The Best Debut Album - Metal Storm Awards 2019





Feuer takes cues from neofolk, neoclassical darkwave, lo-fi black metal, and drone doom and melding it into a gothic mix of darkness and more darkness. Thick immersive soundscapes, brooding vocals that keep you going, and enough German singing to turn the tide more towards the eerie and the hypnotic. From fire comes night and death.

Bandcamp / Apple Music / Deezer / Google Play Music / Spotify / YouTube Music / YouTube

›› Full review...
Yes, this is a band based on a comic series, and that may or may not have Insomnium members, and whose music is probably the closest this category will ever get to melodeath. That said, this is probably the funnest meloblack album you'll hear. There is some overall quirkiness to the whole thing, but not anything that would really detract from it being able to be taken seriously. The symphonic and melodic sound of it, coupled with the excellent production and typically great Insomnium-esque melodies with a blackened twist, ensure that this can appeal to both fans of the comic and folks who care not about such juvenile things as comics and are just here for some damn great black metal.

Apple Music / Deezer / Google Play Music / Spotify / YouTube Music

›› Full review...
Carrier Of Weight is a pretty quintessential example of 'sludge doom'. It is slow, ponderous and long. It is relentlessly heavy. The guitars have a dirty sludge metal tone, delivering riffs that possess both the pace of doom riffs and the filthy swagger and groove of sludge metal. The central riff of "Dry Land" feels like you're being dragged through a putrid swamp. With sickening growls and chilling shrieks on top, this is a relentlessly miserable and suffocating experience, and essential listening for anyone with an appetite for this style.

Bandcamp / Apple Music / Deezer / Google Play Music / Spotify

›› Full review...
Quite falsely advertised as "Death Metal" on the label's Bandcamp page, Come The Tide does defy its misleading tag with some of the most moving melodeath one can imagine in 2019. It could also fool you as coming from Finland instead of Spain with its gloomy and melancholic sound. Though something of a debut album, Come The Tide finds Eternal Storm with a few years under their belt, and this definitely shows in the maturity of the songwriting on this and in how damn great it sounds - plus there's a saxophone somewhere too, so it hits that checkbox, too.

Bandcamp / Apple Music / Deezer / Google Play Music / Spotify

›› Full review...
More often than not, black metal is all about rage and anger and at times is even nourished by pure misanthrophy, whereas doom metal is deep sorrow, grief, and despair transformed into music. Exulansis from Colestin, Oregon have devoted themselves to both styles, yet their debut album turns out to be one of the most uplifting releases of the year. And that is due not only to the contrast of the extremes, but to the sheer intensity of all the interacting components that inevitably turns Sequestered Sympathy into a thrilling and intoxicating experience on a high level of musicality: a core of thunderous black metal enriched by furious blastbeats and traces of post-metal and crust punk, plus the heaviness of crushing, sludge-infused doom and a good dose of acoustic passages with elements of folk and chamber music, containing the most heart-wrenching and excellently composed violin performances in metal we have heard in a long time.

Bandcamp / Apple Music / Deezer / Google Play Music / Spotify / YouTube Music
Fvneral Fvkk play a strain of doom that truly deserves the appellation: Carnal Confessions is solemn and mournful in tone, yet rigid and powerful in delivery. Led by vocal harmonies whose richness and warmth belie the bitterness of the lyrics, which tell of the sexual abuse perpetrated by Catholic clergy, Carnal Confessions returns a dark shroud to epic doom. Fvneral Fvkk has a beautiful sound, if a rather angular and unpleasant name - and it's not to be taken lightly.

Bandcamp / Apple Music / Deezer / Fvneral Fvkk / Spotify / YouTube Music / YouTube

›› Full review...
There's a certain stereotype that, much in the way that all symphonic metal bands are Nightwish clones, all gothic metal bands are Evanescence clones. You need only look around this category to understand how demented a reduction that is, but if there's one band in this category that really takes the genre back to its roots in gothic rock of years past, it's Idle Hands. Gabriel Franco's grimly fiendish baritone conducts melancholy post-punk melodies with delicate yet full-bodied sincerity, largely sidestepping the obvious doomy middlemen that usually separate goth rock from metal. While Mana sometimes dives into harsher territory with lupine snarls and blastbeats, by and large it is a metalized boost of the tender, melodic school of gothic music, a fresh and rich-sounding entry into a field of metal never given enough sunlight spotlight.

Bandcamp / Apple Music / Deezer / Google Play Music / Spotify / YouTube Music / YouTube

›› Full review...
Kaleikr, the Icelandic duo that rose from the ashes of Draugsól, takes bits of that typical Icelandic black metal dissonance and sprinkles it over some Opeth-and-Enslaved-at-their-heaviest, with some damn gurgly growls, some violin, and a bunch of post-rock atmospheres, enough to make an album concerned with both the atmospheres it creates and its progressive melodies that never tries too hard to be technical.

Bandcamp / Apple Music / Deezer / Google Play Music / Spotify / YouTube Music

›› Full review...
Amnesia is not just the title of Greek one-man band Mistveil's debut, it may also remind us to prevent one of the most influencing eras for today's extreme metal - the 1990s - from falling into oblivion. In particular, Mistveil pay tribute to the origins of a sub-genre that arose from the blending of death metal with doom, and the early works of My Dying Bride and Paradise Lost come to mind as soon as you treat yourself with a little rest on the warm carpet of Amnesia's sound. Can you hear the reminiscences of early Katatonia in these uncommon but oh-so-familiar song structures that reach beyond the usual intro-verse-bridge-refrain schemata? And can you feel a touch of Saturnus's 1997 debut in the melancholy of these infectious harmonies? Then you already know that this is much more than just a homage to the early marriages between deep growls and slow riffs, and that mastermind Stavros Stavrou's unusual but very well fitting, almost blackish, vocals and exceptionally good feeling for emotive compositions turn Amnesia into something truly special.

Bandcamp / Apple Music / Deezer / Spotify / YouTube
The Dark Silence Of Death's self-titled debut is all about stonery riffs seasoned with trippy and psychedelic lead guitars, and a dark and creepy atmosphere inspired by horror films. While most stoner bands out there put great effort into crafting the longest and most meandering songs possible, these Mexicans are all about nasty hooks and occult groove, with eight tracks of rough and unpolished '70s heavy rock, and some pretty evil-sounding vocals on top.

Bandcamp / YouTube