Arbitrator – Indoctrination of Sacrilege

ARB_COVER

If you speak to the right people there are always good, often great things said about any new and emerging band. The confirmation is always only in the music of course and just as often as words are proven, anticipation is left in unintended deceit. Arbitrator since the release of The Consummate Ascendancy EP in 2011 has been a band often talked up and recommended from certainly Canadian and North American sources. Their debut album Indoctrination of Sacrilege is our introduction to the quartet and all promise and suggestions of their growing might have been convincingly proven.

Indoctrination of Sacrilege is a beast of a release, an intensively atmospherically soaked death metal bred proposition which from making an impressive first impression grows into one striking and fascinating theatre of imagination. Fusing in textures and essences from electro and industrial climates to progressive and ambient flavouring, the six track release engulfs and stirs ears and thoughts with skilled and increasingly rewarding adventure. The band itself is the brainchild of Robert Kuklaand, its emergence starting in 2010 and announced by the release of The Consummate Ascendancy the following year. It was an acclaimed proposal from the band but just a tester in many ways for the exploratory might of Indoctrination of Sacrilege. With a line-up of Myles Malloy (lead guitar), Connor ORT Linning (programming), and Soilwork drummer Dirk Verbeuren (ex-Devin Townsend Project, ex-Aborted) alongside Kuklaand (rhythm guitar, bass, vocals), Arbitrator put themselves forward now as one of the more intriguing and exciting progressive death metal prospects. They also still feel like they are still only just scratching the first few layers of their potential despite the weight and success of their album, a potential and prospect of even greater things ahead quite exciting.

The Sacha Laskow (ex-Divinity, Every Hour Kills) produced and Jens Bogren (Opeth, Katatonia, Amon Amarth, Arch Enemy) mastered album, swiftly has the imagination engaged as the entrance of opener They Will Worship This Fire of Agony comes through scenery of portentous bells and death feasting flies as church seeded chants seemingly offering final guidance as a dark pestilential cloud looms nearer and nearer. That sonic threat is realised a muscular wall of riffs and punchy rhythms veined by enchanting keys. It is an immediately incendiary and compelling persuasion enhanced by the guttural growls of Kuklaand and spicy persistent grooves. Samples are soon briefly mingling with the cavernous presence and intimidation of the song too but it is the infectious hooks and melodic winery which most captivates against the evolving and enlarging drama of the keys. It is an imposing and enthralling encounter, and as the album subsequently shows itself to be, a pleasingly unpredictable one.

The potent start to the album is solidly continued by Stillborn Bastard of The Nazarene, it straight away binding the appetite with intensive riffs and rhythmic swings whilst thoughts are provoked by its atmospheric colouring. Kuklaand again impresses as he binds words and syllables with a gripping impassioned tenacity which provides additional potent focal points amidst many on release and track. Samples and keys again paint additional inciting scenes in the ferocious and threatening landscape of the song, though it is the superb melodic enterprise of Malloy which steals more of the glory.

Through each song the album just gets better and creatively bigger, the next up For That Which May Appease Lions unleashing black hearted rock ‘n’ roll in a hellacious offering of grooved and addictive contagion aligned to corrosive and oppressive malevolence. The track transfixes from its first moments, the predatory nature and sound of the bass a delicious stalking within the maelstrom of rancor whilst clean vocals add a different shade of temptation to the voracious soundscape. Keys and guitar endeavour similarly vein the tempest with their own unique and engrossing narratives, everything seamlessly flowing and combining together to enslave ears and imagination. Unpredictability is rife across the track, and reveals more twists and subtle ideation with every listen, an exciting trait just as potent in Serpent of The Styx. The song’s electronic opening is a melodic drift of keys and radiant melodies yet it all comes with a solemn and melancholic charm courted by a slowly brewing dark side. An eruption of that heavy menace is eventually unleashed yet the song still continues to radiate melodic expression within a web of carnivorous grooves and enjoyably volatile rhythms. There is also a cinematic ambience to the track, its ‘warmer’ and calmer moments apocalyptic in suggestion as the track’s muscular and rabid side trespasses and challenges the senses. As its predecessor, the track is a mouth-watering incitement which just gets more addictive and anthemic with every passing minute, hook, and barbarous swing from Verbeuren.

       Profaned and Perfected whilst not quite matching the heights of the previous two tracks, has its own persuasive agenda of spiny grooves and spiky beats to contemplate, and an anthemic swing to drool profusely over. It is an out and out death metal ravishment but also one unafraid to explore warmer climes through the often spellbinding invention of the industrial spiced keys and climactic guitar. The song is still a bruising and commanding predator keeping body and emotions invigorated and fearful before the ‘epilogue’ like instrumental adventure of The Burning Sands of His Kingdom brings the album to a fine close. The electronically driven piece draws a cold and stark wasteland yet equally suggests hope with its melodically epic and intimately expressive tones within rugged scenery.

Over a handful of listens in and there is still more revelations coming forward within songs as Indoctrination of Sacrilege continues to reward, that in itself a strong reason with the diversity of sound and invention to check the album out. Wrapped in the excellent artwork of Colin Marks (Exodus, Scar Symmetry, Jeff Loomis), the release has been suggested for fans of Bloodbath, Dismember, and The Project Hate but also it is easy to suggest that those with a taste for bands such as Opeth, Mercyful Fate, and Escapethecult could do far worse than taking a plunge into Arbitrator and their first album.

Indoctrination of Sacrilege is available from February 13th @ http://arbitratorofficial.bandcamp.com/album/indoctrination-of-sacrilege

https://www.facebook.com/Arbitratorband

RingMaster 12/02/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from http://www.thereputationlabel.today

 

Shredhead – Death is Righteous

3

Our first dose of Shredhead ferocity came in the excellent compilation album From Israhell With Love of 2012, which collected the best emerging Israeli metal bands around at the time. Many stood out but the Modiin hailing thrashers stole the march on a great many with their voracious onslaught of a track, Knife in a Gun Fight. Taken from their debut album Human Nature released the previous year, the track lit a fuse under a hungry appetite for the band’s sound, something a hindsight look at that first album only made greedier. Now the band has unleashed its successor Death is Righteous, a fury taking their already blistering and incendiary thrash sounds into a whole new sphere.

The eleven track torrent of crippling rhythms and hellacious riffs bound in contagiously toxic grooves, shows a maturity and new enterprise to the songwriting and sound which instantly opens up a fresh powder keg of potential and invention. It turns a great band into a new force in thrash metal demanding and commanding world-wide attention. From a small, raw, and acclaimed proposition which already has been the name on every Israeli metallers lips and gone onto play the Wacken festival Metal Battle in Germany after winning the Israeli Metal Battle in 2012, Shredhead has evolved into an insatiable sonic predator with grooves swinging from the hips and Bay Area thrash colouring spicing up an inventive tempest of sound.

Last year saw the band play with Biohazard and relocate to Berlin, but more importantly record the Tue Madsen (Suicide Silence, The Haunted, Aborted, Sick of It All) mixed and mastered Death is Righteous which they had been working on over the previous year or so. Unsurprisingly highly anticipated, the album goes for the jugular straight away with Devil’s Race. From its first stirring second riffs and rhythms converge on ears with forceful intent, taking a swift pause before cascading again with venom and animosity upon the senses. Vocalist Aharon Ragoza is soon joining the affray, his tones as the music, far more controlled and distinctive from the crowd now but still holding the caustic might and hoarse tone which lit up the first album. His brawling delivery roars impressively from within the cauldron of fierce beats from drummer Roee Kahana which in turn align to the web of grooves and heavily barbed riffs of guitarist Yotam Nagor. It is an imposing and compelling blaze of sound, foot to the floor metal completed by the great throaty lure of Lee Lavy’s bass and an opening tour-de-force setting the release off in scintillating style.

The following LPBZ opens similarly to the core incitement of its predecessor, beats and riffs a familiar beckoning but in no time becoming a bruising punk infused charge of sonic rabidity and Shredhead-Death-Is-Righteous-album-cover-300x300riveting invention. There is toxicity to the grooves which, not only in this song, has a Pantera-esque quality but also a waspish nagging character which increases an already keen appetite for song and album. Its sizzling hostility is matched by that of The Lie which steps in next. It is a song unafraid to develop a contentment to stalk as well as simply rage at the senses whilst coating its grooves and vocals with a southern fried metal edge as it stomps with virulent endeavour. The track’s bracing presence makes way for firstly the groove metal coated predation of Last Words Are Lost and then the volatile character of the album’s title track. The first of the two without stepping from the shadow of the previous songs, lurches with nostrils flared and sinews stretched, offering a mix of Bloodsimple and Exodus in its own unique form. Its successor picks up a recognisable old school hook and lays it openly down before its expressive sonic narrative, the bait soon embroiled in a steady but dirty rage of voice and sound. It is equally prone to exploding with uncaged viciousness and intensity, planting another notable signpost in the new direction of the band’s sound.

The nightmarish bellow of Hallucinations comes next, neck muscles tormented and ears scarred by the outstanding raw bluster of the track. With a tasty solo and melodic spicing intruding on the inventive turbulence, the track equally sets a marker down for band and album which Walk With The Dead straight away emulates with its infection of spicy grooves and concussive beats. Where Shredhead now outshine their previous album and many other bands on Death Is Righteous is with the constantly revealing and giving underbelly of imagination and unpredictable ideation which boils beneath the surface warfare on the senses. Each song is a maelstrom, with some like this one a vat of tenacious invention.

On a minor note there is a similarity across some songs as shown by the ever alluring grooving of Can’t Be Left Alive and its closeness to certain aspects of other grooves and riffs on the album. As elsewhere though, it is not long before those elements find their own individualism or align to a fresh blaze of sonic ingenuity or a striking boom of vocals, this track twisting into an angry storm of fierce attitude and shapely venomous designs.

Both Witness Hell and I Hate Myself skilfully ruffle the senses; the first juggling malicious rhythms and bass grooves within an anthemic and corrosive fever of vocal savagery and acidic grooving. There is a touch of Hellyeah to the unbridled trash scourge, but only one whiff of flavouring in a track which also calls in hints of grind, groove, and punk metal to its brawl of thrash ingenuity. The second of the pair floats in on an evocative ambience. Haunting melodies gently stroke the imagination as a just as mellow bass resonance adds its emotive tinge to the enticement. A slow groan of a vocal adds drama too before closing song I Am next swaggers in with muscles flexed and grooves loaded. Thoughts of Down make an offering but again Shredhead turn any inspirations into their own creative and aggressive frenzy.

The track is an impressive conclusion to an immense and ridiculously enjoyable and inventive thrash riot. Shredhead are no strangers to impressing people but the band has invited the broadest intensive attention upon themselves with Death is Righteous, the first step in possible world domination.

Death is Righteous is available now via Mighty Music

https://www.facebook.com/shredheadband

RingMaster 14/01/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

http://www.thereputationlabel.today

Dark Century – Murder Motel

all-templates.cdr

A release which can just as easily raise a wide grin as it can an urge to go violate something, Murder Motel is an exhaustive and exhilarating corruption from a band clad in imposing and compelling devilry. Dark Century comes with a potent buzz behind them and their new album easily reveals why as it ignites ears, imagination, and a greedy appetite for their fusion of death, thrash, grind with a viciously healthy course of hardcore. It is a release which has plenty in it to feed expectations but also comes with a just as rich soak of originality to thrust The Canadian quintet into a spotlight of its own.

Formed in 2001 by guitarist Martin Gendreau, Dark Century has built an impressive reputation and presence over the years around Montreal and beyond. It is a time sign-posted by their excellent and well-received debut album Days of the Mosh as well as a live presence which has seen them alongside the likes of Aborted, Misery Index, Quo Vadis, Rose Funeral, Exhumed, Fleshgod Apocalypse, Goatwhore, Origin, The Faceless, Battlecross, Fuck the Facts and many more as well as light up numerous festivals. With a new line-up Dark Century return with their monstrously towering new incitement, an album which puts the band on a new plateau. Produced by Chris Donaldson (Cryptopsy, Mythosis, Erimha, The Agonist, Derelict, Neuraxis) with Gendreau, Murder Motel is a storming onslaught from start to finish, a ravenous bestial proposition veined by incessantly riveting imagination and unpredictable twists.

     In Our Veins starts things off and is soon careering through the same network of the listener with riffs grazing every surface they can find and rhythms voraciously pummelling the senses. It is a ferocious start which aided by the raw thrust of the vocals and that rhythmic tsunami, only intensifies its assault the further into its destructive arms you sink. Drummer Steve Burns is exceptional from the off but also is the stringed ravishment from Gendreau whilst the slightly varied and excellent caustic tones of vocalist Leather King and the predatory bass incitement of Francis Lafrenière equally steal their share of attention and acclaim.

The fine start hits another gear with the following title track where again a mere breath is taken before a disorientating rhythmic assault and bass grilling consumes the senses. Little time passes neither before a swagger and violent swing to the track wraps its irresistible temptation around a by now rampant appetite, the track lurching over and provoking the emotions with mischievous designs and violent intent. Here as with a few songs there is something familiar to the proposal offered but it only eases the accessibility of the track for the eagerly offered passions. The solo from Erik Fernet-Evans is a plume of intrigue and drama to colour further the potent canvas of the song as it drifts away at its end for Torticolis to seize its portion of attention. Rabid and intensively imposing, the track grips with carnal intent and flesh savaging sounds, its breath toxic and riffery a torrential assault driven harder by the severity of the Burns’ rhythmic spite.

Knees might already be buckling at this point and senses cowering in fear but hunger for more is insatiable and fed healthily by the brief but intensive predation of Ice Breaker and the fearsome rage of new single Kill The Crowd. The latter’s touch is as violent and scarring as anything heard before on the album but is aligned to a masterful persuasion of heavy metal coaxing and hardcore ravaging. Add the irresistible swinish grind twists and vocals plus the teasing cowbell, as well as the horde chants and you have another irrepressible capture of thoughts and emotions, but one exceeded even more by the brilliant Dead Birds. It is one of those addictions impossible to shrug off with the track from its anthemic rhythmic entrance stamping its authority over ears and excitement, crowding and preying on the senses with primal riffs and vocal voracity. It is just one of the structures ready to subjugate the passions, a heavy intensity laden consumption taking its sizeable portion of the adventure under its control just as firmly as the underlying but easily detectable excitable grooves have their appealing say.

   The four second Trio du Bûcheron comes next and there really is little to say about it. Neither working as an intro nor making any impact being so short, it is just there before both Cholestérol and Chloroforme cast their severity over ears. The first is another merciless gorging of the senses with piggish vocals, hellish rhythms, and a sonic weave of skilled enterprise igniting the otherwise pleasing if underwhelming song, in comparison to previous maelstroms. Its successor is similar in its presence, formidable and undeniably impressively crafted but failing to spark the same rapture. Nevertheless both keep band and album in solid control before the closing pair of firstly Mosh Test Dummies and the closing Gore On My Snare ensnare ears to inflame responses all over again. The first of the final two initially stalks and stares venomously at its recipient, its approach reserved but only for a deceptive moment as the song soon uncages its sinews and rigorous ingenuity to smother and savage all before its predatory strides. Its companion is pure blistering barbarity, everything from riffs to rhythms and vocals to creativity a masterclass of bloodlusting malevolence. It is demanding physically and emotionally making a scintillating conclusion to a tremendous provocation.

The album comes with recommendations that fans of bands such as Dying Fetus, Cannibal Corpse, Six Feet Under, Hatebreed, and Annihilator will get a hot flush from Murder Motel, but we suggest anyone with a lust for inventive and revelling extreme metal will find Dark Century a new best friend.

The self–released Murder Motel is available now @ http://darkcentury.bandcamp.com/album/murder-motel

www.DarkCentury.ca

9/10

RingMaster 19/04/2014

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

http://www.audioburger.com

 

 

Endless Chaos – Rejected Atrocity EP

 

promo1

    Unveiling their introduction through a three track ravishment which simple devours the senses, Canadian metallers Endless Chaos have announced themselves upon the world in impressive style. Forging an inventively refreshing blend of blackened thrash with death metal, the Winnipeg based quintet take little time raising a greedy appetite for their incendiary sound through the Rejected Atrocity EP. Simultaneously the promise drenched fury also ignites a major anticipation for further things to come from the intensive band, expectations of even greater triumphs a hard to resist thought taking the premise of the outstanding debut from the band.

     With a presence and sound which embraces chaos and enterprise in equal depths, Endless Chaos has forged a formidable reputation through their live performances which has seen the band share stages with the likes of Skeletonwitch, 3 Inches of Blood, Wretched, Aborted, Toxic Holocaust, and Kataklysm to great success and acclaim. The next step on their emerging domination of local and further afield metal scenes comes with their first EP, a released inspired by classic horror movie Re-Animator, a film which is definitely akin to the unbridled lust of their creativity. The self-released, Ryan Forsyth produced, Rejected Atrocity is a teaser and taster of things to come from the band, in the words of Jordan Dorge, the EP will “give you the best taste of what’s to come of Endless Chaos,” the vocalist going on to say “When we were writing these songs, we really took in everything we love about death, thrash and black metal and incorporated it into Endless Chaos.”

    The title track violates the senses first, rampaging riffs and pummelling rhythms an instant assault. Within the torrent of sonic abuse the guitars of Mike Menza and Mike Toews also unleash a twisting irresistible clutch of grooves and hooks to immediately seduce the imagination, their potent bait a bewitching and similarly lethal distraction from the carnivorous rhythms uncaged by drummer James Burton and bassist Jeff Humarang. It is a breath-taking and riveting web of intrigue and devastation from the opening second, the thrash driven ferocity speared and veined by the some of the richest compelling craft and imagination heard in a long time from a thrash/death tempest. The vocals of Dorge parade a vitriolic squall as intimidating as the sounds and invention at work, his slight variation in delivery enough to leave satisfaction ripe and song enhanced as well as listener blissful.

     The scintillating start is soon matched by the following Sacrificial Ritual, it a bestial consumption cored by serpentine vocal malevolence, unpredictable spite, and a maze of ingenious adventure sculpted by the continuing to impress technical craft and vindictive imagination of the band. Like its predecessor, the song is unafraid to launch into unexpected and bold detours whilst the guitars again carve a sonic sculpture which scars and invigorates the senses. The bass of Humarang brings an even throatier predation to the cyclone of malice whilst Burton simply splinters bone and synapse with a continued display of skill and aggression.

   The closing Condemned to the Pit drives at the jugular with its thrash bred energy and sinews crushing all before whilst rhythmically the track batters and concusses with hungry rabidity. As with all the songs, the onslaught is only half of the picture. The track reaches its mid-point and seemingly takes a step back to survey the damage, rhythms still plundering and provoking but sonically the song relaxes somewhat. It is a mere moment in time though as the feverish ferocity is soon letting its death/thrash rage and expertise off the reins to bring the unquenchable storm to a staggering close.

The Rejected Atrocity EP is just exceptional, a must have impressive and towering debut to inject real excitement into the world of metal. It sparks, without reserve, the belief that Endless Chaos will be not only a prolifically important joy ahead but one which will help take thrash, death, and metal itself into new mouthwatering realms.

https://www.facebook.com/endlesschaoss

http://endlesschaos1.bandcamp.com/album/rejected-atrocity

10/10

RingMaster 04/03/2014

 Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

http://www.audioburger.com

Scordatura – Torment of the Weak

Promo Picture

Let us cut to the chase and announce that quite simply Torment of the Weak, the new album from Scottish band Scordatura, is one of if not the most impressive death metal debuts of recent times. It is a monstrous declaration of an emerging potency which already consumes and ignites the senses like a veteran destroyer of souls. It is a bestial rage of unadulterated death metal which preys on, takes up the chase against, and devours its victims in one devious swoop. The band do not stretch existing boundaries it is fair to say upon the album but instead give the genre a fresh and invigorating passion wand enterprise which leaves the deepest, hungriest satisfaction.

Consisting of vocalist Daryl Boyce, guitarists Owen McKendrick and Dave Coia, drummer Tam Moran (all founding members), and bassist Mark Scobie (joined 2011), Scordatura  have built an intense reputation around their local scene and beyond. Since forming in 2007, the Glasgow quintet has wreaked their heavy toxicity across the UK supporting the likes of Cryptopsy, Misery Index, Aborted, Beneath The Massacre, Malevolant Creation, Fleshgod Apocalypse, and Condemned as well as also joining Cerebral Bore on tour in 2011 and making their own successful tours around Scotland before that. Earlier demos and the Open Skies EP as well as their live album Live in Edinburgh [Deadhaggis Deathfest] earned a building acclaim and presence for the band but Torment of the Weak should be the key to full nationwide recognition whilst taking the band to the fore of the extreme metal scene in the UK, and with the self-released album also having distribution throughout North America and Canada by Blasthead Records, maybe the world will be making their calls upon Scordatura very soon too.

Recorded in 2012 with Scott Fuller of Abysmal Dawn doing the mixing, the eight track Torment of the Weak scorches the senses coverimmediately as opener Necromantic Disposition emerges from a sampled piece of cinematic blood soaked mayhem. Their songs are themed lyrically by serial killers and gore bought with an open black humour and the first track brings it all into devastating play. Once the rolling film and final dreg of live has been taken the track explodes into a savage assault of exhausting riffs, suffocating intensity, and crippling rhythms all ridden by the excellent guttural malevolence of Boyce. There is an instantly contagious pull which is impossible to resist within the carnally bred tempest and for all the predacious riffing and cage fighter beats from Moran, groove is king and twists around the spine of passions with intrusive majesty. This addiction causing weaponry is as lethal as the corrosive aspects of the songs and gives no respite from the merciless proceedings despite its impossibly tempting claws.

The following Visceral Disembowelment is bred from the same rapacious heart and also takes a mere moment to clamp its jaws around the ear and send snarling lashes of riffs through its defenceless throat whilst the bass of Scobies prowls in the wake escorted by the continuing to impress bone splintering rhythms of Moran. The track crawls and sizes up its recipient, crowding and provoking with compelling intimidation rather than going all out to ravage all life from the body. With again irresistible grooves littering its path to seduce whilst the rest of the song chews further into the psyche it continues the impressive start with riveting ease.

Both Neurotic Aberration and the title track bring their equally dramatic and distinct rabidity to work, the first with a jackhammer provocation merged with a thick oppressive intensity and its successor through a maelstrom of blood soaked textures and primal hunger brewed into an annihilatory tsunami of violence. As throughout the album the guitars of McKendrick and Coia have a craft and guile which leaves undiluted riffing as potent as the melodic and sonic imagination and they as ruinous as the insidious riffs.

Incestual Convulsions is sheer momentous filth, a sonic irreverence in league with an inexhaustible brutality that turns those toxic grooves into pure venom within the vicious storm. It is a glorious confrontation which uses the intense platform of its excellent predecessor Back to Crack, a song which softens up every aspect of the mind, to launch its merciless grievous tirade.

Completed by the scintillating disorientating pestilence of Sutured Flesh and finally the virulently poisonous jeopardy of From Chin To Hole, the immense Torment of the Weak leaves a blissful shattered wreck in its tumultuous wake. It is a staggering introduction to Scordatura, a band bringing the essences of the likes of Suffocation and Dying Fetus into something new and thrilling. With more tours throughout the UK and Europe ahead, including a tour with Fleshgod Apocalypse, and an appearance at The Northern Darkness Festival  in December alongside bands such as At The Gates, Decapitated, Napalm Death, Graveworm, and Hour Of Penance, 2013 looks like the year Scordatura will stake a claim to sit at the top table of death metal.

https://www.facebook.com/Scordaturaofficial

9.5/10

RingMaster 30/07/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Listen to the best independent music and artists on The RingMaster Review Radio Show and The Bone Orchard from

http://www.audioburger.com

Straight On Target: Pharmakos

IMG_0567 copia

A seething thunderous brute of an album with raptorial tendencies and deep malicious intensity, Pharmakos the debut album from Italian deathcore metallers Straight On Target is an immense and heavily imposing release. It is also a contagious pleasure which leaves one exhausted from and basking in extreme metal at its best. Using established weaponry for the main, the album stays within already set walls but pushes their limits with compelling and irresistible sounds. It is venomous, violent, and wholly irresistible.

The quintet from Piacenza made their mark with their first EP Mediocritas in 2011, the release earning strong acclaim from fans and media alike. Creating a furnace of sound and energy recalling the likes of Aborted, The Acacia Strain, Whitechapel, and Impending Doom, the line-up of vocalist Andrea Scaglia, guitarists Giulio Castruccio and Daniele Molinari, bassist Nicolò Rossi, and drummer Federico Buzzetti, have let loose a ravenous monster of an album which surely will place the band into the awareness of a wider extreme metal audience. Released via Bakerteam Records, Pharmakos is a thrilling antagonistic confrontation which quite simply is impossible not to be sucked into and thrilled by.

Straight On Target seduces the ear first with Theta, a brief sonic abrasion with a startling ambience and menacing breath. It rubs CoverHDthe senses enough to set them on end before evolving into the rabid intensity of Ostrakon. Beginning with deeply resonating rhythms and cranky riffs the song slowly spreads its muscular arms to surround and immerse the ear intently. Once the colossal synapse chewing vocals of Scaglia enter into the midst of the brewing storm, the guitars, bass, and drums raise the temperature further and the impending assault to greater heights. The track never quite takes off in to an all-out assault though and is all the better for that, but instead leaves on a sonic acid of sound which is equally painful and inviting.

The monstrous Demonized next torments and ravishes the ear with a ferocity to scorch the hair from the skin with barbaric blast beats and debilitating rhythmic brutality at the core of its fire. There is nowhere to hide as the track scars and violates every inch of thoughts and senses whilst the body itself is treated to a furnace of aggression. Within the tempest though the band unleashes grooves and addictive melodic teasing which are quite delicious. Arguably this is the template for most of the songs on the album but it is a contagion which rewards as much as it eagerly destroys and one you just do not want to end.

The likes of the brilliant Wake the Apathetic and equally impressive Dreadful Eyes incite an insatiable need and desire for more of the unforgiving corrosion. The first of the pair has an insidious groove which emerges from time to time from within a brawling storm of riff borne intensity and rhythmic turbulence. It is again irresistible and lights up a track which already is perpetually shifting and energising the heart. The second squeals and rampages like a stampede of hellish boars, its brute force and satanic air a captivation which feeds the primal needs of all whilst igniting destructive propensity. If the release had finished right here the recommendation to check out the album would have topped the scale but with the continuing might and excellence within each and every track to come complimenting those mentioned Pharmakos is easily the first essential extreme metal album of the year.

The tribalistic Initiation which unexpectedly brings thoughts of Lord Of The Flies to the fore, the bone crushing and breath sapping He Spreads Hypocrisy, and the carnally coloured Synesthesia all continue the staggering strength and quality of the album whilst closing track Palms Leaves Readers is a final creative fit of rage and violent belligerence. It is an epic end to an epic album, a release which leaves you gleefully shell shocked.

To be over fussy there is a similarity across the release which is noticeable but to be honest unimportant within the striking impressive throat of the release and only adds to the depth of the density and intensity of Pharmakos. It is an outstanding album and marks Straight On Target as a band you should know about.

https://www.facebook.com/StraightOnTarget

RingMaster 14/01/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

Depopulate: Till Man Exists No More

depopulate pic

Rich in primal malevolence and driven by bestial spite, the debut EP from Polish death metallers Depopulate is a towering threat to the senses and an equally rewarding treat for the passions. Till Man Exists No More does not venture to unknown places of originality or intrigue but simply unleashes invigorating violent assaults borne of well-trodden but accomplished violations. It is a crushing release which brings solid satisfaction and inciting maliciousness; whether it is good for the health is debatable but no one truly cares when it sounds as good as this.

Originally formed in 2012 as Eviscerated, the Katowice quintet of vocalist Kostek, guitarists Rumun and Bishop, bassist Skowron, and Jack on drums has become an emerging force within a full and busy Polish underground scene. The release of Till Man Exists No More is a step which with its strength and great sounds should take the band to the fore locally and to good attention further afield. It is a menace with muscles which leave permanent bruises on the psyche and a ravishment that shows no mercy or restraint, what could be better?

After a hellish but unsurprising intro, the album seizes control of the ear and beyond with Deranged I Slice. It is an instant 283767_375063755876283_2104401961_ncorruption of sonic lashing and crippling riffs from the guitars and bass, destructive unrelenting drums, and guttural bile cored vocal scowls which just captivate. It is basically a storm of aggressive spite and energy sapping malice brought with skill and enterprise. As mentioned there is not anything particularly adventurous going on but the song and release ignites something different with its raw and uncluttered presence. It is extreme metal dragged through hell by its strongest assets and Depopulate the accomplished deliverers.

The first track is brief and explosive, a pleasing trait for the whole release as the likes of Pandemic Lust and Wastesoaked next add their infernal corrosions. The first is a sand blast of caustic venom with again the drums of Jack nothing but impressive and the sonic scarring of the guitars a lethal confrontation to devour eagerly. The track gnaws and tears the senses from start to finish with rabid hunger, its inspiring passage a ragged embrace. The second emerges out of the wake of its predecessor and continues the unbridled pummelling. The bass finds an extra menace to its prowling intent whilst the song as a whole just bears flesh ripping rhythmic teeth and sonic viciousness throughout.

The romantic Show Me The Way To Your Heart steps up next… well with a title like that there is an uncertainty as what it will offer but rest assured it is as hateful and deadly as what came before with no sap included. Like all the tracks it is not always an easy listen but completely rewarding. It is a monstrous outrage which demands many returns to its lair, though the release is exactly the same to be fair and both receive their wishes.

Closing with the final sonic humiliation of the senses with the excellent Harvesting Human Flesh, the EP is a mighty release which one can only recommend to all genre fans. It provides all the fruits to satisfy all needs from a death metal release and for an introduction will ensure Depopulate is a name to be noted. Certainly for fans of bands such as Cannibal Corpse, Devourment, Obscenity, and Aborted, Till Man Exists No More is a recommended listen.

https://www.facebook.com/depopulate

RingMaster 12/12/2012

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright