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Nordjevel/Necrogenesis/Osmose Productions/2019 CD Review

jeudi 14 février 2019 à 05:09

  Nordjevel  are  a  band  from  Norway  that  plays  a  very  fast  and  aggressive  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2019  album  "Necrogenesis"  which  will  be  released  in  March  by  Osmose  Productions.

  A  very  fast  and  raw  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  brutal  sounding  blast  beats.  Vocals  are  mostly  high  pitched  black  metal  screams  while  the  riffs  also  add  in  a  decent  amount  of  melody  as  well  as  the  music  also  bringing  in  a  more  modern  Norwegian  style.

  All  of  the  musical  instruments  on  the  recording  have  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them  along  with  the  songs  also  adding  in  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts.  When  guitar  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  are  done  in  a  very  chaotic  yet  melodic  style  and  the  fast  riffs  also  capturing  the  aggression  of  the  mid  90's  era.

   On  one  of  the  tracks  clean  guitars  are  also  introduced  onto  the  recording  briefly  as  well  as  one  song  also  adding  in  spoken  word  parts.  Atmospheric  elements  can  also  be  heard  as  the  album  progresses  while  keeping  the  main  focus  more  on  an  aggressive  style  and  there  is  also  a  brief  use  of  melodic  chants  on  one  song,  the  closing  track  is  very  long  and  epic  in  length.  The  production  sounds  very  professional  while  the  lyrics  cover  darkness,  self  destruction,  nature  and  anti  religion  themes.

  In  my  opinion  Nordjevel  are  a  very  great  sounding  fast  and  aggressive  black  metal  band  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  this  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out  this  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Sunset  Glow"  "Black  Lights  From  The  Void"  "Nazarene  Necrophilia"  and  "Panzerengel".  8 out  of  10.


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Neanderthalensis Interview

jeudi 14 février 2019 à 03:08
1.For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the musical project?
Neanderthalensis is a single-member black metal project. It started out as an outlet for the more atmospheric riffs I would write when I was in d-beat crust bands, powerviolence bands, death metal bands, and grindcore bands. It doesn't take many influences from these genres, so these riffs were set aside for a couple years until most of my other projects dissolved, and all I had left were the riffs on Rain Over Scorched Earth. I am primarily a drummer, but all the drums are programmed, and the guitars were recorded simply in my bedroom using pedals I built myself on breadboards. There's no amp for the guitars, just custom circuits direct to my laptop soundcard. Neanderthalensis will be my primary artistic outlet for the foreseeable future.

2.So far you have released one album, can you tell us a little bit more about the musical style you went for on the recording?
Growing up on the west coast of USA, I listened strictly to grindcore bands like Pig Destroyer and Brutal Truth and d-beat crust bands like Skitsystem and Martyrdöd, but I started getting heavily into dark Bay Area blackened crust bands like Akatharsia and Negative Standards. That facilitated my love of Norwegian black metal like Darkthrone, pre-Gaahl Gorgoroth, Emperor, Burzum, Enslaved, etc. and great USBM acts like Weakling, Inter Arma, and False, but all the black metal I would see live were cascadian acts heavily influenced by Wolves In the Throne Room. This made me interested in atmospheric black metal in general with bands like Velvet Cacoon, Void Omnia, and especially Paysage D'Hiver. I also really like Sunn O))), Hell, Thou, Dispirit, and other doom sludge acts.

3.In your lyrics I can see references to politics, Occultism and Social Darwinism, can you tell us a little bit more about your interest in these topics?
I used to hate politics in black metal lyrics, because as a nihilistic artform it shouldn't tell people what to do. But when I became nihilistic towards my nihilism, I just write lyrics that mean something to me, something I want to scream at people without worrying about how kvlt the lyrics are, and I put the meaning of the song in the title for minimal ambiguity. Claim Your Only Life is a song about being a rebel and a recognition of the various forces that are actively trying to control people for other people's benefit, and that if you do nothing about it, those forces will win. Pity Is the Worst Thing You Can Give Someone is a poetic exploration of why I refuse to feel sorry for someone who is strong enough to take control of their lives, because when you begin to feel pity for someone, you have recognized their incapability and weakness. The song describes someone who does deserve your pity, and he may remind you of yourself because it's easy to resign yourself to weakness and pity, but do so at your own peril. Take Your Fists and Make Your Life is me venting frustration at people's inability to accurately acknowledge the forces tearing apart their self-determination. The Social Darwinism reference is a recognition that those who conform to the Capitalist system acquire the most money and therefore claim more of the benefits of society's productivity in a "survival of the most deranged" scenario.

4.What is the meaning and inspiration behind the name 'Neanderthalensis'?
Neanderthalensis is the specific epithet for the taxon Homo neanderthalensis, which represents the well-known "Neanderthals". The name should hearken back to a time before concentrated power, to a dark and mysterious world where virtually no truths are known, when hominids lived alongside wild beasts of the Earth yet did not dominate landscapes, before society told people what proper conduct looks like, what people "are supposed to do". Its a landscape where self-expression is instant, unabashed, and unique to the life experience of the person. Neanderthalensis is banging clubs against an ancient tree trunk, it is a melody of bones clacking against bones, a howl from a mountaintop after a glorious hunt that nearly killed you, an expressive gesture without explanation. Neanderthalensis means doing what you are compelled to do as an individual without a society full of biases and assumptions telling you that what you are doing does not appeal to their sense of proper aesthetics.

5.Can you tell us a little bit more about the artwork that is presented on the album cover?
Just after I left California, the 2018 Camp Fire burned down my home town, and all my best friends houses including my family's houses, and the album is dedicated to the Camp Fire. The picture is a photograph I received from the California Native Plant Society showing the desolate landscape after the Carr fire burned an entire mountainside to an ash heap. The name Rain Over Scorched Earth represents the cycle of life and death, and that tragedy is around the corner for everyone but strong people learn from their mistakes and move one with the next phase, and weak people drown in pity while the rest of the world takes the rain and rebuilds their lives in fertile scorched soil.

6.Originally your from the United States but recently located to Germany, can you tell us a little bit more about the move?
I am a botanist, and I am in Germany getting a Master's a degree at Ludwig-Maximilans Universität München. It would cost considerably more money to get my Master's degree in California because Germany has no tuition for universities, and I already have about $20,000 in student loan debt and I don't want to get any more. That's pretty much it: cheap school, great quality of instruction, great living standards, no Trump and people talking about Trump, and most importantly adventure.

7.On the album you recorded everything by yourself, are you open to working with other musicians or do you prefer to work solo?
This was my first solo project, and I greatly enjoyed the lack of pressure to quickly write music, and that I could take time to compose and craft the music. That being said, I would love to play the songs live and collaborate with other musicians in a non-solo project. That may or may not happen in the future, but I would be open to it for sure. It probably would not be Neanderthalensis though, I think I want to keep it as an outlet for atmospheric musings.

8.Recently 'Corpse Torture Records' released the album on cassette, can you tell us a little bit more about this label?
Corpse Torture Records is a small label that makes ultra-limited productions of music that inspires the guy who runs it. He asked me if he could print cassettes of Neanderthalensis, and I gave full permission. We don't have a contract or a deal, I don't get paid, he barely makes money, it's a private distro that supports bands he likes with exposure. It's just to get the name out there.

9.On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your music by fans of atmospheric black metal?
I honestly don't know. Some people have really liked it according to comments on blogs and Youtube. I haven't heard any negative criticism of it yet, but it is still pretty underground. Half the comments are in English, and the other half are in Russian, so I suppose that those are the two biggest realms where it is receiving attention.

10.Where do you see yourself heading into as a musician in the future?
I want to start a d-beat crust band in Germany, and Neanderthalensis will continue to get more atmospheric. I want the next recording to have significant ambient themes truncated with bursts of life and energy. The future is wide-open at this point, so I don't really have a well-defined path forward. I'm just doing what I am compelled to do.

11.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?
I think I mostly answered this on the second question. The top five most influential bands for Neanderthalensis would be Weakling, Burzum, Wolves In the Throne Room, Paysage d'Hiver, and Velvet Cacoon. Five things I'm currently listening to are Sutekh Hexen, Nordlicht, all things from Gilead media, Halshug, and A Diadem of Dead Stars.

12.What are some of your non musical interests?
Foraging wild food, anarchist political theory, tabletop RPG, forest pathology research, and smoking too much weed.

13.Before we wrap up this interview, do you have any final words or thoughts?
Thanks for the exposure and the review, I've loved your blog for months now, and maybe we can do this again after the next release.

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Dhul-Qarnayn/Jilwah/Shaytan Productions/2008 CD Review

mercredi 13 février 2019 à 06:19

  Dhul-Qarnayn  are  a  solo  project  from  Bahrain  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  and  on  this  recording  moved  away  from  his  black  metal  style  to  go  into  more  of  a  dark  ambient  direction  and  this  is  a  review  of  his  2008  single  "Jilwah"  which  was  released  by  Shaytan  Productions.

  A  percussion  orientated  instrument  starts  off  the  single  along  with  some  dark  ambient  synths  and  spoken  word  parts  a  few  seconds  later  which  are  samples  from  Aliester  Crowley.  The  track  is  also  over  27  minutes  in  length.  As  the  track  progresses  the  music  starts  getting  more  diverse  as  well  as  capturing  an  occult  atmosphere.

 Ethnic  style  instruments  are  also  brought  into  the  music  at  times  along  with  some  melodic  chants  are  also  added  into  certain  sections  of  the  recording.  Nature,  rain  and  thunder  sounds  can  also  be  hear  briefly  and  the  production  sounds  very  dark.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Dhul-Qarnayn  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  ritualistic  dark  ambient,  you  should  check  out  this  single.  8/5  out  of  10.

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Armagedda/The Final War Approaching/Nordvis Produktion/2019 CD Re-Issue Review

mercredi 13 février 2019 à 03:55

  Armagedda  where  a  band  from  Sweden  that  has  had  music  reviewed  before  in  this  zine  and  played  a  very  raw  and  traditional  form  of  black  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2002  album  "The  Final  War  Approaching"  which  will  be  re-issued  in  March  by  Nordvis  Produktion.

  A  very  fast  and  raw  sound  starts  off  the  album  along  with  a  great  amount  of  tremolo  picking  and  blast  beats.  When  guitar  solos  and  leads  are  utilized  they  are  also  done  in  a  very  raw  and  melodic  style  along  with  the  vocals  being  mostly  grim  black  metal  screams  and  a  couple  of  the  tracks  are  long  and  epic  in  length.

  Throughout  the  recording  you  can  also  hear  a  great  mixture  of  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  parts.  Dark  sounding  melodies  can  also  be  heard  in  some  of  the  guitar  riffing  while  the  music  is  done  in  the  very  raw  and  traditional  style  that  was  very  common  in  the  mid  90's  and  early  2000's.

  As  the  album  a  brief  use  of  clean  yet  distorted  playing  can  also  be  heard  as  well  as  all  of  the  musical  instruments  having  a  very  powerful  sound  to  them and  the  music  is  a  lot  more  aggressive  than  most  of  the  bands  from  Sweden.  The  production  sounds  very  dark  and  raw  while  the  lyrics  cover  occultism,  darkness,  and  anti  Christianity  themes.

  In  my  opinion  this  was  a  very  great  sounding  recording  from  Armagedda  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  old  school  black  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  re-issue.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Sign  Of  Evil"  "Unholy  Sacrifice"  and  "My  Eternal  Journey".  8  out  of  10. 

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Tempestarri Interview

mercredi 13 février 2019 à 02:25

1.Can you give us an update on what is going on with the band these days?

Tempestarii has been working to create a new record and material for a split over the last year or so. The new full-length album was recorded once and then deleted, as we continue to hone our sound we have become more and more particular about what the concept of this project demands.

Last year Tempestarii played in Austin, Texas' Red River Family Fest which was an honor and allowed us to bring our ritual to the right venue and under the proper circumstances. Our belief is that black metal needs a venue more than a bar lit by neon beer signs. This means that concerts are are held in pure darkness or otherwise by candlelight. Red River is an incredibly well curated event.

There seems to be an antiquated idea that bands need to tour mercilessly and “pay their dues”. Why prescribe to that? Why not only play shows we are asked to and under the right circumstances. Maybe that makes one seem pretentious to some, but it’s our path to walk, right or wrong.

2.So far you have released 2 demos and one full length, how would you describe your musical progress from the first demo to current album?

The first Tempestarii demo was of more raw black metal, made under a set of isolatory circumstances. Over time more elements were added to go along with the intentions of the project. The name Tempestarii was asking something more, and the atmosphere began to take shape over time with the help of close conspirators.

The storm that is Temple of Skies features aspects that some would call experimental but I see the sound as something different. Instead of a raw black metal sound that seems to be in vogue at the moment, the sound took shape and featured elements of depressive black metal, the Finnish school as well as our brothers in Mexico and Canada that have perfected the art. Black metal is something that everyone must interpret on their own. It’s not as though one can use make a bedroom project a successful entity without putting a deep part of themselves into it and have it stand apart from the many greats that dominate the style.

There’s generally too much black metal out there, so when one develops their own  language, those that understand it take notice.

3. From 2005 to 2015 there was no music being released, can you tell us a little bit more about what was going on during that time frame?

Tempestarii began in a different form in 2011 under the name IX, which converged from several different projects before this. The internet likes to make up facts and other bullshit so I’m not sure why this continues to come up. So in finality, the Triumph of Spears demo was not recorded or released in 2005.

4.Some of your lyrics have a metaphysical or Gnostic touch to them, can you tell us a little bit more about the songwriting?

The intentions behind the first album were to create a gateway to another realm.

Escapism and inwardness seem to be a running theme in black metal. The temple of skies is our way to inspire inward ritual. Whether that means listening in solitaire or in darkness at a show. My theories on what that may be in store for humanity are probably of little interest, so briefly, there is no value in Christian ideology, or any set of beliefs as instead it is worth questioning all aspects of reality for one self. Humanity is heading towards something, albeit it’s not possible to say what that is, but using a set of imposed beliefs to change the future cannot work.

The next album is titled Chaos At Feast and alludes to the cover of the previous album while the new record will be companion to the last.

Perhaps these are gnostic ideas at work but the best way to explain our trajectory is that of leaving this world behind. It’s the classic inwardness that black metal has always had, but also the focus that the innovators of black metal seem to have. Hatred for the outside, and enough retaliation to fend off those that oppose.

Mankind is certainly on a trajectory towards something interesting. Everyone seems to have an opinion but nothing to do about it. We’ve heard our lyrics described as psychedelic and that can be summed up in our efforts to induce trance, dissolve ego, and pass into dusk with grace. In the end, all you have is humility. Certainly there are some that confuse this with pride, and will end up embarrassing themselves in the social media movement.

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

Tempestarii were witches known as the caller of the storms. Thus the name is both an illusion to the destructive elements of the nature of reality and also a tribute to the guitarist of the mighty BLASPHEMY. The name, since dawning it, has helped shape our world and how to navigate it. I think we have more in touch with war metal than the typical atmospheric black bands.

6.Can you tell us a little bit more about the artwork that was presented on the last album cover?

The image there is from Scythian artisans,  one that haunted me for years. It represents the sacrament we undergo to reach ecstatic states of being. It’s a violent death being depicted and I believe that it shows the ruthlessness of nature and of ego-dissolving materials.

7.The band is from Idaho, a state not very well known for many black metal bands, do you feel you really stand out musically among most of the other bands that reside in the same state?

This is another misnomer, I have lived among many places in North America, though the band rehearses in Idaho, and is from various places as well. Idaho should be known for extreme music as bands like WOLVSERPENT had existed there and paved the way for all originating there.

8.Very little is known about the band members, do you feel it is better to remain anonymous and let the music do the talking?

As described before, there no interest in making a Facebook page or trying to hawk merch to people. It’s an experience only for catharsis. The music is made for a very selfish purpose. It’s more important than having a following of fickle believers. The hope is that real fans of this kind of music will judge us. If you want to find us, anything is possible in this digital world, yet the concept of knowing which people are involved, and their roles, will not bring further satisfaction to the listener.

9.What are some of the best shows that the band has played so far and also how would you describe your stage performance?

Of course playing in darkness and by candlelight is the wish for the spectator to witness. We cannot control every aspect of a show though, thus we ask for promoters to better understand the wishes of the artists. It’s not under all circumstances that a traditional black metal show can take place, so for those patient enough and imbibed at the time, you’ll be rewarded.

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

We will be touring outside of the United States and playing a festival at the end of this year. That’s all that can be said for now.

11. Mercenary Musik is also putting out a re-issue of your 2017 album, can you tell us a little bit more about the newer music?

We connected with that label because of their output and how it had affected us. Early on we wanted to worship Paysage D’Hiver, Battle Dagorath and fell voices, only. After connecting with Black Sorcerer Battle we began on a new path.

The first album was very much influenced by the previously mentioned artists, as is the new record, but more influences came about this time. Distilling down to a more potent version of Tempestarii is always the goal. It's easy to declare that what is to come is the best we can offer.  The language of tempestarii is taking shape at all times, only by the dedication and authenticity of the art. This is what we must be judged by.

12. On a worldwide level how has the reaction been to your music by fans of black metal?

We aren’t really interested in how our music is received. We’ve sold tapes to France and Russia, even Finland and Brazil. Which is very satisfying but otherwise there isn't any awareness of the publics reaction.

It’s apparent that the United States, though hosting many great musicians, is a fickle and parasitic "scene". The aim is to get outside of this country and go elsewhere, visit the true devotees.

13.When can we expect newer music and also where do you see the band heading into musically during the future?

Further into the style we’ve created for ourselves. Honing more of this sound into something unique is the end goal. However the concepts implemented in the music could spell certain end for us, that is yet to be seen. We can only move ever forward into dusk for so long. The new album is in it's final stages, and then we will await the right opportunity to release it.

14.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?

Appreciating music of varying styles is important, and the things that influence this project are mostly beyond metal music. It’s hard to mention just a few, but we always appreciate Battle Dagorath, and the live rituals of Ehecatl, Dispirit, and Sortilegia in the black metal sphere. Otherwise ambient and electronic music seem to be a staple of inspiration among others

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

Ruine for celestial kingdoms, may your beliefs ever-dissolve.

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