Megascavenger – As Dystopia Beckons


With good words heard about but sounds not yet an acquaintance, we had definite intrigue in our anticipation of the new album from Swedish death metal project Megascavenger. What we found within new album As Dystopia Beckons was one mouth-watering and unpredictable kaleidoscope of ferociously imaginative, ravenously confrontational, and venomously contagious extreme metal incitement.

The third album from the Rogga Johansson created project, descends on the senses with a creative animus of discontented sound, ruinous vocals, and an industrial seeded dissonance providing something which really is out of the ordinary. As with previous albums from guitarist/bassist/vocalist Johansson with drummer Brynjar Helgetun often alongside, As Dystopia Beckons sees the guest involvement of a host of members from major bands; Hail of Bullets, Entrails, and Bolt Thrower amongst many sharing their musicians. In many ways though, the stars of the proposition are the bold songwriting and spread of virulently invasive and varied flavours which merge with a tempest of corrosive death metal.

It all begins with Rotting Domain, a predatory stalking of the senses featuring Sven Gross of Fleshcrawl. Initially the track skirts around and prowls ears, shadowing the atmospheric visage of a dystopian landscape which emerges from within the sonic coaxing. Swiftly though, the listener is the target of hungry riffs and tenacious rhythms as an imposing portentous intent is shared by gutturally spewed vocals. It is a highly magnetic affair, especially with the stabbing beats and searing grooves which lay their claim to the imagination.

An industrial intrusiveness opens up the following assault of The Machine That Turns Humans Into Slop. From the carnal tones of bass to the swinging melodic grooves and voracious trespass of the rhythmic web, the song demands and receives eager attention. David Ingram (Hail of Bullets, Echelon, ex-Benediction, ex-Bolt Thrower) adds to the erosive persistence and infectious nagging of the song before Dead City with Jocke Svensson of Entrails involved, takes over. Straight away, the track stalks the senses with a cauldron of onerous sonic intrusiveness and thrash lined riffery. It is a drama which has the imagination swiftly locked in, physical attraction quickly lured by the industrial lined rapacity in sound and emotion that consumes ears. Though it does not quite find the same heights as the first pair of songs, it leaves enjoyment at a similarly feisty level before being eclipsed by As The Last Day Has Passed.

Already there has been a varied addition of textures and spices to songs, but the fourth is far bolder and subsequently even more attention grabbing. Teddy Möller (Loch Vostok, The Experiment No.Q, The Hidden) joins the pair in the lively catchiness and rampancy of the classic/ thrash metal fuelled track, his grizzled vocals a great union with Johansson’s throat shredding prowess. Like a mix of Fear Factory and Soilwork yet not, surprise is instantly replaced by pleasure for not only the gripping sounds but the bold ideation involved.

Things only seem to get braver and more hectic from hereon in; starting with The Hell That Is This World and its early-Pitchshifter/ Entombed like seductive massacre. The track is glorious, an uncompromising anthemic assault of brutal, groove entangled rock ‘n’ roll which again is built on numerous strains of addictive noise and tempestuous textures for one unique infestation of the passions. Kam Lee (ex-Massacre, ex-Mantas, Bone Gnawer, The Grotesquery) adds his prowess to the song and appears again in The Harrowing Of Hell, though before it, the death ‘n’ roll of Dead Rotting And Exposed scars and corrodes the senses whilst stirring up another industrial soaked stomp followed by the even more hellacious Steel Through Flesh Extravaganza with Adrie Kloosterwaard of Sinister in the mix, which uncages a contagion soaked storm of sonic cancer on the senses. Once more the best description for the thrilling violation is grievous rock ‘n’ roll, and again unbridled satisfaction is the reward.

The Harrowing Of Hell entwines gothic and extreme metal in an encounter which hints at bands like Sisters Of Mercy and Gene Love Jezebel as much as an Asphyx or a Godflesh. From a strong start, the album is at a new level around its middle with this transfixing encounter up there as its finest moment alongside The Hell That Is This World.

Completed by the prophetic sonic instrumental smog of its title track, As Dystopia Beckons leaves the senses wasted and imagination alive with emotions in total agreement. The album easily feeds a want for something individual and refreshing whilst stirring up the instincts for a barbarously invasive time, so can only be heartily recommended.

As Dystopia Beckons is out now via Selfmadegod Records @

Pete RingMaster 02/03/2016.

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Planning For Burial/Liar In Wait – Split 7”


Bringing together two bands which have already stolen strong attention and praise for their previous releases, the new split 7” from Broken Limbs Records makes a compelling introduction for newcomers to both Planning For Burial and Liar In Wait whilst showing existing fans a glimpse, certainly in the case of the second project, of a new mature landscape of sound. It is an absorbing and immersive experience being offered, two tracks which distinctly differ but unite in their ability to seduce and envelop ears, as well as the imagination, with subtle and bolder invention.

The first track Mischief Night is provided by Planning For Burial, the solo project of Pennsylvania based musician Thom Wasluck. The song is his first outing since the release of the acclaimed album Desideratum earlier this year. It IMG_7856(2)opens with a sonic flame which swiftly immerses into a radiant but oppressive drone. It is a persistence of noise though wrapped and embraced by flowing synth crafted melodies, their evocative breath and nature a warm caress over the caustic spine of the song. Guitars add their raw beauty and unpolished elegance almost as quickly, everything combining for a haunting and ethereal flight through morose and imposing shadows. It is a thick and challenging intensity which emerges from the bewitching cacophony of sound, but one tempered just enough by the slow laboured vocals of Wasluck, melancholia dipping off every syllable within his expressive monotonous delivery. It is an emotion lighting cloud of riveting dark beauty and dramatic shadows lying pleasingly like a mix of Joy Division and Nine Inch Nails within a cold shoegaze soundscape.

   The second song Paper Houses is a lighter and warmer proposition but just as rich in firm textures and infectious magnetism. Liar In Wait began in 2012 as a side project of vocalist Adam Clemans of Wolvhammer and bassist Jim Adolphson from Mourner. It was not long before the band grew to a quartet with the addition of guitarist Jeff Wilson (Wolvhammer, Nachtmystium) and drummer Peter Clarke (Iron Thrones), and recorded debut EP Translations of the Lost which was released last year on Profound Lore. Employing inspirations from the likes of Asylum Party, Joy Division, The Cure, and Fields of the Nephilim, release and sound was well-received and has already raised keen anticipation for the band’s first full-length scheduled for next year.

liw promo     Paper Houses makes a potent and exciting teaser for the release, immediately seducing ears with an intrigue loaded bassline which swiftly suggests Ian Curtis and co. The irresistible bait is then crossed by shards of sonic eruptions before it all slips into a lively but reserved stroll with the bass still leading the seduction beneath the melodic tones of Clemans. There is a shoegaze glazing which mesmerises with House of Love like radiance but equally a dark tonal elegance which embraces essences of Gene Love Jezebel, early Cure, and The Danse Society in its emotive flight across the enthralling song. It is a spellbinding track having no difficulty in awakening real anticipation for Liar In Wait’s first album.

We have been blessed with a strong and impressive array of split releases over past months and this is another to add to that list.

 The Planning For Burial/Liar In Wait Split is available now digitally and on vinyl (300 black and 200 on orange vinyl) @

RingMaster 15/10/2014

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Disappears: Era

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Over their five years of existence, Disappears has continually delved deep into their creative thoughts and stretched not only their limitations but the listeners, their recent abstract and challenging Kone EP a prime example. With Era, the fourth album from the Chicago band, there is not exactly a less adventurous experimentation going on but certainly a stripped down one which has a core seed driving its breath and intent. The seven track album is bred from early 80ʻs post punk, admittedly given the distinct rapaciously dark Disappears touch and a modern voraciousness but openly spawned from a suggested passion within the band for that period and aural bedding. It is a stunning release which has a foot in nostalgia and another in current noise artistry as it takes the senses on a chilling venture into light exhausting realms and emotive provocation.

Sculpting the album through an almost psychotically oppressive merger of dub, psyched fuelled repetition, and carnivorous post punk cold, the quartet of Brian Case, Damon Carruesco, Jonathan van Herik, and making his debut drummer Noah Leger, immediately throw a caustic web over the ear with Girl. Its slow dawning soon coaxed into greater life by the lone bass croon, which itself is soon immersed in a harsh sonic wash of guitar and effected vocals. There is an immediate sense of Public Image Limited to the stark and hoarse glaze which appeals strongly whilst the persistent haze of noise only adds to the concussive temptation, the repetitious squalling of vocals and sound furthering its strength yet again as the climax of the track scorches the air.

The following Power has a clearer sky to its presence, the tempestuous air of its predecessor replaced by a haunted blackened breath KRANK182_5x5_300dpiveined by a compelling bass narrative and the drum beats. Instantly riveting in this insistent design, the guitars bring an additional expressive hue to the provocative persuasion, their sonic colour pushing a sense of The Cure from around their second and third album to thoughts whilst the steely ice embrace caging it all seems bred from the heart of Joy Division.

Two tracks in and Era has already secured full physical and emotional involvement but an elevation of ardour is soon forced as both Ultra and the title track enslave and appease the now rife appetite further. The first of the pair from the off niggles with a steely stare from the guitars with a rhythmic beckoning which only enhances the thick lure. As the vocals slowly coat the engagement with gelid reserve, the repetitious stance of the track becomes a greater temptress, its minimalistic encroachment bringing a sense of Wire and early Killing Joke into play with the uniqueness of Disappears. Its successor continues in the same teasing persistently nagging way, riffs and hooks on repeat until they seduce down to the instinctive core without ever verging on annoyance though this time they are accompanied by a richer melodic colour dripping delicious discord and wrapped in a polar climate. Carrying a sense of Artery and Gene Love Jezebel to it, the track accentuates the diverse and enriching depths of the release. It may come with a frosty nature but works with resourcefulness on every aspect of the body and mind.

The exceptional Weird House steals top honours with its scintillating stroll of noise pop and pop punk revelry. Holding a swagger arguably missing on the other songs and equipped with a melodic sun that glistens off of the metallic sinews of the drums and compelling bass temptation, the song is a virulent infection on the senses. Again loaded with a singular course for its intent and with vocals that seem to swing with relish simultaneously to the slight wantonness of the song, there is an indefinable familiarity to the scintillating offering though once more you can suggest Wire as a source.

As Elite Typical rolls firmly through the ear with an early Gang Of Four cold scold and invention, and the closing stark expanse of the Joy Division/Colin Newmanesque New House invades every pore with its arctic noir kiss, Disappears ensures that Era is as potent and invasive at its tail as its head. There is a clarity and uncluttered voice to the album and all of its uniquely offered songs which alone sets the album apart from their other releases, but mostly it is the merciless entrancing presence and intensive suggestiveness which leaves no thought and emotion untouched. Rich in the essences of the past but stood rigorously in the present, the Kranky Records released Era is a stunning and exhilarating slice of tender desolation and melancholic joy. A definite album of the year contender too.


RingMaster 26/08/2013

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