Five For Friday: December 10, 2021

Hello, Decibel readers!

It’s this time of year most people stop paying close attention to new releases, as the various publications issue their year-end lists and influencers pontificate on why record X was the best (and how their glaringly obvious relationship with the label had nothing to do with this, NO WAY!). Still, there’s lots of strong stuff coming out this month that deserves a hearing.

This week features a lot of death metal. So if you really love going OUGH! at your desk or on your commute, this is a good week for you. On the other hand, there’s a treat for you stoner/doom metal fans at the end as well.


Cadaveric Fumes – Echoing Chambers of Soul

Thunderous death metal from France. This debut full-length serves as the band’s swansong, closing the book on 10 years of demos, splits and slogging it out in the crowded swamps of the underground. There’s a certain dignity to ending things with a singular artistic statement, especially one as powerful as this.

Funeral – Praesentialis In Aeternum

Spooky, grandiose funeral doom from Norway. Funeral was early on the scene with their 1993 demo Tristesse, and have spent the ensuing years honing their dark craft of brooding, mournful metal. The band brings a creative arsenal all their own to this record, from the use of various clean voices, to the contrasting quiet and loud passages. The ideal soundtrack for the darkest time of year.

Stream: Apple Music

Malignant Altar – Realms of Exquisite Morbidity

From our full-album stream of Realms of Exquisite Morbidity:

“It’s the need to feel the full weight of darkness upon you, similar to the mood of a great doom metal album. But what if you want that mood combined with the energy, ferocity and chaotic barbarity of death metal? Then you get something like Malignant Altar‘s new album, Realms of Exquisite Morbidity. The Houston outfit’s debut full-length follows in the long tradition of bands devoted to the spirit of Incantation and Immolation, but determined to put their own spin on it.”

Phrenelith – Chimaera

Oh, you want even more ominous death metal? I like your style. And I dig the new album from Denmark’s Phrenelith even more! Chimaera delivers and satisfies on every score, from the haunting riffs (you know, the ones that make you do the Abbath-frowning-face), to the pounding drums, and the subterranean vocals. Add the excellent songwriting on songs like “Plegethon” and “Kykytos” and everything just comes together so nicely.

Restless Spirit – Blood of the Old Gods

Yes, that’s a Frank Frazetta piece on the album cover, glad you noticed that as well. I’m also glad the music matches the atmosphere of the image, muscular and epic stoner rock. This music is tailor made to enjoy with a drink in one hand, pounding fist in the other, finishing off the booze as you prepare to enter the pit. Restless Spirit represents their style at its absolute best. So many bands go for this sound and come out of it boring as all hell. The exact opposite happens here.

Stream: Apple Music