coming of a new galaxy in the universe of electronic art metal. And now finally the long wait is over! The mysterious "Goddess” DOL THEETA strides down from the heavens in majestic beauty and spreads her bewitching, narcotic whispers. Chrystof takes you to the phantasmagoric dreamscapes of this mysterious music trip.
Suleiman likes the way ASMODÉE has progressed from the debut without sacrificing any of the aggression and violence.
Thor Wanzek tells you how with "Watershed” OPETH nevertheless continue their individual quest to perform autumnal music touching and spellbinding the listener…
These past five years, the enigmatic, eloquent Englishman, word-and-throat master KVOHST has beckoned us all into the darker regions of his and humanity's psyche, most notably in DHG (whence he recently left) and <code> (whereto he has returned, as it was announced this week). Quite exclusively, our restless correspondent Olivier was able to get an interview with the expatriate, having a chat about love, career choices, and some very nasty and beautiful metal. Read all about it, here.
Black Metal for the New Millennium: Jobst gazes at and assesses THORNS' eponymously titled modern day classic (follow-up soon to be unleashed). Continuing on the track of Norwegian avant-garde supremacy: Olivier takes a ride with Czral & VIRUS in their elevator-car-dog... thing (follow-up soon to be unleashed), and Tentakel hits the green reindeer bottle with the Germanophiliac Cornelius & his STURMGEIST.
And finally, awaking momentarily from a hellish hypnotic daze, aVoid shouts from the Pit some confused words on French ALUK TODOLO's full-length.
From Texas to Montreal, and from Montreal to Texas, some vaguely enraptured transmissions have been caught these last few weeks.
For our dear readers, those were then organized into Q & A textual sessions by none other than our writer Olivier, who later on found out that everything was more or less related to the band PYRAMIDS.
Can you really improve a song by changing the instrumentation from basic rock equipment to a "semi-acoustic" one?
Hindsight listening to ANATHEMA's first album release since five years Thor Wanzek tries to find an answer.
Surprised about the noise in front of his trollcave, he dares to catch a first glimpse of the mammoth rummaging through the brushwood of the world wide underground - the fourth issue of Yury Arkadin's fanzine THE CONVIVIAL HERMIT.
To get things heavier and darker, Suleiman unearths a technical Black metal gem from 2002 with ASMODEE's debut, and Ulv is finally back from the disturbing and unsettling moods of BURIAL CHAMBER TRIO.
This week, we've gathered many new stellar artists for our update. Olivier has been chatting now and then for months with mastermind KIM SOLVE who is more well-known through his illustrative covers as TrineogKim than for his brillant music, which is something that will probably change pretty soon. Go read the interview and see for yourself!
Modern folk music - a mix of metal and delicate electronics, in fusion with a traditional instrument created by three talented Norwegian musicians; HARDINGROCK is proudly presented by Jobst.
30-second-Grindcore-tracks, beer, faecal humour, men in drags, beer, porno film samples, beer- this is what you would expect when opening the booklet of the first official full-length of FREUND HEIN, but Tentakel P. tells you what you really get if you dare to...
One of the strongest newcomers in Scandinavian metal are STONEGARD, and Thor Wanzek analyzed their second album From Dusk Til Doom.
For the last year, thought-master Olivier has progressively discovered the unique Greek artist behind THIS IS PAST. With only one album out, we sincerely think you open-minded readers should give this strange entity a try. Rumour has it that both interviewer and interviewee slowly lost their minds along the process of the interview; come and enjoy their fall...
The ever so versatile Jobst takes a trip back in time, into the wilderness of Norge, attentively re-evaluating the importance of early IN THE WOODS... In another quite more dismal part of the land of Fjords, abyss-purveyor aVoid strut around with the nasty wraiths of NETTLECARRIER, leaving not without a bloody scratch nor some blisters. Finally, also meditating on the Norwegian genius is the venerable Mr. Slone, joining hands with the post-Viking progsters of ENSLAVED, who lay bare the most recent addition to their ever-growing musical mythology.
The NEW NEWS SECTION is online now! It will provide you with the latest scene news of avant-garde metal: new innovative releases, live gigs of the weirdest metal acts, rumours about Mike Patton's underpants,... whatever strange things happen all across the world of experiMetal. Only click "news" on the top left and you will be there. The "sunday updates" start site you still can reach by clicking the agm logo on the top.
This week we proudly present a new pirate on the agm.com ship, an old veteran in the eternal search for SOUNDS UNDER THE SURFACE: Thor Wanzek. His first journey leads us beyond the border into the city of glass built by THE SOUNDBYTE.
Also aVoid totally steps beyond the border of all sanity to meet ZWEIZZ and his gang at a wild psycho party. Olivier joins the party with his doormates AUN. And finally Tentakel P. walks out into the fields to reap RED HARVEST.
For this week, another mindtrip into musical exploration. As you will soon discover, sensitive Jobst went to a massive psychedelic head-trip with Finnish wackos AARNI, while aVoid was reminded by AZURE EMOTE that avant-industrial Death metal is still, up to this day, sometimes a genre to be reckoned with. And Olivier, out of nowhere, decided to spend some of his nights listening to the grandiose Black metal layering of KRALLICE, one of virtuoso Mick Barr and eclectic Colin Marston's currently active project. On his way back to common sense, he didn't believe what he had heard, and involuntarily visited a world where Barr and his penis always go hand in hand.
Exactly one year ago we enjoyed some very old cognac with a very young promising Norwegian band, who at that time earned some extra money with the trade of body parts in Sicily - ANSUR. It seems that Torstein and his gang did a good job and transplanted some of those arms and legs to their own bodies. Because only one year later they return as matured men with their killer prog bomb "Warring Fractions". aVoid laid his ears on the CD to enjoy this marvellous soundwork. Then he laid his eyes on the exquisite artwork of Eliran Kantor. And finally he laid his brain onto the computer to write the review.
More sharp new albums are reviewed today: Suleiman went to a Tibetan Rodeo with YAK. Bernd got electrified by French Electronic Body Metal masters HERRSCHAFT. Jonny Lignano returns from the mental asylum with a glass full of HARVEY MILK. And Olivier eats one of the best German Kraut that the USofA can offer - TITAN.
One of the most recently rising, brightest shining Daemon Stars of the night sky of the proverbially non-existent avant-garde metal scene is, without a doubt, the enigmatic Francophone power-trio SMOHALLA, who after only releasing two records have carved their esoteric cuneiform edicts into the stele of violent musical experiments. aVoid spoke with Slo...
Nofar walks through the idiosyncratic wonder worlds of Austrian hurdy-gurdists ANGIZIA. Polygon gets devoured by the psychopatic moloch LEVIATHAN . Suleiman shakes his hips for DKDANCE.
Some of you might have noticed the delayed news update. We just have to recover from our AGM.COM Birthday last week with lots of party and cake!
But today we are spoiling you with two fine new stories conducted by Olivier and not 1, not 2,.... 3!! Reviews comming from Tentakel P., Jobst and revon right into your parlor...
First you must check out an interview with DET AR JAG SOM AR DODEN . Olivier tells you what is so unique about these Norwegian musicians. If you did so, continue and look beyond the mazes of BOGUS BLIMP also written by Olivier...long live Olivier!
The 3 kick-ass reviews (I know, never say kick-ass) are dedicated to GEASA with their "Angel's Cry", to HARVESTER's "Watch Me, I'm an Artist EP" and DoDHEIMSGARD with "Satanic Art", we already featured in our AGM CLASSICS last week.
This week we celebrate the 1st BIRTHDAY OF AGM.COM. We'd like to use this special opportunity to say a big thank you to all our readers across the world. In more than 300 articles our experiMetal experts have been restless to discover the weirdest and most surprising artists for you. And more will come in the future. To push our efforts always further and further we'd like to know your opinion: What can be improved on our site? What acts are you still missing here? Click on the link to enter the Freak Zone and to tell us your thoughts.
After a long armistice, the story section of Your Favourite Webzine is kicked alive by Suleiman, in his short but tasty interview with Austrian psychological extreme metal duo F.P.G.S.
Among the reviews today, aVoid wakes up screaming to the abysmal noises of LESMENTOR, whereas Tentakel P. is a little disappointed by the semi-all star project TRINACRIA.
Straying Beyond, Jobst studies the cinematic empty canvas of DER BLUTHARSCH and Olivier does his best to fathom the non-Euclidan grooves and plain weirdness of the latest album from ERIC COPELAND.
In other news: Are you looking for a party? Are you in Zagreb the next few weeks?
On 15 July, our colleague Ulv is DJing an AVANTGARDE METAL PARTY, check this out!
Yesterday was a day of exalted pleasure and tragic bereavement at the same time: Two of the very best music magazines that ever touched the metal scene came out in one compilation: the MøRKESKYE #12 / SOUNDS UNDER THE SURFACE #5 split edition of Thor Wanzek. It’s a travel to the Mount Olympus of avant-garde metal and features profound interviews with heroes like MANES, ULVER, ARCTURUS, BERGRAVEN, <CODE>, NEGURA BUNGET or … our Mr. aVoid.
This is the very last, the ultimate, the final issue ever of MøRKESKYE. 13 years after the first edition finally it will be buried in the skies. So don’t hesitate and download this mindtrip to the weirdest sides of metal for free on SOUNDSURFACE.COM.
This week we gaze beyond the border on some promising new acts: Oliviér introduces the monumental bass soundscapes of YETI RAIN and aVoid finally wordified the epic prog of NASCENT. Finally Jobst makes your heads bang with the British freaks of AKERCOCKE.
The competition for THE HORN is over. Is it avant-garde or not? Well, most of you denied or even didn’t care. But some of you listened closer and found the magic moments of uniqueness. It’s difficult to discover these in THE HORN’s internet samples. But it definitely can be unearthed when listening to the full CD.
The most original answer came from our writer Olivier. Enjoy it HERE . Congratulations, Olivier, for winning the CD! It will soon spread the curse of the pharaoh in your post box.
This week we have some more reviews. Tentakel P. found a very vividly way to explain us the avantgardeness of KEEP OF KALESSIN. Suleiman got electrified by the new album of VOLKMAR. And finally Monsignore Lignano brings back in mind one of the most wicked crimes in whole METAL HISTORY.
The great Master is back. Chrystof fought his wakefulness last night and gave THE HORN a chance to reach his fastidious ears.
Luckily this band got fished out the big "not avant-garde drawer" with the question: Is this avant-garde? We think this should be discussed by our FORUM USERS . So shoo, shoo, have a listen and report please.
The one with the best answer wins the CD!
Nofar, back from her trip to Poland poetically wrapped up DORNENREICH's "Hexenwind" and tells us what dreams are made of.
And in Beyond the Border Jonny uses secret Google Map features and zooms in the "interesting window" of BURZUM 's "Svarte Dauen".
It's a bit quiet here; seems the summer heat has taken its toll on the poor AgM staff. But Suleiman keeps the flame burning, reviewing the NAMELESS ORCHESTRAL PROJECT's debut album. Olivier Côte too is still on his march beyond the borders, here with BAD DIANA's "The lights are on but no-one's home".
CARRIER FLUX is an obscure one-man project from the United States who, despite not releasing anything these past five years, are well worth the attention of all explorers of the dark and mysterious sides of metal. Suleiman had himself a short, but noteworthy, conversation.
Keeping to the theme of obscurity, Jegger has returned with a review of the anonymous Norwegians THE KONSORTIUMs' untitled debut demo. The future of Norwegian ground-breaking black metal? You decide...
Riding on top of the waves of new, ultra-complex Death Metal are Italy's ILLOGICIST, perfecting their brutality with a tasteful sense of flowing and psychotic melodies. They recently released their second full-length, whereupon Martin decided to have a chat with the band leader Luca Minieri.
Said Martin has also reviewed the gloomy progmetal of DARK SUNS' third album Grave Human Genuine, and Tentakel P set his teeth into the dark industrial swansong of V:28.
The craziest voice in all of metal? Formerly the vocalist who put ATROX on the map of Avantgarde metal, currently in TACTILE GEMMA, Monika Edvardsen is a personality (and, of course, voice) out of the ordinary. Martin Cermak found her out and had himself a conversation with her.
The British power trio GUAPO recently released their eighth album, Elixirs, and Olivier did not take too long to delve into the mysteries of their oppositional zeuhl rock...
Out of money (or the reach of mail-orders), hungry for new and strange metal music, and trying to keep yourself from the dark side? Look no further! Our own Suleiman has begun collecting the weirdest and most genre-bending metal, spread freely across the Internet by the musicians themselves. All for free, and all legal - go ahead, indulge yourself in some new sounds, at Metal Madness (www.burzukh.webs.com)!
(disclaimer: AgM.com does not support any sort of piracy, modern nor 17th century. support the musicians; if they want your money, they deserve it - if they don't want it, go ahead.)
This Sunday we have an interview with one of Greece's longest running extreme metal institutions: SEPTICFLESH, who recently returned after five years silence with the album Communion; melancholic and furious orchestral black/death metal in abundance. Martin Cermak has spoken to guitarists Christos Antoniou and Sotiris Vayenas.
On the review side, we have the following:
Suleiman continues his wanderings through the exotic world of THANATOSCHIZO's avantgardist gothic metal, and Olivier dives into the dark ambient drones of AETHENOR's second album Betimes Black Cloudmasses - this time with Kriss G. onboard!
A fine Whitsunday Pentecost to you all... keep it strange.
Five months have passed since the publication of the first issue, and now it is time again for the second issue of the AVANTGARDE-METAL MAGAZINE. Over 100 pages worth of interviews, reviews and articles in a fine looking PDF for you to print and read in the forest, on the bus, in the bed, wherever! This is our way of thanking YOU for your supporting our descent into everything weird and wonderful and mostly guitar-driven (...and the crew's collective thanks goes out to Katja, who is responsible for assembling this fine product).
For the more obsessive of you who've already read everything that can be read in the PDF: Mr. Slone brandishes his sword with the late Quorthon and indulges in BATHORY's Blood On Ice, whereas Mr. Côte falls into a smooth oblivion with the untitled drones of WILLIAM BASINSKI & RICHARD CHARTIER.
In celebration of the coming Walpurgisnacht, we at Avantgarde-Metal.com give to you a mighty heap of texts:
The German fellows ISLAND have recently re-released their two EPs under the name of Orakel, reviewed here by Tentakel P. Said Tentacle found it so awesome that he just had to dive into the Teutonic forests to find the lair of Christian and Florian and interrogate them.
Walking through another part of the vast woods of Germany, Polygon stumbled across a colleague of ours: Thor Wanzek, the legendary editor of Mørkeskye and Sound Under The Surface, fanzines feasting on the fringes of metal music, just like yours truly. Read what he has to say about trolls, extreme music esoterica, and what we are actually dealing with at AgM.com...
Alright... We bring unto you a fine set of reviews on this beautiful April Sunday:
Ulv returns to the mystical mythological nature, dancing in circles with the primordial water-dragon known in Norse culture as Jörmundgand, as invoked by his countryman JOHANN WOLFGANG POZOJ's eclectic music. The picture is the gate to the Birth of Pozoj...
Revon thoroughly invades and analyses the second release of them crazy French Canadians UNEXPECT, whereas Suleiman gets down & dirty in the tormented abysses of F.P.G.S.
If you're wondering whatever happened to those disco-dancing fellows in ...AND OCEANS, look no further. They died and were resurrected as HAVOC UNIT, whose first full-length is currently violating the ears of Tentakel P. No fun at all.
Here comes an article with the attempt to shed some light on one of the most vibrant and original metal the planet has ever seen. For ease of discussion, a wide spectrum of bands and sounds have been grouped under the umbrella term of Technical-Progressive Death Metal, whereas in reality there is no single genre that can cater to the variety of the bands mentioned here. Suleiman touches on a number of bands that helped to shape the trends and sounds of the metal scene as a whole and thus affected the tech-death phenomena as well.
"2 Unlimited" was not only a Dutch Eurodance act quite famous in the 90's. It is also the title of an album from PIN-UP WENT DOWN, a new French duo that surprised Revon as hell!
Cosmic Dark Metal Epic comes from SEPTIC FLESH with their 2008-release "Communion". Suleiman compares them to a good wine that becomes better with age…
"Starfire Burning On The Ice-Veiled Throne Of Ultima Thule" was Mr. Slone's first foray into the pulp fantasy universe of BAL-SAGOTH.
Our new writer from the underground "Mang Tsze” not only looks at KOROVA's ”A Kiss In The Charnel Fields", but also describes the days before the internet, the days of real underground music developed in Austria late 80's – early 90's.
In Beyond the Border Oliver Côté and Jonny Lignano frolic with DOWNLOAD's "FiXer” and FOO FIGHTER's "Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace".
Whilst on the interweb, one finds all sorts of different things. Jonny found a super duper cool band homepage called WWW.NOIDZ.NET, which offers two promo tracks to the casual 5-seconds-attention-span surfer.
Ulv shows you the way of cooking the best dish in the world: the soup a la TO-MERA .
Hellenistic Alien Esoterica, or just SEPTIC FLESH with "The Ophidian Wheel” is brought to you by James Slone.
BETHLEHEM's Masterpiece "Sardonischer Untergang Im Zeichen Irreligiöser Darbietung" has been reviewed by Polygon.
And last but not least, a fresh new project from Circle and Pharaoh Overlord's mastermind Jussi Lehtisalo with KRYPT AXERIPPER's "Mechanical Witch”, by Olivier Côté…
The interrogation of the Anglo-Saxon kings of glorious battle magic and the malevolently sublime...BAL-SAGOTH Interview PART II brought to you by aVoid!
A Post Dance Industrial For The People Of The Future comes from James with SQUIBB VS. SQUIBB .
Doomintroll In Wonderland or just "AARNI” with its "Bathos" has been described by Jobst.
Oliver Côté has another Beyond the Border article uploaded for you: the unpredictable ZWEIZZ
There is bombast, and then there is bombast. Epic, majestic, call it whatever - many try, most fail. From the British Isles comes BAL-SAGOTH , for a decade and a half over and over again setting even higher standards in narrative conceptuality and the aforementioned adjectives. "Too many trumpets". "Sounds like a comic book". The taunts have been many, yet none that may touch these infamous warrior kings. You may worship them, you may detest them, but one truth is constant - over their 15 years of existence, they have trodden their own singular path, fearlessly looking forward into the unknown, granting blissful wonders to those who dare to follow.
aVoid searched for illumination and conjured up a spiritual connection to the ultimate driving force behind Bal-Sagoth…
Two new reviews are comming from James and Tentakel P. They carefully listened to SOLARIS' "Out of Reach" and STAR OF ASHs "Iter. Viator." for you.
Oliver Côté presents MIDI MILIZ/EXTRAWELT with their space crashing trance piece "Crsh” in Beyond the Border.
This Sunday update is especially dedicated to our fascinating AVANTGARDE-METAL-CREW. Without them this webpage would not exist nor succeed. But luckily it does! In the past eight months our busy bees from all different angles of the world took their time to collect material, conduct interviews, put together tons of reviews, stories and articles for you to read and enjoy. We hope that you were able to explore many great bands and hidden treasures for a kind of music, that still deserves more attention and praise. Therefore we also try to reach non-english speakers who used to skip english classes during school – or just those of you who might be interested in how one review looks like written in 9 different languages… Have fun with SUNNO))) & BORIS' "Altar"!
Have a look at another cool review about CELESTIAL SEASON's "Solar Lovers" written by James Slone.
In Beyond the Border, waiting for you: EXTRAWELT with "DistTheme”, reviewed by Oliver Côté...
The young Swedish blood Diablo Swing Orchestra is one of the bands that cannot sink into average. If you hear them once, you either like them or hate them, but you cannot mess them with anything other. Of course, what else can you expect from the people who are able to combine elegantly such genres as swing, tango or flamenco with metal and opera?
When listening to the songs on their debut album "Butcher's Ballroom", nothing is sure nor guaranteed, so you must be ready and alerted every minute...
...by Martin Cermak
THE AXIS OF PERDITION are one of the weirdest formations that ever crawled out from the underworld. They absorbed different shapes of extreme music (be it black metal, dark ambient or industrial), processed and transformed it into their own original, non-human, excessive sound for apocalypse. It penetrates into the marrow of your bones and brings an instant anxiety. You need to live and survive this experience...
aVoid gives you an insight of WORMED' "Planisphaerium".
Tentakel P. looked at SIGHS' "Hail Horror Hail".
Bands like this bring the light, search for the paths and push the boundaries of what is possible in extreme music. EPHEL DUATH do this with nobleness, intelligence, significant aesthetics and sense for every form of art...
The band’s leader, main composer and guitarist Davide Tiso is as always very reflective and sensitive, what gives his art significant touches and impulsions.
Interview by Martin Cermak
Trident has reviewed ARCTURUS' "The Sham Mirrors”, and Jonny Lignano scientifically explains the Physics and Chemistry of OPETH's "Ghost Reveries”.
It's been a long time since we all heard of Bjørn Dencker aka ALDRAHN or BIKJA, whose passionate invocations from DHG, OLD MAN'S CHILD, DIMMU BORGIR, ZYKLON-B to THORNS and THE DEATHTRIP still feel as fresh, edgy and open-minded as they were back then and now are. This is why Olivier had to contact the man and take a chance to enter his present-day world views...
After the tricky album "The Focusing Blur", Swedish mastermind VINTERSORG came with its follower "Solens Rotter". Being maybe a more acceptable material for a larger circle of listeners. The recording offers enough uncommon and clever moments, in the same time we can hear a bit of creative modulation and calming. The traditional approaches and roots of Scandinavian art are mixed with black metal atmosphere in one hand and progressive feeling on the other. All in all, Andreas Hedlund aka Vintersorg still has a fancy to release pleasant stuff. Martin has talked with him about his remarkable and sophisticated way of seeing and cognition of our world, projected into his art...
Our new crew member C.L. Edwards from California provides us two great reviews of OPETH and MESHUGGAH.
Suleiman comes along with two reviews of VOLKMAR and UMBAH and Polygon reviewed TIAMAT for you.
CONTROL HUMAN DELETE is a fresh blood of the avant-garde extreme scene. Their extravagant combination of the contemporary technical post-black/death metal with industrial apocalypse is musically very impressive. Not less interesting is the knot of ideas behind (or in the base) of the whole project. The band is a monstrous monolith or organism living on its own and offering a lot of inspiration and stimulation to think and listen. Martin has a talk about the freezing, raw, but beautifully aberrant album "Terminal World Perspective” and about all the perspectives that can be seen in the world of CHD with the speculative and reflective singer and lyricist Void...
There is a big bang of young European bands that are a kind of answer to the Isis/Neurosis style on one hand, The Dillinger Escape Plan discursiveness on the other, also a bit linked to Meshuggah’s unique path, but of course developing their very own way.
The multifaceted art collective THE OCEAN from German capital city Berlin is among the most promising of these acts. Their new concept "Precambrian / Hadean / Archaean" became an important musical event of the 2007/2008 break. Reason enough to talk with Robin Staps, the thoughtful leader of this multimember collective.
The interview with THE OCEAN was led by Martin Cermak, whom we cordially welcome to our crew today!
Jobst sinks deep into the majestic soundscapes of ELEND. Revon starts carnival with DARTH VEGAS. aVoid heads back to the last millennium for ENTITY.
Tentakel P. discovers the great hidden treasure PICA FIERCE. And Suleiman returns with ACHENAR and a glance beyond the noise border of CERVIX.
New Jersey's DÄLEK have been marketed as the "sound of the urban apocalypse," and for once the hype matches the content. A hiphop outfit that channels both disparate musical forms (political hip hop, industrial, shoegaze, metal, grind noise, kraut, and jazz) and the old spirits of forgotten history, especially the fragmented and lost history of African America, Dälek meld violent, angry dissonance with a sad, elegiac dirge. When the bombast and discord finally falter, all that is left is a lingering sigh of resignation. James dedicates a story to the work of this outstanding band.
Revon heads for an extensive dance into the DOG FASHION DISCO. Ulv discovers the Croatian pearl EMPHASIS. Jonny Lignano reviews the legendary first album of DEVIL DOLL, a record of which just one single piece has been pressed. And Polygon steps beyond the border for DESIDERII MARGINIS.
Florida – sunglasses, palm trees, bikini girls and … technical death metal. These are the associations many of us may carry in their head. When the debut of AGHORA came out in the year 2000, they immediately were crowned as Miami’s new stars of progressive metal. This definitely has been influenced by the fact that famous musicians of bands like Death and Cynic were involved. Seven years and one brilliant album later guitarist Santiago Dobles and his gifted gang of musicians show that they deserve their excellent reputation also without famous names.
Much has been written about the music and technical skills of AGHORA. But when Trident talked to Santiago Dobles he wanted to explore the philosophy behind this exceptional music. And so the interview became a profound course in Eastern Alchemy – yoga, reiki, qi gong…and finally a detailed description of how Santiago uses his crown chakra to transfer energies to the listeners of Aghora’s music.
Today you also can enjoy the long awaited second part of Ulv’s talk with Markus Stock, mastermind of exquisite, innovative bands like EMPYRIUM and THE VISION BLEAK. This is one of the rare and precious moments that Markus opens the huge hidden world behind his artistic works and let’s you see a little part of the man behind the thousand masks.
MvH digs out one of the first electro black metal albums of the mid 1990ies – the unholy DIABOLOS RISING. Tentakel P. observes the latest album of VINTERSORG. And Monsignor Lignano designs some movie scenes for VOIVOD.
Ulf Theodor Schwadorf aka F. F. Yugoth aka MARKUS STOCK is a man with thousand faces, a hyper-creative nebula that can transmogrify into any artistic form. With the legendary band EMPYRIUM he brought an excessive use of acoustic instruments into Metal and had a huge impact on the development of Folk Metal. With projects like SUN OF THE SLEEPLESS and NACHTMAHR he mixes Black Metal with Ambient and Opera. With mighty NOEKK he creates epic monuments of 70ies inspired Prog Rock. And with the famous THE VISION BLEAK he founded a new conceptual subgenre called Horror Metal.
Apart from that he’s a gifted multi-instrumentalist and an excellent producer. In his KLANGSCHMIEDE STUDIO E he produced innovative bands like Dornenreich, Bethlehem or KorovaKill.
Within the last weeks THE VISION BLEAK toured through Europe with Therion. So Ulv catched Markus on the road for an intensive talk about the man behind the thousand faces. Enjoy the first part of this interview here!
Another man who confuses you regularly with his thousand faces is our most scary writer Jonny Lignano. Many readers asked us to reveal more about this mysterious enfant terrible. So today we have a Sylvester surprise for you: Jonny Lignano interviews JONNY LIGNANO. And he reviews another album of OPETH. Finally Suleiman presents a hidden treasure from France: PSALM.
Today we have a big Christmas present for you: The 1st print edition of the AVANTGARDE METAL MAGAZINE. On 125 pages you can find all interviews published so far and reviews of the most recommendable albums of 2007. This is our way to Thank You, our dear readers, for your stunning resonance. More than 45.000 visitors show that the metal revolution has already begun! I’d also like to thank the dedicated crew of agm.com who enthusiastically wrote more than 200 articles within the last couple of months to present you the most innovative bands metal music can provide. And we’d like to thank Katja who has spent countless hours to design the whole print version.
Some weeks ago we asked you to send us your favourite avant-garde metal albums of 2007. Today we present you the final results. Here are YOUR TOP 10 AVANT-GARDE METAL ALBUMS OF 2007. You also can find a retrospection on the nearly passed year there, written by Jobst. Thanks a lot to everybody who participated in this election and congratulations to the winners!
Did you ever wonder how it would sound if epic progressive metal unified with exquisite synthesizers and electro sounds in the vein of 1970ies pioneers like Jean Michel Jarre or Vangelis? And instead of a lead singer there was a whole classical choir performing the lyrics? Then DOL AMMAD definitely will become one of your greatest favourites ever. The 21st century of metal has begun now. And DOL AMMAD show how the future may look like. Chrystof enters the intergalactic spaceship for a transmission with mastermind Thanasis Lightbridge.
Explorers of the mysterious and of the supernatural, Austrian tone travellers KOROVAKILL are known for their idiosyncratic sound. Ever since 1994, they have released three mind-bending albums. Call them dreaming spacemen, neo-baroque thrash orchestras, astro-oceanic divers from unknown worlds and dimensions. Whatever, they're basically here to expand your sensory systems.
Several years have passed since their last album WaterHells. Will "the mightiest avalanche of the alps" ever strike again? Olivier enters the Echoworld for an exclusive in-depth talk with KK mastermind Christof.
This week we review some fresh new albums: aVoid introduces the new masterpiece of French avant-garde metal newcomers SMOHALLA. Olivier dives into the latest releases of ULVER and BLUT AUS NORD.
Finally we cordially welcome new crew member MvH, who debuts with a review of AGALLOCH.
This Sunday comes a huge wired metal box full of new articles, dedicated once more to the electronic sides of avant-garde metal.
Suleiman presents the second part of his story about the origins of ELECTRO METAL. Today he delves into the 1990ies and early Industrial Metal. In addition, he unearths some hidden treasures of electronic experiMetal: the exquisite Techno Metal of BRISTOL MEYERS SQUIBB, the dark Dance Metal of TECHNY-CAL X (both from France) and Spanish ElectRollers KRELL.
Polygon drives back from Latvia into the mid 1990ies to review one of the earliest pieces of electronic Black Metal – Norwegian wackos MYSTICUM. And he interviews the German Elektro Black Metal cyborgs DEKADENZ. Enjoy his talk with the two remaining core members @noiZe and L.O.S. about the pleasures of technical evolution, Expressionism 2.0 and the truth about the purpose of their studio…
Jegger travelled to the Roman Empire for an interview with Italian Industrial Deathers IMPURE DOMAIN. Vocalist Angy Impure reveals his thoughts on nihilism, apocalypticism and musical extremism.
Finally Ulv honors one of the most important pioneers of Epic Industrial with a live report: the Slovenian heroes LAIBACH.
He describes an impressive concert that took place in Zagreb two weeks ago. Everybody who has ever seen LAIBACH live knows how powerful and monumental their performances are. Reawaken this mighty deployment of musical art.
This week we bring you the second part of the interview with Austrian Black Metal re-inventors ABIGOR. Read more about the concept of their forthcoming album, their past with Napalm Records, further projects and the Hell Lab studio of TT.
Trident dives deep into the work of jazz metalists AGHORA and reviews their albums ”Aghora” and ”Formless”. aVoid discovers the French black proggers AVERSE. And last but not least the infamous Jonny Lignano dedicates one of his controversial reviews to OPETH. A discussion about his strange articles can be found in the FREAK ZONE. Your feedback and opinion are warmly welcome there.
For the end of this year we are planning a special about what happened in avant-garde metal in 2007. For this we'd like to know your TOP 5 ALBUMS of 2007. Please send them to us via myspace message or to our email. If you don't have five top albums you also can send just your top 3 for example.
We're looking forward to hear what impressed you most this year!
Half a year ago one of the most revolutionary metal albums ever erupted into the scene: Fractal Possession is the surprising comeback of Austrian black metal pioneers ABIGOR. Though still deep-rooted in true black metal this masterpiece is far more avantgardistic than most releases under the banner of avant-garde metal. While other outriders of metal seek experimentation in blendings with other genres, ABIGOR manage the legerdemain of giving a boost of innovation to black metal by crystallizing its very essence. Their music is far beyond any norm and still black metal in its purest form.
If you think that metal in the 21st century is nothing else than an eclectic repetition of the 1990ies then you have to hear Fractal Possession. Your view on music won’t be the same anymore. ABIGOR core members TT and PK gave deep insights into their work to Tentakel P. and Chrystof. Read the first part of this interview here.
This week aVoid reviews one of the very first albums ever labelled as avant-garde metal: the groundbreaking classic "Into the Pandemonium” of CELTIC FROST. Revon introduces a weird experimental one-man-band from Japan - KADENZZA. And beyond the border we find BURZUM (Lignano) and BJÖRK (Tentakel P.).
In the mid 1990ies, just as black metal was going to become the next big thing, there were a couple of bands that tried to break out from the narrow conventions of that genre. In these days the term "avant-garde metal” came up to give asylum to all those mavericks who tried to transport the deep atmosphere of black metal with new, innovative means.
One of the very first pioneers of that time was the Norwegian duoFLEURETY. They only released two albums: Min Tid Skal Komme (1995) and Department of Apocalyptic Affairs (2000). Nowadays both belong to the very top of all-time avant-garde metal classics. A long time has passed since their last signs of life. So Olivier talked to Svein Egil Hatlevik (today also known as ZWEIZZ) for a distant, but deep view into the essence of this great band.
Today at 11:11 carnival begins in most parts of Europe. So what could fit better than three weird inconnus dressed up like mummies from World War II? SATANOCHIO is definitely one of the strangest and most mysterious bands of the entire metal scene. But what breeds behind those masks? Suleiman visited them in their secret moldering crypt and talked with mastermind Satanochio about sheep and the revolted human, about the tristesse of Romania, about the towers of sarcasm and about toothlessly grinning farmers who spill milk over cow faeces.
And if you want more Satanochio go to Jonny Lignano’s review of their DVD Dark Visions from the Fog.
Apart from that we are exploring once more the electronic sides of avant-garde metal: James continues his quest through the experimental knurls of former Napalm Death members and presents SCORN of Mick Harris. Suleiman shows SYMPTOMS of Italian cybersomniomania. Ulv revels in UNHEALTHY DREAMS from France and rides beyond the border on BLUE DEERS.
Did you ever imagine that your brain was a tree sprawling entropically into all directions until everything turned infrared and ultraviolet? Then you were probably listening to the Greek duo ABSTRUSE. Somewhere between psychedelic, prog and math metal they build their surrealistic worlds of tones and sounds. aVoid talked to Substant, the cerebral forest behind Abstruse.
This week our webmaster Bernd has improved the BANDS section. Now you can always find the latest additions on top. Bernd is also debuting with some splendid articles today. He added biographies of RED HARVEST and OXIPLEGATZ and also a review of Alf Svensson's 1990ies pioneering album Worlds and Worlds.
James crept deep into two releases of UK doomsters JESU - Conqueror and Silver – presenting the romantic sides of Napalm Death founding member Justin Broadrick. Jobst travelled through the doomy soundscapes of VOID OF SILENCE. Suleiman listened to Austrian hidden treasures BUG. And Mr. Tentakel P. did some channelling with the wicked angels of ENOCHIAN CRESCENT.
Special Link:SOUNDS UNDER THE SURFACE is a superb online magazine written by truly dedicated top journalists from Germany. Though Thor and Marcel are rooted in the Metal scene since many years, this mag knows no genre borders and features lots of exquisite bands from all directions. Sounds Under The Surface is published as a free PDF. So you can print it out and enjoy reading it on paper. Yesterday the second issue was released, focusing on "woods, krauts & sprouts”. This magazine is a must for all lovers of pure and deep music.
In ancient times metal was quite simple: drums, distorted guitars, bass and a raging vocalist - that was all a metal warrior needed to be happy twenty years ago. Something like keyboards in metal wasn't just exotic. It was a hostile attack of untrue posers. Nowadays the use of synthesizers and electronic sounds has become quite accepted even by old-school headbangers. New popular styles like industrial or gothic metal have developed out of this combination. And former pioneers have become mainstream.
Also in avant-garde metal the use of electro sounds is all around. Suleiman has dived deep into history and has written an article about the early beginnings of electro metal. And he has discovered some great newcomers of electronic metal: the alien sci-fi war tunes of MARS ON EARTH, the hyperspeed cyber metal explosions of TRISTWOOD and the dark electro melodies of CARRIER FLUX (incl. link to free download). Polygon enters the biggest black hole of the universe to explore the wicked techno robots ABORYM. And Trident rises up to the brightest energy fields of bombastic DOL AMMAD - a great band from Greece with whom we'll have an interview soon. Space On!
Last week we introduced some very promising acts from the experimental underground to you. Due to your very positive feedback our scouts went out into the black spots of the metal map once more and came back with full bags:
Suleiman visited the darkest depths of Romania and discovered peculiar beings called SATANOCHIO. He continued his journey to the mountains of Austria and found the dissonance thrashers TURN OUT rioting there. Ulv travelled to Pakistan with some mouse clicks to download for free a masterpiece of obscurity: BURZUKH’s album "Orion”. After a little break our most scary writer Jonny Lignano returned from his brain caves. In his laboratory he discovered a way to make any album sound more avant-garde. This process is called "avantgardization" and has been tested with an early demo of KLABAUTAMANN. Finally James went back into a time when even THE 3RD AND THE MORTAL were hidden treasures.
Special Link:The Blind Janitor is an Israeli online magazine dedicated to all kinds of alternative music from pop to electro to 70ies prog to extreme metal. If you know Hebrew you definitely should check out this fine site by Nofar and her friends.
This Sunday we’d like to introduce some hidden treasures to you: promising bands from the underground that have released their works as self-produced demos or via small labels. Especially for music beyond the norm it’s often very difficult to get contracts with renowned record companies. Still there are some great pearls to discover among them. So thanks a lot to all those bands who sent us promos and copies of their albums. We’ll give our best to support you!
And these are the hidden treasures for today: aVoid discovers ABSTRUSE, a duo from Greece that creates bizarre cerebral landscapes with its peculiar music and video art. The major album of THY CATAFALQUE from Hungary as well as their band biography are presented by revon. Other great newcomers are the hyperspeed cyber metallurgists of TRISTWOOD from Tyrol/Austria. And finally Suleiman introduces a demo by ORBETH, cosmic heavy metal from the UK and the latest album of Indonesian avant-garde metal oldcomers KEKAL.
Furthermore you can find Tentakel P.’s review of ENSLAVED and two avant-garde masterpieces from beyond the border: the pioneering "Piper at the Gates of Dawn” of PINK FLOYD (Suleiman) and the Russian Ompa Rock Roulette of KAIZER’S ORCHESTRA, reviewed by Ulv.
Today we proudly present an interview with one of the most original cult persons of extreme metal – Jürgen Bartsch, mastermind of German Dark Metal pioneers BETHLEHEM.
Since the early 1990ies Bethlehem have gone their very own way far beyond the ordinary metal clichés. Over the years their sound and philosophy have developed into a whole new subgenre of metal: Dark Metal. Bethlehem are legendary for their very idiosyncratic kind of self-presentation and especially for the highly symbolic and enigmatic lyrics and concepts of Mister Bartsch.
Katja Honeywine van de Barrel talked to this charming outlaw who always leaves some riddles in your head. Check out this pleasure of an interview somewhere between morbidity and irony.
One month ago revon introduced a great band from Hungary to us: GIRE. Just some days later the band announced their split up. At their very last concert revon did an interview with keyboarder and poet Tamás about the past, present and future of these engaged musicians.
Today we cordially welcome two new writers: Trident explores the work of epic woodland metallers AGALLOCH. Ulv dives back into the 1970ies to retrieve some elektro-kraut for beyond the border: TANGERINE DREAM.
Most times avant-garde and mainstream are antitheses. But there are a few artists who manage to gain huge success with very experimental and idiosyncratic creations. Tentakel P. makes a flashback to the 1994 album Wildhoney from TIAMAT. Though sounding different to everything else back then Wildhoney managed to enthuse the masses and set new standards in metal. Another fine example are the bands and projects of ex Faith No More singer Mike Patton. One of his most popular creations is presented by James this week: the formidable MR. BUNGLE.
And there’s still more stuff to discover: James digs out one of the most obscure death metal based bands from the early 1990ies – Dan Swanö’s PAN-THY-MONIUM. And he introduces a very promising act from Berlin to us - THE OCEAN. Last but not least inspector Lignano detects the secret code behind KOROVAKILL’s concept album WaterHells.
Sometimes the real heroes of avant-garde metal are hiding deep within the labyrinths of the internet. Without caring at all about publicity they create weird masterpieces far beyond any norm. This week we’d like to dedicate a special to one of those great artists: UMBAH from the UK. With UMBAH ex Necrosanct Cal Scott already has released 10 exquisite albums, highly experimental and highly enthralling. His bizarre soundscapes seem to come from another world. Still UMBAH are totally unknown even within the small avant-garde metal scene. Suleiman discovered them somewhere in the online mazes. He did a tight interview with Cal and also presents another UMBAH album this week. And the very best: You can download all their albums for free at the UMBAH webpage!
This week our treasure chest is full of great stuff: aVoid reviews the debut of the promising avant-garde metal newcomers LE GRAND GUIGNOL from Luxembourg. Nofar dives deep into the death trips of BERGRAVEN. Tentakel P. presents one of the agm top albums of 2007 - DODHEIMSGARD. And Suleiman discovers the hidden treasures of UMBAH and BLACK ALBATROSS.
Two months ago Avantgarde-Metal.com has gone online. The reactions have been stunning so far. More than 10.000 visitors exceeded our best expectations. Therefore we’d like to send a big thanks to all our readers and supporters, to all the engaged bands and labels who sent us their works and to all the people who shared their thoughts with us via email or THE FREAK ZONE. A very special thanks goes to everybody who posted our link in their news, especially to Thanasis from mighty DOL AMMAD and Marcel and Thor from LEGACY MAGAZINE!
Today the last missing section finally opens its gates: BEYOND THE BORDER. This section will take a look beyond the borders of avant-garde metal. You will find articles about avantgardistic non-metal there as well as other weird and surprising stuff. Adequately James starts this area with a review of BEYOND DAWN. Once dedicated to very experimental extreme metal this band finally ended beyond the borders of metal and present some atmospheric Electropop on their album "Frysh”. Jonny Lignano delves into the Kayo Dot side-project TARTAR LAMB and discovers some Manowar in the ps-game GOD OF WAR.
Of course we also have some fine avant-garde metal today: In the bands section you can find KOROVA / KOROVAKILL and RAM-ZET. Tentakel P. dives into …AND OCEANS. Suleiman discovers a hidden treasure of really deranged Psycho Grindmetal - UMBAH, an insane project of ex Necrosanct Cal Scott. And James presents the latest album of quixotic avant-garde metal heroes SLEEPYTIME GORILLA MUSEUM.
This sunday we’d like to welcome our new writer Suleiman. He is debuting with reviews of STRAPPING YOUNG LAD and ORIGIN. James digs out two masterpieces of 1990ies experiMetal: Alf Svensson’s futuristic solo-band OXIPLEGATZ and neo-ancient folk proggers STILLE VOLK. In addition he leads us to the industrial megacities of RED HARVEST. Jonny Lignano designs some national flags for the songs of LIFELOVER. And aVoid gives insights into the latest album of Norwegians LENGSEL.
The BANDS-Section is opened now! A big thanks goes to Katja for making the start. More bands and infos will follow soon...
Last Monday aVoid has been at the Malmöfestivalen to watch weird performances of MAYHEM and THE LOCUST. He also interviewed Jeff from the great Indonesian avant-garde metal pioneers KEKAL. Another freaky band you definitely should check out are BRACHIALILLUMINATOR from Vienna. Jonny Lignano has done an interview with Mr. Bozkovich per telegram…
This week we warmly welcome revon to our crew. His first review presents a real hidden treasure of art metal - GIRE from Hungary. Herr Tentakel P. sharpened his pen-knive to give a vital description of one of the most experimental albums of our Austrian friends ABIGOR. And Jonny Lignano tries to get you horny with a delicate review of CARNIVAL IN COAL.
Two weeks ago we had an interview with ANGIZIA. Due to your very positive feedback James has written an appreciation of ANGIZIA, giving a thorough view into the work of these great artists.
Nofar introduces the latest output of operatic avantgarde metal fellows ABERRANT VASCULAR from Finland. Tentakel P. reviews Robotic Metal Aliens THEE MALDOROR KOLLECTIVE. Jonny Lignano writes a letter to the Merriam-Webster Inc. about VOIVOD and craves for a t-shirt of KAYO DOT. And aVoid presents KEKAL's first trip into avant-garde metal and the re-edition of MESHUGGAH's masterpiece "Nothing".
This week the summer slump has hit us severely. Many writers enjoyed their holidays. Others have been so extremely bored that they nearly reviewed their socks and the chairs they sat on. So today our update is slightly different. You could call it a Jonny Lignano special. He provides weird reviews of SIGH, ELEND and CALLISTO. And the summer heat made him also review a CD-Holder that he bought in Paris some time ago...
For our more serious friends we bring an interview with one of the most promising young progressive / avant-garde metal acts of the scandinavian scene - ANSUR. And Tentakel P. has reviewed the latest work of THE AMENTA.
There are just very few bands who are able to create whole new worlds beyond this world. ANGIZIA from Austria definitely belong to them. Nofar has interviewed Michael Haas, the passionate head and heart of this fancy avant-garde theatre music collective. If even most avant-garde metal is not autonomous enough for you this is a must to check out!
Today our new writer Tentakel P. is debuting with a review of Japanese avant-garde metal veterans SIGH. Opposites attract - so aVoid explores the light, hopeful soundscapes of KEKAL from Indonesia and the utter darkness of DEATHSPELL OMEGA. Jonny Lignano travels back to the 1980ies and digs out an early work of metal pioneers VOIVOD. He also presents the Swedish strangers LIFELOVER. James has done a second review of the avant-garde metal milestone "La Masquerade Infernale" of ARCTURUS and a smart analysis of THE KOVENANT. And last but not least Olivier followed the echoworld caravans into another dimension to dive into KOROVA's "Dead like an Angel".
What is avant-garde metal? Can it be defined? Should it be defined at all? At the moment there is an intensive discussion going on about that in the Freak Zone. What is your opinion about avant-garde metal? We'd like to invite you to share your thoughts with us and to join the discussion.
This Sunday our pearl divers have discovered more sparkling gems for you. aVoid reports from the gig of MESHUGGAH at the Peace & Love Festival in Sweden. A sunburnt Jegger enjoys himself at a hot beach in Sicily and sends us his interview with Austr-Aliens THE AMENTA.
Of course we also have lots of new reviews: Madame Honeywine presents the lighting stars of unique electronica art metal - DOL AMMAD. Nofar gives a profound description of mighty EMPEROR’s final chapter. James continues his journey through the avant-garde metal classics of FLEURETY, SOLEFALD and BAL-SAGOTH. Another classic of ARCTURUS is presented by aVoid. Polygon reviews Italians most brutal ABORYM. Finally Jonny Lignano commits his love for MANES. Maybe one day he will cook for them one of the meals that he designed for each song of THE KOVENANT's album "Seti"...
One week ago Avantgarde-Metal.com has opened. Obviously the time has been more than ripe for a webpage dedicated exclusively to the weird and experimental sides of metal. All your fantastic comments and emails have shown that. We are very pleased that so many of you appreciate our work and give us great support! So thanks a lot to all our readers and especially to those who sent us emails, posted in the freak zone and signed our guestbook at myspace. A very special thanks goes to all the people who helped to spread the news via bulletins and postings in news sections and forums. It’s great to see that so many people are pushing the spirit of avant-garde metal always further!
This Sunday we have a lot of new articles: aVoid reviews one of the most important classics of AgM, the masterpiece "Written in Waters” of VED BUENS ENDE. Two other pioneers of 1990ies metal avant-garde are reviewed by James: SOLEFALD and FLEURETY. Polygon writes about the album that completed the work of mighty avant-garde metal dinosaurs ARCTURUS. Lady Honeywine showcases a hidden treasure of 1990ies theatre art metal: the Austrian weirdos ANGIZIA. Olivier presents the crazy noise artists HELLA.
And last but not least Mister Lignano deconstructs the works of IN THE WOODS and French aliens ARYOS. He invents movie scenes for each song of "Omnio” and shows up some strange relationships between the audio visualisation of "Le Paroxysme” and the shape of a Tyrolean mountain.
Weirdos and freaks, scientists and philosophers, libertines and mavericks of metal music, welcome to your new website!
Metal seems to be a very traditional kind of rebellion. When you browse through magazines, visit concerts or listen to albums you often cannot even say in which decade you are. But this is just the picture of metal that is drawn by major labels and the mass media. Beyond the walls of mainstream there is a sparkling realm of courageous bands and artists that break with trends and old fashions. This site is dedicated exclusively to those pioneers and outriders that keep metal alive by reinventing it.
Every Sunday we will update this site to present treasures of avant-garde metal. Anyway avantgarde-metal.com can only remain fresh and vivid if you take part. Therefore we'd like to encourage you to use our forum and send us emails excessively. All new impulses and ideas are warmly welcome. And of course we will be pleased if you sign our guestbook on myspace.