Monday, March 27, 2017

Hexer/Cosmic Doom Ritual/Vendetta Records/2017 CD Review


  Hexer  are  a  band  from  Germany  that  plays  a  mixture  of  black,  stoner,  and  doom  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2017  album  "Cosmic  Doom  Ritual"  which  will  be  released  in  April  by  Vendetta  Records.

  Atmospheric  soundscapes  and  drones  start  off  the  album  along  with  some  acoustic  guitars  that  give  the  songs  more  of  a  stoner  or  desert  rock  touch  and  after  awhile  powerful  sounding  bass  guitars  are  added  onto  the  recording  and  after  a  few  minutes  the  music  goes  into  a  heavier  direction  along  with  some  growls  and  screams.

  All  of  the  songs  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  while  the  vocals  bring  in  a  mixture  of  black  and death  metal  influence  along  with  some  sludge  and  doom  metal style  riffing  and  when  guitar  leads  are  utilized  they  are  very  melodic  and  also  add  in  touche  of  post  rock  and  shoegaze  and  when  the  music  speeds  up  a  decent  amount  of  blast  beats  and  tremolo  picking  can  be  heard  and  acoustic  guitars  are  also  used  on  the  other  tracks  along with the  songs  also  bringing  in  a  decent  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  psychedelic  elements  are  added  onto  the  closing  track.

  Hexer  plays  a  musical  style  that  takes  stoner,  doom,  sludge  and  black  metal  and  mixes  them  together  to  create  something  very  dark  and  heavy,  the  production  sounds  very  professional  while  the  lyrics  are  a  concept  album  dealing  with  a  cosmic  journey  through  deep  blackness,  being  devoured  by  a  giant  sea  creature  and  the  discovery  of  a surreal  place  along  with  some  sci  fi  and  mythological  touches.  

  In  my  opinion  Hexer  are  a  very  great  sounding  mixture  of  black,  stoner  and  doom  metal  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  those  musical  genres,  you  should  check  out  this  band.  RECOMMENDED  TRACK  "Pearl  Snake".  8  out  of  10.  

 

Friday, March 24, 2017

Netherbird/Hymns From Realms Yonder/Black Lodge Records/2017 Compilation Album Review


  Netherbird  are  a  band  from  Sweden  that  has  had  music  reviewed  before  in  this  zine  and  plays a   symphonic  and  melodic  mixture  of  black  and  death  metal  and  this  is  a review  of  their  2017  compilation  "Hymns  From  Realms  Yonder"  which  will  be  released  in April  by  Black  Lodge  Records.

  A  heavy guitar sound  starts  off  the  compilation  along  with  some  symphonic  elements  and  high  pitched  black  metal  screams  a  few  seconds  later  while  death  metal  growls  are  also  utilized  at  times  and  melodic  chanting  can  also  be  heard  at  times  along  with  the  solos  and  leads  also  using  a  great  amount  of  melody.

  A  great  amount  of  melody  can  be  heard  in  the guitar  riffing  and  when  the  music  speeds  up  a  decent  amount  of  blast  beats  and  tremolo  picking  can  be  heard  and  the  songs  also  bring  in  a great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  a  touch  of  90's  era  gothic  black  metal  can  also  be  heard  in  certain  sections  of  the  recording.

  Some  tracks  also bring  in a   small  amount  of  violins  while  the  slower  riffs  are  very  heavily  influenced  by  doom  metal.  and  all  of  the  musical  instruments  sounds  very  powerful  and  some  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  as  the  compilation  progresses  spoken  word  parts  are  introduced  into  the  music  and  there  are  also  a  couple  of  instrumental  tracks  while  acoustic  guitars  can  also  be  heard  briefly  and  one  tacks  also  adds  in  a  brief  use  of  melodic  singing  and  they  also  bring  in  Sentenced.  Paradise  Lost,  and  Annihilator  covers.

  On  this  compilation  Netherbird  takes  some  songs  from  different  eras  with  some  tracks  being  in  the  melodic  and  symphonic  black/death  metal  direction  while  some  tracks  have  a more  goth/doom  metal  style  to  them,  the  production  sounds  very  professional  while  the  lyrics  cover  darkness  and  struggles  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  a  very  great  sounding  collection  of  songs  from  Netherbird  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  symphonic  and  melodic  black/death  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  compilation.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Sculptors  And  Spectres"  "Born  Defiant"  "Nightwards"  and  "Alison  hell".  8  out  of  10.  

Hammerdrone Interview

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

We actually release it tomorrow, so we've been mainly focused on getting ready for the album release!  We're promoting it the old-school way - DIY - no promotion companies or record companies to help us - so it's a lot of legwork and talking to as many people (like your good selves) as we can to try to get the word out there that we exist and, hopefully, that we are good at what we do.


    2.Recently you have released a new album, 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?

Very firmly in the melodic death metal genre.  Our music is dark and suffused with atmosphere, without relying on synths to do this.  We offer an intense, aggressive and epic interpretation of death metal without being a "brutal" or "technical" band, and at the same time we're melodic without using clean vocals or straying into power metal-style scales.  We keep it dark!  It's a logical progression on from what we have released in the past - this album is just more mature, I guess.


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

I draw inspiration both from my own experiences and from stories from history and science.  This new album is split about half and half, and deals with everything from the bog men of Ireland (The Wasting Throne) to the pressure to procreate (Ancestral Weight).  The title track is about an obscure episode of eco-terrorism from Scottish history - a group of university scientists who formed an organization called the Dark Harvest Commando to pressure the UK Government to decontaminate an old anthrax testing site.  They did this by sending anthrax soil from the site to the government with promises to widely distribute their "dark harvest" if nothing was done.  The common theme, as with the music, is darkness.


    4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Hammerdrone'?

I'd like to say there was something profound behind the name selection... but really, we were coming up to our first gig, without a name, and had been through hundreds of suggestions...and Curtis (rhythm guitar) said "how about Hammerdrone"?  He doesn't even really know where that came from!


    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've appeared at the Calgary Metalfest and the Farmageddon fest, both of which were awesome experiences.  More recently, we supported both Numenorean and Krepitus at their respective album release shows in Calgary - these were incredible shows.  The one adjective that is almost always used to describe our stage performance is "intense".  One reviewer recently called us "intimidatingly intense" which I think is my favourite ever description of us!


    6.Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?

CD release show in Calgary is tomorrow - and we are appearing at Loud As Hell 666 - which is being headlined by Battlecross - in August.  We'll try to take ourselves on the road as much as we can.


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

We're doing OK by ourselves...but yes, some label support would, I am sure, help us get a bigger audience - that would be welcome!


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

We've been well received in the metal underground in countries as diverse as Nepal, the UK, France, Slovenia etc.  People seem to appreciate the particular style of melodic death metal we are producing - or, as one reviewer put it, death metal that happens to be melodic.


    9.What is going on with 'Krepitus' these days, a band that also shares a couple of the same members?

Yeah, our bassist, Teran, leads Krepitus on guitar and vocals - it's his main band, really,  He was only supposed to be helping us out (but has been doing so for 3 years, ha!).  And Curtis plays bass with them.  They're an awesome thrash-death band - they sound like Revocation meeting Dissection in a dark alley.  They've not long ago released their debut album, "Eyes of the Soulless" and it's really, really good. They're busy recording a new single and writing their next album, I believe.


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

More of the same, essentially - in that we'll keep writing dark, heavy, melodic death metal.  But we try not to think too much about writing a deliberate style or type of song and just let what happens, happens.  As long as the five of us in the band like a song, that's all that matters to us at the end of the day.


    11.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?

That's always a hard question because the influences are so many and so wide.  Some common influences would be bands such as Death and Kataklysm.  In terms of what I'm listening to these days...not enough!  I've had a dearth of new music recently so am busily trying to find time to listen to some cool new bands by checking out some underground radio.


    12.What are some of your non musical interests?

Personally...I run, swim, bake and draw. 


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

Just to say thank you for your support.  It is truly appreciated.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Entropia Invictus Interview


For those that have never heard of you before can you tell us a little bit about the band?

ENTROPI INVICTUS is a black/death symphonic metal band composed of 4 members: Pierjan playing drums, Laurent bass, Jordan guitar. For my part, I play guitar, make vocals, write lyrics and compose the symphonic parts.

Recently you have released an album, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on the recording?

With the album we aim at making a hybrid music between, on the one hand, an epic sound with orchestra and choirs and, and on the other hand, brutality brought by blasting drums, dark riffs and extreme vocals.

Some of your lyrics deal with Singularity and the writings of Kurzweil, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in those topics?

The song “Singularity” is the point of view of the first enhanced human who becomes, in a certain way, a god among men. It deals with the topic of transhumanism. This theme fascinates me because it sounds like Sci Fi but it will be real very soon and it will raise ethical issues.


What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Entropia Invictus'?

ENTROPIA INVICTUS mean in Latin “entropy inevitable/invincible”. Entropy is a thermodynamic term which measures a system’s chaos. And this chaos can only become bigger and bigger. We think that this idea of an unstoppable force always in progress fits with the band’s mindset.

What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and also how would you describe your stage performance?

The best show that we played was perhaps during the Rock Metal Camp Fest in France. Our music is very theatrical so we try to create a staging that respect nuances because our set is composed of brutal and speed parts but also quiet and melancholy ones.

Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?

On May 9th we will play with your compatriot of Fleshgod Apocalypse in France. We are honored to do the opening for the kings of this style.

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

The feedback is great. “Human Pantocrator” has been preordered in many country (Japan, Germany, Italy…) and comments about our video “I will overcome” are very positive.

Are any of the band members currently involved with any other bands or musical projects these days?

None of us is involved with another project, we are focused on ENTROPIA INVICTUS for now.

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

We are already working on new songs. The orchestral part will be more powerful and realistic and the metal part will be more varied with mid and low tempo.

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?

Septicflesh, Carach Angren, Behemoth have an influence on our music but also movies music, classical music. Nowadays I’m listening to “King” of Fleshgod Apocalypse, for me it’s a perfect balance between classical music and death metal.

What are some of your non musical interests?

The literature is one of my non musical interests. I read a lot of books of Sci Fi, Fantasy, Thriller, Philosophy, Psychology. I read one or two books per week.
I also go very often to the cinema to watch many kind of films, from blockbuster to art film.

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

Thanks for this interview. I hope you will be pleased to listen to our last album “Human Pantocrator” as much as we are pleased to play it.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Hessaja/Planet Sedom :ISON/WOOAAARGH/2017 EP Review


  Hessaja  are  a  band  from  Germany  that  plays  a  blackened  and  progressive  mixture  of  ambient,  doom  and  sludge  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2017  ep  "Planet  Sedom  :ISON"  which  will  be  released  in  April  by  WOOAAARGH.
 
  Ambient  style  keyboards  start  off  the  album  along  with  a  variety  of  many  different  sounding  keys  and  after  awhile  drum  beats  and  elements  of  post  rock  are  added  into  the  recording  along  with  some  aggressive  hardcore  style  vocals  and  after  awhile  the  music  starts  mixing  in  the  heaviness of  sludge  and  doom  metal.

 Both  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  while  also  mixing  in  a  great  amount  of  black  metal  influences  and  you  can  also  hear  all  of  the  musical  instruments  that  are  present  on  the recording  while  the  music  also  gets  very  progressive  and  experimental  at  times  and  when  guitar  leads  are  utilized  they  are  done  in  a  very  melodic  fashion  and  both  of  the  songs  stick  to  a  very  slow  musical  direction  and  spoken  word  parts  can  also  be  heard  briefly.

  Hessaja  plays  a  musical  style  that  takes  progressive,  post,  ambient, black, sludge  and  doom  metal  and  mixes  them  together  to  create  something  very  original,  the  production  sounds  very  professional  while  the  lyrics  are  written  in  German  and  cover  dark  and  philosophical  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Hessaja  are  a  very  great  sounding  mixture  of  progressive,  post,  ambient, black, sludge  and  doom  metal    and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  those  musical  genres,  you  should  check  out  this  band.  RECOMMENDED  TRACK  "Nista".  8  out  of  10.  

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Everdying/December's Rainy Day/2017 EP Re-Reocrding Review


  Everdying  are  a  solo  project  from  Illinois  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  and  plays  a  melodic  form  of  blackened  death  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  his  ep  "December's  Rainy  Day"  which  i  have also  reviewed  the  original  version  and  this  is  a  review  of  the  2017  re-recorded  version.

  A  very  heavy  guitar  sound  starts  off  the  ep  along  with  all  of  the  musical  instruments  sounding  very  powerful  and  when  the  music  speeds  up  a  decent  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  blast  beats  can  be  heard  and  after  awhile  death  metal  growls  and  black  metal  screams  are  added  onto   the   recording  and  the  music  has  a  lot  of  90's  influences.

  When  guitar  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  are  done  in  a very  melodic  fashion  and  the  songs  also  bring  in  a great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  one  track  also  brings  in  a  small  amount  of  classical  guitars  as  well  as  being  all  instrumental  before  returning  back  to  a  heavier  direction   which  they  also  mix  in  with  the  classical  guitars   at  times.

  Everdying  takes  his  older  material  and  makes  changes  on  how  he  wants  it  to  sound  in  the modern  era  while  still  keeping  everything  in  s  melodic  blackened  death  metal  style,  the  production  sounds  very  professional  for  being  a  self  released  recording  while  the  lyrics  cover  life  and  death  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  a  very  great  sounding  re-recording  from  Everydying  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  melodic  blackened  death  metal,  you  should  check  out this  ep.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Lamentation"  Lunar  Aura".  8  out  of  10.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Hammerdrone/Dark Harvest/2017 Full length Review


  Hammerdrone  are  a  band  from  Calgary,  Alberta,  Canada  that  plays  a  melodic  form  of  blackened  death  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  self  released  2017  album  "Dark  Harvest"  which  will  be  released  on  March  24th.

  Atmospheric  sounding  synths  start  off  the  album  and  after  the  intro  the  music  goes  into  a  heavier  direction  along  with  a  great amount  of  melodic  guitar  leads  as  well  as  a  mixture  of  deep  death  metal  growls  and  grim  black  metal  screams  and  you  can  also  hear  a  great  amount  of  melody  in  the  guitar  riffing.

  When  the  music  speeds  up  a  decent  amount  of blast  beats  can  be  heard  and  you  can  also hear  all  of  the  musical  instruments  that  are  present  on  the  recording  while  clean  playing  and  spoken  word  parts  can  also  be  heard  in  certain sections  of  the  album  and  ocean  sounds  can  also  be  heard  briefly  before  returning  back  to  a  heavier  direction  and  the  songs  also  bring  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  and  one  of  the  later  tracks  is all  instrumental.

  Hammerdrone  plays  a  musical  style  that  takes  the  melodic  forms  of  black  and  death  metal  and  mixes  them  together  to  create  a  sound  of t heir  own,  the  production  sounds  very  professional  for  being  a  self  released  recording  while  the  lyrics  cover  history,  science,  stories  and  personel  event  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Hammerdrone  are  a  very  great  sounding  melodic  blackened  death  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  album. RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Karakoram"  "Black  Bison"  and  "Collapse  Of  Reality".  8  out  of  10.