Posts Tagged ‘grindcore’


Belgian grinders Marginal have focused their particular brand of grindcore on the crustier end of the spectrum, enschewing much of the overly gory stuff to have come out recently. That doesn’t mean to say this sounds any less sickening, and ‘Total Destruction’ is a record that takes their rage very seriously. This is out on Transcending Obscurity now!

‘Barbarian’ showcases this take perfectly, coming across as a modernisation of classic Napalm Death or Discharge songs. Driving, with a nasty guitar tone and a throaty roar, the nasty ‘Delirium Tremens’ is next and from there there is very little let up in the pace. While not ultra full throttle like Nasum or Bezerker, Marginal inject a pretty decent turn of pace and their socio-political lyrics fit very well within this framework. The barrelling ‘Impaled’ is a personal favourite, but you would struggle to find a bad track here.

Rampant, grinding and raw, ‘Total Destruction’ is a non stop ride through a world of industrial misery, corruption and greed where everything is fucked. Except the music. The music is very good. Marginal are bringing you the apocalypse, and it is a bloody and brutal ending.

The Lords of the Land festival in Glasgow has some serious issues to contend with this year. First of all, how was the lineup ever going to match last year’s Carcass/Obituary/Napalm Death/Voivod magic? And secondly the small matter of the Heavy Scotland event in Edinburgh on the same weekend, featuring Grave, Arch Enemy and Behemoth, as well as others. Well, the lineup proved to be as competitive, if not superior, as you could want. I mean, black metal and death metal legends colliding with thrash and even a bit of grind and doom. FUCK YEAH! The old Barrowland ballroom played host once again.

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Opening at the unbearable 12:30pm slot, Rotten Sound were fucking ace. The half hour slot is designed for grindcore bands, and Rotten Sound played to an impressively full Barrowlands considering the time of day. They were sharp, visceral and, best of all, allowed me the opportunity to get a hold of an HM-2 pedal tribute shirt. Killer start to the day, that only improved with the advent of Memoriam. Coming from a guy who named his blog and inspiration after a Bolt Thrower song,  I can honestly say that Memoriam are more than worthy successors to the crown. Karl Willets was in fine form, and massive riffs cascaded upon us lucky few. Willets remarked that this was a celebration of life through death metal, and nothing is more true.

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Next up was the hilarious vitality of Acid Reign, old school British thrash that felt so alive and vital it made me smile. So did the stage banter, with ‘Hello Edinburgh’ getting a particular chuckle. They were high energy, frontman H racing around the stage, encouraging all kinds of crowd participation and almost shitting himself when caught stagediving and taken to the back of the room before being ran forward and chucked back onto the stage. Mental. Mental is also how you would describe the aural waves of terrifying brutality emanating from Dragged into Sunlight, who took the stage behind clouds of smoke and a ghostly, huge candelabra. Their blackened sludgey noise was fearsome, and the fact that the band spent the whole show with their backs to us added to the esoteric mystery surroundng them.

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I took a break from the action during Venom Inc, so I couldn’t pass comment on them but I got back just in time for Marduk’s ‘Heaven Shall Burn’ set which, like every Marduk show, was full throttle black metal of war and darkness. Yet again I had the pleasure of getting ‘Accuser/Opposer’ with Nemtheanga live, and they closed with ‘Panzer Division Marduk’! Speaking of Primordial, they have become a band that have transcended beyond what we would consider simply ‘pagan black metal’, becoming the embodiment of what Bathory strode towards. Nemtheanga’s vocals command immediate attention, like a monstrous and apocalyptic preacher. The stunning ‘Babel’s Tower’ and the enthralling ‘The Coffin Ships’ were particular highlights in a flawless set of blackened doom grandeur.

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The stage darkens, smoke billows from under the drumkit and deep, blue lights shroud the oncoming storm of black metal perfection that is Mayhem, and ‘De Mysteriis de Satanas’ complete. Worth the price of admission alone, the howling ‘Freezing Moon’ and savage ‘Pagan Fears’ remind you about how all black metal owes so much debt to this record. Atilla Csihar’s vocals sound like the voice of Satan himself, and draped in a black cloak and then as a demonic priest, he embodies the dark magic infusing each frozen riff. Hw can anyone follow this?

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Well, Autopsy with every vintage death metal riff ever just about managed. You don’t realise just how much they’ve influenced the genre, until you think about how every ‘old school’ death metal band basically stole everything fom them. Rabid fury crashes into sludgey, evil riffs while vomitous vocals spill from behind Chris Reifert’s drumkit. Despite the fact that we are approaching 11 hours into the day, I think that this was the best moment of the night. Tiredness overwheming us, the first time these legends have graced Scottish shores in 27 years mean that we were reinvigorated enough to show them our appreciation.What a fucking triumph.

Stench Price (Grind Supergroup) cover art

When you get the pleasure of reviewing a release from what is an honest to Satan grind SUPERGROUP like Stench Price, it kinda gives you faith in life and music again. I review lots of shit I love, hear bands that seem totally underground and unknown and I hope to give them a bit of extra publicity from it. This one however, this I’m doing simply because it is AWESOME! Involving members of Brutal Truth, Necrophagist, Cynic and Hail of Bullets, this barely needs any press release bullshit, the pedigree speaks for itself. It’s going to be out on Transcending Obscurity for all to enjoy.

Opener ‘Living Fumes’ is a massacre of the senses; with raging grinding riffs coupled with a blood gargling vocal, thrashing drums and some weird samples to throw everything just a little off kilter. The marimba (yes marimba) sections are gloriously off the wall, and help to accentuate the savagery of what follows. ‘Furnaces Burn’, featuring the legendary Rogga from more bands than you can name, has this excellent chugging death style with maddening solos that is just too short and sweet for one listen. Yet more smooth, jazzy interludes stab into the metal throughout, jarring your perceptions.

The guttural ‘Pressure’, lunging from blastbeats to freaky moments of calm and back into bludgeoning grind, is a challenge to take in at once, while the more straightforward, almost Obituary-esque rage of ‘4.27.15’ is a pleasant change. The chugging power of ‘The Genocide Machine’ is my own personal highlight here, since I’m more of a death metal fan than a grind fan, but the vareity and quality of the material here is enough to keep a fan of any genre persuasion interested.

Closing with ‘the bossanovagrinddoom’ (NEW GENRE ALERT!) of ‘The Vitality Slip’, Stench Price make a devastating impact straight away, and you can only look forward to what else will come spewing from this project in the future. Hail grind and supergroups, because this is a great example of both.


Leech cover art

One man Greek grindcore destroyer Pigskinner have been active for not even a year yet, and their full length album ‘Leech’ is eighteen minutes of flailing chaos.

As you’d expect, the riffing is manic, the vocals are bug eyed intense and the aural violence is extreme. There’s no need to expect any kind of musical progression or variety. It’s fifteen tracks of grinding, growling brutality. But songs like ‘Dead Tissue’ and ‘Poser Holocaust’ have an almost Discharge-like groove about them. This isn’t like Pig Destroyer-esque, razor sharp scything, this is more of a dirty crust punk battering.

‘Social Excreta’ is almost like a slam death metal song, with a guttural vocal expulsion and a sickening groove. ‘Chainsawfucked’ is rapid fire carnage, while ‘Dude, Chillax’ (probably one of the best grindcore song titles ever) is a thick, chunky riff garden of heaviness. Pigskinner inject this incredible variety into what is such a short album and such a pigeonholing genre. Of course, at its blackened, rusted heart Pigskinner are grindcore through and through. But at no point is there any fear of doing things just a little different.

Sure, ‘Leech’ is still very much a grindcore album. Short songs, unending brutality and a kickass DIY ethic. But ‘Leech’ is more than just that. It’s a release that shoehorns a massive Discharge influence into a very varied and riff heavy set of songs that are something to be proud of. Excellent debut!

Canadian grindcore legends have released ‘Desire Will Rot’, their eight full length in a discography littered with splits. Their caustic brand of aural violence has always found a big fan in myself, being a lover of ‘Stigmata High Five’ and ‘Disgorge Mexico’. I’ve been looking forward to this coming out, and I haven’t been disappointed.

‘Desire Will Rot’, while retaining the band’s speed based attack, has some significantly heavy slower paced sections that chug like a motherfucker. Take opener ‘Everywhere Yet Nowhere’, that has this steamroller death groove riff, before the rabid ‘Shadows Collide’ explodes in a shrapnel storm of grinding carnage. The rumbling ‘The Path of Most Resistance’ has this killer swagger about it, while vocalist Mel Mongeon shrieks and rages with all her might. ‘Desire Will Rot’ is a stunning example of what modern grind can be. While we await a new Rotten Sound record with baited breath, take Fuck the Facts under consideration as being a worthy replacement. They infuse their brand of grind with a fascinating variety, from waspish violence to a lurching hardcore stomp, and remain totally engagable.

Other highlights include the solotastic ‘La Mort I’ and its crushing partner piece that compliment each other well, the scathing fury of ‘Storm of Silence’ and the rumbling deathgrind of ‘Prey’. ‘False Hope’ has a vast, expansive section that opens up with melodic lead guitar and a rasping howl. It sounds like no other grindcore band you’ll have ever heard. It’s almost jarringly unexpected, but in a good way. ‘Desire Will Rot’ has ambition in spades, and the band have the talents to create their vision. The chilling dark ambience of ‘Circle’, that builds pressure and intent up until a cathartic release is made, is my own particular highlight.

‘Desire Will Rot’, as with all good grindcore albums, finishes well before you’re ready for it to end. Repeated listens will sate your needs, but Fuck the Facts continue to prove that they are among the cutting edge artists in this genre. It’s not all about speed and break neck violence. It’s about crafting an album that personifies who they are, and establishes how good a group of song writers they are.

Scottish brutal death freaks Party Cannon (who definitely have the BEST logo known to metal), return after their hit EP ‘Partied in Half’ with their debut record of ‘party slam’, the ludicrously titled ‘Bong Hit Hospitalisation’. But is there more to this band than comedy song titles and that logo?

‘Russian Zombie Smack’ kicks us off with a bowel rattling brutal riff and a cavernous growl. Say what you will about their aesthetic, Party Cannon know how to slam big hard and brutal. Breakdowns like icebergs come crashing upon you, with a thick rich guitar tone adding depth to each annihilating crash. ‘Jack vs the Exotic Crustacean’ has a more rampaging quality to it, blasting off before being flattened by yet another bulldozing chugging slam. ‘Bong Hit Hospitalisation’ is certainly chock full of seriously heavy shit.

The quality of death metal here is frankly amazing considering I’d believed that Party Cannon were going to be one of those comedy metal bands that have ‘hilarious’ titles and no songs to back them up. Thankfully this is not the case here. Listen to the gear shifts on ‘There’s a Reason You’re Single’ as proof of the virtuoso nature, and there’s something more than a bit Suffocation about the devastating ‘Keg Stand By Me’. The two part ‘Ectomy’features one of the album’s best samples, but doesn’t outstay its welcome as almost an interlude.

From there we’re catapulted through the thrusting ‘Interested is Not the Word’, the crushing ‘Battle of the Spider Men’ and the nasty ”We Prefer the Term Living Impaired’. Party Cannon show the world that you don’t need to be too serious to riff like a planet collapsing. ‘Bong Hit Hospitalisation’ is a relentless, savage beating of an album shot through with dashes of inane humour that makes me proud to be from the same country. It’s PARTY time, bring your inhalation device and your neck brace. This is heavy as fuck.


"Off-message" EP cover art

Self proclaimed ‘grind n roll’ speed freaks Emissaries of Syn comes screaming from the hills to deliver us this, ‘Off Message’, seven songs in 15 minutes of dirty, punk fuelled social anarchy.

‘Einstein’s Monsters’ catapults us into horror inspired grinding mayhem, galloping along with no care for your personal safety. There’s something a bit Lee Dorian about the vocals, which rail against all the staples that grind/punk bands would; religions, media, the establishments etc. Bonus points for the best song title of 2015 with ‘The Only Way is Ethics’ by the way, that’s ace. Each song flies past with gleeful abandon, injecting a healthy dose of humour into the proceedings.

This helps Emissaries of Syn be more than just another crust punk band that rails against social injustices. The songs are actually pretty tuneful, which I assume where the ‘n roll’ bit of ‘grind n roll’ comes in. They’re memorable, with some clever song titles and some brilliant riffing. I’d definitely recommending find a copy of this to listen to if you enjoy quality crust punk tunes that aren’t totally nihilistic.