Jun 252018


I try to be as honest as I can be in writing about music at our putrid site, but in the case of the Canadian progressive/technical death metal band Bookakee, I need to be brutally honest: Knowing very little about their previous musical output before listening to the group’s new album, Ignominies, I was initially quite skeptical. Maybe “put off” would be even more accurate.

The band’s name, coupled with their outlandish full-body make-up, their reported use of gory props on stage, and the PR brandishing of the band as “Montreal’s answer to GWAR“, made me suspicious. Rightly or wrongly, I glumly surmised that the music wouldn’t be worth taking seriously — that no matter how much fun their live shows might be, this would be a band who relied more on gimmickry than song-writing or performance skill. (The fact that I’m not a huge GWAR fan undoubtedly played a role.)

Having listened to Ignomonies despite all my misgivings, I am here to confess, with some embarrassment but without reservation, that I couldn’t have been more wrong. And if you happen to be approaching the album with a similar judgmental skepticism, hear me out — and then by all means hear this album through the full stream we’re premiering today in advance of its release by Transcending Records on June 29th. Continue reading »

Jul 272011

(NCS writer Israel Flanders reviews Invasion of the Depraved, the debut EP from Montreal’s Bookakee, and for a limited time, has arranged to give you a free download of the EP.)

Bookakee is a Canadian progressive tech-death band who’ve got quite an eccentric direction in their sound.  Throwing combinations of ideas into songs that just should not work, it amazes me that they pull it off.

The beginning song “A.A” opens up with a clean intro that sounds straight out of — dare I say — a Mastodon album. After it ushers you in, you’re hit by a blistering onslaught of technical melodic riffing. The production on this EP, as you’ll pick up right away, is INSANELY clean, with a superb degree of clarity.  This is so very much needed, as Bookakee’s music, especially their guitar work, is off the wall.  The song progresses into a VERY Death-like section before continuing on with its melodic onslaught.  There is a bit of a hit of Necrophagist in this song, but not so much that it feels at all like a ripoff.  I also love the clean section that emerges later in the song, adding a Spanish flavor.

“Bookakee Blast” opens up with an insanely fast sweep, moving into a bit more intense and less melodic onslaught compared to the previous song.  This one is full speed ahead and musically just all over the place. “Carcass Coffin” has a VERY nice, eerie clean opening that reminds me quite a bit of Whoracle-era In Flames; same goes for the distorted version that follows soon thereafter.  UNLEASH BRUTAL PLODDING RIFFAGE FOLLOWED BY TECH RAPE.  This song pretty much hits you like a sledge-hammer until the clean section, which gradually picks up speed and delivers a big climax. (more after the jump . . .) Continue reading »