Studfaust – Where The Underdogs Bark

Studfaust Garage

It is hard not to be turned on by a heavy dose of dirt encrusted, liquor encroaching rock ‘n’ roll and it does not come in much finer form than that which spills voraciously from the might of Norwegian protagonists Studfaust. A third heavy rock, third filth coated metal, and the final segment pure punk rock, the sound conjured up by the Oslo/Bergen hailing trio is pure venom fuelled antagonism. Imagine The Exploited and The Damned in their early days in salacious cahoots with Twisted Sister and Black Sabbath in the distinctive bed made by Motorhead and you get an idea of the weighty thrills and hostile rampage which makes their new mini-album Where The Underdogs Bark one of the year’s treats.

Studfaust was unleashed in 2011 by vocalist/guitarist Tore Bratseth aka Stud Bronson (ex- Old Funeral, The Batallion, Bömbers) and Bård “Faust” Eithun (Emperor, Blood Tsunami, Mongo Ninja). That same year they recorded and released debut single Half Human, Half Dynamite /1980’s Ladies to strong responses, its vinyl release via Soulseller Records subsequently sold out whilst their gigs equally stirred up attention and fans. The line-up became three soon after with the recruitment of bassist Pete Evil (Blood Tsunami, Mongo Ninja, Hellride). Again uncaged through Soulseller, Where The Underdogs Bark riles up ears and passions from start to finish with an instinctive wickedness which easily suggests it could and should trigger the widest spotlight upon them, certainly its devilry deserves it.

Half Human, Half Dynamite is the first riot to accost ears and instantly sets the juices flowing with raw and abrasing riffs aligned to urgent rhythmic provocation. Vocally too the track simply sparks the purest punk rock instincts Studfaust cover 2400x2400whilst grooves and spicy hooks tease and play with the imagination through mischievous rapacity. It is a glorious stomp and easy to see why the eager reception when released as that first single.

The following title track is just as feverishly contagious and incendiary. Caustic riffery from guitar and bass is courted by a simple but ridiculously addictive groove from the off as Eithun swings his sticks with all the muscular contempt he can muster. Within two songs Studfaust shows they have no interest in anything other than adrenaline driven, dirt kicking rock ‘n’ roll with a metallic predation to its raw devilment, the second track the perfect example with its unfussy and bordering on hostile ferocity.

A southern rock twang flirts with ears and thoughts as the next up Hell Is Full embraces the senses. Its gait is a slower heavy metal stroll than that of its more abusive predecessors and similarly veined with a repetitive and relentlessly attentive grooving and enterprising sonic causticity. There is a fire in the belly of the song too which gives it a distinctive toxicity to the others, whiffs of AC/DC and Turbonegro enhancing the abrasive seduction before it all departs leaving the floor clear for the punk aggression of Street Judges Gavel to roar and spill its feverish sweat upon it. A sense of Discharge adds another hue to what is, like all tracks, a seemingly Lemmy and co inspired canvas of middle finger energy and honest senses abusing creativity.

The outstanding Erection Of The Egoist with its ravenous and carnivorous bass swagger and infection spewing grooving takes the album to another irresistible level. The vocal squalls driving it are as uncompromising as the viciousness of the rhythms whilst that imposing lure of Evil pungent bait is as trapping s ever, but the real submission grabbing edge of the track comes with the lethal hooks and spicy grooves out of Bronson’s guitar.

The release closes with firstly The Devil Of Mine and its punk fest of flesh flailing riffs and rhythms bound in funk infested basslines and lastly the irreverent temptation of 1980’s Ladies. The first of the two growls vocally and musically with a pissed off attitude and intensity whilst its successor is sheer glam punk ‘n’ roll, kind of like Sex Pistols meets Towers of London for an inescapable and infectiously addictive rampancy.

Where The Underdogs Bark is not trying to invent or even reinvent the wheel but for a bodily fluid soaked slab of real rock ‘n’ roll it is hard to think of anyone who has thrilled and impressed as much as Studfaust do on their album. A must for all punk and metal infused rock ‘n’ roll fans everywhere.

Where The Underdogs Bark is available via Soulseller Records now @


RingMaster 15/08/2014

Aborym – Dirty


Listening to Dirty, the new album from Italian industrial metallers Aborym, takes thoughts back to the early days of the genre when Ministry and Godflesh corrosively chewed senses and KMFDM had a true snarl to their sound. It was the time when the genre was at its purest, as generally any style is at its seeding time, and when there was a malevolence and creative spite which arguably has since dispersed over the past decade in the industrial arena. Formed in 1992 the band has continued and explored their origins, combining the essences of the genre from back then with blackened venom and extreme metal savagery. Aborym have set high standards across the years which have inspired and shaped the intent of a wealth of bands and it is with confidence that you can assume Dirty will continue that influence.

Released through Agonia Records, the sixth album from the ignites fires in the passions but as easily quells them at times too, it is an experience of mixed ideas and results but one which is thoroughly captivating and deeply intriguing from start to finish. Like their sound overall, the album unleashes a predatory expanse of what they call “hard-industrial-electro extreme metal”, an unpredictable confrontation which is lingering and at times irresistible. The trio of Fabban (vocals, bass, programming, synth), Paolo Pieri (guitars, keyboards, programming), and Bard Eithun “Faust” (drums), whose past and current invention is found in bands such as Emperor, Hour Of Penance, Mongo Ninja, and Blood Tsunami, take thoughts and senses on an intense and caustically carved journey through black hearted emotive depths and synapse challenging intrusions.

Opening track Irreversible Crisis has a tantalising beckoning to recruit thoughts from the start, its blend of sizzling metallic pulsesAborym_dirty_cover300dpi_rgb within a scrappy blistered ambience evoking instant thoughts before the ravaging blackened charge of sonic malevolence consumes the ear. It is a viciously driven persuasion with the vocals of Fabban squalling with serpentine intensity upon the rhythmic bombardment and quarrelsome riffing. It is not long though before the industrial veins move in to shift the emphasis and creative temptation, the vocals seizing a Marilyn Manson like enticement whilst the song itself moves from a black metal like scourge through to an electro industrial wantonness. Imagine Behemoth meets Ministry and Treponen Pal before engaging with Wiseblood and The Amenta and you get an idea of this outstanding track and start.

The following Across the Universe wraps its electro arms tightly around the ear initially before slowly stretching its metal sinews and resonating breath into another intensive provocation. Clean vocals set the narrative up with potent clarity whilst the melodic teasing of the song inspires thoughts before being drenched in a squall of blackened toxin. Though not as immediate in its persuasion as its predecessor, the song is a riveting sonic travelogue through rapacious and magnetic scenery which reveals and persuades more with each subsequent course.

Next up the title track is a filth clad tsunami of nastiness, its erosive breath working silently behind the violent hunger and insidious exploits created by the venomous maelstrom elsewhere. It is the brink of the abyss, its industrially sculpted ferocity a virulently contagious assault with an intensity and energy which is hellacious at best and primal destruction at its most rabid.

Both the scintillating Bleedthrough, a track which infuses a storm of blackened carnivalesque like sounds, diverse essences, and exhausting emotive warfare, and the nightmare that is Raped by Daddy, continue to keep the album on the highest plateau. The second of the two  breeds its deepest agonies  through a magnetic mesh of extreme and electro metal, rhythms chewing on bone whilst the sonic acid scars beside a seductive electronic coaxing. Once at the heart of its distress there is a bottomless pit of emotive torment impacting on every sense, thought, and emotion, making for an experience which is lingering and explosive.

From this point on things do not find the same potency and draw as the first half of the album, though songs like I Don’t Know, even with its dodgy clean vocals at one point, The Factory of Death and closing song The Day the Sun Stopped Shining never find less than full involvement from the mind and attention from the ear for their still inventive and expressive enterprise. Amongst them one more pinnacle does shine through. Helter Skelter Youth is a schizophrenic fire of industrial, avant-garde, and electro devilment, an insatiable fury upon the listener with a thrilling body of epidemically infectious invention.

Though not holding on to its full triumph across all its length Dirty is an outstanding album which feeds the appetite for the origins of industrial metal whilst refusing to neglect the experimentation and intensive adventure of the now. Also released with a second CD available only on digipack, double gatefold LP featuring covers of tracks by Iron Maiden, Pink Floyd and Nine Inch Nails, two completely re-arranged and re-recorded tracks older songs and one new track, the album is a must investigate release as a bare minimum for all fans of the genre.


RingMaster 29/05/2013

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Blood Tsunami: For Faen


    Norwegian thrashers Blood Tsunami have returned with a beast of an album in the ravaging For Faen, a release which makes up for the time the band was away whilst thrusting the Oslo quartet forth with a new ferocity and enterprising design to its sound. With blood raging through its veins and a furnace borne hunger, the release brings a spiteful devastation of thrash metal and a freshness which has been missing from many other recent genre releases.

Blood Tsunami was formed in 2004 by vocalist/ guitarist Peter Vegem who had spent the previous years in punk rock band Hellride. Turning to thrash metal the project ran through a few line-up changes in the first couple of years but equally found permanent members in guitarist Kristoffer Sørensen and drummer Bård G. Eithun to drive the band forward. Two demos were released in the same period with the second leading to the band signing with Candlelight Records/Nocturnal Art Production with who their debut album Thrash Metal appeared in 2007. Critically acclaimed the album brought the band good awareness from around Europe where they toured to further strong responses and recognition. Second album Grand Feast For Vultures followed in 2009 and was a stronger even more impressive riot of invention and power, though soon Blood Tsunami hit problems. After losing out on a slot on a full European tour with Absu and Nachtmystium in the summer of 2009, bassist Peter Boström then departed leaving the other members with a lack of inspiration and energy for the band. The remaining trio started up new punk metal band Mongo Ninja, putting Blood Tsunami on a kind of hiatus, which in twelve months or so toured relentlessly and released three albums with Indie Recordings. Though the quintet was drawing strong acclaim and success the founding trio began looking at Blood Tsunami again and brought it back to life during 2012 but now infusing the punk essences of their last endeavour into the thrash devastation of their resurrected project.

Bringing in Carl Janfalk on bass to complete the line-up alongside Vegem, Eithun, and Sørensen, the band recorded a six track demoFor Faen cover 1400 in 2012 and then set about searching for a label which emerged as Indie Recordings who put out the Mongo Ninja albums. For Faen meaning Devil, though it is also used in Norwegian in the same way fuck is used in English (so the title could mean For The Devil or For Fuck’s Sake), takes no prisoners from first violent note to last, offering an unrelenting siege upon the senses with equally compelling rewards. Previously the band drew on melodic Swedish influences and NWOBHM riffs for their more progressive creativity but now have moved to short biting song structures and a punk snarl to leave a much longer lasting and potent effect in the shorter violent songs.

As soon as the thumping drum call of Eithun opens up first track The Butcher of Rostov, the passions are immediately set on alert especially with the swiftly joining inviting sinewy riffs adding their keen persistence on the senses. In full flow the track unveils a swagger kitted out with a delicious sonic grove before unloading a full ravage of crippling rhythms, flash tearing riffs, and an even more insidious grooved venom. Vocally Vegem has re-ignited the delivery he used in Hellfire and it adds the perfect rasp and belligerent growl to the intensive attitude driven sound. The song thrills with a blend of Slayer, Amen, and Kreator and makes a towering persuasion for release and the new direction of the band.

Next up the bestial Dogfed chews the ear with the savagery of a pack of wolves, its incisors rippling with primal malice whilst its sonic saliva sears with irresistible acid; in barely one and a half minutes it has thoughts racing with deep satisfaction. Its mighty presence is equalled in their own individual bruises by The Rape of Nanking and In The Dungeons of the Rats, tales of war crimes and blood curdling horror which capture the imagination lyrically as much as the sounds succeed in earning full submission of the passions.

To be honest every moment of the album leaves nothing but sheer pleasure in its wake and though maybe the release is not ground breaking it is undoubtedly one of the best thrash cored releases in a long time. Further pinnacles in a plateau of highs come through the colossal rampage of Metal Fury and the unbridled ferocity of The Brazen Bull, both subsequently eclipsed by the ardour igniting Unholy Nights. The song is a classic in waiting, a heart pillaging scourge of fiery sonic mastery within a tempest of marauding riffs and wall demolishing rhythms.

The return of Blood Tsunami has given thrash, if not aggressive metal as a whole, a new thrust of vibrant and destructive energy and in For Faen, an album which thrills on every level.


RingMaster 11/03/2013

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