Introspectively, the demo tape has always been the first glimpse we see into any up and coming musicians’ futures, and for better or worse this first impression determines the potential success of that future. In a market where music is dissected, labeled and mass produced instead of merely listened to, the simple and sacred process of artists sharing their vision with the world has never been more influential. In the case of Belgium’s blackened thrash amalgamation Possession, we are privy to a return to roots effort that exacts its ferocity through an homage to a time when classification did not exist, and all that mattered was producing the most tangibly destructive effort possible.
New Jersey hellraisers Razorheads sail in on a burst of feedback and get straight to work doling out some rough-as-guts corrosive hardcore that is also insanely catchy. Classic rock riffs and eighties metal swagger are not so much heard as felt through all the chaos that is Black Leather Hounds, whose title perfectly encapsulates Razorheads’ latent cock rock tendencies lurking beneath their ferocious canine snarl. Now you’re not gonna hear any wailing falsetto or hair metal hooks in this slab of noise – if anything, Razorheads’ singer has perfected the art of vocalizing destruction, spewing guttural noise at a pitch that blends almost perfectly with the wall of distortion issuing from the guitarists’ amps – but there are some definite stadium rock stylings buried under all the hardcore raging. Dive bombs abound in the muck as well as the occasional burst of ripping old school shred complete with copious abuse of the whammy bar.
The Southwest Terror Fest is almost upon us, and today we’re getting you ready for it with a killer mixtape from Los Angeles’ infamous ACxDC. Sonic Cathedrals Vol. CXXIV ACxDC was curated by Sergio Amalfitano and it’s an A to Z of what you need to listen to!
I’ve been going to shows since about 98-99. Ever since I started going I’ve been collecting vinyl and taking in as many shows as I could within my means. It’s a little bit difficult coming up with a mixtape when I just want to share my entire music library from the last 15 years of gathering music. Hell half the music I have isn’t on a computer. So I narrowed it down to some stuff I think either are basics everyone into extreme music should know or are overlooked gems that might not see too much exposure. Its an eclectic mix of grind, sludge, hardcore, thrash, d-beat, powerviolence, etc. Some of it’s old, some of it’s new. Either way this gives you a pretty decent incite into what I’m into. Its what happens when you grow in a scene like LA.
There is no doubt that black metal and thrash go together splendidly, bands like Aura Noir have proved that already. So it is always nice when you suddenly come across an act such as Hexer. Hailing from Philadelphia and including members of other great bands such as Nachzehrer, One Master, Mutilation Rites and Unholy Goatfucker the band was formed back in 2009 and since then has released one demo and two cassette EPs. Gilead Media fortunately is releasing a vinyl, with remastered versions of the tracks found of both EPs in order to spread Hexer’s black thrash mayhem to the extreme music fans.
What is so intriguing about the band is how they are able to bring together the sound of both scenes in a very interesting manner. Somehow they are able to retain both the thrash metal aggressive feeling and the eerie black metal sentiment. It is quite impressive when you hear the album actually, because in some twisted way you find yourself ready to start a mosh pit when thrash anthems such as “I:III” appear, and the very next moment you are left out in the bitter frost environment that Hexer is so magnificently crafting, for instance in the beginning of “I:I”.
Out Now on Chaos In Tejas Records/Todo Destruido
Chris Ulsh is a pretty busy guy. Playing in Hatred Surge, Power Trip, and Mammoth Grinder tends to keep one busy. This Chris Ulsh project, however, is a bit different than the others. It could be classified as d-beat, it could be classified as straight up punk with metal leanings. Whatever it’s classified, The Impalers straight up tear through ten tracks on their self-titled LP.
The Impalers are partial to knee-jerk aggressive punk rock and hardcore. They exist in a real where their savage, thoroughly refined noise carries all kinds of weight. There’s a lack of punk rock that’s any good; look at what’s being shelled out these days — cookie-cutter bands trying to “fight the man” all while soaking up the lucrative deal they made with their record label. The Impalers desire to push themselves out of the garage and into the minds of studded jacket wearing rock ‘n rollers becomes apparent as their sound deviates from the simple power-chord punches of 1977 glory and begins to focus on throat-ripping metallic sections, rife with layered guitar work.
Armed with only a demo, Virginia act American released three songs on their Bandcamp from their upcoming split with another Virginia act, Crone. While short, American absolutely demolishes through three tracks, putting together a sound that can only be described as “wholly unique”.
“Tomb Legions” starts with a fuzzy introduction, slamming guitars with sludgy overtones. American then kicks it into gear with blast beats, the vocals raw and intense. Elements of hardcore, sludge, and thrash all come to the surface; the track is full of bleakness and despair. Towards the end, they bring in noise, giving off a depressing atmosphere. “Crown of Thorns” is a pure hardcore track with mixed blast beats and, with the start/stop mentality, American punches through, ripping the listener to shreds. The band breaks away from normal conventions of hardcore, incorporating different sounds into their music. All these genres put together work wonderfully, creating some unique type of monster in the realm of extreme music.
You have to wonder just how much gas is left in the tank for this brand of revisionist old school death metal. Some absolute gems like ZOM and Bone Sickness have popped up over the last two or three years; the common themes being bands with an affinity for the sounds of death, black and thrash of yore, cassette tapes and a nasty production. With that said, like any movement or scene or what you want to call it, there have been a few duds in the mix too especially when it becomes a little more popular (as far as underground metal goes that is).
Now that we’re in the second half of 2013, what has this dark and decaying world have to offer us and keep us interested? The always reliable Iron Bonehead have stepped in again to hurl this new demo tape at us, Sulphur Blessing, a caustic offering from Sacrocurse.
Mix via A Fist in the Face of God
So there I was, racking my brain for a theme for my latest radio show, when out of nowhere I got an email from my Brazilian metal brother, Victor Whipstriker, sharing me a track from his upcoming LP, Troopers Of Mayhem. I was naturally pretty psyched at this offering of fresh flesh, but I thought ‘Hey, wait a sec. Couldn’t this guy do a pretty serious Brazilian mix and in turn help me out of this cyclical chasm of what to play on my next show?” So I asked him, and he sent me a list of tracks back within the hour. Another hour later and he wrote up all the bands, both new and old, featured in his 20-track mix.
Victor, unless you missed the interview on here some time ago, fronts not only the god-crushing metalpunk band, Whipstriker, but also the now-defunct Diabolic Force, while handling bass and occasionally vocal duties also for Atmoic Roar. He’s also played live with a bunch of killer bands. Basically, the guy is fast becoming a Rio metal legend and his mix reflects that.
So, without me rabbeting on too much, here—straight from War Town, Brazil—are Victor’s words on his picks for his mix. Enjoy. Oh, btw, check out this ‘report’ from the recording of his new record.
It’s been a while since we’ve had a giveaway for you, so we’re coming back with a bang with 2 pairs of tickets to this year’s The Power of the Riff festival at The Echo and Echoplex in Los Angeles on August 9th & 10th! Every year this festival gets bigger and better, and this year’s lineup features headliners The Obsessed, Final Conflict, Hirax, From Ashes Rise & Black Breath, alongside a ton of other rad bands like Dead in the Dirt, Baptists, Children of God and many more. Today we’re giving away one pair of tickets to the show on August 10th! To enter this giveaway just email email@example.com with TPOTR Aug 10th in the subject, and we’ll choose a winner on Friday at noon PST! PS – If you entered the 9th giveaway, you can still enter this one too!