Thursday, January 31, 2013

wedding - on beyond yuggoth.

Wedding - On Beyond Yuggoth


54.97 MB

1. Mountains Of Mashu
2. Darkly-Splendid World

I discovered this cassette via this post on hammer smashed sound. I had never heard of brave mysteries before, but the great reviews (and lovecraft reference) caught my eye, so I picked up this one, along with the shiny black mater tape also mentioned in the link.

needless to say, these are some weird recordings. this one, wedding's "on beyond yuggoth," oscillates between droning ambience and extremely harsh noise, with some very abstract spoken-word vocals thrown in for good measure. it might not be "metal" per se, but it sure sounds metallic - it's always very dark and haunting - and thus perfect for the blog.

check out the brave mysteries store to pick up this and some of their other releases, all of which feature excellent packaging, high-quality tapes, and some of the weirdest "music" you're likely to find anywhere. for more info on this one and past releases, peruse their history page.

definitely a label worth investigating further.

(for preview purposes only.)

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

fuil na seanchoille - hunger.

Fuil Na Seanchoille - Hunger


89.66 MB

1. The Infinite Void
2. Promethean Age
3. The Crimson Hand
4. Glasslands
5. Night Descends
6. Circle Of Rape
7. Anord Siorai
8. A Thousand Shades Of Grey
9. Outro

here's the debut full-length from irish black metal one-man band fuil na seanchoille, out on tour de garde. and don't ask me how to pronounce that might be the only black metal band name I've encountered that I honestly have no idea how to say properly.

the album is fairly typical of the current crop of UK black metal - noisy, dirty, covered in shouted vocals, and caked in static. but unlike a lot of legion blotan releases, there's more of a focus on songwriting over atmosphere here, and it's very welcome.

I can see this blasting over a medieval battle scene, horses trampling through the fields as grass and sod soak up blood.

pick it up from media tree recordings here (as I did), or directly from tour de garde here - definitely worth the dollars.

(for preview purposes only.)

Friday, January 25, 2013

crown of cerberus - her strength.

Crown Of Cerberus - Her Strength


58.31 MB

1. Eternal Declaration Of Her Love
2. At The Steps Of Her Throne
3. Lifted By The Might Of Her Mercy
4. Pupils Dilate As She Emits Radiance From Her Lips And Hands
5. Declaration II (Lessons In Love)
6. Past Reflections
7. As The Trumpets Bellow From The Heavens
8. Past Reflections II
9. Her Love Eternal, Even Through And After Death
10. Your Reflection In Her Eyes

here's a relatively new release from cult of craft. sure, it's not exactly metal, but music like this is a great way to relax after the caustic chaos of the svn okklt compilation. and it's on cassette in gorgeous, hand-crafted packaging from a small label, so I'm posting it.

a clear tape with gold liners and purple stickers, it comes wrapped in a woodcut print and bound with a single purple ribbon.

crown of cerberus is an avant-garde, ambient project that utilizes tape loops and field recordings and, according to discogs, falls into the category of "musique concrète." this isn't a genre that I have much experience with, so I can't really comment on where it stands with regard to the prevailing paradigms, but the music itself is ambient, soothing, and very contemplative.

filled with rising and falling tones, short, repetitive loops, and ethereal female vocals, all the music here is incredibly heartfelt and strangely moving. and it's made all the more effective by movie-dialogue intros on sides a and b (aka tracks one and five) that help underline the themes of love and loss.

some material here is a little darker while some is a little lighter. there are tracks on the first side that wouldn't be out of place as the background music to some obscure, intricate cult ritual, while tracks on the second side (especially "her love eternal...") I can imagine swelling up as rain stops and sunlight peaks through parting storm clouds.

it's all very beautiful and I'd love to use it in a film someday soon.

unfortunately, cult of craft doesn't have a webstore, but visit the blog for ordering info. this tape goes for $8 but is limited to only 49 copies, so act fast.

the packaging alone makes it worthwhile, but the music is so breathtaking that it needs to be experienced by all.

(for preview purposes only.)

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

metallic cinema.

the criterion collection has a fantastic new(ish) feature that lets you build your own digital collection and create lists of your choosing. I've been a supporter of their stellar dvd releases for about ten or twelve years now and have accumulated more than two hundred spine-numbers. and since this blog represents the intersection point of metal and cinema, I figured I'd create a list of the ten most metal criterion films. these are films that every metalhead should at least be able to appreciate, if not outright enjoy.

my original list can be viewed on the criterion website here.

- antichrist by lars von trier - this one made waves when it premiered at cannes. it's filled with genital mutilation, murderous lovers, a cabin in a mysterious forest and surreal imagery. which would also describe many death and black metal albums.

- häxan by benjamin christensen - demon worship, satanic rituals, what more can I say?

- diabolique by henri-georges clouzot - a murder plot, a missing body, tons of suspense. very metal.

- videodrome by david cronenberg - I'm pretty sure this one's been sampled by dozens of brutal death metal bands, so that alone might warrant it's inclusion. but the subject matter only gets more prevalent with each passing day.

- salò by pier paulo pasolini - definitely the hardest film in the criterion collection to sit through, this is films makes a spectacle out of the torture of children.

- the seventh seal by ingmar bergman - death personified, the middle ages, the plague...sure, it's not the most violent or visceral, but it's an amazing piece of cinema that juxtaposes light and dark.

- the vanishing by george sluizer - talk about a metal ending: a man gets tormented by his girlfriend's kidnapper only to end up sealed in a coffin and buried alive.

- man bites dog by rémy belvaux, et al. - reminiscent of modern goregrind in that it mixes comedy with extremely graphic violence. but that initial shock soon wears off to reveal a film that dealt with the concept of reality television well before its' time.

- schizopolis by steven soderbergh - sure, soderbergh has gone on to make a lot of crap, but this one is an early gem that acts almost as a filmic representation of chaotic hardcore in the way it jumps between scenes, places, characters, and ideas the same way that genre jumps between time signatures.

- shallow grave by danny boyle - with clever dialogue, great pacing and impeccable tension, danny boyle's debut demonstrates how fear and paranoia only build on each other, higher and higher, until there's no way out.

there's my list. feel free to chime in below with your own thoughts and picks. check out the title links to view trailers and ordering info. every single one of criterion's releases is worth your time and money.

Monday, January 21, 2013

svn okklt compilation.

I know this goes against my self-declared "rule" for this blog, i.e., releases available nowhere else online, but this one is too good to pass up.

this long-awaited double cassette compilation, curated by svn okklt and released by fallen empire, is finally available to all. if either of those names are familiar (and they certainly should be), then you know what to expect - the most forward-thinking, savage, chaotic and epic black metal available today.

after spending the weekend listening to the stream on invisible oranges (which, might I add, is the first time I've ever listened to a stream more than once), a couple early favorites are definitely the final three tracks, by dressed in streams, xothist, and jute gyte.

dressed in streams is a mainstay on colloquial sound recordings, having released their first two cassettes through the label last year. while relatively traditional, the songwriting is epic, emotional, and torturous - all necessary qualities for solid black metal.

xothist, on the other hand, is much less traditional and incorporates more noise and ambience into their sound but the end goal is the same - creating an utterly unique and chaotic world inside the listener's head. see my previous post on the vocivus cassette here for more from this black metal force.

and jute gyte, well, where to begin? with close to two dozen releases over the last couple of years, this man is in a class unto himself. sure, not every release has been strictly black metal, but all are worth your time and money. not only are all of his releases available for free on bandcamp, he also puts together stellar cds in dvd-style cases with large inserts and lyrics for only $9 plus shipping. I highly recommend senescence and young eagle to any and every black metal fan out there. his track on this compilation is just as epic as his previous material. it's traditional without being stale, epic without being ponderous, and melodic without sacrificing it's own sense of identity.

anyway, enough with the talk - this is music that transcends words.

turn down the lights.

put on your best pair of headphones.

fall away from the world and into the void.

(original post via svn okklt.)

(pay what you want via fallen empire.)

(buy the double cassette here.)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

horseback/njiqahdda/venowl/cara neir - split.

Horseback/Njiqahdda/Venowl/Cara Neir - Split


68.67 MB

1. Horseback - Heathen Earth
2. Njiqahdda - Towers Constructed To Break The Sky
3. Venowl - III
4. Cara Neir - Minus His Confidence
5. Cara Neir - No Right Path
6. Cara Neir - Seize And Exist

here's another one I can't seem to find anywhere in the vast wasteland that is the internet. sure, some of the bands have released their own tracks independently, but I figured I'd put it all up here for your listening pleasure.

released last year by handmade birds, none of these tracks show a particularly new side to each band, but that doesn't mean that they're not all excellent songs. because they are.

horseback's track is their typical brand of post-rock covered in scathing vocals. njiqahdda's track is epic and swirling while venowl's is harsh and focused. cara neir's three tracks are probably the most straight-forward of the bunch, but also contain the mightiest riffs anywhere on the tape.

limited to only 250 copies, it's still available directly from handmade birds here, but it probably won't last too much longer due to rave reviews like this one. pick it up while you can, along with some of their other amazing releases by sutekh hexen, circle of ouroborus, and servile sect.

(for preview purposes only.)

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

cremation lily - it's ok to say no.

sorry to get your hopes up, but I'm not going to post a rip of this one. if I did, zen zsigo would send me a very polite takedown notice within an hour or two, then I'd remove the link and feel bad about posting it in the first place, so I'm not gonna bother.

nevertheless, this one is amazing. at more than forty minutes, it's far and away the longest cremation lily release to date (that I'm aware of) and the packaging is unbelievable - two c22 cassettes with an insert, a poster, and a black and white tealight, all inside a small hand-painted cardboard box with a handwritten dedication on the bottom.

on to the music itself - harsh, grating, and enthralling. the live drums add a whole new dimension to the sound, breaking through the noise and static, bringing it all to life. shrieks and shouts punctuate the chaos, adding to the live-performance feel.

limited to only twenty-one copies, it sold out within thirty minutes back at the end of october from the strange rules store, so if you missed it then, you're out of luck.

but on the bright side, there's going to be more cremation lily stuff out in the near future, as well as new releases from natural assembly and (probably, hopefully) a whole host of others.

sign up for the mailing list here to be alerted to upcoming releases and new additions to the store - every single one will be worth your hard-earned dollars.

(if there was a link, it would go here.)

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

vocivus - s/t.

Vocivus - S/T


34.34 MB

1. Side A
2. Side B

been waiting a long time for this one, finally bit the bullet and picked it up on discogs. this is a side project from the mastermind behind xothist, also on the bleak environment label.

side a is straight-up mid-tempo black metal while side b is ambient and completely instrumental. not as long as I had hoped for, nor is it quite as furiously epic as the xothist tape, but it's still satisfying nonetheless. with regard to track titles - there are no breaks anywhere on either side, so I've left them alone. metal archives lists ten tracks but that doesn't seem's probably more like three or four. if anyone can shed any light on this, please do so in the comments.

unfortunately, bleak environment appears to have shut down for unknown reasons...but hopefully, like crepusculo negro, it will be resurrected in the coming months. regardless, like them on facebook, buy whatever's left in the store and do your best to support the artists themselves.

xothist will have a track on the upcoming svn okklt double cassette compilation from fallen empire due to be released within the next month or so, but if you're dying to hear more of that sound (as I was), this tape should scratch that itch.

(for preview purposes only.)