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Ad Noctum (Sweden)
Melodic Black Metal with an infectious driving rhythm, very guitar orientated. Drumming is simplistic but provides a hard and solid base for the guitars. Vocals are frozen and grim ala distortion and screams. Musicianship is good, production is above average. My fave pick is “Enchantress Of The Night”

Blodsrit (Sweden)
Pure Black Metal. No frills here at all, just 100% hateful majesty. The closest thing you’ll hear to an “effect” is a flanger on the guitar. The vocals are bitter and cold; the drumming is subdued in the mix but is very well done. The guitar work harmonizes well, and the total atmosphere is frozen darkness. The production is low, but the music comes through it well. My fave pick is “Secrets Unveiled”.

Blot Mine (Sweden)
Blazing Black Metal played in the mid-90’s vein, with reverbed guitars and echoed vocals. No keys on this effort, just the basics. Vocals are wicked and totally grim, very well done. Tempos change from fast and driving to slow and very heavy. Production is good, musicianship is excellent. This is very good. My fave pick is “Sha Nagba Imuru”.

Chaosdaemon (Sweden)
Blistering and raging Black Metal, unbelievable speed. Guitars simply shred, drums blaze through blastbeats and inventive fills, and the vocals are harsh and completely bitter. Musicianship is excellent, production is great. My fave pick is “The Return Of The Ancient Ones”

Craft (Sweden)
Trashing and blasting Black Metal that breaks down into crawling heaviness in parts. Vocals vary from grim and frozen to shrill screams. The guitar work is well done; with some 80’s style fills. Drumming is effective and driven. Sound effects add to the already dark atmosphere. Production is low, musicianship is decent. My fave pick is “Death To Planet Earth”.

Cryptic Art (Sweden)
Very heavy and atmospheric, slower tempo punctuated by hard driving drumming. Rich in sorrowful emotion and bitter hatred translated into sound by moaning guitars, deep toned keys, and angrily shouted vocals. Production is very good, musicianship is excellent. My fave pick is “Beyond The Fog”. Also, be sure to check out their former incarnation as Black Winter.

Cult Of December (Sweden)
Raw and minimal Black Metal, pure in sound and in intent. Driving guitars create the atmosphere, the drumming is pretty solid, and the vocals are grim and harsh. Musicianship is decent, production is good. My fave pick is “Skymningen Faller” http://artists.mp3s.com/artists/501/cult_of_december.html

Dark Funeral (Sweden)
Undoubtedly one of the most well known band from the Swedish Black Metal scene, Dark Funeral has spent their career creating absolutely intense and blasting Black Metal with no frills, just speed, hatred, and pure aggression. This MP3 link has one song. Seek their other offerings.

Dissection (Sweden)
Another “famous” band from the Swedish Black Metal scene. Dissection plays an eclectic mix of Black and Death with fast, hard driving melodies and aggressive rhythms. This is another “must get” band. One song on the MP3 link, seek their other offerings.

Dodfodd (Sweden)
Slow and very heavy, a crushing approach that creates atmosphere through distant-sounding guitars, bizarre bass work, very involved drumming, and wickedly screamed vocals. While the band does step the tempo up occasionally, the overall approach is very slow, very heavy, and very well done. My fave pick is “"Besvärjelse för omvänd rekreation"

Diabolical Masquerade (Sweden)
This band corners the market in Melodic Black Metal from Sweden. With two of the biggest known names in the scene (Swano and Blakkheim) Diabolical Masquerade gets a lot of attention, and it is well deserved. The MP3 selection on this link is hardly an example of the many offerings they have. Seek this band out.

Eternal Autumn (Sweden)
Blackened Death Metal, or Death-influenced Black Metal? You be the judge. Very involved and heavy sound that is rich in harmony, crushing drum work, and disturbingly wicked vocals. Musicianship is perfect, production is top of the line. My fave pick is “In A Land Dawn Never Reached”

Goatworship (Sweden)
Melodic and hard driving Black Metal. Guitars change up from grinding to harmonic, drumming is non-stop blasting, and the vocals are bitter and spitting. Nice piano interlude catches you by surprise. Musicianship is excellent, production is above average. My fave pick is “Symphony Of The Stars”

Immemoreal (Sweden)
Incredibly hard and vicious, with noticeable Thrash and Death influences, but still maintains to stay within the realms of Black Metal. The vocals are harsh, the drumming is an aggressive barrage, and the guitars wail to create a huge wall of sound. Production is average, the musicianship is well done. My fave pick is “The Curse Of Chaos”

Inquisition (Sweden)
Hard and angry, uses limited keys for atmospheric effect; this is a very guitar-driven sound. Vocals are forced and very harsh, the drumming is controlled chaos. Decent production, good musicianship displayed. The overall feeling from this is just hateful and very angry. My fave pick is “Annihilation”.

Legion (Sweden)
Ultra-fast hyper blasting furious Black Metal. Absolutely over the top in all aspects. The drumming is incredibly fast and full of well done fills. The guitarist’s fingers smoke up and down the fret board, and the vocals are delivered in screaming hatred and spite. Musicianship is excellent, production is great.

Libricum (Sweden)
Mixing blasting assaults with sweeping melodic symphony, Libricum is the embodiment of beauty and brutality. Lots of melodic changeups and repetitive rhythms, and a solid wall of aggressive sound. Musicianship is great, production is decent. My fave pick is “…As Gloomy Nightfall Shatters”

Litania (Sweden)
Raw old sound, simplistic in approach but has a lot of harmony in the guitar work. Drums are hard driving and straight, vocals are harsh and strained screams throughout. Very aggressive overall. Musicianship is decent, production is average. My fave pick is “Drömspel"

Lord Belial (Sweden)
Another “Heavy Hitter” in the Swedish Black Metal scene, Lord Belial receives much less recognition than they deserve. Intense and furious Black Metal, grim and uncompromising. Vocals epitomize darkness. Two songs on this link. Be sure to check out the rest of their offerings, they are mighty.

Magog (Sweden)
Aggressively melodic Black Metal with a solid folkish Viking influence. Sweeping harmony and a truly epic sound dominates. Guitars are thick and ever-present, the drumming is heavy and well done, the keys add atmosphere but are not intrusive, and the vocals are truly bitter. The folk instruments add an extra layer of sound that makes this a very interesting band to listen to. Musicianship id excellent, production is above average. My fave pick is “Free From Life Within”

Marduk (Sweden)
One of the better known bands hailing from Sweden, Marduk is easily counted in the number of “super groups” that have achieved a noticeable level of success over the years. With a deep discography and an absolutely brutal sound, Marduk easily lives up to the reputation they have earned. The songs profiled here are a decent representation of the offerings they have, so if you like this, be sure to check out the rest of what they have to offer.

Martyrum (Sweden)
Thrash influenced Black Metal, intense and raging. Maintains melodic harmony through the aggression and speed with excellent guitar work, the drumming is varied between thick and heavy back beat to all out blasting fury, the vocals are harsh and screamed. Musicianship is excellent, production is very good. My fave pick is “Nordic Domain”

Misericordia (Sweden)
Crushing and blasting Black Metal, undeniable power and aggression. Massive wall of sound is created through assaulting drums, shredding guitars, and absolutely bitter and hateful vocals that change from deep and roaring to splitting screeches. Musicianship is tight and well done, production is above average.

Misteltein (Sweden)
High-end aggressive Black Metal with Death Metal influences. Excellent use of keys for ambiance, drums are driven and very well done, guitars are grinding and very good. Vocals vary from deep guttural roars to shrill screeches. Musicianship is top of the line, as well as the production.

Morannon (Sweden)
Raw and pure hard driving Black Metal. Great melody, hard drumming, and very grim vocals. Production is very low. This is a band that will be overlooked for their production, and anyone who does so will miss out on a very hard sound that is rich in melody and harmony. Musicianship is decent. My fave pick is “Misanthropy Divine”.

Morthirim (Sweden)
Aggressive and hard driving Black Metal with no frills. Melodic and forceful guitars create the atmosphere; the drumming is an intense assault, and the vocals use shrill screams and are deeply echoed for that bitter and frozen sound. Musicianship is very good, production is decent. My fave pick is “The 7th Knife”.

Nattstrype (Sweden)
Crushing Black Metal, pure and unrefined. There is nothing pretty about this band whatsoever. Creating a sound that stands with any of the best Black Metal bands I have ever heard, Nattstrype plays the music I think of when I hear someone say “Black Metal”. This is an absolutely essential band to check out. My fave pick is “Crown Of Thorns”.

Necromicon (Sweden)
Melodic and heavy Black Metal with Death Metal influences in parts, others are flat out pure Black Metal. Absolute wall of sound achieved through intense and blazing drumming, shredding guitars, and screaming grim vocals. Keys are light. Musicianship is excellent, production is very good. My fave pick is “Dreams Of The Ancients”.

Nephenzy (Sweden)
Excellent blend of melody and aggression, from hard driving rhythms to flat out speed. Drumming is incredible, and is a constant barrage of hammering aggression. Guitars are upbeat and have great melodic runs. Vocals are grim and as close to perfect as anyone could ever want for that trademarked “grim Black Metal” sound. Musicianship is excellent, production is great.

Nortia (Sweden)
Grim Black Metal with a frozen and distant sound. Guitars are inventive and interesting with different runs and changeups, and are deeply reverbed and thickly echoed for that mystical deep sound, drumming is energetic and powerful, vocals are angry shouts of bitter disgust. I like this a lot. Musicianship is very good, production is above average. My fave pick is “Empires Of Fire”

Ophthalamia (Sweden)
Rich and sweeping Melodic Black Metal, with various tempos from fast and upbeat to a heavy crawl. Overall sound is very guitar driven with powerful drumming in support. Vocals are grim and harsh. Musicianship is excellent, production is top of the line. My fave pick is “Time For War”. (Note- you might want to skip on “Elishias Mistresses Gather” entirely…)

Portal (Sweden)
Hard driving and aggressive Black/Death. Vocals switch from Death to Black seamlessly, the drumming is relentless, and the guitar work is very well done, with a lot of emphasis on harmony. Production value is decent, musicianship is tight and well done. My fave pick is “A World Ago”.

Sacramentum (Sweden)
In their own words… “...a true metal fist in the face to the current goth-laden and vampiric black metal scene”. I fully agree. Hammering and absolutely unrestrained Black Metal. The drums are an endless thunderstorm, the guitars are raging and very well done, finding harmony in the heart of a musical maelstrom, and the vocals are deeply shouted anger. Musicianship is excellent, production is high-end.

Sapfhier (Sweden)
Raging intense Black Metal, a purely massive wall of aggressive sound. The drumming is insane, the keys are done well, the guitars are thrashing yet melodic, and the vocals are distorted and very harsh. Musicianship is good, production is average. My fave pick is "Gudadräparen".

Sorghegard (Sweden)
Hard driving and aggressive Black Metal, has an “old” feeling to it. Has some melody in parts. Drumming is a hammering assault, guitars change from grinding wall of sound to melodic runs, vocals are bitter and frozen. Musicianship is decent, production is low but it is not bad. My fave pick is "Av lögn är ni lärd"

Sternenstaub (Sweden)
Highly polished and top-end sound, this band excels in symphonic Black Metal, and achieves a very epic sound. The vocals are a bit too far back in the mix and very echoed, so the tone is lost a bit, but the overall feel is icy and very cold. My fave pick is “Astronomica”.

Thøkn (Sweden)
Raw, minimalist and very heavy Black Metal. Has a deeply frozen and darkly ambient sound thanks to the droning guitar buzz and deeply echoed vocals. Musicianship is good, production is decent. My fave pick is "Ødegardr".

Watain (Sweden)
Very heavy with a constant assault, a thick wall of sound and energy blasts throughout. The guitars are rich and well done, with some melody here and there. The drumming is a constant barrage of hammering beats, and the vocals are subdued and at times seem lost in the mix. The production is not bad, but as stated before, the vocals get lost in the rest of the sound at times. My fave pick is “Rabid Death’s Curse”.

Winterlunium (Sweden)
Heavily melodic with beautiful acoustic pieces, straightforward and well done Black Metal. Appears to be a one man project, and it is impressive. Musicianship is outstanding, production is a bit off but it doesn’t take away from the work one bit. My fave pick is “Fields Of Snow”