Sunday, July 31, 2011

CLINGING TO THE TREES OF A FOREST FIRE / NESSERIA Split 12" review


CLINGING TO THE TREES OF A FOREST FIRE / NESSERIA Split 12"
Throatruiner Records
Genre: Grindcore/Experimental and Post Hardcore
Rating: 3/5

Another Sunday morning hungover another release from Throatruiner Records to review, which in past reviews is akin to being kicked in the head repeatedly by an unruly mob. Hey guys how about some nice safe brutal death metal for a change? But anyway here we have two bands who are prepared to enter your brain and at the precise moment explode into your dream cycle to create the worst noisy nightmares possible. You will wake up screaming in terror and if you don't believe me look at that cover artwork by Sin Eater. That's somewhat nightmarish. For those of you unaware, Throatruiner Records are purveyors in some of the most punishing post apocalyptic acts in the underground today. You might not see these acts on the huge festival stages but you probably would see these bands if you knew of some shows in undisclosed locations where the beverages served are homemade and better left untouched.

The first act on here, CLINGING TO THE TREES OF A FOREST FIRE, is a three piece who hail from Denver. Colorado. According to the promo material they are Funeral Grind which is strange since they sound like Experimental Grind, there's a joke in there if your conscience. I should also point out that my choice of using the word "experimental" is pushing it a bit. What else is feedback and guitar noodling referred to as, in a non mean spirited way of course? Of the band's four contributed cuts the quick opener "Opaque" followed by the insane racket of "Wrinkled Claws" almost had me running to the bathroom to throw up. No doubt these guys like PIG DESTROYER. Their other two cuts are excursions in dissonance as well as annoyance with "S.I.T.W." being somewhat of a dirge. I guess that's where the funeral part comes into play.

Next up on this platter is NESSERIA from France who push the limits with their brand of post hardcore noise and a heaping helping of sludge. When you have a hangover the last thing you need is something heavy. Once again they add four cuts and by the last one, "1789", I was ready to shut everything down, wrapped my head in a pillow and try to fall back to sleep. Unfortunately the neighbor's dog is barking so the music drowns out the little bastard. I believe if I played this for the dog the animal would keel over and die. Their opener "Freistadt" is slightly blackened hardcore with a caustic vocalist who sounds like he's on fire. Seriously it's as if someone doused the guy with gasoline, threw a match to him, handed him a mic and said "OK now sing before the flames die out. We can only do this in one take." Strangely enough their best cut on here is the instrumental "Mercure". Alright I'm done so pardon me while I go to the bathroom and throw up.

Label: http://throatruinerrecords.tumblr.com/

Here's a vid of CLINGING TO THE TREES OF A FOREST FIRE



And one by NESSERIA



Saturday, July 30, 2011

SATAN'S HOST - By the Hand of the Devil CD review


SATAN'S HOST - By the Hand of the Devil CD
Moribund Cult
Genre: Blackened Heavy Metal
Rating: 5/5

A few years ago SATAN'S HOST played a gig at a local club and unfortunately I had to miss it. Yeah Black Metal gigs are tough for me especially on Wednesday nights. The club also serves as a practice space with various rental rooms in the back. Two friends of mine, whose band was practicing in the back that night, caught SATAN'S HOST's set. I think they were touring in support for their The Great American Scapegoat 666 release which came out in 2008. Anyway my friends told me it was a great set which I missed albeit hardly anyone was there. So listening to this new one, as well as 2009's Power Purity Perfection 999, is a constant reminder of greatness missed. For me the greatness of this band lies in vocalist Harry "Tyrant" Conklin who everyone knows from the Power Metal act JAG PANZER. (He goes by the name Leviathan Thisiren with this band) It's the power and range of Conklin's vocals (like a cross between King Diamond and Bruce Dickenson) joined with the music which makes this sound like MERCYFUL MAIDEN. Personally I'm not a big JAG PANZER fan, OK honestly I don't like em at all which is why I couldn't even review their newest long player this year but I like SATAN'S HOST. To me they're the dark side of the two headed coin and this head has the face of the beast on it.


By the Hand of the Devil is this band's best release by far in their long career which goes back to 1986. The clean arching majestic yet dark vocals laid upon the dark and dirty riffs with a solid rhythm section foundation which excerpts power. Guitarist Patrick Evil rivals Conklin's soaring falsetto vocals with his more cleaner melodic solos which are hot enough to cut steel. Certain cuts add background gang shouts that would be perfect for a crowded club audience to participate in. Yeah as long as it's not on a Wednesday night, right. There are a few newer bands these days who try to conjure up the ghost of MERCYFUL FATE. Some come close while others fail but mask it in their stage costumed theatrics. This is the only act today who are worthy to have their name mentioned in the same sentence with MERCYFUL FATE. Listen to Conklin's screams on the opening title track, "Revival", "Before the Flame" or on "Black Hilted Knife". I promise that you will turn to stare at your copy of MERCYFUL FATE's Black Masses 12", which you have tacked onto your wall (what doesn't everybody have there's up on their wall?) and ask "is it you"? OK that's pushing it .

This release breaks into many parts. The first half being more of a galloping classic metal structure with the second half starting out more heavier with songs like the previous mentioned "Black Hilted Knife" and "Revival". "Fallen Angel" has an almost thrashy URIAH HEEP feel to it. There's no keyboards of course but if they were to slip in some Ken Hensley Hammond organ in there it wouldn't hurt especially since Conklin sounds like he's conjuring up David Byron's best theatrical vocal prowess albeit from the darker side. Just to note Patrick Evil plays much faster than Mick Box ever could. "Inferior Worlds" is another tribute to 70's Heavy Metal cloaked in black. And if that's not enough for your sick twisted minds (think about it you are listening SATAN'S HOST people) there's a bonus track of the band covering "Norwegian Wood". Now I'm really sick of the BEATLES because I've been punished by hearing their music overplayed all of these years. But if memory serves me I do believe the lyrics are not "I once saw a church. Burn to the ground. Smoldering ash. I danced in the flames. Unleashing Hell. Sworn to Satan". What a way to end a record.

Label: http://www.moribundcult.com/



Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/satan'shost


Here's two videos for ya:



And here's their cover (?) of "Norwegian Wood" and don't forget to sing along to the lyrics.




I once saw a church
Burn to the ground
Smoldering ash
I danced in the flames
Unleashing Hell
Sworn to Satan

Ashes and flames scorched
Into the midnight sky
Flames enraged burning
Within the Demons eyes

I once saw a priest
Burn in the flames
Of Norwegian Wood
The chapel burned to the ground
Flames forever rising
Burning the sky

Each church as they burned
I felt a dark delight
Flames of Hell
Consuming into life

I danced in the ash
Forever the flames
Formed into life
I drank of the blood
Dark Lord Satan

Burn in the flames
Of Norwegian Wood

COUNTERIGNITION - Spit or Swallow CD review


COUNTERIGNITION - Spit or Swallow CD
Self Released
Genre: Thrash/Groove Metal
Rating: 3/5

Although this band hails from Kovin, Serbia they could be from right here in the states. Seriously there's a Thrash/Groove Metal act in every burg around the country that has a live music scene. But I shall not let my own personal stateside experiences and prejudices effect a quality (?) review of this release. Everyone knows I'm objectionable (ha!) I mean as far as my ignorance the Serbian music scene goes these guys could be kings. What has become old here in the states is still thriving in Europe. Look at Thrash and Speed Metal for example. Now I'm probably wrong in classifying this as only Thrash and Groove Metal, not that those styles are not in play here which they are. But the fact is that COUNTERIGNITION play a combination of many variations of those themes which run throughout their songs. They even toss in some folk elements and more melodic passages which really blows away any pre-conceptions. Pigeon holing them would simply be an insult. What I like is how they pile on plenty of sludge into those grooves at times plus they include some edgy solos added to that the vocals are rough sounding. Those three elements alone plus with their variations show that these guys are not playing by the genre template rules.

When I first read the info about em and saw those words "thrash/groove metal" I thought the worst. For those of you who read Scumfeast Metal 666 regularly (and frankly who doesn't) you know that I have no love for that genre of metal. I even consider it mainstream instead of extreme. Listening to this release I can honestly say that this band has progressed ahead of the tired thrash/groove genre to add personal character into it. And they do it with subtlety plus the production on here is slightly raw which makes it an interesting release. You wouldn't think it to be technical but once again that's all in the subtlety. They throw a cool sounding headbanging groove at you and then bend it towards a different direction completely. You listen to this a few times and you can catch so much they are hitting you with. Like I said I'm not a fan of the genre but after listening to this it's obvious that COUNTERIGNITION is pushing the boundaries to meet with their own creativeness.

Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/counterignition


PESTILENTIAL SHADOWS - Depths CD review


PESTILENTIAL SHADOWS - Depths CD
Adverse Order
Genre: Black Metal
Rating: 5/5

Coincidentally last week I was discussing online with a friend from Europe about what Black Metal releases came out this year which were great. I gave him my list of thirteen and that was that. Now this drops in my lap so now it's time to reconfigure my list. I first learned about PESTILENTIAL SHADOWS in 2009 when I was checking out another Austrailian band, NAZXUL. You see both bands share members, Balam, Desolate and Wraith are from NAZXUL plus on drums it's Basilysk. Back in 2009 NAZXUL release Iconoclast which in my not so humble opinion was one of that years best Black Metal releases. That same year PESTILENTIAL SHADOWS came out with In Memoriam Ill Omen which was pretty damm good as well. So here's their latest and I'm still impressed. Depths is a mixture of epic tremolo picked savagery and haunting atmosphere which simply draws you in till it's completion. It works that way because the harder edges drive you along with the melodic elements keeping things interesting. The opener "Lost Geists Of The Sunlight Sphere" held me in a trance but not a sleep induced one. Seriously I could be drinking coffee while sitting in my office chair (which had to have been designed by an ancestor of an inquisitor from the Spanish Inquisition) and still doze off to some atmospheric black metal. Not with PESTILENTIAL SHADOWS because not only are they welcoming you into this corridor of sound but you find yourself asking to be taken deeper. You want to find out what's around the next dark corner no matter what. "Tribulations Of Man" with it's moaned vocals are calling to you and at it's ending the haunted choir vocals answer.

Although PESTILENTIAL SHADOWS stays with the parameters of the Black Metal template (thank you very much) as far as musically the vocal exercises do not. Along with the previous mentioned examples another stands with "Choirs Beyond The Blackened Stars". The vocals are merely spoken words from an off worldly presence which switch to harsher tones all while the guitar and drum beats drive you further along. It's akin to being on a carnival ride where you get in the cart, the doors open and inside you go to another dimension. From the dark depths of despair from which you've just went though you get shocked by "Architects Of The Spear" with it's horrific anger and sadistic image inducing aura. "Shrine" is almost comforting in it's early ambient stage until giving way to the releases most grandiose cut. I mistakenly turned the volume up a few notches to bask in the songs ambiance only to be blasted out of my comfort zone as hostility ensued. "Poisoner" has a melodic rhythm quality that borders on a deranged dark psych vibe until the final volley which pounds everything to death. "Putrid Earth" is a more depressive even though it drenches you with intensity. Finally the title track is a sense shattering climax full of tempo changes, variation of structures, whispered and aggressive harsh vocal cries. This ends incredibly to the point of your mind being drained after close to an hour of music manipulating your imagination. The variety of techniques PESTILENTIAL SHADOWS uses pulls apart your psyche. I'm clueless as to this being a conceptual piece or not. All I can say is that Depths is a Black Metal release which must be listened to from start to finish to allow it's grip to take hold of your senses. Once that's been done reality fades away to reveal a realm of grays and blacks. Seriously I did not want this thing to end.


Label: http://www.adverseordermusic.com/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/pestilentialshadows


AZARATH - Blasphemers Malediction CD review


AZARATH - Blasphemers Malediction CD
Witching Hour Productions
Genre: Death Metal
Rating: 5/5

Now this is how an obligatory opening intro track on a Death Metal release should be, if you have to have one. "Arising the Black Flame" is just four seconds long. That's right just four seconds and then the blasphemy commences. For those of you who don't know, AZARATH has always been the outsiders of Poland's more famous (or infamous) Death Metal trident of evil aka: VADER, HATE and BEHEMOTH. Strangely enough AZARATH's drummer, Inferno, is also in BEHEMOTH. Even with all of that AZARATH has released four incredible long players since 2001 and that's with multiple lineup changes. Still this new one follows in that great tradition. Simply put Blasphemers Malediction is bestial blackened death rampaging up from the nether regions because they were giving the horned one the frights. While men use powerful equipment to drill deep inside the earth AZARATH uses heavy pulverizing riffs and intense drumming to tunnel their way up from the depths. Pardon my use of "underground" metaphors but hell in their case it works. Yeah well but anyway I've been a fan of these guys for a while so pardon my bias but these guys can do no wrong in my book. I know 2011 has been the year were every "highly anticipated" extreme metal band's release has left fans with their jaws dropping to the floors in disbelief in how shitty they turned out to be. Thankfully I knew AZARATH would not be releasing an industrial record. Industrial strength yes like a fifty story abattoir running on overtime. After that previously mentioned four second opening Blasphemers Malediction lets loose with ten full cuts of diabolical destruction. Every one is a blistering full on assault of technically proficient blasphemy and going through every song title would be an insult to you evilness. Just order it now.


Label: http://www.witchinghour.pl/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/azarath666


NAILGUN MASSACRE - Backyard Butchery CD review


NAILGUN MASSACRE - Backyard Butchery CD
Slowrunner Records
Genre: Death Metal
Rating: 4/5

Over the years I've had plenty of friends who were carpenters and framers. All of em had a nailgun mishap story and of course a few had some sadistic ideas for alternative uses of nailguns. I've used one myself a few times and I always worried about accidentally shooting myself in the leg or kneecap. (Which is usually the main injuries) Now without going into any more job site accident stories (Although I do have a great one about a guy getting pulled into a wood chipper) this band has two great things going for em from the start. They're from Holland and they've got a great band name. As regular readers of Scumfeast Metal 666 know I'm bias when it comes to bands from the country of my family's heritage. But when it comes to Death Metal, while other nations had to get into the revival mode as far as Old School Death Metal goes, the Dutch didn't have to. They've always done Old School Death Metal right. Am I bias? Yeah. Hyperbolic? Not really. Is this good music? You're damm right!


NAILGUN MASSACRE comes at you with the brutality of AUTOPSY and the insanity of IMPETIGO with a zombie-fied Martin Van Drunen on vocals. Just listen to "Albert The Geek" and you will know I'm right. Face ripping guitar solos are a rarity on Backyard Butchery. Although there are plenty of extended leads, the meatier ones appearing on "Cadaverous Lay", "Mortuary Meathouse" as well as "Spanish Spider". The band makes up for it by packing their songs with enough bludgeoning intensity that you really don't care. This five piece could be the house band for a weekend zombie movie fest. Trust me, the band would be more horrifying then the flicks. This thing is gore, death and more gore with an old school production value that will make your late 80's Death Metal demo collection jealous. Eight songs total and no really fast blasts to speak of. Most of the cuts creep along at the speed of a zombie (that's right people zombies don't run). Since I got absolutely no info on this band I can't tell ya if these are young guys out to continue the great Dutch Death Metal legacy or older veterans having a blast. Either way zombie themed movies might be getting too cliche but music like this never will as long as sick minded individuals create it for hungry fans. They're not out to re-invent the genre but they will keep the beast in you fed.

Bandcamp: http://nailgunmassacre.bandcamp.com/album/backyard-butchery


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/nailgunmassacre666


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

DECAPITATED - Carnival is Forever CD review


DECAPITATED - Carnival is Forever CD
Nuclear Blast
Genre: Death Metal (?)
Rating: 1/5

This is the fifth full length by the newly resurrected DECAPITATED. Just to recap past events, back in 2007 the band's tour bus collided with a truck while they were on their way to a gig in Belarus. Their drummer Vitek would later die a few days later from the injuries sustained in the accident. Their singer Covan still recovering from his head injuries. That left guitarist Vogg to continue on in whatever capacity he felt worthy. He chose to keep the band name and recruit new members. Now obviously with the type of circumstances involved here one should expect some differences. For the past decade they've been Poland's premiere Tech Death act with some decent albums under their belts. I liked two out of the four they've released but now things are different. You wouldn't think a dramatic change was in store since it's still Vogg's riffs, solos and songwriting. But yeah this is pretty mainstream metal here which will probably appear up on the local cable TV metal channel. That's right I'm calling the new DECAPITATED CD the dreaded "Cable Metal". This is the type of stuff for people with no attention span whatsoever who wear baggy shorts, over sized t-shirts and baseball caps worn backwards of course.

Yes I know it's sad but true and you can't escape it especially when this thing opens up with the power chugged vibes and "core" style vocals. Some of the cuts have that groove structure while others sound industrial except for the last cut which is acoustic. It's not a total loss since there are a few choice cuts that veer away from the formulated stuff. Unfortunately this thing has rotted my brain to the point where I just can't put my finger on it. Next thing you know I'll start liking MESHUGGAH or any similar crap retread copycat of theirs. Some people might take what I've written as being harsh. Well frankly yes I am being harsh for a good reason. Normally I wouldn't touch a band like this because it's mainstream sounding metal. Sure Vogg slips in a few cool solos but as far as these songs go they're forgettable, boring and annoying. Mainstream people like things forgettable, boring and annoying. Well DECAPITATED were at one time an exciting band who were part of that great Polish Death Metal tradition. Unfortunately they're now moving into another direction. Mainstream people will probably go nuts for this as they should.

Label: http://www.nuclearblast.de/
Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/decapitated


VOID MOON - The Mourning Son CDEP review


VOID MOON - The Mourning Son CDEP
Self Released
Genre: Doom/Heavy Metal
Rating: 3/5

When this came in to check out I was expecting some traditional Doom from this Swedish three piece. After hearing the opening title track I was like "whoa, we are not exactly in traditional Swedish Doom territory on here." This is the latest release by VOID MOON but they also have another demo and a four song 7"er out on Metalbound but I'm sure it's available from the band as well through their website. Both of those are from 2010 and just as decent as this new one. The band might be new but two of it's members bassist Peter Svensson and drummer Thomas Hedlund have a laundry list of former bands that stretches back to the 1990s. The Mourning Son is just four tracks one of which is an instrumental, "Cathedral Parkway Revisited", which is a haunting little repetitive ditty. As far as the other tracks what shocks you out of any jaded misconceptions is vocalist/guitarist Jonas Gustavsson. This guy has an incredible Hard Rock/Heavy Metal sounding voice. Hell hand over the guitar to someone else and let this guy stand behind the mic and wail. Just a suggestion but seriously on the opener "The Mourning Son" he's amazing. The guy needs to be on stage at Wacken with a voice like that. Musically for the most part the song plays in a simple traditional Doom structure but slowly evolves into something which reminded me of classic 80's Metal, not in a bad way of course. The second cut "Cyclops" starts out like a melodic ballad but then reverts into a massive headbanger with a thick riff worthy of throwing up the horns to. The final cut "Madman" is Doooooom! It's a tremendous cut done in a gloomy fashion with an added psych damaged solo in it's beginning and once again Gustavsson's amazing vocals. I'd lay down money that these guys will be big and soon since they mix Doom and classic sounding Metal well. Hopefully some label representative will agree.

Official: http://www.void-moom.com


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/voidmoonmetal


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Splendiferous Barfing Cup video

My good friend Ed Warner, bassist for the Raleigh, North Carolina Punk/Metal band KNOWLEDGE IS FOR FOOLS as well as being the former owner of one of that area's best Extreme Music venues The CABOOSE, posted this video on Facebook. The Splendiferous Barfing Cup video.




Some people (re: convenient store clerks?) have too much time on their hands but it's funny.

NADIMAC - Po Kratkom Postupku CD review


NADIMAC - Po Kratkom Postupku CD
AreaDeath Productions
Genre: Thrash
Rating: 3/5

Here's a Serbian Thrash band on a Chinese record label proving once again that Extreme Metal works in mysterious ways. Now that the Thrash Revival is over with here in the states, the eyes and ears of fans have turned to Europe for their fresh fix. I talked about this last year while reviewing a slew of newer European Thrash acts. NADIMAC are not relatively new since they started out back in 2003 and started pumping out releases on a regular basis since 2007. This is only their second full length but they have been on a roll releases various splits in the past few years. As far as Po Kratkom Postupku goes this four piece takes the Crossover Punk approach of NUCLEAR ASSAULT and combines it with the cleaner Thrash style of KREATOR. The end result is obviously fast and furious with screamed vocals. All the tracks on here are sung (I mean screamed) in their native tongue except for a six second cover of KREATOR's "Pleasure to Kill" and the final two cuts. This would probably do better with the punks than metal heads but all around it's good. They must put on an incredible live show with bodies flying.


Label: http://adp.areadeath.net/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/nadimacbend


PREMONITION 13 - 13 CD review


PREMONITION 13 - 13 CD
Volcom Entertainment
Genre: Hard Rock/Doom
Rating: 3/5

For those of you who don't know, this is Wino's (aka Scott Wino Weinrich) latest band project. I reviewed their two song 7"er last Spring, which also came out on Volcom. This here is the anticipated full length which those in the new doom blogosphere have been waiting for. Well I'm not going to revisit Wino's band history for ya because if you're reading Scumfeast Metal 666 then you know it already. I will stick with some of the most recent history though. As far as Wino's solo acoustic release Adrift, which came out a little while back, I didn't care for it. I certainly wasn't going to write about it either. Now as for that super group thing SHRINEBUILDER he was involved with well that was a joke. So with that said Wino's newest excursion is PREMONITION 13 a project that he started up with his friend guitarist Jim “Sparky” Karow who he has known for some 20 years. Basically Wino and Jim have also jammed plenty of times over those twenty years as well. It's from those jam sessions that this band became a reality. Wino handles guitar, bass and vocals, Jim plays guitar plus adds some vocals and on drums they enlisted some guy named Matthew Clark who's also in a band called OSTINATO. I never heard of em but now after he's played with Wino he'll probably be able to have some sycophant in the new doom blogosphere write about his band. Basically he doesn't do anything on here out of the realm of mediocre.

Musically 13 is 70's blues rock with a lot of psych damage thrown in. It's as if Wino is exercising that 1970's Hard Rock element he lived through. He's stepping out of his past career role which shines for him. For those of you who didn't have the luxury as I of growing up with the music of the 70s in the 70s (I'm two years younger than Wino) then listen up babycakes. This release was done back in 73/74 by a slew of other bands. It wasn't called doom back then so let's cut it with the historical revisionism. It's called Hard Rock and what this band does on here with it is standard fair from that era. That's not to say it isn't good because well it is exceptional at least on most of the tracks. This is the type of music which should be played in biker bars and not in pretentious hipster retard hangouts. Songs like the opener "B.E.A.U.T.Y." and "Senses" sounds a little like BAD COMPANY but with the added use of the e-bow it adds the psychedelic drone violin sound effect. "Hard To Say" is another winner with some decent chugging distorted rhythm and choice soloing weaved in and out of Wino's vocals. "Clay Pigeon" is a page out of 70's rock with a simple groove riff repeated over. It's not far from what Tommy Bolin era JAMES GANG was into back in the day especially with that solo. It's not until the middle of the release with "La Hechicera de la Jeringa" were we finally here Wino back into his Doom icon role but still only slightly. "Deranged Rock N' Roller" is pure 70's Southern Rock boogie while "Modern Man", with Karow on lead vocals, is the weakest track simply because of the repeated song title chorus. The final track "Peyote Road" is nothing to write home about either.

Years ago I use to tend bar at a joint that had a lot of aging 70's rock fans in there as regulars. They hated Punk, Metal and basically anything relatively new sounding. Those people would probably find this to their liking because PREMONITION 13 recaptures much of the 70's FM Rock music aesthetic that those fucks couldn't shake. This is not Doom by a long shot but it is the best thing Wino's done since SPIRIT CARAVAN. I doubt the new doom blogosphere hipsters will accept it but if you've been a long time fan of Wino's career then you will enjoy this. The first half is exceptional and the second part is less attention grabbing. I believe if this was just Karow's band with a bass player and a second guitarist who had a similar voice as Wino I'd still give it a decent review.

Label: http://www.volcoment.com/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/premonition_13


Official: http://www.premonition13.com/#


TOXIC HOLOCAUST - Conjure and Command CD review


TOXIC HOLOCAUST - Conjure and Command CD
Relapse Records
Genre: Thrash/Death
Rating: 5/5

To say that this was not a highly anticipated release for 2011, that's if you like extreme metal of course, would be a lie. Mainman Joel Grind had set the standard for great no bullshit straight up speed metal/thrash for a decade. One thing people seem to forget is that he was pumping out music long before someone came up with the idea that Thrash was making a comeback. Now although he's only put out four full lengths in a little over ten years he's also managed to put out thirteen minor releases as well as a live album and a comp. To say he's prolific is an understatement and he was doing it all on his own as in the one man band way. On some stuff he had a session drummer and live he has hired guns for bass and drum duties. I didn't get into TOXIC HOLOCAUST until he had already made a name for himself in the underground but I'll say this, out of his three previous full lengths the last two, 2005's Hell on Earth and An Overdose of Death from 2008, are must haves for any Thrash maniac. Better yet if you like metal then you should have em in your collection. So when coming to this one I was expecting more of the same from Joel Grind. I was wrong since this is better then I expected since there's some slight changes all for the better.


First thing different is that TOXIC HOLOCAUST is an actual band now since Grind has enlisted a bassist in Phil Zeller and a drummer Nick Bellmore. Musicianship wise there's not much of a difference but I'm sure having a rhythm section took some of the weight off of the man's shoulders to concentrate more on his guitar work and vocals. Musically there's a difference from the past releases and that's the added proto Death Metal sound on a lot of these cuts. This is like POSSESSED, VENOM, DESTRUCTION and DECEASED all rolled into one thick punch. In the past there was a Punk Metal hybrid thing going on but now it's strictly thick metallic riffs played with a driving intensity. Grind's blackened vocals (kinda reminds ya of Cronos at times) are even more sadistic then before. There's plenty of slash and burn thrashers like opener "Judgment Awaits You", "Bitch" and "In the Depths (of Your Mind)" to name a few. What I found outstanding were some of the twisted cuts like the death and roll catchiness of "The Liars Are Burning" (they have to make a video for this one) and the death crawl of "I Am Disease". The last cut on here, "Sound the Charge" is probably the most punk influenced. To just call this another great Thrash release would be a disservice if not an all out insult. Joel Grind has actually progressed beyond those boundries and he's better for it. This is one of the best thirty two minutes of 2011.

Label: http://www.relapse.com/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/toxicholocaust


Sunday, July 24, 2011

Metal Videos That Don't Suck MERRIMACK In the Halls of White Death


France's MERRIMACK are not afraid of controversy that's why this is such a good vid.

DISMA - Towards the Megalith CD review


DISMA - Towards the Megalith CD
Profound Lore Records
Genre: Death/Doom
Rating: 4/5

New Jersey's DISMA are part of the new wave of bands the world over who are into Old School Death Metal. While overseas the influence is directly from Sweden here in the states it's more INCANTATION and AUTOPSY worshipping. The band put out a demo in 2009, The Vault of Membros, which is when the whole new OSDM thing really got going. Somehow someway they got on Profound Lore which really ain't hard to believe since the label has put out similar material by bands I really like; COFFINWORM, MITOCHONDRION and HOODED MENACE to name a few. One important thing to note is that while the lions share of the new breed of OSDM bands out there are young guns DISMA are veterans of the DM music scene. The band is made up of members who have trudged along the path of bodies and broken bones for sometime. One in particular is their vocalist Craig Pillard who once sang with INCANTATION back in the 90's. So therefore the comparisons to the previously mentioned bands is going to be obvious. DISMA also doesn't try to screw with the formula. The basis of Towards the Megalith (or is it Onward to Golgotha Two?) is the diabolical rhythms, powerful drumming and Pillard's cavernous vocals. Speed on here is not in large quantities. Most of the songs on here are of the dragging more ass than an alligator type or maybe the mega-gator. But then that's what it's all about. They're not about to dazzle you with flashy solos but will crush your skull and scare your neighbors if you blast this with the windows open.

Label: http://www.profoundlorerecords.com/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/dismadeathmetal


GRAYCEON - All We Destroy CD Review


GRAYCEON - All We Destroy CD
Profound Lore Records
Genre: Progressive Metal
Rating: 0/5

So this is the cello girl's band? For those of you who don't know the "cello girl" I refer to is Jackie Perez Gratz who has appeared on quite a number of other band's releases. Whenever some band is at a loss for inspiration they think "hey you know I believe what this song really needs is some cello." Then again it could be the producer who comes up with those ideas. Either way Gratz has appeared on releases by NEUROSIS, CATTLE DECAPITATION and a few more which I just don't feel like mentioning. Lets just say she's not hurting for side work as long as bands or their producers get a wild hair up their rectums to ask for more cello. As far as her band here it's just average sounding down tuned crunchy doom riffs, drums and Gratz screaming/singing along with her cello playing. In a nutshell GRAYCEON is average sludge metal with a gimmick. I have nothing against bringing non metal instruments into the fold. My love for Pagan Folk metal is proof of that. But on here the cello is just as annoying as Gratz's vocals which kinda sound some what Lilith Fair-ish. This is not innovative it's simply ridiculous. So it's no wild stretch of the imagination to why hipsters like GRAYCEON. Hipsters by design are non-metallically inclined to start with. Therefore anything that is unorthodox or ironic when it comes to metal is something they run to like lemmings. Hopefully while chasing this band they don't notice the cliff up ahead.

Label: http://www.profoundlorerecords.com/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/grayceon


DEADMAN - Spirito Di Pietra CD review


DEADMAN - Spirito Di Pietra CD
Dusktone Records
Genre: Black Metal
Rating: 2/5

The only info I knew about DEADMAN before listening to this debut full length is that the title translates into English as Spirit of Stone and that the band is from Italy. I'm guessing all the mystery lies in the fact that DEADMAN is actually a one man black metal project. It's just a suspicion of course brought about by the low fi production. Something which is not a mystery is the fact that this Italian sounds like a Scandinavian export as far as blackened atmosphere and style on here exhibits. I wouldn't say the guy is completely painting by the numbers though since there's added bits of post rock ambiance and even some industrial flavor to the mix. The cuts on Spirito Di Pietra are represented by Roman numerals (go figure right?) and there's nine in all covering just over forty five minutes. The opener "I" is a simple ambient shoegazer cut using synths, guitar picking notes and some drum work. Once it's finished the mystery is over since the following cuts are pretty standard paced second wave BM. There are moments when DEADMAN slips into areas of doom then again it could simply be the disadvantages of a one man recording process. The songs contain all the BM standards as in tremolo picked riffs, hauntingly harsh vocals which sometimes revert to the satanic frog and at times when needed the double-bass drumming. When the added extras do come in they're like someone accidentally opening a door while listening to something completely different from the other room. Then it stops abruptly and all returns back to the simple BM formula. To me that's a sad way to structure a song in order to make your sound more cross pollinating.

Label: http://www.dusktone.eu/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/deadmanspirit


HAERESIARCHS OF DIS - In Obsecration of the Seven Darks CD review


HAERESIARCHS OF DIS - In Obsecration of the Seven Darks CD
Moribund Records
Genre: Black Metal
Rating: 4/5

I learned about this one man black metal band last year with the Denuntiatus Cinis release which was also on Moribund Records. The one man is Cernunnos and yet the sound he creates would have you thinking this had to be a full size band at work. When was the last time you heard a one man act sound like EMPEROR? Hell I'll even toss in when was the last time you heard some decent black metal from sunny California? The answer to the first question is never. Cernunnos takes the influence of those early Norwegian greats and transforms them into his own grim sensibilities. He creates epic sounding black metal that's still within the underground standards of low production values but just by a razor's edge. This is not another American symphonic BM act trying to ride the coattails of DIMMU BORGIR in order to get attention from Hot topic mall rats. That was 2009 and I think all of those bands are dead now or at least discredited. Besides Cernunnos, matter of fact, does a straight up rendition of "Ensorcelled by Khaos" on here which will confound the clueless.

Were as I thought 2010's Denuntiatus Cinis was a triumph with a great flow between it's tracks this one here sounds obviously formulated. You'll have an intense track overflowing with blackened noise as well as raspy high pitched screeches. Then it's followed by some filler instrumental albeit lengthy ones. If this release has some sort of concept behind it then it was lost by me even after five straight plays, one of which was with the lights off and a fan blowing cold air on me in order to really feel grim and cold. But seriously I'm wondering if some of this was left over material or just unfinished works that were done in haste with the instros set in as filler. Even if that is the case the lions share of In Obsecration of the Seven Darks does create a hell like atmosphere. Cernunnos use of the keyboards on here is more as an effect to certain songs which produces a gothic appeal. In no way is it being relied on heavily as a symphonic act would choose to do. If the in between tracks were eliminated this would still be a formidable piece of blackened hate.


Label: http://www.moribundcult.com/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/haeresiarchsofdis


NO NEW VIDEO FOR THIS GUY SO HERE'S SOMETHING FROM 2010.


HRIZG - Anthems to the Decrepitude CD review


HRIZG - Anthems to the Decrepitude CD
Moribund Records
Genre: Black Metal
Rating: 3/5

Spain's HRIZG is a one man Black Metal act who effuses the atmospheric tones of depressive blackness with doom. What stands out the most is his baritone voice as if he's some ancient figure from the past encapsulated in stone with only his mouth able to move. Obviously that's not the case since how could he play all the instruments. Still Anthems to the Decrepitude is very monolithic as well as slow to mid paced. The music actually takes a back seat to Hrizg's vocals which hold your attention the most. He clearly conveys the oppressive weight of dark emotions be they depression or agony. Even with the hypnotising quality of the vocals there's still some aggressive nature missing which makes this more doom and gloom instead of blackened doom. Even though there's plenty of guitar within the melodies it's the synths which hold everything together like background glue. If you're not morbid now then one listen to this and you will be.

Label: http://www.moribundcult.com/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/hrizg


HERETOIR - Self Titled CD review


HERETOIR - Self Titled CD
Northern Silence Productions
Genre: Shoegazer Black Metal
Rating: 1/5

Every time I write the words Shoegazer Black Metal someone asks, What? Even though this style of BM has been on a constant growth process for the past few years people still don't know about it or refuse to acknowledge it. Obviously the metal hating crowd tends to like it more as well as hipster retards who don't know what metal is. For the rest of you it's depressive black metal mixed with a more melancholic post rock and the English shoegazer sounds of the 90s. Sometimes it can be decent by creating a dark atmosphere that envelopes the listener while still keeping within the blackened framework. Other times it's pretentious bullshit in which the artist who created it needs a bullet in his fuckin skull. The best Shoegazer Black Metal comes from Europe while the worst comes from the states where each artist who created it needs a bullet in his fuckin skull. Some people now (re: idiots) are trying to label it "blackgaze" which not only is stupid but whoever uses that term needs a bullet in his fuckin skull. Now is everyone up to speed on Shoegazer Black Metal? Good now lets proceed.

This German band HERETOIR, which is Eklatanz who sings and plays all the instruments plus Nathanael who takes care of the bass (what bass?) as well as backing vocals (again what backing vocals?) is not new to the scene. They have released a few demos and splits but this is the debut full length. The thing that makes this blackened style enjoyable and interesting is when the artist can carry you along in some relaxed state. Making you drowsy means failure. HERETOIR fails on here because there's far more attention paid to the sugary shoegazer sound then black metal. I could see this played over the intercom system in an office building full of ethereal losers. This is earth fart music plain and simple. Hey Eklatanz where's the fuckin metal? Even France's ALCEST incorporates some metal into their sound albeit their last outings have been sad. Musically this is all blue skies and bunny rabbits with plenty of acoustics and keyboards.

Label: http://www.northern-silence.de/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/heretoir


BONES - Self Titled CD review


BONES - Self Titled CD
Planet Metal
Genre: Blackened Death/Thrash
Rating: 5/5

I believe I've found the party release of 2011. What I mean by party release is that you slap this into the stereo at your fuckin party and if anyone complains then they don't belong at your party. When you give em the boot don't forget to flip them the horns and scream "666"! Seriously everything about this release rocks like a motherfucker. You could bang your head to it, start a pit to it, you could even simply sit back and slap your leg to it. As you all know (or should by now) I'm listening to the music while writing about it. I'll say that this one is almost impossible to type to because I keep stopping to play air guitar, throw the horns, bang my head (into the fucking monitor once) basically anything. In the words of an old friend of mine from years past, "Dude this is killer!" BONES is a brand new act out of Chicago which is made up of ex-USURPER members: Jon - Bass & Vox (aka: Jon Necromancer) Chris - Guitar (aka: Carcass Chris) and Joe - Drums (aka: Joe Apocalyptic Warlord). Now I will tell ya that USURPER was a damm great band back in the day but these guys are not trying to rekindle their past. On the contrary BONES is far more bludgeoning and fun to listen to. I get a sadistic grin going on every time I play this. THIS IS FUCKIN METAL! Remember that feeling when you got a new release, played it and then thought to yourself that it was the greatest thing you've ever heard? Of course not because you're jaded but I'm not.

Now of course in reality BONES ain't the greatest band ever (BEST RELEASE OF 2011?) but their music has all the right elements which make extreme music incredible. Hell this is the kinda stuff that Scumfeast Metal 666 was based upon. What makes BONES so fuckin over the top is their primordial sound. You have that filthy sick guitar tone added with distorted bass, incredible drumming and of course Jon's mighty vocals. He makes it sound like this is the last recording ever and he's putting every bit of anger left in him out into the cuts. There's an old saying that goes "Music has charms to soothe the savage breast." Well screw that because BONES creates music that turns you into a savage beast and I like being a beast. When "March Of The Dead" starts things off and it's like a punk thrash MOTORHEAD hybrid on the attack with Carcass Chris ripping through a solo that will have ya screaming "yeahhhhh hell fuck yeahhhhh!" The intensity builds with "Bloodlust" and "Bitch" which are perfect cuts for starting a pit to and not stopping till the floor is a bloody mess. The chaotic destruction continues when BONES breaks out a DEVASTATION cover "Apocalyptic Warrior". This is the Chicago band and not the one from Texas of the same name. The song itself comes from DEVASTATION's demo from 1986 A Creation of Ripping Death. Quick look it up and download it so you can be cool and knowledgeable. Obviously BONES are giving a nod to their hometown's great metal past which they too are part of. Not everything on here is slam pits and MOTORHEAD hybrids. BONES knows how to slow things down to a death metal crawl on the excellent "Good Die Young" and "666". Hell every single cut on here is fantastic. My only hope now is that I'll get to see em live this year.

Label: http://www.myspace.com/planetmetal


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/bonesofchicago


BEHERIT - At the Devil's Studio 1990 CD review


BEHERIT - At the Devil's Studio 1990 CD
KVLT/Hells Headbangers
Genre: Black Metal
Rating: 4/5

Are you worthy? I repeat are you worthy? Well if you're reading SFM666 then you are. You'll also know that I praise the perverse, obscene and Satanic works of Finnish Black Metal on a regular basis. What we have here is literally an unearthed gem as it were. BEHERIT's drummer Sodomatic Slaughter had this master tape in his possession for the last 20 fuckin years and it's now finally seeing the light of day of course after it was re-mastered last year. This is the first official BEHERIT studio album which was recorded live in the studio by Nuclear Holocausto Vengeance and Sodomatic Slaughter back in 1990 in Ala Ky Studio, Rovaniemi. Obviously it's a little worn and rough as far as production values go. It does make Drawing Down the Moon sound polished if you know what I mean and if you are a BEHERIT fan you do. Now everyone and their basement dwelling, black metal forum addict cousin knows that The Oath of Black Blood release is a compilation of the band's early demos plus the Dawn of Satan's Millennium 7"er. That was the standard for BEHERIT's early rottenness. At The Devil's Studio 1990 is the real debut album but it was scrapped because the band had problems with their label then Turbo Music. So now here it is in all of it's disgusting filth along with two previously unreleased tracks. Unless you are a BEHERIT fan or at least a cult collector of pre-production values Black Metal (first & second waves) then I say stay away from this. For you others this will be a feast of sorts with it's chaotic minimalism working through some familiar cuts like "Demonomancy", "Witchcraft" and "The Oath of Black Blood". You'll be reminded how well this band was influenced by HELLHAMMER as opposed to their Norwegian counterparts at the time MAYHEM. You have been warned.

Official: http://www.beherit.fi/


Label: http://www.kvlt.fi/


Label: http://www.hellsheadbangers.com/


VARIOUS ARTISTS - PLEBEIAN GRANDSTAND, BONE DANCE and DIVIDER CD review


VARIOUS ARTISTS - PLEBEIAN GRANDSTAND, BONE DANCE and DIVIDER CD
Throatruiner Records
Genre: Post Hardcore
Rating: 5/5

Throatruiner Records is slowly becoming, in my not so humble opinion, the go to label for intensity. I'm serious every time they send me something I have to break out the seat straps because I know I'm in for a wild ride. This particular one came with something of a warning label; "Three bands, three different interpretations of hardcore/punk, two continents, one policy: Destroy." The three bands on here also contribute two songs each as well. The first of this trio of destruction, BONE DANCE, call Boise, Idaho home although I doubt the city elders like em one bit. BONE DANCE shoot for that Boston post hardcore sound which you can't slam dance to although they hit their mark on both cuts. The second band DIVIDER from Long Island, NY are more of a late 80's/early 90's dirge punk band with a bloody throated banshee for a vocalist. This band would have fit well on Amphetamine Reptile's line-up of bands. And speaking of amphetamines the last band on here PLEBEIAN GRANDSTAND from Toulouse, France is the winner for eye bulging, neck vein popping extremism in post hardcore. Actually if this was a contest then the French win hands down as far as providing a sound that shook pictures off of my walls. All three of these bands conjure up brilliant sound scapes of post apocalyptic noise that could crush the weak.

Label: http://throatruinerrecords.tumblr.com/


HERE'S A SONG FROM ONE BAND ON THIS COMP, PLEBEIAN GRANDSTAND from Toulouse, France. THIS CUT IS NOT ON HERE BUT JUST LISTEN IF YOU DARE.


MALIGNO - The Funeral Domine CD review


MALIGNO - The Funeral Domine CD
Self Released
Genre: Stoner/Doom
Rating: 3/5

This Mexican band was once hailed as the south of the border's version of CANDLEMASS. Although their singer Luis Barjan can conjure up a little Messiah Marcolin with his vocals he also conjures up Ozzy and anyone who sang in a post grunge retread outfit from the 90s. Musically they're more from that California desert stoner rock sound from the 90s (drop band names here if you care to) which I always found to be more of an offshoot from the Grunge days. MALIGNO know their SABBATH as well as there 70's hard fuckin rock. Guitarists Ivan Tamez and Zef Vega shine on here with catchy riffs as well as the solos. The one thing that stands out the most is how mainstream metal this comes over. MALIGNO could have been a 1990's MTV band. This is their third full length and the biggest surprise of all is that they're not on a mainstream recording label. They might have visa problems with the touring thing though. On my initial listen I thought it was interesting but further listens led me to pick out the non mainstream sounding cuts like "Emperor's Fall" which has a decent stoner groove going for it. "Transmutation" as well with it's 70's styled blues solos which could've been borrowed from MOUNTAIN's Leslie West, sludgey SABBATH structure and Barjan switching from Messiah to Ozzy on vocals. At least the cover art is outstanding with the naked chick surrounded by a dark psych background underneath the band's logo. Would make a great t-shirt.

Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/malignodoom


OBSEQUIAE - Suspended in the Brume of Eos CD Review


OBSEQUIAE - Suspended in the Brume of Eos CD
Bindrune Recordings
Genre: Pagan Folk Medieval Metal
Rating: 5/5


Hearing something like this coming out of the US gives me hope. Musically the style being played on here would be easily thought to have come out of England or Europe but this duo is from Minneapolis, Minnesota. Band members Neidhart von Reuental (guitar, bass,drums) and Blondel de Nesle (vocals, guitar) were applying the metal chops in the blackened death band AUTUMNAL WINDS for many years. Blondel de Nesle is also in funeral doom stalwarts CELESTIIAL. None of that matters now since what we have here is something completely different. Combining folk like melodies and prog structured medieval sounding grandeur over a black metal backdrop with rasped vocals. Soft acoustic pieces are interspersed between the metal cuts to give it an almost conceptual feel. This is the type of stuff you would play in a castle if you could afford to own one. Hell this is the type of sound Varg Vikernes was touching upon before his incarceration years ago. Songs like "Atonement" and "Arrows" are fully draped in black metal but without the hornet's nest tremolo picked sound. The rhythms range from mid paced to speedy riffs combining the essence of black metal with that medieval structure. The result is this haunting atmosphere that's chilling yet elegant in a classical meets pagan sense. "Cabin Lights" and opener "Altars of Moss" are majestic to the point of standing in awe of what this duo has accomplished. I absolutely love what these guys have created. Suspended in the Brume of Eos is one of those unique standout releases of 2011. Renaissance Fairies need not apply.

Label: http://www.bindrunerecordings.com


Thursday, July 21, 2011

LITURGY - Aesthetica CD review


LITURGY - Aesthetica CD
Thrill Jockey Records
Genre: hipster stool
Rating: 0/5

Thrill Jockey? I think I've still got a few GAUNT releases which were on that label and they were a garage punk band from Ohio. This Brooklyn, New York band's debut full length Renihilation from 2009 came out on 20 Buck Spin. They were simply four hipsters attempting to be avant garde black metal. I think their attempt failed but of course some people (re: hipster retards slumming in the metal media) thought it was incredible. After one listen to this sophomore release I can understand the label change. I mean 20 Buck Spin is a quality metal label and LITURGY are just too hip to be on it. Now they can really explore their pretentious noise while someone screams over it (on a few songs) while being butt raped. Although there is some clean singing which is for the most part worse then the screams from butt raping. The seven minute long one riff jam of "Generation" was definitely a sleeper since it's an instrumental. "Veins of God" is basically the same way so I'm guessing their vocalist didn't feel transcendental (their definition to their music) enough to put some vocals to it. Those were the highlights since the rest of this is garbage. I want all of you hipster retards out there to read this carefully. What you call deconstructing or stretching the boundaries of black metal is a fuckin joke. You don't even like black metal therefore you steal from it to fit in with your own failed musical concepts. Your own avant garde garbage can't stand up on it's own so you call yourselves black metal by adding some blastbeats here and there plus some harsh vocals. Here's a clue to you clueless dolts. Harsh Black Metal vocals exemplify pain and cruelty. What you hipsters do sounds like you're getting fucked in the ass and enjoying it. Leave our music alone retards or the only thing blackened about you will be the bruises I and others will inflict on you. Fuck Off.


Label: http://www.thrilljockey.com


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/liturgynybm


PORKY VAGINA - Bukkageddon CD review


PORKY VAGINA - Bukkageddon CD
Self Released
Genre: Gore Grind
Rating: 2/5

Just for the record this Polish band's release is available for free download at their label/blogspot. You might wanna consider that before you fork over the bucks for something which has songs like the opener "Analne Torsje" which translates into English as Anal Vomiting. It has an appropriate sound bite to start things off with. Then there's "Kupiłem psa w dywanie" which means I Bought a Dog in a Carpet, obviously they do have a sense of humor amidst all the gore and grind. Plus how many times has that happened to you after carpet shopping? Seriously you bring the carpet home, unroll it in the living room only to find a dead dog inside. Frankly that's happened way to many times if you ask me. Then there's "Swiniogwałt" and that means Pigrape which ain't so bad since one man's bestiality is another's masturbation. There are a few English titled cuts on here like the surf rocker "Cock'n'Roll" and a DAVYBOYS cover of "Heavy Metal Farmer" all gore grinded out. After the first listen I was thinking that not even the band; who are Gangbang Warrior on bass, Pig Fucker on vocals (if you wanna call what he does vocals) and Bukkake John on guitar and drums, takes themselves that seriously. Two members are also in a death metal band GRIND YOUR BRAIN so maybe this is a side project to relieve tension. I thought that's what the pig was for.


Label: http://porkyvagina.blog.pl/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/porkyvagina


BRUTALLY DECEASED - Dead Lovers' Guide CD review


BRUTALLY DECEASED - Dead Lovers' Guide CD
Lavadome Productions
Genre: Death Metal
Rating: 4/5

This Czech Republic death metal quartet not only takes their name from a GRAVE song off of their second release, You'll Never See, but to an extent they also take their brutal influences from them as well. They definitely sent this to the right person since I'm a big time GRAVE fan. I have more of their releases than any other early Swedish Death Metal act. BRUTALLY DECEASED are another young band whose love for OSDM has led them down the left hand path to recreate old school death metal in the early Swedish tradition. This originally came out in the dink format last year but their label is about to re-release it on vinyl. Therefore it's worthy for the Scumfeast Metal 666 review treatment. Whenever I hear these new bands reviving the spirit and traditions of the late 80's/early 90's Swedish DM sound I get a kick out of it. I've seen some people (re: idiots) pass their negative judgements on these types of bands. Not me, obviously, because good extreme music transcends generations and overly jaded opinions come from those people who were never into it in the first place.

BRUTALLY DECEASED are definitely perfect in their recreation of the old Sunlight sound. That at times can be a hindrance since sounding too close to the subject matter can quickly make it seem like you're a tribute band. Case in point, the last cut on this nine song release is a cover of DISMEMBER's “Override of the Overture”. The band does a spot on version which works well since it is the final song and if they fucked with it then there would be hell to pay. But still you are an OSDM band so if you're gonna do Swedish DM covers then save em for the live set. As for their originals, the drums on the opener "Lustful Sodomy in the House of God" sounded a little canned. Then again the production is just as raw as the early Swedes recorded back in the day. The speed and brutality grows more savage as the release proceeds which to me is always a plus. All in all BRUTALLY DECEASED do well in resurrecting memories of the past. Lets wait and see what their next release sounds like for a real judgement call.

Label: http://www.lavadome.org/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/brutallydeceasedband


FALLS OF RAUROS - The Light That Dwells In Rotten Wood CD review


FALLS OF RAUROS - The Light That Dwells In Rotten Wood CD
Bindrune Recordings
Genre: Avant Garde Black Metal
Rating: 3/5

Maine's FALLS OF RAUROS might not be a household name for most people into USBM but for those who like the genre's boundaries stretched to it's limits, they are. Formed on a cold winter's night in 2005 (well maybe not but it sounds good) the band slowly crept out of the North Appalachian woods one day to hand some stranger jogging down the road a CD to take back to the city. The year was 2006 and that CD was the band's first recording, the four song Window of the Eye demo and the rest is history. Ok that previous part was total bullshit but it definitely sounded cool like a folk legend. Besides if a jogger saw four guys coming out of the woods together the person would not immediately think they were a band. It is Maine you know.

The fact of the matter is that FALLS OF RAUROS truly are from Maine and their music is post black metal with melodic folk and orchestral elements added. They made a name for themselves back in 2006 with the release of their debut full length Into the Archaic. The release had that woodsy charm like latter day ULVER. Once bands like WOLVES IN THE THRONE ROOM and AGALLOCH started busting out the crescendos the search went out to find similar acts. By 2010 FALLS OF RAUROS were practically scene veterans with two full lengths out while hipsters were trying to figure out if AGALLOCH were a doom or black metal band. Here's some more knowledge for ya, Bindrune Recordings has slowly become the cool label to find avant garde type of music within the black and doom metal realms. FALLS OF RAUROS simply fits in like a glove.

As far as The Light That Dwells In Rotten Wood (by the way it's called fire) is a fairly melodic sounding release. They stick to a hypnotic treble induced post black metal that shuns anger but invites interspectiveness. You come to expect this from a band who takes their name from Tolkien's Lord of the Rings and are woodys from Maine. Although they could relocate to the Northwest and it wouldn't change a thing about em. It's avant garde folk and orchestral structured black metal, you either like it or not. I'm not so convinced with all of the over the edge non black metal aspects of it. The atmospherics of it are too lazy as if these guys smoke a lot of pot up in them there woods. I won't go as far to say this could be the soundtrack to the new Deliverance movie remake, set in Maine of course. When they keep things in the black it's decent otherwise this is mostly for the faint of heart.

Label: http://www.bindrunerecordings.com


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/fallsofrauros


Sorry No New Videos For This One So Here's Something From Their Previous Release.


CORPUS CHRISTII - Luciferian Frequencies CD review


CORPUS CHRISTII - Luciferian Frequencies CD
Candlelight Records
Genre: Black Metal
Rating: 5/5

It's been a while since this one man black metal act from Portugal put something new out. For the record 2008 and that was an EP on Agonia Records titled Carving a Pyramid of Thoughts. I'm sorry to say I never picked that one up. In fact the last CORPUS CHRISTII release I have is the Rising full length from 2007 which I thought was great. I wasn't alone on that opinion either. It seemed that even certain snobs in the metal media took a shine to Nocturnus Horrendus' (vocals and all instruments) creativity which was a surprise since they've always looked down their nose at Moribund bands. Who knows, maybe since the only other dark band outta Portugal, MOONSPELL, hasn't done anything exciting in a while they wanted to throw a bone. Whatever the case now CORPUS CHRISTII is on big time Candlelight Records, who reissued the Rising full length in 2008. Now that means instead of finding just one copy of their new release, which was once the case, you will see four or five copies in the record store bins. Yes that is a good thing if you still shop in stores for music. Besides there's another band which goes by the same name minus one "I" at the end who are polar opposites when it comes to religious philosophies. I laugh at the possibilities of mistaken purchases. Nocturnus Horrendus might be a satanist but I'm a sadist.

Luciferian Frequencies, the seventh full length by Nocturnus Horrendus is his best work, in my not so humble opinion, to date. It's pure unadulterated black metal which reminds me of some of the early, angry and Satanic bands of the French underground BM scene but with better production. Music wise it's blastbeats and tremolo picked riffs with no avant garde progression or watered down atmospheric time consuming passages. All the songs on here are relatively short with none going over the six minute mark. The uniqueness of all CORPUS CHRISTII's releases is of course Horrendus the vocalist. He screams, shouts, growls and even spits out the lyrics propelling himself to be a formidable opponent to anything holy. At times he even sounds like Atilla Csihar of MAYHEM. The final result is a release full of venomous disdain yet shrouded in a creepy darkness. The idea is for the listener to sit back and let the music conjure up the evils of your own imagination, which for me was easy. I'd say even the kvlt BMers will wanna grab this even though they hate Candlelight.

Label: http://www.candlelightrecords.co.uk/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/corpuschristii666


UNDEAD CREEP - The Ever-Burning Torch CD review


UNDEAD CREEP - The Ever-Burning Torch CD
Dark Descent Records
Genre: Death Metal
Rating: 4/5

Here's an band from Palermo, Sicily playing Death Metal as if they hailed from Sweden circa 1991. UNDEAD CREEP are part of the sweeping wave of new bands in the death metal world who are not bowing down to the progressive or mainstream watered down taste makers of the modern metal media. They are championing old school death metal as if it was an ancient religion. UNDEAD CREEP started back in 2009 which is right about when this whole old school death metal revival thing (OSDM for short) started to rear it's ugly head. That year the band released an amazing demo which has also been tacked onto the end of this their ten song debut full length. After first listening to The Ever-Burning Torch it's obvious that these guys take their influences from Swedish Death Metal legends DISMEMBER and ENTOMBED. Hey if you're going to follow the left hand path you might as well keep things authentic. UNDEAD CREEP do just that by displaying a menacing atmosphere on here that jumps right out at you at certain times while other instances it creeps up for the kill at a death doom pace. A detail on all the cuts is not needed since it's OSDM so you either like it or not, I like it.


Label: http://www.darkdescentrecords.com/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/undeadcreep666


TRIALS - Witness To The Downfall CD review


TRIALS - Witness To The Downfall CD
Self Released
Genre: Death Thrash
Rating: 2/5

In a field overflowing with sound alike bands Chicago's TRIALS are in for an uphill battle with their brand of Death Thrash Groove metal. This is what I always call Cable Metal referring to the stuff played on the local cable provider's Metal music channel. It could also be found on satellite metal radio channels as well. If their goal was to be mainstream sounding then hey they win. You've got the common screamed and clean vocal change offs which I really do hate. Musically their songs delve into MACHINEHEAD territory, who are a band I really do hate. While they try to stick with some heavy handed riffs as well as tech death time signatures TRIALS also accents a few cuts with full on melody plus a few acoustic moments. To me that's just an excuse for trying to stand out from the pack which in the long run makes them sound like wimps. I really do hate wimpy wannabe metal bands. Do these guys have those Hot Topic mall rat kiddie haircuts as well because I really do hate those too. OK I checked and they don't, lucky for them. After a few listens of this I wanna go to a mall and punch out a kid in a Hot Topic store. I could probably get arrested for that, going to a mall that is.

Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/trials


REIGN OF VENGEANCE - Disemboweling Swine CD review


REIGN OF VENGEANCE - Disemboweling Swine CD
Brain Damage Music
Genre: Brootal Death Metal
Rating: 3/5

This Scottsdale, Arizona act must have spent plenty of time watching gore horror films with the sound turned down while listening to copious amounts of MACABRE. Seconds into the opening title track I immediately thought of MACABRE and as it turned out this whole release is one big worship fest, albeit a bloody one, to MACABRE. Other than the previous worshipping scenario this band is also obsessed with murder. I thought Scottsdale, Arizona was a retirement community where senior citizens go to spend their final years in the dry heat. REIGN OF VENGEANCE makes the place sound like murder city. There's something to remember when I plan my retirement. As far as Disemboweling Swine goes this is mostly slow paced death metal sliced and diced in a brutal way or should I say "brootal" That and all of the eclectic elements; backing high pitched screams, jazzy bass soloing, clean vocal shouts, tossed in display the MACABRE influence. Once in a while they will show some GoreGrind speed, toss in a Deathcore breakdown or two but for the most part it's a slow ride. Overall it's like the sick twisted thoughts of some guy abandoned in the desert by enemies and he's thinking of all the horrible ways of vengeance he'll perform on them as well as all humanity if he lives long enough to get to civilization. Sounds like a great concept for an album and strangely enough Disemboweling Swine sounds some what conceptual. Unfortunately most of what this band does drags more ass than a Gila monster with an anvil tied to it's tail. Blood drains faster than the momentum this band displays on here, trust me I know. Also according to some recent promo info they're now looking for a new drummer. Hmmm I wonder what happened to their previous one? When you go out searching in the desert look for the buzzards circling, trust me I know about that too.

Label: http:www.BrainDamageMusic.com


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/ReignofVengeance


EXHUMED - All Guts No Glory CD review


EXHUMED - All Guts No Glory CD
Relapse Records
Genre: Death Metal/Gore Metal
Rating: 5/5

I must say it's been a good few years for Death Metal especially if you like things sounding old school and violent. This year seems to have pushed things over the top with some of the original dealers in destruction coming back to life to regain some significance in a genre that is running wild with new talent. First there was AUTOPSY with their long awaited comeback Macabre Eternal and now we have this. Although their "troo" fans will tell ya that EXHUMED are not Death Metal but are Gore Metal which is a hybrid of death, grind and thrash. Yes one could see the confusion and its true they pretty much are Gore Metal. So after a five year semi quiet period founder Matt Harvey (guitar/vocs) returns with his latest EXHUMED line-up incarnation featuring second oldest member bassist Leon del Muerte along with Wes Caley on guitar and Danny Walker on drums. Although Caley and Walker have been officially part of the band since 2003, and appeared on 2005's covers compilation, this is their first appearance on a full length release with all original material.

After a short intro instrumental title cut to get your blood pressure rising the holocaust of gore tinged ferocity begins and your knee deep in the shit. All Guts No Glory is a few seconds over thirty six minutes of grisly clinical fornication. Yes true believers not all old bands who return after a long hiatus turn pseudo industrial. Everything you remember from the past is back in full force and tighter. The release slowly builds upon the ferocity until finally at it's mid-point you're in face ripping country. The duel vocal attack of Harvey's high pitched screams and Muerte's low guttural growls run throughout. Early cuts like "As Hammer To Anvil" and "Your Funeral, My Feast" are slightly melodic in a brutal kind of way. Harvey's soloing again at times soars through you like piano wire cutting flesh with ease. It's the riffs which of course hold the most bludgeoning power propelled even further by talents of Walker's pounding drum work. "Distorted And Twisted To Form" and "I Rot Within" are the two best cuts on here which exemplify the intensity this band has returned with. Excellent.


Label: http://shop.relapse.com/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/exhumed

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

UNCLE ACID AND THE DEADBEATS - Blood Lust LP review


UNCLE ACID AND THE DEADBEATS - Blood Lust LP
Self Release
Genre: Psych Rock/Doom
Rating: 4/5

If you like the recent trend of bands who take their influences from late 60's Psych and then smothered em with Tony Iommi riffs then here's another. UNCLE ACID AND THE DEADBEATS are a three piece from the UK and they're about as secretive as it gets. The info on this band is pretty scarce (another trend of late) but what I do know is that their members go by the names Uncle Acid (Vocals, Guitar and Keyboards) Kat (Bass) and Red (Drums). This is also their second full length which only came out in very limited quantities. Welcome to the wonderful world of Psychedelic Rock meets Doom Metal again. Some people (re: idiots) are now calling all of this type of stuff "retro doom". Chances are they will get noticed by more than just the 355 people who like em on their Facebook profile page. I'd say Tee Pee Records should re-release this in mass quantities but who knows? Blood Lust is definitely worthy of some lava lamps, strobe lights and the intake of illegal substances. Uncle Acid was obviously in the top of his class when he (?) graduated from the Tony Iommi school of guitar. Hey it works on songs like the rhythmic "13 Candles", the haunting psych pop sounds of "Ritual Knife" and the opener "I'll Cut You Down" which literally does. So lets review here, in the early 80's we had the Paisley Underground movement most noticeably pushed by Bomp/Voxx records. In the 90's it was the return of 60's Garage Rock followed by the New Bohemian sound in the late 90s/early 2000s. Now in the past few years we've got Psych Rock meandering within Doom circles. Here's something a few people (re: idiots) might have forgotten, SABBATH killed the summer of love.


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/uncleacid


APOCRYPHON - Self Titled CDEP review


APOCRYPHON - Self Titled CDEP
Self release
Genre: Death Grind
Rating: 5/5

This came to me with the words "feel free to tear it to pieces if you don't dig it." Well I wouldn't go that far since this is the type of death grind which will tear anyone to pieces. Since their band name means "secret writing" I was expecting something out of the ordinary to make me question my beliefs in Extreme Metal. Question my beliefs, yeah right? Next thing ya know MORBID ANGEL will release a pseudo industrial record. Ah yeah well oops! Thankfully there's no new gospels on here to speak of. This four piece from San Francisco, CA are strictly go for the jugular gore grind with some experimental touches. In all four of those performance stations the individuals excel but I gotta give credit to their guitarist Shelby Lermo. Listening to his guitar prowess on these six cuts is like being beaten with something ugly and made of metal. Emphasis especially at the end of "Hidden Altars" with that sizzling in the frying pan type feedback along with the atmospheric blackened rhythms within "Synaesthesia". Another point of interest are the vocals which are lead by Peter Lamons but with added background violent screams by Lermo as well as bassist Jason Miller. It adds to the overall attack by taking this self titled release out of the typical genre box. These guys are tweaked and rock like crazy people. The drumming by Mike Jochimsen is also out of the box worthy since he's adding choice fills within the trigger frameworks. Along with the death grind the band experiments with some psych elements added like garnish on introductions to cuts like "Psychedelic Warrior" and "Synaesthesia". Unpredictable is a perfect word for describing APOCRYPHON since they have created something so interesting to listen to. You listen something this good and wonder why the major labels are releasing childish crap. Other writers would probably find elements within here where they could name drop classic band names from the past. I think those past greats need to sit up and look at what they helped create with their influence. APOCRYPHON are the next big thing in Death Grind.


Bandcamp: http://apocryphon.bandcamp.com/

Thursday, July 14, 2011

VOICE OF RUIN - Self Titled CD review


VOICE OF RUIN - Self Titled CD
Heimathome Records
Genre: Deathcore/Thrash
Rating: 4/5

I like it when a band starts off their release by simply attacking the listener. You push play and without any warning or atmospheric opening the music hits you like a runaway truck. Next you have a singer who is simply screaming in your face. That's what it's like on this band's opener "Dependances", plus the guy is screaming at you in French so it's even better. VOICE OF RUIN are actually from Switzerland and the opening cut is the only one sung in French, the rest are in English. Also along with screams and angry yet clean vocals their singer also adds plenty of animalistic death grunting. These damm Swiss are pissed and crushing as well. VOICE OF RUIN's sound is running around in a mosh pit of Deathcore and Thrash grooves. Songs like "Show Your Respect", "Win or Die" and my favorite "Free Hate" make it clear what their musical intentions are and how it's supposed to influence the listener. After I finished blasting this the first time I then went next door and punched out my neighbor. So does the world of Extreme Metal need another At the Breakdown type of band? Sure why not since they sound better than their contemporaries here in the US. Their music is brutality with the complexity of a baseball bat wrapped with barbed wire which they beat you with. Then again that could be the riffs pummeling you into the floor. VOICE OF RUIN seem to have found that niche where they supply enough death thrash to overcome the generic "core" type elements which bog down bands in this genre. "My Obsession" is a perfect example of the effect. Dance with your fists up to this one.


Label: http://heimathomerecords.com/


Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/voiceofruin