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Thumbs up: +14
A WTF Party: The Avantgardist's Guide To 2014

The title pretty much says it all. This is the strangest of the strange for this year. No albums that just recycle the same old ideas over and over again, no overhyped albums, and no over-commercialized bands. Just albums from the depths of the 12th dimension that sodomize your mind and make you question the exact definition of metal in its current incarnation. Not ALL releases in here are metal, and I'm not necessarily saying they're all Avantgarde, either: Just that by comparison to most other releases of the year, they're pretty outlandish and bizarre. In chronology by release date, and subject to expansion as the year progresses. Links to songs or full albums provided. Suggestions gladly appreciated, but keep em fucking strange!

1. Alkerdeel - Dyodyo Asema [Collaboration]
2. Murmur - Murmur
3. Hail Spirit Noir - Oi Magoi
4. Los Random - Pidanoma
5. Blut Aus Nord - Debemur MoRTi

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Created by Apothecary on 24.03.2014



Thumbs up: +7
SAY WHAAAAT? Apothecary's Favorites That May Surprise You

The idea for this list was given to me by mz when I expressed that I was more excited about Blut Aus Nord's upcoming Memoria Vetusta III than their Debemur MoRTi EP. As he said: "You are known as a person with intense love for experimental/avantgarde black metal and everyone by default expects you to love a MoRT-like album more that what is probably going to be a not-so-original-melodic black metal album." While I do prefer experimental metal, and tend to lean more towards black and doom, there are plenty of more orthodox and classic releases outside of these confines that I love as well, some of which are true guilty pleasure albums. I decided to throw in some non-MS albums as well, to show that my tastes definitely aren't limited to metal. In no particular order, we have...

1. Pantera - Vulgar Display Of Power
2. Marilyn Manson - Portrait Of An American Family
3. White Zombie - Astro Creep: 2000 - Songs Of Love, Destruction And Other Synthetic Delusions Of The Electric Head
4. Strapping Young Lad - Alien
5. Testament - The Ritual

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Created by Apothecary on 24.01.2014



Thumbs up: +12
Quadruple A: Apothecary's Album Art Anthology

I know I probably speak for a lot of people when I say that, very often, the artwork that a band chooses for a particular album can be the icing on the cake, essential to giving a visual depiction that tops off the overall aesthetic of the music. There are plenty of albums that I simply couldn't imagine listening to without staring, zoned out, to the big ball of glorious that is their cover art. Here are some such albums. In alphabetical order by band. Links to full images of the covers have been provided, as well as credits to the artists.

1. Aarni - Bathos
2. Absu - The Sun Of Tiphareth
3. Atheist - Unquestionable Presence
4. Bathory - Blood Fire Death
5. Blue Öyster Cult - Fire Of Unknown Origin

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Created by Apothecary on 06.11.2013



Thumbs up: +6
Nightfall In Helsinki: Finnish Tales Of The Dark And Surreal

Within the past decade, the latter half especially, Finnish metal has developed a habit for the darkly bizzare and mind-bending ambience that can sound like anything from Wrathful Buddhas chanting in the Intermediate State to aliens making love on Klandaathu. This trend is primarily limited to black and doom metal, however, as the two genres are generally more inclined towards it due to their inherently atmospheric natures. Here are some top notch albums representative of this "movement," if it can be called that. Recommendations appreciated, but try to keep them confined to black and doom if you can.

1. Dark Buddha Rising - Abyssolute Transfinite
2. Aarni - Bathos
3. Oranssi Pazuzu - Kosmonument
4. Circle Of Ouroborus - Eleven Fingers
5. Candy Cane - Fay-Ra-Doowra

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Created by Apothecary on 19.10.2013



Thumbs up: +18
The Best Of Unorthodox Black Metal

Within the past decade, black metal has seen bands from all over the world incorporating new sounds to the style and changing its delivery like never before. As great as the classic acts are, BM bands today seem to be branching out in every possible direction. From the beautiful chaos of the French bands to the psychedelic dabblings of the Finns to the atmospheric scene out West in the U.S... all the experimentation is helping to create a new identity for the genre. So, in no particular order, here are some of the best releases from this growing trend of originality within black metal's foundations (atmospheric, psychedelic, black doom, and otherwise).

1. Deathspell Omega - Fas - Ite, Maledicti, In Ignem Aeternum
2. Blut Aus Nord - 777 - The Desanctification
3. Diapsiquir - Virus STN
4. Glorior Belli - The Great Southern Darkness
5. Enslaved - Axioma Ethica Odini

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Created by Apothecary on 05.06.2012