ALBUM REVIEW: Darkher – The Buried Storm

There’s a slow, mournful funeral march coming through the mists, on a still silent plain, on The Buried Storm (Prophecy Productions), the latest release by Darkher. Led by multi-instrumentalist Jayn Maiven, the album at times bears a resemblance to Neurosis or Triptykon at their most quiet and reflective. With each song centred around the vocal layering of Maiven, the instrumentation often stripped to cello and violin backing, it’s an evocative and understated musical landscape. Often bringing to mind Bat For Lashes, one that sings her siren song with a doom folk backing, this is soothing music for people who like it dark.

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Bloodstock Festival Adds More Bands, Tickets On Sale Now

Bloodstock 2014 as of march 10

Bloodstock Festival (aka Bloodstock Open Air or BOA) has added five more bands to its already stacked line-up for 2015. New to the bill are reformed sludge metallers Raging Speedhorn, prog-metal exports Xerath, Trepalium, Villainy and Godsized. Taking place August 6th – 9th at Walton on Trent, Derbyshire UK. Tickets are on sale now by phone (24hr ticketline at 0871 230 5584 )or online and include an array of camping and VIP ticket options. Camper van pitches are now all sold out.

Already announced to the bill over four massive stages are major acts such as Friday’s headliner Trivium and special guests Sabaton, Saturday’s headliner Within Temptation and special guests Opeth, Sunday’s headliner Rob Zombie and special guests Black Label Society, also Cannibal Corpse, Ihsahn, Sepultura, Orange Goblin, Death T.A, Nuclear Assault, 1349, Napalm Death, Dark Angel, Armored Saint, Belphegor, Overkill, Ensiferum, Agalloch, Korpiklaani, Pro-Pain, Enslaved, Wolf, Delain, Fleshgod Apocalypse, Godflesh, Lawnmower Deth, Mordred, Ethereal, Onslaught, Oaf, Pritchard Vs Dainton, Conan, Planet Of Zeus, Bast, Saille, Batallion, Destrage with more bands to be announced in the coming weeks.


Negură Bunget – TĂU



Romanian folk-infused black metallers Negură Bunget have more than upped their game with their latest release, TĂU (Code666/Prophecy), an album that marks the inaugural release of the bands ‘Transylvanian Trilogy’, a series of three albums that act as a sonic tribute to the band’s naturally visually striking home country. The first album in the trilogy deals with Romanian nature, and as a result feels earthy, but at the same time otherworldly and elemental.

Having won hearts and minds with 2006’s genre masterwork, Om (Code666), the very pinnacle of atmospheric indigenous black metal, Negură Bunget have remained relatively quiet with just one album in the nine intervening years that have been spent recovering from a damaging line-up change. Erstwhile band members Hupogrammos Disciple and Sol Faur moved on to pastures new and impressed with Dar de duh (Prophecy), the debut opus of new outfit Dordeduh, while Negru retained the band name and released Vîrstele Pămîntului (Code666) in 2010 to a mixed reception, raising as many questions over the longevity and remaining quality of the band as it answered.

The idea behind TĂU is ambitious and out of the band’s comfort zone and for those familiar with the Negură Bunget sound this is apparent from opener ‘Nametenie’. The chanting backing vocals provide ritualistic foundations, while the harsher black metal elements combine to give a very primeval feel. The intent of this album is a visual one, and TĂU’s cinematic ability to transport you visually to the Romanian landscape is unlike anything the band has done before. Each song on the album represents a different landscape, and album closer ‘Schimniceste’ is a black metal ambient master class. Its pensiveness and hypnotic rhythms aurally transport you to another world, one that you cannot see but can certainly feel.

Accompanying this release will be a 72-page art book edition, which in addition to featuring stunning photography will also include the history of the various featured landscapes. It is clear that immeasurable care and attention to detail has taken place throughout this project, and the band’s dedication to attentively bringing to life the natural world makes this a wholly unique record.


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