It’s been a busy week here at Sixsixsix HQ. Hefst was launched on Monday. And it’s a promotion business dedicated to promoting unsigned and small label bands. Full details can be found here: http://hefst.blogspot.co.uk/
Hefst is the Icelandic for “beginning”. So I hope to help many bands at the beginning of their musical adventures.
On the label side, the Baalberith album has been sent off for duplication. I should have copies on Tuesday. HaatE is being sent off very soon as well
And Toxoid have just joined the Sixsixsix Music Family. They’re a Satanic Black Metal band from India. Details on their cd will be announced soon
The Black Metal compilation Helvete : Confederacy of Hatred is complete and will be unleashed on September 1st. It’ll be available for free, and I’ll do a feature on all the bands who are included next Sunday.
Just to be totally different, I’m working on some Metal related Christmas cards. There are some pictures on my Facebook page of a few of the possible designs:
https://www.facebook.com/1405099836423721/photos/pcb.1454528818147489/1454527998147571/?type=1&theater If you click the picture, the next design will appear
And finally, I’ve had such an enjoyable time finding new bands this week, that I can’t cram them all in today. So I’ll be updating this blog throughout the week
Hyperborean - Mythos Of The Great Pestilence
I should have reviewed this album a few weeks ago. But it’s been an album I’ve tended to put on while I’ve been doing other things and I’ve just emerged myself in the music, without really analysing what I’m listening to.
The opening number, Hail Dystopia, is staggeringly good and reminds me of the days of when I was listening to my Black Metal on tape, about 20 years ago. It’s somewhere in-between majestic, technical, melodic and brutal. It’s spins around and goes through a myriad of time changes. And for me, it’s a perfect opener.
The only downside is that it’s head and shoulders above everything else on offer. This is a good album, but the pace tends to slow down too much at times and Hyborean are much better at the faster bits.
There’s so much to like here. I’m a huge fan of the guitar sound, the vocals are wonderfully harsh, the production is superb etc… but I don’t think Hyperborean have quite cracked it with their song writing. Maybe a few more BPM and less slower elements and I’d be raving about this album, but as it stands, it’s in the very good category, rather than the great.
And another band I should have featured before, are Egyptian band Excimer
They’re heavily influenced by 80s Thrash and I’m loving the old school vibe of their music. And their brand of Thrash is flavoured with some NWOBHM influences as well.
The title track of this EP, Serial Killer, has a vocal delivery that reminded me of early Suicidal Tendencies, so there’s plenty here to enjoy if you love all aspects of 80s Thrash.
You also get a very cool cover of Metallica’s Whiplash and Sodom’s Sodomy and Lust, to go with the three original tunes.
The band are recording a new album right now, so this is a nice introduction before their album comes out in the autumn.
Melodic Death, for me, can be very one dimensional, with so many of the bands all sounding the same. Thankfully, Sweden’s Unfolded are a bit of the good side.
This is supposed to be a demo, but the sound supersedes many albums from bands that are allegedly a few rungs above this. There’s a mighty groove going on, and Joakim Hegsund’s vocals tend to follow the groove and the overall effect is a head nodding bundle of joy. I like music that makes me happy and this certainly fits the bill.
My better half, who is a big fan of this genre and most things Swedish, is particularly impressed with the construction of each song. As a Maths Teacher, she also wonders if someone involved with this demo has a mathematical brain, such is the precision of each song.
Everything about this 5 tracker screams class. From the musicianship, production and the songs themselves. The only thing I’m surprised at, is that this is a self release.
I know the musical industry is imploding in on itself these days, but these guys are seriously good. I’m sure a few years ago the likes of Nuclear Blast and Century Media would be sending someone over to Sweden to snap these guys up as soon as they could.
It’ll be interesting to see where they go from here.
Skyggen hail from South Korea and have just released their debut demo via You Tube.
I’m not a massive fan of the drum sound, but apart from that it’s a very solid offering of reasonably melodic Black Metal.
There are 2 original songs and a Gorgoroth cover for you to digest and I’d say that Whispering Death just edges it for me as it’s a bit more inventive in terms of the songwriting and the time changes.
Skyggen are definitely ones to keep an eye on.
Vorzug are a new band out of Phoenix, Arizona and this one track single, I Am In Hell, is both an introduction to the band and a statement of intent from the band.
It’s a rumbling tomb of Old School Death Metal, with darker Black Metal overtones. The sound is just about perfect and this is such a fucking tease as one song just isn’t enough.
The band are currently working on their debut album… I just hope it doesn’t take them too long as this is a very good opening salvo.
I Am In Hell is out on August 30th. And if you visit their Facebook page, there’s a link to another song, In One-Hundred Years, whose Death Metal parts remind me of early Amorphis
I was expecting 30 minutes of Depressive Shoegazing from Belgium duo, Soul Dissolution, but this is a much heavier release than I was expecting. Ok, it’s still quite soft compared your average glass gargling raw Black Metal, yet it’s still (just about) on the melancholic side of the same genre, but it’s nowhere near the slit-your-wrist fest I thought it would be.
I’m not up on the slew of popular bands doing this kind of music right now, such as Alcest, but what I did pick up on, during The Final Solution : Part 1, was a similarity with Primordial, albeit at a much slower pace. So that’s my (sole) reference for this release.
But maybe it’s a good thing listening to this with fresh ears. My opinion is only based upon what I hear, not who it should be compared with.
If I had to sum up this release in one work it would be “sombre”. There’s an overall feeling of sadness throughout the duration of Cold Rays and Grey Waves. It’s an emotional journey that probably has some connection with the sea, which I’m basing my theory upon the album title and the artwork. And as someone who grew up on the coast and yearns for a return to living by the sea once again, I feel a real affinity with the songs. Even if I am probably completely wrong about the subject matter.
That's the end of part 1 of a week of updates. Next update will be on Tuesday