Friday, 27 January 2012

Cauldron Black Ram – The Poisoner

The most ravenous, raping and pillaging pirates from down under are finally back for more sea hardy mayhem. After 2010’s average Slubberdegullion with  awkward and lazy musicianship (sounding like  B sides of Skullduggery), Cauldron Black Ram has marked the right spot on the map with The Poisoner. With an opening title track, crashing like a steel cannonball through a wooden hull, the first thing noticeable is the change in guitar tone, shifting from that crusty buzz to a slight cleaner hum. And as you dwell further into The Poisoner despite the change, the core of Cauldron Black Ram’s unique signature sound still remains twisted, primal and ugly.

It has never been easy task to pinpoint Cauldron Black Ram's approach and I can only loosely describe it as of sludgy, Bolt Thrower influenced, pirate themed  blackened death metal. With my "loose" description you can figure how unconventional they are. Passages of doom lurk within all tracks prime examples being midway through Corpse Chariot, when the song grinds to a halt and creepy dual growls along with dragged out riffs take control, or the slow churning intro of Infernal Interjections. Hypnotizing almost thrash like  rhythms wander within Beast In The Brass and a infectious  sing along chorus in The Poisoner. But if you you’re familiar with band you should know what to expect.  

What makes this release superior to Slubberguillon is the fact that it was created with conviction. There is no awkwardness in the dynamics and everything moves together at the same twisted pace. Though overshadowed by  magnum opus Skullduggery, this EP is definitely cast the sails in the right direction.


Monday, 16 January 2012

Absu, Portal, Ruins

It’s hard to blame anyone for not wanting to arrive at  Conjuration Festival early. With the opening line up of A.M.D.B.L’s uninspiring unconventional grind, Encircling Sea medocre sludge and run of the mill black metal band Ruins, makes the start of  Conjuration fest  passable. With the last two bands being the highlights of the bill, this night begins with Portal. With a stage presence like no other, the Curator dressed like a phantom spat out of a black hole along with his fellow headsmen hypnotize the crowd with their brand of haunting complex death metal. Evoking an abysmal atmosphere through a pristine sound and along with fret board wizardry that would make your eyes bleed,Portal is a mesmerizing experience. Reciting their incantations for the first time in Melbourne, Absu nails their set with deadly precision. The Proscriptor sounding like a pissed off goblin after being cut off from the local pub in Moria introduces tracks amongst there diverse set list spanning over their twenty year career, including Highland Tyrant Attack, Manannan and Swords and Leather. With the chant of “ABSU” from the packed East Brunswick Club the Texas veterans return for an electrifying encore of Never Blow out the Eastern Candle. Though definitely being worth the $40 price tag, the bill could use improving as it was like putting wolves and cats in the same cage.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Void Meditation Cult – Sulfurous Prayers

From the ashes of Sperm of the Antichrist, slivers forth Void Meditation Cult.
Dripping in morbidity, this four track demo delivers ancient bestial black metal in the vein of Beherit with a dose of rotting death. Despite being only one member, Void Meditation Cult is far above any pathetic one man bedroom project.

What really stands out about this demo is the evil aura that is emitted,  feeling like your creeping through a sacrificial lair, where dried blood stains linger on the walls and cruelly curved tools of pain litter the rotting floorboards. Void Meditation Cult projects this grim atmosphere through the harsh guitar tone that trudges along with a claustrophobic creep. Along with the very prominent bass which drags around like a body that has been severed in half. Adding to that already possessed terror Sulfurous Prayers has that devilish charm as if it was recorded in the pits of hell, so expect primal rawness the demo format offers.

The vocals shift between sinister whispering and demonic growling identical to vocalist of Manticore, (which may unravel any mystery behind the only member).  The venomous combination of the two creates moment’s of unbridled tension that will have the hairs on the back of your neck standing up. Easily being one of the finest demos of 2011,  if you looking for something that reeks of evil or sacrificing a goat, Sulfurous Prayers should have the wickedness you seek.