I’ve had this 4th and last part of my Noteworthy Report «all the great albums of 2017 I didn’t get to talk about» for quite some time on my HDD, but for one reason or another I didn’t have the energy to actually go finish the finer details that go hand in hand with actually posting a NWR. However, with March marching to an end, I knew I had to act, mostly because in this specific part you will find what I believe is THE best album of 2017, and not posting it would really be a shame. Without further ado I give you the Noteworthy Report: Rest of 2017 pt. 4/4.
Ars Magna Umbrae – Through Lunar Gateways
Magnificent Black Metal that marries the best parts of the melodic, the experimental and the occult. If you weren’t listening to this, what DID you do this summer?
Inferno – Gnosis Kardias (Of Transcension and Involution)
On the surface this is yet another black metal album, but it is mixed in such a bizarre and profound way that makes it more of an experience than just a listen. Add the psychedelic Septicflesh-y elements that are subtly woven in and get ready for a trip to another cosmos. If you’re still in doubt, it bears the mark of W.T.C. Productions, and this alone is a testament of its superior quality.
Ashenspire – Speak Not of the Laudanum Quandary
This has got to be the ABSOLUTELY BEST album I heard in 2017. The bastard offspring of Ved Buens Ende and Primordial is filled with theatrical vocals, brilliant riffs, epic marches and the sickly medieval atmosphere of rainy England.
Wolves In The Throne Room – Thrice Woven
WITTR return with what appears to be their most primitive and aggressive album so far. The shamanistic aesthetics and their crystalline melodies are still here, they just left more room for pure black metal to blossom. Even if you never liked them before, you HAVE to give this album a chance.
ÆRA – Of Foresworn Vows
90’s Norwegian Black Metal, only produced in the Americas. Early Gehenna / Emperor come to mind. Short and to the point. Invest!
Diablery / Shadowcraft – Entropy
Last but certainly not least, a split by two Greek bands that are slowly but steadily making a name in the scene. Diablery play cold, symphonic Black Metal that has a Scandinavian quality and influences (from early Gehenna all the way to modern-day Dimmu Borgir). Shadowcraft on the other hand are also symphonic but on a more Pagan trajectory and at points they really reminded me of Limbonic Art. This release sure deserves your attention.
Thus closes the circle. 2017 proved to be an amazing year for black metal. Let’s wait and see if this year can match it…