Wednesday, 17 October 2018

Scolex/Mortuous - Split 7"

Labels: Carbonized Records
Formats: Vinyl/Digital
Release Date: 31 Oct 2018


1. Scolex - Black Pyramid Ritual
2. Mortuous - Desiccated

I'm moving back into more familiar territory now with a review of the soon-to-be-released split 7" featuring Californian death metal bands Scolex and Mortuous, which is being release by new US label Carbonized Records. Scolex has been plying their horror-filled death trade since 2010 with their only previous release being the self-released EP "Torn From Beyond" from 2013. Mortuous has been a band for a similar period of time, putting out two demos in 2010 and 2012 respectively, before unleashing their debut full-length "Through Wilderness" earlier this year via Carbonized Records and Tankcrimes. Both bands include personnel with years of experience within the US death metal scene.

This split contains two ripping and disgusting death metal tracks. Black Pyramid Ritual by Scolex is a filled with old-school mid-paced riffs, low dirty growls and a rumbling low-end that will have you running for cover. Scolex’s music is also technical, but not in an overbearing way. It’s more of the thrashing and headbanging variety, with lead work that’s more Autopsy than Cynic. 

Mortuous presents an even bleaker image via Desiccated with a sound that’s even more rooted into the deepest depths of the extreme old-school. The percussion is deeper in the mix, the vocals are delivered via deep gargled rasps, while the guitars themselves still provide melody and riffs aplenty. 

While these two tracks aren’t enough to just both bands on, this split shows that the ever moving US death metal production line is continuing to spit out bands with the chops and technical prowess too hard to ignore. Scolex and Mortuous are both excellent and keep the fires burning. 

Pre-orders for the both physical and digital copies can be placed via the below sites:-

Tuesday, 16 October 2018

The Ocean - Phanerozoic I: Palaeozoic

Labels: Pelagic Records/Metal Blade Records
Formats: Vinyl/CD/Digital
Release Date: 02 Nov 2018


1. The Cambrian Explosion
2. Cambrian II: Eternal Recurrence
3. Ordovicium: The Glaciation Of Gondwana
4. Silurian: Age Of Sea Scorpions
5. Devonian: Nascent
6. The Carboniferous Rainforest Collapse
7. Permian: The Great Dying

Early November will see the release of the new album from German/Swiss post-metal band The Ocean Collective (probably better known as solely The Ocean. This will be the first of two records focusing on the Phanerozoic period of the earth's geological evolution, with the second coming in 2020. "Phanerozoic 1: Palaeozoic" will be released on cd and vinyl (both in separate full-band and instrumental forms) as well as special collectible box sets. For a band that's always followed a similar trajectory music and presentation-wise, this new record promises to be something special.

Beginning with the dramatic instrumental intro The Cambrian Explosion, The Ocean creates intrigue and anticipation through the use of keys and ambience that leads straight into Cambrian II: Eternal Recurrence. The guitars loom large as the melody from the keys and synths form continuation. When the full band kicks in it’s an aural cacophony of harsh vocals, clean singing and stellar musical progression, which is what The Ocean is known for. The Ocean’s heaviness is plain to see on Ordovicium: The Glaciation Of Gondwana. It’s a magical song and while it’s shorter in length, there’s no passing up on the layers of warmth that come from the whole band. When The Ocean fires on all cylinders, they are a cut above.

You could make obvious comparisons at times to a certain US progressive metal band but that would be pointless and disrespectful to say the least. Silurian: Age Of Sea Scorpions sees The Ocean’s dynamic flipped with ocean vocals taking the lead to great effect. The piano definitely adds to their progressive nature as well. No one texture rules over the other despite what I said earlier on in this paragraph. Dense, engaging metal and classical elements work in harmony to make it one of the more conventional (in a listening sense) song’s on the album. Devonian: Nascent follows in the same vein and it makes me realise that I was a bit rude when calling Silurian… conventional. Both songs are soaring metal songs that seem happy to tread further from the genre’s confines and Devonian.. contains a grunge-like clean vocal tone that makes the hairs on your neck stand up, especially when backed up by the harsher growls. Being the longest song on the album, you might be fearing something pretentious but this couldn’t be further removed. 

The Ocean return to heavier realms on penultimate song The Carboniferous Rainforest Collapse, which is mostly instrumental, save for the subtle screams that can be heard deep within the music (at least that’s what i’m hearing so correct me if I’m wrong). Album closer Permian: The Great Dying is the progressive beast that every album of this ilk should end with. This whole record is astounding and it’s made me fall in love with proper progressive music again. The Ocean may be leaning further away from the post-metal that helped them to make their name, but it’s no bad thing when they can produce music of this quality. They are set to become the biggest progressive metal band on the planet.

You can pre-order the album's closer via The Ocean's bandcamp page, where you can also pre-order it digitally and stream two songs:-

Physical pre-orders are available below:-

Sunday, 14 October 2018

Autumnwind - Endless Fear

Labels: Symbol Of Domination Productions/More Hate Productions
Formats: CD/Digital
Release Date: 20 May 2018


1. The Panic Attack
2. The Hallucination
3. Lost And Alone
4. Forever Insomnia
5. Endless Fear

The weather conditions here are terrible today and I don't much feel like going out. Instead, I've decided to surround myself with music and try to be productive on here. For this first review I wanted to write about a project from a far-flung nation, that's going against the general populous in what is still a war-torn country. Autumnwind fit that bill perfectly, being an instrumental ambient/black metal band from Syria. This is Autumnwind's third album and it was released in May via Belarusian label Symbol Of Domination Productions and Russia co-conspirators More Hate Productions. 

It’s always interesting to hear music produced by individuals from countries like Syria, as often the hardship they face comes through in the music. On “Endless Fear” though, Autumnwind projects a feeling of hope and positivity though the use of ambient keys and uplifting black metal featuring subtle riffs and a drum machine. The Panic Attack opens the album in a calm way and is structured really well. The lack of vocals doesn’t affect it either. There’s a cosmic feel to The Hallucination and the melodies that comes through provide a glimpse into the Middle-Eastern roots of the band. It’s more heavily synth-led, which helps to add more atmosphere to it’s mid-paced tempo. Haunting is a word I’d use to describe this song and it sums up the emotions of those behind the band.

The lengthy compositions on “Endless Fear” are meant to be listened to with no distractions or stoppages and as such are oddly relaxing, with Lost And Alone being the longest piece on the album. The ambient instrumentation led by pan pipe effects make it quite hypnotic and the minimal use of dissonant guitars also helps. Forever Insomnia is filled with strings that add a slightly more jarring edge to Autumnwind’s sound, though that’s maybe just me being a bit unfair. The song itself is more urgent and of a slightly higher tempo, with more prominent guitar melodies. Ending with the beautifully calming title-track is a masterstroke as it’s quiet instrumentation washes over you with no threat of heaviness to break the mood. The ominous bell closes it out and leaves only silence. This album may not be extreme (musically) but it is when consider the band’s roots and the work that has been put in to release it. Excellent in it’s own way and worthy of further support.

You can stream "Endless Fear" below:

It's available to purchase digitally and on cd from Symbol Of Domination Productions above and you can can also purchase it from More Hate Productions here -

Symbol Of Domination Productions -

Friday, 12 October 2018

Fauna Timbre - Altering Echoes EP

Labels: Red Orchard Records
Formats: CD/Digital
Release Date: 31 Oct 2018


1. Heart Murmurs
2. Violent Waves
3. Turn The Sun
4. Umbra
5. Memory Leak

As another Friday evening rolls around it's time to start thinking about becoming more consistently productive (from a writing point of view anyway), which is why I'm committing to writing at least 3-4 times (and hopefully more) from now. I need to for my own sanity and for the love if it. Tonight I'm focusing on new Norwegian doom band Fauna Timbre. The band started in 2016 as a duo, but are due to release their debut EP at the end of this month, as a trio. 

Fauna Timbre’s take on doom rock is cleaner than most. The opening song Heart Murmurs is melodic and mournful, but it never becomes truly heavy. The vocals feature that ever so slight hint of autotune, while the instrumentation is sensitively delivered so it doesn’t take too much of limelight from them. The layered and progressive nature of Faun Timbre is really endearing as the slow march of Violent Waves takes over. They’ve been compared to the mighty Katatonia and I suppose that’s an adequate comparison given the clean nature of their sound. They are very good at what they do on here and they do add more crunching riffs to the song, but that level of name dropping only adds to the expectation. The abrupt end to Violent Waves is clearly inspired by the title itself. 

Turn The Sun is the most expansive song on “Altering Echoes” and it’s at this point that Fauna Timbre’s sound begins to truly click. They’re dreamy composition style really comes through and whisks you off to a completely different place with almost no effort. The melody is back with Umbra, which is a minimal number to begin with. It’s a flowing ballad but it features bass lines that could easily be mistaken for harsh vocals at times. EP closer Memory Leak is the psychedelic piece that Fauna Timbre’s been threatening to deliver throughout and while that may not be exactly the sound they’re going for here, it works thanks to some great guitar/bass effects. It’s also the longest song on “Altering Echoes” and at times it becomes ambient, avant-garde and subtly jazz-like. Less doom-like then and more alternative, but it works extremely well as a whole and shows that this trio aren’t afraid to experiment. There’s lots of promise within these five songs. 

You can stream Heart Murmurs below:-

Pre-order "Altering Echoes" digitally here -

Thursday, 11 October 2018

Brain Fragment - Fungus EP (Mikey Ortega)

Labels: Hellasaurus Records
Formats: CD/Digital/Tape (Coming Soon)
Release Date: 19 Sep 2018


1. Trust
2. Too Late
3. On Your Own
4. Enough

It shouldn’t be surprise that hardcore punk and jazz are a great match. Both music genres were really big on the youth during the times. They’re both fast and chaotic. Their beats make your body want to move. And of course both music genres were looked down on by the status quo. When bands like The Dillinger Escape Plan and Candiria brought jazz influence to hardcore, it took extreme/underground music to a whole new level. It made every band want to push the limit. For a while, many bands doing the Jazz/Hardcore sound, pretty much tried to be DEP jr. But one band from the SGV/IE area some how gave Jazz/Hardcore a breath of fresh air and that is Brain Fragment. Originally, the band was a two-piece that consisted of Dave on bass and Luis on the skins. Their first album, LSD Is Good For You, was a juggernaut of a debut. Luis’ jazz/hardcore/grindcore drumming is like nothing else and Dave’s use of effects on his bass gave Brain Fragment their identity. Now when it came to stepping it up, what did they do? They got beautiful and talented Ash as their new lead singer. For a while, this new line-up has been kicking arse live, in the local SoCal scene and  they have gone on a West Coast tour with Rock N’ Roll Suicide. Finally the dudes and dudette of Brain Fragment have made time to hit the studio and record new music with Ash busting those pipes, to bring us Fungus.

If you’ve been to Brain Fragment’s live shows, you pretty much know what to expect. Now we can bring it home to piss off the neighbours or freak out that bus full of nuns, while cruising around. The first track, Trust just comes in charging out of the speakers. Dave goes full-throttle on the bass, as Luis comes in like a beast with his powerful blast beats and then we finally hear Ash come in with some jazzy vocals, with a mix of Soul/old-school R&B. Think early Aretha Franklin fronting Melt-Banana, but take it to supernova. Things get funky on Too Late. This is a track that makes you want to shake, rattle, and roll. It really has a great hook that just grabs you. On Your Own is a personal favourite and I always loved it when they play it live. It’s a song that brings me back to my high school days listening to 90’s punk. To me, this is a song that goes to show that Brain Fragment can evolve and write a killer tune.  It’s also one of Ash’s best vocal performance. If anything, Ash could be the female Mike Patton. Her range is like nothing I’ve ever heard before and to end “Fungus” is Enough.  Hearing this track makes me feel like I’m in a David Lynch film (like Blue Velvet and Twin Peaks).  Think of a beautiful nightmare. Things may look terrifying, but you don’t want to wake up. Dave’s bass sounds like a total acid trip. For some reason, you would think Luis has 10 arms and I think we can hear Ash do some guttural vocals, which you gotta give her some mad love for.

“Fungus” is definitely a huge step up. It’s really great to hear Brain Fragment progress and still keep their identity. With Ash on vocals, it really gives Dave and Luis time to focus more on their instruments and they really fuck’n own it. To me, this is what experimental music should be about.  It’s taking that risk. Not just play around with different genres, but fuck around with different sounds. Be messy. Be smooth.  Be chaotic. Be disciplined. Be ugly. Be beautiful. Be a fuck’n artist. Each member brought something to the table, which makes Brain Fragment a well-oiled machine.  Words can’t describe how much I love this band and with the “Fungus” ep, it made my heart grow twice it’s size. This ep is why I love music and why I’m a music fan, especially the experimental type. Luis shows that he’s well rounded. His drumming skills are out of this World. He can go from Buddy Rich to Mick Harris in just seconds. Dave's bass is what makes Brain Fragment come alive. The way he brings all these different styles and makes it cohesive is just remarkable and of course Ashley, who was that missing piece of the puzzle to take Brain Fragment to that new level. When I heard her vocals playing along with Dave and Luis, it just sounded astonishingly fucked up. In some ways, it kind of felt like hearing No Doubt or Paramore for the first time. Not that Ash sounds like Gwen Stefani or Hayley Williams (even though I feel like she will soon be in their level), but that she’s a vocalist that sounds like no one else and is totally in a league of her own. For sure, the “Fungus” ep is something that the music scene needs to challenge itself. To not make current music bland. If Brain Fragment keeps up the momentum, I say they’re two albums away from making that classic, which everyone will hold up in high regard. If you want to restore your faith in new music, then please pick up the “Fungus” ep. It will totally open up your mind to a whole different World, that you didn’t think was possible. Be weird. Be proud of it. Embrace it.

I rate this “Five Hitlers Punched In The Face”

You can stream and download "Fungus" below:-

Brain Fragment - /

Thanks to Mikey for writing this review. It's great to have him and his infectious love for music on board again. Go and check out Brain Fragment!

Tuesday, 9 October 2018

Ravage Ritual - XVIII

Labels: Unquiet Records/Powertrip Records
Release Date: 08 Oct 2018


1. Introduction
2. I
3. II

In August I posted on social media asking for people's recommendations on what I should review. I don't normally do this but I thought it would be a great way to increase the interaction with people who take the time to read my blog. Now, because I'm a slow ares, I'm only getting round to writing these reviews up now and I'm starting with the newest EP from Finnish heavy hardcore band Ravage Ritual. "XVIII" was only released officially yesterday and has been made available digitally and on cd from Unquiet Record and Powertrip Records (with a 7" due soon), as well as via the band themselves. 

Ravage Ritual is a Finnish band very much inspired by H8000 hardcore and the Holy Terror-sound. The Introduction proves this with heavy guitar and drumming that creates a mid-paced mosh-a-long. I is a straight-up continuation of the Introduction, filled with great riffs and guitar effects. When the full backline and vocals kick in it’s pure metallic mayhem. Ravage Ritual goes hard and are as life affirming as an angry hardcore band can get, especially given their penchant for early the metalcore sound.

That early-metalcore sound is even more obvious on II thanks to the awesome thrash tempos and screaming guitar-work. The double-bass will rip you a new one while the screams are delivered with true power and belligerence. This is savage yet rhythmic and as it closes out with a wall of jarring feedback and noise, you’ll still be headbanging uncontrollably. Just when you thought heavy music was being overrun by progression and slow riffs, along comes Ravage Ritual to prove otherwise. Hardcore for the win. 

You can stream and purchase "XVIII" on cd and mp3 formats below:-

Saturday, 6 October 2018

Snag/Swallows Nest - Split Tape

Labels: Zegema Beach Records
Formats: Tape/Digital
Release Date: 23 Apr 2018


1. Snag - Violence
2. Swallows Nest - Dark Hamz
3. Swallows Nest - Apathy As An Infinite Manifestation

Yay, I've got some more exciting US/NZ Skramz for you! This is the split tape between Milwaukee (USA's) Snag and Dunedin (NZ's) Swallows Next. It was release earlier this year by the ever faithful and reliable Zegema Beach Records. Snag has so far released a self-titled EP and a split with Social Caterpillar, while the only other release to come from Swallows Nest (as far as I can tell) has been their split with Crowning (also review on the blog).

This split only features one song from Snag but Violence is a joy to listen too. It’s a (pardon me) violent screamo song filled with jangly, off-kilter instrumentation and a mix of harsh screams and what I think are spoken-work samples (though they could be delivered by the band themselves). It’s stark and emotive, especially during the mid-section and that atmosphere carries on throughout the rest of the song. 

Swallows Nest follow on with two shorter songs; Dark Hamz is brooding and slightly bleak, but when the dual-vocals and orchestral guitar-work takes over that atmosphere is somewhat forgotten. There’s real urgency here as you’d expect. Apathy As An Infinite Manifestation starts how Dark Hamz finished and it’s immediacy is obvious, while the band’s delivery is pummelling. 

Three brief songs that give great accounts of both bands. You could do far worse than check out both Snag and Swallows Nest, starting here.

You can stream and purchase the split (both on tape and digitally) here:-

Friday, 5 October 2018

Technical Damage - The Introspect

Labels: Self-Released
Formats: Digital
Release Date: 15 Sep 2018


1. I: Everything Is Forever
2. Reflections
3. Reshape
4. Crystal Angels
5. II: Awakenings
6. Eviscerate
7. The Introspect

The weeks are flying by faster than ever, which is fine with me as it means that I get to Friday night quicker and I get to curl up with my favourite beverage and some awesome music, which tonight is delivered by Canadian death metal band Technical Damage. The band formed towards the end of 2016 with the release of their debut EP " Damaged Nation" and they've only recently released their debut full-length "The Introspect". When a metal band sites influences such as Killswitch Engage, Misery Signals and Opeth, it's usually a good sign so lets see...

Modern metal albums wouldn’t be complete without the obligatory atmosphere-building intro song and it’s present here in I: Everything Is Forever. Reflections is the first sign of Technical Damage’s progressive death metal and it doesn’t initially contain the level of melody that their intro promised. What it does deliver though is low brutal vocals and instrumentation that flits between modern death and post-hardcore. It’s clearly slick but the volume of recording seems a little low on early listen. The guitar work and solo’s are great though! Their music can at times be considered Djent (oh how I hate that term) but as Reshape shows, they are so much more than that. Technical Damage fits a lot into their songs and musically they are incredibly tight. The mathy elements towards the end take things in another direction as well. 

Things get heavier on Crystal Angels, which is definitely a more straight-up death metal song, albeit with a few breakdown-like riffs here and there. There’s some passionately delivered clean vocals that sit well alongside the melodic guitar and make the heavier sections sound heavier still. They break up the album with a rousing instrumental piece called II: Awakenings, which is quite folk-sounding. It leads into penultimate song Eviscerate. The Spanish guitar is a welcome addition that seems to fit the album perfectly and gives Technical Damage a very different sound and feel. It gives way to yet another blast of off-kilter death metal that’s more progressive than technical. The quieter acoustic-led passages are more European than North American. 

With the title-track placed at the end of the album, Technical Damage has one more shot at atmospheric drama and the intro to the song manages to achieve that drama. They follow it with more rhythmically intelligent metal that’s surprisingly easy on the ear. The reggae in the mid-section does nothing to change that either. Overall, this album is very well played and Technical Damage are sound at what they do. This will definitely appeal to those with a modern metal disposition and that’s no bad thing.

You can stream and purchase "The Introspect" digitally below (and from all of the usual outlets):-

Thursday, 4 October 2018

Monstrath - Demon Sold (Video Premiere)

Tonight I'm sharing the latest video from Brazilian technical death metal band Monstrath. It's been a while since I featured a video on here and I had intended to share it via my Youtube channel (which is very slowly becoming a thing) but I've decided to feature it here instead. The video is for the song Demon Sold, which appears on the band's debut album "The World  Serves To Evil", which will be released by Downfall Records on 19th October.

Montstrath began life in 2015 and with the release of their debut album fast approaching, they're looking to broaden their reputation overseas. Check them out if you enjoy this video and their take on death metal.

News on the release of Monstrath's debut album can be found via the links below:-

Downfall Records - 

Friday, 28 September 2018

Coldawn - ...In The Dawn

Labels: Flowing Downward
Formats: CD/Digital
Release Date; 31 Jan 2018


1. Spectral Horizon
2. My Escape
3. The Essence
4. Only Moments
5. La Primavera No Llegara Esta Vez
6. ...In The Dawn
7. This: Over
8. My Destiny

Tonight's review features the first band whose music was released by Avantgarde Music sub-label Flowing Downward. The new imprint started releasing music in early 2018, with an ear for black metal with a difference. Coldawn (formerly Beyond The Dawn) began life in 2016 and crafted what would become "...In The Dawn", Coldawn feature guest musicians that previously formed part of Austere and Annorkoth respectively (as well as other bands), but that's not all...

I approach Coldawn’s music without any pre-conceived notions whatsoever and that pays off immediately, as Spectral Horizon greets with it’s acoustic guitar melodies that sound alive and welcoming. When My Escape takes over the speakers, it’s just as enjoyable with an atmospheric sound that move far beyond black metal. The instrumentation sits up top while the bleak vocals nestle beneath, giving the music and melody space to breath and envelope you. Further sensitive acoustic passages take you further into post-metal territories. The closest similarity I can find would be the music of Astronoid, but that’s not to say that Coldawn are mere followers. They are very much an entity filled with originality.

Another element of their sound in the keyboards and they come through during The Essence. It’s obvious that Coldawn find’s comfort at the ambient side of extreme metal, if you could even call it that here. It’s glorious, emotive and I have no idea why it’s taken me till now to discover it. The piano work that graces the The Essence is expertly played and leans more towards the baroque-era of classical music (if I’ve got my classical periods correct). Mid-way through, the full band breaks out of the shadows but the keys still remain ever-present. At times, it sounds like “…In The Dawn” could be a more commercial attempt at black metal but that would be an unfair assumption. If you think of the music created by Dark Tranquillity, Tiamat and Poisonblack in the past, then there’s a fair chance that Only Moments will appeal to you, as will the whole album. They are loose comparisons though, so apologies if you think I’m way off here. 

The band’s South American lineage shows itself on La Primavera No Llegara Esta Vez, with Spanish spoken-word samples and dreamy music. It’s incredible and creates a truly uplifting feeling when coupled with Coldawn’s heavier side. The breadth at which they vary their songs is obvious when the classical tones of the title-track begin. If the previous song sounded too modern for you then you’ll be at peace with this. More dramatic piano eases you into more foreboding surroundings with an ever increasing tempo and a reward at the end made up of their trademark take on black metal. It’s anthemic in all the right ways. 

There’s a sense of urgency to This: Over that’s not been present until now and clean female vocals that are siren-like against it’s backdrop. These dynamics all add up to the majestic noise that’s created ad expertly delivered. My Destiny seems to be the perfect song to end on as it allows one last euphoric glimpse into Coldawn’s world and it’s one that shines brightly. I cannot believe that I’ve gone so long without knowing about or listening to this album. If ever you want your perspective of heavy music changing, then this should be the album and indeed the band that does it. Coldawn is breathtaking. 

You can stream "...In The Dawn" below, where it's also available to buy on cd and digitally:-

Coldawn -
Flowing Downward -

Thursday, 27 September 2018

Necroslurg - Kuolonkierre

Labels: Ramekuukkeli-Levyt
Formats: Tape/Digital
Release Date: 01 Jun 2018


1. Vakaa Tila
2. Vieraat Aanet
3. Kuolonkierre
4. Musta
5, Tuho, Ei Tuomio
6. Ajojahti
7. Kauhun Pyorteissa
8. Ekranoplan
9. Metsanpeittoon
10. Hyvaksy Kohtalosi

I felt it was time to re-visit the wonderful tones of Finnish heavy music again and found this nestling in my review pile. It's been a little while since Tuukka (Ramekuukkeli-Levyt) sent me this tape, so apologies to go out to him for the delay in posting this write-up. Necroslurg is a "heavy punk metal" trio from Helsinki and "Kuolonkierre" is their second album.They've been plying their trade for about two years now and releases their first album "Haudantaka" just over twelve months before this one. They recently played Svart Festival in the Finnish capital alongside the might Foreseen.

Necroslurg’s music is delivered with true Scandinavian ferocity and the vocals are entirely in their mother-tongue. Vakaa Tila is an angry opener that flows between up-tempo punk and groove-laden rock.It’s all about the riffs on Kuolonkierre, as Vieraat Aanet proves. They are at home alongside the frenzied screams that’s for sure, while the drums keep a restrained yer accurate beat behind. The other cool thing about Necroslurg’s sound and approach is that they play fast and leave no room for pondering. Kuolonkierre is filled to the brim with punk attitude, though it also does a good line is stoner doom fury too. So far this trio is living up to Finland’s reputation for producing great experimental bands.

They’re band to their raucous best on Musta, which shoots from the hip with it’s noise rock blueprint and blink-and-you’ll-miss-it running time. Thankfully, they slow things down on the sludgy Tuho, Ei Tuomio, which proves again that they can switch the mood effortlessly. Channelling the cold darkness that envelopes the country during Winter, they produce probably the heaviest song on the album. The shoutiness continues unabated on Ajojahti, which feature plenty of awesome musicianship as well. The volume levels that this trio reach are pretty incredible. The latter half of the album retains the same level of variation as the first and Kauhun Pyorteissa is a stomping noise rock song with more crisp lead work.

Not sticking to one formula or blueprint gives them an edge and Ekranoplan is subtly stripped down and minimalist to begin with, though it’s still layered with the kind of riffs and percussive atmosphere that makes you think of Black Sabbath and the like. The loud pedal is pressed to the floor again during penultimate song Metsanpeittoon, as Necroslurg force you to pump your fist and bang you head in joyous unison. Album closer Hyvaksy Kohtalosi is gives you one last opportunity to raise glass to this Finnish powerhouse in the making. Necroslurg are great and this album is well worth checking out and getting on tape.

If you can stomach the ads n between songs, you can stream "Kuolonkierre" in full via Necroslurg's Soundcloud page below:-

Tapes can be purchased here -

Monday, 24 September 2018

Komusō - Komusō Tape

Labels: Zegema Beach Records/Damn Fine Tapes
Formats: Tape/Digital
Release Date: 23 Apr 2018 (Self-released)/17 Jun 2018 (Tape Release)


1. 暗宿
2. 輪姦
3. 一斉蜂起
4. 約束

New Japanese screamo and before you ask, no I can't speak Japanese and I don't trust Google Translate, so you're going to have to figure the song-titles out for yourselves. This is the debut EP from Tokyo's Komusō and after self-releasing it themselves digitally earlier in the year, the lovely people at Zegema Beach Records and Damn Fine Tapes released it on tape. You can't get anymore DIY than this!

Even though I don’t feature as much Japanese music on the blog as I probably should, it’s still fascinating to me how a nation such as Japan can write and produce such interesting variants of the genres that grace this small part of the Interweb. 暗宿 reminds me of when I first heard both Blue Friend and Yumi. The spoken-word vocals that morph into powerful screams, backed up by the melodic guitars and thoughtful bass/percussion sums up the Asian style I think. It’s so uplifting. 輪姦 is dramatic and frantic all at the same time. It’s more akin to emo-violence with it’s faster and often off-kilter tempo. It’s short in length but there’s so much to take in all at the same time.

The drumming on 一斉蜂起 is magnificent and thanks to the production/mastering of the EP, it’s clear too. There’s a really nice flow to the music and indeed the release as a whole, with sensitive quieter sections that lead into and follow the more violent passages. Komusō manages to avoid the truly chaotic and instead peppers their music with restraint. EP closer 約束 is the complete opposite to that though with it’s urgency and emotive screams. Four songs are all you get and to be honest they’re all you’re gonna need to become hooked on Komusō. So good!

You can stream the entire EP and grab it as a name-your-price-download below:-

Tape copies can be purchased from the labels below:-

Zegema Beach Records (North America) -
Damn Fine Tapes (Europe) -

You can also pick copies up from the band if you happen to be in Japan.

Sunday, 23 September 2018

Irreversible Mechanism - Immersion

Labels: Blood Music
Formats: Vinyl/CD/Digital
Release Date: 14 Sep 2018


1. Existence I: Contemplation
2. Existence II: Collision
3. Abolution
4. Simulacra
5. Footprints In The Sand
6. Beyond
7. Limbo
8. Immersion
9. Awakening

Yesterday was a wasted day for me, as I partied a little too hard on Friday night. I feel fresher today though and ready to give this new album a spin from Belorussian progressive metal band Irreversible Mechanism. It's still fresh, as it was only released just over a week ago by Blood Music. It's the band's second release following their 2015 debut "Infinite Fields". You can buy "Immersion" now on cd, double LP and digitally.

Progressive/Technical death metal always promises a lot, but I often feel a bit underwhelmed after listening to it. I’ve never quite understood why that is, but it could be down to my musical tastes altering as I get older. I’m hoping Irreversible Mechanism will be different but as opening track Existence I: Contemplation starts with ambient synths that make up half of the song, I’m still not convinced. When the second half of the song sees the band open up more, there's a glimpse of what’s to come with a brief hit of their extremity and some very good musicianship that leads to a classy solo. 

Existence II: Collision is more like it. The band launches straight into it with on unnecessary build-up and immediately shows off their musically ability. The good thing about it is that even with the frenetic drumming and guitar-work, the pace seems to be at the right end of the spectrum enjoyment wise. The mix of harsh roars and clean singing also works really well. As with many bands that perform with progression in mind, the songs on “Immersion” are lengthy. Abolution stretches to nearly six-and-a-half-minutes and as the album title suggests, it requires your full attention. I think what sets Irreversible Mechanism apart as they progress is their ability to play with sensitivity as well as aggression, and being able to inject variation into their music. Pleasantly surprised at the moment.

They revert back to a more electronic/ambient sound on Simulacra. The organ gives it a sinister edge and the otherworldly electronic effects are well placed. The noise level builds in layers as more effects and vocals come into play, moving the song from being what could have been a lengthy interlude and turning into something more. There’s a real sense of purpose about Footprints In The Sand. Again it’s main verse is preceded by a lengthy instrumental build-up but when it gets going properly, it again highlights the band’s agility and brutality. It’s the standout track on the album for em due to it’s different movements and melody.

The second half of the album it stronger and more focused with Beyond being easily the heaviest piece so far. It’s tempo also raises up a few notches for good measure. Limbo follows and that title is quite apt, because it’s calming music and short playing time sort of leaves you in limbo following the intensity of Beyond. It does contain another solid piece of guitar virtuosity though. Limbo flows into the title-track perfectly and what follows is another barrage of kick-drumming and mind-bending riffs. There’s a lot to like on this record and despite my earlier uncertainty, this album is certainly growing on me. Closing track Awakening ends the album on the right note. Irreversible Mechanism have written an album that’s full of ideas, creativity and stellar musicianship. A lot of album of this ilk tend to sound too clinical in the production/mastering and while “Immersion” sounds clean and clear, it’s certainly not over-produced and It allows the band to give a great account of themselves.

You can stream "Immersion" via Blood Music's bandcamp page below:-

"Immersion" is available to buy digitally and on cd (a limited quantity is still available) from the bandcamp page above and vinyl copies can be purchased here -