Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Putrid, Vile, Rocking Noise

Well, first off, I've been sick all day. Either I have some bug or it's something I ate. Either way, my day's plans got a little fucked. Oh well.

I don't know much about noise, harsh noise, or.....uhhh, power-electronics (that's a noise thing, right?) but I always love when bands like Pissed Jeans can pump out ugly, rough songs that end up sounding way heavier than many standard death metal bands. Or maybe not even "heavier" but maybe "tenser," if you like.

So, Drunkdriver is such a band although they are definitely dirtier than the Jeans. Their final release Drunkdriver runs the gamut from vile, abrasive rock to disturbing, harsh, non-music, like "Look Back and Laugh." Right down to the name, Drunkdriver was confrontational and dangerous sounding band.

This is in some ways an alternate approach to some of the gratification I seek in heavy metal and it may be the same deal for you but check them out. They were really something.

The band ended under very ugly circumstances but Pygmy Shrews, which shares members, is still active and is also very, very good. I could do a whole post just on the time I got to see Pygmy Shrews play, which was actually a pretty funny story and they were probably the best live act I had seen in months, at the time, but ahhh, I don't see the point.

Drunkdriver Blog (now handling Pygmy Shrews info)

Self Titled

-W.F. Link

Saturday, November 26, 2011

More Wall-Punching Music

First, I was kind of joking about the Black Friday thing and then boom, it happened and crazy shit that exceeded my wildest expectations, like a shopper using pepper spray, happened. Please don't do that.

Holy shit, also a deal has been reached between the players and the owners of the NBA! Basketball!! The season will start on Christmas. That's good timing, I was in danger of forgetting everyone's names.

So, it took a while but this year's Putridity full length clicked for me last night. The trick was just playing it really loudly. If you're new to the band, in terms of Italian Death Metal, Putridity fits more into the camp of Septycal Gorge (with whom they share at least one member) in that they play a similiar style of unflinching, mechanical BDM, and have less in common with, say Hour of Penance and Fleshgod Apocalypse (especially now, with their new, weirder symphonic stuff), who both generally have a more grandiose, mythic flair.

You could say once you've heard one modern BDM band, you've heard them all and there is a little bit of truth to that. I can't really pick out much on this album that is unique per se and every song hits you with so many different riffs and time changes that it's almost impossible to tell them apart but, it's still just so, so good. One thing that can be noted is rarely on Degenerating Anthropophagical Euphoria (until I double checked, I had always read that as "Anthropological" and it made even less sense to me) does Putridity wind up for any big slams. Instead it more or less barrels forth like some kind of gruesome freight train.

PURCHASE -- Willowtip


Support that band! It must be exhausting to be so brutal. You'll also be funding the purchase of more dictionaries for the band to use when they're creating song titles.


Thursday, November 24, 2011

Alternate Histories

(Yes, that is Dan Seagrave's doing)

Crappy Thanksgiving, America. As much as I would have liked to be current with Sweden's Death Metal explosion, I wasn't even a year old when Nihilist put out the Drowned demo. I've spent a lot of time gazing back and I have (and still do, typically) operate under a lot of safe assumptions/general understandings about certain times and certain places and how extreme metal evolved in these categories (earlier -- later, Stockholm -- Gothenburg, Sunlight -- Abyss, for some examples).

Until a few days ago I did not know shit about Seance, who have been around since 1990 and who absolutely defy my expectations for Swede Death from that time. Part of me always assumed there would be exceptions to the rule and here you go. Musically speaking they've got more in common with Suffocation and Deicide than any Swedish contemporaries. I've so far listened to Forever Laid to Rest, which is what I've stuck at the bottom of the post. This came out in 1992 and it is very good. Again, something I didn't expect for this time. Check it!

Out of here. Maybe tomorrow you might consider driving to a mall to see the darkest side of humanity, fighting for tablets and 3-D TVs.


The only relevant official link I could find was to their Myspace. If you like Forever Laid to Rest a lot, I guess you can shoot them a message, in case they still check theirs.


Saturday, November 19, 2011

This leaked in 2010

Man, it's weird to think how long Parasignosis has actually been "out". This album, which technically was released at the start of this year, has aged well. This is merely a refresher on what is for me, one of the more baffling, chaotic things that's come out with recent memory. Mitochondrion, like Portal, have an undeniable knack for impenetrably bleak, abrasive, crushing filth. Here's the title track.


Profound Lore

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I'm Demiserable...

Like I was saying, Demisery and their first album are worth giving a shit about. It's likely that you've never heard of them, as this is a relatively new project by virtual unknowns, who just got an entry on the Metal Archives TODAY (11/16). You may ask why you should still be giving a shit and to that end I will break it down, as there are a few things at work here.

Demisery play modernized, meat and potatoes, old school Death Metal. Check. For their LP, Demisery effectively bridges the gap between classic Swedish and American Death Metal very well (not to suggest those two international scenes didn't cross-pollinate. Tape trading. Heavy metal nerds of yore) -- you'll pick up moments that are very Morbid Angel alongside visceral, buzzsaw Dismember riffs, all of which mesh together very well. It's more of a soup than a salad, if you catch my drift. The vocals and drums are both pretty decent but they play second banana to the guitar playing on this album, which is impressive without being overly technical. Maybe the only flaw that I can pick out is that during my first listen through there weren't too many memorable moments but on the other hand, it is consistently very strong for the duration of the album. There's also a Death cover. Good. Also, by dissecting the mechanics of this, I don't want to sound un-enthused because I'm not. This is top shelf Death Metal and speaking as a guitarist, it's always exciting (and sometimes a little bit frustrating) to hear a person or a group succeed in hitting that sweat spot between aggression and precision, dissonance and consonance, etc. etc. etc.

Nice. It's Death Metal. Not reinventing the wheel or anything like that but it's definitely well-conceived and exciting.

The other aspect of this project that is so interesting is it's status as a studio project by two musicians. This is, as I understand it, mainly a side project of Keith Merrow, who's better known for instrumental metal compositions that kind of remind me of Cloudkicker (Check it. Cloudkicker.) and may or may not be associated with djent (though truthfully, what solo material I've listened to has been much more interesting than quote unquote djent groups/artists), which may or may not be a little bit of a silly trend with some redeemable qualities. To me, the redeemable, interesting, and otherwise important qualities that seem endemic to what has been referred to as djent in particular are to what extent processes that yield a complete product, musically speaking (recording, mastering, distributing, etc.), are done DIY by fewer and fewer people with less pricey, "professional" equipment in favor of software, musical production suites, digital drum plug-ins and what have you.

This is in some ways almost the spiritual opposite side of the coin to the explosion of bedroom Black Metal bands in the Myspace age, who in many cases may well have had the requisite passion but in no way possessed the technical knowledge to make an even remotely listenable project. Speaking from my limited experience in digital home production (postponed indefinitely), it's a pricey hobby but far less expensive than paying for time in a studio or investing in the kind of recording and production equipment you'd find in a professional studio. It's a really promising idea, giving one full creative control in every aspect of the final product with a sliding deadline. All the more time to dial in the most suitable guitar tone, refine one's riffs. Everything. I somewhat facetiously tagged this post as "the future" because I think this will only become more common. It's more than likely established bands will do as they've always done and go to trusted studios for what they need but I'm counting on more groups like Demisery popping up, having produced sonically perfect albums all by themselves.

Bleccchhhh, this is really poorly written but you get what I'm saying. I don't really care to proofread this since I'm already past my self-imposed deadline. Don't do as I do.
I recommend checking out Demisery, as I keep saying. You can stream/download Hives of Mutation on Keith Merrow's site, as well as order a copy on CD.



Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Smithing Lvl. 30/Total Nerd Shit

Well, first and foremost, for some dumb reason I bought Skyrim. Not much else to say, I'm just trying to keep that from eating my brain/ruling my life.

Also, Sunday's game against the Jets was really cool. I can't say as to whether it was more a case of the Jets skidding or some major improvements by the Pats or a combination of both, but this may have been the most convincing win all season and I'm pretty happy about that. We actually got sacks. Amazing. The Jets' offensive line isn't a bunch of slouches either -- Nick Mangold is a pro-bowler. I couldn't believe it. One thing that I can give the Pats credit for without any reservations is working Gronkowski and Hernandez in the back field. The Jets have a pretty decent secondary (especially Darrelle Revis, who I still think gets away with some absurd fouls pretty regularly -- Oh, also for a bit of fun, check out Darrelle Revis' incredibly slanted Wikipedia page where someone left out the huge touchdown pass Randy Moss burned him on in the 2010 season. Digression.) and seeing our tight ends using their physicality and reach to make those huge catches was really gratifying.

Anywho...Here's a video. Why should you give a shit about it? Find out tomorrow...


Friday, November 11, 2011


So, I get Terrorizer on my iPod. I like Terrorizer a lot and I was really excited when I figured I could get issues thusly. This might be harkening the end of printed media but whatever. That said, I don't know what bothers me more: how this month there was a huge feature on Slipknot (who are described as having "changed the metal world," or something equally, nakedly misleading or misconceived as that assertion) or the sheer volume of folk metal coverage. And that speaks to a quandary I'm having -- I feel like I can't objectively look at folk metal (e.g. Turisas, Finntroll, or...eughhh, Alestorm), all of it just seems like gimmicky, wishy-washy bullshit to me. Now, don't get me wrong, I love the sheer boyish enthusiasm and adventurousness of classic heavy metal and I can kind of see traces of that in the aforementioned bands but...uhhhhhhh I think they suck and I can't seem to force myself to appreciate them in the slightest. That's all.


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Worth Giving a Shit About/A Good Piece of News from this Week

"Personhood Amendment..." The Guardian, 9/9/2011

This is the best news I've gotten all week. I so glad enough people voted against this -- and that is, while I don't think voting and participating within the system is the most perfect way to enact, protect, or promote social/sexual/economic justice, in this particular case, I am beyond relieved that enough people worked to/(voted for) derail(ing) this insane piece of legislature that could have potentially opened up the floodgates in other states.

The actions of organizations like Personhood USA aren't guided by science, nor compassion. Anti-choice groups/individuals, generally speaking, who stand outside clinics to intimidate women, threaten doctors and healthcare professionals who administer aid (and these aren't all idle threats, if we go back to the murder of George Tiller), and stigmatize private procedures are zealots who want to turn back the clock to when women didn't have rights. Speaking of which, how can so many so called "Libertarians" like Ron Paul say they want to scale back incursions by the state into day to day life, yet support backwards, fascistic legislation that divests women of their privacy and access to safe medical care? Because if you ask me, that's as enormous of an incursion by the state into one's affairs as goddamn possible.None of your business.

If we're ever going to have a just society, challenges to freedom from lunatics like Personhood USA must be beaten back ever step of the way.


Monday, November 7, 2011

Realm of Chaos

Another frustrating Sunday. Were the lows not so low, I don't think the highs would be quite as high. Football season.

Here's something worth revisiting.

What I really enjoy about Realm of Chaos (1989), by the one and only Bolt Thrower can be summed up in a few features. First, the sound, even today, is heavy enough to flatten a human being into paste. Not to use a buzz word that is often utilized for retro and period death metal, but the sound is "cavernous" and is a perfect compliment to Karl Willetts apocalyptic soothsaying. The guitar is appropriately reverbed out and the tone is appropriately muddy and thick.

Stylistically, what's really interesting here is that while it's unmistakably Bolt Thrower playing Bolt Thrower-isms -- those distinctive riffs, that certain rhythmic emphases -- there are features of their playing that would gradually be ironed out by ...For Victory, five years later. One such feature is the loose, frantic blast sections that aren't all that unfamiliar to their contemporaries Carcass and Napalm Death, which nods to the primordial soup that all three came from. Also in Realm, between the riffs that are, again, so unmistakably Bolt Thrower originals, the album is replete with vestigial thrash riffs that wouldn't sound out of place on Seasons in the Abyss, not even mentioning the atonal, whammy-abusing, squealing solos.

Eventually the songs got a bit slower and more triumphant and the leads became a little more consonant. This is a great "throwback" (awful, awful, awful pun) from a band who I've never heard a single bad song from. The 'Thrower. While it's not my favorite, this album is definitely worth a spin and not a bad place to start if you've never listened to them. They're still around. Go see them! Buy some albums?

Title track, live 1991

Fantasy War Nerds


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Double Feature

I'm still privately being a big, pissy baby about my Rosetta post getting mostly deleted, so I'm going to put a cap on tonight with the new Burial Invocation split.

I had no idea this even came out but I really love Burial Invocation and their side of the split continues with their A+ death-gloom -- for new listeners, kind of like Incantation in a cave sitting on a pile of Autopsy-isms. Dark, cosmic mysteries. I haven't even bothered to listen to the other band (Anatomia) but if their Metal Archives profile is accurate, there's a chance they could sound like Coffins.

I've already dropped what I was doing to order the 7" and you should do the same because at least one half of the split is crushing, evil death metal done by professionals.

Buy this

Try This (Thanks to Prophet of Death)


Oft-delayed Rosetta Post

EDIT: I wrote a LONG fucking post which Blogger deemed unworthy of preserving and instead deleted 82% of. What a treat! The best part is how I repeatedly hit "Save Now" during the process and I'm still only left with the nucleus of this post, which I wrote this afternoon while I was applying to jobs. I also really love how this was the culmination of an earlier post which I also spent a stupidly long time writing and is now basically devoid of a satisfying conclusion.

First, a salutation to all Kansas City Chiefs fans:

You have a great team and I have had a especially pronounced affinity to the Chiefs ever since Matt Cassel came aboard. Now, do me a solid and please stop dressing up as American Indians. You wouldn't come to a football game wearing blackface, right?...Right?

No, that is NOT heavy metal.

Here's the ultra abridged version of my thoughtful, exhaustive post that I spent hours writing. Trust me, before it was flushed down the toilet, it was a pretty convincing argument as to why this full length is so much better than Wake/Lift.

Rosetta's newest (2010) full length is pretty good and much more directed and terse. At times it sounds like they're incorporating bits of 90's metalcore, which is a plus. This song gets good at a fraction of the speed required to find enjoyable parts in most of Rosetta's back catalog.

Support, please.

A Determinism of Morality

Fuck. You. Blogger.