THE HOWLING WIND – Pestilence & Peril

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Ryan Lipynsky's post-Thralldom foray into raw searing black metal.

With THRALLDOM, mastermind Ryan Lipynsky (a.k.a. Killusion) would help generate the sound that is known as US black metal and help take it to new extreme experimental levels. With three full-length albums to their repertoire, Thralldom, even though they may not have been as widespread as some of their contemporaries (i.e. Leviathan, Nachtmystium, Xashtur etc.), were clearly known as one of the most important bands in US black metal. Their Profound Lore released swansong, “A Shaman Steering The Vessel Of Vastness”, solidified Killusion’s reputation as one of the most creative minds within contemporary extreme underground music. And of course with what he’s done with US black metal, he’s also helped spearhead the blackened sludge doom genre with Relapse Records recording artists UNEARTHLY TRANCE, clearly one of the leading bands in this particular genre in which said last album, namely “The Trident”, showed Killusion as a visionary in the scene.

Hence with the inevitable demise of Thralldom, due to Killusion’s former band mate not sharing Killusion’s extreme-minded vision and views, Killusion has decided to continue his black metal pillage under the new moniker of THE HOWLING WIND. Continuing in the legacy he left with Thralldom, The Howling Wind is Killusion’s vision on the coveted genre of black metal and what he considers to be some of the most extreme art he has ever created. And indeed you will know such a statement is true when embracing the aural holocaust of The Howling Wind. While still maintaining the vibe of Thralldom, The Howling Wind sees Killusion’s black metal pedigree lurking within more extreme and oppressive waters. Inheriting some of the experimentation found on the last Thralldom release through waves of static and noise, “Pestilence & Peril” is a very raw, primitive, and polarizing black metal opus that will go down as one of the year’s shining treasures within the US black metal underground. Through dense layers and layers of hypnotic and old-school riffing, diabolical metallic groove and unforgiving unearthly surrealism, the murk and filth that is “Pestilence & Peril” is a continuation on the themes explored on the last Thralldom album; the decay and demise of America’s social and spiritual backdrop all told through an occult-like vision through apocalyptic and Satanic allegory.

Nevertheless, where Thralldom left off, The Howling Wind begins a new legacy as a new impending force in US black metal has been unleashed.

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