Feb 092016

ten thousand miles of arteries-even seed spilled


(Allen Griffin brings us short reviews of three new Power Electronics releases, from Ten Thousand Miles of Arteries, Whorid, and Nekrasov.)

For all the counter-culture caché one might attribute to their particular niche in some extreme music sub-genre, nothing tends to be as purely off-putting and anti-social as Power Electronics. The bastard offspring of Extreme Metal’s sonic palette and Free Jazz/Improv’s penchant for free-form chaos, Power Electronics attempts to pry open the deepest recesses of humanity’s psyche with waves of pure noise.

Over the course of the genre’s development, the sound has evolved from pure blankets of static and feedback, to a more complex and detailed approach, well illustrated by this trio of recent and upcoming releases. Continue reading »

Jan 152016



(Allen Griffin provides this review of the debut album by Sweden’s Temisto.)

Pairing the word “Swedish” with the words “Death Metal” will certainly lead to certain listener expectations, and while the duo Temisto manages to check all the appropriate boxes on their self-titled debut, there is much more to their sound than expected.

Due out on February 26th on Pulverised, the album does an excellent job of keeping pace with its wide-ranging ambitions. “Above Sacred Ground” and “Descent Into Madness” start things off in a straightforward manner, but with the introduction of the vocals the music quickly becomes more labyrinthine. Whirlwind riffs crash into each other as drum beats and tempos rapidly change on a dime. Somehow, Temisto seem to simultaneously channel both pre-Entombed Morbid and Nihilist while also invoking more technical acts such as Atheist. At their fastest and most brutal, Temisto nearly reach Angelcorpse levels of kinetic violence. Continue reading »

Jan 112016



(Allen Griffin reviews Chasms, the forthcoming second album by Lycus from California’s Bay Area.)

Oakland Doom quartet Lycus, are poised to kick 2016 off with the release of their second album Chasms on Relapse Records. The band have already established themselves with a highly regarded demo (Demo MMXI, released in 2011) and their debut album Tempest, which appeared in 2013 courtesy of 20 Buck Spin.

On this second album, it is now apparent the long shadow that Finnish funeral doom masters Thergothon cast over Lycus. It would be surprising if Lycus were unfamiliar with Thergothon’s sole full-length, Stream from the Heavens; the sorrowful, lumbering rhythms and walls of sustained guitars are here in great abundance. But this isn’t merely idol worship on the part of Lycus. They are certainly adept enough not only to modernize the sound but also to add elements in order to make it their own. Continue reading »

Jan 072016

Ripper-Experiment of Existence


Today we bring you the premiere of a song named “Magnetic Solar Storms” from the second full-length by the Chilean band Ripper. You can stream it at the end of this post. But first, we welcome back guest writer Allen Griffin, who provides this review of the album from which it comes: Experiment of Existence.

The thrash revival of the past several years seems to have been spawned almost exclusively by a focus on the Bay Area scene, to the exclusion of almost everything else that was going on in the past. Perhaps predictably, this thrash resurgence has often neglected some of the darker and more brutal roots of the sub-genre’s origins. Thankfully, the latest album from Chilean death/thrashers Ripper is set to fix the imbalance.

Titled Experiments of Existence, this release in many ways appears to channel the savagery of groups like Possessed, Dark Angel, and particularly Pleasure to Kill-era Kreator. Yet, one thing that quickly becomes apparent to the listener is the precision of execution. One hesitates to use the term “technical” for all the baggage that comes along with it, but this difficult material is performed flawlessly. The aggression, though, is never compromised. This is neither Watchtower nor Voivod, just a death/thrash hybrid performed at the highest standard. Continue reading »

Dec 182015

Lychgate-An Antidote for the Glass Pill


(We present this guest review of a fine album by Allen Griffin, who makes his first appearance at our site.)

Dedicated fans of Extreme Metal often suffer from an embarrassment of riches when it comes to finding bands who can competently produce the sounds they yearn for. What these same fans often lack are acts that can provide a sense of surprise and excitement, a feeling we might not have felt since the early days of diving headlong into the genre.

This is what makes Lychgate’s second full-length, An Antidote for Glass Pills, such a startling discovery. This group consists of Vortigern, also of The One (vocals), G.A. Chandler, also of U.K. group Esoteric (vocals), T.J.F.Vallely of Macabre Omen (drums and percussion), S.D. Lindsley (guitar), A.K. Webb (bass), K.J. Bowyer (organ), and F.A. Young (piano). Obviously, with some members being involved with other well-known projects (at least in underground circles), there is some indication this is a side-project, which would be a shame as this group seems to be at least the equal of just about any band out there. Continue reading »