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(Daniel Death)

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Necuratul – Sanguine Lupus Graves – Forever Plagued

Blurred Black Metal from Columbus/ Ohio…

This demo tape is being released in cassette and it’s the epitome of the cult sound for die-hards of TRUE BLACK METAL elsewhere.

I don’t have plenty information about this supposedly one-man-band besides that it’s composed by Jake Kohn, the guy behind bands like Prosanctus Inferi, Black Funeral, and Father Befouled, hence the great quality of the music.

This demo has 5 tracks clocking in at 22 minutes of pure satanic music!

The first song brings a somewhat sad black metal, nonetheless with rapid parts and a sinister keyboard on the background, showcasing the ability to sound haunted like no one else. The sound is “blurred” on the final cut, giving it a gritty sensation and turning the tracks rustic.

Other fave is Pale Eyes Of The Hunger with its primitive form of destructive sound with midtempo nuances and a satanic vocal! Riffs evoke the heyday of black metal with the heaviness of death metal!

Last song Softly With Hatred is another sample of how true music must be done: traditional, but not claiming to be “old-school” as everyone else, this tune brings the darkness of old to the fold but with new ideas (hark!!! Not so new that it sounds modern, screw it!!!)

Sanguine Lupus Graves is an underrated work that has to figure out in every true headbanger collection!!! Soon it will become a rarity, be sure of that!

Sanguine Lupus Graves is out now Forever Plagued.

(Daniel Death)

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Loudblast – Burial Ground – Listenable Records

A new classic from a classic band…

Loudblast is the French institution of extreme metal. I know that since a friend of mine got the split album with Agressor “License to Thrash”… Since then the band has evolved from another good thrash metal band to a great death/thrash band with melodic hints… A use to say that if Netherlands has Pestilence as their forefathers, France has Loudblast!

A Bloody Oath, the opener shows extreme dexterity and complex compositions showcasing constant changing of tempos and right dosage of aggressiveness. This is highly technical, yet it contains a organic sound (without the overdone gimmicks of a super polished production), and this is what separates Loudblast from other bands: although they are an old band, their relevance is undisputed, and they are here to teach the new guys how a good thrash/death is done… Fucking ace!

Darkness Will Abide is even more destructive, and I, as an old headbanger, have goosebumps when I hear this one. It throws me back in the day with its plenty of good and high pitched soloing, and abrupt changes of phrases with lots of information… Well, it’s sufficed to say that “technical” started somewhere in the past (and no it wasn’t the great Suffocation who invented it)…

Soothing Torments is another great thrash metal number (or death metal, depending the angle you are), with great vocals, and a drumming which resounds as a chopper!!! Eventually the tempos change…

By the end of CD, mainly in the track The Void, the album seems to get another path, a melodic death metal one, and albeit this track is not bad, it sounds kinda anticlimactic given the nature and the gestalt of the whole opus, but for an acute ear, Burial Ground as a whole is a win-win situation.

Loudblast proves over again that their (sometimes underrated) importance is still active and they are the masters of their own game.

Burial Ground is out now on Listenable Records.

(Daniel Death)

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Kap Kap – Flux of Solace – Rapu Records

Experimental avant pop.

Kap Kap is an experimental rock/pop band from Finland and their sound is really something difficult to classify but this is what people used to call “post-punk”.

Although they claim influences from the seventies their sound is in conformity with acts such Clash and Joy Division.

But at the same time they don’t satisfy themselves in doing a kind of straight pop (Depeche Mode this is not) and they go on a trip of powechords and subtle changes of tempo, so characteristic of the confusing years after prog rock.

A song like Midnight is a fair testimony of that starting in one way and ending in another…but strangely enough their “avant pop meets Iggy Pop” bravado works and they do their stuff, although smoothly, with a slightly verve.

The strangest Lady, Appear will appeal to those who like alternative rock.

Flux of Solace is a difficult album to describe, maybe it’s difficult to like given the nature of the band which is to not follow any tendency (as in the track Old Goat). So beware with this release and if you’re taking something for granted you might as well find another band, let’s say, less avant-garde, to hear.

Flux of Solace is out now on Rapu Records.

(Daniel Death)

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On Top – Top to Bottom – HPGD Productions

On Top, Over the Top!

Top To Bottom, the new Ep by On Top is pure hard heavy attack, and it’s a delicious four-track opus, moving and marvelous!

Opener, No Shame is pure heavy metal with 1980’s vocals with shaggy solos and syncopated drumming along with “anthemic” choruses.

Second track Cold and Blue continues the binge of pure hard and heavy fiesta and over again the vocals transport the listener to the glorious days of yore with their Mötley Crüe ways of deliver their sound!!!

Don’t Go follows suit and with swinging guitars and rhythm it takes over! The guitars of Brian Davis keep on frying on the backdrop while Jaron Gulino keeps singing and great drummer Danny Piselli grinds his kit.

Bad Love is the best number with a sticky riff and more hard oriented sound, but never ever forgetting their Heavy Metal way of playing!!! Superb song!

Top to Bottom is a superlative release of guys who seems to play only for pleasure, but that’s the deal nowadays when all music seems to be plastic: they do organic real rock n roll! Indicated for: EVERYONE!!!!

 Top to Bottom is out now on HPGD Productions.

(Daniel Death)

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Darkest Era – Severance – Cruz Del Sur Music

Impressive and expressive heavy metal from Northern Ireland.

Belfast has new heroes to show to the world: Darkest Era: this quintet is the pure form of epic heavy metal with vocals of the great Krum which is a helluva singer.

Man this is for cultists of Manilla Road to Atlantean Kodex only (include in this list names like Suidakra, Christian Mistress and Grand Magus)

Bigger than life sound is what they present in the first and dramatic track called Sorrow’s Boundless Realm which dabbles with some death metal, but it is indeed a great trad heavy metal track! The vocals are melancholic nonetheless powerful. Mix this with the celtic vibe that they try to transmit and you have an appealing tune. It’s important to notice that since they carry this “celtic” style they DO NOT use traditional instruments: this is pure rock n roll, mate!

The Serpent And The Shadow is one of my two absolute faves and although the despondent initial sound, the song transforms itself into a pure Heavy Metal attack and the chorus is simply orgasmic! Grandiosity and epicness über alles.

The sadness of Beyond The Grey Veil is perfect to hear in a cold and sad day!!!! Okay this is my other fave! Over again the over the top vocals take over everything else, I mean, they are great musicians, but what the heck is this voice man??? Breathtaking and emotional, this is a masterpiece!

The Scavanger has a striking chorus but this song is more upbeat than the others…

If there is something negative is that they insist in putting some “extreme” sound on the track Trapped in the Hourglass which is deviant from the other numbers of the album, and I think they should stay just in the heavy metal mode which is perfect.

This album Severance is tragic and electrifying, powerful music for metal buffs and old-liners!!!! Get your copy!

Severance  is out now on Cruz Del Sur Music.

(Daniel Death)

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BJARM – Imminence – Fono

Great Extreme Symphonic Music from Russia.

Russia’s Bjarm comes with this debut album, full of good songs and the excellent production is second to none.

They are a somewhat new entity and that’s what is more impressing in them: they act like a veteran band, with the over the top complex compositions and the beefy sound of the melodic guitars: newcomers they are not!!!!

For example, the first track Approaching of the Close has layers upon layers of good orchestrated parts. I mean, even if you think you are good the guys of Bjarm are better than you! Why? Just because this prelude shows right off the bat what these dudes have to offer: complexity and dexterity in a crescendo of a gargantuan opera.

 Knowledge of Doom, the proper song after the “intro” puts some guttural vocalizations in contrast to angelical feminine voices and what a great number, following the very same gestalt throughout the album, going to and fro between “beauty and beast” form of musical approach.

Of course this is a CD indicated only for admirers and die hards of this very style of music, since this album demands time and an acute ear to understand the whole thing.

Another great number is Nine Worlds with its melancholic, yet ominous vibe with heavy music covered by keyboards in a mix of Turisas and Dimmu Borgir. Over again this composition shows they are set to become big shots in this game…

Imminence is a remarkable work of a band that deserves to gain worldwide recognition for their gusto and their force. Honestly, it’s not everyday you’ll hear a debut like this.

 Imminence is out now on Fono.

(Daniel Death)

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