Thursday, March 5, 2015

Terra Interview

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

Ryan: We formed last year when I convinced Luke to play drums for us because I'd got a gig for the band but no drummer, also Olly was in Australia so I forced him to come back which only gave us a month to prepare for said gig. Somehow it all went really well and we've managed to put together an album in this short space of time.

Olly: Me and Ryan have been trying to make music together for about a decade! From failed grind-core projects to many different iterations of a Black Metal band. After a hiatus of a couple of years Ryan got back in touch with me asking if I was willing to play bass for his new project. I agreed on the condition that he found a drummer willing to learn huge songs: Enter Luke. One month later we had a band!

2.You have a new album coming out, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording?

Ryan: It's pretty relentless, I kind of went at it taking aspects I liked of Drone and infused it with Black Metal. It wasn't something I'd heard done often so it was kind of a way to scratch an itch for me as I was craving something heavy yet with a hypnotic feel.

Olly: I would describe it as Atmospheric Black Metal. There are many dark elements but also plenty of more upbeat melodies by way of contrast.

3.I have seen the band being labeled as cascadian black metal and when i think of that term I think of bands from the Northwestern areas of the U.S and Canada, does the band embrace the term or is that something that the media has tagged you as?

Ryan: Whilst I can see why we get that as I am a fan of a lot of the bands from that scene, I wouldn't really say it's representative of who we are. Equally we get tagged as DSBM sometimes and I hate to admit we had to look up what that was.

Olly: I had never heard the term before people told me that's what I was playing. We are also described as DSBM a lot, having looking into the genre I can see where people are coming from with that one! But we have no specific sub-genre affiliation, we are just trying to make music that we enjoy.

Ryan: Yeah, I think Black metal might be as far as I'd be willing to go down the sub-genre rabbit hole. We just make music for ourselves and if other people like what we do then all the better.


4.What are some of the themes and images the band brings out with its musical style?

Ryan: I like to to be intentionally vague in terms of themes for the music, I leave that open to interpretation of the listener and let them let them form their own impression rather than imposing it on them.

Olly: The music is certainly open to interpretation. In my opinion it is rooted in nature however if someone else hears our music a different way, that's cool too.

5.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Terra'?

Ryan: Terra is Latin for Earth, I've always lived out in the countryside and as such nature is all around and a constant source of inspiration so it seemed appropriate.


6.What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and also how would you describe your stage performance?

Ryan: I think our favourite as a band was our first gig down in London supporting Sonance, we were the oddball band on that bill supporting a bunch of fantastic Doom bands, it was a great gig and somehow we went over really well with that crowd.

Olly: I would have to agree with Ryan about the Sonance show, the lineup was so solid it was quite intimidating to open the bill. Another favourite was supporting Old Corpse Road. Sidious were brought in as a replacement and totally smashed it. They were really cool to hang out with too, I hope our paths cross again sometime.

7.Do you have any touring or show plans once the new album is released?

Ryan: We've got a few things lined up but nothing major, we love playing live so we're always looking for shows to play.

Olly: Luke tends to look after this side of things, because he's much better at it than either of us. I certainly hope we get to play out loads more supporting this album.

8.The new album is coming out on Hibernacula, are you satisfied with the support they have given you so far?

Ryan: We're really appreciative for them to have taken us on board for our first album. We were approached by the owner after a gig, for him to take a chance on such a new band is really awesome of them.

9.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of atmospheric black metal?

Olly: The album hasn't been released yet so there aren't loads of reviews at the moment, however the early feedback we have received has been very positive.

Ryan: I've had some great feedback from people who aren't even into Black Metal so that's kind of interesting, we also get some great responses from people at shows which is always great to hear people are digging what we do.

10.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

Olly: We're already working on some new ideas and are hoping to spend more time working on new material together as a band. The only thing I can say for certain at this stage is it's sounding heavy as fuck!

Ryan: I'd not like to restrict where we might go and what we might do in the future by predicting it at this early stage, I'm sure it'll be heavy though.

11.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?

Ryan: I've a broad set of influences, a lot of the early black metal pioneers have influenced my writing of course; 'Hvis lyset tar oss' and 'Nattens madrigal' are particularly inspirational. I also find the modern American black metal scene is especially interesting these days. Outside of this I'm fairly open to what I listen to, if I like it I'll listen to it, I don't particularly stick to any specific genres. I like to think listening to a wide selection of music has a positive impact of the creative process as well.

Olly: Im a total fan of the classics as far as Black metal is concerned give me Mayhem, Darkthrone, Burzum, Emperor etc. and I'll be happy as a clam. Im also heavily into dark drum and bass, Hardcore and other extreme electronic styles. Guys like The Outside Agency, Switch Technique and Current Value influence my playing more then you would think.


12.What are some of your non musical interests?

Olly: That's a really good question, I mean I work in music and spend much of my spare time working on music. Computer games and getting hammered I suppose!

Ryan: I like to run, being out in the countryside and away from civilization for a while is particularly cathartic.

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

Olly: Clam

Ryan: Thanks for reading and checking us out.

Astarium/Chthonian Miasma/Narcoleptica Productions/2015 Single Review


  This  is  the  final review  of  a  recording  from  Astarium  for  now  which  shows  a  return  back  to  a  symphonic  black  metal  sound  with  the  single  being  called  "Cthronian  Miasma"  which  was  released  by  Narcoleptica  Productions.

  A  very  melodic  guitar  lead  and  symphonic  synths  start  off  the  single  along  with  a  good  mixture  of  grim  black  metal  screams  and  spoken  word  parts  and  the  music  also  bring s in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  the  song  is  divided  into  2  chapters  along  with  all  of  the musical  instruments  sounding  powerful  and  the  second  part  displays  more  of  a  raw  side.

  Asterium  creates  a  very  grim  approach  to  symphonic  black  metal  with  this  single  while  also  adding  in  more  powerful  guitar  leads  and  bass,  the  production  sounds  very  powerful  while  the  lyrics  focus  on  dark  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Astarium  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  symphonic  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  single.  8  out  of  10.    

  

Astarium/Reverie/Ratten im Gemauer/2015 Demo Review


  This  is  a  review  of  another  recording  from  Astarium  with  the  song  being  a  50  minute  long  track  that  combines symphonic  black  metal,  dark  ambient  and  neo-classical  with  the  demo  being  called  "Reverier"  and  released  by  Ratten  in  Gemauer".

  Nature  sounds  start  off  the  demo  along  with  some  atmospheric  dark  ambient  synths  a  few  seconds  later  and  after  a  couple  of  minutes  spoken  word  parts  can  be  heard  in  the  background  at  times  and  as  the  song  progresses  more  distorted   guitars  find  their  way  into  the  track  which  also  bring  in  dark  sounding  melodies  at  times.

  At  times  the  music  has  a  depressive  black  metal  feeling  while  the  spoken  give  the  song  more  of  a  ritualistic  feeling  and  after  awhile  the  synths  also  start  bringing  in  more  of  a  symphonic  atmosphere   while  still  not  as  dominant  as  the  previous  recordings  and  the  whole  song  remains  true  to  a  very  slow  musical  direction.

  Astarium  creates  more  of  an  epic  50  minute  song  with  this  recording  staying  away  from  the more  symphonic  or  raw  sides  of  black  metal  that  where  a  part  of  previous  recordings  and  he  creates  a  song  that  is  more  in  the  dark  ambient  and  neo  -classical  direction  while  still  having  some  black  metal  elements  and  ritualistic  spoken  word  parts,   the  production  sounds  very  powerful  while  the  lyrics  focus  more  on  a  dark  concept.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Astarium  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  dark  ambient,  drone,  black  metal  and  neo  classical,  you  should  check  out  this  demo.  8  out  of  10.    

Astarium/Nekrocosmo: Demiurge/Margin Art Records/2014 EP Review


  This  is  a  review  of  another  recording  from  Astarium  who  continues  his  raw  and  symphonic  black  metal  sound  of  previous  recordings  with  the  ep  being  released  in  2014  by  Margin  Art  Records  and  called  "Nekrocosmo:  Demiurge".

  A  very  dark,  atmospheric  and  symphonic  sound  starts  off  the  ep  along  with  some  heavy  guitars  in  the  background  which  also  get  more  powerful  as  the  music  progresses  and  after  the  intro  the  music  starts  incorporating  more  melody  and  avant  garde  elements  and  also  mix  in  with  the  symphonic  parts  along  with  grim  screams  being  added  onto  the  recording.

  Synths  on  this  recording  have  more  of  a  modern  and  epic  atmosphere  than  the  previous  recording  reviewed    and  the  solos  and  leads  also  remain  true  to  a  melodic  musical  direction  and  the  spoken  word  parts  also  have  a  grim  feeling  to  them  and  all  of  the  songs  stick  to  a  slow  to  mid  paced  musical  direction  and  bring  in  a  heavy  Norwegian  black  metal  influence  and  there  is  also  an  instrumental  song  before  the  ep  closes  with  a  vocal  track  which  is  alos  very  long  and  epic  in  length.

  Astarium  creates  more  of  a  modern  and  epic  style  of  symphonic  black  metal  on  this  recording  and  focus  less  on  the  raw  and  lo-fi  sound  of  earlier  material  to  create  something  very  dark  and  melodic,  the  production  sounds  very  powerful  while  the  lyrics  cover  darkness,  cosmos  and  astral  projection  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Astarium  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  epic  and  symphonic  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  ep.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Golem"  and  "Obsessed  By  Astral  Hunger".  8  out  of  10.  

Astarium/Atenvx/Hell Division Productions/2013 Cassette Review


  Astarium  are  a  1  man  band  from  Russia  that  plays  a  very  raw  and  symphonic  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  his  2013  album  "Atenvx"  which  was  released  by  Hell  Division  Productions.

  Nature  sounds  start  off  the  album  along  with  some  distorted  yet  melodic  guitars  and  symphonic  synths  and  all  of  the  musical  instruments  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  after  the  intro  the  music  starts  to  speed  up  a  bit  and  add  in  more  of  a  raw  style  of  black  metal  along  with  some  blast  beats  and  grim  screams.

  The  symphonic  side  also  mixes  in  with  the  raw  side  along  with  the  vocals  getting  very  deep  at  times  and  the  songs  also  bring  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  the  music  focuses  more  on  a  90's  style  of  black  metal  and  on  a  later  track  the  nature  sound s of  the  intro  also  returning  briefly  along  with  the  synths  giving  the  music  more  of  a  darker  atmosphere  and  the  album  closes  with  an  instrumental  track.

  Astarium  goes  back  to  an  era  where  black  metal  band s still  mixed  in  raw  guitars  with  symphonic  sounds  before  the  later  mentioned  turned  all  mainstream  and  all  of  the  songs  sound  like  they  could  easily  be  mistaken  for  a  demo  from  92,  the  production  sounds  very  dark  and  lo-fi  while  the  lyrics  cover  Darkness,  Eternity,  Death,  Hell  and  Mythology  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Astarium  are  a  very  great  sounding  raw  and  symphonic  black  metal  project  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Howl  To  The  Curst"  "Lycanthropy  Seal"  and  "Realm  Of  Nykta".  8  out  of  10.


Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Heaven Abhorred/Opening The Gates/SixSixSix Music/2015 EP Review


  Heaven  Abhorred  are  a  band  from  Pennsylvania  that  plays  a  very  raw  and  blasphemous  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2015  ep  "Opening  The  Fates"  which  was  released  by  SixSixSix  Music.

  A  very  dark  and  melodic  guitar  lead  which  also  make  their  return  on  some  of  the  later  tracks  starts  off  the  ep  which  also  gives  the  recording  more  of  a  doom  metal  feeling  and  after  a  minute  grim  black  metal  screams  are  added  into  the  music  which  also  get  deep  at  times  and  add  in  a  touch  of  death  metal  and  after  the  intro  the  music  speeds  up  and  brings  in  more  of  a  fast  and  raw  black  metal  sound.

  You  can  hear  a  lot  of  90's  influences  in  the  bands  musical  style  along  with  a  few  blast  beats  being  utilized  at  times  and  all  of  the  musical  instruments  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  on  some  of  the  later  tracks  growls  make  their  return  at  times  along  with  some  thrash  elements  being  added  into  some  of  the  riffs  while  the  main  focus  remains  more  on  a  raw  and  old  school  style  of  black  metal  and  the  last  track  also  brings  in  a  brief  use  of  clean  playing  and  the  song  is  very  long  an d epic  in  length  and  also  adds  in  a  small  amount  of  slower  riffs.  

  Heaven  Abhorred  plays  a  style  of  black  metal  that  is  very  old  school  sounding  and  more  rooted  in  the  90's  style  and  all  of  the  song s ignore  any  modern  trends,  the  production  sounds very  raw  and  heavy  while  the  lyrics  cover  Occultism,  Satanism  and  Anti  Religion  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Heaven  Abhorred  are  a  very  great  sounding  raw  and  blasphemous  black  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  recording.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Opening  The  Gates"  and  "Children  Of  The  Night".  8  out  of  10.

  

Goatchrist/The Epic Tragedy Of The Cult Of Enlil/SixSixSix Music/2015 EP Review


  Goatchrist  are  a  band  from  the  United  Kingdom  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  and  plays  a  very  raw,  melodic,  atmospheric  and  occult  form  of  black/death  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2015  ep  "The  Epic  Tragedy  Of  The  Cult  Of  Enlil"  which  was  released  by  SixSixSix  Music.

  A  gothic  horror  style  keyboard  starts  off  the  ep  and  brings  in  the  atmosphere  of  an  old  horror  movie  along  with  some  spoken  word  parts  which  also  appear  on  some  of  the  later  tracks  as  well  and  drum  beats  a  few  seconds  later  and  after  the  intro  the  music  starts  going  into  more  of  a  raw  and  melodic  black  metal  direction  along  with  some  grim  high  pitched  screams  and  blast  beats.

  You  can  hear  a  lot  of  mid  90's  influences  in  the  bands  musical  style  and  the  songs  also  bring  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  along  with  some  clean  playing  and  keyboards  returning  in  certain  sections  of  the  recording  and  the  solos  and  leads  also  add  more  melody  in  the  songs  when  they  are  utilized  and  as  the  ep  progresses  more  growls  and  death  metal  influences  can  be  heard  at  times  while  the  keyboards  also  add  in  a  touch  of  psychedelia  and  mix  in  with  the  heavier  parts  of  the  songs  and  all  of  the  musical  instruments  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  there  are  also  a  couple  of  tracks  that  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length.

  Goatchrist  creates  a  very  raw,  melodic  and  atmospheric  style  of  black  metal  on  this  recording  and  while  the  death  metal  influence  of  previous  recordings  is  still  there  in  some  parts  the  band  focuses  more  on  the  blackened  side  of  things  this  time  around,  the  production  sound s very  powerful  while  the  lyrics  focus  more  on  Sumerian  Occultism  and  History.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  form  Goatchrist  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of r aw,  melodic,  and  atmospheric  occult  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  ep.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "A  Message  Blows  On  East  Sumerian  Winds"  and  "The  Great  Battle  At  The  Ruins  Of  Ninurta's  Temple".  8  out  of  10.