“This thread, and the other one about the PlanB article, are the best things on the music board since the minimal techno thread.”
In response and in addition to Plan B’s article on USBM and my reply post on Drowned in Sound I made my own compilation of US Black Metal to illustrate a whole range of styles of black metal that will hopefully reveal the many different facets and angles to what can be done with this genre of music - or more specifically, what American artists are doing with it, how they are interpreting the templates that already exist and how they are mutating them. I think that it is evident that even the more traditionionally indebted tracks still display a sense of progression and flair for interpretation while the out and out progressive shows scant regard for what went before other than it simply being the style of music the artists enjoy most.
No compilation will ever be complete, exhaustive, succinct or get into all the niches and dark little corners that exist and I can only ever be subjective in my selection, but what I tried to do here is cover as wide a range of sound and influence as possible, from original Heavy Metal, through traditional Scandinavian BM, to post-rock, prog-folk, doom-drone and power-electronics.
In reducing this selection down to something fairly concise and focused instead of the enormous compendium I was tempted to do I have ended up compiling 21 tracks of US Black Metal recorded since the year 2000 – in alphabetical order. It comes in at 2:22:23, which I think is nice and tidy. Shame it wasn't 22 tracks and 22 seconds, but never mind., I don't think it means too much anyway.
Also worth noting – because of the unique way black metal is recorded, the sound levels and qualities between songs are unpredictable, if nothing else.
Agalloch - Limbs (Ashes Against The Grain, The End)
Ash Pool - Origin Of Man (Saturns Slave, Hospital Productions)
Black Witchery - Holocaust Summoning (Upheaval Of Satanic Might, Osmose Productions)
Bone Awl - Culture Denied (By Ropes Through Dirt, Demo-Worship Him-Klaxon)
Brown Jenkins - Forever Funerals (Angel Eyes, Moribund)
Chaos Moon - Illusions of Dusk and Dawn (Origin of Apparition, Wraith Productions - Ars Magna Recordings)
Cobalt - Pregnant Insect (Gin, Profound Lore)
Draugar - Dust Chains Idiots (From Which Hatred Grows, tUMULt)
Enbilulugugal - Slicing The Blood Clotted Cunt Of The Rotting Virgin Angel Slut (Nun Twat Armageddon, Dipsomaniac)
Inquisition - Of Blood & Darkness We Are Born (Magnificent Glorification of Lucifer, No Colours)
Krallice - Forgiveness In Rot (Krallice, Profound Lore)
Leviathan - Fucking Your Ghost In Chains Of Ice (The Tenth Sublevel Of Suicide, Moribund Cult)
Lurker Of Chalice - Granite (Lurker Of Chalice, Southern Lord)
Servile Sect - Into The Bloom (Stratospheric Passenger, Sounds Of Battle & Souvenir Collecting)
The Angelic Process - We All Die Laughing (Weighing Souls With Sand, Profound Lore)
Velvet Cacoon - 1 (Genevieve, Full Moon Productions)
Weakling - This Entire Fucking Battlefield (Dead As Dreams, tUMULt)
Wolves In The Throne Room - Behold The Vastness And Sorrow (Two Hunters, Southern Lord)
Wormsblood - A Wolf In The Night (Mastery of Creation, Barbarian)
Wrath Of The Weak - Journey Of Many Days (Wrath Of The Weak, Bastardised)
Xasthur - Soul Abduction Ceremony (Nocturnal Poisoning, Blood Fire Death)