Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Interview with Diego and Mariano of Septycal Gorge

ID: First of all, Congratulations on your latest album ''Erase the Insignificant''. Its an album for which I had been waiting to hear since quite a while now and I must admit that I was completely ripped apart by it's sheer brilliance. Can you tell me about the writing process of this album and the approximate time consumed to record it?

Marius: Cheers, man, thanks for the nice words!! We started working on new songs just few months after "Growing Seeds Of Decay" went out - so Autumn '06 -; we finished our songwriting at the beginning of 2009: as you can see, it's been a long pregnancy, lol, but necessary, because we had some line up changes and we gave our best in every song. Also the period of the recording sessions was almost long: maybe 3 months; we recorded at Dave's (our drummer) home studio and everyone went there recording everytime he had enough time - in that period (May-July '09) our private lives were really busy and don't forget everyone of us is pretty far from Dave's house... 

ID: Septycal Gorge's debut album ''Growing Seeds of Decay'' got rave reviews and appraisal for the top-notch musicianship and sickness. How would you compare your latest album with the first one? What all changes did the band undergo while writing it?

 Diego:The new album is for us a huge step up. We have a new drummer, Brutal Dave who is a really talented artist and brought us lots of speed and tightness in snare and kick above all, and also the new bass player Clod took his talent and unique sound to complete SG skills. The new songs are more structured and arranged, more technical but still keeping the “SG trademark” of our personal sound.

Marius: I think the influences are still the same, but there are many different musicians (Diego - gtr - and me are the only "survivors" from the first album) and I think that's been fundamental for "Erase The Insignificant", because developing our sounds, tastes, ideas, technical capacities passed also through the possibilities/abilities which every musician in the band could give. 

ID: Erase the Insignificant was released on Permeated Records which is a change from your earlier label Mutilated Records. Can I know the reason behind this label change?

Marius: I have good memories of the period under Mutilated Records: when "Growing.." went out, it was a label which re-started its activities after years and years of forced stop... Mutilated Recs helped us and the success of "Growing.." helped both them and us: we're so grateful to Diego Cardozo – Mutilated Recs manager – and all the possibilities he gave us in our first years officially passed in the brutal death worldwide scene! By the way, as in music, as in promotion, our goal's always been aiming the highest possible, and well, the contract with Permeated Records, of course, is something more and I hope everything's going to be better also for us.  

Diego:The label change was so natural and easy cause we felt, after the first album appreciations, that we need a new label for a greater promotion and more exposure and we knew that with Permeated records we were going to get them. Anyway we have only to say a big thank you to Diego and Mutilated to have believed in us at the very beginning, when we was a bunch of newcomers and our sound was so immature. Mutilated helped spreading Septycal Gorge name in the whole death metal scene around the world, so it’s the best thing a young band can get form his debut label.

ID: The artwork for the new album has been done by Marco Hasmann who has done a great job like always. But the cover art for Growing Seeds was done by Tony Koehl. Why was the artist changed? Is it because of a personal choice or the change in label forced you to do so since Tony does a lot of artwork for Mutilated Records.

Marius: Well, you're right: Tony Koehl used to collaborate a lot with Mutilated Records, but that's not the reason we changed cover-artist... He's a specialist with gory and spatter scenarios, and we asked him for something different, something more apocalyptic in the vein of early Suffocation… and he made a good job, we’re so satisfied about “Growing Seeds..” cover artwork! By the way, fundamentally, we simply wanted to change; we personally know Marco Hasmann, he is a good friend with the band and a fresh artist and made an awesome job. 

ID: Septycal Gorge underwent a lot of line-up changes since the very beginning. The more recent ones being the departure of Maurizio Lucà (bass) and Davide Boeri (drums). What were the reasons behind this?

Marius: Maurizio and Davide are still good friends of us - particularly Maurizio; they left just because they were fed up of playing this kind of music and admitted they didn't have enough capacities to follow the rhythms and the technical developments of the band.

Diego:It’s all about personal and musical reasons, as Marius says. Everyone has his own history and musical tastes, and these cannot affect the friendship. We left with the old members always in a good way.

ID: You guys played in The Mountains of Death festival at Switzerland earlier this year sharing stage with some of the sickest bands on this planet. How was the experience while playing at such a big event?

Marius: In 2009 MOD definitely has been the greatest event for death metal, in Europe and of course it's been a great experience for everyone of us! It rained all time but luckily... after our show, eheheh! And well, speaking/seeing on stage with people like Jon Zig, Ricky Myers, AJ Magana, Mike Majewski... has been a great emotion!

Diego: Playing at MOD is a big feeling cause it’s one of the best European death metal fest! We enjoyed it so much. The only problem was the weather, but at MOD you can overlook it, cause the atmosphere is always great. Lots of friends and great music.

ID: Share some of the best and worst live experiences Septycal Gorge has ever had.

Marius: Neurotic DeathFest 2007 with the old line up: maybe the sickest show we made with Davide Boeri and Maurizio Lucà. With the new line up we don't have enough live experiences, but I think our release party (21st November, in our zone) and the gig in London we made few days ago (we toured UK from 10th to 13th December) have been the best shows. Freaky partecipation of the audience, nice exibition on stage, definitely we had a great time!

Speaking about the worst… well, bad performances happen and happened and probably will happen! I’m pretty sure the worst gig was at the beginning of 2008, the last concert of our drummer Davide Boeri: we were playing in Germany, we were really hard partying, lol, and everyone of us was pretty drunk… That’s probably the worst concert we made; all the drum patterns were wrong, lots of mistakes for the guitarists, my vocals were a sort of guttural freestyle! Shameful… but people over there was crazy – and also really drunk! So none seemed noticing it… there’s also a video of that night someone uploaded on YouTube, try to find it and have a laugh! 

ID: Tell us about your band's upcoming events.

Marius: At the moment we're planning some gigs for the next years; they'll be lots of dates abroad, almost none in Italy - and, honestly, I think it's better! The news making me really happy is we're going to perform at Neurotic DeathFest 2010 with Dying Fetus, Origin, Beneath The Massacre, Napalm Death, Immolation and many more!! 

ID: What do you guys do apart from playing brutal death metal? And how has playing this extreme and ugly form of music affected your lives?

Marius: Playing this music is a vent, as art is in all its forms. By the way, as you can imagine, when you play about 20-30 underground gigs every year, it's not that easy ruling private life... If you have some private problems with your family, they risk to get bigger, also with friends/girlfriends... by the way these situations are fundamental to leave us attached to reality, if you know what I mean... Playing in cool situations, have gigs all around is fucking amazing, it's a sort of drug and you risk to forget all days reality: luckily we have common lives, without people considering us members of Septycal Gorge, but students, common workers, sons, boyfriends, stupid and useless friends, AH!

Diego: Death Metal is simply part of my life and cannot be detached to it. Music is a passion and not a work, so it will always be, cause it’s an important way to self expression.

ID: A lot of so-called puritans today detest the modern ''ultra brutal/slam brutal death metal'' and label it as ''trendy'' and ''talentless''. What are your views regarding this criticism?

Marius: Personally, I think that's not a question of "trendy" or "catchy" or what else... Fundamentally and generally, there are two categories of music: good and bad... Nothing more to add about that, except the fact I think real brutal death metal can’t be considered “trendy”: it’s ages it survives to every kind of trend, because it survives in a sort of musical ghetto; for me it’s easy noticing this feeling of exclusion from every (new or old) trend: here in Italy, the 99% of people saying they listen to metal/hardcore/extreme music only knows and supports mainstream bands; there are also some zones – like the one where Septycal Gorge were born – where it’s hard finding someone listening to Metallica (and I hate Metallica…)! By the way, my experience taught me that, when the music is trendy, it sucks…  

Diego: I personally don’t like at all slam bands, it’s not my cup of tea. I prefer bands like Deeds of Flesh Inveracity etc. Don’t know really if slam is trendy or not, anyway there are lot of shitty bands out there and few that are really really good.

ID: Tell me 5 albums which you have been spinning very frequently these days.

Marius: Terrordrome "Vehement Convulsion", Vomit The Soul “Apostles Of Inexpression”, Skinless “From Sacrifice To Survival”, Gatekeepaz "Dietro il Cancello" (Italian hip hop, uhuhuh!), Disgorge (US) "She Lay Gutted".  

Diego: Morbid Angel “Covenant”, Deeds OF Flesh “Mark Of the legion”, Alice In Chains Black “Gives way to Blue”, Insidious Decrepancy “Extirpating…” Soundgarden “Superunknown”

ID: Which bands do you consider as an integral influence on the music of Septycal Gorge?

Marius: I'm sure our guitarist and founder member Diego would answer Deeds Of Flesh; by the way, personally, I've always felt the smell of Suffocation... By the way, all the technical Californian bands which Unique Leader Recs put under contract at its beginning are our fundamental influences. 

Diego: Marius is true. For me my main musical influence in writing and conceiving music is DoF. A platter as Reduced…” and Path…” are the bible for me. Also Suffocation of course that are the masters of this style.

ID: Thanks a lot for spending some crucial time out of your tight schedule and answering this questionnaire. I wish all the very best for your new album and hope to see Septycal Gorge crushing the emo kids more barbarically than ever. Horns up for Italiano brutality! Take care guys.

Marius: Thank you so much, Ankit!! Sorry for the late answers, but during these last days we've been really busy! Support your own local scene, underground's fundamental for developing this music worldwide! Cheers! Have fun, have a great 2010!

Diego: thanx a lot for your friendship and support man! And for this interview of course! Wish you the best for your work.

Septycal Gorge is:

Mariano - Vocals
Diego - Guitar
Los - Guitar
Clod ''The Ripper" (Claude De Rosa) - Bass
Davide - Drums

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Mitochondrion - Archaeaeon

Full Length, Independent

A band having an absolute awkward name like Mitochondrion might sound disgusting, isn't it but what we have over here is disgusting in the best sense possible.  In Biological terminology, ''Mitochondrion" is actually an organelle that generates most of the cell's supply of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), used as a source of chemical energy. But this term cleverly justifies its appropriateness as a band name since Mitochondrion's aural projections generate an absymasly dark and ominous atmosphere which act as a source of demoniacal dynamism.

Archaeaeon was independently released earlier last year and it pounced upon the Canadian undeground like a ghoulish beast. They became the talk of the underground since the release of their first two demos in 2005 and 2006. Their musical style has been the basic highlight of their praise which is an uncanny and bizarre amalgam of darkened black metal with technically adept brutal death metal. I didn't really knew what to expect from them when I began the album but the first track after the Intro ''Chapter 11'' gave me a clear insight that I had to prepare myself for a flood of sonic onslaughts which would follow. 

Into the Pit of Babel had a very coarse beginning and pretty soon, a flurry of thunderous riffs attacked my eardrums, to be followed by a chaotic dual vocal assualt only to be continued with more raging dissonace. The vocals are one of the best highlights of this album which are an amazing blend of your average Brutal Death Metal gutturals and black metal snarls and shrieks, however, the latter has been employed sparsely and as a perfect backing support.  The blasting cacophony on the first track unexpectedly disperses into a melodic verse which is caracterized by a subtle acoustic riff accompanied by synthwork, gutturals and snarls. That part gives me goose pimples on every listen! Then suddenly it faints and there is a deep silence for a few moments, just like the calm before a storm and the carnage rages on abruptly. 

The whole of this album offers this unique harmony of weird tremolo picked technical riffage with occult black metal-esque parts. The drumming has been perfect and deftly mixed with an efficient double bass work and the slower parts have also been played suavely. Archaeaeon's murky production enhances the credibility of their musical style and it  gives you an impression of bands like Demilich and Portal fused with Candian ''war metal'' connoisseiurs Blasphemy. Its just something which doesn't come out everyday. 

Although each track on the album is a sheer display of brilliant musicianship, the tracks like ''Akashic Predation'', ''Wraith'' and ''Agonizing (In The Shadow of the Hammerblow)'' especially desplay the incredible talent of these Victorian blasphemers. Creating an experimental musical piece always involves a lot of risks since either the output can be a pile of mess or it can be sheer magnificence. Mitochondrion have been able to achieve the latter of the two outputs and that too with a monstrous effect. What could be a better example than the fact that all the 666 copies  were sold out within a little while and they got signed to Profound Lore which boasts artists like Krallice, Altar of Plagues, Portal etc on its roster. Its a label which would do justice to their music and probably release more such masterpieces in the near future.

People looking for occult and apocalyptic death metal should definitely hear this masterpiece. 

This is pure horror in audial form. 

 Check them out over here

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Wodensthrone - Loss (2009)

Full-length, Bindrune Recordings
August 2009

Track List:
1. Fyrgenstréam 03:12
2. Leódum On Lande 06:59
3. Heófungtid 08:14
4. Those That Crush the Roots of Blood 10:28
5. Black Moss 12:42
6. Upon These Stones 11:01
7. Pillar of the Sun 05:26
8. That Which is Now Forgotten – 597 11:32
Total playing time 01:09:34

I have been listening to a lot of atmospheric black metal lately, and I noticed a lot of hype surrounding this debut by Wodensthrone. I generally stay away from releases that are exceedingly hyped up by people, because they always tend to be disappointing and fall way below my expectations. I decided to give this a listen but totally forgot about it; until a couple of days back. I listened to Loss in a recent train journey where it was just me passing through scenery full of trees, fields and a lot of greenery. And it just thrust me in a trance-like state and I couldn’t snap out of it till it finished one entire spin. Throughout the 70 odd minutes, I felt like I was in a different place. A different world, where time stood still.

Wodensthrone are a 5-piece band from north England and their music, while undeniably black metal has a lot more to it. They use a variety of instruments such as a flute, keyboards and even a harp (at times) without sounding annoyingly ‘epic’ or pretentious. The songs bear similarities to ‘Wolves in a Throne Room’, ‘drudkh’ and ‘Weakling’, but this band is not a cheap imitation or a clone at all. They are an excellent band in their own right and Loss has just proved it.

The atmosphere generated in this album is spectacular. You feel yourself getting lost in it as the world passes you by. The production is excellent. The lo-fi production adds another dimension to the music, but all instruments are clear and audible. The Songwriting and musicianship is brilliant and very mature, which is very impressive considering that this is their debut album. The riffs are excellent; They alternate between crushing brute force and beautiful melodies. The softer acoustic and clean sections are simply stunning and very nicely used and are hypnotizing, to say the least. Keyboards accompany almost every riff and is a very prominent feature of this album. But its not overdone and does not ruin anything. It creates a brilliant atmosphere that does not let go of you till the end. The vocals are mainly shrieks. There are certain variations at some parts when they add low raspy vocals too, but they are hardly used. The drumming is very good. The best element about it was how seamlessly it fits in with the instrumental passages as well.

As good as the first 3-4 tracks are, the later half of the album is what excels and places this release in a different league altogether. ‘Black Moss’ is an epic which features some brilliant riffs and has plenty of complex twist and turns. Hréowsian on drums excels in this song. ‘Upon These Stones’ and ‘Pillar of the Sun’ has one of the most beautiful instrumental sections I have heard in a long time. The final track ‘That Which is Now Forgotten-597’ is the most atmospheric track of the album and provides the album with a very enjoyable conclusion.

In short, Loss is a brilliant album. An absorbing listen and it leaves a profound impact on the listener. It would definitely make it to the top-3 releases of the year for me. These 5 guys know how to get it right. A pagan/black masterpiece which is definitely worth your attention.


Embryonic Depravity - Constrained By The Miscarriage Of Conquest

Full length, Permeated Records
November 2009

Embryonic Depravity is one of latest ensembles in the UK brutal death metal scene. They recently released their debut full length entitled as ''Constrained by the Miscarriage of Conquest'' on Italian label Permeated Records which also has bands like Septycal Gorge, Vomit the Soul etc on it's artistic roster and both those bands have slayed with their latest ventures.

There has been a sudden upsurge in the underground brutal death metal scene in UK with bands like Amputated, Fleshrot, Kastrated, Crepitation, Ingested, Infected Disarray etc raising the sickness quotient. Previously known as Odium Incarnate, Embryonic Depravity has joined this brutal brigade with elan.

I wouldn't really tag Constrained.. as something exceptional but the efforts of these British sickfucks are pretty noteworthy. This album is a must listen for fans of US style gut wrenching brutality. Like a majority of other brutal death bands, Embryonic Depravity take their basics from American goremongers Disgorge and given it their own twisted and deviant shape.

Their style can be easily described as ruthless brutal death metal with nicely layed technical dissonance. One complaint which I have is the playing length which is just under 27 minutes. There are a totality of 10 tracks so it makes up for an average of almost 3 minutes per song with the longest song being the title track which lasts for about 5 minutes. Another good factor which can be noticed is judicious usage of slams or breakdowns being employed. They are mixed with the merciless blast sections in a handsome ratio and doesn't let a monotone to evolve.

These young musicians seem pretty spot on with their musical intricateness. Rob Newson the vocalist has delivered a ferocious guttural onslaught which is bound to create a buzz in the listeners ears. The dual guitar bombardment by Pete and Will is also well executed a la Severed Saviour, latest Deeds of Flesh and somewhat Defeated Sanity. The percussion has been fairly good with efficient double blass sections, grooves and hyperblasts. The mixing and mastering has been conducted at the 16th Cellar Studios in Italy who have previously worked on Hour of Penance, Blasphemer (Ita) and Vomit the Soul and have granted this album a great modern sound. All the instruments have been fairly audible and maleficently fluent.

So it has been a promising overall effort by these young turks and has left me enthusiastic about their future material. Currently they are looking forward to massacre UK with the upcoming ''Erasing The UK Tour'' where they would be sharing stage with Amputated and fellow label mates Septycal Gorge and Vomit the Soul. A good exposure would do the trick for these guys and the rest would be done by their musical artillery.

Recommended for fans of ultra sick, bowel regurgitating and technically savoured death metal.


Official Myspace:

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Disma - The Vault Of Membros (2009)

Hello folks, how are all you guys doing? First of all, I beg extreme apologies for not keeping Infernal Dominion active since quite a long while now. Curse my stupid college and a pile of incomplete assignments for that.  But now I am finally back on track and all geared to write a review of an absolutely fantastic band which is one of my recent discoveries. The band is called Disma and they are from New Jersey, United States of America. What's the speciality of this band? Scroll down and read.

All the fellow death metal maniacs who have been urging to hear more and more relentless assaults of primitive death metal can be prepared to hear one of the best new congregations in the old school death metal scene. Funebrarum meets Incantation and the result is pure blasphemy!
Disma was founded by Funebrarum's frontman Daryl Kahan and former Incantation guitarist Bill Venner during January 2007 with the intention of creating heavy and morbid death metal. Shawn Eldridge (Funebrarum) joined on drums along with Randy Strokes (Methadrone) on bass. The line-up was complete after the legendary Craig Pillard joined the ranks on vocals.

They recently released a demo entitled as ''The Vault of Membros'' containing three tracks which sound as if they were recorded in Satan's own studio. Their name was derived by the Finnish band Xysma and a lot of their influences include great Finnish bands for example Rippikoulu, Adramelech and Convulse. Disma's brand of death metal is uncompromising and a great amalgam of Finnish and American old school death metal.

Its the perfect treat for the fans of Onward to Golgotha era Incantation. Pillard has relived those memories by an absolutely fiendish vocal performance very much reminiscent of his days with Incantation. A cacophonous twin guitar assualt by Daryl and Bill has been able to grant a raw and dissonant sound to the demo. It feels as if this is one of those obscure gems which spawned out in the early 90's tape trading era. Shawn has been brilliant on drums as excepted after his splendid performance on the latest Funebrarum album. He hasn't blasted as furisously as he did on The Sleep of Morbid Dreams but has delivered a great percussive attack which was appropriate for Disma's pumelling music. Randi's muddy, down tuned bass tone added more fervor to this juggernaut.

It's not very often that a band leaves a staunch impression on oneself just after one listen but Disma have been instrumental in doing that for me. It didn't take much time for me to immerse in the harsh death/doom hymns being blared out of my speakers and it left me hungry for more. Fortunately, they are soon coming with more hellish tunes and I can't wait to hear them. This is going to become a favourite among the appreciators of primitive and ballsy death metal in no time from now. Disma are yet another outfit among the flagbearers of the new wave of old school death metal which have resurrected the glory of those great old days.

If you found this review intriguing, then waste no time in checking out these great guys on Myspace. The demo is available for sale straight away from Daryl Kahan. Check out their Myspace link below for more details

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Reclusiam - Reclusiam (2004)

Demo, Self Released

Track list:
1. Parasellar 12:16
2. Litanies of Rust and Decay 13:20
3. Enim Corpus Meum (Hill 60) 14:30
4. Scotoma 04:44
Total playing time 44:48

I once had a conversation with a friend about our respective interests in music and I declared that I preferred listening to dark, depressing music. Naturally, he could not comprehend why I would choose to listen to something miserable and despondent and not something upbeat and lively. I guess, the experiences in my past explain my affinity towards this type of music, but I always wonder why people are scared to explore the darker and the more gloomy side of life. Why are they scared to explore the darkness within them? I never understood this, but whenever I want to do just that, Reclusiam’s debut is the first album I reach out to.

To put it simply, this album captures the true essence of depression and loneliness in its music. Musically, it is flawless and radiates emotions of emptiness and solitude with every passing second. The music is minimalistic and melancholic. Each song is 10+ minutes long, as expected with funeral doom. It is your typical funeral doom on this first listen. The long drawn out chords, the slow plodding drums and deep harsh vocals; But what is truly amazing about this release is how Ryan Henry has taken all his influences and added his own touch to it. There is something about this release that makes it different from most other funeral doom albums that I have heard.

Every track is similar. It starts off with “Parasellar” which is quite possibly, one of the best tracks I have heard in this genre. The riffs are extremely slow and lifeless. Its as if he only plays a chord once every 10 seconds or so. The vocals and nice and low growls, but are used sparsely. The atmosphere is stunning. The organs and the violin intertwine to form melodies that are so full of despair and despondency that you immediately wonder what mental state the musician was in when he wrote it. The last 3 minutes of ‘parasellar’ with the violins and organs playing together is possibly the most haunting piece of music I have ever heard.

The other tracks are also on the same level, which is brilliant. ‘Litanies of rust and decay’ is next. The song just explodes with a slow, plodding riff and some spoken vocals/growls. The vocals are brilliant and add another dimension to the sound. It sounds as if he is dying slowly and is sinking into despair. The sitar used in this track is brilliant and adds to the atmosphere. ‘Enim Corpus Meum’ is the third track. The song starts off slowly and repetitively, and just as you begin to feel overcome with emotion, the drums and guitar bursts out. The song continues on a slow pace till the end where it picks up and unleashes a tirade full of misanthropy and hatred.

The best thing about this album is the atmosphere. It is claustrophobic and crushing. It sucks you in even before you realize it and does not let go till the end. The production is perfect, with no instrument upstaging the other. Most importantly, the guitar tone is perfect but the main focus is on the keys. The songs are long, but at no point do they become tiresome.

In conclusion, this album is perfect for people who like funeral doom. Its slow, dark and depressing. It will leave you thoroughly disillusioned with this world…this life…with humanity.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Human Mincer - Degradation Paradox (2008)

Line Up:
Guilemoth - Bass
Phlegeton - Vocals
David - Drums
Miguel - Guitar

Country: Spain
Record Label:Brutal Bands

Track list:
1. Flask Copper Deglutition
2. Sculpturing Himself Atrocity
3. Degradation Paradox
4. Dyskinetic Martyr Modification
5. Scaphocephaly: Status: Error
6. Macromutation Overflowed
7. Thoughts Inner Illogical Collapse
8. Turbulent Migratorious Conceptions

Total playing time 27:04

Spanish brutal death metallers Human Mincer have returned with their latest venture entitled as ‘Degradation Paradox’ after a long hiatus of 3 years. They shot to fame in the Spanish underground scene after the release of their first demo ‘’Grotesque Visceral Extraction’’ in 1999 and there hasn’t been any looking back since then.

Their earlier full lengths ‘’Embryonized’’ and ‘’Devoured Flesh’’ were instrumental in making them a household name in the underground scene. The band has been marred by frequent line up changes since their inception but it didn’t really hamper their immense focus towards composing some extremely sick and technical music to charm the loyal followers of the BDM scene.

Human Mincer’s career took a huge turning point when Carlos (Vocals) and Antonio (Bass) decided to leave the band during the summer of 2006. The guys who were recruited to fill in these vacant positions were none other than Phlegeton (Vocals) and Guillemoth (Bass) from the bizarre Spanish Brutal Death Metal band ‘’Wormed’’. This new incredible line up was then ready to massacre the weak in the most heinous way possible.

In January 2008, the newly formed line up entered the studio to work upon their third album to be released by Brutal Bands which is undeniably one of the most revered DM record labels in the world. They had earlier worked with Xtreem Music owned by the legendary Dave Rotten which had released their first two albums.

Their earlier sound was very much reminiscent of Disgorge (USA) and similar other American Brutal Death Metal bands but now it can be pretty easily compared with the sound of Wormed with more variations and intricate song patterns. The inclusion of the profane duo from Wormed was subservient in giving them their new implausible sound.

This 27 minute juggernaut unleashes a relentless assault on the eardrums of the listener containing every ingredient to be served in front of multitudes of fans hungry for a truly barbarous display of blasting Brutal Death Metal.
It should have been come out with a warning sign ‘’Beware of serious neck breaking headbanging’’ in my opinion. An absolute inhumane slab of gravity blasts, inhumane riffs and monstrous vocals makes you jump with ecstasy everytime you play this record.

As far as the individual performances are concerned, Miguel’s guitar skills have been absolutely astonishing and awe-inspiring throughout the record. His playing style is not anything much different from the other guitarists in the scene but the reason why he receives an enormous appraisal is the way he has executed them. There has been an intelligent usage of groovy, thick downtuned chugs (Not the slam death metal types though) intertwined with frequent tremolo picked, palm muted riffs and occasional pinch harmonics. Abrupt tempo changes and innovative rhythm sections also highlight the amount of dexterity been exuded by him. The sumptuous production by BB also compliments his hard work very dearly.

Talking about vocals, Phlegeton has been a total monster on the mic on DP. He has been instrumental in devastating the auditory senses of the listener through his loathsome brand of ultra low gutturals. He sounds like Leatherface’s chainsaw persistently buzzing with angst and craving to savor the taste of bright red human blood. His vocal style is basically categorized with very low frequency croaks and squeals and the amount of adroitness which he employs while unleashing them out of his throat is simply phenomenal! I became a huge fan of his vocals the day I heard Wormed but the performance in this CD made me worship him.

This multi-talented musician has been active in the Spanish underground scene since quite a long time, playing for various other bands like Unsane Crisis, Infernal (Col), Banished from Inferno etc. where he also plays drums apart from doing vocal duties. He is also a well know illustrator and graphic designer in the underground DM scene and has designed cover arts and logos for various bands like Avulsed, Mortician, Disgorge (Mex), Gloria Morti, Benighted, Kronos, Revenant, Funebre, Guttural Secrete, Wormed, Reinfection, Impure, Golgotha, Embryonic Devourment, Vidres a la Sang, Infested and Human Mincer’s Degradation Paradox too. So, total respect for him.

The drums on this album have been totally exceptional. I remember watching a live footage of David’s drumming skills on the song ‘’Dyskinetic Martyr Modification’’ and was awestruck watching him. He appeared totally inhumane there as he did on the CD.
This album would not have sounded so epic without the earnest efforts of this gentleman.
His incessant gravity blasts have left a profound impression on me and through that I can easily put him in the league of the most talented drummers out in the scene today.
What is even more brilliant about him is that he hasn’t allowed the drums to overpower the guitars by maintaining a prodigious variance on his playing speed.
He has also succeeded in playing the slower groovy parts with much ease and combining them with the ferocity of his blasting skills.

The production level is also very impressive and has been the most prominent factor in giving the dark and thick sound which this album boasts of.
It’s a record which you will love to blast on your speakers at full volume to give a heart attack to your grouchy neighbors. The word extravagant would be just an understatement to describe the grandeur of this magnum opus.

It possesses a unique charisma which makes it sound pristine even after giving over a zillion plays. There is no such moment where you would feel like interrupting the CD and switching over to another record. So, I advise all the guys who are desperate to experience an unpretentious and insane onslaught of original and bizarre Death Metal to get a copy of this record and blare it loud on your music player. You would be left more than satisfied.

Stay brutal.


Rating - 9.5/10

Check out Human Mincer on their official Myspace

Monday, August 17, 2009

Lurker of Chalice - Lurker of Chalice (2005)

Full-length, Total Holocaust Records
June 27th, 2005

Track List:

1. I 02:09
2. Piercing Where They Might 06:12
3. Spectre As Valkerie Is 06:43
4. Minions 09:32
5. Paramnesia 04:08
6. This Blood Falls As Mortal Part III 10:36
7. Granite 05:27
8. Vortex Chalice 06:34
9. Fastened To The Five Points 08:32

Total playing time 59:53

Eliminate society. Eliminate all your ideas, your dreams, your hope and replace them with what you fear the most. Replace light with darkness. Destroy humanity. Destroy all emotions. Destroy all beliefs. Replace rational thoughts and logic with insanity.

These are the range of emotions you experience on listening to ‘Lurker of Chalice’s’ self-titled debut. Lurker of Chalice is a side project of Wrest, the mastermind of ‘Leviathan’. And to be honest, the general soundscape of this release and the emotions explored bear a resemblance to leviathan’s ‘the tenth sub-level of suicide’. However, the sheer emotional outpouring in this album is overwhelming and proves to be more effective than leviathan’s works.

The main accomplishment of this album is that the moods depicted by wrest are genuine. From the first moment onwards, you enter a tortured mind. Wrest takes you through a journey filled with darkness and despair. You seem to drift aimlessly, lifelessly in a parallel grey world. A world in which all senses fade away, only leaving behind fear and cold depression. The atmosphere suffocates you after a point of time and you are left grasping for breath to convince yourself that you are still alive.

Now, onto the music. Most of the instrumentation is downbeat as compared to ‘leviathan’. The drums are nothing special. Nothing flashy. Their main purpose is to move the song along a definitive direction. The vocals are nothing more than spoken-words through some distortion effects and a lot of reverb. The vocals are amazing. If in the right state of mind, the listener will definitely lose himself in the folds of this music. The guitars are fantastic. They sound as if they are far away, and add some incredibly haunting ambience to the music. The riffs consist of blackened tremolo riffs and doomish passages as well. The guitar is mainly distorted although, there is some strumming and clean guitars thrown in as well. The bass seems to be heavily influenced by doom metal and play a big role in this album. They are slow and seem to ebb away at the listener while leading the music. The atmosphere is stunning and suffocating. And nothing I have heard can top the atmosphere that wrest produces in this album.

This is a fantastic release. It is something that has to be experienced. It is a journey through emptiness. A journey through desolation. A journey through the mind of a tortured individual who wishes nothing better than death.

This is one of the most original and captivating music I have heard for a long time. Listen to it and ‘enjoy’.

RATING – 10/10

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Morpheus Descends - Chronicles of the Shadowed Ones (

Full Length, 1994

Line up:

Vocals- Jeff Reimer
Bass- Andy Newton
Guitar- Bryan Johnston
Drums- Sam Inzerra
Guitar- Rob Yench

Track Listing:

1. The Cruciform Hills 06:17
2. Cairn of Dumitru 06:49
3. Autumn Bleed 04:56
4. Signs of Gehenna 05:02
5. Moupho Alde Ferenc Yaborov (In the Land of the Vampire Ferenczy) 09:00

Total Playing Time: 32:04

''Chronicles of The Shadowed Ones'' is the second release by NYDM stalwarts Morpheus Descends and In fact their best. The band flourished in the early 90's when the New York underground scene was gaining world wide recognition with bands like Incantation, Suffocation, Immolation and Mortician creating a benchmark for other bands all over the globe. But sadly, not many people credit Morpheus Descends' role in this process. They were highly significant in defining the whole NYDM sound and this album is a sheer exemplification of their musical prowess.

This album clocks at around 32 minutes and leaves a profound Impression of Impending doom and catastrophe on the listener. It contains a sinister atmosphere with heavy death/doom parts and brilliant riffing which reminds me of Incantation's Onward To Golgotha a lot. The guitars have played a pivotal role in defining the pessimistic and dark sound of this masterpiece. The dual guitar attack of Rob Yench and Bryan Johnston has been phenomenal throughout this testimony of diabolical art. There aren't any solos or guitar wankery here but a stellar, to the point performance. The pummeling riffs leave no stone unturned in tormenting the ears of the listener.

Jeff Riemer(R.I.P)'s vocal work is amongst the best in the whole death metal history which remind me of Craig Pillard'. His undecipherable gutturals were like Cobras spewing venom upon their preys. Tracks like ''The Cruciform Hills'' and ''Cairn of Dumitru'' have stellar vocal performances which perfectly compliment the sinister guitar work and percussion. He has created an evil web of Blasphemy through his Guttural narratives which haunt the listeners throughout the album. Like the lyrics of the title track says ''In the cruciform hills
Something evil lies, undead ''.

The next big highlight of this gem is the precise drumming. It contains an excellent double bass and pedal work with frenetic blasts at times. The snares create an explosive sound which is perfectly in sync with the riffage. Its an amazing fact to see such a good sounding drum mix on an Independent release that too 15 years ago! Sam Inzerra may not have achieved anything path breaking but he was Instrumental In making this album a gem through his percussive skills.

Overall, This album is a timeless classic which stays pristine even after 100 listens and it's fiendish, majestic feel never ceases to erode. I highly recommend Morpheus Descends to all the old school death metal aficionados and i guarantee that this album would become the soundtrack to your horrific nightmares.

Enjoy the brutality!

Final Verdict:

Worship - Last CD Before Doomsday (1999)

Demo, Impaler of Trendies

Track List :

1.Whispering Gloom 11:53
2.Solicide and the Dawning of the Moonkult 10:59
3.Eclipse of Sorrow 08:18
4.Worship 15:23
5. Keep On Selling Cocaine to Angels 08:32

Total Playing Time - 53:55 minutes

Imagine the most painful moment in your life. Imagine pain. Imagine anguish. Imagine despair. Imagine this painful existence slowly coming to an end. This is what it feels like on listening to this masterpiece, which quite brilliantly portrays the raw emotions to those who know what it is to be depressed.

‘The last CD/Tape/Vinyl before doomsday’ is probably the finest funeral doom release ever. I would go as far as to call it the soundtrack to suicide. This is one of the albums that you have to sit down and listen to, in order to understand the music. The music is slow, as expected with funeral doom, and extremely heavy.

What immediately captured my attention were the vocals. Its almost as if Max knew this was the end and put in all that he had in this album. His vocals are sick and twisted. He doesn’t just do deep guttural vocals, but effectively uses some shrieks and some whispers. Max knows exactly what he is doing and what is needed to create such dismal music.

The guitars are brilliant and possibly are The Doommonger’s best work yet. They are distorted and heavy as fuck. Not all of the guitar work is distorted though. There are some clean guitar passages that maximize the oppressive atmosphere of these songs. The solo at the end of ‘whispering gloom’ gives me goosebumps every time I listen to it and sends me to a totally different state of mind. The riffs are excellent. Extremely slow, but crushing and suffocating. It sweeps over the listener like a tidal wave.

The drums are typical of funeral doom. They are played very slowly and are non-existent in parts. It would not matter even if the drums weren’t present in this release. Nothing special, but done well.

Overall, I consider this to be the benchmark against which I judge other funeral doom releases. After a while of listening, you find yourself staring at an endless void. You find yourself surrendering yourself to this void. You witness nothingness. You feel empty, hollow and devoid of all happiness. You almost feel dead. All hope abandoned; your spirit broken. But in spite of all this, you find yourself coming back to this again and again.

This is Funeral Doom. This is what it was meant to be. Absolute perfection

R.I.P max