Archive for June 2024

Hate Forest – Justice (2024)

June 30, 2024

I’m sure there’s a decent set of Hate Forest tracks here but they are buried beneath a super modern, slick, overcompressed production job. Don’t get me wrong, the drums sound fantastic, but that’s about it. This thing would be much better if it was just allowed to breathe.

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Cunt Grinder / Satan’s Revenge On Mankind / Hymen Holocaust – Split CD (2007)

I’ve had this CD for like 17 years now so I should probably review it. The Cunt Grinder stuff takes a while to get off the ground, taking Gut-inspired procrastination tactics (ie Atmosphere lol) but we’re all secretly hoping they’ll just get to the point. When they do, intros and samples aside, this is some chunky, riff-heavy stuff. Offensive and abrasive, but with a well-rounded and sharp production, there is genuine heft to their material…

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Devastation – A Re-Creation Of Ripping Death (1986)

An interesting (re)creation. For this EP the band have chucked an extra 2 letters into the title, and rerecorded their older songs in a thrasher style, rather than a death metal one. For the most part, to be honest, this works better than I would have thought. The songs have more “go” in them, probably helped by an increase in speed as well as a slightly clearer production. However, unfortunately, the vocals aren’t as good…

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Devastation – A Creation Of Ripping Death (1986)

No frills early daze death metal (in the days where thrash became death) not too dissimilar from others at the time. The most interesting thing here is how heavy this is for 1986. It almost sounds as if the guys in Autopsy listened to too much Slayer before recording any songs.

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Morbid Angel – Heretic (2003)

It’s hard to see why this thing gets such a pasting. Yes, it’s not Altars Of Madness, but it’s a well made, well composed slice of lightning fast death metal. The album loses its way towards the end, descending into a series of pointless and distracting tracks, but the core “metal” songs are absolutely fantastic. Tucker sounds rabid as hell and Pete “the Feet” is a machine on the drums. Riffs. For. Days!

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Saint Pepsi – Hit Vibes (2013)

June 29, 2024

Wasn’t feeling this one. It’s like a shittier vaporwave version of Daft Punk. I mean, it’s probably great if you’ve had a few too many expensive cocktails and you wanna dance, but otherwise it’s a no from me, dawg.

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Old Sorcery – Dragon Citadel Elegies (2022)

Magical dungeon synth. Yes, there are parts of this where it feels like Mortiis should be seeking legal advice but those moments are confined to the first two tracks alone. As Dragon Citadel Elegies sprawls, as does the pool of sounds from which it draws from, creating a dark and forboding atmosphere. Despite this, track 2, “Inn at the Borderland” is an absolute bop.

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Robot God – Portal Within (2024)

Wow, imagine being able to make stoner / doom / prog / jam style music and to NOT make it boring as shit! Come on in Robot God, sit down, you can stay a while.

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Guttural Secrete – Reek Of Pubescent Despoilment (2006)

I don’t usually like brutal or technical death all that much. It can become a brute force attack of cardboard cutout drum triggers with a side serving of riff salad. But not Guttural Secrete. This shit is fucking outstanding. Punishing is probably the best way to describe it, but an enjoyable and satisfying listen for those on the hunt for new levels of savage barbarity. The production job is fucking glowing, which doesn’t always work…

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Esham – Sacrificial Lambz (2008)

June 27, 2024

Stronger than most albums in this “era” of his career but goddamn this thing is longer than War & Peace. Despite this, it definitely feels like Esham got back on track here, with the spirit of the wicked shit coursing through this long set of songs. There’s a bite to proceedings, an edge to the lyrics, and an extra stomp to the beat.

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Dark Fury – Vae Victis! (2004)

A solid early effort from the excellent Dark Fury. Not their strongest, and the tone / production is fairly “middle of the road” which gives everything this kind of drab air to it. Despite this, there are some great riffs and tracks in general. The atmosphere is so thick you can cut it with a knife.

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Wolfnacht – Heidentum (2002)

Black metal can be frosty as hell but fuck me this production is beyond brittle. Despite this ear-scraping setup, the Wolfnacht debut sets the tone for the rest of the project’s trajectory – as in, there was zero fucking about from the beginning. This shit is ridiculously good. The compositions are fantastic, the drumming is great, the synths add the perfect layer of atmosphere. THIS is fucking great black metal.

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Esham – Purgatory (2023)

Purgatory would be a decent later-career Esham offering, if it was not for the dreeeeeaaaaadful metal tracks pulling this thing down. Honestly, they truly, completely, totally, suck ass. Otherwise, this thing is pretty good. Some interesting ideas and vibes. Lead single “Bro” was an interesting choice, as it’s easily one of the weaker tracks on the album. The majority of the “Circle Of…” tracks having interesting concepts (unless they are metal tracks lol). But yeah….

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Inquisition – Into the Infernal Regions of the Ancient Cult  (1998)

Good heavens (below), this album has some fucking diiiiisssgguuuuuusssting riffs. It’s not often you’d pull a “stank face” when listening to black metal (and in this case for once it’s not because of Dagon’s browsing history), but there are so many moments here that are just too downright satisfying. Absolutely savage stuff!

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Esham – Amuse-Bouche (2024)

June 26, 2024

Crikey, before I can even think about getting around to review Purgatory (I’m slow, I know), Esham The Unholy drops another slice of wicked shit for us. The man is clearly on a roll, between the recent solo drops as well as the 3HM records that came out recently. I’m glad to see him back on the game! You probably shouldn’t expect the world from the man this far into his career, but this is…

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Evoken – Atra Mors (2012)

June 25, 2024

I’ve got nothing really special to say about this one. I don’t think funeral doom is for me.

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Cannibal Corpse – Gore Obsessed (2002)

Pure fucking head crushing death metal! I’ll level with you, I expected Cannibal’s records to get worse as they went along, but fuck, this record is up there with their best shit. Gore Obsessed? More like Riff Obsessed, brah brah. Production is par for the course but the soundstage is huge and the balance of instruments is fantastic. Alex Webster’s bass clanks away maniacally underneath the razor wire riffage. Straight banger after banger after banger….

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Darkthrone – A New Dimension (1988)

Solid early demo from everyone’s favourite Norwegian (now) dads. Even at this primal point in time, the band were cooking up their own super interesting brand of death metal, and the complex drumming is of particular highlight.

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Mortiis – Transmissions From the Western Walls of Time (Live 1997) (2021)

Frankly, a pointless release in every sense of the word, despite the lovely new artwork. Pretty sure this was available as a bootleg for many years. Truly, it should have stayed as such. I feel like I’m at a house party and some dork has put Crypt Of The Wizard on the stereo and the only effect it’s had is causing all the twats in the room to shout at each other a little louder….

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Von – Satanic Blood Angel (2003)

Von’s name is legendary. I remember a friend gave me some Von stuff on CDr many, many years ago but I couldn’t get into it. Over the last 15 years or so however I’ve come to appreciate the looser / noiser end of black metal, and in the timeline of such releases, the early Von demos are essential listening. I don’t think they are all that great; as in, stuff that came a little later…

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Agathocles / Blood – Split 7″ (1991)

AGx stuff is more lo-fi than you’re average lo-fi stuff but fuck if early 90s AGx doesn’t blow your fucking sandals off – proper muffled, treble-heavy blow to the face. Like a brick is a sock. But there’s like, bits of fuckin glass in the fibers of the sock. If you like barely audible, grimy tape recordings, look no further! Blood has a clearer production but instead draws you down into bogs of heaviness and…

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Sick Sinus Syndrome – Rotten To The Core (2021)

Maggot-infested, swarming gore from Czechia with an insane pedigree (in the form of members of Malignant Tumour and the excellent Pathologist). Expect blasting drums, sinister riffs, watery vocals, oh and lots of cool cover songs such as Regurtitate’s “Vulva Fermentation” or Carcass’ “Oxidised Razor Masticator”. Either way, solid fucking production reigns supreme, allowing the sick display to be fully consumed in all of its glory.

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Bathory – Destroyer Of Worlds (2001)

Nowhere near as confused or as eclectic as I went into it expecting it to be. Destroyer Of Worlds is yet another strange u-turn in the meandering back-and-forth river-like discography of Bathory. There are some hold overs that sound like they are from the Blood On Ice sessions here, such as “Lake Of Fire” (although I do appreciate there was like a five year gap between albums), but for the most part Destroyer Of Worlds…

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Bathory – Blood On Ice (1996)

An interesting return to something of a form from the later-career era of Bathory. I’m not scholar of Quothorn’s works so I have no idea why he’s whiplash u-turned back into fucking viking / norse stuff again after two albums of balls-to-the-wall blasting thrash, but here we are. My main complaint, at least initially, with Blood On Ice is that the production feels permenantly distant and far away, like I’m listening to a 192kbps mp3…

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Morbus – Diabolikalrites & Nekrosexlust (2010)

There is something about this injection of raw bestial energy (I suppose not bestial as in, proto-war metal, bestial as in, deeply perverse sexual energy) that is just what the corpse-paint wearing doctor ordered this morning. Expect necrotic production but with a fat low end, something that is always a treat in the more tinnitus-inducing mires of underground black metal. Composition-wise, I find the tracks compiled here to be very excited, and far better than…

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Operation Cunt Destroyer – Slam Before Time (2015)

June 24, 2024

Fucking stupid as fuck but good clean fun for the whole family. Originality? Purleease. Brain slam nonsense is what you’re getting, and you’re gonna be fucking pleased about it!

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Rectal Smegma – Because We Care (2011)

You gotta hand it to these guys, they have some of the most ridiculous and absurd vocals ever. Easily one of my favourite pitchshifter vocal performances of all time, regardless of which album. Because We Care (lol) is like a bigger budget version of Keep On Smiling, which is not quite as bogged down as the later more “death metal” focussed stuff. Because We Care still retains plenty of that trademark early daze silliness to…

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Paradise Lost – Gothic (1991)

Beautifully crafted, mournful yet crushingly heavy doom metal in that imitable UK style that seemed to proliferate in the early 90s. Comparisons to early Anathema and early My Dying Bride are perhaps a bit lazy on my part, but Gothic has a gorgeous lineup of monolithic songs that hold up well against the other greats of the time. Production is clear, heavy and crisp. Brilliant!

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Virologist – Ameliorating Vicissitudes (2024)

June 23, 2024

That bass crept out the damn speaker and slapped me in the whole face. Darkness and evil, brah brah, pure roughness and toughness.

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Witchfinder General – Death Penalty (1982)

Death Penalty sounds like it came from a decade earlier than its actual release date. Witchfinder General bolt from the gate with “Invisible Hate”, which for my money is the best track on this gorgeous sounding analogue romp through doomy traditional metal. The ending one-two punch of “Burn A Sinner” and “RIP” leave a great impression, and the short run time only encourages me to spin this again. Brilliant feel good metal of olde!

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Thorns – Trøndertun  (1992)

Far more dusty, forgotten and ancient than the main Thorns record, this earlier release is a fantastic example of the Norwegian wave of black metal. Snorre’s riffs are incredible; mesmeric and transfixing, not unlike early Burzum material. Odd how these two who were linked by one of the more infamous events of black metal history are also peas in a pod when it comes to six string dexterity.

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Old Man’s Child – In The Shades Of Life (1996)

Well composed, mystical and interesting black metal from the mid 90s. OMC almost sounds like a clone of Dimmu Borgir at times, but these early records are their own special beasts. My favourite tracks on this EP are the fantastic “The Old Man’s Child” and the closing synthesizer piece, with all sorts of dark accents and flourishes. Great stuff!

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Cystgurgle – Exquisite Macerated Tissue Slippage And Full-Body Degloving Under Extreme Circumstances Of Accelerated Putrefaction  (2023)

June 20, 2024

I guess this is what the inside of a slaughterhouse sounds like if you speed it up like a 100 times? There is no compromise, only blastbeats on bin lids, meat grinder bass and a torrential current of liquescent gore (the vocals, in case you’re wondering what the fuck I’m talking about). Truly a band after mine own heart!

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Bathory – Octagon (1995)

Never thought I’d ever hear Quothorn screaming such lyrical ditties as “Eat my shit / Suck my dick” but Octagon exists, and here we are. It is perhaps not hard to see why this album is so reviled compared to the other Bathory records. It’s like a poor man’s Requiem that should actually work on paper, what with the frantic guitar work and song structures and the flurry of drums, but is just a shittier…

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Goat – Requiem (2016)

June 15, 2024

The main problem Goat have is that they will never be able to top their debut album, World Music, which is wall to wall, front to back, banger to banger – a total classic. Requiem is much the same as Commune before it in that it is an absolute pleasure to listen to; the production is glorious as is the various instrumentation (in particular the percussion) but none of the songs hit home with the…

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Hole Dweller – Returns To Roost (2020)

I discovered Hole Dweller around the same time as that RuneScape.wav dungeon synth project and to be honest I often conflate the two, even though I’m clearly an idiot because they both have entirely different vibes! Granter, more ambitious and more involving than the cult classic Flies The Coop (which has now been re-recorded or something?), Returns To Roost is an interesting set of songs that are led by synth melodies that toe the line…

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Mushroomhead – Fall In Line (2024)

June 13, 2024

If you ever needed proof that Mushroomhead is now a dog that needs putting down, then look no further than this single.

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Sperm Gurgling Necro Fetus – Stuffing Her Stoma With Dog Cum (2020)

Surprisingly cognisant and well put together pornogrind, which is yknow, not something you can say very often, I’ll be honest with you. If you’re here reading a review about a band called Sperm Gurgling Necro Fetus then I hope you know exactly what you are in for and yes, this release does deliver the goods, if I can call it that. Definitely and exclusively for sleazy grinders too far down the rabbit hole to even…

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Absurd – Grabgesang (2021)

Absurd gotta be one of the best black metal bands out there when it comes to vocals. Whether we’re talking the Wolf-fronted version (in this case) or the JFN-front version (such as Schwarze Bande), the way the vocals sound are both second to none. This is a peculiar release, though. I don’t want to say it’s a “knock off” version of Absurd, but it’s a curious lineup. Maybe I’m getting confused (it’s easy to when…

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Electric Masada – At The Mountains Of Madness (2005)

The concept of “Grails” is probably overused in this record collecting renaissance age (or should I say over-memed?). This Electric Masada album however, was a grail of sorts for me. It has always remained tantalisingly out of reach; a mysterious Zorn-led experimental jazz supergroup consisting of a who’s who of the avant-garde elite which I could not ever hear. I refused to pay £25/£30 for a Tzadik import, it wasn’t available on streaming services, and…

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Graveland – Wotan Mit Mir (2008)

June 12, 2024

A considerably well made entry into the ever-flowing stream that is the Graveland discography. There is a lot of Graveland. Not all of it is good. Wotan Mit Mir is fantastic however, in both terms of production and songwriting. It is an EP that feels long enough to be a full length album. The only thing that’s a bit shite is the artwork, but even that looks great from far away.

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Infester – Darkness Unveiled (1992)

Drab, disgusting, low, infinitely dark death metal from a short lived yet revered project. Expect the usual death metal demo tape dustiness and lo fi production, but tunes that absolutely crush you.

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Van de Graaf Generator – Pawn Hearts (1971)

Gorgeous, bright, vibrant, incredible, exciting, exhilarating – these are some of the words I would use to describe the absolute aural treat that is Pawn Harts. I’m no prog guy, as you can probably tell, but this was an incredible experience.

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Sigh – Infidel Art (1995)

June 11, 2024

On Infidel Art, Sigh really begin to expand their sonic wings, which is incredible because the Requiem… demo and Scorn Defeat were already incredible pieces of work with unique character and instrumentation from the off. Even when Sigh are silly (“the Zombie Terror”, anyone?) they retain all experimental integrity and flair. Highly recommended!

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Haggus – Mincecore Agenda (2016)

June 10, 2024

What is the Mincecore Agenda you could ask? Cheap beer, weed, vegan food? Black caps with saggy patches stitched on for all? Who gives a fuck, just wag a finger in the air and roll down your balaclavas, this shit fucking rules.

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Melvins – Ozma (1989)

More refined and streamlined than the Gluey Porch debut, and infinitely more punishing for it. Ozma is a dry heave in direct blunt force heaviness (with some mandatory Melvin’s groove, of course). That’s more like it!

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The Exploited – Let’s Start A War… Said Maggie One Day (1983)

Solid fucking effort from Wattie & co. You can really feel the absolute loathing for Thatcher on this one. It is incredibly relevant still in a time where such hatred for the Conservative Party is once again rife amongst the community conscious of the UK (some cunt is voting for these twats though). Anyway, this album is fucking great. Not the best, but still fucking great. Fairly heavy for punk, full of hatred and bile….

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Negro Terror – The Voice Of Memphis (2019)

June 9, 2024

Banging single, especially the A side, which hits like a truck. “We Need Support” on side B has its moments, but both the production and songwriting for the title track are far better. The video is great too. Top street punk / skate punk style stuff.

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Melvins – Gluey Porch Treatment (1987)

June 8, 2024

Fun, but pretty directionless and seems to be lacking any real purpose or direction. A mere shadow of what was to come. Gluey Porch Treatments is notable however for being considerably ahead of its time for “sludge” metal.

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Sigh – Requiem For Fools (1992)

Considering this is a demo it is beyond fucking excellent in every possible way. The instrumentation on early Sigh is just second to none; raw black metal with incredible playing of traditional instruments in a timeless blend of sounds. Not many can do it this well!

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Graveland / Nokturnal Mortum / North / Temnozor – Split CD (2007)

Graveland and Nokturnal Mortum stuff is great, if a little typical on Graveland’s end (I could be listening to one of what seems like 30 recent albums). Fantastic mix of folk elements in the NM track. North lose me a bit in the sheer fucking headache that is their track, before Temnozor bring their olde worlde pagan metal to the conclusion of this split. All in all, a mixed bag.

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Bathory – Requiem (1994)

A strange side step in the chronological order of Bathory’s evolution. After several records expanding and refining on the Viking themed epic metal, Quothorn side steps his project into a mid-90s mire of sheer sonic brutality. Gone are the epic 10 minute tracks, instead we get an unique brand of super intense thrash metal, where the riffs are so fast they are crazy blurs, where the bass is so loud and clanking that it almost…

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Sex Pistols – Never Mind The Bollocks, Here’s The Sex Pistols (1977)

People say that the Sex Pistols can’t play, but this thing has always sounded far more put together to me than most punk from this era. On the other hand, you have the nay sayers who suggest that the Sex Pistols are just a pop band with distorted guitars. As is often the case, the reality is somewhere in the middle. Now, I’ve never been a big fan of the hype around these guys, in…

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E.A.G.L.E. – Above It All (2024)

A noticeable improvement from the Autumn Hearts stuff, E.A.G.L.E.’s oddly morose yet triumphant riffs lead us through several more tracks of DIY black metal rawness, but this time with more maturity and evolved songwriting.

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Black Sabbath – Forbidden Remix (2024)

I was very dubious of the Forbidden remix. Why, you ask? Well, remixes, generally, aren’t usually that great. If a band decides to do it, there’s usually a reason – and it’s easy to see why in Forbidden’s case. On top that, most if not all remixes that I’ve heard of controversial albums have failed to improve on the original. This, I’m happy to report, is where Forbidden differs. The changes here are night and…

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Der Sturmer – Areifatoi (2013)

With the ceveat of putting the NS themes to one side, musically this is exactly what I look for in my black metal. Raw production, but clear enough to make out what’s going on (with prominant bass), awesome vocals, hypnotic yet sinister riffs…. I could go on, but its a short EP so it’s probably easier to just listen to it rather than watch me waffle on. It’s great, though.

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Yuzo Koshiro & Motohiro Kawashima – Streets Of Rage 3 OST (1994)

Feels noticeably different from the first two soundtracks, no doubt in part because of additional composer Motohiro Kawashima. That being said, SOR / Bare Knuckle 3 was also a markedly different game than its predecessors, so perhaps also called for a slightly different approach. But hey; I’m no video game journalist or historian, I’m just an idiot with a RYM account. What I can tell you for certain that whilst this isn’t as legendary or…

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Anti-Nowhere League – We Are… The League (1982)

A raucous collection of tunes with that trademark cheeky ANL “we’re up to no good” vibe shot right through them. I would say the usual matters of working class British punk are addressed, but so are less tread topics for early punk such as being a sexual pervert, the excitement of waiting for the “Snowman”, or how much the band hate rock and/or roll. We Are… The League is well written, well performed, and a…

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Haggus – The Masked Mincer (2016)

Oooooooooooooooooooooooh (mince commences). It’s really cool looking back now to see just how fucking great early Haggus was. This shit has the mega groove, the mega fucking mincegore STOMP. Combine those irresistible mosh parts with blasting, grinding carnage in a loose goregrind style, and you’re on to a winner. Some of the strongest Haggus tracks are stacked back to back on this EP, making it well worth your time. It’s only a few minutes long…

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Exhumed / Nyctophobic – Split 7” (1998)

June 7, 2024

Far from the best material from either band, but still a fun little split. You’ve got gory early daze Exhumed and three cuts from the super under rated Nyctophobic. It’s hard to argue with that!

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Dead Infection – Corpses Of The Universe (2008)

An unfortunately very uneventful later effort from the legendary Dead Infection. In isolation, the drums, downtuned guitars and crazy shifted vokills are fantastic, but the end product is kinda mid, with none of the songs popping out at me and the general theme being rather ridiculous and plain stupid. Dead Infection can do no wrong, in reality, but this was one of the weaker releases they ever did. RIP Cyan.

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Caveman Cult – Demo 2023 (2023)

Lo-fi, grinding, pounding war metal of a prehistoric nature (lol). Don’t expect these neanderthals to (re)invent the wheel, but expect instead the sound of primordial being smashing each other with rocks and so on. Nice riffs too!

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Mohammad Pedophile – Heir Of Mental Degeneration (2022)

Came here after hearing about the offensive name, stayed for the tunes. Production is fairly middle of the road but the songs and odd guitar melodies are interesting. I’d heard complaints about the vocals but I think they fit pretty well to be honest. The excellent cover of an Impaled Nazarene classic is the icing on the cake.

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Crossed Out / Man Is The Bastard – Split 7″ (1993)

Wild shit across the board. Crossed Out sound raw as hell on this. Blasting, uncompromisng powerviolence of legendary status. What more can I say? Fuck, what more do you want? MITB on side B is always a treat because you never know exactly what you are going to get. The patented blend of bass/drums PV and skull-hollowing electronics never gets old for me (there’s some guitar here too for good measure).

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Excruciating Terror – Legacy Of Pain (1992)

Lo-fi, raw, uncompromising grindcore with tinges of death metal, but of course in the early 90s sometimes these styles were not so easy to separate. High points are subterranean vocals, analogue production with natural drum sound, and excellent songwriting. Lower points include bizarre guitar effects like on “Careless Attitude” which aren’t so great but otherwise this is a cracking little EP from a now legendary band.

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Crass – The Feeding Of The Five Thousand (1979)

June 6, 2024

Legendary anarcho-punk record (the first?) that needs no introduction from a prime idiot like me. The production is just to die for; I could listen to this thing on a loop for days. The bass pops out of the speakers and slaps me in the face. On top of that, this is a fantastic set of songs, from “Do They Owe Us A Living?” to the catchy as fook “Securicor”, and everything in between. On…

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Capricornus – Alone Against All (2004)

This is an incredible piece of black metal. Capricornus is an enigmatic and controversial figure in the black metal world. His drumming in Graveland is questionable but undeniable unique and influential. The project Thor’s Hammer is well, not the best IMO. He shines in this project, though. I guess all the pieces just aligned; the songwriting, the riffs and the production. The drums sound a bit strange (did these triggers come cheap secondhand after Nick…

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Gehenna – See Through The Veils Of Darkness (The Second Spell) (1995)

Beautifully conjured record of keyboard-led black metal, with a dual vocal attack. I’m no expert so I don’t know who is who but one vocalist is definitely preferable to the other. One of the guys hits these Shagrath a la Enthrone Darkness Triumphant kinda insane screeches which are just blood curdling (more like Shagrath should be compared to these guys as this came earlier). Comparisons can also be made to Emperor without being too lazy…

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Mayhem – Ordo Ad Chao (2007)

One of the weirder Mayhem albums. Kinda like A Grand Declaration Of War Part 2. Only not quite as good. Or as weird. As with anything post De Mysteriis, this Mayhem album is another offering of cold and frostbitten riff salad, topped with a garnish of incomprehensible drum flourishes and all sorts of bizarre artsy fartsy lyrics. Things aren’t quite as pompous as they were when Maniac was around, but it’s still very “artistic”. I…

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Nasty Face – This Is The Face Wish Show (2021)

June 5, 2024

gargling gravy goregrind with an excellent razor sharp edge of freshness and ripping riffage. As you can probably tell from the bizarre cover art, there is much more going on here than just the usual blast’n’gurgle goregrind. Nasty Face have expanded their bludgeoning sound with this full length in ways that it is difficult to accurately describe.

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ShitFuckingShit – Life Of Excess (2015)

Have you ever seen one of those Japanese pornos where a guy is lying under like a glass coffeetable or something, and then this absolutely gorgeous lassie wanders in, sits on the table, and then takes a huge wet shit all over it? The man underneath the table can admire this once beautiful behind like a modern day De Sade; this perfected work of nature becomes a disgusting, shit-smeared mass of flesh and fecal matter…

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Nasty Face – People (2017)

Chonky, disgusting goregrind with that unique Nasty Face twist. Expect scooped to hell and back guitars chugging out fat riffs that fill the entire space, with trashcan snares being the only sound that can penetrate the thick bog. Bubbling over the top like a frothing maniac is the pitchshifter vokills. The icing on the cake is all sorts of disturbing sound collage work and sampling, which really makes this stand out from other goregrind releases.

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Master / Paganizer – Split 7″ (2018)

June 3, 2024

Later Master is a strange beast. You’ve got the super clinical and clean drumming, mixed with muddy and swampy old school death metal guitars, and of course, Paul Speckmann’s trademark howl/yelp/growl/whatever. The track here is a hell of a beast; 6 minutes of chaotic metal goodness. Paganizer initially sound like some forgotten 90s Barney-era Napalm Death recording, which is an interesting start. Their offering, whilst half the length of Master’s, is no less in quality…

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Black Sabbath – Evil Eye / Get A Grip (2024)

Evil Eye sounds massive. A really promising remaster job which will no doubt have many returning to the long forgotten Sabbath album from whence it came. Get A Grip took me by surprise. Initially, I did not like how the 2024 remix by Iommi and Mike Exeter handled Cozy Powell’s drums, nor was I particularly fussed on the strange inclusion of different vocals for the second chorus (I don’t understand why only one chorus has…

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Unholy Altar – Unholy Altar (2022)

A solid demo from US black metal act Unholy Altar. Expect hellishly distorted guitars drowning out the reverb drenched drum work, dissonance, blastbeats, carnage, frostbitten and anguished vocals – you name it! The four tracks are over like a shot, which is a shame, but I’m sure we can expect more from Unholy Altar. If I had any criticism it would be that this is very “by the numbers” second wave black metal, save for…

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Graveland – 1050 Years Of Pagan Cult (2016)

June 2, 2024

The award for most pointless session of re-recorded tunes goes to… this album. This wasn’t wanted or needed, I feel. I’m not sure the justification for doing this. The production is so smooth and big that it doesn’t even sound like modern Graveland, so it’s not even like it’s about modernising the sound. I’m not the biggest defender of the early Graveland records but this release is superfluous at best.

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горемыка – дурак (2021)

Mournful, sorrowful, drab, everything you’d expect from soviet (insert word)wave. I’m not up on things when it comes to the particulars of this kind of genre, but it sounds like Молчат Дома only even sadder and more depressing. Just lovely. Fantastic production with that cassette wobble effect for the idiots like me who think that’s still cool in 2024. Art is great too.

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Blood Incantation – Astral Spells (2014)

Mixed bag early release from the now legendary Blood Incantation. As has already been firmly established, these tracks are available elsewhere on better releases, so Astral Spells is a listen for the true ‘heads and the lost. The TLDR is that the first twelve minutes of music is glorious technical death metal but with an anxious and paranoid edge, like I’m creeping around corners in an abandoned moon base filled with monsters. Like Death meets…

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Aborted Fetus – Goresoaked Clinical Accidents (2008)

No frills in regards to approach, vibe, songwriting, or production, but infinitely enjoyable sickness nonetheless. Expect the ol’ blast n’ rattle brutal death with plenty of chuggy heavy riffs too for good measure. Throw in a gore-soaked computer-drawn cover art and boom, job’s a good one!

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Yakisoba – Acid Bath Litanies (2021)

Disgusting blasting goregrind with an interesting modern edge. Think Jig-Ai meets Pharmacist, or something like that. The drums are clear as day, so you can feel every blast and double bass kick, the guitars dominate but sound natural and organic, without undue levels of compression or modification. The vokills remind me of Cryptopsy’s Lord Worm, but if he had his mouth stitched shut in some sort of hideous medical experiment. Tidy!

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Unsu – Darkest In The Sun (2019)

Raging, dense, cataclysmic grindcore of the most savage magnitude. The songs are short, sharp blasts of chaos interspliced with mosh parts and short cool-off periods in between the madness. The main downside here is the same for a lot of “bigger” grind bands, and that is the super compressed and artificial production; drums aren’t too bad but the HM-2 guitar at that loudness / compression is enough to enduce ear fatigue in a matter of…

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Graveland / Biały Viteź – Split CD (2012)

An excellent split (if you discount the cover art). Graveland tracks are prime cuts for this latter area; clanking, clattering drum programming and triumphant riffs, with the trademark Darken croak. Shup up and take my money! Bialy Vitez use a lot of traditional instruments and folk elements, which ties right in with their split mates. The production is fantastic and the mix of metal and olde worlde instruments is done to near perfection. More often…

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Lucifer’s Hammer – The Burning Church (1994)

Glorious metal of olde that looks like black metal but sounds like death metal! It is perhaps crazy to think that there was once a time where both genres were not so accurately defined, but 1994 was not this time – both were very much established by then. So, the stunning cover image and title(s) were a deliberate design decision. Interesting! It certainly makes for a change from all the usual guts and gore. As…

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Graveland – Thunderbolts Of The Gods (2013)

June 1, 2024

It took me a few gos to get into this one. It’s not that Thunderbolts… is necessarily bad compared to other (original) albums from this era of Graveland, but it is considerably different. It has the same clusterfuck drumming (programmed at this point) with the overlapping, hypnotic riffs, but the whole thing hangs together with a darker, thicker sound than usual. The production plays a huge part in this, but so does the change in…

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The Ancient Order – Neu Schwabenland (2020)

Sounds like a decent bit of psych that was recorded into a music box or something, but then it got dropped so it’s all fucked up and wonky; not so fucked up that it won’t play anymore but fucked up enough so that everything sounds broken and slightly off-kilter. Oh, also you are on acid. That’s what this Ancient Order single sounds like.

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Todesstrafe / Hollentur – Split 7″ (2021)

Todesstrafe play hateful, venomous drum machine black metal. Thankfully, the programmed drums sound dark and powerful, which compliments the rest of the sound nicely. Hollentur on the other hand, kind of sound like the Autopsy of NSBM, with a drums-forward mix and ants-in-your-pants drumming; all sorts of cymbal flourishes and fills keep you guessing and the compositional elements of the song here are all over the place. I don’t mean that as a slight; it…

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Deceased – The Blueprints For Madness (1995)

I’m no expert on Deceased but credit is due where credit is due: a.) the drumming on this is absolutely fucking fantastic! As a drummer myself I was fucking glued to my headphones for the entire listen (and then the repeat listen lol). Then, of course, there is point b.), which is that Deceased have such an unique personal take on the death metal template. Outside of “the greats”, how rare is that? It’s a…

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Totenwitch – Panzer Division Totenwitch (2023)

An EP of instrumental 1940s warfare-based black metal? Sounds good to me, on paper at least. Unfortunately, being devoid of vocals and sadly, also any real variation or dynamics in songwriting, Panzer Division Totenwitch (I’ve got Marduk’s lawyer on the phone!) feels unfinished. With a little more refinement – not to mention some vocals – this could be great.

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Jesu – Pale Sketches (2007)

Like a lot of people it seems, I wasn’t all that fussed on Pale Sketches when it came out (not to be confused with another JB project, Pale Sketcher). Returning to this album over a decade later however, I am happy to say that I was incorrect to dismiss this record. Whilst at the time it felt like a change of pace, nowadays it fits right on in to the larger Jesu canon of albums….

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