“A Flourishing Scourge” 2017 CD

(Self Released)


This is the bands debut full-length release, despite being a self funded and self released affair, they spared no expense traveling from Washington State to New York State to record it, then had it mastered in Sweden by Jens Bogren (Opeth, Amon Amarth etc…). The result on this hour long recording is fantastic; it is crystal clear while also not having bleached out the heaviness and character, which you sometimes run into these with over produced recordings. It certainly shows the bands level of commitment and belief in their in their music to go to these lengths to get the right sound. They are professed by some as a progressive black/death metal band, but personally I might drop the progressive tag and replace it with melodic and feel it is more accurate. I mean the band does have a level of variety in their sound and composition, maybe slightly more than others bands in this style, but to me it is not to any pronounced level and what some might call progressive feels more like just slower, passive and mild, fairly commonly used interlude sections. The foundation of their music to me feels like melodic death (admittedly a sub-genre I tend to be quite picky with bands I like few and far between) with symphonic black metal overtones. There are plenty of tremolo picked riffs with some nice melodies, but also nothing overly stands out on that front compared to the usual fair. So going back to those interludes mentioned above, they are some of my fave parts of the album and are well done, mood setters with well timed and executed transitions to and from the mainstay sound. The other aspect I really liked, amidst the melodic lightness is when a brutal death metal bit pops up giving things some grit and balls, but sadly these sections are generally very brief and underutilized by my tastes. The vocals are decent, very decipherable growls, seemingly serving as more of an accent, letting the instruments (handled by skillful musicians), do most of the musical talking so to speak. For me, this is just a solid record that I liked okay, but ultimately not something I see myself returning to, yet having said that I think melodic black/death fanatics who are less picky with this style and get their hands on everything they can will enjoy this album.  - Dale 

https://aflourishingscourge.bandcamp.com/    http://www.aflourishingscourge.com     




“Embryo” 2007 Demo CD

(Self Released)


An interesting mix of metallic tapestry sweeping in on the winter winds from Finland. The band seems to have an interesting colourful and forceful array of content to their lyrics and message. A fave song title of the 7 tracks present would be “New Clear Vision – Nuclear Vision” and another goodie is “Anal Napalm Bomb”. That one sounds painful both to the assaulter and the one receiving the gift haha. I love a band with a raunchy attitude mixed with some evil hate and a little fun humour. To be honest the music is rather simple, stripped down and can use a little more flow somehow in certain parts. But that is not meant to be negative as the music on here is rather good, memorable and keeps the old metal spirit burning brightly in my view. AFC play a mix of old school heavy metal and thrash with some small death / black metal elements and even a touch of punk in spots. They play generally at a more mid-paced speed ala the American band Scepter who are probably not too far off as a comparison, though Scepter was more on the old pure heavy metal rocking side of the ledger. In other words, if you enjoy the audio smell of a witches cunt & like headbanging then you should pick up this demo now.   – Dale

www.absolutechaos.co.nr/   www.myspace.com/absolutefuckingchaos   




"Luciferik Ritual Blasphemy" 2008 Demo

(Self Released)

This band is coming from Singapore, the country where tons of great obscure hordes in old-school metal are, and ABVULABASHY is right into legion of destructive hordes! The music played here is real old-school black-death, made in a really destructive way; the whole structure is chaotic and brings nothing less than total destruction! It has a raw sound, mad cutting guitar riffs, just sick blasphemous screams and the whole dark atmosphere. I liked also all of those fast tunes which is the music is created with. The main conception of this stuff is total annihilation of humanity, a standard theme, nevertheless great music underlines that ideas! 3 songs just, which force you to get a knife and go to kill someone, he-hej. And of course blasphemous atmosphere should force you worship to the music of this band. Support them because ABVULABASHY deserve for support from worldwide maniacs which are into blasphemous music!   - Aleksandr Maksymov  

crucifixdestroyer@yahoo.com.uk   www.myspace.com/abvulabashy  




“We Must Be In Hell” 1999 Demo / CD

(Cursed Productions)


Damn, I remember reviewing this bands demo “Lord Of Chaos” back in ‘94/95 for the Sepulchral Voice fanzine. The style hasn’t changed much but their improvement and maturity shows. Adversary play heavy and reflective mid-paced death metal that is both well constructed and well played. It’s of note this band has two fanzine editors in it! Ray Miller of Metal Curse and Jack Botos who publishes Portrait Of Defiance ‘zine. To close my highest compliment to them is their riffing reminds me of a death metal version of Motorhead. 

Send only $5 US for the disc to: Adversary, P.O. Box 302, Elkhart, IN. 46515-0302, USA Email = cursed@sbinet.com




“Severance [Dead To This World]” 2008 Demo

(Self Released)


As I understand, this is demo of this band, I don’t know how old the band is, but I know they are from France and plays good musick. Here are 3 songs just, but it was enough for me to understand what things they are worshipping. And they worship pure old-school death-thrash metal! This is music for fans of raw old-school death metal, with tons of obscure melodies, as well as freezing sick solos. Looking to the intros in the start of songs I suppose they are into war themes totally, and the music sounds warlike too. Each chord is wrapped in hate and evil, and the only things you’ll feel while listening this stuff is fear! The whole stuff sounds raw and has various tempos, songs played both fast and slow means, and with tempo-changes. Each song is pretty memorable and fukking catching my attention. I listened to this EP for about 5-6 times already, and the only thing I’d like to do after EP finished – is press to start button again! The main conception of this metal carcass reminded me of early Sweden style, with such obscure and at the same time catching, driving riffing! Here also great destructive drumming, together with no less destructive growls (slightly reminded me GOREFEST or DISMEMBER for example). There on the photo musicians look like young men, so I dare to say – they choose the right way to create destructive music! So let’s support them.  - Aleksandr Maksymov 





“War Of Extermination” 2012 Demo Cassette

(Self Released)


It is cool to see bands continuing to release tapes, this time I received a cassette demo from this aggressive Swedish band. Aggressive Mutilator play loose, raw and lethal dark thrash metal in the old school tradition. War of Extermination features very mid paced, while continually preserving an evil edge and a cold atmosphere in way few bands manage to accomplish these days. They just have that raw energy to them, sort of a rough punk energy mixed with thrash and an old school black metal aesthetic. Their music is pretty simple, straight forward. There are five songs on here, including a cool cover of “Sacrifice” by Bathory. They do a superb job on this cover most importantly capturing the old feeling of this classic song and the feel of that time in musically. The lyrics are steeped in blasphemy, depravity, war and sleaze. I mean unless you are one of those types that only loves plastic, razor sharp productions, then there is very little here not to like.  - Dale

http://aggressivemutilator.bandcamp.com/  mikael_holm@hotmail.com 




“Death Toll VI” 2013 Demo CDR

(Salute Records)


The Swedish purveyors of filth return already with yet another attack already. Aggressive Mutilator is a very prolific band, they released three demos and a seven inch in 2012 alone. They show no signs of slowing down as you can see this is the second demo they sent me this year already! The sounds on Death Toll VI is very rhythmic, almost ritualistic feeling, they still play that dirty thrash style but the music on here reminds me a lot of old thrashing black metal bands from the late ‘80s / early ‘90s. You know stuff from that time period like Mortuary Drape, Necromantia, Vital Remains or even something like the “Inside The Circle Of The Pentagram” demo from Morningstar or the “Satanas Tedeum” demo from Rotting Christ mixed with some Celtic Frost. You know I worship all of that, so it is no surprise that I also like the stripped down low-fi sickness of the Mutilator. I need to go to Scandinavia one day soon and see a gig with Aggressive Mutilator playing alongside Axeslaughter and Bestial Mockery, I might not make it out alive!  - Dale

http://aggressivemutilator.bandcamp.com/   mikael_holm@hotmail.com    




“They Want Me To Cut Off My Head” 2013 Demo Tape

(Self Released)


Lock your doors and hide your women Aggressive Mutilator are sweeping through town once again. Aggressive Mutilator continues to do what they always do on this six song demo. Just play down ‘n dirty thrash, this time I would say they are little more energetic and forceful than say their Death Toll release I reviewed here as well. I got a nice little headbang going on the song “Storms Of Evil”. This may be the best production I have heard from them, the grimy low-fi sound really suits them, this is good but almost a tad too clean for this filthy band haha. But they make it work and run rough shot over top of the listener. The raw black metal rasp vocals on here are very well done and add that element of an evil aura to their sound. I honestly can recommend this to those that are not obsessed with technical, razor sharp plastic metal, but do like ripping thrashing black metal. Keep the cassettes coming sickos!!  - Dale

http://aggressivemutilator.bandcamp.com/   mikael_holm@hotmail.com      




“Channeling Unclean Spirits” 2003 Demo Tape

(Starlight Temple)


A nice surprise here, this brings back memories. It harkens back to the days I sat in my bedroom, ripping open package after package from fellow tape traders and listening to great dark death metal. Now are talking circa ’91 to ’93 and death metal, what I now call old school death metal was a different beast. Not that many bands had yet jumped on the guttural brutal death metal. This was slow to mid paced death metal that still had some of that old feeling. I think back to bands like Immortal Fate, early Acheron (the first album a lot and of course that debut is one of the greatest metal records ever released), Cemetary, early Rotting Christ, Varathron and the like, I know there is some nostalgia going on here but fuck me it feels good to listen to something like this, in this day and age of a million miles a minute, glossy pro-tool’d razor shit that is just getting too much. Five track of epic suffocating death metal. Yes the flame still burns in Alioth, the ancient feelings in me have been stirred and I am reminded why I fucking worshipped true metal of death and the occult in the first place! Alioth is not flashy, Alioth is not brutal, nor blistering fast or adrenaline filled. Now what Alioth is heavy, deeply atmospheric, mysterious and hypnotic, they are beckoning you to swing the river of styx, drink it deep and praise be in the name of metal. Upon completion of this review I have come to the knowledge that is the one man band of Wargoat Obscurum from Cult of Daath, quality metal from one of the truly dedicated. Consider my filthy spirit channeled. – Dale

cultofdaath@comcast.net http://starlighttemple.atspace.com  S.T., Box 293, Glendale, OR. 97442-0293, USA




"Self-Titled" 2008 Demo CD

(Self Released)


This is the first demo from Altars, an Australian death metal band. There are five songs on tap, this release is apparently limited to 500 copies. The production is pretty thick and dense, but heavy. It is also a bit muddy, but that kind of just adds to the atmosphere for me and everything can still be heard fairly well. While Altars put a few more dynamics than many death metal bands, I am not sure I would push the “experimental” title that they seem to fancy themselves on. Actually some of the quirky bits and time changes, remind me of shit Gorguts were doing in the late 90s and what Cryptopsy were doing on their first few records some years ago. But full marks should be given, due to the fact that they do incorporate some unconventional style elements, into their material. All the while, not hurting the overall, brutality and flow of the music. Which is something, I have seen gone wrong many a time, over the years, on releases I have reviewed and purchased. As far as influence goes, I can hear stuff like such as old Entombed, Dismember, Morbid Angel plus the Canadian bands I mentioned above. All of which, receive regular rotation from my record collection. So I suppose, it is of little surprise that I enjoyed this demo. The vocals though in case you wondered, are nothing like the bands I compared them to, save for Cryptopsy a little bit. They are mainly belched and growled with the odd higher pitched squeals to add some counter point. The packaging is well-done here too. I can recommend you check these blokes out. Apparently a 4-way split CD and split 7” ep in the works, so keep an eye out for that as well.  – Dale

http://myspace.com/altarsofficial   http://altars.bigcartel.com/   




“Heaven Hath No Fury”1998 CD



I’m not much of a fan of hardcore or the mixing of death and hardcore (deathcore). It has to be done with a lot of energy and brutality to impress me. Alterkation fit that bill as they are the above plus a little punk feel. Good enough for me to enjoy but not good enough to make me think highly of said genre. Send $10 US/$15 World to:

Alterkation, P.O. Box 335, Clarksburg, MJ. 08510, USA Web = www.alterkation.com




“Rise Of The Tempest” 1999 Demo / CD

(Self Released)


Cheers to Glenn of the mighty Destruktor for pointing this band towards Canadian Assault. Anarazel (Anah-rah-zel) play great and stylish black metal which I would consider similar to the Swedish and French black metal scenes. The vocals remind me to Immortal from their first album “Diabolical Fullmoon Mysticism”. The material on here is really very quality stuff and I think you should get yourself a copy and hear this cold band. Send $8 US to:

Anarazel, P.O. Box 26, South Oakleigh, Victoria, AUSTRALIA Web = www.alphalink.com.au/~gelman




“A Menacing Reality” 2010 CD



This is something different from what I usually get and that is a nice change of pace. Not to mention they are from my homeland (or the old country if you prefer) of Canada. It is always a pleasure to get some music from back home. Ancient Obliteration play a quirky sort of thrash and death metal mixture most often played at a pounding slower to mid-paced speed. They sing about monsters and cool shit like that from what I can gather, you know the kind that wreck cities, slither out of swamps, ooze puss and sending people scurrying like roaches when someone turns on a light. The production is clear enough for me but also kind of muddy and obscure sounding, but if you read Canadian Assault often you know I tend to like that kind of thing. The vocals of Geoff Olson are excellent and I never tire of hearing them. They are part shouted, part growled with that old school thrash gruff clarity and he comes across a little bit like he is an off-kilter mad man that stepped out of one of those cheesy but great 70s horror flicks. Actually musically their attitude and quirkiness makes me think somewhat of another great old messed up Canadian thrash band I worshiped growing up by the name of Dayglo Abortions. You mix Dayglo Abortions with some great old American deathrashdoom sicko bands like Righteous Pigs, Impetigo and Goatlord, then smatter in a healthy dose of their own sound and you have Ancient Obliteration. Seriously the more I listen to these guys it makes me think of a more off-balance slightly more modern version of Righteous Pigs (which featured Mitch Harris of Defecation/Napalm Death fame in its ranks). I loved the Pigs so that is a compliment. Ancient Obliteration is probably an acquired taste for some that like it all slick and by the numbers. For the rest of you reading this check out these dirty sounding, fuzzy monster obsessed pervs out.  – Dale





“Heretical Goat Worship” 2010 Demo Tape

(Self Released)


We have six, six, six tracks of depravity, bloodshed and antichrist hate and vitriol bursting out of Thailand. As one might expect, from the band name and song titles, such as “Hail The Goat”, “Eternal Pandemonium Antichrist”, and a Sarcofago cover. This is a war metal band; they wear that title with pride and come ready for battle. I must say there are some extremely interesting, off-kilter song structuring and speed changes on this demo. The likes of which you rarely or almost never see displayed in this style. They make sure it never takes away from the speed or brutality though. At the same time those quirks and changes in the song really helps hold your interest and adds some depth to the overall maelstrom of lightning sickness and chaos. Without any doubt in my mind this is one of the best war metal bands I have heard in the last half decade, and maybe even longer than that. This comes highly recommended for those who worship the goat and musical pandemonium of the old gods like Sarcofago, Blasphemy etc… but with a new twist. I also recommend those of you that can play tapes, you proceed with haste as this killer demo cassette is limited to only 166 copies. $6 USD / 5 Euro.  – Dale

http://www.myspace.com/destroyallreligions  phzine@yahoo.com 




“Beyond The Infinite Horizon” 1999 Promo CD-R


This is pretty damn good heavy Euro styled death metal. Some nice quality material with fresh sounding, semi-technical song structuring. The vocals are maniacal screams and growls that give the music a touch of chaos. Only two songs on here but if the rest of their stuff is like this I can only highly recommend Aphasia to you. Order their 4 song MCD with the same title as this promo for $10 US to:

Aphasia, c/o Steph, C.P. St-Andre, B.P. 32111, Montreal, Quebec, H2L 4Y5, CANADA




“Devourer Of Worlds” 2014 Full Length Demo CD

(Self Released)


I must say for a self release, the band has not gone the cheap route on anything, from the packaging to the recording. Ara hail from Milwaukee, Wisconsin and they play very technically proficient death metal. Now, I must confess, when it comes to this particular sub-genre of death metal, much like that of melodo death metal, I am very picky. I will only re-listen to and enjoy, the elite cream of the crop bands / albums from those two sub-genres. As opposed to just straight up brutal non-technical / non-melodic dm or black band, where I can listen to an average or slightly above average album, and still enjoy and get something out of it, and play it again and again. So how does Ara measure up to my lofty standards of this style? I am happy to report, they measure up quite well, thank you, as I will admit they both surprised and impressed me. I would even go so far, as to say they flirt with the gold standard quality level of bands, and albums, like Gorguts “Obscura”, Atheist “Unquestionable Presence”, and Theory In Practice “The Armageddon Theories” etc… I would not, and do not put them in that company lightly, let me tell you. I dig the growling style of the vocalist as well, he has a deep frightening roar, but mixes in a bit of Toad’s croak, that croak reminds me of the great old Demilich vocals on the “Nespithe” album from the early nineties. This has to be close to the best debut album I heard in ages. Not sure what else to say, except, if you like, love or worship brutalizing techno death metal, then you simply must have a copy of this album. I am convinced after listening to this, that either the band will not be unsigned for long or they never had any interest in being with a record label in the first place.  - Dale

http://arawi.bandcamp.com/   https://www.facebook.com/Ara.Music.WI   




“Blood For Wotan” 2016 Demo Tape

(Self Released)


This is a very good looking cassette with nice professionally printed packaging. Arktogaa is an Italian band playing a NS black metal hybrid, mixed with punk and Oi! hardcore influences. I would say black metal is the more dominant sound within the music, but they do fluctuate depending upon the song. There is some fine old school traditional riffing on here I enjoyed, as well the songs are quite catchy at times, which adds an extra dynamic to the proceedings. The atmosphere and feeling of the music is a very triumphant one, possessing a sort of militant aura, yet always keeping a dark edge. I hear hints of influences on the bm side from bands like Bathory, Burzum and Graveland. The vocals are the gruff yelled variety, with a slight growled underpinning, but still fairly decipherable in a forceful style. I like them quite a bit. I also enjoy the break from time to time, in the epic malevolent black metal side of things, as the energy injection of the hardcore / punk influence kicks in before inevitably returning to the darkness and evil. “Blood For Wotan” is a rather impressive debut demo, as far as I know, this is the three members first band but they do not use their real names, so who knows. The recording and production for a first effort is solid. I did not get into the philosophical side of the band, but this often does not interest me much in many cases anyway, so no different here. This cassette is limited to just 100 copies, so if you have any interest based on my description, get on this sooner than later or miss out.  - Dale

http://arktogaahorde.bandcamp.com/releases    Wotanfront@hotmail.com       




“Self Titled” 2013 Demo CDR

(Mandarangan Recordings)


I have heard a lot of bands over the years from Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and that region. But this Malaysian band, I am pretty sure is the first doom band I have ever heard from there. No not pure doom, but rather a death doom metal band, a scene which for a while there about half a decade ago seemed like it was poised to break out, then quickly went back in the shadows. It is raw and simplistic doom death, but rhythmic and heavy, every now and then there are even these crazy little guitar solos, which should not fit with this music but somehow Ataul make it fit and it sounds cool. The vocals are part spoken, part growl, and part whisper which all combine together for a cool sound that compliments the dark mood. Which brings up a point I wanted to make, that is unlike most doom bands Ataul music is not really depressive, but rather it is evil and sick sounding which is cool. An old fave doom death band for me is Goatlord and I feel like they might be a big influence on this Ataul, I also hear a little Disembowelment and Cianide in there. Only three songs here, so not a ton to go on but I like what I hear and I look forward to following this killer band.  - Dale 

http://mandarangan.bandcamp.com/album/demo-2013   ataul_ph@yahoo.com 




“Demo 2014” Cassette

(Self Released)


I got this demo tape in a very interesting package one day; it had this cassette, the Black Blood Stigmata cd and issue 2 of Extreme Metal fanzine. What all three of these creative underground entities have in common is, the main man Troy, whose last name I have no idea what it is haha. He simply lists his first name in all three of these projects. Okay, now on to the project in front of me, there are only two tracks on here, everything written & performed by the mysterious Troy. The opening track starts off with some melancholic sounding, dark and serene music, which is shattered by the high nasally rasping screamed vocals. They sort of remind me a little of the first Burzum record, I like them, such emotional and tortured vocals over spat out over the top of mildly tranquil guitars. They really do not fit together, both are good on their own, but do not, in my opinion, really compliment one another in the least. After flipping the tape, the music is some melancholy acoustic guitar; it almost feels like some atmospheric road music or something to chill to while you float down a river. The vocals are a little more subdued on this track, which fits the music better; though I am still not sure the music and the vocals are good match here again. I am not trying to knock the music or the vocals, both are fine, but they do sound like they should belong to two completely different bands. I do dig the lost in thought, meditative vibe of the music on this track, it might have actually worked even better for me as an instrumental song. The music is well done and you can tell Troy has some talent at striking emotion in the listener. I think this is worth checking out for sure, if you can get past those cool vocals that just do not mesh with the music they are paired with.  - Dale

http://autumngrave.bandcamp.com/    autumngrave@hotmail.com    




“Forsaken By The Gods” 2016 Demo Cassette

(Self Released)


Autumn Grave, the brainchild of Troy Reynolds, has returned for another foray into the pages of Canadian Assault. This time, once again, with another nice looking tape & packaging. The quality level extends to the recording which is extremely clear and nice. I found myself focusing the most, on the opening track entitled “Immortal Through Suicide”, it has this weird break in the flow, then goes into this stunted sing song children rhyme type rhyme, like dunt da da dunt dunt da. That is just sounded so weird to me, sort of irritating at first, but with each new listen that started to grow on me, and I started to like it. That is not the whole song of course, but that part just cuts in and out of the flow a couple times, again at first it seemed out of place and now feels seamless to me. Speaking to the overall sound now, I still feel much the same, as I did on their last demo tape. It still feels to me like the vocals, and the music, do not really belong together, but obviously that is a choice on Troy’s part, and we just apparently disagree on that fundamental point. It still feels like the harsh screeching tortured (ala early Burzum) black metal vocals; do not belong with the light, airy, beautiful flowing folk music. I will admit, I think, he has managed to make this unlikely coupling work slightly better and more smooth than it did the last time around. I like it, but I want to like it even more, because the vocals are great, and the music is wonderfully written and performed, but they do not mesh together for me. Having said that, if that unlikely mix, sounds like something you would be into? Then I can this, because all the elements that make up “Forsaken By The Gods”, are of high quality and deserve to be heard.  - Dale

https://autumngrave.bandcamp.com/   https://www.reverbnation.com/autumngrave    




"Existence No More” 2017 CD

(Self Released)


First things first, I love that fucking cover photo; it conjures up so many images and implications and fits the hellfire of the music. Autumn Grave continue to forge onward, giving us their third release, which is listed as an ep, but at 31 minutes it is nearly as long as a Decide album haha. If you read my reviews of their first two releases, you will see I liked them, but the extreme contrast in styles with regards to the vocals and the music was too wide of a gap to make them compatible for me. I am pleased to say the music in a lot of ways, this time around has changed to fit the cool vocals like a glove, so I can shut up about that now. I am really pleased with the new material on “Existence No More”. Now gone are the classical influenced, airy folk inspired guitars, to be replaced by much more grim and despondent old school black metal riffing and guitars. There is a definite level of hate and aggression, within the early 90s black metal style presented here, but it is not to blitzkrieg levels of spitting venom. No, it has the aggression, but the music while keeping that evil aura, has more of a feeling of depression and an epic sense of forlorn. This reminds me of early releases, of black metal bands, in the early to mid ‘90s, where it was devoid of modern day plastic production and razor artificially pro tool’d uniformity. Which is something; so many modern black metal bands suffer from, robbing them of a large part of their blackened souls. So sure, like those early releases, you might hear the odd little off-kilter timing bit where it is not perfectly flowing and mistake free, but like those classic releases when it only happens once in a while, for me it adds to the music, it feels more real, there is more emotional blood and sweat spread across it and I like that a lot. The signature vocals from Troy Reynolds, the one and only man in this band, still have that trademark tortured rasping, reminding me slightly of the early Burzum vocals and other early 90s Scandinavian vox. I like the vocals a lot. The atmosphere radiating off the music on here is great; it takes you on a cold, dark and depressive mental journey. It really feels to me, more than ever before, that Troy has managed to open his veins up on this music and translated or conveyed his vision to the listener. Apparently, this prolific man (who is also a member in the bands Path Of Damnation and Black Blood Stigmata) has already started in earnest on new material. I can not wait for more, after hearing and enjoying “Existence Is No More” as much I did, I can only hope it continues on right where he left off here.  - Dale

https://www.facebook.com/autumngrave666/    https://autumngrave.bandcamp.com/       




Symbol Of Loss" 2011 Demo CD

(Self Released)


Averse Concept are a black metal duo that plays a mixture of early nineties mid-paced black metal with a lot of modern black metal that really doesn't fit together. Semi raw/dark guitars with very little emotion or aggression. The drumming is a little better quality with some decent patterns but overall the band is not the violent, raw style black that I grew up on. The vocalist doesn't fit at all going from screams / hollering to some god-awful type of clean vocal yelling / singing that doesn't fit at all. Maybe fans of modern black metal will enjoy this, but as for me I'm gonna stick with the more violent, raw sounding black metal.  - Patrick

http://averseconcept.bandcamp.com/  https://www.facebook.com/Averseconcept?fref=ts  




“Northern Ghosts” 2014 Full Length CD

(Bud Metal / Self Released)


I had not heard anything from Avitas, prior to receiving this, but it is always good to get something form my homeland and better yet, a release from a Western Canadian band. The area in Canada where I was born and raised. Avitas’ music, is a blending I do not think I have heard before, philosophically / image wise, as they are a national socialist black metal band, which heavily incorporates weed use and weed culture, which for lack of a better term some might call stoner black metal. I may be putting, a little too much emphasis on the weed thing here, then again their band name is a form of pot spelled backwards and they have Cannibas in one song title, and finally, their label name is Bud Metal. I’m not going to lie, when the first song hit after the intro, I thought to myself, I often say a one man band does not sound like a one man band as a compliment, but based on the start of this album, I could not bestow that compliment on Avitas. It just sounded disjointed and too separated. I am pleased to say, slowly track by track, everything gets better and better, smoother and smoother, and generally more quality and convincing steadily as the album goes along. Avitas play raw, mid paced early 90s Scandinavian influenced black metal, with a minimalist approach, putting an emphasis on a dark, creeping atmosphere, that so many bands seemed to forget about, over the years, as the scene trended towards slicked up, shiny plastic sheen presentation across their music. No, Avitas keep it cold, harsh and hateful, with gloomy touches and interludes. With each listen, I get more and more into this album, it really holds up the old ways very well. But, one thing that holds it back for me, a little bit, is the vocals. They are just sort of coarsely yelled vocals, that are a bit clunky and slightly amateuri-ish sounding at times. They do get the job done though, and do not distract too much, from the great raw sounding black metal that flows throughout this killer record. If you like your black raw and rough, then check this out, for those overseas, it is also distributed by PHD (Plastic Head Distribution) so hit them up.  - Dale 

http://avitas.bandcamp.com/   http://www.plastichead.com       




“Pioneers” 2016Full Length CD

(Self Released / Bud Metal Records)


Avitas are back at it once again, in the pages of Canadian Assault, with their newest offering and second full length release “Pioneers”. I am very pleased right from the first listen that Myrtroen, the one and only man in this band, has taken everything across the board up a level (with the possible exception of the second track on this full-length effort). I mentioned, if you read my review of their last release, whilst I enjoyed it I said it had room for improvement, and improved it has. I mean even starting with the recording, now I like raw recordings, and there is still a raw edge to this release. But the recording is a bit crisper, a touch cleaner while remaining heavy and retaining that evil edge to it. This time around the playing is better, smoother; the song writing is enhanced and more confident sounding. Avitas for the uninitiated, play epic old school Scandinavian influenced black metal, wrapped in brooding atmosphere with even a slight psychedelic feel to it. It is an interesting blend the band pulled off well here. Some of the songs are very long, in the eight to ten minute range, but thankfully they do not drag at all, quite the opposite really. At times it creates a very dark, hypnotic journey which invokes for me many fantastic creepy, fog covered mountainous mental landscapes, mixed with occult imagery and ritual. The bands style of play and slower to middle pacing, reminds me very much of the diverse black metal scene of the late 80s and early to mid 90s. Bringing to mind, in addition to the Scandinavian scene, the early Greek scene or great old bands like Mortuary Drape or early Ancient Rites. Which is a style, I would like to see return, even more in the modern bm scene. I can not continue on without also praising Myrtroen, for strengthening maybe the weakest area in the past, which were his vocals. He has worked hard on those here, while it could still use some sharpening in the more partially sung, partially spoken word bits, but overall the improvement is dramatic and his delivery is filled with great emotion and poise. Mytroen even gets adventurous in a way, by doing a black metal style cover of Ministry’s “N.W.O.” (I am a big Ministry fan), which is very interesting, and dare I say, it turned out better than you might think with that cover choice in this style. I find myself coming away quite impressed with “Pioneers”! The bands previous release was a little below average honestly, yet showed stong elements of promise underneath peeking through it’s blackened soul. Now they have taken that rough diamond, and now have honed that diamond to dangerous sharpened point, which strongly gleams brightly, reflecting it’s creators black heart. This comes highly recommended from me, but do not take your time, as I believe this is professionally produced record is strictly limited to 300 copies!  - Dale 

http://avitas.bandcamp.com/    avitas66@hotmail.com        




“Reaping Mindless Discord” Demo 1999

(Self Released)


There are a robust six tracks (“Axenic”, “Reaping Mindless Discord”, “Vexed”, “Equal To Nothing” and “In Green Pastures”) of thrash structured but death metal sounding music. The vocals are pretty cool as they are growled by 3 separate members. I see room for improvement but for a debut demo this is pretty damn solid.

Axenic, c/o Ji Taylor, P.O. Box 1735, Flowery Branch, GA. 30542, USA





"Tape # 2" 2011 Demo

 (Self Released)


As soon as I opened the package that this tape came in, it took me back to the early 90s. When I was ordering demos left and right and would rip open the rectangular package with adrenalized fury and pop the cassette right in the stereo. The cover and inlay are pure old UG style, photocopied and cut ‘n paste – hell yeah! Axeslaughter are a bit sloppy and dirty as hell, they play death thrash metal in sound and especially the spirit of old gods like Nunslaughter, Slaughter, Repulsion etc… I find the riffing to be both heavy and abrasive, yet strangely hypnotic in it’s own rhythmic / ritualistic way. The vocals are harsh sandpaper growls / screams, the sorts of which you might imagine coming forth from a well rotted decaying corpse. In another old school tradition Axeslaughter employ weird or disturbed audio samples from movies, tv and wherever in the intro and peppered throughout the songs themselves. By the way a message to the band with the outro entitled “Outro (FUCK YOU)”. I think you twats put the outro one too many times in a row, so fuck you too! ha ha. Some other song title highlights on this six tracker are “Ripping Up The Virgin’s Tomb”, “Coffin Breath” and my favourite “Never Drink From The Dead”. For those reading this that like slickly produced, tightly played modern death and thrash metal. You need not apply here as this was not made for you and you could not handle it anyway. It is rough, ugly, low-fi and I like it, it keeps the old spirit burning bright! Nice to see something like this come out of Finland.  – Dale





“Self-Titled” 2013 Full-length Demo CD

(Self Released)


Hailing from Battleboro, Vermont comes the self-titled debut album from this progressive metal foursome. When I read the bands style, I expected clean, silky vocals like Fates Warning or something, but no, the vocals are very audible and decipherable yet pretty extreme craggy yells and screeches. The vocals are sort of like a less maniacal version of the vox, employed by the The Accused, which are total over the top insanity. They do switch it up on us, now and then, suddenly employing a cleaner style of vocals I expected, for an example check out the “Through Streams, Through Mountains” track. But that is only a moment’s respite, as the cool vocal savagery quickly returns. The music itself however, while pretty hard edged, does fall a little more into what you expect, when you see the progressive metal descriptive thrown around for Barishi. The music, is very free flowing and introspective, with some skillful time changes and arrangements. When the vocals start getting faster and meaner, so does the music, yet the music at all times is smooth and the interesting time changes and overall dynamic speeds up, while always maintaining that finesse, that is ever present on the pensive mainstay material. The musicianship and song arranging, are pretty impressive on this album, surely belying the age of this recently formed band. I would think this album would be a must own, for progressive metal fans, that do not mind or even like a heavy edge to their progressive rock / metal.  - Dale

http://barishi.bandcamp.com/   https://www.facebook.com/barishiband      




“Being” 2017 CD EP

(Self Released)


This is definitely something different to what I usually get for review. Such opposing and unusual genre elements, combined together such as hardcore vocals, industrial influenced drums, and extreme metal guitars alongside some more accessible elements from mainstream music. I could see this being viewed, as either brilliant or a train wreck, depending upon your tastes and pre-conceived notions going in. I am usually one to firmly pick a side on these things, but I find myself hovering between liking this at times, and at other times holding my nose and witnessing the aforementioned train wreck go down. There is one thing that is for sure, their music is extremely energetic, sort of like a caged cat freaking out and losing it’s shit on the way to the Vet (yeah been there). That part is something I like, it gets the adrenaline flowing, another thing I like is the caustic harsh hardcore-ish vocals with a slight growling edge to them, reminding me to some good sludge vocalists in the past. Something I did not care for, would be the high level of groove in the guitars and riff patterns bringing to mind some of the things I dislike so much about Deathcore and Nu Metal. Speaking of which, if you like the math metal style, there is some of that present here as well, which might appeal to fans of things like The Dillinger Escape Plan or Coalesce, not a favoured style of mine but I do not mind some of it. As mentioned, the band throws all kinds of shit together that normally does not mix, which you could call adventurous or progressive, but to me as I stated this feels closer to a clusterfuck than outright brilliance. Yet, there is some moment’s brilliance within, here and there, but not enough for me to really recommend this. I am sure it will have it’s fans, but I am just not one, this feels like it would have been pretty popular had it come out like 10 years ago in the Hatebreed frenzy era. Just not my cup of tea, and may require a bit of a Caveat Emptor rating for me, I suspect the same will also apply for a lot of the readers CA tends to attract.  - Dale

https://beastmodulus.bandcamp.com/    https://www.facebook.com/beastmodulus/     




“American Pride” 2012 Demo CD


Here is something a little different and interesting arriving in my mailbox. They label themselves as a Metal/Rock/Blues mixture. Which, all in all is a pretty fair description I suppose. I would say some influences I can hear are Down, Alice In Chains, Pantera, Crowbar, Eyehategod and just generally shoot from the hip garage rock ‘n roll bands. I don’t hear that much blues influence but you can detect it here and there, also despite some of the influences I list they are not a doom band. The name does give you a pretty good indication of what to expect. Just really raw and raunchy hard rock that is probably played with few a beers in them, you know what I mean? I dig some of those short spastic and energetic fills/solos. It is pretty loosely played, lacking precision in the playing or in the song writing and again I use the term raw sounding. Now for most reviewers in this day and age that is probably enough to write them off. But I think you know me by now I tend embrace the loose, the low-fi and the rough music presentation. What Beer, Guts & Glory lack in precision, technical song writing, they make up for with coarse, nerve jarring emotion and fuck you we are doing what we want and play what we like type of attitude. I respect that and you will have to as well to enjoy this beer stained, cigarette smelling four song demo tape. If you like your shit polished, clean and by the numbers then you are going to hate these guys, you can book that son. Didn’t blow me away yet I got some enjoyment out of it for sure.  – Dale 

http://www.myspace.com/beergutsglory  http://www.reverbnation.com/beergutsglory  




"Demo # 2” 2015 Demo Cassette

(Self Released)


I was happy to receive this demo in my mailbox. It is not every day you get something from a band from Chile. When I hit play, I was very satisfied to have some evil old school ‘80s black thrash metal, come attacking through my speakers. It reminds me of some of the more savage, early neck breaking material from bands Master, Sacrifice, Possessed, early Sodom, early albums of Razor and the like. I quite like this stuff, the singer has this cool, dark relentlessness to him, possessing a very driven yelled delivery. I think my fave track, out of the four here, is probably the excellent and memorable “Fuck This World”, with its mix of blitzkrieg speed, slow down moody breaks and catchy chorus. They love to play mainly at a frenzied lightning pace, but when they do slow down, it adds such a heavy dynamic and makes speedy mainstay really have more impact. The drummer is a maniac behind the kit, attacking it like, well, a beast and I also liked the short frantic guitar solos mixed here and there. This is a good demo tape for fans of old dark thrash from the 80s, as well as bands I mentioned above. Check this out.  - Dale

black.beast.cult@gmail.com   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FZTPRFGwwx4 




"Demo # 3” 2016 Demo Cassette

(Self Released)


I was honoured to receive, once again, the new demo from the Chilean extreme metal speed merchants Black Beast. The band continue on with their excellent brand of thrash metal, but not just run of mill thrash here, think of the darkest and most evil thrash metal you have heard over the decades to get an idea of what you are in for. As I mentioned, in the last review think the blackest and most evil sounding early material from bands like Sodom, Razor, Infernal Majesty, Possessed, Slaughter (Canada), Destruction etc... Even though I would not quite label the band as death metal I can hear more of that influence this time around with the first releases of bands like Morgoth or Grave. I feel like the speed was dialed back slightly on this demo, compared to the last one, but to fill that void they turned up the brooding atmospheric feel in a good way. The vocals are not the usual cleanly sung gruff thrash vocals; they are much more obscure and malevolent, with a slight hint of death and black metal style mixed in. The vocals perfectly match the sinister darkness the music generously inflicts upon the listener. As with the last demo, there are some short, furious frenzied guitar solos that add that punch of recklessness and oomph, which propels the song forward nicely. I have to confess was pretty stoked and enthralled, by hearing this great ominous band finish this four song demo, with a raw, loose and lethal cover of Canadian legends Infernal Majesty with “Night Of The Living Dead”. The old school goats will love this one so get it!  - Dale

black.beast.cult@gmail.com    https://youtu.be/Ll-jDrC_Y84  




“Refugeeum" 2015 CD

(Self Released)


This is my first encounter with Black Space Riders, despite this apparently, being the German bands fourth album. This is most definitely something different, from the usual fare, I receive for review. BSR play atmospheric spacey, non-technical prog rock, with some metal touches in some of the riffing. I have to be honest, the first listen through, I thought well this is okay, but that is really about all. But with each subsequent listen, I am feeling my way emotionally, into the soundscapes and mental tapestries, they are weaving and warming up to it. If you are willing to let yourself, you can really go on a free flowing journey, which for me, felt both chilling and uplifting at times, yet also very sorrowful and melancholic at other times. I think, to get the full experience of this band, patience and a number of repeated listens are required. The band make quite a big deal on their website, about having two lead vocalists, but honestly, not to disparage the vocals performance on here, because I like it. Yet, had I not known there were two vocalists, I may have thought it was just one person, as it is usually not that apparent to me, as a listener, where one guy ends and the other begins. The drumming, at times is sparse, but there is a real feel with drumming of when to turn it up and when to recede into the shadows, then take a brief breather and wait for the optimum time to join back in. The drums are definitely more important, to their sound, than you often find in this style of music. I enjoyed this record, but I should probably reiterate here, considering my usual readership, this is not metal, so keep that when reading this review, and if you are a little adventurous and like what I have above definitely check this out.  - Dale





"Self-Titled" 2006 Demo Tape

(Self Released)


This is actually the band of the man who runs Witching Black records. If memory serves, our mortal coils crossed paths a time or two in the mid 90s before I moved to the US. This material was recorded in 2006 and contains 4 tracks of nothing less than northern Canadian black fucking metal! The main vocals are standard black metal and are really good. They pepper in a bunch of obscured death metal sounding vocals but these are buried so deep in the mix you really need to listen very hard to even pick them up. Begrime definitely do not employ standard monotonous black metal riffing / song structures. They like to throw some dynamics and emotional speed / time changes that go a long way to keeping ones interest quite attentive to their dark art. There is a great song on here which is a tribute to an old comrade of mine. Mad Max Varnier of Impaler of Trendies records / Worship / Kult + some fanzines he used to do. Long story short a couple years after he moved from France to Canada, he jumped off of a bridge and committed suicide. He will be missed and I can appreciate this little tribute. Good demo. – Dale

B.E., 13307-117 Street, Edmonton, Alberta, CANADA T5E 5K3  bsymic@shaw.ca 




“Chainsaw Demons Return” 1999 Demo

(Self Released)


Pure raging chaos in it’s rawest metallic form! Warring hymns in the tradition of Blasphemy, (old) Beherit with a little early Destruction and Venom thrown in! They are no retro band though and walk their own blood stained path. The vocals are rough and inflamed blackened gurgles and shouts. The metal spirit lives and it has never looked uglier!!

Bestial Mockery, c/o Carl Warslaughter, Bjorid 6440, 455 92 Munkedal, SWEDEN





"Deviant Dieties And Perverse Prophets” 2014 Full-length Demo CD

(Self Released)


That album title is great, it really does a good job of painting a vivid picture, and it rolls off the tongue with an inevitable wry smile to follow. It just sounds like something, which is right up my perverted sleazy alley, so to speak haha. The music on here is audio hatred incarnate; it is low fi and reminds me of the black death metal, that was coming out in the early and mid 1990s. It has that old spirit, also like bands of that time period, almost all bands calling themselves black metal, were very satanic lyrically or at the very least extremely anti-religious. Black Blood Stigmata are no exception, they are filled with venom and vitriol towards religion, one only needs to peruse their song titles to know this. The music is very stripped down, evil and filled with brutal, vigorous riffing that quickly assaults the senses and rarely lets up. There are brief sort of melancholy introspective moments, that add emotional depth, to the music. The vocals are a high / low mixing of two distinctly different vocals styles. The slightly more prominent vocal is a raspy screamed bm style vocal, with a very nasally, whining resonance to them that I could see being a bit of an acquired taste for some, for me I liked them after I got used to them. The other vocal is whispery dm growling, the juxtaposition of two vocals styles, really fits the music well and they play off of each other, never stepping on one another, but do a good job of point and counterpoint. There is some synth on here, it wafts in and out, like a wisp of smoke, but tends to stay more in the background where it belongs and is not over used for the most part. It did not bother me that much, but if I did have one complaint, it would be a couple of the songs maybe over stay their welcome slightly. But otherwise this is a superbly crafted album, by men who make music the right way, in my estimation, and also it has the right kind of old spirit and attitude behind it. You can just feel that bleed through listening to the music. I should mention as well, you get your money’s worth length wise, as this album clocks in close to the one hour mark. I can recommend fans of old-style black metal, with large doses of death metal, who enjoy a touch of unabashed blasphemy in their lives like I do.  - Dale





“Alchoholic Metal Mayhem” Demo 1999

(Self Released)


They say they play in the tradition of Motorhead, Warfare, Bulldozer and Venom. Those are some very cult names to throw around! Do they live up to their billing? Yes and no. There are hints of Motorhead, Venom and Bulldozer but what takes things down a notch or two for me is it has a lot of punk rock influence both musically and in execution. I hear influences like D.R.I. and Dayglo Abortions running throughout. Not a bad tape at all and the old metal attitude is welcome but it is too punkish for me to recommend. $6 US to:

Iron Bonehead Records, Brunnenweg 9a, 36160 Dipperz (Diapers!? J), GERMANY Band Email = pranuss@gmx.de




“Promo 2012” CDR

(Self Released)


Unfortunately the CDR the band sent will not play and my computer reads the disc as being empty and read to record. But fortunately for me (and those reading this) the bands Reverb Nation page has the entire demo available to play for free. Blood Legion hail from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and play dark death thrash metal with old school feel and attitude. They play a stripped down, simple sounding and very controlled brand of metal. I really like the vocals from Shan, they are shrouded growled vox that seem to provide the most emotion in Blood Legion’s music, as the guitars in particular are too muted and listless sounding for my tastes. Though I must admit that area picks up a little on the last track which sounds like a different recording to me and the band let loose a and go balls out, they should do more of this, it suits them. This third and final track titled Blood Legion after the name of the band, is easily the best song on here, it shows what Blood Legion are capable of. I think they have a ways to before they make a name for themselves, but you can see the foundation is there. Like I said if the song Blood Legion is any indication you can expect the band to realize some of that untapped potential with their next release. Hope I get a chance to hear it soon.  - Dale.

http://www.myspace.com/bloodlegion666  http://www.reverbnation.com/bloodlegion666    





“Poisoned Reality” 2006 Promo CDR

(Self Released)


Two years passed and I listen to the latest album of this Ukrainian band which management I run some years ago... To be honest I awaited some great stuff from this album, and I was right! With this album BRILLIANT COLDNESS opened new "gates" in its history, I mean this stuff is more than great in all brutal death aspects, and I'm curious how they did not find label still?!?! Well, I think musicians just running poor promotion, because the internet doesn't have so strong power… "Poisoned Reality" is really different from "Beyond Eternity", this stuff is more catching, more brutal and very technical (also here's more or less good sound as for Ukraina). Music made in really rich way, here are tight rhythm-section, massive sound, obscure atmosphere, deep growls… The strongest side of BC is guitar parts, which are really killing, might it be rhythm-section or freezing solos here and there, as well as good drumming. Not only straight-forward riffs waiting here for your soul, but such sick killer breakdowns as well (these moments BC music reminded me such INCANTATION even, thx to those slooow guitars/drums, and deeeeep growls…)… Also there is a huge influence from gods MORBID ANGEL (again guitar parts, as well as solos and tempo-changes). If we'll look deeply into music structure, we'll see some influences from such TESTAMENT (from the latest albums) and KREATOR as well as such as NECROPHAGIST even (yeah, killer, technical rhythmic… ). It is really hard to try to fully descre "Poisoned Reality"… Thus we have technical brutal death, made in all its obscure "beautiful" way… for fans of twisted brutal riffs and memorable stuff as a whole! I think BC have a big future, but they will have to take care much more with promotion…  - Aleksandr Maksymov






“Oppressive Darkness” 2012 Demo Cassette

(Self Released)


Normally this is the part where I say it is fucking awesome to get a cassette tape and that never happens any more in this day and age. But the last year or so has been a pleasant surprise and I have received I think 3 or 4 demo tapes. The old school way lives and the old traditions die hard. That brings a smile to the sullen face of this old UG scene goat! I read a review online that said these New Orleans ghouls rose from the ashes of a band named High Priest which I see released a demo and ep. I would call Burial Curse a blackened mixture of brutal death metal and doom. The said review above (from a site called Chips & Beer) compared these guys to Profanatica and Incantation, I would agree with that but I would say a slowed down version of the former and bang on the latter comparison. Oppressive Darkness has a very brooding and suffocating atmosphere which slowly grinds and steam roll you to bits. The vocals much like the music itself are very obscure, sounding like blood curdling screams and growling howls emanating deep in the woods, on a foggy night, chilling you to the bone. This is an excellent debut release for Burial Curse, look into this band, I believe this whole demo or most of it is available to listen to for free online. So you have no fucking excuse not to check into this tremendous new band.  – Dale

http://www.reverbnation.com/burialcurse  http://www.myspace.com/burialcurse   




“Dolorum / Cobrum / Buztum / Askum”

Promo CDR


You are wondering about that title, are you not? This is no less than 4 demos all released at once and collected for me on this one single promo CD. The whole thing seems to be some sort of connected war concept though the message of it all seems a little unclear. Buztum is nothing more than 1 guy playing / recording his synth. I must confess after listening to this, it may be the worst ambient keyboard music I have ever heard! That is saying a lot! I have heard some really, really bad stuff. I include my old tape trader from the mid 90s, his stuff was just awful but I will be damned if some label in Italy did not release a couple albums worth of it. The “music” itself is poorly thought out and not well performed either. It is, neither evil sounding or depressive nor melancholic and not possessing any traits that are usually considered of any worth in this style. It is monotone tripe. This is really embarrassing. How he managed to get not 1 but 4 labels to release this stuff is beyond me. Oh before I go all 4 tapes were recorded in one day. Four demos recorded in one day – I rest my case. – Dale

www.apocalypticempire.com   www.bloodynecromancer.de 




“Canyon Of The Skull” 2015 CD

(Self Released)


There are a lot of two’s going on with this Canyon Of The Skull disc. There are two members in the band, two members who do not do vocals, only two songs on here, yet it clocks in at over 35 minutes. This Texan band plays doom metal, though they keep things moving at a slightly quicker pace than you might imagine, when you see two songs and the run time. The songs wind, and stagger, their way through the desert, occasionally stopping to lick their dry lips, at the sight of the next mirage, then continuing on through the sun hammered sand that feels like it is burning through it’s boots. Canyon plays less of a Black Sabbath style doom, and more of a sludgy doom style, minus the constant screeching feedback some of those bands, ala Cavity love so much. The band manages to convey a good amount of emotion, considering their instrumental nature, and lack of general pace or directional change within the songs. They do start the album off on a higher energy note though, with a chugging riff at a higher than normal velocity, but by the two (uh huh!) minute mark, they have pretty much settled down into the flowing introspective journey you will partake in for the rest of the album. I think this is a good release, if you are a doom fan in general, and like the sludge doom side of things and do not mind instrumental releases, you dig will this puppy, just give it a few listens to really dig it’s claws into you.  - Dale 

http://canyonoftheskull.bandcamp.com/  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Canyon-of-the-Skull/100972360126         




Compilation CDR 2005

(Nihilistic Holocaust Records)


Another fine compilation from the mighty UG to the maximum Nihilistic Holocaust raising hell in the fiery, prolific French scene. 4 bands on here with 3 to 6 songs a piece, here we go…

Incinerator - Raw raucous and heavy chugging old school thrash metal with some intense solos and vocals that scream old German thrash influences but musically they remind me a lot of Sacrifice. Excellent band…  the.heretic@lycos.com

Vacarme Mid paced death metal with some speedy parts, kind of reminds me of early Sinister or some early 90s death metal demo bands. Not bad… stenchvacamre@free.fr

Lethal In the immortal words of Dayglo Abortion “Arghh Fuck Kill!”. This is killing alright, 80s reminiscent Speed Metal nightmare, straight forward, catchy with epic adventurous solos, pounding drums and a husky singer that reminds me to Bob Reid during his S.F.H. days. Superb stuff here, keep your fucking eyes out for this band! sorath@hel l-mail.zzn.com

Re-Creation Moody death thrash metal with a slower pace, heavy but with a lot of slow contemplative type of moments and deep growls. Not that any band on the planet is as good as Disciples of Power but their style kind of mirrors them a bit. Goodwww.re-creation-band.com  – Dale

Nihilistic Holocaust, c/o Gabriel S., Nihilistic Holocaust Records   mailto: Gabsk@wanadoo.fr  



“Instrumental Rehearsal” 2014 Demo CDR

(Self Released)


This is an interesting release to receive in my mailbox. I am not certain what the thought was by the band, on here, of playing instrumental versions of songs that were from one of the members past bands Chainsaw. Which, was a good band, and these songs of course are good. Without vocals, it gives their brand of black thrash, more of a hypnotic feel, but the hate and blasphemy still emanates from the music like a rising fog. The music just rages on here, dark and thrashing riffs, alongside strong militant drumming. Despite the rehearsal tag, the sound on the recording is actually quite good, and fits the music perfectly. I hope to hear some new music from Communion soon, assuming it will be in vein of this Chainsaw stuff, I know it will be something I will not want to miss. But in the meantime, if you missed out on the Chainsaw album, or are just a die hard fan of the band, then pick this up to tide you over until the next attack.  - Dale 

https://www.facebook.com/CommunionBlackMetalChile   proselytismrecords@yahoo.com         




“Through Chaos And Disharmony” 1998 CD



This is OK. Mix a little Napalm Death “Utopia Banished” with heavy doses of Fear Factory’s first album (vocals too) with less industrial feel and you pretty much have Core. Decent but not much more. It costs $14 US to:

Core, P.O. Box 2040, CEP 86023-970, Londrina-Pirahna, BRAZIL Web = http://members.tripod.com/coredam




“Death Is Rising” Demo 1999


There are four songs on here (“Bodybag Lust”, “Thoughts Of A Graverobber”, “Putrid Mass Mutilation” and “Amputation Of Vital Organs”). This is my first time hearing Cranial Torment even though this is apparently their 3rd demo. I think the drums are programmed or the drummer just has no style and plays boring. In fact this may be a one man band as the music as a whole is very uncohesive. Sorry this demo did little to nothing for me. - Dale  

Cranial Torment, c/o Bill Benakis, 32 Paradision St. Peristeri, 121 36 Athens, GREECE




“The Ones Who Create : The Ones Who Destroy” 2016 Digipak CD

(Self Released)


The band has spared no expense with this Digipak, everything looks beautiful, from the layout to the extra touches with the gorgeous gold accents and lettering. Prior to this, the band had only released one song digitally. Which immediately floored me when I hit play, how could such a young, inexperienced band produce this music out of the gate?! Then I quickly did a bit of digging, which quickly brought expectations into sharper focus, as this band is made up of current or former members of bands like Gorguts, Angelcorpse, Dim Mak, Possession, Skinless, Origin etc… The breadth of quality experience of the band members is impressive. I have not listened to a whole lot of Origin, but I am a big fan of Gorguts and have been actually since I ordered their demo tape way back in the day. But we are talking more modern Gorguts here from the “Obscura” era and forward. So you guessed it, Crator play very technical death metal, but one area they differ is I would say Crator lean a little more towards speed and brutality. Technical death metal when done well is something I am fan of, when the technicality does not stifle the emotion and song flow, it can be a beautiful thing. There are those who do not like excessively technical dm and I can understand where they are coming from, this may not be for you, but as mentioned Crator do keep a decent level of cruelty and speedy barbarism in the mix. An area that reminds me a lot of Gorguts is the distinct interplay, leaving room for both the guitars and the bass, to do their thing separately and together, rather than the bass just providing a cloned bottom end. The vocals are all death metal, but are still quite varied with deep growls being higher and lower end, along with slightly nasal tinged growls which gives the listener some variety to keep their interest sparked. This album is an impressive display of technicality, brutality and speed, alongside some very skillful song structuring. This is definitely of particular interest for techno dm heads devotees.  - Dale

https://www.facebook.com/cratorUS/    https://crator-us.bandcamp.com/  




“Ainulindale” 2011 Demo CD

(Self Released)


This is Crowned and they hail from Brisbane, Australia and Ainulindale is a three song demo, the bands debut recording as it were. The three tracks are very epic in running time, going from 8 minutes to 11 minutes respectively. The word epic fits very well as the band play an atmospheric, drawn out sweeping form of black with short interludes of speed and furry to add dynamic to the flowing mainstay. I think right away people will think of the early Burzum albums when listening to Ainulindale. That is the feeling I received and that is my favourite period of Burzum, maybe not so surprisingly I quite enjoyed this release. The first song is an instrumental, after that you run up against some harsh and raspy / growling vocals that for me do not fit this style quite as well as they would a less atmospheric band (ala Immortal or someone along those lines). That is not to say they are not good or are distracting, they are just fine, but could be a little better. This is definitely a promising demo and a good release by its own merits, it sounds like we will not have wait long for a follow up as the band plans to record their debut album sometime this year. Check it out.   – Dale





“Where Angels Rot” 2005 Demo CD

(Self Released)


Crucifix hail from Denmark. This is their second demo, the first being “Extermination” in 1998. This is purposely played Florida style death metal, with a Satanic side. There’s no DM / BM crosses here, just as Deicide, mainly. This works in and out of their favour. Rather than concentrate on sounding American, they use their Danish abilities, as Denmark easily has a trademark sound of their own; owning many of the greatest bands in the world. The music is very reputable, the vocals need work, they could be more devastating. See I’m a huge fan of double vocals, but somehow it doesn’t work here and is overused, becoming tedious at times. I’m not shitting on this five-some, but this is nothing original, or remotely anything you have not heard before by a fusillade of other bands in the last 15 years of the Florida fame genre worldwide. Crucifixiation, errr, I mean Crucifix (or do I?) does kick ass with cool intros but could kick ass hard than this 5 song demo. Considering this band is in their demo stage, next time, if they work harder, I may hail this band one day – they have the potential. Buy this for 7 euros. – Clayton





“Resilience” 2008 Full length Demo CD

(Self Released)


There are a precious few that properly combine hardcore and death metal into something that is palatable to mine ears. This group of Austrian metallers are next in line to give this experiment a go. They do have some positives going on such as when they decide to play some straight on death metal passages they are pretty good at it. Then they add in the rhythmic almost rhyme-y swaying pogo jump grooving sections and the whole things starts to go side ways a bit. Songs like “Reaping Tempest”, “Verbal Defecation” and the title track highlight to me how the band are mostly imitating their inspirations stemming from such bands as Hatebreed, Dying Fetus with a hint of Fear Factory (no not the industrial influence). Not overly impressive considering these guys have been around for over 10 years now with this release containing songs from a past release. If you are really into the bands above and want anything in the style even if it is not nearly as good you may want to get this. Otherwise I think Crusade should keep at it and work on something that has more of their own identity within the music. – Dale

http://www.myspace.com/crusade666   http://www.crusade.at 




"Eve Of Fatality” 2015 Demo Cassette

(Weed Hunter Records)


This is a very unique collaboration, almost a super group of sorts, but this time on the underground level, and on a purely for the love it basis, and not for monetary reasons. A truly international effort, with the four members hailing from Greece, Romania, Brazil and the last member is listed, as being from both the US & Mexico. I was hooked up with this release, by the bass player from Mexico, named Victor Varas (thank you Victor of Zombie Ritual Fanzine). So what have these men gotten together and produced? Well, Cryptic Realms is a tribute or love letter of sorts, to the great brutal death metal beginnings, of the late ‘80s to early 90s. I would say, looking from the extensive list of influences they included, in this promo pack, those influences center upon American (they even named the band after a Massacre song!) and Euro early death metal, while excluding the whole Swedish sound that became the rage. The bands that immediately come to mind, upon first listen were Incubus, Death, Hellwitch, Massacre, early Obituary (the vocals are very John Tardy sounding), Baphomet, Monstrosity etc… Yes, this is definitely the death metal sound that I fell in love with, during the late ‘80s and start of the ‘90s, when I was tape trading my ass off with traders around the globe. As you can see, from my list of bands, I feel the American sound had a far bigger influence on this material than the European bands they named. This is just brutal, stripped down, driving and ultra heavy memorable death metal. Done in the old tradition, when the songs still meant more, than just relying on pro tools and doubling everything up fifty times, and trying to fit a dozen riffs, and dozen time changes, in every song. This when the song drove death metal, you could really get into a trance-like headbang flow while listening to it. You know, before clinical and plastic, replaced the sinister atmosphere and ominous, foreboding aura, within the brutality. If I could find one nitpick, and believe me that is a difficult task, it would be that the recording does sound a tad separated, like these guys were never able to rehearse the songs together properly. But that feeling is only there, in a fleeting way, because considering every part was recorded in a different country, with different equipment, the result is still very even and relatively cohesive. I really enjoyed this demo and I hope there are plans for an album!! Get this, if you love the old death metal traditions, which spawned the whole scene in the first place.  - Dale

http://crypticrealms.bandcamp.com/   http://weed-hunter-records.blogspot.de/       




“Attack From The Past” 2008 Demo

(Self Released)


Argh! Yet another band from Poland, and a really obscure one. I have heard nothing about this band before, but now I'm totally satisfied with this chance. Unfortunately the demo includes just two songs, and both these songs killed me. The music CRYPTIC RITES plays is true old-school mix of death and thrash metal! The music is played pretty professionally and as a whole it's pretty memorable and standard, but it's the right standard, I mean music is based on such necro riffs, which tightly mixed both death metal brutality and thrash metal aggression. Of course there are lots of similarities to other (old) bands on things like guitar parts and so on, nevertheless the music sounds really dark and obscure, and of course TRUE as for UG "hellcommunity"! This is totally OUR cup of BLOOD, so we just should to support this horde NOW!  - Aleksandr Maksymov 

cryptic_rites@yahoo.pl   http://crypticrites.prv.pl/




“Live At Tokyo” Promo Tape 1999


I was chuffed when I read the bio and seen Cutthroat is made up of Youhei and Yasuyuki of Abigail as well as Mirai and Shinichi of Sigh! The tape consists of a live gig where these metallers played 11 cover songs! They say “this tape shows all these ‘retro thrash’ bands what ‘pure fucking metal’ means”. That they do as evidenced by this tape. But if that was their sole intention why did they confuse things by doing 4 punk rock cover songs!?!? Anyhow they fucking rip and blaze all in their path with killer covers of such ugly bands as Voivod, Razor, Sacrifice (I think they like Canadian metal!! Hell Yeah!!!), Warfare, Hirax, Tankard plus more. The sound on this tape rules and it only costs $2 US so I can recommend all headbangers with metallic blood in their veins to order this!

Cutthroat, c/o Yasuyuki Suzuki, 59-7 Saiwai Cho, Itabashi-ku, Tokyo 173-0034, JAPAN Email = suzuyasu@ma3.justnet.ne.jp




“Fear, Hate & Corruption” 2016 Full-length CD

(Punishing Records / Self Released)


I have heard the name of this Swiss band, but I had not realized how long they have been around and releasing albums. As “Fear, Hate & Corruption” is their 5th full length album! These veterans play quality brutal death metal with some underlying groove elements. I hear influences like Napalm Death, Nile and Cannibal Corpse in their music. Darkrise write some good riffs, that at times sound like they have a slight thrashy feel to them, ala Pantera or something, but it is just a hint of it. There are some pretty killer guitar leads / fills on here, such as you will hear towards the end of the “You’ll Burn For This”, which I enjoyed. The vocals are deep growls yet not at all garbled you can easily make out a lot of the lyrics the singer is snarling at you. There is nothing ground breaking or spectacular here, but all the same it is a really solid death metal record, which I am sure the die hard followers of the genre would enjoy.  - Dale

http://www.darkrise.ch/    http://www.punishingrecords.com/  




“Medium” 2004 CDR Demo

(Self Released)


As soon as the first song starts "Dark Mass Medium", I know what this band is about. You have a guitarist that has probably been wood shedding for years in his bedroom - practicing until his fingers bled. He then gets all his finger tapping and arpeggio sweeps down and decides its time to form a band to showcase his talent. Said backup band is anywhere from average to decent but the "star" is Mr. Wood Shed. Dark Mass is basically an excuse for a competent guitar player to release his music. By the way Mr. Wood Shed - tune your guitar or work on the intonation - it's out of tune on several tunes, particularly when you're using the clean sound. I like the drum set in the music video from one of their live gigs. A lovely glitter 5 piece that is reminiscent of my junior high school jazz band's kit. Hey, if that's all ya got, that's all ya got. It certainly is pretty but probably too pretty for a band called Dark Mass. That would also explain the mashy 80's snare drum sound I suspect, though. I was half expecting Crockett and Tubbs to come driving down the road in the video. If I had to pick between hearing a crushing E chord or a flight of too many bumblebees kind of playing (like this recording) - I'd pick that E chord - every damn time. Sometimes musicians need to know when not to play so much. Guitar masturbation central is this dead mass.  - Mark





“Demo 2011” CDR

(Self Released)


Dark Psychosis hail from Lansing, Michigan and they hit the ground running with this seven song demo release. The guitars are really front and center, they ride the line between having that razor sharp feel and just straight up cutting raw fuzz chainsaw sound. As I mentioned the band are full on, tons of energy and venom, just a headlong dash for the finish line taking down anything in their path. Yes, some pretty adrenaline filled black thrash metal is what you get, nothing overly fancy, nothing too technical, not that that is what they were going for anyway. Maybe think of a dark sounding Celtic Frost that drank way too many energy drinks, to get a general picture on the Dark Psychosis sound. Even their solos are fucking spastic and played at light speed haha. The vocals are gruff, hissed thrash vocals spat out in a rapid fire fashion. Dark Psychosis are not overly dynamic, more of a one trick pony much of the time, though they do slow down very briefly here and there, so yes a bit of one trick pony, but they do that one trick very well and throw everything they’ve got into executing it. I think fans of old school raw thrash and Celtic Frost, that also like their stuff speedy will enjoy this.  - Dale

http://www.myspace.com/103720953  http://www.darkpsychosis.com/fr_home.cfm    




“Nocturnal Prowler” Demo 1998

(Self Released)


This is a perfect example of why I hate keyboards! The tape is filled with promising dark music but smothered unmercifully with keys. The band is apparently currently recording their debut album. If you like your music mid-tempo with obscure feel and tons of keyboreds then this is the band for you. Send $4 US to:

Dark Vision, c/o Giannis Konstantakos, 5/Akti Kountouriotou, 18534 Piraeus, GREECE




“Death Always Wins” 2017 Full-length CD

(Self Released)


So this is becoming a thing I guess haha. Not sure what the odds are, but this is now two back to back bands from western Canada and you guessed it, another melodic death metal band too. Though the difference between the two bands is Dead Asylum incorporate little tendrils of thrash in their sound as well. I have to admit, at the time of my second listen I was not too impressed or into this, but with a number of additional listens it has grown on me a little. It struck me, initially, that it was maybe too melodic for my tastes and I still feel that way at points in this album. But the thrash elements have risen to the surface more for me, with repeated listens and helped bring me around a little bit. Also, the vocals are probably the most aggressive thing about the band, they are varied growls (alongside some very sparsely used nasal snarling and old Cradle of Filth style screeching) with some pretty decent range and emotion, adding that extra level of viciousness this music needs and needs even more of. I also liked the drumming of Samantha Landa, whose performance has a nice flow and precision to it. There are a ton of catchy melodies, at times a little too many to be honest, and too flowery in spots that really could have used a stronger measure of brutality and cruelty to balance things out. Which is something the lyrical content almost begs for, and also would better reflect what their cool thought provoking cover artwork displays. Having said that, some of those melodic guitar sections are very well done, appealing and memorable. It is really nice when a thrashy sequence pops up pushing along the flow forward and ripping things up. I think one last thing I am not sure about with album is the production, it feels a little too passive, probably purposely done to highlight the melodies, but for me it could have used more bite and punch. Overall this is a solid album, which I could see bigger fans of the melodo death thing digging, as well, thrash fans might want to check this one out too.  - Dale 

https://www.facebook.com/deadasylum    https://deadasylum.bandcamp.com/           




"Demolition Deployment” 2016 CD EP

(Self Released)


I knew this Salt Lake City, Utah band was going to be a fun listen, just from their band name, song titles and band pic (they all look metal as fuck plus the guitarist is named Smeltron!). Deathblow play old school thrash metal, they do so in style, on this three song disc. The playing on here is great, some catchy as hell and heavy riffs with a dark moody edge to them, backed up by some really great solos and tasty guitar fills. Danzer really is a commanding presence on the drum kit, some really strong work here, I like it when he really lets loose and punishes his kit on the fast aggressive sections. The vocalist Holger, has those mid to late ‘80s style gruff screamed vocals down pat, he accents and rounds out the mainstay vocal well with changes in register from mean and gritty spoken word style bits, to high pitched screams, which take me right back to those old days of my youth. Some influences I hear on here are bands like Death Angel, Destruction, Atrophy, Vio-lence etc… But the two biggest, clearest influences I hear are Kreator and Slayer, not just Slayer in general, but “Seasons In The Abyss” comes through strong by my ear which I liked as I fucking love that album. This review mainly covers the two original songs on here, there is also a cover of Motorhead’s “Mean Machine”, which is hard to mess up and they do a good job musically, vocally they went for a different vocal style and it is decent, but honestly could be better. Sticking to the original music, it is great old style mid to late ‘80s thrash classic thrash metal, which is a pretty great infectious listen. I only wish there was more, I can not wait to hear their next release, hopefully something longer next time as this left me wanting more from killer band!  - Dale

https://www.facebook.com/deathblowofficial/    https://deathblow1.bandcamp.com/music       




“All That Is Beautiful” 2016 CD

(Self Released)


I have heard the name of this band for a while, all good things, so I am happy to get a chance to judge for myself. There are only four tracks on here, from this Los Angeles band, but do not let that fool you as the run time on thing is over 60 minutes! So prepare yourself for a couple nearly twenty minute epic songs. The Deathkings play moody, strikingly melancholic doom, with a real sense of elegance and flow in the song writing. Some of the music style on here, reminds me a little of the best Paradise Lost albums (ala “Shades Of God” and “Gothic” era), even a little in some of the vocals too, which is all a very good thing in my books. Speaking of the vocals, much like the guitar playing, and the song structuring, there is a diverse array of vocal approaches. There are the mainstays, which are the somewhat obscured sounding hoarse shouts, as well as decipherable but deep and great dm growls, all backed by accents of clean sung parts and chants, shadowy whispered spoken word etc… “All That Is Beautiful” is a really good doom metal record, I think it is diverse enough that fans of other sub-genres of metal, who are not die hard doom fans like me, will also be able to get into this and enjoy it. Highly recommended.  - Dale

http://deathkings.bandcamp.com/    https://www.facebook.com/DeathkingsMusic      



“Godwork” 2013 Full-length Demo CD

(Self Released)


This preamble could take a while, so stick with me here, if you want some background information on the band. First off, the band is formerly known as Sargatanas Reign, who was around for quite some time releasing albums on I Hate Records and Regain Records. Also, on this album you interestingly, or strangely, upon your view get two songs, from full time vocalist Petter Hauckland, then they have a roster of guest vocalists, who also get two songs each on the album. Both strange and interesting to me, and I can only guess, the full time vocalist was okay with this arrangement? The roster, of guest vocalists, include Tompa Lindberg (At The Gates, Disfear, Lock Up), Roberth Karlsson (Edge Of Sanity, Scar Symmetry), Mathias Vreth Lillmans (Fintroll, Magneta Harvest), Joakim gothberg (Marduk, Dimension Zero). This variety will surely interest some, while frustrating others who wish their favourite, had done the whole album. Once again, I found myself feeling both emotions, the variety was welcome at times, other times I wish for less of it and a concentration on the best suited vocalist. So anyway, we have that out of the way, on to the music. Deathquintet play mainly mid-paced death metal, which is solid and at times really good. It is pretty simple and straight ahead material, fairly heavy, with maybe a touch of thrash aesthetic mixed in for good measure. Even though, they do not overall sound exactly like that, I can not shake the often reoccurring undercurrent, of a more brutal “Heartwork” Carcass influence. Not quite as intricate as that influence, or as catchy, yet all instruments are expertly handled and performed. The straight forward nature of the material could be seen as a plus, no million miles a second pro-tool to death, with the needed accompanied math sheet, to try to follow along with it. No this has more of an old school vibe. There is something about Deathquintet’s overall sound, that just does not do it for me, I am sorry to say, often times when I think they have a good idea or section going, it seems to promptly die, they repeat themselves, things just never seem to progress to anything that held my interest for long and I am a pretty patient listener. There is so much here, that is honestly top notch quality, from the playing to large portions of the material, that I can see this band working out the bugs and creating something really special in the future. But this not it.  - Dale

http://www.reverbnation.com/deathquintet   http://www.deathquintet.com/   




“Year One” 2013 Demo MCD

(Self Released)


I was not sure what to expect from this Brit band after just looking at the cover. You have the old school sci-fi font with an accompanying picture that reminds of something from old British science fiction TV mini-series The Prisoner or some such. Now that I think about it another UK band used that same / similar font on their album, a certain Live At Last from Black Sabbath in fact. So now you are expecting some spacey, floating mellow space rock right? No wrong, really the only place where the elements of sci-fi are prominent on this three track, twenty-three minute outing are in between the songs. Where you get some spoken word passages about black holes and the like, with a few 70s sci-fi movie bleeps in the background. No I would probably describe their music as progressive, sometimes technical death metal with epic, flowing sensibilities and more aggression than that description makes it sound. As you can imagine from that description the skill level of the musicians is high as this sort of style simply demands for it to be, lest it fall to pieces. Their performance on this adventurous piece of atmospheric brutality is damn impressive. It is a clinic of emotive playing that is technical, expertly timed, progressive and somehow in the middle of all of that harsh sounding. The production on here is superb as well and those deep growling adaptable vocals just add the cherry on top. I can not help thinking while listening to this that record labels must be falling all over themselves like their shoe laces are tied together to sign this talented band.  - Dale





"Access Code” 2014 Demo CD EP

(Self Released)


I am glad I was able stream the two lengthy tracks on this disc. Because I put the disc I received, in my computer drive, it asked if I wanted to burn something to the disc, as it is empty haha. Oh well, shit happens and I was glad in a rare case (I generally prefer to review physical copies of releases) like this, to be able to still make the review happen without another disc being posted across the globe. As you already know, if you read my prior review, I am fan of this young and exciting band. Deconstructing Sequence once again weave a cosmic, sci-fi theme through their release, but this time the accompanying sound samples, spoken words and sounds have not just been relegated to in between the songs. They are wonderfully, expertly made part of the music itself and add an extra dimension to the sound, which I found quite exhilarating and interesting. The concept feels more like a human exploratory mission, rather than just a space-y, flowery journey along the Milky Way, it feels a little more gritty and grounded than that. As I mentioned the last time out, these two musicians are highly skilled, but what is more exciting for me, is they are not just highly skilled on their instruments, they are also extremely talented song writers, and construct songs that are emotional works of death metal art. This is an audio version of Hierronymus Bosh or Pieter Bruegel The Elder. What I love about this, again it speaks to their song composing talents, even though there are many progressive elements, very technical elements, somehow they make the songs flow like a river. It is all very accessible, for someone, who is not necessarily into those beautiful intricacies, to just pick up and enjoy straight away. That is talent and vision at work. The dimension about DS, which may not be coming across yet in my review, is just how fucking brutal and aggressive this band is. The harsh moments, are violent and destructive, the brief quieter moments are very contemplative and emotionally atmospheric, and the cosmic elements only help to propel you on a superb mental journey. I am not sure, if the band prefers putting out just eps, but that seems to be their modus operandi, maybe it suits their concepts better? Maybe they are waiting for the right record deal? Record labels should be climbing over each other in order to sign this young British band. Not sure what the story is there, but I am very hungry now for a full length album! Someone make this happen please. Beyond recommended, for anyone who complains the scene is stagnant or everything sounds the same, Deconstructing Sequence has heard your pleas and responded with “Access Code”.  - Dale

http://www.reverbnation.com/deconstructingsequence   https://myspace.com/dsprogart     




"Traitor’s Grave” 2017 CD

(Self Released)


Decrepit Throne are a two man band featuring Gregory, who takes care of writing and playing the instruments, plus Ron K. who handles the vocal duties for the band. Traitor’s Grave is the bands debut full-length, which is a digital release (the cd version is now out as well I believe - Dale) featuring seven tracks of blackened death metal. The music is very well written and performed mainly staying in the mid paced black death metal style. The guitars are played in the mid tempo range with some heavier and faster patterns used in a few of the songs. Ron does a great job with the vocals switching from death growls and to some harsher black screams. If you are a fan of well crafted blackened death metal be sure to check out the debut release from Decrepit Throne today.  - Patrick

https://decrepitthrone.bandcamp.com/    https://www.facebook.com/DecrepitThrone/      




“Antichristian Disease” 2008 Demo

(Self Released)


This band is coming from Kyiv, Ukraina, and fortunately this band is on the right way of Metal creation. Yeah, I was really impressed by their music. For the last times I didn’t get any worthy stuff from my country (except for SLAUGHTER BRUTE), and I’m hellish glad by fact of existing such band. DEFERUM SACRUM plays obscure black metal, made in great hellish way. The whole sound can’t be called raw, nevertheless the music sounds really obscure as I said before. This demo is made in fast rhythms, with some tempo-changes and destructive atmosphere. As for me this stuff should be respected by fans of bands such as SATYRICON or from time to time CARPATHIAN FOREST for example. I mean there are lots of things made in aforementioned bands way, such catching rhythm-section and straight-forward guitar riffs, sometimes changed on such marching destructive ones (attention, these aren’t comparisons, I just wrote way the band is on). Also music is not dominated by straight-forward riffs just, there also lots of sick slowdowns involved over here. As for Ukrainian scene this band is pretty awesome I must to admit, and the only thing I’d like to add is – DEFERUM SACRUM should be supported by black metal fans! At the moment band is searching for a label who will release their stuff, I hope they will find it soon and we’ll be able to hear full-length. This time keep up your eyes upon this horde!  - Aleksandr Maksymov





“Welcome In The World” Promo Tape 1999


Slovak progressive heavy metal that I found enjoyable. They could be a bit tighter though and some of the vocals were pretty poor. I was sent this on a dub and I don’t know if I got a bad dub or this release just sucks but my copy cuts out from time to time. The talent and potential is there but I need a better sounding product to truly judge. Management contact:

Marek Faltan, Cinobana 295, 985 22 Cinobana, SLOVAKIA




“Juggernaut” 2011 Full Length Demo CD

(Self Released)


This is some throw back thrash that will surely bring to mind the 80s bay area scene. The vocalist has more of a traditional old school style to his voice and delivery but I also detect a hint of James Hetfield influence there as well. I could see thrash fans that like the newer style not being that into this, it has that old 80s speed / thrash metal vibe to the pacing with speedy parts, yet the music is often more on a mid-pace with a nice emphasis on the atmosphere. Which is something a lot of thrash does not have and especially newer contemporary bands. I am sure Degradation is fine with that they know who their music appeals to and fly that flag proudly. There are some tasty guitar fills / solos on here that add extra dynamic and pushes the song forward. I really enjoyed those. I think for the most part Degradation do their own thing, but you can hear them wearing their influences on their sleeves at times too. Such as the title track, sections of that scream out Master Of Puppets to me. Still they make even that stuff sound pretty cool. This is for fans of the bay area thrash scene circa the mid to late 80s when bands like Testament, Forbidden, Vio-lence, Death Angel, Exodus, Heathen, Defiance etc… were ruling the scene and making heads bang. So if that is your cup of tea, then by all means you should check out Degradation.  – Dale

http://www.myspace.com/degradation666   http://www.degradationband.com/   




“Vikingpath” 2010 CDR

(Salute Records)


I guess this must be some sort of a popular cult release or it is treated as such with it’s limited releases. This album was released on CDR in 2010 through the Kvlt666 label in a limit of only 66 copies. Now Salute Records re-releases this album again on CDR, with new cover artwork, this time limited to 100 hand numbered copies. Apparently my copy is #3 in the run. They label themselves experimental Pagan Black Metal. That seems like a fairly apt description. They also add in some extreme death touches here and there, not too often, more like an accent to their main sound. This is pretty interesting stuff, definitely different, the experimental parts come in with a odd sound on their production and incorporating strange, at times psychedelic sound effects, that adds a trippy, off-kilter vibe to their staple dark atmospheric sound. It is hard to explain, but the sound effects are things like eccentric, weird popping sounds, almost like something sampled from an old sci-fi movie or tv show and re-purposed and presented in a musical way, other times it sounds like sampled middle eastern Sitar type music and just various random sound effects. They go to this middle eastern well a bit too often for my liking though. Sometimes these experiments are really effective, they create not only something different but something resembling an original sound. Then other times the experimental elements come off as clunky, out of place and that particular song or section kind of falls on its face. But hey I guess you have to give the band credit for attempting something different, while not just being ridiculous simply to stand out. The traditional elements are pretty simple, stripped down music, minimal beats, lightly strummed guitar played at a pedestrian speed to create a dark, moody atmosphere. This main theme you get is the pagan or viking metal influence, slow and meandering as it is much of the time, lightly sprinkled with some full on metal touches here and there. The vocals are the obscure whispered style, which adds a little of that bold I am a mighty pagan warrior vibe. The vocals like the music tends to vary and be layered. I am not sure whether to recommend this or not. If you are adventurous and appreciate bands trying new, different things you might dig this. If not you will probably not get into this, as mentioned at times it really clicks, other times it comes off like a clunky, amateurish mess. Caveat Emptor my friends.  - Dale

http://www.reverbnation.com/demorian  https://www.facebook.com/SaluteRecords    




“Self-Titled” 1999 Promo Tape


Only 3 tracks on here (“War Whores”, “It Feeds On Children”, and “Warhammer”) and apparently all 3 are going to be on comps coming out. I remember tape trading for two demos of this band in like ’96 or so. Then they were industrial death metal which is something I dislike but they were quite brutal so I didn’t mind it so much. It is still slow industrial sounding but the death and brutality has been replaced by hardcore/crust elements both musically and lyrically. The tape only runs about 3-4 minutes but it only costs $2 US so it is your call.

Depressor, P.O. Box 472007, S.F., CA. 94147, USA




“Hate For Your Blood” Promo Tape 1999


Technical, tight, teeth-rattlin’ and adrenaline pumping death metal! There is only two songs on here but that is enough for one intense juggernaut of a disharmonic extremity that should not be missed! Send only $2 US to:

Descend, P.O. Box 770376, Cleveland, OH. 44107, USA




“Death Lives Again” 2007 Demo CD

(Self Released)


This is the new band of Henrik Engkjaer, a member from the great Danish bands Exekrator and Victimizer. I am a big fan of both of those bands (I interviewed both for Canadian Assault to prove it haha). So naturally I am extremely excited to receive this demo release. Henrik is helped out here with some vocal abuse courtesy of Anders Bo Rasumussen and Les Groth of Crucifix on the skins. This is right in my wheel house, it is dark, it is brutal, but it is also quite rhythmic and catchy and memorable with a very Euro flair to it. The vocals are heavy death metal growls but well-done and the inflection in the voice often mimics the melodies in the music and the result is very satisfying. They are also not above throwing in a ripping smoker of a fast guitar solo or two which sits well with me too. Mr. Groth does not disappoint with blasting, but tasteful drumming and lightning double bass. There are 4 tracks on here for interested parties and the production is very solid in my opinion for a demo. I think maniacs who appreciate bands Necrophobic, Edge Of Sanity, Autopsy, Dissection, Death mixed with the attitude and imagery of bands like Nunslaughter and Goatlord. Well worth checking out by both fans and prospective record labels. I hear they might have a new demo in the works. I am already looking forward to that shit cumming down the pike.   – Dale

http://www.deus-otiosus.com   www.myspace.com/deusotiosus   





“Too Maimed To Use – Live in Svendborg, Denmark” 2010 Promo CDR

 (Self Released)


You will remember my favourable review of their “Death Lives Again” 2007 demo. Well these Danish purveyors of dark and dirty death metal have hit me up again with this release. Which I think could be considered a taster, for the upcoming “Murderer” album that was scheduled for release sometime in late 2010. There are only 2 live songs on here, those being “Wall of Violence” and “I Seen Him Slay”. The band is loose and raw on this recording, but powerful and it adds an atmosphere to their sound in a live setting that really works. I enjoyed this, but it is short and only leaves me wanting for a copy of their album now. Hail Denmark!  – Dale





“Self Titled” 2013 DEMO CD EP

(Self Released)


Here is some filthy blackened death metal from my old stomping grounds of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. There are five songs on this EP, the band name seems an apt one for their sound, it is heavy and dirty metal. The vocals are dark yelled screams with a death metal growling edge to them, quite decipherable, so you can follow the lyrical content, yeah I like the vocals. The music is sinister and grave, but also seems to also have some emotional, introspective elements also, which I quite enjoyed. Those elements give the music some extra depth making it more memorable. Their sound is a nice mix of speed, barbarism, slower maudlin moody passes and the odd quirky bits to keep you guessing. I also like some of the subtle, classy guitar work going on here. There are five songs on here, the band lists this release as an EP, Deicide would probably call this length an album, I would say it is plenty long enough to at least consider it a mini-albums worth of material. So you get plenty of material here, go check out their band camp site, download it and apparently you name your price on the download, so it is hard to beat that with a stick. Check these guys out, good to see the Philly scene showing some strong signs of life.  - Dale

http://dirtworshipper1.bandcamp.com/  https://www.facebook.com/DirtWorshippermetal  




“To Praise With Persecution”

Full Length Demo CD 2007


The Texan’s album starts off with a classy instrumental tribute to Chuck Shuldiner from Death. The guitar work on this song is fantastic and it is pretty clear throughout that Mr. Shuldiner is a key influence. I have a long standing interest in Discern going all the way back to 1998. When I reviewed and praised their only other release until now. That is a long time with nothing new released but they (as in the one man of the band Billy Fraser) are alive and definitely kicking. If you like and are looking for meat and potatoes metal then that is what you will get. Just some really hearty brutal American death metal with good heavy riffing backed with a solid wall of straight forward & driving drum pounding. You get a little of everything as this is fairly equal parts of blazing speed and brooding ominous transitions. It is all topped off with classic death metal growling and barrage of guitar solos/fills that surely has Chuck smiling from the beyond. I think this was recorded at a studio that King Diamond has done some of his albums at and it sounds very good. I can recommend you pick this up and you will headbang to it. Good work Bill.  – Dale

http://www.discerndeathmetal.com/   http://www.myspace.com/discerndeathmetal






Promo CD 1999


A 3 song disc that features Craig Pillard (vocals/guitar) and Jim Roe (drums) who were of course in Incantation for the first couple albums. The sounds a bit rough as it was done live in the studio but still very decent. The music sounds like a slowed down doomier early Incantation with an own twist. I think most loved Craig’s vocals in the past and none should be disappointed with his deep bestial roar on here. This is cult death/doom in it’s truest form. Expect a crushing debut album from D.O.M. soon!

Disciples Of Mockery, 153 Oaktree Ave., So. Plainfield, NJ. 07080, USA




”Chronic Copra Infest”

Demo 1998


You would think from reading the song titles to this album that you were about to here another early Carcass clone (General Surgery, Putrefaction, etc.). This is not the case however. The lyrics definitely consist of medical terms rarely used outside the field of medicine but the music is excellent brutal death metal that will crush you just as much as the first Suffocation LP's did. If that doesn't sound appealing enough to you then you probably don't like death metal and should go and buy the new Twin Obscenity album instead. Here is a small taste of lyrical content: "Stygmatodermuropyanephrosism on Imppetiginose Urogenism". You figure it out.  – Jeffrey Kusbel 

Disgorge c/o Edgar Garcia Alvarez - P.O. Box 1-310 - Queretaro, QRO 76001




”Hybrid” 1998 CD



They call themselves “prog-core” which seems like a ridiculous term. But after listening to this CD of rhythmic progressive metal-core it fits. I appreciate that this is well done but it is surely not my thing. Send $6 US/$7 World (M.O.’s and checks payable to Patrick Mullen).

Dissent, P.O. Box 567, Rockland, MA. 02370, USA Web = http://spyjurenet.com/dissent




“Promo” 1999 CD-R

(Self Released)


This band Emailed me and said they are a traditional heavy metal band. So I of course said yes send your stuff and was looking forward to it. They lied!! They wouldn’t know heavy metal from a loaf of bread! What they do play is trend ‘jump’ music mixed with even trendier alternative/grunge music. Not very well played or written either, this band is a waste of space in a mag that supports real metal!!

Sandra Bee Mgmnt., 16310 St. Louis Ave., Markum, IL. 60426, USA




”Obsessed” 1998 Demo / CD

(Self Released)


Some solid heavy and pounding death metal from Pennsylvania. There is room for improvement but not much is needed to put this excellent band over the top. Well worth the asking price, 5 songs for $6 US/$7 World to:

Divination, c/o John Scherrer, 413 South 14th St., Reading, PA. 19602, USA




“Self-Titled” 1999 Demo / CD

(Self Released)


Well this is poorly constructed juxtaposed death metal. The material, which is mish mashed together is pretty sub-par to start with. There are 6 songs in their original version and then 5 out of 6 of those same songs are repeated in their “primal versions”. Primal huh…it is just the same songs played in reverse and the sad thing is they sound better backwards. Maybe whenever these guys write a song when they are finished they should play it backwards because it makes more sense. They say on their flyers, the songs are thoughtful symphonies and not any of that “mindless gore-laden grind”. Those gore bands are not mindless and know how to make better music than this. On top of this the band sent in a copy for review and then wanted it mailed back to them – cheapos J. You think I don’t drop $1,000 + postage on this mag each issue!? Well I do and I don’t have 4 other band members to split costs with either! Any other band writing in that wants to do this I am not santa claus so don’t bother sending it if you want it back! There is a promo-video on here that isn’t bad for those of you w/ a computer. Otherwise average in my personal opinion but the cost is $10 US if want to get a copy. These guys live on the outskirts of Philly apparently so I guess they will hate me if I see them at shows - such is life.

Divine Rapture, P.O. Box 159, Chester Heights, PA. 19017, USA Web = http://welcome.to/divinerapture





“Winter 2012 Promo” CD

Compilation CDR


This seems to be a brand new record label, so new it was very hard to find any kind of an online presence for the label. The same, to a lesser extent with the three bands they are kicking off the label with, all of whom are apparently brand new bands as well. Those three bands are Relentless, Nocturne, and Deathcult, with the exception of Deathcult who previously had a demo out, none of the other bands have released anything. Now I do not know if this is the label of one of the bands. But two of the bands Relentless & Deathcult are one man bands and both are the same man (Tim Pearons) doing everything for both bands. Nocturne is also a one man band, but a different guy than the other two one man bands, you got all of that straight haha? I think I do now. This release is basically a three song sampler, with one song form each band and one song is obviously not a lot to go on, but I will try my best. Relentless, as soon as I read the name I wondered if it was a Pentagram influenced band and named themselves after that bands classic album. That is the case they are very Pentagram influenced, a really cool song, entitled “United By Darkness”, replete with Bobby Liebling copy vocals. I like Relentless and want more, I am sucker for this stuff! Noturne hit us up with the song “Pain of Purity”, hard to take away a lot from one song, but I would say it is some interesting melodic flowing catchy death metal, not bad stuff. Finishing things off, we have Deathcult, who brandish a flaming sword of bitter, early 90s black metal destruction with a fuzzy, otherworldly fuzzy guitar sound, some cool riffing, a bit too stop and start in the middle for my liking, but it does add some dynamic to the song. The production is clear enough but pretty low-fi stuff which can be a positive with this style of bm. With this band I feel I need more material to make any kind of judgment, some stuff I really liked and some stuff I was so-so on with this track. One thing is for sure apparently Do Or Die Records plans to burst into 2013 like a blaze across the northern sky, as all three bands will be releasing full length records in first few months of the year. On a final note, love the artwork on the front and the killer fanzine style page borders on the inside of the booklet.  - Dale 

https://www.facebook.com/DoOrDieRecords  DoOrDieProductions@gmail.com