The Post / Sludge genre is permanently growing, and for sure the French scene is one of the most prominent ones worldwide. One of my most beloved acts from France is Dirge, hailing from Paris, and active for almost twenty-five years. In the earliest years, the band brought some kind of industrialised and psych-grinding Metal (also quite ‘popular’ in their home country), yet throughout the years they evolved a lot. Dirge recorded and released six albums in the meantime, but the last one, Hyperion (*), was released four and a half years ago.
If I’m not mistaken – and since I’m a smart guy the chance is almost nihil – ‘Arkona’ is the name of a cape on the Rügen island, nowadays in Germany (Baltic Sea, close to Poland), where the Slavic fortress Jaromarsburg was built. Like many castles, it has been a source of inspiration for many Metal bands. Behemoth’s first recordings, for example (at the time that they did still play ‘real’ Black Metal), referred to that era / area, but there are quite some bands named after that specific historical place too.
Despite almost two decades of existence, Expenzer finally release their debut full length via Czar Of Bullets. This Swiss quintet had the material recorded, mixed and mastered at the Little Creek Studio by Gurd’s V.O. Pulver, who did some studio stuff for bands like Darkmoon, Zatokrev, Megora, Excruciation, Destruction a.o. before.
Finnish horde Archgoat was formed at the end of the eighties, and after the recording of some demo tapes, they wrote some new material that was supposed to be released via Necropolis Records (which, at that time, was one of the most impressive underground labels, I think), along with some older stuff that appeared on the demonstrational recordings. Normally it would come out in 1993, but because of some specific circumstances, the release got postponed.
Fortid originally hail from Iceland. They were formed as one-man outfit in 2002 by Einar Thorberg Guðmundsson ‘Eldur’ (think: Potentiam, Curse, Thule, and recently also in Den Saakaldte or Midnattsvrede).
I’ll keep this introduction very short. Manes hail from Norway and released quite differing / different stuff in the past. I was truly obsessed / possessed by the debut Under Ein Blodraud Maane (1998), but the other recordings showed another side of etc… You know, or you do not, but there’s the .net to help you out.
Irish top-act Cruachan needs no introduction anymore, I guess. They are active for more than two decades in mean time (with a brief break), and I do follow them as from the release of their first full length, Tuatha Na Gael. More info: search the net…
After more than six years, the German act Divine:Zero finally returns with the successor of 2008’s The Day God Left. This sophomore album, The Cold Asylum, was recorded with studio assistance of Achim Kaiser – think Motorjesus, Steele The Score etc. In between both albums, the band was able to play live on stage with the likes of e.g. Born From pain, Fleshcrawl, Motorjesus, Dew-Scented, Powerwolf etc.
This will be a short / quick one: five-piece Karne (craving for a piece of bloody meat right now too?...), hailing from France (line-up: founding member and vocalist Eingeweide, drummer Bael, guitar players R. and H.K.A., and bassist Hraesvelg), finally release their debut full length, the first official release after the 2012-demo MMXII (extremely original, not?...).
Quality Steel Records aren’t that known (yet), but they came up with quite some fabulous releases lately. And then I am talking about material by the likes of Ajuna, King Fear, Divine:Zero, Harasai or Karne. You can find the reviews on these band’s last releases on the site, or you will find them in a very near future, by the way.