Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Trobar Interview

1.Can you give us an update on what is going on with the band these days?

We just released the digital version of our new album "Charivari", the CD version will be released soon, and we will be playing in different cities in eastern canada starting june.

2.Recently you have released a new album, how would you describe the musical sound of the new recording and also how does it differ from the ep you had released in 2011?

Our new album is made of new songs and older songs we couldn't record in 2011 due to time limitations. The result is an album that covers the evolution of our sound from the beginning to today. We could say that Trobar took a more progressive turn last years, but our music is still a recipe with different musical ingredients : black and death metal, folk melodies, psychedelic ambiance, acoustic parts and progressive structures.

3.Your lyrics cover Celtic Mythology, how would you describe your interest in this topic?

We have some celtic elements in our music, but our lyrics are more inspired by Québec's legends and history. For example, we have a lot of legends talking about the devil coming to the surface to take the bad people with him in his trolley. In the last song of our album, "Pactés à mort", the devil comes to a tavern and tells the people that the one that will drink a whole barrel of his beer will have eternal life, and the ones that fail will burn with him in hell. This is a story we created, but we took some elements from our legends.

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

Trobar is an old french word describing the art of the minstrels. It has a common etymology with the french word troubadours.

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?

When we started playing, there were not a lot of folk metal bands in our place, so we really enjoyed when people came to listen to another band of another music style and ended up really enjoying our music. One of those great shows was when we opened for "Mononc Serge et Anonymus" in Rimouski. It was a dream coming true when we opened for Korpiklaani, Moonsorrow, Tyr and Metsatöll in 2012. We also had the chance to play a couple of times with the excellent band Unexpect.

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

We will be playing in Québec on june 27, Montréal on june 28, and Rimouski in september. More shows are to be announced.

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

For now, we focus on our new album. We want to keep our independence but we stay open for any opportunities that could make our band progress.

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

We received a lot of comments and reviews from places in the world we didn't expect. It makes us very proud that people around the world are interested in what we do. The way metal makes connections between people around the world is inspiring.

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

We already are working on some new songs. In our opinion, these songs are a proof that we are still improving our sound and that the best days are in front of us.

10.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?

Of course, we have been influenced by folk metal bands like Moonsorrow and Korpiklaani, but we also have influence from Québecois traditional music, more prog bands like Opeth, and 70s English and Québecois prog-rock bands like Jethro Tull, Harmonium, etc. We like to experiment with different kinds of music, for example fusion jazz, funk, various world music, etc.

The six of us listen to a large variety of musical styles, having in common metal music of course.

11.What are some of your non musical interests?

People in our band have very diverse interests. We have a physician, a radio operator, some artists (we made our artworks ourself). We are interested in literature, content creation, politics, geography, history, gaming, etc.

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

Thanks for your interest, and don’t forget to listen to our album available on Bandcamp, and to follow us on Facebook!

Monday, April 28, 2014

Embrace Of Disharmony/Humananke/My Kingdom Music/2014 CD Review


  Embrace  of  Disharmony  are  a  band  from  Italy  that  plays  a  progressive  and  avant  garde  form  of  metal  with  some  black  and  gothic  metal  elements  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2014  album  "Humananke"  which  will  be  released  by  My  Kingdom  Music.

  Sounds  of  war  start  off  the  album  before  adding  in  more  orchestra  sounds  which  also  bring  a  symphonic  and  avant  garde  sound  to  the  album  and  a  minute  later  they  add  female  operatic  vocals  to  the  recording  which  also  leads  up  to  a  more  heavy  direction  while  also  keeping  the  symphonic  and  avant  garde  sounds.

  Progressive  rock  elements  are  mixed  in  with  melody  throughout  the  album  and  they  also  bring  in  a  mixture  of  death  metal  growls  and  black  metal  growls  while  also  keeping  around  the  melodic  male  and  female  vocals  and  all  of  the  musical  instruments  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them,  the  guitar  leads  and  solos  are  very  melodic  sounding  and  utilize  a  great  amount  of  talent  and  skill  and  at  times  spoken  word  parts  are  added  into  certain  parts  of  the  recording.

  A  good  portion  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  there  is  also  a  brief  use  of  blast  beats  being  utilized  on  the  record along  with  the  music  taking  a  modern  approach  to  progressive  metal  while  also  being  more  heavier  than  most  bands  of  that  genre  and  when  acoustic  guitars  are  utilized  they  bring  in  even  more  classical  music  elements  along  with  a  medieval  atmosphere.  

  Embrace  Of  Disharmony  show  a  great  amount  of  originality  with  their  music,  having  a  sound  that  is  mostly  rooted  in  progressive  metal  while  also  having  the  heaviness  of  death  and  black  metal  as  well  as  mixing  in  a  lot  of  classical,  symphonic,  opera,  gothic  and  avant  garde  to  create  a  very  diverse  sounding  album,  the  production  is  very  professional  sounding  and  the  lyrics  cover  the  struggle  in  fate  or  circumstances,  identified  in  Ananke,  primordial  deity  in  Greek  mythology.

  In  my  opinion  Embrace  of  Disharmony  are  a  very  great  sounding  progressive  avant  garde  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  recording.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Shards  of  Apocalypse"  "Identify"  "By  The  Hands  Of  The  Moirai"  and  "A  Descent  Into  The  Maelstrom".  8  out  of  10.   

Valdrin/Beyond The Forest/Blast Head Records/2013 CD Review


  Valdrin  are  a  band  from  Ohio  that  plays  a  very  melodic  and  symphonic  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2013  album  "Beyond  The  Forest"  which  was  released  by  Blast  Head  Records.

  Nature  sounds  and  bells  start  off  the  album  along  with  some  distortion  and  whispers  a  few  seconds  later  along  with  some  avant  garde  sounding  pianos  which  lead  up  to  symphonic  sounding  synths  starting  to  kick  in.

  After  the  intro  the  music  goes into  a  more  fast  black  metal  direction  along  with  some  blast  beats  as  well  as  adding  in  grim  vocals  and  atmospheric  elements  along  with  a  good  amount  of  melody  as  well  as  thrash  and  death metal  influences  being  a  huge  part  of  the  guitar  riffing  and  some  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length,  when  acoustic  guitars  are  added  into  the  music  they  bring  a  folk  and  progressive  feeling  to  the  album  along  with  a  good  amount  of  classical  guitars  while  the  lead  guitars  are  very  melodic  and  talented  sounding  guitar  solos.

  The  synths  bring  in  the  symphonic  black  metal  elements  and  they  are  more  close  to  the  90's  side  of  the  genre  and  there  is  also  a  small  amount  of  spoken  word  parts  being  utilized  at  times  and  all  of  the  musical  instruments  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  on  some  of  the  later  tracks  a  small  amount  of  death  metal  growls  are  utilized  while  the  main  focus  is  still  more  on  the  black  metal  vocals  and  the  album  is  very  diverse  in  sound  while  also  remaining  heavy  most  of  the  time.

  Valdrin  bring  back  the  90's  symphonic  and  black  metal  sound s of  the  90s  to  create  an  album   that  is  very  old  school  yet  very  heavy  all  at  the  same  time  along  with  elements  of  thrash  and  brutal  death  metal,  the  production  is  very  professional  sound  and  the  lyrics  cover  dark  and  supernatural  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Valdrin  are  a  very  great  sounding  melodic  and  symphonic  black  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Beyond  The  Forest"  "Impaled  Visions  Breed  Within  The  Vines"  "Come  Forth"  and  "Forgotten  Souls".  8/5  out  of  10.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Anti Ritual Interview

1.Can you give us an update on what is going on with the band these days?

Well, right now were waiting for the record to come out and preparing for playing some shows to support it and make our existence known to people.

2.You have a new ep coming out towards the end of April, can you tell us a little bit more about your musical sound?

Our sound is a natural emanation of our collective creative input. We all bring something different to the table, as we all have a history in other bands that are quite diverse. The sound is basically what naturally emerges when you put the four of us in a room with instruments.

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

The lyrics are a way of tackling our frustration with contemporary culture and politics. The lyrics are tied very much to the sound of the music, as the music is a vessel for the lyrical themes and vice versa.

4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Anti Ritual'

The idea was that we wanted to have a different take on being in a band. Having all been so before, we just wanted to steer clear of the whole social media circus for example. We didn’t want the hassle of creating and maintaining a profile on, say, Facebook. As such we kept the whole project a secret until the record was recorded and ready for streaming. Also the name expresses our general feeling of being in opposition to a lot of things, and us playing and singing is our act of getting out the anger of frustration.

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

We still have our debut show to look forward to, but there’s a few things in the works at this point.

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

Yes, but so far there is still a few more pieces that need to fall in to place before we’re ready to talk about them.

7.Your ep is going to be released as a joint effort between Indisciplinarian and Vendetta Records, can you tell us a little bit more about these labels?

Well, Indisciplinarian is a label run by our drummer and guitarist focusing on heavy and aggressive music on vinyl. Vendetta is a well renowned label from Berlin. They have a quite impressive stable of bands that we are honored to be a part of, such as Thou, Salome, Ash Borer, Whitehorse and the list goes on. If you don’t know any of these labels, get on it now!

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

So far we have received a handful of reviews of our EP and they’ve been quite positive. Being involved in the process of writing and recording a record can make it real hard for you do look at it objectively, so it feels amazing to see all the positive feedback.

9.When can we expect a full length album and also where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

As for a full length, only time will tell. We are all quite busy people, but let’s just say that recording this record has made us want more and assured us that this is not the end of Anti Ritual. As to where we are heading musically in the future, I’d say along the same path were on now. It seems to work out for us.

10.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?
We are four individuals who are all musicnerds, so I can only speak for myself. These days, I’m really into a lot of Canadian and American black metal such as Délétère, Sanctuire, Hæthen, Lluvia, Bael Kultus, Odz Manouk, Xothist the whole Rhinocervs thing and pretty much anything put out by the incredible label Fallen Empire Records.

11.What are some of your non musical interests?

I work as a librarian, so obviously literature has always played a huge part in my life. Apart from that Im a huge musicnerd and record collector, so that, and politics takes up a lot of my time.

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

Not much besides thanking you for taking an interest in Anti Ritual. All the best.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Heid Interview

1. For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?
The proyect starts in summer 2011, when Drakhai and Sergio (ex Pagan Fire) decided to play together again the songs composed by Drakhai. On autumn, they both entered in Sons of Midgaard, introduced their songs and changed the name of the band to Heid. With them enters Marta, Sechem's flautist.
After a show on May 2012, the band decides to divide. Marta, Sergio and Drakhai decide to sing in Spanish and tell about History and traditions of their homeland, Castile.
From that autumn, different musicians have passed by the band and with them it was recorded its first demo, called “Heid”, in January. This was released on March, with Drakhai on vocals as they didn’t had any singer on the line-up. On June, Marta leaves the band. The present formation is not closed until August, with that in autumn 2013 they recorded their last EP “Voces de la Tierra Dormida”. This new EP contains 5 tracks where Heid mixes the rage of the Norwegian black metal, the sound of modern metal and deep ambiences made by the 
sound of traditional Spanish instruments that will guide you on a travel that you will want to walk over and over again.

2. So far the band has released a demo and ep, how would you describe the musical sound that is presented on both recordings and alos how do they differ from each other?
The first difference is the studio quality and the voice. You can find the second one on the lyrics: at the demo we still wrote about some Norse mythology issues, but with “Voces de la Tierra Dormida” we declared ourselves a full-Castilian folk metal band.

3. The song lyrics cover Castilian folklore and Paganism, how would you describe your interest in this topic?
From high to wow much interest so Castilian such Pagan wow (hahaha)

4. What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Heid'?
Heid is a character of Nordic Mithology that caused discord between night and day, between the physical and the mystical worlds. There are references to her at the first verses of the Völuspá.

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 highlight the gig we shared with Pimeä Metsä and Survael last November in Madrid. The venue was full, we really enjoyed playing with those friends and the crowd gave a great response to our music.

6. Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?
On May the 2nd we are dated with Celtibeerian and Ocelon here in Madrid, and on November we are gonna hit the stage of Pax Julia Metal Fest (PT).We are working on more dates in festivals and venues outside Madrid, our 
booking is open!

7. Currently the band is unsigned, are you looking for a label or have received any interest?
We have talked with some Spanish extreme labels but we haven’t signed with anyone. By now we are happy as an independent band, as no one brings an interesting trait.

8. On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans
of black, death and folk metal?
Recently we’ve received a review from the US giving us 5/5 stars. In Romania and Russia our EP has reported us very respectful words, and inour country the public is having a very good reaction. People abroad and Spaniards are understanding our proyect and the work made by the producer Erik Monsonís and Destroyer Management is making everything easier.

9. Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
We’d like to offer a deeper and richer vision of the Castilian folklore through our own style, without closing any door to genres and sounds.

10. What are some bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
Moonsorrow, Numen, Ensiferum, Korpiklaani, Helheim, Aiumeen Basoa, Arkona in the folk metal scene; Lamb of God, Molotov Solution, Immortal, Marduk, Crimfall and some names and forms from the Renaissance period.As we are six people in Heid, we come from different styles but we all have in common the extreme music and the folk.

11. Outside of music what are some of your interests?
We love food and cooking, and we enjoy learning about History.
 


12.Any final words or thoughts before we wrap up this interview?


We’d like to thank you for making us this interview; it’s a great support for us! And we’d like to talk directly to our readers: listen to us, give us a chance and let us know what you think!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Graves At Sea/Sourvein/Seventh Rule Recordings/2014 Split EP Review


  This  is  a  review  of  a  split  ep  between  Oregon's  Graves  At  Sea  and  North  Carolina's  Sourvein  which  will  be  released  by  Seventh  Rule  Recordings  in  2014  and  we  will  start  off  the  review  with  Graves  At  Sea  a  band  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  and  plays  a  blackened  form  of  doom/sludge  metal.

  Their  side  of  the  split  starts  off  with  some  distorted  sounding  drones  before  going  into  a  very  slow,  dark  and  heavy  doom/sludge  metal  direction  along  with  some  black  metal  screams  and  after  awhile  they  also  bring  in  some  growling  vocals,  as  time  goes  in  by  the  band  brings  in  a  small  amount  of  clean  sections  while  mainly  focusing  on  a  heavier  sound  and  both  of  the  tracks  they  bring  to  the  split  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  you  can  hear  the  vocals  using  some  sludge  elements  on  the  second  song  and  the  music  starts  having  a  more  stoner  vibe  to  it.

  Graves  of  Sea  continue  the  sound  they  are  very  well  known  for  on  this  split   and  the  music  is  as  heavy  is  it  always  is,  along  wit h a  very  powerful  and  heavy  sounding  production  and  lyrics  that  cover  dark  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Graves  At  Sea  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  band,  you  should  enjoy  their  side  of  the  split.  RECOMMENDED  TRACK  "Betting  On  Black".

  Next  up  is  Sourvein  a  band  that  plays  a  mixture  of  sludge  and  doom  metal.

  Their  side  of  the  split  starts  off  with  drum  beats  and  distortion  before  going  into  a  more  70's  doom  metal  direction  along  with  some  melodic  vocals  and  they  start  getting  more  aggressive  as  the  music  progresses  and   when  they  add  in  guitar  solos  and  leads,  the  music  starts  evoking  a  more  retro  vibe  to  it  and  they  also  bring  in  psychedelic  elements  on  the  other  tracks  and  there  are  only  3  songs  on  their  side  of  the  split  wit h the  last  one  returning  back  to  the  heavier  direction  of  the  first  song  as  well  as  adding  in  some  heavy  sounding  bass  guitars.

  Sourvein  have  a  more  calm  and  retro  sound  than  the  previous  band  reviewed  with  their  music  before  closer  to  70's  doom  metal  while  also  having  the  modern  day  elements  of  sludge  being  an  influence  on  their  sound,  along  with  a  very  heavy  sounding  production  and  lyrics  that  cover  dark  and  occult  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Souvein  are  a  very  great  sounding  mixture  of  sludge  and  doom  metal  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  band.  RECOMMENDED  TRACK  "Equinox".

  In  conclusion  I  feel  this  is  a  very  great  sounding  split  and  I  would  recommend  it  to  all  fans  of  black,  doom  and  sludge  metal.  8  out  of  10.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Trobar/Charivari/2014 CD Review


  Trobar  are  a  band  from  Quebec,  Canada  that  plays  a  progressive  from  of  folk  metal  with  elements  of  black,  death  and  thrash  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  self  released  2014  album  album  "Charivari".

  Nature  sounds  and  synths  start  off  the  album  giving  the  music  a  folk  music  feeling  along  with  acoustic  guitars  that  add  a  progressive  and  medieval  feeling  to  the  recording  and the  band  also  starts  to  add  in  more  folk  instruments.

  After  the  intro  the  music  starts  to  get  heavier  and  goes  into  a  more  folk  metal  direction  along  with  some  growls  and  screams  that  bring  in  the  death  and  black  metal  elements  and  all  of  the  musical  instruments  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  on  some  of  the  alter  tracks  keyboards  are  added  into  the  music  along  with  melodic  pagan  male  and  female  vocals.

  When  guitar  solos  and  leads  are  added  on  the  album  the  music  starts  having  a  more  melodic  and  epic  sounding  feeling  and  the  acoustic  guitars  are  make  a  return  on  some  of  the  tracks  without  taking  away  from  the  heavier  aspects  of  the  recording  and  they  also  bring  in  more  tribal  and  prog  elements  later  on  during  the  recording  and  they  also  bring  in  back  up  pagan  shouts  to  give  the  music  a  more  battle  like  feeling  and  some  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  along  with  some  psychedelic  elements  being  added  onto  some  of  the  later  tracks  and  they  also b ring  in  a  couple  of  instrumentals.

  Trobar  bring  a  more  progressive  and  darker  approach  to  their  folk  metal  sound  while  also  mixing  in  the  heaviness  of  black  and  death  metal,  the  production  is  very  professional  sounding  and  the  lyrics  are  written  in  French  and  cover  Celtic  Mythology.

  In  my  opinion  Trobar  are  a  very  great  sounding  progressive/folk  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Troubadors"  "Le  Sacrifice"  "Tyran"  and  "Pactes  A  Mort".  8  out  of  10.

  

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Grey Skies Fallen/The Many Sides Of Truth/Xanthros Music/2014 CD Review


  Grey  Skies  Fallen  are  a  band  from  New  York  that  plays  a  mixture  of  melodic  black  metal,  doom  and  progressive  death  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2014  album  "The  Many  Sides  Of  Truth"  which  will  be  released  by  Xanthros  Music.

  A  dark,  heavy  and  melodic  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  some  progressive  rock  sounding  keyboards  which  also  leads  up  to  some  melodic  vocals  and  later  on  the  band  brings  in  a  mixture  of  both  acoustic  and  heavy  parts  as  well  as  adding  in  a  decent  amount  of  black  meal  influences  with  some  screams  and  blast  beats  and  mixing  them  with  the  cleaner  vocals.

  On  some  of  the  other  tracks  the  band  brings  in  acoustic  instrumentals  as  well  as  adding  cellos  and  violins  in  some  of  the  songs  while  remaining  heavy  most  of  the  time  and  they  also  add  more  death  and  doom  metal  into  the  guitar  riffing  and  when  they  add  in  guitar  leads  they  enhance  the  melody  and  darkness  of  the  recording  and  most  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  as  the  album  progresses  you  can  hear  more  experimental  and  psychedelic  element s being  mixed  in  along  with  some  very  powerful  sounding  bass  lines  which  also  leads  to  the  black  metal  vocals mixing  in  death  growls.

  Grey  Skies  Fallen  have  a  very  interesting  sound  with  their  music  taking  a  very  melodic  form  of  doom  metal,  mixing  in  fast  and  grim  black  metal  parts  along  with  the  heavier  riffing  of  death  metal  to  create  a  sound  of  their  own,  the  production  sounds  very  professional  sounding  on  this  recording  and  the  lyrics  cover  dark,  metaphysical  and  occult  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Grey  Skies  Fallen  are  a  very  great  sounding  melodic  and  progressive  mixture  of  black,  doom  and  death  metal  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  those  musical  genres,  you  should  check  out t his  band.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Ritual  of  the  Exiter"  and  "Of  the  Ancients".  8  out  of  10.

  

Friday, April 11, 2014

Heid/Voces De La Tierra Dormida/2014 EP Review

 
Heid  are  a  band  from  Spain  that  plays  a  pagan  form  of  black/death  metal  with  elements  of  folk  music  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  self  released  2014  ep  "Voces De La Tierra Dormida".

  The  music  starts  out  in  a  heavy  direction  along  with  some  epic  pagan  atmosphere  being  mixed  in  as  well  as  a  great  amount  of  medieval  melodies  and  grim  vocals  that  combine  black  and  death  metal,  and  in  the  faster  sections  you  can  also  hear  a  good  amount  of  blast  beats  and  in  the  slower  sections  you  can  hear  some  powerful  sounding  bass  guitars.

  The  folk  instruments  and  acoustic  guitars  on  the  album  do  not  over  power  the  music  with  the  band  really  focusing  on  a  more  black/death  metal  sound  while  the  folk  metal  sound  is  still  a  very  strong  part  of  the  recording,  in  some  of  the  riffing  you  can  hear  a  great  amount  of  thrash  influences  and  the  guitar  leads  and  solos  are  very  melodic  sounding  when  they  are  utilized  and  most  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  on the  last  track  emlodic  pagan  chanting  is  added  into  the  song.

  Heid  bring  a  great  amount  of  death  metal  into  their  melodic  pagan/folk  metal  sound  while  also  keeping  around  the  black  metal  elements  that  are  a  huge  part  of  their  sound  along  with  a  very  powerful  and  professional  sounding  production,  and  the  lyrics  are  written  in  Basque  and  cover  Paganism  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Heid  are  a  very  great  sounding  mixture  of  black,  pagan,  death  and  folk  metal  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  those  musical  genres,  you  should  check  out  this  band.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "No  Habra Paz"  and  "la  Mana  Negra".  8  out  of  10.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Anti Ritual/Self Titled/Indisciplinarian/2014 EP Review


  Anti  Ritual  are  a  band  from  Denmark  that  plays  a  mixture  of  black  metal,  sludge  and  hardcore  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  self  released  2014  ep  which  will  be  released  by  Indisciplinarian.

  A  very  dark  and  heavy  sound  starts  off  the  ep  along  with  some  sludge  style  vocals  being  mixed  in  with  a  blackened  metal  sound  along  with  brutal  blast  beats  and  the  slower  sections  have  a  great  amount  of  hardcore  influences.

  When  the  other  tracks  kick  in  more  crust  and  punk  rock  influences  are  added  in  along  with  a  more  dark  style  of  post  hardcore  and  on  some  of  the  later  tracks  the  band  starts  utilizing  a  small  amount  of  melody  and  the  tracks  are  all  very  short  with  no  solos  or  leads  being utilized  on  any  of  the  tracks.

  Anti  Ritual  have  a  great  balance between  darkness  and  energy  with  their  blackened  hardcore sludge  metal  sound  along  with  a  very  dark  and  heavy  production  and  lyrics  that  criticize  the  mainstream  structures  of  society.

  In  my  opinion  Anti  Ritual  are  a  very  decent  sounding  mixture  of  black  metal,  sludge  and  hardcore  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  those  musical  genres,  you  should  check  out  this  band.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Ideals  To  The  Fire"  and  "Blame  the  Victim".  7/5  out  of  10.

  

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Warthrone/Venomassacre/Ghoststorm Records/2014 CD Review


  Warthrone  are  a  band  from  Florida  that  plays  a  very  symphonic  and  melodic  form  of  blackened  death  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2014  album  "Venomassacre"  which  was  released  by  Ghoststorm  Records.

  A  very  dark  and  ritualistic  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  some  demonic  laughter  before  going  into  a  heavy  blackened  death  metal  direction  along  with  blast  beats  and  high  pitched  screams  and  the  band  also  bring  in  heavy  breakdowns  and  deep  death  metal  growls  along  with  some  fast  melodic  Swedish  style  black  metal  influences  and  the  solos  have  a technical  death  metal  feeling  to  them  while  some  of  the  cleaner  sections  have  an  early  Satyricon  feeling  to  them.

  On the  other  tracks  the  music  becomes  a  mixture  of  brutal  death  metal  and  melodic  black  metal  having  the  perfect  balance  between  brutality  and  melody  along  with  symphonic  sounding  keyboards  being  thrown  in  at  times  as  well  as  a  mixture  of  growls  and  screams  and  the  keyboards  are  closer  to  the  90's  Nordic  and  Swedish  black  metal  sounds  than  the  modern  symphonic  sounds  that  bands  go  for  these  days.,  while  the  death  metal  elements  have  a  more  modern  feeling  to  them  at  times.

  Warthrone  have  a  very  interesting  sound  with  their  music  taking  the  melodic  and  symphonic  sides  of  90's  black  metal  and  mixing  them  in  with  the  brutality  of  modern  death  metal  to  create  a  sound  of  their  own  as  well  as  adding  a  small  does  of  thrash  along  with  a  very  professional  sounding  production  and  lyrics  that  cover  dark  spirituality  and  supernatural  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Warthrone  are  a  very  great  sounding  mixture  of  symphonic,  melodic  black  metal  and  brutal  death  metal  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  those  musical  genres,  you  should  check  out  this  band.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Violation  Of  The  Ethereal  Realm"  "self  Induced  Reckoning"  and  "Fate  Of  The  Spineless".  8  out  of  10.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Geist Interview

1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?
We started this band with a desire to do something technical but still heavy on the riffs and melodies. Today, there's much focus on technicality but very little thought about what actually constitutes a song. In this manner, melody is very important to us. Graham (Bassist) and I (Luke, Guitars/Vocals) have been plotting to put a band together for about a decade. However, he and I were always involved in other projects and time was not a luxury we had. We finally decided to put the thing into action. It took us about a year to find Zach (drums/percussion), and during that time we focused on songwriting and defining what we wanted the band to be about, song structure, lyrical content, etc. We had originally planned on Geist being an instrumental band. Then, once I had put lyrics to one song, I was pretty much forced into adding vocals to the rest of them.

2.How would you describe your musical sound?
Simply put, we try to make Progressive Black Metal. We take a lot from technical & progressive bands and try to arrange similarly thought out ideas and lay them over black metal melodies. So, in the end, we have music that is dark and disturbing in its reality that is not confined by time signatures, black metal that is freed from the commonalities.

3.Can you tell us a little bit more about the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?
I try to make the lyrics realistic. They may not all be about true stories, but they are certainly about real possibilities. Reality is far more frightening than fantasy.

4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Geist'?
We chose the name Geist from our fondness of the Philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Geist means spirit or ghost. It is a living thing that is a part of all of us and, at the same time, extends beyond us. I like to view the idea of the Geist as something that acts as a witness. It watches us over time. It sees all of our actions, it knows our secrets. 

5.What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and also how would you describe your stage performance?
One of our most fun shows was one that we recently played at the Blue Note in Columbia, MO. We had just played with Abigail Williams a couple of weeks before and that show did not go so well. We wanted the next one to be different. So, we booked up the venue with some of the "best of the best" in the area. We played with Creaturezoid, Legend, & A Hill To Die Upon. Great lineup with great friends equals a great night. 
Another good one was at a local DIY spot. I love the atmosphere in places like that because people are truly there for the music. There's no bullshit behavior, no drunks, no frat boys looking to score with drunk girls. Just the love of music. The crowd really got into it. Probably the best reception we've yet had.

6.Do you have any plans to do a tour outside of your state in the future?
We're possibly planning on a small, month-long tour this summer with a fellow label-band, As Earth Shatters. We played with them a couple of weeks ago and they are really great guys and a great band. They asked us to join them and, if it all works out, we will.

7.The new album is coming out on Hard Wood Records, can you tell us a little bit more about this label?
It's a great group of guys with great ideas. They are really focused on getting good bands that know their stuff. They are really moving forward with positive ideas and we're glad to be a part of it all. Travis, the label head, has a TON of great ideas for the future and the drive to make it all happen. They have been more than eager to work with us and make us feel supported.

8.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of progressive and extreme metal?
It's hard to say at his point. Since the release of our sing for "The Dark Core," we have been getting a lot more attention, mostly stateside but some around the globe as well. It's nice to have someone contact you from another country that digs what you do. It let's us know that we might be on the right track. We intend to make that continue even farther once the new album is out.

9.Can you tell us a little bit more about the other musical projects that some of the band members are involved with?
At the start of this band, I was in a straight-forward rock band called Triple P, but once Geist got signed, I decided to put all of my focus on this project. However, I have been working on a new project from time to time with a drummer. For this one it'll just be him and myself and I'll be playing bass. I also do a lot of solo recording. I just released an album last year and I'm working on another to be released later this year.
Graham is in another band called Don't Mind Dying. They are a blues-based rock outfit. It's blues at it's roots but it has a heaviness to it that is really fun. He was, until recently also playing with another group called The Mercury Trio, but he played his last show with them last weekend.
Zach is a busy dude. No doubt about it. He plays with us in Geist, he is in another band called Perceiving the Design (also on Hard Wood Records), and he also plays in a 3rd band called Nevalra. He also frequently plays in the local drum corps. He doesn't seem to mind being this busy though. Whatever makes him happy and keeps him outta trouble, ha! 

10.You have a new album coming out this year, what can metal fans expect from the record once it is released?
I know everyone wants to feel like they are breaking new ground. I can't say that we'll be inventing or re-imagining anything. I do however feel that we will turn some heads with the structure of the songs. Maybe not so much of the "what," but the "how" of what we're doing is different, if that makes sense. We're taking ideas from a few different levels and crossing them in ways I've not heard before. It'll be heavy, it'll be thought provoking, and I think it'll give the listener a lot to hold on to, even if we are blurring the lines between sub-genres.

11.What are some bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?
The bands that have had the biggest influence, as far as my writing for Geist is considered, are fairly standard. Opeth, God Dethroned, Amon Amarth, Dimmu Borgir, & Diabolical Masquerade, to name a few. We take some ideas those bands and toss them in with what we like about more complex acts such as Blotted Science or Animals as Leaders.
Right now, personally, I'm into a lot of black metal. There's so many great acts that are totally underground and reveling in it (as they should). Sorcier Des Glaces' new album has been in constant play in my home. I love the atmospheric, the white noise, the screams of despair that are so prevalent in black metal.It's oddly meditative. 

12.What are some of your non musical interests?
I'm a student of Philosophy, History, and Religion. Not that I consider myself to be a philosopher, and I'm certainly not a religious person by definition. I mainly view it as a study of people. It's interesting to see what causes people to believe what they believe, looking at the big picture to see what gives rise to our choices.

13.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
We hope that everyone enjoys our music or, at least, can take something from it. We thank everyone for the support we have had thus far and we are looking forward to a very productive future with Geist.
Thank you!
-Luke

Friday, April 4, 2014

Norse/Pest/2014 EP Review


  Norse  are  a  band  from  Australia  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  and  plays  a  melodic  form  of  blackened  death  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  self  released  2014  ep  "Pest".

  A  very  dark,  heavy  and  progressive  sound  starts  off  the  ep  along  with  some  aggressive  screams  and  powerful  bass  lines  and  the  music  also  speed  up  at  times  and  brings  in  blast  beats  as  well  as  the  black  metal  sound  kicking  in  and  the  vocals  use  of  mixture  of  grim  screams  and  growls  and  after  awhile  spoken  word  parts  are  added  into  certain  sections  of  the  recording.

  All  of  the  musical  instruments  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  on  this  ep  along  with  the  musical  direction  going  for  more  of  a  progressive  and  melodic  style  of  black/death  metal  and  at  times  the  faster  parts  bring  in  some  brutal  elements  to  the  recording  and  on  some  of  the  lighter  sections  you  can  hear  some  drone  and  psychedelic  sounds  which  sound  very  powerful  on  the  last  track.

  With  this  ep  Norse  go  into  a  different  direction  than  their  previous  recordings  with  the  music  being  more  progressive  and  experimental  this  time  around  while  still  having  a  great  amount  of  black  metal  elements  along  with  a  very  dark  yet  powerful  production  and  lyrics  that  cover  dark a and  misanthropic  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Norse  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  melodic  and  progressive  black/death  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  ep.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Disarmed,  toothless,  And  Weak"  and  "Aimless".  8  out  of  10.

Lord Mantis/Death Mask/Profound Lore/2014 CD Review


  Lord  Mantis  are  a  band  from  Chicago,  Illinois  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this   zine  and  plays  a  very  blackened  form  of  sludge  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2014  album  "Death  Mask"  which  will  be  released  by  Profound  Lore.

  A  very  dark  and  heavy  sound  starts  off  the  album  and  a  minute  later  you  can  hear  background  voices  before  the  blackened  sludge  style  screams  start  to  kick  in  and  the  riffing  starts  utilizing  some  melody  and  at  times  the music  speeds  up  a  bit  and  blast  beats  are  added  in  while  the  main  focus  is  on  the  slower,  darker  and  heavier  aspects  of  the  music.

  The  album  starts  to  find  its  own  sound  on  the  other  tracks  with  the  music  becoming  a  mixture  of  black  metal  and  sludge  and  at  times  you  can  hear  small  amounts  of  punk  rock  being  added  into  certain  sections  of  the  recording  as  well  as  mixing  dark  and  melodic  parts  together  to  create  an  evil  atmosphere and  on  one  of  the  tracks  traces  of  industrial  and  noise  are  brought  in  along  with  a  brief  use  of  more  spoken  and  melodic  vocals.

  When  we  get  more  intro  the  album  drones  and  psychedelic  sounds  become  a  part  of  the  music  at  times  along  with  a  small  amount  of  acoustic  guitars  while  the  main  focus  is  still  on  being  very  heavy  and  on  a  couple  of  the  tracks  they  bring  in  a  small  amount  of  fast  and  raw  black  metal  riffs  that  sound  even  more  powerful  when  the  blast  beats  are  added  in  and  on  one  of  the  tracks  they  bring  in  a  small  amount  of  robotic  vocals  and  they  close  the  album  with  a  track  that  is  very  long  and  epic  in  length  as  well  as  mixing  in  traces  of  melodic,  post  black  metal  with  sludge..

  With  this  album  lord  Mantis  continue  the  blackened  sludge  of  previous  releases  while  also  being  a  bit  more  experimental  and  adding  in  more  melody  this  time  around  while  also  having  a  very  professional  sounding  production  and  showing  their  misanthropic  and  hatred  for  the  human  race  in  their  song  lyrics.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Lord  Mantis  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  band,  you  should  enjoy  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Death  Mask"  "negative  Birth"  and  "Three  Crosses".  8  out  of  10.

  

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Negative Voice Interview

Can you give us an update on what is going on with the band these days?
The band is currently actively engaged in the creation of the material for the second album, which we plan to record in the studio at the end of this year. The new album is likely to be very different from the debut album in stylistics and sound. The whole band now are involved in writing the new material; everyone brings ideas and influences the final result. After recording a new album we plan to continue an active concert schedule.

Recently you have released a new album, can you tell us a little bit more about the musical direction of the new recording and also how does it differ from your past recordings?
Infinite Dissonance is our debut album, and it is the aim and the logical culmination of a long enough, more than a decade years evolution of Negative Voice`s ideas. During this period band recorded several inconspicuous demo-tapes, went on long pauses, changed the line-up, the band conception and style of music played. So Infinite Dissonance as our first creation is some kind of a milestone. Stylistically, the album has included elements of several styles of metal.

The band was broken up for a few years, what was the cause of the split and also the decision to reform?
In fact the band has never ceased to exist. In 2004 there was a pause associated with location of band`s members (at that time - Andrew and Yaroslav) in different cities, and with their participation in other musical projects. In 2010 it was decided to continue the activities of the band and to record a new demo tape with a few songs.

Can you tell us a little bit about the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?
All themes of the lyrics on the Infinite Dissonance could be characterized by the phrase "intentional self-destruction of the individual in modern human society." All lyrics are filled with depression mood, sadness, thoughts of return to the past, mental anguish, mental degradation and madness. The last song leaves hope for the life salvation outside of society by refraining from the madding crowd.

The band started out as «Valhalla» what was the decision behind the name change and also the meaning and inspiration behind the name «Negative Voice».
Valhalla name was coined in late 1999 for the just formed new band. At that time we had influence of pagan doctrines on our ideology - both in lyrics and music. A little later, with the change of the course the name was changed to more neutral. Meaning of the words Negative Voice for us is "vote against" - the ability to speak out against the prevailing attitudes, and the canons of morality, as well as the expression of the negative voice in all of us, our dark half or "second self."

What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?
For today it is a concert in the city of Kazan, which has been played as a part of our mini tour in late 2013. We were warmly welcomed and well supported technically.

Do you have any touring or show plans for the new release?
We are currently planning a tour for upcoming summer, hoping to capture some cities in Baltic countries through Belarus, probably getting to Poland. World web community firstly became acquainted with the album in the summer of 2013, and the official release at the Inverse Records came in the spring `14th. Therefore, several concerts as the presentation of the debut album have already been given in 2013.

On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black and death metal?
Fans usually tell that music from our release is some continue from an old Katatonia era, it’s a pleasure for us to know that people from different parts of the world enjoy our music, hope we’ll be able to play in every such country.

Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?
We do not think what style we want to play and who we’d look like. Today, it is important for us that our music is more diverse and less iconic, and would not cause association with well-known albums of well-known groups. Each of us brings to the music part of his perception of the future Negative Voice’s music, his personal view  the structure of the songs and overall band’s concept. And partly we ourselves wonder how the second album will be. There will be more influence of progressive and some «post»-like subgenres. The vocals will be more varied, with rich arrangements.

Are the band members involved with any other musical projects these days?
Konstantin (drummer) takes himself in side-projects from time to time, for example in death metal bands. Today, he continues to help his former colleagues from Inis (Moscow, Black metal). Andrew has its own, but currently suspended due to lack of time studio project.

What are some bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening nowadays?
Our musical taste ranges from DSBM to fusion. The key thing for us is that we listen to many different kinds of music. Some of us are ‘metalheads’ preferring math and progressive metal, some enjoy and old classic rock bands such as Black Sabbath, the Who, King Crimson. We accept each other’s preferences with respect, trying to acquaint with the bands one of us was not aware of.

What are some of your non musical interests?
Usually we are setting churches on a fire, wearing corpsepaint along with a rusty nails sticking out our jackets (just kidding). Each of us has a permanent place of work, so the music for us - the main interest in our spare time. We all like travelling; some of us spend time with family. In general, we are the peaceful and kind people trying to live an interest life.

Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts
We wish all the best and good luck to the ADifferentShadeOfBlackMetalZine blog, hope you guys get a large amount of a bands respecting you as we do.