"6 Bands You May Not Know, But Should" - April 6th, 2020 Edition

1. Membaris (Limburg, Germany, EUR)

Album: Misanthrosophie (WTC Productions)

Release Date: March 24th, 2020

Genre: Melodic Black

Contemporaries: Naglfar, Dark Fortress, Vortex of End, Glaciation, Arctos

Veterans in their own scene, Germany’s Membaris have been chilling spines and mesmerizing minds for over two decades now. Esoteric, arcane, and occasionally flirting with folky, the soundscapes crafted by the demonic doublet of founding members Obscurus and Kraal are elaborately more intricate and mature than your standard black metal fare; and no more so is this evident than upon Membaris’s fifth studio release, Misanthrosophie. Beguiling and bedeviling, the melodically evil music of Misantrosophie is the music of loss and lament, of darkness and depression, and most of all, of spectacle and cynosure. Unequivocally A plus material from start to finish. Rating: 9.75 / 10

2. Lutharö (Hamilton, Ontario, CAN)

Album: Wings of Agony EP (Independent)

Release Date: March 27th, 2020

Genre: NWOTHM/Thrash

Contemporaries: Burning Witches, Savage Master, Haunt, Blood Star

Oh, Canada! Seriously, what is it with all the fantastic music coming from The Great White North these days? To what seems to be a never-ending stream of killer Canadian metal releases over the past year or so, we can now add Lutharö’s latest EP, Wings of Agony, to the torrent. Packed with powerful riffs, rhythms, and amazing vocals (provided by frontwoman Krista Shipperbottom), Wings of Agony is five tracks of contemporary thrash and speed metal blended faultlessly with traditional heavy metal progressions, structures, and chorus patterns, and what results is pure metal perfection. Lutharö: tip-top shit, not to be missed! Rating: 10 / 10

3. Escuela Grind (New York/Massachusetts, USA)

Album: Indoctrination (Armageddon Label)

Release Date: March 20th, 2020

Genre: Grindcore

Contemporaries: G.R.I.D., Wvrm, Insect Warfare, Everything Must Die, Chopping Mall

Relatively new to the grindcore ranks, Escuela Grind have built their growing reputation through ceaseless gigging and recording, releasing a spate of splits and EP’s in the years leading up to Indoctrination, the quartet’s debut full-length out now on Armageddon Label. Featuring seventeen curt and socio-politically scathing tracks, Indoctrination is pure noise and aggression served up hot and sizzling, if not a little thin in the production. Nonetheless, Escuela Grind are on the rise, and this release will only help to keep elevating these East Coast grinders. Rating: 8.5 / 10

4. Velnias (Nederland, Colorado, USA)

Album: Scion of Aether (Eisenwald)

Release Date: March 27th, 2020

Genre: Blackened Doom/Folk

Contemporaries: Barathrum, Raventale, Ashtar, Head of the Demon, Seventh Circle

Blurring the lines between atmospheric, folk, black, and sludgy doom are Colorado’s Velnias, whose third full-length, Scion of Aether, is a master study in genre bending. Axiomatically, in terms of overall pace and content, Velnias are purely a doom act, but between the ethereal lead guitars, the blackened vocals, and the folk influences and chord progressions, the whole of this act is incontestably more than the sum of its parts. Not to be fit neatly into any box, Scion of Aether is an astonishing journey into the abyssal plains of the unknown. Highly recommended. Rating: 9.25 / 10

5. Ambush (Växjö, Sweden, EUR)

Album: Infidel (High Roller Records)

Release Date: March 13th, 2020


Contemporaries: Skull Fist, Night Demon, Sölicitör, Orphan Devil, Crusader

Sweden’s Ambush have been hell-bent for leather since laying down their first demo in 2013, and while their following has grown steadily since then, the March release of their third full-length Infidel might just catapult these traditional heavy metallers into the stratosphere. Expertly produced and classically inclined, Ambush’s Infidel is ten tracks of nostalgic paradise, replete with so many solos and high notes that you can almost smell the Aqua Net and picture the pyrotechnics. Awesome! Rating: 9.5 / 10

6. Sutrah (Montreal, Quebec, CAN)

Album: Aletheia EP (The Artisan Era)

Release Date: March 13th, 2020

Genre: Technical/Atmospheric Death

Contemporaries: Fallujah, Rivers of Nihil, Ulcerate, Caecus

And in keeping with the previously established pattern, yet another Canadian act has had jaw-dropping effects around Hated One’s Headquarters... The Montreal-based death trio known as Sutrah hit the ground running in 2017 by releasing their debut full-length, Dunes, to much fanfare and acclaim; and last month, the follow-up EP Aletheia was quietly unleashed upon an unsuspecting public. Thought-provoking and stunningly dynamic, Sutrah unapologetically weave elements of prog and folk into their salmagundi of technically competent offerings. Graced with four compositions, Aletheia and its “wall of sound” approach has raised hairs on arms around here... how about yours? Press play below to find out! Rating: 9.75 / 10

Thanks for checking out this latest edition of “6 Bands” and be sure to support the artists if you’ve enjoyed what you’ve read and heard! \m/


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