Sulaco – The Privilege (Review)

Sulaco - The PrivilegeThis is the latest EP from Sulaco, a grindcore band from the US.

Considering the band’s traditional extreme length between releases, we’re quite privileged, (ahem), to have The Privilege so soon after The Prize. Continue reading

Applaud the Impaler – Ov Apocalypse Incarnate (Review)

Applaud the Impaler - Ov Apocalypse IncarnateThis is the debut album from US death metallers Applaud the Impaler.

Applaud the Impaler smash together death metal, deathcore, and grindcore into a heaving mess of blood and entrails. This is quite the brutal delight. Continue reading

Pyrrhon – What Passes for Survival (Review)

PyrrhonThis is the third album from Pyrrhon, an extreme metal band from the US.

Pyrrhon are not your standard band. I first encountered them on their 2014 album The Mother of Virtues, and even then they were a distinctly atypical and genre-breaking proposition. Continue reading

Replacire – Do Not Deviate (Review)

ReplacireThis is the second album by US technical death metallers Replacire.

I always enjoy a new techdeath release, especially when you never really know what you’re going to get when you press play.

In its dark heart this is a highly aggressive and Continue reading

Fuck the Facts – Desire Will Rot (Review)

Fuck the FactsFuck the Facts are a Canadian Grindcore band and this is their tenth album.

Fuck the Facts are always a good listen. Playing by no-one’s rules but their own, they play Grind with their own agenda and are wonderfully individual.

They combine most different aspects of Grind, including some non-Grind elements too. Labelling them as Progressive Grindcore is not too bad of a description. From blasting brutality to melodicism to experimentalism; Fuck the Facts have got it covered somewhere in their discography, (and on this release), and they do it very well indeed.

These songs are largely, (but not exclusively), short blasts of aural carnage, although there’s much more to the band than just this. Longer songs and more experimentally diverse songwriting, (including solos, melodies, Death Metal, Progressive Metal, atmosphere, noise, cello, piano, etc.), mean that there’s a lot on offer here.

Sitting pretty among similarly individualistic Grindcore such as Cephalic Carnage, Cloud Rat, Antigama and the like, Fuck the Facts have built an impressive legacy for themselves over the 16 or so years of their existence and Desire Will Rot only cements their sterling reputation further.

The vocals alternate between the main singer’s acidic shriek and the bassist’s deathgrunts. It’s a combination and team effort that works very well. The main singer has a very individual and charismatic high scream and her voice sounds as nasty as scraping nails.

This is 39 minutes of challenging and impressive Grindcore. It’s not for people who just want the latest scene-clone; this is thinking Grind for the discerning connoisseur, and yet it still remains its visceral nature despite this.

A must listen.

Reciprocal – New Order of the Ages (Review)

ReciprocalThis is Reciprocal’s second album of Technical Death Metal. They are from the US.

A strong start introduces the band and their heavy, sprawling sound to the listener. It’s complex and interlinked whilst retaining a brutality and nastiness a lot of Technical Death Metal bands are lacking in.

This is Technical Death Metal mixed up with the modern, New-School breed of crushingly Brutal Death Metal. It’s a heady combination that immediately makes you sit up and take notice of them.

The songs are long, (for Death Metal), and the band use this time to explore the labyrinthine riffs and to show off their musical chops.

They appear to have quite the mixture of influences on this release. I hear elements of Cephalic Carnage, Carcass, Spawn of Possession, Arsis, Gorguts, Decapitated and many more crammed into the technically dense songs. There is too much going on here to absorb in one listening, which is a good thing as it increases the longevity of the album.

Vocally the band incorporate pretty much all styles in the album somewhere, although high-pitched Carcass-esque screams are the most used.

The sound is absolutely immense. It sonically shines and the tracks hit home like hammers. It doesn’t get stale or boring as the band have enough variety within their framework to introduce elements of several Death Metal sub-genres; Brutal Death Metal, Melodic Death Metal and Deathcore being the main ones in addition to the core of Technical Death Metal.

New Order of the Ages is an ambitious album; 68 minutes of music with plenty of ideas and enough talent to hold it all together. Piano and samples are used liberally to help spread the band’s message and to provide breaks between bouts of swirling riffs and widdly fret-wizardry.

I heartily recommend this album to anyone who enjoys bold, challenging, heavy, technical music. If this is you then this is a must listen.

Super Massive Black Holes – Calculations of the Ancients (Review)

Super Massive Black HolesCanadian band Super Massive Black Holes play Experimental/Progressive Jazzy Death Metal, and this is their début album.

This is bright and shiny music that’s technical but also slightly whimsical in nature; there’s something of the Devin Townsend about it.

The band manage to mix disparate elements of Devin Townsend, Opeth, Ephel Duath, Gojira and Cephalic Carnage; schizoid jazzy breakdowns, atmospheric interludes, Stoner vibe rockathons, pseudo-Grind workouts and heavy melodic cyber Metal all collide on this album.

The songs are surprisingly cohesive for all this. Sometimes an idea or a section can feel a bit half-formed or unfinished, however, although from the sound of it this could very well be intentional; to keep the listener guessing or to stop them becoming complacent?

The vocals are mainly between a shout and a growl, with the vocalist reminding a little of the singer of Gorod, or even Gojira on occasion, only not quite as emotive.

I like this album, although it definitely needs time to reveal its charms and won’t be to all tastes. Give them a listen and see what you think.