Jan 302017

 

(Austin Weber introduces our premiere of a new video from Serocs.)

Multi-national technical brutal death metal act Serocs have remained an ongoing favorite of mine ever since I first stumbled upon their 2013 album, The Next, and reviewed it at the time here at NCS. Even then the band was onto something special, but they truly took themselves to a higher level on their 2015 album, And When The Sky Was Opened, from which NCS helped launch a single called “Itami”.

Since that time, the band’s founder, guitarist Antonio Freyre, has been busy starting other projects, including last year’s side-project Punished, for which Islander was nice enough to premiere a song called “The Absent” (since I guested on it briefly and it wouldn’t have been right for me to cover it).

But I digress. Seeing as it’s now 2017 and Serocs is ramping back up again, that provides the impetus for us helping to launch this new video today.

Jul 182016

Punished-The Absent

 

On July 29, the multi-national band Punished will release their debut EP, The Absent, and today we bring you the premiere of the EP’s title track.

Though the name Punished may be a new one to you, the band’s line-up includes former Ulcerate vocalist Ben Read as well as Serocs guitarist Antonio Freyre, plus guitarist/bassist Aldo Mora and drummer Ignacio Rizo. In addition, the EP includes guest vocals by Josh Smith (Serocs), Antti Boman (Demilich), Phil Tougas (Chthe’ilist/First Fragment), and our very own NCS comrade Austin Weber (whose vocal turn appears near the end of the song you’re about to hear).

Nov 222015

Nachash-Conjuring the Red Death Eclipse

 

As you can see, I decided to give the “Seen and Heard” title a rest for today, but that’s still what this post really is — another selection of music I’ve come across in recent days that I thought you might enjoy as much as I have. Most of what’s in here is new, some of it only newly discovered by yours truly. As is usually the case, the featured music is stylistically diverse. And because this is a birthday weekend at NCS, I decided to really load up this post with a lot of listening.

NACHASH

We’ll start this collection of music with the debut EP from Norway’s Nachash, a four-track offering entitled Conjuring the Red Death Eclipse. Though it was released in February of this year (through Unborn Productions), I only discovered it recently, and what a discovery it has been.

The four long songs on the EP are rich and multifaceted. The final track “A Necromancer’s Lament”, which is set to play first on Bandcamp, is like a melding of stoner doom and black metal; the riffs are so goddamn delicious that I got pulled headfirst into the rest of the EP as if I’d been sucked into a whirlpool.

Sep 022015

Serocs-Only When the Sky Was Opened

 

(Austin Weber introduces our premiere of a song from the new album by the multinational band Serocs.)

Ever since Serocs released their sophomore record, The Next, in 2013, I’ve been on pins and needles waiting for the follow-up that the band has long been teasing. While it would seem some shifting line-up issues from a vocalist standpoint were a large part of this delay, their new record, And When The Sky Was Opened, is finally going to drop before year-end through Comatose Music. I’ve been informed that the release date and pre-release info should be coming shortly in the days following today’s premiere of “Itami”. It’s a fantastic track that should pique your interest in this quite talented multinational act if by some chance you missed the boat on The Next or their previous works.

In the course of the wait for this record, the band made it clear that this would be a big step up for them, with a special emphasis on diversifying and growing their technical deathgrind sound while expanding the scope of their songwriting into bolder territory. While such statements didn’t make me think the Serocs I had grown to love would be no more, I was curious as to how big a shift in their sound And When The Sky Was Opened would be. Well, the proof is indeed in the pudding, and “Itami” is a damn fine introduction to what will surely be a standout record of 2015.

May 052014

I have mixed feelings about Cinco de Mayo. I grew up in central Texas, and celebrated the date every year after a certain point. On the other hand, the certain point was when I reached drinking age, which was the age at which my friends and I could convince winos to buy us tequila at liquor stores. That became a road to misery.

My first exposure to tequila was at age 16 on a high school Spanish Club trip to Monterrey. One of my buds, who was fluent in Spanish without having to be taught, evaded the teachers by climbing out a hotel window and down a fire escape on our first afternoon there, returning with a couple of bottles. That night I never made it out of the bus that took our teachers and us to some restaurant. I said I was sick, and that was no fuckin’ lie.

Even now, all it takes is the smell of straight tequila to bring on a wave of nausea. Doesn’t mean I’ve given up on it (there have been many subsequent tequila poisoning experiences in the many years since that Monterrey trip), but these days I prefer to take my poison in a margarita. Goes down easier, though a high percentage of the time I still wind up crouched over a toilet begging for mercy.

But I don’t mean to suggest that Cinco de Mayo is nothing more than a chance to get shit-faced. There’s rich history behind the date as well, but in my mind it’s also an excuse to revisit some Mexican metal. That’s another form of poison I can’t seem to resist.

Sep 162013

(NCS contributor Austin Weber delivers this review of the new second album by a multinational collective who call themselves Serocs.)

With the advent of the internet, a number of quality metal bands have emerged where members individually contribute and collaborate with the help of the internet to form groups that would otherwise not be possible. Among this new breed of bands comes the frenetic grinding insanity of Serocs.

Technically speaking Serocs is based in Guadalajara, Mexico, which founder and guitarist Antonio Freyre calls home, and originally he played and wrote everything; their first two releases are solely him. Over time Serocs evolved into a full band with members scattered across different nations. Besides Antonio Freyre on guitar, the group currently also consists of Mike Poggione (Monstrosity/Capharnum/etc) on an often audible in the mix six-string bass, and Jason Hohenstein (Lecherous Nocturne) churning out sickening bellows and growls. Rounding out the lineup is Finnish drummer Timo Häkkinen (Kataplexia), who covers the songs in an endless stream of blast-beats and furied fills.

Serocs are quite fond of guest spots too and spice up The Next with six guest contributions. They don’t fit into one subset of death metal neatly, but to break it down, they basically mix old school death metal influence with technical death metal, supplemented by a brutal death metal side, all deconstructed through a deathgrind approach.

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