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Forest of Tygers and Anicon's New Split Is Peak American Black Metal Fury

Stream the ferocious new split from these underground upstarts, out October 10 on Acteon Records.
Forest of Tygers / Photo by Román Alvarado

USBM has been on the up and up for years now, and the bands that make up its current wave are as varied and intriguing as they are furious. Two such exciting examples are New York City's Anicon and Nashville's Forest of Tygers. Both straddle the enormous pool that is black metal, but both attack the genre in varying ways and both are fiery machines of sound—so it's interesting to hear the two play off each other on this new split.


Anicon's manifesto is one of more straightforward blackened metal—all delirious blastbeasts (courtesy of surely the hardest working drummer in metal, Lev Weinstein) and growling, harsh vocals that are layered in bile and spite. Their track, "All in Time," is a six minute monster of climbing guitars and tremendous heat that sees the band build on 2016's phenomenal Exegeses and push their frantic sound to the next level. Space is given to the instrumentation rather than allowing the vocals to overpower, and it's here than Anicon really drives the song forward; in the beautifully soaring riffs and the domineering drum work. It's a neat trick, and one that pays off superbly as "All in Time" is a glorious work that isn't afraid to push the genre further.

Anicon / Photo by Dena Rosenberg

On the flip side, we have Forest Of Tygers, who have yet to release a full-length record yet have produced some defiantly heavy music in the few short years they've been creating together. "Mongers" takes a less traditional route through black metal, and instead incorporates hardcore elements into Jim Valosik's angst-ridden screams and punkier drum beats from Rachel Valosik. The guitars follow simpler structure, and again come laced with blackened hardcore vibrations that only add to the desolation found within the song and its bitter course. "Mongers" is a scorching track that is never one thing more than another; sludge, caustic hardcore and blackened foundations all vie for space but it's wonderfully cohesive despite the swirling chaos Forest Of Tygers present here. It's truly a thrill.

"Both Anicon and FOT are heading into studios respectively this coming winter to record new full-lengths. Anicon is following up 2016's powerful and lauded Exegeses, and Forest Of Tygers are making good on their promise from splits and an acclaimed EP with a proper debut LP," the label told us. "And Anicon will be appearing at Into the Aether Fest in Portland, ME, mid-October."

Stream it in full below, and secure your copy via Acteon Records on October 10.

Cheryl Carter is playing fast and loose on Twitter.