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Greytomb/Monumental Microcosm/Transcending Obscurity Records/2017 EP Review

mercredi 11 octobre 2017 à 20:50

  Greytomb  are  a  band  from  Australia  that plays  an  atmospheric  form  of  post  black  metal  with  some  dsbm  elements  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2017  ep  "Monumental  Microcosm"  which  will  be  released  in  December  by  Transcending  Obscurity  Records.

  Dark  yet  melodic  riffing  starts  off  the  ep  along  with  some  deep  yet  grim  black  metal  screams  and  drum  beats  a  few  seconds  later  while  all  of  the  musical  instruments  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  and  when  guitar  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  are  done  in  a  very  dissonant  fashion.

  When  the  music  speeds  up  a  great  amount  of  blast  beats  and  tremolo  picking  can  be  heard  which  also  gives  the  songs  more  of  a  raw  feeling  along  with  the  vocals  also  getting  more  high  pitched  and  depressive  sounding  while  the  songs  also  bring  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  as  well  as  some  clean  singing  that  is  than  in  more  of  a  dark  and  grim  fashion  and  all  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length.

  Greytomb  plays  a  musical  style  that  takes  the  post,  atmospheric,  depressive  and  modern  forms  of  black  metal  and  mixes  them  together  to  create  a  sound  of  their  own,  the  production  sounds  very  raw  and  heavy  while  the  lyrics  cover  states  of  consciousness,  nihilism,  and  metaphysical  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Greytomb  are  a  very  great  sounding  atmospheric  black  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  ep.  RECOMMENDED  TRACK  "Antimeta".  8  out  of  10.

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Hvile I Khaos Interview

mercredi 11 octobre 2017 à 06:15
1.Can you give us an update on what is going on with the musical project these days?

Hvile I Kaos in 2017 is easily the strongest it’s ever been. I brought it back from an extended haitus with two EPs, Beholden: Thy Olde Birch Gibbet and the Cellistic Black Metal Tyranny split with Angmar. Now with a fresh live lineup and several live rituals under our belt, we’re ready to confront the world with Agios O Fotiá.

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

In the past everything on recording was pretty scripted and through-composed. Always extremely symmetrical in the way the phrases were divided. The new material has a much more organic flow to it. The writing process allows for more spontaneity, and just some generally weirder sounds. Also, the incorporation of acoustic guitar and bass as a rhythm section is still a fairly recent development. The early EPs from 2013/2014 didn’t have that.

3.You label your music as 'cellistic black metal', can you tell us a little bit more about this term?

In essence, Cellistic Black Metal is a descriptor for Black Metal with the cello as its primary foundational instrument. Of course this does not mean other instruments can’t be used. I’ve taken to recording acoustic guitar and bass for rhythmic support on the more recent releases, and live Hvile I Kaos also features violin playing the lead melodies. But the cello is always the foundation.

4.So far your music has been instrumental and avoids the traditional instruments found in black metal, can you tell us a little bit more about taking this musical direction?

I feel like a true musician shouldn’t need to use lyrics as a crutch to communicate a message. Of course this doesn’t discount the value of great lyrics or libretto applied to music. But the music itself be able to stand on its own as a communicative tool.

5.On the albums you record everything by yourself, would you be open to working with a full band on the recordings?

Not at the moment. At this point I’ve kind of just embraced how much of a control freak I am when it comes to my own music. When I’ve been in other bands I’d show up with a song I’d written more or less complete, and then it would get altered by the rest of the band and I’d get pretty bent out of shape over that. I always have something super specific in mind when I write something of my own. I don’t like that being fucked with. I’m just an asshole like that.

Of course, when it comes to the full band I’ve assembled for Hvile I Kaos, their own creativity is expressed on the live front. There are some long sections of improvisation in a few of the pieces we perform, and if a member has an idea for how to do something differently live, I’m by no means opposed to that. I’m of the mindset that the live experience is fundamentally different from the studio recording. That should be exploited to its fullest extent.

6.What are some of the best shows that the live line up has played and also how would you describe your stage performance?

Our live performances are rituals in a very real sense. We play around an evocation triangle with lit candles, and transfer our energy towards the triangle via the music, and then out towards the audience. When performed correctly, a gateway is opened.

Every live ritual we’ve done has been special in its own right. So far my favorite of 2017 would be our date at the Regal Inn in Lakewood with Valkyrium. The energy there was really special.

7.Do you have any touring or show plans for the future?

We do have some live rituals lined up for 2018, which will stay undisclosed for the time being. Touring will come when it makes sense for us.

8.On the first ep you had done a 'Dissection' cover, what was the decision behind doing your own version of one of their songs?

Jon Nodtveidt and Dissection were a primary influence of mine to form Hvile I Kaos. The band name actually translates directly to “Rest in Chaos”, a term often used in reference to Jon. It seemed only fitting to acknowledge that influence on the eponymous debut EP.

9.You have also been a part of splits with 'Northsong' and 'Angmar', what are your thoughts on the other bands that had participated on the recordings?

Both of those artists are two extremely valued colleagues of mine. Northsong was one of the first projects I ever got in touch with during the earliest days of my involvement in the scene. I always thought Cortland’s music had a really special atmosphere. Before that split came out I actually appeared as a session musician on Northsong’s “The Final Journey” album.

Angmar is the only other project in existence (to my knowledge at least) to ascribes to the term Cellistic Black Metal. Cameron’s take on the genre, and how to use the cello in a Black Metal context, is pretty distinct from my own, which I appreciate. He and I have exchanged a lot of ideas on music and other matters over the years.

10.The new album was released on 'Deathwave Nexion', a label that also releases occult books, can you tell us a little bit more about this label?

The working relationship between Hvile I Kaos and Deathwave Nexion has been fantastic. Both are comprised entirely of individuals who prize integrity over commercial appeal. They exclusively sign artists and writers whose work pertains to the more abstract truths that dwell beneath the surface. I’m glad to work with people whose goals are complimentary to my own.

11.On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black metal and other forms of underground music?

Hard to say. A lot of people don’t really know what to make of a project like Hvile I Kaos. I’m always happy and grateful for those who are able to really get into it. Or at least appreciate it on an aesthetic level.

12.Where do you see yourself heading into as a musician in the future?

Hopefully doing things I’m not capable of delivering at this point in my life. I’m constantly trying to push myself and put myself in environments that challenge me, both in terms of playing and composition. I still kind of feel like I’m just scratching the surface.

13.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?

I didn’t make any deliberate effort to mimic any existing artist or style on Agios O Fotiá. I focused primarily on the spiritual significance of everything I was writing and kind of just let the music happen.

That said, classic Melodic Black Metal has always been a staple of the Hvile I Kaos sound. Dissection, Vinterland, Sacramentum, stuff like that. Also occult rock like The Devil’s Blood, In Solitude, Jess and the Ancient Ones. My latest obsession might just be the new Grave Pleasures album, that’s got a fantastic groove to it. Within the last year or two I’ve gotten super into the whole Orthodox Black Metal thing. Deathspell Omega, VI, Acherontas, Amestigon, etc.

As far as string playing and writing influences are concerned, obviously Apocalyptica opened the door for me to use the cello the way I do. I go back to that influence a lot. I enjoy the work of cellists like Zoe Keating, Matthew Schoening, and Maya Beiser who use the instrument in genre-bending ways. A lot of people tell me my music has a folky vibe to it. I really can’t claim any authentic folk influence in the way I write. However, I do enjoy the work of fiddlers and folk artists like Annbjorg Lien, Frigg, and Alasdair Fraser/Natalie Haas quite a bit. Maybe that’s rubbed off on me, who knows.

14.How would you describe your views on Occultism and The Left Hand Path?

The Left Hand Path certainly is not for everyone. It’s something that by default mandates confronting and embracing everything we’ve ever been conditioned to fear by civilization at large. Having the blinders ripped off can be quite traumatic. However, for those select few suited for it, the road less traveled by can be the most rewarding continuous experience imaginable. And the most punishing.

Concerning occultism, well, there’s a lot of bullshit out there. Finding the gold nuggets often requires panning through the muck. My own personal litmus test for whether or not I consider legitimate a system of occult thought and practice is twofold. Primarily, I seek tools to empower the individual rather than fear-riddled mechanisms of superstation and subjugation. Within that framework, I generally look for patterns, overlapping archetypes and concepts that compliment one another. Connecting the dots to help me reach my goals.

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

The greatest and clearest facilitator of evolution is suffering. Rise up and Become.

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Khandra/All Is Of No Avail/2017 EP Review

mercredi 11 octobre 2017 à 04:55

  Khandra  are  a  duo  from  Belarus  that  plays  a  very  raw  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  self  released  2017  ep  "All  Id  Of  No  Avail".

  Melodic  guitar  leads  start  off  the  ep  before  going  into  a  very  fast  and  raw  musical  direction  which  also  uses  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  blast  beats  while  also  bringing  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  along  with  the  vocals  being  mostly grim  black  metal  screams.

  A  great  amount  of  melody  can  be  heard  in  the  guitar  riffing  while  the  music  also  mixes  in  a  touch  of  the  modern  atmospheric  style  as  well  as  mixing  it  in  with  the  rawness  of  the  second  wave  style,  both  of  the  tracks  are  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  also  bring  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts.

  Khranda  plays  a  style  of  black  metal  that  is  very  raw,  modern  and  melodic  sounding,  the  production  sounds  very  heavy  and  raw  while  the  lyrics  cover  darkness,  death  and  dying  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Khranda  are  a  very  great  sounding  raw  and  melodic  black  metal  duo  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  ep.  RECOMMENDED  TRACK  "Where  Death  Has  Settled  In  Life".  8  out  of   10.

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Nekrasov/The Mirror Void/Prosthetic Records/2017 CD Review

mercredi 11 octobre 2017 à 04:25

  Australia's  Nekrasov  have  returned  with  a  new  recording  with  the  music  being  a  mixture  of  atmospheric  black  metal  and  power  electronics  and  this  is  a  review  of  his  2017  album  "The  Mirror  Void  which  will  be  released  in  November  by  Prosthetic  Records.

  Distorted  power  electronics  start  off  the  album  along  with  some  heavy  riffing  a  few  seconds  later  while  the  guitar  solos  and  leads  when  they  are  utilized  are  done  in  a  very  dark  and  melodic  fashion  as  well  as  most  of  the  tracks  being  very  long  and  epic  in  length  and  after  awhile  grim  yet  high  pitched  black  metal  screams  are  added  onto  the  recording.

  When  tremolo  picking  is  utilized  it  gives  the  music  more  of  a  raw  feeling  while  atmospheric  synths  are  also  added  into  certain  sections  of  the  recording  along  with  some  elements  of  dark  ambient  and  the  music  also  mixes  harsh  noise  with  black  metal  at  times  as  well  as  the  faster  sections  of  the  songs  also  bringing  in  a  decent  amount  of  blast  beats  and  there  is  also  some  instruments  that  are  done  in  more  of  an  experimental  and  avant  garde  style,  female  vocals  can  also  be  heard  briefly.

  On  this  recording  Nekrasov  focuses  more  on  a  raw  mixture  of  black  metal  and  power  electronics  on  this  recording  to  create  something  different  from  previous  releases,  the  production  sounds  very  dark  and  raw  while  the  lyrics  cover  negative  themes  with  a  touch  of  Lovecraftian  vault.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Nekrasov  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  black  metal  and  power  electronics,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Whatever  Pleases  You,  Keeps  You  Back  "The  Ignorance  Of  the  5  Elements"  and  "Boils  And  Fevers  Clear  The  Body  Of  Impurities".  8  out  of  10. 

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Aisuragua/El Arte De Orfeo/Merdumgiriz/2017 CD Review

mardi 10 octobre 2017 à 04:51

  Aisuragua  are  a  solo  project  from  Spain  that  originally  started  out  more  in  a  raw  and  depressive  black  metal  style  but  on  this  recording  goes  into  more  of  a  mixture  of  neo-classical  and  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  his  2017  album  "El  Arte  De  Orfeo"  which  was  released by  Merdumgiriz.

  Stringed  instruments  start  off  the  album  along  with  some  organs  and  woodwinds  a  few  seconds  later  which  also  gives  the  music  more  of  a  militant  feeling  while  all  of  the  music  is  instrumental  along  with  some  symphonic  and  neo-classical  elements  also  being  utilized  quite  a  bit  throughout the  recording.

  A  lot  of  the  atmosphere  you  can  expect  from  more  of  an  epic  keyboard  orientated  black  metal  album  can  be  heard  in  the  music  at  times  while  nature  sounds  are  also  used  briefly  along  with  the  music  also  mixing  in  elements  of  ambient  and  most  of  the  songs  also  sound  very  different  from each  other.

  On  this  recording  Aisuragua  move  away  from  a  depressive  black metal  style  and  go  for  more  of  a  neo  classical  and  black  ambient  mixture  while  also  keeping  everything  instrumental  and  the  production  sounds  very  dark.

  In  my  opinion  Aisuragua  are  a  very  great  sounding  mixture  of  neo-classical  and  black  ambient  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  those  musical  genres,  you  should  check  out  this  solo  project.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "El  Bosque  Y  La  Ninfa"  "Carabasis"  and  "La  Constelacion  De  La  Lira".  8  out  of  10.

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