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Mining Metal: Backslider, Dark Meditation, Gates of Londra, Krallice, The Neptune Power Federation, Skin Tension, Urushiol, Vaura

A rundown of the best underground metal releases of February 2022

Mining Metal
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    Mining Metal is a monthly column from Heavy Consequence writers Joseph Schafer and Langdon Hickman. The focus is on noteworthy new music emerging from the non-mainstream metal scene, highlighting releases from small and independent labels — or even releases from unsigned acts

    Normally, we provide a much more comprehensible palette of choices. We’ve been running this column for nearly three years now (time sure does fly!) and in that span you’ve been able to set your watch by how often we cover death metal, ignoring how haphazard a visual metaphor that is. This isn’t for lack of trying; we listen far and wide and we each admittedly have our tastes, and it just so happens that more often than not it is death metal records that land guaranteed spots rather than the five to eight other records we juggle for remaining spots.

    Which makes it so thrilling when we encounter the outer weirdness that we did this time. We have an absolutely wild span of records for you all, from punk-metal to classic goth to sky-rattling power metal to, gulp, a twenty-seven hour grindcore/free jazz record. It’s important, especially for something covering the underground, to show the diversity of sonic ideas you can find in underground space. Death metal is like a comfort food, those home-cooked meals that never get boring and always make you feel warm and happy. But this strangeness we’ve encountered is more like those magical hole-in-the-wall restaurants, the kind you never realized were there, never forget, and oddly can never find again, as though whatever magical dimension they emerged from had thinner walls for just long enough for a brief tantalizing glimpse before – Langdon Hickman

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