Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Evoken - Antithesis of Light (2005)

Funeral Doom

This is a repost from awhile back. (Actually, I think I posted it in another blog.) I have been listening to this again. I think it's a gem that shouldn't go unnoticed. Being Funeral Doom you should expect lots of slow riffs, chilling sounds and a dark atmosphere. You can compare this to the more popular bands of the genre, like Esoteric and even Ahab. When I draw the comparisons from Ahab, Ahab has a lot of let's say...

"Riffy hook moments."

Meaning, in some songs they play riffs where you can almost bob your head to. For example. Evoken have a lot of moments like that as well. Especially in songs like "In Solitary Ruin" and the title track. These moments change the pace from gloomy despair to crushing fear.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

P.H.O.B.O.S. - Anœdipal (2008)

Full Length, Megaton Mass

Genre: Industrial Doom Metal
Region: France

P.H.O.B.O.S. have a new album coming out soon called "Atonal Hypermnesia" which should be a nice treat no doubt. Until then this is their second full length delivering more dark, disturbing and slow industrial heaviness.

Again their sound is quite unique — P.H.O.B.O.S. really are like a combination of The Amenta or Godflesh with Khanate, and how could that not be excellent? A bleak, spacey atmosphere blankets the winding and deliberate riffs, black metal tinged vocals and the foundation of trudging industrial drumming. Most of the 6 tracks end in some ambient and industrial loops/samples and all of them hit the 8-9 minute mark. Anœdipal is devastating and hypnotic and like Tectonics a bit challenging, though a little less varied (it feels and flows much like a concept album). Don't pass it up.

In 320. (There's a good chance this will get taken down at some point from the looks of how scarce links are for this album around the net).

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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Absu - Abzu (2011)

Full Length, Candlelight Records
October 12th, 2011

Genre: Blackened Thrash/Black Metal
Region: USA

Abzu was flying low on my radar for most of the year despite the fact I'm a big Absu fan. I believe this is the second in a 'trilogy', the next being Apsu, and it also might be their first album where Kris Verwimp did not make the cover. The last album wasn't terrible but it felt a little bland and unfocused to me; even with Proscriptor leading everything, Shafteil and Equitant leaving definitely had an impact on song writing. Also following an album like Tara is difficult regardless of all the injuries and line-up changes. So I was a bit apprehensive when I read about their newest record. Fortunately my fears were not confirmed. Abzu is a little different from their previous work but very enjoyable all the way through, and a bit on the short side for an Absu release (35 minutes, 6 tracks).

The two current members definitely flow well with Proscriptor (who's still a beast on drums), there's a clear direction and overall the writing is much better and focused than their last album. Their sound has a very subtle tint of modern black metal spread throughout as well — of course they're still all about blazing riffs, ridiculous screams and technical/quirky drumming but there's a different atmosphere from their past work.

Proscriptor is still quick and odd, splitting the vocal duties with bassist and still showing off his high pitched screams and hoarse snarls. He's great as always. Guitar work is much more memorable than it was on Absu for me while still revolving around their classic formula. They throw in a few twisted riffs which is a nice spice to the thrashy foundation that work perfectly with what they're laying down. There's a 14 minute closing track consisting of six separate parts which could've been split into three tracks and worked just as well in my opinion, but it isn't detrimental. All parts are solid and work fine together.

Overall it's a great release and certainly a step up from their previous album, taking what makes Absu unique and subtly moving their sound forward. Not pants-shitting like Tara or In The Eyes of Ioldanach but a pleasant surprise. Recommended. You can listen to it here.

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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Thank You

Recently Equivoke reached 100 followers and while it's a small number compared to the vast jungle of popular blogs out there, I wanted to recognize this and express my sincere thanks and appreciation for following our blog as well as supporting hard-working bands whose material we post here.

Cheers and thank you.

In celebration of this, here's a track off the upcoming Antediluvian album "Through The Cervix Of Hawwah" titled "Scions Of Ha Nachash (Spectre Of The Burning Valley)" in 320:

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EDIT: This is Sagi, instead of making another "thank you" post I'm going to use Sanakan's if he doesn't mind. It was a slow crawl but we finally made it 100 followers. When I started the blog in '09 I didn't think it would ever happen. This blog at first was just me posting music I enjoy with no real motive, and look at it now! I wasn't until I invited a few friends to come contribute when this blog started to actually take off. Ecspecially Sanakan, who has been the most active member. So I thank him the most, if it wasn't for him this blog wouldn't be where it is today, even having a label want us to post an album for them. And thank you all for supporting us dirty pirates, I know we're probably just another music blog on the internet but I mean it. Thank you again.


To reward you I suppose, the least I can do. I give you one of my high tier death metal albums. I picked up the album in a record store called "Peaches" (I think.) when I was on vacation in New Orleans. And in FLAC too!

Death - The Sound of Perseverance

People consider it to be the runt of the bunch but fuck them I say. I finally got the opportunity to buy it. Enjoy this album from the classic band that was Death!

Various - Have a Nice Life Covers (2011)

Full Length, Unknown/Unofficial
September, 2011

Genre: Shoegaze/Post-Punk/Experimental/Pop
Region: Various

This interesting compilation album has been in the works under the radar for a little while and I've only heard pieces of it until now. Originally compiled here, nine tracks consisting of covers and variations on Have a Nice Life's 2008 album "Deathconsciousness", a few from EPs, etc. done by Sun Devoured Earth, Airs, Seth Belier, Aceta, Wahlheim and Mackenzie. Some great interpretations of heavy tracks from a brilliant album.

1. Trespassers W, covered by Sun Devoured Earth
2. Woe Unto Us, covered by Airs
3. I Don’t Love, covered by Seth Beiler
4. Earthmover, covered by Aceta
5. Deep, Deep, covered by Wahlheim
6. Bloodhail, covered by Sun Devoured Earth
7. There Is No Food, covered by Sun Devoured Earth
8. Variations on the Theme from Top Gun, covered by Airs
9. I Don’t Love, covered by Mackenzie

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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Thantifaxath - Thantifaxath (2011)

Demo, Dark Descent Records
May 27th, 2011

Genre: Black Metal
Region: Canada

Thantifaxath were one of the openers for Wolves in the Throne Room and Thou here in Toronto not long ago. I found out that they share members with Sortilegia and signed to Dark Descent Records who have a great lineup already. I listened to the demo before seeing them and it impressed me as the overall sound I expected to be similar to the more well known atmospheric black metal groups (as that's what they are lumped into), but what I experienced was much different. Not ground-breakingly innovative but definitely not your standard black metal act. Thantifaxath have found their own sound amongst the growing swath of bands in the genre and are worth your time.

This is their first release (limited cassette and soon 7") showcasing a sound straddling orthodox black metal such as Taake and that laid down by Deathspell Omega in some aspects; though certainly not as bizarrely dissonant and in briefer shots. There are elements of atmospheric black metal peppered throughout to be sure but the structure is more along traditional lines and there are no sustained, reverb coated riffs. It's a short release: all 4 tracks, aside from the haunting choir-like intro, span between four and five minutes of well written material that is both memorable and unique. Relentless stormy guitar work which leans from chaotic to depressive and melodic, bass riffs that don't get lost in the mix, howling vocals, etc. — a very promising demo no doubt.

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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

False - Untitled (2011)

EP, Gilead Media / Howling Mine
August 9th, 2011

Genre: Black Metal
Region: USA

Last night at Thou's merch table their vocalist Bryan was selling a bunch of Gilead Media, Howling Mine and Iron Rail Book Collective stuff: Barghest, Fell Voices, Ash Borer, Dangers, etc. as well as False's EP which I was hoping to see there — and it was.

Another black metal album from Gilead Media titled "Untitled", which also makes it a little difficult to find on the net. You can listen to it streaming on Gilead Media's bandcamp page  and pay what you want for a digital copy (or get it on vinyl on their main site).

The EP is two 12 minute tracks of black metal with a symphonic bed which means theirs atmosphere to be felt despite the more orthodox sound (minus the long/slow passages and ambiance). In terms of sound Ascension and Emperor come to mind at points but generally more upbeat in my opinion. There is one slower section on the second track, aside from that the album is very fast paced in all aspects making it an intense listen: frantic powerful riffing and drumming, actually audible bass lines, vocals are standard fare. Keyboard is ever-present without the cheese one might expect. There's one riff 10 minutes into Sleepmaker that is clearly a variation on a section in the title track of Weakling's album Dead As Dreams (4 minutes in), which is awesome if you enjoy Weakling.

False show that they have potential. They can play and write well for sure but it's nothing ground breaking (and not everything has to be). That said though this is another solid release from Gilead and I would definitely recommend it.

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Monday, September 5, 2011

Sonne Adam - Transformation (2011)

Full Length, Imperium Productions
April 4th, 2011

Genre: Death Metal
Region: Israel

Extreme Jew death metal right here. Clearly influenced by Necros Christos and Incantation, Sonne Adam's debut album Transformation is a 40 minute trudging, serpentine mountain of death. A few atmospheric moments are created with tasteful/sparse use of effects that are interspersed throughout the slow tremolo riffs and big power chords, and the vocals here are cavernous and gravelly; this album is a great chunk of dark death metal from start to finish.

If you liked Disma, Witchrist, Incantation, Vasaeleth, Necros Christos, and all that twisted shit get this now.

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Gottesmorder - Gottesmorder (2011)

EP, Absurd Creature Records / Tokyo Jupiter Records / Nojoy Records
August 3rd, 2011

Genre: Atmospheric Black Metal
Region: Italy

I received a request a few days back from Matteo the bassist of Gottesmorder to post up their new EP, so now that I've had a chance to listen to it I'm doing just that.

They're a three piece atmospheric/ambient black metal band from Italy and their self-titled EP is a whirlwind of droning, swirling riffs, subtle and cold atmospheric synths, and spacey ambiance creating a sad and bleak atmosphere. The band take a path more close to Altar of Plagues' first album "White Tomb" compared to the more 'Cascadian' bent bands of the genre — which I definitely like as I found Altar of Plagues most recent releases to be disappointing.

There are some similarities to Fell Voices at points in terms of the quality of writing, not a moment without purpose and always building to a great payoff. Gottesmorder is quiet a surprising and cathartic release. Highly recommended.

From their bandcamp (where you can stream the whole album):

"Guitars like drones, primitive drums, bestial throat. The Gottesmorder Ep aims to be the dark age sound in which contemporary human being will find frosty/obsessive atmospheres as well. The two tracks record is almost a concept, talkin’ about the deafness of nature. It boasts the collaborations of K11/Pietro Riparbelli and Lee Baughn (Ghost Empire). It has been recorded at Orange Recordings Studio with Stefano ”Zven” Doretti, mixed and mastered at Locomotore Studio with Lorenzo Stecconi (Ufomammut, Lento, ZU, Dälek). The artwork has been done by the graphic/musician Mories (Gnaw Their Tougues, Aderlating, De Magia Veterum).”

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Sunday, September 4, 2011

Weirding - Each Birth Is A New Disaster (2011)

Full Length, Secret Flood Records
August 20th, 2011

Genre: Sludge
Region: Canada

Newcomers Weirding unleash thick and thunderous sludge metal with Each Birth Is A New Disaster. Nothing but heavy, pounding grooves that are catchy as fuck on this record, some of which have a very middle eastern flare similar to Melechesh. If you enjoyed Seven Sisters of Sleep's self-titled you'll definitely like this. The whole album is up and streaming on their Bandcamp page.

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Sortilegia - Pestilent Black Sorcery (2011)

Demo, Vault of Dried Bones
July 24th, 2011

Genre: Atmospheric Black Metal
Region: Canada

Another band I was looking forward to seeing at Skull Fucking Metal Fest III and they did not disappoint. Candles, animal skulls, cloaks, and lots of reverb. It was kind of strange seeing an atmospheric black metal band open for more traditional death and black metal acts.

Sortilegia are two canadians (girl on vocals/guitar, guy on drums) creating atmospheric black metal in a similar groove as Skagos, Thantifaxath, Deafest and Wolves in the Throne Room and it's really good. On Pestilent Black Sorcery there are three tracks, two of which hit the 10 minute mark. The influences are pretty easy to identify but they have enough of their own direction to make them stand out — lots of reverb soaked guitar chords and tremolo riffs, tribal drumming and high pitched screeches creating a ritualistic, misty atmospheric. If you enjoy the genre you'll surely enjoy this so give it a spin, demo is available on  cassette at Vault of Dried Bones limited to 100.

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Auroch - Stranger Aeons (2010)

Full Length, Self-released/Independant
March 12th, 2010

Genre: Death Metal
Region: Canada

Death metal from the west coast of Canada with a Lovecraftian flare. This one will be a little contentious based on vocals alone. I saw Auroch last night along with Nuclearhammer, Adversarial, Sortilegia, and Into Oblivion at Skull Fucking Metal Fest III and I was impressed by their set.

Where some people may get turned off is the vocals. Half the time they're traditional raspy death growls and then occasionally they swing into clean vocals resembling early Pantera (high pitched screams) or maybe a little bit on the power metal side of things. If you can get past that aspect then you'll hear some pretty fast, catchy, technical guitar work with some serious early Kataklysm influence (always a plus), chaotic Slayer-esque solos, and wicked blast beats and kicks. Get a taste here.

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