† And then the Curse swept the Earth

segunda-feira, 30 de dezembro de 2013

Best of 2013 - Part II: The Albums

And here we are, on the last part of what are my favorite releases of the year. Hope you guys checked and have enjoyed the other first two parts, the Best Demos/EPs and Best of Albums  Pt.I. Now, for this last part I've gathered some names that are probably more familiar to you. These are indeed the cream of the crop in my opinion. It's those kind of albums that are definitely a "must-have". Albums that, even with the amount of new music coming out, will always feels good to revisit from time to time. 

20. Wormlust "The Feral Wisdom"

Wormlust, one of Iceland's best kept secrets, saw this year his name on everybody's mouthes due to his first full-length "The Feral Wisdom". A cadavre exquis of hallucinogenic black metal that you just simply love or hate. Being a long time fan of the band I personally love the whole atmosphere of the album. Just look at the album artwork. It really reflects what you will find inside: A creative and innovative mixture of psychedelia, black metal with amazing and mesmerizing atmospheric parts that will take you on a authentic roller-coaster journey. Listen the whole album here.

19. Moon "The Nine Gates"

Australia's atmospheric black metal band Moon also delivered a very magical and beautiful album this year. "The Nine Gates"is a rather somber but mystical album, filled with great and enigmatic details. A dark trip into Miasmyr's mind. Beautiful.

18. Rorcal "Világvége"

One of Europe's best kept secrets are Rorcal, a band that has been around since 2006 or maybe earlier, I don't know, and still they don't get enough recognition out there. And that kinda pisses me off, because this band kills and deserves more eyes and ears upon them. Nevertheless, Rorcal have already a large cult of fans following their steps and this year we were gifted with the crushing album "Világvége". A demolishing fusion of sludge, black metal, post metal, post hardcore.. whatever. It's heavy as fuck. Damn right it deserves to be here. Listen to it here.

17. Aosoth "IV: Arrow In Heart "

One of my current favorite French black metal bands, Aosoth, who this year delivered another great milestone which strengthens even further their journey as one of the best BM bands coming from France. A must. Listen here.

16. Lycus "Tempest"


After a very well received Demo, Lycus delivered this year their first full-length and one of the best albums in the Doom category. Great songs carrying loads and loads of grief, despair and solitude. All wrapped in a great sound production. Amazing. Listen.

15. The Howling Wind "Vortex"

Here is an album that caught me by surprise. While I loved 2010's "Into the Cryosphere" I really didn't die of love for "Of Babalon" I thought it was missing something, those epic tracks that "Into the Cryosphere" has. But with "Vortex", that good old feeling came back. Great tracks filled with riffs that haunts my mind for days. Awesome work. Another good news is that "Vortex" is now available as CD, get it right here and listen to "Vortex" if you haven't, here.

14. Slidhr "Deluge"

Ireland is one of those countries that let's face it, that isn't the most famous when it comes time to name some acts within the black metal scene. But being few, doesn't mean that they're weak or mediocre... on the contrary. Slidhr finally put out his first full-length entitled "Deluge". It only took one listen to this album for me to stay completely addicted to it. What i really enjoy the most here, is the sound of this album. Starting from that bass, to the drum, passing by the guitars and ending on the vocals, it all culminates in a not-so-grim-sounding-but-quite-nefarious record. Superb. Check here.

13. Old Witch "Come Mourning Come"

Another pleasant surprise for the year is Old Witch. A two person band that simply created this wonderful piece straight out of nowhere. Introducing a great fusion of drone/doom and black metal, "Come Mourning Come" is a superb album, with great lyrics that will transport us to the most melancholic scenarios in the wild. I've heard that a physical album is taking place, let's hope soon. Listen to this beauty here.

12. Leucosis "Leucosis"

Making presence yet again in my personal list, are Leucosis. This year, the band brought another great album with some slight changes in their sound but further raising the bar when it comes to the quality of the tracks. Undoubtedly one of the best pearls from the underground. So glad I own a physical copy of this album. Listen here.

11. A Story of Rats "Vastness & the Inverse"

Another great album that struck me for weeks was A Story Of Rats "Vastness & the Inverse". I don't know if we can tag this as "metal", I mean... the atmosphere is really dense and heavy. It seems to hover over drone and doom territories at some points. Although if features two tracks, it's a very beautiful and transcendental album, starting from the music itself to the whole artwork created by ASOR member Garek J. Druss to whom I must thank for the copy I own of this remarkable piece. Turn off the light and light some candles. Listen to an excerpt here.

10. Usnea "Usnea"


Another outstanding debut was this self titled album by Portland's Usnea. Four amazing tracks of simple the best sludge/doom I've heard in quite some time. Where other bands that I personally love (cough.. cough.. Mouth Of The Architect.. cough..) failed to do this year, Usnea nailed it! Can't wait to hear more from this band. Listen here.

9. Paysage d'Hiver "Das Tor"

After a six year hiatus, "Das Tor" marks the return of Wintherr as Paysage d'Hiver. A one and a half hour of the most mesmerizing, cold and grim black metal being made. Every time I hear this it feels like I'm teleported to this dense forest in the middle of the mountains of Switzerland right in the middle of a blizzard. A masterpiece. Enough said.

8. Lychgate "Lychgate"

Undoubtedly, one of my favorites and probably most plays got here at the Haxan's den. Another remarkable debut coming out from one of the most amazing supergroups. Lychgate's debut is all about delivering great theatrical and enigmatic atmospheres with the most esoteric of black metal soundtracks. Awesome. Listen here.

7. Ataraxie "L'Être Et La Nausée"

Another remarkable album that has passed under the radar of may people out there is this one, Ataraxie's "L'Être et la Nausée". An amazing journey into grief, despair and madness. Strange how I don't see people mention this album more often it really deserves more ears upon it. A magnificent and outstanding work by the French band.

6. Carpe Noctem "In Terra Profugus"


"In Terra Profugus" is another amazing journey brought this year by Iceland's Carpe Noctem. I really don't know what they're taking up there in Iceland. This band took a giant leap in what they were doing and the result is this jaw-dropping, astonishing, brilliant album that pulled off so many great reviews along its path. Look forward to grab the vinyl edition next year. Listen to a track or buy the CD here.

5. Grave Miasma "Odori Sepulcrorum"

When I think of death metal, of real death metal, I think of guitars spewing putrid sounds, a drum echoing from the most deep of catacombs, a creepy bass that gives me goosebumps and a monstrous voice that seems to growl from a grave. All of this and even more can be found in Grave Miasma's "Odori Sepulcrorum". This, ladies and gentlemen, is death metal. So fucking good.

4. Portal "Vexovoid"

Portal, what's necessary to say about Portal that has not already been said? "Vexovoid" an album that introduced a new sound to the band that probably divided some long time fans, and maybe made them earn new ones. Nevertheless, this album still proves that these crazy aussies are still masters in their game. Another great milestone into their career. (re)Listen here.

3. Irkallian Oracle "Grave Ekstasis"

From Sweden comes another great gem, "Grave Ekstasis" from the mysterious band Irkallian Oracle. Intoxicating. Hallucinated. Entrancing. These are all words i can use to describe this fantastic debut. For those who didn't grabbed the tape, no worries... a vinyl release is on the works. Listen here.

2. Fyrnask "Eldir Nótt"

Do you know when, from time to time, you find one of those specific releases that overwhelm you in such a way that you can't find words to describe it? Well, Fyrnask's "Eldir Nótt" is one of those cases. I was absolutely overwhelmed when I heard the track that introduced this first album. Automatically pre-ordered it. My guts told me this was a masterpieces of the year, and when I finally got the (amazing) double LP, I wasn't wrong. If you still aren't familiar with this band or album I strongly recommend that you take care of that asap. One of the most beautiful albums of the year. Listen/Buy here.

1. Cultes des Ghoules "Henbane"

And finally, we're down to my number one. Cultes Des Ghoules toxic album "Henbane". Why? Well, first I really enjoy this album from beginning to the end, the whole atmosphere around it exhales black magic. Those intros that the band uses really enhance that theatrical environment to the album, an aspect that for me in this specific case works rather well. Then the sound, truth is that isn't the most grim and frostbitten black metal album out there but I guess because this album is on another level.. on a occult and esoteric levels. The whole performance of the musicians is just awesome and the vocals... ah.. the vocals. I don't know how he pulls out so many and creepy voices like that, almost if he's possessed by not one but dozens of evil spirits. "Henbane" is one of those unforgettable albums. A true vintage black magic metal and classical album... Hear it here.

- Download Part II of Forever Cursed's Best Albums of 2013 HERE

 That's it, hope you've enjoyed it. Let's wait and see and 2014 will bring. See you guys next year, wish you all a happy new year. All the best!


11 comentários:

  1. excellent list, my friend.

    I've been meaning to listen to that moon record, and your praise has bumped it to the top of my list.

    1. Thank you my friend! That Moon is really unique and amazing. Cheers!

  2. I know only 4 out of 20… that's why I love album lists! Irkallian Orakle and Cultes des Ghoules are in my top 20 (or 40) too… so, let's see what i've missed this year.

    I hate to be the smartass here, but aren't Irkallian Orakle actually from Schweden? :)

    1. Lists are such a pain in the ass to do man... glad you enjoyed this one. And about I.O, you're right it's Sweden. Thanks!

  3. Great to see the final Top 20 in your list. I must say, I must say, that Cultes Des Ghoules albums is just fucking killer isnt it. It's not my favourite album of the year, but I'm glad it got to number one on somebody's list. Its a fucking ripper. I played it non-stop for all of April. I'm surprised you didn't list Peste Noire's self titled effort.
    Anywa, thanks for all of your efforts this year, I learned about some great music thanks to your blog. Cheers!!

    1. Hi Jake, well.. to be honest with you I'm not very familiar with Peste Noire's work. I've seen a couple of people talking about their latest but never paid enough attention to it. Thanks for leaving some lines here. Happy New Year!

  4. Once again thanks for the work you put into Forever Cursed!!!! Digging the Wormlust!!!!! They totally slipped by me, can't wait to check out a couple others I have not heard on your list. Well gotta work a Queen cover band tonight called Magnifico,should be fun,ha,ha. Happy New Year!!!!!!!!

    1. Hahaha! Queen??? Sounds good to me! Happy New Year my friend.

  5. I haven't been able to get these past 2 compilations to successfully download. HALP!

  6. agreed with Jake on the new Peste Noire, it's my second favorite for the year. check the first song:

    my favorite this year was Paúrpura Fræovíbôkôs by Wulkanaz. such a dirty fucking junkie of an album. some weren't into the production, but i think it sounds great. could just be the rip they have too. there's not much on youtube, but here's a track off the album:

    i love your lists, since you always seem to listen to cool stuff i haven't yet. will be looking into a lot of your picks