DEPRESSOR is one of those bands that had me in awe from the very first time I heard them. I’m just saying that they were the perfect combination of damaged machine-like crust with apocalyptic tones of metallic dirge & destructive riffs. Everything about this band’s sound gets me hyped as fuck, I really dig their album “Symbols,” but unholy fuck, their two demos Depressor (1995) & Grace (1997) are great works unto themselves for sure! DEPRESSOR’s music is rad because it’s just classic, it will never be dated in any way, plus they are really original – when you listen to this band their is no way to escape this fact. The lyrical content of this band hits the bullseye & should be a wake up to all the shitty leaders of the world that their days are numbered. The way the songs are written is just otherworldly; it almost seems like robots from hell chose this as the soundtrack for when they are going to take over the planet. When you allow their song “Mammoth” to invade your mind, you will never feel the same, because that aggro bass line will stomp out any self doubt you ever had. DEPRESSOR is also so epic for the fact that no matter how many dark caves their sound will push your head into, they will still shower you in blackened melody to keep the revolution moving! Today is really your lucky fucking day, because you can download their demos from CVLT Nation. So after the jump, follow the instructions & bring these pieces of sonic terror into our existence!
Not only have I lost my mind, but I have also lost my hearing…call it deafness caused by over exposure to giant riffs. If you don’t know, now you know: POWER OF THE RIFF laid siege to Los Angeles this past weekend & I must say it was fucking off the chain. So many rad bands, for the first six hours I could not even stop to eat. All I wanted to do was to go from killer set to radical set. I was so hyped all day, I was cyco non-stop fucking head banging. POWER OF THE RIFF straight wrecked shop with this year’s lineup, but what really makes this festival so special is that it is put on by people from the scene, so you never felt a corporate puppet master pulling your strings! Yeah I know this event is famous for many reasons, but everyone should know that this festival should be known for respect for humanity – what I’m trying to say is that there are fucking truckloads of positive vibes at this festival. It’s extra cool to see the bands just kicking it all day with the fans, it seemed like we all just checked our egos at the door. Due to the varied genres of music on the bill, you had metal heads, doom dealers, crusty punks, hardcore kids & everyone in between, and they all just chilled in oneness. I can’t even describe how cool it was to be able to bro down with bands that I have been into for a while & be able to have some epic conversation. I did the best I could do – I couldn’t catch every set, but here is a list of the bands I did see: 7 sisters of Sleep, Skin Like Iron, Masakari, Acephalix, Alpinist, Trap Them, All Pigs Must Die & EYEHATEGOD. I took mad flicks of some electrifiying performances, so in order to get down to nitty gritty, I’m going to pick one of my favorite shots from each band & write a small review of their set. It gets better – we will also have a huge POWER OF THE RIFF photo gallery (over a 100 photos) after the jump with even more off the chain photos!
For a band putting out doom metal today, history must weigh down like a planetary body. Black Sabbath, Pentagram, Electric Wizard, Sleep, the list of utterly legendary doom metal bands goes on and on. No genre truly evokes the power of the riff like doom does. Think to the first time you ever blasted Iron Man or Dopethrone, those weed smoke hazed days gone by leave an indelible impression on us that usually turns us into a lifelong doom metal fan. With their latest release, Yob have managed to solidify their spot in the American doom metal canon, entering the pantheon of greats that still continue to pummel us into submission with their apocalyptic riffing. Atma is merely five tracks, but weighing in at over fifty five minutes of music, this is a record that demands you sit back, and ready yourself for a meditation on the power of metal. Like their brothers Om, Yob revel in the mystic. Riffs lead us into a state of trance, pummeling us into mindful submission with their monstrous presence. The very album name here is derived from the Buddhist concept of self, the Atma.
Unholy radness, hot damn, I dig it when doom gets a face lift, because I love the vibrations of Apocalyptic Blues, it quakes my inner ghost to it’s invisible bones. One 7 inch that gets me pumped is Pharaoh’s record that was released by A389 recordings. It’s only two songs, but fuck they are epic songs that are so rad you will just keep them on repeat anyway. Pharaoh has elements that would be considered downtuned for sure, but their sound flies on the wings of more than just one bird. You will not be able to avoid the atomic groove that this band manifests with every note. The riff for “I Murderer, I” is honey-coated and sounds like they baked it under the heat from the black sun. On this tune, Pharaoh lets you know that as a band you can’t fuck with them, because they stretch the soundscape of doom into something that works on a metaphysical & visceral level; put that in your bong and inhale it! The singer is epic awesome – the vocals might sound harsh to certain people, but to me he just kills it with heartfelt conviction every time he busts a note. When playing this 7 inch, you will find yourself breaking out into uncontrollable head banging. “Two Thousand Seasons” is a perfect name for a song that a vortex to a place where the landscape of the Grand Canyon has taken over the world. With all of the light that this band’s music has, you do hear the warning sign that our end is near. So the last day is upon us, make sure to find this 7″ maybe it will let you in on some secrets!
Pharaoh : I Murderer, I
Who kick authority in the balls then punched corruption in the eye & broke the legs of oppression the dynamic duo of CLINGING TO THE TREES OF A FOREST FIRE & NESSERIA. Together these two bands put out one of the sickest splits of the year & it was released on Throatruiner Ṙecord.What’s ultra cool about this record is that both band are masters at sonic destruction but each one them approach the killing of ear drums from a different angel.CLINGING TO THE TREES OF A FOREST FIRE from denver creates music that should be the sound track for apocalyptis .It’s fucking insane how heavy this band is every song has this uber thick wall of desolate bass that just punish you every second.What impreeses most about their bass sounds is that they have so many layers of hate but then dig deeper then you will hear the murder groove which just pushes each song closer to the edge of insanity.CLINGING TO THE TREES OF A FOREST FIRE combine genres to come with a sound that shape shifts i would say every ten seconds.At one point the band pushes your brain into the mud of sludge then breaks out their grind core sledge hammer to whack you over the skull.I can not forget that they have no problem knocking you in knees with a brick of doom plus they brake their crusty razors for some blood letting.On their opening track Opaque CLINGING TO THE TREES OF A FOREST FIRE creeps up on with this dirgy bass before blasting into onslaught of grind damage that will leave your spinning.These are wizards at changing tempos which can be heard on their tune Wrinkled Claws that starts off almost at a doom pace but morphs into 6 different audio beasts.The vocalist for this band is super rad he sounds like cannibals ripping flesh off of the bone & enjoting every minute of it.CLINGING TO THE TREES OF A FOREST FIRE also has thse weird catchy riffs that infest some of their songs & they will embed themselves into your memory for sure.Read the rest of this epic review after the jump!
I swear there must be something in the water in DC, because bands from this part of the country always have a different swagger, and this is a fact – you can hear dating back to Bad Brains, Minor Threat, Void & Marginal Man. DC’s ILSA is a band that brings the cosmic death doom to the party and sets it off til the break gloom. ILSA’s 2010 album, Tutti il Colori Del Buio, released via Contagion Releasing comes from a place of superdelic radness, where the basslines break bones & putrefied screams shatter steel. ILSA has riffs that are apocalyptic & stink of all sweaty basements they have wreaked havoc in. They pull off something really special with this album; it’s like the blues got hijacked by a crazy horde of crusty punx & they gave birth to a mutant bastard sound. ILSA also electrocutes their music with cryptic volts of death metal. They also have one more element in their sonic tour de force that commands respect: they have the knack & knowhow to harness the power of D-beat. Their singer sounds damaged to the core, and seems like someone you would want on your side in a riot. They hit me in all of the right places, and put me in a head lock with their swamp boogie dirge, then they keep my soul captive in their dungeon of doom. They really seem like they are just fucking happy doing them & not trying to be anything they aren’t. Every song on this album bleeds caustic conviction & nuclear passion. I want this band to be the soundtrack to our new Armageddon! Black Flag kills roaches on contact, but ILSA beheads all posers in sight!!! After the jump, check out live footage of gnarly rituals.
YOB and Dark Castle are two of the biggest names in doom today. Both bands are on the incredibly hip and respected Profound Lore label, and have spent the past month touring across the United States. On Saturday, August 6, 2011 these two titans teamed up with labelmates Worm Ouroboros and blackened doom enigma Dispirit at the Gilman in Berkeley for what was one of the best shows of the year. Each band had their own unique sound and aura, which is often a rarity for a four band package. Check out tons of photos of all four bands and a full review after the jump.
One of my favourite memories of listening to music dates back to 2009. We played one single show in Sweden, that meant to drive overnight back to Germany. I had to drive and to stay awake I was blasting the fifth Shining album, Halmstad. Listening to this music while driving through dark Swedish forests was just such perfect combination of surrounding world and music, I’ll never ever forget that. Now the band around Niklas Kvarforth released a new record entitled VII: Född Förlorare and of course my expectations were high – especially since the last record, Klagopsalmer, didn’t amaze me as much as Halmstad. So could Född Förlorare bring back the horror once again?
You can watch the video for the track “Förtvivlan, Min Arvedel” from the VII: Född Förlorare album. Don’t watch it you can’t stand the sight of drug abuse and self-mutilation.
Wow is jumping over 6 unholy fucks and awesome is doing back flips over pure radness…MAN WILL DESTROY HIMSELF is one of the sickest new bands in my universe.The first millisecond that I heard them, they had me hanging on to the killer fury that they conjure up like a puppet on a string. So this is the deal, MAN WILL DESTROY HIMSELF, from Raleigh, NC, just released their album This is a Test via The Path Less Traveled Records. If you can’t tell, this record has me mad hyped! When the riff on “Circle the Drain” wraps around your inner head banging demons, I know for sure you will be hooked. Actually, MAN WILL DESTROY HIMSELF is so good that when I hear them, everyday feels like Saturday. Now I’m going to get my mad scientist on, I’m going to mix the spirit of Rudimentary Peni with the confrontational energy of S.O.A, plus the metallic edge of VOID, and what I would create would still be no match for MAN WILL DESTROY HIMSELF. The vocalist in this band is called Earthworm Poverty, and his magnetic screams & grunts are filled with harmonic agony. Then there is the music – you could say it’s crust, metal or punk, but none of these labels would do it justice, my advice to you would be to hear it for yourself. I will say that every tune on this record is gnarly to the core. MAN WILL DESTROY HIMSELF know how to use speed as a weapon, and they construct all of their tunes with a rancid layer of cosmic melody that will have your face contorting in awe. You know when you hear people that live what they create every second of their existence, so their creations have that special quality that you can’t put your finger on? This band has that. Now I have one more thing I have to do before I leave this planet, I must see MAN WILL DESTROY HIMSELF live. I know these humans must rip the universe a new one!
When bands try to mix genres, a lot of the time they just don’t get it right. This is why I don’t like to put labels on things, because once you do that, you can automatically turn people off that might otherwise be into what you are creating. When I first heard VIT, I’m so glad I didn’t pay attention to any labels, because this is one band that might sound weird on paper. What you need to do is listen to their 2010 self-titled, released via Music Ruins Lives – from the first guitar note, you will be hooked. What links all of the different moods & genres together on this awesome album is honesty in why & what they are creating. For me, this is what VIT’s music makes me feel – when I hear their music, I wish I could move to a rad tree house. The album starts off with a riff that would make Cat Power jealous, then all of a sudden these rad black metal drums come in while a waterfall of melody pours all over the beat. Then the second song comes on, “Swansylvania” – now with this, VIT changes the game a little because they start to break your bones with ultra heavy stench laden doom, but it’s the heartfelt demonic vocal style that punches you in your eye! Their song “The Ascension Ritual” starts off with an old world gothic Americana vibe that had me high the very first moment I heard it; the guitar work on this song is so fucking emotional that it is almost addicting. The tones that the guitar is speaking says a lot about the pain of this world, but fear not, 4 minutes into this epic track the power gods awake to guide you into the darkness. I could write about every song on this album, because it’s that darn radical, but let it be known that VIT is like a mirror that everyone should look into & see who is looking back at them. The power of the open mind has prevailed once again!