The first time I heard Carcass, it scared the shit outta me. It was unlike anything I had heard before. At the tender age of eighteen, I did not know what to make of this unholy gurgling, vomiting, stench of mess. I tell ya, listening to Reek Of Putrefaction was the equivalent of watching Henry:Portrait of a Serial Killer. I felt dirty, gross and just wanted to take a shower afterwards. And talk about songs titles, this band had it all….from “Regurgitation of Giblets”, to “Crepitating Bowel Erosion”, and “Swarming Vulgar Mass of Infected Virulency”.
Carcass may have been lumped in with other bands in the death metal genre, but they were unlike any of their peers at the time. From first listen of the early Carcass records, it may sound like the flushing of an over filled toilet, but after a few spins it all starts to make sense. You then figure out the choruses behind the grind and youre hooked for life. Some of my death metal friends give me grief for calling Carcass a “hard rock” band. I give them the term out of respect, cause if you take the static grind out from the face of the tunes, you get catchy as hell songs that you can sing to…well if you ever memorise the complex medical dictionary lyrics.
Bands like Carcass also never had to rely on throwing blast beats into the whole song, instead they used it when it was necessary, this could not be said with most death metal bands back then, and even now. Carcass was all about bringing feel & aura to the mix, not just an endless, buzzing, repetitive wall of noise.
One of the great things also about Carcass was that unlike most other death metal bands, the band did not have a very high turnover rate of musicians coming and going. It was for the most part a stable line up of Jeff, Bill, Michael, and Ken. So many bands have tried to take from Carcass’s sick, pungent recipe, but have failed miserably in recreating the vomit inducing sounds of the true gore kings. Carcass is one rotting corpse who’s stench never gets old.
Always count on Vader to put out consistent albums each and every time. Necropolis is no different, this time they up the ante on intensity. The album follows up to where it left off with their 2008 4 song EP Lead Us. This is probably one of the best produced death metal albums I have heard in a while. The guitars and Peters vocals are up in the mix which is nice for a change ( I’ve head some albums where the double kick drums usually bury the guitars/voice). The album starts off with the “Devilizer” which is like a hybrid of thrash/death metal. Next up is my fave song on the album “Rise Of The Undead”, this one is officially my fave Vader song of all time. It’s got a wicked groove all the way through.The albums continues with some slow grinding stuff, symphonic intro stuff, & some good ol European death metal stuff. Then it all ends with the majestic horrid beauty of “When the Sun Drown In Dark”, an old school 80′s track if there ever was one.
What I love most about Vader is that they are never one thing. Vader always has the nucleus of death metal, but they manage to throw in elements of thrash, sludge, symphonic metal into the mix & somehow they make it work real well. With most death metal bands, I will listen to ten minutes of the album, & will get bored after listening to blastbeats for that whole ten minutes. Vader use blastbeats when necessary for the individual song, & not just for the sake of using them , because they think thats what death metal is (which it isn’t by the way….but thats a whole other topic we’ll get into one of these days).
Thick As Blood are my new favorite shit disturbers. These hardcore hitters from Miami are the real deal, and they need to be heard. I so wanted to see these guys on the Earth Crisis tour that came a few months ago in Vancouver, but their lead vocalist Gino couldn’t get across the Canadian border. What a surprise. If you like your hardcore with some bounce for the ounce, then TOB will satisfy your spin kick, fists swinging appetite.
If I ever decide to become a professional wrestler, this will be my entrance song.
When it comes to crust-punk, none do it finer than the lovely lads of Wolfpack. These Swedish misfits are still the tops for me. The first time I heard Wolfpack, it was some of the most pissed off noise I had to endure. My mind wasn’t ready for this hate filled racket, but I was sucked into the ferociousness of it all, and couldn’t go back. This is backdrop music for one of those National Geographic specials where the lion is ripping apart the poor little zebra.
Wolfpack have been around since the late 90′s, but you wouldn’t know it from listening to their music. It sounds straight out of 1982, as it’s a homage to the raw, violent era of Amebix, and Discharge. This isn’t your daddy’s Epitaph / Fat Wreck Chords mix tape, this is the real deal.
For all you rubber neck’s out there that cant resist watching a wreck…will have I got a treat for you. This makes anything David Hasselhoff put out in the 80′s on vinyl seem like Napalm Death. This five piece atrocity called Attack Attack has it all…choreographed dance moves, auto tune lead vocals, and a singing / dancing monkey fronting the band. Wow….just when I thought I seen it all…this makes 2 girls 1 cup seem tame…..you have been warned my friends…this shit aint pretty.
If there is one band out there that has influenced so many different styles of metal bands, it is Venom. Everyone from Skid Row, Darkthrone, to Pantera has cited these three satanic war mongers as influences.
My run in with Venom happened when I was fourteen. I was watching MuchMusic and Venom’s video for their song “Bloodlust” came on. Let me tell you, it scared me shitless. I had to cover my hand over my eyes, as there was this very eire vibe about the band. Cronos the lead singer was like this demon like evil figure on stage. The song itself was a sloppy tune with an morbid vibe of some sort.
When I see the video now though, it seems almost humorous, and very Spinal Tap like. Venom’s music still lives on though, as you can hear their sound in many of the new bands out today (Toxic Holocaust, Gallhammer, Lightning Swords Of Death). Long live the black metal kings!
There was a lot of cool bands to come out of the late eighties / early nineties industrial scene, but one band that got overlooked was Head of David. Many people cite bands like Ministry, Nitzer Ebb, and Front 242 as the godfathers of the early industrial movement, but Head of David were right up with there with the rest of the pack.
I first found out about HOD when I was listening to Fear Factory’s second album Demanufacture. There was a cover song on that record called Dog Day Sunrise. It’s my fave Fear Factory song, and I decided to hunt the original out. When I heard the original version, a wave of post industrial bands came through my head (no pun intended). So many bands I think were influenced by HOD, but the band never got the recognition they deserved. Now when I listen to bands like Prong, Fear Factory, Curve, I can hear subtle hints of HOD everywhere.
The band started off in the early stages of the mid 80′s with a bare bones, sorta garage, sorta synthetic sound that got more refined in the early 90′s to the techno side of things. Many HOD fans state that from the early works of the first record Dustbowl to their last full length album Seed State, the band softened their sound up for mass appeal, but I think thats horseshit. There is plenty of hard edged songs to make Seed State a worthy contender to the industrial throne. Funny thing is that bands like Curve, and The Young Gods borrowed from that album as well. Justin Broadrick made his mark in the early stages of HOD also. Justin was in Napalm Death for a while and then started his own band Godflesh. For those of you who miss the days of A Mind Is A Terrible Thing To Taste, Tyranny (For You), and Pretty Hate Machine, check out Head Of David.