I greatly enjoyed both Lucid/Entheogen and Sic Erat Scriptum, so a new EP’s worth of material is most welcome. Continue reading “Estuarine – Wisdom of Silenus (Review)”
Normally a solo project, the main-man-behind-the-band has been joined by others on this release, helping to flesh out his sound even further than previously. Continue reading “Nyn – Entropy: (of Chaos and Salt) (Review)”
The UK’s Damnation Festival is fast approaching. Saturday 5th November will see a plethora of top metal bands, large and small, take to the stage in Leeds to show off their music, and there’s a lot to be excited about.
With a whopping 4 stages and a wealth of metal talent spread across many genres and drawn from all over the globe, there’s bound to be something here to satiate even the most jaded of metal tastes. There’s a very good reason it’s my favourite UK festival and seems to only be going from strength to strength every year. Continue reading “Damnation Festival Preview”
Blood Incantation play death metal with plenty of atmosphere and technical skill. This is a band who have gazed towards the night sky, saw the vast darkness, and pay homage to that empty malevolence via the medium of underground music that’s less restricted and more expansive than your average death metal band. Continue reading “Blood Incantation – Starspawn (Review)”
Now this is an interesting release.
0N0 combine the industrial, death metal and doom genres together, creating an album that has aspects of all weaved into its genes.
How to classify this? Well, extreme metal is the easy cop out, and as these things don’t ultimately matter that much, I suppose that will do. Industrial death/doom is more specific, of course, but there we are.
Think of the something like Continue reading “0N0 – Reconstruction and Synthesis (Review)”
This is Extreme Metal that’s rooted in differing elements of Death Metal with a pinch of Black Metal to produce a concept album that deals in the subject of psychoactive substances. The first 6 tracks are regarding their modern use, while the last 4 tracks deal with their traditional usage.
The music is a mix of Progressive and Technical Death Metal with a subtle modern Black Metal influence. If you think of Extreme Metal bands such as Zyklon, Between the Buried and Me, (minus clean singing), and Mithras then you’ll have an idea of the kind of landscape that Lucid/Entheogen inhabits.
On the first half of the album the songs have a delightfully brutal method of attack that sees the Technical Death Metal aspect take the lead, with the Progressive Death Metal aspect coming second. Slower/lighter introspective parts, occasionally bordering on Post-Metal territory, add flavour and depth to the music, although the extremity is never far behind.
On the second half the roles are reversed somewhat, with the Progressive Metal aspects shifting to the fore and the Technical mayhem relegated to a close second place. It’s a subtle shift in many ways, but it is noticeable and results in songs that are longer, more expansive and a bit less brutal, (although this is relative as everything here is still highly aggressive and technical overall).
The vocals alternate between growls and screams. The growls are convincing enough, but it’s the screams that sound particularly good to me.
The recording is a good one and everything sounds solid and in your face. Sometimes the production on one-man projects can sound a bit flat or one dimensional, but this is certainly not the case here.
Although by no means perfect, this is still better than most. Ambitious, forward-thinking and brutally proficient; Lucid/Entheogen is an impressive accomplishment and anyone who has a penchant for interesting and individualistic Extreme Metal should make a beeline for it as a priority.
Really, really enjoyable and extremely highly recommended.
Favourite Track: Towards Infinite Kaleidoscopic Dimensions.
The music that Barús play is complex and unforgiving. This is not music for the weak.
The band’s take on Death Metal is one that combines the Technical and Progressive Death Metal sub-genres into something pretty special. There are even some hints at Post-Metal and Black Metal here and there.
The songs evoke complex reinterpretations of bands such as Gorguts, Morbid Angel, Mithras, Nile, Akercocke, etc. – bands that are not content to be constrained by the norm and reach for greater and higher. Barús now join their hallowed ranks.
The dense guitar riffs seem to layer on top of themselves and Barús’ music seems to have levels upon levels of extremity to hide itself in. For all of this though they are also aware that sometimes simpler is better, but even here there’s usually a lot going on.
Sometimes twisted melodies appear to float up out of the chaos to bring an otherworldly element to their already esoteric sound. A great deal of variation exists across these 4 tracks and each song is both self-contained and part of a greater whole.
The vocals are predominantly deep grunts but a whole load of other vocalisations are used too, from semi-clean moans to spoken word to chants and everything in between, including, briefly, actual singing.
I love it when you find a band like Barús who are willing and able to take the standard Death Metal template and experiment with it until it’s mutated into their own personal view of the genre. This EP has a personality and style of its own and these songs are involving and engaging from start.
An extremely promising beginning for Barús. This EP is a strong start to their existence and if they manage to keep up the quality levels then their début album will be fantastic. Here’s hoping.
Sarpanitum take a three-pronged approach to their Death Metal that combines traditional Death Metal, melodic atmospheres and a touch of Black Metal’s heart of darkness.
The band’s melodic edge is a sharp one and it’s incorporated directly into their heaviness rather than seeming like an addition to it as is frequently the case with other bands that combine brutality and melodics.
Added keyboard sounds subtly enhance this already keen melodic sensibility they have and I really like the sense of atmospheric brutality that they create. There’s a Middle Eastern feel to a lot of the melodies that adds an exotic touch to the songs, as well as no small amount of epic grandeur.
The vocals are as dark as night; thick, deep, malevolent growls that are so low as to be akin to rumbling thunder.
Blessed Be My Brothers… has a thick, dense sound that’s uncompromising and combined with the band’s complicated riffing is impenetrable to the casual listener. This is Death Metal for real Death Metal fans who want something a bit more interesting than the standard generic fare.
Here we have three tracks lasting almost 22 minutes in total that showcase the band’s harsh blend of Industrial sounds and Death/Black Metal know-how.
Usually when bands attempt to merge these two genres the result is some half-hearted Death Metal with keyboards on top. ART 238 don’t fall into this trap, as the Extreme Metal they play is actually extreme, and the Industrial influences seem coded into the band’s make-up at the genetic level and then hybridised with cybernetics to create this fascinating beast.
ART 238 manage to merge ultra-brutal blast beats with more atmospheric Industrial workouts in a way that recalls Aborym if they had gone the Death Metal route rather than the Black Metal one.
Another thing I really like about this EP is that the songs take the time to explore their surroundings, like they’re genuinely trying to find the best fit for their various component parts. In a feat of ingenuity the band manage to work with both sides of their sound expertly and incorporate them into an Industrial Extreme Metal whole.
It’s a musical framework that not many bands try, as most that do usually sound weak, incoherent or like some 80’s synth parody. ART 238 sidestep all of this by going straight for the jugular with their creative brand of urban Metal.
Highly enjoyable and highly recommended. This is the sound of a mechanised apocalypse.