ViciSolum Productions is a Swedish record label and management company that seems to consistently put out albums that fall perfectly with a few of my preferences. Recently, their output has steered towards a thrashy/melodic/progressive/black metal that just hits all the right spots.
CB Murdoch – Here be Dragons
Despite the colorful artwork and mention of dragons, this album has no other kinship with power metal; however, it is just about every other genre melded into one aggressive album. I see them labeled a djent band occasionally, but that should only be noted in reference to their strong Meshuggah influence. As Spear pointed out on Toilet Tuesday, the bass on “Everything is Going to Be OK” is rather “farty”, but the rest of the album should make up for that weird choice. There is no clean singing here, instead expect low and heavy guitar and bass, blasting drums, and maybe just a little melody. This album will pummel your eardrums and fuck with your sense of rhythm.
Diabolical – Umbra
This EP isn’t out until July 8th, but the single they have playing now is very exciting. This Swedish band has been around since 1997, and Umbra will be their first release since Neogenesis in 2013. Compared to Neogenesis, this song off Umbra is a little more black than it is straight death metal, but I will wait until the rest is out to make any conclusions. “Decline” is fast, heavy, and foreboding and I love every minute of it. If you haven’t heard of Neogenesis, it’s a pretty crazy concept album based on a book written by the guitarist.
POEM – Skein Syndrome
Slightly out of step with the previously mentioned bands, POEM are more in the lighter progressive rock/metal vein, and resemble Karnivool, Katatonia, and Soen. Skein Syndrome is packed full of melodic riffs and triumphant clean vocals. The Greek four-piece excell at exultant choruses and intensely morose passages. It’s an emotional rollercoaster. My interest in this type of music was fading, but POEM may have revitalized my enthusiasm. While there’s nothing exceptionally new that they bring to the genre, they clearly put in the effort to make sure every moment in every song serves a purpose.
The Ugly – Decreation
Most things I have mentioned here have at least a little bit of a progressive twinge, but providing a little diversity, The Ugly are just straight black metal. The Swedish group put out their first album in 2008 and joined ViciSolum to release their second in June of 2015. I am less familiar with this type of music to make this claim, but I see a lot of references to Marduk as a heavy influence. It’s fast and sharp with very few frills. Like most things this label puts out, the production is on the clearer end, which is may not be ideal for you fuzz junkies, but I think it sounds great.
Malrun – Oblivion Awaits
I did a mini review of this album in the past, so I won’t spend much time on them here, but this power/prog ballad is still stuck in my head after a few months.
Want more by ViciSolum? I have also previously covered Grorr, and look for some talk of Winterhorde soon, all of which I highly recommend. Still not enough? Check out these links: