It’s tough to deny the gravity that the past roster of ZOZOBRA lays claim to. Founded in 2006 by Caleb Scofield of Cave In and Old Man Gloom and having featured members from Isis, The Hope Conspiracy, United Nations and pretty much every other goddamn member of Cave In. So when the news hits that next month they’ll be dropping Savage Masters their first album in five years… you get excited.
This incarnation of the band Adam McGrath (Cave In, Clouds, Bodega Girls) – guitar, vocals
JR Connors (Cave In) – drums (2012-present).It also melts your face, rips your head off and shits down your throat while cackling like a hyena. Their uniquely volatile mixture of crusty, grinding, blood spitting, apocalypse hardcore takes the next 13 minutes and 40 seconds and turns them into the most satisfying glimpse of chaos strewn hell that I have so far bared witness to in 2013.
Written By Shayne Mathis
All in all, it’s a great time to be a fan of heavy music. There are an abundance of bands out there who
are either pushing the boundaries of their respective sub-genres or perfecting their sound to reach the
pinnacle of Trueness. Unfortunately, you’ve probably never heard of any of these bands. I’m not saying
that as a slight against your metal cred, but as a statement of fact. The incestuous nature of the metal
writing community all but guarantees the majority of underground bands remain that way as writers
rely on Haulix promos and PR releases to dictate what bands get coverage. I understand that it’s hard
(if not impossible) to make a living as a metal journalist in the digital age, and I know bloggers have
to chase trends to ensure constant website traffic. But the end result is that many bands are left out in
the cold as the same handful of buzz bands and albums get coverage from all of the major heavy metal
news outlets from week to week. Imperium Dekadenz is one such band that’s been largely ignored.
If you aren’t familiar with Imperium Dekadenz already, you should know that they are an
atmospheric black metal band from Germany that manage to sound simultaneously depressive and
majestic. Their previous album, Procella Vadens, was one of the best metal albums of 2010 that you
didn’t hear. Don’t make the same mistake with the band’s follow-up, Meadows of Nostalgia.
Imperium Dekadenz stay mostly true to the Norwegian black metal tradition. Meadows of Nostalgia
features plenty of buzzsaw guitars, blast beats, and raspy shrieks throughout. But there’s also a clear
bass sound, prominently featured drums, and (gasp!) some acoustic passages in the mix that sets
Imperium Dekadenz apart from many of their fellow practitioners of trve kvlt black metal.
Last night, one of our readers posted a link to this article, and the contents of the following letter posted on Hiphopisread.com last April are explosive. It is an anonymous letter submitted to the site by an ex-executive in the American music industry, one who lived with the guilt of his knowledge for more than 20 years before he wrote this. It details how the major labels he worked with in the 80s and early 90s made huge investments in the privatization of prisons in America, and how they decided in the early 90s to take an active role in making sure those prisons filled up with young men. The letter writer explains that “since technology and media weren’t accessible to people like they are today, the industry had more control over the public and had the means to influence them anyway it wanted”. It’s fucking despicable, but not surprising maybe for a lot of people. One thing about our readers is you are all committed to independent music and music labels, and share a distaste, dare I say hate, for the mainstream music that is ubiquitous in our societies. Major labels have blanked independent music and have even tried to erase some genres from existence by having absolutely nothing to do with them and marketing a more palatable and weak substitute. Both Sean and I are fans of some hip hop, but we have both leaned towards the more “conscious” or underground hip hop because of the sheer stupidity, racism, sexism and homophobia of most mainstream hip hop music. Sean was a part of hip hop in the late 80s and early 90s in the Bay Area and LA, and he witnessed first hand the demise of Afrocentric, positive music that uplifted black American culture and people; music that went from scorning crack to selling it, from promoting powerful women and men to taking their power and their lives away. Hip hop went from showing American society and the world that black Americans were intelligent, political and motivated people to returning to the negative stereotypes that have kept American society segregated and hateful for the past few centuries. It actively fed the mentality that young black men deserved to be in prison and were a threat to society that should be locked away. So the contents of this letter are no surprise to him, but that’s not to say that it doesn’t make both of us sick. The idea that major music labels wanted to promote criminal activity in the black community, and by extension in all communities of all colors, in order to maximize their investments in the prison industrial complex is an outrage. It makes you wonder in what other ways they have decided to influence society – for example, the way that women are mostly given powerless and sexualized roles in music. It is so sad to think that generations of children have had their futures tampered with by being repeatedly exposed to ideas that make them negative, self-conscious and powerless to motivate themselves or each other to change the world. Thankfully there is a movement towards change happening, real change at the grassroots level, to make our societies happier and more equal places. After the jump, please read this letter and share it as widely as possible!
One of the coolest things in the world is to see your friends’ dreams come true! This is exactly the case for Dan Clements of EXCEL. As young kids growing up in Venice, even before we discovered hardcore, we would skate together. Then something happened: we both got into punk around the same time and became a part of the Suicidal scene that was happening around us. Then he and his homies started Chaotic Noise, which later would become the almighty EXCEL. When Shaun Ross joined, this band really started to kill shit during the mid 80′s. When you listen to EXCEL’s lyrics you can hear that they were before their time. It was a sad day when this band called it quits. The good news is that EXCEL has reunited and will be performing at the RVCA store on Fairfax this Saturday, March 30th at 7pm. This is going to be an epic show, I am looking forward to seeing many heads that I used to terrorize Venice with. So for everyone who will not be in Los Angeles this weekend, check out some sick footage after the jump! Suicidal Boyz for life!
DUE TO THE OVERWHELMING RESPONSE WE’VE HAD ABOUT THE EXCEL SHOW, WE WILL BE LIMITING ENTRY TO 70 PEOPLE AND YOU MUST RSVP TO ATTEND. EMAIL STORES@RVCA.COM TO GET ON THE GUEST LIST.
So here is a new video from COLD CAVE’s A Little Death To Laugh 7″ that came out in September. Their new 7″ Oceans With No End, which is coming out on Deathwish Inc., can be pre-ordered HERE! In the meantime, check out the new COLD CAVE video entitled “A Little Death To Laugh” after the jump! This visual was filmed by Amy Lee.
Speedwolf is the shit and their new video of the same name is a raging visual party! When I heard their 2011 debut Ride With Death, I was hooked on their intocating riffs. When I watched the “Speedwolf” video, something came over me and I wanted to blast some metal then drink a cold one. Anyway, this sick fucking band is about to hit the road again, but in the meantime check out their visual for “Speedwolf” after the jump!
You know those days when you need more than just a caffeine boost? I have the answer! It comes in the form of a Pittsburgh band called SLAVES BC. I have been following them for some time and I must say that each release is taking their fury to unknown heights of audio anger! They have a new split in the works with Cousin Sleaze from New York, and today CVLT Nation has the honor of streaming two SLAVES BC songs from the split below. Have a listen, then pre-order HERE! The split will be released digitally on April 11th, and it will be released as a 7″ at the end of May.
Some people say space is the place and when it comes to the band E-Musikgruppe Lux Ohr, and they would be correct. Today they release their new album entitled KOMETENBAHN via Svart Records. The whole record takes you into a valley of sound where you will lose yourself. CVLT Nation is streaming their song Sonnenaufgang below. Every time I hear this tune, a giant smile comes alive on my face and I start to dream! E-Musikgruppe Lux Ohr create sonic magic that will make your eardrums float away into the void…
Rhinocervs, for those unfamiliar with the group, is a label and band operated by two members as a means to distribute the music they had been working on under the guise of anonymity. I found Rhinocervs interesting in that regard, as they (potentially) function as their own musician, distributor, and label which makes their business model wholly attractive from an artistic standpoint. To add a more important note to this model it should be noted that Rhinocervs have made it a goal to prioritize releasing art, rather than create an embodied artist to represent their catalogue. In lieu of this, Rhinocervs catalog their releases very simply, as the current one is simply “RH-14.” But that’s business, and no one really likes to discuss business when they are looking to be entertained.
RH-14’s first untitled track is the largest of the three and in many ways the most full-bodied. From the get go it is reminiscent of artists such as Antediluvian who encapsulate the idea of death metal brutality and black metal form. While that sounds somewhat cliche and easily misinterpreted, don’t fret, this song is fucking pulverizing. As a sucker for the drum tone that is used on this release (and various others), I found myself wholly entertained by the force of the song. There is a deliberate idea within the first track that is melded and erected fully throughout the song’s seven minute length. It should be noted that the vocal work here is particularly enthralling; at times it feels both above and below the listener, eventually coming to a middle point in the mix and engulfing the mix fully.