Archive for the ‘Abrasive Audio’ Category

Abrasive Audio…to Soothe the Senses – Part 35

headbangin gif


It never stops, and for that I’m thankful. Bathe in the all-consuming nature of metal, but let us not forget the cleansing properties of water, as personal hygiene is always important and much like most of the audio under scrutiny here also highly recommended.


SIJJIN – Angel of the Eastern Gate


Release – November/13/2019 (on cassette format)
Sepulchral Voice

Obviously biblical in tone this imagery depicts an angel (a seraphim?) directing traffic in the heavens much to the dismay of a pleading pedestrian. Admittedly I’m not a scholar of religious texts and this has deeper meaning, but it’s lost on me.


With an introduction sporting undeniable (Slayer) Hell Awaits evocation qualities, though in a rawer more mischievous form, one would hope that the scene is set. And they wouldn’t be disappointed. Combining diabolical fretboard wizardry, raw flesh-shredding pace, a tight skin pounding salvo and vocals which could well be a part of the Underworlds daily soundtrack Sijjin have managed to forge audio which is unmistakably familiar but only in part rarely together as heard here.


Wicked vokills, raw speed and an undeniable archaic maniacal nature. Is this blackened thrash, blackened speed or Deathrash? It matters not, as the fact remains and cannot be ignored that the combination of a variety of influences makes for an infectious experience indeed which is quite unlike that which many, in their endeavors to outdo everyone else while cramming all manner of differing styles into their audio, are perpetrating today. Desire audio dripping in old school values and lyrics upon all manner of ancient shenanigans with a pace you can snap your neck to? I believe I have a little something you can wrap yer’ ears around.

Favorite Tracks; Angel of the Eastern Gate, Trine Immersion, Remnants of Cambrian Evil.

FFO; (vintage) Morbid Angel, (vintage) Possessed, (vintage) Sodom, (early) Incubus.


Neolith – I Am the Way
Release – November/22/2019
Mythrone Promotion

A dizzying number of steps leading to an archaic structure bathed in mystery and drenched in dried crimson (or is that how aged sandstone normally appears?) which all unquestionably emanates an ominous presence and an air of sinister. This isn’t audio of a Gospel nature of that I’m sure. Hitting play…


Portentous doom building to a mid-paced unrelenting militaristic death assault. Oozing with maniacal properties, unrelenting narrative elements and a potential cataclysmic air, this is intriguing indeed.


Blackened death boasting a myriad of pace (ranging from slower atmospheric heavy passages, occasional but rare groove passages to blasting speed) which are often hypnotic in their rhythm, though familiar in tone this remains a solid effort from an act who have somehow managed to slip under the radar while providing that which fans of the blackened death style (emphasis on ‘black’ rather than ‘death’) will be able to easily appreciate.

Favorite Tracks; Ask and Thou Shalt Receive, In the Name of Umamu, Let the Heavens Rejoice, Wanderer Who Bestows.

FFO; Behemoth, Hate, Noctem, (early) Septic Flesh.

obscure album

Obscure – Darkness Must Prevail
Release – November/5/2019
Xtreem Music

The imagery here reminds me of Uncle Frank from the original Hellraiser film. Although here “he” seems more down with nature rather than having to hide in a basement in wait for nourishment.


Bludgeoning riffs and groove tainted mid-paced rhythms. Add a dirgey tone and this sounds all too familiar. Admittedly this is a tad formulaic but it still bears a certain something to keep the digits from the eject button.


Mid paced chuggery abounds. Thankfully there’s more to this than merely steamroller riffs and driving percussion. Doom passages aid mid paced madness, ominous atmosphere is plentiful and there’s enough diversity in the vocal department to keep this interesting (there’s little more annoying than vocals which do not change tone, cadence or pace throughout an album). On the whole this fits comfortably in genre parameters made famous by the likes of those listed below with only the occasional deviance into arenas shrouded more in doom sensibilities than groove-encrusted death.

Recommended for fans of melodic brutal death with dirge undertones.

Favorite Tracks; Darkness Must Prevail, Afterlife, Through Self-Repulsion, Sunk into Oblivion.

FFO; Unleashed, Bolt Thrower, Benediction, Jungle Rot.


Warsenal – Feast Your Eyes
Release -November/15/2019
Svart Records (only because it isn’t on Bandcamp… yet)

As a gorehound and cult movie fan this has my attention. Obviously reminiscent of the uglier side of European cinema from the 80’s this, I can only hope, hints at audio of the same nature. Fingers crossed.


An unexpected folksy introduction opens the doors to a technical speed metal assault, galloping rhythms, breakneck speed and slower more intricate passages dipped in values of an undeniable NWOBHM nature. The vocals are venomous and of the style one might expect based on the albums art. A combination which might take some getting used to but has managed to grow on me over the course of this track.


In moments one could well imagine this is what Destruction (Germany) might have sounded like if they’d have spent more time listening to NWOBHM. The vocal style is at times eerily similar, the music is often face-melting fast though imbued with undeniable traditional heavy metal elements and even on occasion a tone likened to crossover thrash. As a whole the album is neither “this” nor “that” but rather a stunning smorgasbord of styles combined with expert cohesion plucked with reverence from a myriad of genres. This is sure to appeal to a wide swath of the metal community, both veterans and newcomers alike, this only gets infinitely better after the initial listen.

Favorite Tracks; Lords of Rifftown, Insatiable Hunger, You Better Run.

FFO; Blitzkrieg, Exciter, Venom, Whipstriker, (early) Voivod, (early) Iron Maiden.

A Break in our Regular Broadcast for something a Little Different

Vampyromorpha - Herzog

Vampyromorpha – Herzog
Release – November/29/2019
MDD RECORDS (“Darkness Whore” official lyric video)
Against PR

“The influence of Lovecraft is strong in this one. Hungry they look, out of here in a hurry I am.”

Ed* Thanks Yoda.


Undeniably Gothic synth layered in a criminally infectious guitar riff grabs the attention. The lyrical accompaniment grows over time. The hooks and undeniably catchy nature have the attention leaving me eager for more. This isn’t what I was expecting based on the art and against my initial prejudice it is actually rather listenable. A great start!


Admittedly, this is a little different than that which I normally listen to. It bears a radio-friendly vibe as well a uniqueness which is impressive and wholly important in order to stand out. A Gothic nature (all one has to do is take a peek at the albums track listing), Southern groove and passion alongside hard rock sensibilities (including soaring solos), a rough vocal approach which oddly fits and a willingness to experiment this might normally be something I’d avoid (having seen the description) but in this instance and with the composition caliber showcased here I’m in for the long haul. Although this occasionally dips into ultra-melodic realms it remains intriguing throughout and is most likely to fit nicely in the ‘guilty pleasures’ folder of those whose daily audio is drenched in nature extreme. Go into this with zero prejudice and you’ll tappin’ the foot and noddin’ the head within no time.

Favorite Tracks; Darkness Whore, Waiting and Die, The Dead Walk Home Alone at Night, Witchliker.

FFO; Seether, HellYeah, White Zombie


Ankhara – Sinergia
Release – September/18/2019
Fighter Records

When Man and machine combine to produce something ‘altogether’ better. That is only an example of “Sinergia”. And this illustration depicts what it may look like (and makes me think this might be audio of a thrash/speed metal nature). But, what does it sound like? I’m beginning to think I’m about to find out.


Driving rhythms with a speed/heavy metal edge (at times bringing to mind Randy Rhodes Ozzy-era guitar wizardry) accompanied by Halford esque vocals (highly reminiscent of a track from “Painkiller” whose title escapes me). A stunning way to start the proceedings. Did I mention the vocals are in Spanish? It matters not, this kicks arse. Admittedly this isn’t the usual audio to be found between my ears, but I’m diggin it.


I’ll admit I was a little thrown by the first track, however each thereafter is different, unique in their own exciting way ( I bypassed the live tracks I’m rarely a fan of live material). Showcasing passionate rhythms, galloping riffs and dynamic, high energy, percussion there are zero dull moments here to be discovered. The style varies and brings to mind a plethora of acts some more distinct than others as the album unfolds. Regardless of the fact that the lyrics are in Spanish their presence still adds significant power and emotion to the music. If your interests lay more in hard rock than death, black or grindcore this is where you’ll want to rest your ears for a while.

Favorite Tracks; Te Toca Sufrir, Suena, Libertad, Tu Ultima Vez.

FFO; Judas Priest, Queensreiche, Hammerfall, Wolfsbane, Primal Fear, Skid Row, Helloween.

Back to Our Regular Scheduled Broadcast

hviel I kaos

Hvile I Kaos (which translates to “Rest in Chaos” in Norwegian) – Black Morning, Winter Green
Release – December/6/2019
Red Nebula
Carcosa PR

Ethereal smoke formed into a robed presence above a spherical object which might or might not represent the earth and another more ecliptical in nature (raised above the first) which might or might not represent the moon. A floating green triangle in between might or might not represent nature. An interesting image indeed. Which is open for interpretation, obviously.


From the very get go this track transports me to another plain entirely. It has that level of power. Acoustic brilliance boasting unquestionable depth to evoke a myriad of emotions. Rich audio which is soothing, anxiety-inducing and melancholic. An amazing start!


The thing about a great release is that the listener loses themselves within in, and doesn’t pay heed to the time left or that which has already passed, in effect the audio transports to a place where time matters not. This is a great example of that type of release. It offers a rich texture of melodies invoking darkness and beauty and the many grey areas in between. More classical than anything remotely extreme metal in nature this still however bears a tone and myriad of qualities which will strike a chord with fans of the aforementioned genres. Intricate melodies writhe and duel for dominance, a narrative is carefully constructed utilizing an assortment of details and depth forming a rich tapestry to enrapt the listener. This is an experience sans a vocal accompaniment, for it doesn’t need such. It speaks volumes and stands testament to the talent, passion and composition brilliance of Kakophonix; the single soul behind the manipulation of the strings involved (cello, bass and guitar) and this albums creation. Step outside of your comfort zone and give this a listen.

Favorite Tracks; All but the last.

FFO; Apocalyptica, 2Cellos.


Depressed – Beyond the Putrid Fiction
Release – November/22/2019
Black Lion Records
Qabar PR

Dark and fantastical, vivid and eye-catching. A wilderness in disguise, a habitat for all manner of devilish beings to frolic and lay in wait for the unsuspecting tourist.


This sounds a little different than what the militaristic introduction suggests as though it could have been plucked from a Vital Remains release circa “Dechristianize” era. Grandiose triumphant riffs and even Glenn’s vocal stylings. A great start which is making me all ears!


Hardly audio to take the scene into fresh undiscovered territories this is however incredibly solid from start to finish. Injected with a groove infused dirge tone and varied rhythms to give even the most hardened of death fan a sore neck following a listen this is a stunning example of audio which isn’t afraid to utilize both doom and death sensibilities to its advantage as it envelops it’s listener in familiar influence and careens them down an incline fraught with all manner of diabolical narratives.

Favorite Tracks; Beyond the Putrid Fiction, Into the Realm of Abhorrence, Unholy Covenant, Descending into Madness, Thy Fragment of Light.

FFO; Deicide, Vital Remains, Vader, Krisiun, Vomitory, Bolt Thrower, (early) Decapitated.

And Now the Owls are Smiling – The Comforting Grip of Misery

And Now the Owls are Smiling – The Comforting Grip of Misery
(United Kingdom)
Release – November/1/2019
Clobber Records
Imperative PR

Dark, doomy and drenched in ominous qualities. A structure open to the elements. Does this comment on the music itself I’m left to wonder?


Melodic, melancholic and evocative with an occasional choir (of sorts) accompaniment. Far from traditional black in nature, though this still has rawness to it this also has a certain flow which is unnervingly hypnotic especially with the accompanying plentiful atmosphere.


An odd name for a band. Regardless, it grabs the curiosity. A one-man project out of Norfolk, England, (an area which isn’t normally known for its black/extreme metal output) manages somehow to beguile the listener with its combination of varied pace, majestic melodies, repetitive rhythms, folk sensibilities and a rasped vocal garnish. In effect an audio landscape which appears more soothing than the genre is typically famous for (yes, I’m of the understanding that the genre is a multi-faceted arena, though some reading this may not be). Don’t be fooled, for there still remains a sinister disposition, an underlying current of melancholy and grief atop a tapestry of atmosphere which has the potential to draw the listener like a moth to a flame.

Favorite Tracks; Our Forest Calls Me Home, An Indictment, Winters Elegy, An Empyreal Spirit Dances Before me, Betrachungen.

FFO; Helengard, Psychonaut 4.


Galaxy – Lost from the Start (EP)
Release – November/8/2019
Dying Victims Productions

Seriously, where are we? We’ve been walking around in circles for so long we’ve worn huge furrows in the Earth and the moon is upon us.

Dad. Dad! Wake up. You’re dreaming about Picasso landscapes and Heinlein book covers again.


A brilliant acoustic introduction leads into gradually building and excellently executed thrash and a “scream” (Halford/King Diamond esque in tone) which is sure to grab anyone’s attention. The track continues in an undeniable fluid nature and showcases many an influence from across a slew of genres. A damn impressive start with rhythms sure to set the limbs afire and surprising vocal gymnastics which don’t appear even slightly out of place. Hold my calls, I do not want to be disturbed!


I find it hard to fathom that this is a debut as the audio here bursts with confidence and flair. Galaxy meld rhythms and styles from a number of widespread influences. In certain instances, one might have an idea as to the origin of a particular riff only to lose the thought in the next as another passage sparks nostalgia. The whole album (EP) has many moments of such though it also showcases a caliber of composition far beyond the band’s short history. Channeling NWOBHM, Power, speed and thrash metal elements Galaxy have created a release that’s dynamic, infectious and draped in a cosmic narrative. And all in a way which reeks of homage yet breathes with exuberance and youthful energy, a package which is sure to stand out, if there’s any justice, to ensure they garner the respect a release (and an act) of this quality deserves. Highly recommended, this grabs you from the start and doesn’t let go until you come to your senses only to hit repeat.

Favorite Tracks; Dreaming Out, Sons of Titan, Lost from the Start.

FFO; King Diamond, Judas Priest, Helloween, Mercyful Fate, Voivod, (later) Death, (early) Megadeth.


Negator – Vnitas Pvritas Existentia
Release – October/18/2019
Massacre Records/Fono Ltd.

Obviously biblical and slightly medieval in nature this displays both realms; that of the Heavens, the Underworld and the space in between. But which is worse? An interesting image which hints at the atrocities on Earth being infinitely worse than that taking place in either the Underworld or the Heavens.


A storm front and a summons (to war?) bring this audio to the fore. A technical, machine precision, drum salvo complements percussion draped in an archaic nature which is sure to get the limbs a twitchin’. Aided by a venomous, somewhat traditional black metal, vocal accompaniment the package is one which has me glued to the spot. I’m not going anywhere in a hurry this is blackened metal I can subscribe to without complaint!


It’s been six years since the bands last, “Gates to the Pantheon”, which I’ll admit I enjoyed immensely. So how does this fare?  The first element to “pop”, that leaves an instant impression, is the inhumane drum accompaniment (and it’s relentless on-point precision) which lays the groundwork for the percussion to embellish upon. The albums pace is primarily hyper-speed; although there are plenty of instances where a slower, more atmospheric laden, pace comes to the fore. If only as foreplay to the brooding, sinister, brutality which is about to follow. Surprising melodies, an undeniable grandiose aura permeate this release and an undeniable diversity in rhythm (over and above that which is typically expected from a release in this genre) amidst all its brooding archaic nature, majestic rhythms and hyper speed tendencies making for a release which definitely stands out from the typical blackened affair. Negator may have taken a few (6) years to bring another release to the masses but it was worth the wait for this delivers throughout! Expect to see this in my year end list (if I ever get around to compiling one!)

Favorite Tracks; From start to finish this does naught but enthrall.

FFO; 1349, Belphegor, Dark Funeral, Origin.

Time for an Old Favorite; Recc’d by
Recc’d by Feind Gottes @FeindGottes on Twitter

Feind Gottes author

First, let me mention that if you are in the market for some sick, deviant, excellently written fiction you should check out this fellows output

I’ve tried to keep up (we once shared a site) but have found my time yanked more towards the review arena than fiction as of late. But enough about me, just what has Feind been talking about that I should check into. The first is from an act who have been getting quite the buzz lately, while the last is an album I believe I’ll enjoy if not for the unmistakable homage element alone. Onward…

jinjer macro

Jinjer – Macro
Release – October/25/2019
Napalm Records (“On the Top” official video) (“Pit of Consciousness” official video)
Thoughts –

Before I impart my thoughts on the music a few words, as per usual, on the accompanying artwork. In this case a figure appears to be reaching out to touch a shimmering ball of light above and against a sea and sky boiling in a tempestuous nature. This might take a few moments to process the meaning of (for me anyhow). I’m of the mind that it hints at the nature of the music itself, but it what regard I’m not entirely sure. Time to hit the play button to find out…

It doesn’t take but a few seconds to realize that Jinjer perpetrate a style which is a little off “the beaten path”. Many have likened their style to deathcore and djent. I can see how that might be the case as there are stylistic elements which are similar, passages which fall into that category easily, and the music does have traits of those genres. The music “bounces” for want of a better term, it displays varied jagged, stabbing riff assaults and a vocal style (stunning is a word I will use here) which at times brings the aforementioned genres to mind. But it’s so much more than merely that alone. A number of surprising elements are also present. For starters before you can really appreciate the band you must watch one of their videos (I’ve included two examples, above) Tatianna, the vocalist, is a force of nature both beautiful and ferocious with pipes which could terrify the most imposing of predator (that’s enough worship, I don’t wish to come across as a stalker or salivating fanboy) In the audio there are several instances which stand out. For example, varied reggae passages in “Judgement (& Punishment)”. Even more surprising is the fact that this elements inclusion comes across as wholly acceptable, although it seems a tad odd it doesn’t seem at all out of place. Other stylistic oddities are splattered across the album. The following track “Retrospection” has a Lacuna Coil vibe in its introduction and utilizes lyrics sang in Ukrainian (I might be wrong here as I’m no language scholar). From then on it descends into a back and forth approach between traditional and vocal viciousness which keeps me enthralled, to say the very least. I’m finding it surprising, I’m not normally a fan of this style, I’m only three tracks in and believe I’ve found another act I need to keep tabs on. Sans giving a track-by-track narrative, for I could; it’s in my ‘wheelhouse’, I’ll gloss this over with a ‘highly recommended’, ‘go out and buy this’ and ‘add it to your collection at your earliest convenience’ lest I run my appreciation into diatribe lengths.  Seriously, this release took me by storm, it’s quality and varied in tone from start to finish. And I’ll admit I usually avoid acts with a buzz about them but in this case, it’s warranted Jinjer are an act who deserve attention and praise. Acts of a similar nature include Twelve Foot Ninja and Gojira if only for the fact that they too can pull off utilizing a myriad of styles in a nature which is easily consumable and doesn’t seem at all disjointed.

cannabis corpse from wisdom to baked.jpg

Cannabis Corpse – From Wisdom to Baked
Release – June/20/2014
Season of Mist Records (the discography)
Thoughts –

Again, I’ll tackle the art before the audio. A cursory glance shows a family watching television in a state of blankness. But if you look closer there’s so much more going on. A horrified face at the window is at the lowest end of the scale whereas the device attached to the EZboy makes the imagination do cartwheels at adrenaline speeds. Just what is it that the family is doing? Are they harvesting, albeit slowly, are they cannibals or fueling the growth of the plants seen meandering across the floor and walls? I’m not entirely sure but this image is chock full of intricate details and demands further exploration at the very least. What about the music? Admittedly this is a first for me, a virgin experience of an act who on all accounts I should already have extensive knowledge of. Hitting play…

Obviously, the band’s name is a cunning slant on a moniker of another huge act within the scene (if you can’t tell who it is you are on the wrong site!). But, what of the music? Admittedly, this is my first experience of the band and their audio. Although I’ve been hearing of them for years, I’ve never taken the plunge. Though after hearing this in its entirety I really can’t tell why that might have been the case. The music is surprisingly decent, familiar and tight and much as the track titles suggest much in the same vein as the acts the band pays homage to (in this case Death and Gorguts based on the track titles and undeniably Cannibal Corpse based on their name). This is death metal circa early to late nineties and is instantly acceptable, this is criminally infectious and somewhat, scratch that, extremely familiar sounding. The vocal style is more similar to Barnes than ‘Corpsegrinder’ which pleases me as I’ve always been more a fan of the acts earlier material and fits the audio perfectly.

However, Cannabis Corpse are in no way merely copycats and this isn’t a cover act. The audio here oozes with talent, composition brilliance, is heavily reminiscent and overflows with humor (most, if not all, in relation to the “green god”) naturally it’s nothing new but huge props must be given to the act for pulling off that which many have unsuccessfully attempted but have usually only miserably failed at. It would’ve been a mean feat for this release alone to have been relatively successful. However, the band have gone on to release two others since this albums release and three previous. In actuality a little research (I hardly ever do more than a “little”) shows this as the least praised amongst the bunch. Apparently, I have some digging to do. For starters though this was and serves as a fantastic introduction to an act who I can’t honestly believe I haven’t enjoyed before now. For those who remain confused, I get it I tend to waffle on a wee bit, and haven’t yet got the point, Cannabis Corpse are an act who warrant discovery especially if like myself you are also a huge fan of the earlier days of death metal.

Animal - music is meant for sharing

And you shouldn’t, great audio is meant to be shared!

That concludes another Abrasive Audio installment. Until out paths of audio interest cross paths again don’t fear that which might normally be foreign to the ears.


Abrasive Audio – Part Thirty-Four

headbangin metalhead

Chugging ever onward, the deluge of new metal never stops. But fear not, for I am here to light the way (poop now where did I put those batteries?)

Onward stumbling around in the darkness


Esogenesi – s/t


Release – October/4/2019
Transcending Obscurity Records

This image makes me ponder upon a Terry Pratchett and Terry Gilliam collaboration. Fantastical, detailed and wholly mind-bending. Seriously is that a creature with a city upon its ‘back’ and why does it appear to be u raveling? Imagery to set an author into creative overdrive for sure.


A fantastic introduction leads into epic, meandering death/doom drenched in a morose nature boasting surprising qualities (is that Italian or Latin which they speak?) which nod towards many an influence outside of the traditional. An overall grandiose vibe which is stunning and is sure to please those curious of new audio/acts. A great start.


“Esogenesi” is the concept that life started elsewhere in the universe and later spread to Earth. With that in mind it makes this audio that much more interesting, this is hardly traditional doom fodder but rather more do with cosmic concepts, philosophy and the like. The music itself is evocative and absorbing. Melodies are a number of things; sweeping, soaring and hardly repetitive in the traditional extreme metal sense, in fact they hardly traverse extreme territories at all but for a rare few instances. Distortion, an ominous presence and growling (relaxed) vocals usually takes the lead rather than driving pace. In part familiar, easily consumable yet different, the whole effect is hypnotic and has the potential to take the listener far from their daily woes. Naturally the lyrics are spoken in a tongue only a few of us can understand which only makes this that much more intriguing and well worth setting the senses upon.

Favorite Tracks; (here’s hoping my spell-checking device doesn’t wage war against me). Decademento Astrale, Esillio Nell’ Extramondo, Incarnazione Della Conoscenza.

FFO; Paradise Lost, Thy Mourning Beloveth, My Dying Bride, Swallow the Sun.


Wolf Brigade – The Enemy: Reality
Release – November/8/2019
Southern Lord Recordings

Yellows, reds, bold black outlines. Mermaids, crosses and skulls this is a little different, but it works and certainly grabs the attention!


Punk, hardcore, crust, D-beat. Call this what you will I’m sure they’re be an argument. However, there’s no argument that this drives to the core and does that which most other audio fails to. It’s rhythms and the accompanying voice make one want to do something, flail around, jump around, do housework… something. This yanks the attention away from whatever else one is doing and instantly. I’m all ears!


Imagine if Lemmy (RIP) decided to take on the Crust genre, add a healthy dose of melody, passages of mischievous pace and plenty of attitude (he’s famous for that, right?) The result might be something eerily close to what we have here (although an argument exists that the vocals on display sounds more like Tom G Warrior (Celtic Frost), I’ll have to agree to disagree especially when one hears the opening line to “The Wolfman”. Which even appears in part a homage to “The Wolf”?) This is unapologetically formulaic at times, even a tad simplistic but it hits home and has an effect that borders on hypnotic. Ungodly infectious and especially potent following a workout or participation in an activity with similar “results”, short and to the point this is to be played loud, but probably not in rush hour traffic as it tends to incite uncontrollable movements and a shit eating grin hardly anyone is likely to understand. Suffice it to say Wolfbrigade strike again and much like their last this destroys most everything in its path.

Favorite Tracks; The Wolfman, Hammer to the Skull, Doomsday Dominion, Human Beast.

FFO; Agnostic Front, Motorhead, Disrupt.

midnight prey

Midnight Prey – Uncertain Times
Release – November/8/2019
Dying Victims Productions

Rare is that we see merely a picture of the band as the ‘artwork accompaniment’. Perhaps the music too will reflect upon a time when everything was that much more relaxed? (But was it, seriously?)


Nailed it! This is definite hard rock/heavy metal/NWOBHM in tone. A little of a gamble having the initial track to hit the senses in a foreign language (but that’s my “take”). However, there’s definite talent on display here. The melodies are infectious, part metal part ominous doom in vibe, and the overall feel is that of audio from a few decades ago. For those with late 70’s/early 80’s hard rock/heavy metal penchants this should tickle the curiosity.


Combining vintage heavy metal, speed metal, Gothic elements and a splash of punk Midnight Prey have created an album drenched in retro qualities which doesn’t sound too over-bearing in the slightest. The production is crisp and harkens to a time before the introduction of CD’s (a format touted as you can eat your dinner off atop it and it will still play. Huh, what-!?) The vocal style, when in English, bears emotional qualities putting me in mind of Goth rock outfits from back in the day. Admittedly it’s a love it or hate it factor of the music, but it’s growing on me. The music itself, far from what I normally lay digit to keyboard in appreciation of, is riff-centric, intricate at times but always interesting and infectiously melodic without running face-first into predictable realms. I suggest if you’re a fan of the roots of metal to lay ears upon this. It’s growing on me.

Favorite Tracks; Black Forest, We Lose, The Fall (into the atmosphere).

FFO; (vintage) Iron Maiden, Thin Lizzy, Helloween.

oath of cruelty.jpg

Oath of Cruelty – Summary Execution at Dawn
Release -December/13/2019
Dark Descent Records
Clawhammer PR

An ornery wizard riding a sinister-looking steed forging his way ahead with fire and carnage. A black and white image drenched in detail, dripping magick and medieval values. If I’m to guess the music is going to be Wicked indeed based on this art. Pressing play.


These guys waste no time with zero introduction which might lower the listener in gently the music here attacks like a rabid entity.  Diabolical, fast paced, frenzied and seething with old school attitude. Blackened thrash with a rawness which hints at Altars of Madness worship.


Chaotic, tumbling melodies shot through with veins of maniacal madness and capillaries of diabolical finesse. This could well be Morbid Angel under the Kreator banner of old imbued with South American aggression. Ballads here there most certainly are not; this is unrelenting blackened thrash recommended for fans of the old school draped in a generous helping of sinister. Hankering for “Pleasure to Kill” tunage or something similar with an aggressive edge complemented by rasped vokills. You’ve found what you’re looking for and this is likely where your ears will spend a great deal of their future.

Favorite Tracks; Pounding Hooves of Shrapnel, Pathogenic Winds of Swarm, At the Tyrant’s Behest.

FFO; Kreator, Slayer, Hellish (vintage) Death, Goatwhore, Morbid Angel.

sentient horror.jpg

Sentient Horror -Morbid Realms
Release – November/29/2019
Testimony Records/Redefining Darkness Records

Well. Shit, Dorothy we aren’t in Kansas anymore. What does your phone say?




Fuck. Toto. Did you just eat Dorothy?



Seething with a HM2 buzz saw dirge nature this takes the listener far from realms they might expect by introducing sinister passages, solos oozing with presence and just the right amount of ‘chuggery’ to smother the familiarity receptors without drowning the listener in a sense of I’ve heard this all before. Wholly European in vibe but hailing from the US. A stunning introduction to the band and a style which many believe has turned stagnant.


Somehow Sentient Horror have utilized a familiar style and have added their own flair making it fresh and exciting again. The driving riffs are there, the dirgey aura, and the mid-paced madness with forays into swifter paced menace. In fact, all the ingredients a fan of the bands mentioned below have come to expect. However, this band have imbued the formula with a certain something; be it maniacal solos, fluid lead moments or instances of ominous atmosphere which combine to levitate this to another level entirely. Top- notch production also gives it an edge. Nocturnal Hollow released one of my favorites (“A Whisper of an Horrendous Soul”) in this style earlier this year. This is another which stands out. And it managed, barely, to just sneak in ‘under the wire’, not to mention it’s from an area/country not normally known for the style. Lay your ears upon this and rekindle your love of the ‘Stockholm sound’.

Favorite Tracks; Call of Ancient Gods, Bound to Madness, Ripped from Hell, Loss of Existence, Morbid Realms.

FFO; Grave, Entombed, Nocturnal Hollow, Morgoth, Vomitory, Entrails, Hypocrisy.

Time for an old Favorite; Reccd’ By

fistful of doom

Reccd’ by Fistful of Doom @Flatulent Fuzz on Twitter
Grond (Russia)/Graceless (The Netherlands) split – Endless Spiral of Terror
Release – October/30/2019
Raw Skull Recordz
Thoughts –

grond graceless split

As is traditional I’ll ponder/lend a hilarious note first upon the accompanying art then muse upon the music itself.

The art here depicts an unsuspecting individual going about his merry ways when lo and behold behind him the earth erupts with a cavalcade of tentacles, archaic looking tanks and a skeleton warrior who appears to be banging a drum of one sort or another. Alternatively, this fellow could be merely leading his pet to the nearest veterinarians for an annual check-up with an entourage in tow.

Grond (first four tracks with a cover of “Darkness” by Cianide) –

Pulverizing, Lovecraftian themed, death from Russia often with a mid- pace, diabolical and doom edge. “Of Boreal Flame” opens the proceedings with chaotic evolving rhythms, heavy drums, a dirgey tone and definite groove infused melodies. This audio keeps the listener on their toes with rhythms which are steamroller in their assault; both infectious and atmosphere laden, with occasional nods to a slew of influence. Hardly technical neither repetitive in its riff approach the audio here nestles someplace in between with definite appeal for a wide audience across the board.

I can’t admit that I know of the Cianide track (or even the band themselves, I should really do some homework) but I will mention that this “Darkness” seems awfully (later) Morgoth in nature and seethes with an almost palpable ominous aura. Pleasing, easily appreciated and familiar enough (in the sense that it isn’t wildly inventive/ambitious or experimental) to respond to positively on a first listen basis the tracks here are a great example and a fantastic introduction to what Grond offer, an act who, in my opinion, deserve more coverage.

Graceless (last four tracks) –

Damn! The opening to the first track about knocked me on my arse. Old school groove with oomph and a vocal style which will bring a face-splitting grin to any fans face. Infectious is a term which doesn’t quite suffice in this instance. The following track, “King ov Pain”, tells of obvious influence, bordering on grindcore, a mid-paced militaristic vibe with narrative lyrical content reminiscent of the timeless classic “Orgasmatron” but with an unmistakable Bolt Thrower vibe. It’s epic nature, however, allows the style to somewhat wander into doomier territories pulling it from mere worship status into a track which hoists the standard for this split.

Later tracks tell of the same undeniable influence though embellishes upon atmosphere. “In Thy Honor” brings the split to a close in grandiose fashion and is sure will leave fans of the aforementioned act eager for future audio as they ready themselves for an exploration, a dive into foreign territories, a discography which might sate until fresh audio is unleashed.

Overall, fans of OSDM will likely scramble over themselves for the quality this offers, suffice it to mention that this would make an excellent accompaniment to an already outstanding collection boasting the finest the genre has to boast. Did I mention that I liked it? As if you couldn’t already tell.

Animal - music is meant for sharing

Good, because great music is meant for sharing!

Well that concludes another installment. This one’s a little shorter than normal, for that I blame chores, but it’s still packed full of audio which deserves attention.

Until our paths of interest in audio cross again, don’t fear discovery of that which is normally foreign to the ears,


Abrasive Audio (Special Edition) Re-release/Reissue Corner

diggin through vinyl.jpg

Howdy readers. For this installment I thought I’d tackle something other than my usual ponderings on new audio. Occasionally I receive promotional materials for albums which are already in my collection, naturally I think this is a little strange until I realize I’m no spring chicken and my collection dates back to the late 80’s/early 90’s. Obviously, a great deal of these albums have long since gone out of print, thus the picture of someone above digging through vinyl in hopes to find an out of print gem, but thanks to VicRecords ( ) a great many are being brought back, to be introduced to a new generation who are yet to discover those which are considered classics/genre mile-stones, though remain largely undiscovered. Those featured below are either from acts who are still around and have been for a while (with a stunning discography to their credit) or from acts who have come and gone though have left a distinct mark upon the extreme genre and perhaps have members within acts which are still tearing up the ear holes.

Without further ado…

soulburn demo 96.jpg

Soulburn – Demo 1996
“Release” – November/22/2019
Thoughts – 80

Asphyx meets “Return to the Eve” Celtic Frost this has more than a smidgen of that ‘tone’. Martin van Drunnen’s Asphyx replacement Wannes Gubbels (also Pentacle) handles vocal duties alongside menacing mid-pace rhythms with the occasional blackened riffs smothered in Celtic Frost worship. Oozing atmosphere this screams 90’s European death metal obviously Asphyx (how many times can I say that name in this, sheesh!) in tone with a slight splash of ominous nature. Four tracks, including an intro and an outro running close to seventeen minutes which all fans of Asphyx (circa “The Rack” and earlier) will want in their collection. Soulburn are active and currently have two EPs and three full lengths to their name.


Comecon – Megatrends in Brutality
“Release” – November/22/2019
Thoughts – 81

Released in 1991, this is Comecon‘s debut and showcases L.G Petrov’s vocals after his controversial departure from Entombed following the genre milestone “Left Hand Path”. Recorded at Sunlight Studios it also bears a HM2 Buzzsaw sound albeit at times with more a crust/grindcore edge, plenty of groove, old school sensibilities and extreme punk leanings. Often overlooked and underrated this is well worth setting the ears upon and is pleasingly different, somewhat diverse although still somewhat similar to the obvious release which cannot be ignored released a year earlier.

Comecon have three full lengths to their credit but have since disbanded due to label disinterest.

asphyx crush the cenpotaph

Asphyx – Crush the Cenotaph
“Release” – November/22/2019
Thoughts – 78

Recorded a year after the death metal landmark “The Rack” and sporting the ‘classic’ lineup this includes five tracks in all; two new, one in studio recording and two live recordings. The quality and crispness of “The Krusher” (the live studio track) is worth the price of the CD. The two new tracks follow the traditional plodding mid-paced huge riff occasional foray into grooves-ville Asphyx shenanigans though don’t quite stand up to that heard on “The Rack”. The final two sound better than expected on location in Stockholm, are fans favorites and although a tad ‘tinny’ hit the spot. Admittedly, “Wasteland of Terror” had me bouncing around in the car on the highway like a chemical riddled primate.

A must for fans of one the best things to come out of the Netherlands, since, well, I give up. The obvious choice is too blatant, and tulips are just silly.

Active since 1987 Asphyx has gone through a number of line-up changes have released nine full lengths and are joined again by Martin Van Drunnen on vocals.

infernal majesty demon god

“Release” – November/22/2019
(please not there are six tracks here, this version is minus “Is There a God” and “Gone the Way of all Flesh”)
Thoughts – 82

Fashioned from a rare (band and management rotation only) two-track demo of sorts and a later six track EP this shows the maturity of the band (diabolical blackened thrash with maniacal, Gothic and epic themes) to their later output with a decidedly more polished/fluid thrash/death edge. Featuring a pair of special guests (Corpsegrinder from Cannibal Corpse and a guitarist/vocalist from Strapping Young Lad/Zimmers Hole) the later material is still diverse employing groove, dynamic rhythm shifts, more a South American old school aggressive thrash feel and a vocal style which is delightfully feral much like their earlier material, a trademark of sorts I suppose. In short, this is a fantastic introduction to an act whose name is no stranger to those familiar with Canadian thrash. It was a first experience of their audio for me and I will be diving into their discography as soon as I’m able, this was impressive audio indeed and I can’t believe I’ve waited this long to jump upon it when I’ve heard their name often enough.

Infernal Majesty have four full lengths to their name and have been a huge influence on more than merely talent from their homeland and active since 1986.

excited animal gif

Are these worth investing in? I believe Animal about says it all…Hell yea!

And that brings my first foray onto re-release territory to a close. Until out paths of audio interest cross again, don’t fear discovery of that which is normally foreign to the ears.

Please note the that the links provided are meant for ‘teaser purposes’ only, please support the artists and the scene to keep it thriving and healthy for the next generation to also enjoy.


Abrasive Audio – Part 32

headbangin gif

Tumbling uncontrollably downward into the abyss, I clutch to the comforting thought that I’ll be suffocated by that which I adore. Metal in all of its many forms and guises.

Diving face-first into an Inbox overflowing with promo material…


godless agenda

Godless Agenda -Death Awaits You All
Release -November/8/2019
Against PR

*in a hushed tone*

Move those leaves.

Umm. Shit, it’s too late. They’ve seen us!  Prepare to have your insides served upon a bed of lettuce. And your head hallowed out to serve as a container for Kool-Aid.


Thrashy death with an unmistakable dirge tone and grinding aura influence (the first guess doesn’t count!) and a sprinkle of crust. Neat vocal diversity, the raw drum sound is a great addition. including a rasped narrative introduction and one’s gotta love the nod to a British comedy troupe (a skit within a film, hint; “Run Away, Run Away!”) who were way ahead of the curve.


Simple at times, formulaic in others, with obvious strong influences and moments where unsuspecting melody, blistering pace and groove leave an imprint. Really nothing new but this hits the spot and is designed to make the listener move. And it does just that! Another stellar example of a one- man outfit which proves it’s more than possible to get the job done w.o. an entourage. This is better than I expected and deserves respect!

I’m gonna ruin it…this even includes a track about the killer bunny from Monty Python’s “Holy Grail”; gotta appreciate the fan dedication and the gamble; it pays off and it’s a great start to an album which delivers throughout.

Favorite Tracks; Death Awaits You All, Fear Me (Inch Allah), Rising from the Pits, Devoured from Within.

FFO; Bolt Thrower, Jungle Rot, MOD, Slayer, Khazaddum.

blood incantation

Blood Incantation – The Hidden History of the Human Race
Release – November/22/2019
Dark Descent Records
Clawhammer PR

Far from what one might expect. This is however, captivating, enigmatic and thought-provoking imagery bursting with fantastical sci-fi themes plucked from the 70’s which puts me in mind of Heinlein, Ildiss and others whose names escape me at this moment.


Putrid death, chaotic technicality, maniacal riffing and progressive themes (in moments channeling later Death sensibilities and in others honing in on a cavernous aura draped in vintage Morbid Angel frenetic fretboard devilry) combine for a track that’s multi layered, oozing with textures yet amazingly not overpowering.


A first glance at the track list might baffle some. An eighteen-minute track from an act of this ilk and in this genre? (Insert WTF emoji here). Somehow Blood Incantation manage to pull it off without dragging the listener into realms drenched in a tedious and boring nature.

Intoxicating passages are plentiful alongside melodies, which invoke wonderment and awe, they transport the listener to unfathomably vast cosmic landscapes. Cavorting with an amorphic, slithering, nature which is par for the scene (although nothing about the quality here screams anything but impressively far beyond par) the whole effect is one which is at the very least unpredictable and undeniably mesmerizing. Menacing, enveloping yet drenched in melancholia coupled with transcendental qualities (strangely wallowing in David Bowie and Devon Townsend pools in instances) which demand exploration this is an album which only blossoms the more it’s allowed the dominate the senses.

Highly recommended!

Favorite Tracks; The Giza Power Plant, Inner Paths (to Outer Space), Awakening from the Dream (Mirror of the Soul).

FFO; Morbid Angel, Ct’helist, Death, Nile, Drawn and Quartered.


Vadiat – Darkness Proceeds (EP)
Release – October/31/2019
Redefining Darkness Records

An unearthed skull with a brand on the forehead surrounded by serpents amidst leaves and shrubbery. If this doesn’t scream ritualistic skullduggery (there’s a pun there someplace), a staple in the death metal realm, I don’t know what does. And again, in black and white ink. Did I mention that I’m a sucker for BnW imagery?


Hypnotic rhythm, mid-tempo death/doom with ominous vibes, distortion and groove aplenty. Slathered in diabolical qualities the intricacies within this unfold following several listens.


Old school qualities unbound and run riot throughout. And groove coupled by abrupt whipping pace transformations and a plodding bludgeoning approach are commonplace within tracks which display a surprising spectrum of emotion. Although some moments could be shortened for much the same effect and some instances are a tad repetitive this remains a solid effort leaving listeners, especially those of the old school guard, eager for a full length.

Favorite Tracks; The Entity, Darkness Proceeds.

FFO; Benediction, Vomitory, Grave, Bloodbath, Morgoth.


Golgotha – Erasing the Past
Release -October/22/2010
Xtreem Music

Crimson splatter, a myriad of frenetic scribbles and brilliant white comprise the outline of a face. Vivid and blunt, and a tad unconventional, this image conjures thoughts of order out of whack, a silhouette, the remains of a form worn down by the various forces forced upon it, the undoing of the mortal coil. I could turn this into a dissertation, perhaps I should hit play.


Grandiose riffs and sweeping melodies and dualistic vocal styles make for a sorrowful landscape the addition of cinematic atmosphere elevates the aura. An outstanding start.


A smorgasbord of styles is on display here. Primarily doom draped with growling vocals, but also traditional heavily accented vocals which often give this more a Gothic Rock edge, much like samples from the finest Paradise Lost albums (‘Shades’ and ‘Icon’) some might be put off by the familiarity and similarities. Folk elements are subtle, undeniable power, presence and a stunning composition mastery are factors which can’t be ignored. Rhythms are both soulful, passionate and melancholic coupled with keyboard atmosphere the effect is an album which, if you’re a virgin to this act like myself, will make one want to sift through past efforts and pronto.

Powerful audio with undeniable fluidity and allure which makes an immediate impression.

Favorite Tracks; The Way to Your Soul, Distorted Tears, Enveloped in Fog, New Hope.

FFO; Paradise Lost, Novembers Doom, Moonspell, Amorphis.

the bleeding morbid porophecy

The Bleeding – Morbid Prophecy
(United Kingdom)
Release – October/18/2019
World War Now Records
Clawhammer PR

I’m of the belief that this sermon carried on past its original, intended, parameters. His/her audience have since turned to dust forgotten all they’ve learned and became fodder for worms and various other beasties who prefer their meat tainted by fanaticism.


Introduced by a Slayer– esque creepy riff aura which later transforming into a blistering pace this is an explosive way to open any album! Limber up peeps, this is gonna be an exercise in stamina and self-control. If the album is anything as good as this track one will be hard pressed to not want to push the stereo above and beyond speaker destroying limits.


I don’t know why it took me as long as it did to wrap my ears around this (moods often transport us to realms we’d not visit). But now that I’m giving it my full attention I can honestly state that what this offers is huge. Atmosphere, when required, coupled with flesh melting riffs, a thrashy death approach and vocals seemingly plucked from the early Destruction (“Mad Butcher”) era. All raspy and seething with menace. However, that’s not all. Infrequent nods to traditional heavy metal are a fantastic addition with the occasion galloping riff and familiar feeling riff passage which serve to break up a pace that’s sure to please even the most demanding amongst us. An acoustic interlude also checks all the boxes and might be all too familiar in tone for those of the above forty age group living in the British Isles on account of a news/information program using a similar tune in its credits which aired many moons ago. (bonus points if you can name it, I can’t).

In short, if your mood demands furious fluid riffing, evil (as the inclusion of guacamole on a beef burger) and vocals which only make one want to serve at the altar of a Dark God then this will serve to placate and although the tone has changed somewhat is still as exciting as the bands previous effort. Highly recommended and again accept my apologies for not getting to this sooner, for it warrants attention!!

Favorite Tracks; Yea, I started listing tracks here only to stop realizing I was listing the whole damn album! Suffice it to say, this delivers throughout.

FFO; Slayer, Vader, Massacre, Destruction.


Ossuaire – Derniers Chants
Release – October/15/2019
Sepulchral Productions

Spectacular black and grey rendition depicting a man of the cloth beseeched by various demons and apparitions as he prays to his deity.


Epic, majestic and melodic. This is the type of black metal I can subscribe to without reservation. Though I should also mention that it’s chock full of harrowing atmosphere and a passage of surprising groove. An outstanding opener!


Furious and unmerciful, yet hypnotic. I don’t get how that works, it’s puzzling to be sure. But somehow, this has the power to enthrall. Unrelenting though often soothing in a strange way embellishing upon melancholic moments and slight doom accompaniments (acoustic at times bringing to mind a medieval age), this transports the listener through a realm that bursts with presence, a landscape drenched in a treacherous and harrowing nature. Ancient and mysterious, majestic and grandiose, this seethes with archaic malevolence and undeniable passion. A stunning feat, one which I’ll visit again and again at the behest of my spouse who always wants to converse when I have audio of an epic nature in my earholes.

Spend some time with this and let loose your preconceptions about the genre. This isn’t raw and doesn’t hail from an act with that much of a history within the scene. However, it has the feel of an album which reeks of experience and an act who have significant knowledge of what ‘works’ and have the talent to pull their vision together in a manner which is a wonder to have traipse across the senses. Assured to leave a mark this is an album which cannot be ignored.

Highly recommended!

Favorite Tracks; Pestilence Rampante, Sous l’Autel des Immacul’es, L’Oeil-Sang, Derniers Chants.

FFO; Dissection, Stortregn, Wintercrown, Emperor.


HoboStew – Legend of the Infected
Release – August/2019
Grindhouse Ministries

Delightful black and white imagery depicting all manner of filth. Seriously who enjoys stew from a trashcan? I much prefer soup from the bowels of the sewer (wha-?)


Raunchy bass lines and groove complemented by a traditional gruff vocal approach. This is grindcore with a touch of crust, but it’s slightly different than merely that. It has my attention, and I’m impressed.


With fourteen tracks on offer and the length this runs (seventeen minutes) this is predictably grindcore or some other type of core which has its roots in angst or the gutter.

An undeniable sense of humor permeates this release coupled with the short, sharp delivery, tightness and groove it makes for a spot of extreme audio which stands out above the same old, same old. Chunks of infectious are scattered throughout and the vocals are (wait for it) somewhat decipherable. The bass is distinct, filthy in fact, and the tracks have identity. What more could you ask for? For a debut this makes an impression and I’m imagining theirs to be a name I hear a great deal of, in extreme core realms, in the future. Be it either on Splits, compilations or an upcoming full length.

Naturally these guys aren’t to be confused with the band with the same moniker hailing from Northwest Ohio who specialize in Alternative Rock with Psychedelic Folk Pop elements (whatever that may sound like).

Favorite Tracks; Micro-Aggression, I’m Hardcore, Needs Neglected, Total Loss, Radical Amputation, Hobocop.

FFO; MOD, SOD, VHS, Disrupt.

night goat

Night Goat – Milk
Release – December/13/2019
Dewar PR

As if plucked from a cinematic event in which one is possessed by a myriad of slithering Lovecraftian entities/demons (is that a Kraken?) this exhibits vivid colors a dreamy, troubled, aura and undeniable menace (in this case hovering above the only person in the picture). One could also argue that this poor fellows’ thoughts/woes are overpowering his conscious sending him into a state of Flux or delirium. Whatever one chooses it’s certainly stark and demands closer inspection.


Loud, obnoxious and off-kilter. This is rock careening without a care into punk territories. Bursting with angst, distortion, energy and attitude this is far from the normal ear candy I gorge myself on but it is exciting, frenetic and enticing. I’m left dripping with intrigue.


Wholly unpredictable and miles from fitting comfortably into any one genre (especially not that which the words ‘Night’ and ‘Goat’ might conjure) this

incorporates huge riffs, distorted soundscapes and a vocalist whose ‘passionate’ abilities demand to be appreciated in a live setting. The overall effect is often dizzying, is never stale and flutters erratically (this isn’t a bad thing in the albums context) much like a Hummingbird who has dipped his beak (do they have beaks?) into ‘tainted nectar’, or “milk” way past its due date. Many words could be used to describe this; Gritty, Raunchy, Hypnotic, Experimental, Raw (and a slew of others) but not a single one, or even two, even comes close to giving it that which it deserves. Take your senses off the beaten track and give this a few spins. It’ll grow on ya!

Favorite Tracks; Chubby Leech, Jerusalem’s Lot, Gnarltooth Grim, Head Lice.

FFO; Freighter, Helmet, Brutal Juice, Wizard Rifle.

mortuary new release 19

Mortuary – The Autophagous Reign
Release – November/8/2019
Xenocorp Records (this album isn’t represented as of this publication)

A rotting face with what I can imagine are various overriding influences from all sides, suffocating, driving one to follow blindly without thought or complaint.


Like an adrenaline shot of grindcore, with old school aggressive thrash sensibilities, this attacks like a horde of ravenous hyenas (thus the excitable gang vocals; thought that was a great tie-in) going straight for the throat; it knocks one back wide eyed. If you’re half asleep this is guaranteed to wake your arse up. A ‘rager’ of a start to an album and an amazing introduction to what the band offer.


After thirty years most have slowed, perhaps even changed styles completely to appeal to larger audience (I think we all know who I’m talking about). Mortuary however have shattered the ‘over the hill’ adage; if there ever was a hill, they’ve blasted their way through it! Incorporating a pulverizing, unrelenting, riff assault channeling a style that’s part grinding death/thrash (with just enough technicality thrown in) part South American aggressive thrash. complemented by a precise Misery Index esque drum barrage and all ungodly infectious. I’m left wondering how it is that I’ve not let this bands audio traipse between my ears before. Be it all-out or an acoustic introduction this boasts unquestionable prowess, oomph and is likely to be treated like a box of pringles; however, in this case it’ll be that you can’t just play it once. This is an album which’ll make you wish you were fit; a single track is likely to leave you sweaty and tired. Awesome audio with incredible allure.

Favorite Tracks; Delete, Replace, The Sapiens Order, Disposable, A Curse in Disguise, Eternal, Memorial in Vivo, Cheptel, Monuments.

FFO; Vader, The Haunted, Killswitch Engaged, The Crown, Dying Fetus, Benighted, Sodom.

chained to the dead

Chained to the Dead – Gruesome Encounter
Release -November/29/2019
Horror Pain Gore Death Productions

This red headed temptress appears more than satisfied drenched in crimson and chunks. Perhaps she’ll fashion herself a jewelry ensemble from the remains of her companion or alternatively string a collective of tennis racquets. One thing’s assured; clean-up will be a bitch!


Drenched in vintage cult qualities and grinding death elements supported by attention yanking angst-fueled vocals and limb twitching rhythms this garners attention.


With an album cover as striking as this one has their fingers crossed that the audio is worthy. In this case, thankfully, it is. Obviously, many have tried the horror/cult/exploitative/gore/metal angle (it would easier at this point to mention bands who haven’t). A fair few in the same vein as this with soundbites aplenty abetted by a similar audio style. C.t.t.D (an obvious abr.) have managed somehow to combine the usual elements (grindcore, death, crust) and exquisitely I might add then included a certain something to elevate the final result from the pack. The vocals are top-notch. Dripping with venom they add an undeniable quality to an infectiously groove laden percussion with an emphasis on melody and rhythm rather than blistering O.T.T brutality which is often over used and doesn’t always work. Whipping, frenzied, riff salvos (injected throughout) assist in the albums allure as well slower, doom-laden atmospheric, passages drenched in palpable ominous qualities. Overall, crimson, guts, stabbings, slicing’s, creepy soundbites and all this is an album which decimates unsuspecting earholes without falling into repetitive realms, alights furious fanboy cinematic horror/cult research and demands attention. Top of the year list material in my opinion, for the record.

Favorite Tracks; Are you in the House Alone? The Shunting, Head not Found, Butcher, Be Still (and know that you’re dead), What Lies Beneath the Gate?

FFO; VHS, Cropsy Maniac, Necrophagia, Exhumed.

Plucked from Metal Past

mass infection

Mass Infection – Shadows Became Flesh
Release – December/7/2018
Comatose Music

Note: this could technically fit in the ‘main body’ of the review section seems as it has yet to reach its first-year birthday, but I slipped and placed it here instead. Nevertheless, I’ll continue…

The art here has a decidedly classical feel, as if it could well adorn the walls of a Gothic castle draped in cobwebs and mystery. From what I can fathom A gent is invoking ‘something’ only to be harassed by (the same?) spirits. A wicked image indeed but what about the audio?

From the very first note it makes one sit up and take note. The style here is technical, though not crazily over the top, with riffs tumbling over themselves in an unrelenting, pummeling, assault. Think a style that’s part Nile, part Origin and you’ll be close, though there’s also unmistakable majesty which hints towards blackened influences. Atmosphere is an undeniable element and oozes from the album’s composition aiding its depth and the myriad of grandiose textures it offers. The drums are handled in a manner which is so stunningly precise and tight a duck’s arse would be jealous. And the instruments addition to the sound is a huge factor taking the combination to another level entirely. This is top notch driving death metal folks! Cavernous, yet epic, with an awe-inspiring production quality which allows every instrument to breathe and stand out in the overall mix.

Is it too late to add this to the upper echelon of albums from last year’s best of list? Perhaps an addition to this one under a heading of “I could slap myself for missing this”. Don’t be like me, although there’s so much released its hard, near impossible in fact, to keep track. This demands respect and a place in any collection boasting stand outs and milestones of the genre from years past.

Set the senses upon it!


Druadan Forest – The Loremasters Time
(Original) Release – September/2016
GS Productions/Hammerbund

Note: I’m assuming the version I’m listening to is a re-release as there are varying covers available online.

Described as atmospheric black metal the art here is what grabbed my attention. Vivid hues, bright greens and blinding light making its way through a sea of tree. This doesn’t seem like the typical black and grey (atmospheric) black metal album cover. The album commences with a brilliant epic instrumental and it certainly gets one in the mood for things of a fantastical nature, most probably war gaming (or I can only imagine, as I’ve yet to fall for its allure). As the album progresses traditional black metal elements (rasped vocals in particular) come to the forefront, although muted somewhat they weave in/around and amongst a keyboard audioscape showcasing various sounds of nature, including storms, to create a melancholy which is oddly relaxing. In other moments a deliberate chaotic environment is at the fore with a more transformative nature on display. Folk (both Baroque and medieval) elements cavort with cinematic symphonic compositions to form a fantastical realm draped in majesty, intrigue and history which is easy to imagine losing oneself within. Obviously, this won’t appeal to most but those whose penchants run to audio where rasped vocals are accepted without complaint. It’s hardly traditional in regard to what most would deem black metal and it often runs to soothing audio lengths which Enya or Disney might incorporate if not for the “unconventional” vocal approach. However, there’s no denying that this is powerful, masterfully created, audio which would serve as an excellent palette cleanser for those whose senses are accustomed to brutality in a wide array of its many forms. If you’ve yet to lay your senses upon that which many deem atmospheric, or even Ambient, black metal this is a great place to jump on board. Following this I’m sure my fingers will dance as my retinas flicker from one artist to another, as my mind expands to accept yet another genre I should have previously explored. Forget your preconceptions, or assumptions and give this a chance.

And an old favorite…”Recc’d by”

In this case from an anonymous Twitter user (I only wish I could give someone credit)

Assassin’s Blade – Gather Darkness.jpg

Assassin’s Blade – Gather Darkness
Release – October/18/2019
Pure Steel Records
Thoughts –

Obviously, I’m not a huge fan of power or even traditional speed metal (if you’re a reader of my other review pieces you might note the absence of the genre) but this managed somehow to catch my eye. The art is by a familiar artist, Juha Vuorma, whose work graces many an album cover (recently Usurper and Kalmah) and can be seen here in a plethora of its many guises In this case it appears a collective of acolytes are about to encounter something other than that they summoned. In regards to the audio on offer I was surprised to read that the vocalist is none other than Exciters front man (from 97’ to 04’), Jacques Bélanger not to be confused with the drummer from Sarkasm (Canada) who has the exact same name. Other than that, the familiarities are null. That is until the music starts, then it’s nostalgia ville. “Tempt Not (the Blade of the Assassin)” is an opener which leaves the jaw agape. The rhythms are infectious to the nth degree and the beat enough to drive one to involuntary spasms of movement (I’d put this up there with a personal favorite of mine by Dio-fronted Rainbow “Kill the King”) And the album progresses from there to leave one with a grin plastered across their chops as if to say I’ve done something insanely wrong, quite naughty in fact, and I’ve gotten away with it. In this case that is not the case this is just that damn impressive! “Gather Darkness” oozes with an aura and vocal approach which screams NWOBHM, power metal and traditional speed metal (have I mentioned that I’m not normally a fan?). In this case however the vocals are the side of falsetto I can stomach (perilously close to that which ‘metal god’ Rob Halford and Dickinson exhibit) and this guy can sing. The melodies and riffs are just short of mind blowing, excitingm frolicking, galloping this checks all the requisite boxes one could ask. Seriously, it’s been a while (Riot’s “Thundersteel” was the last instance) since I’ve fallen ‘arse over tit’ as hard as I am at this very moment. There is undeniable fluidity on display here, there are zero dull instances, “no filler, just killer” (as the popular webzines are likely to spout) and the collective of tracks lifts you from the dull drum daily activities to a place where you forget all your ills and woes, let your hair down and bang yer’ head like one possessed (if you’re anything like me however, the days of having hair are a thing of the past). Without going into diatribe lengths I’ll leave this here, click on the provided link and feel free to tell me your thoughts, or give suggestions of a similar nature. I wasn’t expecting this to be this good. But it is. And I’m sure I’ll be mentioning it again come years end.

Recommended for fans of Exciter, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Iced Earth and Nocturnal Rites.

exhausted animal

That’s it for another installment, it’s nap time!

Until our paths of audio interest cross again, don’t fear the discovery of that which wouldn’t normally grace the senses.



Abrasive Audio – Part Thirty -One

headbangin gif

Like an ever-flowing stream the onslaught of metal flows ever onward, caressing the ears, delighting the senses and making even the shittiest of day that much better. Did I mention I’m drowning in promos?

Forget it. I don’t need your pity, though a helping hand would certainly be appreciated at this point (reach out if you’ve a dark sense of humor, a disdain for politics and have ever felt the urge to compose).


ectoplasma white eyed.jpg

Ectoplasma- White-Eyed Trance
Release – October/31/2019
Memento Mori/Repulsive Echo/Caligari Records

If you go out into the woods tonight (…”you’re in for a big surprise”. Wait wha-!) take a flashlight, a knife and a hooded cloak then, and only then (perhaps), can you join the party. I hear there’s plenty of fun to he had; ritual sacrifice, an orgy with a plethora of enthusiastic octogenarian kultists, a petting zoo (of sorts), Kool-Aid and cookies…with chocolate chips (yum).


A topically themed introduction that comes complete with cawing crows and howling winds quickly transforms into a riotous avalanche of sound; chaotic drums and riffing. An old school aura with groove and a vocal style which will please most with brutal death penchants.


Groove, atmosphere and brutality combine to forge an album draped in familiarity. A death/doom affair, emphasis on death, which overflows with chuggery, melody, riffs which will incite instantaneous grins and an impressive ominous nature rather than all-out brutality. A fantastic introduction to another band who deserve attention within a genre overcrowded with a lack of originality.

Favorite Tracks; Pyschomanteum Immolation, White-Eyed Trance: Choronzonic Covenant, The Oak Spewed Foul Whispers, White-Eyed Trance: Ensnared in Devilry, Souls of Sacrifice (Devastation cover)

FFO; Deicide, Morgoth, Pestilence, Vomitory, Benediction, Asphyx.

hot breath

Hot Breath s/t
The Sign Records
Release – October/18/2019
Dewar PR

This screams retro, a photo of what I can only assume is the band, and could well have embellished the cover of an album from thirty years previous.


A whirlwind of synth clears the air for a guitar salvo with an unmistakable air of retro about it. And I’m sold! This is definite rock n roll 70’s worship and as a fan of a plethora of NWOBHM acts the grin plastered across my chops couldn’t possibly be any wider.


Hailing from Sweden one might initially think of the HM -2 sound rather than traditional rock n’ roll (thanks to Entombed, Carnage and the like) but all that might be about to change. This is an obvious palette cleanser for those whose interests primarily reside in the extreme but for those who dip their senses in metals roots this delivers all that one could wish. Powerful attitude-laden vocals complement galloping melodies and riffs which harken to an age where denim was king and tassels were an addition one could not be without (Insert memories of finding my parents jackets in the closet when I was but a young lad).

Hardly a copycat act this collective are slated to bear the standard of the revival into an age where more of the same (seemingly on repeat) needs to be eradicated at all costs. For most this might qualify as a guilty pleasure, in my case however, I’m proud to support and praise an act who’s worthy of such. Give this a listen but be warned, it’s dangerously and instantaneously addictive.

Favorite Tracks; Still not Dead, Maniac, What you Reap.

FFO; AC/DC, White Spirit, Girlschool, Heart, Screamer, Di’anno fronted Iron Maiden, Jet.

An impromptu Interruption to take a peek at an official single premiere

being of entropy

Being of Entropy -Thumos
Release -October/24/2019
Thoughts –

The art depicting a heart fashioned from a myriad of twisting serpents leaves me inquisitive. Heavily drenched in Djent, Slam and Deathcore vibes (from the get go), “Thumos” is also undeniably shrouded in atmosphere. Progressive elements appear as if out if nowhere (showcasing a softer vocal approach) and weave in and around the dripping barrage of bludgeoning riffs. As the track progresses mid-tempo riffs become faster, shifting into hyper speed then back again. A background howling vocal effect becomes part of the background and adds an undeniable aura to (what many might consider) typical deathcore elements towards the track’s finale making for a climax which leaves me curious, especially since I normally don’t traverse genre waters of this type too often, and eager for any surprises an upcoming full-length might provide.


Back to the Regularly Scheduled Programming

gevaudan iter

Gévaudan – ITER
(United Kingdom)
Release – October/4/2019

Black and white imagery depicts a two-headed bird against a stark full moon. A closer look, however, and one can see the bird has a certain duality about it; half flesh and half bone. A clever touch which only makes me ponder upon the nature of the music itself.


Hypnotic, traditional, acoustic melodies ease the listener into the album. Combined with a soothing vocal approach the effect is mesmerizing. Even when the style suddenly shifts (drenched in distortion and ominous qualities) the tracks allure strangely remains captivating. The lyrics (as well their delivery) combined with the coalescing mood, spanning various doom landscapes, make for an experience one will want to explore again and again.


Much like the fabled French beast the band has named themselves after this also has the inane ability the consume. In this case however, it’s the listener, and not the unfortunate who has stumbled upon the beasts hunting grounds, and they aren’t cowering in fear but rather in absolute awe as the audio here washes over their unprepared senses. Channeling a myriad of styles from as far afield as stoner rock, folk and Gothic rock with a varied landscape of doom in-between Gévaudan have meticulously crafted a collection of songs boasting undeniable fluidity which possess the power to cast a spell, a unfathomably huge web of appeal, upon all who choose to lay ears upon it. Whether your listening habits lay in retro 70’s doom or the more update showcasing a mixture of death and doom or the melancholic and/or atmospheric this holds a vast trove of treasures to be excited about. Soaring, sweeping, riffs, a plethora of textures to whisk the listener away, distorted soundscapes, a narrative which warrants opening the lyric booklet alongside a spot of research and a diverse vocal delivery which hits then obliterates ‘the spot’. This about has it all and I can’t for the life of me wonder why it isn’t spoken about often and loudly, perhaps the end of year lists will change that. Mine will!

Favorite Tracks; This is another example of an album with zero filler. This dominates the attention from start to finish with its utter unmitigated brilliance.

FFO; My Dying Bride, Spirit Adrift, Candlemass, Black Sabbath, Lord Weird Slough Feg.


Vultur – Drowned in Gangrenous Blood
Release – October/31/2019
Memento Mori (note; this isn’t the release under scrutiny, as of this publication I could not locate it on Bandcamp)

It’s not the sharks you have to keep an eye for in this body of water…It’s the bodies!


A surging bulldozer approach sporting dirge quality, old school leanings, groove passages and atmosphere. A good start to get the attention.


One would only have to look at the track titles to get an idea of what they’re about to jump into. And this presumption isn’t that far off; this channels Cannibal Corpse qualities throughout. Rhythms are pummeling, bludgeoning, even at times mischievous and the overall quality doesn’t disappoint for those demanding ‘more of the same’. For those yearning audio that’s draped in technical and progressive elements this is a location offering sparse elements of each but for those needing something between melody and brutality this will hit the spot.

Favorite Tracks; Drowned in Gangrenous Blood, Crushing the Ribcage, Postmortem Lividity.

FFO; Deeds of Flesh, Malevolent Creation, Cannibal Corpse.

Interrupting the Flow of the regular Broadcast to take a Peek at a “Split”

treasonist y-incision split

Treasonist/ Y-Incision (Split) – Mechanical Perdition
Horror Pain Gore Death Productions
Release – November/22/2019
Clawhammer PR

An intricate black and white image (old school European thrash in aura) vividly depicts the suffering that most post-a-selfie-a-minute millennials are worthy.

Treasonist (USA) – (tracks 7 – 13)

Punishing grindcore sensibilities are accentuated by ever-evolving and amorphic, technical, brutal death, rhythm passages. The vocal approach is varied and successfully tops off an assault which fans of Napalm Death, Misery Index and Terrorizer are sure to salivate over.


Favorite Tracks; Chemically Silenced, Spiteful Tongues Condemn, A Moment is the Most you can Expect from Perfection.

Y-Incision (USA) – (tracks 1 – 6)

The sense of humor is undeniable here as too a style which incorporates all manner of extreme “cores” (thankfully not death, emo or math) in their titles starting with Grind with the addition of other elements to keep the listener at odds with what to mention as influence. Frenetic and frenzied leaving barely a second to catch a breather this is stylistically chaotic though tighter than a Nuns nether region. Sure, to place a smile on the face of fans whose penchants are firmly rooted in audio which is akin to watching television at a considerably faster pace than is normal and/or recommended.


Favorite Tracks; Lunaticus; A Vitruvian’s Tale Signifying Nothing, Snowflake Tears as Lube, Leech of Pity.

Overall – 79

Note: a spin on the traditional split. Each band here does a cover of one of the others tracks not heard here.

Back to the Regular Broadcast…

tempole ov perversion.jpg

Temple ov Perversion s/t (EP)
Release – October/18/2019
Clavis Secretorvm

Thanks fellas, now I have what many might consider the first pornographic image on the site. Although jaded this boasts certain vintage qualities, as well underworld qualities (as seen by the imps in attendance and creatures which warrant closer inspection to define). And the fact that I’ve just noticed that the one ‘impaled’ is sans arms and that the perpetrators face is malformed means that my attention is juvenile and drawn to the obvious before all else.


The introduction is an instrumental which more than hints at an album draped in a myriad of styles. A traditional heavy metal vibe here is strong as well elements of thrash/speed and an underlying dark atmosphere with a medieval vibe.


This is not what I’d expected based on the introduction, admittedly it’s closer to the albums accompanying art. Herein is a style which is draped in rhythm (damn catchy rhythms at that, sporting surprising groove passages) albeit slathered in black values. Accompanied by a vocal style which is decidedly black in tone (traditional) the whole affair is draped in a menacing aura and atmosphere occasionally shot through with shrieks and howls (which hint at Avant Garde influence). Riff breaks, far from the normal unrelenting assault, are a welcome addition and show an act who aren’t afraid to stray from the traditional genre template. Black metal with elements of speed metal, although to be sure it’s fast enough as it is, the occasional nod to tradition metal with moments of dramatic vocal gymnastics this is far from the norm but is wholly consumable without complaint. Surprise your senses and toss this between the ears it’s a damn sight more impressive than you might think.

Favorite Tracks; Arrival ov the Horns, Temple ov Perversion.

FFO; My apologies, I’m at a loss for whom to mention here. Step outside of the comfort zone and give this a listen, dammit!

hour of penance

Hour of Penance – Misotheism
Release – October/25/2019
Agonia Records

This is dark, Gothic and ominous indeed. Great colors and details. Are there tendrils/tentacles surging from the cathedral? Are the amassed crowds drenched in offal and crimson? Something is certainly stirring in the distance above the monstrous construct. Best grab a brolly, and best not to forget the tank. Prepare to put that bitch into four-wheel drive we be about to trample some unfortunates!


Technical, yet not overly so, unrelenting yet not so much as to be suffocating and accompanied by an inhuman drum salvo. This is a fantastic combination; did I mention the vocals are top notch? Nope, they are and this is an ultra-impressive commencement.


Unmerciful in its approach and unrelenting in its salvo; this is what death metal is all about (there are all manner of sub genres, the list expands by the day, but I believe this to be the purist strain). Boasting zero progressive passages and sporting unerring brutality; intricate in its composition from start to finish. Drenched in speed, but not merely for speeds sake, and an atmosphere complemented by undeniable majesty which places it perilously close to the darker side of the metal spectrum. I can honestly say this grabbed me from the get-go and caressed the space between my ears with loving punishment whilst creating a visage splitting smirk from ear to ear (I could probably star as the next Joker if I didn’t suffer from the curse of being absolute crap at most everything I try my hands at) until its finale.

I hate to admit that this is the first Hour of Penance album to really grab me. With that in mind I’m sure there are others and with the quality of this in mind I’ll make it a point of exploring their discography until I can decide I should probably go back to work, or family duties. I’ve heard word that most are excellent, perhaps I just wasn’t in the right mood at the time? Don’t be like me, give this a listen and dwell in absolute audio brilliance. Add this to your collection and support an act who are worthy of such. Suffice it to say this delivers and demands praise, here’s hoping I’m helping it along that path.

Favorite Tracks; Blight and Conquer, Lamb of the Seven Sins, Flames of Merciless Gods, Iudex,

FFO; Origin, Suffocation, Nile, Deeds of Flesh, Abysmal Dawn, Fleshgod Apocalypse, Hideous Divinity.

Time for an Old Favorite; “RECC’d by”


Recc’d by RYCHUSSYN @gregorywjkelly on Twitter
Paladin – Purification du Mal
Release – September/20/2019 (note: the Bandcamp page mentions both July/20 and September/20)
PRC Music
Thoughts –

With art which depicts Seraphim obliterating serpents I’m left wondering what manner of audio I’m about to lay my ears upon. Is this power metal, epic or otherwise? Does it have religious connotations? Only one way to find out…

paladin OSDM

For starters, this certainly isn’t power, epic or even close to traditional heavy metal and I don’t believe it has anything to do with religion (one-way or another) though I could be mistaken, this is in a language I’m unfamiliar with much to the chagrin of my high school French teacher. It is however, mired in a gutter nature, catacomb values and an old school influence so cloying you can virtually smell it. Not to be confused with the Prosthetic act with the same name this Quebecian (am I saying that correctly?) collective stray far from thrash waters, also progressive and technical landscapes, much preferring to camp out in a terrain which is unmistakably treacherous and drenched in an ominous aura. Theirs is a style whose influence is familiar yet varied, from past (the old school here is strong young Padawan) and from more recent acts who have chosen to resurrect that which is tried and true and have added their own flair for an unarguable degree of success and acclaim. The pace showcased here is sluggish, and only occasionally treads into faster currents. The groove permeates throughout, is wickedly strong and one wouldn’t be remiss in wanting to prance around like one possessed whilst this slithers its way through the brain. Surprising are moments when the vocalist adds grunts and enunciation perhaps in homage to Celtic Frost. But, hey, it works and although one might be left scrambling for acts who sound like this (I know I am, my memory is schiite at the best of times) there’s no doubt that Paladin know how to compose to grab the attention of those yearning for a spot of putrid old school with a fresh twist. Check this out and support an act who more than worthy of your attention.

Recc’d by Void @voidhanger2 on Twitter


Verdugo – Altar Del Rencor
Release – July/16/2017
No Mercy Reks
Thoughts –

Recently my knowledgeable pal Void tossed me a Recc which I couldn’t find in its entirety, so I chose to tackle an earlier release by the same band instead. Much to my surprise and excitement the original Recc is now up and in full. With the quality of the last in mind I couldn’t wait to take the plunge so without further preamble…

verdugo altar of

First off, I must mention that this sports some of the finest black and white art I’ve seen in recent months. The stone altar, the skulls, the details on all of which are superb. And the depth of texture to the surrounding walls. Just brilliance.

The music itself is raw. But don’t let this fool you. It lends an edge to the style, as in this case I believe polished would feel out if place. The order of the day here is thrash, not just that but undeniable blackened values too. And it works! The concoction is criminally infectious in fact. Combined with vocals which sound as if they were recorded in a cavernous surrounding the effect is one which drips venom (not the band, nor ‘Spidey’s’ most infamous of foe), an air of underworld which the word macabre doesn’t quite touch. Naturally, lyrics sang in the bands native tongue help the music’s archaic qualities and the composition certainly aids in the same regard. Mischievous and galloping melodies are often part of the assault and serve to break up the unrelenting speed laden salvos. Bearing a decidedly South American aggressive thrash aura set against darkened values this is an album fans of the scene need to make time for. Toss them a few bucks in support to ensure they can continue to delight the senses; I’ve heard rumor something new is in the works. Fingers crossed.

exhausted animal

This is more tiring than you might imagine

Well, that’s about it for this shorter than normal installment, I’ve attempted to make this more diverse than most on account of its length hoping there was something for most everyone. Until our audio paths of interest cross again, don’t fear discovery of that which would normally be foreign to the senses.



Abrasive Audio – Part Thirty (October 2019)

headbangin gif

To quote Beavis and Butthead, or someone equally as silly, “Metal, metal, metal”. It’s what I’ve got in store and what I’ll preach upon, as per usual. So, grab your favorite beverage, sit back, strap in and open those ear holes for another extreme audio invasion. Be warned – this is another especially mammoth affair (11 bands/albums at last count) with a veritable avalanche of diverse new tunage to discover, jump in!

Please note that ratings here are usually on the high side this is due the fact that I leave audio which I can’t get into (for one reason or another) for someone else to lay words upon. Naturally tastes vary, yours may not be the same as mine for this reason I try to impart a wide spectrum of styles within the titles I place my ponderances upon. Without further ado what say we get this started with…


Necronomicon – Unus
Release – October/18/2019
Season of Mist
Asher Media Relations

Serpents, lions, reptiles, flames and an overall motif many may well confuse for a stamp of royalty. Black Metal by order of Her Royal Highness, or something… close.


In short, this is symphonic, atmospheric blackened metal with an epic nature. And it’s a damn impressive commencement.


There’s no doubt whatsoever that these guys know exactly what they’re doing. This album drips with excellence, wisdom, atmosphere and an epic audio landscape drenched in master craft-execution of archaic qualities one cannot possibly ignore. Chants, synth interludes and angelic voices add to the albums blackened death par excellence (combining infectious rhythms, ranging from sweeping melodies to hyper speed pacing, and inhuman drum precision) and an undeniable captivating allure. There’s even an addition of old school stylings (by way of the last two tracks “Cursed MMXIX” and “Vox Draconis”) tossed in to perk the interest of those whose interests lay more in the death, rather than blackened death, side of the metal spectrum. If blackened death is the area of the metal arena upon which you spend most of your time you would be negligent not to place this within the ears. If this is a scene which is new to you and you’re curious this is a great place to start your exploration. Highly recommended!

Favorite Tracks; Infinitum Continuum, Paradise Lost, Singularis Dominus, Ascending the Throne of Baator, Vox Draconis.

FFO; Septic Flesh, Dimmu Borgir, Cradle of Filth, Rotting Christ, Behemoth.


Algebra – Pulse?
Release – September30/2019
Unspeakable Axe Records
Clawhammer PR

Not usually what one would expect to find on a ‘thrash’ album (again I’ve spoilt the fun and perused the promo materials) this hints at an album with progressive death leanings, the logo hints at the same. Hitting play…


An acoustic intro that’s part Sepultura (BtR), part Annihilator (AiH) certainly perks up the ears but it’s the cavalcade of riffs both intricate, precise and technical which warrants praise. I can’t honestly say I’m a huge fan of thrash, a few albums here and there. This however has my complete and utter undivided attention leaving me more than intrigued as to how the remainder will play out. (On a personal level the vocal approach took a few listens to fully appreciate although it doesn’t take away from the genius of the music itself).


‘Precise’ is a fantastic descriptive word. And I’ll attempt not to overuse it as I continue. Admittedly it might be easier said than done. The audio found here isn’t face melting pace for the sake of it, neither is it merely too technical, a style which might only appeal to those who aspire to be the next Vai, Rhodes or any number of guitar virtuosos who leave audiences around the world in awe. There’s an undeniable fluid nature here. Timing changes are exquisite, rhythms infectious and dynamic. Melodies are plentiful and change enough to keep a listener on their toes (ranging from galloping, ‘old school’ aggressive, stoopid fast to melodies which evoke all manner of emotions) but not too much as to be over the top. A sense of familiarity abounds, leaves one scratching their heads as to which band or album this or that part sounds like, but it doesn’t take away from the listening experience in the slightest. Oftentimes an epic narrative unfolds by way of the music alone complementing the (far removed from the run of the mill) thought-provoking lyrical content. The vocal approach appears at first like it doesn’t fit. But then, after a few listens, slips comfortably into the ‘perfect complement to the percussion’ folder. In short, a winning combination which if someone could bottle it would most probably be titled something along the lines of ‘Excuse me for a second while I blow your mind’, or ”Forget the Remainder of your day you’re about to be Unfathomably Distracted”. Naturally words, as they often do, fail me as I attempt to imprint my appreciation upon the flashing screen beneath my hands. To top it off this has one of the finest “Dead Embryonic Cells” covers I’ve ever had the pleasure to put between the ears. Don’t, DON’T, don’t, allow this to go unnoticed. It really is that damn impressive and seriously appeared from out of the ether itself to entangle my whole afternoon in audio I wish to play again, again and again.

Favorite Tracks; Inner Constraints, Addicted to Authority, Stimulated Mind, Manipulated Soul, Pulse?

FFO; Deathrow, Vektor, Coroner, Slayer, Sepultura.


ColdClaw – Anti Martyr: Decades to Suffer
Release – September/27/2019
Ritual Sounds Records
BDWE Media

Black and white imagery complete with a sun-bleached effect (this might have been shot in Arizona, anyone?) depicting an unfortunate soul stuck within the confines of a suspended cage with his only companions the birds which have, most probably, been pecking away at his torso for millennia.


A ritualistic introduction, of sorts, dissolves into a drum heavy salvo with a dissonant guitar complement. This soon transforms again into dangerously addictive rhythms channeling both crust, death and black metal leanings. A fantastic combination which grabs the attention and opens the eyes to Coldclaw’s style whilst yanking control of the torso into uncontrollable spasms of frenetic movement. An excellent opening leaving one eagerly salivating for the remainder of what’s to follow.


With the quality of this release in mind I expect Coldclaw to be a name on most lips throughout the arena of extreme metal within the coming months (of course ‘justice’ doesn’t always prevail). Theirs is a style which captures the essence of black metal (via rasped vocal stylings), crust as experienced throughout the album in various passages featuring dominant drum salvos; which are difficult not to move to and death metal as heard within various chugging riff approaches and the brutality which is displayed dominantly throughout. Undeniable atmosphere is a fantastic accompaniment to the angst on offer and will please those with blackened metal penchants regardless of what the atmospheric element accompanies. A mid-tempo is customary, though occasionally Coldclaw take the leap into hyper drive realms (bringing to mind 1349 and Necronomicon) as heard within the excellent “Zephyrs” and “Stillness” track (why isn’t there more tracks with this in the title? My spell check device is about to remove me from its Xmas list mailing).

In conclusion, as if one hasn’t already come to the same conclusion as I, this album is one which deserves ears upon it and praise slathered all over it. Its composition is one that’s not altogether new though sounds unique on account of the quality it’s been created by. The result is a collection of tracks which has the potential to appeal to a wide audience, some who are curious about arenas they perhaps haven’t discovered before and others whose interests lay within the styles mixed with such passionate precision here. No matter where your compass lie do yourself a favor and set the senses upon this then add it to the collection and support the blossoming talent within the scene.

Favorite Tracks; The Deafening, Into the Mirror (Visceral Self-Loathing), Bring Down the Hammer, Searing Wings Through Zephyrs, Stillness and Devine Rivalry, Crippling Dementia.

FFO: Dark Throne, Mayhem, 1349.

come back from the dead album

Come Back from the Dead – Rise of the Blind Ones
Release – September/13/2019
Transcending Obscurity Records

Teal on an album cover. It’s quite the risk, but it works. And this collective of corpses shot through with wicked looking tendrils certainly catches the eye.


Huge riffs lead into a groove -laden landscape complemented by a Barney-esque vocal approach. Early The Haunted in feel accentuated by thrash sensibilities. This isn’t your Father’s death metal! A great start!


With melody and groove throughout this rarely let’s up in the infectious department. Maniacal passages, ala early Slayer, lend an edge and elevate this far above what one would find upon the same old traditional, tried and true, death release. Occasional familiarity (especially in the case of “Restless in Putrescence”) puts one in mind of an old school style, an influence no doubt though this is far from merely just that. Think a hybrid of 90’s European death, old school British grind/death with a complementary sprinkle of doom and a maniacal essence. A mixture no doubt which has been perpetrated before but, in this case, somehow it feels fresh and leaves quite an impression.

Favorite Tracks; Outcast of the Light, Martyrs of a Gruesome Demise, Restless in Putrescence, Darkness Abominations, Possessed by the Death.

FFO; Morgoth, Dismember, The Haunted, Vomitory, Bloodbath.

And, wait for it…it’s Split Time

swampbeast void terror split

Swamp Beast/Void Terror split
Holocaust of Terrestrial Empires
Release – November/14/2019
Me Saco Un Ojo
(note; the Split is represented as of this publication date)

This looks as though it could be from the same pencil as the person responsible for the last Drawn and Quartered album (I could be wrong, and most probably are). A diabolical, subterranean image which blossoms with more details as the viewer digs deeper.

Swampbeast – 86

Unrelenting death grind complemented by suffocating catacomb-esque atmosphere. A mesmerizing soundscape combining Napalm Death touches, passages of groove and a brutal whirlwind chaotic attack. The climax of their ‘set’ utilizes an excellent militaristic/ritualistic drum salvo which morphs into an all-consuming, blazing, fire motif. An excellent climax to a fantastic introduction to the band and their audio.

FFO; Morbid Angel, Tomb Mold, Blood Incantation, Ch’thelist.

Void Terror – 92

Utilizing more a majestic and atmospheric black metal approach as an introduction Void Terror’s initial portion (of this split) initially brings to mind what Bolt Thrower “Realm of Chaos” might have sounded like if it had decidedly black metal undertones. Dirge laden and wickedly dark, yet chaotic and shot through with diabolical essence. Gothic elements are a great addition and add to an already undeniable hypnotic effect. A swirling maelstrom of audio madness one doesn’t wish to escape.

This is easy to lose oneself within, extreme fans will be left pleased indeed!

FFO; Drawn and Quartered.

An excellent split with plenty on offer from two acts ripe for discovery. Keep an ear out for these guys they are poised for greatness.

Favorite Tracks; Chant of Bolotnik, Multiversal Extract, Second Death.

Overall – 90
Back to our regularly scheduled programming…

meth fetish.jpg

Meth Fetish – Meth Fetish EP
Release – November/1/2019
Dry Cough Records/ Pissed Gargler Records
(Note; the Split isn’t represented as of this publication date)

What is it with album art which is perplexing? I somewhat get it, the artist and band want you to look closer, paying more attention to hidden intricacies as you try to work out what it might be. Perhaps I’m old school and require (scratch that; ‘demand’) instant gratification rather than an image I need a degree and an impressive IQ to utilize in order to get somewhat of a clue. The jury’s out. If I were to guess I’d say this is a representation of a torso shot through with a substance making its way through the vital organs. Meth perhaps? Pressing play.


Hypnotic and dense this is sludge oozing with an unmistakable dirge nature and subterranean qualities.


With strings so loose it’s an OSHA hazard, Meth Fetish choke the listener in a dirge nature so vile, thick and heavy you’d think it might have recently exited the bowels of a pachyderm freed from worrisome constipation. Complemented by distortion so blatant it could clear the cobwebs from an abandoned Gothic mansion, a bludgeoning nature, vocals spewed lazily from a pestilent throat and an overall nature which drips with underworld atmosphere. This about ticks all the boxes for the requirements a seasoned vet of the filthiest arena of extreme tunage demands. Give it a listen and prepare to put a down payment on a brand spanking new subwoofer. You’ve been warned!

Favorite Tracks; Wasted, Incurable.

FFO; Fetish 69, EyeHateGod, Cathedral, Acid Bath.


Cleric – Serpent Psalms
Release – October/25/2019
Raw Skull Recordz/Redefining Darkness Records

There’s a great deal going on here. An alien landscape, a sacrificial Aztec-esque altar, effigies watching over all and coitus in what appears to be mud of one type or another. Intriguing indeed. It’s as if doom has collided with sci-fi laden grindcore.


Traditional HM2 action meets old school British death/grind complemented by a Barney-esque vocal approach, catchy as fuk mid-tempo groove and an atmosphere one might not expect bearing in mind the above-mentioned combination.


The familiarity here for those of us with tastes for the old school and mid-tempo infectious silliness is undeniable. This is worship at the altar of both HM2 and the early 90’s British death scene. Above and beyond that this offers little touches (synth interludes hinting at cosmic/foreign landscapes,  as well a fluidity which hard to deny) which add to the homage keeping the attention and plenty of groove passages to make one want to take this from wired headphones to blue tooth or even a speaker system setup which the neighbors will more than likely hate you for, but it’s worth it. Boasting a seething dirge nature complemented by riffs and rhythms which are difficult to ignore this, though not altogether ground-breaking, is a release which demands further attention and might well male one take a trip down nostalgia brutal ville to revisit that which is most probably collecting dust. Highly Recommended, but be prepared for the limbs to move of their own volition.

Favorite Tracks; Maw of Absolution, Possessed in Congress, All Death Unseeing, Destroying Eye of the Self.

FFO; Benediction, Bolt Thrower, Carnage, Entombed, Dismember.


Andralls – Bleeding for Thrash
Release – October/11/2019
MDD Records
Against PR
(Note; this is an earlier release as of this publication date the album isn’t represented yet)

With the recent background of the band, more specifically the lead singer, in mind odds are this could well be imagery, and the albums aptly named title, depicting his overcoming thyroid cancer.

The image certainly grabs the interest and piques the curiosity and is miles from what one would expect to find adorning the cover of a thrash album, a melodic or doom/death affair but hardly thrash.


Heavily accented vocals (with a hardcore slant) atop aggressive driving rhythms which bear undeniable early Exodus ‘bounce’, maniacal riffage ala Slayer and also old school go all out tendencies.


This collection of tracks is testament to a band’s dedication, perseverance and passion for the craft. Rarely letting up this album showcases driving rhythms, a style which incorporates a slew of influences across the extreme spectrum and dynamic pace channeling Sepultura, Overkill complemented by the maniacal riff fashioning of Slayer. Feast your ears on this and support an act who prove that hard work, perseverance and patience pay off.

Favorite Tracks; Bleeding for Thrash, Imminent Cancer, Acid Rain.

FFO; Sodom, Exodus, Slayer, Sepultura.

in mourning.jpg

In Mourning – Garden of Storms
Release – October/4/2019
Agonia Records

An amorphous plant, a force of nature running amok or merely an artist’s interpretation of a transformative hybrid force within the wild? Regardless, this is certainly eye-opening and not what one would expect to find on an album cover in a genre in which I can only presume this resides. I’m ready to be set to rights, hitting play.


A stunning mix of melodic death, doom and progressive elements supported by an excellent fluidity and rhythms which are criminally infectious. A clean, hoarse vocal trade off works superbly and only serves to make this a track which is most certainly up there with the finest of the year (need I say IMO?)


What we have here folks is another example of an act which I’m amazed I haven’t discovered much sooner. The audio here is about as varied as one can imagine without it running into ridiculous territories, Avant Garde, or experimental realms. Growling vocals (of the highest order if there is such a thing) complement shifting rhythms, sweeping, soaring melodies and progressive passages which otherwise wouldn’t fit but, in this instance, based on their setting and the music’s composition and the tracks nature, are exquisite. The styles herein tumble over each as though puppies at play without once resorting to brutality, the fluidity here is astounding. In fact, overall this is an album I’m itching to recommend to the wife if only it wasn’t for the fact that she has an aversion to growling vocals I believe she’d be as excited about it as I. Without running into diatribe lengths I’ll leave this here and hope my fanciful words have made an impression. Hopefully I’m not the last to jump on this it deserves praise from the highest of peaks. Suffice it to say the name of both the band and the album are sure to be heard until well into next year even after year end lists have been exhausted. (If I get around to compiling one, there’s no doubt it’ll be high on the podium.)

Favorite Tracks; This album flows so damn well and offers so much stylistic diversity at such an elevated level that its hard to pick only a few tracks. Suffice it say it delivers throughout.

FFO; October Tide, Opeth, Katatonia, Between the Buried and Me, Be’lakor, Insomnium, Swallow the Sun.

the deathtrip.jpg

The Deathtrip – Demon Solar Totem
(United Kingdom/Norway)
Release – November/15/2019
Svart Records/Profound Lore Records

I’m not quite sure what to make of this to be honest. It looks as if it could have Oriental occult origins; the shape of the face, the flowing mass of hair. Though I’m still perturbed as to what it could be. One thing’s for certain though, there’s plenty of crimson and the person has wicked sharp looking talons. Pressing play.


Ominous indeed. Atmosphere drenched in dread and menace collides with tradition hyper speed chaotic, blasting, black metal which oozes undeniable majesty. Occult qualities, as well mystical elements are front and center and cavort in an epic nature. Within its length hypnotic rhythms are commonplace aided by chants making for a varied vocal approach and hinting at a release which could well be quite the auditory experience.


Adding upon a harsh, primal, oftentimes raw groundwork with epic themes, a grandiose template which incorporates screams, howls, chants and undeniable majestic The Deathtrip have created an album which has the potential to garner appeal from across the BM landscape. Varied in both scope and approach raw audio (with an intensity to appeal to traditionalists and those acclimatizing themselves to the variety the scene offers; aka me) cavorts alongside melancholic atmosphere hypnotic, trance inducing, rhythms and surprisingly melody drenched under occult skies an effect which holds the attention from first to last. And the more one sinks into the experience (aka repeated listens) the greater detail and intricacies it provides. This boasts an appeal which cannot be argued, begs to be repeated and often.

Favorite Tracks; Demon Solar Totem, Angel Fossils, Surrender to a Higher Power, Enter Spectral Realms, Abraxas Mirrors.

FFO; Mayhem, Darkthrone, Thorns, Beherit, Dissection, Emperor, Burzum.


Psychomancer – Shards of the Hourglass
Release – October/31/2019
Orchestrated Misery Recordings
Clawhammer PR

The imagery (as well the bands logo) bears somewhat a dark hip-hop vibe, the effluent green glow and font are to blame, thankfully the audio isn’t (I’ve perused the accompanying promo materials) and honestly, I’m not a fan, fingers crossed it doesn’t turn a potential listener away.


Thrashy death with a familiar HM2 Buzzsaw dirge vibe showcasing plenty of rhythm changes with a sound bolstered by commendable production values. The drum sound and bass twang is distinct, the vocals are of the death doom variety.


Melodic death, bordering on the more aggressive spectrum of thrash, boasting mid-tempo rhythms and a cavalcade of riffs which are difficult not to appreciate. Quality production values, clear sound and plenty of groove passages help keep this from forgettable realms. Though the style is truthfully far from ground breaking this offers a style and execution fans of the Entombed, Grave and Dismember movement will likely appreciate more than most.

Favorite Tracks; Red Poetry, As Your Vital Signs Decline, Deto-Nation, Myrmidons.

FFO; Benediction, Gorefest, Malevolent Creation, Vader, Grave.

It’s “Recc’d by” Time

fistful of doom

Recc’d’ by Fistful of Doom; @FlatulentFuzz (on Twitter):
Cycles of the Damned – A Time to Survive
Release – October/12/2019
Incendiary Ceremony Recordings, D.H.U Records
Mettle Media
Thoughts –

It’s hard what to expect from audio with the album’s art in mind; A skull within chainmail and helmet set against a background ablaze in flames. Better just to clear the mind and let the audio itself do the “talking”.

cycles of the damned.jpg

Immediately noticeable is that the albums six tracks run sixty minutes (one runs over fifteen minutes in length, the first three run close to forty-two minutes). I’m of the mind that this can only go one of only two ways; sheer boredom (resulting in my attention diverting elsewhere and damn quick) or audio which captivates with its brilliance, leaving me in awe with my attention rapt. I’m glad to report that the latter is the case. This is drenched in doom sensibilities as well sludge qualities and a certain amount of unquestionable angst. Cinematic soundscapes are introduced often, showcasing psychedelic moments amidst unbound atmosphere, and make up a great deal of the albums playing time adding considerable depth, an element one might normally expect to find upon an album within the same genre, and a narrative one can easily lose themselves in depending on of course their ‘state of relaxation’ (if you catch my drift). A plethora of emotions are guaranteed to be evoked as this plays out as the listener is dragged from one destination to another in a journey comprised upon a spectrum of landscapes formed from the unlikely coalescing of a myriad of styles. Fluidity is uncommonly commendable and I would suggest an afternoon free from distraction to be able to let the power of this release (as a whole, not track by track if avoidable) sink in. Thanks for the Recc Sir. I’m adding this to my playlist for those long road trips where conversation is dull and the surroundings muted by sparseness.  Recommended for those who have an open mind and are willing to allow a release to breathe rather than assault the senses immediately.

Recc’d by Void; @Voidhanger2 on Twitter

Void Reccs

Scaphism – Perpetual Torment
Release – August/27/2019
Thoughts –

Within the last year I’ve laid thoughts down upon Scaphism’s last album (“Unutterable Horrors” released in January of last year through Horror Pain Gore Death Productions), I liked it but was left wanting more, I wondered when their next might drop. Void surprised me one day by asking if I’d ever heard of them (doesn’t he read my inane ramblings upon all things metal I thought briefly) and continued by stating that he was going to a show (I’m still jealous, dammit!) A few hours after the show in question he dropped me a brief video which left me perplexed; had the vocalist changed? (regardless he stated that he loved them) Which prompted me to seek out and lay a few thoughts upon this, a two-track demo leading up the bands third full length (which I’m also willing to promote if the band is reading this – hint, hint).

scaphism - perpetual torment

As is typical I’ll ponder upon this releases art before I dissect the audio. I’m all up for gruesome art especially if it reminds me of a standout, and quite unexpected especially grisly FX laden, scene from the original Poltergeist movie (which is usually omitted when it airs on TV).

Old school and groove come to mind when I hit play. The vocalist may have changed but the style hasn’t, for which I’m thankful, Lovecraftian lore and a story type narrative oozes from the lyrical content and for the most part it’s actually decipherable (which is rare in the genre) which in no way takes away from the quality. This is a lady who can growl (anyone else into that sort of thing?) And hers is a style which fits the audio leaving no doubt or concerns whatsoever. Riffs are far from technical, but I’ve no complaints, this is undeniably more ‘meat and potatoes’ style death with breakdowns and the occasional abrupt galloping pace transformation tossed in for effect.

If this is any indication of the quality on offer from album to follow, I’m all ears. And Void likes it so who’s to argue ‘his’ logic.

exhausted animal

That’s about it for this, yet another monstrous installment, in the series, I only hope you made it to the end (I’m tired). Until our paths of audio interest cross paths again, don’t fear discovery of that which would normally not grab your attention.