Montag, 30. Juni 2014

earth crisis - to the death

'to the death' is one of my favourite earth crisis records. it's their re-union record after a six year hiatus and two years working on the album. and man, it's a strong one. when i bought my ticket for thei wth full force festival in early 2007, i wasn't aware of what was coming my way. when i heard about earth crisis playing the festival, i was pretty excited to see them. i mean, man it's earth crisis we're talking about. the band that is, in a way, responsible for the lifestyle i chose. i remember them playing pretty early on sunday, maybe 3pm, and how none of my friends wanted to see them.
so i ventured from the camp to the in-field on my own. thankfully they were playing the tent-stage, where one was at least protected from the relentless burning sun, of course not from the fucking heat. and boy, they were a blast. i mean, i can't compare this performance to their past because in 2000 i was a teenager and didn't know a thing about earth crisis, but their set was pretty impressive to me. on the stage they even teamed up with andre from maroon, who had been the singer of one of my favourite german vegan straight edge bands of the early 00's. yeah, that was cool.
and then the day of 'to the death' had come. and passed by. in 2009 i was at the end of my vocational training and there are certain jobs in germany, mainly in the healthcare section, where you have to finance the training by yourself with little support of the state. bottom line: money was slim and so it took another year to finally obtain the cd. and i played it to the death. ha, wordplay! check that solo on 'when slaves revolt'. gives me the shivers.
it took me some time to get the vinyl. i mean, it wasn't like the availability had been a problem. there were a lot of chances to buy this for a fair price in stores as well as on the internet. you know, after all it's only black vinyl and it doesn't seem like the record sell out any time soon. but this one sunday afternoon at burnout store all the stars lined up in the right position and the time had come. bought this for twelve bucks and happily took it home. century media. 2009.

Sonntag, 29. Juni 2014

turmoil - who says time heals all wounds

one of the records from the vault. according to the pictures i made of it, this baby found its way into my hands last year's october. so it's waiting to be written about for over half a year now. but anyway, here we are. turmoil was one of the many hardcore bands of the nineties that played a metal orientated style, also known as crossover. next to earth crisis and strife, turmoil is my favourite band of that era playing this style.
in 1994 turmoil released two 7"es. 'fragments of suffering' on harvest records and this one here on century media. both releases share the songs 'walk away' and 'contain'. don't know the story behind that or which release came earlier. if you know, don't hestitate and leave an enlightening comment. musically this is just the right aggressive stuff you need to forget your everyday life and tear the concert room apart with your friends. unfortunately that won't happen anytime soon as turmoil called it a day in 2000.
but who knows, other bands did re-unite too. until that i'll chase their vinyl output on ebay. so occured with this blue copy of 'who says...'. i think i won this for two or three bucks and the condition the 7" is in, is flawless. century media did a black pressing too but i don't know about numbers in both cases. century media. 1994.

Samstag, 28. Juni 2014

mastodon - call of the mastodon

it's been a busy week and i didn't find any time to write something. but the weekend came to my rescue and now i'm finally able to spend some time with my obsession, music and records. speaking of... i'm in a metal state of mind lately. i don't know how it happened but i stumbled upon a band, that is far from unkown - mastodon. yeah, again a party which i'm fairly late to. of course i've seen their album covers everywhere, of course i've seen them on plenty alternative magazine covers and of course i knew they were the big deal. but somehow i managed to ignore them and never listen to any song. i think it happened as i looked through the relapse internet shop and came across a nice looking version of mastodon's sophomore record "leviathan".
i listened to some songs and thought, man, what the fucking hell?! how it has been possible to overlook this revelation. i immediately fell in love with this unbelievable drumming. those relentless snare rolls, fantastic. i ordered it directly from the states and momentarily i wait for it to arrive. "what has this to do with the record the picture shows?", you might ask. good question. "everything!", is the answer. without this incident i wouldn't have checked the mastodon section at my favourite physical store, burnout store in hamburg, and picked up this little gem. "call of the mastodon" is a compilation 12" that consists of their "slick leg" 7" and "lifesblood" 7", both from 2001.
relapse put this together in 2006, obviously to make some money with a last release before the band moved to warner/reprise records. the songs on display here are pretty amazing. an early and more raw and heavy version of their style. i love how they mix their kind of doom/stoner metal with hardcore and how this sounds absolutely cracking. check out "deep sea creature" and the superb "call of the mastodon", which was previously unreleased. i picked up a recent repress on lovely ultra clear w/ blue and gold splatter vinyl out of 1000 copies. for a more detailed pressing information of all the pressings, check out discogs. recently relapse re-pressed "remission" in a lovely box-set. check that! a bit pricey but looks awesome. already put my pre-order in. relapse records. 2006/2014.

Samstag, 21. Juni 2014

dimmu borgir - puritanical euphoric misanthropia

after i was introduced into hardcore music with nyhc classics through my uncle, i started my own expeditions into the world of electronic guitar-heavy music. in my very early teens i was listening to the new metal wave. korn, coal chamber and the like. with seventeen or eighteen i returned to harder stuff. it started with cradle of filth's "damnation & a day". soon after that i found myself obsessed with this metal mish mash mixed with a dark and menacing touch to it. next to cradle of filth there is only one band that plays this style equally as good - dimmu borgir. and my first record i brought into my possession was "puritanical euphoric misanthropia". boy, what a title.
at first i had the regular cd version but soon after i played it to death, i knew i had to have something cooler looking. i had been a collector of nice music related items ever since, so i scored the cd box-set on ebay which i still have. now that i'm always on the hunt for records that i loved and missed in the first place, "puritanical" was pretty high on the list. nuclear blast did a purple version when this record was initially released in 2002, but looked kind of boring. i discovered that back on black pressed a splatter vinyl version in 2008. that should be more of my taste. problem with it was, it never appeared on ebay neither did it on discogs. and after waiting pissed me off, i did what i did a couple of times in the past. annoying people with e-mails over at dead format. among others was this decent guy named justin.
after exchanging some mails over a quite long period of time, because of justin's involvement in other matters requiring his attention, we struck a deal. i checked popsike and thought my offer was decent enough and because of taking so much time, justin even allowed me a little discount on shipping. thanks again, man! after only one week the record lay at my door. i was finally able to drop the needle on it. and boy, this cracker aged damn well.
songs like "blessings upon the throne of tyranny" or "kings of the carnival creation" are as strong as i had them in mind and simply death metal perfection. together with those dark keyboards and well placed strings, these songs are audio delicacies to my ears. even songs which were the weaker ones of the album ("maelstrom mephisto", "absolute sole right"), getting better and better now. the sound is super tight and nick barker's drumming is outstanding. after gripping relentlessly for ten songs, the record releases you with this sublime outro called "perfection or vanity". what a trip. don't know how many copies were made. nuclear blast/back on black. 2002/2008. 

by the way, germany against ghana ended in a draw. that looked exhausting but still on champions course. vorwärts, deutschland!

Freitag, 20. Juni 2014

depravation - II: maledictvm

i have this record on my shelf for quite some time now. a nine month period to be exact. that's a pretty long time and i really feel, i should have posted this earlier. simply because this is an awesome record and an awesome band, that should get more attention out there. due to be released on small d.i.y. labels, promotion is understandably not very broad. i stumbled upon them accidentally. back when i ordered the "withers - lightmares" lp i came across the life and death records shop. the withers record is a split release and life and death rec. being one of the participating labels. so i saw this slick depravation cover artwork and thought, i should check this out.
i listened to the song "filth", at the time the only one available on the net, and was a bit undecided. knowing now the rest of the record, "filth" is the weakest song but after repeated listens the song grew on me and i pulled the trigger. thankfully i did. "maledictvm" is a real scorcher. this is just the right mix of dark metallic hardcore and a pinch of occultism. blackened hardcore they call this and, yeah, that works. just listen to that intro at their bandcamp (and after that to the whole album and after that you download it). these little touches, the heavy tunes and the stunning artwork make this record a great piece of music.
i even like the vocals here. the singer of this young german band has a rather high pitched voice and i'm usually not a big fan of that. but in the musical mood and context it really works good for me. momentarily only dark omen records has grey coloured records left in stock, with the blood red being already sold out. life and death records has some black vinyl left. so better be quick! there were only 300 copies pressed in total with 100 copies for each colour way. dark omen records. life and death records. 2013.

Montag, 16. Juni 2014

nile - at the gate of sethu

yeah, i love nile. absolute death metal perfection. and in combination with those death bringing egyptian underworld lyrics, nile is simply unfuckwithable. as a constant reader you might know that i already own a copy of that immaculate record. and you might also know that i actually had a clear green copy and what you might know on top of that too, i wasn't really satisfied with it. and simply because i had the chance to buy a more limited and better looking beige vinyl copy without any problems on pre-order at that time. why i didn't, is just beyond me now. nuclear blast had just some exemplary photos up and the beige looked boring. i think that was it. but i don't want to pull any feeble excuses. it was a dumb move and i corrected it but not without any extra burdens of course.
i saw this sealed and brand new copy on ebay. yeah, it looked pretty good. i wanted it. and even though it was a bit pricey, i knew that the price wouldn't come down any time soon. not with such a great record. the time was right to go for it, i pulled the trigger and finally came to peace with "at the gate of sethu". it is everything nile promised with their previous records and beyond that. every single song a master piece, no fillers all killers. if you liked them already i warmly recommend this to you without any doubt. it has become my second favourite record next to "annihilation of the wicked". it has the same sinister touch to it. the art work is fantastic in my opinion. seth as the ambivalent god between good and evil.
now that i had two copies of this masterpiece, i thought about what to do with the green one. at first i thought i should frame the cover and one vinyl disc and hang them on a wall at my home, but then again... i mean, it's a fantastic record and apart of being played for a few times, it was in a great shape. why don't give anybody else the chance to fall in love with this monster of an album? so gave it to a friend. he was happy, i was happy, much too much happiness for a death metal subject. i'll go put on some nile to gnaw the flesh from thy bones, happiness!
this record comes with the obvious but lovely gatefold sleeve with some introductional words by karl sanders. additionally you get two inserts for each lp with the lyrics and the liner notes. 180gr marbled beige vinyl, black dust sleeves and a poster. this version is hand-numbered, #26 out of 250 copies. nuclear blast. 2012.

Samstag, 14. Juni 2014

cattle decapitation - humanure

i probably said that before but again, i am a fan of vinyl re-issues. for several reasons. there is the easy accessibility of long sold out records, improved packaging or finally coloured vinyl. and sometimes there is another facet. as i saw the metal blade announcement for the upcoming re-issues of the complete cattle decapitation discography for the label, my curiosity was aroused. i knew them only by the name and had the vague idea that they were an all vegetarian/vegan band. and yeah, that they'd play some serious death metal.
so i started to do some research. first thing i did was re-visiting lenny's blog because i knew in the back of my mind him writing about their latest album "monolith of inhumanity" from 2012. his opinion was all positive. so i went over to the tube to listen to some stuff. at the time their first metal blade record "to serve man" was already available. i only found one song to that album and didn't like it. so i downloaded the whole thing and after one listen i thought, man, what a shite record. that thing is unlistenable to me. i put the idea aside.
but sometimes such ideas are persistent. the records are released monthly and next up was "humanure". i thought i should give it a try. i downloaded the album too and man, that is a real progression compared to "to serve man". so i ordered the record from nuclear blast. by the time i did, there had been no pictures of the vinyl and just the description the label gave. i took the one i liked more. "exploded polyp".
the mix between blood red and brown seems apropriate thinking of an exploded rectal polyp. i really like this merge, or haze, or colour in colour pattern. nice. metal blade presses splatter colours for the u.s. pressing and 200 splatter and 300 colour in colour copies for the euro pressing of all records. "humanure" comes in a nice gatefold sleeve with printed dust sleeve and a poster. i already have the follow-up "karma.bloody.karma" but haven't found the time to listen to it. but it'll soon appear here. metal blade. 2004/2014. 

Dienstag, 10. Juni 2014

congress - the other cheek

man, looking back at my recent posts, there seems to be not one that i was to one hundert percent satisfied with. this needs to change now. again it is another congress record. i was pretty eager to get all the lp's on coloured vinyl together, and with "the other cheek" i made a huge step towards my goal. again discogs came to my rescue.
ninety percent of my discogs inbox is filled with crap. records that are on my wantlist but far at the end of the priority list, come up several times a day. but you know, among all this shit there is the rare chance of finding a gem. and every once in a while such a gem comes my way. this time in the shape of a fine chinese seller going under the name of goatart.
an orange copy for under 20€ was too good an offer to pass up. even with the postage from china, which wasn't that high though. "the other cheek" is actually an e.p. with, at that point, five new songs on the a-side. these songs are great. typical congress mixture of death metal and hardcore. check out "under pressure" and love it. the b-side is grooved with their '93 demo. can't say i like it, but it has its value considering completion.
reading the band's dedication on the back of the cover, a smile plays around the corners of my mouth. seems like the scene suffered from the same problems as today, eighteen years later. shows me that we shouldn't take all those trend hunters and hipsters too serious. the diehard remain! 300 copies made on orange vinyl. there are also some black vinyl copies, but i don't know how much. good life recordings. 1996. 

Samstag, 7. Juni 2014

congress deformity split 7"

long time no see. don't know when i did the last good-life-belgium-metal-hardcore related post. so here we are with another congress record. they are my favourite european metalcore band from that prolific period which spanned from the mid-nineties to the early 00's. they had such an unique sound combined with great attitude, that is simply unmatched to me.
this split came out before the release of their full length "angry with the sun". before actually dropping the needle on this 7", i wasn't really aware of the fact that the congress song "exhume the truth" is also part of "angry...". the b-side band called deformity was unknown to me. and their song "god defined" doesn't grab me enough to investigate further.
the deformity cover looks funny though. does anyone know if there is a deeper sense to that cover eluding me? the face looks somewhat familiar. anyway, i scored this one on ebay for next to nothing. there were 2000 copies of this split pressed in total. 1000 on clear vinyl, 500 on red vinyl and another 500 copies on clear blue vinyl. comes with the jukebox hole. good life recordings. 1997.

Donnerstag, 5. Juni 2014

ryker's - hard to the core

mighty ryker's. back in the day when i came into contact with hardcore music for the first time, classic nineties stuff was the law. like i probably said a thousand times before in other posts but never get tired of, milestones such as "madball - set it off", "biohazard - urban discipline", "sick of it all - scratch the surface" or "life of agony - river runs red" had been my door openers to heavy music in general and hardcore music in specific. i hold them in an iconic like memory and always love to drop the needle on those vinyl discs.
the band i always seem to forget but were just as influential, is ryker's from kassel, germany. lese majesty, indeed. back in 1994 the german label lost & found records put out their "payback time" mini-album. i loved the shit out of it. it's simply hardcore perfection to me. a blatant shame it never got the vinyl treatment. thankfully the first full length "brother against brother" has been put to everyone's favourite format last year (i don't count the picture disc from '94). but enough talk of former heroic deeds. onto the present. and the present is "hard to the core". and man, they are close to those classics.
but yeah, a tiny bit is missing somehow. i mean "the world as i see it today" got this reminiscent early ryker's riffing and "time heals..." comes around with those crossover guitar solos that makes the hair of my neck stand up, but too much of the stuff sounds like they wanted it too much. hard to explain. it's a damn good re-union release never the less, but i'll probably prefer putting on their old stuff when i feel like listening to ryker's. was a bit late to the pre-order, so i got the second to rarest version on white out of 100 and already gone. red marble out of 75 copies and sold out too. blue /125 still available. beatdown hardwear. 2014. 

Dienstag, 3. Juni 2014

a perfect murder - demonize

it is already ten month ago that i obtained this record. but due to a loss of all my vinyl pictures, this baby disappeared in the sheer flood of records that had been piling up in the meantime. "demonize" was another record of a strong release period of demons in the middle of 2013. a perfect murder is a band from quebec, canada. they formed in 2001 and in the mid 00's they released three full length albums for victory records. to be honest i don't know any of them. at least not properly. just a loose collection of songs i heard at friend's places. i even saw them once live in berlin on hell on earth tour 2006. i couldn't really remember that, i stumbled upon it while doing some research for this post. i still have that ticket and memory slowly comes back. they were a good live act back then
they broke up in 2007 and came back briefly in 2009 and 2011. now they are here with a steady line-up and a new record. the one thing that pushed me forward to purchase this piece of grooved plastic, was a comparison to throwdown in the demons run amok description. and honestly, that was all i needed. by the way, why does that new throwdown album doesn't appear on vinyl? what's wrong entertainment one records? back to a perfect murder. "demonize" is quite good but that's it. no killer, no gamechanger, not even a brilliant copy cat. just solid and in this case a bit boring to me. a shame, because there are good beginnings but they fail to complete a good idea with that kind of special moment, that is hard to grab. that kind of moment which makes a good song to a great song.
of course i will provide you with a link to some music from "demonize", so you can judge for yourself. when it comes to the presentation, demons run amok doesn't seem to disappoint. lovely cover art work, nicely lay-outed insert, black dust sleeve and quality clear w/ black splatter vinyl. yupp, that's why i like to buy from dra. they pressed 300 copies on black vinyl, 100 copies on red w/ black splatter and 100 copies on my version. demons run amok entertainment. 2013. 

Sonntag, 1. Juni 2014

bitterness exhumed - desperate & miserable

the last bitterness exhumed record "a place of many ghosts" wa a real cracker. dark and fucked up hardcore punk with some metal hints a melodies for a really depressing sound scape. pure negativity that had its very own kind of subtle charm. to be exact this wasn't a real full length. some songs were re-recorded versions of former releases. on these re-recorded songs you could hear early stages of their song-writing skills and that left room for development. at that point i was really interested where new stuff would lead them.
that was almost exactly one year ago and here we finally are with "desperate and miserable". this release is an e.p. and consists of five new songs. i don't know. probably it needs more plays but to me this is just fast. don't get me wrong, fast is good and the songs are good, but sometimes a song needs some hooks to stuck in ones mind. some more of those desperate melody lines of "a place of many ghosts" would have done good to one or two songs of "desperate & miserable".
the fourth song "rat season" is that perfect mix of dissonant groove structures and mean melodies. you can listen to the whole thing on their bandcamp page. probably my expectations were too high because of the long time i had to wait for this. it was almost three month delayed because of the cover and b-side screening. and when you have to wait for a record that long, anticipation rises. but it's very solid never the less.
presentation wise i have nothing to complain about. "desperate & miserable" comes on quality clear blue vinyl, cut at 45 rounds per minute and with a wonderful screening on the b-side. hold up to the light you can see it in all its glory. there is also a bonus poster, which will always stay nicely put inside the sleeve, great cover art-work and the same custom stamp that was featured on the last record, can also be found here. it's just hard to be seen on the black dust sleeve. 300 copies made and hand numbered. demons run amok ent. 2014.