indie / punk
Hailing from Cambridge, UK, indie punks Grieving throw a few energetic pieces of lo-fi rock music in our faces.And quite frankly, sometimes that is all we need. Their influences include Guided By Voices, Fugazi, Television, The Lemonheads, Bob Mould and Wolf Brigade, which could explain the varied sound of their songs. Sometimes they're emotional, coming close to indie pop while on other occasions they blast out of my speakers with a severe punk attitude. My favorites on this ep are 'Ownership' and 'Warmest Jets' but I also really dig the noisy and somewhat creepy 'Little Armoured'. In all, this stuff will certainly reach the many festival goers wherever Grieving do their stuff...
Fuzz yeah, this is the shit. Well, it is if you're into bands like Mastodon, Baroness and Red Fang. Hailing from Nashville, Tennessee, USA, Howling Giant comes up with some infectious stoner rock, nudging towards psychedelic rock and doom. The trio seemingly consists of nerds who combine their love for comics, space travel and downtuned, fuzzed-out guitars. Personally, I am more than ok with that, certainly if they keep on blasting out their massive sound in stunning songs like 'Mothership' or 'Exodus-Earth' and even in noise faceslaps like 'Dirtmouth'. My favorite is the doom track 'Clouds Of Smoke' but I have to recommend this stuff to any psychedelic stoner doomer out there.
doom / black metal
Give Praise Records seems to have a flair for interesting split 7" releases. This time, the label invited Ukrainian horde Moloch and Polish blackened doomers Gurthang. Moloch got the opportunity to open the split with an atmospheric intro and a massive track where funeral doom meets sludge metal. I really dig this song, but as far as I'm concerned, it could last for about twelve minutes instead of (barely) three. More haunting doom metal comes from Gurthang, who deliver another piece of crushing metal, not as raw and primitive as their colleagues but still damn immersive. The keyboards give the whole that awesome nineties sound. Yep, I'm a fan...
Iron Bonehead is another one of those labels who somehow always succeed in coming up with strange and obscure gems to please the filthiest of ears. This harsh, chaotic yet melancholic tape by Finnish black metal duo Celestial Grave is a perfect example of that. The three songs on this ep are not loaded with blast-beats (except for closer 'Burial Ground Trance' but still contain the necessary elements to make this a fierce competitor in the raunchy underworld of the blackened scene. The music is primitive but at the same time shows a great deal of musicianship and songwriting skill. The whole is not so much a performance, more like a dark ceremony or a nocturnal ritual, driving on vintage riffing and powerful drums. For collectors of obscure blackened gems, this certainly is a must-have. For others, well, I guess a lot of fans of extreme stuff will like this. So check it out and allow yourself to dwell in the thick sound of Celestial Grave
More obscure blackened filth, this time as a tribute to the 7" releases by German label Sombre Records. On this 7" we get some harsh, raw and primitive black metal, courtesy of four bands from the German underground. Intempestus opens with a grinding, punk induced song that will rip your head wide open. Antares comes with 'Revelations', a lo-fi piece of work that sounds as grim and haunting as this genre should be, and a well varied one too. Necrohell delves right into the old 'World Domination' compilation with their thick, grinding sound and relentless punk induced riffing. At the end, Vent comes up with a delightful piece of doomed and blackened audio-filth, my favorite one on this already impressive split.
Hardcore Punk / Powerviolence / Grindcore
'Boak' is Scottish slang meaning vomit or feelings of excessive nausea. That should already explain a thing or two about this ep. With four songs, in all not even seven minutes long, these Scottish canaille throws old school hardcore, grindcore and powerviolence in one massive heap of musical extremity. Yet, the whole thing is quite catchy if you're into this stuff, certainly because it's also loaded with weird samples. These songs can easily cause moshpits, walls-of-death and crowdsurfers wherever Boak decided to plan their next assault. My favorite is the last track, 'Pamplona' but the whole thing is so destructive that 95% of humanity will never be able to withstand the other tracks, HAH.