As I always do, I geared up for trick-or-treaters at the NCS headquarters last night. I filled a bowl with nasty death metal band stickers to hand out, because candy is apparently bad for children. To enhance the spooky atmosphere of the night, I bought lengths of pig entrails from an unlicensed butcher and draped them from tree limbs. I shut off all the exterior lights so the kids and their parents would experience the thrill of seeing dozens of large glowing eyes in the loris compound when they hit them with their flashlights.
To provide a full sensory experience, I lit bags of burning dog shit that I’ve been collecting from local parks over the last few months and strategically placed them along the dirt driveway, which has been turned into a mud pit from three straight days of heavy rain in the Seattle area. Above the burning shit bags, I impaled simulated goat corpses on spikes so they would be lit from below and look extra spooky. Cool idea, huh? I even rigged up a couple of boom boxes outside so they’d start blasting Mayhem when activated by motion sensors.
And then I waited. And waited. And waited. And once again, no trick-or-treaters arrived. I don’t get it. Don’t kids trick or treat any more?
While I waited for those timid knocks on the door, I watched a lengthy series of news reports about the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy in New Jersey and New York and got my own Halloween shocks from that. Really awful stuff, seeing the most densely populated part of the U.S. completely fucked, with massive flooding, fires, homes lost, dozens dead, 6 million people still without power, sewage and toxic chemicals floating in flooded streets, and the prospect that storms like this are going to happen more frequently in the years ahead.
To cheer myself up and block out the impatient gibbering from the loris compound, I also watched four new metal videos, to while away the hours while waiting for the non-existent trick-or-treaters. The bands are: Eye of Solitude (UK), Funk Vigilante (Canada), Blast Rites (Poland), and Lokurah (France).
EYE OF SOLITUDE
I’ve been hearing about UK-based Eye of Solitude for months from a number of people whose opinions I respect. Their second album, Sui Caedere (“to kill one’s self”), was released by the French label Kaotoxin Records during the summer, but dumb shit that I am, I failed to lend it my ears.
Yesterday the band premiered a music video for the album opener, “Awoken by Crows”, and I checked it out while waiting for ephemeral costumed brats. The video was created by Jordan Saunders of Dead Parrot Productions. I’ve been impressed by every Dead Parrot video I’ve seen (we’ve featured others at NCS), and this one is no exception. Mixing rapidly interspersed shots of the band with a mix of eye-catching images (including the comely Ivy Tenebrae), it’s an engrossing thing to see.
I enjoyed the song, too, though it evolved into something I wasn’t expecting from the way it began, segueing from hard-charging death metal (with even a hint of deathcore in some of its elements) into an atmospheric swath of melodic doom/death. Romanian born Daniel Neagoe (also in Unfathomable Ruination) provides satisfying cavernous growls, and the vocals are part of what has been attracting me to this style of doom-influenced melodic death metal quite a bit this year.
Sui Caedere is available for streaming and purchase on Bandcamp here:
Yesterday I got an e-mail from a Victoria, BC, band named Funk Vigilante introducing me to their brand new doomsday music video for a song called “Today Is the Day”. The message said, “Your stuff is probably about a thousand times too heavy for us, but I figure since we are singing about the end of the world that’s a least pretty heavy, no?”
Well, how could I resist that come-on? Plus, since the band is from Victoria, they’re basically neighbors of mine. Plus, their name is Funk Vigilante.
The song on the video is one of two tracks on a single released earlier this month which is available for streaming and download on Bandcamp (here). It’s a real throwback — a nu-metal-styled mix of funk, early hip-hop, Rage Against the Machine, and . . . well, if you were ever into bands like RATM, Primus, and P.O.D., this will be a nostalgia trip. It sure as hell was for me. Also, the song has gotten stuck in my head and undoubtedly is going to rattle around in there for the rest of the day.
I had a shitload of fun watching the video, too. Fuck trick-or-treaters, I’m ready for the armageddon!
Blast Rites are a Polish band who released their debut EP Suicide Solution earlier this year. All six tracks are available for download on Bandcamp at the price of $1. Earlier this week they released their first official video, for a song from the EP named “The Descendants of the Morning Star”. I gave it a look and a listen for much the same reason I dived into Funk Vigilante — they have a cool band name. Yes, my approach to music selection is always thoroughly considered and completely logical.
The new video is essentially a frenetic performance clip. The song is a stylistic blend of fast-paced death metal, deathcore (without the breakdowns), and grind. It may not be ground-breaking, but it sure as hell broke something in my skull with its jackhammer rhythms and drill-bit tremolo picking. Check it out:
Lokurah are a Parisian band whose second album, The Time To Do Better, was released in May of this year by M&O Music. It’s available on iTunes and Amazon mp3. A couple of days ago the band premiered a music video for the new album’s title track and sent us an e-mail with the link. I’ve had so much consistently good luck with French metal over the last year that I gave it a look.
Both the song and the video are worth checking out. The music is a hard-hitting mix of hardcore and death/thrash that will put a good hard jolt into your spine, and there’s an interesting break from the pummeling near the end. The blood-drenched video (directed by Julien Metternich) is one that mixes blood-drenched band shots with a blood-drenched crime-scene story that unfolds in unexpected ways.
And that’s more or less how I spent my Halloween at home. And now it’s the day after. Time to bury the dog shit and put away the pig entrails until next year (yeah, I’ve decided I might get more trick-or-treaters if I let the entrails decompose instead of buying fresh next year). Maybe I’ll let the lorises out to roam the grounds next year. They might have some fun with the kiddies even if I can’t.