Junkyard Lipstick – The Butcher’s Delight (Review)

Junkyard LipstickJunkyard Lipstick are from South Africa and play Thrash Metal.

The band have some quality Old-School Thrash riffs in their repertoire and know how to use them.

The vocals are similarly Old-School, with good melodies and lots of character. Her voice reminds me of a female version of the Agent Steel and Pagan’s Mind singers somehow mixed together. Add to this the odd raspier L7 moment and you have a voice laden with personality. Vocal experimentation rears its head on occasion though, especially on House of the Holy and when it does it’s just wonderful; she can do more than just rasp for sure.

The songs are short and the band wear their their Metallica/Anthrax influences on their denim sleeves.

The combination of youthfully exuberant vocals and passionate Thrash hero-worship means this short EP is very infectious. As I listen to it I can’t help but feel my heart filling with Metal and the urge to mosh along rising.

Check them out and give them your support.

Favourite Track: House of the Holy.

The World State – Flier (Review)

The World StateDanish band The World State have released their first EP Flier.

Orchestral sounds and touches of Rock and Metal collide in this ambitious release.

The ex-Sirenia singer shows that she still has an amazing voice and her vocals here are exquisite.

The tracks have lots of ideas and effects to hold attention. Ambience and subtlety are used effectively as well as heavier and more intense sections.

Well written songs with a great sense of dynamics and pace pound or slink their way out of the speakers and it’s clear that this is a very talented band.

Each song captures a different mood but all of them are involved and have a playful experimental edge that sounds fresh and exciting. There are three main songs and one piano instrumental.

After listening to this over and over I can’t get enough of it. It’s simply wonderful, that’s all there is to say about it.

At under 20 minutes across 4 tracks this EP is brief but effective. A full album of this would be most welcome!

Cultfinder – Hell’s Teeth (Review)

CultfinderThis is UK band Cultfinder and they play Black Metal with a hefty Thrash influence.

A relatively short release of 24 minutes; after a perfunctory intro, (and one interlude), we get 5 tracks of blazing, bestial Blackened Thrash full of Satanic energy coursing through its corrupted veins.

The songs are primitive and atavistic, harking back to simpler times of a purified Metal lineage without outside influences or detractions. The band are fully aware of the path they tread and do so with pride.

The vocals bark their way from the gutter and scrape like nails down a blackboard. Even so, they manage to effectively deliver a wealth of hooks.

The wills of the various musicians are nefariously bent towards the creation and propagation of primeval Metal, and they do this admirably and to full effect. The songs and the riffs stick in the brain even after the final song The Scourging Angel ends in a squeal of feedback.

Apart from a previously released demo this is the band’s first release, and thus is laid a foundation for the future. A terrifying future where Cultfinder’s Blackened vision has come to pass. Get in on the action early and have a listen to Hell’s Teeth.

Interview with Our Last Enemy

Our Last Enemy Logo

Our Last Enemy have recently released their latest album Pariah, in all its Industrial Metal glory.  I got to grill Matt Heywood and Oliver Fogwell from the band about the album and what makes them march to the pulsing, Industrial beat.

For those who are unfamiliar with you – introduce yourself!

We’re Our Last Enemy and we’re from Sydney, Australia. We play a type of Industrial Metal. We like the listener to decide what it is exactly.
We are:
Oli – Vocals
Bizz – Guitar
Jeff – Keys
Matt – Bass
Zot – Drums

How did you form?

The band was formed in late 2006 in Sydney, by Oli, Jeff and myself (Matt), and we were introduced by a mutual friend after our previous bands had disbanded.

Bizz joined the band in 2010 after leaving his previous band Genitorturers and re-locating to Sydney and was also introduced by mutual friends.

Zot joined the band in 2013 and had originally played in a band with Oli before Our Last Enemy. It’s all in the family here down under! There’s a lot of history and experience between the members having played in various bands for many years.

Our Last EnemyWhat are your influences?

We all have different a varied styles of music that we listen to individually, with the common thread being metal, electronic music and just plain weird shit!

In terms of what influences us, I guess we influence each other when someone brings in an idea for a song and what that idea makes the rest of us feel or think.

What are you listening to at the moment that you want to recommend?

Well I know all 5 of us love the new-ish ‘Bring Me The Horizon’ album, I know they’re very “scene” and popular at the moment – But that album is fucking brilliant! So we would recommend that album for people who can look past their “scenester” audience.

I’m also listening to Phil Anselmo’s new album – Walk Through Exits Only – Its great! It’s a no bullshit album that doesn’t pull any punches and doesn’t try to be one form of heavy music or fit into some sub-genre! Phil is still one of the best frontmen in the world!

Why did you decided to incorporate Industrial and atmospheric parts into your songs, rather than just sticking to the more “traditional” instruments?

That’s a good question – probably because anything traditional bores the living fuck out of us! All 5 of us would rather punch ourselves repeatedly in the testicles than listen to an entire album of like…U2 or Coldplay or something like that.

But I guess it’s because we all love different styles of music even some “traditional” style of rock music… some.

So there was never really a moment where we decided to incorporate industrial or atmospheric parts into our songs it’s just what we do.

Our Last Enemy

Are you happy with how the album came out?

Yeah, very happy… Having Christian (Olde Wolbers – ex Fear Factory) on board as producer was great, it was a great learning curve for us and it was great to have his experience in the studio.

We tried to give the listener as much value as possible, choosing our favourite songs and also adding the remixes from Mortiis, Angel (Dope) and Travis (Divine Hersey) who we thought did a great job.

What can you tell us about the lyrics?

There is a central theme to the album on a character we call ‘Pariah’ who causes/follows/is a witness to anything devastating in our world, whether it’s the past, present or future. He doesn’t die, he doesn’t live. He’s is neither the devil nor god, he is just devastation. Or a very unlucky soul.
What is your aim with Our Last Enemy – what do you want to achieve?

Our answer would be the same as any honest band or artist, without getting into a particular agenda – we want to get our music out to as many people as possible, pushing our particular style of art as far as we can, which we hope will lead to a strong career so we can continue to make music.

What does the future hold for Our Last Enemy?

Well, our album drops on March 11th 2014 all over North America through Eclipse Records. We will be doing a North American tour soon, which we can’t elaborate on anymore at the moment and in the meantime we’re writing our second album. We like to stay busy.

Thanks!

Eissturm – The Purpose (Review)

EissturmThis is US band Eissturm and they play Black Metal with Ambient and Folk touches.

This is Black Metal in the style of Vinterrikket with Metal tracks interspersed with more Ambient, Folky numbers.

In the Metal parts the guitars are fuzzy, atmospheric and concentrate on building mood with layers of ice cold depth. It’s heavily distorted and laden with reverberation.

The guitars aim to create maximum emotion and the extra effects create a veneer of feeling that radiates outwards from the songs like a cyclone.

The vocals are either emitted like static; scratching and screeching their way through the storms, or howling and tortured; crying out in anguish against the wind.

The ambient tracks reinforce the fact that this is Black Metal born of a frigid, desolate environment where survival is hard and night is perpetual. Each one adds to the mystique and flavour of the album and draws you into their world even more.

Like walking through a snowstorm in a barren landscape with no food or shelter for days. Icy and atmospheric Ambient Black Metal done well.

Cauldron Black Ram – Stalagmire (Review)

Cauldron Black Ram

This is the third album from Australian Death Metal band Cauldron Black Ram.

The band have a very striking sound that instantly forces you to sit up and pay attention. Sort of like Six Feet Under crossed with Venom and Celtic Frost.

There is an air of Sludge to the songs; a foetid whiff of mouldy corpses long sealed in a basement. Add to this a decent Black Metal influence on occasion, and you have a bumpy ride over the screaming bodies of countless poor passers by as this Metal juggernaut rolls into town.

They have a very fluid sound in the sense that the songs can morph into different shades of Metal quite quickly, with different riffs, vocals and drumming patterns all asserting themselves dominantly depending on the song. All of this happens within the Death/Black/Sludge Metal framework of course, but it does mean that there’s never any chance to get bored when the band have so many tools to club their way into your attention.

Although I wouldn’t call them Old-School per se, there is a definite Old-School streak to them and they even have some prime Heavy Metal, almost Iron Maiden-type moments now and again.

This is an interesting and gratifying Metal album. All the more so for the fact that it’s a little different from the norm. A lot of talent and effort has gone into these songs, and it shows.

Get your fix of Cauldron Black Ram today.

Terminal Prospect – Redefine Existence (Review)

Terminal ProspectTime for a bit of Swedish Melodic Death Metal in the form of Terminal Prospect and their second album Redefine Existence.

At 11 tracks in 34 minutes, most of the songs are quite short and to the point. This is from the same school of Metal as The Haunted, early In Flames, Darkane, At The Gates, etc. and it’s better than you probably imagine.

The album starts with the high-pitched screams of the singer, whose vocals appear to be designed to scratch at the brain while the music batters your chest. He screams and shrieks his way through the songs in an effective manner, and it works particularly well when he locks into a rhythm with the guitars and they work together as one.

The songs are streamlined and full of melodic flourish, while still keeping the Thrash feel of the riffs alive and well. There are some nice guitar parts and the band have a vibrant feeling to a lot of the riffs. This vibrant feeling is important; it would be easy for a band like this to have tired-sounding guitars. Although it’s exceptionally hard for any group to have completely unique riffs, melodies etc., and Terminal Prospect don’t fall into this category, (as most bands don’t); at least they still sound young, fresh and full of life. There is no going-through-the-motions here, it’s all done for the love of Metal.

A quality album that is easy to digest and leaves a pleasant taste in the mouth. Recommended.

Sammath – Godless Arrogance (Review)

SammathThis is Sammath’s fifth album of Black Metal misanthropy from the Netherlands.

Oh but this takes me back! This is for the people who couldn’t get enough of Panzer Division Marduk – this has the same intensity and visceral assault.

Straight away the band are a whirlwind of razorblade riffs and frenzied drumming. As brutal as a stabbing and as clinical as a missile; these songs are not interested in who gets hurt but only in the wanton amount of collateral damage they can cause.

Accompanied by savage vocals sharp enough to tear reality the music is ferocious and vicious as only scathing Black Metal can be.

Dark melodies cloaked under waves of rhythmic misanthropy truly manifest themselves over time in the 8 hymns to warfare and death that the band deliver.

This is cold and violent. This is murderous and intense. This is Godless Arrogance.

Thy Flesh – Thymiama Mannan (Review)

Thy FleshThy Flesh are a Black Metal band from Greece who play a particularly Daemonic brand of Blackened darkness.

The songs have a ritualistic quality to them in addition to the usual razor sharp guitar lines that pepper a release like this.

The vocals are savage and vomit their word-made-shadow out into reality from places unknown.

Frozen and obscure melodies strike from these barren hymns of ice and lash out at the listener from behind barricades of pounding war drums. They speak of eerie atmospheres and unearthly longings, voiced in the language of Black Metal and oncoming apocalypse. Perhaps Thy Flesh herald something long forgotten, something returning to exact payment for a disturbed slumber that should have gone undisrupted.

Mixing elements of Dissection and Ondskapt, Thy Flesh have crafted an expertly delivered offering of occult Black Metal that more than hits the spot. The band have enough instant appeal to satisfy but have sufficient depth to their compositions to allow digestion over time to improve satiety even more.

Well played and decently written; this is a worthy addition to the genre and a quality début for the band. You can feel the darkness approaching, heralded by a storm of knives.

Avulsed – Ritual Zombi (Review)

AvulsedThis is Avulsed’s sixth album and the veteran Death Metal juggernaut shows no sign of let up in either the aggression or quality departments.

If you haven’t encountered Avulsed before then I heartily recommend you get hold of their entire back catalogue as they have released some great Death Metal over the years.

Their style is brutality spiced up with unexpected moments of melody and a large degree of catchiness. Yes; Death Metal with songs!

Their latest album is no different; here we get ultra-heavy song-based Death Metal with a production that melts faces all delivered by a band who have made Metal their true calling in life. This passion shines through and I think is one of the reasons that Avulsed are so good at what they do.

They’ve never shied away from the odd unexpected moment either; the odd keyboard-enhanced section or Spanish guitar track has been known to make it through the mincer on occasion to throw in a bit of light in all of the gore-drenched chaos. This is the exception of course, as the vast majority is pure unadulterated Death Metal.

This zombie-themed album smashes skulls and scores kill-shots with every song. Vocalist Dave Rotten once again putting in a stellar performance with guttural, bowel-loosening growls honed through decades of use.

There is also a cover of Death’s Zombie Ritual to chew on.

Avulsed continue to be one of the best Death Metal bands around. This album is expertly crafted, proficiently played and staunchly Death Metal; any fan of brutality should have this in their collection.