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  • Graveyard Ghoul - " The Living Cemetery " 2cd 2014 (Germany)

    Final Gate Records
    I love the old Stockholm scene with fucken bands like Nihilist, Dismember, Necrophobic and Unleashed. Germany, home of terrible power metal and the only place in Europe that hasn’t yet banned the homosexual warriors from Manowar, apparently loves it too the last fucken ten years or so. Cos I dunno about you, but everytime some “old school” death metal band from Germany sends me an email about their fucken record, I always get a distinct feeling that it will be fucken Stockholm death metal. Not that I’m complaining. So, Graveyard Ghoul is another of these throwback bands like that are too fucken many, but like Abyssous, Chapel Of Disease, Diabolical Imperium, Lifeless, etc – I mean, even Mental Killing Spree is pretty fucken ace considering they are modern and plastic sounding. Do you know why the fuck else I love this record? The bass guitar. You can hear it popping and throbbing away like it’s none of your fucken business. I never understood why contemporary metal bands need a bassist if they are going to mix him/her away to fucken kingdom come anyway. Graveyard Ghoul has a bassist, and the guy is actively contributing to the fucken songs with his oozing bass lines. I mean, fuck, I don’t get what is so hard to understand about that, but songwriting was never one of the main priorities of modern fucken death metal. All those fucken clueless piece of shit idiots care about is sweep-picking, and gravity blasting cos that is what all the cool kids do. Well, fuck you too, buddy! Who the fuck cares about the cool kids are doing, anyway? Kids are stupid. It’s hard to fucken believe that death metal was actually, at one point, good. I’m certainly having trouble remembering why I started liking it in the first place. Thanks fucken Odin for Graveyard Ghoul for reminding me, cos “The Living Cemetery” sounds dank, rotten and completely fucken deranged in its traditional genre sensibilities. For fuck’s sake, the genre doesn’t need to be more than this: chainsaw riffs, booming bass lines, utterly fucken vomited grunts and eerie melodies with a completely fucken necro production that is one part old Morrissound and one part old Sunlight. Seriously, if you are like me, and consider most of contemporary Swedish metal to be completely fucken fruity, impotent and stupid – than this is a worthwhile fucken alternative, cos you wouldn’t be able to tell that these bratwursts are from Germany. http://www.finalgaterecords.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 8
  • Merkabah - " Ubiquity " 3cd 2014 (Canada)

    Maple Metal Records
    There is no fucken justice in this world. You’re telling me that Merkabah is able to land a record deal, and the infinitely more deserving Category VI isn’t? By fucken Odin, I don’t see the difference between both bands, except for the fruity Tuomas’ Midlife Crisis, erm, Nightwish keyboards. Amanda Marie Gosse’s vocals are also a lot emotionally stronger and fiercer compared to Jacinthe Poulin’s try-hard diva vocals. It must be, like, the big names attached to this fucken band. Pierre Rémillard produced this fucken Nightwish clone in his Wild Studio. I’m not nearly drunk enough to enjoy this… This sounds either like Tuomas’ Midlife Crisis, erm, Nightwish, or Rhapsody. I mean, for fuck’s sake, at least Category VI has the decency to actually be thoroughly traditional metal, and not some kind of fucken mish-mash of popular styles with a half-naked chica singing. Most of the times this sounds like fucken Francine Boucher Has Really Big Tits, I mean, Echoes Of Eternity. And they were horrible. Not even that ‘Voices In A Dream’ video could save that horrible piece of shit record they put out, cos that video looked for one part like a lingerie commercial, and the other one like a L’Oréal commercial. No, I am not fucken joking. You know, it is fucken produced really smooth, and the songs are about as inoffensive as bag of meowing kittens, but this is supposed to be metal, right? At least be cheesy and over-the-top if you want to be part of this whole “female-fronted” movement, cos this is neither pure enough of a traditional heavy metal record, nor is it remotely epic and bombastic enough to be considered symfo. Oh please, make it stop already. Oh sure, I suppose Jacinthe Poulin is easy on the eyes, and the fact that she barely wears any clothing is always enough to draw in some very virginal tween boys… However, most of us like to keep our porn and metal fucken separate, and unless this is some ginormous joke on Poulin’s part to bring along a couple of Canadian dudes as an excuse to strut her stuff, and later launch a solo career… Erm, let’s not even go there. I got better stuff to do. Like getting fucken obscenely and insanely drunk, or watching a couple of Katie Banks or Bryci videos, preferably one with the both of them together. At least they make no qualms about what they are. You know, I hope this band does a few shows with Category VI, so Amanda Marie Gosse can show these sad sacks of shit who is more metal, and who is actually talented. If this is the direction of Canadian symfo metal, I’m gonna need a lobotomy in order to sit through a record, cos this stuff actually kills the brain and rots the teeth. For fuck’s sake, try harder already, Merkabah. Geez. http://www.maplemetalrecords.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 5
  • Nümph - " Theories Of Light " 1cd 2013 (Italy)

    Self-release
    Usually Italian metal, especially the “progressive” and power variety, makes me fucken run to the hills faster than you can say “Sawa Suicide has really big fucken tits”. Point me towards a good Italian metal band (surprisingly they do exist. Hey Vera!) and I’ll point you towards five that are absolutely fucken dreadful. All humor aside, Nümph is from Italy too, and they don’t completely fucken blow. I know, I was as surprised as you fucken assholes were. The band consists of nobody you ever heard of, and they describe themselves as “progressive rock n roll”. They name Pink Floyd and Soundgarden as most important fucken influences, which is always a fucken win in my book. The Floyd is great, dudes. Check em out today. “Theories Of Light” is a really breezy, light record that is mostly about fucken atmosphere than actually being metal, and they weren’t lying about the fucken Floyd influence, cos this has David Gilmour written all over it. You can ever hear the bass guitar, and it has an absolutely godly tone. Holy fucken crap, dudes. Oh yeah, now I hear where that Soundgarden edge is supposed to come from, some of the riffing has that grungy Seattle feel, and the singer really tries his best to pass himself off as a brooding grunge singer. Not that I’m complaining. I’d rather listen to a grunge record than to sit through another of your “fucken sick, and completely br00dle” slam bands, asshat. I can’t really say there’s a ‘Black Hole Sun’ to be found on this record, but I’m giving that a pass, this record is fucken ace as it is. Nümph, what does that even mean? Is it supposed to mean anything? I prefer a nymph myself. I could listen to ‘Dust Of Souls’ for fucken eternity. This is why I like to listen to Café del Mar or Buddha Bar. That fucken opening is grand. Holy shit. Oh wait. Actually the entire record is like that, and ‘Death and Rebirth’ totally opens with a modern day U2 melody. I’m not even kidding. So yeah, you assholes get the point. This isn’t very heavy, or brutal – not that I care for such things. It does have two things, two things that most metal records in about every genre miss these fucken days: songs, and atmosphere! I don’t give a flying fuck how many notes you can play, or fast you can sweep-pick or how fucken long your retarded drummer can gravity-blast… All that means shit to me, certainly if you couldn’t write a decent song if your pathetic piece of shit life depended on it. Nümph can write songs, and they do. For fuck’s sake, I can’t get enough of this shit. Odin knows that that doesn’t happen too often around these parts. So yeah, I better enjoy it while it lasts. Fuck you! http://numphband.bandcamp.com; www.numphband.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 8
  • Teitanblood - " Death " 2cd 2014 (Spain)

    Norma Evangelium Diaboli/The Ajna Offensive
    This more fucken like it, alright. Are you fucken sure these Teitanblood fucks are Spaniards, like, at all? Cos this sounds fucken Australian to these ears. Not that I’m complaining. We need more out of control, fucken necro and totally chaotic war metal. I mean, sure, Hells Headbangers has released about every single side-project, unreleased recording and splinter project from Deströyer 666 in the last couple of years, but most of them sounded like ass. And not the good kind of fucken ass. Like, Lucy Briggs’ enormous round ass, or something like that. I dunno who Teitanblood are, or why they are so fucken angry, and grim, and necro – but if they continue making music like this I might eventually check out that “Seven Chalices” record out, despite the fact that everybody was masturbating themselves silly over it in 2009. Which is something metallers do far too often, most of the time over hairy, sweaty men. I don’t care what you fucken assholes say. Metal’s fixation with other men never ceases to amaze. Anyway, so yeah, Teitanblood. So this is released on Norma Evangelium Diaboli, which I suppose makes this probably theological in subject matter. Not that matters, cos metal lyrics are patently ridiculous. Face it, you’re a metal band – nobody outside of a select few morons is gonna take you fucken serious anyway. A couple of songs run +10 minutes in length, so I guess Teitanblood has some big and important message to spread. Okay with me, I don’t bother with fucken lyrics most of the time anyway, and this is fucken boss chaotic war metal any self-respecting metal fan should have heard at least once. I still prefer Bestial Warlust, Angelcorpse or Deströyer 666 – but this comes close enough for me. I’m not hard to please. The atmosphere is also surprisingly grim and haunting consider the genre this is (yes, it is black metal too, you fucken clowns) – and the times that I could find atmosphere on a modern black metal record I can count on one hand. Fuck you! Now I don’t particular care which necro, evil and unholy black metal band is hot this week among you basement-dwelling virgins, and neither have I any interest to find out – but apparently Spain is making somewhat of a comeback on underground metal. Fuck knows what is up with the country, but I’m liking it. Just like I like their beaches, and girls in tiny bikinis. I could use some of that right now. Girls in bikinis, I mean. Yeah. Graçias. http://www.noevdia.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 8
  • Thyrien - " Hymns Of the Mortals, Songs Of the North " 1cd 2014 (Finland)

    Massacre Records
    Oh please, make it stop already. Another folk metal band from Finland, the land of Armi Päivinen, that has absolutely nothing to add, but somehow is able to land a record deal? There is no justice in this world. Vittu tätä paskaa. More of this polka metal shit? I’m not nearly drunk enough to enjoy this… This is just what we needed. Another band of fucken Finns that can’t decide whether they want to mimic early Children Of Bodom, or that horrible polka band Kivimetsan Druidi. Odin fucken well knows that Kivimetsan Druidi only landed a record deal cos Leeni-Maria Hovila has really big fucken tits. At this point I find it more fucken interesting that Leeni-Maria and Armi Päivinen both spent time in the same band prior to their current gigs. For fuck’s sake, try harder already. Unlike you I actually got better stuff to do. Was the CEO from fucken Massacre Records high went he offered these clueless fucken clowns a contract? The fuck is this shit?! Seriously, this whole ridiculous folk metal fad is, at least, a decade over its fucken prime, and we certainly don’t need more these fucken pea-brained yokels clogging up the airwaves. This shit ain’t funny no more. For fucken reals. By now I had hoped that Leeni-Maria Hovila had taken her top off, or at least quit her band to do something productive. Like, I dunno, knitting, or belly-dancing. Not even copious amounts of alcohol intake can make this dreadful record more tolerable. Believe fucken me, I’ve tried. Remember in the mid 90s when folk metal was brooding, dark and atmospheric? This horrible piece of shit band is nothing of that, and there are Agalloch records that are more scary. Vittu että vituttaa niin vitusti! If you’re going to peddle sub-mediocre crap to us at least pretend to fucken care, or at least contract a band that has a really hot or big boobed female singer. There’s a fucken science to this. I mean, for fuck’s sake, who cares about a bunch of scrawny Finnish men wearing embarrassing war paint? Even the fucken godawful Turisas can’t sell that shit no more, and they were supposedly the cream of the crop. And give it a rest with those fucken polkas melodies and “Hey! Hey! Hey!” choruses. You’re pretending to be a fucken metal band, so stop it with the pop-punk attitude, you fucken hare-brained inbreds. No matter how many lightning fast Bodom solos you throw at me, I don’t play that fucken way. I’m not 14 years old anymore, and unlike sexually frustrating Hot Topic shoppers, I actually have fucken standards, you fucken abysmal talentless hacks. This shit makes me fucken projectile vomit. I hope your rehearsal studio burns down. Painu hevon vittuun! http://www.massacre-records.de comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 3
  • Dracena - " Ravenous Bloodlust " ep 2014 (Sweden)

    Self-financed
    Nothing can stop Mia Larsson. Even though she has been bringing the pain since 1994, it is fucken unbelieveable that no label has picked up this band yet. “Ravenous Bloodlust” is a furious exercise in hellish black/thrash metal with keen heavy metal sensibilities. You’d imagine that with the popularity of populist shit like Skeletonwitch that actual honest-to-Odin good bands like Dracena would be able to sustain themselves. Not so. I don’t know what the fuck it is but it seems that good bands only release new material sporadically, while piece of shit fucken garbage bands put shit out every year. By Odin, I hope Mia can show the current generation of fucken abysmal black/thrashers how to do the genre properly. You know, she’s the genuine article next to the old men from Nifelheim. Not only cos she’s one of the relics of the 90s melodic death metal scene in Stockholm, but because she simply writes better than most of her contemporaries. Oh yeah, she has a really fucken venom rasp too. Oh my fucken god, if only the likes of Angela Gossow could rasp and growl like her. Mia needs no digital processing, or studio magic to make her vocals sound fucken demonic. She is a demonic woman after all. Holy crap, dudes. The artwork. Fucken hell, when was the last time you were truly amazed by a metal artwork? Not a lot springs to mind. This painting is fucken amazing, and all sorts of cool. There’s plenty of classic metal solo’ing too, which is always a good thing cos most underground metal these days is so busy chugging like it’s 1994 that they forget that solos are an integral part of the metal sound – and that lack of solos shit ain’t funny now as it was then. Anyway, so yeah, this is a teaser EP – and there are rumors of a full length being in production. I certainly hope Mia can pull the resources and make it happen. I remember when Dracena was an all-female death metal band (this was the case last in 1998, I think), but who cares if Mia is the only female left at this point? She’s Dracena and Dracena is her. Oh, fuck you too, if you came here expecting Mia to flaunt her cleavage, and show some leg. Wrong fucken band, you sad sack of shit. Mia Larsson is more metal than you can ever hope to be, and whatever the fuck it is that your stupid band is writing right now – you can’t beat her. Ever. https://www.facebook.com/Dracena.SE comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 8
  • Electrocution - " Metaphysincarnation " 2cd 2014 (Italy)

    Goregorecords/Aural Music
    Supposedly Electrocution is one of those “legendary” early Italian death metal bands that nobody ever heard of. They apparently formed in 1990 and released their debut “Inside the Unreal” in 1993, which all of three people heard. I never heard of Electrocution prior to getting this fucken promo, and for a band that has been inactive for the better part of 17 years – this stuff actually sounds decent, for a change. Anyway, this sounds a lot like Malevolent Creation, old Monstrosity and pre-“The Sound Of Perseverance” Death. I’m actually fucken surprised how good this shit is. It has the thrashiness of Malevolent Creation, the technical prowess of Monstrosity and the musicality of Death – and the production isn’t completely sterile. No. It is bass-heavy, crunchy and organic with just enough modern sheen, but nothing is ever overdone or plastic sounding. Yeah, what are the fucken odds of that happening in contemporary death metal? Fucken nil. And in case you were still fucken doubting these pasta eaters are a forgotten relic from the 90s, just look at that artwork. That could have been on a Metal Blade-era Vader album, or on an album of one of those Pavement Music death metal bands. You know, those who just weren’t good enough to be really considered vital, or important to the scene. There’s also this small acoustic guitar instrumental like about every death metal band used to do in the 90s. Just when I was about to give up on Italian underground metal after hearing aural fucken abortions like Exhumer, or Acheronte – here finally is a band that proves that there’s still good Italian extreme metal. You know, I get so fucken tired of all those fruity prog metal bands, goofy black metal or really br00thal death metal bands that sent me fucken incoherent promo mails all the time. I didn’t even fucken realize that Aural Music had a sublabel specializing in death metal. You learn something new every day. I should probably thank Elisa Drago for that, so there. So yeah, “Metaphysincarnation” sounds like a long lost mid-to-late 90s death metal record. This is just what we needed. http://www.auralmusic.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 7
  • Khaoz - " I, Creator Of Damnation " 2cd 2014 (Holland)

    Mad Lion Records
    What do you get when put together members from Houwitser, Pleurisy, Sinister and The Embodiment? Khaoz. “I, Creator Of Damnation” sounds exactly like you think it does with these old men from Holland playing groovy death metal. That’s okay, cos the world needs more pure, crunchy, bass-heavy death metal. The only remotely original thing is the dual vocalists, although that is kinda fucken pushing it cos one vocalist would’ve sufficed. Given that this is a Sinister splinter project by proxy, I’m amazed that this sounds more like fucken Acrostichon, or early Altar than Sinister. Which is a good thing, cos the reformed Sinister is awful and stupid, and you really shouldn’t fucken listen to them. Of course, this shit is hardly reinventing the wheel, but what the fuck are you expecting here?! At least Khaoz realizes that death metal doesn’t need to blast constantly, or have tons of breakdowns to be heavy and brutal. This is death metal exactly like I like my chicas: thick and well-formed (I’ll have some more Hannah Sharp, thank you). These are actual honest-to-Odin songs too, not just endless piling of random riffs and blasts. Odin fucken well knows that most death metal bands today couldn’t write a song of their sorry piece of shit lives depended on it. That it takes a couple of senior citizens from Holland to illustrate this sad fact, makes it all the more fucken depressing. The old school solos are a treat too. None of that wanky shit, just pure emotion and simplicity. Kinda like Obituary, when they were still fucken relevant and good. You know, long ago. There isn’t a lot of fucken shit you can say about a band like Khaoz. They are obviously fucken genuine about their love for the genre, and that translates in a better than average pure death metal record. And when was the last time you heard an actual pure death metal record, and not one of those brainlessly fucken trendy “retro” death metal records? Exactly. This shit doesn’t come around often enough, so if you fucken value integrity and good taste, you’ll pick up this record instead of that stupid fucken trendy piece of shit album those sad sacks of shit you call friends continue to yap on and on about cos they fell for some dumb label’s marketing hype. Fuck you! It might not be the most technical or fastest thing out there, but at least this is far better than whatever stupid djent or deathcore band is popular this week. Whatever keeps you away from that dumb shit. http://www.madlion.eu comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 7
  • Upon A Burning Body - " Red White Green " 2cd 2012 (USA)

    Sumerian Records
    I don’t know who Upon A Burning Body are, but I do know that they apparently really, really, really like Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez movies. What I also know is that this a Sumerian Records release, so that this sucks harder than the average chick on Exploited College Girls is no surprise. Neither is it a surprise that this is deathcore, the very fucken dumb and stupid kind even. I don’t even fucken know, is this deathcore? Cos half of the time this sounds like rap/hiphop with breakdowns and “heavy” riffs. The vocalist never shuts up for a second, for one, and there a fucken gang shouts too. I suppose this is all very impressive when you are a 14 year old virgin that shops at Hot Topic, but those of us who actually have good taste will avoid this like the fucken plague. Speaking of which that illiterate douche Johnny Plague from the entirely awful Winds Of Plague apparently sings on this record too. For fuck’s sake, it’s all here: the inane, self-empowering, woe-is-me lyrics, the thinly veiled hiphop beats, those stupid bouncy Meshuggah “riffs”, “Digimortal” era Dino’s Cheese Factory songwriting (a term used very loosely) and a vocalist that never ever under any circumstance shuts the fuck up for three seconds. I bet all these dumb fucks have tribal tattoos, giant earlobes, scene haircuts and wear Affliction clothing. The last time I reviewed a deathcore band around these parts it was the fucken awful Oceano, and I’m still having nightmares about that. The lack of social skills, illiteracy and collective virginity on display here is simply astounding. This is body music for trailer parks, gun-toting rednecks and basement-dwelling nitwits across the American continent. There is absolutely no fucken good reason why anybody sensible would want to listen to this. This shit sounds just like every other deathcore band (on Sumerian, or elsewhere) – but it’s just repackaged, rebranded, and stuffed with enough of a recognizable gimmick (they like dumb movies) that every fucken hipster and stupid kid from here all the way to Malaysia is jumping up and down in excitement. Since I actually have good taste, and some semblance of what classic extreme metal (death, black, grind, doom) sounds like, I fucken advise you to stay the fuck away from this as far as humanly possible. If this band plays near you, boycott their shows. If they sell their records near you, destroy them with fire. If you see band members hanging around your neighborheeds, slash their tires and insult them. Whatever the fuck you do, don’t encourage them in any shape, or form. We don’t need more of this crap, in fact – we need far LESS of it. Change starts with you… http://sumerianrecords.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 2
  • Warthrone - " Venomassacre " 1cd 2014 (USA)

    Ghost Storm Records
    We all know the fucken US black metal is, and has been, terrible for longer than it has been good. It’s funny that the best releases in the genre come from the people you least fucken expect it from. So, here’s the second independently released Warthrone effort, the death/black metal band with as most notorious member Erik Sayenga (ex-Dying Fetus) on lead/rhythm guitars and drums. I know. Apparently he was the most talented member of the “Stop At Nothing” line-up cos some of the guitar work and solo’ing is actually pretty fucken fantastic here. Why John ‘King Wigger’ Gallagher didn’t let him do any riffing in Dying Fetus is a fucken question for the ages. Holy fucken crap, does this guy know to write a killer riff, and his drumming is super awesome too. Yeah, a Dying Fetus member in an actual good band, what are the fucken odds? You’d be hardpressed to call this original cos this sounds a lot like Order Of Ennead (minus the neo-classical leads) and fucken Aurora Borealis. Anyway, half of the time this sounds like Sayenga’s solo record cos this guy is fucken insane behind the drums. Holy crap, dudes. The guy is a fucken machine. The blasts are fast, the kickdrums fucken keep on rolling, and the riffs are some of the meanest this side of early Pessimist, or you know, Sadistic Intent. For some reason there are keyboards and sound effects too – which I never really understood the fucken point of, but there you have it. I fucken suppose they keep Kristel around for other things next to looking pretty in a band picture. Next to doing all the guitars and drums Erik does growls to, which contrast nicely to the singer’s rasp. Oh yeah, and the artwork isn’t a complete fucken eyesore this time around. Never a given with death – or black metal these days. The entire thing was self-produced, so it’s kinda expected that it sounds rough around the edges, and that the whole thing never really gels like a pro studio recorded project. I dunno. The lead and rhythm guitars sound a bit on the fucken thin side. You can hear the bass guitar too, altho it doesn’t exactly do much of anything to make its presence more known. Just endless doubling of the guitar riffs. I mean, the fuck happened to the aspiring Chris Richards (ex-Suffocation), Steve DiGiorgio and Jeroen-Paul Thesseling (ex-Pestilence, ex-Obscura) type bassists of the world? Maybe Erik should consider recording his guitar/bass parts elsewhere, like, at Nightsky Studios or something. I dunno. Aurora Borealis always has fucken killer productions. The keyboard and drum production is pretty good considering this was home-recorded and self-produced. So yeah, excellent death/black metal featuring a known Dying Fetus member. I am as fucken amazed as you were. Now I wanna hear “Ghost Storm Eulogy”, you fucken assholes. If that’s half as good as this is, consider me a Warthrone fan. http://www.facebook.com/pages/Warthrone/334645363314771 comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 8
  • Cokegoat - " Vessel " 1cd 2013 (USA)

    The Path Less Traveled Records
    Chicago used to have a small but decent death metal scene back in the day, before the hipster and black metal crowds took over. Cokegoat are five bearded stoners and some girl you never heard of trying their fucken hand at stoner/doom metal, cos the world needed one more band like that. For fucken reals. Thankfully Cokegoat is lots better than all that stupid occult rock we’re getting so fucken much of these days. But not by much. Despite what the label might tell you, this sounds about, like, every other band in this genre right now, but I’m probably the only fucken one pointing it out to you assholes. ‘Buried In the City’ opens with a colossal riff that is equal parts Black Sabbath as it High On Fire (back when they were still good, and not high on suck). Oh yeah, this band has three guitarists, not that you’ll ever notice it, but the press leaflet can’t apparently get enough of that. Sure, this is pretty tolerable stuff, but when you heard “The Art Of Self Defense” and any of Neurosis’ early folky material, but you get more there than you’re getting here. Actually now that I fucken think about it, this isn’t all that different from that Drawers album I reviewed last week. Fuck, no. Maybe Drawers is a bit more uptempo, but that’s about it. “Vessel” isn’t particular bad, or offensively awful – but in a genre as fucken trendy and popular as stoner/doom metal, you need a lot more than some girl in your band, or some stupid gimmick to stand out. Everybody is fucken ripping off Black Sabbath and early High On Fire cos that’s the easiest thing to do. For fuck’s sake, try harder already. I am so fucken done with this genre right now. Sure, you emptied a keg of fucken beer, and smoked a ton of ganja when you were fucken writing this album – who gives a flying fuck?! Exactly how much more of this shit do we need? What was the game plan here, fellas? Selling ten copies, and then collectively forget that you released a stupid record? By fucken Odin, I can tolerate a lot of crap, but this is pushing it. I’m not nearly drunk enough to find this enjoyable, or funny – and I could be doing better stuff right now. Like getting insanely and obscenely drunk, or messaging some internet model. Anything but suffer through your interchangeable, redundant record. Congratulations, you were high on day, and recorded an album. Don’t expect me to fucken pat you on the back for a job well done. “Vessel” is okay, but this shit ain’t funny no more. That isn’t to say I fucken hate this record. It’s just very, very unnecessary, and a waste of time for anybody with a functional brain, or the least bit of taste. You wrote a good record, I’m impressed. Now leave me the fuck alone. Fuck you! http://www.cokegoat.com; www.facebook.com/Cokegoat comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 6
  • Deadly Carnage - " Manthe " 3cd 2014 (Italy)

    ATMF
    My Dying Bride was actually relevant and good once. Long ago. You know, in the early 90s. “As the Flower Withers” and “Turn Loose the Swans” and shit. I know that’s hard to believe these days. Probably right now Hammy is putting together yet another compilation of My Dying Bride stuff that nobody in right mind wanted. Holy crap, these Italians must have thought the same. Apparently these Italians play “black metal with doom metal influences”, yet musically this is clearly fucken inspired by respected funeral orchestras as diSEMBOWELMENT, early Evoken and a good dose of My Dying Bride’s earlier romantic material. The tortured and agonized vocals are especially powerful. They combine the agonized emotion of Darren White (ex-Anathema) with a hoarse shout. Thank fucken Odin that these pasta-eaters bothered with a good bass-heavy production cos this genre relies heavily on its melodic and atmospheric nuances, both which Deadly Carnage has. Oh sure, the moniker sounds like a really fucken awful 90s death metal band, but “Manthe” is actually surprisingly decent. Where the whole black metal shtick is supposed to come from I will never know, but I stopped reading press leaflets ages ago (as should you). Occasionally the band will play a bit faster, but to classify it as black metal for that is all sorts of stupid. What these guys are so fucken depressed for I dunno. Somehow this reminds me a fucken lot of Alastis (in terms of atmosphere), probably mostly cos of the vocals. Deadly Carnage is really fucken superior to Alastis in every conceiveable way, and those of you who were conscious or not buried under a rock somewhere in the 90s will probably remember this band. They had, like, three good songs and Century Media (in their endless benevolence) pushed them to the max. Anyway, if you don’t mind the stupid band name, and the fact that the description these fruitcakes give their music, this is actually pretty good stuff considering the country it comes from. Geez, the Italian underground metal scene is pretty fucken terrible these days, but these sad sacks of shit at least have some kind of idea what they are doing. Which cannot be said about the countless beyond fucken shitty black metal bands, or those blast-first-write-songs-second death metal type bands that are so busy imitating Hour Of Penance and Fleshgod Apoca-pasta that they end up sounding even more retarded and juvenile than the average Comatose Music or Sevared Records signing. If you are in one of these bands, and considering right now to send me your promo: don’t. I’m not nearly drunk enough for this shit yet, and I could be doing better stuff right. Like talking to Vera Clinco, or dreaming about Armi Paivinen and her dress. Just fucken saying. http://www.deadlycarnage.altervista.org; www.facebook.com/pages/Deadly-Carnage/177263620271; www.atmf.net; www.facebook.com/aeternitas.tenebrarum comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 7
  • Loath - " Total Peace " 1cd 2013 (Finland)

    Inverse Records
    If there’s one thing I’ve fucken learned over the years of doing this whole music critic spiel is to never ever, under any circumstance, believe whatever clueless labels put in their press leaflets. Loath is from Finland, the land of Armi Päivinen, and Inverse Records (yeah, them, fuck you!) describes this band as “crust with a twist of grindcore and doom”. Now I have no fucken clue what drugs whoever wrote this was on at the time, but I’d like some of whatever the fuck it was he/she was having. Why? Cos the only thing I hear in “Total Peace” is the doom and the grindcore – wherever the crust is supposed to come from I dunno. Sure, the band plays faster occasionally, and the singer really goes nuts every once in a while, but does that make it crust? Hardly. Some of the riffs have that ancient hardcore/punk feel, but to label it crust for that is all sorts of fucken stupid. Oh sure, the singer totally sounds like old man Tompa Lindberg, and that’s the hot thing right now since At the Paycheck decided to reunite. That this is released on Inverse Records of all fucken things is the bigger enigma. Here I was fucken thinking that Inverse Records only signed the absolute fucken worst of the Finnish scene, and Loath is actually decent! Who the fuck knew… Why this is described as “crust with a twist of grindcore and doom” in the first place is a fucken headscratcher, cos this sounds like about every two bit piece of shit sludge/doom metal band on the scene right now. Put this in a playlist with Drawers and Cokegoat and you wouldn’t be able to tell the fucken difference between each. Not that Loath is fucken terrible, or anything – just redundant and unnecessary for the most part. Just another band that wants to be the next High On Fire, but at least Loath has the bright idea to do things a little differently. They use plenty of samples in their songs. What labels’ fascination with trends are I’ll never understand. Why do labels keep signing all these fucken sludge bands? Cos it’s the trendy thing to do right now, and you can easily sway a few hipsters and stupid kids into handing over their money? I can understand that, but that still doesn’t fucken justify it. So yeah, “Total Peace” isn’t exactly bad, but it isn’t exactly good either. It fucken exists and people can buy it if they are into that whole “support the underground” nonsense. I’d rather watch that catfight between Armi Päivinen and Veronika Toivokoski to be honest. I can tolerate this crap, but I’ll need more fucken alcohol if this is the direction we’re gonna in. Wake me up when all these stupid sludge bands died out. Unlike you I have better stuff to do. https://www.facebook.com/LOATHband; www.inverse.fi; www.facebook.com/inverserecords comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 6
  • Neglektum - " Blasphemer " 1cd 2014 (Sweden)

    Goathorned Productions
    Apparently people still can’t get enough of Dissection and Mayhem. Neglektum comes from Sweden, and that’s about everything you need to know. Never fucken mind that Lord Belial has been doing this spiel for two decades already, to varying success at that, so why a bunch of fucken nobodies felt the urge to form a band like this is a question for the fucken ages. I suppose this isn’t half bad, and it is about as solid as the next faceless, identityless Swedish black metal band you’re listening to right now. The melodic black metal movement is, at the very least, a decade past its prime – and all the pillars in this genre have either changed or split up – so what exactly Neglektum is trying to accomplish remains a fucken guess. In the track ‘Babalon’ the singer goes completely off the deep end. I’m not sure whether he’s having a particular fucken bowel movement, or that his meds ran out. Seriously, considering how fucken goofy the average black metal band is I wouldn’t be all that surprised if half of these guys end up having severe mental problems. Am I even supposed to, like, fucken take this band seriously? They named their album after a member from Mayhem. Metal’s fascination with overt homo-eroticism never ceases to amaze me. I suppose that’s all very evil and necro, and shit like that – but to anybody with a functional brain it comes about as very, well, dumb. So, yeah, this sounds like Mayhem, Dark Funeral and Marduk in the fast parts, and the slower more melodic numbers for the most part recall Dissection. This bands sounds like a lot of other bands that are just plainly better than them. So why anybody would want to waste time on listening to this band instead of the actual good ones is something I’ll never understand. Then again, I never fucken understood all that “support the underground!” nonsense that impressionable teens keep yapping on about. Pressing the “like” button on your fucken FaceBook profile is not support. Neither is downloading their album, asshat. For the three of you who are fucken dying to pick this up, I suppose you could do a lot worse when it comes to underground black metal. But I’m not the right person to fucken talk to about this shit anyway. I stopped taking black metal serious a long time ago, and by now I fucken hoped people would finally be over it. Black metal is not underground, rebellious or even important. For fuck’s sake, there are black metal commercials, documentaries, photoshoots, and more memes than there are nude pics of Tessa Fowler. If you truly believe black metal is still a niche genre, and not as mainstream as any other metal genre at this point, then you are really fucken delusional, and I hope there aren’t any sharp utensils around. “Blasphemer” sounds exactly like you think it does. Fuck you! http://www.neglektum.com; www.facebook.com/neglektum; www.goathorned.com; www.facebook.com/goathorned comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 5
  • Obituary - " Inked in Blood " 9cd 2014 (USA)

    Relapse Records
    For fuck’s sake, try harder already. Here we are more than a fucken decade into this piece of shit band’s reunion, and they still haven’t figured it out. I don’t care how much a “legend” you were back in the day, this band was at the end of its fucken creative rope by the time “The End Complete” was released. Holy fucken shit, dudes. You rake in this much fucken cash with your Kickstarter campaign, and you still have this absolutely fucken dreadful cardboard guitar tone, and empty bucket drums? Were Obituary ever good to begin with? I have a hard fucken time remembering that myself at this point. What I do know is that “Frozen In Time” was fucken terrible. “Xecutioner’s Return” was okay, and “Darkest Day” was about as pleasant as the combined discographies of Devourment and Mortician. Yuk! This is the first Obituary album since… I dunno, fucken “World Demise” to not be a ginormous eyesore. The universally awesome creature logo is still fucken missing, but it’s a start at least. However even with decent artwork post - “Back From the Dead” Obituary is still as awful and unnecessary as ever. They probably like “Dead Island: Riptide” too, and the latent homosexuality has never been more obvious. This band is fucken heavy, not so much cos of their music – but cos legendary fat ass Terry Butler is now replacing that other legendary fat ass Frank Watkins. Not that you’ll notice much of a fucken difference, cos this is Obituary who even at their brightest were still pretty fucken abysmal. So what is Obituary without meth head Allen West, Ralph ‘is your band hiring?’ Santolla and Frank Watkins? Pretty fucken awful, that’s what. John Tardy, master of bad song titles and general incoherence, never sounded worse, and his lamentable vocal performance here makes his haggard grunts and strained screams of the prior records sound acceptable in comparison. Seriously. Hang it up already, old man. Donald Tardy, the other half of the retarded fraternity, completely fucken phones in his drum performance with the laziest patterns this side of fucken Greg Gall (ex-Six Feet Under). Terry Butler does his usual shtick, playing the most impotent bass lines as long as there’s a fucken paycheck to be had. Dudes, seriously, I halfway expected Chris Barnes to do a guest vocal performance at one spot, but apparently they were smarter than that. Kenny Andrews does his best Allen West impression – and occasionally throws in a neat trick here and there, but even he can’t save this sinking ship. I’m not expecting Obituary to turn all fucken technical all of the sudden, but at least pretend you care at this point, fellas. This fucken shit is embarrassing enough as it is, and fucken phoned in slog like this isn’t helping your case – at all. Call it a day already, you fucken faggots. You’re not doing yourself any favors by fucken releasing more albums. http://www.relapse.com; www.facebook.com/ObituaryBand; www.obituary.cc comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 4
  • Narcotic Wasteland - " Narcotic Wasteland " 1cd 2014 (USA)

    Self-financed
    I suppose it was fucken inevitable that Dallas Toler-Wade would eventually grow tired of playing second fiddle to Colonel Sanders. That metal attracts drug addicts, felons and criminals is old news – so what better than to combine the two? So yeah, Narcotic Wasteland is a death metal band from South Carolina that sings about substance abuse. How very fucken original… Is any of this shit supposed to be autobiographical and therapeutic? Anyway, the band consists of nobody you ever heard of, and it is actually pretty competent groovy bass-heavy death metal with dual vocals. It’s actually leagues fucken better than the last three Nile records, but that isn’t saying much. Those records were fucken awful and stupid. If you want to nitpick Toler-Wade’s vocals are more screamed grunts, and not nearly as deep as his earlier stuff with Colonel Sanders’ history project. The second vocalist/bassist is no Jon Vesano, but he sounds decent enough. No wonder they chose "Keeping Up with the Jones" as first single cos this sounds just like "Lashed To the Slave Stick" to my ears – but don’t take my fucken word for it. "Addicted to Junk" sounds a lot like "Execration Text" outside of that weird electronic solo. I don’t even know what the fuck that is supposed to be. A guitar-synth? An early Children Of Bodom-like keyboard solo? Fuck if I know… Of course there are samples to introduce some songs, and that practice is exactly as stupid and pointless as it was when the dumb bricks from Mortician introduced it in the 90s. I guess this is at least a change of pace for Dallas Toler-Wade, and I wouldn’t be fucken surprised if this is his excuse to pick his bags and leave Nile. Odin knows that band got really fucken annoying and stupid after their stint with hipster label Relapse Records. The production is really fucken sterile and plastic, so it’s up to today’s standards. Fuck, even that Success Will Write Apocalypse Across the Sky record on Nuclear Blast sounds better. The drums don’t sound like a fucken typewriter and you can actually hear the bass guitar. Thank fucken Odin for that. The artwork is really fucken stupid, but for a band singing about drug abuse it could have been far worse. In actuality this is what HatePlow is to Malevolent Creation. Yeah. That. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. This is competent death metal, but nothing more. It has members from Nile, for fuck’s sake. Don’t expect to be wowed. Nile might be very fucken popular but that doesn’t mean shit to anybody with a functional brain. It has Dallas Toler-Wade. No label wanted to release it. Draw your own fucken conclusions. http://www.narcoticwasteland.com; www.facebook.com/narcoticwasteland comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 7
  • Nervosa - " Victim Of Yourself " 1cd 2014 (Brazil)

    Napalm Records
    No. Contrary to fucken popular belief I don’t hate thrash metal. The fact is just that a load of terrible fucken crap is released under the banner of retro-thrash metal. If you’re happy with some band just sounding like your favorite band, knock yourself out – but I fucken demand quality in my music. So after years and years of submediocre crap on piece of shit labels big and small, leave it to the Nervosa chicas to show how it is done. Fernanda, Prika and Picchu are pissed, and I can’t say I fucken blame them. There is so much shit released in this genre that I’m fucken pissed off too every time I get another review request. The album might not contain the super awesome ‘Masked Betrayer’ song like I hoped, but this shit just rocks, plain and simple. Yeah, the intro might sound like early Machine Head, but when the girls rip into the first track you know that it is fucken classic Slayer where its at. Fernanda Lira’s bass guitar is loud in the mix, and like Iron Maiden’s Steve Harris you can hear her pluck away at it. Picchu Ferraz is more the Bill Andrews type of drummer, but what she lacks in creative fills she makes up in sheer intensity. Holy crap, dudes. This chica can drum. Prika Amaral, when not dishing out super angry and tight vintage Slayer riffs, is solo’ing like Andreas Kisser when he was still relevant, say circa "Beneath the Remains"/"Arise". "Victim Of Yourself" of course features the chica’s hit single "Death!" (Picchu Ferraz even wears a Death shirt in the video) so she’s so meta it hurts. Holy shit, dudes. I wonder if Prika and Fernanda scream that way in the sack too cos they are all sorts of sexy in their leather get-ups and tight shirts. Hey, a guy can dream, right? These chicas make no illusions about what they are, or what their record is. Don’t ask me to tell you the difference between these cuts cos I couldn’t tell you if I fucken wanted. Nervosa only knows two speeds: fast and faster. Fernanda and Prika both share vocal duties, but Fernanda takes the lead and her rasps sound just like Schmier and Evil Chuck Schuldiner. By fucken Odin, and there are solos! Solos everywhere! I don’t care whether Prika Amaral is getting her Kerry King, Andreas Kisser or Chuck Schuldiner on – when she solos she’s on fire – and considering how fucken hot this chica is all by herself that’s saying something. The title track even has a bass guitar intro! Holy fucken shit. I can’t remember the last time I heard once of those. Sure, sure – these chicas don’t have English as their first language so there’s the usual butchery of Shakespeare’s language and some funny song titles here and there, but overall it’s pretty fucken minor stuff compared to some other releases in this genre. That last track even borders on death metal territory. So, yeah, "Victim Of Yourself" is completely fucken brutal, and more exciting than the combined discographies of Scampeltura and senor Kisser. This is the most exciting thing from Brazil since Roberta Murgo, Ariadne Souza (Valhalla) and Maysa Rodrigues. I don’t care what you assholes think. This rocks! http://www.nervosaofficial.com; www.facebook.com/femalethrash; www.napalmrecords.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 8
  • Panychida - " Grief For An Idol " 3cd 2013 (Czech Republic)

    Folter Records/Werewolf Productions/Paragon Records/Cursed Records
    When I fucken received the promo invitation for Panychida’s latest offering, I felt the sudden urge to take that long overdue nap as this band described itself as pagan metal. That is, along with folk and slam-death metal, my cue to take a nap and wait till those bands go away. Anyway, these ugly men are from the Czech Republic and apparently have released two albums prior to this one. You’d be hardpressed to call this pagan metal cos a lot of the times this sounds like heroic and dark sounding melodic death metal, but that may be me. I dunno. What I do fucken know is that these guys at least don’t sound fruity, and remember that metal is supposed to sound dark and threatening. By Odin, there are still bands who remember that. Who knew… Most of the time this just reminds me of that Hungarian band Effrontery, or, like, what the fuck ever they are called. ‘Wayfarer’s Awakening’ is actually the most typically folk/pagan metal track on this album, by far – and the second half of the album actually picks up the fucken pace in that regard. It is as if the band woke up from drunken stupor one day and realized they were supposed to be pagan metal, and thus wrote three songs in the style. I don’t blame you fucks, pagan metal is stupid and silly. Grown ass fucken men and women dressing up as Lord Of the Rings extras. So seek the LARPer within thyself, and all that shit. Whatever keeps you away from me is good enough. I’m not nearly drunk enough to think of something funnier. Fuck you! Lay down that bong for a minute, and listen up. It isn’t as if there’s any standard in folk/pagan metal to begin with – how the flying fuck do you assholes otherwise explain the continued existence of beyond fucken awful labels like Stygian Crypt Productions or the fact that Folkearth continues to release albums? Or more importantly: why hasn’t Hildr Valkyrie taken her top off yet? Whatever keeps her away from a microphone, or recording equipment. I used to remember a time when folk/pagan metal bands were far and few, and the few of them were actually really fucken good. Thankfully Panychida is leagues better than most modern day folk/pagan metal bands. Thank fucken Odin these guys don’t play polka metal, or drunk Viking music, or, like, what the fuck ever is popular with stupid kids and hipsters. "Grief For An Idol" is a solid record, you’ll like it. http://www.panychida.com; www.facebook.com/panychida; www.folter666.de; www.paragonrecords.org; www.cursedrecords.at; www.werewolfshop.cz comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 7
  • Primalfrost - " Prosperous Visions " 1cd 2014 (Canada)

    Maple Metal Records
    Remember when Rhapsody was still good? Yeah, neither do I. Apparently some people still take them seriously, cos Odin fucken knows there’s no other way that I can explain the existence of Primalfrost. A band that, despite its ludicrous name, isn’t an Immortal tribute band, and even though the artwork might suggest otherwise "Prosperous Visions" unfortunately isn’t a new episode in the fucken amazing King’s Quest series. In fact people tell me Primalfrost is a power metal band from Canada. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, cos so far I’ve heard as much great as terrible power metal bands from the Great White North. Oh wow. So this band is one part Children Of Bodom (up to "Follow the Reaper") and one part Rhapsody (up to, say, "Power Of the Dragonflame"). It’s completely fucken cheesy and over-the-top, but there’s no way this kind of victorious, glorious sounding traditional metal is going to suck. There’s just so much energy. The orchestrations and choral parts aren’t as prominent as in Rhapsody, for which I am fucken thankful cos they are schmaltzy. What I’ll do concede is that this kid can play. By Ruby Jones’ tits, this kid can play. I’m not a big fan of the vocals, which are more suited for a fucken Viking or pagan metal band. Imagine this band with a soaring falsetto and you just got the recipe for success. The clean vocals in ‘Tale Of the Hero’ are all sorts of absolutely fucken terrible. Holy fucken crap, dudes. There’s a lot of absolutely fucken dreadful shit in the power metal underground, but Primalfrost is something else. Not even the goofy name and video game artwork can take away from how fucken amazing this band of ugly Canadian men is. Oh, wait. Apparently this is a project of one Dean Arnold, who really looks like a ugly, zitty girl, and played in a band called Will Of the Ancients before – which makes this album all the more impressive, cos this sounds like a genuine full blown band. Is there a ring of bands that play this shit in Canada? Cos this fucken shit reminds me a lot of that other Canadian band, uhm, Kälter. I swear, you could put these bands together on a record, and wouldn’t be able to tell where the one stops, and the other begins. Which is actually meant as a compliment. Shit, dudes, shit. I can’t believe that with the amount of shit I have to fucken endure that good bands are still accounted for. Who the fuck knew… There’s one thing better, and that’s new Katie Banks pics. http://www.maplemetalrecords.com; www.facebook.com/Primalfrost; www.primalfrost.bandcamp.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 8
  • Tears Of Martyr - " Tales " 2cd 2013 (Gran Canaria)

    Massacre Records
    Oh, wow – there’s a new Amberian Dawn record? I didn’t fucken realize that the line-up from "River Of Tuoni" and "The Clouds Of Northland Thunder" relocated to Gran Canaria and call themselves Tears Of Martyr now. For fucken reals, Berenice Musa sounds almost exactly like Hot Heidi Parviainen. Every once in a while there’s some guy called Miguel grunting too, but he’s as dangerous sounding as Mark Janssen. So, yeah. Chocolate milk grunts aren’t exactly scary when tiny-framed girls like Maysa Rodrigues sound like grizzly bear vocalist Sylvain Houde (ex-Kataklysm). Seriously, this sounds so fucken close to Amberian Dawn that I’m surprised that Tuomas Seppälä hasn’t sued these people yet. Tears Of Martyr apparently only know two sorts of gothic: the cheesy and the ultra cheesy one. Half of this record sounds like Amberian Dawn, and the rest sounds like early Epica. It’s all here, tho: galloping riffing, circus piano melodies and the sort of dance rhythms that the poppy variety of this once-good genre now relies on. Oh sure, it’s metal alright. The sappy kind of power metal that is upbeat and happy that it makes you fucken wonder why anybody can seriously call this "gothic" metal. Call it female-fronted all you want, cos this has about zero to do with gothic metal. It’s not Boob Metal exactly, but it is coming fucken close to the territory. I don’t know what the fuck it is with this band, but everything sounds like Tim Burton Metal to me. Especially that song "Golem" with its plinking synthesizer keys and orchestras. Oh yeah, the chorus is catchy as all hell, but so if syfillis – but you wouldn’t want to catch that either. Just fucken saying. Oh fuck you too, it’s all written exactly as good as you think it is, and the production isn’t too shabby either, but Epica is still around and so is Amberian Dawn. Excuse me while I don’t exactly fall out of my chair in excitement cos your piece of shit band sounds nearly identical. I’m not 12 years old anymore. Maybe your audience is, but that’s your fucken problem. I dunno. The more I hear of these bands the more interchangeable with each other they become. If you want some new chick metal band to get in good graces with your girlfriend, by all means, knock yourself out. I have heard enough of this sappy shit to last me a fucken lifetime. I could be doing something else right now. Like getting insanely and obscenely drunk, or sending sweet messages to my Italian inamorata Vera Clinco. No. Instead I’m listening these "Tales". Fuck you too! http://www.massacre-records.de; www.facebook.com/pages/Tears-of-Martyr/86164698467; www.tearsofmartyr.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 6
  • Beatdown Hardwear - " Label sampler vol. 1 " compil. CD (Germany)

    Beatdown Hardwear Records
    Oh, hey – label samplers are still a thing? Who knew… Anyway, there used to be a time when these things were useful. Probably around the same time when printed magazines still mattered, and metal fans were something fucken resembling semi-literate, or, like, whatever. These days samplers are done digitally cos metal fans are fucken lazy, and don’t want to click more than two times to hear whatever the fuck they wanna hear. So yeah, Beatdown Hardwear (which is, surprisingly, not a porn label) put together a compilation of twenty (20!) bands of what their label has to offer. Thanks, I guess? Xibalba, despite its black metal name, are really fucken like Hannah Sharp: thick, and juicy with a heavy bottom to die for. Holy fucken crap, dudes. The vitriol, frustration and aggression is dripping from the vocals, and the bass guitar tone is fucken unreal. I used to remember when death metal was this passionate, and genuine. Harm/Shelter go for that Hatebreed and “Diatribes” Napalm Death sound, but with punk vocals that are equal fucken part Johnny Rotten as Wattie from The Exploited. Ryker’s are a bunch of angry old men that everybody should be fucken familiar with by now. Odin knows they have been at it longer than most. The drum tone is ass, but the bass guitar is heavier than the combined busts of Stacey Poole, Penny Lee and Libbie Smith. Just fucken saying. Heavy shit is heavy. Dead Man’s Chest go for that whole emotional and melodic thing, and thankfully aren’t inspired by fucken Pirates Of the Caribbean. Optimist for some reason really fucken remind of France’s Calvaiire in terms of intensity, but they are more punky. Look My Way are okay musically, but they have a horrendous singer. Manu Armata down my fucken alley. No fucking around, just straight up hardcore. I guess this reminds me of Cause For Revelation. What Pallass is supposed to be I dunno, but it isn’t my cup of fucken beer. Hardcore, sludge or fucken retarded breakdown/moshcore I dunno, cool vocalist, tho. Sand is more punk/hardcore with a terrible drum sound. The Last Charge is more of that fucken stupid and redundant Hatebreed worship that nobody in the right mind asked for, but for some reason labels keep pushing it out at an alarming rate. Maybe all those fucken moshers are as fucken retarded as they act. Coldburn is more of that “Diatribes” Napalm Death stuff in a fucken hardcore jacket. The Setup is something, altho I couldn’t fucken tell you what exactly. Half “Chaos AD”, half punk – all terrible and unnecessary. Fallbrawl, despite aping Catastropic’s terrible album art, are fucken abrasive and the sort of stuff that gets me all sorts of excited. World Eater sadly aren’t a Bolt Thrower tribute, but actually fucken remind me of The Sex Pistols circa “Never Mind the Bollocks” and Rancid (say “…And Out Come the Wolves” and its non-ska songs). Awaken Demons is more bare bones hardcore with a singer that really, really, really likes Jamie Jasta. Ruckus is really fucken filthy and thick sounding hardcore that has a bass guitar tone that would make fucken Demilich proud. They even solo, and go all fucken flamenco all off the sudden. World Of Pain thinks they are Textures circa “Polars” but with tough guy vocals and dem slow ass breakdowns stupid kids love. Yeah, it sounds exactly as fucken terrible as the description suggests. Seriously, put some Jon Zig “artwork” over this, and have some clogged toilet gurgle over it, and you could pass it off as a lost Devourment song. Nasty has a few good riffs, but are inconsequential otherwise. Keep on chugging like it is 1994, fellas. Warhound are pissed, but half of the Throatruiner roster does this better. Born From Pain closes the compilation, and they are fucken old dogs of the genre. Of course they do it better most. So yeah, about 5 great bands, 5 tolerable ones, and a bunch that really should have never left their rehearsal studios. Pretty worthwhile compilation overall. “Support the underground” and all that, fi you still believe in that nonsense. http://www.beatdownhardwear.com comment it (1) Flemming Gabin / 7
  • Ravenia - " Wingless " ep (Finland)

    Self-financed
    Nothing will stop Armi Päivinen, headmistress of In Silentio Noctis and the sexiest Finn of them all, from complete and utter fucken world domination. Ravenia is her latest symfo metal project, and you’d be hardpressed to tell it apart from her main band. Not that I’m complaining. Anything with Armi is usually fucken great. Clothing optional. Nothing is better than Armi singing her cute little heart out, or her cavorting around in her tiny underwear. I’m not hard to please. Anyway, where In Silentio Noctis sounds like Tuomas’ Midlife Crisis, erm, Nightwish done right, or a less fucken fruity take on old Therion – Ravenia is just darker all around, and not nearly as hellbent on being black metal. Whatever the fuck that is supposed to mean with In Silentio Noctis. It’s not like they ever claimed to be “tr00” or anything. Whatever. If that sort of stuff is important to you, then you need to have your head examined. Geez. Ravenia fucken fits Armi and her angelic voice, who is always frowning and looking grumpy. “Wingless” is a nice little teaser EP of what hopefully will become a real project. This is a lot darker than her other band, and not nearly as overindulgent either. This reminds me a fucken lot of 90s gothic/symfo, in the sense that it is actually, you know, heavy, depressed and dark. Once upon a time symfo was actually dark. Thanks Armi for reminding us of that. If only the scene you are part of would get a fucken clue. If there’s one thing you can say about miss Päivinen is that she’s consistent. Consistently stunning, and consistently pro – this chica doesn’t sign off on anything unless it is professionally done. And I fucken like, no, adore her for that. I wish more metallers were like her. Don’t send me your crap unless you are absolutely sure it cannot be improved upon. No wonder she’s always so grumpy, it is fucken cold in Finland, and the booze is expensive as all hell too. It’s an –Ia band (Catamenia, Imperia, Krypteria, Xandria, et al) and it doesn’t fucken blow! Thank Odin that we have Armi Päivinen to show the world how this genre is supposed to be done. Makes you wonder why fucken crap like UnSun gets signed, and miss Päivinen is left alone in the fucken trenches. I swear, the metal industry is a joke! But I’m just an interwebs critic, or blogger and not important in the slightest. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. The world needs more Armi Päivinen. That is a fact. Fuck you if you don’t get it. http://ravenia.bandcamp.com comment it (1) Flemming Gabin / 8
  • Soreption - " Engineering the Void " (Sweden)

    Unique Leader Records
    I was as surprised as you assholes were to learn that Unique Leader Records actually is still signing death metal. Yeah, that label has become so fucken terrible over the last half decade that most of their signings these days have me going: “For fuck’s sake, more of this terrible teenage deathcore drivel?! Sign real metal again, fuckos”. One of the few signings worth their salt is this bunch of ugly Swedes and their band Soreption. Oh well, I always joke and call this fucken band The Tony Westermark Project, cos that is what it is. A good thing is that you can hear the bass guitar, and there are plenty of sweet guitar solos everywhere! Holy fuck, good death metal… on Unique Leader Records. Yeah, the chance of that happening these days is about as fucken slim as me ending up in a three-way with Summer St. Claire and Holly Eriksson. Anyway, “Engineering the Void” is album numero two for these ugly men, and if you hate what Spawn Of Possession has become – this is the antidote. It’s really too bad that their bass guitarist decided he had better things to do, cos this guy could actually learn most metal bassists a thing or three. I mean, by Odin, this guy is probably the best thing since Chris Richards (ex-Suffocation), Jeroen-Paul Thesseling (ex-Pestilence, ex-Obscura) and Steve DiGiorgio (Death, Sadus, etc). The only fucken new thing, which is actually a really old thing, is the inclusion of several orchestral parts. Some of these things are really fucken cheesy. I mean, the segues in ‘Monumental Burden’ and the title track sound like the type of thing you’d expect in a Ratchet & Clank video game, and not a supposedly very necro, super technical and evil sounding death metal album. For some reason there are other people on this The Tony Westermark Project album, although I really like the bassist, and the guitarist does some really neat fucken stuff too. The vocalist kinda bores me with his try-hard tough guy growl vocals – but who cares about vocalists in death metal anyway?! Yeah, well, this is underground metal after all, so intelligence and coherence never come first. I still don’t get why this band and Cerebrum aren’t yet touring together. But there are many things I don’t understand about the metal scene, let alone the joke that is the industry. http://uniqueleader.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 8
  • Unsacred Seed - " Frontiers " (Canada)

    Self-financed
    When you call your band Unsacred Seed you are setting yourself up for all sorts of expectations. When I read the fucken promo mail the band sent in (and before I saw the cover artwork), I was so ready to write this off as another retarded porndeath metal band that searches longer for the right samples than they do writing their songs. A name like Unsacred Seed doesn’t exactly scream intelligence, subtlety or coherence – so when “Frontiers” turned out to be an actually pretty fucken decent death metal album, I was as fucken amazed as you stupid assholes were. I don’t know which bands Unsacred Seed reminds me of, but I do know that this is the kind of death fucken metal that I can get behind. Holy crap, dudes. This shit is awesome. By Odin, modern death metal with electronic soundbits, melody and varied songwriting. No. Scratch that. Songwriting in modern death metal is rare enough in itself. I hear bits of old Kataklysm (say, “Sorcery” era), Golem, old Neuraxis, Death, Flesh Consumed, and the likes in this. The riffing is obviously of the Swedish variety, the construction itself is more contemporary and, well, sci-fi in death metal isn’t a novelty by a long shot. The bass guitar is actually important to the songs, so you can hear it popping and throbbing away. It might not sound evil in the slightest, but Unsacred Seed at least is able to convey their sci-fi atmosphere. And there’s solo’ing, fucken solo’ing. Okay, there are the usual boring and pointless dudebro breakdowns, retarded pit grooves and the drum production is completely fucken ass (listen to Gorefest’s “Erase” any pre-“Symbolic” Death album or Immolation’s “Unholy Cult” for a boss drum production) – on the whole this album is actually pretty fucken decent. Finally here’s a drummer that understands that it is okay to lay off the constant pounding bass drums, or that endless blasting is somehow a fucken prerequisite for this genre. Boo fucken hoo. Tasteful drumming wins over brutal blasting any day of the week. “Frontiers” is also completely fucken bass-heavy. I never heard of any of these bald men before, but I’m fucken glad one of them decided to sent me a promo invitation. I was amazed as you assholes were that this didn’t fucken blow. You learn something new every day. comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 7
  • Warfather - " Orchestrating the Apocalypse " (US/Brazil/Holland)

    Greyhaze Records
    Let it be said that death metal is about as fucken goofy as most of the black metal I regularly make fun of. Exhibit A: Warfather, the new band fronted by one-time Morbid Angel (who morphed in to PowerMorbid 5000 in the interim) vocalist Steve Tucker. Geez. Anybody with a fucken knack for 70s/80s Italian Mad Max and Road Warrior knock-offs will have a fucken field day with the promo pictures here: gun-toting steampunk women, guys wearing strange headgear with bladed weaponry and the main man himself in the weirdest apparel this side of, I dunno, the Atlanteans in “Raiders Of Atlantis”. Holy fucken crap are these costumes laughable and awful. The production is kinda off, and if it sounds like Warfather is playing two records at once, it probably is. For fuck’s sake, try harder already. The guitars, bass and vocals are produced fucken decently, but the drums sound like a pre-production demo at best. The production feels kinda bare bones and it never truly gels the various instruments together. It also is completely fucken bereft of any beef, and it feels strangely artificial. Oh sure, Tucker is his usual self proving that he was one of the better aspects of that fantastically awful (but in retrospect surprisingly decent) “Heretic” album. “Orchestrating the Apocalypse” feels like a half-finished product. I dunno. The foundation for a great record is definitely present and accounted for, but what the fuck this could have been (this could have been fucken monumental in good ol’ 90s death metal tradition) and what it is (a worthwhile but overall limp affair hampered by a subpar production) makes it sad that this was supposed to be Tucker’s re-entry into the underground death metal scene. Oh sure, the band is scattered across the Americas and central Europe – but that hasn’t stopped other far more low-profile projects from writing excellent music together. I mean, fuck me, this band features Steve Tucker (ex-Morbid Angel) and Eric de Windt (ex-Sinister, he sung on “Aggressive Measures”) along with a Brazilian dude and some American guy that wears strange masks and insists on being called Armatura (although I’m told he’s actually called Nick McMaster) – on the count of the first two this should have been massive, utterly relentless death metal of the purest kind. Well, it is for the most part. There are orchestrations (cos everybody wants a cake from Fleshgod Apoca-pasta’s pie), female vocals and esoteric solos – but to what end? A decent but ultimate forgettable USDM record that’s playing like its 2003? I kid you not. This is what “Orchestrating the Apocalypse” is. It’s decent, it’s pretty good – but that’s simply not good enough anymore. This should have been monumental, commanding, unearthly sounding death metal from celebrated scene veterans. It is not. And that’s a fucken shame. http://greyhazerecords.com comment it (0) Flemming Gabin / 6

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