mardi 29 avril 2014

Perikato - Kovat ajat (EP 2013)

Perikato is an excellent, but quite obscure, hardcore band from Finland. Kovat ajat is an EP (9 songs on vinyl, last 6 minues approximately. it's released by Ektro records). from start to finish it hits hard and fast, providing blasts of a noisy and wild fastcore / crust / powerviolence screamed in their mother tongue.
really intense stuff!
if you like your hardcore, well...hardcore, I mean really hardcore, then go for it!

listen to the side A on Ektro soundcloud page.

dimanche 27 avril 2014

Triptykon - melana Chasmata (2014)

Melana chasmata is the second Triptykon album, the new band of T.G.Warrior (Hellhammer, Celtic frost).
it's not far away from his recent works, it's another fine piece of dark majestic metal. it contains some primitive death metal elements but most of the time it's closer to some desperate doom metal, heavy, abrasive and ominous (Tom vocals are as commanding as usual) but also with some female melodic vocals and fine lead guitar works. and the whole thing is enveloped in a black and cold, nearly industrial, atmosphere. the terrific and mysterious Giger cover art is giving a good hint to the content of the album. and like it, it's a weird and hard to describe beast! especially the more adventurous and ambient second half of the album.

the band website.

mercredi 23 avril 2014

Mother brain - Rise and grind (2014)

Mother brain is a cool new grind band. the duo from Long Island attracted some well deserved attention with their first released called Straight to business and are now back with the excellent Rise and grind. taking elements from modern grind but firmly rooted in old school grind as well, they can appeal to every grind fan without sounding generic at all. tight and precise playing, but with a noisy and dirty sound, screams and low growls, blastbeats and slower sludgy parts, Rise and grind manage to keep the attention of the listener till the end. check it and go to their shows (I saw them playing live a month ago and they were really excellent).

the Bandcamp page

samedi 19 avril 2014

Monolord - Empress rising (2014)

Empress rising by the swedish trio Monolord is a serious contender for best doom debut of the year, or maybe even best doom album as well. it's just so heavy. the guitars just sounds dirtier and heavier. the bass (an ex-Rotten sound handling it by the way) doing a good job in making it thickier and...heavier. thats it heavier! get it?
but it's not just the sounds it's also the good sloooowww riffing, the vocals that sounds as they are coming from miles away (or below!). but what makes it so good it's that the five songs are really crafted with taste, grabing you and letting the insidious groove spiraling in your brain. addidctive stuff really... if you're looking for a comparison i'd go for something between early Electric wizard and a darker (and less stoned trippy) Sons of Otis. but stop reading this review, just listen to it and let the low end do its dirty work...

the Bandcamp page

And I had the pleasure to had their drummer Esben Willems answer to my questions (by mail), read the interview below :

-From what I hear when I listen to Empress rising and whatI read in your interviews it seems that the basic idea behind the band is the heavy dirty sound, the massive fuzz, is that correct? Something else to say about the birth of Monolord?

(Esben Willems)
You're spot on about the sound reference, we always aim for the gritty and compact heaviness, hopefully without losing the dynamics in our music. With that said, we would never limit ourselves to merely a sound, so of course we put a lot of effort into writing songs we like to play, and which can stand on their own live. A cool sound is fairly easy to generate, as I see it it's all in the songs and the performing of them. I think far too many are getting lost in the gear, thinking that the gear itself possesses some kind of mojo, but it's all in your fingers. Gear can't make music, that would be shit scary. Or muzak.
Regarding the start of the band it all came from doom jamming between rehearsals with me and Thomas' boogie band Marulk. It developed into a side project and soon we realized we wanted to go full throttle with this. I'm happy we did.

-One thing that strikes when listening to Empress rising is that heavy fuzzy sound. there's loads of doom bands nowadays but in a way you managed to "out-doom" or "over-doom" many of them. what's the secret?

Over-doom, those are massive words, thanks! I don't believe in secret tricks or magic solutions much though, we honestly just went strictly by our own ears producing this album. Our influences range from grindcore to the smoothest singer/songwriter stuff, and then some, so maybe that's one of the reasons the album didn't follow the doom dogma. As I mentioned, we just aimed for what we thought was the heaviest possible. I'm a sound tech as well, so we recorded and produced the album ourselves, which could be another explanation to what we feel is our own sound.

-Are the songs on the album the first you wrote as a band or the best among the ones you have written?

The three of us have been playing in bands and writing music in all of them for more than 20 years, so it's hard to say when one project starts and another one ends. The songs on Empress Rising are a mix of brand new jams and riffs that are 10 years old, as I think good music should be like. But as always there are more songs written than what ends up on an album, so in that sense these five songs are the best ones we have written as Monolord, yes.

-What is the usual process of writing for Monolord?

Musically, Empress Rising is mostly based on riff ideas by Thomas, but we all write songs. Usually, one of us takes a riff or a rough song idea to our rehearsal space and then we finish the song together. Sometimes it ends up almost identical with the original idea and sometimes it ends up with an entirely different song, so there's no specific formula to the process. In fact, we also put a lot of effort trying not to repeat ourselves too much, however contradictory that may sound in a genre like this.

-Which song or track in Empress rising is your favourite, and why?

That all depends on when and where I play it, or listen to it. I'm really proud of the entire album, as we all are, so I like it from side A to side D. Pounding the intro to Icon is just as great as when we get to the last part of Watchers of the waste, which is just as sweet as when our collective groove starts in the title track, and so on.

-What about the lyrics?

The same goes for the lyrics. Our first bass player and singer Danne Palm (ex-Marulk) wrote the lyrics for the title track and Thomas wrote the rest and I really think they did a brilliant job. They mostly deal with dark forces in humanity and stories of supernatural beings taking over, but the final enterpretation is up to the listener. We're all morbidly fascinated about the sinister sides of us humans; manipulative religion and politics, corruption, narcissism and general stupidity are neverending sources of inspiration, whether the lyrics are about fictious worlds or our own, real one.

-Apart from the obvious Black sabbath, which bands were more influential for you, either for the music or for other things? I'd say your music reminds in some ways Electric wizard, was it an influence?

We listen to and are influenced by a lot of bands in a wide span of genres. Of course Black Sabbath, Electric Wizard, Sleep and other bands like them was and are big influences, but so are tons of other bands we've listen to through the years. On Empress Rising you can find references to both Tom Waits and Entombed, to name a few, but I think you're always influenced by everything you've liked to listen to, regardless of if it's purposely or not. If you dig deep enough, I'm sure there's a nursery rhyme in there somewhere, haha.

-Which recent "heavy" bands would you recommend?

Damn, that's a tough one. We're all manically curious music consumers, so a lot of bands flow through our speakers, all the time. But right now, when I'm writing this, Crystalline by Hark is rotating on my player. I've never heard of the band, but a guy at a local record store told me about them and I thinks it's a fucking brilliant album. I'm hoping to see this trio live sometime.
On top of that I just have to mention our fellow doomsters Mammoth Storm, that's pure torch blower heaviness. Hopefully we will be touring a bit with them, so that's gonna be a sweet ride.

-Which evolution would you like to see for underground music in the future?

Excellent question. I would like the live scene to thrive, for many reasons. I love going to concerts, for me it's the ultimate music experience. The bands should get paid properly for the hard work so it would be possible to make a living touring, simple as that. For most bands now, the reality is that you have to keep a full-time dayjob just to pay your bills, on top of delivering albums and live shows that require your full-time dedication to a band. Since the dawn of the internet it's really easy to produce and spread music worldwide, which in turn means that noone can make money on albums, they're just a portfolio for the band to reach out to fans. So for bands being able to keep making good music, they need to get paid to play live.

-What is planned for Monolord in the coming months? are the songs for a future album already written?

We're writing and recording material for pre-production of the next album right now. A lot of loose ideas and outlines to songs and a lot of more or less finished ones, so I hope we won't disappoint anyone when all songs are written and properly recorded.
Other than that, we're planning to get out on the roads as soon as possible. The how, when and where will be revealed as soon as anything is set.

-Something to add?

Not much more than we're itching to get on stage again, as soon as possible!

jeudi 17 avril 2014

Body betrayal -Soft cage (EP 2014)

Soft cage is the new EP (on vinyl) and second release by the crust / punk (or queercore as they call themselves) band from Seattle Body betrayal. (for an introduction about Body betrayal you can, listen to their split with Disparate, and read my review of the split and the interview we did at that time. HERE it is). the EP is 6 songs (they re recorded two songs that were already on their split) and lasts about 10 min. it's mostly crust / hardcore punk, filled with energy, fiercely intense, fast riffing and drumming and screams. but where many bands sounds the same, dull and grey, it's like they breathe more life into their songs, sounding very heartfelt. smarter and more poetic lyrics than usual also. and they found a good balance between fast agressive parts and slower ones, with a slight touch of experimentating  (different song structures) and more diversity than in most punk record.

I recommend it..and wait for a full lenght release!

their Bandcamp page.

mardi 15 avril 2014

Mortefoutre - L'Exécrable symbole défraichi (demo 2013)

Mortefoutre is a black metal one man band from Toulouse (France) and L'Exécrable symbole défraichi is his first demo (issued as cassette by Preposterous creations). I like how it reminds the attitude of early black metal, with its raw sound and its punk and trash elements (some drumming parts reminding Slayer), but on some other songs (the second part of the demo) it shows that Mortefoutre can also display some good black metal of a more atmospheric and modern kind. maybe I prefer the rawer and punkier parts but some diversity in a record is a good thing as well.

you can stream or download if for free on its Bandcamp page

dimanche 13 avril 2014

La Dispute - Rooms of the house (2014)

La Dispute is a band that really have their own style and personnality, we could say it's "post hardcore" but just because it sounds rooted in hardcore without being really hardcore, but it does not sound like what is usually called "post-hardcore". the best comparisons would be probably At the drive in. or we could say it's emo but with vocals often  bordering to spoken words territory, and also it's better than emo! their new album Rooms of the house is in the continuity of their previous work and is of the same excellent quality so if you liked it you'll like this one as well. and if you don't know them already it's time to discover La Dispute with this new album!

their website.

mercredi 9 avril 2014

INTHESHIT - Priapus (split 7'' 2014)

this INTHESHIT / Priapus 7'' (around 8 min) is a cool US east coast grind release. two good bands, each one playing it's own distinctive kind of grind.

INTHESHIT, from Boson palys  a well balanced grind combining old school elements (some punkish beats, some trademark grind screams) with more modern grind elements (brutal / technical parts, a massive sound), the groove, the vocals and the very tight drumming gives sometimes an impression of Pantera playing some Napalm death songs. and that's fine with me! (HERE is my review of their 2012 album).

Priapus, from North Carolina, is on the more chaotic hardcore side of grind, delivering an intense brutal and technical frenzy with a sharp and modern sound, somewhere between Dying fetus and Converge we could say. good stuff.

the split's been released by the cool Give praise records in february.

the Bandcamp page.

The guys in Priapus kindly answered to my quesitons by mail, so you can read the interview below :

-can you present quickly Priapus and its history up to now?

jeremy (guitars): Priapus is 3 probably drunk dudes in north carolina that play deathgrind. Our drummer Kevin and I knew each other from playing shows together with our previous bands, and we bonded over sweet Nasum riffs and decided to start a grindcore thing. We plowed through some shittier band members for a while until I met Jordan (vocals) at a Dillinger Escape Plan show. Our eyes met across the bar: he, in an Insect Warfare shirt; me wearing a homemade Maruta hoodie. (Note that this scenario, when it happened, was just as homoerotically charged as it sounds.)

a couple weeks later we were all hanging out and listening to music, and since our vocalist at the time had just showed up late to play a show in his elevator repairman workshirt, Kevin and I drunkenly invited Jordan to come by our practice space the next day and do vocals (despite the fact that he’d never been in a band before). The next day, I woke up thinking Jordan was going to be terrible and we were going to have to tell him that we didn’t want him in the band and that this would ultimately fuck up our friendship, but he actually ended up sounding incredible and really really pissed off. So it worked out well! i take 100% of the credit for this decision.

-what about your new split with Intheshit, how does it fit in your discography? how did it happen?

jeremy: we’ve known the ITS dudes for a couple years, just from playing shows together, and we’d always dug their sound - really angry, killer musicianship, and extremely aggressive (maybe because BOSTON, who knows??). Plus both band names are fucking awful, so we knew it would be a good grindcore record.

in terms of how it fits in our discography...we always push each other to change things up a bit (while still sounding like Priapus), but our ultimate goal is still the same as it was from the beginning: write music that is fun for us to play, interesting to listen to, and memorable enough to stick in peoples’ brains. hopefully these songs accomplish that.

-is a first full length album on the way?
Kevin (drums): We’re working on some new material for a one sided LP. We have something like 6-8 songs in the works with 3 them being complete. We hope to have the writing process done here within the next month or two and then hit the studio.

jeremy: I usually don’t ever want to listen to grindcore records for longer than 15 minutes, 20 max, so I doubt we’ll ever do a “real” full length. Plus we are just pretty fucking lazy individuals.

-how would you describe your music? do you think saying your music is "somewhere between modern deathgrind and chaotic hardcore" is relevant?

Kevin: Yea, you could say that. Jeremy and I have a lot of death metal influence in our writing from our prior band experiences. I don’t think it’s something that we set out to do intentionally though but you can hear it in our music.

Jeremy: That’s a pretty good description, although musically Priapus is probably closer to death metal & grind then hardcore. Jordan’s vocals and the overall rawness is probably where the hardcore vibe come from. We definitely didn’t want to lose the grime and dirt of the earlier grind and crust influences we had, but at the same time I really like some of the more technical aspects of death metal.

By “technical” (and, in the context of music, i hate that fucking word), I don’t mean like sweep picking and wanky shit like that...more like interesting riffs/drum parts/song structures that stand out a bit, and aren’t just constantly shifting power chords and d-beats/blasts. pretty consistently, my favorite bands are the ones that meld adept playing with punk sensibility - stuff like Assuck and Discordance Axis. I’m definitely not putting us in the same category as those bands, but that’s the kind of blend I like when I listen to heavy music.

-which subjects are you dealing with in the lyrics of the songs?

Jordan (vocals): Adversus is about rejecting organized religion. I grew up going to a Pentecostal church from the time I was born up until I was probably 16 years old or so. I met a lot of the friends I have today in that environment and I’m grateful for that, but once I was old enough to really understand a lot of the completely insane shit that’s talked about in the bible and actually grasp how ignorant a lot of the shit the church supported was, I realized that it was something that I never wanted anything to do with. 

Failure Addict is about drug & alcohol abuse, isolation, and the depression that comes along with it. I’ve spent a decent amount of life completely out of my mind and generally just fucking up, so you might notice that these themes come up in quite a few Priapus songs haha.

Jeremy: Jordan writes all the lyrics with no input from Kevin or myself, and I fucking love what he’s done. You could probably sum up our lyrical themes with one word: “failure”. Everyone has fucked up and let people/loved ones down at some point, so it’s a pretty universal theme. It’s kinda uplifting in a way - like, you’re not the only one that has made terrible life decisions, so own your choices, accept the consequences and move on.

-how did you get into extreme music? which bands were more influential for you, either for the music or for other things?

Jordan: I give total credit to my brother (RIP) for getting me into heavy music. He was six years older than me and was really into a lot of heavy bands in the 90’s. He’d make me cassette copies of shit like Helmet, Pantera, White Zombie, etc., when I was a kid, and once I had a taste for stuff like that, I became obsessed with finding that next band that was faster and heavier than the last. 

As far as influence in Priapus, I don’t know, I try not to emulate anyone’s vocals, but some of my favorite vocalists would be Jon Chang (Discordance Axis), Pete Ponitkoff (Benumb), Ken Leek (The Neighbors), JR Hayes (Pig Destroyer), and Chino Moreno (Deftones).

Jeremy: I started listening to thrash in middle school, shit like Slayer, Anthrax, etc. After going through a hilarious nu-metal phase, I started wanting to find the most extreme shit I could, music-wise. That + starting to play guitar (and trying to learn songs that would stretch my limited skills) led me to death metal, brutal DM and grindcore.

In terms of influences, from a general standpoint (IE, things that motivate me to play music), I really like bands/musicians that are consistently pushing themselves or setting new milestones within their genre - Steven Wilson, Deathspell Omega, Bireli Lagrene, the aforementioned Discordance Axis, Ulcerate, His Hero Is Gone, dredg, Ephel Duath, Venetian Snares, Demilich, King Crimson, Cynic, Gorguts, Paatos, John Zorn’s Naked City & Painkiller stuff.

Sorry, not too much grind shit there haha! But now that I’ve listed those bands out, I think that one common factor amongst them is that there’s always a fucking hook (possible exception being the John Zorn shit). Songwriting always seems to take a backseat in extreme music, and that’s a shame, because it IS possible to write a memorable, catchy fucking grindcore song - like any good song, it’s just all about tension and release. With grindcore, where you’re always at level 10 out of 10, you can’t use dynamics to create this tension/release - so you use feel changes, drum patterns, instrumental breaks and tempo changes to build the push and pull that you need for writing a great song. Bands like Pig Destroyer, Nasum, Rotten Sound are great at this, and that’s why people respond to it so well. These bands just write great fucking songs.

More specifically, for guitar playing, major influences probably don’t contain any big surprises: Scott Hull from Pig Destroyer, Luc Lemay from Gorguts, Rob Marton from Discordance Axis, Steve from Assuck, Eduardo & Moe from Maruta, Mieszko from Nasum, Dorian from Noisear, Fredrik Schalin from Anata, Vogg from Decapitated, Ron from Malignancy, Giulio from Hour of Penance, dudes from Wormed, etc….I could go on.

Kevin: I kind of hit the “Metal Lottery” as a kid in the late 80’s - early 90’s, so to speak. I had an older cousin and two neighbors; one of them being in a Death Metal band called Atropos, that were really into metal and took the time to expose me to it.
The guys in Atropos taught me what it was like to be in a band and I learned a lot of my chops from them. I was around 11 or 12 when they started up and I was always going to their practices, hanging out, learning adult language and what cigarettes tasted like. Awesome times. I think that they are still my biggest influence and why I still play today.

-which bands from your area would you recommend?

Jordan: NC has some sick bands that are definitely worth checking out. I’ll list my top three at the moment, (sorry to any friends that feel snubbed, I’m trying to keep this brief!): No Tomorrow (d-beat/crust from Wilmington), Torch Runner (grind/hardcore from Greensboro), and Irata(sludge from Greensboro).

Jeremy: Holder’s Scar from Greensboro is really fucking fun hardcore with a great drummer. Mourning Cloak is super-slow doom stuff with dudes from Torch Runner and Graf Orlock (also featuring our buddy KRIF BILBERT, with whom we record at Legitimate Business). Born Hollow plays screamy hardcore and has a lead singer that may be a legitimate crazy person. Also, I play drums and Jordan does vocals in another poorly-named grindcore band called BRAINxTOILET.

-what is planned for Priapus in the coming months?

Jordan: Our main focus right now is getting our new album written and recorded. Kevin and I will both be welcoming little baby grinders into the world this Summer, so after we get this album taken care of, we’ll probably take a couple months off from playing shows and shit to focus on family stuff. Hopefully we’ll be able to get back to the daily grind in the Fall and will be pushing the new record hard and playing as many shows as possible while continuing to work on new material.

Kevin: Changing a fuckton of diapers.

Jeremy: Playing with my dog and not having babies like a dick.

-which evolution would you like to see for underground music in the future?

Jeremy: Just evolving and changing is good enough for me. New influences and perspectives will keep a genre fresh and add new fans/keep current ones. I love straight forward face-ripping grindcore, and that will always be around, but shit like the last Dephosphorus record is the kind of stuff I love to hear.

-something to add?   

Jeremy: Hey thanks to Dennis/Blasting Days for the interview and to everyone else for reading/listening to our dumb shit! We would be doing this even if everyone hated it, so to meet people at shows or hear from them online that they like what we’re doing is fucking awesome and means a lot. Holler at us anytime:
merch/download music/bandcamp site ->
shows/news ->

samedi 5 avril 2014

Atacama death experience - Wasted time and broken bones (EP 2014)

Atacama death experience is a new italian duo (drums / bass & vocals) and with the Wasted time and broken bones EP they did an impressive first record. they play some heavy and raw sludge / doom. the excellent bass lines could reminds the damages Eyehategod inflicfts to the sabbathian riffing (but without the frenetic hardcore moments) and the grooves and twisted bluesy vibes could reminds Unsane (but it's slower, heavier and rawer).the vocals are in a black metal vein which fits well to the raw dirty sounds of the band.
I just can't see nothing to complain about the four songs of this EP and I hope their first album will be as good.
it's released as CD by Cimmerian shade recordings (which used to be called Bad  god music, read HERE the interview I did with its founder Dave Lindley).

The Bandcamp page.

and here is the interview we did by mail with Romano Malaciort Monero, founder of Atacama death experience :

-Wasted times and broken bones is your first release, so can you start by telling us about the formation of Atacama death experience? what were your motivations, your ideas about the music of the band, the name you chose, etc...what about being a duo, was it your choice from the start or did it just happened that way? was it a way to have a simple and raw sound, focusing on rythm, texture and heaviness?

The Atacama Death Experience was born in my head (Romano Malaciort Monero) a few years ago. In the beginning it was to be a classic guitar - bass - drums band. Following the drafting of the first pieces I realized that it could work just bass and drums, and I think I was right.

The first band was made by me (Romano Malaciort) on bass and Riccardo Castagnedi on drums. Subsequently to artistic differences Riccardo was replaced by Antonio Iodice who participated in the recording of the ep. Now Samuel Bridi is behind the skins of drums

Behind the name there is no particular story, I wanted to associate the desert and death.

-are the songs on the Ep the first you wrote as a band or the best among the ones you have written?

The songs are the first songs that I wrote. I have excluded only one song because I do not like the arrangement but most likely it will be recorded on the next disc with a new arrangement.

-what about the lyrics?

The lyrics relate to what I think of the world and of my existence. Fleece of time talking about a trip I made under the influence of salvia divinorum, I thought the time was a blanket that enveloped everything and everyone stealing the lives and dreams. Useless Blues talking about work, a practice that I do not think at any level compatible with human life. Finally Rotten Clouds and the title track are visions of a world where everything is bound to end and the only chance of salvation is to destroy what you believe.

-do you see the (kind of) "bluesy" feel in your songs as a way to go back to the earlier roots of doom / sludge music?

I believe, like many others, that the blues is at the root of contemporary music and you can not do without it

-which bands were more influential for you, either for the music or for other things?

At the risk of sounding corny, but I believe that the basis for the music of the Atacama Death Experience there are thousands of hours listening to Black Sabbath. Even bands like Eyehategod or Pantera influenced my creative process.

-which italian bands would you recommend?

Ufomammut and Grimes

-which evolution would you like to see for underground music in the future?

I can not answer that question because I do not care. I will just play and express my thoughts. What will be will be

-what is planned for Atacama death experience in the coming months? are the songs for a future album already written?

I hope to play live as much as possible. The new songs are in the works, let's say we're halfway there :-)

-something to add?

Thank you for this opportunity to talk about us. STAY LOW TUNED AND SICK

jeudi 3 avril 2014

Cara neir - The overwatch (EP 2014)

Cara neir is back with this excellent Ep (check also their new split with Flesh born) called The overwatch.
I was a bit disapointed by their last LP Portals to a better dead world, not that it's not a good album  (it is) but i found it not as challenging as their music is usually (read HERE what I wrote about them, and read the interview we did), too close to the usual "blackened hardcore" formula (now that I listen to it again I think that I was a bit too harsh since it's largely more interesting and better than the usual metallic hardcore release). anyway, with their new EP it's a different story and I had the pleasure to get interested in it and like it at first listen. it's at the same time more direct and aggressive (shorter and faster songs) but also more experimental (with the "trademark" guitar work of Garry Brent). really catchy songwriting because it's well crafted but also because of it's diversity (grind, crust, hardcore, black metal, mathrock, they do a smart mix of all that) and capacity to surprise the listener (and as usual faultless delivery from Garry Brents with the instuments and Chris Francis wih the vocals).

highly recommended!

The Bandcamp page.

mercredi 2 avril 2014

The Drip - A presentation of gruesome poetics (EP 2014)

A presentation of gruesome poetics is the new Ep by americans grinders The Drip and their first release with Relapse records. six songs of modern grind, brutal, dense, with a powerfull fat sound. it could reminds Rotten sound with it's massive agression (but with more hardcore elements and less Entombed), but of course the major influence would be probably Nasum, like it is for the whole "modern" grind wave. maybe it sound a bit too generic, but at least it's really well crafted, efficient and enjoyable.

the Bandcamp page.