XUL – Extinction Necromance

Photo Credit – Jenna Hindley, Midnyte-Sun Photography

Photo Credit – Jenna Hindley, Midnyte-Sun Photography

Extinction Necromance is a release which wholly captivates whilst hitting the listener with a tsunami of malevolent sound and intent. Consisting of four tracks covering thirty minutes, the EP is a barbarous affair which at times defuses or certainly overshadows the invention and diverse textures within its depths through a continual tirade of vocal and emotional hostility. There is no hiding place from the encounter either, except the off button, but its creators Canadian metallers XUL, ensure that is never an option with their craft and fascinating enterprise.

XUL hails from Vernon, British Columbia and cast a merciless trespass of blackened death metal upon the senses. Influences to their intent include the likes of Behemoth, Dissection, Immortal, Emperor, and Watain, strong flavours noticeable in the band’s sound but without leaping miles away from such inspirations XUL has woven the spices into a sonic narrative built on the sole character of their imagination. Formed in 2008, the quintet released debut album Malignance four years later, a well-received encounter stirring up Canadian extreme metal especially across the Western side of the scene country, a recognition reinforced forcibly by the band’s live presence which has seen them share stages with the likes of Obscura, Exhumed, Vreid, Kampfar, Woods of Ypres, Macabre, Withered, Cephalic Carnage, Archspire, and 3 Inches of Blood. New EP Extinction Necromance sees the band explore their darkest depths and most malevolent emotions, filtering all into intensive examinations of ears and psyche.

It begins with Frozen, We Drown, an immediate consumption of the senses through prowling riffs and grooves punctuated by lurking rhythms. There is also an underlying swing to the opening baiting of ears, a trait which is regular bait whether in a gentle melodic persuasion, a rugged rampage, or an unbridled savaging. There is also thrash bred virulence at the start which with the rabid sonic intensity subsequently evolves into a melodically scenic landscape of constantly developing climates and unpredictable intent. The track continues to shift and switch its attack and sound, merging murderous sonic and rhythmic affairs with almost seductive hugs of calm and evocative suggestiveness. XUL’s sound, as each song upon the EP, is not suitable for a lightweight consumption. It is with continual examination that the busy terrains and almost insidious nature of the aural tapestries unravel for increasingly dramatic and impressive proposals. That is not to say it is not a potent first introduction made, just a matter of almost too much to digest and get a handle on initially.

Album Artwork done by Remy C. of Headsplit Design

Album Artwork done by Remy C. of Headsplit Design

It does ensure every listen is a slightly different and fresh adventure too, epitomised by the following Orbit of Nemesis. It rises from the release with a heralding fanfare of horns and celestial harmonies, the epic air suggested in the orchestral hints of its predecessor in full regalia here. Like a majestic bird soaring into an expansive and thickly coloured atmosphere the track sparks the imagination but like the same being swallowed by the jaws of a violent storm, the expressive opening of the track is devoured by a bestial sonic explosion. The band surges over the senses from within that assault; volleys of violent beats from Lowell Winters the spearhead of a hellacious onslaught brought by the bass predation of Marlow Deiter and rabid guitar causticity from Wallace Huffman and Bill Ferguson. With the raw primal tones of vocalist Levi Meyers leaving their own inhospitable residues in ears too, it is a gripping fury taken to greater heights by the toxic but sonically invigorating grooves and shards of melodic imagination spilled by the fingers of Huffman.

As the first track, though maybe not as openly tangible, there is an evolving aspect to the raging and another swing to its vicious stroll, an ingredient which marks each song in varying ways and degrees as shown by third song Chaos Requiem. Rolling in on a ‘gentler’ gait and intent than its excellent predecessor, the song is soon sledgehammering the senses as guitars weave a tempting lure of melodic intrigue and expression. The turmoil is exhausting, ensuring that the brief respites when they emerge feel like oases in the merciless storm. It is increasingly gripping and an intensive incitement which as mentioned needs time to fully explore but more than rewards the effort.

Final track Summon the Swarm coaxes with the calm of water and a reflective melody before unleashing sonic and rhythmic carnage, but a tempest openly and precisely sculpted by each element of the band. It also delivers a thick anthemic lure alongside its punishing tirade of sound and voice, the track at times as intoxicating as it is corrosive as it frees a maelstrom of emotion and musical drama, especially in the closing ravishing of ears.

The more time Extinction Necromance is given the more it impresses, an undeniable success which marks XUL out as a band to watch closely as they surely start luring in a more global attention, starting right here. It might not quite be the best blackened death metal protagonist you will meet this year but it will be the one of those enticing the most repeats plays.

Extinction Necromance is available from May 19th @ https://xulmetal.bandcamp.com/album/extinction-necromance

http://xulofficial.ca/   https://www.facebook.com/Xulband

RingMaster 19/05/2015

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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Blunt Force Trauma: Beyond

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    From the first abrasive riff to its very last raptorial note the Beyond EP from Australian metallers Blunt Force Trauma allows no time for the listener to take a breath or seek refuse in any less intensive opportunities. The release is a furnace of aggressive passion unleashed through a torrent of exhausting enterprise and bruising confrontation and one thrilling adrenaline soaked encounter.

From Perth, the 2009 formed band has garnered a towering reputation for their performances and music, its sound bringing them the tag of “Thor’s love children.” The past few years has seen the quartet leave audiences wasted from performances alongside the likes of Macabre, The Amenta, Truth Corroded, 4arm, Desecrator, and Grotesque and with the release of their new debut EP and tours confirmed in India, Asia, and North America over the year ahead, 2013 is looking a breakthrough period for the band, something which would be a shock if it did not come to pass such the might of their release.

Opening track Whore of Eden gravitates into view with industrial hydraulics before exposing firstly coarse riffs and then an engrossing spine entwining groove. Blunt Force Trauma brings a fusion of groove metal and metalcore with rich veins of numerous other rewarding unique genre inventions and the first track is an immediate explosion the resulting impressive corrosive excellence. As riffs rip flesh with their muscular snarl and sonic sabre cuts the ravenous caustic vocals brawl upon the senses with purpose, viciousness, and contagious effect. Clean vocals add a compelling lure alongside the rabid growls whilst the rhythms of drums and bass prey on the wounds caused with pack like militancy and ferocity. The track is a tempest of confrontation fervour and outstanding craft with loud whispers of Bloodsimple and Killswitch Enagage. It is hard to say the song is offering anything toweringly new sound wise but few bands recently have found the depth and power let alone primal pleasure instigated here.

Closing off its capture of imagination and passions with a sirenesque groove and equally tempting predatory bass flirtation the track is an immense start matched by the following Meat Puzzle. The song initially grazes the ear as if waiting for a reaction before breaking into a stomp equipped with a tight slightly wanton groove and hungry eager heavy riffs. Clean metal vocals burst from the core of the song to instantly bring variation to the whole release, something which each subsequent song reinforces with skill and imagination. Though not the riotous onslaught of its predecessor the track still rampages with an energy and intent which leaves the senses eagerly agitated whilst with its classic metal overtones within the guitar teasing and expressive vocals, a feverish greed is soon driving the appetite for more.

Defiance instantly caresses the ear with a mellow yet sinewy melodic guitar cascade of fiery sound and invention with the again formidable rhythms and muscular bass coaxing its flames higher for further pleasure. It is not long though before the song is charging with the drums calling, the march of their insatiable rapid punches evolved into a rumbling pulse framing another insidious groove manipulation firing the senses with devilish efficiency. The track is a maelstrom of passion, aggression, and thought plundered by superb moments of melodic and emotive clarity, vocally and musically. For the main though it ravages with impossibly infectious enticement from riffs and rhythms, it is not over complicated or dramatically ground breaking but oh it is irresistible.

The closing Eulogy is an explosion of unrestrained metallic revelry, thrash, and punk dished up in an insatiable storm of mayhem and sonic lust. Equipped with waspish grooves, bone splintering rhythms, and savage energy the track is simply rock n roll at its very best…and most inflammatory.

With The Beyond EP, Blunt Force Trauma shows with a vengeance why they are one of the loudest names on the lips of the underground scene and simultaneously declares their intent to infest and enflame the wider world with their towering sound, something it needs and deserves..

http://www.facebook.com/BluntForceTrauma.au

9/10

RingMaster 07/03/2013

Copyright RingMaster: MyFreeCopyright

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