Aug 182015

Planks-Perished Bodies


Hosting this premiere is a bittersweet event for me. On the one hand, the song is by a German trio whose music I’ve greatly enjoyed for many years — and it’s an excellent song. On the other hand, the song appears on what will be the group’s final album. The band is Germany’s Planks, the album is Perished Bodies, and the song is “She Is Alone“.

By some measures the song is not among the heaviest of Plank’s creations. But though it may not be quite as “crushing” as some of their songs (as that adjective is commonly used), it packs an emotional punch that can still stagger you.

The song is distinctive in other respects as well. Vocally, it’s a duet between the band’s Ralph Schmidt and Leonie M. Löllmann, vocalist of the German grind/crust band SVFFER. The song was inspired by another duet, one between Nick Cave and Kylie Minogue on “Where the Wild Roses Grow”, but though you can understand why the one may have inspired the other, “She Is Alone” proves to be more savagely wrenching than spooky. Continue reading »

Aug 052015

Dalkhu-Descend Into Nothingness


Once upon a time I started an irregular feature called “Eye-Catchers” in which I periodically tested the hypothesis that cool album art correlates with cool music. As much as anything else, it was a vehicle for exploring the music of bands I wasn’t familiar with, based solely on the attractiveness of their album or EP covers. There’s still a category link to all those posts on the right side of this page, even though the project has been moribund for quite a while.

This post, though it shares that “Eye-Catchers” title, really isn’t a continuation of the earlier experiment, because I’m already a fan of all the bands whose news and/or new songs are collected below. But the artwork for these new albums is so good that it seemed to be a fitting title. So, here we go….


I originally discovered this two-man Slovenian band in the middle of last month — and that really was an example of the original “Eye-Catchers” experiment. Their second album, Descend… Into Nothingness, features cover art by our beloved Paolo Girardi, and that’s what induced me to explore the music. Having done that (and written about the first advance track from the album here), I immediately became a fan. And so when I learned that Dalkhu released another new song yesterday, I felt confident it was going to be another good one — and so it is. Continue reading »

Jun 072013

I first heard the music of Germany’s Planks last September and wrote about them here. What I heard then was a Bandcamp stream of Planks’ amazing 2012 album, Funeral Mouth. Not much later I discovered that Planks had recorded a split with a band named Lentic Waters that was released on vinyl in June 2012 by Apocaplexy Records, and was made available for free download via a link on this page. I wrote about that split here. Now, Planks are on the verge of releasing another split with a band named O.

For this new split both bands recorded cover songs. Planks picked “A Forest”, which was originally recorded by The Cure and appears to be one of the all-time favorite songs of the band’s vocalist/guitarist Ralph Schmidt. Mike Hill from Brooklyn’s Tombs contributed guest vocals on the track.

The other band, O, consists of members from the border region of Germany, The Netherlands, and Belgium. The song they picked to cover is the “Laura Palmer Theme” from the David Lynch TV series Twin Peaks. It appears that show is a favorite of everyone in O (I like it a lot too). Continue reading »

Oct 102012

I caved in to impulse again this morning.  While browsing the interhole to see what was happening in the world of metal, I saw a Facebook post by Planks about a show they’re playing in Plauen, Germany on November 16 with two other German bands, Trainwreck and Lentic Waters. Event details can be found here. The show seems to be part of a two-day fest called Deaf Row, and I came across a flyer for the fest that I thought was cool enough to paste on the top of this post.

Hannover is on the other side of the world from where I live in Seattle, so it seems unlikely that I’ll be at that show, unless of course the Seattle tech geeks figure out how to get my fuckin’ teleporter working again. I’ve become a big fan of Planks but didn’t know anything about Trainwreck or Lentic Waters, so I thought, what the fuck, time to check out some new music!


I first heard the music of Planks over the most recent Labor Day weekend and wrote about them here. What I heard was a Bandcamp stream of Planks’ amazing new album, Funeral Mouth, which is being released on October 12 but can be downloaded via that Bandcamp link right now.

In compiling today’s post, I discovered that Planks also recorded a split with one of the other bands featured on that November 16 show, Lentic Waters. The split was released in June of this year on vinyl by Apocaplexy Records (which can be ordered here), but it turns out that Apopoplexy also made the split available for free download via a link on this page. Continue reading »

Sep 022012

It may be Labor Day Weekend here in the U.S., and although it’s fair to say that I’m fucking off even more than usual with a 3-day weekend to enjoy, I’m also still prowling the interhole in search of new metal experiences worth sharing with our beloved readers, without whom I would just be talking to myself like the average homeless person. And man oh man, did I find some intriguing items yesterday.

I knew only one of these bands before seeing and hearing what I saw — Allegaeon. But we’ve slobbered over them a lot at NCS already, and they’re getting buckets of slobber from fans and critics already, so despite the fact that their new video is indeed awesome, I’m putting them last today. In front of them come three more obscure collectives that deserve the front end of the spotlight.


I’m pretty sure that the first and last time I wrote about a metal band from Tunisia was in July 2010, when the subject was a band named Barzakh, in a series on Metal From North Africa. Yesterday I found another Tunisian band named Brood of Hatred, thanks to the wonderful Middle Eastern-based metal blog, Metality. This past March, Brood of Hatred released their debut EP, New Order of Intelligence, which is available for free download on Bandcamp (here). But though I’m now interested in hearing that, what I heard (and saw) yesterday that grabbed my attention was something even more recent.

It’s a brand new video for a new single called “Cacophony In Creation” that will appear on the band’s debut album, Skinless Agony. The song is excellent, both very well written and very well performed.  Continue reading »