Metal Bulletin Zine (est. 2006) is a metal music zine (Seattle region), online and on paper. 160 issues so far.
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Saturday, April 13, 2019
None Damp Chill of Life Hypnotic Dirge Records April 11th, 2019
2.The Damp Chill of Life 10:30
4.You Did a Good Thing 05:08
5.It's Painless to Let Go 05:56
6.I Yearn to Feel 03:45
7.A Chance I'd Never Have 07:57
total time 44:04
None is “depressive black metal”—subgenre that is stubbornly unwilling to disappear despite the merciless derision and criticism coming from some quarters—and it’s presumably a human alone working in a hu/wo/it/man/cave somewhere in the state of Oregon, U.S., where it is grey, cold, cloudy and rainy, and where, to add insult to injury, the beaches do not even warm up during the months of July and August, so there might as well not be any beaches there in the first place because you cannot go in the water, unless you have a salt cold ocean water death wish.
None is, we may assume, one person that miserably enjoys taking slow and melancholic guitar notes, add sad keyboards to the recipe, and a trustworthy drum programming software, all the while recording/cutting/pasting and adding studio magic for the perfect agonizing-desperate-tortured-soul screams that sound like they were recorded not in the recording room but rather down in the hallway with the microphone at nice, long distance so that it sounds a bit like an echo. This one person also sorrowfully delights in making this music anonymously for the (small, selective) masses around the world that cannot get enough of “depressive black metal.” This is the third album and it is completely obvious that this is not an inexperienced person who has just discovered about one-person slow sad black metal projects. This is done with a good understanding of making a do-it-yourself cave recording that can be soft, subtle and gentle, and weird, of course, because, you know, keep Portland weird.
You know how Iron Maiden has a million songs that have quiet introductions with Steve Harris noodling around on his bass? Well, None can play that game, too. The song “Cease” takes a full four minutes before it begins. The first four minutes are quiet or meditation or silence sounds. Then the wonderful misery starts again. The song called “You Did a Good Thing” looks like it is going to be yoga sounds. It is peaceful sounds, but then about 2:20 a huge argument (yes, people screaming-arguing, or something) breaks out and it totally ruins your yoga moment of zen, but then the yelling stops and we’re back to meditating. The depressive black metal starts up again on “It’s Painless to Let Go” and we are back to the slow sounds of the cave of misery.
Anyway, you get the picture. Fanatics and zealots of this style will need to do some shopping. A new source of quiet despair has just shown up in your radar.