Vanquished Black Northern Storm

Seeping murk, and erupting savagery and profanation, Vanquished’s debut album is entirely black metal. Black Northern Storm comes off frigid and angular on the surface, gloomy drone underneath, and unrelenting in its tempestuous blasphemy. Vanquished performs black metal with old school ferocity, but the band’s three-man assault is icily clear, evoking dark frozen landscapes rather than sooty caves, and the album’s chilling effects are as stormy (literally) as its title. Despite the stripped down aggression dominating the record, a little symphonic grandiloquence emerges in the dying moments — but you have to weather many minutes of wind and thunder to get to it. (Krankenhaus)