Septycal Gorge – Scourge of the Formless Breed – Comatose Music

Italian Brutal Death Metal Powerhouse

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Although Brutal Death Metal is a plague that is spread throughout the globe, Italy is not well known for their Brutal Death Metal bands. Well if you think that Fleshgod Apocalypse counts…

Scourge of the Formless Breed is an album that is more brutal than technical per se, even though bands that follow this style ought to have great technical skills, and this is, naturally, what separates the good bands from idiots trying to play in the great game of metal.

Going to the good side, Septycal Gorge shows with relatively short tracks – that in total clock in at 32 minutes (the average of Death Metal bands methinks) – they are in for the kill. The songs are very aggressive, the drumming is so insane, I would like to see them live. Plus the vocals are really guttural and impressive, and the rifferama is like a bulldozer chopping up the eardrums with no sense of remorse and their metal is a no compromising one.

Whilst not being the most original act in the world of brutal extreme music, Septycal Gorge is an excellent band and sometimes we need more of the same. But only if it excels the expectations as these Italians do. Totally recommended!

Scourge of the Formless Breed is out now on Comatose Music 


(Daniel “Roderick” Death)

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Northern Crown – In the Hands of the Betrayer – Self Released

Excellent Heavy Doom from Florida.

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Northern Crown follows the tradition of old. Its music is something magic, its sound is from outer space, and it’s very metal indeed!

But rather than to sound purely retro, this band is a different kind of monster.

They follow the tradition of bands such as Candlemass and Black Sabbath.

First song, In the Hands of the Betrayer is a classic heavy metal number, of course not so fast, but played with enough gusto and (only in this track) a harsh vocal.

Second track A Perfectly Realized Torment is really spooky and macabre. The beefy and intelligent riffs take command of everything. The vocal is a show apart: it’s mix of Tony Martin with RONNIE JAMES DIO… Yes, this guy called Frank Serafine is THAT good!

Crystal Ball is a proper Candlemass cover that is very theatrical and fits very well with the mood of the album. This is just ace!

Approaching, Encroaching Storm is a dark ambient intro to the last track, the 11-minute long To Thee I Give an Orchid which reeks of Black Sabbath.

This is a criminally underrated band/album. Okay it’s the first effort of the ensemble, but this band should have a cult following at the moment. Excellent release!

In the Hands of the Betrayer  is out now and it’s Self Released 


(Daniel “Roderick” Death)

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Mausoleum Gate – Mausoleum Gate – Cruz del Sur Music

How much vintage can a band get?

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Hailing from Finland, this band came out of nowhere, released a demo in 2010, a single in 2013 and now they are here with their debut album that seems to have a positive response from die-hards of NWOBHM such is their dedication to sound exactly like the bands from the past. I believe that even the bands from the belle epoch don’t know how to sound this way anymore, but the guys from Mausoleum Gate studied hard and made their homework.

The only think that lacks here is the sound of the vinyl, and I’m being a little tongue-in-cheek here. For the first time you spin the album, until you catch up with the tunes properly, the main question is if it is really necessary: to have such good imitators. They are so good in their well skilled raw production and in how to make it sound rough, that sometimes they get the opposite result and one can think of them just as impostors.

Well but if this is a problem or not, is up to the listeners to decide, as the compositions vary from mediocre to good, and over again, if they are not exactly creative, they are at least very competent.

Magic of the Gypsy Queen is the most “pedal to the metal” sound of the CD sounding like Cloven Hoof and other acts of the golden era. The chorus is good.

Demon Droid is more serious and pensive. But over again the refrains are there to save the day and to show nothing abnormal.

Then comes the trippy part and now is where one can get confused. They go from NWOBHM to something more primal like psychedelic trips: Lost Beyond the Sun is not exactly the best song in the world, and the solo is very much extended. Maybe it’s a nod to Iron Butterfly, but the Hammond in the background is a tentative to sound like Uriah Heep and Deep Purple. Somewhat the things don’t fit. They fail in their progressive/hard approach.

The trippy rock n roll sound continues with Mercenaries of Steel, and if it’s not a blast from the very past, it’s a well done second-hand rock n roll inside the boom of NWOBHM with bands that didn’t make it in the industry. Over again the Hammond appears, but this time, it goes from a hard form of heavy metal to seventies… and there is a segue with There Must Be Demons, where their actual intention appears: THE EVILNESS of the sound. This is the best song of the album, sounding like British band Hell, and the energy is genuine. Now this is a strike and I believe it will become a staple in their shows due to the grandiosity of the chorus.

The long closer, Mausoleum Gate, starts like a dark ballad and evolves into another good number where some remote elements of Progressive Rock appear timid, here and there to fulfill the 11 minutes of the song.

Die-hards will praise the band, but others must be warned, because their sound ought to be degusted in order to be understandable because the simplicity from a seminal era won’t appeal to a young audience. They may find this band dull.

Mausoleum Gate is out now on Cruz del Sur Music.


(Daniel “Roderick” Death)

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Solefald – World Metal. Kosmopolis Sud – Indie Recordings

Solefald is no more. This is their legacy to the world.

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Today when I was at work I opened my Facebook feed and while planning to come home and write about this album a strange coincidence occurred: the first thing that appeared on my feed was note on their page saying that Solefald called it quits.

I thought: damn, why would they do that after recording this great album World Metal. Kosmopolis Sud? It’s anyone’s guess.

It’s sad, but this album is figuring in my list of the best albums of 2015 so far, and it’s only April!

Featuring Lazare and Cornelius Jakhelln,This disc shows a mix of crazy sounds, rhythms, changes of vocals, everything occurring in a vortex of pure metallic creativity in the vein of Borknagar, Enslaved and the likes. 

The first song World Music with Black Edges is simply astonishing blending electronic and “acoustic” parts, in a very heavy and fast paced music, difficult to understand and since the first time I’ve heard this track I thought: this is the very future of metal.

The Germanic Entity continues the difficult-to-grasp music, in an avant-garde way, the production is noisy, although clear: I explain: While everything is “audible”, the myriad of instruments layered one upon another make the listener to pay close attention to what is actually happening. Over again the clear and harsh/guttural vocals appear to cause a delicious confusion, while the tune de-accelerates a little bit giving space to more melodic parts, but that doesn’t endure very much, because the layered Norwegian heavy metal takes over everything.

Another highlight is Future Universal Histories, this one works more like a “single” for the album, because it encompasses everything that World Metal. Kosmopolis Sud stands for. The riffs are second to none.

2011, or a Knight of the Fail is another title that envelopes the idea of the album. Not so confusing, still clever as fuck.

Too bad that after 6 albums, an EP, a demo and a compilation, Solefald is no more. Maybe now people learn to give credit that they always deserved. Great, great album INDEED!

Oh I forgot to say: IT’S APRIL FOOLS DAY MORONS! Have a nice day!

World Metal. Kosmopolis Sud is out now on Indie Recordings


(Daniel “Roderick” Death)

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