Dec 222011

It was a good morning on our metallic island. The day here in the Pacific Northwest is dry and bright, I enjoyed BadWolf’s immensely entertaining interview with Arthur Von Nagel (Cormorant), and I’ve been filling my head non-stop with good metal — some cathartic black death from A Hill To Die Upon, a sampling of grindviolence courtesy of Alex Layzell, and a few head-wrecking tracks from Condemned.

I thought briefly about continuing my painful efforts to whittle down the list of most-infectious-song candidates into something less than 100 songs, but decided to put that off a while longer (“Procrastination” being one of my middle names) and instead check out news from the 5,000 bands I follow on Facebook. Turned out to be a wise decision, because in doing that I discovered some extremely high-quality concert video of the mighty Demonic Resurrection performing at the 26th annual Independence Rock festival in Mumbai, India, on November 26.

And by high-quality, I mean (a) it was filmed with about 100 cameras from about 100 different angles (including, like, just underneath the hand of DR’s keyboardist so you get a close-up of his fingers in motion), and (b) it sounds fucking awesome. Also, the stage is festooned with color and smoke and lights and looks killer.

As for the music, it’s over the top. Despite the fact that “Apocalyptic Dawn” is a single song, it almost sounds like a medley (even more so than on DR’s 2005 album, A Darkness Descends), with elements of symphonic black metal, death metal, power metal, and folk metal all effectively fused together — plus a heavy dose of hardcore vocal violence added by guest singer Sunneith Revankar of another Indian band we love around here, Bhayanak Maut. Continue reading »

Oct 212010

The last 24 hours has brought us good news from two bands we’ve written about in the past — the UK’s Detrimentum and India’s Bhayanak Maut. We like good news. We like to share good news. And this good news involves new music that will blast away all the cares cluttering your brains (and perhaps your brains, too) and leave you feeling energized and ready to spit in the eye of anyone who tries to fuck with you today. That’s a good thing, isn’t it?


Last January we ran a multi-part feature called UK DEATH METAL IN REVIEW, in which we looked back at 2009 and some of the extreme UK metal bands that we listened to a lot in the old year. One of the bands whose praises we sang was Detrimentum (see our post about them here), based on their album Embracing the Deformity. We called the music “complex, ultra-fast, technical, brutal death metal that periodically gives way to sweeping black-metal influenced melodic guitar passages and blistering solos.” We noted that the “overall tone is dark, ominous, and overpoweringly intense.”

Unfortunately, we learned not long after writing that post, via a message from one of the band’s founders, guitarist Jon Butlin, that only he and guitarist Paul Wilkinson still remained from the line-up that recorded Embracing the Deformity. On the other hand, he explained that the jaw-dropping Steve Powell of Anaal Nathrakh fame would be joining the band as its drummer, and that the group intended to finish recording an album of new songs as soon as the line-up could be sorted out. (That post is here.)  (more after the jump . . .) Continue reading »

Jun 232010

More than two months ago we stumbled across a band from Mumbai, India, called Demonic Resurrection whose music hit us upside our blunt foreheads like a stout, low-hanging limb. We can’t remember what snagged our attention, though it may have been the news that Candlelight Records had agreed to handle the worldwide release of their third album, The Return to Darkness, which the band had originally self-released in January.

Whatever the reason, we were quite taken by a song from the album called “The Unrelenting Surge of Vengeance”, which the band had featured in a music video, and we wrote about it here. Eventually, we tracked down a copy of The Return to Darkness, and it blew us away.

We acknowledged back then that we were probably late-comers in our admiration for DR, and now we’ve got proof — because over the last week they’ve won a couple of notable awards, signifying that lots of other people paid attention long before we did. And we’re pretty fucking happy for them, and for the many metalheads who’ve been devoted fans of DR for a lot longer than we’ve been. So, we’re here today saying congratz to Demonic Ressurection.

And by sheer coincidence, we also just learned that another band we’ve been hot about — Shining — have won a righteous award of their own. So this post is a congratz to them, too.

And, last but not least, we want to say congratz to some other Indian bands we’ve admired from afar — Infernal Wrath and Bhayanak Maut — who also won recognition at one of the ceremonies that handed out awards to DR.

And because all these bands are on our minds, we’re going to remind you about them by serving up a collection of songs for you to hear, just in case you weren’t hanging around this site back when we first got up off our lazy asses and took notice of them.  (all that shit is after the jump, of course . . .) Continue reading »

May 022010

We’ve got so damn much new music to hear, it’s ridiculous (and so much of it is ridiculously good). At the same time, we’re also trying to explore new metal horizons — and in doing that, we continue to discover that extreme metal is truly a burgeoning global phenomenon. A case in point: Metal from India.

Not so long ago we stumbled across a couple of really good bands based in Mumbai called Demonic Resurrection and Bhayanak Maut, and wrote about them here and here. In response to those posts, we received lots of comments and e-mails from NCS readers in India, not only praising those bands but also recommending others. We’re still working our way through those recommendations as time permits — and we definitely need more fucking time!

One name popped up continually in the tips we received — Infernal Wrath — and once we hit that music on the list of bands to check out, it brought us to a full stop. And we went back and listened again. And again. And again.

Their 2009 album Inside of Me is a remarkable blend of musical styles and traditions that’s a real attention-grabber. It’s a serious, meticulously planned and superbly played work that by turns is exotic, beautiful, headbangingly compulsive, and brutally heavy. Trust us on this — it’s definitely worth your time.  (more after the jump, including a song to hear . . .) Continue reading »

Apr 152010

Yesterday we posted some news about a promising metal band from Mumbai, India, called Demonic Resurrection. Astonishingly, that short piece drew more visits than any other post we’ve written, save one, since we began this blog last November. One of those readers, “Infected0718,” urged us to check out another Mumbai band called Bhayanak Maut, and we did. Today we feel compelled to write about them, too. (We received other recommendations, and we’re also following up on them.)

Metalheads well know that we’re in the middle of an extreme metal renaissance (and NO, we’re not talking about Axl Rose taking the stage again or Slash releasing a new album). In recent years, we’ve seen an explosion in the number, quality, and popularity of bands putting out the kind of music we love.

That phenomenon is not confined to North America and Western Europe. It’s happening throughout the world. And to us here at NCS, there’s something reassuring about that. As fucked up as the planet is in so many ways, and as many religious, cultural, and political barriers still divide people around the globe, music is a common language. Even in our tiny corner of the music universe (where a ridiculously small percentage of all people are thoroughly hooked on this brand of music), we have brothers and sisters everywhere who speak this demented language.

As a pretty random set of examples, we’ve written here at NCS in the not-too-distant past about bands and artists from Italy (Hour of Penance, Psychofagist, and Carnal Rapture), Hungary (I Divine), Romania (Negura Bunget), Moldova (Neuromist), Costa Rica (Sight of Emptiness), Finland (e.g., The Jasser Arafats), Sweden (Soreption and Valkyrja), Greece (Rotting Christ and Gus Drax), Indonesia (Bloodshedd), Germany (Thrudvangar), Norway (Shining), France (Eryn Non Dae), South Africa (Haggis and Bong), and — well, you get the idea.

Not so long ago, we never would have known of bands like this or had any realistic chance of hearing their music. But thanks to the miracles of modern technology invented by Al Gore, they’re now just a few clicks away. And that brings us back to Bhayanak Maut.  (stay with us, after the jump . . .) Continue reading »