Sunday 27 August 2023

Coarse - I

Labels: Secret Nature/Zegema Beach Records

Formats: Vinyl/Digital

Release Date: 28 Mar 2018


1. Shed

2. Hoax

3. Only Death

4. Separation Is Survival

5. In Peril

6. No Heart

I've been neglecting newer 2023 releases recently. I'll have some write-ups coming up next after this one. Fast and chaotic hardcore from NY, USA duo Coarse. This EP was released on 2018 and was Coarse's debut. It was released digitally by the band before Zegema Beach Records did a 7" pressing (alongside Secret Nature according to Bandcamp, though I can't find any information about them). 300 copies were pressed, including 20 with a special alternate cover for the band's Japanese tour. 

Coarse’s sound on opener ‘Shed’ is not unlike Every Time I Die crossed with the more experimental approach of Knut. Instumentation that’s made up of chaotic percussion and mathy guitar alongside dual-vocals that are sassy and deep respectively. As a duo, Coarse’s music is very full sounding. The recording is loud and ‘Hoax’ is a battering ram of a song from start to end. Even featuring some juddery emo-violence. 

With this being an EP (and 7” release), the songs are shorter in length and more to the point. ‘Only Death’ gathers together both mathcore and metallic hardcore in one succinct package. The thought-provokingly titled ‘Separation In Survival’ is the noisiest piece of music here and subtly brings to mind the more industrial/harsh noise elements of Full Of Hell.

Penultimate song ‘In Peril’ hits top gear right away and doesn’t let up at all. Coarse are (or were) one hell of a unit sonically. Blistering low-end blasts added to the duo’s hardcore intensity work a treat. It reminds me of Scotlands Godhole (look them up!). Closing the EP out with ‘No Heart’, things start in avant-garde fashion before quickly morphing into utterly chaotic grindcore. Melody penetrates both the low-end barrage and the frenetic vocals, before everything stops dead. 

Six songs that go by in less than ten minutes. No meandering, no hanging around and no fuss. Coarse did release a four-track EP in 2019 but I don’t think it saw a physical release so this is one for the archives, if you’re lucky enough to own a copy. Fantastic stuff.

I is available to stream and purchase digitally via Coarse's bandcamp below:-

The EP is currently on sale at a discounted price via Zegema Beach Records below:-



Zegema Beach Records -

Tuesday 22 August 2023

Howye - No Suffocating

Labels: Polar Summer

Formats: Tape/Digital

Release Date: 09 Dec 2015


1. Comes And Goes

2. Kamchatka

3. Hide And Fight

4. Unnecessary Sediments

5. Bleeding

6. Blow Sky High

7. No Suffocating

8. Receiving Line (Title Fight Cover)

Not done one of these Polar Summer posts for a little bit. Also, please can you remind me not to start anymore of these label roster review series thingies. I've got enough on with those I'm already committed too, alongside my sporadic schedule. For those who missed my first two reviews in this lil series, I went a bit crazy about Russian DIY label Polar Summer earlier this year. I subsequently started listening to their back catalogue and even ordered quite a few of their physical releases from a European distro (Dingleberry Records). I have 14 Polar Summer releases in my collection currently, which barely scratches the surface but I'm still stoked about them!

Attempting (and failing) to flex aside, I'm trying to write this review series in release number order and this one is ps#3. It features eight tracks by Tomsk, Siberia's Howye, which I think is the band's only release to date. I can't find any others anyway (please reach out of there are more). Howye plays (played) emo/shoegaze and even covered US punk band Title Fight.

Life’s rich tapestry set to music would probably just sound like white noise used as part of sedition or torture, such is the bleak reality that we currently exist in. Looking back seems apt then as this is exactly what I’m doing. No Suffocating was originally released digitally by Howye in December 2015 before Polar Summer committed it to tape the following year. Having not known what to expect from the first two of PS’s back catalogue, this release is no different. Slow, melodic and clean tones greet you on opener ‘Comes And Goes’. It’s song-title also describes the meandering waves of instrumentation and vocals that make it. Introspective but also very enjoyable, with a smattering of dower post-punk thrown in for good measure.

‘Kamchatka’ begins like an upbeat punk-rock song upon hearing it’s first bars, but it soon retreats, leaving more instrument-heavy emo/shoegaze in it’s wake. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing at all. There’s plenty to dive into here and despite the deeper position of the vocals in the mix, when the guitars let loose they light things up. The more time you spend with the album, the more it’s layers and melodies wash over you. ‘Hide And Fight’ glides along in an early morning haze of bright treble and subtle dissonance, only clearing to bring you back to reality for a second.

The songs on No Suffocating don’t last all that long, leaving their mark succinctly. ‘Unnecessary Sentiments’ is the perfect example of that. It’s hard to accurately describe why but it’s easier-listening sensibilities flourish beyond words. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover. As before, the album’s latter half is equally as pensive in places. ‘Bleeding’ eschews any images of gore and instead offers a life-affirming glimpse into a group making music that they believe in, that’s authentic and emotive.

‘Blow Sky High’ is a little more on the art/avant-garde end of the spectrum and I love it! Maybe it’s just how it hits me but I could think of worse songs to draw listeners back in than this one. The album’s penultimate song is the title-tack ‘No Suffocating’ and the double-layered harmonies coupled with the more up-front percussion lays down a real marker for what Howye could have been. To think that a band this good could exist in a corner of the world so cold and bleak is mind-blowing to me. 

Closing it all with their take on Title Fight’s ‘Receiving Line’ gives a subtle clue as to the band’s collective age when writing/recording for this album commenced, but it also shows that they can make a song their own in a beautiful way. Nothing else needs to be said really. What are the chances of scoring this on tape in the wild?.

You can stream and purchase No Suffocating as a name-your-price download from Howye's bandcamp page below:-

Tape copies are long sold out.

Howye -

Polar Summer -

Sunday 20 August 2023

Orbit Cinta Benjamin + Flirt - Split Premiere (full stream)

Tomorrow marks the release of the brand new split between Malaysia's Orbit Cinta Benjamin and Germany's Flirt. Tomb Tree will have 50 tapes across 3 different variants, while an LP pressing is being handled by Major Label, SM Musik, Bad Health Records, ZilpZalp Records and Salto Mortale Music.

Thanks to Tomb Tree, you can stream the entire split below:-

Orbit Cinta Benjamin includes former members of Utarid and Ellisebelle Tears. The quintet have been active for quite sometime too, as they released their first demo in 2006, which was followed by a self-titled EP, a split CD with fellow Malaysian post-punk/emo band Killer Calculateaur and a 6-way split LP in 2008 with Arse Moreira, Eucalypt, Amalthea, Dodewaard and Hiro (information was taken from Discogs, so I can't confirm it's correctness).

Flirt released their first demo in 2019 and include members from Tiger Magic. As far as I can tell, this split will be their second release to date (please correct me if I'm wrong).

Both bands contribute four songs to this split and the tracklisting is below:-

Orbit Cinta Benjamin

1. Essence

2. Four Corners

3. Harbinger

4. Chalice


1. Amazon Crime

2. Morsch

3. Trist

4. Einfach So

Orbit Cinta Benjamin -

Flirt -

Keep an eye on Tomb Tree's online store for the tape drop tomorrow -

Also, if you want vinyl copies, head to the labels involved in that pressing below:-

Major Label -

SM Musik -

Bad Health Records -

ZilpZalp Records -

Salto Mortale Music -

Bad Health Records -

Salto Mortale Music -

Tomb Tree -

Friday 18 August 2023

White Nights - Into The Lap Of The Ancient Mother

Labels: Iron Bonehead Productions

Formats: Vinyl/CD/Tape/Digital

Release Date: 24 Apr 2020


1. Litha

2. Drift From Irminsul

3. Bölthorn

4. -

Nobody really knows much about mysterious black metal/doom/death rock band White Nights, apart from that they (or it) are from the US, maybe. Steeped in psychedelia, Into The Lap Of The Ancient Mother was the first recorded material to come from White Nights in 2020. The fact that it was released by Germany's ever consistent Iron Bonehead Productions shows that it was and still is worth a lot of attention.

This evening calls for something a little on the weirder side. White Nights follow their own path on opener ‘Litha’, where austere German sounding spoken-word vocals join instrumentation that’s part black metal and part martial industrial, to my ears anyway. I was expecting more psych but one can’t be too choosy.

Given Iron Bonehead’s connection to the likes of Pa Vesh En, Aparthiva Raktadhara and Rope Sect, this release shouldn’t come as a surprise. ‘Drift From Irminsul’ isn’t necessarily a reflection of the aforementioned bands but it does have some similarities, while also having a much greater psych/rock influence.

‘Bölthorn’ is the EP’s longest song and it begins in a subtly anthemic way, containing more melody and brightness than expected given the coldness of White Nights as a whole. It’s an otherworldly mix of euphoria and dread all at the same time.

EP closer ‘-‘ is a looping-sample filled outro that kind of cuts through the mesmeric momentum gained throughout. If you were expecting a release with more noise you’ll be disappointed but if you hit play because you’re adventurous and appreciative of the art that’s put into extreme music, then this is for you.

You can stream and purchase the EP digitally below:-

CD and vinyl copies are still available from Iron Bonehead Productions below:-

Wednesday 16 August 2023

Blue Youth - Dead Forever

Labels: Grind Central Records/Santapogue Media/Suspended Soul Tapes And Records/Zegema Beach Records

Formats: Vinyl/Tape/Digital

Release Date: 08 Jun 2018


1. Black Lung

2. Delusional//Unapologetic

3. Water Well

4. So Seizure

5. (The Worst Of It Is) You

6. Pause For Death

7. Succubus

8. Dead Forever

Adulting constantly gets in the way of good things! One such thing is time I'd set aside to relax with some great, heavy noise from Canada's Blue Youth. Bloody household appliances! Calm is restored though and there's still plenty of time for me to dive into the band's 2018 album Dead Forever as part of my ongoing ZBR roster review series. 

Blue Youth aren't active currently and Dead Forever makes up their second only physical release, having been pressed on vinyl by all of the above mentioned labels as well as being pressed on tape by Grind Central Records. 

The time for noisy punk/rock has come and hearing the opening bars of ‘Black Lung’ is the midweek wake-up call I needed. Stylistically, it’s difficult to place Blue Youth with their mix of clean vocals, euphoric screams and up-tempo instrumentation. I guess at a push I’d liken it to Australia’s Jet crossed with Sweden’s The Hives and countrymen Cancer Bats. 

One thing I love doing is reading Bandcamp’s recommended bands at the bottom of the page when listening. Blue Youth’s page recommends Whores, Chat Pile, Twin Drugs amongst others, which is pretty good company especially when you consider how good the bass-heavy ‘Delusional//Unapologetic’ is. There’s a bit of sasscore later on as well, which turns into something heavier towards the song’s close.

‘Water Well’ is an atmospheric short-player that curtails some of the album’s early momentum a little bit. I think these songs do play their part on records but can sometimes be a bit out of place. Here it make sense as it leads brilliantly into ‘So Secure’ and with it, another (maybe poorly placed) comparison. That comparison is Turnstile, purely based on the key of the clean vocals that adorn it. I’m probably way off the mark again but hey ho, it’s great all the same.

The stirring piano that opens up ‘(The Worst Of It Is) You’ belies what is a gloriously (and seemingly) mid-paced take on garage-punk/rock. It’s anthemic all around. How Blue Youth isn’t bigger I’ll never know! You might think that ‘Pause For Death’ is an ominous song title, and I guess it does lend itself to a song that’s equally as dark, but it also draws you in further than you were expecting. 

The devilish ‘Succubus’ is a song of many parts, from raging screamo to off-kilter progression and driving rock. The fact that it ends on a dime with no notice only adds to it’s allure and before you know it you’re being greeted by the album’s title-track ‘Dead Forever’, which rounds things out with Blue Youth diving back into their noisy/rocking best.

Dead Forever is over far too quickly. It completely puts to shame those albums that are twice as long. Blue Youth may be gone (I don’t know) and if so, they’re not forgotten. Their sound is personified in these eight songs and more people should hear them. Enough said.

You can stream and grab Dead Forever as a name-your-price download or pick up a first-run tape from Blue Youth below:-

If you want a vinyl copy, the only place to pick it up from is Zegema Beach Records. There's a single copy left on their Bandcamp page:-

Copies are also available from the  ZBR CAN/INTL store here - and the US store (both vinyl and tape) here -

Blue Youth -

Grind Central Records -

Santapogue Media -

Suspended Soul Tapes And Records -

Zegema Beach Records -

Sunday 13 August 2023

Gnasch - Low Slow Woe

Labels: Self-Released

Formats: Digital

Release Date: 17th May 2023


1. Low

2. Slow

3. Woe

After an impromptu week off it's time to wind myself back up to a return to the day job and more importantly, the blog. I have tried to get on top of my inbox but as this evening's review demonstrates... I've failed. I must wholeheartedly apologise to Bristolian sludge/doom band Gnasch for that, as Russ (vocalist) took the time to write to me back in the latter half of last year. The band's debut demo Spite At The End Of The Tunnel was released back in August 22; but I've chosen to review their more recent EP Low Slow Woe, which was released in May of this year.

Gnasch formed in 2021 and features drummer Samuel Smith (Woodland Creatures), guitarist Will Turner Duffin (Row of Ashes, ex-Sonance) and vocalist Russel Barron (ex-Body Harvest, Warrior Pope and Vyral). Additionally, this EP features guest vocals from Jörgen Sandström (The Project Hate MCMXCIX, ex-Entombed, Grave and more) on songs 2 and 3 and additional guitar work from Nicklas Rudolfsson (Necrocurse, Runemagick, ex-Sacramentum and more) on all songs.

Gnasch brings out the hatred-of-mankind feeling that’s been festering within me since yesterday (for reasons I won’t go into). EP opener ‘Low’ is sufficiently heavy, reminding me of old Sea Bastard and On Pain Of Death while also being melodic and short enough not to allow things to linger. To my surprise, Gnasch played alongside LockerSludge back in April, a band I fondly featured here many moons ago. It’s great to see that they’re still going.

Anyway with that bit of nostalgia aside, ‘Slow’ is up next and it’s a bit of a beast in both sound and song-length. It’s no big surprise that there’s a nod to slam given Russ’s previous endeavours in death metal band Body Harvest (Comatose Music alumni). That nod is delivered drenched in sludge though, so don’t be fooled. Proper detuned riffing, ringing-feedback, trance-inducing drums and dread-filled vocals all combine to great effect. In the paragraph above I mentioned two bands that were affiliated to the early days of Manchester’s Dry Cough Records. That wasn’t on purpose but I reckon Gnasch would be right up Andy’s street. 

EP closer ‘Woe” is more uptempo, while really benefiting from the added Swe-death vocal and guitar work delivered by both Jörgen Sandström, and Nicklas Rudolfsson respectively (more so than before).The atmosphere that’s created leans towards death metal again, unsurprisingly, yet Gnasch lose none of their authentic sound either.

It’s easier than ever for bands and musicians to collaborate across great distances, and to be honest metal now is better because of it. I’m beginning to feel a bit guilty for not starting with Gnasch’s first demo but  their latest release is still a great place to begin. There’s a new EP on the way apparently, so now’s the time to get acquainted. Top stuff from another really promising addition to the UK underground!.

You can stream and purchase Low Slow Woe as a name-your-price download from Gnasch below:-

Gnasch -

Thursday 3 August 2023

Trench Foot - Moral Obscenity

Labels: Brutal Cave Productions/Dry Cough Records/Frozen Screams Imprint/Stump Grinder Records

Formats: CD/Tape/Digital

Release Date: 10 Jun 2022


1. Septic Experiments

2. Switchblade Slaughter

3. Incinerated Alive

Suddenly realised that there hasn't been any Dry Cough releases on here since the Atvm review in June.  Time's going by too quick right now. Apologies Andy! Back at it then with the latest EP to date from Liverpudlian death metal band Trench Foot. Moral Obscenity was released on tape via Dry Cough in June 2022, while Frozen Screams Imprint and Stump Grinder Records covered the US tape pressing. Portuguese label Brutal Cave Productions handled the CD release too. At the time of this EP Trench Foot was a solo project but I think it's a full band now.

One day to go until I get a much needed week away from the day job. I’m looking forward to sleeping, jamming more music and dare I say it, catching up on the old inbox. Before I get ahead of myself though, it’s time to focus my attention on Trench Foot and Moral Obscenity. I have this on tape and as with all previous Dry Cough releases, it’s provided me with a great listening experience to date, even if it’s taken me somewhat longer to actually write about it.

Opener ‘Septic Experiments’ is as old-school as modern death metal gets. It has amazingly good production that doesn’t detract from the gloomy, dank atmosphere delivered by both the instrumentation and vocals of sole member (on this release) Joe Bradley. If you add to that the harrowing yet scene-setting sample that kicks of this song, you’ll know what you’re getting yourself into.

‘Switchblade Slaughter’ ups the ante in terms of tempo and before you know it you’re halfway through the song (I say that after getting distracted by family dog videos on my phone!). I must note that I did pause the music while watching the videos because I didn’t want to miss any of the riffs. They’re effortless and sound like they come from a band much more advanced in years than Trench Foot.

EP closer ‘Incinerated Alive’ is a perfectly named song, complete with unnerving intro and frenetic kick-drumming. Said drumming propels you through the song’s first couple of minutes before the vocals kick in. Lengthy instrumental build-ups are what make death metal better for me. I’m drawn more to that than the brutal/slam death approach of instant bludgeoning. The song’s latter half is no different for me. The groove, the solos and the dirty bellows make it what it is.

I wasn’t sure if three songs were going to be enough here but this EP is more than long enough to get you salivating for more from Trench Foot. The rich tapestry of death metal continues to grow and the UK is very much leading the way IMO.

You can stream and purchase Moral Obscenity on all formats from Trench Foot below (but be quick if you want physical copies):-

Trench Foot -

Tape copies are long sold out from Dry Cough, but physical copies are still available from the labels below:-

Brutal Cave Productions -

Frozen Screams Imprint -

Stump Grinder Records -

Brutal Cave Productions -

Dry Cough Records -

Frozen Screams Imprint - @frozen_screams_imprint Instagram

Tuesday 1 August 2023

Euth - Euth

Labels: Adorno Records/Convulse Records/Middle-Man Records/React With Protest/Zegema Beach Records

Formats: Vinyl/Tape/Digital

Release Date: 29 Apr 2018


1. Twin Tombs

2. Land Of The Breathing

3. San Pedro

4. Caustic Skin

5. Peace In The Narrow

6. Bleached White Hell

7. Disposed

8. Anomic Death

I'm still some way off my aim of posting here once a day but then again expectations are a pain. I'm back on the ZBR train once more, where I journey through the label's (now extensive) roster. This evening I'm talking about Wyoming, US screamo/mathcore band Euth. Euth released their first demo in 2015, before a split with Closet Witch a year later and this self-titled album in 2018. They went on an indefinite hiatus in early 2020 with no promise of a return. Their final shows were spent alongside Portrayal Of Guilt and Street Sects amongst others (not a bad way to call time on things).

I love it when an album starts with a huge chunk of feedback and Euth’s opener ‘Twin Tombs’ fills that craving perfectly. The off-kilter, dissonant hardcore mixed with screamo and grind provides a glorious hit of chaotic violence, while gathering together excellent instrumentation. ‘Land Of The Breathing’ gives off some nice metallic hardcore vibes (even though it’s heavy on the panic chords). I’ve been listening to a lot of early metallic hardcore/metalcore recently and I think Euth’s sound Isn’t too far apart from bands like Disembodied and Turmoil, at it’s slower end. 

The combination of both fast grind and sludgier/meatier riffs on ‘San Pedro’ manage to hide the fact that it doesn’t last more than two minutes. It’s good value for that playing time though, especially during it’s second half. I love the two approaches. If you’re after something less immediate then ‘Caustic Skin’ breaks things up a bit. It’s not any less immediate in approach but just longer, giving more bang for the buck.

The second half of Euth continues in the same vein with the slow and brooding ‘Peace In The Narrow’. Grind isn’t far away on this one but it’s tempered with another layer of unnerving atmosphere and tense instrumentation. It shows exactly why Euth were chosen to share the stage with Portrayal Of Guilt! From here on out, you’re left kneeling at the alter of blink-and-you’ll-miss-it grinding madness, beginning with ‘Bleached White Hell’. If ever there was an apt song-title then this would be it.

Following up instantly and cloaked in feedback, ‘Disposed’ is filled with hardcore tempos and shrieking screamo vocals that come from a place more blackened. Ending it all with ‘Anomic Death’, Euth proceed to destroy though noise with a masterclass in distress-inducing hardcore. The dissonance is what makes it what it is. Completely and utterly immersive from start to finish.

I’ve had conversations with colleagues recently about music and why I like heavy music the most. On all occasions I’ve said it’s because I like music that makes me feel something, that’s not mainstream and helps to balance out the negativity of the daily grind. Euth does all of those things and even if this is the last recoding they ever do, it will be enough. 

You can still stream and purchase Euth digitally from the band below:-

Euth -

Physical copies are still available from the labels below:-

Adorno Records -

React With Protest -

Convulse Records -

Middle-Man Records -

React With Protest -

Zegema Beach Records -