SEEN AND HEARD: ABYSS, COLD CELL, INFERNAL WAR, KURHAN, SABERTOOTH ZOMBIE, VELUM
What’s that they say about the best-laid plans of mice and men? I had collected a great volume of new songs since Monday and began displaying the ones I wanted to recommend yesterday, in alphabetical order. I made it through “L” and had intended to finish the back half of the alphabet today. But in the meantime I came across still more worthy new song premieres by bands whose names didn’t conveniently fit in the “M” – “Z” category. So much for that idea.
Anyway, here are a few more things I discovered since yesterday and a few (but not all) of the tracks I originally intended to provide today. I guess that means I have more round-ups to prepare for the weekend…
20 Buck Spin is set to release the debut album by a Toronto band named Abyss — the album’s title is Heretical Anatomy — and yesterday DECIBEL premiered a track named “The Atonement”. It’s a searing blast of thrashing, lashing death metal that punctuates its fury with forceful hammer blows and a breakdown that will provoke sore-neck syndrome. Gruesome, morbid vocal vomit, too.
Avantgarde Music plans to release an album named Lowlife on March 25. It’s the second full-length by a Swiss band named Cold Cell. Though I’ve already forgotten how I found it, there’s a song from the album that’s now available for streaming on Bandcamp, and I’m very, very high on it. “Lifestyle Lunacy” is a strange and twisted trip, a combination of rocking stomps, raking blasts, and lurching staggers — all of it threaded with grasping tendrils of grim melody and vocals that are hellishly striking. The kind of avant-garde black metal deviancy that gets its hooks in your quivering brain.
Yesterday Agonia Records unveiled an official video for a song named “Into Dead Soil” from Axiom, the third album by Poland’s Infernal War (due for release on April 17 in Europe and April 21 in North America). Holy shit, is it good — an absolutely scorching assault of blackened death metal, loaded with galvanizing riffs, high-intensity from a decimating rhythm section, and supremely tyrannical vocals. Halfway through, the song unexpectedly shifts gears (I’ll let you experience the joy of that without describing what happens), and there’s some soloing in the song that will burn your eyebrows off.
Kurhan are another Polish band, and their debut album Głód is due to be release on March 5 via Arachnophobia Records (pre-order here). Not knowing anything about the band, I checked out a stream of the title track, and it really grabbed me by the jugular. It’s akin to taking a ride on a whirlwind. The band fly like a bat swarm embarking on a night of feeding, but in addition to unleashing a plethora of technically impressive high-speed riffs and hard-hitting percussion, they’ve made the song a rhythmically dynamic work and interwoven appealing strands of dark melody as well. The vocals are quite good, too. A very fortunate new discovery.
I hadn’t heard about Northern California’s Sabertooth Zombie, despite the fact that they’ve been around for a decade and have released an impressive number of records, until I listened to a song named “The Headache”, which premiered yesterday. It comes from their new album Human performance IV, which is being released on March 3 by Twelve Gauge Records. It’s heavy, its gritty, it hits like the methodical application of a crowbar to the back of the head, and it brawls with a will, too. This is rough, raw, crusty hardcore that will make you bow down to the power of the almighty riff (and the power of the almighty solo, too) — and on top of everything else, it’s catchy as fuck.
Yesterday I featured a song by a band whose forthcoming album will be released by Sweden’s Lamech Records, and today I have another new song by a different band from the same very interesting label. This one is named “Alleviato” and it’s by a mysterious Swedish group named Velum. The song will appear on a forthcoming 7″ EP entitled Ab Innocentia ad Caelos.
“Alleviato” is an apocalyptic storm of vibrating, meat-tenderizing riffs, warm rumbling bass, and organic-sounding drum fusillades. The music is bleak, doomed, and depraved (the depravity due largely to the howling intensity of the vocals, which may cause the hair on your arms to stand straight up), the kind of esoteric black/death that’s as effectively atmospheric as it is bestial.
Once again, every track is a winner. My wallet’s gonna start cursing at me at some point.
HA! Beat that wallet mercilessly! (glad you liked everything)
The frantic soloing in the opening of the Abyss tune sold me! A little chaos goes a long way.
i’m really digging Kurhan, Infernal War and Abyss 🙂
The Kurhan track is really good.