When All Became None

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This sludgy, Indianapolis-based black metal band holds tight to its anonymity; the members' faces are blurred out in official promo photos, and they go by initials. Vocalist D. howls and shrieks in a manner reminiscent of Xasthur's Malefic, while guitarists T. and G. carve out gothic, despairing riffs, supported by bassist T. (a different one) and drummer C. The music on this, their debut full-length, has a full, analog sound courtesy of producer Sanford Parker, who's delivered warm, proggy albums for Yakuza, Nachtmystium, and his own band Minsk in the past. There's relatively little warmth to be found on When All Became None; song titles like "Start Saving for Your Funeral," "Strip Naked for Your Killer," and "High on the Reek of Your Burning Remains" tell the story. This is a band fueled by misanthropy and rage, cranking out a music that's equal parts classic black metal (Hellhammer, Darkthrone) and sludgy doom (Eyehategod, 16). Like the equally punky and pissed-off Goatwhore, Coffinworm are forging a uniquely American style of black metal that's bound to make sense to listeners who've spent more time hanging around the post-industrial wastelands of urban Middle America than they have stomping through frosty Norwegian forests.

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