Mar 062019
 

 

(Andy Synn reviews the new album by Venom Prison, which will be released on March 15th by Prosthetic Records.)

So this weekend just gone I had the pleasure of seeing Bryan Adams playing to a packed out arena full of people, performing tracks from across his fourteen(!)-album back catalogue with all the verve and vitality of a man who has built his career, and his life, around a simple love of music.

On the surface, of course, the former’s uplifting pop-rock anthems have very little in common with the hideously abrasive assault of Venom Prison, whose second album is arguably an even more aggressive, no-holds-barred barrage of Death Metal fury than their first, but I find it interesting all the same to see how the basic building blocks of both artists’ music – guitars, bass, drums, vocals – are basically the same, yet the execution and end result are so strikingly different.

One thing that the two do have in common, however, is that their music undeniably comes straight from the heart (pun intended)… although in the case of Samsara it does so in a much more bloody and brutal way than anything which the (in)famous groover from Vancouver has ever released! Continue reading »

Mar 052018
 

 

(This is the third and final part of DGR’s round-up of selected new songs and videos that appeared over the last couple of weeks. You can find Part 1 here, and Part 2 here.)

 

Venom Prison – Devoid (Live)

The last time we checked in with Venom Prison was in late January, to spread the news of the February 23rd Prosthetic Records re-release of their 2016 album, Animus, and the group’s music video for the song “Immanetize Eschaton”. That deluxe edition of Animus is now out with five live songs added to it as a bonus disc, and the group unveiled a live-shot video for one of those songs, “Devoid“, right around that time. Continue reading »

Jan 152018
 

 

In 1983 the U.S. Congress passed a bill by a veto-proof majority, subsequently signed into law by President Reagan, establishing Martin Luther King Day as an American federal holiday. It’s being observed here today in the U.S., though one wonders whether such a law would have been passed by the current Congress or signed by the current President, what with all the talk about shitholes and such.

Here in our own metallic shithole we’re conducting our own kind of observance, the kind that doesn’t depend on Acts of Congress or presidential largesse, but only on the continuing brain-blasting creativity of metal musicians, which seems never-ending. The torrent of new music since shortly after New Year’s Day has been kind of staggering. I may have to try to do one of these round-ups every day this week in an effort (one doomed to failure) to keep up.

VENOM PRISON

My colleague Andy called Venom Prison’s debut album Animus “nothing less than a neck-wrecking explosion of audio ultra-violence that fans of Dying Fetus, Cryptopsy, and Cattle Decapitation should already be salivating over”. Roughly 18 months after that all-killer, no-filler advent, Prosthetic Records will reissue the album on February 23rd. To pave the way, the band released a new video late last week (via Revolver mag) for a track off the album called “Immanetize Eschaton“. Continue reading »

Feb 112017
 

 

Happy Saturday to one and all, and if you’re not feeling particularly happy, maybe the recommended new music collected herein will improve your mood.

This is another Seen and Heard post, but with a title that’s more specific to the music I chose for this collection. Most of it could be considered shades and phases of death metal or, in the case of the first item, death-themed.

MANTAR

The Spell snuck up on me. I learned about it yesterday through an e-mail from Nuclear Blast Records that included a link to the lyric video you’re about to see. Like virtually everything else I’ve heard from Mantar, it exploded my brain. Continue reading »

Nov 112016
 

venom-prison-animus

 

(In this post Andy Synn combines a trio of reviews, focusing again upon releases from the UK.)

Grouping bands by their nationality, rather than by their sound, style, or ideology, is a remarkably lazy way of doings things.

Which is why I do it. Obviously.

But, on a more serious note, they do say that variety is the spice of life, and one of my big hopes for this series of columns (along with the usual aim of exposing our readers to bands they might not have discovered otherwise) is that established fans of band [X] might also find something to love in band [Y], fans of band [Y] might find something to love in band [Z]… and so on, and so forth.

Anyway, if you want to check out some of my previous efforts, which run the gamut from Deathcore to Doom to Black to Groove, you can have a gander at Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of this year’s crop by clicking the appropriate link.

Otherwise, onwards you go, for a triple-header of deathly, doomy, blackened delights! Continue reading »

Nov 082016
 

julie-christmas-cult-of-luna

 

(Our man in the UK, Andy Synn, attended Damnation Festival 2016 in Leeds on November 5, and provides this report along with videos he made.)

Oh Damnation Festival how do I love thee? Let me count the ways…

Whereas too many other events seem content to book the same big-name crowd-pleasers, year in and year out, buttressed by an interchangeable selection of generic sound-alikes and contrived gimmicks – all carefully selected purely for their mundane mass-appeal – the Damnation team seem to operate on an unwavering ethos of only booking the bands they truly like, bands (big and small) that they truly believe in, who have something unique or special to offer.

This is how every edition of the festival features an array of bands from multiple different styles, from Death to Prog to Doom to Hardcore to Sludge (and beyond), from across the length and breadth of the underground Metal scene coexisting under one roof and why, over the years, Damnation has seen everyone from Ahab to Asphyx, Carcass to Katatonia, Mono to My Dying Bride, playing to the sort of packed crowds that are a regular occurrence in Europe, but which only rarely seem to be achievable here in the UK.

This helps make Damnation Festival’s line-up a much more interesting affair than many of their peers, as the organisers seem to operate on the principal of “if you build it, they will come”, putting their faith in the belief that the UK scene doesn’t just want to be fed the same old bands and the same old performances, time and time again. And this year was no different, with a wide variety of different acts, of different styles, on display, coupled with a bunch of exclusive performances which practically justified the ticket price on their own! Continue reading »

Aug 202015
 

Venom Prison-The Primal Chaos

 

For the second day in a row, we bring you a premiere that’s preceded by a striking piece of cover art, which again tests my completely irrational hypothesis that cool cover art usually means cool music. This cover was created by Raul Gonzalez (Morbus Chron, Skinfather, Master), and in this case the music is a new four-song EP by a band from South Wales in the UK named Venom Prison. The name of the EP is The Primal Chaos, and my completely irrational hypothesis has been validated once again — because Venom Prison’s music is really damned cool, too.

The EP’s title track will stagger you in your tracks right from the beginning. The massive, groaning riffs and potent drum strikes hit with tremendous power, as if designed to soften you up for all the ferocious, grinding death metal savagery to come. But Venom Prison don’t just deliver morbid, early ’90s death metal, they also mix in elements of hardcore. Continue reading »