Five For Friday: April 3, 2020

Hello, Decibel readers.

I don’t have to tell you what’s happening right now. Things have become very grim, and deadly serious. It’s also become abundantly clear who really holds civil society together: first-responders, doctors and nurses, teachers, postal workers, and all other professions now classified as essential (e.g., grocers, garbage collectors, delivery drivers, tradespeople). Ironically, these are often the people taken most for granted, scoffed at, and forgotten about by the well-connected, the comfortable, and all those ignorant of their own good fortune.

So, as we lean on these people to get us through the next couple months, we should think of how we can help them during and after the crisis — both morally and financially. Remember, friends: all the social status seeking and fancy degrees in the world won’t mean much if you’re starving while surrounded by filth and crumbling infrastructure. So please, if you care, don’t patronize working people with hashtags, avatar filters, and other empty self-serving gestures: find ways to help them directly (for example, here or here).

Still. Art and music are important as well. For those of you stuck at home, or on break after a hard shift and in need of catharsis: here’s five new albums should check out. This week’s edition comes loaded with lots of black metal, a thrash titan, and some deathy grind. Enjoy!

Aara – En Ergô Einai

Aara is a Swiss black metal band that combines ferocity with a rich and epic atmosphere. This generates a wave of several moods and emotions, from the power of rage to the hopefulness of ambition. According to the band, the album is inspired “by the Age of Enlightenment in 18th-century Europe” and “serves as a tribute to the duality in man’s pursuit of perfection and the futility found therein.”

Lamp of Murmuur – The Burning Spears of Crimson Agony

It’s raw, melodic black metal. It rules. King material right here. And for once, you can finally obtain a Lamp of Murmuur release in its entirety … instead of only obtaining one track from the Death Kvlt Productions page because the 100 physical copies sold out in like 10 minutes.

Svartkonst – Black Waves

Sweden’s Svartkonst plays an aggressive and ripping form of blackened death metal, one which utilizes the HM-2 sound to give it that extra crunch. Lots of ear-candy riffs to be found here among the all-around excellent songwriting. Sonic chaos in a well-organized package.

Testament – Titans of Creation

I mean, dude, it’s Testament. For the past decade or so, thrash’s supposed “B-team” has been wiping the cutting floor with the big four, and Testament continues their conquest on this latest album. Thankfully, it seems as if lead singer, Chuck Billy, is on his way to crush coronavirus as well.

Stream: Apple Music

WVRM – Colony Collapse

And now for a nice palette cleanser for your Friday. South Carolina’s WVRM brings the brutality to this new salvo of explosive, deathy grind. For those of us not ashamed to mosh alone in our bedrooms and offices (terrifying the family cat in the process), Colony Collapse is just what we need right now.

Stream: Apple Music