Another full load of 5 releases ranging from black to psychedelia – color is just a name…

White Oak – Verscholen Visies (self-released)

I seem to be inundated with Dutch black metal at the moment (and there is more to come), which in the end is kind of a luxury problem, given the great quality of these releases.
White Oak‘s debutĀ release sends a shivering sadness through the soul with a series of contemplative, at times almost fragile compositions, beckoning the listener to enter the musical winterscape with equal parts extreme beauty and coldness.

I find I’m getting caught up in a melancholic loop that forces me to consider my life and surroundings critically, and infuses a bittersweet pain into my soul.

This is pretty much an album you HAVE to give a try – if you dare…

Wormfood – L’envers (Apathia Records)

Experimental metal from France is where it’s at, at this moment in time, and Wormfood proves that this is a many-faceted truth.

Putting over the kettle with an enticing, yet sinister and somewhat gruelling brew of metal mixed with the immediacy of pop, the sinistry of goth (over and beyond those delightfully misanthropic vocals), the experiments and playfulness of prog and the abandon-all-conventions of the more avantgardic parts of the metal-scene, L’envers could easily have become a hodge-podge of incongruent influences.

But it does not – instead it isĀ an album that is both coherent and at the same time pretty hard to describe, as it constantly sends the mind on New Adventures in glorious sounds and mental images, underlining the very theatrical aspects of both the individual tracks and the album as a whole.

L’envers is a grand, cinematic experience, that let’s you close your eyes and float away on imaginative journeys.

Orobas – Arise In Impurity (EP) (Black Lion Productions)

Starting with a wonderfully weird and disconcerting intro-track, the rest of Orobas‘ debut EP rests comfortably in the traditions of black metal, which is not to say this Bangladeshi band is simply copycatting the greats. Far from it.

They’ve got a great sense of creating rhythmically challenging compositions that grabs you by the throat and slams you around in a violent St. Vitus dance.

And the guitar solo on The Ravana is pure, dischordant, dark genius.

Vainaja – Verenvalaja (Svart Records)

Vainaja‘s doom is of the kind that blackens out the sun, leaving everything in a deeply-dark dusk of misanthropy, and impacts as if the ground beneath your feet just disappeared sending you swirling into an as yet unknown abyss.

At the same time they manage to be excruciatingly brutal, and I’m left with a feeling of being run over by a slow-moving glacier, and cannot do anything but simply give up and watch the violent beauty of it all.

Farflung – 5 (Heavy Psych Sounds Records)

A weird and wonderful journey into the eclectic lands of psychedelia, 5 is a rich and varied album that takes the open mind to diverse and always shining places.

Taking their cue from both krautrock, goth and elektro rock, thus keeping the music vibrant and interesting and hardhitting, Farflung is a new acquaintance for me, but will be one of those guests that keep on coming back. With encouragements and warm welcomes from me…