Oct 142012

(In this post TheMadIsraeli reviews a classic of Dutch death metal from a long-defunct band and provides a free download of this out-of-print beauty.)

Ok, this is me finally getting around to a favor that was asked of me all the way back in the summer of 2011.  You might remember my coverage of a now defunct Dutch band I was a huge fan of called Cypher (who were kind enough to provide us with free downloads of their music, including that unreleased EP we helped bring to the light of day).  While I wait for Tobias Borra and gang to resurface with what is essentially Cypher 2.0 (name not yet revealed), Tobias had asked me to check out a band considered to be Dutch death metal legends alongside the likes of Pestilence who were rather overshadowed in their day.  The band has Cypher/I, Chaos/Dew Scented bassist Joost Van Der Graff on bass and vocal duties, so Tobias felt I’d find it extremely relevant to my interests.

The band in question is Creepmime. Information about them is rather obscured and hard to come across (even the Metal Archives page appears to be inaccurate and very incomplete).  Actually, information on them is VERY obscure and nearly fucking impossible to come across.  Wanna know how obscure?  It’s nearly impossible to find line-up-per-album info, including for the album (Chiaroscuro) that’s the subject of this post. This band is so obscure that there aren’t release dates, simply fucking estimates of time.  All I can tell you is that Chiaroscuro came out sometime between late ’93 and ’95. Continue reading »

Jul 042011

Almost one month ago, NCS writer Israel Flanders reviewed a 2006 album he loved called Darkday Carnival from a Dutch band called Cypher. That album attracted quite a following when initially released, and the band started work on a follow-up album to be called Tyrian MMVII. They recorded three songs which became available for streaming on Cypher’s MySpace page. In Israel’s opinion, those songs were the foundation for what could have been “the best melodeath record released in the last 10 years”. And then all activity appeared to stop.

As a result of his review, Israel became acquainted with the main-man behind Cyper, Tobias Borra, who confirmed to Israel what fans of the band had suspected — that Cypher is no more. However, a new band is rising from those ashes. Tobias has been joined by Joost van der Graaf (bass) and Koen Herfst (drums) in the successor to Cypher. The new band is working on an album that, with good fortune, will see release before this year is over.

As for Tyrian MMVIII, Tobias explained to Israel that it was intended as a 3-song promo for a new Cypher album, and therefore may never see release. But Tobias provided us a copy, which we made available for download with Israel’s review. Now, thanks to Tobias, we’ve got something even better — a new download package that includes high-quality FLAC versions of the three promo songs, album art for Tyrian MMVII, and a tablature book for the three songs. All that is included in a file you can download from our own high-speed Fileburst account via . . .


Jul 012011

(NCS writer Israel Flanders bravely sticks his neck out with his list of the best albums released during the second quarter of 2011 — April, May, and June.)

So I’m back. Been out of it for the last week or so and just decided it was time to take some lazy days, but it’s time to get back to the fuckin’ metal and the fuckin’ headbanging action. It’s now the end of the second quarter of 2011 and I figured I would continue my top ten of every quarter series, which I started at The Metal Register. So, just for refreshers sake, let’s take a look at what I picked for Q1. In no particular order I had…

SylosisEdge Of The Earth
EradicationDreams Of Reality
Born Of OsirisThe Discovery
Rotten SoundCursed
Amon AmarthSurtur Rising
CrowbarSever The Wicked Hand
Paul WardinghamAssimilate/Regenerate
Times Of GraceHymn Of A Broken Man
DeicideTo Hell With God

So now we move on to the list for Q2. I know people are going to complain, bitch, moan, and otherwise cry at me through the comments on how often I didn’t pick your favorite tech-death band that sounds like rejected Psycroptic demos, but if I haven’t heard it, I’m not gonna pick it. Now let’s get to the albums shall we?  (after the jump . . .) Continue reading »

Jun 082011

(Israel Flanders reviews the excellent 2006 album from Cypher, provides a download of the album for those of you who missed it, solves the mystery of what happened to Cypher after that album was released, and has arranged for us also to provide a download of the never-before released 3-song demo that was to pave the way for Cypher’s follow-up album. Not a bad day’s work.)

Ever know of any bands who just… disappeared? I do. I’m reviewing the album of Cypher, an EXCELLENT melothrash outfit from the Netherlands who just vanished off the face of the earth. This is a band who not only had extreme promise, but had the kind of promise that would take the world by storm.

So let’s get to the music, and I’ll touch on what exactly happened later. Everyone remember Trivium‘s album Shogun? Take that kind of music, remove the whiney clean choruses, the parts that AREN’T fast and thrashy, and bring in a vocalist in the form of frontman and rhythm guitarist “T” (Tobias Borra), who takes Matt Heafey’s signature roar to the next level and makes him look like he hasn’t even hit puberty yet.

Cypher plays VERY aggressive melothrash that doesn’t let up, and the band’s debut and only album Darkday Carnival, released in 2006, lives up to this style to a T. Drums are pounding out thrash beats with savage force, guitars and bass are pedal-point riffing with tight precision, and the vocals are just ferocious in a way that’s out of this world. (more after the jump . . .) Continue reading »