Thursday, December 12, 2013

Bandcamp Picks: Thaw, Blaze of Perdition, Erebus Enthroned, Cult of Fire

Polish black metal band Blaze of Perdition suffered a touring accident recently that resulted in the death of their bassist and the other band members seriously injured, with their vocalist left in critical condition.

In response, their countrymen Thaw released the single Afterkingdom as a benefit for Blaze of Perdition. Culled from their upcoming album, the song gives an inkling as to why the band is so highly touted by some, including Nergal (praise from Caesar is praise indeed). Not content to simply bludgeon the listener into submission, the song takes a turn into discordant Gorguts/Portal territory halfway through. In music and intent, this release makes it clear that Thaw is a band whose heads and hearts are in a laudable place. I eagerly await the full-length. [$1; but since this is a benefit release, I'm sure more would be appreciated.]

This week Pagan Records released Accession of Fire, a split between Blaze of Perdition and Sidney's Erebus Enthroned. Each band provides a track of unabashed tinder; this is music to light churches. In all likelihood, this may end up being Blaze's final release; as such, it's a fine, fiery send off. [$3.50]

Released at the end of 2012, OREMUS - Popioły marked Blaze of Perdition as a band that was reverential of black metal's second wave, with Darkthrone and Satyricon seeming to be especially big influences. This is no-nonsense black metal, brimming with malicious intent even when the band eases off the gas pedal (as on the blackened folk of the closing track). An accomplished and impressive release, made tragic by the band's circumstances. [€9]

(Note: on my PayPal receipt, payment to Blaze of Perdition went to the account of vocalist Pawel "Sonneillon" Marzec. As of this writing, I haven't been able to find out what Marzec's recovery status is, or what happens to the money that's debited into his account. But with a long and expensive road ahead for both him and his family, I doubt it would hurt.)

Western appropriation of Indian culture is a little baffling to me - but hell, I have little interest in my South Asian heritage, so anyone else who wants it is welcome to it. Cult Of Fire from the Czech Republic dive headlong into the dark side of Hinduism on their sophomore album मृत्यु का तापसी अनुध्यान ("Ascetic Meditation of Death", apparently), with a concept revolving around Kali and titles written in Devanagari. The album is often reminiscent of Agalloch's blacker moments, but with the occasional Hindu(ish) chanting and sitar playing. The Profound Lore crowd should be all over this; it's definitely the best Czech-Hindu black metal I've heard this week. [€6.66.]