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Nocturnal Witch/Summoning Hell/Undercover/Evil Spell Records/2014 CD Review

vendredi 9 mai 2014 à 00:02

  Nocturnal  Witch  are  a  band  from  Germany  that  plays  a  very  raw  form  of  black/thrash  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2014  album  "Summoning  Hell"  which  was  released  as  a  joint  effort  between  Undercover  and  Evil  Spell  Records.

  A  very  slow  and  old  school  black  metal  sound  starts  off  the  album  and  after  a  few  seconds  blackened  thrash  style  vocals  are  added  into  the  music  and  the  style  starts  getting  more  fast  and  raw  sounding  along  with  some  blast  beats  as  well  as  capturing  an  underground  80's  metal  atmosphere.

  The  music  on  the  album  starts  getting  more  diverse  on  the  other  tracks  taking  the  early  90's  raw  occult  black  metal  sound  of  Greece  and  mixing  it  in  with  the  80's  German  thrash  and  early  South  American  black ,  death  and  thrash  metal  band  while  also  making  it  have  a  more  modern  feeling  as  well  as  having  black  metal  as  being  the  main  focus  of  the  recording  along  with  a  good  amount  of  evil  sounding  melodies.

  From  beginning  to  end  the  album  keeps  a  very  raw  and  heavy  atmosphere  mostly  sticking  to  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  while  still  having  its  slow  and  melodic  moments  which  are  also  still  very  heavy  and  raw  and  one  guitar  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  the  most  evil  elements  of  mid  80's  black,  death  and  thrash  metal  join  forces  along  with  some  deep  demonic  voices  being  utilized  in  the  background.

  Nocturnal  Witch  bring  a  very  old  school  and  retro  sound  in  with  their  album  showing  the  best  element s of  both  first  and  second  wave  black  metal  as  well  as  mixing  it  in  with  more  underground  sounding  thrash  to  create  a  very  heavy  and  evil  record,  the  production  sounds  very  powerful  and  makes  the  bands  old  school  metal  approach  sound  more  modern  while  the  lyrics  cover  darkness,  evil,  occult,  heavy  metal  and  violent  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Nocturnal  Witch  are  a  very  great  sounding  raw  and  old  school  black/thrash  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Hellfire  Cult"  "Realm  Of  the  Dead"  "Resurrected   Darkness"  and  "Possessed'.  8  out  of  10. 

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2014/05/nocturnal-witchsummoning.html


Morko Interview

jeudi 8 mai 2014 à 21:48
 1.Can you give us an update on what is going on with the band since the  recording and release of the new album?

- Well, the current situation might be best described as deadpan stasis. The two other members of the band left during the final stage of production and release of "Itsensänimeävä" and I'm also quite unkeen on continuing to work under the name Mörkö. So at the moment the actions are narrowed to promoting our albums, hoping to find new listeners.


 2.In October the band released a new album, can you tell us a little bit more about the musical direction of the new recording and also how does it differ from your past releases?

- "Itsensänimeävä" is by far our most complex and multilayered release. That is not to say that it is a particularly complex piece of work in any other sense than in comparison to a more primitive edged "III" (2001) and the downright minimalistic "IV"(2008). The direction in which the new album headed early on sprung from an interest towards deeper structures through basic compositional techniques. This awakened a new interest in metal riffing, which had been absent for some while back in 2009 when the making of the album started. "IV" was seemingly a deadend. It would have been difficult, and potentially pretentious, to try and go further in that direction. So, after a year of digestion of ideas an entirely different approach began to form. Basically it was the very original idea of having riffs. Talking about re-inventing the wheel.


 3.The band has been around since the 90's, but so far has only released 3 albums and 2 demo's, can you tell us a little bit more about the gap between releases?

- I think the primary reason for the gaps is that we never wanted to repeat ourselves. We wanted to avoid doing the same album over and over again. This had its pros and cons. Some ideas might have been worth improving or re-exploring. On the other hand there is a sense of a fresh discovery in each album. After all, black metal has always been - in one point of view - a way of stepping outside boundaries of the status quo, being it personal reality or cultural norms. In the time of their making all the albums were genuinely interesting to us. Apparently it took years for new ideas to come. But, there was also other bands in which each of us were involved, exploring other ideas and channeling different aspects.


4.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the music?

- The underlying theme of the new album, in one word, is death. Not only fetishizing over the final stages of the organism, but more on an archetypal level. Death as a function of the wheel of life.
Yet it is much more concrete and even carnal in its approach if paired with the quite abstract "horror vacui"-themed "IV", which was mirroring the horrors of the mind at gaze with the absolute. There seems to be some sort of lurking at the threshold going on in these themes. All our thoughts, the on-going stream of words in our head, are already dead, defined. With the relatively recently contacted possibilities of the neocortex we are basically scavenger monkeys in a space ship fighting over the chance of who gets to scratch his ass on the control board instead of learning any of its functions. So, every now and then the monkey gets a glimpse of something from beyond its narrow mechanical perception. To somehow recover from the shock and organize the new areas suddenly opened it may engage in creative activity and digest its experiences into a piece of some cultural formation. But, unfortunately, the "traditional" way is to seek the fastest way back to the mechanic routine and despise everything that reminds of the hideous experience of non-omni-control.


 5.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Morko'?

- Mörkö is an ancient Finnish word. It refers to dark, unspoken things in a community. Also often used as a name for vague childhood fears, something oppressive hiding in the dark. Also the bear, the king of the forest, is in some parts of Finland called mörkö. I cannot recall the precise inspiration for the name, we took it to ourselves by the suggestion of H.Talvenmäki in 1999. It seemed proper, even though the word is perhaps most famously used by Tove Jansson in her children's books, which actually have quite a strong atmosphere, by the way. I think this caused some people to hold an attitude against the band. But, it's a shame how shallow taste of their own language many people have. But anyway, the logic behind that attitude has always been a peculiar mystery to me. After all, we are talking about a scene which basically looks up on bands which took their names from Tolkien. And are perhaps one of the most eager marketers of the christian tradition nowadays.


 6.Has the band done any live shows or is this a studio project?

- We haven not done any live shows. I have always sensed some sort of dull dissonance between the rock gig culture and black metal.


7.The new album was distributed by  Ahdistuksen Productions, can you tell us  a little bit more about it?

- Well, Ilkka at Ahdistuksen Aihio kindly offered to distribute and promote the album. And for this, I believe I can speak on behalf of the whole band, we are very thankful to him. 

 8.Currently you are unsigned, are you looking for a label or have received any interest?

- Our two earlier albums are lacking a proper release and distribution, currently only available on cd-r, so yes, we would be very interested in finding a label to put them out in a proper way. Some offerings to release our two first demos were received some years ago, but we didn't take that chance back then. My view on that is a varying one. Also "Itsensänimeävä" is currently only released as a limited vinyl edition, so putting it simply, all our work is waiting for a proper cd release. And also vinyl releases of "III" and "IV" would be a great thing!


 9.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of  black and doom metal?

- It has been quite varied, mostly positive which is always a good thing. Quite little of entirely negative feedback. What I have heard from listeners or read from reviews the album seems to have made some sort of interesting impact. It appears to be considered somewhat on the "avant-garde" side of the genre, so it seems that our music opens up more easily to the more broad-minded and exploratory listeners of metal and progressive rock.



10.Can you tell us a little bit more about the other musical projects that some of the band members are involved with?

- The two closest bands to Mörkö are Disorder of Deadeight and Jumalhämärä. Disorder of Deadeight was the band we formed with H.Talvenmäki during the hiatus between "III" and "IV". It is tightly entangled in the same process as Mörkö, they are like the different sides of the same coin, to use a bit worn out metaphor. For interested readers, I would like to suggest listening to the album quartet "Voidkollapse/Tunnelvögel", "IV", "Depthsounder", "Itsensänimeävä". They are all quite different, but form some sort of non-linear whole. Also other combinations should be given a try. But, all not-exceedingly open-minded listeners should avoid "Do Wow That Tilt!" at all causes! All releases can be found from Bandcamp.
Of Jumalhämärä's doings I know not much. They have just released a new ep, for which I haven't yet received a chance to hear. I think one track which quite practically binds these bands together is still waiting for a release. I was collaborating with Jumalhämärä a few years ago and we made this systematic atonal track for a Hammer of Hate compilation which has been quite delayed for some reason. 
H. Kivelä is also creating new sounds in Otavan Veret. Their debut album is an astonishing piece of cosmic scale ritual ambient. H.Talvenmäki has been involved with Sink and Armon Kuilu, but I have no information about his level of participation in any of these projects nowadays. Last autumn me and Heikki were borrowed as session musicians on some of the tracks of Johannes Riisitauti's "Orajyvä" -album. That one is a highly recommended piece of black metal from the more genuinely innovative side of the genre. Meanwhile in the batcave, I am continuing my compositional  adventures with a new band called Order of the Living. We are currently producing a new album. Our first work was a short radio-play entitled "Nyarlathotep" and it can be found in Bandcamp. A proper ep release might be appropriate. I have also released a bunch of minimalistic electronic music in Mindset Archive.


 11.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

- Well, like I mentioned in the beginning the current situation of the band is quite defunctional. At the moment I am very sceptical about this line-up gathering around the same table again, but some of us might pick up the name with new ideas in the future, but that is also quite unlikely in the current light of the situation. I have been slowly developing an idea of composing a black metal "string quartet" for electric guitars. I began the writing for the text today!


12.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

- The early influences were the quite classic bands like Celtic Frost, Hellhammer, Burzum, Darkthrone, Winter, Skepticism. Later also for example Khanate and Toadliquor made a huge impact. During the time "IV" was made my main influence was just listening to differently tuned fifths and other intervals from electronic organs for hours and hours, those recordings can be found from Mindset Archive, or actually there is a link to the place where you can find them, but anyway. The main influences of "Itsensänimeävä" were some 20th century composers like Ligeti and Penderecki, RIO bands, mainly Univers Zero, and Portal.



 13.What are some of your non musical interests?

- Umm, I might be a bit of a monomaniac when it comes to using ones time. I walk quite a lot since I live some seven kilometres away from the nearby town Jyväskylä. The forest is near and I enjoy going there. I simply attend to silence more and more day by day. I do toss around philosohical and theoretical ideas, but quite often they connect back to music. I do read, music theory, philosophy, novels and some esoteric literature and cook food. Of the other fellows, I cannot really speak on their behalf, since our contacts have been few or non-existant. I hope they are well. 


14.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?

- Thank you for the interview! I hope that people will find our albums and give them some of their precious time. For all music makers and listeners I wish they stay true to their deepest essence and that they dare to continue to explore the possibilities of human condition!

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2014/05/morko-interview.html


Myrrdin/Dungeon Song/2014 EP Review

mardi 6 mai 2014 à 23:46

  Myrrdin  are  a  1  man  band  from  the  united  Kingdom  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  that  plays  a  mixture of  black  albion  metal  and  dungeon  synth  with  the  music  on  this  recording  focusing  on  the  later  and  this  is  a  review  of  his  self  released  ep  "Dungeon  Song"  which  is  also  a  34  minute  long  tack.

  Dark  ambient  synths  start  off  the  recording  and  gives  the  music  a  medieval  and  dungeon feeling  that  evokes  memories  of  old  fantasy  themes  but  done  in  a  more  raw  manner  than  the  soundtracks  for  those  films,  the  synths  also  start  utilizing  a  variety  of   many  different  sounding  keys  as  the  ep  progresses  as  well  as  adding   in  background  nature  sounds  at  times  and  the  song  is  divided  into  3  different  movements  and  also  has  a  neo  classical  feeling  at  times  along  with  some  influences  of  the  early  dungeon  synth  artists  and  Burzum's  later  ambient  albums.

  Myrrdin  brings  in  a  very  great  sounding  approach  to  dungeon  synth  with  the  music  being  all  instrumental  and  serving  as  a  perfect  tribute  to  the  early  Mortiss  album's,  the  production  is  very  dark  and  epic  sounding  with  only  one  track  being  on  the  whole  entire  album.

  in  my  opinion  this  is  a  very  great  sounding  recording  from  Myrrdin  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  dungeon  synth,  you  should  check  out  this  ep.  8/5  out  of  10.

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2014/05/myrrdindungeon-song2014-ep-review.html


Countess Interview

mardi 6 mai 2014 à 21:49
1.Can you give us an update on what has been going on with the band since the recording and release of the new album?

After the recording of the new album, we got an offer to play at UTBS this year. We discussed this and decided to give it a go. So we have been looking for new members to join us so we can play live again. We have more or less completed this process and we’re rehearsing pretty hard now. Also, we’re working on a new official website that should be launched in the near future.


2.Recently you have released a new album, how would you describe the musical sound of the new recording and also how does it differ from the stuff you have released in the past?

It’s not all that different from previous releases stylistically, I think. Our sound has been gradually incorporating more traditional metal influences through the years and that evolution more or less reached its zenith on the previous album. On the new one, traditional influences are still very prominent, but at the same time there’s also some more old-fashioned stuff. There’s a lot of variety on the new record, all the songs are very distinct from each other. The biggest differences between the new album and the ones preceding it are the presence of Zagan and the production. We tried some new techniques and we’re rather pleased with the way the record sounds. It sounds very old-fashioned; no modern heavily compressed wall-of-guitars-sound but a sound where you can hear everything clearly.


3.You where one of the first bands to use the tag 'orthodox black metal' what are your thoughts on the bands that have taken that label over the years?

Actually, as far as I know we were the first band to use that tag, back in 1994. What we meant with that tag was: black metal loyal in style to the originators. Black metal true to the black metal ‘canon’ so to speak, as established by – first and foremost – Venom, Hellhammer and Bathory. We meant ‘orthodox’ in a literal sense, meaning ‘strict’ and ‘uncompromising’. When we started using the tag we mainly did so to set ourselves apart from all the new bands that were everywhere at the time, the so-called ‘second wave’ bands who played music that sounded like grindcore without bass and they called that ‘black metal’. We didn’t think that was black metal. It most definitely wasn’t metal. We were playing black metal the way we felt it should be played, hence the ‘orthodox’.
I know that there are now bands who are calling themselves ‘orthodox black metal’ where the ‘orthodox’ applies to the lyrical content and not to the musical style. I don’t have an opinion on that really, but it does appear they mean something different by ‘orthodox black metal’ than what we originally meant by it.

4.Can you tell us a little bit more about the lyrical topics and subjects the band explores with the new release?

‘Battle Sky’ describes the descent of the valkyries on the battlefield after the battle; ‘Burn The Throne’ is basically a story about overthrowing a monarch, ‘Cursed Seed Of Aten’ deals with the origins of monotheism and ‘Pray For The Cult’ is a typical hymn to metal itself. All the other songs deal with a desire to return to ways of yore, in one way or another.


5.The band has been around since the early 90's, what is it that motivates you to keep going after all of these years?

Well, I still feel like writing and playing metal. It’s as simple as that.


6.Even though the band started up with a full line up the project was solo for many years, what was the decision behind bringing back a full line up after all of these days?

Well, it wasn’t really a conscious decision. I was talking to Zagan in early 2013 and we both felt it would be cool to start playing together again. So we did, just the two of us, playing with a backing track (with drums and keys). Initially, we didn’t plan on anything; really, we just played songs we both like. But this went well and one thing led to another. We recorded some of these old songs again and released them as the ‘Sermons Of The Infidel’ EP; then we did the new album. When we got the offer to play at UTBS this year, we thought, well, why not? And of course, you need a full line-up to be able to play live. Another reason I was open to the idea of working with other people again was that I felt I had more or less reached the limits of what I could do on my own. The previous album ‘On Wings Of Defiance’ was all right, but it wasn’t really a step forward anymore from the one preceding it, ‘Burning Scripture’.


7.What are some of the best shows that the band has played over the years and also how would you describe your stage performance?

It’s a long time ago we played live; our last gig was back in 1997. Some of our best gigs were probably the ones we played in Germany; where the crowds were really into the music. You know, they weren’t just banging their heads but they were singing along as well. Especially the gig in Berlin in 1997 was really cool. As for our stage performance, most of the time it was pretty basic. In the early days we played with face paint a few times and in 1996 we experimented with somewhat elaborate costumes but we quickly tired of that. We felt a live show should be first and foremost about the music. So our shows were mostly pretty basic as far as stage performance went. We just played the songs, as powerful and energetic as possible.


8.Do you have any touring or show plans for the new release?

Currently we have two shows scheduled at festivals; Veneration Of The Dead in Rotterdam on May 25 and UTBS on July 5. We’ve been getting a lot of offers for shows recently, though. We’re currently considering these, so there may be more to come later this year.


9.The last few albums have came out on Barbarian Wrath, how would you compare working with this label to the other ones that you where a part of in the past?

Actually, all our full-length albums except the first one (which was essentially self-released) have been released by Barabarian Wrath and its predecessor, Nazgul’s Eyrie Productions, so we really can’t compare.


10.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your newer music by fans of black metal?

Both good and bad. We’ve always been a ‘love it or hate it’ band. This hasn’t changed in over two decades. Response to the newer stuff has also been divided. Some BM fans dislike it because it doesn’t sound like modern BM while others really appreciate it because it’s really metal.


11.Where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

I’m not completely sure, but we’ll probably go further down the same road we’ve been on for a while now. We’re always open to new ideas, though, so there may be some interesting twists and turns coming up. We don’t have any plans or concepts for the next record in place at the moment, since our newest record was only just released. We’re focused on returning to the stage right now.


12.What are some of the bands or musical styles that have had an influence on your newer music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

Our influences haven’t really changed over the past two decades. The main influences have always been first-wave BM and traditional metal, mostly NWOBHM and US epic. Gradually, the traditional influences have become more prominent; however, on the new album there are still plenty of first-wave BM influences as well. My listening habits haven’t really changed over the past two decades either: the influences I mentioned aside, I also enjoy good DM bands like Unleashed and Amon Amarth; metal bands that push the boundaries of metal while still being metal such as Therion and Blind Guardian, but also folky music like Loreena McKennitt and Blackmore’s Night and Irish folky punk like The Pogues and Dropkick Murphys. I also dig classical music; romantic stuff but mainly baroque.


13.How would you describe your views on Satanism and Occultism?

I have certain beliefs and these are, obviously, reflected in my music. Not always in a literal sense, though. And although I am expressing feelings and thoughts and ideas – as any ‘artist’ does, I suppose – I’m certainly not preaching or proselytizing or promoting any kind of ideology. I prefer not to go into detail as far as this subject is concerned. People who are interested in Countess should just listen to the music and read the lyrics – or not, if they don’t feel like it – and interpret the songs for themselves. That being said, I would not mind if my music would entice listeners to think and maybe look at things from a perspective they normally would not have looked from.


14.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?

Thanks to you for the interview. Keep the flame of real metal burning!!!

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2014/05/countess-interview.html


Tenebrositas/Embraced By The All Devouring Void/2014 Full Length Review

lundi 5 mai 2014 à 08:37

  Tenebrositas  are  a  1  man  band  from  Croatia  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  and  plays  a  very  dark,  old  school  and  raw  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  his  self  released  2014  album  "Embraced  By  The  All  Devouring  Void".

  Bell  sounds  start  off  the  album  and  bring  in  a  very  dark  and  ritualistic  feeling  to  the  recording  along  with  some  more  clean  yet  musical  sounds  a  few  seconds  later  and  after  the  intro  the  music  starts  going  for  a  more  fast  and  raw  black  metal  direction  along  with  blast  beats  and  high  pitched  grim  screams.

  Just  like  with  the  previous  recording  the  music  on  the  new  album  sticks  to  the  early  90's  sound  of  European  black  metal  and  their  is  also  a  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  throughout  the  recording  as  well  as  a  good  mixture  of  both  Norwegian  and  Finnish  metal  metal  influences  from  the  earlier  days  of  the second  wave.

  The  old  school  black  metal  sound  dominates  the  album  from  beginning  to  end  of  the recording  with  the  music  being  very  dark,  raw  and  emotional  sounding  as  well  as  evoking  a  hateful  atmosphere  and  the  music  is  so  heavily  rooted  in  the 90's  sound  to  the  point  where  if  you  where  hearing  this  album  and  had  no  knowledge  who  was  doing  the  music  you  would  probably  think  you  where  listening  to  an  underrated  album  from  92  and  th e album  closes  with  some  clean  guitars.

  Tenebrositas  remains  true  to  his  old  school  black  metal  sound  and  stays  away  from  any  3rd  or  4th  wave  black  metal  sounds  with  his  music  and  sticks  to  a  truer  black  metal  direction,  the production  is  very  dark,  raw  and  old  school  sounding  and  the  lyrics  cover  darkness  and  sorrow  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  album  from  Tenebrositas  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  raw  and  old  school  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  recording.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Slavery,  Torment  And  Death"  "Forlorn  Path  to  Obscurity"  and  "To  Dwell  Among  The  Spectors".  8  out  of  10.



    

Source : http://occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.com/2014/05/tenebrositasembraced-by-all-devouring.html