Thursday, December 29, 2011

Rotten Sound-Cursed

It only took me one listen to realize Rotten Sound hadn't made any headway since their disappointing Cycles. Calling it a slide might be a bit too much, rather than a fall like 90's Napalm Death, the band has simply repeated themselves and added only tweaks and bugs to their execution with recent releases. That stomach churning guitar tone that was responsible for clearing whole forests back in 2005 with Exit has been diminished to a digital liquid soup with lack of character. The grime that covered every inch in Exit (including the hostile artwork) has been blunted into a fatter, boring-er sound. The vocals have lost whatever punch they had and are some of the most repetitive and uninteresting around (this would be a title fight between Deafeatist in the land of the inane). Songs lack character and definition, possibly a symptom of using such a muddied guitar tone; but somehow all those Swedes back when made it work.

To make things worse, the band finds time to do their best Entombed imitation with "Choose" and it's immediate successor "Hollow." It's beyond me why this band's wasting time with slow sections because they're the same stock riffage the band has come to use (as well as any generic death metal band) in their trip into mediocrity. The song writing's so boring, if you were to play them "Slave" from Exit they'd view it as some superior entity above themselves.

A name that used to mean something, Rotten Sound's content to repeat themselves as long as you're content to listen.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Sweating the Small Stuff: Favorite not-full Lengths of 2011

Here's a handful of stuff that caught my ear this year. Look forward to a list of full lengths (I'm taking my time to backtrack as well as explore anything I might have missed). Share your thoughts, and please point out what I might've missed ( I always need new music). I've listed my 9 favorite not-full lengths of the year because 9 is the most metal number besides 11. Everything's gone topsy turvy since I found out Teitanblood has an ep that's just come out and near impossible to get a hold of. This list reflects that.

9.Suffering Mind/Neon HoleSplit 
Our favorite Polish grinders offer up nearly 4 minutes of the most consistent grind around. Neon Hole's not breaking new crust, but the death metaly grind chaos of their side is just enough to keep up with Suffering Kielbasa.
8.Pilgrim - Forsaken Man 
Old is new again, as Pilgrim fly under the radar of bands trying to recapture earlier magic of stale genres. Forsaken Man is a well executed and riff barrel of doomy goodness.
7.Short Walk -  Don't Be One 
A reminder to the scene that power violence started from punk music, Short Walk are off the wall with this light-hearted thrashfest of a release.
6.Mutilation Rites - Demo (2011) 
Thrashy chops, memorable compositions and great production show this NYC group's ready for the big leagues. Look for them at the forefront of the usbm scene soon.
5.Ash Borer/Fell Voices - Split 12" 
What else is there to say besides there are two of the best black metal bands around? Long, winding, and organic spindles of thread and sewn between the two of these West Coast deities.

4.Vastum - Carnal Law
 Vastum's demo/debut showcases a picture perfect reflection of early death metal channeled into one entity. Riffs reminiscent of Dismember, rhythm and attack familiar to Cianide, and an overall gloom that brings to mind Incantation. Far more than worship, Vastum's ritual form of blasphemy belongs at the top of what passes for death metal these days.

3.Protestant - Stalemate
Protestant's proper check in to 2011 has been yet another solid slab of metallic hardcore that's way more fulfilling than you'd expect an EP to be. Dynamic takes like the opener "Nothing Left" have as much to mosh to as there is to pump your fist and sing along to. A mature and well rounded release from a band that's melded the angst and violence of hardcore with the melodies and intricacies of metal.

2.Ruin Lust - Demo
Ruin Lust's Cyclopean sound burns not only in it's visceral songwriting, but also in the pure animosity within each member's respective instrument. Not since Teitanblood's Seven Chalices has a band sounded so powerfully dark and violent with drums like turbulent storms and vocals that coincide with animalistic slaughter. A step above your average Blasphemy worship, Ruin Lust's laconic demo drowns out the light and thunders in the darkness.

1.Massive Attack Vs. Burial - Four Walls/Paradise Circus
My favorite non full length of the year belongs enigmatic U.K. electronic artist Burial and his rendition of two Massive Attack tracks. This is somewhat new ground for me, so I can't comment about previous efforts, but Burial's treatment of the two tracks is otherworldly and mesmerizing. The slow, hypnotic beat finds it's way through both tracks as a lone familiar singer sings admist the serene passages of varying noises and glimmers. Simply beautiful and darkly touching, this is one of my favorite releases this year period.

0. Teitanblood - Purging Tongues

I don't even know if this is out here in the States, if I'll even be able to buy it, or whatever; but I'm going to do something completely illogical and say this is the best of the year even though I have only this to go on...

"'Purging Tongues' is the revelation of blood-stained truth from behind the wall of life. Death Metal told in blind voices, guided by mute vision from the bottomless pit."

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Putting The Christ Back in Christmas

There's a million things to be said about the holidays, especially Christmas, but I'll say only one thing.

Enjoy the time you have with the people you enjoy and be sure to do something to that makes you happy.

Oh, and listen to some Christ smashing music.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Gripe Pig Servant

If you've been hankering old school grindcore touched up with the spit and polish of a post-good Napalm Death world then look no further. Gripe's songwriting is highly entertaining, energetic, and bombastic; definitely their strong point as it's something that sets them heads above others in a subset in where cloning yourself 30 times for an album is quite common.

I really can't get over the opening track's title "Ghetto Rapist," whatever the lyrics might be, it seems at odds both with the style of the band, as well as the other song titles (much of which contain the typical grindcore/punk ethos). To be blunt, the vocals need to be toned way down. Beyond that, the band plays a competent style of grindcore that reminds me a lot of my Turkish love affair with Sakatat ( yet is a bit too clean and rhythmically proficient to have that Warsore/E.N.T. vibe). I sound like I'm not too impressed, but I am. When the guitars come through they absolutely crush and even get hummable at times. And while the complaints I make about the vocals could be made about the drums, I like loud as hell drums and this drummer seems to be a machine that's learned how to dream of sheep. The pieces are on the table, and Gripe's just gotta find what clicks.

Check it out for free over at here.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Coins As Portraits - Form and Structure. Storm and Fracture.

Have you ever rolled your sleeves  and walked into a mess of a room prepared to tackle it, then looked at it a bit too long and completely space out and not do a thing? I ask, because I had a similar feeling upon first listening to Coins As Portraits. But, like the mess in question, when I got into the thick of it, I found all kinds of things I had forgotten about, lost, or simply never appreciated. The uneasy, disjointed jazzy grind that Coins As Portraits plays reminds me a bit of those tech hardcore bands that were all the rage in the early 2000's, bands like Ion Dissonance and the like, but without the necessary bro-ness and floor punching sections (thankfully).

Instead, with CAP (props for a cool acronym) you get highly playful grindcore that I can only compare to !T.O.O.H.! a band I had largely admired but nearly forgotten about. All of that said, the band's songwriting and technical chops is as much the flag they carry and the sword they fall on. My attention starts to wander after a couple songs as each song is next to impossible to discern one from the other. And while this is true,  tracks like "The Human Predicament: Part II" and "Solipsism" standout with oddball moments of melody  that sounds  tragically simple amongst the sea of start-stop riffs and blast beats and encircling vocals that give little, if any, room to breathe.

Check out the last track "Solipsism."

CAP definitely have something going here and  from a musicianship perspective it's quite impressive ( the swing section during "Solipsism" is damn cool). There is a seamless blend of varied musical schools of thought and disciplines underneath the umbrella of blast beats and frantic screams. Much in the way Swarrrm, and aforementioned !T.O.O.H.! and other have played with the confines of a genre that was birthed with 30 second songs, Coins As Portraits play challenging grindcore that is nothing short of intimidating. The band could benefit from a little more moments of normalcy and melody, (using the expected in the unexpected has worked wonders before) but benefits from a just polished enough production and enough variance and discernability to keep you listening  through the 15 minute window of Pollock meets Monk.

I also can't ignore the wittiness the band employs as both their name, and the title of this ep, Form and Structure. Storm and Fracture., is not only a fun play on words, but extremely fitting for their style of erratically familial music that plays extensively with form and mood.

Check it out from Fading Halo Records or Asiluum

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Leviathan - True Traitor, True Whore

Where solo act Leviathan has found success in the past in densely harrowing, vulgar, and paradoxically beautiful efforts, he seems to over look it with his latest release True Traitor, True Whore. Personal impetus aside, the album appears to be a connect the dots effort in order to make an overall homogeneous, digestible, and painfully overproduced work that leaves a die-hard like me disappointed.

Much to blame is the production, not only in sound and style, but in the sheer amount of effects and things at hand for Wrest to over complicate and distract with. Right from the beginning there is this laughable gibberish which goes into a great curve ball riff that's then torn apart by a very violent and thrashing riff. I get it, he wants to play with the listener's expectations and contradict whatever might be pleasant and melodic sounding with violent and unsettling sounds; but it's just so forced sounding. This works well on some tracks, "Her Circle is the Noose" and "Blood Red and True", but for the most part, every song seems to follow the same idea and strains my interest.

My favorite track from the album

The album is a strange form of retrogression as it borrows not only previously used ideas and tropes from Leviathan's back catalog, but also previous songs ("Shed this Skin" and "Blood Red and True"). The variance between tracks themselves is little, if any. They all jump from typical black metal sections to overproduced hazes of effects and creepy effects, in some way, shape, or form. Previous efforts had such strong writing chops and attention to structure, in that sense, True Traitor, True Whore feels much more like a pop album, where each track was conceived on its own and only the production with a vague agenda to keep them together.

While Wrest deserves the attention he's got for this record, I think it would've been more appropriate some five years ago. Sheer talent and good ideas don't save Leviathan from this overproduced (literal) nightmare of an album that lacks the atmospheric brilliance of prior releases and pushes the envelope of digestible dissonance black metal to another level. The simple, ending track shown above "Blood Red and True" manages to build upon a simple, plodding riff which shows Wrest's talent for not only creating dense and creepy songs, but also something rhythmic and hypnotic.

Will I buy it? Probably on vinyl, because as both a fan and a collector, it has been Leviathan that first spurred me to collect records. Will I listen to it? Doubtful.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


My creative energies haven't been there as of late and I haven't done much in the way of exploring new music. If you're bothering at all to read this, then I thank you greatly; this isn't the kind of gig I'd carry on for my own entertainment.

To keep on tab with me, and maybe inspire me to respond or facilitate something I've been listening a lot to Polish favorites Self Hate and Suffering Mind, and usbm acts Ash Borer, Fell Voices, and the new Leviathan album which I'll talk about at greater length sometime soon.
There's few albums that I really like that I can't give a concrete answer for. One of which being Self Hate's At the Beginning God Created Fear, another being Conqueror's War Cult Supremacy. I think something both albums contain is an incredible amount of ferocity, speed, and bat-shit vocals. To the former of the bands, the production definitely helps as it's absurdly heavy and viscous, so muddy at times I'd normally complain about it, but here, I'm loving it. It feels at times that things might just spiral out of control and that anxiety of wondering if the band can make it out of the song alive makes it all the more enjoyable.

The aura that At the Beginning... evokes is rare, it reminds me a bit of old Phobia and Brutal Truth, but a lot heavier and darker. I couldn't help but think, if this band were American, they'd be as revered as the other two previously mentioned.

Anyway, I'm finding more and more to like out of Central European acts like those mentioned, there's something great going on their besides hockey, sausage, and beer, and it's their grindcore. I plead to for you to listen to Gride, Lycanthrophy, and Wojtyla.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Frightmare on Thrash Street

Halloween has, and always will be, my favorite holiday. From when I first demanded a hockey mask  to my college days dressed in a full suit of armor made from beer cans (that's right), there hasn't been a Halloween that hasn't gotten me into movie marathons and music to match. No music, however,  has fit the bill as well as Frightmare.

I've decided to dissect each track from their debut, Midnight Murder Mania, and watch each film referred to and let you guys know what I think 'bout 'dem.

Without further adieu, here's...

Midnight Movie Mania

Need a hand? hahahahahahahaha
It doesn't take much more than decent characters and good special effects/violent deaths to make a slasher work; this, without a doubt, is what The Burning's (1981) all about. "Cropsy" kicks Midnight Murder Mania with a clip that tells you all you need to know; kids burned a man beyond recognition and he shouldn't hold it against them. Yeah right. "This man's cooked. A fuckin' Big Mac." Scariest part is seeing a young Jason Alexander's ass; yikes.

As the second track kicks in, we take cue from Deranged: Confessions of a Necrophile (1974).One of the more well executed low budget horror movies I've seen, Deranged, is loosely based upon the story of Ed Gein and follows this killer as he tries to find solace after his mother's death. Scenes of him carrying around decaying corpses and having dinner with them a'la Texas Chainsaw Massacre are an odd mix of disturbing and silly. Main actor, Roberts Blossom does a great job of being that creepy, isolated weirdo who secretly talks to the corpse of his mother and others.

As promised, these chicks get 'drilled'
Slumber Party Massacre (1982) makes a lot more sense when you find out that the writer intended it to be slasher parody; but the producers turned it into a serious slasher (as serious as it could be) and it sucks. There really isn't much here for anyone that's not a boy and twelve years old, and, oh, not in the 80's. Massacre is outdated and one of the few completely trite movies Frightmare picks to pay homage too. Every action the stupid teens take is illogical and against any sense of self-preservation. I wish this was taken as a joke because then it could have been very aware for its time (and funny too; I guess...).

That's right, take that Bacon!
Possibly the best slasher ever made, Friday the 13th(1980), is also one of the best tracks on the record. A name everyone knows, the combination of a genuinely good twist, effective music, and excellent pacing make this not only a must see for horror fans, but for everyone. If you watch the previously mentioned The Burning, or probably half the slashers out there, you'll see Friday the 13th's influence.

"Slasher Holocaust" is a thrashy track that doesn't relate to any particular movie that I know of. Given the title, as well as the other songs, I assume it's a general homage to the slashers found on this list. We'll just move on.

It's been awhile since I've seen The Prowler (1981), and it hasn't been the easiest to find. What I do remember are some excellent effects/sequences by a name I'm tired of typing by now. Much like The Burning, The Prowler's mostly just a slasher money shot of well done death sequences.

"Be My Bloody Valentine" is not only the best track on the album, but maybe my favorite of the films here. My Bloody Valentine (1981) has an outstanding setting (an old mine shaft) and some of the best killings on film. Choice clip, choice riffs; this is probably the catchiest and thrashiest track on the album.

Black Christmas (1974) was one of the better surprises here as it actually is frightening and creepy at times and does a good job to build suspense. A sorority house terrorized by unsettling phone calls and a maniac killer, sounds like fun right? Thankfully it doesn't submit itself to just boobs and blood like some others might. Really awesome trashy song to go with it that has quite the buildup.

While"The Ripper" opens up with a clip, I can't make out what it's from. I'm sorry to disappoint. But I can tell you it's a 'ripping' (get it?) track that continues this album's amazing fluidity and riff catalog and has this awesome moment that I can only explain by equating its momentum to that of someone in mid-swing pulling back and swinging again (an axe of course).


"Frank Zito, The Maniac" takes its name from another Savini project,  The Maniac (1980), which features the best shotgun death ever. The film does do a good job of making you feel uneasy and catching the dirty 70's New York that no one wants to remember.Alright overall, but nothing to it besides the phenomenal effects by Mr. Savini and lead man Spinelli's performance as yet another creepy serial killer with mommy issues.

"Devilock" takes cue from The Misfits, a band much like Frightmare in the respect that they had to show their love for their favorite childhood/adolescent horror movies by writing songs about them. The cover itself is okay, a bit one dimensional, but fun nonetheless (especially for a Misfit fan like myself). While the other songs pay homage to movies, this does the same thing to an important band.

In the end, this album, as well as this list, becomes a pretty good collection of important early slashers, none later than 1982. For people who have never appreciated slasher films, then I say give a few of these a try. These films are best watched with a group of friends and a beer or two in hand. There's a real art to the pacing, dipiction, and suspense of death in film, and some of these are a perfect example.

Beyond the films themselves, this album is an amazing combination of thrash and death metal not without a touch of grind. Melodic leads, gutturally to raspy vocals, blasting drums and plenty of riffs make this a very well rounded release. For fans of any of Maniac Neil's other projects, Ghoul, and old deaththrash like Sadus and Cancer. This was a lot of fun, and it's gotten me in the mood to watch millions of slashers and horror movies.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Standing on the Edge of the World... songs Ad Infinitum

The premise of long songs gets me in a fit most of the time. Bands endlessly plucking away for 20 minutes at an accoustic guitar before the song gets underway is just more of a reason why I love mp3s. Like anything, it can be done well, and on the converse, it can be done poorly. Somewhere, in the middle of all of this, I find songs/albums like Corrupted's "El Mundo Frio." 

Spanning an hour and eleven minutes, the one song album translates to "The Cold World," a fitting title, for such a desolate song. But like I mentioned earlier, this album in particular finds itself in an odd spot as it meanders, gets heavy, meanders, gets heavy, meanders....etc etc. And while I like the song, for the most part, I can't help but wonder what it'd sound like if it dropped some of distant guitar plucking in between the heavy sections, ones that castrate and usurp the power of these landslide like sections. Thankfully, this doesn't happen too much in the realm of faster music, but sometimes it does, and sometimes it works.

One man grindoctopus Parlamentarisk Sodomi put together "Klæbukrønikene (De Anarkistiske An(n)aler)" a Pollock-like ten minute grind marathon which starts with a silly, circus like keyboard section and continues into grind infinity. I don't have a problem with this song except I think it could have done without the keyboards. Also, the fact that it's a grindcore song placing around ten minutes makes it feel like a novelty. I particularly don't like novelty, unless it's something along the lines of Wehrmacht or such (you'd never catch them with a ten minute song!). I hope this doesn't make me sound like some bible thumping old timer whose shut down the town dance, I just get annoyed by joke bands, or serious bands with stupid jokes.

Where long songs are a given to work is obvious. Drone and the slower of spectrum of things almost require you to get in distance contests. For the most part I accept it, but some bands outstay their welcome and seem to repeat the same crap ad nauseum for no other reason than to build the song. Like the idiot kid in your presechool who built the most inane legos/lincoln log contraptions, those drone/doom/whatever bands haven't discovered that it's not always the size that matters. The same could be said about grind bands putting out an album with 150 songs under 30mins (or whatever the specifics are), but i digress.

The Makai are a band that comes to mind when song length is in question. Their Embrace the Shroud of a Blackened Sky which is a one song, crusty-black metal hardcore whatever track that spans two LP sides and is as varied as a ten song album could be. I love this album, I find it flows very well and there is never a moment i pick the needle up to skip ahead. On the converse,many black metal bands will go for a ten minute song or something even longer, when it could be separated and made more digestible (Deathspell Omega I'm looking at you). Whether it be my prejudice, my predispositions, or whatever else, I usually find myself more amenable to black metal dirges that top ten minutes as opposed to stripped down doom/sludge acts, or bands that obviously use place holders like noise and whatever else to bridge together a track that shouldn't be so long.

How do y'all feel about long songs? I put together what I'll deem the Perpetual Strife Marathon; see if you can make it through ( I decided against something like El Mundo Frio because that's just silly, as well as anything 20+mins/ easy options like sludge or whatever).
Like my Paint skills?

1. "Deuteronomy" - The Endless Blockade - The Red List (split w. Man Is the Bastard)
2."Ţesarul De Lumini" - Negură Bunget - Om
3."Fade to Black" - Sludgetallica - Ride the Lightning (45rpm record slowed to 33rpm)
4. "IX : Der Einsiedler" - UrfaustEinsiedler
5. "Klæbukrønikene (De Anarkistiske An(n)aler)" - Parlamentarisk Sodomi De Anarkistiske An(n)aler
6. "Memory Leak" - NadjaTruth Becomes Death
7. "Black Prophecies" - Dark Angel - Darkness Descends 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Hobos, Trolls, Samuari, and Sean Bean

With Halloween coming soon, and an arduous project for that said holiday up my sleeve, I've been watching a lot movies. Recently, I've watched a slew of a great, somewhat under the radar releases from Magnet Releasing, a subset of Magnolia Distribution, who is a U.S distributor for slightly off-beat, foreign, or violent/grindhouse releases. The few I've watched, Rubber, 13 Assassins, I Saw the Devil, Hobo With a Shotgun, Black Death,The House of the Devil, Trollhunter and the ones I plan to see Tucker and Dale vs Evil, The Last Circus are all high quality indie flicks with the approach, production, and execution that the movies many of the pay homage to lacked.

13 Assassins
As I said, some flirt with the mainstream, for instance 13 Assassins is an excellent samurai flick that would make Korosawa proud and is done by the Japanese master Takishi Miike (Ichi the Killer, Audition). Similarly, Black Death, featuring Boromir/Lord Snow/005 (Sean Bean, the man who dies in every movie he's ever been in) is a solid medieval action flick filled with tons of great fights. Rubber is a hip, playfully self-aware black comedy that focuses on a serial killer car tire and Hobo With a Shotgun hides nothing in its technicolor glory and shotgun executions. The biggest surprise for me was House of the Devil, a 2009 release that looks like it was done in the early 80's (this is purposeful). It's an excellent haunted house/slasher that's as good an homage as it is a current release. The latest, for me that is, is I Saw the Devil, which convinces me that ever single Korean is obsessed with revenge. The film was an excellent, and very disturbing revenge tale much like Old Boy, but thankfully original in its own way.

I Saw the Devil
I guess I'm happy to see consistently good movies and more so surprised that a one company has such a good eye for these releases. It makes me think of labels like Profound Lore, Gilead, Halo of Flies, and back in the day, Earache, Peaceville, Roadrunner, who inspired enough confidence that I would buy simply based on their track record.

I recommend each film, unless you have a weak stomach, otherwise they cover a wide breadth of action/horror, all with their own unique eccentricities.There's something about them that I guess is reminiscent of my taste in music. Some are very good, but are purposefully predictable or cliche (Hobo with a Shotgun, Black Death) reminding me of bands like Coffins or Insect Warfare who are far from reinventing the wheel, but do what they do almost perfectly. Others, like Trollhunter are goofy, good premises that are a fun watch and never claim to be anything else, much like thrash bands like Municipal Waste. Maybe the same way people thumb their noses at one of the previously mentioned bands because of their familiarity, or lack of mind-blowing originality that is nearly impossible to find, these films, and the music I like get scrutinized a bit too much and should simply be enjoyed because they invoke something in you. Whether you're twirling your hair to a band like Midnight or cheering on a shotgun wielding hobo, you're still having a good time.

The scenes of this fat Norwegian man yelling "troll" make this movie alone worth it.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Let me Count the Ways... A Grindcore Numbers Game

One album is the only full length release from Insect Warfare, arguably one of the best grindcore bands this century whose singer, Rahi, has joined up with Hatred Surge which is back to having Two vocalists, but dropped the male/female combo like stalwarts Despise You and crusties Nausea, meaning there have been Three different singers before their latest split with fellow Austin Four-piece Mammoth Grinder whose only been around for Five years and made a big splash with their second full-length, Extinction of Humanity in 2009, which featured artwork by Joe Petagno, notable for his work with Motorhead, except their Sixth album,

Ironfist which German thrashers Sodom covered the title track on their seminal album Persecution Mania that had a re-released including "Sodomy and Lust" which is covered by Tacheless on their 2009 album Freiheit but originally released on Sodom's 198Seven release Expurse of Sodomy which was the same year Napalm Death's all important Scum came out, who have had Eight guitarists in their 30 year career, only matched by Anthrax who've also had eight members for two positions (vocals and guitars), one of whom, Dan Lilker (credited as a guitarist before anything was recorded) formed grindcore legends Brutal Truth who formed Nine years after Anthrax did and released their second album Ten years before Insect Warfare formed in 2004.


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

SLUDGETOBERFEST- A Down-tuned Odyssey

As the days grow shorter, the nights colder, and the mornings more invasive, a proper soundtrack is in order for the occasion. Sludge, a genre I came to unfortunately late, has been a mainstay in my musical diet for a good while now. Whether it was when I first heard Dystopia, or finally got around to Eyehategod, never has a name epitomized [sludge] a sound so well.

I've compiled this digital tape in hopes to not only share my fondness for the following bands, but also in hopes of inciting people to find something new and discuss it, embrace it, and reinvent it. Sludge is a fickle thing for me because I dislike many mainstays of the genre (Down, Crowbar, Acid Bath) yet I consider it a favorite genre of mine.

Anyway, enjoy this scratch at the sewage lid, and feel free to share. I opted for the more vile and brooding bands, as well as made an exception for Coffins.

  1. "The Frozen Styx"                              Coffins                                       Buried Death
  2. "Empty"                                             Corrupted                                 Corrupted/Cripple Bastards
  3. "Hands That Mold"                            Dystopia                                   Human = Garbage
  4. "Anxiety Hangover"                            Eyehategod                              Dopesick
  5. "Disciples of Nothingness"                 Fleshpress                                 Pillars
  6. Birth of Cousins                                Goatsblood                                Drull
  7. Depression                                       Grief                                          Dismal 
  8. Lethe                                                Hell                                           Hell 
  9. Boss Keloid                                     Iron Monkey                             Our Problem
  10. Wroll                                                Moloch                                     Tears That Soak A Callous Heart
  11. Stasis                                               Noothgrush                                Failing Early, Failing Often
  12. Master Failure                                  Salome                                      Terminal
  13. The Work Ethic Myth                       Thou                                         Peasant
  14. Dust                                                 Wake Up On Fire                     Wake Up On Fire
  15. Exit                                                   Zenocide                                   Zenocide

I have no idea why blogspot is being a complete cunt about this formatting, but whatever; I'm not spending more time trying to fix it.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

When Cliches Go Right

With your beer goggles firmly affixed, Midnight's at its best this time around. The band's honest brand of heavy metal gone black is a complete homage to bands like Venom, Motorhead, Mercyful Fate, and finds itself best amongst friends, clinking beers and waves of hair in constant motion. A cleaner production this time around, Satanic Royalty begins with perfect pacing as the title track eases you into the driving NWOBH influenced "You Can't Stop Steel." Catchy leads, hook driven rhythm guitars, sing-along lyrics and pumping drums pen Midnight as catchy and credible as heavy metal can get.

Highlights include the aforementioned track as well as the following track, "Rip This Hell" which are both similar nods to Lemmy and co and eventually "Violence on Violence" which retains a very early thrash feel.The album stomps along, never moving far from a driving mid-pace rhythm, until the lone dud of the album, "Black Damnation" which sounds like stock 80's jukebox hard-rock with raspy vocals. For a band that does a good job with repeating familiar sounds and tropes, maybe this track does it too well and simply becomes flat.

As only as Hell's Headbanger's can do, Midnight is a retro-act with just enough of a modern distinction to make it an easy pick for parties, car rides, or a venture to physical therapy for whiplash.

Album drops Novemeber 8th.

Inquisition and Mortuary Drape to Play NYC in Decemeber

Pretty fuggin' cool if you ask me, black metal shriekaholics Inquisition team up with Italy's trailblzaers Mortuary Drape to play in Drape's first ever North American show. Put together by my friend over at BBQ Booking, this promises to be a rare and unholy show.

Taken from the barbeque pit...

For our fourth volume, we are extremely proud to announce the return of Washington-via-Colombia's black magick leaders Inquisition to New York City. The band—drummer Incubus and vocalist/guitarist Dagon—have been relentlessly creating their unique brand of black metal for over two decades and have been consistently evolving from Anxious Death, the band's debut EP from 1990, to their latest opus, last year's Ominous Doctrines of the Perpetual Mystical Macrocosm... Joining Inquisition will be none other than legendary Italian cult Mortuary Drape (!), which will be the band's first-ever appearance on North American soil. The band's 1994 debut LP, All the Witches Dance, and 1997's sophomore release, Secret Sudaria, are not only some of our personal favorite records ever, but they pioneered the sound and aesthetics of modern-day black metal.

Crawl out from whatever rock you're under and put away your Burzum tapes, this promises to be a unique performance. The show is December 2nd at the Studio in Webster Hall.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Thou, The Body, Alakhest @ ABC No Rio 10/8/11

Yesterday I cuaght ABC No Rio's weekly matinee that caters to punk/metal acts. One of New York's best venues, and possibly the oldest DIY venue in the States, it was the perfect setting for Baton Rogue sludgophiles Thou.

I came into the gig a bit late and missed the first act ( some band from New Jersey that had members of Burnt by the Sun and Dillinger Escape Plan). Luckily I caught a bit of Alkahest's set which quickly won over my girlfriend and I (her first CD purchase since middle school). The band's brand of atmospheric sludge a'la Mouth of the Architect with a much heavier touch (not to mention painfully awesome/dynamic vocals) sounded so overwhelming and great in such a small place. Catchy and building guitar leads upon thundering drums, competent bass lines, and a guiding rhythm guitar had me zoning out (in a good way of course) and wishing for more.

The Body was up next, hailing from Rhode Island, the duo had one of the oddest looking drum sets I'd ever seen and refused to use a mic for singing. I admire the idea (if this was what it was) but it was silly as he just sounded like he was yelling randomly and just barely got above the guitars and drums. The band itself sounded heavy for heaviness's sake. The crowd swayed to and fro to the plodding thunder of indistinguishable and monotonous riffs and seemed to like it. I wasn't won over, but the band seems to have quite a following and maybe this gig didn't live up to the band's recorded material.

Next up, Thou took the stage in a very humble manner and kicked things off a set full of energetic songs embracing their punk side, as well as my favorite track "They Stretch out Their hands," and ending with one of the most fun covers I've ever heard, "Sabotage" by the Beastie Boys. The crowd was nuts before the cover, and with the cover the small setting turned into a moving pit of people singing along as front man Byran tossed himself throughout the crowd. While I liked the band's set list better last month at The Bell House, the energy and smaller venue was a lot better here at ABC. The band really shined in the crowded smaller space and proved to be one of the most energetic and fun bands I have ever seen.

A must see, and a must hear band, Thou kicked ass once again.

Thou | NYC @ Abc No Rio | 08 Oct 2011 from (((unartig))) on Vimeo.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Forgotten Lore: ABC Weapons

My discovery of ABC Weapons was the product of a summer with too much time and one dedicated to finding music. Luckily, I came across the now defunct ABC Weapons of Melbourne, Australia. Formed in 2003, dead by 2008, these boys put out only two EPs and are trying to get an unreleased album out posthumously.

The style the band plays is a furious d-beat driven ensemble of blistering guitar leads and barked vocals on top of typical punky like chord progressions. A very metal, yet dynamic approach to a commonly replicated sound.

Similar to the band they take their name from (*cough* G.I.S.M *cough*), ABC Weapons have guitar leads that would fit in much more with the melodic thrash crowd than any punk group. It's a big statement to make, but take a mid-era Wolfpack/brigade effort and make it more melodic, dynamic, and better and essentially you've got ABC Weapons. The Process of Decay has always been a top player in my month to month listening. It's such a great mixture of melodic, catchy leads and hooks along with furious vocals and surging d-beats that get me in a Doom kinda mood.

It's rare to find such a release that is perfect in of itself, and that's just the case with The Process of Decay, without fault or any need, it's definitely one of my favorite EPs.

For fans of Muga, Martyrdod, His Hero is Gone, Wolfpack/bridge, Nux Vomica, etc.

Up the punx!

An Autumn For Crippled Children - Everything

Covers like this are usually a good indication of what you're in for.
While it might sound like some small town fundraiser started in memory of Timmy the octoplegic, it is, in fact, the name of a symphonically driven black metal band out of the Netherlands (we'll stick with ACC to make life easier). A dense and claustrophobic production coupled with trite keyboards, made it a surprise to find out that this isn't a one man black metal band, but rather a three piece (there are credits to a drummer, but I don't believe that these are real drums).

To get right to it, Everything is the latest release from this band. The album itself is  a very spotty record  that jumps from keyboard driven sections that are boring and over the top to dense, powerful walls of steel wool, shoe gaze-y guitars gone scary and forlorn. This sums up the first two tracks as "Forever Never Fails" is as poppy as black metal could ever get and then "Formlessness" explores a very post-rock influenced sound and, for the most part, lacks keyboards. Halfway through the second track reminds me a lot of Xasthur on a good day and Alcest circa Le Secret. This is a very powerful, and well done section that shows the potential behind ACC if they focused their energy on atmosphere and the guitar.

This is pretty much how the rest of the album carries on as the band jumps from silly, synth driven tracks that sound amateurish and over the top, to dreary slicing guitars, mangled screams and dense sections where they all come together.

There was a period in my life where I listened to almost anything labeled black metal and when I found bands like Xasthur to be the creme dela creme, with ACC I feel like I'm back there again. There are countless, forgettable bands that did what ACC do and have never been thought of again by myself, and there are others such as Caïna and Lifelover who have what makes ACC interesting without what makes them not. ACC do somethings right, but the merry elves keyboards and the drum machine really kill what what does work. The band would be far better suited to bask in dense, droning sections and pour out into post-rock like explosions.

The album leaves me thinking "well, maybe next time they'll get it right." Truth be told, I don't care if there is a next time. If Slayer went right from Haunting the Chapel to Seasons in the Abyss I would say "they had something going, but lost it somehow." What's there is there, and what An Autumn for Crippled Children have is nothing worth revisiting as handfuls have done it better, and continue to do so.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Soundtracks for the Deaf: SWANS Live

"Byah Byah Byah, hey hey hey"
Swans, formed in 1982 and recently revived, showed no sign of age or weakness last Wednesday at The Music Hall of Williamsburg (albeit minor setbacks as front-man Micheal Gira blew out two amps). Notorious for their live performances the band set out to live up to their painfully loud legacy of making concert goers pay with their hearing.

Swans are a band I've only come into recently. Having first heard them by way of Nadja covering them I didn't know about their heavier, dirtier side until recently. That said, I am, by no means an avid fan, expert or even knowledgeable about the band. I think such a statement would speak volumes about the band as a person like me was completely blown away by their performance.

Openers Sir Richard Bishop and Wovenhand attracted a crowd, but as solo performers upon a large stage they looked out of place. The rustic, eerie folk of Wovenhand would have fared much better in a small coffee shop, log cabin, or wild cave and the fretboard wizardry of Sir Richard Bishop felt a bit flat without anything to back him up. I'm sure these two are great on record, or a proper venue, but they were a bit boring up on that large stage.

As expected, the show was the loudest and most overwhelming concert I've ever been to in my life. It wasn't just feedback and the droning sections that got me, or the drummer's fury upon a rack-mounted bass drum, but every little nuance of the band formed a huge, fractured sound that came together and split apart in such a way that was as beautiful as it was ugly. Gira flailed around and looked utterly possessed as the band occupied the stage for two plus hours. Most of the set list I assume to be from their most recent work, although I recognized the last track as it was from Soundtracks for the Blind. Employing well over a dozen different instruments, no keyboards, and a very well put together sound, Swans were just enough messy to be authentic and organic without being sloppy or bad in anyway.

I was so enamored by the band and this beautiful screened poster that I opted for the wrong date. Much nicer than the one done for us New Yorkers.
Chaotic, cathartic, loud, and overwhelming, Swans proved to be more of an experience than an event.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

DRIVE Sountrack

I'm not sure of the merit in doing a soundtrack review, but the accompaniment to Nicolas Winding Refn's  film Drive has had me hooked since I saw it. Maybe my attraction to the soundtrack is based more in the film and my associations with the songs featured, or maybe because it's a realm of music I'm not too familiar with. Regardless of whether my enjoyment of the soundtrack is based in nostalgia or not, I've found myself unable to avoid it.

What's included in the soundtrack are five songs songs done by various groups and the score composed by Cliff Martinez (drummer for Red Hot Chili Pepper, Captain Beefheart. Composer  of Traffic, Solaris (2002), The Lincoln Lawyer, amongst many others). The cream of the crop for me are the first three tracks, which are simple, bobbing pseudo disco pop that's a mix between 80's dance music and new wave with a modern feel relying heavily on synthesizer and vocals.

Composed pieces by Martinez are stark, minimalist electronic pieces that ebb and flow with building intensity and subsiding emotion. These tracks are in contrast to the previously mentioned three which feature vocals and have a  driving pulse to them as well as the black sheep of the bunch, a track by Italian composer Riz Ortolani featuring the harrowly powerful vocals of Katyna Ranieri. Martinez's efforts don't fare as well as the rest of the tracks simply because they're meant to have a visual accompaniment.

Overall this is probably the only soundtrack I've ever sought out and listened to in its entirety. I'm almost positive that my enjoyment of the movie plays a large roll in my enjoyment of the music as many tracks are in tune with powerful and enthralling scenes of the film.

The soundtrack, when hand in hand with the actual film is a perfect match and does nothing but highlight what Refn and company are pushing for you to feel.

1. Nightcall - Kavinsky & Lovefoxxx
2. Under Your Spell - Desire
3. A Real Hero (feat. Electric Youth) - College
4. Oh My Love (feat. Katyna Ranieri) - Riz Ortolani
5. Tick of the Clock - Chromatics
6. Rubber Head - Cliff Martinez
7. I Drive - Cliff Martinez
8. He Had a Good Time - Cliff Martinez
9. They Broke His Pelvis - Cliff Martinez
10. Kick Your Teeth - Cliff Martinez
11. Where's the Deluxe Version? - Cliff Martinez
12. See You in Four - Cliff Martinez
13. After The Chase - Cliff Martinez
14. Hammer - Cliff Martinez
15. Wrong Floor - Cliff Martinez
16. Skull Crushing - Cliff Martinez
17. My Name on a Car - Cliff Martinez
18. On The Beach - Cliff Martinez
19. Bride of Deluxe - Cliff Martinez

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Ruin Lust- Unittled

Ruin Lust's set at The Brooklyn Union Pool Hall last Saturday was one of the most driven and intense performances I've seen in awhile.This artillery barrage of a show forced me to pick up what I can only assume to be their only release, a titleless demo cassette.

Usually a band has either its recorded experience to live up to, or vice versa; here, Ruin Lust had the latter. What you get with this cassette is 5 tracks of uncompromising black metal that is as heavy as it is fast. Nothing atmospheric, nothing artsy or progressive, instead, it's a vehement, laconic curbstomping that starts as quickly as it ends.

Critics often make the mistake of using absolutes when they're ignorant of what else exists, I myself have probably made the mistake. I say this because I remember reading ages ago a copy of Revolver which stated Nirvana was the 19th heaviest band of all time (Obituary was 45th, just for comparison's sake). So I keep that in mind when people say "heavy" as it's lost its meaning, just like "epic." Well, for what it's worth, I can assure you that Ruin Lust is one of the heaviest bands I've heard in recent memory. The ferocity of Conqueror's s War Cult Supremacy meets a more level headed production and an uncompromising desire to offer something that countless Blasphemy clones can't; decent song writing and varied song structure. Dramatic build ups and primal grunts fly right into Blasphemy pounds (all drums are hit at the same time as fast as possible) as the most perfect guitar tone saws meaty, wet riffs in rapid fire succession. Much like successful grindcore bands, the emphasis on rhythm and structure propels Ruin Lust through dirge like build ups into razor walls of sound and brooding intensity.

While I talked with their drummer briefly about an upcoming Fell Voices release (one of his many projects), I'll be honest in saying I'm much more excited to see what happens with Ruin Lust and hopefully we can see a full length down the road.

Yes I have to bring up Blasphemy, no Ruin Lust isn't some trite clone. Catch the band if you can and look around for their demo, I'm sure it's out there somewhere to buy.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Show Saga Pat III: Urfaust, Black Anvil, Krallice, and Ruin Lust @ The Union Pool Hall

If my ear drums weren't already aching, last Saturday brought another session of top class metal that I was fortunate enough to catch.

Ruin Lust. Courtesy of Brooklyn Vegan.
The night kicked off with the unassuming three piece Ruin Lust. Comprised of members of Fell Voices, Ruin Lust are a far cry from the lengthy and spectral sound of the adforemntioned band. Instead, drummer Mike, pounded his tiny drumset like some frenized berzerker, grunting and screaming all the way. Accurate to call "war metal" but unfairly pigeon-holing the band, Ruin Lust were 100% that night and showed a level of aggression, power and sheer force that no other band matched up to. Well excuted, Ruin Lust set the bar high for the night.

I skipped out on Krallice and hit the bar as I know their shtick, but I overheard they were spot on and the same goes for Black Anvil. The latter interests me far more than the former, but corn on the cob got in the way of seeing the band (the venue has a taco truck situated in its outside portion).

Urfaust came to the stage, humble and on point, rocking right off the bat. The slow, droning chords matched with the unmistakable and truly ethereal vocals of singer/guitarist IX were held together by the rudimentary backbeat of drummer VRDRBR and successfully recreated the trance like quality that the band has perfected after nearly seven years.The crowd moshed as slowly and drunkenly as they could, much to the dismay of some, and to the delight of others. Faint attempts to recreate the German lyrics echoed in the tightly packed venue and people even bought drinks for the guys. The night was topped with a bunch of songs I can't pronounce and pinpoint as many bleed together. Much of the set seemed to be from their latest full length, Der freiwillige Bettler. No ego kept the band from the crowd and they, to much applause, dedicated a track to the late Peter Steele (of Type O Negative fame; Brooklyn's pride and joy) and even haggled the crowd for requests (to which someone called out a tune already played, and silence as the bands titles were intimidating enough to read let alone shout).

I was suspiscious of Urfaust's ability to recreate some of the most absorbing and atmospheric music in the extreme music scene, but they succeeded without the help of keyboards or addiontal members. An impressive show and a fortunate occurrence as the band rarely makes it to this side of the Atlantic.

Look for a review of the Ruin Lust cassette I snagged at the show sometime in the future.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Show Saga Part II: Wolves in the Throne Room, Thou, and Krallice @ The Bell House

The day after I lost a third of my weight in sweat from the Despise You show I made my way over to The Bell House primarily to catch Thou. For starters, the Bell House was a lot larger than I thought it'd be. Complete with a full size barroom and a whole seperate concernt venue with lodge-like roofing and a full stage, the venue seemed a bit out of place for the night's show. Needless to say this wasn't my ideal venue, but I was still excited to see one of my favorite bands.

Krallice kicked things off with an older song ("Dimensional Bleedthrough" I think) which was surprisingly good. I've seen the band 3 (or 4? I can't recall) times now and they've done an excellent job in sounding tighter and more energetic since I caught them two years ago with A Storm of Light and Wolves in the Throne Room. Unfortunately, the rest of the set suffered as their newer songs showcase more attention to vocals (deeper, less interesting ones), heavier and more technical riffs and structures that really detract from the hypnotic melodies that were so absorbing from their s/t. They got a good response from the crowd and I heard mixed things while waiting at the bar.

Thou, as I expected, dominated the show, putting Krallice in their place as openers, and distracting me from the headliner as they couldn't be lived up to. Beyond the cohesion between the band, their spot on execution and excellent sound, their set-list was worth it alone. Starting with my favorite song "They Stretch out Their hands,"  and eventually "Burning Black Coals And Dark Memories," "Here I Stand Head In Hand" (possibly my third favorite of theirs) and ending with a very honest and energetic cover of Black Sabbath's "Into the Void." While the stage was too big for them (they're the kind of band that thrives in small settings) they lived up to my expectations and easily stole the show.

Thou - Burning Black Coals And Dark Memories from (((unartig))) on Vimeo.

Wolves in the Throne Room are a far cry from the band I obsessed over with their first release. Whether it's the relative stardom they've accomplished, or maybe my own shifts in taste, the band bored me this time around. I fondly recall them playing Brooklyn nearly 4 years ago (right around the release of Two Hunters) and thought they were one of the best acts I had ever seen. That show was such a clash compared to this one as they practically played in the crowd and let their music speak for itself that time. However, in recent years, the band's employed incense, smoke, banners, candles, and other gimmicks that feed into this "natural aesthetic" that just seems a bit silly in such a big venue like The Bell House. Rumored to be a possible fairwell tour, I'm happy I was able to catch them, but I'm happier to think of a time when they were a small outfit with only two releases and no gimmicks.

Wolves in the Throne Room | NYC @ The Bell House | 12 Sep 2011 from (((unartig))) on Vimeo.

Thou and WITTR continued on two days later to Death By Audio (this time with support by the excellent Mutilation Rites). Unfortunately I missed the show, but I assume Thou really shined in the small death trap that is Death By Audio.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Monday Night Violence: Backslider

Two man fastcore act Backslider hail from my most hated sports city in the world and were one of the high points of the Despise You show I caught last week. One part one part stop and one part go, Backslider prove to be as mosh oriented as they are confusing. Songs abruptly shift from slow jams to breakneck blasts to precision stops then a jumble of the previous formula.

Formed in 2009 and with only a handful of splits, demos, and eps under their belt, Backslider stay strong with the promise of three new eps from trusted labels Deep Six, To live a Lie (it's imperative you check their front page as it's one of the most glorious pieces of art I've ever seen), and Cowabunga Records.

As I mentioned earlier, more so than the Infest vocals, the riffs, or the drum work, it's the song structure and the band's tendency to play in salvos, correct themselves, rearm, and start it all over again. This lead to newcomers to the band, as well as regulars, awkwardly head banging or moshing to silence or a complete different tempo than they expected throughout the aforementioned show. 

Where the band rarely stays at one tempo or rhythm, the music isn't anything too jarring or annoying, instead it's an ammusing approach that not too many bands employ. "Amusing" might sound belittling, but it isn't meant to be. Rather, it's a way of making the music itself enjoyable and playful, something few (if any) hardcore bands do.

They're the kind of band that will be out of place with a full length, but right at home on any split possible. Definitely worth checking out, and more fun live as this band's built for the pit (if only their average song was longer than 30 seconds).

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Show Saga Part I: 9/11 Despise You, Magrudergrind, Blackslider, The Communion, and Defeatist

Photo courtesy of Brooklyn Vegan
The past week has been a blur for me. I haven't seen his many bands since I went to maryland Deathfest two years ago.We'll start with last Sunday as Despise You and company completely ripped Shea Stadium (what passes for a venue) apart.
Now with 30% more china cymbal

An homage to New York's favorite losers, Shea Stadium is situated in the unhip part of Williamsburg that's still just old warehouses. Up a narrow stair case and you're inside what looks like a squat, complete with old, torn furniture, crusties, and absolutely no ventilation. First I saw Defeatist who has a new album out soon that you can hear here. I've done the band a favor and renamed them "China Cymbal" as that's all that band seems to do. Their brand of technical stop n' go grindcore came through somewhat clearly as the crowd stood still through their china filled set.This is my third time seeing them and they still haven't clicked with me; oh well.

The Communion were a nice change of pace playing a style of sludge similar to Dystopia (while no where as good of course). Awkward 9/11 references and singer aside, the band poured themselves out to what seemed to be an indifferent crowd.

Philly's Backslider got people moving and did quite a lot for just two guys. Maybe the sleeper of the show, I really enjoyed this two man act's penchant for moshy hardcore-tinged grindcore that provided plenty of breaks to pick up change and hammer punch your way through the crowd.

Magrudergrind were themselves, I don't really know what to say after I've seen this band five times now.They play fast, they play loud, they've got more energy than half the bands out there and they're pros at what they do/ This wasn't there best, and from what I could tell there was a lack of older jams which means it was much more grindy: bring back the Spazz vocals and mosh parts!

Guess which dude is me. Photo courtesy of Brooklyn Vegan
Despise You however, boy oh boy, this is what I was waiting for; everything their recorded material promised to be and more. Despise You had a few slip ups but proved to be one of the best bands I've ever seen. They played thrity two songs covering old classics like "No More...Feelings," "Bullshit Reflections," "I End Me" as well as newer tracks like "Roll Call," "Fear's Song," and "All the Regimes you Hold Most Dear" from their recent split with Agorphobic Nosebleed.

Wildly energetic, complete with mics to the crowd and what seemed like a genuinely fun time between the old band mates, Despise You were without fault and any signs of slowing down. Needless to say I was blown away, everything came together with their cover of D.R.I.'s "Couch Slouch" which had Magrudergrind drummer in the pit and the whole floor singing along.

Part II and III to come shortly, Thou, Wolves in The Throne Room, Ruin Lust, Urfaust, etc.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

New LEVIATHAN Album Announced: True Traitor, True Whore

True Traitor, True Whore
Just announced via Profound Lore, the turbulent and mysterious  one man act Leviathan will have a new album out soon, titled "True Traitor, True Whore." Instantly, people might think the title refers to charges brought against main man Wrest (Jef Whitehead) for sexually assaulting his girlfriend with a tattoo gun. Regardless of whether that's the case or not, the title isn't all too inspiring as it lacks his old knack for bizarrely unsettling titles like Tentacles of Whorror or A Silhouette in Splinters.

To further my pessimism, Sanford Parker is credited with Engineering duties. You might know him from his awful band Minsk, his help in derailing Nachtmystium, as well as his handful of other instances of mediocre and slick production (Krieg's lackluster comeback, Twilight's awful new incarnation, etc).

So, with all that negativity you'd think I just have some bone to pick, but I have proof; lo and behold "Her Circle is the Noose." What does this tell us? Well, for one, my allegations against Sanford Parker stand true and two; Wrest seems to be continuing his creepy meandering style that really came through in Massive Conspiracy Against All Life. I guess this is a logical continuation from Wrest's last recorded work (I think Sic Luceat Lux was recorded before Massive Conspiracy Against All Life).

The track is good, don't get me wrong, but it's no return to form and no trailblazing. For anyone who's listened to  Leviathan's split with Sapthuran, otherwise known as The Blind Wound or even the split with Xasthur, you'd know Wrest has it in him to create some extremely potent, moving, and darkly melodic stuff. With this leaked track, he seems to be straying further from the melodic nuisances that made me such a fan and rather building upon the creepiness explored in ambient works A Silhouette in Splinters  and the last full length.

Of course I'll be buying this, but my hope is that there's something more potent than this, something that grabs at you and suffocates you in a dismal and etheral breech like what we've seen in the past.

Here's the track listing...

1.    True Whorror
2.    Her Circle Is The Noose
3.    Brought Up To The Bottom
4.    Contrary Pulse
5.    Shed This Skin
6.    Every Orifice Yawning Her Price
7.    Harlot Rises
8.    Blood Red And True

Two tracks are oldies, "Shed this Skin" which is similar to "Her Circle is the Noose" as it's a midpace meandering track that was plagued with his silly bedroom production from years prior and "Blood Red and True" which could be a perfect fit here on this album (and due for a touch up).

Due out Novemeber 8th, this promises to be a big fuggin' deal.
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