1. Undesiccated (Virginia, USA)
Album: Tseh’-Makh EP
Release Date: May 17th, 2020 (Independent)
Contemporaries: Wvrm, G.R.I.D., Chopping Mall, Escuela Grind
Setting grindcore blasts to imagery of and lyrics about the local flora of your home region is an unusual concept to say the least, but Undesiccated thought that the idea was worth a go. Since early 2019, this enigmatic grind trio has been releasing efforts that pay homage to the native (and sometimes invasive) vegetation and verdure of Virginia. But while grindcore’s subject matter normally tackles everything from politics to the perverse, Undesiccated have done away with such traditions by blending a little nature into the mix instead, and truth be told, it’s not half bad! Besides, nobody can really tell what most grind vocalists are barking about anyway, right? So, if you’re looking for some grindcore that’s a little outside of the box, Undesiccated’s discography – including the recently released Tseh’-Makh EP – is ready and waiting for you!
2. Close the Hatch (Dayton, Ohio, USA)
Album: Modern Witchcraft
Release Date: May 22nd, 2020 (Independent)
Genre: Melodic Doom/Post-Metal
Contemporaries: Huntsmen, Loviatar, Marrowfields, Death the Leveller
Ohio’s Close the Hatch seek to follow in the footsteps of such great acts as Huntsmen and Loviatar in creating melodious, thought-provoking doom metal with touches of post that tingles the spine and entrances the soul. Active in the Dayton scene since 2013, Close the Hatch recently released their fourth independent full-length, Modern Witchcraft, and if this album doesn’t get this act some sniffs from some labels, someone ought to report it as a crime. Well-written, no-nonsense tunage, all around.
3. Féleth (Alta, Norway, EUR)
Release Date: May 22nd, 2020 (DeadPop Records)
Genre: Melodic Death
Contemporaries: Kalmah, Burn Down Eden, Voices of Ruin, The Eldritch Grimoire
Striking out into the plague-riddled night upon their debut full-length crusade are Norway’s Féleth, whose album Depravity just dropped recently on DeadPop Records. Pacey, cumbrous, and with just enough melodic riffage and vocals interspersed to keep you satisfied, the production on Depravity is killer in the speakers. Even flirting with progressive at times, Féleth have displayed some excellent instincts on this fantastic first full-length. Dig it, dig it now!
4. October Falls (Helsinki, Finland, EUR)
Album: A Fall of an Epoch
Release Date: May 30th, 2020 (Purity Through Fire)
Genre: Atmospheric/Folk Black
Contemporaries: Fen, Gloosh, Fellwarden, Blaze of Sorrow
Helsinki’s October Falls have mostly ditched the neofolk on their latest effort, A Fall of an Epoch, in favor of a more purely atmospheric black metal bent. Don’t be mistaken, though, there are still some folky elements to be heard, but overall, the five lengthy compositions that make up A Fall of an Epoch are riding the fresh wave of airiness and ethereality that has so thoroughly swept through the black metal world. While unfortunately rather thin in the production and light in the speakers, the music contained within these tracks is still enjoyable and admirable nonetheless, so give October Falls’ newer atmospherics a listen by pressing play below!
5. Sorge (Washington, District of Columbia, USA)
Album: Sorge EP
Release Date: June 5th, 2020 (Independent)
Genre: Stoner/Psychedelic Doom
Contemporaries: Yob, Windhand, Monolord, Acid King
Bringing pounds and pounds of stony, psychedelic wavelengths upon their virgin EP release are Washington, D.C.’s newest of newcomers, Sorge (pronounced “sor-guh”). Fresh out of the conceptual womb and still green around the gills, this stunning, self-titled debut yawps loud and clear from the rooftops of the world that Sorge are another new force to be reckoned with in the stoner/psychedelic doom community. Fuzzy in both riffage and vision, Sorge by the band of the same name is one hell of a “how do you do?”, so go ahead and turn yourself on by tuning in to the press play dial below, and drop out of reality for a while courtesy of Sorge!
6. Ulthar (Oakland, California, USA)
Release Date: June 12th, 2020 (20 Buck Spin)
Genre: Modern Black/Blackened Death
Contemporaries: Suffering Hour, Yaldabaoth, Predatory Light, Raptvre
Half black metal, half blackened death, and all evil are Oakland, California’s Ulthar, whose one foot in and one foot out approach is back for another full-length go-around with 20 Buck Spin. However, if their 2018 debut with the growing label (Cosmovore) failed to commence your acquaintance with this up-and-coming act, then the recently dropped Providence finally just might. Rough, raw, and rancorous, Providence is eight tracks worth of what equates to an audible flogging, complete with the delicious dissonance of a cat-o’-nine-tails’ thwaps against bare flesh. Totally fucking ruthless, and totally fucking worth a listen!
That wraps yet another installment of “Six Bands” from Hated One Metal Reviews! Thank you so much for reading, for listening, for checking out the bands, and for continuing to stay metal even whilst weathering a plague or two. Your continued support of the international metal community has been nothing short of spectacular. Keep that shit up. \m/