Thursday, April 24, 2014

Kaluman – Kaluman


When I first listened to Kaluman, I didn't think much of them. The production of their songs was muffled and the music itself was really boring. Well, Sevared Records must have seen something special in them, because they signed those guys and released their self-titled debut back on March 20. Don't get me wrong, Barrett Amiss II is a cool dude and his label features a bunch of great bands, but I have a feeling that he might have been drunk when he signed some of those bands. This would explain some of the terrible albums his label would occasionally release. I had a feeling that would be the case here, but to my surprise, this album is actually good.

First of all, this album doesn't have the production problems that were on their promo material. All the instruments come in clear as day and the bass is really thick which helps to add to the heaviness. This thick bass is most obvious on the song “Global Genocide”. I know that a lot of the brutal death metal band's on Sevared's lineup feature a great deal of bass, so it's no surprise that Kaluman would feature prominent bass as well. As for the music, it consists of really wicked slam with a few fast parts dispersed throughout. The drummer, Sebastian Abas, also played on Jasad's latest album Rebirth of Jatisunda, so it's not surprising to see that the drumming is awesome. Since this a slam release, he mainly plays a bunch of mid-paced rhythms, but they feature a lot of powerful snare strikes and cymbal crashes. He also occasionally plays some awesome blast beats that feature double bass that sounds like an infernal drill.

The vocals are performed by Aries Kingkong. A rather funny name, but his performance is nothing to laugh about, because it's really brutal. He performs a deep, hoarse growl that reminds me of Jasad's latest work. He also performs some Glen Benton-type demonic screams that are sometimes performed right alongside the growls. The guitars are performed by Daniel and Ferly. Daniel plays for Turbidity and Ferly has been with Jasad since the release of their full-length debut, and by their powers combined, they have created something awesome. They play a shitload of slam riffs that have a crunchy sound and pack a lot of groove, the best of which can be found on “Global Genocide”. They also occasionally play some faster riffs that bring forth swarms of destruction.

Sometimes it helps to give bands a second chance. There are some cases where a band is dismissed as terrible during their early years but end up doing great things. Kaluman is a great example of this. They started off by making mediocre music that was terribly produced, but then they ended up releasing a great slam album that featured excellent drumming and guitar work. I'd also like to thank Sevared Records for seeing potential in these guys.



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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Desecrated Dreams – Raven Forest


One year after releasing their debut demo Waiting For The Last Sunset, they released their second demo Raven Forest. The music on this demo is essentially the same as it was on the last demo, with a few minor improvements.

The production is still just as strong as it was on the first demo. I can still hear everything clearly and the music's delivery sounds mighty, but I also noticed that the bass was much more prominent this time around. The bass helps to add more thickness to the music. As for the music, the formula is still the same, only this time it's more complex. The drums still play plenty of blast beats and strong mid-paced rhythms, but this time around their structures are more complex. This is especially obvious in the numerous fills they play.

The vocals seem to be fitting into a nice little mold. The guy performs those grisly growls and angry screams with ease. The biggest improvements are seen in the guitars. The riffs are more complex, constantly churning out a constant stream of dark shredding and vicious chugging while also playing some fantastic atmospheric riffs that remind me of Death's later work. They then top it all off with some fantastic solos that tear up the fretboard and produce a wondrous sound that reminds me of all those early progressive death metal bands from Florida.

This demo is even better than their first. It features a band that has matured a great deal in a short amount of time. The music still sounds strong, but the structures are also more complex. I highly recommend it.
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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Devouring Star – Demo 2013


I've had a fascination with the cosmos ever since I was a child. When I wasn't playing video games, I would spend my time reading books about the stars. I was so amazed by what outer space held, that I wanted to become an astronomer. However, you need to know a lot of math in order to become an astronomer, and I learned in my senior year of high school that I sucked at math, so I gave up on that dream rather quickly. Despite this, I still hold a fascination for the stars. This brings us to Devouring Star, a black metal band whose name reminds me of black holes. Black holes are terrifying things. So is Devouring Star's music.

These guys essentially pay homage to Deathspell Omega. There's nothing wrong with that. Imperial Triumphant do it, so I guess Devouring Star can do it too. The music is as dark and menacing as the black holes that lurk within the void. The drums creep and crawl in the shadows. The powerful snare strikes puncture holes in the fabric of space time. The violent blast beats and fills hit you like massive torrents of radiation. Unlike most other black metal bands, the bass is rather prominent hear. Their heavy strings sound like the heartbeat of a pulsar.

The vocals consist of an angry, agonized rasp. If a dying star had a voice, this is what it would sound like. It pierces the quiet emptiness of deep space and scars your soul. As for the guitars, they sound absolutely evil. The riffs are discordant and chaotic. Their unorthodox sound and structure make for a most unsettling experience. They sound like the swirling of superheated plasma that was stolen from a nearby star. This “devouring star” consumes the life force of its neighbor like a spider consuming the juices of a fly caught in its web. The end result is a terrifying eruption of radiation that roars through the cosmos.

So, yeah, Devouring Star is awesome. It's a collection of powerful drumming, sickening vocals, and awesome guitar work that would make Deathspell Omega proud. Their demo is available as a name-your-price download on Bandcamp, so hurry up and go get it.

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Touhou Tuesday #115


"I am the light of the world. He who followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life."
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Monday, April 21, 2014

One Sentence Review: Surreal Embodiment - Official Rehearsal 1992


This is what shitty death metal would sound like if it was buried under George Lucas's ass. Share on Tumblr

Desecrated Dreams – Waiting For The Last Sunset


Desecrated Dreams was a Slovakian death metal band that has been around for quite a while. They formed in 1996 and have existed until 2013. Their first demo, Waiting For The Last Sunset, exhibits some really strong death metal that features lots of great songwriting.

First of all, even though this is a demo, the production is professional. Not only can I hear all the instruments clearly, but it also sounds really heavy. The great production helps give strength to the even better instrumentation. Instead of blasting until his arms falls off, the drummer offers up a great deal of complex rhythms that feature really strong snare strikes. The guy also likes to sprinkle in plenty of double bass and intricate fills.

The vocals consist of both a grisly growl and a ghastly scream. Both styles sound really nasty and are performed well, and they nicely fit the rest of the music. The guitars are just plain fantastic. They mainly play a lot of fast shredding riffs similar to what you might find down in Florida, some of which sound like they've been pulled straight from Death's Human album, but they also take the time to play some slow creeping riffs and sinister chugs. They then top it all off with some fantastic solos that exhibit a great deal of wondrous melody. I also like their performance on “My Sun Goes Down” where they play some hauntingly beautiful clean guitars.

This was an amazingly strong debut demo. It's way better than most other debut demos I've heard. The production is professional and the instrumentation is both complex and enticing. If you have the time, be sure to download this and listen to it.
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Sunday, April 20, 2014

Demonic Rage – Venomous Wine from Putrid Bodies


Demonic Rage have been around quite a while, but they didn't release their first full-length until recently. They formed in Chile way back in 2001 and released a slew of demos and splits over the course of twelve years. Then, in 2013, they released their full-length debut, Venomous Wine from Putrid Bodies, a perfect name for a putrid death metal assault.

This album is pure old school death metal. It's as if Chile is still stuck in the early 90s. Right out the gate they hit you with a furious assault, and then they drag you down to the grave with slow, creeping rhythms. The production is fantastic. It's thick, it's heavy, it's dirty, it's a perfect emulation of the production style that was so popular back in death metal's glory days. The music is also a perfect replica of the past. The drums bombard us with equal amounts of rampaging blast beats and powerful mid-paced rhythms that feature lots of double bass. They also take the time to play a few slow, crushing beats that sound like creeping sludge monsters.

The vocals consist of a deep, echoing growl. The guy's performance is utterly venomous and putrid. In other words, just the way I like it. Best of all are the guitars. They play a plethora of fast and vicious riffs and dark shredding, but they also take the time to play some slow and evil riffs that almost sound akin to doom/death, the best of which can be heard on the final song. You just gotta love that Incantation influence. As for the solos, they screech and howl in a way similar to the legendary Rick Rozz, thus completing the old school ensemble.

Venomous Win from Putrid Bodies was an awesome discovery. It's a vicious old school death metal assault that also takes the time to pay homage to Incantation. It may have taken them twelve years to make, but it was definitely worth the wait.
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Saturday, April 19, 2014

Decrepit – Acrimonium


There are three metal bands named Decrepit and they all come from America. This one in particular comes from Ohio. They formed in 1991 and released their first demo, Hymns of Grief and Pain, two years later. The demo was pretty good, but it got boring rather quickly. I think it had something to do with the production. In 1997, they released their only full-length album, Acrimonium. Will it be better than their demo? Let's find out.

First of all, they fixed the production problems. On the demo, the music sounded rather muffled, but on this album, it sounds clear, but it's still really heavy. They also improved the music. The demo featured a bunch of mid-paced death metal that got repetitive after a while. This album, on the other hand, features a mixture of energetic death metal and black metal.

The drums mainly play a lot of mid-paced rhythms that feature plenty of double bass, but they also play lots of blast beats and complex fills. The bass spends most of its time rumbling in the background, but there are certain points where it's given the spotlight and plays lots of crushing riffs. The vocals consist of a deep growl and an angry black metal rasp. Both styles are performed really well and compliment each other perfectly. Best of all are the guitars. Not only do they play lots of mid-paced death metal rhythms and heavy shredding riffs, but they also play plenty of black metal tremolo riffs that sound as cold as ice. They then top off their furious performance with lots of solos that screech and howl with utter malevolence.

I may not have liked Decrepit's demo, but I like their full-length album. It's an excellent mixture of mid-paced death metal and black metal riffs. It's a truly underrated gem.
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Friday, April 18, 2014

Slaughterday – Nightmare Vortex


There are two bands named Slaughterday. One is from Greece, but the one we're talking about today is from Germany. They formed in 2010 and released their full-length debut, Nightmare Vortex, last year. Funny thing is, even though these guys are from Germany, their sound is distinctly Swedish. I don't have a problem with that, because this album is awesome.

The production features a mixture old school Swedish and modern death metal aesthetics. It sounds clean but it also has a rather crunchy sound to it. As for the music itself, it's pure old school Swedish death metal worship. No frills, no extravagance, no unnecessary bullshit. Just pure violence. The drums play an equal mix of slow doom/death rhythms and vicious blast beats. The snare strikes are powerful and the cymbals sound really dissonant.

The vocals consist of a hoarse yet bellowing growl. The guy sounds angry and ferocious. He sounds like the feral spawn of an elder god. Best of all are the guitars. The tremolo riffs sound like slithering snakes, the crunchy riffs sound like stomping mutants, the grooves sound delightfully sick, and the slow riffs sound like dripping ooze. As for the solos, they're utterly killer. They sound vicious but they also have a great sense of melody to them. The band also takes the time to slow things down and play some solemn clean guitars and whatnot.

This album maybe simple, but it's still excellent. Personally, I wish the music was faster and more crunchy, but it still sounds great regardless. I hope they release more killer Swedish death metal worship in the future.
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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Antithesis – Subjugator of Machine


Sometimes you just have trouble finding good Indonesian brutal death metal. Most of the stuff I've sampled recently featured either boring music or bad production. Luckily, I managed to find a band that didn't have either of those problems. Their name is Antithesis, and they hail from Banten. They formed in 2010 and released their debut album, Subjugator of Machine, on Breeding Records last year. Though they're young, their music is as powerful as a rampaging robot army.

These guys essentially pay homage to Origin. Though they're not as flamboyant as their primary influence, their music is still just as strong. The production quality is a lot better than their peers. It doesn't have that horrible muffled quality, the bass is quite thick, and I can hear all the instruments quite clearly. The drummer, Andy Bayau, can easily be described as the Indonesian John Longstreth. His blast beats are almost constant and sound like the rumbling of an infernal engine of war. His fills are incredibly complex, once again paying tribute to Origin, and I also like how the snare doesn't have that hollow thudding sound that seems to plague so many other Indonesian brutal death metal bands. I like how they took the time to make the production sound nice.

The vocals are performed by bassist Ieckhmal Toge and consist of a deep, hoarse growl. Although they're not as mighty as James Lee, they still put on a great performance. The best part of this album are the guitars. The riffs are technical, but they're not so technical that they end up becoming ridiculous and impossible to take seriously. In other words, they don't fall into the Brain Drill trap. Instead, the guitar duo of Satrio Kura and Randi Pakonk use these technical riffs to unleash a torrent of utter brutality. Their technical riffs are dark and crushing, and some of them, such as those on the title track and “Different Rassial Wars”, are direct tributes to Origin. As for the solos, they sweep across the fretboard at a frightening pace, producing a torrent of rage that sounds like a billion death lasers that annihilate all those unfortunate to cross their path.

Antithesis is awesome. The drums are powerful, the vocals are sweet, and the guitars are utterly amazing. Their music is a perfect tribute to Origin. Don't you just love that feeling you get when you find something good after spending so much time digging through shit?



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