Thursday, 21 September 2017

SATAN'S DOZEN: 13 Unearthly Hymns Unearthed (September 2017)

SATAN’S DOZEN is our attempt to present the very best music the underground scene has to offer and whilst we’d love to review every band submission we receive, not to mention the countless  recommendations you send our way, in practical terms that is just not possible, however because we don’t want killer music to pass you by, each and every month Andrei Moose will painstakingly sift through the music labelled “no killer riffs included” and choose 13 of the best new albums released via bandcamp and bundle them together into the mightiest riff sandwich.  So we hope you dig our selections and enjoy the riffs.   This is SATAN’S DOZEN Vol. III, 13 Unearthly Hymns Uearthed.

1. Masterhand – “Mind Drifter” Released May 12, 2017

Garage / psychedelic / stoner / rock

2. Have Blue – “Melted Mind” Released July 17, 2017

Garage / psychedelic / blues-rock 

3. Surprise Party – “The Last Temptation Of Chris” Released March 19, 2017

Psychedelic / stoner / rock

4. Blue Eyed Sons – “Animals” Released August 15, 2017

Psychedelic / stoner / blues / hard / rock

5. Vintage Cucumber – “Arabische Nächte” Released June 21, 2017

Psychedelic / instrumental / experimental / kraut / rock

6. Analog Faze – “Analog Faze” Released June 23, 2017

Psychedelic / stoner / rock

7. Addicthead – “Addicthead” Released July 15, 2017

Psychedelic / progressive / stoner / rock 

8. Obey the Wolves – “Obey the Wolves” Released March 23, 2017

Desert / fuzz / stoner / rock

9. Knall – “Free Album” Released May 19, 2017

Experimental / instrumental / acid / jam / kraut / rock

10. Sarattma – “Inner Spaces” Released March 17, 2017

Instrumental / progressive / stoner / metal

11. EL COLOSSO – “Pathways” Released March 14, 2017

Stoner - rock

12. TURBOBOBCAT – “Pentastar Rocket Ride” Released August 12, 2017

Stoner - rock

13. Hard Driver – “Freedom Machine” Released July 1, 2017

Stoner - rock

ALBUM PREMIERE: Polish soul crushing doom band 71TONMAN unleash "Earthwreck"

Polish doom band 71TONMAN are set release their sophomore album “Earthwreck” via Black Bow Records on September 22nd 2017.  As a follow up to their 2013 self titled album, “Earthwreck” takes their original template, but this time around the delivery is bigger, bolder even more soul crushing.  71TONMAN have delivered a fucking monster of an album, so if you love fat riffs, then this 71 Ton goliathon is highly recommended. If you’re a fan of band like Suma, Indian and Primitive Man check out the full stream below and be sure order a copy when it's released on Friday.  

Band info: bandcamp || facebook

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

ALBUM PREMIERE: Fuzz Popvli deliver "The Fuzz of The Gods" on debut "Fuzz Dei"

"Fvzz Dei" which in latin means "The Fuzz Of The Gods", is the debut album of the roman fuzz trio Fvzz Popvli. Featuring members of the bands The Wisdoom and Beesus , "Fvzz Dei" will be released via Heavy Psych Sounds on 22nd September  and is a grandstand example of fuzz sounds, an amalgamation of garage rock and powerhouse song writing, catchy hooks and most importantly Queens of the Stone Age-style riffing, you can check out “Fuzz Dei” in full below, this is music for the gods.  You can preorder/buy the album here

Band info: bandcamp

ALBUM REVIEW: Ufomammut - "8"

By: Victor Van Ommen

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 22/09/2017
Label: Supernatural Cat |
 Neurot Recordings

The time signatures will still have you scratching your head and the chugging rhythms are no less heady as they are pummeling. The choice to structure songs rather than to orchestrate them means that the ideas unfold quicker than what we’re used to. A totally different listening experience, sure, but it’s one that offers yet another opportunity to throw some quality, heavy psychedelic doom on the turntable.

“8” CD//DD//LP track listing:

1. Babel
2. Warsheep
3. Zodiac
4. Fatum
5. Prismaze
6. Core
7. Wombdemonium
8. Psyrcle

The Review:

This time out, Ufomammut just let it flow. Where “Eve” and “Oro” focused on a huge sound and concept, the follow up “Ecate” tried to bring things back to something resembling normalcy. It failed, which in the case of “Ecate” was fantastic, because Ufomammut still own that crushing tone they’ve trademarked.

With the release of “8,” Ufomammut have tried once again to bring things back home. This new record focuses on the strength of individual songs. Sure, some of these tracks are produced in such a way that they feed into each other, but this is the first time since about 2010’s “Eve,” that any single song can be plucked from the album’s playlist as a standalone specimen of what Ufomammut is.

So what is Ufomammut? Well, if it’s chaotic, strobe like synths you’re looking for while a thick, aggressive riff bears down at you, look no further than “Core.” If what you’re looking for is a strangely timed, crunchy riff that hints at being catchy, then “Fatum” is a good place to ignite the rockets. “Warsheep” and “Zodiac” provide the rolling march that Ufomammut has gotten so damn good at, so tune into these two cuts if that’s what whets your whistle.

Don’t be fooled, this song-based Ufomammut is not any sort of light version of the band. They’re not phoning it in, they’re displaying a different approach to their brand of heavy, one that they’ve spent years mastering. The time signatures will still have you scratching your head and the chugging rhythms are no less heady as they are pummeling. The choice to structure songs rather than to orchestrate them means that the ideas unfold quicker than what we’re used to. A totally different listening experience, sure, but it’s one that offers yet another opportunity to throw some quality, heavy psychedelic doom on the turntable.

“8” is available here (Europe) & here (USA)

Band info: bandcamp || facebook

ALBUM REVIEW: Geist - "Disrepair"

By: Ernesto Aguilar

Album Type: Full-length
Date Released: 22/09/2017
Label: Vetala Productions |

Geist's debut, "Disrepair," sees the quartet alternating effortlessly between genres. Its opening song, "Painkillers," is cut from a strongly crust punk cloth. It is straight up savage from frantic start to grinding finish.  These entries give the listener just the right amount of menace and fury.

"Disrepair" CD//DD//LP track listing

1. Painkillers
2. Dear World…
3. Services Rendered
4. Eyeless Needle
5. Fiction Souls
6. Inkblot Lives

The Review:

Hardcore and metal will always have a kinship, arguably. There are more than a few great crossovers and bands inspired by both styles. In Geist – of the United Kingdom, and not to be mistaken with the German and Israeli groups bearing the same name – you get music that is not afraid to embrace both, and do it impressively.

Geist's debut, "Disrepair," sees the quartet alternating effortlessly between genres. Its opening song, "Painkillers," is cut from a strongly crust punk cloth. It is straight up savage from frantic start to grinding finish. The second and third tracks, "Dear World…" and "Services Rendered" respectively, come at you with a brawny extreme metal undertone. They're tremendous in terms of quality and vocals. These entries as well as the fourth and fifth, the hardcore "Eyeless Needle" and "Friction Souls," give the listener just the right amount of menace and fury. And while Geist foreshadows its sound well on digital, disc and wax, you can almost imagine a sound this large needs to be experienced live.

Geist is most assuredly one of the better young hardcore/punk bands with tinges of metal you may hear this season. Keep your fingers crossed that the band can make it sometime to the States.

"Disrepair" is available here

Band info: bandcamp || facebook

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

ALBUM PREMIERE: Deadsmoke’s new record “Mountain Legacy” comes crashing down like the heavens themselves have cracked

You like your doom loud and vicious?  Then ask no more because today you shall receive it, indeed straight out of the ethereal haze and armed with a tone that could rupture the tectonic plate, Deadsmoke’s new record “Mountain Lagacy” comes crashing down like the heavens themselves have cracked. 

“Mountain Legacy” is set for release via Heavy Psych Sounds on 29th September and is the natural evolution for the band, whilst the album retains their archetypal deep fuzz guitar tone and the snarl of the bass, as a follow up to their 2015  self titled debut, “Mountain Legacy” ups the stakes and takes the listener on  a aural journey their debut only dared touch upon, a perfect juxtaposition of light and shade, this album is ultimately cavernous scale and could literally reduce mountains to dust.   

Taking cues from the likes of Conon, Monolord and the mighty Sleep, stylistic it may be rudimentary metal, but this is bludgeoning stuff and maddeningly effective doomentia, that will infect your mind and rattle your soul.  “Mountain Legacy” is available for preorder/buy here and you can check out the album in full below. 

Band info: bandcamp || facebook

ALBUM REVIEW: With The Dead - "Love From With The Dead"

By: Charlie Butler

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 22/09/2017
Label: Rise Above Records

The opening quartet of tracks here offers up a relentless onslaught of earth-shaking doom. Tim Bagshaw is on fine form, unleashing an endless stream of mammoth riffs and lead guitar that channel the hazy evil of his finest moments in Ramesses.  Lee Dorrian’s half spoken, half roared vocals work well in amongst the carnage and are a breath of fresh air in the modern doom landscape.

“Love From With The Dead” CD//DD//LP track listing:

1). Isolation
2). Egyptian Tomb
3). Reincarnation of Yesterday
4). Cocaine Phantoms
5). Watching the Ward Goes By
6). Anemia
7). CV1

The Review:

The future of With The Dead seemed bleak following the sudden dismissal of Mark Greening shortly after the release of their debut. New LP “Love From With The Dead” shows there is plenty of life left within these undead servants of the riff.

It’s noticeable even from the bowel-churning opening notes of “Isolation” that “Love From With The Dead” is a different proposition from the band’s debut. Fortunately there is no change on the punishing heaviness front, but the strange atmosphere of their first album has been supplanted by a more conventional production and sound that befits the development of With The Dead from a studio project to a full live band. 

The opening quartet of tracks here offers up a relentless onslaught of earth-shaking doom. Tim Bagshaw is on fine form, unleashing an endless stream of mammoth riffs and lead guitar that channel the hazy evil of his finest moments in Ramesses, particularly during the epic churn of “Egyptian Tomb”. Lee Dorrian’s half spoken, half roared vocals work well in amongst the carnage and are a breath of fresh air in the modern doom landscape. The new rhythm section of Leo Smee and Alex Thomas do a grand job of laying down an unshakeable foundation of low-end filth. 

With The Dead could probably draw upon an infinite well of sludged-up ragers like “Reincarnation Of Yesterday” and “Anemia” but it’s the deviations from the script that lead to the album’s finest moments. “Watching The Ward Go By” is a haunting and crushing dirge built around a single, desolate chord sequence. It emerges from a fog of eerie faraway sounds as a hushed, funereal hymn with Lee Dorrian’s spoken intonations heightening the dread. Around the mid-point the track erupts into a distorted nightmare that wrings maximum torment from the glorious monotony.

The best is saved for last in the form of the monstrous 17 minute “CV1”. It begins in familiar territory with lumbering riffs acting as a perfect foil to Dorrian’s impassioned rant about the sad decline of his home of Coventry. Around the mid-point the band lock into a minimal droning groove that the band hammer into oblivion. This acts as the backdrop for swirling psychedelic sounds and a rising tide of harsh electronic squall that finds With The Dead moving into a higher dimension of dark, mind-expanding noise.

“Love From With The Dead” could probably do with trimming some of its mammoth sixty minute plus duration to maximise impact but this is a minor complaint. This is a massive offering from With The Dead that demonstrates the band are still a force to be reckoned with in terms of heaviness and hints at a weirder future ahead.  

“Love From With The Dead” is available here

Band info: facebook

Monday, 18 September 2017

ALBUM REVIEW: Myrkur - "Mareridt"

By: Ernesto Aguilar

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 15/09/2019
Label: Relapse Records


Rarely does a recording embody the dynamism of heavy music, while being legitimately artful and musically resplendent, "Mareridt," just happens to be one such album and with it, all your expectations will be exceeded.

"Mareridt" CD//DD//LP track listing

1. Mareridt
2. Måneblôt
3. The Serpent
4. Crown
5. Elleskudt
6. De Tre Piker
7. Funeral (featuring Chelsea Wolfe)
8. Ulvinde
9. Gladiatrix
10. Kætteren
11. Børnehjem

The Review:

What metal fan hasn't had the talk with a friend, partner or acquaintance? You know the talk? It is that moment of judgment. It is at once an inquiry of a sound as it is a question about you are as a person. What attracts you to this howling? Implicitly, because it is less polite, is the query: what in you is broken that prompts you to listen to this?

It is a thematic inquiry too of course. Extreme music's foreboding images and confrontational sound are disquieting for listeners of many other styles of music. Like the ghosts in our stories, the specter of Tipper Gore and the Parents Music Resource Center hangs heavy. For every genuinely curious question, there are three value-laden ones, which probe scarring of listeners to such noxious aural assaults.

Without a doubt, plenty of metal is proudly noxious. The music is by its very definition bellicose. So, when a recording appears that embodies the dynamism of heavy music, while being legitimately artful and musically resplendent, it is singular. Such is the case with the return of Myrkur's new release, "Mareridt."

The one-woman project of multi-instrumentalist and vocalist Amalie Bruun, Myrkur has specialized in the classic sound of black metal with folkloric as well as orchestral flourishes. Bruum's 2014 debut drew much praise for its virtuosity. "M," the 2015 follow-up, saw assists from members of Mayhem, Arch Enemy and Ndingr and received international awards. Buoyed by a live record last year, interest in Myrkur has only grown since "M."

You will have every high expectation exceeded with "Mareridt," Myrkur's latest. Its title is Danish for "nightmare." It is anything but.

With the title track opening the new record, tinges of folk metal with its waves of ceremony and menace wash over your mind. In addition to being a fantastic start to the many moods you catch across 11 tracks; it is simply an impeccably composed song. Outstanding vocals and exemplary instrumentation make it a great beginning, lolling into crisp guitar work of the fast but understated second wave of black metal. Like some other cuts on the recording, such as "Gladiatrix" and "De Tre Piker," the title track sets a blueprint for a blend of metal snarling and otherworldly singing. Many artists have employed this mode of attack over the years. Myrkur just happens to do it exceedingly well.

Back to the talk. To many people, this style of metal is unexpected. For a mainstream that associates most metal with volume and corpse paint, the variants like this will challenge opinions. Most labels and more observant fans recognize the potential for music like this is break boundaries and attract new audiences. Consider the regard for French act Alcest when it surged to prominence in the mid-2000s with a black metal style that engulfed shoegaze and pop strands at points. Having a sound that is at once bold yet divergent is a blessing and a curse, certainly. By "The Serpent," your internal conversation may be quite active, as you may ponder if there is no limit, in truth. It and the following track, "Crown," are easily the most accessible on the album. Both are appreciable for their artistry. They're also unlikely to be considered metal by American hardcore fans or the mainstream. Regardless these cuts, and several other moments, are sure to make you step back, beyond extreme music, and appreciate their creativity and fearlessness.

Myrkur deserves much praise for presenting a fully imagined release, one that goes from gauzy to portent in the blink of an eye. From the efficaciously strong "Funeral," with singer-songwriter Chelsea Wolfe, or the closer, "Børnehjem," a supernatural first-person tale, Bruun is sure to prompt you, and the friends wanting to have the talk, to think about extreme music in a renewed way.

"Mareridt" is available here

Band info: facebook || bandcamp

Friday, 15 September 2017

FOR THOSE ABOOT TO ROCK: Riffs of Canada introducing Völur (Toronto, Ontario)

By: Mark Tremblay

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 02/06/2017
Label: Prophecy Productions

“Ancestors” CD//DD//LP track listing:

1). Breaker of Silence
2). Breaker of Skulls
3). Breaker of Oaths
4). Breaker of Famine

The Review:

Völur are a doom 3 piece from Toronto, Ontario whose approach to doom is stripped down and re-imagined. Gone are the redundancy's of guitar riff worship, and what you are left with is a completely refreshing approach to the sub-genre. Utilizing violin, bass, and drums, Völur capture a primal form of Doom Metal for a modern audience.

“Ancestors” is an emotional journey from front to back. The album is broken into 4 movements; “Breaker of Silence”, “Breaker of Skulls”, “Breaker of Oaths”, and “Breaker of Famine”. The absence of guitar on this record opens up an entire world of tortured violin feedback and noise; filling in a much more textured experience. The addition of chamber vocals also helps the band achieve “heavy” and is what truly separates this band and their record from the rest of the pack. Let “Ancestors” consume you, in what is likely the most refreshing and sophisticated doom records of the year.

“Ancestors” is available here

Band info: bandcamp || facebook

INTERVIEW: Owlcrusher - "Apocalyptic, Hateful and Nihilistic Blackened Sludge since 2008".

Sludge, doom, funeral doom and all the many sub genres within it could easier be viewed as the easier versions of metal and your average half baked pipple faced journalist will probably try to argue that point, but to me the counter point to bands such as Rings of Saturn is that technicality is one thing, but often what is lacking is that all important “feel”.  Does the overall experience of an album with mechanical dexterity leave you feeling cold or does the power of a slow Sleep like dirge make you feel all warm and fuzzy?

For me low and slow gets my vote and when songs are played with the ferocious intensity and terrifying precision of a group as remarkable as today’s guest Owlcrusher, their combination of glacial riffing, blistering vocals, and sludge is every bit technical as the best shredders, because it feels cathartic, invigorating and plain addictive, which your average tech band just can’t replicate.    

From the opening of Owlcrusher’s debut full length, the whole mammoth affair has a delightfully unsavory flavor: even the ambient tones recall the scuzzy industrial planetscapes of Eraserhead.  But when the trio comes to life, the sheer scope is undeniably menacing.  With three tracks spread across 45 minutes, each song embraces sprawl and space: the reverb heavy drum tone pounds like the pulse of a leviathan.  The low end guitar tone crackles with fuzz, while the bass rumbles so menacingly that, with the right sound system, you may get your guts churning like you’ve just been forced to smoke a whole pack of unfiltered cigarettes – you’ve got the cold sweats, your insides feel poisoned, and you’re probably gonna puke, but god damn it you’re not hooked.

Today after many months of delay (e.g. my own tardiness), I can present a short and yet insight interview with bassist/shouty person Steve Hobson from the band. A band we rate very highly indeed.  So check it out below and don’t forget to like, follow and share their music. 

So when you’re not heading up funding raising events for the annual Ornithology convention, can you give us an insight into how you guys started playing music, leading up to the formation of Owlcrusher?

Well, for a start, it’s probably worth saying at this stage before some fucker sicks PETA on us; we’re not as anti-owl as the name suggests. Thats reference to Moloch; the Owl from the Bohemian Grove Cremation of Care ceremony, which might or might not be a real thing. Not for us to say. We don’t condone any harm coming to birds or animals. Especially not spooky ones that have a reputation for scaring the shit out of people.

As for the band, it’s a bit of a saga. Me and Andy have known each other since we were kids. We lost touch for a while but started hanging out together when we started drinking under bridges in our home town. By that stage he’d started playing guitar and jamming with Damo. I’d been playing in bands for a while at that point and we tried to get something going between us. This was about 2001 and I moved away shortly after that and joined Bad Boat (Me and Andys other band), while Andy and Damo formed Throat Locust. Over time Throat Locust turned into Dwell in Sun, who changed their name to Owlcrusher around the time I took over the vacant bass slot, so it kind of came full circle eventually. That sort of brings us to now.

Although you released “Owlcrusher” (your debut full length), nearly 10 years after your inception, for folks unfamiliar with your band, is there any bands on the scene past and present that you would use as a reference point bands to describe your band, and who or what continues to inspire you and push you to try new things?

I suppose it would be different for each of us where that’s concerned. I think on the whole its stuff like Burning Witch, Goatsnake, Moss, and so on who would be obvious reference points, but after 10 years hopefully there’s other things going on in there as well. I’ve always thought there was a bit of a Godflesh feel to it; and threes definitely nods towards a black metal aesthetic. Not in a huge way, because if your Black Metal record is sounding like us, your record player might be fucked, but threes a coldness to it, especially in Andys vocals, that leans us that way a bit I think.

As for what inspires us, musically there’s not really anything you could call a unifying band or style. We’d be here all day listing the stuff we’re into; it’s different for each of us these days and a comparatively small amount would be anything like Owlcrusher in the strictest sense. Owlcrusher’s more of a way of processing negativity and making the ugliest noise we can so we don’t go spare at the horror of it all. Catharsis is a word that gets bandied about a lot, and can sound a bit trite, but I think we’re all a little more well-adjusted and approachable from day to day because Owlcrusher sounds the way it does. 

Does anything spring to mind when you think about the completion of your new record and how is the mood in the camp at present

I think the fact that it took a year to the day to get it finished made us feel a bit daft. Moods good though. We’ve just signed to Seeing Red Records and they're sorting the kind of physical release we could probably not have afforded, as well as actually having enough faith in us to make us want to be a bit more proactive in return. We've definitely a lot more fire in our bellies to put some effort into touring and the like.

What stands out as your overarching memory from the recording sessions?

Amp Porn. We were greeted at the studio by walls lined with old and new equipment for every conceivable sound we could have wanted, so we indulged ourselves a bit. I played through a bass rig that was taller than me, Andy had a Matamp and Mesa Boogie setup to record into two different channels at once and Damo got to experiment with a bunch of cymbal setups (even though he settled on his own original one in the end) and Niall (Doran, the engineer at Start Together Studio who recorded us) astounded the shit out of us by being equal to any stupid suggestion we may have had. If we said "I want to play that left handed twelve string and have it sound like seagulls he'd say "ok. How many seagulls?"

Couldn't ask for a better way to record really.

With a new record in the bag, how is your schedule shaping up over the next 12 months?

We're not really looking too far ahead quite yet. We want to get the CD out, do some launch shows, then hopefully get some touring done in support of it should the opportunity present itself. We've already started into writing the next one, so that should be out by 2027 all being well.

Finally, do you last words?

I imagine my last words will be "stop pointing that at me" or "yes I can catch it". Something like that.

 The End

Owlcrusher” is available digitally here and on limited CD here

Band info: bandcamp || facebook