Stench Price – Self Titled (Review)

Stench PriceStench Price are a grindcore supergroup and this is their debut release.

There’s a bewildering array of talent and people involved in this, so I’m simply going to copy and paste the lineup from the press blurb to make things easier for myself –

France – Romain Goulon – Drums (Necrophagist, Disavowed, etc.)
Siberia – Peter Shallmin – Bass (Escapethecult, Kamlath)
Siberia – Max Konstantinov – Guitars (Kamlath, Nebesniesnami)
USA – Danny Lilker (Brutal Truth, Nuclear Assault, SOD, etc.)
Sweden – Rogga Johansson (Paganizer, Demiurg, etc.)
USA – Max Phelps (Cynic, Death DTA Tours, Exist)
UK – Dave Ingram (Hail of Bullets, Benediction, Bolt Thrower, etc.)
Australia – Karina Utomo (High Tension)
USA – Shawn Knight (Child Bite) Continue reading

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The Ritual Aura – Laniakea (Review)

The Ritual AuraThis is the début album from Australian Technical Death Metallers The Ritual Aura.

This is sci-fi themed Death Metal that takes the listener on a brutal and dizzying journey that may only last 26 minutes but is definitely worth the effort.

After an ominous piano intro, the first song Ectoplasm starts and it’s clear we’re in for a world of extreme technicality.

The Ritual Aura excel at combining hyperspeed wizardry with blazing melody and brutal inflections. Elements of bands such as Death and Necrophagist can be heard in their sound, as well as a much more modern style, such as can be found being played by bands like Rings of Saturn, The Faceless and Infant Annihilator.

This is imaginative music that takes its sci-fi theme and creatively incorporates this into the melodies, creating some quite unusual electronica/games-soundtrack-esque sounds that manage to avoid everything that’s usually wrong with bands when they try to do something like this. It sounds like a natural extension of the chaotic-yet-melodic music without sullying it with words like “novel” or “gimmick”.

Although it’s the music that is the central focal point here, the band would not be as enjoyable if they didn’t have vocals. The singer uses surgical growls and unhinged, savage screams. Although not as colourful as the music, (the human voice just isn’t capable), he does a great job of anchoring everything in place and providing a brutal linchpin while the music is off exploring unknown heights and realms. Clean vocals make a very brief appearance on Erased in the Purge, and these are a welcome addition to the mayhem.

Laniakea is short and to the point, resulting in an album that doesn’t outstay its welcome. In fact, I’m more than happy to have this around again to blow the cobwebs off the competition. There’s an energy level and an excitement factor to this music that makes a lot of more generic bands sound quite stale by comparison.

Great stuff. I can’t recommend this highly enough.

Innsmouth – The Shadow Over Innsmouth (Review)

InnsmouthInnsmouth are from Denmark and play Technical Death Metal. This is their début album.

This is Technical Death Metal with programmed drums and added subtle keyboard highlights.

Think bands like Nile, Necrophagist and Obscura and you’ll be in the right place.

The musicianship is impressive with shredding guitar solos peeling off all over the shop. The solos feel like an integral part of the band’s identity and they make a good impression.

The music is nicely varied with a healthy amount of brutality offsetting the technical capabilities of the band. Quality riffs and some good atmospheric sections rub shoulders with moments of chuggery and melodic leads. Inssmouth seem more than capable of keeping the listener interested and the songs on this album show a high degree of maturity of delivery and composition whilst simultaneously keeping things aggressive and direct.

The band have plenty of energy and show that they can use dynamics to good effect. These songs actually feel like songs rather than stitched together riffs, which is always a danger with the more technical side of Metal. Thankfully they seem to realise that the song comes first and everything else is just enhancement.

The vocals are quite daemonic and evil sounding, both deeper growls and higher screams.

The album’s production values are good and the music has a satisfying sound that hits the spot.

A most enjoyable release. This is Death Metal with interest, depth and a whole bucket-load of guitar shenanigans. I Like.