(Comrade Aleks is back, and brings with him a snake, or rather an interview with Snake McRuffkin, vocalist of the Dutch band The Spirit Cabinet, whose members come from other well-respected extreme bands and whose debut album appeared last August.)
Can you imagine that could happen if you gathered in one rehearsal place a guitarist from a black/thrash band (Zwartketterij), a drummer from a doom metal band (Hooded Priest), a bass player from a black metal band (Cirith Gorgor), and a vocalist from another black metal band (Urfaust)? Okay, here’s the answer – bloody impressive heavy doom metal with influences from all the above-mentioned bands and damned good dark lyrics on spiritualistic topics.
The Spirit Cabinet consists of four members – Erich Vilsmeier, Cromwell Fleedwood, Johnny Hällström, and Snake McRuffkin — who came to an understanding of what they wanted, and their first full-length record Hystero Epileptic Possessed was born in a pretty natural way just a year after they gathered for the first time.
It saw the light with the help of Ván Records, and I feel myself inspired and enlightened enough to bring the Word of The Spirit Cabinet further to those who thirst for knowledge and some mental pabulum. During a midnight séance Snake McRuffkin shared his experience of playing in this band.
(Comrade Aleks is back! And he brings us this interview with Vikk from the Italian band Funeral Mantra.)
Rome-based stoner doom outfit Funeral Mantra is heavy, brutal, and full of primordial power. The gentlemen have worked out their own sound, heavily influenced not only by doom classics but also by such bands as Motörhead, channeling that raw energy and masculinity through their riffs. Their first album Afterglow consists of ten songs that embody sheer and unstoppable doom rock ‘n’ roll from hell!
Funeral Mantra certainly know how to gain exposure for themselves, and the songs sound really killer, dynamic, and professional. Mantra’s bass guitarist Vikk will do a brief excursion into Funeral Mantra’s world.
(Earlier this week KevinP named the debut album by Sweden’s Fifth To Infinity, Omnipotent Transdimensional Soulfire, the top album released this month, and that followed on the heels of Andy Synn’s laudatory review of the album last week. Now Kevin brings us a new installment in his short-interview series, in which he quizzes the band’s vocalist/guitarist Nader Jonas Reslan.)
K: After starting the band back in 1997 you finally released your debut album (19 years later). I’m sure there is a sense of relief and excitement about that.
N: Indeed there is and very much so. It’s been a really long and messed up journey, so far.. and now after all these tough years, we’ve finally succeeded in manifesting our music beyond the realms of the underground. So, yes, the feeling is great.
(Andy Synn presents this new interview with CSR of the Swiss band Sammasch, whose new album will be upon us in 2016.)
Swiss spiritual occultists Schammasch have been a firm favourite of several members of the NCS team ever since we stumbled across the band’s masterful double-album Contradiction a few years back.
Since then we’ve run features on the band several times, covering everything from new videos, to live show reviews, to the re-release of their debut album Sic Lvceat Lvx, and tried to stay abreast of any and all developments within their camp.
Over the past 5/6 months we’ve tried to stay tuned in to all the updates the band have been putting out regarding the writing and recording of their as-yet-untitled (to everyone outside the band at least) third album, from photo shoots in London to mixing/mastering at Woodshed Studios in Germany.
As the album sessions have now all been wrapped up, and the album is, essentially, “in the can” and primed for release by Prosthetic Records, it seemed like the perfect time to get in touch with the band’s mainman CSR and pick his brains about what 2016 has in store for Schammasch!
(Comrade Aleks rejoins us with this interview of the vocalist and guitarist of Black Medicine.)
You maybe asked yourself: Where has Comrade Aleks been? Where has he been since New Year’s coming? Was he lost, drunk, and miserable on Red Square in Moscow? Did he freeze to death in snow-covered Saint-Petersburg? There’s no reason for worries dear comrades! I was searching something new for you, something besides new Italian doom metal bands… And you know… I’ve found it.
Welcome Black Medicine! A damned heavy and sludgy doom band from South Korea! They done their dirty deeds since 2005, but their first full-length album Irreversible was released less than a year ago. What’s the hell?!! How did it happen?!! Let’s ask it Lee Myeong-Hee (guitars) and Kim Chang-Yu (vocals).
In the middle of 1982 two young brothers, Moyses M. Howard and Francis M. Howard — moved with their parents from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to New Orleans, Louisiana. It didn’t take long for them to be caught up in the energy of music — joining bands, playing shows… exploring. By 1986 their interests had turned to underground metal, and they formed a band named Incubus with Scott Latour as vocalist. They released a demo in 1987, and then a debut album in 1988 named Serpent Temptation.
A blistering onslaught of death/thrash, the album has been hailed as an underground classic, and it led to a deal with Nuclear Blast, who released the band’s next two albums —Beyond the Unknown (1990) and Discerning Forces (2000) — both of which were recorded by the Howard brothers as a two-piece band, with Francis as vocalist. By the time that third album was released, the band had changed their name to Opprobrium. Eight more years would pass before the band (now based in Tampa) released their fourth album (and most recent to date), Mandatory Evac.
Today, Relapse Records is re-releasing that 1988 classic, Serpent Temptation. It has been remastered for this release by Brad Boatright (Sleep, Obituary, etc.), and it includes four bonus tracks from the band’s 1987 demo, plus an extended booklet. What we’ve got for you on this release date is both a full stream of the remastered album and a track-by-track commentary by the Howard Brothers.
(Comrade Aleks presents his interview with Merethe Heggset, vocalist and bassist in the Norwegian band High Priest of Saturn, whose second album will be released next month.)
High Priest of Saturn is from our planet; actually this band was born in Norway about five years ago. Well, they’re from Norway and they don’t play black metal. They did a demo-record in 2011 and stole the heart of Svart Records’ boss, who helped the band with the release of the High Priest of Saturn album in 2013.
The core of the band are Merethe Heggset who sings and plays bass; Andreas Hagen who can easily deal both with guitars and drums; Martin Sivertsen (also Andreas‘ mate in the Resonaut band), also a guitarist; and Ole Kristian, organ player.
I already gave you a hint, but let’s clarify it: High Priest of Saturn perform a bit raw, a bit dirty, but overall psychedelic doom metal with hypnotic female vocals. If you like Acid King, then you need to check it. We had already started this interview with Merethe when suddenly I found a promo version of the band’s new album Son of Earth and Sky in my mail box and it took a bit more time to finish our discussion.
(Andy Synn posed some questions to Ken Sorceron, vocalist/guitarist for Abigail Williams, whose 2015 album The Accuser was one of our favorite 2015 albums — and here are the answers.)
Hello Ken, how are you, and how are things in the AW camp?
I’m fine, thanks for asking. The band is good, just gearing up to go out and support Fleshgod Apocalypse in Feb.
How did the recent tour go? (Feel free to embellish with stories of drunken hijinks, drug-induced lunacy, or fine-dining experiences.)
Lots and lots of drug-induced lunacy, that’s for sure. Though it’s pretty hard for a band at our level (low) to operate like that over time, so that era has had to come to an end. Obviously drugs and alcohol will still be around, we aren’t squares or anything, just to a lesser degree from now on. The last two years were pretty insane on that front and we are somewhat lucky to be either alive or not in jail or something at this point.
As far as fine dining goes I’m a big fan of eating in the South and in the Midwest. Eating at all my favorite places around the country or world is pretty much one of the main reasons I still tour.
(Comrade Aleks somehow snuck into our own backyard and interviewed Bobby James, vocalist/guitarist of Seattle’s Wounded Giant.)
As it seems that I’ve managed to escape from the Italian doom mafia, I had some time to reveal something new for our loyal readers who have enough patience for slow and heavy stuff. Wounded Giant came from Seattle (Hey! Islander! Is it true?!), and they are about slow, dark, heavy, and a bit psychedelic horror doom metal.
Drums are played by Alex Bytnar, bass is played by Dylan A. Rogers, and Bobby James displays fantastic skill singing and playing the guitar at the same time. What does he sing about? About Clive Barker sadistic nightmares, Lovecraftian horrors, and other things that mostly lie between those two mentioned above. So Bobby is here, and he has something to say.
(Here we have Comrade Aleks’ interview with bassist Rochelle of Milwaukee’s Moon Curse.)
Moon Curse of Milwaukee, Wisconsin are good for all who love hazy psychedelic doom in particular and quality heavy music in general. That power trio have worked fair and stoically since 2011 and the two full-length albums in their discography are a good result. The second crushing wave of their doom practices is named Spirit Remains, and it saw the light of day on November 30th with the help of Kozmik Artifactz Records.
Matt (guitars, vocals) and Keith (drums, Hammond) are busy gentlemen, but I consider myself lucky because lady Rochelle (bass) has found few minutes of her precious time to deliver to us her story of laying the Moon Curse upon listeners.