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Last Active 09-10-19 7:33 pm
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~ E V I L ~ MODERN BLACK METAL PT.1

A few users brought up in interesting point in the Falls of Rauros thread that I believe deserves some discourse. While this year has been amazing for black metal, many of the most popular/visible records that have come out seem to lack the E V I L that the second-wave of black metal made a staple element of the genre. Obviously, if you've seen my gushing over various albums released during the year this a non-factor to me, but do I also believe it's a very legitimate criticism of modern black metal. So, in the spirit (heh) of camaraderie (another black metal staple), here are 5 EVIL af black metal albums that have come out within the last 12 months.
1Nihil Invocation
Furthering the Depth of Lucid Madness


I reviewed this album earlier in the year, but my analysis for this album stands as an analysis for the whole of their discography. Though their production is never as gnarled as the more lo-fi black metal acts, they embody raw black metal in every other regard. The band is built upon Darkthrone-y dirges, reveling in simplistic and repetitive black metal drones. There's no repentance in their delivery and while their often mind-numbing style can be hard to digest at first, repeated listens are where the connections are made.

Rating: 3.5/5 - EVIL METER: 4/5
2Lathliss
Demo II


Lathliss is a mysterious USBM entity that was evoked last year who released an excellent demo cloaked in celestial atmosphere. Upon a cursory listen of their second demo, you can glean that the same element still resides in the heart of their blackened rampage, but the delivery is a bit different. Demo II discards much of the euphoric ambiance of the last record, pursuing a more riff-based approach instead. Though I generally enjoy a more atmospheric attitude in my black metal, the focus on Hellhammer-esque primitivity and odd, dissonant chords serve as the perfect counterbalance to the record's more orchestrated moments. It's a dichotomy that keeps the album moving and adds a bit more variation to the prior formula. I'm excited to see what Lathliss does next.

Rating: 3.5/5 - EVIL METER: 4/5
3Sanguine Eagle
Storm Mysticism


One main points of detraction on the most recent Falls of Rauros record, was that its use of melody may have been a bit too flowery. Obviously that's wrong: it was DEFINITELY too flowery (though you're not going to find this listener complaining about that!). Sanguine Eagle - a Profound Lore-signed band featuring members of Yellow Eyes and Vorde - is also a heavily melodic black metal band, however unlike Falls of Rauros they excel in conjuring a truly dark and ominous sound. "When Bride of Blizzard" opens it is immediately reminiscent of the classic Norwegian scene; it's fast and full despair, yet cloaked in cold, twilight beauty. There's an air of solemnity strewn throughout its frozen mysticism, evoking that sense of isolation and lonerism inherent to the second wave. It's a beautiful and meditative album, but dread lurks in every riff and roar.

Rating: 4/5 - EVIL METER 4.5/5
4Lampir
Demo III


A member of the Perverse Homage stable, Lampir, in my mind, is the archetype of modern, raw USBM. The production is absolutely abhorrent with vampyric howls ringing out over buzzing guitars. The drums are nothing but sopping wet thud, often sloppy and almost completely out of time. There's a punkiness to the atmosphere and attitude, an aural smirk that hints at a band relishing in the freedom to create the most obscene racket they can muster. If you're looking for something neigh unlistenable, but oddly addictive, Lampir is the perfect candidate.

Rating: 4/5 - EVIL METER 5/5
5Skrawl
Nil (demo)


If Lampir hinted at their punk leanings, Skrawl is like a punch to the face with studded gloves. A Knife Vision acolyte, Skrawl's crust covered blackened stomp follows in the footsteps of Bone Awl, Raspberry Bulbs, and early Grinning's Death Head. This means rudimentary three-chord romps, blown-out rasps, and buzzing, static-filled atmosphere. The irony of Nil (and most other blackened punk to be honest) is that while from the outset it appears to be alienating there is something so addictive about their ill-intentioned performance.

Rating: 3.5/5 - EVIL METER: 4/5
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