Archive for April, 2016

TURBOCHARGED / RAGEHAMMER - Enlightenment by Bloodletting cover art

This black thrash split between Swedish ragers Turbocharged and Polish devastators Ragehammer promises to be pretty fucking good, and each band provides a new song to the 7″ vinyl release, entitled ‘Enlightenment by Bloodletting’, out now on Godz ov War Productions.

Turbocharged’s contribution is a waspish, high speed attack of razor guitar riffs and a galloping, Sodom like thrash. There’s a crusty, d-beat rage here which is pretty cool, that channels a bit of Swedsh death chainsaw riffing too. Ragehammer’s ‘PanzerFaustian Enlightenment’ is a more direct, black metal approach, with an underlying emphasis on speed and blasting. Of the two tracks, I think I just prefer this one, only just though.

Both tracks sum up what makes each band good, and that’s what all good splits should do. Turbocharged chainsaw their way in while Ragehammer slash in with cold, metallic riffing. Yet more awesome stuff from Godz of War Productions, and you should definitely try and get a hold of this!

Paroxsihzem - Abyss of Excruciating Vexes

Canadian black/death chaoticians Paroxsihzem (I’m so glad I only have to type that and not try to say it out loud…) have returned on Hellthrasher Records with their new 12″, the ravaging ‘Abyss of Excruciating Vexes’. Billed as some of the most violent music the band has created, this promises to be PROPERLY nasty…

‘Dillanties Torture’ opens with one of the most sickening riffs I’ve heard in a while, a cacophonous raging blitzkrieg of heaving chaos, with unholy vocals and an atonal weirdness. This is heavy, mind melting shit, the kind of death metal that opens doors in space and time to call through fell beasts of madness. It smacks of Portal or Mitochondrian, and the intensity of tracks like ‘Isolation’ or the suffocating ‘BZ Experiment’ weighs upon your mind, straining to snap it.

Closing with the excellent Arkhon Infaustus cover, ‘Dead Cunt Maniac’, Paroxsihzem are as incomprehensible as their name, and as omnipotently crushing as is humanly possible. Unbearably brutal in parts and suffocatingly dense, ‘Abyss of Excruciating Vexes’ is an essential release for those who like music that takes you to that mental brink, before catapulting you over the edge.

Mangled - Involuntary Organ Donor

Death thrashing terror merchants Mangled have returned from the slimey hell of Atlanta, Georgia to belch out another 7″ EP gem of a release, ‘Involuntary Organ Donor’ on Boris Records. Three new songs of gore soaked metal awaits thee…

The ominous hum of ‘They’re Not Gonna Stay Down There Anymore’ opens this EP with some nasty riffing before the chugging title track really lays in the brutality with some proper deathly thrashing. Mangled are short, sharp and directly to the vicious, bloodsoaked point. It is catchy as hell though, and there’s undeniable melodic licks in amongst the raw brutality. ‘Butchery Loves Company’ has some nice chunky death metal riffing at the start, and the breakneck speed of the assault is headbang-inducing. Both main tracks here have that to their immense credit that they are very memorable.

Mangled have nailed this 7″ perfectly; a short sharp shock to the senses, injected with some memorable riffing and more than a dose of crushing guitar work. Excellent stuff!

Bulgarian black metal master of atmosphere Morth, who have been active since 2002 but only record his first full length record last year, brings ‘Towards the Endless Path’ to the table, out now on Symbol of Domination.

Stretching over an hour, ‘Towards the Endless Path’ is a haunting, hypnotic record of ghostly black metal, built around the lessons of Drudkh or Wolves in the Throne Room. Morth is more raw than that, more primal, and there is a distinct icy coldness about tracks like ‘Cold Moonlight Mysticism’ and the harsh ‘Dark Dawn Rise’. Each songs builds the cloying, murky atmosphere, and the snarling growl gargles with the sodden blood of Morth’s victims.

‘Towards the Endless Path’ is a fine album, with plenty of variety in there to help hold your attention. ‘Echoes of Ancient Winds’ is a vast piece, with a simple yet ear worming melody in the middle that stays with you. Atmospheric black metal can be hit or miss with me sometimes, but Morth hit the spot. Maybe it’s my mood today, but this kind of spacious, haunting music is perfect. It just needs a little trimming length wise, but that’s a nitpick of mine with a lot of these style of records.

It’s a little long for such a simplistic, atmospheric black metal album, but those who stick it out to the end will be rewarded with a gloomy slab of primal black metal, replete with interesting bleak melodies hiding in amongst each crevice of blackness. Conjuring images of Carpathian forests decked in snow and darkness, Morth’s debut has been a long time coming, and yet it feels like a triumph.


Boston sludge group Sea dropped their debut EP last year, three tracks of heavy grooving doom with elements of post metal and even a little grunge in there. The haunting cover art makes the music inside seem even more dense and frightening.

Opener ‘Seer’ has a vastness about it. Sure, it has crushing riffs and a primal roar that shakes the ground, but there is a sense of open space where ethereal melodies lurk behind oppressive sludge. ‘Moros’ has that same, glacial melody that ghosts through, haunting vocals accompanying it perfectly. As it swells to an inevitable crescendo, Sea have created a debut that builds with layers to create excellent post metal/sludge. The grinding groove of closer ‘Chronos’, complete with a melancholic croon, creates Sea’s most perfect moment, and this band are to be watched!

This two man, Swedish/German collaboration of crushing death called The Malice have dropped their debut EP ‘Malevolent Creature of Kings’ upon us, and it is a savage amalgamation of some of the USA’s finest death metal styles, from the punishing relentlessness of Nile to the waspish fury of Hate Eternal. You can source the EP at the band’s Bandcamp site.

Opener ‘Namtaru’ explodes in a fury of blasting, brutal growls and rapid fire riffing that engages a furious bout of headbanging. Blastbeats rain down upon you, while razor sharp riffing slashes at every vein or tendon. Evisceration by riff seems inevitable, and that feeling only grows with the superlative ‘Malevolent’. The Malice are supremely heavy, with riffs spraying in all directions and an immense roar powering the band forward.

This is sleek, modern death metal that is down the same lines as the fury of Hour of Penance, or the savagery of Decapitated. Closer ‘Abusing the Virgin of Khadi’ is my favourite track here, bludgeoning you into submission with wild guitar heroics and an innate hunger for blood that is just perfect. The Malice could be a new 2016 highlight for me. RIFFS!!

Ukrainian black metal eh? Wonder what this sounds like…. Wait a minute, an actual BAND instead of these one man projects? What a refreshing change! Not that I don’t like the one man atmospheric stuff from the Easternest edges of Europe, but it is always good to be surprised. Morkesagn channel only the most classic second wave Norwegian black metal for their debut effort, ‘Where the Darkness Never Ends’, self released in November of last year.

Opener ‘Dungeons’ eases you in with a disarmingly ethereal melody, taken up by a piercing guitar tone that tears through space and time to unleash vintage, vicious black metal. Possessed of an occult grandeur, with rich clean vocal parts enhancing a primal rage with glacial menace, Morkesagn switch tempos effortlessly in order to retain your interest. The measured hatred bubbling under the slowburn start of ‘Heart of Darkness’ is instantly effective, while the bone rattling ‘Heart of Poison’ is rife with nasty Darkthrone-isms.

The lead guitarwork is stellar, particularly in some of the killer solos. The Dissection-esque rage of ‘Heart of Flame’, and indeed many of the songs carry that super melodic blackened metal that Jon Nodtvedt et al pioneered, are all excellent. From the swirling icy riffs of ‘Frost’ into closing piece ‘Throne of Doom’, Morkesagn are a force of black metal supremacy to be reckoned with. Precise, sharp and ready to kill. Glorious black metal art!