Eternal Death announces August 4th as the international release date for The Howling Gale, a special split album between Ancient Torment and Haxen, on CD format. Timeworn Records will be releasing the cassette tape version.
Ancient Torment was formed in the cold New England winter of 2016 by guitarist Tormentum. The band lingered in shadows for two years until debuting live on Halloween night 2018 in the gutters of Olneyville. In 2019, Ancient Torment released the debut EP Satan’s Legacy Come Flesh via Eternal Death. At the beginning of 2020 came the Of Wolves and Pain demo via their own Old Pain Records. After several personnel changes, their current lineup is by far the strongest: vocalist/bassist Tabarnak on (Abaroth, ex-Abnormality); on guitar, both Tormentum (Witch King, I,Deströyer) and Taíno Sangre (Sanguine Moon, ex- Crypter); and drummer Zealot (Witch King).
Taking strong influence from the gloomy darkness of the Finnish scene and the triumphant misery of Quebec black metal, Ancient Torment initially cut their teeth devouring records from Providence’s Armageddon shop. Drawing inspiration from common themes such as blasphemy, sex, lust, death, old New England, and inebriation, the band’s style strongly opposes Christian Nationalism by virtue of Satanism. There are no songs about dragons, castles, or fantasy adaptations; no masks, hoods, or face-paint to conceal appearances, as the band’s blue-collar Rhode Island DNA presents a true representation of the confrontational nature of black metal. Ancient Torment have the fire of the Gaspee in their hands and are prepared to burn down the world, as displayed by the two lengthy tracks here.
Also hailing from Rhode Island, Haxen have been fighting the good black metal fight since the year 2000. The band’s first demo arrived in 2003, with a steady flow of demos following for the next decade. In 2013, Haxen released their self-titled debut album via Eternal Death, a bare-knuckled synthesis of old Finnish nastiness and the ’90s East Coast filth of early Profanatica and Blood Storm.
Now, after four years since their last release – a split with Perdizione, also via Eternal Death – Haxen have returned in 2023 with another split album, this time with co-conspirators Ancient Torment. On this particular split, Haxen have contributed three new tracks, with each song having its own unique sound – a bounty for discerning listeners of honest, straightforward black METAL. Here on their side of the split, the band goes from a headbanging anthem that rattles bones and brains (“Blood on the Fire”) to the forgotten tones of the obscure (“Cave and Solitude”) to blasting simplicity that soars to a soulful and longing destination (“Black Eyes of Dog”). Altogether, Haxen’s new material is an antidote to the stagnant and redundant.
Eternal Death continues to proudly fly the flag for authentic American black metal. This latest split album between Ancient Torment and Haxen features a fiery half-hour of exclusive material, with both bands complementing one another in atmosphere, delivery, and camaraderie. Prepare to face The Howling Gale or be dashed upon the rocky shores of the Atlantic!
In the meantime, hear two brand-new tracks – Ancient Torment‘s “Outlaw Cleansed Waters” and Haxen‘s “Blood on the Fire” – HERE at Eternal Death‘s Bandcamp, where the split album can also be preordered. Cover and tracklisting are as follows:
Tracklisting for Ancient Torment & Haxen’s The Howling Gale
1. Ancient Torment – A Solitary Grave Illuminated by the Light of the Morningstar
2. Ancient Torment – Outlaw Cleansed Waters
3. Haxen – Blood on the Fire
4. Haxen – Cave and Solitude
5. Haxen – Black Eyes of Dog