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Review from Metal Gods TV

Posted by Nick Skog on Monday, February 11, 2019, In : English 
From: Metal Gods TV
Published: February 9, 2019 

Canadian blackened funeral doom troop Altars Of Grief are definitely aptly named and on Iris, the bands second full length album, they mercilessly unleash a mixture of heaviness, sadness and all encompassing bleakness to devastating and stunning effect. This is music soaked in sadness but reveling in the triumph of that sadness. 

The epic and sublime (and again, aptly named) Isolation gets things off to the most funereal starts and yo...

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Review from Scum Feast Zine

Posted by Nick Skog on Saturday, December 22, 2018, In : English 
From: Scum Feast Zine
Published: December 21, 2018 

So with a name like ALTARS OF GRIEF I was pretty sure what I was getting myself into with this release. Now if that wasn't a total giveaway then there's the song titles for example liker "Isolation", "Desolation", "Voices of Winter", etc. This band is also from Saskatchewan, Canada aka: the Yuke. Years ago I spent two years in Alaska so I know about the extreme cold and cabin fever. The only thing missing here is a bottle of bourb...

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Review from No Clean Singing

Posted by Nick Skog on Wednesday, August 15, 2018, In : English 
From: No Clean Singing
Published: July 26, 2018 

We’ve filled this post to the brim with a whole variety of different death metal and grind metal acts, so why not shift gears just a bit and go for the full-blown and melodramatic doom of Regina, Saskatchewan’s very own Altars Of Grief?

Iris was hotly anticipated around these here parts and to put it bluntly, holy shit is it unfair just how good Iris is. Although there was some line-up shifting (and still kind of is, as the band s...

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Review from The Headbanging Moose

Posted by Nick Skog on Wednesday, August 15, 2018, In : English 
From: The Headbanging Moose
Published: June 29, 2018

Highly influenced by the desolate landscapes and the solitude of long, prairie winters, here comes one of the biggest names in Canadian Blackened Doom with a superb new album narrating a tragic story of a deeply flawed man and his dying daughter.

Formed in November 2013 in Regina, the capital city of the Canadian province of Saskatchewan, Blackened Doom act Altars of Grief has worked over the years to develop a weighty concoction ...

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Review from Teeth of the Divine

Posted by Nick Skog on Wednesday, August 15, 2018, In : English 
From: Teeth of the Divine
Published: June 25, 2018 

Canada’s Hypnotic Dirge Records is best known for its crippling doom metal but a few recent forays into atmospheric/depressive/black metal such as Kassad, None, Kval, Mavradoxa  and such haven’t been quite as successful in my humble opinion, but a here is a glorious, rending return to from from Canada’s own aptly named “prairie doom” act Altars of Grief, and it’s utterly amazing.

I hate to use the name of deceased folks...

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Review from Ave Noctum

Posted by Nick Skog on Thursday, May 24, 2018, In : English 
From: Ave Noctum 
Published: May 21, 2018 

I do love the place name Saskatchewan and it is from that Canadian province that Altars Of Grief call home as do their record label Hypnotic Dirge. There must be a healthy amount of misery in a place that image searches show as full of sunshine with all the doom coming out the area. But geography aside, we last heard of Altars Of Grief via their split release with Nachterror back in 2015 and the group stood up proudly with their offering a...

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Review from

Posted by Nick Skog on Monday, April 30, 2018, In : English 
Published: April 29, 2018

It's been a while since we heard anything from Saskatchewan's Altars Of Grief: summer of 2015, or thereabouts, with a split release that - in digital version at least - faded out with a superbly raw and bruised cover of Akira Yamaoka's 'Room Of Angel' (taken from the Silent Hill 4 videogame soundtrack). It's a track that utterly blew me away playing the game back in '04, and though the Altars... version didn't originally hit quite so h...

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Feature on What Culture (Best Albums of 2018 so far)

Posted by Nick Skog on Monday, April 30, 2018, In : English 
From: What Culture 
(Best Albums of 2018...So far)
Published: April 18, 2018

Iris is not the most progressive album on this list. Nor is it the most melodic. Nor is it the most energised. Nor is it the heaviest. But it soars to unparalleled success as an emotive work of art that elicits feelings from me that no other entry on this list could even come close to recreating.

Providing almost an hour of ethereal, blackened doom, Altars of Grief’s second full-length is the deeply sorrow...

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Review from Blessed Altar Zine

Posted by Nick Skog on Monday, April 30, 2018, In : English 
From: Blessed Altar Zine
Published: April 18, 2018

When a music album emboldens such vivid visuals - it unfolds as a cinematographic masterpiece, in the mind of the listener.

And as in a silver screen award contender drama, this album begins it’s timeline in retrospective. Ex post facto we find the protagonist, alone, “in solitude and twisted steel” - a tragic ending in itself, to an escape journey. A casualty on a road to nowhere. Tormented by regrets, yet “finally at peace...

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Review from Metal Temple

Posted by Nick Skog on Thursday, April 12, 2018, In : English 
From: Metal Temple
Published: April 12, 2018 

Hailing from Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, Blackened Doom/Death Metal band ALTARS OF GRIEF formed in 2013. The story behind the second full-length album “Iris,” is rooted in their prairie surroundings and deals with the struggles of addiction, sickness, and religion. A father finds himself unable to connect with and care for this young daughter, Iris, who has fallen seriously ill. Spiraling deeper and deeper into his vices, and feel...

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Review from KNAC

Posted by Nick Skog on Sunday, April 8, 2018, In : English 
From: KNAC
Published: April 4, 2018 

The province of Saskatchewan sits cleanly in the centre of Canada. As such, along with the other two prairie provinces of Alberta and Manitoba, Saskatchewan is totally landlocked. Possessed of astounding natural beauty, boasting lush flora and fauna to the north (and a few ice roads in winter) and an abundance of canola, potash, and suicidal deer to the south, Saskatchewan is a land of contrasts. It is at once a desolate barely habitable tundra ...

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Review from Toilet Ov Hell

Posted by Nick Skog on Tuesday, April 3, 2018, In : English 
From: Toilet Ov Hell
Published: April 1, 2018

“Every parting gives a foretaste of death, every reunion a hint of the resurrection.”

Prairie doom. Something about that designation seems incredibly fitting; on the plains, as often as not only the wind is to be heard, only a stunted tree here and there to be seen, and the surroundings are identified more by absence than presence. Doom’s inherent vastness, then, may be the perfect accompaniment to this environment. It...

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Review from Angry Metal Guy

Posted by Nick Skog on Saturday, March 31, 2018, In : English 
From: Angry Metal Guy
Published: March 31, 2018 

In 2004, a close friend of mine lost not one but both of his parents in the Indian Ocean tsunami that claimed nearly a quarter of a million lives. While I hope I will never experience tragedy as dramatic and profound as his, the impact reverberated throughout our small group, and to a comparatively infinitesimal degree, we shared in his loss. Without wanting to cheapen such sorrow, doom metal — particularly in its more extreme iter...

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Review from Metal Master Kingdom

Posted by Nick Skog on Saturday, March 31, 2018, In : English 
From: Metal Master Kingdom
Published: March 29, 2018 

Like the cello that hums the introductory notes to “Isolation”—the opening track on Iris, the long awaited full-length sophomore release from Saskatchewan’s blackened doom lords, Altars Of Grief—I am hesitant.  Hesitant to commit words to the virtual page, for fear that they will be wholly inadequate and fail to do justice to the magnificence of Iris.

But, if you are willing to walk with me down a desolate prairie road ...

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Review from Metal Injection

Posted by Nick Skog on Thursday, March 22, 2018, In : English 
From: Metal Injection
Published: March 22, 2018 

The question isn’t whether Altars of Grief’s sophomore record is good; it's a question of how good it is. Iris is a nigh-peerless construct of somber beauty and one of the greatest doom metal albums in years. That much is readily apparent after just an initial listen. Where should we begin? Should we discuss how Iris’ magnificent fusion of funeral doom and black metal perfectly complement one another while sounding entirely unl...

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Review from Dead Rheteric

Posted by Nick Skog on Saturday, March 17, 2018, In : English 
From: Dead Rheteric
Published: March 15, 2018

What does it truly mean to be ‘heavy?’ Doom metal bands have often given us the proof that heaviness doesn’t have to necessarily link towards anger and frustration. Altars of Grief return with their second album, and the first release since their excellent 2015 split with Nachtterror, to explore the possibility of grief and sorrow being truly the heaviest of all emotions.

Iris is a concept album rooted in some rather weighty materi...

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Review from The Sound Not the Word

Posted by Nick Skog on Thursday, March 8, 2018, In : English 
From: The Sound Not the Word
Published: March 7, 2018 

Despite being “only” 55 minutes long, Iris feels much, much longer. The second album from Altars of Grief is a leviathan of blackened, gothic doom, filled with a spirit that is equal parts mournful and furious. Telling the tale of a father who abandons his sick daughter, only to die and be condemned to watch her slowly succumb to illness, it is every bit as bright as the subject matter implies. And yet, there is something c...

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Review from Blackened Death Metal Zine

Posted by Nick Skog on Saturday, March 3, 2018, In : English 
From: Blackened Death Metal Zine
Published: March 2, 2018

Altars  Of  Grief  are  a  band  from  Regina,  Saskatchewan  that  plays  a  mixture  of  black  and  funeral  doom  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2018  album  "Iris"  which  will  be  released  on  March  21st  by  Hypnotic  Dirge  Records.

Stringed  instruments  start  off  the  album  along  with  some  drum  beats  and  clean  playing  a  few  seconds  later  which  also  mixes  in  with  the  heavier  sect...

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Review from Kaje Music

Posted by Nick Skog on Saturday, February 10, 2018, In : English 
From: Kaje Music
Published: February 9, 2018

Altars of Grief are masters of crafting absolutely beautiful blackened doom metal since 2013. The cornerstone of doom metal from the Canadian Prairies, Altars of Grief is preparing to release their second full-length Iris this year on Hypnotic Dirge Records.

With lyrical themes of the well-known struggles of addiction and illness, this album follows the story of a man unable to empathize with his ill daughter Iris. Capitulating to his vic...

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 Released: March 21, 2018
500 Copies
Genre: Blackened Doom Metal