On the evening of November 17, 2012, heavy music legends Neurosis played their hometown of Oakland in celebration of their tenth studio album called Honor Found In Decay. Neurosis also invited along Portland doom trio Yob, and the Canadian heavy metal band Voivod. Oakland’s Fox Theater was packed to the brim with an audience that spanned multiple generations, proof that their legacy continues to thrive. As usual, Neurosis wasted no breath communicating with the audience, preferring to plunge straight into leaden, dismal riffs, primal howls and captivating visuals. In the spirit of Neurosis, my words end here and I leave you with my photos from that unforgettable night.
Words don’t flow that easy when the opportunity to speak about AMENRA comes. Ever since i found this band, back in 2004, i never stopped following their steps. Albums like “Mass III” and “Mass IIII” definitely left a mark on me, so big that i still occasionally have the pleasure to revisit them once in a while. Soon came to my ears, from some friends who were touring in Belgium at the time, words about this ridiculously heavy band and a curious vocalist who sang with his back faced against the crowd. Speaking of AMENRA is not only about the music they make, but all that surrounds it. Since very early the band showed a special care and concern about visual aesthetics that serve as a complement to their sound. Making their live shows an unforgettable experience, both sonic and visual, to those to witness such performance. Everything this band makes, they put in their blood, sweat and tears into. Everything is thought to the smallest detail: every word, every image, every sound. Everyone i know that has seen AMENRA live, always tell me about how it was the best live experience of their lives coming out from a band. It goes beyond the skin, beyond the flesh, deep into the soul. No wonder their live performances are known as “rituals”. Their contemporary view offered through their music makes the most experienced and faithful listener renounce to their personal definition of music. Our body and soul are stunned by the crushing, repetitive chords layered with the sweet distressing sermons preached by the charismatic lead singer, and his unique vocal tone.
Added to the Neurot clan in July 2011, AMENRA saw this opportunity as a dream come true. Following Neurosis on tour, the relationship between the two parties only grew stronger as they prepared themselves for an upcoming release, first by their new home. In last November the band wandered by their neighbor countries in search of inspiration for their next work. This trip took them to the village of Wissant in northern France, where they discovered a place carved by time, still carrying visible scars caused by the several battles that occurred during the Second World War. This decimated and devastated scenario would be the muse that invoke and stimulate the band to create “Mass V”.
The band revealed the following personal testimony on how they achieved the concept for the album:
“In November 2012, we left wandering by our own and neighboring countries. Looking for the perfect backdrop for the artwork for the new album. Few days after our trail ended at the village of Wissant in northern France. The site is a meeting of the destruction of World War II bunkers. Force and strength from these weathered buildings was overwhelming. Concrete blown to bits, hundreds of bullet holes everywhere, salt and sand before they were covered in blood.
We draw about these stone temples, this time, was a world of pain. We stayed overnight at the place and slept in one of the bunkers so that we are swallowed by the sea as the tide came in and when dawn brought the first light, Stefaan Temmerman took the picture, I knew it would be perfect to represent our MASS V.
It was a long, cold night ” – CHVE
In May, the band entered the La Chapelle Studios, a former chapel now converted into a professional studio to create and write this new chapter in their career, assisted by engineer Billy Anderson (Eyehategod, Neurosis, Melvins, Sleep, Swans) that would refine and take AMENRA’s sound to another level. “Mass V” presents us an AMENRA with a more stripped, sincere, intimate sound. Almost if a layer from the band was peeled off and we now face it’s raw flesh. Although we’re facing another surface, the whole essence in its pure form, still lies within.
Much like the creature that forms half of their name, Sweden’s Snailking’s debut album Samsara moves at a steady and methodical pace. No surprises then that this is a sludge ridden doom album and what’s more, one of the year’s best. With just three tracks, with some obvious influences making their presence felt, Samsara unfurls some serious heaviness in their slow, creeping riffs and bellowing vocals.
On November 21st, OZ will never be the same, because the NOLA wizards of filth EYEHATEGOD will touch down! For five days, a storm of sonic mayhem will take over Australia and leave nothing behind besides bleeding ears. The word in the dirty alleys of NOLA is that EYEHATEGOD is fucking hyped to bring the pain down under! To celebrate this sick fucking tour, we have put together a demented live video essay so that the humans of OZ can see and hear what they are in store for…I have seen EHG live before – trust me, they will not disappoint you! Now check the sick footage and tour poster after the jump!
Feel the pain and taste the sickness…the almighty BUZZOV•EN is killing shit! Check out over 50 minutes of these dirty sludge-slingers wreaking havoc after the jump! BUZZOV•EN are fucking way beyond cyco, thats why I can’t get enough of them…The filming for this show was spot on, same with the sound!
Don’t expect anything near objectivity here. What you are going to read now is pure worship – worship of the raw, bold, brutal energy of this downtuned, downtempo sludge.
Nightslug is a three piece band from Düsseldorf/Germany, formed in 2011. This three song demo album is their first release in the same year!!! (None of the musicians are tenderfeet though, they all are/were involved in different other bands. Some of you sludge lovers might know “Union Of Sleep”.)
These three songs with a playing time of about 15 minutes altogether just seem to have the right key to my receptor cells in my ears to open the way to my brain and gain control over it. Resistance is futile. Utterly heavy and thick they crawl through my brain like a sludgy monster and here the monster spits out hellish violent doom riffs, vicious dynamic drumming and a sweet hardcore feel. Impossible to not fall in love with this bold breathtaking directness.
If your receptor cells are roughly built like mine, I highly advise you to listen to this demo as loud as possible and let this monster into your brain.
Over the past week we have added quite a few titles to the CVLT Record Store! First up – two import double LPs from the UK’s doomlords RAMESSES, Take the Curse and Possessed by the Rise of Magick, remixed by Justin Broadrick. In addition to two 180 gram black vinyl double LP, Take the Curse comes with a bonus 7″ with two live tracks from their 2011 Roadburn set, a full-color poster and a rad full-color sticker sheet. Next up we have the 3rd press of the WINDHAND self-titled LP, featuring white vinyl with a purple haze, plus we have the self-titled LP from KUXAN SUUM from Fallen Empire, limited to 500 copies on black vinyl. We also brought in a couple of new 7″, including OLD WOUNDS’ Terror Eyes, and the Halloween 2012 special edition color vinyl of the EYEHATEGOD “New Orleans is the New Vietnam” record. There will be more coming soon, so stay tuned to our FB and Twitter to hear the word first!
As 2012 is nearing its end, it begs the classic question – where does the time go? Once again another year chock full of albums to lose yourselves in and while the end is near, we still haven’t reached the edge yet, proven by the arrival of another of the year’s immense albums in the shape of Lento’s Anxiety Despair Languish. The Italian instrumental sludge band’s fourth album is probably their tightest, most impressive and breath-taking to date. Rampant with riffs on every corner and bend of this meandering opus, Anxiety Despair Languish is still an album poised to conjure atmosphere and invigorating release at the same time.
They say you can’t judge a book by it’s cover but in the case of Ilsa the cover of “Intoxicantations” tells a whole lot about what’s to come. A tiger with a tab of LSD on it’s tongue, a tangle of weeds, skulls, eyes, and centipedes, lines being cut, a free-based tooth. Horrific, intoxicant soaked doomed out death metal that’s equal parts brutal as it is mind-altering. Following up 2010′s excellent debut record, Tutti il Colori del Buio Ilsa return with another crusted out attack on sobriety. Intoxicantations is a lengthy record, over 10 tracks ranging from two minute bursts of rage to six plus minutes of punishing doom. The introduction sets the stage perfectly. Ominous, martial drumming with strangled ambiance merges with panicked descriptions of drug use and the occult, merging with the opening track “Foreign Lander”. Crusty riffing, d-beat drums, and Orion’s furious vocal delivery make up the backbone of this record. There is something particularly punishing about Ilsa’s brand of death/doom, and Intoxicantations dials it up a notch. The sludged out guitar and and abyssal drumming provide an oppressive, funereal atmosphere to this record.
The eponymous track, “Intoxicantations” is pure doom. Serving as a powerful contrast to the slowed down riffing, the drumming on this track, and record as a whole, is something to behold. Bursts of double bass drop in when necessary then dissipate into ethereal cymbal crashes, never overwhelming, but always there, pressing on your chest. Paeans to drugs and satan make up the core of this records lyrics. It’s wild, hallucinatory imagery that fits well with the death-tinged atmosphere. The next track, “Deadbeat’s Ballad” takes on a more traditional heavy metal tone, something that happens a few times on this record, invoking bands like Red Fang or Howl. Buried gang vocals are the first thing you’ll notice about this track. ”Deadbeat’s Ballard” is high energy even when the listener is being buried under the massive riffing and wild drumming, ultimately leading to a massive conclusion.
On November 20th, 2012, Savannah’s KYLESA release From The Vaults Vol. 1 via Season of Mist. This release is a gnarly collection of rarities, covers and a new song, “End Truth” – if you are a fan of this band the way I am, this is a must-have. KYLESA covered “Drained” by the almighty Buzzov-en for From The Vaults Vol. 1, and did this tune way more than justice. This is why CVLT Nation is super stoked that we are streaming KYLESA’s version of “Drained” in full below! Smoking THC beforehand is recommended, or just bang your head in slow motion.