Monday, 13 March 2017

#160 Fekete Fagy - Átokhold

Write-up originally posted for Metal-Archives; February 18th, 2017.

On paper, this tape should be very compelling. The art is fantastic and the band logo one of the best I've seen in some time. After 75 seconds of an acoustic intro, Fekete Fagy leads immediately into a soundscape far superior to that rendered by any of my expectations.

Hypnotic guitar riffs repeat and sound deeply, deeply cold. The drums are full, and jump from aggressive to slow and ritual-like. It'd be fair of me to compare this to Hunok's latest release, or perhaps some of the more contemporary classics from Scandinavia. There's a great deal of aesthetic here that can be claimed as relatively identifiable, if not totally unique. Most of the tracks start with beautifully executed acoustic parts. The black metal itself has a trademark sound that would nestle the band into a list of modern leaders - yet infuriatingly there's nothing here so unique that people are clamouring for more.

In all fairness to this release, it's an excellent listen - this isn't realised recklessly, as it took me a couple of plays to really gel with it - and it's the final track "Álom" that's the clincher here. It has the most coherent bass on the record , and the entire track is deeply woven around a clearly sorrowful mindset - It's reminiscent of the early days of Xasthur, when Scott was innovative (if he ever was - this will no doubt be a talking point for the 5 or so people that are ever likely to read this).

I've been remiss on really discussing the vocals on here - that's pretty much intentional as I can't put a finger on the right vernacular to use. They're not original, or a clone of anything - just generic but well rehearsed; effectively like the rest of this release. However, it's far above any preconceptions, and I'd be surprised if the group didn't record a second demo and make a name for themselves as one of Hungary's break-out bands. It'd be nothing short of deserved.

Sunday, 12 March 2017

#159 Grimwod - Humanities Last Judgement

This is a tape I purchased and ripped a while ago but forgot about, as you do. I picked this up as it was the only release on Putrescence Noire that I couldn't find anywhere. Was I disappointed? Hell-fucking-no.

Starting with a 10 minute long metal track that invokes punk and metal, this tape segues into an archaic-sounding ambient number that reminds me VERY strongly of the first Mortiis tape "A Song of a Long Forgotten Ghost". Not only does it have the same tonality and feel to it, it even has a crackling effect from the tape rip (sorry about that) which I was unable to reduce - however, it adds charm to the ancient sound of it, so bonus, I guess.

I'll apologise for the quality of the later tracks. The rip almost sounds slightly warped, like a REALLY old cassette, but when the music is this good, who the hell really cares?

Highly recommended.

Monday, 27 February 2017

#158 Illapa - Blood and Coca for our Warmaster

Another rip of mine for the patient among you. This is an EP by one of the more obscure acts from Peru. This oddly-titled release is a nod back to Incan (citation needed) cultures, reference tributes to gods and deities alike.

It's also quite a metal title, which is interesting. Although over here in the "cultivated" worlds, Coca makes me think of a hot beverage to send one to sleep - highly doubtful that this is what Illapa intended...

...Unless you really find the music boring and then it's a double whammy of accuracy! Last time I posted something from Peru, it was widely panned as one of the worst articles on the blog. Hopefully this will fare better, or I give up for now. (I have a lot more Peruvian stuff...).

Anyway, worth a listen, right?

#157 Enfer Kommander - Hellish Torments

For as long as I can remember, one of my routines has been to order curious and obscure metal from Japanese distros. This particular one is one of the most obscure things out there.

I won't dither with details and the like - if you like your black metal extremely raw and hateful, you've got it with this release. It comes with a warning though - if you don't like your vocals high-pitched, don't download this. The term "Shrieks" has never been so apt. Fuck. I sold it as soon as I got it. Mistake? You tell me.

Monday, 6 February 2017

#156 Malesanctus - Live in Bullion

I'd promised this one to a couple of you at Yule last year when I posted "Emen Hetan Sargatanas".

I'm not going to type up the usual blurb - reason being that I dislike live albums - there's never been one that's stood out to me, and I don't really see the point of them. (Feel free to flame me below). However, this one seems to be relatively obscure (20 copies, apparently) and in demand.

Hopefully, the collective audience that reads this will be far more entertained than I am with this demo.

Sorry about the 128 bit rate. Best copy I could trade - I don't sadly know anyone with the original.

Sunday, 5 February 2017

#155 Taranis - Forgotten Thunder

Here is the only release from California's Taranis. It appears to be quite a luxurious release to come across, as I've had 6 requests for it over the last 13 months. (Not including my own).

Musically, it's four lengthy tracks, with a much higher quality of production than I expected. It's almost Atmospheric, almost NS - but what makes this a real hit is the clear drum fills and patterns (They sound so rich and alive), the guitar melodies which are extremely easy to hear and quite technical at times, and the vocals are delightfully hateful. The Bass is audible too, which is quite rare these days, although it's quiet at times (Maybe that's what they were referring to when they said "Forgotten Thunder...").

Bon appetit. Or something.