Posts Tagged ‘International’

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International death/doom supergroup Towards Atlantis Lights have gifted to us, the miserable and the melancholic, ‘Dust of Aeons’, which is a culmination of death/doom laden hymns to the abyss from years past. Transcending Obscurity is putting this wondrous, beautiful slab of music out there to remind us all that it could and almost definitely will get worse.

The epic behemoth that is ‘The Bunker of Life’ gives us a massive half hour of atmospheric, crushing doom that is laced with some of the heaviest moments TO Records have released this year. A sensual, miasmic journey through brutality, misery, bleak melody. A true odyssey of heavy music, with dashes of My Dying Bride-laced piano and some old fashioned Finnish-style death completes the piece. It really reminds me of aquatic funeral doom lords Ahab, and to think there are still three more tracks…

‘Babylon’s Hanging Garden’ is guttural death at its lowest possible pace, with a haunting spoken word section breaking the grind. More dragging, ghostly misery comes in the elegiac ‘Alexandria’s Library’, and you are finished off with the visceral pain and crawling morbidity of ‘Greeting Mausolos’ Tomb’. Towards Atlantis Lights have created something incredibly lonely here; an album that teeters at the edge of fragility while retaining this intense and eldritch heaviness. Death/doom often focuses on the death, and the doom is not always truly captured. ‘Dust of Aeons’ may be the most doom-laden epitaph this world will face when it finally crumbles into dust.

https://towardsatlantislights.bandcamp.com/

https://www.facebook.com/TowardsAtl/

https://tometal.com/

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Folkodia - Battle of the Milvian Bridge

International folk metal band Folkodia features members from 7 different countries, and their seventh full length ‘Battle of the Milvian Bridge’ is another rampant slab of anthemic Viking/folk metal. It is out now through Stygian Crypt Productions.

The opening title track is a massive galloping beast of a track, threading epic melodies throughout the heavy metal thunder. Taking cues from the likes of melodeath giants Amon Amarth and the catchy folkisms of the likes of Ensiferum or Metsatoll, Folkodia have perfected their sword and battle songs and each comes out with masterful aplomb. ‘The Maiden of Lorraine’ is full of epic hooks, while the raging ‘Battle of Salamis’ couples the intense blasting with plaintive violin work. All throughout ‘Battle of the Milvian Bridge’, Folkodia conjure the feel of ancient battles, tales of bravery and savagery drawing you in at each point.

Whether you’re singing along to the super catchy ‘Hussar Angels’, or banging your head at the thrashy gallop of ‘Sigillum Militium Xpisti’, Folkodia present something for everyone. ‘Battle of the Milvian Bridge’ will scratch your folk metal itch perfectly, while not being too predictable or stale. Top stuff!

https://www.facebook.com/Folkodiaofficial/

https://www.youtube.com/user/Folkodiaofficial

http://www.stygiancrypt.com/

Moonlight Prophecy - Vanquished

A multinational group, Moonlight Prophecy is the evolution of founder guitarist Lawrence Wallace’s instrumental shred project ‘Lawrence’s Creation’, and now their debut record ‘Vanquished’ is out with ten tracks of thrashy power metal full of classical guitar licks and progressive riffing.

The first band that springs to mind as an influence is Nevermore, particularly on the first real track ‘Escape the Ruins’, and that seems particularly pertinent due to Warrel Dane’s passing this past week. The riffing throughout is solid, winding and intricate while never losing itself in self indulgence. The soloing is top notch, and the songs are pretty hooky, even when the instrumental moments return. ‘Vanquished’ is a solid power metal record that is a bit chunkier and a bit more progressive than most. Each track is easily digestable, and most make you wanna just go air guitar crazy.

Musically you can’t really fault the execution of these songs, but there’s a sprinkle of magic missing. I feel bad saying that, because Moonlight Prophecy hit it out of the park in the likes of the chugging ‘Eternal Oblivion’ and the fret pyrotechnics of ‘Witch Hunt’, but I’m looking forward to where the band go from here rather than eager for a repeat listen. There’s no doubt that the potential exists here, it is whether Moonlight Prophecy can grasp it.

https://www.facebook.com/Lawrencescreation1/

http://moonlightprophecy.weebly.com/

https://moonlightprophecy.bandcamp.com/

Gravetemple is a who’s who of extreme music creators, from experimentalist Oren Ambarchi, to black metal avant god Attila Csihar and drone icon Stephen O’Malley, and their ‘Impassable Fears’ bridges esoteric and spiritual worlds through unadulterated heaviness of sound. Svart Records will unleash this celebration of volume and density in June.

As ‘A Szarka’ begins to emanate from the speaker, a menace buils within fuzzy feedback and a ritual thudding. Polyrhythms rumble from underneath scowling feedback, while croaking vocals draw you into a hazy, mystic void between realms. Full of uncomfortable sounds, moments that sound like beasts of darkness and fear scratching on the walls of our world, ‘Impassable Fears’ is not only music, but an experience. Csihar describes it as a contemporary Shamanism, and with the ritualistic and mesmerising ‘World Out of Date’, you are sucked into a world that is not quite your own.

Haunting instrumental ‘Karma’s Claws’ provides a breather from the intensity, as does the creepy electronica of ‘Domino’ before the terrifying monolith of the title track drags you back into madness. By the time ‘Eternal Endless Void’ hums you to a disturbing sleep, you’ll be exhausted, drained and thoroughly ready for another go. These creative gods have brought us yet more wisdom us mortals cannot yet fatom. Gravetemple are mysteriously and inexplicable essential.

https://www.svartrecords.com/artist/gravetemple/

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.

http://stenchpricegrind.bandcamp.com/album/stench-price-grind-supergroup

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