Monday, September 1, 2014

Bereft/Lost Ages/Silent Pendulum Records/2014 Vinyl Review


  Bereft  are  a  band  from  Wisconsin  that  plays  an  atmospheric  mixture  of  post  black  metal  and  doom  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2014  album  "Lost  Ages"  which  will  be  released  by  Silent  Pendulum  Records.

  A  very  dark  and  atmospheric  ambient  sound  starts  off  the  album  and  after  a  couple  of  minutes  the  music  starts  to  get  a  lot  more  heavy  and  goes  for  more  of  a  doom  metal  sound  before  going  into  a  very  fast  and  raw  black  metal  direction  along  with  some  blast  beats  and  high  pitched  screams  and  all  of  the  musical  instruments  on  the  recording  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them.

  There  is  a  good  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  throughout  the  recording  along  with  a  great  amount  of  melody  and  after  awhile  more  post  metal  elements  can  be  heard  in  the  bands  musical  sound  and  that  influence  has  a  very  dominant  presence  in  the  leads  that  band  utilizes  and    clean  playing  can  also  be  heard  in  certain  sections  of  the  recording  and  most  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length.

  On  some  of  the  tracks  there  are  some  sections  where  clean  singing  vocals  are  utilized  and  the  slower  sections  have  more  of  a  dominant  doom  metal  feeling  to  them  and  the  band  also  brings  in  elements  of  sludge  into  the  vocals  and  mixes  it  in  with  the  black  metal  screams  and  as  the  album  progresses  the  ambient  sounds  make  a  return  and  there  are  also  a  small  amount  of  spoken  word  parts  are  added  into  the  music  before  making  a  return  back  to  a  heavier  direction  on  the  following  track  while  also  adding  in  a  small  amount  of  synths.

  Bereft  takes  the  rawness  and  aggression  of  black  metal  with  the  fast  parts,  the  heaviness  and  darkness  of  sludge  and  doom  metal  in  the  slower  sections  and  the  melody  of  post  metal  along  with  some  elements  of  ambient  music  to  create  a  sound  their  own,  the  production  has  a  very  dark  and  raw  sound  while  the  lyrics  cover  religion,  politics,  social  injustice  and  the  human  condition.

  In  my  opinion  Bereft  are  a  very  great  sounding  mixture  of  post  black  metal  and  doom  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  those  musical  genres,  you  should  check  out  this  band.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Lost  Ages"  and  "Lost".  8  OUT  OF  10.      

Jute Gyte/Ressentiment/Jeshimoth Entertainment/2014 CD Review


  Missouri's  1  man  band  Jute  Gyte  has  returned  with  a  new  recording  that  continues  his  experimental  approach  to  black  metal  and  this is  a  review  of  his  2014  album  "Ressentiment"  which  was  released  by  Jeshimoth  Entertainment.

  A  very  fast  and  raw  black  metal  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  blast  beats  and  grim  vocals  as  well  as  the  guitars  having  more  of  a  weird  approach  to  this  genre  and  a  few  seconds  later  distorted  guitar  leads  are  added  into  the  music  and  after  awhile  the  music  starts  incorporating  more  avant  garde  and  experimental  elements  as  well  as  adding  in  some  influences  from  industrial  and  ambient.

  All  of  the  musical  instruments  on  the  recording  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  along  with  all  of  the  tracks  being  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  there  is  also  a  good  mixture  of  clean  and  heavy  parts  with  the  cleaner  sections  bringing  in  a  very  progressive  approach  to  the  music  with  more  of  a  tripped  out  approach  and  you  can also hear  elements  of  noise  in  the  music  at  times  and  the  heavier  parts  also  bring  in  a  good  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts.

  One  one  of  the  tracks  you  can  hear  some  doom  metal  being  added  into  the  guitar  riffing  while  the  main  focus  remains  more  on  an  experimental  black  metal  sound  which  also  has  a  microtonal  feeling  along  with  a  great  amount  of  polyrhythm's  and  as  the  album  progresses  the  elements  of  black  metal  start  bringing  in  a  more  approach  while  the  music  also  remains  progressive  and  experimental  at  the  same  time.

  Jute  Gyte  creates  another  very  original  and  experimental  black  metal  recording  with  this  new  album  as  well  as  showing  a  great  amount  of  progress  with  the  music  and  this  recording  sounds  a  lot  more  different  than  anything  he  has  released  in  the  past,  the  production  has  a  very  powerful  sound  while  the  lyrics  cover  mortality,  philosophy,  nature  and  war.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Jute  Gyte  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  project,  you  should  enjoy  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "The  Central  Fires  of  Secret  Memory"  and  "The  Grey  King".  8  out  of  10.    

      

Friday, August 29, 2014

Fagus Sylvatica/Ishtadeva Vinyl Productions/CD Compilation Vol. 1/2014 Review


  This  is  a  review  of  a  compilation  album  called  "Fagus  Sylvatica"  which was  released  by  Ishtadeva  Vinyl  Productions  in  2014  and  is  the  first volume  in  a  series  which  also  consists  of  Spanish  black  metal  bands  and  we  will  review  each  song  one  by  one.

  Lux  Divina  starts  off  the  compilation  with  "Fagus  Sylvatica"  a  song  that  starts  out  with  some  folk  style  acoustic  guitars  before  going  into  more  of  a  slow  and  atmospheric  black  metal  direction  along  with  a  mixture  of  melodic  vocals  and  grim  screams  which  leads  up  to  more  of  a  fast  and  raw  direction  along  with  some  blast  beats  while  also  keeping  around  the  acoustic  guitars  and  clean singing  in  certain  sections  of  the  track

  Next  up  is Foscor  with  "Ghost  Sonata"  a  song  that  starts  out  with  some  melodic  leads  and  chanting  vocals  before  adding  in  grim  black  metal  screams  and  raw  yet  melodic riffing  and  the  song  also  brings  in  a  good  amount  of  clean  singing  vocals  and  the  song  after  awhile  starts  getting  a  bit  more  faster  at  times.

  Next  up  is  Akerbeltz  with  "Spider  From  The  Depths"  a  song  that  starts  out  very  slow  and  dark  before  going  into  more  of  a  mid  paced  and  raw  black  metal  direction  along  with  some  grim screams  and  after  awhile  the  song  starts  to  speed  up and  add  in  some  blast  beats  and  the  track  is  over  7  minutes  in  length.

  Next  up  is  Ataraxy  with  "Demons  Of  The  Storm"  a  song  that  starts  out  in  more  of  a  slow  black  metal  direction  along  with  some  dark  sounding  melodies  which  leads  up  to  some  deep  screams  being  added  into  the  track  as  well  as  speeding  up,  adding  in  blast  beats  and  elements  of  death  metal  and  after  awhile  the  music  slows  down  and  adds  in  more  atmospheric  sounds.

  Next  up  is  Animus  Mortis  with  "Dying  Murmur"  which  starts  out  very  low  and  dark  before  going  into  a  faster  direction  along  with  some  blast  beats  and  grim  black  metal  screams  a  few  seconds  later  and  there  are  also  some  deep  growls  present  in  the  song  at  times  as  well  as  a  small  amount  of  melodic  leads  and  the  songs  gets  more  mid  paced  and  atmospheric  towards  the  end.

  Next  up  is  Ered  with  "Wings  Of  Plague"  which  starts  out  with  a  very  fast  and  raw  black/death  metal  sound  and  blast  beats  before  adding  in  grim  screams  and  dark  sounding  melodies  which  also  takes  the  music  into  a  more  slow  and  melodic  direction  while  also  still  having  its  fast  moments.

  Next  up  is  Celestial  Season  with  "Together  In  Solitude"  which  starts  out  with  a  very  slow  and  atmospheric  some  metal  direction  along  with  some  violins  and  death  metal growls  adding  some  variety  to  a  compilation  that  is  mostly  black  metal  with  an  old  school  doom/death  metal  track  and  after  awhile  melodic  leads  and  riffing  are  added  into  the  music.

  Next  up is  Perennial  Isolation  with  "Over  The  Sea"  which  starts  out  with  acoustic  guitars  before  going  into  a  more  heavier  and  melodic  direction  along  with  some  depressive  and  grim  black  metal  screams  and  after  a  couple  of  minutes  the  music  starts  to  speed  up  a  bit  and  bring  in  a  small  amount  of  blast  beats  as  well  a s mixing  the  clean  and  heavier  parts  together  and  spoken  word  parts  can  also  be  heard  in  the  music  briefly.

  Next  up  is  Atman  with  "El  Pic  de  I'Infern"  which  starts  out  with  a  very  fast  and  raw  black  metal  sound  along  with  some  blast  beats  and  a  few  seconds  later  high  pitched  and  grim  screams  are  added  into  the  song  and  after  awhile  the  song  starts  utilizing  a  good  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts.    

  Next  up  is  Oujia  with  "The  Serpent  Calls  Me"  which  starts  out  with  a  very  fast  and  melodic  black  metal  sound  along  with  some  blast  bears  before  adding  in  some  grim  screams  a  few  seconds  later  and  after  awhile  the  music  starts  to  slow  down  in  certain  sections  of  the  song  as  well  as  bringing  in  a  small  amount  of  solos  and  leads  along  with  a  brief  use  of  chants.

  Next  up  is  Empty  with  "The  House  Of  Funerary  Winds"  which  starts  out  with  some  acoustic  guitars  and  background  grim  chanting  and  after  a  minute  the  music  gets  heavier  and  the  vocals  evolve  into  depressive  black  metal  screams  and  you  can  also  hear  some  melodic  cries  in  the  song  at  times.

  Next  up  is  Nyctophobia  with  "The  Will  Of  Darkness"  which  starts  out  with  acoustic  guitars  before  adding  in  spoken  word  parts  a  few  seconds  later  and  after  a  minute  the  music  gets  more  heavier  and  melodic  as  well  as  speeding  up,  adding  in  blast  beats  and  grim  black  metal  screams  and  the  song  also  brings  in  a  good  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts.

  Next  up  is  Amnion  with  "In  Sarna  We  Trust"  which  starts  out  with  a  very  slow,  dark  and  melodic  black  metal  sound  and  a  few  seconds  later  the  music  starts  going  into  a  more  fast  and  raw  musical  direction  along  with  some  blast  beats  and  after awhile  elements  of  thrash  metal  are  added  into  the  track  along  with  some  grim  screams  as  well  as  adding  some  melodic  style  vocals  for  a  few  seconds  which  leads  up  to  a  brief  solo  being  added  into  the  track.

  Closing  the  compilation  is  Spellcraft  with  "Alone  In  The  Eternity"  which  starts  out  with  grim s creams  and  a  very  fast,  raw  and  black  metal  sound  along  with  some  blast  beats  before  adding  in  a  thrash  influence  into  their  fast  and  melodic  approach  to  black  metal  and  the  band  also  brings  in  a  good  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  as  well  as  a  brief  use  of  classical  guitars  before  returning  back  to  a  heavier  musical  direction

  In  conclusion  I  feel  this  is  a  very  great  sounding  compilation  and  I  would  recommend  it  to  all  fans  of  Spanish  black  metal.  8  out  of  10.  
    

Rimrunna/Frostbann/2014 CD Review


  Rimrunna  are  a  duo  from  Germany  that  plays  a  very  raw  and  cold  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  self  released  2014  album  "Frostbann".

  Dark  nature  sounds  and  acoustic  guitars  start  off  the  album  bringing  in  both  finger  picking  and  full  chords  along  with  some  elements  of  folk  music  and  after  the  intro  the  music  starts  going  for  more  of  a  mid  paced  old  school  black  metal  sound  before  speeding  up,  adding  in  blast  beats  and  high  pitched  grim  screams.

  There  is  a  good  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  present  throughout  the  recording  and  most  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  some  of  the  songs  also  shows  the  band  adding  in  a  small  amount  of  clean  playing,  acoustic  guitars,  and  melodies  in  certain  sections  of  the  recording  which  also  brings  more  of  a  medieval  atmosphere  to  the  bands  musical  sound.

  Bass  guitars  have  a  very  dominant  presence  on  certain  parts  of  the  recording  and  most  of  the  tracks  focus  on  a  more  of  a  raw,  grim  and  forest  style  of  black  metal  that  is  heavily  rooted  in  the  European  tradition  of  the  mid  90's  and  they  avoid  any  use  of  solos  and  leads  to  focus  more  on  a  true,  raw  and  atmospheric  black  metal  sound  and  they  close  the  album  with  another  acoustic  instrumental.

  Rimrunna  brings  in  a  very  dark,  raw  and  grim  approach  to  their  old  school  style  of  black  metal  bringing  in  10  minute  tracks  with  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  which  makes  the  music  has  more  of  a  90's  feeling,  the  production  sounds  very  dark,  raw  and  old  school  while  the  lyrics  are  written  in  German  and  cover  nature  and  coldness.

  In  my  opinion  Rimrunna  are  a  very  great  sounding  raw  and  old  black  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  recording.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Frostbann"  "Winters  Macht"  and  "Die  Sage  vom  ewigen  Eis".  8  out  of  10.
        

Fordarv/Between The Eternities/Nigredo Records/2014 CD Review


  Fordarv  are  a  band  from  Sweden  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  and  plays  a very  raw  and  old  school  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review of  their  2014  album  "Between  The  Eternities"  which  was  released  by  Nigredo  Records.

  A  very  nature  orientated  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  some  clean  playing  or  few  seconds  later  which  leads  to  the  music  getting  more  heavier  and  going  for  a  raw  black  metal  sound  along  with  fast  riffing,  blast  beats  and  grim  screams  and  the  musical  style  is  heavily  rooted  in  the  90's  ear  of  Norwegian  black  metal.

  After  awhile  the  music  starts  using  a  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  along  with  a  small  amount  of  melody  and  deep  growls  and  they  also  bring  in  a  couple  of  long  and  epic  in  length  tracks  and  the  vocals  also  start  getting  more  high  pitched  as  time  goes  on  by  and  the  bass  guitars  also  have  a  very  powerful  sounding  presence  on  some  of  the  tracks.

  All  of  the  songs  sound  like  they  could  of  been  released  in  the  90's  with  the  music  being  purely  black  metal  and  none  of  the  modern  and  watered  down  elements  of  modern  black  metal  can  be  heard  in  their  musical  sound    and  they  also  avoid  solos  and  leads  which  makes  the  music  have  more  a  raw  and  very  approach  to  black  metal  and  on  the  last  track  nature  sounds  and  clean  guitars  make  a  return  for  a  few  brief  moments  before  returning  back  to  a  heavier  musical  direction.

  Fordarv  remains  true  to  their  raw  and  old  school  approach  to  black  metal  creating  an  album  that  is  very  aggressive  from  beginning  to  end  of  the  recording  as  well  as  evoking  a  very  dark  and  grim  atmosphere  to  create  a  pure  form  of  black  metal,  the  production  sounds  very  raw  and  old  school  while  the  lyrics  cover  Philosophy,  Occultism  and  Mythology.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Fordarv  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  raw  and  old  school  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Darkness  Of  The  Eternal  Winter"  and  "As  Life  Turns  Black".  8  out  of  10.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Endzeit Interview

1.For these that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?

There is really not that much to tell. Endzeit was incepted in the end of 2012 as a project by me (Polaris) together with Jarkko who was to take over vocals and participate in the whole concept of the band. Unfortunately due to personal reasons Jarkko could not make it, but luckily he is not out completely: he did the whole artwork. And here two people need to be thanked as well: Susa Dosa for the band photos, and Stefan Johnson for the Detroit photos.

But be that as it may, Schwarz joined Endzeit in early 2014 during the recordings of ‘Years of Hunger’ to take over vocals and second guitars. Luckily, Lahti is a pretty music-filled town and Profane Omen’s Samuli joined Endzeit on drums while Pyry of Mörbid Vomit has taken over bass duties.

2.You have an ep coming out in September, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording?

I guess, that’s a pretty obvious one: black metal. We added 'raw apocalyptic' to the black metal label as it is a raw sound with apocalyptic content.

3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?



4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Endzeit'?

I think question 3 and 4 can be answered together. ‘Endzeit’ is the German word for apocalypse or literally translated into end-time. Since I’m German I connect a very mythical and somewhat religious connotation to that word. The name, music and lyrics are inspired by the decay I saw when I visited Detroit in early 2013. It deeply moved me to see how capitalism has failed, how people live in the rubble of burnt down buildings, how anarchic structures – no, that’s not a contradiction – have found their way into the lives of people. And the government does too little to help them. It is a very disturbing sight to drive through the ‘food deserts’, the places where there are no supermarkets anymore within several miles, and to see empty and decaying buildings where once was laughter and joy. And in the middle of that “haggard human shadows, pallid and hollow” – as our song ‘Godless’ describes.
All this is combined with an atheistic worldview –at least for myself. The lyrics I wrote together with Schwarz, so I can’t answer for him if he’d subscribe to that statement. We also included the abandonment of any good god, if you will. Instead, the people that live in this apocalyptic world do not see their god protect or help them anymore and a child which is born is indeed born into the land of Satan. The child, which is described in “Life?”, is motherless. Some kind of Jesus-like figure. It could be the son of god or the son of Satan. Who knows…

5.Has the band done any live shows or has this been a studio project so far?

No, not yet. But we are planning to play our first gig in Detroit at next year’s Foul Winter Festival. A little black metal festival for underground bands. Above mentioned Stefan is one of the organizers and a good friend of mine, so if we manage to get the money arranged, we’ll head over there and give the energy Detroit has given to us back to the city.

6.Currently you are unsigned, are you looking for a label or have received any interest?

Yes, we are unsigned and don’t have any money for physical copies or promotion, so a label that would make tape or vinyl copies would be awesome. Of course, CDs are also more than welcome, to say the least! We have sent the record to two labels only and not heard back yet, but let’s see what happens.

7.On the ep you had a Dark Funeral cover, what was the decision behind doing your own version of one of their songs?

Yes, Dark Funeral’s “Secrets of the black arts” is one of my favourite black metal albums and “The dawn no more rises” one of the best black metal songs of all time for me. Since it also touches upon the Endzeit narrative of a post-apocalyptic world in its lyrics, playing our own version of the song was an obvious choice.

8.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal that have heard it so far?

That’s too early to say. Your review is the first and for now only one and that has been very positive!

9.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
New songs are written and they are in the same vein as the songs on “Years of Hunger”. So expect more black metal.

10.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

For now I’ve been the only songwriter and my musical spectrum is very wide. But for Endzeit I used the black metal influences of the time when I grew up – the 1990s. I would consider myself a black metaller anyways. What do I listen to nowadays… everything that is hard, dark and creative. I, together with some friends, run a little zine called Vendetta Metal Magazine, so we get a lot of different metal from all over the world. I’m not interested in any bigger bands really. The global underground metal scenes are amazingly diverse and extremely interesting, so I personally tend to ignore the mainstream and focus on the tiny bands. And that’s what I listen to in everyday life.

11.What are some of your non musical interests?

Educating myself. Through books, through life, through people. The world is a complex entity and everybody who comes up with generalizing and simplifying statements about people, regions or contexts should really ask him/herself: is the world really that simple?

12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words o thoughts?

Thoughts I have plenty but I’m not able to or don’t want to share them with you. ;-) My final words are: thank you very much for your support! Very much appreciated!
  

The Furor/Impending Revelation/2014 CD Review



  The  Furor  are  a  1  man  band  from  Australia  that  plays  a  very  raw  and  brutal  mixture  of  black,  death  and  war  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  his  self  released  2014  album  "Impending  Revelation".

  A  very  dark,  evil  and  atmospheric  sounding  synth  starts  off  the  album  before  going  into  a  more  melodic  and  heavier  musical  direction  which  also  brings  in  leads,  growls  and  screams  setting  up  the  mood  for  more  of  a  black/death  metal  direction  and  when  the  blast  beats  kick  in  they  invoke  the  sounds  of  war.

  The  solos  and  leads  that  are  utilized  on  the  album  are  in  an  old  school  and  chaotic  extreme  metal  direction  and  there  is  also  a  good  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  the  music  brings  back  a  lot  of  the  early  to  mid  90's  Australian  style  war  metal  sound  back  and  at  time s you  can  also  hear  a  great  amount  of  thrash  elements  in  certain  sections  of  the  recording.

  After  awhile  the  solos,  leads  and  riffs  start  utilizing  more  melody  and  after  being  very  heavy  and  brutal  for  a  long  time  on  one  of  the  tracks  the  music  calms  down  for  a  few  seconds  before  adding  even  more  brutality  as  well  as  mixing  in  a  small  amount  of  atmosphere  on  the  next  couple  of  tracks  while  the  rest  of  the  recording  remains  in  a  raw,  brutal  and  chaotic  musical  direction  and  there  is  also  a  cover  of  Slayer's  "Show  No  Mercy"  towards  the  end  of  the  recording.

  The  Furor  takes  the  rawest,  heaviest  and  most  brutal  elements  of  black,  death,  war  and  thrash  metal  and  combines  them  together  to  create  on  of  the  heaviest  sounding  recordings  to  be  released  so  far  this  year,  the  production  has  a  very  strong,  powerful  and  heavy  sound  while  the  lyrics  cover  darkness  and  occult  themes.

  In  my  opinion  The  Furor  are  a  very  great  sounding  mixture  of  black,  death  and  war  metal  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  those  musical  genres,  you  should  check  out  this  project.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Hammer  Hierarchy"  "Corpse  Eclipse"  "Black  Sorcerer  Of  Sadism"  and  "The  Pentagram  Prevails".  8  out  of  10.