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05.17.24 What did I miss03.15.24 Deweekly: March 15th to March 21st
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01.30.24 10 Albums of 195001.26.24 Deweekly: January 26th to February 1st
01.23.24 10 Albums of 196501.19.24 Deweekly: January 19th to 25th
01.12.24 Deweekly: January 12th to 18th 01.10.24 10 albums of 1964
01.04.24 Deweekly: January 1st to 10th 12.27.23 Dewi's 2023: A Year in Review
12.26.23 10 albums of 196312.21.23 10 albums of 1962
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Deweekly: January 12th to 18th

Previously known as the 1300 albums challenge (what a stupid title), this si the list where I log my listens every week. The target is 25 albums a week. The order is more or less from stuff I was hyped about to things I'm just curious about, recs, mainstream, stuff that's been reviewed by reviewers I like, etc. But enough of introductions, let's jam!
1Nailah Hunter

Fat Possum // Ambient Pop

I was really looking forward to this one, and while it's not as interesting as I thought it would be, it's a very chill listen, full-on atmosphere, warm production and Nailah's vocal delivery is just perfect. The songwriting suffers a bit from lack of diversity which might also be due to her sticking firmly to her style without extremes, but on the other hand maybe she doesn't need to, as her proposal is good enough to make this debut (after a couple of EPs) an enjoyable experience.

Highlight: Bleed
2Saevus Finis
Facilis Descensus Averno

Transcending Obscurity // Dissodeath

Prepare for your first spoonful of dissodeath of the year and the first of probably many Transcending Obscurity releases of 2024. Saevus Finis (Savage End?) is a trio from Portugal that shares members with several other projects, so even if this is a debut, there's a palpable level of veterany on this album. Style wise this is drenched in Portal and Gorguts with a bit of Immolation and even some Deathspell Omega on top. It's relentless, and its 39 minutes honestly felt like an hour plus. This is one of those albums that need repeated listens to get the hang of it, but I'm not feeling the need to do so at the moment.

Highlight: III. Corpse of Hope
Here Comes The Rain

Steamhammer // Hard Rock

Magnum continues their unstoppable streak of one album per year with their 26th release, and the heavens have wanted "Here Comes The Rain" to be guitar, founder and main songwriter Tony Clarkin's swansong after his passing just five days ago. The first time I heard Magnum was around 1987, when I was around 10 years old. Me and my neighbour used to exchange tapes, I used to have "The Eleventh Hour" and "On A Storyteller's Night" and he had a copy of "Chase the Dragon". We were completely blown away by its fantasy themes. Now, listening to this after Clarkin's passing hits different, and I'll even say this is probably on the best 3 modern Magnum albums I've heard in the last 3 years. Rest in peace, Tony, and thank you for this last gift.

Highlight: After the Silence
4Marika Hackman
Big Sigh

Chrysalis // Singer Songwriter / Indie Pop

Really interesting fourth album from English singer songwriter Marika Hackman. Everything that she has experimented with in the past is here, and then some more. Nine engaging songs and one interlude that feel fresh, with each one of them having a very distinct trait and its own sound. From lo-fi bedroom folk to pop ragers. This one will get more than one listen, I'm afraid.

Highlight: No Caffeine
Akt III: Erl​ö​sung


Self released // Black Metal / Folk / Experimental

What a pleasant surprise. If you remember, a couple of years ago I reviewed the first album of a new black metal project called Ancient Mastery. The man behind the project, Erech Leleth had another project before releasing music for Ancient Mastery, and that project was called Narzissus (fortunately renamed from former band name "Narzis" (facepalm)). Anyway, Erech is a wizard and this project, slightly different from Ancient Mastery, proves that he's capable of composing and recording incredible music if it's done at his own pace. Once again, this third part of the trilogy that started in 2020 with 2 EPs, follows the melodic nature of past releases, introducing a lovely lady on vocals, folk elements reminiscent of Thy Catafalque and overall heavy and melodic black metal in the unique way that only Leleth can do.

Highlight: Empor zum Ideal
6Exit Eden
Femmes Fatales

Napalm Records // Symphonic Metal

In 2017, Amanda Somerville (Avantasia, Epica, many others), Anna Brunner (League of Distortion), Clémentine Delauney (Visions of Atlantis) and Marina La Torraca (Phantom Elite) formed a cover band aiming to transmat heavy pop hits into heavy symphonic metal hits. Results were... interesting. For this second run, Somerville has left the band due to a busy schedule, but the trio has decided to push on with another set of covers plus some originals. The covers of Pet Shop Boys' "It's a Sin" and Alice Cooper's "Poison" are clear highlights, but the originals are also pretty good, with special mention for "Run!" which is performed alongside Finnish Symphometal deity and ex-Nightwish Marko Hietala. Good monday morning album.

Highlight: Pet Shop Boys
7Infant Island
Obsidian Wreath

Secret Voice // Screamo

One word: Abrasive. This is the band's third release since their inception in 2018, though it's the first time I hear them. Obviously, first thought was "ok, Sunbather", but there are a lot of intrincate melodies and extremely powerful moments splattered around the 36 minutes of this album. Same problem I have with Deafheaven though, the vox gets old for me really quick, but I do love the music so it kinda balances out. I doubt I'll get to this often but for fans of screamo with a post black metal tinge I'd say this one's a mandatory check.

Highlight: Amaranthine
8Nicholas Craven and Boldy James
Penalty of Leadership

Nicholas Craven Productions // Hip Hop

Boldy James is a rapper from Detroit who was recently involved in a fatal car crash and fortunately lived to tell the tale. Nicholas Craven produced this, I think, second collaboration together and provided the beats for the man's words. I'm still amazed I'm on my third hip hop album in just 2 weeks considering last year I heard a total of zero rap albums. Boldy James' style is pretty soothing, he has this low, very laid back register that is very calming for some reason and Craven's beats are really cool, playing with soul sections into some more unusual patterns. Can't really judge anything else because you know, hip hop is not my field but I did enjoy this one, although not as much as the Unlearn the World release last week.

Highlight: Brand New Chanel Kicks
9Lucid Funeral
Terminal Lucidity

Self released // Progressive Death Metal

Listening to Lucid Funeral is hard to believe this project has just hatched from the youtube/instagram account of guitar shredder Samuel Rav. This release comprises a total of four songs plus an interlude. The first two songs belong to the project's first release in 2021, which was titled "Cathartic Dreamscapes", while the two last ones first saw the light last year as "Synthetic Nightmares". There's more precise info on Samuel's account (@rav_riffs) so pay him a visit, but yeah this thing absolutely slaps. Really solid writing, incredible execution, very smart use of gutturals and riffs for an eternity, all enshrouded with plenty of atmo synths. Fans of 90s death metal do not let this one pass.

Highlight: Spectrum of Consciousness
10Folly Group
Down There!

So Young Records // Post Punk

This might be the first decent post punk record I've heard this year. In fact, it's pretty good. I've seen someone somewhere calling them "modern Talking Heads" and that almost made me wanna gouge my eyes out but it's true that these fellas have their moments. This is their long play debut so let's give them some time and space. Also, I can see some Black Midi comparisons coming up in the future but I think Folly group have their own thing going on so even if you see this comparison, ignore it and give them a chance.

Highlight: Pressure Pad
11Arrested Development
Bullets In The Chamber

Vagabond Productions // Hip Hop / Soul

Arrested Development, that's a name I hadn't heard in a very long time, and I'm not talking about the TV series. If you were a teen during the 90s, there is no way you haven't heard of this band. Radio played them 24/7, MTV loved them and their brand of gentle and classy hip hop reached millions of people that didn't want to associate with the themes of several other hip hop acts of that time. Eight years since their last album (which I totally missed), they're back with enough material for two albums. "Bullets..." contains 1 hour plus of soul and hip hop like the gang from Atlanta can only do. Really nice album and in the very unlikely event you don't know them but you dig A Tribe Called Quest or De La Soul, you'll be doing good in checking this one.

Highlight: Overachiever
12Domination Campaign
A Storm Of Steel

Prosthetic Records // Death Metal

I'm sure fans of Psycroptic will know of this side project of Jason Peppiatt and Joe Haley. It's war themed primitive chugga chugga death metal, nothing to write home about, but Haley's drumming is unsurprisingly potent and there's plenty of riffage if that's what you're craving for. Songwriting is honestly as basic as it gets, with zero surprises or little details here and there. No. It's just a suckerpunch to the guts, with no explanations given.

Highlight: Winds of Death

Deaf Touch Records // Experimental / Post Punk / Post Hardcore / Noise Rock

A nice little discovery for this week. Yureka or ユウレカ in Japanese, are a band from Tokushima that like This Heat... a lot. I also found some similarities between them and Chat Pile in the way their both rythm section sound like they want to tar down your door and suffocate you with a pillow while you're lost in your dreams. Unfortunately the album is not up on streaming platforms, at least yet, but it's available on bandcamp and it's definitely worth checking if you feel like something different with a filthy mechanical vibe.

Highlight: Kyoen
14Bill Ryder-Jones
Iechyd Da

Domino Recordings // Singer Songwriter / Folk

Pleasant album, that goes without saying. Production is exemplary, and there are so many arrangements that contribute to Ryder-Jones' immaculate songwriting that it's easy to consider this as one of the great albums of this still very early 2024. BUT, as a subjective opinion and how I personally feel about this album, I think the singer's register becomes increasingly grating as the album goes on, and some of the arrangements didn't sit well with me, like those slightly detuned synths, for example. In addition, the album feels very melancholic but I'm not aware of where this is coming from so I can't really empathize with it. Knowing his past catalogue or more about the album would probably help me to get a better understanding of what is happening here but this is not the kind of album I can see myself investing the time to do so.

Highlight: Sadly, none
15Escuela Grind

MNRK // Death Metal / Power Violence / Grindcore

Not the best material from the caustic gang from Massachusetts. Chunky riffs, stomps and anything you can imagine that could work for the windmill loving folk in the pit but not much else to enjoy sitting and listening to it in a boring office. Maybe that's part of the problem though. I'm pretty sure these new 4 songs go very hard live but as far as recording goes, this is as enjoyable as a headache. Barney from Napalm Death growls on one track, and it's always nice to hear from Barney, so there's that.

Highlight: Meat Magnet
16Drown In Sulphur
Dark Secrets Of The Soul

Scarlet Records // Deathcore

When I said I was gonna go out of my comfort zone I really meant it. Why listening to this masked chads from Italy when there are probably better deathcore bands out there? Well this is the first release of its kind this year but I'll get on more if I'm in the mood. This record though, it plays nicely with symphonic arrangements and they use melody wisely. It's a relentless assault as you could expect from a deathcore band but it's not as overwhelming as other albums of the genre I've heard before. Opener is really engaging but as the album went on my interest started waning, in part thanks to that middle track / quasi-ballad spawn called Lotus, god I hated that track. I may still visit this for a couple of songs though, it's pretty decent.

Highlight: Eclipse of the Sun of Eden
17Kali Uchis

Geffen Records // Latin Pop / Reggaeton

While I was expecting an insufferable reggaeton maelstrom from the Colombian pop queen, I gotta admit that the single "Te mata" wasn't a fluke, this album is actually really fun and rich. Reggaeton does happen though, and from track 10 you have a few tracks to endure before the album ends, but all in all I'd say the good far surpasses the b... the reggaeton. Before this I hadn't heard any music from Kali Uchis since Isolation so I may have missed her transition into the brand of pop that she does on this album, deeply rooted in her traditions and sang in her native tongue. Sweet album.

Highlight: Te mata

Obviously, no bandcamp or full album link but check her video of "Te mata", cause it rules.
18The Vaccines
Pick-Up Full of Carnations

Super Easy / Thirty Tigers // Indie Rock

Same as above, I got hooked to one of the singles of this record, "Love To Walk Away" whch unsurprisingly is the best... well, my favorite song of the album. First time hearing these guys although this was probably not the best album to start (and probably end) with them. Apart from the song I said and maybe "Heartbreak Kid" the rest is really bland, awfully produced indie rock with zero thought put into it. If you ever wanted to hear how does a band on autopilot sound, here's the answer. Skip it (but jam "Love to Walk Away").

Highlight: Read above!

(I really can't believe that even their bandcamp reads like "the vaccines suck".)
19No Terror In The Bang

Klonosphere // Progressive Metal

Yes, weird name, but turns out is a quote from Alfred Hitchcock: "There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it." If you knew it, good for you, I didn't, and so I had no idea where I was getting into with this band from France. Progressive metal, a bit of djent, a bit of Jinjer, soulful singing, this is quite the revelation for this week. Sofia Bortoluzzi's versatility on vocals allows her to sound like an r&b solo artist that can ramp up to metal at any time, either with growls, shrieks or whatever you throw at her, she can manage. The band doesn't stay behind either. Song writing is fairly twisted, unpredictable most of the time and when it all comes together it conjures a spell that actually works. This is their second ful length, and you should give them a chance.

Highlight: King With No Crown
20Elegy (RUS)

Slowsnow Records // Atmospheric Black Metal

It's been three days since I listened to black metal, what the heck!? Normally and sadly these days, whenever I see a band from either Ukraine or Russia I can't stop thinking about the absurdity of the ongoing war and it makes me think of the possible scenarios that surround the album. I don't know the specific circumstances of this one, and I prefer to focus on the music and let me tell you, this album checks a lot of boxes for me. Furiously melodic, ambitious in its delivery and well-balanced. Highly recommend it.

Highlight: Until the Cold Takes Us
21Holy Dragons

Self released // Speed Metal / Heavy Metal

At the end of the 90s, Holy Dragons were the first heavy metal band in Kazakhstan, and probably the only one. Hailing from Almaty, this band is already on their... 20th release? I'm not sure what's official or not but they have a shit ton of albums, that's for sure. Their style is heavily influenced by the NWBOHM and the likes of Warlock, with Chris "Thorheim" Caine's vocals bearing a fair resemblance with those of Doro. I can't say that "Fortress" sports pristine production, but it definitely sounds like a labour of love, and for fans of dragon themed epic metal (like my brother manosg), this is a guaranteed good time.

Highlight: Stronger Than The Wind
22My Anh

Young Hit Young Beat Corp // r&b / V-pop

Correctly written as Mỹ Anh, this is the third full length of the Vietnamese pop superstar. This is my first incursion into, not only pop from Vietnam, but really any music from Vietnam, and I gotta say this was a pleasant surprise. The album is really well produced, it's really short, just 22 minutes, and Mỹ Anh's performance and melodies really stick. This album will make you move like a happy eel at the bottom of the ocean. Wait, did I really just write that...?

Highlight: Mỗi khi anh nhìn em

Full album w/ visualizer:ỹAnh

Self released // Mathcore / Black Metal / It has a sax on it so Avant Garde

With three albums released in 2023, the Chinese madman behind Ὁπλίτης or Hoplites is back at it again not even 2 weeks into the new year. I'd dare to say this is his more "sophisticated" album of the 4 he has on his catalogue now and I promise that the sax has nothing to do with it. At this point he's just not as focused on brutality as in his first album but more on doing things for fun. There's much more space to breathe and even his style has expanded to other subgenres, which poses an interesting question for the future of the project.

Highlight: Συμμιαινόμεναι Διονύσῳ Ἐλευθέριῳ (or track 5)

Masterworks Publishers Inc. // Alternative Metal

You may remember Nemophila from those YouTube big hits where they covered heavy metal classics from big names like Iron Maiden, Helloween, Pantera or Kiss to name a few, proficiently, to say the least. In addition to owning every classic they touch upon, the Japanese all-ladies metal band also has time to make albums featuring their own material, so how does that sound? Well, as you would expect, "Evolve" is mercilessly over-produced, extremely well performed and includes any metal trope you can imagine. From a bouncy opener, to a ballad to big big chorus tracks, everything is here. But it's fun, it's catchy, it's guilty pleasure territory but I just went with it and had a good time, and sometimes that's all you need.

Highlight: OSKR

Too big for bandcamp it seems so check the live version of "Rise":
Reap Humanity

Xtreem Music // Death Metal

Great way to finish the week. Long-running Swedish death metal stalwarts Ribspreader fronted by the incombustible Roger "Rogga" Johansson with what I believe is their 14th full length. "Reap Humanity" sounds amazing, much in the line of fellow Bloodbath, this is unapologetic OSDM with no flourishes. It goes straight for the throat, reeks of putrid riffs and explosive drumming and is guided by gutturals from another dimension. Hell of a good time.

Highlight: Reap Humanity
Akt III: Erl​ö​sung

This week seems to start ramping up in quality, with some relatively big names making an appearance, like Kali Uchis, Arrested Development, Magnum, Bill Ryder-Jones or The Vaccines showing up, but still feels like that mid-open January door that won't be flooding releases until the last week of January. In any case, this was a good week for black metal and death metal, but also allowed me to explore out of my realm and come back with some sweet pop and hip hop delicacies. Jazz still has to make an appearance and the same goes for big metal releases but for now 2024 seems to be on a good path.

As for the "challenge", still doing good, no burnout so far but my 60s run is definitely taking a hit. Oh well, it was never really the priority anyway. I hope these lists are helping people to discover new music, or just a source for updates on every week's new releases.
Akt III: Erl​ö​sung


1. Narzissus - Akt III: Erlösung
2. Marika Hackman - Big Sigh
3. Lucid Funeral - Terminal Lucidity
4. Arrested Development - Bullets in the Chamber
5. Infant Island - Obsidian Wreath
6. Hoplites - Π​α​ρ​α​μ​α​ι​ν​ο​μ​έ​ν​η
7. Ribspreader - Reap Humanity
8. Kali Uchis - Orquídeas
9. Exit Eden - Femmes Fatales
10. No Terror In The Bang - Heal

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