Dienstag, 30. Dezember 2014

carpathian - isolation

almost two years ago i wrote about my black/grey mix copy of carpathian's 'isolation' lp from 2008. just recently i picked this record for a listen and while listening to it, i re-read my post about it. back then i wrote the following: 'deathwish made two colour variations. one white with grey swirl and another on black with grey swirl. the white is the more limited. man, i'd like to have one one day.' it was a friendly reminder and so i ventured over to the bay and searched for carpathian.
sometimes this incidents must have to be destiny. the first result of my search was a shining white with grey swirl copy of this fantastic record. starting bid was just below ten bucks. i thought this would hold off early bids but i was pretty sure that the price would climb the more time went by. with only a few hours of the auction remaining, the record still had no bid. ok, i threw in my maximum bid of which i was convinced no one would go higher. the next day i found myself winning the auction for the starting bid. fine with me but i was quite surprised. maybe it flew under the radar of many because of holiday trouble. whatever.
unfortunately my copy came without an insert. asking the seller if he forgot to sent it for whatever reasons, i got a negative reply with some stupid undertone, mmpphh, that gave me the shits a bit but hey, it was christmas time, time of forgiveness. anyway, bottom line was he had none. so i took the one of my black/grey copy. as i don't need several copies of a record, i gave my spare to a friend for watching after my two rats. thank you! to all of you a happy new year! see you 2015. 200 made. deathwish inc. 2008.

Sonntag, 28. Dezember 2014

high on fire - blessed black wings

to make the high on fire set complete i was eager to get my hands on the last missing two. there is 'snakes for the divine' and then there is 'blessed black wings'. 'bbw' was after 'death is this communion' the second album i downloaded and listened to and still this is my second to favourite release by this stoner doom monster.
it has this groundshaking energy and those dreamy harmonies which made me love high on fire in the first place. the stuff which 'the art of self defense' and especially 'surrounded by thieves' were lacking of. with this record the unique hof mix is back. or better it appeared for the first time fully developed. maybe they needed the first two records to evolve that sound.
actually i wanted to order this record directly from relapse but as shipping rates from the states are a pain in the ass and i didn't want two records on the same colour way ('surrounded by thieves' and 'blessed black wings' were re-pressed on the same more limited colour pattern), i was looking for a domestic solution. thankfully i found a copy in hamburg's burnout store.
i must admit i am not the biggest fan of the choice of colour for this vinyl release. i mean, nothing wrong with an opaque purple but together with the colour scheme of the cover art it seems to be an odd choice. doesn't really work well together. ah nevermind, it sounds awesome though! 918 copies made on purple and still available. relapse records. 2005/2013.

Freitag, 26. Dezember 2014

yob - atma

i'm really getting into somm doom metal lately and by doing so, i came upon some more names thrown around. one name often appearing is yob. especially when i was checking 20 buck spin records for the latest pallbearer re-press. why, you might ask. it's because 20 buck spin also repressed a yob record lately, atma is the title.
with all this coming together i checked some actual music by downloading their 20 buck spin release in its full digital glory. yob is really playing some demanding type of metal. the umbrella term is doom metal but there is so much more. death metal elements, blues elements, accoustic soundscapes, progressive and techincal gimmickry and, of course, crushing doom. together with those transcendental lyrics this is some serious nerd music.
you can check out the title song and 'before we dreamed of two' and feel your utter self depart from the crude matter that is your flesh. bring our bodies! as i was looking for a physical copy of this record, i searched once more for ebay. there was an offer by hhv.de with a reasonable price but i went for a different seller because he expressly declared it a marbled vinyl copy. the seller was high roller records, an independent metal label from germany with a big distribution, i bought another record there too, but this will be a different story...
the presentation however is good standard quality concerning the sleeve. nice gatefold sleeve with all lyrics and recording information on the inside. the vinyl colour looks pretty impressive, if you ask me. it's an orange/yellow and blue merge configuration. on the edges of where the orange/yellow and blue meet the colour becomes green and so this is a very unique pattern. well done! the label calls it sunburst vinyl. can't say how many have been made. 20 buck spin. 2011/2014.

Montag, 22. Dezember 2014

veil of maya - [id]

when i was posting about the four born of osiris records lately, i was curious about what else sumerian pressed to vinyl. i have some of their titles on cd and so i wanted to know if could get them on vinyl as well. searching the net i came upon a record that i only knew by the cover art. veil of maya's '[id]' album from 2010. i know veil of maya since their 'the common man's collapse', which was the forerunner to '[id]' and came out in 2008.
i checked some of these songs in the glory days of myspace and knew that they were playing this kind of nerdy tech metal like born of osiris or between the buried and me, that was really hyped at that time. i don't know why i didn't buy the cd back then. probably money, probably it wasn't really good. whatever it was, it made me forget about veil of maya. when i saw a picture of a white vinyl copy of '[id]' on the net, i checked them out via youtube and was sold on them.
this is not all too innovative, they work with the same ingredients as the aforementioned bands but they manage to stay as their own. they paly their stuff crisp and with no holds barred. listen to 'resistance' and 'conquer'. i ventured over to discogs and found a white copy and threw it in my cart to check out later. i do this quite often lately if i'm not to one hundert percent sure to get a certain record. that doesn't work out as planned all the time. sometimes somebody doesn't need as much time to consider as i do and the record is gone. so was the case right here.
so i checked ebay to see if there was something waiting for me. i didn't really expect to find something because sumerian titles are elusive in europe. but to my surprise there was an offer by a seller from swiss. very reasonably priced but with no further information concerning the vinyl colour. as i couldn't find any info on black vinyl i took the gamble and ordered. when it came around i was surprised to find a purple copy in the sleeve. i saw way more pics of the white version on the net and so i presumed it to be the more common version. don't know if that's true though. one unreliable source speaks of 500 copies made of the semi-translucent purple marble version. merry christmas c-3po! sumerian records. 2010/2012. 

Samstag, 20. Dezember 2014

in circles - rêverie cult

now that the end of the year is coming nearer and nearer, i search my backlog for remaining 2014 releases. i'd really like to clear it of those records but i'm afraid i'm not going to make it. in my attempt to do it anyway i'll throw the latest in circles 7" into the ring. actually i wanted to start with the beginning, their first output 'void of illusion' to be precise. that came out in 2013 and as i'm late to post about it anyway, i might as well start with their second release 'rêverie cult'.
in circles is a young german band from jülich in western germany. they play a brand of metallic hardcore with loads of dark and melancholic melodies. reminds me of some deathwish bands like carpathian, killing the dream or the carrier. on this 7" you really can feel the progression compared to 'void of illusion'. the songs are more to the point, song writing is better all around. with a full length like this and some touring they should gain alot of attention. check them out on their bandcamp page.

i came across this 7" accidentally and in the coolest way there possibly is, in a physical store. you know, flicking through the racks and discovering a gem that seems to be coming out of nowhere. no force fed internet propaganda, no months long pre-order process, just you and your new record. yeah, christmas is approaching and that warms the cockles of my heart. good record, get involved! 300 on clear. powertrip records. 2014.

Freitag, 19. Dezember 2014

the acacia strain - coma witch

i was in breathless anticipation as i red about the anouncement of the new the acacia strain record 'coma witch'. you know about my feelings concerning the last record 'death is the only mortal'? to sum them up, i was highly disappointed about it. it was so exhausting, so inaccessible, and yes, so boring that i thought their good times were all through. but then came their teaser 7" 'above / below', these two songs promised a revival of their old sound.
with 'old sound' i mean the fantastic first three records up to their crowning achievement 'continent'. and now that i hold the record in hands and played it a few times on my turntable, i cannot get the grin off of my face. yes my the acacia strain are back. i welcome their regained straight forward riffing. of course they still have these off-beat elements and dissonant rhythms but they scaled them down to a digestiable dosage.
i'm really more than happy about this return to form. you know how it is, a loved band of yours strayed from the path and you just had to let them go. and then, out of the blue, they're coming home. welcome back! you sit around a table, chat about the new things, giggle about times you've been through together way back in the day and cast aside the recent misdeeds with a wave of the hand. listen to 'holy walls of the vatican' and to 'send help' and make yourself comfortable.
the second disc comes with a track called observer which spans over both sides of the vinyl. in the description text over at per koro, where i bought the record from, said this was a half an hour long song consisting of dark samples, growls and screams. i was initially put off by this statement. my first association coming to mind was the intro of the slipknot's 'iowa' album. you ever heard that? man, that is hard to take because it sounds so utterly insane to me. after i listened to 'observer' for the first time, i was relieved to find that it was nothing like that. it's simply an overlong song that gets under your skin. take the time and be rewarded!
i saw some pre-orders going up but only for clear vinyl and green for bundles. must have been already late to the process because later on i was informed about a 'starbust' colour via discogs more limited than the clear or green ones. as the release date came i checked at per koro and thankfully they had a coloured option available. by then i saw pics of a pruple marble on the net which had been chosen for distribution. i got that in the end and am very happy with it. it just looks lovely. don't care about the admittedly high pressing number of 2400 copies. comes with full album on cd. rise records. 2014.

Sonntag, 14. Dezember 2014

korn - s/t

after i gave in and bought my favourite korn album 'follow the leader' on coloured vinyl and was aware of the fact that music on vinyl would re-press all the good korn albums on vinyl, i was thinking about if i should get all the other records, too? either i would only buy 'follow the leader', justify it by the personal involvement and leave the rest alone, or i would buy them all. nothing in between. as i listened the shit out of all the other korn albums as well, the decision was easy after all.
who am i to lie to myself? of course i would buy them all. music on vinyl released their self titled album from 1994 at first in august this year. this one passed me by and the first time i saw a copy, was on a record shopping spree in hamburg. even holding a physical copy in hands, i didn't really feel the need to get it. but then came 'follow the leader' and that set the ball rolling.
i checked the internet for a copy and again i came across an offer of hhv on ebay. as every order with hhv was very convenient so far, i knew i could rely on them. i ordered it together with another record that i will soon post about. the records came in fast and in perfect shape. won't be the last order i placed with berlin's hhv store.
musically i was never that much of a fan of it. back in the day when i heard the album for the first time, my best friend and me had an agreement. after we both loved 'follow the leader' we knew we had to get the two preceeding albums as well. i was responsible for 'life is peachy' and he would get the self titled album, so we could exchange the cd's. then i preferred 'life is peachy' over 'korn' at any time. i think that hasn't changed.
i mean, the songs are good but it's the first record and, in my humble opinion, korn needed some more releases to fully develop. interestingly songs like 'fake' and 'lies' have aged really good and i can't remember that i enjoyed them as much as i do now. i really like that music on vinyl pressed the 'whole' album to vinyl (unlike on 'follow the leader'), so you can hear the argument of a couple over an exhaust that the producer ross robinson found on a tape in an abonded house. it's pretty spooky and i really loved this sixteen years ago. the fact that this was found somewhere in a house and nobody knows who the couple is or who taped this adds to the creepiness. pressed on lovely red w/ black marble vinyl. 2500 made. music on vinyl. 2014. 

Samstag, 13. Dezember 2014

unearth - watchers of rule

i am one who learns his lessons. in the past i made the mistake to ignore emp mailorder as a source for new and limited colour vinyl. as a result to that behaviour i missed out on a coloured version of madball's 'hardcore lives' record of this year. never again i would pay extra in the aftermath. by now i'm checking the emp upcoming releases section very carefully and regularly. by doing so, i just could not overlook the new unearth effort.
i really love unearth. together with killswitch engage they were part of my in between phase, where i began to look for more thrilling stuff than nu metal ala limp bizkit or drowning pool. they gave way to that european hardcore scene of the mid 00's that i hold so dear. actually, they were a part of it (aside from not being european). their 'the oncoming storm' record is an evergreen to me and with it, they formed a musical style called metalcore, which is still nostalgia to some and an insult to others.
i like to look upon this style with a part nostalgia but rather as simply good music. i have all their other albums on vinyl, too - except 'III: in the eyes of fire' of which there is no vinyl version - but i didn't find the time to write about them. unearth delivered almost with every record and as i saw the limited red double vinyl on pre-order at emp, i didn't hesitate to jump on it.
musically unearth takes no prisoners here. man, i couldn't believe my ears at the first listen. this record is played so tight, it will most likely beat 'the oncoming storm' to second place in my personal ranking. the album starts with a freaking blast beat, that i don't think i ever heard on an unearth record, and takes you on a death thrash hardcore journey of the wild kind. check out 'the swarm' and 'guards of contagion' and tell me you don't have to headbang all the way through. either way you're deaf or you're lying.
but wait, didn't i order a double vinyl pressing? you may understand my astonishment as i opened the package, because i was pretty sure i ordered such a vinyl copy. as i put in my pre-order i was surprised to see a 2xlp version at emp because century media, the label the record appeared on, sold a single lp version. ok, i thought, the double lp was probably the emp exclusive version. now i think, emp got wrong informations somewhere along the way. i kept the sticker with the double vinyl text for the oddity cabinet. century media. 2014. 

Freitag, 12. Dezember 2014

pallbearer - sorrow & extinction

my doom awaits me. the pallbearer comes to take me under. yeah, i'm pretty satisfied with this word play all around. pat my own back. but now to the subject. you ever heard of the fertile symbiosis of music and art work? sure you have. you read about it on this blog a few times before, so on others. most likely you experienced it yourself. a strong connection it is and it worked out well again with this new find of mine.
i was checking the metal selection of hhv.de on their ebay shop and came across this lovely cover art of pallbearer's first full length 'sorrow & extinction'. knowing the post to conan's 'monnos' record this might sound familiar to you, as this was just the way i discovered that record. i checked the label this album was released on. 20 buck spin records from the states. i browsed through their shop i came upon a recent re-press of 'sorrow & extinction' on a lovely merge colour. everything was looking so good, the music just had to be great.
i downloaded the album and what can i say? it grabbed me and didn't let go. pallbearer plays a pretty classic doom type. similar to iron heel. i love this massively down tuned guitar sound and in combination with the singer's dreamy vocals and their spaced-out harmonies they have quite a unique sound to call their own. listen to 'devoid of redemption' and 'an offering of grief', close your eyes and take in the whole atmosphere. man, i can see why people love to get stoned to this stuff, haha.
the latest pallbearer record from 2014 called 'foundations of burden' created some hype and the coloured version sold out very fast. too fast for me, so for now this 'sorrow & extinction' re-press will have to do until 'foundations' itself gets a re-press. by now, the starbreaker swirl vinyl has sold out, too over at 20 buck spin. so i'm happy that i was just in time for it. and boy, that colour configuration looks bad ass. totally in touch with the art work. fantastic record all around. get this! can't say how many had been pressed. 20 buck spin records. 2012/2014.

Sonntag, 7. Dezember 2014

tears of gaia - burial

when i wrote about the 'unveil - destruction wherever i go' 7" in august this year, i mentioned that i bought the unveil 7" and two others in one go and that it actually had been four, rather than three. now i will solve this mystery all you guys probably lost your sleep over, the ebay seller also had this gem right here up for bidding. i did bid on it but someone wanted it more than me. i lost the auction by fifty cents.
after the auction ended, pretty quickly i got an automatic e-mail from ebay telling me that i could buy the item for my maximum bid. i don't want to breed bad blood but i have the suspicion the seller got a friend to bid on his stuff to up the price. this friend accidently won the auction and so i got offered to buy it instead. i mean, in the end it doesn't matter because i was actually happy about this offer. my maximum bid wasn't unreasonable and so all is ok.
musically this band plays nineties vegan straight edge hardcore worship. played actually, as i believe this band doesn't exist anymore. beside a compilation song and a self made cd-r, both from 2003, 'burial' is their only release and that appeared in 2007. so i think it's safe to say they called it quits somewhere along the way. check out the title song anyway and get this vegan sxe monument on vinyl (revhq and xsentientx seem to have some in stock). comes on double white w/ black haze 7" vinyl out of 1000 copies. new eden records. 2007.  

Samstag, 6. Dezember 2014

conan - horseback battle hammer

after i bought the latest re-press of conan's first full length 'monnos' lately, i wanted more. the vocals of guitarist and bass-player plus their monolithic, down tuned riffing got me real hypnotised, craving for more doom metal madness. so i checked back what else the band had released. my usual source for such information is discogs and no exception this time. i came up with the information of an e.p., another full length and two split releases also in existence. even a live recording but that doesen't count to me.
i thought it would be apt to check their first e.p. 'horseback battle hammer' from 2010. it's actually their second output, but 'battle in the swamp' was a self-released demo from 2007 that never got the vinyl treatment. 'horseback' was put to vinyl for the first time via throne records from spain. they came up with a nice grey splattered limited colour version. then head of crom rec. from the uk did a repress on white a year later. and now, to my advantage, napalm records from austria just pressed another run on vinyl.
conan's latest record 'blood eagle' was released through napalm rec. and so they thought it might be a buzzing idea to release another colour version. right they are. i found a german seller on discogs who had it up for sale for a reasonable price. after i sealed the deal and payed the record, i found out that napalm had a left over copy in stock. stupid me, would have saved me five bucks. but i can still sleep, so it's alright.
musically this is not as great as 'monnos' in my opinion. the guitar sounds that overly fuzzed out. too much of a good thing, if you ask me. the songs are quite good but lack a bit of that hypnotic touch, which makes 'monnos' so outstanding to me. still 'satsumo' and 'sea lord' are good listens and it's essential background to fully understand their musical development. presentation wise 'horseback' has some nice artwork, but again i like the colourful approach on 'monnos' better. the gatefold is of matte card and thick quality. the clear vinyl with heavy red splatter is really well done. looks almost like the splatter has some texture. 300 pressed. napalm records. 2014.

Freitag, 5. Dezember 2014

no turning back - damage done

no turning back is an european hardcore institution. they formed somewhere around 1997. after a few 7"es they released their first full length 'revenge is a right' in 2003, and since then they are a force to be reckoned with in the euro scene. they were and still are deeply rooted within the d.i.y. mentality. therefore and to quote themselves, they decided to take control with their own label, conveniently called 'take control records'. their latest album from 2012 'no regrets' was released via this label and they started to re-issue their own back-catalogue on vinyl.
i already posted about the first re-press of the 2008 record 'stronger' and this time it's about the 2004 piece 'damage done'. i personally consider this album their masterstroke. 2004 was an important year me when it's about influential hardcore releases. told the story many times. stuff like heaven shall burn's 'antigone', destiny's 'the tracy chapter' or cataract's 'with triumph comes loss' had been huge records to me and paved the way for further musical discoveries.
as 'damage done' was also produced by denmark's master mind tue madsen (who worked also on the aforementioned records), i knew some songs of this album but never really came around to pick up a cd copy. so no turning back's second record never had such an impact on me as other releases of 2004 but as i poked around on the net and came across this recent re-press, i simply couldn't resist. i downloaded the whole album and after a few clicks more, i ordered a lovely green copy of 'damage done'.
the order process was again not without delays. after i waited for three weeks or something, i asked where my stuff was at. i got no reply but after two days it landed on my front door. whatever, what counts is this nice piece of vinyl. take control rec. pressed three colours of vinyl. yellow limited to 200, brown also limited to 200 and green limited to 100 copies. this version comes with a cmy sleeve. frankly i have no idea what this is. the picture in the store shows that it's a bit paler then the regular sleeves, but that's all i see. anybody knows the secret to cmy sleeves? take control records. 2014.