Donnerstag, 7. November 2019

disentomb - the decaying light

i got really lazy as of late but here i am back with a bang. the latest disentomb record called "the decaying light". due to production delays i waited over a month from the actual release date to get my copy. i am usually not into those brutal/slam death metal bands but these aussies add the right portion of melody and technical finesse to their sound. a real haunting and heavy piece of music. the semi-translucent orange splatter looks lovely, even though the mock-ups showed a purple inside orange with splatter. ahh, whatever... unique leader records. 2019.

Dienstag, 15. Oktober 2019

korn - the nothing

for korn i will always have a soft spot in my heart. the first cd i ever bought myself was the band's third album "follow the leader" and so they played a substantial role in my musical development. their return to form with "the serenity of suffering" was surprising and now i was curious if they could keep up.
"the nothing" is the title of the new opus and i pre-ordered blindly at after thoroughly spinning the record, i can only say that they lived up to my expectations and beyond. that record is really damn fucking good. they played out their strength in full extend - huge choruses all the way through. white vinyl and beautifully embossed cover art to round out the package. roadrunner records. 2019.

Montag, 14. Oktober 2019

type o negative - slow, deep and hard (box set version)

the first album out of the "none more negative" box set i feature here is of course the debut record by type o. "slow, deep and hard" was initially released in 1991 and was the band's most controversial album. there were so many things on that record which offended people that it's feels difficult to keep track. in "prelude to agony" peter steele dwells on a fantasy of violence concerning an unfaithful girl (like almost all songs do on this album).
the lyrics caused feminist activists to accuse them to support rape. the band even got threatening phone calls. the admittedly not so smart choice of the song title "der untermensch" - a term used by nazi germany to denounce jews, homosexuals and others - brought them heavy reactions on tour in europe by left wing activists plus the bad smell of being racists.
and then there is the cover art. it shows the zoomed in penetration of a vagina, a picture stolen from a porno magazine. well, and besides all the hysteria stands a great record. "slow, deep and hard" was one of the albums i didn't know before the box and i am pleasantly surprised at how much this one rules. the vinyl colour turned out great, by the way. roadrunner records. 2019.

Sonntag, 6. Oktober 2019

death - live in l.a.

there is a new death record being re-pressed? count me in. so of course when i heard news that relapse was going to re-issue one of the band's live recordings, i defiitely wanted a copy. at the time i stepped to the pre-order, the 100 pinwheel copies were already gone indeed. ah typical, those 100 whatever colour copies always go in no time and i am too slow to even see a glimpse.
anyway, i got my colour vinyl copy nevertheless and couldn't be more happy about it. the show captured was played in 1998 at the whiskey a go-go in los angeles. the band performed in its last incarnation and played many songs from their second, progressive phase which just suites me fine. death plays fast and accurate and so i can sit and dream of what it would have been like to see them live myself.
this live recording was released in 2001 by nuclear blast shortly before chuck schuldiner passed away in december that year. since then it was re-pressed on various formats by various labels, this new edition comes with cool liner notes by richard christy and on sharp looking siler/black striped vinyl out of 300 copies. relapse records. 2019.

Donnerstag, 3. Oktober 2019

bongripper - the great barrier reefer

bongripper is next to animals as leaders my favourite instrumental band. their progressive doom metal is able to unleash such a mantra-like power, it is remarkable. the rising and dense atmosphere of their songs transfers one into riff nirvana. i have almost all their releases on vinyl but two were always eluding me.
the noise/soundscape album "heroin" which doesn't really appeal to me and their debut album "the great barrier reefer". the album was actually self-released in 2006 and it wasn't until 2012 that a proper vinyl version was produced. emetic records did the job back then with only 100 colour copies. so those didn't come by cheap. thankfully the lads run their own now label to promote their stuff.
another seven years later and here we are with this slick re-press. burning world rec. from the netherlands provided the eu distro and now i am the proud owner of this splattered blue/purple merge version out of 200 copies. musically the first lp isn't that exciting but the last half of the reefer makes up for that big time. really excited to see them live in two weeks. great barrier records.

Samstag, 28. September 2019

spirit adrift - divided by darkness

it took me quite a long time to finally be convinced by spirit adrift. it started in 2017 when 20 buck spin records announced the release of the second full length by a band called spirit adrift. i never heard of them before but when they were likened to pallbearer, i was all ears. i am a fan of all things pallbearer but "curse of conception" could not really grab me.
i filed spirit adrift as "not for me" and moved on. when "divided by darkness" came out it was the same play. again i gave them a try but it did not click. while i was checking the van records store (van records is the european distributor of 20 buck spin) lately searching for the new tomb mold, i came up empty handed in tomb mold terms but found a second press for "divided by darkness". listening to the tunes this time and suddenly everything made perfectly sense. i ordered a copy quickly.
the record is fantastic. the pallbearer comparisons are undeniably accurate but that is not a bad thing. "divided by darkness" gets better with each song and in combination with the breathtaking artwork this bad boy might be the best doom metal release of the year. on a side note: after opening the parcel and pulling the vinyl from its dust sleeve, i was delighted to see that i actually got a tri-colour merge copy from the first press. lovely surprise. 250 copies made. 20 buck spin. 2019.

Freitag, 27. September 2019

nocturnus a.d. - paradox

somehow i slept on the release of this gem right here. nocturnus were part of the massive earache records roster in the early nineties, where this fine u.k. label gathered the slickest bands from europe and across the pond. bolt thrower, morbid angel, entombed or godflesh just to name drop a few. and among them there was a band called nocturnus and their debut record called "the key".
a mixture of oldschool (back then not so oldschool actually) death metal, progressive death metal and sci-fi lyrics. something new and very well executed. mike browning, the mastermind of nocturnus reformed the band in 2013 as nocturnus ad with the plan to pick up where nocturnus left off with "the key". well, almost thirty years after the debut's release the new album "paradox" finally saw the light of day - and i missed it. when i got news all the colour vinyl was already gone. i am pretty well networked when it comes to new vinyl releases, but that one slipped through my fingers.
so i waited for a re-press which came sooner than i anticipated. i am a bit bummed that this clear green/black mix vinyl is one of those that look almost black when not held against a light source which is quite lame. well, beggars can't be choosers and musically "paradox" is at least as strong as "the key" in my humble opinion. not pure gold (which "the key" wasn't as well by the way) but a damn strong return to form. 100 copies made. profound lore records. 2019.

Sonntag, 22. September 2019

type o negative - none more negative

wow, it's been a while since i wrote something here. i don't know why but i didn't feel like posting anything. i got enough cool stuff to post in the coming days, though. i thought, i come back with a bang. my dearly awaited and desired copy of the "none more negative" box set by type o negative. since i bought "the least worst of" for a steal, i was hoping for re-issues of the type o back catalogue. little did i know that destiny would make it easy for me.
three months or so ago i got wind of warner music in the shape of run out grooves records was about to re-press the complete roadrunner records full length releases from type o (which means six out of seven type o albums) in a monumental box set. this box was actually released in 2011 for the first time for record store day. i ordered this new edition from nuclear blast even when the price of admission was not for the faint of heart. 200 bucks made my bank account frown upon me but there was no way i was going to miss this box.
after a little release date delay of two weeks, i feel like it was worth the money and definitely the wait. a beautiful and sturdy outer slip case with minimalistic art (which i think is cooler than the 2011 edition) houses the six gatefold/double lp records. they all got their original artwork (especially "the origin of the feces) but none comes with the iconical lettering in the corners of the cover. the vinyl colour is a nice opaque green with black marble. i will post the records individually so for now the pictures will do. 5000 copies made. roadrunner records / warner music. 2019.

Mittwoch, 28. August 2019

job for a cowboy - genesis

i know job for a cowboy since they released their equally loved and hated first e.p. "doom" from 2005. at the time a lot of hype surrounded a new genre called deathcore, a breakdown orientated form of death metal - something new for the kids to play with. i was a kid back then and really liked it. the more i was shocked when i listened to "genesis" two years later. technical death metal and no breakdowns whatsoever.
in the coming years i really learned to appreciate "genesis" to point where i freaking loved it. i have all subsequent jfac records and this debut of them became my favourite. therefore i always hoped for a vinyl re-issue. there is a pressing from 2007 but no way i was going to buy a damn picture disc. so when metal blade announced this pressing, i wanted a copy badly. somehow i missed that metal blade moved their european shop from emp mailorder to kingsroad merch.
i thought that cool copies were already gone and so i opted for the less limited clear brown/orange marble version. i am still undecided if i should get a nicer opaque edition. we'll see. the album is brilliant and the pressing does it justice. lovely sounding pressing housed in a single pocket sleeve with insert and poster. my edition is limited to 500 copies. metal blade. 2007/2019.

Sonntag, 25. August 2019

thy art is murder - human target

another new album from 2019. thy art is murder and their latest effort "human target" was one i really waited for. there is something about this band that really resonates with me. i am usually not the deathcore type but they have something that goes beyond, or maybe not and it is just damn well executed. whatever it is, the new record lives up to all my expectations.
the record is full of blast beats, chunky riffs, sinister melodies and that fantastic guttural voice by singer c.j. mcmahon. speaking of, i saw the guys live at wacken open air this year and to me they had the most energetic performance of the whole festival. Also because the vocalist got himself a wacken tattoo live on stage. what a guy, see for yourself.
nuclear blast europe offered a white vinyl edition for pre-order and although i like the aesthetics of that colour-way, i knew this wasn't going to cut it. usually the label gets a few copies of the u.s. version and so i waited. i checked regularly and as soon as they were up, i grabbed one. here we are with this beautiful splattered orange/white merge edition housed in a glossy gatefold cover out of 500 copies. nuclear blast. 2019.

Sonntag, 18. August 2019

inferi - the path of apotheosis

the last of three inferi vinyl releases which was definitely the most elusive but not the most expensive. it was one of the artisan era records vinyl releases that were unavailable here in good ol' europe due to scarce distribution. i still struggle to get copies of the spawn of possession re-issues which artisan produced. just like the zenith passage record, i bought this in a lot from the same seller from latvia.
the records arrived here in fantastic condition. love these mailers with corner protection. musically this is another slab of fast, technical and melodic death metal that ticks all the right boxes with me. of course, there is a strong black dahlia murder resemblence, but i don't care if it is executed that damn well. re-mastered version sounds really good and the über lovely colour pattern makes this release a scorcher. hope i can catch them live in december. 125 copies made on "tyrant" vinyl. the artisan era. 2018.

Samstag, 17. August 2019

the zenith passage - cosmic dissonance

yes, finally! since the artisan era announced the re-issue of the zenith passage's first e.p. "cosmic dissonance" last year, i wanted a copy badly. to this point, artisan era still has no proper european distribution and ordering from the states is no option because of insane shipping rates and extra fees here in germany.
so i hoped for the sources i bought artisan era stuff from before, to get it in stock. little did i know that none of those would lead me to satisfaction. one day a recurrent mail from discogs gave me the chance to snag a copy for a decent price and to a moderate shipping rate. the seller came from latvia and so the record made at least one more interesting turn before it landed at my place. from the czech republic where it was pressed, over the u.s.a. to latvia and finally germany. quite a journey.
the actual e.p. was released in 2013 and one can hear quite some differences to the sound the band would develop three years later on "solipsist". not as eloquent as its successor might sum it up, still a pretty good listen. the packaging is very nice. fantastic artwork which looks real ominous, an etching of the band logo "z" on the b-side and this sick pink/blue merge vinyl out of 200 copies. the artisan era. 2018.

Freitag, 16. August 2019

inanimate existence - clockwork

another record that was hard to come by this year. i already had troubles with born of osiris and fallujah and almost every time seems to be involved. i ordered "clockwork" at jpc with an initial delivery time of two weeks. of course this was expanded from week to week. i think after four or five weeks i got a shipping notification.
i thought: "wow, can it be?" when the package arrived and i opened it, i couldn't believe my eyes. they really sent me a fucking cd of the album. oh boy, i was through with them. i took another look around to see if other options emerged in the meantime. look and behold, an amazon market place seller from canada offered a copy for slim eighteen bucks. mine!
musically "clockwork" is a tech death beast. inanimate existence scored with all the right proportions. melodies, sick riffing, brilliant drumming and technical finesse in finest balance. my favourite work of them. the record comes in a single pocket sleeve with insert. got the most common colour-way out of 200 copies. looks very nice although the other colours are a bit hotter, ah what's the use... the artisan era. 2019.

Montag, 12. August 2019

ichor - hadal ascending

ichor is a german death metal band from trier, i believe. they are around for quite some time, eleven years at least, and got four full lengths under their belt. i actually had two of them on cd in my possession before a water damage in my basement ruined three quarter of my cd collection. i pretty much forgot about them but when i bought the avalanche record at the wooaaargh shop, i spotted this gem.
when i saw the cover art and the band name, i knew that i had to check that out. i listened to one song over at the tube and after that, there wasn't the shadow of a doubt that i had to have a vinyl copy for myself. the record is a beautiful bastard of modern death, a good portion doom and a bit tech. the presentation is awesome. lovely gatefold sleeve with cool artwork and stunning turquoise marble vinyl. 200 copies made. wooaaargh. 2018.

Samstag, 10. August 2019

avalanche - interstellar movement

avalanche is a sludge metal band from vienna, austria. i already have their two releases before this full length here. those were just three and five song e.p.'s and already seven and six years old. so a lot of time went by and i thought the guys called it a day. the more i was surprised when i stumbled upon this record when checking the wooaaargh records shop.
what actually made me check out this album in particular was the cover art. as there is no band logo or so on the cover i wasn't aware that the band at hand was avalanche when i clicked it. i think the original painting is oil on canvas and just looks awesome. musically avalanche picked up where they left off with "thanatos" in 2012. rock solid sludge metal with a hardcore edge to it. check them here. 313 copies made. wooaaargh. 2019.

Mittwoch, 7. August 2019

type o negative - dead again (box set)

so i am back from wacken open air. it was again a very well organised edition, great atmosphere and big shows of bands like life of agony, meshuggah, cradle of filth, thy art is murder or body count. even a severe weather alert with an one hour long shut down of the whole festival couldn't change that. of course there have been a lot of merchants and a bit of vinyl sitting in the racks as well. this year i ended up with only one record, but what a record this is!
the best selection was to be gazed upon in the hot shots records tent. this time they had two tents with the second, smaller one being a place for stuff on sale. cd's and records that didn't sell well and stuff with minor damages. i was already through with flicking through the vinyl when i looked into the last two boxes containing vinyl box sets. and there it was, a copy of type o negative's last full length "dead again". i wasn't familiar with the going rates and i couldn't get no internet on my mobile but fourty five bucks seemed like a good deal.
the guy before me even grabbed two copies and the hype sticker ("double 180gr red vinyl)"finally made me buy one. well, my copy has a ding in the upper right corner but for this price i really can live with it. a copy on discogs with the same flaw is listed for 103€. a really cool find considering it was still sealed and actually released over ten years ago. musically this is such a great record. i listened to it nonstop for the last four days. type o in full glory - dark, depressive, self-ironic, dreamy, laid back. the box set is cool, too. the album on two red vinyl discs, a live record on black, an lp-sized booklet, a bonus dvd with a wacken set from 2007 and a shirt. i am in love. rasputin in heaven. spv/steamhammer records. 2007/2008.

Dienstag, 30. Juli 2019

monotheist - scourge

the last of the prosthetic records batch right here. monotheist were new to me but since eighty percent of the vinyl records that land on my turntable are tech death related, i keep my eyes peeled for new additions to the collection. i still had a discount code from to burn and when i spotted the record among other prosthetic titles, i decided to go for it.
i remembered a newsletter from prosthetic advertising the album as a new technical death metal pearl and so i gave it a shot. now, after a few listens, i really dig this release. it starts like the usual tech death massacre, solid but nothing new. as soon as "mark of the beast I: the image" kicks in the record takes a turn. the guys experiment with interludes, instrumentals, chamber music and weird hooks.
it still sounds a bit confused at times and not really cohesive but it is definitely a fun listen with many twists. the vinyl pressing looks really nice but is actually the real weakness of the release. a lot of surface noise and it seems that insufficient dehorning in the production process caused repeating grinding noise in the background. do i have a one-off or did anyone here experience the same? still, a great album musically! 300 copies made. prosthetic records. 2018.

Sonntag, 28. Juli 2019

the acacia strain - wormwood

finally! a gaping wound in my collection can now be closed eventually. to this point i had all the acacia strain full lengths on a first press basis, except that miserable first pressing of "wormwood", the band's fifth record. i missed out in the first place in 2010 and when i started to chase the vinyl versions a few years later, prices were already sky rocketing.
there were 1.000 copies of the first press, 500 on black vinyl and five colours each limited to 100. all of them are selling for 100 quid at least. the clear blue version even sold for 180 dollars. no way i was going to fight for a copy in that weight class. thankfully prosthetic records had the insight to finally re-press this monster.
musically this one is fantastic. i had almost forgotten about it but when i listen to the album, i cannot help but keep thinking that it is almost as good as "continent". especially the guest vocals by hatebreed's jamey jasta on "the beast" and 100 demonsbruce lepage on "nightman" are mind blowing. the colour-way is ace, too. 250 copies on semi translucent orange with white and blue splatter. prosthetic records. 2010/2019.

Freitag, 26. Juli 2019

animals as leaders - s/t (10th anniversary pressing)

so yeah, this is actually my third copy of that specific album in my possession. my first one was the clear blue pressing out of 250 copies from 2015 which came in a single pocket sleeve. not my favourite colour-way and no gatefold but beggars can't be choosers, right?! two years ago prosthetic released another pressing.
as part of their silver series they marketed this version containing the songs of the re-vised "encore edition" with more additional bonus tracks and the original 3-d art on an insert. cooler colour-way but still no gatefold. when the band announced their touring cycle to celebrate the 10th year anniversary of their debut record this year, prosthetic records came up with a new pressing.
three colour-ways, encore edition track list and a freaking gatefold sleeve. of course i was all over the pre-order. had copies available to pre-order and since jpc is a distro, i was bound to get the least limited version. no problem, because this yellow marble/clear green and black smoke edition looks really nice. finally i have my gatefold cover! 250 copies made. prosthetic records. 2009/2019.

post scriptum: of course i went to see the band play live in hamburg. i bought a ticket in last year, i believe. it was worth every penny. great atmosphere among the crowd, great set list with many songs of the debut, indeed and i even was able to catch a drum stick from matt gorstka (ok, actually the roadie threw it because the band was gone fast after the show :). fanboy heaven.

Mittwoch, 24. Juli 2019

baroness - gold & grey

a new record by baroness. "already a new one?", i asked myself. it felt like "purple" came out last year or so. when i checked back, i realised that said album was released four years ago in 2015. boy, time flies. ok, so a new baroness record isn't that strange after all and i pre-ordered a goddamn copy anyway. i took the easy way out and opted for the indie retailer version that was available from a domestic mailorder.
there are a bunch of nicer looking versions out there but the orange/blue edition seemed like a reasonable choice when i pre-ordered at emp mailorder. after the record was delivered and i unwrapped it for the first time, i was amazed by the whole set. again baroness put so much love into the packaging, alone the lovely booklet with additional art by marald van haasteren from the netherlands is worth the purchase.
musically "gold & grey" is the logical next step to its predecessors "yellow & green" and "purple". a lot of smooth arrangements drenched in progressive rock songs with little bursts of energy here and there. i do really like that and i do have no bad feelings about the sound production here like so many others seem to experience. strong output which comes in a gatefold sleeve, printed dust sleeves, booklet, d-side etching and clear red-orange/clear sea blue vinyl. abraxan hymns records. 2019.

Samstag, 20. Juli 2019

flub - s/t

flub. what a strange name. i didn't know the translation when i first read the title of just another artisan era records release. my research brought up the result that it means similar to a big mistake - still a strange name. when i visited the tube to check them out i found two videos. the first one showed the members performing in white shirts in front of white bed sheets. i really began to wonder.
the next video showed the members in front of the same bed sheets but this time in colourful hawaiian shirts. on top of this the vocalist looks like zach de la rocha and the weird feeling about this band reached its climax. alright, put aside all those admittedly odd appearances and what is left? solid deathcore that feels like it was made in the mid 00's with an proggy edge to it.
all this is very enjoyable because the band knows how to surprise. when you think you know what flub is about, they are coming with another bizarre twist round the corner. great debut that doesn't bore with too much detail. short and crisp! i ordered at without knowing what colour-way i would get. i was really happy when i unwrapped the coolest. pink with light blue and purple splatter. 100 copies made. artisan era. 2019.

Freitag, 19. Juli 2019

pelican - australasia

it has been quite some time since i posted about a pelican record, three years actually. that was mainly due to the lack of new stuff (although that's not really true, i just skipped live records and e.p.'s) and high second hand prices of stuff i still need. speaking of, one release of the band had always high priority to me - their debut "australasia". i didn't want just any copy of the several pressings, though.
i was after a special pressing of the record, the fourth to be precise. "australasia" was actually released in 2003 with the first vinyl pressings made by hydra head records in 2004. this edition was unleashed in 2008 and pressed by interloper records. interloper took care of further vinyl pressings of the album starting with the second press. the label changed the cover colours for their pressings to give it an individual flavour, i guess. but with this version they went above and beyond.
the gatefold is made of untreated card board and hand-printed with several layers of colour. that alone looks super slick but the vinyl colours take it one step further. loveley grey marble for the first disc and even nicer brownish marble for the second one. a feast for the eyes and ears as well. my favourite pelican material runs from the grooves of this double lp release. it comes in handy that the band just released a new record. have to get my hands on a copy. 1.000 copies made. interloper records. 2008.