Monday, 26 March 2012

Ignivomous, Embodied, Inverloch, Starfaust

Two weeks since Denouncement Pyre devastated the Bendigo Hotel with their first live performance in five years; this small venue was to face another night of absolute mayhem.  With dismay Starfaust which contains ex-members of Ignivomous and Roskorp had cancelled, fortunately Black Jesus (a more then worthy replacement) was called in. Unfortunately traffic is not always one ones side, and I completely missed Black Jesus’s set and arrived only in time for Inverloch. 

For those not sure, Inverloch contains two members of Disembowelment who reunited under a full line up  titled D.usk and started playing live shows covering Transcendence into the Peripheral,  only recently taking a new form. A ghostly mist shrouds the stage and the packed crowd are hypnotized as Inverloch emits their aura of death doom which is similar to Disembowelment (believe it or not). Though not having the same spellbinding effect as D.usk is merely due to  many not having digested the upcoming EP Dusk/Subside, but this showcase will have plenty drooling for its release. Being on a stage with some finest death metal Melbourne has to offer, Embodied feel outplace on the bill. Sure they play death metal but are any good… no. Following the Cannibal Corpse textbook, their brutal American styling made the beer garden the bests place for their set.

Having been disappointed with last time I saw Ignivomous a year ago due to muddled sound which felt like rolling down a rocky hill in a trash can, this time things were very different. Armed with two axmen, Ignivomous crushingly kicked off with Death Transmutation. A set scattered with tracks from the upcoming full length Contragenesis, I have say hearing them them for the fist time they were  impressive , even though Nuclear War Now did have the album streaming, I’d  rather wait and enjoy it full force on vinyl. With a minor mosh pit or should I say beer pit due to the ridiculous amount spilled onto the wooden floorboards, Ignivomous pummeled between their first full length and Contragenesis and also included the oldie but goodie Path of Attrition. The crowd did start to thin during the set, though this did not stop them from crushing the remaining skulls in the venue.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Defamer - Decrepit Rituals

Since their 2008 debut Chasm, Queensland death metallers Defamer have picked up the game on Decrepit Rituals. Taking an approach that does not follow any of the current trends of Swedish death metal or Incantation worship.A boiling  pot of the old school death metals savagery, Defamer craft a concoction that is comparable to Cardiac Arrest. 

Like a slimy wrecking ball of unique brutality Decrepit Rituals scrambles your brain with mid paced pummeling in the vein of Suffocation, blood soaked waltzes of Autopsy, Bolt Thrower’s marching rhythm, twisted compositions comparable to Demilich and scattered hints of black metal. The guitars lead the way zigzagging between tempos with a gruesome tone while the drumming follows no patterns, continuously changing  direction like the bowels of a sickening beast. Overall Defamer keep you guessing as to what crooked procession that will take next. The riffs on the other hand don’t always deliver as one would hope considering they are rather high in the mix and are a core component in Decrepit Rituals. Generally the slow paced moments are the most powerful, The End Is His slow heaving outro crushes you slowly like being caught under a steamroller. While occasionally rapid moments tend to become a bit uninspiring. The vocalist’s primary growls are rather powerful and reach sickening points of wetness as Mike Yee of psychedelic death dealer The Dead. Not as intense are his raspy cries, but never the less try to add variety

Taking a unique approach to death metal, Defamer still need to mold their musical clay, no doubt the tools are there to create something of monstrous proportions. Considering Decrepit Rituals an improvement on Chasm, Defamer is a band to keep an eye out  on for the future.       


Friday, 16 March 2012

Revenge – Scum. Collapse. Eradication

After four years and the loss of member Pete Helmkamp, Canada’s most barbaric have finally retuned with the fourth full length Scum. Collapse Eradication.  With such underground “kult” acts as Revenges progression is considered sacrilege, and are reveled for continuously spewing out the hostile foulness they are known for. Whilst   Scum… is very akin to previous full lengths, it leaves little to be sought.

The experience of your skull concaving is a practice Revenge has assisted in multiple releases and Scum… is no different, except  an axis is missing Revenge previously encompassed. The loss of Helmkamp sneers is noticeable. His vitriol is not there to add munitions to the assault of Reads screams and (if I dare say) variety. Nerveless his departure has not affected the song writing. With their take no prisoner policy as a tank slowly bulldozes the deceased and injured near a trench to be buried dead or alive, the Revenge war machines cogs start turning slowly. Opening track Us And Them (High Power) begins with a foreboding intro, through the slow rhythmic pounding of the drums and shrilled screams before letting loose all fire power in putrid anthem of blackened militant grind. Filthy pitch shifters rumble in 35 minutes of pure desolation along with a hammering guitar tone a venomous squawks that can be described as something more vile then the screams of hundreds of babies being dissovled in acid. J.Read's skin smashing is particularly insane, as if wielding dual mini guns relentlessly propelling lead and tearing the opposition into shreds with out mercy, ensuring all bow down to his carnivorous expertise.

Surges of doom take part in the in the blitzkrieg, as mentioned in the intro of Us And Them (High Power) and the slow build up of pitch shifters and violent commands in Banner Degradation (Exile Of Death). Regrettably they are minimal, but when they occur they are no less filthy then their putrid grind counterparts. Ranked third after Victory… and Infiltration…, Scum… offers nothing new to Revenges harsh barrier of grinding noise but will no doubt satisfy the most militant fanatics. 


Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Cathedral, Paradise Lost, Turisas

Some things should never be mixed together like the fruity mixture of folk and metal. Unfortunately opening act Turisas supposedly excels in such a queer combination. Draped in leather fur sacks and caked in red face paint Turisas comes across all a bit to gimmicky, thankfully their “jolly” set only lasts half hour. But with Paradise Lost on next my expectations were not high either, specially considering pre Gothic material is something rare for them live. And unfortunately tonight that material was neglected. Nerveless if you like their later more gothic styling you definitely would be absorbed as they were tight and the man behind the sound did an excellent job at keeping things together. With The Sisters of Mercy also playing tonight this reviewer was bit skeptical if he had made the right choice in not attending, thankfully though by the time Cathedral hit the stage and erupt into the classic Vampire Sun all disappointment is forgotten. A sturdy set list heavily based around  the early nineties period, Cathedral smash through the classic stoner hits of Midnight Mountain, Cosmic Funeral, Ride and the majestic Carnival Bizarre. The crowd is also treated with the crushing performance of Ebony Tears. With  a encore Lee Dorrian singles out all the witches in the crowd before stomping into the groove of Hopkins (The Witchfinder General).  Being their farewell tour these doom lords defiantly left  a legendary impression that will not be forgotten anytime soon.

Toxic Holocaust, Kromosom, Nocturnal Graves

Though not being a fan of Toxic Holocaust, I would still tip my hat to Joel Grind for playing thrash before the wave of throw back, which is the least I can say for opening act Desecrator.  Standard bay area worship, these revivalists had me bored by the first song, thankfully their set let up enough time to allow one to enjoy a couple of cigarettes before Nocturnal Graves. Playing a “one off show” this carnivorous legion being my most anticipated band on the bill delivered chaos and brimstone. Devastating the stage with a set that smashed through the Satan’s Cross LP, hammering nails into the crucifix with When The Demons Feast, Nocturnal Maniac and The Pestilence Crucified. Playing with such ferocity it would leave some doubts whether Kromsom would be able match it. And surprisingly these crusty chaps, raw assault of hardcore definitely met the expectations that had been lay down. Locked in Berserker mode lead sing Yeap (ex- Pisschrist) antics including stage diving amongst his razor sharp screams proved to more then entertaining. As already mentioned not being a fan of Toxic Holocaust, I have say these guys were tight and definitely know how to whip a crowd into frenzy, instigating many circle pits and stage dives to one bounces dismay.  Belting out their “hits” Nuke the Cross , Lord of the Wasteland and Wild Dogs  would ensure most thrashes to cream their denim underwear by the end of the night.  

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Proclamation - Nether Tombs of Abaddon

The earth splits in twain; tidal waves of molten lava spill upon civilizations, demons rise from fumes of ash and sulfur only to rape and maim any survivors. A gruesome trail of decapitated heads on pikes and charred corpses nailed to crucifixes is all that’s left of humanity. Nether Tombs of Abandon would be the soundtrack to such apocalyptic event.

Continuing on bestial left hand path, Proclamation fourth full length is their strongest effort yet. The drumming is commanding and thunderous  but not to the point where it is overbearing as on Execration of Cruel Bestiality, and while that 2009 desecration had the guitars extremely low in the mix, this time around on Nether Tombs of Abandon it is much more audible and lends to be more punishing experience.Other than that Proclamation is essentially play the same formula they have been for last ten years: fast tempo that rarely changes, Kerry King esque solos, atmospheric intros and the whole bullet belt goat skull aesthetics. Obviously they take influence from Blasphemy, which is much more prelvent on earlier albums but on Nether Tombs of Abandon and even Execration of Cruel Bestiality Proclamation has broken those chains and taken that design to new violent heights

With such aggression and malevolence Proclamation are easily one of the strongest (if not the strongest) straight up bestial black metal acts around. Though all of the releases from these Spanish devil worshippers are of high caliber Nether Tombs of Abandon has to be their magnum opus so far.


Sunday, 19 February 2012

Perversor - The Shadow of Abomination

Spewing from the blasphemous depths of Chile, Perversor return with their second EP The Shadow of Abomination. If not well versed with this Chilean horde then just by looking at the cover should give an indication of what lurks within, or the simple knowledge they are signed to Hells Headbangers.

Stewing in the same pit of savageness as Demon Metal, Perversor once again assaults your eardrums with their blasphemous hybrid of black, thrash and death. Clocking in at eleven minutes The Shadow of Abomination is like amphetamine as it is purely addictive, making it perfect for a quick fix of audio violence. Scorching and blistering Extremist Satanism literally explodes off in cluster of Napalm, preparing you for what Perversor has installed. The drumming floods the mix like Obsessed by Cruelty and the bass thumps away, both assisting to creating a barrier of hateful bestial noise. Not at all moments are like getting caught in trench under a bombardment of artillery, when tempos slow down the Bathory esque guitar work finesse peeks through, these less bombarding sections are still rather speedy and frantic. While songs are slightly distinguishable this EP is best taken in a single lethal dose due to short running time.

Though as solid The Shadow of Abomination is, it never crosses over from great to masterful. And in general Perversor has always struggled to do so, each of their releases lacking a certain attribute that would place them as kings rather other than warriors. Nerveless if you don’t seek originality and thirst for blasphemous brutality then The Shadow of Abomination should quench the venomous craving.