NIGHTSLUG’s Dismal Fucker is one of the heaviest, most fucked up records of this year and probably the following 20. Emerging from Germany’s Hardcore-Punk scene and featuring (ex-) members of infamous bands like The Now-Denial, Burial, Doomtown or Union Of Sleep, the quality of Dismal Fucker could have been foretold but still surprises with its blatant uncompromisingness. Sludge, as heavy as performed by NIGHTSLUG, is not easy to be found anywhere, but most people surely wouldn’t expect it to come out of Germany. Being the fanboys and –girls that we are here on CVLT Nation, we had to do an interview with NIGHTSLUG to get to know this band more. So I sat down with Jens, the singer and guitarist of the band, and asked him a few questions while having a few beers and listening to the new Black Sabbath album. Besides Jens, NIGHTSLUG is Philip on bass and Fabian on drums.
I guess you could say so. I really wanted to play music, just rehearse regularly. It wasn’t so much about playing live or anything, just to hang out and play music together. So I fell back on Fabian and Philip because it’s always cool to make music with these guys. At first I didn’t even know if they’d be into this kind of sound – because the stuff we did in the past was quite different for sure. But it clicked already at the first rehearsal, so that was that. READ MORE…
(Note: This article originally appeared, in an earlier form, at Souciant.com, here. It is reprinted with permission from the author.)
Manchester’s Warsaw changed their name in 1977 to Joy Division to avoid conflict with the punk band Warsaw Pakt. Coincidentally, that change served to mark the break between Joy Division’s punk phase and their later, better-known dark postpunk era. There is something important to this: Many bands at that time started as punk bands yet ended up becoming postpunk, deathrock, and gothic rock acts.
Although Warsaw’s output has its fans and diehard evangelists to this day, it’s the Joy Division material that garnered that band’s popularity. Easy Cure – a British punk band – became The Cure. Crisis became Death in June. The punk band The Outsiders became the postpunk band The Sound. And it goes on. But other bands have had the opposite problem: They are known for their punk material, but their later postpunk output remains neglected, or is seen (by purist punks, at least) as a kind of embarrassing deviation from punk purity, to be brushed under the rug. Rare are bands like Wire or Siouxsie and the Banshees, or Killing Joke — bands whose punk and postpunk material is accorded equal acclaim.
Well, here are five bands whose postpunk material merits reexamination. Audiophiles will be familiar with some of the releases. The material warrants broader exposure regardless.
All Pigs Must Die are at it again. Their follow up to the revered God is War, Nothing Violates This Nature is a continuation of the already heavy, already destructive tendencies of APMD. Heralded as a supergroup, APMD pushes the envelope of what is heavy, and explores the deepest reaches of pure, unadulterated decimation.
“Chaos Arise” – a blitzkrieg that aurally assaults the listener, opens up Nothing Violates This Nature. Seriously heavy riffing by Adam Wentworth encapsulates the atmosphere of pure bleakness — Ben Koller’s drumming is unrelentingly crushing, and the deep barking by Kevin Baker sets the mood straight away. It is a bludgeon over the head with a blunt instrument; APMD shows their strength from the opening note. It is difficult to pinpoint, exactly, how something so heavy could exist; perhaps it is the fastidious approach to instrumentalization that APMD employs. Perhaps it’s the water in Massachusetts. What-ever it may be, “Chaos Arise” is an opening track that completely destroys all in its wake. It is something to truly revel in; APMD has such a unique style that it is almost impossible to resist the urge to thrash around the room.
The first single from the album, “Silencer”, is demonstrably heavy. Picking up where “Chaos Arise” left off, APMD segues into “Silencer” perfectly. Blending together a style of crust and blackened hardcore, the track grooves along, pushing the pace at every step, a sound made from the ashes of bands Discharge and Entombed. This style of hardcore works so well for APMD; all tracks sound extremely clean through waves and waves of distortion. “Primitive Fear”, a constant sludge assault, breaks the convention of the two opening tracks. Having this sludge influence, APMD grooves to a repeating breakdown, using these deep, metallic guitars to assault slowly. “Of Suffering” is another track that follows the same pattern; these sludgy, dark tones wash over, painting the bleakest picture. There is all kinds of imagery in the music, something dark and full of suffering; drenched in the mire of the river Cocytus, and steeped in the deepest reaches of the nether. APMD can play assaulting, break-neck blackened hardcore, but these tracks that showcase this kind of sludge are not only breaks from the action, but rather their own entities that exist to give the whole album a full, experienced sound.
Are you Secretly Windigos?
Davey: Despite the numerous tests we’ve had performed on us, we are still unsure. One thing for sure is we all constantly have intense cravings for human flesh.
Are you Secretly French Canadian?
That’s just mean guys.
Is that why you spell your name all weird?
We just suck at spelling haaard.
Are there Clones of Russia?
Davey: Oh brother, we’ve tried time and time again. It’s just so hard to recapture that raw exotic vibe he gives off. Sadly we always have to take em out back n shoot em.
Florida act Centuries are ripping up the East Coast. Their debut LP, Taedium Vitae, a darkened hardcore shellshock of an album, fits right at home on Southern Lord. The sound delivered from this LP is caustic, volatile, and overtly heavy; Centuries tears through nine tracks in nineteen minutes (!). Taedium Vitae proves to be an absolute wrecking ball – a downright raw album that Centuries pushes the limits of their creative efforts on.
Opening with a jarring one minute, twenty second wave of fuzz and jangling guitar chords, Centuries drops the listener right in with “Caeruleus.” The guitars are punchy – crunchy, if you will; thick walls of sound crash through the gates. The vocal style is abrasive – loud screams pave the way for the album, a tour de force emotional ride that hinges on the very fabric of the bands capability. “Caeruleus” is a track that builds upon itself. As the next track, “Gelu,” takes shape, the drums rage, pounding away a menacing beat as the guitars crank out deep, powerful chords. A slower track than the former, Centuries brings an emotional wave to “Gelu”; all this blackened anger comes to the forefront – the vocals expel such venom.
The Banner is one of the greatest hardcore bands ever. Period. Don’t believe me? Pick up any one of their three albums, Your Murder Mixtape, Each Breath Haunted and Frailty, and you’ll be blissfully hating yourself or someone else by the end. Next month will see the release of the band’s first material since Frailty in 2008 with the release of Born to Ruin I, the first in a series of three. With the cassette’s release fast approaching, I took an afternoon to discuss the EP with vocalist Joey Southside, in addition to The Banner’s influences and recent adventures.
Born to Ruin I is almost upon us. What can you say about the cassette at this point, what can fans expect?
I can say that it’s six tracks and I guess I got a little bit out of my safety zone with this one. It’s nerve racking but I’m looking forward to seeing what people think.
So far, based on the tracks released last year like “Negative Zone” and “Lilith,” Born to Ruin I looks to be one of the band’s most unique releases yet. What new influences have found their way into The Banner’s sound?
I would say it’s more of our old influences becoming more prominent. “Negative Zone” was written the day Peter Steele passed away so that’s how I approached the vocals for that track, as an homage of sorts. That sort of just opened the flood gates for me just writing whatever the fuck I felt might not bore me to death. Plus the off chance of alienating our fans always appeals to me as a masochist.
CVLT Nation favorites FULL OF HELL are offering their Rudiments Of Mutilation LP for free download this week only!! From now until July 22nd, you can download the entire album free HERE! This acclaimed album is a must-have for hardcore fans, so it’s pretty fucking rad that FOH is giving us the chance to have it for free – although we highly recommend picking it up on vinyl HERE (only a few are left). You can read our review here and also check out their video for “The Lord Is My Light” here. Stream Rudiments Of Mutilation below and check out their tour dates for their upcoming East Coast and European tours!
Some of the best bands are the ones you know fuck all about, aren’t they? The band someone mentions and you search and search and just find maybe a mention of one EP they did on Google. But that EP is a fucking stormer and that’s all you know. Bands like that leave you wanting more. They don’t have to release another thing, that EP will be their legacy.
Wasn’t that what indie music was supposed to be at one point? Produced independently from major corporate control and not concerned with commercial success. Making the music you want to make without caring whether people liked it or not. But somewhere along the way they all sold their music down the sewer for money. Give me bands like Crow, Winter or so many other bands I know fuck all about. These just release great music, they couldn’t give two flying fucks about being popular. Anyway, getting back to the point, Luddite is one of those bands. No moody photos of the band, just ripping hardcore.
Text and photos: Adele van Heerden
We arrived at Hellfest around four in the afternoon on the Thursday before bands started, exhausted, having travelled from London at four in the morning. After finding a spot in the masses of tents, our friendly French neighbours gave us beer and bade us welcome, even helping us to set up our tent. I had never heard of the festival before my boyfriend suggested we go, but upon arrival we were given a quick course on Hellfest history.
Apparently Hellfest had a long history of being attacked by right-wing conservatives for their supposedly demonic or satanic theme. Luckily it enjoyed continued support, despite large sponsors, such as Coca-Cola, dropping out because of the pressure.
This year seemed to be avidly supported by members of the whole family: I saw father and son enjoy acts such as Ihsahn and Immortal together, and absolutely no scorn between groups of people. Everyone was just there to dress up and have a good time, whether it be with their family or the people from another country they had just met an hour ago. I believe Hellfest also makes an important economic contribution to the town of Clisson, which embraces it in full: the town pharmacy played Metallica and everyone working in the shops that weekend wore Hellfest support shirts. I believe the local supermarket probably made more money than they would at Christmas!
Germany’s Deathrite are an imposing presence in every way. Just look at the horror dripping from their logo and the image of Death dominating the cover of Into Extinction. However, superficial elements aside, Deathrite have their devastating music in check and Into Extinction is one of 2013’s dirtiest and darkest hardcore records of the year.
With crust and d-beat firmly in tow, these Germans know exactly what their MO is on the half hour long LP. There’s simply no messing about, these are face ripping sonic dirges that waste no time in living up to their name – bringing extinction.
That said, Deathrite may be all about the pummelling dark abyss but they never lose track of the “song” as believe it or not, there are even riffs on the LP that you could call catchy and memorable. For all their barbarisms, Deathrite are still good songwriters.