Hulder’s darkness began to spread through the underground beginning in 2018 with the release of the Ascending the Raven Stone demo tape. A few more heavily traded and widely regarded cassette releases later, the band signed with Stygian Black Hand Records to release the first vinyl offering in the form of the EP, Embraced By Darkness Mysts…This solidified Hulder’s influence within the international metal scene but it wasn’t until the debut full length album, Godslastering: Hymns of a Forlorn Peasantry (Iron Bonehead Records), that both underground and more broad audiences were captivated by Hulder’s black metal craft. The long awaited first live performances took place in Olympia, Washington and New York City in the autumn of 2021. It was on the Winter Solstice of 2021 that a new partnership was announced with 20 Buck Spin Records, and plans for a new mini-album and second full length album were unveiled. The year 2022 will mark just the beginning of Hulder’s powerful live performances throughout the United States and, eventually, to lands beyond.
HAIL THE DARKNESS
Philadelphia’s DEVIL MASTER have been spitting in the face of convention since forming in 2016 with their raw, twisted brand of death rock meets black metal punk mayhem. Manifestations is a compilation of DEVIL MASTER’s full catalog, two sold out demos from 2016 & 2017 (S/T & Inhabit the Corpse); remixed, remastered, and sounding more malevolent than before; plus available on vinyl together for the first time. The vinyl version of the self-titled demo was originally released on America’s Leather Doomsday Records followed by both being pressed by Germany’s Erste Theke Tonträger.
Now in 2019, DEVIL MASTER stake their claim as one of the most venomous, twisted entities in the underground with their hellish debut, Satan Spits on Children of Light. The album, recorded, mixed, and mastered by Arthur Rizk (POWER TRIP, MAMMOTH GRINDER, OUTER HEAVEN, and more,) rattles the very gates of hell with a vile dose of black metal-infused punk mayhem. Commanding the steel of VENOM, the fury of BATHORY’s earliest years, and the raw, uncompromising nature of the notorious GISM, Satan Spits on Children of Light sees DEVIL MASTER emerge from the grave and reach new blasphemous heights. Give in to the Satanic panic and obey your DEVIL MASTER!
Deep within the scorching cauldron of Texas, the alchemists of Necrofier have brewed another potent dose of American black metal with their sophomore full-length, ‘Burning Shadows in the Southern Night.’ The Houston four-piece honors the time-tested virtues of traditional black and heavy metal, even taking an organic sonic approach, tapping seven-time Grammy-nominated producer and engineer Joel Hamilton (Unsane, Tom Waits, Tyler Bryant & The Shakedown, etc.) to lend his magic touch for a natural sound.
“The goal going into the new record was to start setting ourselves apart from our contemporaries,” explains Necrofier drummer Dobber Beverly. “One of those ways was changing what the record sounded like. Moving away from the clinical and sterile nature that most productions suffer from and back into a real room with real instruments and performances. Our friend and esteemed producer/engineer Joel Hamilton had expressed interest in venturing back into the metal world and offered to make the record with us at his facility, Studio G Brooklyn. With a full vintage Neve front end and a host of Telefunken and Neumann microphones we tracked a record the old way, mostly. The results will speak for themselves hopefully, as this record breathes and spits fire wherever it’s played.”
“Joel is one of the world’s best engineers,” adds Necrofier guitarist and vocalist Bakka. “Dobber and Joel have become good friends since they recorded the last Oceans of Slumber album with him. After that, Joel wanted to record something heavy so we made the trip to New York City to record in his legendary studio. It was an amazing experience in a great studio; besides having all the gear, he also created an environment where we challenged ourselves and brough everything up to the next level.”
‘Burning Shadows in the Southern Night’ doesn’t just simply pick off where Necrofier’s debut album left off, but displays a conscientious effort to double down on the elements that made ‘Prophecies of Eternal Darkness’ successful. The solos are more plentiful and intricate, the hooks are more anthemic, and the overall musicianship is bolder and more daring. Speaking of the band’s evolution, Bakka explains, “I think this collection of songs represents us very well. We have grown together as a band and it shows in the new songs. Also, for this record we flew to NYC and recorded all day long for 10 days straight. I love recording this way because it captures a certain magic. The whole band is immersed in the process and it’s all we would think, do, live and breathe during the process.”
Another core facet of Necrofier’s allure is being a black metal band from Texas. .” “Where you live always helps shape someone,” says Bakka. “It helps shape our style and tone in ways, it’s hot most of the year, so as we burn, it gives us warmer tones and more of a heavy metal influence than when compared to our brothers from the North. Also, Texas has a style all of its own; everything is heavier, louder and we are always trying to outdo the rest of the world.”
To that avail, Necrofier isn’t your typical black metal band, and so this isn’t your typical black metal record as there’s a healthy amount of traditional metal influences, particularly within the guitar work. While conceptually, the band doesn’t heavily rely on Satanic themes, exploring deeper human philosophies and the occult like burning for your dreams or spiraling out on a psychedelic trip and exploring the beyond.. “While there isn’t overt satanic worship in the lyrics, I would still say that he is a friend of ours,” Bakka cheekily says.“There are Occult themes on this record, but at the same time, it does take a philosophical approach.”
Further illustrating the influence of their environment, Necrofier also heavily explores one of Southern America’s most fabled myths. “The new record touches on selling your soul at the crossroads,” adds Bakka. “ I like to take a different approach and touch on the elements of the esoteric world and dive into the forbidden or hidden that surrounds us in our lives everyday.”
As the Texan black metal outlaws saddle up for record two, they are leading the charge as one of the contemporary purveyors of black metal revivalism. ‘Burning Shadows in the Southern Night’ is certain to elicit a sense of nostalgia for those who dare to lay ears on this vicious new offering.