Monday, 29 September 2014

Destroyer 666 - Discography

'Discography'
Destroyer 666
1994 - 2010

Review by Elek Malcolm Madill

Genre/s: Blackened Thrash Metal
For Fans Of: Destruction, Sodom, Kreator, Toxic Holocaust, Sodom, Midnight, Skeletonwitch

Coming from Melbourne, Australia, Destroyer 666 are one of the many gems in the world of blackened thrash metal that if you haven't heard of, and you like blackened thrash, should listen to asap. Their blend of blackened thrash is the perfect mix of 80s German thrash mixed with the bands of the early Norwegian black metal scene, but this mixture of style changes itself around from album to album. For example, one album may sound more like just black metal, another might sound more like just thrash metal, the vocals change a bit along with the overall tone and atmosphere of each album, but overall remains fast and addictive throughout their entire body of work thus far. There really isn't one album in particular I can choose to recommend (which is why I'm posting their entire discography in the first place) but I will say that Satanic Speed Metal and Phoenix Rising are my own personal favourites.To (semi) steal something that Stephen King once wrote; Destroyer 666 songs are like potato chips, ya can't just have one- so if any of this sounds good to you so far and you download one or two of their albums don't say I didn't warn you if you get hooked.

Includes: 
- Six Songs with the Devil (1994)


- Violence Is the Prince of This World (1995)


- Unchain the Wolves (1997)


- Satanic Speed Metal (1998)


- King of Kings / Lord of the Wild (2000)


- Phoenix Rising (2000)


- Cold Steel... for an Iron Age (2002)


- ...of Wolves, Women & War (2002)


- Terror Abraxas (2003)


- Defiance (2009)


- See You in Hell (2010)

 

Sunday, 28 September 2014

FUCKED BY NEWCASTLE: Hacked To Chunks - Demo Tape

'Demo Tape'
Hacked To Chunks
2014

Review by Jerry Kahale

Genre/s: Grindcore, Mincecore
For fans of: Warsore, Agathocles, Unholy Grave, Violent Gorge, Dahmer, Pizza Hi-Five


For my next few reviews, I am going to feature my own series of bands to come out of Newcastle in NSW, simply called Fucked By Newcastle. Newcastle is a city that's two hours north up the coast from Sydney. It's a peculiar town, in that being the second most populous area in the state, it's been a ghost town most of the times I've been there. Most small-to-medium sized bands, both local and international, make the stop at Newcastle, and it has its own thriving and lucrative underground music scene that has music from all over the spectrum, including primitive noise acts that usually keep to themselves and who seldom put music online except through live bootlegs.

Hacked To Chunks are a grindy/mincecore Newcastle band that features members from a wide variety of musical projects (including a few insestual ones that will probably feature again in this series) including Obat Batuk, Disintegrator, Cock Safari and Amateur Drunks. Musically, I'd probably say they have more in relation to bands like Void and Jerry's Kids than any of the above bands though (a band like Warsore could be mentioned, but would be an exception) because as far as grindcore goes, this is unhinged and primitive with members constantly trying to outplay each other as fast as possible.

Hardcore this is not though. This is pure mincey grind with riffs that are as simple as they come but very chunky (sigh) and completely devastating. The drums are also doing what they do best, delivering these songs from break neck speeds to break every-single-bone-in-your-puny-body speeds, but the vocals are what I think make this really interesting. It's not like the usual deep monster growl, nor the high pitched eagle screams we've come to expect from grindcore. It's more like a disgruntled and drugged out Skeletor doing his best black metal impressions. The only band I can think of that does this style of vocals and does it well is Witch Cult.

This review is an F.B.N. exclusive. There is almost no music of Hacked To Chunks available online bar a few YouTube videos, so I got permission to rip my copy of the demo tape here, since the only way to get this tape is to see them live, given their lack of online presence. It's a bit hissy but otherwise it's audible. The other side of the tape features a live set at a sweet DIY venue in Newcastle called The Pharmacy (got to see Space Bong there once at 1am in the morning) that features more or less the same songs (for you non-Aussie people, the date on the live track reads DD/MM/YY).

There isn't really anything to fault here. If you like your grind as berserk as it can get, then Hacked To Chunks are your new best friends.

TRACKLISTING:
1. His Hero Is Bong
2. Eastern Wisdom
3. Two Hits
4. No More Wine
5. Cut It Off
6. Captain Planet
7. Otter
8. Live @ The Pharmacy 29/12/13

Download

Editing by Simon Dawes 

dawes1986@gmail.com p.s the original post had the .wav version of the tape but it has now been replaced with the .mp3 version

Friday, 26 September 2014

Sauron - Thrash Assault

'Thrash Assault'
Sauron
2004

Review by Elek Malcolm Madill

Genre/s: Blackened Thrash Metal
For Fans Of: Destroyer 666, Midnight, Nunslaughter, Venom, Toxic Holocaust

Although apparently still active, Michigan satanic speed metal act Sauron haven't released anything since 2009- what they managed to creation since their formation in 2000 is definitely worth taking a look at. They play a spin on the blackened thrash genre that sounds like a cross between Nunslaughter (especially comparable to the vocals in Hell's Unholy Fire) and Toxic Holocaust, and I overall enjoyed Thrash Assault. I was glad to see that Sauron was able to stay away from extreme lyrical and thematic cheese considering their lyrics and name (obviously based around the Lord of the Rings series) have sufficient conditions to be so. What you'll find here isn't anything like the atmospheric Tolkien-worshipping tunes of Summoning, Sauron manages to stay fast and classically inspired thrash brimming with awesome guitar solos and chompy drumming.

Tracklisting
1. Thrash 'til Death
2. Witch King
3. Demonic Invasion
4. Thrash Assault
5. Unholy Art
6. Tormentor
7. Total Death

Download

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Waves Crashing Piano Chords - Childhood

'Childhood'
Waves Crashing Piano Chords
2014

Review by Brayden Bagnall

Genre/s: Harsh Noise
For Fans Of: Prurient, Whitehouse, Sutcliffe Jugend, Consumer Electronics

We're no strangers to Wave Crashing Piano Chord's brand of musical(??) nihilism on FBN, having interviewed Sean himself and reviewed his stuff previously. If by chance you have not acquainted yourself with WCPC's material, you can usually expect sharp arcs of feedback and coarse, barked vocals detailing deviancy, perversion and violence.
On Childhood, however, such is not the case. Gone are the vocals of previous releases, replaced entirely by piercing microphone feedback and sparse samples. That's not to say it lacks the intensity of the previous releases - if anything it's more unrelenting and dangerously unhinged than WCPC's other material, as Sean's only goal on this is to warp and mold feedback into increasingly frenzied sonic attacks. Much like Dom Fernow's early Prurient work, there's an element of control and progression exhibited over the feedback, tones are held back and then unleashed in an extremely gratifying flurry of aural violence. There's definitely an element of atmosphere and ambience, but it's so loud and piercing it often crosses the pain threshold - right on into 'harsh' territory.
Childhood again showcases WCPC's primitavist ethics and minimalist method in creating noise, but channels it into something that comes off a less brutal, and more clinical and premeditated. An intriguing and welcome change of pace if you ask me.

TRACKLISTING:
1. Childhood
2. Childhood (Concluded)

Purchase
Bandcamp/Download

Monday, 22 September 2014

Sex Snobs - Lonely

'Lonely'
Sex Snobs
2014

(Band Submission)

Review by Brayden Bagnall

Genre/s: Noise Rock, Alternative
For Fans Of: The Jesus Lizard, Future Of The Left, Cherubs, Death From Above 1979, Melvins

Sex Snobs are a three piece outfit hailing from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma who play a mixture of alternative and noise rock. Taking inspiration from the likes of Am Rep and Touch And Go's scuzzier side and filtering it through the  cleaner sounds of modern alternative rock to create something that's equally as abrasive as it is toe tappingly catchy.
Lonely presents you with 7 tracks of this heavily riff driven take on the genre - and while the tends to stick to a fairly straightforward approach in terms of verse/chorus/verse dynamics, they throw in the occasional curveball with wailing guitar noise, strained vocals or plain old feedback. The guitar certainly represents a fair portion of Sex Snob's sonic output, but its the tight rhythm section that holds it all together. The overdriven muddy bass guitar cuts a swathe through the power chords whilst the drums provide a suitably bombastic, energetic backing for the band.
Lonely, Sex Snob's new EP Ugly and their demo are all available for download at their bandcamp (pay-what-you-want).

TRACKLISTING:
1. Sick as a Dog
2. The Idiot Room
3. Lonely
4. The Other Room
5. Pissin' the Bed
6. King of the Jungle
7. Prologue

Bandcamp

Diocletian - Doom Cult

'Doom Cult'
Diocletian
2009

Review by Elek Malcolm-Madill

Genre/s: Raw Black Metal, Blackened Grindcore
For Fans Of: Blasphemy, Xasthur, Nyogthaeblisz, Belphegor, Witchrist

The best way I can think of describing Diocletian is that they sound sort of like a toned down version of Nyogthaeblisz through a Xasthur-y filter... if that makes any sense. I mean this in that Doom Cult is pretty damn raw and chaotic, but not to the extent of Nyogthaeblisz (then again few bands raw black metal or otherwise are) and the vocals are long and wailing somewhat like Malefic's, but again not to the same extent. Don't get me wrong though when I say "not to the same extent", this is still some seriously gnarly, ear-gnashing stuff that definitely seems to have influences from grindcore- especially with the use of samples from various horror movies (and elsewhere). I've gotta say, I'm becoming more and more impressed with New Zealand's music scene as time goes on, they really seem to have a knack for churning out some blisteringly fast, chaotic music- in this case they've done so in the form of "war metal" as some people like to call it, unlike Slavedriver's chaotic hardcore. If you're looking for some tasty riffs shredded to inhuman speeds paired with some good ol' fashioned blast beats in the style of Blasphemy then look no further.

Tracklisting:
1. Doom Cult
2. The Iron Fist
3. Oath to Ruin
4. Deathstrike Overkill
5. Werewolf Directive
6. Antichrist Hammerfist
7. Bullet Vomited
8. Baphocletian
9. Heretics

Download

The Wounded Kings - The Shadow Over Atlantis

'The Shadow Over Atlantis'
The Wounded Kings
2010

Review by Elek Malcolm-Madill

Genre/s: Doom Metal
For Fans Of: Reverend Bizarre, High Priest of Saturn, Lord Vicar, Windhand, Electric Wizard

Lurking in the shadows of other modern British doom metal titans such as Electric Wizard and Cathedral, the Wounded Kings are most easily comparable to these bands of their countrymen while still holding a level of individuality. Their songs aren't nearly as heavy as Electric Wizard though, so if you're looking for some seriously ear-pulverizing stuff like Conan than you'd best look elsewhere. The Wounded Kings do have heavy segments, but the majority of their songs are focused around slow, methodical riffs that follow more of a psychedelic vibe rather than full on weighty doom- I really enjoyed their use of piano in most of their tracks as well as transitional tracks of pure piano that last about two minutes or so, they worked really well to break up the sprawling ten minute doom odysseys that make up the rest of the album. The album has an overall very dreamy feel to it, all the aspects of it are strangely soothing and work together really well to achieve a pretty ethereal tone a la High Priest of Saturn. The Wounded Kings are a bit of a refreshment from the extremely heavy doom that although I love can get a little tiring at times- so throw on The Shadows Over Atlantis and feel yourself drift away.

Tracklisting:
1. Swirling Mist
2. Baptism of Atlantis
3. Into the Ocean's Abyss
4. The Sons of Belial
5. Deathless Echo
6. Invocation of the Ancients

Download

Friday, 19 September 2014

AUDITOR REVIEW AND INTERVIEW.



FBN:First off, who are you and what do you do?

Brandon Elkins, known variously as B., Auditor, Iron Forest, or A Crown of Amaranth.  Professionally I’m a pixel pusher and musically I do a little bit of everything that mostly involves staring at a monitor with headphones on.

FBN:Thoughts on the underground music scene as of right now?

Depends on which “underground” we’re talking about.  I spend a lot of time digging through BandCamp looking for new projects.  There are tons of great ideas coming out of some very “underground” black metal and noise projects like Emanation and Venowl but the more I’m involved with actually talking about either the metal or noise scenes, the more I see a sort of puritanical, closed-off kind of thinking.  The “holier-than-though” attitudes and self-serving ego stroking are what will end up choking off and invalidating any sense of experimentation the underground might have.  That’s sad to me.
Having said that, there are still a lot of really great people that I’ve met that are doing solid work in creating, writing about, or releasing what I think will go down as a sort of revival in truly experimental music.

FBN:What bands or projects are you listening to?

At any given time I’m all over the map with what I’m listening to.  I get to sit at a desk all day with headphones on so I get 40+ hours of time to listen to music each week.  In the last few days I’ve been listening to Emanation, Brobdingnagian, Phobonoid, Cara Neir, Axis of Advance, REVENGE, the new Earth and YOB albums, new Pallbearer, INVDRS, A Pregnant Light, Dead Congregation, Cyanotic, the new Venowl/Highgate split, and (believe it or not) a lot of Chief Keef, Young Thug, 2 Chainz, Migos, and A$AP Ferg.

FBN:How did you come up with the sound for Auditor?

I pull pretty equally from heavy industrial like Frontline Assembly, Skinny Puppy, Bile, and Author and Punisher along with harsh noise and wall noise, death industrial (SHP, Theologian, Navicon, Gruntsplatter), doom (Khanate, Sunn0))), MOSS), and black metal.  Anything that fits that punishing, bleak mold gets thrown in the pot and stirred around.

 FBN:What are your musical influences?

I’m influenced by everything I hear.  Complete willingness to be open to new sounds is my only rule.


 FBN:Do you draw any influences from movie scores?

 I don’t, but I do envy people that can work like that.  I do try to lend a bit of “cinematic” or narrative flow to not only individual pieces but whole albums.

  FBN:What is your favorite ice cream flavor, if any?

The last truly amazing ice cream I had was at the Green Goddess in New Orleans and it was a Bacon Sundae.  Yeah, you read that right.  Coffee pecan brittle ice cream, bacon caramel sauce, Himalayan pink and black salts, bits of applewood smoked bacon, topped with whipped cream.

I think I achieve official “Fat Kid” status by saying I think about it far more often than I should.

FBN: Any future plans for Auditor, or for you in general?

I’m working on a couple different collaboration projects that I won’t reveal too early but, suffice to say, they should be pretty cool.  I’m also digging into a remix for Jason Walton’s (Agalloch) Self Spiller project, so that’s exciting.

In addition to that, Danvers State Recordings will be doing a tape release of the collaboration that I did with Crowhurst last earlier this year.  I’m also working on an album that will see vinyl release on Die Song probably early to middle of 2015 that I’m really excited about.  Early in 2015 I’ll also be hitting the road providing live ambience/noise for the absolutely insane ÆVANGELIST and maybe playing an Auditor set here and there.  I always stay busy.

FBN:Any shout outs or last words you would like to say?

I’d like to give big love to Leech from Theologian/Annihilvs Power Electronics, Derek Rush, Andy Grant, James from Die Song, ][ // and :: from Venowl, Ryan from IxDx/TTADA, and my lovely wife.  All of them have helped push me forward.

FBN:Thank you for your time.
Thanks for having me, it was a pleasure typing




Auditor is the brainchild of the ambient-industrial project of Brendon Elkins, who is based in Chicago, Ill. Brendon was very kind and sent me a copy of “Form Destroyer”.
The depression started off with the opening track “Protocol 1”.  From the opening of the track I was thrown down into a pit and buried alive from the oppressive nature of the audio that was filling my ears with ambient waves of dirt. I felt as if I was dying, the sample, or what I think was a sample, “I am not sorry for what I did” mixed with background screams of agony further dug my grave of audio suicide.
            The second track politely titled “And Vomit As You Devour Them”, this track features a very solid drum track that hits you in the chest like a rubber bullet from ignorant cop.  The shortest track on the album, it is hard hitting and keeps your attention long enough to cum on your face.  Id say this industrial sludge fest is my favorite on the record. 
            Next up is “Flea On A Dead Dog”, like the track before, it features a very industrial beat that is reminiscent of Godflesh in the best of ways. When I first listened to this, I instantly was taken to a boiler room. The oppressive nature of the ambient sounds mixed with the paranoia that something bad is going to happen crushed me. This track is slow, mind numbing. It will consume you.
            “Betrayer Of Sleep”, is death. Pure death. ThIs track made me feel helpless. The slow droning experience drowns you in its massive riff. Taking everything you have and making it, and you obsolete. This song is heroine. This song is a slow hypodermic needle injecting nothing but black slime into your veins.  Some serious SunnO))) worship on this track.
            The final track on this record is “I Can Never Be Far Enough From You”, reminds me of the project “Stalaggh” with its ambient overtones and creepy haunting chanting vocals in the background. This track is the longest on the record at over 14 minutes. This track will leave your mind in pain, and aching for some sort of relieve. But there is none. Only mind numbing ambient brutality.

            Overall this record is nothing shy of a religious experience and needs to be listened to at high volumes to get the full effect of what Brendon is doing here. The abrasive and dark nature of each song leaves the mind in a warped sense of detachment from what is healthy and good for you.

Zack


Links!!



Interview with Witchface


Interview by Elek Malcolm-Madill

I'm not gonna to lie, I had a little bit of a fangirl freakout moment when I learned that I would be interviewing Morten Erga, the man behind the Norwegian blackened hardcore project "Witchface". His album Skada for Livet has countless plays on my last.fm profile and I'm overall just a big fan of his music. So when he told me during the early stages of the interview that he would be releasing a new twelve inch record I couldn't resist asking him all about it, not to mention some other questions about his creative process, inspiration, the early Norwegian black metal scene, and endless bummers.

FBN:  To start with, who are you and what is "Witchface"

Morten: I am a 28 year old from Sandnes, Norway. Witchface is my one man Punk/HC  project/band that I started 3 years ago.

FBN:  How long have you been playing music for?

Morten: I have been playing music since I was 15. First starting playing drums , then I did vocals for a while and later on I learned how to play guitar.

FBN: Have you been involved in any projects before this?
 
Morten: I have been involved in a few bands over the years, but we never released any material and broke up because no one was really into it and arguments was always around the corner. If there wasn't weed at our practice spot, no one bothered showing up for rehearsals. 

FBN: I think one of the obvious things people question when they look at Witchface, with the music having various blackened components of it, along with you being Norwegian is the correlation between your own music, and the music of the early Norwegian black metal scene with bands such as Darkthrone, Burzum, Mayhem, etc is? Do you draw any inspiration from any of these groups or do you prefer to think of Witchface as completely unrelated to any of this?

Morten: The recording /creative process of Witchface might have some similarities with some of the early Norwegian BM bands like Burzum or Darkthrone simply because I am alone in creating and that means a lot more work but a lot less hassle. I guess you could say that we also share similarities in that we play riff based, lo-fi, music with a lot of distortion and we don't play live. Other than this i don't see to many obvious connections with these bands, other than me liking them and being Norwegian. I think if your alone and making extreme riff based distorted music its hard not to draw inspiration from Burzum at some point, he did all that shit early on and it sounded fucking bad ass.

That said I play angry punk/hc and not black metal and I draw much more inspiration from more current bm/punk bands like Sump, Bone Awl, Sexdrome than I do from any of those early Norwegian bands. 

FBN: I was interested in your writing/recording process as well- for a non-Norwegian speaker such as myself (and others reading this) could you translate the titles of the songs on "Skada for Livet" and the name of the EP title itself? Where do you find possible inspirations for lyrics as well as the rest of your music? On that note, could you also explain what the process of recording Skada for Livet was like and what sort of equipment you used on it?

Morten:  The Title for my EP - Skada for Livet means  Damaged for life. 
The meanings of the titles on the jams are:

01 Basta! - This is actually Italian and transalates to "Enough!"
02 Negativ Kniv - translates to" Negative Knife"
03 De Nifse Normale - translates to "The scary Normal Ones"
04 Antiliv - translates to " Antilife"
05 Kjip av natur - loosely translates to " Jerk by Nature"
06 Maaneskrekk - transleates to " Moonhorror"

I find inspiration for lyrics in my day to day misanthropy and all the endless bummers that make up my life. I have seem to come upon a inexhaustible source, but I don't find writing lyrics to be very enjoyable these days. I am leaning more and more against using my vocals as a instrument to complement my sound more than grinding my brain for days on end to write "genius" lyrics that usually has to be manipulated a lot to fit into the songs when recording anyways. Truth be told absolutely no one (Norwegian or not) can make out what the fuck my lyrics are about anyways. I usually don't print lyrics and those distorted shrieks of mine are not understandable at all without lyrics, so I have come to not care to much about the words, its all about the sound.When I write lyrics these days I try to write down a couple of badass lines and then just repeat them as much as I can, more like a chant or something.

When I recorded Skada for Livet I recorded the guitar and bass at home over a weeks time and then I did drums and vocals in one day at a rehearsal spot. I did it mega easy with only one shitty vocal mic on the drums, and very much a plug and play approach to the guitars (no cut and paste) and then I did vocals last with a twist of distortion (no cut and paste) only the least shitty takes wins. I do it all on the hardware and never use a computer. The equipment I have always used and probably will continue to use is a 8 track digital mixer, a vox pathfinder 10 guitar amp, a  cream fender jazzmaster copy (its a burn victim and looks really trashy) and a super shitty epiphone bass. I bring my own cymbals when I record drums.

This process doesn't cost me a single cent and I am really glad I don't have to spend any money recording to get the sound I'm after. The only money I spend is on mastering services over the interwebs when I am done recording and mixing.

FBN: Sounds good to me, mind if I ask a few questions about your new 12" as well?

Morten:  No problem.


FBN: I loved that you added an intro that was a bit more noise-oriented seemingly- was that was you were going for? 

Morten: I'm glad you like it. The Intro was something I made in like 15 mins, just experimenting with bass and vocals.  I thought it turned out a bit "Noisey/Power electronicish black metaly whatever" and decided to use it for the first cut. 

FBN: Overall the album is great but is definitely a bit different than Skada for Livet, what was your creative process like this time with the writing/recording of the album? Were you going for a different effect than before or do you think you've built on what you were doing with your debut EP on the 12"?

Morten:  The creative process was pretty much the same as with the 7" EP, but I definitely had a more heavy and angry approach to writing the 12". I wanted a couple of  pissed off mid tempo songs inbetween faster ones, and I knew I wanted a protopunky first riff on the album. I really liked the idea of having a "scary" intro and then diving right into a stoogesy/brainbombsy type first riff. It sounded a bit funny to me to have a evil intro and then just Ron Asheton piss all over that first riff. I was definitely going for repetitive lyrics this time around. I don't really know if I built on what I was doing with the 7", I mean the music for skada for livet is a bit more urgent and garagey. My intention was to make a new record that had a tiny bit heavier pace and more of a creepy atmosphere and that was what I did.

 FBN: I was also curious as to who does the artwork for your album covers, did you make them yourself or did someone else?

Morten: Me and my Girlfriend made the 7" artwork together and the artwork for the 12" is made only by me. Its usually just me doodling around with artwork, but when the technology becomes to overwhelming I have to involve help. I am not smart, and I am definitely not smart with computers.

FBN: Do you have a favourite song or piece you liked recording, or just how it turned out on the album? Be it vocals, guitars, drums, etc

Morten:  I don't think i really have a favourite song or piece I liked recording. I like the overall sound on the record and for me that's what its all about. I couldn't care less about good songs as long as the sound is awful.

FBN: What do you think the most difficult track was to "get right" in what you had envisioned for it?

Morten:  All the tunes are a bit difficult to "get right" because the vision of the final product is always really strong with me. That means that recording drums and vocals can be a bit of a bummer sometimes because for me its the last two layers of the recording( - mastering) and if things are not sounding according to plan at this stage i get a bit frustrated. It usually works out in the end.

FBN:  That makes sense, and I think that about wraps up everything I wanted to as far as I can think of, thanks for taking the time to talk to me!

Morten: Great. Thanks you so much for everything. I've been reading your reviews and they are a good read. I have also found a few gems om your guys blog that i probably wouldn't discover if it hadn't been for the blog. Keep up the great work.

FBN: Thanks man!

 Witchface's new album "Skrekk & Gru" is out now and I highly recommend it, there are vinyl copies in the works of being pressed but they're also greatly worth pre-ordering, I personally can't wait to get my hands on one. If you're interested in checking out the review I wrote for the album to get a feel for it before you listen maybe, then here's that as well.

Witchface - Skrekk & Gru

'Skrekk & Gru'
Witchface
2014

Genre/s: Blackened Punk, Noise, Hardcore Punk
For Fans Of: Sump, Devil's Dung, Sexdrome, Raspberry Bulbs, Jackman, Bible Thumper

I don't know about anyone else reading this, but a while back after Brayden posted the debut EP of Norway's Witchface; called "Skada for Livet", I became completely obsessed with it, and still kind of am. It was short but sweet and was overall one of the best couplings of black metal and hardcore punk I had (and still have) ever heard, and I couldn't wait to see what would be next for Witchface. Well, my (and possibly your) wait is over as "Skrekk & Gru" has been released- and was well worth the wait. It begins with a distorted and chaotic intro of noise and quickly transitions into the grimy, lo-fi experience I remembered from Skada for Livet, but has been built on a lot which is great to see. The catchiness and strange comfortability of Witchface's music is still there but has risen out of Skada's bare-bones sense of the lo-fi and gained many more layers of depth ripe for analysis, and more importantly enjoyment. Witchface's talent for variety has also made a comeback as the tracks power through aggressive screams and instrumentation akin to hardcore, then clashed against tortured wails and instrumentation akin to black metal- making for the perfect marriage between the two genres- or again, one of the best I've ever heard myself. Skrekk & Gru is easily one of my favourite releases of 2014.

Tracklisting:
1. Intro
2. Nattekryp
3. Sex/Dop
4. Blodspor
5. Grusomme Syner
6. Kunsten Å Glemme
7. Underhund
8. Redusert Til Skit
9. Et Siste Stikk

Bandcamp

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Dead Boomers - The Pig In The Python

'The Pig In The Python'
Dead Boomers
2012

Review by Brayden Bagnall

Genre/s: Death Industrial, Harsh Noise, Power Electronics
For Fans Of: Pharmakon, IRM, Disgust, Grunt, Deathpile

Hailing from Melbourne, Australia, Dead Boomers are a duo that perform an incredibly dense, atmospheric mixture of death industrial and harsh noise.
The Pig In The Python pairs percussion with pulsating electronic noise, the result of which are apocalyptic industrial dirges punctuated by absolutely gigantic rhythms and heavily distorted vocals. For the most part, Dead Boomers keep their tracks harsh and focus purely on pummeling you senseless with deliciously warped static swells - but on tracks such as Leave Flowers Now present are much more subdued and atmospheric side, albeit sinister as fuck. Each track is deliberated composed (meaning they can be recreated in a live setting) and if there's any improvisation it fits right in with the measured clangs, thumps and feedback screeches.
There's not a great abundance of noise projects in Australia, and certainly none as monolithic as this one - you'd be wise to check it out.

TRACKLISTING:
1. The Pig In The Python
2. Vintage Summa Cum Laude
3. The Hammer
4. Send Flirts and Modify Your Profile
5. A New Altamont
6. Leave Flowers Now
7. The New Scarlet Letter
8. One in Eighty Five
9. Synthetic Entheogen Private Party
10. Sundowning
11. Burden
12. The Golden Boomers

Bandcamp
Download


Cirrhus - Self Titled

'Self Titled'
Cirrhus
2013

Review by Elek Malcolm-Madill

Genre/s: Raw Black Metal
For Fans Of:  Furdidurke, Raspberry Bulbs, Sexdrome, Early Burzum, Grafvölluðr

What I really enjoy about Cirrhus is that their music is very clearly inspired by Burzum, especially "My Journey to the Stars" from what I can tell, and they manage to transmit this inspiration into something melodic along the lines of the song's infamous riff, while still managing to be pretty damn raw- not quite in the style of Bone Awl or Raspberry Bulbs with their high(er) amount of inspiration from punk, but still a good coupling of the lo-fi and melodic. Cirrhus don't make things nearly as bare and desolate as bands like Bone Awl and other raw black metal bands, don't get me wrong I'm all for that sound, but its nice to see a band like Cirrhus step up to the plate and offer something a bit new- its almost like raw black metal mixed with atmospheric black metal or DSBM. A combination like that probably sounds pretty strange or almost impossible to pull off well seeing as they're usually pretty much stylistic opposites, but  Cirrhus have managed to find a great middle ground between the two that can get into eight minute long sprawling tracks of lo-fi harmony that don't get boring at all in my opinion. The only real complaint I have about the album is that I was listening to it while working on my laptop and one of the effects the drummer managed to get out sounded exactly like the sound my external hard drive makes when it's unplugged so I kept looking over to see if it had fallen off the table or not- it was only after a few songs of this that I stopped myself and realized that I'm just a dumbass. There have been tons of awesome metal bands to come out of Oregon in the last decade or so, and Cirrhus is definitely up there with my favourites amongst them after this album, which is pretty impressive seeing as it's only their first full-length LP- I can't wait to see what they'll spit out next.

Tracklisting:
1. Night Falls and Bestows Insect Fixation
2. All At Once
3. Structure On Earth
4. Smallest View
5. Sharpened Spectacle
6. Among the Detritus

Download

Funeral Parlor Double Post


'Axis Flowers' and 'Split With Waves Crashing Piano Chords'
Funeral Parlor/Waves Crashing Piano Chords
2014

Review by Brayden Bagnall

Genre/s: Synth Pop, Darkwave, Ambient, Noise, Power Electronics
For Fans Of: Croatian Amor, Prurient, Christian Cosmos, Lust For Youth, Whitehouse

Josh Doughty (whom I've interview previously on the blog here) is the man behind downer synth outfit, Funeral Parlor.
Funeral Parlor mixes airy synth and subtle, ambient noise to create sad, melancholic music with a heavy focus on atmospherics, both airy and bleak.
Axis Flowers is a fully realized evolution of Funeral Parlor's previous work, with its four tracks delivering a much more pop-oriented vibe, whilst still remaining true to its dark, depressing roots. Vocals are used sparsely, from Access Flower's opening monologue, to the pained scream in Morning Due and melt into the mix as an eerie companion to the synth and background ambiance.
Funeral Parlor's split with one man feedback tantrum Waves Crashing Piano Chords, on the other hand sees the haunting synth melodies juxtaposed with blistering power electronics on a split 7".
Side A presents two live tracks from Waves Crashing Piano Chords, I Hope I Get AIDS which then leads into ...Or Is It Me. The recording really captures the ferocity and full brunt of the microphone feedback, essentially frog marching you into the live performance and forcing your head right up against an amplifier.
Side B is a single Funeral Parlor track, Sway Away. Recorded in the same session as Axis Flowers, its despondent atmosphere and rising tides of synth and background static may not posses the sheer brute force of WCPC's side, but certainly make up for it by leaving you emotionally drained and just a tad bit sad.
Both releases are available for your listening pleasure below, both via bandcamp (where you can find a multitude of other Funeral Parlor releases available as well) and download. While you're at it, hit up Dumpster Noise Records to nab yourself a Funeral Parlor tee, and other related noise project tapes. Also keep an eye out for the physical release of the WCPC split (due November) on the H8-Track Stereo site.

TRACKLISTING:

Axis Flowers
1. Access Flowers
2. Morning Dew
3. Mourning Due
4. Axis Flowers
Bandcamp

Split With WCPC
1. I Hope I Get AIDS/...Or Is It Me? (WCPC)
2. Sway Away (Funeral Parlor)
Bandcamp
Download

Monday, 15 September 2014

Holy Mount - Alpic

'Alpic'
Holy Mount
2013

Review by Elek Malcolm-Madill

Genre/s:  Space Rock, Synth, Psychedelic, Doom Metal
For Fans Of: Ufomammut, Zaum, Om, YOB, Pelican, Spell

Toronto band Holy Mount have pretty much created a new sub-genre you can add to the ever expanding list of global musical categories, and the best name I can come up for it is "Synth Doom". Imagine the heaviness and eastern-influenced riffs of Om, YOB, Zaum, etc mixed with space-rocky, sci-fi sounding synths backing it and you'll have a vague idea of what Holy Mount are like, to the best of my abilities of comparison anyways. Holy Mount have done a great job of using synths in a way that doesn't sound like a weird re-hash of 80s keytar cheese and throwing it together with doomy riffs- they've got some serious talent for knowing how to place things which is exactly what I think a mix between synths and heavy riffs needs. The bass remains heavy throughout the album with the synths coming and going, but usually remaining in the backdrop to some extent while minimalistic, but again well placed and done drumming clashes excellently with the light ethereal vocals of the album. This is a seriously good album that I really enjoyed listening to all the way through, every track is an awesome journey all its own and I highly recommend checking it out.

Tracklisting:
1. Goldenhorn
2. Nineteen Ninety and a Half
3. Alpic
4. My Sun
5. Behind Drip Hill
6. Eiger
7. Daydream Light

Bandcamp

Enbilulugugal - The End Is Extremely Fucking Nigh

'The End Is Extremely Fucking Nigh'
Enbilulugugal
2014

Review by Elek Malcolm-Madill

Genre/s: Blackened Noise, Raw Black Metal, Noisecore
For Fans Of: Nyogthaeblisz, Zarach 'Baal' Tharagh, Godcage, Nexul, Satanic Warmaster

Starting out with a really eerie soundbite intro explaining the effects of nuclear bombs and radioactive fallout, an assault of harsh black noise mixed with some low, melodic bass keeping things balanced begins and gives a feeling that keeps true to to the album title- the end is extremely fucking nigh, in fact it's arrived in the form of California blackened noise/raw black metal act Enbilulugugal. What I like most about Enbilulugugal I think, is that they're everything I like about Nyogthaeblisz (although not to the same level of ear-splitting insanity they are) without all the super-serious politically (and racially) driven shit they get into- Enbilulugugal do not take much of what they do all that seriously. While still being dark and intimidating and all-around great blackened noise and raw black metal in a serious sense, the members: KumSlinger, Alcoholonomicon, and The Boogeyman, among others, demonstrate the more fucked up light-heartedness (I use that term in an extremely loose sense) that characterizes what their music is really all about. Like I mentioned before though, don't expect some hilarious, fall on your ass laughing mockery like some kind of black metal Gwar, Enbilulugugal is some seriously menacing stuff with a huge amount of talent present- the bass in particular is really great all throughout the album and really helped to drive it along and further characterize it. I might have to grab one of their CDs myself soon.

Tracklisting:
1. ...
2. IX
3. XIII
4. XXXIII
5. .....
6. LXVI
7. XCIV
8. ........
9. The Bright Side (Those Poor Bastards Cover)

Bandcamp

Voivod - Quadruple Post

'Quadruple Post'
Voivod
1984-1988

Review by Elek Malcolm-Madill

Genre/s: Thrash Metal, Crossover Thrash
For Fans Of: Vektor, Coroner, Venom, Destruction, Helloween, Droid


I've been on kind of a big Canadian thrash metal kick lately, as demonstrated by my love of all things Hard & Heavy Records- posting Droid, Wesley Crusher, etc. So I figured why not post the early works of the quintessential Canadian thrash metal band; Voivod. They're pretty popular, granted- but if you've never listened to them and you like thrash metal then you are in for quite the treat. Voivod came (and still comes seeing as they're still active) from Jonquière, Quebec and are some strange and disorientating but awesome as hell thrash- their infamous lead guitarist Denis D'Amour aka "Piggy" always managed to keep things interesting due to the strange, not-quite-there sound he managed to kick out, which is took me a while to realize it was intentional and was meant to throw you off guard. Piggy, coupled with the great, francophone accent-steeped vocals of the other Denis (Denis Bélanger) made for an all-around killer and unique thrash metal band. They started out on War and Pain and then RRRÖÖÖAAARRR as purely thrash, but moved over to include some progressive and crossover elements beginning in Killing Technology, which would also mark the beginning of their clear flair for science fiction which must've been a clear influence on Droid and other Canadian thrash metal greats. This move towards progressive thrash and conceptualism wasn't their first ever attempt at it; War and Pain for example is a bit of a conceptual album if you listen closely because it tells the stories and sings the fame of an inter-dimensional alien warlord named Voivod- as pictured on the cover of the album, so evidently they've always been lovers of sci-fi, but just embraced it in a new way beginning with Killing Technology. Anyways, if you're looking for a strange, and somewhat offputting spin on the traditional sounds of thrash, then I recommend any one of Voivod's albums  below.



1984 - War and Pain
1986 - RRRÖÖÖAAARRR
1987 - Killing Technology
1988 - Dimension Hatröss

FUCKED BY NEWCASTLE: Hutz - Greatest Hutz Vol. 1

'Greatest Hutz Vol. 1'
Hutz
2012

Review by Jerry Kahale

Genre/s: Ambient, Drone, Electronic, Hip Hop, Experimental
For Fans Of: Tim Hecker, Gas, Brian Eno, Stars Of The Lid, OFWGKTA,12 Oz Mouse

Yo. So i've been AWOL for the past six or so months because its kind of hard to write reviews when you dont have a computer. Here is a review i started ages ago but never finished till now.

Just like how it first grabbed my attention when I was given this cassette in a tape trade with my pal Max who runs White House Records (The Sufferjets, The Nugs, Whitney Houston's Crypt) I can say that the album cover itself has immobilized your mouse wheel from scrolling down in a state of disarray. A paper mache mask of Milhouse in a pink shirt beside a well-crafted rubber mask of Homer Simpson? What is this absurdity?

As it turns out its not even the weirdest thing about it, this is a soundtrack for an obscure webseries called Hommer Simpson (not a typo). Curiosity got the best of me and I can't be ever more thankful because its truly an amazing piece of morbid dadaist comedy. It is pretty much The Simpsons given the 12 Oz Mouse and Dumbland treatment, even more so the former because it starts out the same way with crudely drawn animation with wafer thin plots seemingly give way to a contrived and deliberately confusing conspiracy story but this is with characters you've come to know and love put through the ringer and warped, wrecked and molested in true black comedy scenarios. It even has its own in-show series called Seinbleuth, a crossover of Seinfeld and Arrested Development that also descends into chaos and a plethora of Australian television references of last decade (kinda like another aussie absurd animation called The Big Lez Show). It starts as crap animation but as the series progresses it goes beyond parody and becomes self spiteful art.

The soundtrack for this series is just as weird.. It starts off conventional enough with an extended jam of a "Live From News" theme but then listening to it in one go is a weird ordeal in itself because most of the songs consists of all the collected music from one episode. So here you are listening to lounge music, cheesy but epic hip hop to butchered up versions of original Simpsons songs and then there are the songs that cannot even be described without your brain going to a blithering mess (Homm Grimm) but without realizing it a mood swing comes about and it transforms into these minimal swells to wondrous and lush drones that gradually wash into each other. All of a sudden it doesn't feel like you are listening to a soundtrack from an absurd black comedy animation anymore. Going into "Hommer Simpson 5" it really starts to become haunting but between the drones there are these little moments that are truly unique; a lone gradual electronic beat pulsating in and out, harmonious strings and piano crescendoing up to a pinnacle and really dark moments of crying children and maniacal laughter cutting through static and phasing with some intense industrial drums and synths. 


There are too many of these unique moments to mention here because what makes this release stand out from other ambient releases is that it seldoms stays on the one theme for a long period of time because its all based on a webseries, so you can say its a soundtrack that likes to toy with you. Enjoying these sombre and deep soundscapes? Fuck you take this destroyed version of the Stonecutters song. Even if you don't end up watching the series its still a truly unique release thats there for the kind of music fan that likes it when artists and albums don't pay by the rules.

TRACKLISTING:
1. Live From News (Extended Mix)
2. Hommer Simpson 3 Suite
3. Cletus And Glick - Thuggin' In Springfield
4. Homm Grumm
5. Hommer Simpson 4 Suite
6. Hommer Simpson 5 Suite
7. Seinbleuth 2 Suite
8. Hommer Simpson 6 Suite
9. Cletus And Glick - The Lard Lad Hustle

10. Marge Karaoke - Sanitarium (Welcome Home)
11. Hommer Fixes Dulk (Hommer 6 Deleted Scene)

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Friday, 12 September 2014

Venom P. Stinger - DISCOGRAPHY

DISCOGRAPHY 
Venom P. Stinger
1986 - 1991

Review by Brayden Bagnall

Genre/s: Punk, Noise Rock, Post Punk
For Fans Of: Grong Grong, Lubricated Goat, Fungus Brains, Cuntz, Feedtime

Venom P. Stinger sound like the lovechild of a bad drug tip and a hangover, that have just crawled out of a pub two days after they entered - not that's a bad thing by any stretch of the imagination. Australian punk has thrived on scuzzy, pub rock gone awry since the Scientist started doing their thang and in keeping with this noble tradition, the boys in Venom P. Stinger cranked out some of the most deranged, drug fucked tunes to ever grace this fine nation.
Picking apart Venom P. Stinger's music, you'll find hints of post punk, rockabilly and jazz (the latter two demonstrated superbly by Jim White's tight, but free flowing drum rolls) all of which have been thrown into the gutter out the front and had their teeth kicked in. Meanwhile Mick Turner's energetic, incredibly loose but rhythmically conscious guitar playing goes from power chords to screeching feedback and atonal noise solos, putting some of the aforementioned genres through the proverbial meatgrinder. Vocalist Dugald McKenzie (RIP) on the other hand,  yelps and whines about drug abuse, urban decay, depression and all things nice backed by the sounds of a band veering off the rails of simple chord progressions into free form noise punk.  If ever your descent into poverty and mental illness needed a soundtrack, this'd be the band to do it.
This compilation collects a fair portion of the band's material, bar a live album, their 1994 EP 'Thickskin' and their 1996 LP 'Tearbucketer' (all of which were recorded with new vocalist Nick Palmer). I really could prattle on for hours about this band, but I won't - I will however say that you'll be hard pressed to find another band this good, that sounds so woefully sloppy, and unashamedly Australian.

TRACKLISTING:
1. P.C.P. Crazy / Jaws
2. Hold Me Closer
3. And Suddenly
4. Going Nowhere
5. Flourish Wish
6. Untitled
7. Precious Little Time
8. Jaws II
9. Venom P. Stinger
10. Walking About
11. 26 Milligrams
12. Those Shakes
13. Before You Open My Eyes
14. Hell Street
15. My Hole
16. The Quiet One
17. Impressions
18. Home Sweet Home
19. Lethargy
20. Dear God
21 .Unused
22. Day Will Come
23. Greystones
24. What's Yours Is Mine
25. Pressure Inside
26. Inside The Waiting Room
27. I Try, I Really Try
28. Turning Green
29. In Love

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DiE - Vexed EP

'Vexed EP'
DiE
2014

Review by Brayden Bagnall

Genres: Hardcore
For Fans Of: No, The Flex, Perspex Flesh, The Mob, Warthog

DiE released a corker of a 7" last year with their debut EP, and it seems they're on something of a winning streak with EP number 2, Vexed.
The UK band play hardcore that has a faint, blue collar streak to it that recalls denim, black boots and shaved heads but drowns all that nonsense out with massive, stompy riffs, noisy guitar solos and ferocious vocals.
Paying homage to classic and contemporary UKHC bands is one thing, but ramping it up to dizzying, blistering levels the way that DiE do on Vexed shows that these lads have some serious chops when it comes to writing and playing straight-to-the-point hardcore.
This 8 track EP, plus the band's debut are available to download as a pay-what-you want purchase on the bands bandcamp. Keep an eye out for physical copies!

TRACKLISTING:
1. B.T.K.
2. Monotony
3. Dark
4. Pressure
5. Fight
6. Ready To Rot
7. Life Sentence
8. Exterminate

Bandcamp