8 New Reviews ( This is a diverse bunch !!!)
Manegarm- S/T- CD/ Digital ( Napalm Records)
So this is a long time pioneer of the Viking/Black/Folk Metal realm. Early on as I call it the Displeased records years they were much more grim and black metal with viking and folk element they have much more over the last two albums on Napalm going into a catchy and melodic Viking/Pagan force with amazing strings and harmonies in the vocals. They still very much have that Black metal passion and element going on through out the album. I would say Manegarm have much in common with bands like Tyr, Vintersorg and Mithotyn these days. There is a sorrowful beauty in what they create and strong and passionate Heathen heritage pumping through out. The vocals keep getting better and better each album. Manegarm is the kind of band that makes you want to tell tales of the old world while feasting with kin and drinking from your favorite ale horn. What more can really be said other then Wotan will be proud to welcome this kindred to Asgard when their time comes.
Flowers for body snatchers- Aokigahara-CD/ Digital ( Cryo Chamber)
So this is the name of the suicide forest in Japan . You may have heard about this. It's a dense and lush forest and it's seems to be a place were sorrow and pain can finally be released. There seems to many stories of Demonic elements in this Forest as well. Duncan Richie is the person that recorded this mixing in field recording in and around the Japanese forest as well as adding stunning dark ambient and neoclassic piano movements layered on top of the release. I can hear the Passion and the Pain through out the release and the subtle darkness creeping in through out. This is a very complete circle feeling about this album. You can feel and hear ( Birth, Life, Dying and Afterlife). At times it almost feels like a soundtrack you could have used to Silent Hill video game and movies and the stories really seem to intertwine. Even with suffocating minimalism of Black ambient sounds there are moments of hope and release maybe more relief as the suffering is almost at an end. I don't want to over think it but albums like this always make me over think things. Chilling and Stunning at the same time this is what Flowers for Body snatchers is...
Malady-S/t- CD/Digital ( Svart Records)
Wow I was not ready for this but Svart does this to me often with bands I would not think are something that are going to emotionally draw me in and make me want to listen to. Well Malady comes at music in two very different directions one is very much a 70's Prog /Folk Rock style think Jethro Tull, Fleetwood Mac, Early Genesis and then from a total Pagan Folk element of bands like Tenhi, Hexvessel and Sabbath Assembly. This album is amazing but steeped deep in fuzzed out tones and deep prog bass, organ and drum work. There is a complexity here that your not going to hear in mainstream pop music. This would be one of those long jam type albums you want to listen to from beginning to end as you don't want to miss out on the story and the talent of the amazing interplay between all the different elements going on. It's does get heavy at time but mixes so many folksy and avant sounds through out as well. This vocals are really just another storyteller background you would expect to here in good 70's prog bands like Yes and Tull. Malady is a band that much be heard to grasp it's special undertaking.
WarCurse- Final Days- CD/Digital ( Static Tension Recordings)
The Thrash worship is strong with these soldiers of the moshing nation. If you like The Bay area early 90's bands like Testament, Death Angel and Forbidden then look no further as this has every thing you are looking for and more. The thick riffs, heavy back beat , Those raspy vocals commanding each and every word and that catchy melodic edge that Bay area thrash is known for as well as that social/political side that you could not run away from with all the great Thrash metal forces. What more can really be said that didn't create the wheel but this band has sure given us one hell of a Thrash album..
Nachtlieder- The Female of the Species- CD/Digital ( I Voidhanger)
A one woman black metal force that puts as much atmosphere and ambiance in tone and arrangements as well to the complexity to Shoe gazing Black-metal tone. This album by Dagny is as hypnotic and mesmerizing as it is layered and powerful . We have some old school Black metal ideals going on in the guitar and drumming but it comes down to the way it's presented to us that makes it a cut above many. The production is very open and lets the music breathe and change through out every song . The vocals as well are not as harsh as many that is were the more post black metal side comes to play. I've read this is much different to other releases by Nachtlieder and if so keep going in this direction as the mix of Emperor, Wolvhammer and Marduk works so well it's making me come back over and over again .
Agoraphobic Nosebleed- Arc- CD/ Digital ( Relapse Records)
This is the 1st of four Ep's one each focusing on the styling of the band members 1st one up is of Vocalist Kat Katz and this is something very special for me as this is the most Sludgy, Crusty and Doom of any thing I've ever hear from Agoraphobic Nosebleed. This is straight out from the teet of Melvins, Noothgrush , 13 and Cavity in the presentation and over all sound. I fucking worship this EP . If I could say there was a perfect 27 minutes of music in the world it would be right here. " Arc" is so thick, bluesy, heavy and southern fried in the sludge it really makes me want to weep. The vocals are so tormented and twisted I swear Mike from Eyehategod or Dwid of Intgerity was screaming them . The guitars and drums are straight out of "Bullhead" from Melvins.. I want a full album of this from Agoraphobic Nosebleed . I really hope to hear more like this three tracks are just not enough..
Chrome Over Brass-S/T- CD/Digital ( Death Wish Inc)
So this is a one man force of Alex Garcia of American Nightmare and what we get is a Post Metallic Hardcore album full of Punk and Prog element that are very percussion heavy and chaos factor on tracks are always on eleven. Chrome over Brass are an assault on the senses . The Album has a stellar production which makes it all the more wonderful to listen to. This is an all Instrumental album. There is so much going on here Rock, Metal, Hardcore, Punk, Funk, Jazz, Prog and Avant elements. If Meshuggah was more Hardcore and prog I really want to say this is where I would say the project is going as well as reminds me a lot of what bands like Russian Circles and Pelican are going to as well. All and all this is some stunning music I'm rather glad I got to review.
Classhole- S/T- CD/ Digital-(The Compound/Terror Cult)
What do you get when a bunch of NOLA Sludge/ Hardcore guys get together to make an album well with Classhole you get an Old School Crossover Crust Punk album that reminds me of the So Cal stuff that came from Prank and Slap a ham or could very well be a be Alternative Tentacles release. Classhole is raw, dirty, fast and short very much like this review is going to be this is music for circle pits and to slam dance you mind into oblivion. The Pissed off vocal snarls say it all. This is not a group of well adjusted men and with bands like this you never want them to be. Just let the venom take you over and have out on all your rage. This album is perfect for that..