Friday, November 27, 2009
Beyond Mind is a two-man depressive black metal band from New Zealand. This is their debut five track EP, Wrath of the Dead Tounge.
The name itself, Beyond Mind, and the EP name, Wrath of the Dead Tounge, are interesting and intriguing by themselves, so upon recieving this EP, I was betting for some strange enigmatic black metal. This is what I got too, and I am definitly pleased with the results. Two words one could use to descirbe this release are droning, and spacey. They tend to go off into three minute long drones, maybe one of discordant, distorted, three note riffs. Maybe one of somewhat melodic, clean guitar.
The vocals are another thing I'd like to mention. They're very packed with emotion, giving a vibe off of pure depravity and insanity, which I like. They're not sad, or very hateful, just insane. It's pretty original and I like it. It's fitting to hear him slurring twisted words over an entrancing drone.
Depressive black metal is an interesting thing, and I think Beyond Mind takes a very original approach to this, if you consider them depressive. Normally when you think of depressive black metal, you think sad songs, tortured vocals, minor keys, ect. Beyond Mind is not like this. They have slow, low guitar riffs, most of which do not seem to follow a minor key, and again, this can easily be described as very expressive of insanity. This is more akin to Xasthur or Leviathan than it is Nocturnal Depression or Drowning the Light. No melodic guitar lines here. Probably my only major gripe with this is, it's monotony and lack of occasional melody.
Overall a good release, I reccomend you to check Beyond Mind.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Haemotodipsomania is a slamming brutal death/pornogrind band from Jacksonville, Florida. This is their four track promo demo from this year.
These guys play brutal as shit, midpaced, slamming brutal death metal. They do not use a guitar, rather they use a distorted bass. Now, you'd expect this to sound bad or incoherent, but the bass tone is actually very natural, gritty, dirty and perfect for this music. You can hear everything as well, every riff is easily heard and enjoyed. The riffs are all heavy and groove-laden, brutal, albeit simple, and quite easy to headbang to. This is by all means party music, very fun, and very brutal.
The vocals go along with the riffs nicely. The vocalist is using a pitchshifter for sure, but I also hear some other kind of processor, which sounds great. They go perfectly with the music, in time and in rhythm. Drums are good, not much to say about them, they do their job, and sound good, not much variety in the beats, but this is alright.
To conclude the review, this is a solid slab of groovy death/grind, fun to sit down and relax to. Reccomended for fans of Torsofuck, Gorerotted and Devourment.
Baby Basher is a two man brutal death/pornogrind band from Jacksonville, Florida. This is their first full length, Bound For Torture, Beaten Into Submission.
The riffs for this album are mostly fast and grinding, at an up-tempo pace, comparable to Insect Warfare. Frantically strummed power chords and tremelo picked riffs, coupled with open-stringed breakdowns are what most of the songs are made of, the guitar tone is rough and gritty, yet audiable, you can hear every riff. This is not your average death/grind though. I can definitly hear a shitload of old school death metal influences in half of the riffs, which is kind of expected considering they're from Tampa. I was reminded of Scream Bloody Gore so many times throughout this album, which is definitly a good thing, you do not see much old-school influence in most of today's grind, and these guys can integrate it into their music with great effect. They keep things interesting and brutal, succeeding in creating an intense wall of sound, again similar to Insect Warfare. They have frequent little bass solos, which I always am a sucker for. Wonderful bass tone as well, by the way.
Vocals on this album consist mostly of pitchshifted growls and squeals. They do their job, and are not at all bad, they're quite good in fact. My only complaint about them is the lack of diversity, not just in vocal style, but in patterns as well. I'd like it if they mixed in some natural vocals in there, maybe some regular growls, screams, whatever. But, it'd be even better if they had more intricite vocal patterns. They mostly just sing at a flat rate over the music, while it'd sound so much better if they mixed it up and sang with rythem, like Dyscrasia or something. The vocals are good, they do their job and add to the brutallity, it's just that they could do with a bit more diversity.
Baby Basher uses a drum machine as well. Normally, drum machines are alright and are just there to do their job and blast. However, these guys are one of the few that can utilize a drum machine in a great way. The drums are very good on this album. They do blast a lot, but they also go into a lot of other intriciate little rythems and patterns, quite easy to hear and they sound great. Even a few drumsolos here and there, which is quite a nice touch. These guys do a wonderful job with this, you will not mind the fact that they use a drum machine at all.
Another thing I'd like to say is about the groovy parts. Seeing as though this is brutal death/grind, it's kind of expected that there's gonna be a few grooves and slams here and there. And there are. But, the problem is, I can tell they're going for a groovy slam, but the groove parts are not ryhthemic enough to bang your head to. They're brutal, and sound good, but I don't think they're acheiving the effect that they're aiming for.
Oh, and I'd really like to commend Baby Basher on their samples. They make wonderful use of samples. Most bands like Torsofuck or Mortician have like three minute long samples that are annoying as hell, and have some bitch screaming and a chainsaw. Booring. Baby Basher on the other hand, has five to ten second samples that are actually good and at times absolutly hilarious. These guys make fucking great use of samples, something I've yet to see in a lot of other bands, and I really appreciate that Baby Basher know's how to do em right.
To conclude this review, I'm going to say Baby Basher is a very good band of modern gore-soaked death/grind, keeping it fucking brutal and interesting, gory, and hilarious. They have their flaws, but overall, kickass band. Reccomended for fans of Death, Insect Warfare, Nasum, Devourment and Cannibal Corpse.
Check their myspace at www.myspace.com/baybeebasher666
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Cauldron Born is a death metal band from Pakistan. This is their first demo, two songs, called Blood Crusade.
The first track, Blood Crusade, starts out blasting with a pound-your-face in type riff, fast and thrashy as hell, but headbangable, kind of like a riff off ov Scream Bloody Gore. It then slows down into a bit simpler riff, sounds even a bit Egyptian with the higher notes alternating with open strings, the thrash influence is very apparant. Catchy and brutal, just the way I like it. After an acoustic part and a short solo, the Egyptian influences are really fucking glowing now like a bitch after getting fucked. To mix things up even more, they throw in a drum solo that is like a beat to a fucking war-march. It goes on like this for a while, multiple interesting riffs, before going into a breakdown. At first I'm thinking "Shit, here comes a boring metalcore-esque breakdown" but after about five seconds I realized it was groovy as fuck, and again was like something to play to a marching army. The vocals in this song are either phlegmy highs or brutal, indecipherable lows. Very nice vocals, I don't see many bands doing highs like these guys. By the end ov this track, I had already decided this was going to get an 85 or higher.
The next and last song, Exit Wounds, starts with an interesting enough war-movie intro. A short drum intro, and the band breaks into a thrashy Slayer mode. This song stays in a semi-interesting thrashy midpace groove. The problem with this is, they gallop the open E constantly without any breaks for a lot of the song which gets old if overused. It's far from a bad track though, later it gets some high riffing and sounds pretty good. An average thrashy song, but enjoyable nonetheless. Right when I'm getting bored, they finally mix things up with a very nice clean guitar and a far-off, dreamy sounding guitar solo. This really improves the song a lot. It breaks back into thrash mode again, with a very good and interesting solo.
To conclude this review, this is a very good peice of modern death/thrash, has a nice blend of old and new school vibe to it as well. Interesting vocals, very pheghmy and distinctive, I enjoy them. The guitar got kind of boring in the riffing of the second song, so I'd suggest they'd have more variation though. Drums I think are on a machine, but while simplistic, they get the job done. You should check out this band, www.myspace.com/cauldronborn666
Friday, July 10, 2009
This is the first demo of New Jersey funeral doom band Decaying Citadel. It's a two track demo, lasts about 22 minutes and I fucking love it =D
The first song, Chaos Ivocation starts out with an admittedly horrible intro. It sounds at first like someone just fiddling around with a wannabe doom riff. This lame riff goes on for about 2 and a half minutes, right before you are about to turn it off, it gets amazingly better. Fucking heavy ass chords come in, sludgy and demonic, slow and grinding. Here, it gets good. As you are starting to fall into trance that funeral doom puts you into after a few minutes, the vocals start. The vocals are distant and distorted shreiks, remenicant of Burzum or Xasthur. Now, about seven minutes in, it goes into an even slower riff, throwing you deeper into the atmosphere. The song ends this way. You should have your head just about crushed by now.
The second song starts out with a short melancholic acoustic intro, it's nice and a good change of pace. Afterwards, we have a trippy, slow, bass solo. I caught traces of traditional doom influence in the last song, but here is where it really manifests itself. The guitar chimes in after a minute or so. For some reason, the tone is different than on the first track, but it's a lot better. Deeper, heavier, just a much better tone, louder too. I don't see why he didn't have this tone on the first song, it would have been an improvement. The vocals are a lot more prominent on this one, they are great with the again slow, sludgy and crushing guitars. After a bit, there is a short acousic interlude for some variation. The crushing riffs continue on for a few minutes until another acoustic part, this one a bit longer, with chords. We get a different riff after, this one oozing traditional doom influence. Continues in all it's glory until the end with an acoustic outro.
This demo is amazing, fucking trance-inducing funeral doom, crushing, interesting, varying, absolutely everything you could ask for in a funeral doom release. The intro and tone of the guitar in the first track is the only problem. Other than that, it's perfect.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Scordatura is a British death metal group, this is their two song demo, Garrote.
The first track, Bones of Hades starts out as some bilsteringly fast, tremelo picked death metal, with some chunky palm-muting here and there, and stays on this course before a kickass little drum and bass solo. Then goes into a section a bit slower, with small bass breaks, before going back to the speed again for about 45 secs. Right before it starts to get boring, they throw in a melodic riff to mix things up, I love this band's style. And to finish, fuckin hits you in the face with a kickass breakdown to get you headbanging. Fucking awesome.
Next and final track, Garrote, has a small drum intro, before going into an alternate picking frenzy, ala Gorgasm. Then we get some melodic riffs that sound bit classical influenced, I wish they had kept the second riff section going longer. The rest of the song is pretty much melodic brutality. Melodic in an Aborted or Gorgasm way, not melodeath.
Well this shit kicked ass. I was expecting just an average modern DM band when I was first doing this review, but it's way more than that. These guys play modern death metal, but with REAL variation, that keeps you there. Also, good production as well. Probably my one complaint is the vocals. They are good, nothing wrong with them, but they're not too interesting. They do their job and help the music alright, but it coud use some screams, maybe a few squeals, some predators or something. Vocals are the one thing on this album that need more variation. Wish it was longer too. 96/100
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
WinterRealm is a black metal band from the USA. This is their CD, Twilight.
The album starts off with a somewhat black metal ambient track, it's an ok track, but kind of long and boring, not too great of a start. But if you keep listening, the second song, Perdition (The White Light" hits you with a dark, cold black metal riff, and it, unlike most black metal, really does give me a feeling of ice, cold and desolation. Not a lot of black metal can actually do that. The track also mixes in some synths as well, this is an exeptional, beautiful song. Next one, Winter and the Spring, is slower. Good. I like down-tempo black metal. The song, like the one before it, give a landscape, it grabs at you. The next song, Fractal, takes you out of the trance of the songs before it. It's an ambeint/industrial track with a simple beat from a synth. It's ok, but I'd like it better if it were only a 45 second interlude. With the next one, Autumn's Gate, we get back into the real music again. The song is my second favorite on this. It gives me the same feeling as Burzum does. Full of wonder and darkness. I absolutely love winding songs like this one, this will take you on a fucking journey. The last track, Memories in Crimson Haze, is my favorite track on the album. It has a clean guitar picking an arpeggio while a distorted guitar behind it plays one of the best melodies I've heard in black metal. Captivating, melancholc, but also that feeling of wonder and hope is there. I don't understand why a just decent track like Fractal was four minutes long yet this masterpeice is only 2:30.
The thing that I have to mention is the vocals. The vocals do nothing for this album. They don't add to the music at all, but they don't take away either, I think the album would be better with proper screaming or insturmental. The vocals are not too great, but they don't take away anything from the atmosphere of the album.
All in all, this is a great peice of art. I love it. It has quite a few flaws, but it manages to take me on a little journey and make me feel good. Get this. =]