Thursday, February 9, 2017

Draugsól - Volaða Land (2017)


Iceland is no longer an underdog in the filthy bottomless pits of Death Metal/Black Metal and hasn't been for a while, despite it's humble population where the sheep outnumber the humans on its treeless windswept land. These cold bastards experience a lot of darkness throughout the winter months and nasally basement bloggers might say this could nurture such a predilection for all things bestial and grim, maybe, maybe not. Icelanders seem to be willing to try everything.

Holding the banners are Mannveira, Svartidauði, Naðra, MisÞyrming, Sinmara, Carpe Noctem but even one man projects upholding the loud, drenched in noise weirdness like AMFJ who has also collaborated with Svartidauði, and it's hard to ignore bands like Muck and The Pink Street Boys to name a few that are pushing the boundaries within their sound, but everyones sound is conducive to pushing the boundaries within their respected pigeon-holed genres.

I digress. Draugsól don't seem to be an exception to the rule, they like their respected cohorts attack their sound with a type of uncontested ferocity that lends a certain sincerity to its bleak and feral nature, similar to their island brothers in New Zealand or the likes of Western Canada within the realms of Bestial Death Metal.

Volaða Land is more of what we have come to expect; A tactfully experimented practice within the black and death metal camp but far enough removed from church burning blast beats and atypical death metal riffs, instead tracks lithely move between sounds with veteran understanding and an almost sentient atmosphere. Volaða Land is one of those albums that can be hard to nail down, but one things for certain, it's forward thinking and executed with a due diligence.

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Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Iron Reagan - Crossover Ministry (2017)


Crossover Ministry is the name of Iron Reagan's newest album and they are the pope, bishop, high-priest, monk, deacon, low-ranked cleric, the father, the son, and the unholy spirit genuflecting at the altar of Thrash.

In the Church of Crossover we pray to the god of riffdom and high fructose, beer soaked energy and the uniform is cutoff denim everything. If you are looking for a band reinventing the wheel look elsewhere bud, this isn't the nature of the beast and thats okay because what we have here is a high form of emulation that can only come with an astute appreciation for the founding ground of Crossover,  a careful amalgamation of early hardcore and thrash.

I don't care if riffs come in the phantom form of recycled riffs from Nuclear Assault, Suicidal Tendencies, D.R.I. or only a couple notes off from a Neil Young played three times as fast. I don't care if I can't even tell I'm not listening to Municipal Waste. Crossover Ministry has done just about everything right; The riffs are tight and do have a sound of their own, the drums have that snare pop that is tuned in that sweet spot you have to like even if the bass drum is maybe a couple decibels too punchy I like it, it works and in the words of Accept the energy is "Balls to the Wall".

It would be unfair to leave out the straight facts that Iron Reagan have meddled with some experimentation to break apart tracks so they don't fall prey to bleeding into each other too much, which can happen… Dead With My Friends opens with a gangly and lurching piano, Fuck The Neighbors is an ode to partying and hating everyone else who gets in your way rife with gang-vocals and pro-boner soundbites of pansy neighbors, Parents of Tomorrow is only 00:05 seconds in length a la Napalm Death and how about Megachurch? Big tune of throwback worship with a hook that is guilty of being tight.

I've said enough, this album holds up and I'm going to spin too much. Bang on!

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Saturday, January 28, 2017

Misþyrming - Hof (2017) [single]


One song will have to do to satiate my lust for Iceland's Misþyrming. This is different than what we heard in 2015, but this shouldn't comes as a surprise. As far as generalizations go within the Icelandic musical cloth, Icelanders get bored with playing it safe and sticking to the working formula. "If it's working, we gotta change it" I can hear someone saying. Good, fuck your comforts.

I'll let you listen to it rather than me telling you to expect a couple Hatebreed riffs and a Teitanblood 'Purging Tongues' type of dialogue. Nah, I won't.

Misþyrming (bandcamp)

Saturday, January 14, 2017

The Coltranes - Everything I Dream B/W Let's Keep Our Fingers Crossed (2016)


The Coltranes come in heavy and with both feet planted in weird juju, noisy and wonky garage punk territory. Not a bad work ethic for a group of slime punks, they keep thier bandcamp nobly active with a handful of LP's, EP's, splits, etc. Better yet, nothing not worth your time.


Throw a couple bucks at these dudes if you're thoroughly inspired, you can have their whole discography for the cost of a pint, dink.

The Coltranes Bandcamp

Friday, January 6, 2017

Ljå - Til Avsky For Livet (2006)



Frostbitten black metal from Stavanger, Norway. This album becomes a decade old next month, which doesn't really matter but then again, neither do you, and neither do I. Til Avsky For Livet is the only full-length Ljå have released and may ever release for that matter as they have become about inactive as a Nun's cunt for the last 5 years.

Black metal elitists and puritans can release a collective and weighty sigh; Til Avsky For Livet follows the black metal ethos incredulously without sacrificing any ferocity or competency. The album in it's entirety is draining to listen to, through it's blistering pace it aims to sap your energy and rob you of all positivity. Winter is for black metal.

Ps; good luck snagging this on vinyl for under a $100, as expected.

Ljå - Til Avsky For Livet (Zippyshare)

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Sumac - What One Becomes (2016)


Leave your whimsy in your grandmothers panty drawer, forget about happiness, abandon all faith and hope, disregard your well-being and submit to the sonic nihilism of Sumac's What One Becomes. I'm going to compile a small best of 2016 list soon; Small because I seemingly spent more time last year listening to podcasts and old records that I simultaneously and unintentionally tossed up a big fuck you to all new releases in the process.

One thing you can count on like you can count on shit smelling foul is that What One Becomes will be on that list. Sumac improved on their debut album, The Deal in every conceivable way; They bulked up the production so when it's plodding, the air is thick and the form glacial. The drums are mixed with tact, the snare pop is mega satisfying and the cymbals are spot on in the fray, a feat studio-headphone wearing shitters tend to fail at.

In it's entirety this album is a towering monolith in the world of doom and sludge, bang on.

Doom on my Wayward sons,

What One Becomes

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Menace Ruine - Venus Armata (2014)


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One hot spring, the devil arrives in Moscow, accompanied by a retinue that includes a beautiful naked witch and an immense talking black cat with a fondness for chess and vodka. After selling your soul for a quart of raw ether and a back-alley tug the devil will simply ignore your extended hand, for he will not shake against the weight of post-cum depression, and anyone, especially the devil can pick up the scent of lost cause and moral ineptitude better than anyone, anything, anyway.

Menace Ruine from Montreal, Quebec are one of those bands that harbor a soundscape I hate to try and describe, searching my dull brain for trite platitudes a hundred other bedroom bloggers have used more than their toothbrush. I'll do it anyway, and I'll hate myself today like a soul-sucking vacuum because of it.

The duo create a sound fit for cathedral ceilings and soulless robed zealots humming strange juju, the candles lit in thirteen, the virgin flayed upon the alter, in a sweat and semen soaked, surrounded haze of incense smoke bellow Geneviève's pipes sounding like the songs of sirens and carrying the same force that draws one to be hopelessly and beautifully enamored. All of this beauty cloaked in a gothic atmosphere fit for a music box that once belonged to Elizabeth Báthory and can't help but run backwards on moral premise. The drums play out like a dirge and the organs may as well be emanating out of a Transylvanian castle because everything is bleak and life sucks, right Todd?

Kudos to Chris Bruni of Profound Lore Records for taking them on and putting out the hidden gems. Today I'm going to run along the Toronto boardwalk to this, the Hour of 13 self-titled, Lunar Aurora's Andacht and Drudkh's Autumn Aurora… Do the same, or not. Gloom dopamine brothers and sisters.

Invoke; Menace Ruine - Venus Armata (bandcamp)

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Krypts - Remnants of Expansion (2016)


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Krypts from Colorado have a guitar tone akin to the grimy filth in your toilet bowl and a plodding movement speed like old people fucking but it hits real heavy and the recording on the drum kicks sound like distant battles being fought. Tight artwork too.

Krypts - Remnants of Expansion (bandcamp)