Sunday, July 31, 2016

CARNIVOROUS VORACITY - The Impious Doctrine (2015)


The Basque Doctrine: Voracity Is My Name


That’s pretty obvious some of my record purchases are the result of a coincidence. The case of Carnivorous Voracity isn’t an exception here and I found this name in label catalogue. Nothing extraordinary, don’t you think? So, fast listen on band’s bandcamp site and after “Secularize” track I knew “The Impious Doctrine” belonged to my must-have list. To write what is all about, stop at the genre. Brutal death metal. Ha, everything is clear in that matter. Everything? Just look on general number of such bands. As Encyclopaedia Metallum informs, there are over three thousand crews in whole world. Probably I don’t know even ten percentages of their names, but believe me, these mad Spaniards are of the better kind. Their debut stuff simply mangled me.

From production standpoint: with a help of Pedro J. Monje, the band did a perfect job for such a musical form. The album got organic natural sound and each element can be easily heard and deciphered. As for music itself, it is maintained in brutal (technical) death metal standards, however the most important is to have even slight piece of individuality as well as show any creativity dimension to overcome such dangerous dullness. Even if the album clocks in 36 minutes, musicians got along with aforementioned musical traps efficiently. What’s more, they did it in a really splendid and devastating way. Avoiding putting many useless movie samples, these 36 minutes of total senses annihilation are what I was looking for: it just takes my breath away. As the riffs are the foundation, the guitarists deliver killing rugged tremolo riffs and fascinating thing is they are served in a really catchy way in most cases. Despite of indescribable dynamic broken structures, some parts can be crooned either with the best examples in “Anatomic Human Degradation” or “Anthropophagus Infanticide”, which is my favourite one I guess. I have an impression that Xabat and Turbine just take the instrument and play it freely, simple as that, not proving how fucking great musicians they are, but using skills and effective technique in a proper way. So not only fast frantic paces, but slowdowns that nail me to the ground, it works smoothly making the running album time with no yawn signs. For sure song called “Grotesque Expiation of Dissolute Lambs” should be mentioned as it contains of rather rare for such a genre, but absolutely perfect parts of guitars starting off at circa 2:10.

The rhythm section is smashing. What is interesting, bass lines have been performed by producer himself, Pedro. And you know what? They sound brilliant! And Edgar performance is a rather low bow to the old classical drummers and I found in his playing many patents known from “Effigy of the Forgotten”. This ruthless duo supports the guitar machinery effectively just like midfielder’s line does with Aritz Aduriz on San Mam├ęs. Well, I can’t skip the vocalist, Seyerot, who follows the standard way of singing. Of course he does, from ultra low guttural vomits to shrieks and squeals, the way it’d be executed. In few tracks he is supported by other guys, there are also clean vocal lines (or just taken from any movie, I’m not sure about it) in “Epiphanies of Perverse Egocentrism” and I treat it as a really good idea. Ah, one more thing concerning the longest “Transferable Malignity” which ends the album. Namely it seems it’s a kind of bonus track because of different sound realization (guitar layers put a bit in the background at the expense of rhythm section), yet I couldn’t find such an information anywhere. For sure this song is a bestial stuff and the only one with a guitar lead.

Brutal death metal. Yes, “The Impious Doctrine” is seriously brutal and Amputated Vein label sheet didn’t lie about it. But who cares about label descriptions, right? I didn’t expect inventing the wheel because it’s impossible. But these Spaniards offers talent and creativeness to bring with the debut just a great music worthy many extreme spins. On purpose I did not give you any other such rotten outfits, but the natural and best place for Carnivorous Voracity to exist is the US death big family and although Spaniards didn’t dethrone my old-time killers, yet they took my soul by storm and ate my senses voraciously with no mercy. Well, the band’s name obliges, doesn’t it?

90/100
-Tlacaxipehualiztli

(written in July, 2016)       

Saturday, July 30, 2016

TEMPLE OF VOID - Demo MMXIII (2013)

Of Doom, Death and Smile


According to the interview in the 8th issue of Apocalyptic Rites zine with Bartuus, boss of Till You Fukkin Bleed label, this demo goes like hot cakes and belongs to the highlight in the rooster so far. Of course I’m still talking about underground level and do not expect a new yacht in private Bartuus’s harbour, yet I can understand the whole thing is all about. Well, as for production, MountDoom Studio did a really good job, it’s just an added value. So, we get a proper sound and since the first seconds of “Beyond the Ultimate” the powerful portions of riffs crush my head. The band describes his music as a resultant of early British doom scene and energy and devastation from American old-school death metal. And I totally agree with the first part of it, and “Exanimate Gaze” is the affirmative proof. It’s horrifically sad track reminding me of the best moments from the first albums of My Dying Bride, becoming a real band’s visiting-card. I love it, not only for the second beautiful part leading me into unknown dimension. Paralyzing indeed, and absolutely one of the most admirable things I had a pleasure to listen to this year. The first mentioned track, maybe not such splendid, is maintained in the same genre vein with melodic tunes here and there and clean vocals on the end. Yes, vocal lines, there’s a need to mention about Mike, as he shows his talent through deep gutturals (mostly), blackish screams and aforementioned clean parts as well. It really works. Thus, these two tracks are extremely good invitation to the temple of void.

And now something about the second part of band’s description. In this case I cannot fully agree. Just take a listen to the third the longest song. For me it’s a pure riffing such known from the white album by Candlemass, just replace Mike Erdody growls with Marcolin singing and recipe for unreleased lost of doom masters track is ready. Unfortunately, there is something broken in the middle. When it seems “Bargain in Death” reaches the end, at 6:30 a guitar melody appears. Melody that brings nothing but too much optimism, and totally doesn’t fit to the whole musical and lyrical concept, just like the rest of this song being an instrumental needful thing. What a pity it hasn’t been ended before it… Damn, I can’t come to terms with it!

 Anyway, despite of this the only failure, “Demo MMXIII” is a really noteworthy piece of music. The band is complete, with own visions and proper skills. It’s not hard to plunge in, it doesn’t drag to nowhere, and the sounds are able to deliver memorable good music which I listen to it heaps of time recently. And now it’s a good moment to look for their debut released in 2014, however “Of Terror and the Supernatural” is the 265858th title on my must-have list.     

75/100
-Tlacaxipehualiztli

(written in July, 2016)
        

Sunday, July 24, 2016

FORGOTTEN CHAPEL 9 (2015)





May 2015, 60/A4, printed, English, hand-numbered, interviews: TEMPLE OF ADORATION zine, INFERNAL CURSE, SARTEGOS, ABYSMAL GRIEF, AGGRESSIVE MUTILATOR, GRAVEYARD, FISTBANG RECORDS, VEINEN, PARAGON RECORDS, SWAMP, EVIL MACHINE, DET GAMLE BESATT.

This name is known to me quite well, but issue #9 is my first encounter with it. Man, ninth number… I feel like a rookie and have nothing in self-justification. What’s more, if my mind doesn’t play a trick, I didn’t read any low-marked review of Mateusz work in underground press / webzines so far, however it refers to this and the previous one. Well, I decided to give it a chance eventually, and the zine landed on my desk. And you know what? My final opinion won’t be different than those read days ago. All right, fast glance on front-cover, an old Eire graveyard that looks mysteriously and perfectly fits to the whole. What’s about the content? The layout, made in old-school cut’n’paste method and showing triumphant struggles with empty spaces, is definitely strong point of editor’s vision: seemingly in claws of swarming chaos, decorated by each kind of font ever invented and many various horror-like graphics is very nice and friendly for my eyes. As a language itself, Mat who is my countryman, did a really good job. It means Forgotten Chapel is probably the best English written zine by Pole. It’s not exaggeratedly complicated and supported by words I cannot understand even in Polish, it has a kind of flow I dive into without any problem, yet I have been caught in associative trap in Pathogen “Lust of Evil” review when Mat compares it to Autopsy and Europe type of thing. Ha, Pathogen and creators of “The Final Countdown” put together to one mortar? Uff, anyway, the lecture is just like a cold beer in very hot day, fortunately not a concern one. Thoughts are committed to paper with ease, sense of humour and accumulated knowledge. These used elements raises the final mark beyond doubt.

And if the chapel is opened by really interesting chat with Phil / Temple of Adoration zine, Spanish Graveyard was the thing I wanted to be familiar with. The band belonging to one of the best crews that came into being this century, doesn’t disappoint me again. This is the next interview with Javi (and Julkarn from time to time) I read with the highest pleasure. Interesting questions = interesting answers. The recipe for a success is really simple, isn’t it? Thus we travel from sunny Catalonia to the land of Galicia. Rou from Sartegos gives another fine piece of reading, however in this case it is not a surprise for anyone in underground press as well. Of course, not only Spain has a good position in chapel walls. Just take look on Evil Machine from Poland which turns out into one of the highlight of the issue. About any weak or lame answering? No, I didn’t find such ones. But there are two controversial, strange things to me. First, in Abysmal Grief chat, Regen admits to committing the thefts all attributes they use from churches and graveyards. I missed the point here, as stealing is always stealing, no matter the motives you follow! The latter Aggressive Mutilator matter, you know, old-school to the bone, strictly limited demo tapes, hand-written letters and when it comes to the general feedback on this band, Mikael says how many times his songs have been played on… Bandcamp. Then he mentions about good review in the webzine. Is there something I cannot go through? Anyway, the last thing concerning the interview section is pretty long chat with the owner of Paragon Records Mike Zanchelli. Probably the best one in Forgotten Chapel family, great, in-depth, and fully absorbing with fifteen notes and observations on nowadays (not only underground) metal scene, sometimes it turns out even to be a kind of commandments. Anyway, Mike is simply right with his opinions.    
   
As for reviews, Mat is without any mercy and attacks with huge amount of them: 191 of music (plus some short reviews from Evil Spirit Distro) and 34 of press, surprisingly without Polish Necroscope. To visualize the hard work with all this stuff, Mat placed his picture after 168th review (page 13). Believe me, there’s nothing enviably. But what about its style? Well, it’s good enough to travel through the wall of text smoothly. Some of them are rather short straight-forward shots, the other kept in more complex way, sometimes Mat gives few ending words prior to the final mark. For sure, most of zine reviews are longer than musical ones, yet I couldn’t find any signs of boredom or redundant verses and I simply liked the way Mat examines it. Reading his opinion on Usul demo, I found out he has own zine-room, hope to see a picture of it featured in #10. What else in menu? Typical stuff for zine: interesting article on trades and short story about zine making, tiny poll on first encounter with printed metal press, an obligatory Old, Rotten, Not Forgotten column, one gig report from Redemption Festival fueled by plastic cups of beers with a sentence I really liked a lot: “only cassette passed the test of time and keeps up the shape”! Of course, it’s impossible to overlook three pages story titled Horror in Cinema and Heavy Metal written by Nathan Surface. And even if it is not my cup of tea as I watched last such a movie in the eighties, I found it highly interesting and noteworthy. This completes a chapel into strong fortress. Did I find any drawbacks? Yes, there are typos and demons of misprints (aaarrrghhhh!), sometimes orthography of adjectives is wrong and in Hegemoon review new band has been invented (Sacrelligium), although it hasn’t any crucial impact on my final rate.

Summing up the thing, this is definitely top-league zine, bringing the interviewing ecstasy in 91,667%. Yes, such a score, because even if I always read the stuff from cover to cover, simply I’m not interested in Det Gamle Besatt creation. And one thing on the end, page number three contains of an opinion of Dr. Edmund Carter on any possible side effects concerning reading the zines. This authority, imagined in sick metal injected Mat’s cerebrum, or not, gives an answer I wanted to read about, but the most revolutionary idea refers to gestation period. All the gynecological associations should be informed immediately. So, pregnant women, not only folic acid supplementation, but zines and classical metal too. Anyway, I’d like to see an interview with this doctor in next issue, it would be a highlight, I guess… All right, my review says it all, so don’t hesitate to order a copy for yourself. And paraphrasing some sentence from Maniac Butcher’s review: this zine is not to be elaborated about, this zine is to be experienced. Am I clear?  

forgottenchapel@gmail.com

9,4/10
-Tlacaxipehualiztli

(written in July, 2016)   

Sunday, July 3, 2016

GRAVEYARD - ...for Thine Is the Darkness (2016)



Sand Dementia


Truly awesome is how the Spaniards left the impenetrable depths of the sea and peregrinated to the grim desert. Thus the third Graveyard’s strike became a fact and so long-awaited album saw the shining light of the sun. And well, my great experience with this band has been lasting since the first spins of their debut from 2009, then they stroke my senses with even better “The Sea Grave” bringing a real water madness from R’lyeh itself. It didn’t lose its filthy, obscure yet breath-taking charm and these tunes visit me time and again. So, did I have any expectations concerning the next release? You know, the magic of the third album. No, I was just curious of the things to be, however I was sure that Graveyard wouldn’t follow wrong way. The first impression was favourable one, I mean really good front cover, but in the case of the band, it hasn’t been done at haphazard. And when first shamanic-like “Almulk Biallawn Al'Asfar” ends after ninety seconds, a real monument called “With Fear and Thirst” enters the stage and clenches me without any hesitation. And you know what? This song is great example I worship Graveyard for: crushing riffs, frantic speed-ups, slow-downs and captivating parts of catchy melodies, especially this one that ends it. What a start! With the shining light by my side, I head for Irem and its monumental buildings, and full of delight and bewilderedness I kneel down before the treasure of Rub' al Khali, before the mighty columns rising from the all-embracing sand kingdom. Yes, the song number six is something different in band’s career. In spite of some fast fragments, slow hypnotizing yet majestic pace is the key (to this forgotten city…), especially in the second part supported by keyboards and clean vocal lines…

Well, the most accurate will be every track is pretty much exactly what I would dream about and wish for. There’s nothing wrong with production side, again it has been mixed and engineered by Javi himself, maybe now it is a bit clearer as compared to the predecessor. Generally speaking, the newest offer is more atmospherical, by courageous using of keyboards, ominous and terrific effects, on the other hand, bouzuki intensifies oriental-like interesting impression and the whole has been divided into seven short introductions with mentioned intro and outro, definitely not being artificial time elongation of the album. Somewhere on band’s site there is a note that doesn’t leave any understatements: devoted to the ancient metal of death and I have no even a small single argument to disprove it. The third album is still deeply rooted in such a genre, not only suckling from the Swedish 80/90s scene. The perfect mix of well-known influences sewn by their own vision results a simple yet incredibly addictive music making no track passes without a proper deathly impact. The musicians juggle the tempos serving only one track with slow pace one-dimensionality. Just like on their previous full-lengths placed on the end, it became a tribute to doom metal, in the case of this song “Son of the Aeon / Sun of the Daemon” an Edling thankful composition. And believe me, this is amazing! Not only because of crushing guitar parts and demon-like vocals, but the second part that brings another even fairy musical level. Then it turns into ending short outro leaving me speechless amongst the sea of sinister sands…     

Yes, we had soil (first album), water (the second) and sand now, three elements of the Earth, yet it’s hard for me to indicate whether “…for Thine is the Darkness” is the best Graveyard work so far. Using maths and numbers, I rate it same as the “The Sea Grave”, not because there’s no any sign of progress, but both are just equally fantastic and splendid albums. The third seems to be braver a bit with its slower atmospherical fragments and multitude of vocal forms (mentioned earlier Irem’s praising song, “Hidden Amidst the Stars” or great performance of Fiar in “The Womb of the Desert”), not only throaty Julkarn’s devastation. I can do nothing but to praise this unmerciful riffs machine, classic or oriental leads or rhythm section which has very audible and important trace on the record. In short, these 43 minutes blows my mind out once again, proving exuberance of death metal form is still inexhaustible. That means they never cease to amaze me and I have another great songs to listen to for evermore. Another great songs as a guide to the middle of the desert, to its unexplored secrets, to her womb. It’s time to close my eyes and plunge into the sand dimension, again I stand before Irem majesty, completely vulnerable…

98/100
-Tlacaxipehualiztli

(written in June/July, 2016)