Thursday 27 June 2013

Summer Sounds - Enjoyment Records

Jeez, where does the time go. It's already mid-June and we've just passed the Summer Solstice, which means we're now into six months of constant rain and darkness (probably). This is also my third label feature of 2013, which in itself is pretty rad as I didn't think I get this far, due to my laziness and/or interruptions. Anyway, I've decided to write about a label that I've been repping for a while and who's owner Dale, has been a kind supporter of This Noise Is Ours for just as long. I don't know many other labels that have such a varied roster and with it's 2013 releases coming thick ans fast at the moment it seemed like the perfect opportunity to focus on four of them. I've decided to mix it up a bit as well, by focusing on two new and two not so new releases.

Saint Coltrane/Weird Wives - Split 7"

I thought I'd start with one older releases but one which I think epitomises Enjoyment's roster and approach to releasing music. This split release features Saint Coltrane from Brighton, who play a kind of arty/jangly take on hardcore-punk and Weird Wives, a mad-ass punk band from Miami! Each band contributes one track to the split.


1. Saint Coltrane - Iron Dracula
2. Weird Wives - Gila

Saint Coltrane's contribution Iron Dracula starts with some pretty experimental guitar and bass. It's hardcore but not as we know it! I can see it being the kind of punk that Maximum Rock n Roll will dig. I actually own this 7" and it's a great listen when I want something a little out of the ordinary. It reminds me of when I was getting into punk, other than just the normal pop-punk type stuff. Saint Coltrane reminds me slightly of when I first heard Million Dead. They have that same chaotic sound. Good stuff.

Weird Wives carry on the arty vibe with Gila. I may be doing both bands a disservice by referring to their music as arty, but it doesn't fit any mould that I know of. Being from Miami, you'd expect Weird Wives to frequent a basement club, where people in the know go to check out bands. They really compliment Saint Coltrane's side as well, managing a sound all of their own while still somehow injecting an element of British-ness into it.

This 7" may only be a taster of what both bands can create, but if you're new to both bands then it's a great place to start. The record also comes in two rather nice hues. A Red/Yellow mix and a Grey/White/Blue tri-colour version. If you like vinyl and nice hardcore/punk, you can't really go wrong.

Hear it for yourself here:-

There are still copies of both colour variants of this record available on Enjoyment's store and each record comes with a free download code, which features a bonus track from each band.

Store -

Saint Coltrane Facebook -
Weird Wives Blog -

Indian Taker/Shortcuts - Split 7"  

This split was released earlier this year. This release was collaborative one between Enjoyment Records, Quote Your Pulse Records from the US and Guys With Beards from Ireland. Indian Taker are a punk-rock band from California and Shortcuts are a melodic hardcore/emo band from Essex, UK. This split was pressed as four different colour variants too, for all of you who collect vinyl. There's transparent red, transparent green, transparent Orange and also violet.


1. Indian Taker - Growing Feigns
2. Indian Taker - Interlude
3. Indian Taker - Foxholes
4. Shortcuts - Wonderland
5. Shortcuts - Bowling

This is another 7" that I own (not bragging!). Indian Taker is up first, with three songs, ones an interlude but to me it still counts. Opener Growing Feigns is an upbeat melodic punk/screamo song with verse vocals that remind of La Dispute. The chorus is pure summer though! It's definitely very danceable, but not in a cheesy way. The interlude is just that, a break between songs and if I'm being honest, I'm not sure why it's there. I just want more punk rock! Their second song proper - Foxholes, is another hook filled punk song. The great thing is that Indian Taker don't just sound like a Blink-182 or Green Day clone, as they very much have their own sound. The country-style guitar and the brass instruments that pierce their sound add more variation and make them more unclassifiable than some of their peers.

Shortcuts play more to the point, but still with a great sense of melody and fun. Wonderland's gritty attitude and more rough and ready sound go hand in hand, which is an effect that only UK bands seem to pull of properly. Bowling is very much the same and it helps Shortcuts to compliment Indian Takers cleaner sound. The production though of both sides of this split is great and allows both bands varying styles to come across well. That solo at the end of Bowling is genius too!

Like all other Enjoyment Releases, it's available for full streaming on bandcamp:-

If you're in the UK, you can pick copies up from Enjoyment's store here -

Indian Taker Facebook -
Shortcuts Facebook -

Nathan Detroit - S/T 7"

Now, I'm heading into virgin territory. This 7" is one of Enjoyment's newest releases. Nathan Detroit is a pop-punk band from Trowbridge in Wiltshire, UK. This is a little different to previous releases as it's a limited lathe cut record and is the first one that Enjoyment has released. Nathan Detroit are bringing back the good vibes.


1. Hold On Tight
2. 17
3. Come Home

You know you get those days where you just need something that's not brutal or angry to listen to. The first thing you reach for (if your me) is pop-punk. Punk just like the type that Nathan Detroit plays. The melodies of the guitars are there to smile, the drums hop and skip just like they should and the vocals are clean, with brill harmonies.

Hold On Tight is the perfect opener and it's too the point. 17 is song to help you reminisce about easier days, when you have no responsibilities or cares. Come Home sounds so familiar in its style, yet original at the same time. The production of the record is spot on too. All of the instruments and vocals are clear, as you'd expect with a punk record. You won't be paying attention to that though, as you'll most likely just be lost in the music. Damn I want to see these guys live!

All three tracks are streaming on Bandcamp:-

You can pick a physical copy of this 7" in a double pack with the Second To Last - Vessels 7" here -

Nathan Detroit Facebook -

Axes - S/T 12"

This is the newest record to come from Enjoyment and is a pretty big deal for the label. They are working alongside Big Scary Monsters, who are releasing this record on CD, by releasing a 12" version.  Axes are a London based band featuring members from as far away as Iran and Denmark, as well as Scotland and Essex! They play a dissonant version of indie laced punk and have a penchant for funny song titles, as you'll see below.


1. Wet Wet Wet Wet
2. Let Me Tell You Something About Pepe
3. Jon Bonjela
4. Rainbow Bacon
5. Middle East 17
6. Manolis Hadja Manolis
7. Fleetwood Math

That dissonant sound starts straight away with the intro bars of Wet Wet Wet Wet, but it soon fuses into a brass-laden instrumental song, somewhere between indie and screamo. This may sit at the more pop end of the Enjoyment Records roster, but it's exactly what you'd expect the label to put out if you've been following them for some time. Let Me Tell You Something About Pepe has a bit of a country music vibe to it, thanks to some clever guitar work. You're pretty much forced just to sit back and enjoy this, as without vocals you can really appreciate the instrumentation for what it is.

Axes keep you guessing with their musical direction because the amusingly titled Jon Bonjela has a 70s rock n roll feel. After a while it goes all danceable and features some great lead guitar towards the end. It genuinely is hard to categorise Axes and as such, I'm not gonna bother trying. If you want something out of this world to listen to, just stick on fourth song Rainbow Bacon. It has some of the strangest guitar picking I've ever heard in it. You'll know what I mean you listen to it!

I really like their jazz-inspired moments a lot and the fact that you can't pin down a tempo for more than a few bars. It makes the music interesting and keeps you hooked. Even the song-title Middle East 17 made me snigger. Manolis Hadja Manolis follows in the same vein but is more math orientated and is pretty stop-start. Fleetwood Math isn’t, as I'd expect. I thought it would be equally as mathy, but it isn't. It's actually a really pleasant end to the album. 

Overall, this record wasn't what I was expecting. Then again, I didn't really know what to expect. I really like the look of the finished vinyl product as well. It's a chilled out, well-played album, which definitely adds something to Enjoyments existing roster.

Have a listen to the record here:-

You can buy the record here -

Axes Facebook -

So, there you go. A brief look at a UK label who are very much on the up. There are more new releases still to be announced by them but for now, just explore what is already out there.

Enjoyment Records Website -
Enjoyment Records Facebook -

Monday 24 June 2013

Let It Die/Monolithian - Because The World Is Perfidious, I Am Going Into Mourning Split 7"

This post sees the return of two UK bands who've been featured here previously. Let It Die have featured with both their demo and last year's sick 7". Monolithian appeared earlier this year with their One/Zero 12". There was one constant amongst the two vinyl releases I reviewed and that was UK label Moshtache Records, as they conspired with Church of Fuck to bring us both those vinyl records. Well, they're back again alongside Skin and Bones Records to bring you a mighty new slab of wax in the form of the Let It Die/Monolithian split. Fast as hell hardcore inspired noise rocks up next to bass-heavy sludge-ridden hardcore in a tag team match that will tear out your eardrums and drop your bowels.


1. Let It Die - Boredom/Inertia
2. Let It Die - Torture
3. Monolithian - Emaciate Euthanise won't be! Not after Let It Die tear you a new one with opening track Boredom/Inertia. Borrowing subtle textures from their slower comrades in Monolithian, they proceed to pummel you with a sound as thick as the tar. The ringing feedback that acts as wing man to those anguished screams will have the weaker amongst you reaching for your earmuffs. The drums pound, with cymbal crashes flying at you like falling anvils and the low-down riffs will threaten to shake the strongest of foundations. That feedback leads into Torture, which pretty much does what it says in the title. Let It Die hit a faster stride here, which harks back to their 2012 7".  The same thick sound is present and the holy-terror style guitar makes it impossible to tear yourself away. Stuff your cookie-cutter deathcore tripe, you need to be hate-moshing to Let It Die before moshing becomes illegal...oh wait, it already is!

Things take a sinister turn as the bass-heavy tones of Monolithian break through. Emaciate Euthanise builds on the momentum and sound gained by their recent One/Zero 12" and shortens it too produce something equally to the point as Let It Die, while complementing their chaos with something down and dirty. The constant here is the bass and the rhythm section, bellowing beneath the low-growls that drag the tone deeper into the depths of despair. Just when you think it's slowed to a halt though, Monolithian spew up some filthy crust that hits you like a gutter punk that's drunk too much angry juice.

Three tracks is all it takes to remind you that no matter how convoluted mainstream metal gets and no matter how many fringe bands cause furore on the Warped tour, at least you'll have the welcoming arms of the UK underground to come back to. Both Let It Die and Monolithian have seriously upped their game and if you're going to be seeing them on any of their upcoming live dates, you'll be in for a treat.

As the above poster says, the whole split is streaming over at Tight To The Nail here - Go listen now!

The 7" is being released on heavyweight 70g vinyl. You can pre-order it from the following places - 

In terms of live dates to watch out for; Let It Die are making an appearance in Manchester on the 29th at Fuck Fest and Monolithian will be sharing the stage with the mighty Eyehategod on the 4th of August.

For their other live dates and to tell them how awesome they are, head over to their Facebook pages below:-

Sunday 23 June 2013

Trials - In The Shadow of Swords

Those of you who have been paying close attention over the last few weeks, will recognise the name Trials. I did an interview with Mark and Usha from the Chicago metallers earlier in the year and thought it was time that I posted up my review of their new album. In The Shadow of Swords is Trials second album, having already released Witness To The Downfall back in 2011. Trials play a modern take on metal, with death and thrash thrown in alongside the obligatory groove.

Note: The digital version of the album includes a cover of Judas Priest song Jawbreaker, whereas the CD version contains the track Spirit Leaves. I'm reviewing the digital version.


1. Conjoined
2. Believers In Black
3. Blueprints of Metaphor
4. In The Misery Machine
5. With Only Sorrow Now
6. All The Promises
7. Upon This Day
8. Ancestor
9. Embracing Nothing
10. Jawbreaker (Bonus - Judas Priest)

It seems like an age since I actually listened to some proper modern metal. All these sub-genres can get mystifying, so sometimes it's good to sit back and listen to something more familiar. Trials are modern metal of the best kind for me. Their mixture of death, thrash and groove sits really well alongside the melodic choruses and subtle djent influences. Conjoined is an epic call to arms as well, featuring elements of all of the above. The deeper you get into Conjoined, the more you hear symphonic elements too. Believers In Black hints at the rock n roll swagger of the band and definitely highlights why Trials were chosen to support Holy Grail in July. There is a progressive edge to the band as well though. Their songs are longer than those of your average metal band, but their musicality and skill justifies it. Trials keep up a pretty blinding pace without sounding fast.

Their groove and song-structure lends itself to a full-throttle assault. There are similarities between Trials and Scandinavian progressive metallers Scar Symmetry that reveal themselves during cleanly sung passages (to my ears anyway!). The pace does slow slightly during fourth track In The Misery Machine, but it doesn't spoil the bands momentum and it creates a slightly more brooding atmosphere too. That brooding atmosphere continues into fifth song With Only Sorrow Now. It's extended instrumental intro providing a neck snapping groove and a sound, which will definitely prick your ears up. As you pass the halfway and point and get stuck into All The Promises, the variation begins to kick in more, with subtle time-signature changes and more experimentation. This is where Trials begin to flex their musical muscles after the initial full-on assault during the first half of the album.

Their ballad moment comes in the form of Upon This Day. It's a pretty majestic one though and the further in you get, the more that ballad tag becomes irrelevant. Penultimate song Embracing Nothing is a rage too and their longest song. After that, they pluck out an unlikely cover in the form of Judas Priest song Jawbreaker. It gives the album a rousing send off and shows that Trial are not afraid to put their stamp on a classic. Trials play some of the best modern metal I've heard since I reviewed A Wanted Awakening. It reminds me of my early days discovering metal bands and listening to metalcore (when it was good!). It's just honest, killer modern metal that will gain Trials new fans without a doubt. You should check it out.

You can checkout the entire album here:-

In The Shadows of Swords is available to buy both digitally and on CD from the Bandcamp page above.

Trials Facebook -

Random Band of The Week - Mors Voluntaria

It's time for another "Band of The Week". To inspire me this time, I checked out the latest band additions on Metal Archives and since I've been listening to more UK based black metal recently, the decision was pretty easy. The band I've chosen this week is Leeds based one-man black metal band Mors Voluntaria.

Seemingly a new band, Mors Voluntaria sprung up earlier this year but has already released a Bandcamp only promo and Tape called "A Pathway Through Forgotten Woods", which has been released by the prolific Ukrainian black metal/ambient label Depressive Illusions Records.

You can listen to the digital two-track 2013 promo via the band's Bandcamp page below:-

The two promo tracks on Bandcamp are raw, hateful black metal with elements on noise and drone thrown in. It's airs more towards depressive black metal with the only ambience coming from the feedback generated by the guitars.

Mors Voluntaria is a mysterious project and there isn't a great deal of information about it, apart from what's on Metal Archives. As with many similar bands, there is no Facebook page as yet either.

In terms of the bands debut tape release, you can purchase "A Pathway Through Forgotten Woods" via Depressive Illusions Records here - 

Friday 21 June 2013

ZOM - Multiversal Holocaust 7"

Dublin's ZOM have been talked about in hushed tones for some time now. After an initial demo in 2011 that was released by Invictus Productions, they followed with another in 2012 courtesy of Iron Bonehead Productions. They're back in 2013 with their first vinyl record, the Multiversal Holocaust 7". Comprising of two tracks, this brings their unholy black noise to more people just in time for their appearance Live Evil later this year.


1. Multiversal Holocaust
2. Terror of The Cosmos 

Multiversal Holocaust features just two tracks, but that's all ZOM need to hammer their rusty nail into your head. Starting with the title track, they settle into their blackened death metal almost instantly. The raw-sound and thrash metal elements make it perfect for those who like extreme metal. It does take a few listens to pick out some of the subtle intricacies within ZOM's music, but once you do it's well worth it. The vocals sound like barks coming from the jaws of Barghest himself and the slower riffs in the mid section create great atmosphere. After a final wave the thrashing grimness, it ends with an unsettling sample.

The B-side is Terror of The Cosmos, which follows on and maintains the unsettling atmosphere that ZOM set out to create. Ringing feedback plays alongside the sampled voice, before the low-end makes it's presence well and truly felt. The riffs here seem to take their cues from traditional heavy metal but once they are stood next those ungodly vocals, they change and sound nastier. It strikes me that with the sheer amount of extreme metal about now and with new bands appearing all the time, it's hard to plough a furrow for yourself, which is original. ZOM seem to manage it and exceed the expectations of the baying throngs by playing what they want to and by creating such a very all-encompassing sound. This 7" may be short, but as an introduction to the band or a sign of their progression from previous releases, it shines above all. Grimness isn't always black!

Listen to the title track at Iron Bonehead's Soundcloud page below:-

You can purchase the 7" from Iron Bonehead Productions at

Analogue of The Sun - Eardstapa

I've talked loads about my admiration for bands north of the border and am always excited when another bursts it's way through the undergrowth. Analogue of The Sun are a band that came to my attention last December, but that I'm only just getting around to writing about now. They sent me a link to their debut album Eardstapa with promises of sludgy, ambient post-metal vibes. A hint to their sound may come from the fact that they supported the mighty *Shels in Glasgow in June of last year.


1. The Wanderer
2. Snow on The Hull
3. What The Thunder Said
4. Synonymy

I always think that Scottish bands present some of the most majestic soundscapes. If you listen to bands like Prelude To The Hunt and Of Spire And Throne, while in different genres, they both reach incredible heights. Analogue of The Sun are the same. They start of quietly with opener The Wanderer, with gentle guitar and clean singing, before throwing in intermittently heavy bass. You feel like they are building up to unleash a Cult of Luna-esque wall of noise and as such you're always anticipating. They kind of do at the midway point, but sitting atop of the heavy instrumentation are clean vocals, which add tonnes of atmosphere. There are flecks of indie, screamo and Neurosis-esque moments throughout and this is just the opening song!

After that grand opener, Analogue of The Sun switch into a sort of improv/ambient intro to Snow On The Hull before twisting into more indie inspired instrumentation. It's pretty rad that their music can sound so experimental yet danceable at the same time. Some people may baulk at the artsy tag, but these guys pull it off well, without sounding too madcap. Snow On The Hull sees them going down a really twister-jazz route, with some vocals which seem off-key but actually work really well with the sound clash beneath them. What The Thunder Said, much like Snow On The Hull, is a shorter piece. This has a more menacing atmosphere thanks to the crashing cymbals and rumbling bass. It's stop-start and pretty much unclassifiable. For the most part it's instrumental, so it gives you a bigger insight into the song-writing skill of the band. After the initial chaotic section, they settle down and play something quieter and more laid back, which becomes more feedback-ridden and dissonant as the song reaches it's conclusion.

It all ends with Synonmy, which weighs in at almost twelve minutes. By now, you don't have a clue what to expect but you can't dare take your ears away from the speakers. The song starts of gently, with a kind of pop-vibe and what sounds like programmed drums, though I can't be sure. There are strings in the background, piano and cleanly sung vocals with soaring harmonies. This song may seem at odds with those before it, but it's a perfect way to end the record. The dissonance from previous tracks does show itself about five minutes in and at time after and they do throw in elements of the jazz, but for the most part it's a more straightforward song in the way it's structured. It gives off a sense of drama and warmth, which stays with you. 

I came into this with an open mind, not knowing what to expect and was really surprised by the breadth of ideas and textures that Analogue of The Sun weaved into the record. I don't want to pigeonhole it as post-metal as I think that's unfair. It's just good, different music that takes influences from different genres including metal. It's original.

Listen to this for yourselves here:-

You can purchase Eardstapa digitally or on CD from the above page as well.

Analogue of The Sun Facebook -

Wednesday 19 June 2013

Dead Church/Suffering Mind - Split 5"

I love fastcore, grind, powerviolence or whatever else you want to call fast music. I also love vinyl so this little release from 7Degrees Records is pretty much perfect. It brings together Michigan's Dead Church and super-prolific Polish grinders Suffering Mind, for a quick fire two-track blastathon. Dead Church recently played alongside Full of Hell and Seven Sisters of Sleep and Suffering Mind are due to hit the UK imminently with UK PV band The Afternoon Gentlemen, so both bands are keeping their live reps well and truly in tact.


1. Dead Church - I Want Nothing
2. Suffering Mind - War Street/Wall Street

Dead Church are furious from start to end. After their initial thick riffing intro, they launch into a hardcore-led blast of grind madness. The mixture of high screams and low growls give it an edge and while it's short, it's still a rager. Suffering Mind has a less thick guitar sound but like Dead Church, they throw in elements of sludge into the mix and some incredibly fast kick drumming to boot!

There's really not a lot I need to say about this record, other than that it will do more damage to you in it's sub two-minute playing time than most grind albums will do in their entirety. Some people may find the 5" format too short, but whether you're an avid follower of both bands or you're looking for a place to start, you'd be foolish not to pick this up.

Hear it in it's grinding glory here:-

7Degrees have made this split available to buy digitally from the above bandcamp page, though I'd strongly recommend you to go for the physical 5" if you can afford it. It looks immense, as does that artwork!

Dead Church Facebook -
Suffering Mind Facebook -
7Degrees Records Facebook -

Jellywatch - Demo 2011

This is my second review featuring a release from French/Belgian punk label Never Trust An Asshole. This time, I'm writing about the 2011 demo from Jellywatch. I'm not fluent in French, but by reading their Facebook bio I can just about make out that they formed in 2008. This seven-track demo was released in February 2011 and has been their only recorded output to date. They seem to have played a fair-few live dates and look like a fun bunch of dudes, so I'm hoping this demo will be a little more lighthearted than some of the music I've been listening too recently.


1. Derrière le mur
2. Quoi d'autre? 
3. A La Carte
4. Roulettes et contreplaqué 
5. Song of The Dead
6. Seeing Red (Minor Threat Cover)
7. Kids for life (bonus réédition) 

Jellywatch open with Derriere Le Mur and an extended guitar intro before launching into a fuller, more melodic verse. Their sound has a garage-punk slant to it during the verses but tends to be pretty danceable in between, featuring some cool guitar harmonies. Quoi d'autre features some really cool ska-punk saxophone. A La Carte starts with a more measured approach. This approach doesn't last long though, as Jellywatch quickly launch back into their quick-fire punk. The rhythms are pretty tight and the recording/production is more on the live side of the fence, which helps bring out the band's energy.

Roulettes et Contreplaque will have you pogoing along in no time, with it's NOFX-esque harmonies and upbeat drumming. It's probably the standout track on this demo for me. Up until now all of the songs have been sung in the band's native tongue, but Song of The Dead sees them switch to English. This is a scuzzy punk song that last nearly twice as long as song that came before it on the demo. That doesn't stop it from being raucous fun though!

Jellywatch then spring out at you with their own take on Seeing Red by Minor Threat. Their last song Kids For Life is a nod to hardcore punk, with more attitude and a sound akin to AFI. It's another fast and scuzzy number that ends their demo in suitable style. If you're after some punk that's played with abandon and without being too clinical, look no further than Jellywatch's demo. It would be interesting to hear how they progress with future releases, if any do materialise. For now though, just stick this on and enjoy it.

Have a listen for yourself below:-

The EP is available to by both digitally or physically from the above bandcamp page.

Jellywatch Facebook -
Never Trust An Asshole Facebook -

Monday 17 June 2013

Not My Hero - S/T EP

I thought I'd have a break from extreme metal for a little while and check out some good old hardcore. A while I ago I was sent an e-mail from a French DIY label called Never Trust An Asshole, letting me know about their label and the bands they've helped out. Not My Hero were one of those bands, so I thought I'd check then out, although reading their Facebook page tells me that they've called it day now. When they were a band, they played hardcore in a similar vein to Comeback Kid and shared stages with bands like A Wilhelm Scream. This four-track actually came out in late 2011.


1. Fire
2. Amnesia
3. Dead Heroes
4. My Gucci Eyes

I've not heard a lot of melodic hardcore like this for a while. Not My Hero play hardcore with punk twist and it sounds pretty refreshing. Opening song Fire is a short, sharp intro. Amnesia is a fierce hardcore underpinned by fast drums and melodic guitar. They even throw in some cool gang vocals too. It's pretty much all you want from a hardcore band really, something fast and upbeat to get you moving. Not My Hero continues with same level of energy during Dead Heroes. This time injecting more clean vocals into the song and even a subtle Boysetsfire influence, which is nice. They don't seem to take themselves too seriously either and don't come across all “tough guy”, which is again pretty refreshing.

The last song is the amusingly titled My Gucci Eyes. It's a rager too! The lyrics too all of the songs here are in English and are audible, so you can hear what’s being screamed without needing to read along to the lyrics. They throw an introspective part into the song about three-minutes in which settles things down before building up to a crashing crescendo which ends the song abruptly. This is a short and killer EP from a band that I wish I'd known about before. This is going to be on repeat for weeks to come!

You can checkout the EP here:-

Never Trust An Asshole put on gigs, write zines and release music. You can buy this EP digitally or physically from the link above.

Not My Hero Facebook -

Pseudogod - Deathwomb Catechesis

Black metal for me has two sides. On the one side there's the bands that prefer image over music and on the other side there's those who prefer to let their music do the talking. That may be a farely generic statement I know, but It's one which I've stuck by since I started digging deeper into the black metal realm. Pseudogod are on the latter side for me. This Russian four-piece formed in 2004, released their first demo in 2006 and after a few split records and other releases, unleashed their debut full-length in 2012 via Hells Headbangers and Finnish label Kvlt Records. Deathwomb Catechesis features eight hymns full of death infused black metal.


1. Vehement Decimation
2. Malignant Spears
3. Saturnalia (The Night of The Return)
4. Azazel
5. The Antichrist Victory
6. Necromancy of The Iron Darkness
7. Encarnation Del Mal
8. The Triangular Phosphorescence

I get the impression that Pseudogod approaches their black metal in the same way that many South American bands do, instead of choosing to mimic their Scandinavian cousins. After the choral intro to Vehement Decimation, you're presented with chaotic blackened noise. The drums and guitars seem to be intertwined underneath a strange fuzziness, which gives them a raw sound. The deep growls are more prominent but still sit within the mix a little. That fuzziness in the production seems to detract slightly from Pseudogod’s black metal attack. That fuzziness is less noticeable during Malignant Spears, as Pseudogod's approach becomes more aggressive. Musically they're impressive. They play at a hell of a speed and the drums are especially fraught during their faster moments. They inject some menacing guitar riffs into their mid-paced passages, which give them an extras sinister bite.

Pseudogod's tone throughout Deathwomb Catechesis is one of abject misery and hatred. Saturnalia (The Night of The Return) seems to drag you further into their blackened abyss. There are some great guitar harmonies nestling in the song though, but it might take your repeated listens to truly appreciate them. With Azazel, Pseudogod seems to inherit a slightly more industrial sound, certainly in the opening bars anyway. When they hit top gear, that sound seems to disappear and is replaced by their more familiar blackened hue. The brooding guitar solo during Azazel adds mystery and a touch of real instrumental flair to the record and is one of the outstanding moments for me. The Antichrist Victory passes by in a whirlwind of growls and low-end rumble, with some pretty cool structure to boot. Pseudogod then fling themselves straight into Necromancy of The Iron Darkness, which is almost a battle stomp. You can just imagine soldiers marching to the front line, which this blasts in the background. The sound of menacing victory and fear all rolled into one!

Pseudogod stretch their legs with their last two songs. Encarnacion Del Mal is pure blackened-thrash fest. It leads nicely into The Triangular Phosphorescence, which is nearly eight minutes of writhing pain. As with previous tracks, there is a seamless switch between the last two songs, so as not to lose the band momentum. The Triangular Phosphorescence is a slower song all round, borrowing some tempos and atmosphere from doom metal along the way.  Overall, Pseudogod has done well with their debut album. I feel that the production does let it down slightly but then again, no black metal album should sound like a pop album!  There's plenty here for fans of black and death metal to get their teeth into for sure.

You can stream whole of Deathwomb Catechesis here:-

You can buy the album digitally from the above page or you can buy both vinyl and CD copies from the following stores:-

Hells Headbangers -
Kvlt -

Pseudogod Facebook -

Saturday 15 June 2013

Laser Flames on The Great Big News - Lambs

I'm off on a stag do later today, so  I thought I'd jam some music to get me in the mood for the copious amount of drinking that will no doubt take place. I decided that a fitting place to start this morning was with Tennessee rocks Laser Flames on The Great Big News and their debit four-track EP Lambs, which was released last summer by Handshake Inc. Laser Flames... play Southern rock with a heavy side, influenced by a wide variety of bands from Lynyrd Skynyrd to Metallica to Deathspell Omega!


1. Monster Truth
2. Dead River
3. Faith of The Black Heart
4. Not Living

I approach this EP, not really knowing what to expect. As Monster Truth rings out, the first thing you feel is the semi-sludge riffs and then the vocal melodies hit you. They almost remind me a bit of the harmonies that Fleetwood Mac would weave. This is pretty laid back for an opener, the viola and the easy instrumentation makes it a great listen, then when the guitar solo's come in, they add to the sound. This is the sound of slowly cruising down route 66!

Dead River has a slightly harder-hitting intro but there's still that undeniable Southern rock vibe going on. It's really groovy and melodic. I don't really want to try and compare to any modern day metal/rock bands because I think it's really unique. The Sword has though endorsed them, so I guess that could be a reference point for those of you who only like bands based on the "For Fans of" recommendations!

Faith of The Blackened Heart is a complete u-turn for Laser Flames. It's an amalgamation of occult chants, black-metal vocals and Southern sludge. The time signatures are also hard to pin down at times, just like they used to be when Mastodon first came into your consciousness with Remission. After the initial duo of tracks, this is a surprise and may put some people off, but it just shows the length and breath of Laser Flames experimentation and influences.

They slip back into grooving territory with Not Living. It's all riffs and deep, bellowing vocal melodies. With so much going on across these four songs, you'd expect it to be quite hard to listen too but it's not. The production allows all the instruments and voices enough space to breath and it sounds really warm, especially when the viola comes to the fore. If you're looking to listen to something a little out the ordinary and varied, then Laser Flames are definitely worth tracking down. This EP is immense on so many levels and even if it leaves you confused by it's mix of genres, it'll leave you smiling.

Lambs is streaming via the Handshake Inc bandcamp page:-

It's also available from the above link as a pay-what-you-want download.

You can purchase physical copies from Handshake Inc here -

Laser Flames on The Great Big News Facebook -

Wednesday 12 June 2013

Witchtrap - Vengeance Is My Name

One thing you'll never be without in extreme music is blackened death and thrash metal. That mix of Bathory-forged hatred and Slayer-like pace, which has been sewn together over the last twenty years to produce a hellish sound. One of the genre's biggest proponents of this sound is Hell's Headbangers. This label has an uncanny knack of unearthing bands from across the globe, especially South America, where it takes on a new level of evil. Witchtrap are one such South American export. Witchtrap begun in 1992 as Dark Millennium. In 1993 they changed their name to what it is now and also changed their style from death to thrash metal. After two full-lengths and a number of EP,s and reissues, Vengeance Is My Name emerged in 2012. Witchtrap take you back to the days of day-glo thrash and bullet belts, reminding you that thrash used to be raw and dangerous.


1. Intro
2. Winds of War
3. Damned To The Core
4. Put To Death
5. The Queen of Hell
6. Venomous Breath
7. Metal
8. Vengeance Is My Name
9. Pay In Blood
10. I'll Take Your Head

Witchtrap kick things off with a gentile intro of great melodic guitar, plucked thoughtfully to draw the listener in before they launch into their full on thrash attack. That thrash-attack comes in form of first song proper, Winds of War. What you get here is rip-roaring drums, guitars that sound like they're gonna explode and vocals that could give Mille Petrozza of Kreator a run for his money! It's undeniably South American in its delivery, full of raw attitude and killer solos.  Damned To The Core slows the pace of proceeding slightly, with a measured instrumental build up but it's not long before the whirlwind begins again in earnest. You can't help but bang your head as the main verse begins, thanks to the furious leaping drums. The melodies in the riffs add variation, stopping the song from sounding stale.

One thing you can always guarantee with thrash metal is that it won't hang around. Bands that don't care for noodling or beard-stroking artsy crap and Witchtrap are no exception.  Their songs are all around the four-five minute mark and they all follow a well-trodden formula that works. Put To Death doesn't lean to heavily on the vocals this time, relying on the rapid instrumentation to do it's talking, with a sound that seems to thicken as it progresses. If had to draw comparisons between their sound and that of the genres better known acts, I'd have to say it's closer to that of Kreator than any of the big four. That should come as a relief to some, as it shows that Witchtrap's music isn't as watered-down or clinical, but instead heavier and more natural. None more so is this difference in sound obvious than during The Queen of Hell.

Witchtrap get more preposterous as they pile-drive through Vengeance Is My Name. The solo during Venomous Breath is probably the best solo on the whole record. The odd falsetto vocal raises the temperature as well. One of their most powerful songs is the song titled only as Metal. It pretty much sums up where Witchtrap are coming from. They even step up the grandiosity with the title track, by throwing some great sweep picking into the intro. It's hell of a track! Listening to both Pay In Blood and closing track I'll Take Your Head makes me sad that I don't have long hair, as I can't mosh with my hair in a circle. The thought was there though!

If you're a fan of old-school thrash, this is another album you should be checking out. It's got energy and more importantly, balls!

Vengeance Is My Name is streaming in full via the Hells Headbangers bandcamp page:-

You can purchase a digital download copy directly from the above link for $6.66 or buy physical copies from Hells Headbangers at

Witchtrap Facebook -

Tuesday 11 June 2013

Jagernaut/Terlarang - Split 7"

After the review Id' just posted, I realised that the last four reviews I've written all featured bands beginning with A. It wasn't planned, it just happened. This review features two band and neither begin with A. This is the 7" split from Greek grinders Jagernaut (who've featured on this blog before) and Malaysian PV brethren Terlarang. This 7" was released in July 2012 and was a collaboration between US label Suburban White Trash, Australia's Tenzenmen, Austria's Black Trash and Greece's own Screaming Victims Records.


1. Hatred (Jagernaut)
2. Voiceless Leaders (Jagernaut)
3. Dead Sect (Jagernaut)
4. Sorry This Song Is Too Short (Terlarang)
5. Exploitation Becomes Power (Terlarang)
6. Hero Behind The...(Terlarang)
7. Greed As You Are (Terlarang)
8. Betrayed...Lair...(Terlarang)

Jagernaut fill their side with three tracks worth of raw, fast hardcore-influenced grind. Hatred starts things off with a low-fi sound and deep-growled vox. The riffs are pretty furious during Voiceless Leaders. Jagernaut like to keep them on the low side though. Chances are, you'll be checking this out if you're already a fan of grind/power violence. Jagernaut's Euro style is subtly refreshing and they harness the power of many of their Greek compatriots. Dead Sect absolutely slays and then ends abruptly.

Terlarang have five songs on the record and their sound varies from that of Jagernaut. There's more treble in the guitar and it sounds thicker too. If you thought Jagernaut's songs were fast too, then you'll find Terlarang's fly by in the blink of an eye. During Sorry This Song Is Too Short, after a long instrumental build up you're left with rapid, short shrieking vocals, which last about ten seconds. Terlarang switch on the punk with Exploitation Becomes Power. At sixty-one seconds, there's no room for messing about. Hero Behind The... is just absolutely chaotic from start to finish, with the drums being pounded constantly while Greed As You Are pretty much batters you in exactly the same way. Both songs last a mere minute and a half. It's left to last track Betrayed...Liar... to put the nail in the coffin. Nail you it does, with one final hit of shrieking, grinding madness.

This may be an acquired taste to some, but it's well worth losing your bodily functions over. From the rawness, deep sound of Jagernaut to the less composed and more chaotic noise of Terlarang, you've got yourself two bands that complement each other and steamroll everyone else.

Listen to the 7" in it's entirety here:-

It's available from Suburban White Trash's bandcamp page above as a pay-what-you-want download, but you can buy physical copies from the below places:-

Suburban White Trash -
Tenzenmen -
Black Trash Records -
Screaming Victims -

Jagernaut Facebook -
Terlarang Facebook -

Art Of Burning Water - Love You Dead

As I get myself in order and find a true writing rhythm, I'm at the point where I'm attacking music hidden within my inbox. The first of those hidden gems is the eight track LP Love You Dead, from London noisemakers Art of Burning Water. The record was released on vinyl by AOBW member Kunal Nandi's label SuperFi Records as well on CD by Swarm of Nails. I remember coming across AOBW after reading a review of their 3-way spilt released with American Heritage and Foe, so god only knows why it's taken me so long to get round to writing about this record.

Tracklist :-

1. Hoglan
2. Oh My Days
3. Spiros Arion
4. Husker Du Happiness?
5. Only Choking
6. Tapdancing on Landmines
7. Whitman, Price and Haddad
8. Nicaragua

Art Of Burning Water sound frightening. Opening with Hoglan, they spit out a grind/sludge/metal amalgamation with vocals, which seems all over the place. I don't even know how to describe the screams! They're groovy though, with hints of stoner in their riffs. They prefer drawn-out instrumental passages, like at the start of Oh My Days. The drums and the bass contribute to a brutal low-end and the guitars aren't tuned much higher either. You won't find many screeching leads during these opening songs. You will find mind-bending time signatures and a band that just do their own thing.

The vocals sit very much in the middle of the mix, especially in songs like Spiros Arion, where the guitars seem quite atonal at times. There are hints of straight-up metal buried in their music though. AOBW seem to be as comfortable grooving as they do smashing you over the head with their crazed noise. They've also clearly got a sense of humour, if song-titles like Husker Du Happiness? and Only Choking are anything to go by. The former is a fifty-three second wall of grinding menace while the latter is equally as terrifying. It's almost as if they split one song into two here, because they were scared that it would have been too much for people. As that huge breakdown appears towards the end, all I can do is grin from ear to ear!

So far, so quick! With the exception of Oh My Days, no song has broken through the three-minute mark. Tapdancing on Landmines keeps the pace fast and fraught. The subtle textures that you can pick on multiple listens will surely keep you coming back to this record. It's only when Whitman, Price and Haddad ring’s out that things start to slow down. The riffs are bruising and sludgy as hell. It's definitely one of the most punishing numbers on Love You Dead, proving that you don't necessarily needs grinding madness and hard-to-pin-down time signatures to make your listeners head fall off.

As Nicaragua begins, you feel like the preceding songs have been but a mere build up to what is the final hammer blow, all eleven minutes of it! The chugging riffs and powerful drums provide a build up, which seems like the calm before the storm. Occasional glimpses of sick sludge-influenced jazz guitar peeps through before what can only be described as utter chaos. There may be more of a focus on the instrumentation on Love you Dead, but when it's this powerful why spoil it. The vocals add to the maddening intensity and that feedback six-minutes in will have cowering on the ground. The feeling of brief calm lasts but seconds before another thick, tar like passage fills your ears, as the song lurches it's way to an inevitable end.

You can shove whatever genre terms you want into a review, but you will never come close to describing fully what AOBW sound like. I'm just going to settle on the term mind-blowing.

Do not do what I did. Don't let Art Of Burning Water pass you by. Listen to the whole of Love You Dead as well the rest of their discography on their bandcamp page below:-

There is a download link on the above page for this album, but if you like physical copies, head to the following placed to pick up either a CD copy or a vinyl one:-

SuperFi Records -
Swarm of Nails -

Art Of Burning Water Blog -
Art Of Burning Water Facebook -

Monday 10 June 2013

Random Band of The Week - Afterlife Kids

My "Random Band of The Week" posts haven't been that weekly, but here's another. I came across Berlin emo/hardcore band Afterlife Kids a few days ago and started checking them out, alongside so many other German bands that have just bypassed me lately. According to their Facebook page, they only started in January 2012 but they've been mega productive since then.

They've released a 2 song promo CD, they release an EP names "Geisterhand" on tape/CD and repressed it, a noise/drone tape called "Elementar" , a live split tape with fellow German Screamo band - Fuck, Wolves! and they're due to release their first LP "Morgengrauen" very soon.

They've played alongside bands like xCurraheex, Pay No Respect and Lightbearer!

Not only that, but they also have their own label called Skull Witch Records which has helped co-release the recent Huffin Paint/Chevin split 7" amongst other things. Check out more of it's releases here -

You can listen to their discography as well as tracks from their new LP via their bandcamp page below:-

Another thing that stuck for me was the aesthetic that they have. Their merch and artwork designs look awesome. Check stuff out on their Tumblr page here -

Afterlife Kids Facebook -

I encourage you to check these dudes out for yourselves!

As Albion Sleeps - The Prayer of Arthur Gauntlet

Ambient and drone music has always been a bit of a mystery to me. I've featured some here and there over the last couple of years, from Sutekh Hexen and Arktau Eos to the more black metal inspired sounds of Moloch (Ukr) and Mists of Poveglia. As Albion Sleeps are one such mysterious project from North Yorkshire, England and this is the entity's debut cassette/digital release, which was the debut release from now defunct local noise/drone label English Herbalist Records.

As I write this, I'm coming up against what is essentially a writer's nightmare, as there is very little information about As Albion Sleeps around, other than it being a solo project. This may also be the only review on the Internet, but feel free to correct me.


1. Oberon
2. Drowning
3. Three Ravens

A word of caution, for the uninitiated this will be a challenge. Essentially, As Albion Sleeps play drone using guitar while being backed up by the slow beats of programmed drums. The sound is close to that of black metal, but without vocals. Oberon has a medieval sound lurking, as melody pierces the initial guitar. It's actually a very good listen. Some drone music can seem pretty dull, as it tends to be the same riffs, noise or sound repeated for a random amount of time but As Albion Sleeps perform an interesting brand. There are different layers and instruments used, including what sounds like either a cello or violin, but I'm not too sure. The melody intertwined within the music brings to mind old sea shanties.

Oberon is the shortest of the three tracks here, but is a great opener and very listenable. It flows straight into Drowning. This song starts off as more of an atypical drone track, with less melody and a lower tone. There are subtle layers of sound hidden within the song, but it's more of a challenging listen due to the lesser use of melody. Challenging doesn't mean bad though; it just requires more attention from the listener. If you're willing to invest the time, you'll be rewarded with a song that reveals more as it goes along and leaves a shivering, icy feeling around you. It's certainly got a very harrowing ending to it, with a more metallic edge created by the noise that pulsates in and out of the speakers.

The volume level ratchets up for the leviathan that is the closing track, Three Ravens. The brooding, haunting atmosphere that threatened to envelope you previously, finally breaks away this time. As Albion Sleeps presents more of an adventurous and torturous sound in a track, which span nearly thirty seven minutes. Melody is sparingly used and where Oberon was seemingly upbeat, this is vacuous and void like. It would be pointless describing all thirty-seven minutes of Three Ravens to you, because of it's nature, but without resorting to hollow comparisons, it's the song I was expecting to hear from the start of this release. It's got a sense of confrontation and horror about it. It's loud and almost suffocating in its delivery.

Spanning nearly an hour in length, The Prayer of Arthur Gauntlet is a test, but one not without reward for those willing to take it. Sometimes anonymous and mysterious projects solely exist to allow their musical output to do the talking and this does it in spades.

You can now stream the entire EP below via the new bandcamp page of As Albion Sleeps -

It's also available on the page as a name-your-price download.

Saturday 8 June 2013

Atragon - Volume 1

Before I press on with reviewing the latest releases from Witch Hunter Records, there's a couple of earlier releases that I want to attend to. The first of those is the mighty two-track CD from Edinburgh doomsters Atragon. It's been quite a while since I featured a band from Auld Reekie, which has always felt like a safe-haven for me. What makes it all the more special is that Atragon are playing a part in the Scottish invasion this weekend by Liverpool's Iron Witch and Corrupt Moral Altar. Damn I wish I was there!


1. The Sound In The Halls
2. Jesus Wept

The bass rumble that opens The Sound In The Halls tells you pretty much all you need to know. That is that you're in for a dark, dank time of it! When the riffs and the drums kick in, that feeling of suffocation gets all the more the greater. The tortured, low screams that can be heard through the mire are not a beacon for safety, but a sign telling you to run as far as you can and escape! Doom metal often conjures up such images; such is its slow and harrowing march. It tramples all in its path. I honestly don't know what it is about Edinburgh that makes it give birth to so many incredibly extreme metal bands, but it keeps doing it. Atragon's sound is pretty much exactly what doom should be. Slow, deep but with a subtle groove that can't help but throw you into a trance.

Atragon follow The Sound In The Halls with an equally sickening bout of depressive doom by the name of Jesus Wept. I bet this would have indeed made Jesus Weep! Unlike the opener, this song features stoner-inspired singing. The pace at the start is more upbeat, but you know it won't stay like that for too long. Is it wrong of me to say that the vocals actually remind me of Matt Bellamy from Muse? You can draw your own conclusions there.  About five minutes in, that upbeat groove is replaced by a slightly more menacing feeling. The tempo begins to slow and the bass becomes a little more prevalent. Things seem a little bit more improvised here, but instead of detracting from any momentum, it adds to it. The low, grooving bass mixed with a winding solo drags the song along, closer to it's eventual conclusion, all the time becoming slower and thicker. Around the ten-minute mark, everything seems to merge into one, like a slowly cooling lava flow. It drags everything in its path towards a final verse, which brings back that oppressive stoner-vibe.

There's nothing you can do but sit and ride it out, knowing that once the haze clears, you've just born witness to one hell of a CD. It may be a mere two tracks, but those two tracks should easily satisfy your thirst for doom. Knowing that we've got homegrown bands like this making their first steps in the doom genre is exciting and they should be embraced. Raise a flagon of whisky and a bong to Atragon!

Breathe the doom-laden air in for yourself by listening to Volume 1 here:-

Volume One is available as a pay-what-you want download from the above bandcamp page, but alternatively you can pick one of one hundred and fifty four panel gatefold CD's from Witch Hunter Records here -

Atragon -

Friday 7 June 2013

'Kin Hell Fest - 2013 Fund-Raising Compilation

For those of you who didn't make it out to 'Kin Hell Fest this year, you missed an epic weekend. Three days worth of varied, killer extreme metal and drunken fun in Leeds. This festival was unlike any other I'd been to before, in that the atmosphere was so chilled and everyone was there for the same reason, to have fun and  support some ace bands from both our shores and from further afield. Also unlike other festivals, 'Kin Hell Fest was funded and run by a few very committed people. For example, the venue had no electricity before the weekend, which meant the organisers having to wire the whole place up, so they could get the stage lights, sound-desk and back line working prior to the gig. This in  itself was a task, but also paying for toilet facilities and refreshments took their toll. As a result, the organisers are now in fund-raising mode, to help recoup some of the costs.

This compilation is one of the methods they're using. It features an absolutely mighty 82 bands, who have kindly donated tracks. The whole comp has a running time of 5.6 hours and all for £4 or more.

The metal scene is very good at pulling together, especially the DIY contingent, so if you missed out over the weekend and want to feel some of what the festival-goers felt, while contributing towards paying off the costs of the festival, download the compilation for £4 or more and start your weekend off with a satisfied glow.

By doing so will also allow this great local festival to keep going next year and beyond.

'Kin Hell Fest -

Thursday 6 June 2013

Scream for me Oslo! - Listen To Aylin Records

Sorry about the title, couldn't resist! This is my second label feature and for those of you who check out the Broken Limbs Recordings one, you'll sort of know what to expect. I basically pick four label releases at random and review them, which in turn helps to spread the word about the bands and the label.

So yeah, Listen To Aylin Records has been on my radar from a while, since I was added to a label group on Facebook. I've been to talking to head-honcho, Christer a lot about screamo and some you will have no doubt have read his first two guest reviews on this very site. The truth is that even though I haven't featured it a lot on this blog, I love my screamo/emo music and am always up for checking out new bands. It gives me an escape from the more extreme music that I review more regularly. LTA itself began in 2008, initially as a distro before turning into a full label shortly after. Christer has released several records collaboratively with other labels over the years, but I wanted to focus on the releases that he'd put out himself.

Her Breath On Glass - S/T 6"

What better place to start than with the first LTA release. Her Breath On Glass is a screamo duo from Boston, Massachusetts and features members of The Saddest Landscape. The band mainly existed while The Saddest Landscape was on hiatus, which was between 2005 and 2009.


1. Everything Wasn't At All
2. Calling All Dark Forces 

Being a 6" means that space for tracks is limited, so this release only features two. These two though are unlike anything I've heard. Everything Wasn't At All features vocals akin to spoken word at times, alongside the more traditional screamo vocals. The drums and guitars sit in the background, but are still flatteringly violent and beautiful.  Calling All Dark Forces feature disconcerting feedback at the start before morphing into rock n roll influenced screamo. It's chaotic and noisy and when Her Breath On Glass switch between fast and slower passages, they do so with ease and a knack that demonstrates their ability to build and maintain atmosphere. In two short songs, you get a brief taste of what Her Breath On Glass are all about. The Saddest Landscape may have become genre favourites in recent years, but HBOG are another reason to get acquainted with screamo. 

Here it for yourselves below, via LTA's bandcamp page:-

The record itself has long since sold out from Listen To Aylin, but there may be copies in distros and there are some on Discogs, selling for very reasonable amounts if you can't track one down elsewhere. 

Quiet Steps - Think Aloud LP

I seem to be going in chronological order with this feature, so the next logical step for me is Quiet Steps. I was surprised to see that these guys are from Brisbane, Australia and dig Idylls, who I featured here a while back. They've been together since 2005 and Think Aloud was released on vinyl by LTA in 2011.


1. Sales Rising
2. Enemy Control
3. Mirage
4. Dead Sea
5. Chateau
6. Assimilate
7. Generation to Generation
8. Exclusion
9. Measure Reaction
10. Surrounded
11. One Breath
12. Vision Lost

Quiet steps put forth twelve track of varying lengths, featuring melodic, indie influenced screamo. There's plenty of emotion and raw energy on Think Aloud. The riffs present the indie influence straight from the off during opener Sales Rising. The vocals are great as they're not too Americanised and they like mathy-style time signatures as well. After the lengthy opener, Quiet Steps change tack a little with the brief Enemy Control. One and a half minutes long and with a subtle garage rock influence. I'm not afraid to say that I'm totally lost in this record already. The vocals harmonies during Mirage sound epic. They have a great live sound to them, much like the rest of the album. That live sound doesn't hurt the clean guitar riffs either.

Quiet steps avoid the sometimes-chaotic arrangements that some screamo bands present, as they play at a more mid-paced speed, but the mathy parts I mentioned earlier sound none the worse for it. I like how Think Aloud seems to be really engaging too. It's a record that you can get really buried in, trying to pick out intricacies and subtle elements. The counterbalance between the guitar and screamed vocals works really effectively during Chateau. Just having the caustic emotion of the vocals nestling next too the pleasant guitar work makes this song one of the standout tracks for me. One thing that you'll notice when listening to Think Aloud, is that the vocals seem to get heavier as the album progresses, certainly up to Assimilate anyway. It's like a natural progression if you like.

The band choice to keep things flowing with short songs book-ended by longer songs at the start and finish, works really well too. It allows them to keep the listener's interest while building dramatic atmosphere, while tearing it down with their shorter pieces. In terms of that atmosphere, the one that's created by the gang-vocal style harmonies during Generation to Generation is almost haunting, yet beautiful. If you sit back and listen to Think Aloud, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised by the amount of musicality contained within it. Normally some bands of this ilk can sound kind of muddy or even atonal, but Quiet Steps don't and the production goes a long way to forging that engaging sound I was talking about earlier. Quiet Steps also remind me of a UK screamo band I saw recently, Crash of Rhinos. They have a very similar sound I think, especially as they have multiple vocalists like Quiet Steps, which I something I really like. The soaring melodies really standout when they are all together.

There's a brief element of surprise in the form of twenty-four second song Surrounded, which is literally over in the blink of an eye. One Breath follows and in contrast, is nearly the longest number on Think Aloud. The twists and turns in the song make it quite a journey. Closer Vision Lost is the culmination of what's been a pretty awesome record. It manages to sound different to the songs before, which may be down to the different chords/tuning in the guitars. Think Aloud is one of those albums that leaves you feeling somewhat euphoric at the end. It's a journey for sure, but one that's filled with raw emotion and even nostalgia. I love it and think I should dig up some of their newer releases now.

Listen to Think Aloud below:-

Quiet Steps -

Tristan Tzara - Omorina Nad Evropom Tape

Chances are that if you're a fan of screamo and particularly bands like Orchid, you'll be familiar with German band Tristan Tzara. For a band that ended in 2002, they still get a lot of attention in certain circles and still influence many of today's screamo bands. This tape was released by LTA in 2010, after the initial 12" version in 2008. A very rare CD version was released in 2001 while Tristan Tzara were still active, but the tape like the 12" acted as a posthumous release and was the first first of their two albums. LTA's tape version was limited to just hand stitched, hand numbered copies.


1. Anatomies
2. Seaside Suicide
3. Song 7
4. Untitled
5. No Poem
6. I've Seen It All
7. Schwule Uber Euro
8. Dance Macabre
9. Our Society (Is Fucked Up)

Tristan Tzara feature nine quick-fire songs on Omorina Nad Evropom. Their sound is on the more extreme end of the screamo spectrum. Opener Anatomies has a militaristic sound to it, with the guitar melodies that sit behind the screams sounding more like that of a marching band. They settle things down with Seaside Suicide that features spoken word and gentle guitar. It does give you the feeling though that it's about to explode and it does after about forty-five seconds, launching back into a similar passage like the opening track. There's a break of silence and then the maddening noise sets off again for one final sharp burst.

To be honest, Tristan Tzara's sound is unlike anything I've heard. They play with more of a grind influence, which overpowers their screamo sensibilities a lot of the time and that shows up in their shorter songs like Song 7. That being said, there are some great melodies sitting underneath the vocals. The untitled fourth track is a good example of where they mix mid-paced and crazed tempos together to create a more math atmosphere. The sole screaming at the end is quite chilling as well. No Poem is one minute of pent up rage and bile, all released in an explosion of raw emotion. I've Seen It All and Schwule Uber Euro follow in quick succession, not allowing the pace or momentum to slip. The extended instrumental passage in the middle of Schwule Uber Euro is really well played and allows you some respite from violent side of the band.

The closing duo of Dance Macabre and Our Society (Is Fucked Up) show Tristan Tzara's grander side. They're longer songs that focus less on their violent side and more on their thoughtful song writing and instrumentation. Dance Macabre is mainly instrumental and builds itself up to a thirty-second blast at the end. The hip-hop sample at the start of Our Society (Is Fucked Up) keeps playing on repeat for the entire length of the song. It's kind of harrowing really and hammers home the fact that Tristan Tzara were lashing out the society around them for being so messed up. It also harks back to Refused and The Shape of Punk To Come in a strange way.

Overall, Omorina Nad Evropom was and still is a harrowing, violent screamo record, which invokes emotion and despair in the listener. For a band that released two albums before disappearing into obscurity, this record certainly leaves it's mark.

You can hear Omorina Nad Evropom below:-

The tape itself is completely sold out from LTA's store so the only place you'll find it is on Discogs or from private sellers. You may though be able to find vinyl versions is some distros.

Because Tristan Tzara ceased in 2002 there is no Facebook page, but there is an Myspace page which is semi active here

Aske/Hap - Split Tape

So, I've come to the last review of this look at Listen To Aylin Records. This split tape was the last release to date that was solely put out by LTA. It features song from two bands, Norwegian screamo four-piece Aske and fellow Norwegian's Hap, who refer to themselves as "Powerhiphop". This was again limited to 50 copies and was released in mid-2011. Aske contributed two songs to the split while Hap added the other four songs.


1. Alt Jeg Kan (Aske)
2. Forsta Meg (Aske)
3. Hap (Hap)
4. Knips (Hap)
5. Pieierske (Hap)
6. Blanke Ark (Hap)

Like the Tristan Tzara tape above, Aske present a more violent take on screamo with their two contributions. Alt Jeg Kan’s mid-paced, with indie emo instrumentation and Norwegian language lyrics. I have to admit that I like the more introspective form of screamo and Aske to present a decent take on it, in between their more chaotic moments. Forsta Meg is very similar to Aske's opener, but its guitar is more prominent. It's a very meandering track this one, with a more stop-start approach and very cathartic vocals throughout.

Hap presents a more energetic image with their side. Their songs are all around or under a minute and a half, but in those songs they put forward a very musical sound. Their opener is a great example of this. The vocals in Knips are more abrasive but that goes hand in hand with the thirty-second playing time. They perfectly counterbalance Aske's more considered approach to this sub-genre. There's more of an obvious post-hardcore element to the like of Pieierske and Blanke Ark, but that only goes to add to their overall sound. It's more controlled and reminds me a lot of the French screamo I recently featured from bands like Aguirre and Who Needs Maps! The guitar during Blanke Ark is some of the most furious guitar on the whole tape and helps round things out brilliantly.

Overall, the two sides and bands complement each other on this tape. They both have slightly differing approaches but work well. It's a more sedate introduction to screamo for me, but one with plenty of merits. Both Aske and Hap are well worth investigating if you like your screamo with plenty of musicality.

Again you can hear the whole tape on LTA's bandcamp page:-

This tape is also sold out from LTA's store, so you may struggle to find copies if you want one.

Aske -
Hap -

So there you go, a look at a great screamo label and four records that they put out. There are of course loads more great records that they've released, along with other like-minded labels. You can hear them via their bandcamp page. There will be a special compilation CD coming out in the future as well.

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