Note from Team Klown: On behalf of Team Klown, the Klown would like to extend his deepest condolences to Mexico, Florida, Texas and Puerto Rico. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico got their ass kicked by Hurricane Harvey, Irma, and Maria respectively. As of yesterday, Central Mexico received an earthquake of magnitude 7.2. All the Klown can say is prepare for the end of days! In case you haven’t checked out part one you can help out hurricane victims here. To help the clown president’s favorite nation you can click here.
Hell Is Other People Release their First
Ugh Metal’s fetish has returned once more: Independent talent! The Klown had to check out what this other group from the mystical lands of the Canadás had to offer. Hell Is Other People has released their debut 4 track LP independently titled Embrace . The album begins slow and ambient with “Visions” which would then pick up speed and feature Brandon Gruber’s harsh, screaming vocals. “Embrace” would do the same at the beginning and remain somewhat ambient throughout the whole song but would feature James Ditty’s drum rolling and cymbal clashing as an indicating catalyst for the song especially when the drumming begins to pick up.
“Blossom” gives you a dose of both ambient and raw black metal which made for an awesome track. This track also features a brief but cool guitar solo that was somewhat atmospheric and some more treble drum play from Ditty. The final song of this album “The Colour Returns” gives you a combo of both raw and ambient but add some atmospheric influence. It is also worth noting that the song is a little over 13 minutes long.
This album was a pretty good start for these Canadians and was somewhat of a sleeper hit. The Klown highly recommends this album for those who love black metal in any shape, way or form. You can check this puppy out on the band’s Bandcamp to really hear what the Klown wrote about.
5 out of 6 Hell Yes!
Belphegor Present their Black Metal Ritual unto the Masses
The name Belphegor should not be so foreign to metalheads especially those who fancy themselves kvlt and consider themselves uber black metal aficionados. These Austrian black metal legends have blessed… cursed (depends on your perspective) with a 11th new album titled Totenritual through Nuclear Blast Records.
Right from the start, vocalist Helmuth Lehner unleashes pure hell, no pun intended. Unlike previous albums, Lehner takes a stronger and coarse approach, vocally, and an aggressive take instrumentally as the Klown evidenced through “Baphomet” and “The Devil’s Son.”
The band revisits their double kicks, that’s currently provided by Simon “BloodHammer” Schilling with a cacophony of church bell samples, and the ritualistic sounding chorus from previous albums with “Apophis-Black Dragon.” “Spell of Reflection” was a pretty good track and felt like a classic Belphegor song but newer and featured an awesome solo from Lehner. The song is first met by the introductory track “Totenbeschwörer” which could best be described as a heavy, melancholic instrumental. Although the Klown liked “Embracing a Star,” he enjoyed “Totenritual” more.
The title track really features a combo of both old and new Belphegor. The Klown, however, feels that bassist/backing vocalist Serpenth truly shined on this one. Whenever the chorus had to be featured, Serpenth didn’t end it there and continued to add more spice to the already peppery song with an extra diabolical voice. Lastly, the album finishes this devilishly exquisite album with two live renditions of “Stigma Diabolicum” and “Gasmask Terror.” The Klown demands that if you really love black metal, that you should get your ears wrapped around this album ASAP because it was worth the 3-year hiatus wait. You can get yourself a copy of this album here.
6 out of 6, Currently Seeking for the Next Sacrifice
Ensiferum’s Latest Will Lead You to Greatness
The Finnish Pagan Metal band known as Ensiferum has, at long last, returned from battle and graced us with a brand new epic album. Along with Metal Blade Records, the quintet released their latest tale of glory titled Two Paths. As soon as the intro “Ajattomasta Unesta” begins, you know you’re in for an absolute treat.
The Klown’s words hold true when it is immediately followed by the glorious new anthem for our beloved genre “For Those About to Fight For Metal.” The song contained all the elements to make a grand arrival such as the opening guitar solo from Markus Toivonen, Petri Lindroos’s harsh vocals, the manly epic sounding chorus, Janne Parviainen’s drumming, which at times sounded like the beats used in battle, and Netta Skog’s electric accordion to add a bit of whimsy.
This new classic is followed by “The Way of the Warrior,” “The King of Storm” “I Will Never Kneel” which can best be described as a bit toned down by comparison to “For Those…” T the track is also more robust and seemed reminiscent to that of fellow compatriots Children of Bodom. “Two Paths” has this band taking a page from Amorphis and feature Prog metal similar to theirs. “Feast of the Valkyries” has Lindroos taking a backseat and Skog take over with her vocals. Skog is then joined by the rest of the band for a manly chorus to make an awesome Viking/Pagan metal romp which can also be said about “God Is Dead” but with clean male vocals.
“Don’t You Say” has Toivonen take the helm with his clean vocals, Parviaine with his house drums, and Skog’s accordion to create an upbeat Pagan metal song. The album finishes how it began, with an epic song in the form of “Hail to the Victor” and the soft outro “Unettomaan Aikaan.” Just to let you peeps know the Klown named all the tracks on this album! As a bonus the album includes an alternative version of “God Is Dead” and “Don’t You Say.” You can check it out and get in Metal Blade’s Bandcamp.
6 out of 6, Choose the Right Path for Glory!