Written by: Alex, Bringer of Payne
Attempting to retrospectively describe Italian deathcore outfit Drown in Sulphur is a little tricky, as unfortunately the band has been mired in conflicts since the release of Blackwind. Ultimately, it appears to have split the band, with several members departing to found Defamed, while the drummer has tethered himself to Drown in Sulphur, and repopulated it with a fresh new lineup. Group politics aside however, both the band and Blackwind are pure meat and potatoes deathcore. Thick, pulsating blast beats are layered upon chugging bass and pitched down guitars to create a monochromatic whirlwind. It’s a tried and tested technique that has been a dominant force in extreme metal since being popularised by Job for a Cowboy and Whitechapel, amongst others, almost two decades ago. Remaining fully faithful to the genre, Blackwind is sonically coloured with brutality and themes of violence.
Written by: Scorpi
Diving headfirst into Bandcamp’s metal releases often goes one of two ways. You either spend ages looking for something worthy of your undivided attention, a task that feels like crawling through mud to find an elusive treasure, or you absolutely nail the first album you pick.
In Arcaine’s case, they were the immediate jackpot. No spinning reels endlessly losing all your cold, hard cash to find this one.
Arcaine are an emerging deathcore quintet from Chur, Switzerland, founded in 2015. They are made up of vocalist Adrian Gisler, guitarists Brandon Wildhaber (lead) and Renato Herzog (rhythm), bassist Rinaldo Gaudenz, and drummer Reto Camenisch. As Life Decays is their debut album, and they couldn’t have given themselves a much better platform to become one of the best modern metal bands out there.
Guest Post: Carcassbomb (of Noob Heavy)
Experimentation is my magic word… and my safe word. It’s an approach that can really go anywhere, including some dumb places, but Rat King challenge song writing conventions in a far more subtle way that makes for an interesting listen without alienating fans of experimented genre in anyway. Previously with their 2016 debut LP Garbage Island they had a similarly experimental take on sludge so it’s interesting to see they have taken their approach into the realm of death/grind, a completely different arena. Here’s the thing though, they fucking pulled it off and in my opinion this release is both a better album and a better representation of their signature craft. There’s been an evolution here that I respect and admire. Vicious Inhumanity will be released Jan 17th via their very own label Within The Mind Records, CD, Vinyl and cassette, so dig in mother fuckers. They’re also giving away CDs to two lucky people, entries close on release day so there’s time.
Well, here we are. The belly of the riff-lovin' extraterrestrial beast. You'll inevitably be subjected to a veritable cosmic load of Blood Incantation hype in the weeks to come prior to Hidden History of the Human Race's November 22nd release, so I'll keep this intro brief.
Blood Incantation's meteoric rise to the upper echelon of underground death metal carried with it a burden of expectation. 2016's Starspawn hit the scene with an expansive roar, solidifying Blood Incantation's reputation as an outfit willing to inject a little intensity and exploration into their forward-thinking approach to atmospheric death metal. How do you follow up a flawed-but-remarkably-promising debut? In an ideal world, by removing said flaws from the picture, while simultaneously pushing onward and upward so as to avoid stagnation. No small order.
To assess Blood Incantation's latest offering, two Village-dwellers took up the pen, making for a rare double review 'round these parts (and quite possibly a triple, if I can get my doddering ass into gear). Without further ado, I'll let them do the talking.
VARIALS - In Darkness (Review)
Written by: Izzy
Despite often on first glance appearing as a metalhead, probably because I’m oft wearing my Slayer or Gojira tshirts, I actually consider myself much more of a hardcore kid at heart. I never cared for classic punk, and my dad raised me on Dio and Black Sabbath so it was natural I grew up mostly in the metal scene, but as I got older and learned about more genres adjacent and outside of metal, when I finally dove into hardcore something about the music and community just grabbed me and I’ve felt so at home there ever since.
Don’t get me wrong, metalheads are great people (usually), but the hardcore community was so accepting, progressive minded, filled with activists looking for a change, it felt like where I belonged, much more than any metal community I had been a part of. So, in the span of a couple years I went from a diehard metalhead to a straight-edge core kid, I guess you could call me…Transgenre.
Okay okay I just really wanted to make that joke. I’ll actually start the review now.
SANITY CONTROL - Demo 2019
Occasionally, something breaches our slumbering village's humble walls and whips a little life back into the plague-ridden peasantry. Such is the case with the (forthcoming) too-short-but-oh-so-sweet 2-track demo from Warsaw's Sanity Control--the briefest of endeavors, imbued with the best of the respective punk and thrash realms. This bruiser was self-released this past February, but will be receiving a full cassette treatment from the certifiably esteemed Seeing Red Records.
Take the punky slur and aggressive drive of Cryptic Slaughter, Attitude Adjustment's hardcore ‘tude, and a healthy injection of ripping thrashy riffage. And there you have it. Sanity Control's formula isn't new or novel, but yet this is crossover at its most effective, seamlessly integrating the highlights of both respective genres. Notably, the two tracks herein feel quite distinct in character, giving a little hope for Sanity Control's ability to write songs varied enough to prevent the dread crossover fatigue. “Hunt” relies comfortably on a bombastic chanted chorus, while “Swarm” implicates some fierce vitriol and an unexpectedly acidic solo. The result? An invigorating and endlessly repeatable lil’ bundle of grimy joy. What more could you ask for?
Our populace rejoices in the face of a rising force in crossover excellence. If you've got (quite exactly) five minutes of free time, Sanity Control comes highly recommended.
Sanity Control - Demo 2019 will be released June 21st, 2019 from Seeing Red Records.
Sanity Control can be found on ye olde Bandcamp.
We provide thoughtful reviews of music that is heavy, gloomy...and loud enough to wake us from slumber. Written by a highfalutin peasantry!