Monday, January 22, 2018

Evil Nerfal/Bellum Est Pater Omnium/Grimm Distrubution/Morbid Skull Records/2018 CD Review


  Evil  Nerfal  are  a  band  from  Columbia  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  and  plays  a  very  satanic  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2018  album  "Bellum  Est  Pater  Omnium"  which  was  released  as  a  joint effort  between  Grimm  Distrubution  and  Morbid  Skull  Records.

 A  classical  music  intro  starts  off  the  album before  going  into  a  heavier  direction  which  also  mixes  in  elements  of  death  metal  along  with  all  of  the  musical  instruments  sounding  very  powerful  and  when  the  music  speeds  up  a  great  amount  of  blast  beats  can  be  heard  along  with  the  vocals  being  mostly  angry  black  metal  screams.

  Throughout  the recording  you  can  also  hear  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  while  growls  are  also  used  at  times  along  with  the  solos  and leads  also  bringing  in  more  of  a  black/death  metal  style  as well  as  the  riffs  also  bringing  in  a  great  amount  of  dark  sounding  melodies.

  At  times  the  vocals  also  get  melodic  while  the  music  also  mixes  in  a  decent  amount  of  80's  and  90's  influences  without  losing  the  modern  touch  along  with  the  solos  and  leads  also  getting  more  melodic  as  the  album  progresses  and  when  tremolo  picking  is  utilized  it  also  gives  the  songs  a  more  raw  feeling,  acoustic  guitars  can  also  be  heard  briefly  and  when  spoken  word  parts  are  utilized  they  also  give  the  music  more  of  a  ritualistic  feeling  and  a  couple  of  the  later  tracks  are  instrumentals. 

  On  this  recording  Evil  Nerfal  expands  on  their  satanic  black  metal  style  by  adding  in  more  death  and  traditional  metal  elements  this  time  around  as  well  as  getting  more  melodic,  the  production  sounds  very  raw  and  heavy  while  the  lyrics  are  written  in  a  mixture  of  Spanish  and  English  and  cover  Satanism,  Occultism,  Anti  Christianity  and  Misanthropy  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Evil  Nerfal  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  satanic  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Fuck  Off  Jesus  Christ"  "En  Las  Fauces  Del Demonio"  and  "Sathanas  Kingdom  Rises".  8/5  out of  10. 

Enoid/Livssyklus & Dodssyklus/Grimm Distribution/Final Gate Records/2017 Double Album Compilation Review


  Enoid  are  a  solo  project  from  Switzerland  that  has  had  a  few  album  reviewed  before  in  this  zine  and  on  these  recordings  played  a  raw  and  brutal  style  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2006  and  2007  albums  "Livssklus"  and  "Dodssyklus"  which  was  re-issued  as  a  joint  effort  by  Grimm  Distribution  and  Final  Gate  Records  in  2017  as  a  double  album.

  A  very  dark  yet  heavy  sound  starts  off  the  compilation  before  going  into  a  very  fast  and  raw  musical  direction  which  also  uses a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  blast  beats  while  the  vocals  are  mostly  grim  yet  high  pitched  black  metal  screams  along  with  the  riffs  also  bringing  in  a  small  amount  of  melody.

  Throughout  the  compilation  you  can  also  hear  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  while  all  of  the  musical  instruments  have  a  very  powerful sound  to  them  along  with  a  great  amount  of  second  wave  90's  influences  mid  still  sounding  very  modern  in  the  era  it  was  recorded  and  when  guitar  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  bring  in  a  very  dark,  raw  and  melodic  style.

  On  the  second  album  the  music  also  continues  the  raw  and  chaotic  approach  to  black  metal  while  also  taking  the  music  into  more  of  a  melodic  direction  without  losing  any  of  the  brutality  along  with  a  brief  noise  style intro  before  returning  back  to  a  heavier  direction  as  well  as  closing  the  compilation  with  two  tracks  that  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length.

  On  both  of  these  albums  Enoid  played  a  style  of  black  metal  that  was  very  raw,  brutal  and  chaotic  sounding  while  also  being  very  melodic  at  the  same  time,  the  production  sounds  very  raw  and  heavy  while  the  lyrics  are  written  in  Swiss  and  cover  death,  misanthropy,  and  reflection  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  a  very great  sounding  collection  from  Enoid  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  fast  and  raw  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  compilation  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Ecnassian"  "Noitpecnec"  "Edicius"  and  "Dirow  Eht  Kcuf".  8  out  of  10.    

Slaves B.C Interview

1.Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording of the new album?

We recorded this full length at Very Tight Recordings early in 2017. Aside from waiting on the vinyl to come back, we have been making a lot of changes.
We added a new drummer (just live so far), a new bass player (just live so far), and Brandon our bass player moved to 2nd guitar. I moved back to doing live vocals without drums for the first time since 2012. That has been both exciting and challenging.
Brandon set up a studio in his basement later in 2017, and we have been writing like crazy. While figuring out his home studio, we have recorded two singles for two different compilations and a single "wither" that we released on Bandcamp in December 2017.
All three singles were written and recorded in one day each. We also are working on a digital only EP that will be released later in 2018.


2.In March you have a new album coming out, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording and also how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past?

Musically, we pulled from our various influences to combine elements of Doom, Black, and Death metal. The recording of "Lo, and I Am Burning" was the first time Brandon really started to contribute to guitar, so this allowed us to add new layers of atmosphere and noise.
I think if you look back through our discography, we have been phasing out the hardcore elements of our music more and more until now it is almost completely gone. I would say that "Lo, and I Am Burning" is the first release that as a whole captured exactly what we have been working towards since the beginning.

3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the newer music?

The lyrics have always been directly taken from various books of the Bible. "This World Shall Pass Away" was taken from the book of Revelation. "All Is Dust and I Am Nothing" was taken from the book of Ecclesiastes. "Naked We Return" (our digital EP out later in 2018) was taken from the book of Job. With the exception of "The Wolf You Feed" and "Through Broken Teeth" from the "Cursed Breath / Innocent Blood" split 12", I have not really allowed my personal experiences to bleed much into the lyrics.
"Lo and I Am Burning" is completely the opposite. The lyrics for the songs on this album are pulled from lyrics I have written during my hardest days in my last 13 years. "When Her Prayers Are Silenced" was written while I was watching my Grandmother die in the fall of 2016. "Honor Thy Father and Mother" is about recognizing and admitting abuse and trying to free myself from what had been done to me. "XLV" was written the day after Trump got elected and was my response to some of my fellow Christians who voted for him. "Glory" is a shortened and slightly re-written version of a suicide note that I had written about 10 years ago. Most of the rest of the songs act as confessionals for my own struggles and insecurities with my place in the world and with my faith.


4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Slaves B.C'?

The name comes from imagery that the Apostle Paul used in the New Testament. He referred to himself as a slave to sin/death before encountering Christ. So "Slaves Before Christ".

5.What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?

We played at the Odditorium in Asheville a while back and that was one of the best shows we ever had. Such a cool space and welcoming scene there. We also got to play at The Acheron in Brooklyn before it closed. That was a fantastic time because I got to meet so many awesome people that I consider friends but had never talked to outside of Twitter before.
Our stage performance is usally me looking tired/angry/sad/pained and sweating a lot while everyone else in the band looks cool and jams out.

6.Do you have any touring or show plans once the new album is released?

We would like to get back to Brooklyn soon after the album comes out. We would like to hit local-ish places like Cleveland, Philadelphia, Erie, and Asheville again.

7.The new album is coming out on 'The Fear And The Void Recordings', can you tell us a little bit more about this label?

The Fear and the Void Recordings is a label that was started by myself and an anonymous friend. The label is something I have wanted to do for a while. So far we have releases from Twilight Fauna (which I am the drummer for), Evergreen Refuge, Young Hunter, and Unleash the Archers. We don't take money from the label, if we sell a record, we just put it towards the next record.  I am hoping we don't bankrupt ourselves and this Slaves record sells well. There are quite a few death/black metal bands that I want to do releases for.

8.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal and hardcore?

I have honestly continued to be surprised and humbled by the reception of our music. "All Is Dust..." was received with high praise from Noisey, Cvlt Nation, Metalsucks and many, many more. A lot of people that are fans of heavier music seem to have interests in more than one subgenre. Those are the people that really get into us. A lot of people that only like trve cvlt black metal hated us because someone referred to us as black metal while we were blending black metal with sludge or hardcore or grind or whatever. Some people that just like hardcore or metalcore did not get it at all because there were no breakdowns or we sound too "gross".
The people that get it, really get it. For the rest of the people, thanks for stopping by, maybe see you again when you are older. I don't think we will ever really capture those types of fans. We like a lot of different types of music so we will continue to blend more and more subgenres into our sound. We write what we want to write. We write what we want to hear.

9.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

We are just going to keep going. We will continue to push further into the more nauseating and horrific soundscapes that is polluting our newer material. If you look at our history, you know where we've been and where we are going. The path is before us. There is no end to the music inside of us. We will only get better. We will expand our sound to encapsulate more genre-blending and sharpen our current wheelhouse. We have only just begun.

10.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your newer music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

As a band, we have been influenced heavily over the last several years by bands like Lord Mantis and Portal. For the singles we have been doing and our future material, you will hear a lot more influence from bands like Skaphe and Misthyrming.
I myself have been listening to new records from the following almost daily for a while now:
Primitive Man
Spectral Voice
Triumvir Foul
Suffering Hour
Succumb
Fange
The Ominous Circle
Dodecahedron
Aosoth
and anything on Fallen Empire Records

11.What are some of your non musical interests?

Our wives/ladyfriends, beer, whiskey, food, and really horrible movies. Dogs.

12.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?

Thank you for your time and interest.
To everyone else:
Don't give up.
You are not alone.
You are loved.
You are deserving of love.
Find your voice, and never silence it.

Kosmogyr Interview

Can you give us an update on what is going on with the musical project these days?

Ivan: Well, we’ve got our debut album Eviternity dropping soon on March 9th. Until then, we’re doing our best to contain our excitement about finally sending this album out into the world.

So far you have released a single and a full length, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recordings?

Ivan: The roots of our music are firmly planted in second-wave black metal, but we’ve also drawn from a wide range of other more recent interpretations. It’s a punishing record, but we’ve seeded each song with a number of moments in which to stop and breathe. Pacing and dynamics were two factors that played significant roles in our songwriting process. It’s important to have balance.

What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?

Ivan: This is something we’d prefer to let each listener create and discover for themselves.

What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Kosmogyr'?

Ivan: I’d rather not say.

Originally both members once lived in China but one member moved to the Czech Republic, can you tell us a little bit more about the move?

Ivan: I’m the one who moved. Before leaving, I was in Shanghai for almost nine years — over a quarter of my life — and though Shanghai is an incredible city, I was itching for a change of scenery. Now, my wife and I are living in Prague, where I’m currently engaged as a freelance copywriter and illustrator.

Though Prague is lovely, I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t a lot about Shanghai that I miss quite dearly. It’s truly an amazing city.

Can you tell us a little bit more about the recording process since both of the band members live in different countries?

Ivan: After we’d settled on the final arrangement and structure of each song, using GuitarPro, Xander would record the guitars himself, while also engineering the MIDI drum tracks that I’d written in order to create a more authentic sound. While this was going on, I’d be writing lyrics. Once I’d gotten the instrumental track from Xander, I’d record the vocals in my bathroom with a simple USB mic and Garageband.

Currently you are unsigned, are you looking for a label or have received any interest?

Ivan: Yes, and also yes! But most importantly, yes.

On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal?

Ivan: Worldwide? That’s hard to say. The handful of reviews that have been published so far have been positive, which is very heartening. There’s still plenty of time to go before the album comes out, so hopefully we’ll be able to continue spreading the word about our music.

On a related note, if you give every album you review a score of 8/10, does the score still retain any meaning?

Are any of the band members currently or have been involved with any other bands or musical projects?

Ivan: Absolutely. You can hear more from Xander with Shanghai melodic death band The Arcbane. My most recent band in Shanghai was The Machinery of Other Skeletons, who are still going strong with a new vocalist and new music. Before that, I drummed and sang with Death to Giants.

Where do you see the project heading into musically during the future?

Ivan: I’d be very upset if this record was the last anyone ever heard from Kosmogyr. I’m eager to build on the foundation we’ve established with Eviternity and to see where we can take our music from here.

What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

Ivan: My two favorite albums of 2018 so far would be The Harlot Star by Frost Giant as well as Bind Torture Kill’s Viscères. I also greatly enjoyed Hawkmoth’s recent album Godless Summit. There’s so much that can easily go wrong with instrumental doom, but these guys nailed it.

Outside of metal, I’m looking forward to the upcoming EP from The Oh Hellos, and I’m still getting a lot of play from Turnover’s latest record Good Nature. Shanghai band Foster Parents are also worth checking out — their 2017 release Grim is a solid bit of instrumental math rock.

What are some of your non-musical interests?

Ivan: My wife and I are both big into tabletop RPGs, and we’re currently involved in ongoing campaigns for both D&D and Shadowrun. I read a lot as well — I’m about to begin Brandon Sanderson’s Oathbringer, with The Long Ships by Frans G. Bengtsson on deck. I also recently picked up a copy of Boccaccio’s The Decameron, which I’m looking forward to given how much I enjoyed Throne of Heresy’s recent album of the same name.

I’m also into cycling, and I brought my bike here from Shanghai. It’s a lightweight single-speed road bike, and though I love going out on exploratory rides, I’m not quite used to Prague’s hills and cobblestones and one-way streets. It’s a far cry from the flat streets of Shanghai and the…ahhh…creative techniques of the city’s drivers. I loved it, actually. Once you learn how to read the rhythm and flow of Shanghai traffic, you can immerse yourself within it on an instinctual level. I’m still learning how to read the traffic here.

Lastly, I love drawing, and it’s always a joy whenever I get the chance to work on a new art project. I’m definitely not drawing as much as I should these days…

Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?

Ivan: Eat plenty of vegetables, and dress appropriately for the weather.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Transilvania/The Night Of Nights/Into Dungeons Records/2018 Full Length Review


  Transilvania  are  a  band  from  Austria  that  plays  a  raw  and  old  school  mixture  of  black  and  thrash  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2018  album  "The Night  of  Nights"  which  will  be  released  on  January  31st  by  Into  Dungeons  Records.

  A  horror  movie  orientated  synth  intro  starts  off  the  album  before  going  into  a  very  fast  and  raw  musical  direction  which  also  uses  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  blast  beats  while  the  vocals  are  mostly  grim  black  metal  screams  along  with  the  music  also  mixing  in  influences  from   the  first  wave  era  of  the  genre.

  A  great  amount  of  thrash  elements  can  be  heard  quite  a  bit  throughout  the  recording  while  the  riffs  also  use  a  great  amount  of  melody  along  with  all  of  the  musical  instruments  also  having  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  when  guitar  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  also  remain  true  to  a  very  melodic  yet  old  school  style.

 Throughout  the  recording  you  can  also  hear  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  while  classical  guitars  are also  used  briefly  along  with  the  music  also  mixing  in  both  80's  and  90's  influences  in  with  a  more  modern  touch  and  as  the  album  progresses  another synth  instrumental  can  be  heard  before  returning  back  to  a  heavier  direction  and  a  couple  of  the  tracks  are  long  and  epic  in  length,  demonic  growls  can  also  be  heard  at  times.

  Transilvania  plays  a  musical  style  that  takes  first  and  second  wave  black  metal  and  mixes  it  with  thrash  to  create  a  sound  of   their  own,  the  production  sounds  very  raw  and  old  school  while  the  lyrics  cover  darkness  and  occultism  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Transilvania  are  a  very  great  sounding  raw  and  old  school  mixture  of  black  and  thrash  metal  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  those  musical  genres,  you  should  check  out  this  band.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "The  Night  Of  Nights"  "One  Night  In  Salem"  "Moonlight  Sorcery" and  "Ghost  Along  The  Candle".  8/5  out  of  10.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Marozia/Immortal As Hatred/2017 EP Review


  This  is  a  review  of  another  recording  from  Marozia  which  is  also  in  the  raw  and  old  school  style  of  black  metal  and  the  ep  was  self  released  in  2017  and  called  "Immortal  As  Hatred".

  A  very  fast  and  raw  sound  starts  off  the  ep  along  with  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  blast  beats  while  the  vocals  are  mostly  high  pitched  black  metal  screams  along  with  all  of  the  musical  instruments  having  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  the  music  is  heavily  rooted  in  the  90's.

  Throughout  the  recording  you  can  also  hear  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  while  some of  the  riffing  also  brings  in  a  small  amount  of  dark  sounding  melodies  along  with  all  of  the  songs  sounding  like  they  could  of  easily  been  recorded  and  released  more  than  20  years  ago  and  when  guitar  leads  are  utilized  they  are  done  in  a  very  raw  yet  melodic  fashion  and  spoken  word  parts  can  also  be  heard  briefly.

  On  this  recording  Marozia  brings  in  a  style of  black  metal  that  is  raw  in  the  90's  second  wave  tradition,  the  production sounds  very  raw  and  old  school  while  the  lyrics  are  written  in  a  mixture  of  Portuguese  and  English  and  cover  dark  themes. 

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Marozia  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  raw  and  old  school  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  ep.  RECOMMENDED  TRACK  "Daughters  Of  Heresy".  8  out  of  10.  

Ulvegr/Vargkult/Ashen Dominion/2018 CD Review


  Ulvegr  are  a  band  from  Ukraine  that  has  had  an  album  reviewed  before  in  this  zine  and  plays  a  pagan  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2018  album  "Vargkult"  which  will  be  released  on  January  30th  by  Ashen  Dominion.

  A  very  fast,  raw  and  melodic  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  blast  beats  while  all  of  the  musical  instruments  on  the  recording  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  along  with  the  vocals  being  mostly  high  pitched  black  metal  screams  and  the  music  is  heavily  rooted  in  the  Eastern  European  style.

  At  times  the  vocals  get  very  deep  while  the  music  only  slows  down  for  a  few  seconds  as  well  as  focusing  on  being  very  fast,  raw  and  aggressive  throughout  the  recording  along  with  only  a  small  amount  of  guitar  leads  being  utilizes  and  the  music  also  brings  in  a  great  amount  of  90's  second  wave  influences.

  Ulvegr  plays  a  style  of  pagan  black  metal  on  this  recording  that  is  very  fast,  raw  and  aggressive  sounding,  the  production  sounds  very  raw  and  heavy  while  the  lyrics  cover  Pagan  Mysticism  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Ulvegr  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  fast,  raw  and  aggressive  pagan  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Rune  Ice  Frozen  Hatred"  "Death  Is  Our  Law"  and  "We  Remember  The  Blood".  8  out  of  10.