Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Scythe/Subterranean Steel/Primitive Reaction/2013 CD Review

  Scythe  are  a  band  from  Chicago,  Illinois  that  has  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  with  a  musical  style  that  combines  black,  thrash  and  speed  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  2013  album  "Subterranean  Steel"  which  was  released  by  Primitive  Reaction.

  "Leather  Aggressor"  begins  with  a  spoken  word  sample  before  going  into  drums  and  old  school  thrash  style  guitar  riffs  which  leads  to  some  blackened  thrash  screams  and  death  metal  growls  then  going  into  a  more  mid  paced  direction  before  speeding  up  again  which  then  leads  to  the music  switching  back  and  forth  between  mid  paced  and  fast  parts  as  well  as  slowing  down  for  awhile  and  bringing  in  some  powerful  bass  playing  and  adding  melody  in  the  guitar  riffing  and  towards  the  end  there  is  a  brief  use  of  guitar  leads.

  "Monarch"  begins  with  some  heavy  old  school  metal  guitar  riffs,  bass  and  drums  which  lead  to  some  deep  growls  and  high  pitched  screams  and  the  song  stays  more  in  the  slow  and  mid  paced  directions  and  a  few  minutes  the  music  speeds  up  for  a  few  seconds  and  brings  a  guitar  solo  into  the  mix.

  "Subterranean Steel"  begins  with  some  slow  guitar  riffs,  drums  and  Hellhammer  style  grunts  before  going  into  some  high  pitched  black  metal  screams  and  as  the  song  moves  on  the  riffs  get  more  diverse  as  well  as  mixing  in  some  deep  growls  which  leads  to  a  faster  direction  along  with  some  blast  beats  and  after  awhile  there  is  a  brief  guitar  lead  being  utilized  which  also  leads  to  some  powerful  bass  guitars  and  heavier  riffs.

  "October  Dies"  begins  with  some  mid  paced  guitar  riffs  and  drums  which  lead  to  some  high  pitched  screams  before  slowing  down  and  adding  in  some  dark  vocals  briefly  as  well  as  some  deep  growls  and  after  awhile  it  goes  into  a  more  mid  paced  direction  and  brings  in  some  melody  to  the  guitar  riffing  and  then t he music  starts  switching  back  and  forth  between  slow  and  mid  paced  parts  and  the  song   closes  with  bell  sounds.

  "The  Grunting  Dead"  begins  with  some  heavy  death  metal style  guitar  riffs  and   powerful  drums  which  lead  to  some  high  pitched  screams  and  deep  growls  which  in  return  brings  thrash  elements  to  the  song  and  after  awhile  the  music  slows  down  and  the  guitar  riffs  start  utilizing  some  melody  and  towards  the  end  there  is  a  brief  use  of  blast  beats  and  chaotic  guitar  leads.

  "The  Bray  Beast"  begins  with  some  heavy  guitar  riffs  and  drums  which  are  followed  by  a  grunt  that  evolves  into  high  pitched  screams  while  also  keeping  around  the  grunts  and  then  the  song  speeds  up  a  bit  while  sticking  mostly  to  slow  and  mid  paced  parts  as  well  as  bringing  in  some  melodic  elements  as  well  as  some  deep  growls.

  "Beyond  The  Northwoods"  begins  with  some  heavy  guitar  riffs  and  drums  and  then  the  song  speeds  up  and  brings  in  some  blast  beats  and  blackened  death  metal  vocals  which  then  lead  to  the  song  going  more  into  a  mid  paced  direction  as  well  as  switching  back  and  forth  between  slow,  mid  paced  and  fast  and  towards  the  end  the  guitars  start  utilizing  some  sound  effects  as  well  as  the  bass  guitars  getting  heavier  and  th e song  closes  with  a  spoken  word  sample.

  "Nights  Of  Terror"  begins  with  some  fast  old  school  speed  metal  guitar  riffs  and  drums  which  lead  to  some  screams  and  growls  and  a  few  seconds  later  there  is  a  brief  use  of  guitar  leads  before  switching  back  and  forth  between  mid  paced  and  fast  parts.

  "Thunder  Hammer"  begins  with  some  dark  guitar  riffing  and  drums  which  lead  to  some  grunts  and  after  awhile  dark  spoken  word  parts  become  a  part  of  the  song  and  as  the  song  moves  on  growls  and  screams  make  their  presence  known  as  well  as  a  brief  use  of  guitar  solos  and  leads  and  the  song  closes  with  some  fast  riffing  and  blast  beats.

  Song  lyrics  cover  horror,  supernatural  and  occult  themes,  while  the  production  has  a  very  dark, heavy,  powerful  and  old  school  sound  where  you  can  hear  all  of  the  musical  instruments  that  are  present  on  the  album.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  recording  from  Scythe  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of t his  musical  genre,  you  should  check  out t his  album.  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Leather  Aggressor"  "Subterranean Steel"  "The  Bray  Beast"  and  "Nights  Of  Terror".  RECOMMENDED  BUY.    

www.scythe.us      www.facebook.com/scythe.chicago     www.reverbnation.com/scythechicago

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Mulciber/Cries From Below/2013 Full Length Review

  Mulciber  are  a  band  from  Austin,  Texas  that h as  been  featured  before  in  this  zine  with  a  musical  style  i  would  describe  as  being  blackened  death  metal  and  this  is  a  review  of  their  self  released  2013  album  "Cries  From  Below".

  "The  Void"  begins  with  some  distorted  sound  effects  and  serves  as  an  intro  for  the  album.

    "Traitor"  begins  with  some  primitive  old  school  death  metal  guitar  riffs,  drums  and  deep  guttural  blackened  death  metal  vocals  along  with  some  blast  beats  and  after  awhile  the  music  goes  into  a  slower  but  still  heavy  direction  before  making  switches  back  and  forth  between  slow  and  fast  parts  and  as  the  song  moves  on  their  are  some  death  metal  guitar  leads   making  their  presence  known  briefly.

  "Unholy  Trinity"  begins  with  some  heavy  guitar  riffs  ad  powerful  drums  and  after  awhile t he  growls  kick  in  along  with  some  melody  being  throw  into  the  riffing  along  with  some  slow  parts  which  seem  to  be  influenced  by  doom  metal  and  then  the  song   switches  back  and  forth  between  slow  and  fast  parts  as  well  as  some  guitar  solos  coming  in  and  out  of  the  song.

  "Enshrouded  In  Misery"  begins  with  a  dark  and  melodic  guitar  riff  along  with  some d rums  coming  in  shortly  after  that  and  then  the  fast  and  heavy  guitar  riffs  and  blast  beats  start  kicking  in  while  also  keeping  around  the  melodic  elements  and  a  minute  later  it  goes  into  a  clean  direction  briefly  before  getting  heavy  again.

  "Hells  Of  Iron"  begins  with  some  dark,  heavy  and  melodic  guitar  riffs  which  leads  to  some  drums  coming  into t he  song  and  after  awhile  growls  make t heir  presence  known  and  takes  the  song  into  a  more  fast  direction  before  slowing  down  and  adding  in  doom  elements  and  then  the  song  switches  back  ad  forth  between  slow  and  fast  parts  and  as  the  song  moves  in  there  is  a  brief  use  of  guitar  leads.

  'Fog  Eternal"  begins  with  some  heavy  guitar  riffs  and  drums  before  going  into  a  faster  direction  which  sets  up  the  mood  for  some  deep  growls  and  it  stills  in  the  same  direction  until  towards  the  end  where  they  mix  in  some  guitar  leads.

  "Apoptosis"  is  all  guitar  amplifier  drones  and  noises  and  this  song  serves  as  an  instrumental.

  "Berserker"  begins  with  some  slow,  heavy  and  dark  guitar  riffing  along  with  some  drums  before  going  into  a  faster  direction  along  with  some  blast  beats  and  growls  and  after  awhile  the  song  starts  switching  back  and  forth  between  slow  and  fast  parts  as  well  as  throwing  melody in  certain  parts  of  the  riffing.

  "The  Devil's  Call"  starts  off  with  some  dark  and  heavy  guitar  riffs  along  with  some  drums  and  after  awhile  it  gets  more  fast  and  brings  in  growls  and  blast  beats and  after  awhile  the  song  starts  switching  back  and  forth  between  slow  and  fast  parts.  along  with  a  brief  use  of  guitar  solos  and  leads.

  "Tyrant  Rising"  begins  with  a  dark  and  melodic  guitar  lead  along  with  some  powerful  bass  playing  before  adding  in  power  chords  that  take  the  song  into  a  faster  direction  along  with  some  blast  beats  and  growls  and  towards  the  end  there  is  a  brief  use  of  guitar  leads.

  Song  lyrics  cover  darkness  and  war,  while  the  production  has  a  very  heavy,  old  school,  raw  and  primitive  sound  to  it.

  In  my  opinion  this  is  another  great  sounding  album  from  Mulciber  and  if  you  are  a  fan  of  blackened  death  metal,  you  should  check  out  this  recording  RECOMMENDED  TRACKS  INCLUDE  "Unholy  Trinity"  "Hells  Of  Iron"  and  "The  Devil's  Call".  RECOMMENDED  BUY.


Sunday, September 1, 2013

Soul Remnants Interview

1. For those that have never heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about the band?
Sure, Soul Remnants is a band with its roots embedded in the old school. I don't think we sound very old school, I mean, the production we get is clean and modern with enough filth to make it work, but we keep the philosophy of proper old school metal in mind. It's mostly death metal, if I had to put a label on it, but there's a strong dose of thrash and black metal in there. 

2.So far you have released one full length and a demo, can you tell us a little bit more about the musical sound that is present on the recordings?

The demo was just a raw live recording. Very few overdubs and just a couple full band takes. The songs on the demo were just unrefined versions of tunes that would be on our debut album. When Plague of the Universe, our first full length, came out in 2009 we were very pleased with the result. The album is heavy, and sludgy at times. People tell me it has a doom metal feel, which I was surprised by, but I guess sometimes you don't realize what you have created until you step back and look at the big picture. It's a fast album, but not as fast as Black and Blood, our new record. Black and Blood is definitely our speed metal masterpiece so far. I just wanted to push the boundaries of what we had created, and through the years we have been able to get there. The dark theme of the band has remained intact which is a pretty strong philosophy of mine. What's good about the music, is it isn't just fast. There are slow, melodic, and epic moments to keep the experience interesting. The music of Soul Remnants is always going to be changing, we can't make the same album twice, but the point of the music will remain. You will always know it's us. Honestly, the third full length is almost done being written, and it's coming out really great and different from Black and Blood, so I can see that this journey is going to continue and keep getting better.

3.What are some of the lyrical topics and subjects the band has covered and explores over the years?

We cover a lot. The lyrics are split up between myself and Mitch, our vocalist. Mitch writes a lot more of the lyrics than I do, I mostly write all the music. I have written about friends dying from drug addictions, people I know being sent to insane asylums, or just fucked up personal relationships filled with rage, pain and hate. Man, real happy stuff. Mitch writes in a more abstract style than I do, and I really like that. You can read his lyrics and wonder, "is this some fucking crazy horror gore rant, or is there a deeper meaning?" I think everyone can get something different from what we write about, but it's some extreme stuff that a lot of people won't be able to digest, haha.

4.Can tell us what inspired you to name the band Soul Remants?

Yea, it was the title to a song I wrote when I was 18. We don't play the song, never have, but the guitar player I was jamming with at the time suggested we start a new band and call it Soul Remnants. I didn't like the name at first, but it stuck-- the usual story, right? As far as meaning goes, it's about self empowerment. I am not and never have been a religious person, but for example, if you were to look at someone with blind faith following a church, giving hard earned cash over to them, I think that person is insane. I'm saying they are spiritually beat down, and what little is left would be the remnants of a soul. That's where they still have some strength and have the potential to wake up.

5. What are some of the best shows that the band has played in its 6 year existence and also how would you describe your stage performance?

Well, we have actually been a band for 10 years now. We have been fortunate enough to play with some bands that really kick ass like Lockup, Deceased, and Rotten Sound which is obviously a blast, but some of the best shows are the underground DIY ones too. BYOB and all, you know? People fucking going nuts all night, definitely the way to do it! We take our live show extremely serious. We don't fuck around when it comes to pulling off every part with tightness.
6. Are there any touring or show plans for the new album?

We are going to be playing one off shows here and there. We all have jobs and need to pay bills, and where we are at, we can't necessarily afford a full on tour. A week here or there is probably the most "touring" we are going to be doing unless of course, this album hits number one on the billboard charts. We are going to try and get out as much as possible for fests and shows that are worth it.

7. On a worldwide level how has the feedback been to your music by fans of black and death metal?

I'm probably opening the flood gates in saying this, but we have never got a negative review. We sent Plague of the Universe all over the world when we released it back in 2009, and it's got universally positive reviews. That's all I have to go on. At shows, we get a lot of great responses so we look forward to unleashing the rest of our music on the masses. This band strikes a chord with a very specific type of metal fan, and that's what I'm looking for. I'm not about mass appeal, just making the stuff I would want to hear for other people who "get it."

8.What is going on with the other musical projects these days?

I'm in a heavy metal band with Chad from Soul Remnants, called Armory, and our second full length is coming out soon. It's called Empyrean Realms, and is the result of about six years in the studio. It's almost unbelievable that it's actually gonna come out, it has taken forever. I was in another band called Forced Asphyxiation with our bass player Ryan. Their full length is almost done in the studio. I had to quit that band due to time commitments but they are my brothers still. I helped them a lot with the recording of the album and will probably still track guitar solos on the record. On top of that, I have been helping out a one man atmospheric black metal "experience" called Cryostasium. I'm playing guitar in the project, and I call it an experience because if you met the guy behind it, it is a fucking experience. That's all I can say about that. 

9.What direction do you see your music heading into on future releases?

Well, I can say since the third album is being written and is almost done, it is going to be a natural progression. There is a black/thrash metal vibe to a lot of it and kind of a crossover feel. It's different enough to be interesting but still sounds like Soul Remnants. All we want to do is make sure we are getting better with every step.

10.What are some bands or musical styles that have influenced your music and also what are you listening to nowadays?

My biggest influences are Slayer, Death, Dissection, Mercyful Fate,Immortal, Iron Maiden, Hypocrisy, Pantera, Megadeth, and Metallica off the top of my head. I used to just learn their songs when I was a kid, and that's what really taught me how to play. I am also very into Frank Zappa, the guy was amazing. But, yea, I would just learn the songs I like and jam with different people too. I would jam with rock musicians, jazz musicians and anybody who wanted to. You can learn a lot of really cool tricks that way, and then soon enough develop your own style. Nowadays, I'm still listening to the old stuff mostly. I do really like the new Phil Anselmo solo record, though. I just throw the ipod on random a lot, but aside from the above mentioned, you can never go wrong with Strapping Young Lad, Faith No More, Cannibal Corpse, Carcass or Suffocation. Basically, if it's good and it's real, I'm going to listen.

11.Outside of music what are some of your interests?
I like to paint and draw sometimes or cook. I still hang out with my friends and just rip it up, so if that counts, then there you go. Honestly, music is my main passion in life right now and that's where a lot of my focus lies. If I'm not home with my girl and kid, then I'm probably jamming somewhere. 

12.Any final words or thoughts before we wrap up this interview?
First, thanks for taking an interest in what we do, we appreciate it. Soul Remnants isn't going to be stopping anytime soon so you should go look us up on facebook @ www.facebook.com/chopwork so you can keep up and enjoy the ride. That's also how you can find out how to get your hands on our cds! Fuckin' right!