5 bands every metal fan is going to be talking about in 2023

Imha Tariket

(Image credit: Elif Akguen)

Imha Tarikat

The explosive, emotional maelstrom at the heart of Imha Tarikat is a double-edged sword. On one hand, its raw- nerve intensity helped put the band on the extreme metal underground’s radar, their propulsive and chaotic BM resulting in anarchic shows where glass could fly and blood spray at any minute. On the other, the emotional and mental toll it took appeared to be killing bandleader Kerem Yilmaz. 

“Things were turbulent,” he concedes. “It feels good to finally have our new album out, like the conclusion for a certain part of my life. The first album [2019’s Kara Ihlas]was about understanding my struggle with depression. [2020’s] Sternenberster was about getting lost in pure madness, so Hearts Unchained… is about living through these experiences and learning. A moment of clarity after everything has settled.”

Released in December, Hearts Unchained – At War With A Passionless World completed a stunning, visceral trilogy that cemented Imha Tarikat as one of black metal’s most intense new bands. Now with drummer Melvin Cieslar and bassist Ricardo Baum in their ranks, the Germans are gearing up to spread their gospel far and wide, even looking at a potential show in Turkey later this year. 

“My parents are from Turkey, but it’s totally different going as a musician,” Kerem says. “The country has a really strong underground scene, everyone goes crazy, so I can’t wait to go back.”

As for the rest of the world, he admits to some interesting role models when it comes to taking his explosive black metal to the masses. A million black metal bands might be inspired by Motörhead, but Imha Tarikat might be the first inspired by Mötley Crüe. 

“Man, those guys were rock stars,” he says giddily. “It got me thinking, having so many people attend your shows must be great. Maybe we should try that! Ha ha ha!” Rich Hobson

Hearts Unchained – At War With A Passionless World is out now via Prophecy


Matt Mills
Contributing Editor, Metal Hammer

Louder’s resident Gojira obsessive was still at uni when he joined the team in 2017. Since then, Matt’s become a regular in Prog and Metal Hammer, at his happiest when interviewing the most forward-thinking artists heavy music can muster. He’s got bylines in The Guardian, The Telegraph, NME, Guitar and many others, too. When he’s not writing, you’ll probably find him skydiving, scuba diving or coasteering.