Unleashing one of the early candidates for best album of 2019, today we have Downfall of Gaia and their crushing masterpiece “Ethic Of Radical Finitude”. Slowly perfecting their trade, this German outfit deliver six brilliant songs filled with unrivaled melancholy and sheer power. With over 40 minutes of majestic atmospheric sludginess, this release perfectly combines Post-Metal elements with Sludge, Crust and even some more traditional Post-Rock passages.
After the opening intro, “The Grotesque Illusion of Being” wastes no time in unleashing brutal vocal onslaughts perfectly framed by dreamy guitars and blistering drums. The band has perfected the ability to unleash both brutal and melancholic pummeling onslaughts. Moving into more crafty territories, “We Purse the Serpent of Time” starts of with ritualistic percussion as the riffs slowly build up to create a crushing wall of sound, the signature style from the band. The clean vocals here add extra depth and mystery to an already pretty impressive song.
Unleashing a very unique amalgamation of different styles, today we have Germany’s Ancst and their crushing release “Ghosts of the Timeless Void”. Blending Black Metal with Hardcore and Crust elements, the band crafts a very punishing and direct sound that is not for the faint of heart and weak of mind. Delivering over 41 minutes of music, this release will have you listening to it over and over to discover all the intricate layers build on-top a very aggressive foundation.
Opening with the melodic guitars of “Dying Embers”, the band quickly escalates the situation with blistering drums and hyper aggressive vocals. The complexly crafted brutality is quite interesting and it allows the band to explore multiple combinations of genres in a very chaotic and yet directed way. While songs like “Shackles of Democracy” have melodic undertones, the punkishness of “Concrete Views” allows the band to pivot from what the listener expects into what they are most comfortable doing.
Delivering a pulverizing mixture of Crust/Sludge and Black Metal, today we have Italy’s Rest and their self-titled debut release. Featuring five tracks of expertly crafted incisive riffs and a throbbing bass guitar onslaught, this release is one of those short but sweet albums that leaves you begging for more.
The album opens with the Crusty onslaughts of tracks I and II. The band quickly creates a punishing atmosphere of catchy and powerful riffs that revolve around engaging drums and very fitting screams. The intensity of the bass guitar and drums allows the band to be quite heavy and very fast-paced. Things move more into Black Metal territories with the savage track “III”, which perfectly showcases the band’s versatility and unique take on the genre.
Hailing from Oakland, CA, today we have the Abstracter and their 2nd punishing aural assault titled “Wound Empire”. Featuring over 40 minutes of crushing Blackened Sludge/Crust/Doom music with some Post-Metal elements, this is one hell of a punishing release that will subdue the listener from start to finish.
The opener “Lightless” slowly builds up with pummeling riffs and a nice progression as the nearly 11-minutes of music go by. The vocals are quite strong and nicely fit the equally crushing guitar riffs. Abstracter goes into further exploration of their dark sound in the atmospheric “Open Veins”. This song provides us with some more typical Sludge/Doom riffs arranged in a very precise manner to fit their atmospheric passages and massive drumming.
Bigger, better, quicker, and more grandiose seems to be the objective of Fleshgod Apocalypse and their monumental release “Labyrinth”. Having blown people away with the combination of dramatic orchestrations and extreme technical abilities in “Agony”, the band is ready to deliver an even more impressive and monumental release with this album.
The album kicks off with dramatic operatic vocal arrangements and over the top orchestrations on “Kingborn”. This single opening makes the last Dimmu Borgir album sound like a bunch of kids playing with Protools. In this track the band also delivers their signature Technical Death Metal with hyper fast riffs and killer drumming. “Minotaur (The Wrath of Poseidon)” eases into the picture with a more standard approach featuring killer growls mixed into the rich sound of the band. Don’t be fooled since there are also plenty of memorable melodic passages mixed in between all the brutal sections and lush arrangements.
Delivering a short but sweep EP of relentless Black Metal, today we have one-man battalion Frozen Ocean all the way from Russia. In the “Vanviddsanger” EP, the band delivers eight crushing hymns of old-school hate-filled Crust Black Metal that is are both furiously paced and monumentally devastating. For all nostalgic fans of the days of raw Black Metal and old Crust Punk, this is one release you don’t want to miss.
Opening with an atmospheric intro, “Vanviddsang: I” sets a very mysterious tone for a fast-paced Black Metal journey. The release immediately explodes with the crushing tracks “II” and “III”, keeping a very hectic tempo filled with powerful guitars and very demonic screams. While the music in not too original in nature, the pure rawness and brutality of it make this EP quite an enjoyable release for any fan of the genre.
Delivering a wall of crusty guitars and a very decadent (but effective) mixture of Punk and D-beat with Death and Black Metal influences, today we have Sweden’s Martyrdöd and their full-length release “Paranoia”. While we usually don’t like this type of music, Martyrdöd does a great job in making it engaging, brutal, and well sounding, enough for us to be fully immersed in the 11 tracks presented in this release.
Opening with some sick riffs, “Nog Är Nog” fully delivers the unexpected: a five minute song (not 2 minutes like other bands) with excellent melodic elements as well as the traditional crusty sound and punkish edge of these kinds of releases. The band’s focus on the catchiness of the riffing is excellent perfectly contrasting the more aggressive sections. With a more Black Metal influences tracks like “Överkom Er Rädsla” and “Hör Världens Rop” feel like a punkish version of Immortal with some of Satyricon’s edge from the 90’s. These two songs are the perfect example of why Martyrdöd is beyond your typical one-dimensional crust band and can delivers in many different fronts while maintaining their identity.
Hailing from Italy, today we get the debut-full length album of Thrash/Crust-Punk newcomers Children of Technology. With similarities to old school Voivod, Cro-Mags, The Exploited, among others, this band will surely appeal to you if you like your music to sound old school and have that Crust Punk-ish feel to it that bands have been perfecting over the years.
The main thing that you will notice is that while Children of Technology is not a bad band, the genre does not allow for much ‘improvement’ or ‘experimentation’ making them sound a bit like everybody else. While this is not particularly bad, if you are looking for something ‘innovative’ might as well skip this album. But if you are looking for straight up old-school music, then “It’s Time to Face the Doomsday” will satisfy all your needs.
If you like D-beat/Punk you should already know who the Swedish Warvictims are. If you don’t, then definitely check this album out. We are not huge fans of the genre or this band, but we can notice how intense and raw Domedagen is.
In a quick lowdown of “Domedagen” we have to say that the punk riffing and drumming is very persistent during the album and create the right atmosphere for a band of this genre. The production quality on this release is pretty shitty, but we assume this would add more ‘rawness’ and ‘authenticity’ to the album.
Hailing from Cleveland, Ohio, today we get a very impressive full-length from Masakari, a very powerful Crust/Hardcore band that will surely storm the scene by surprise. Since Southern Lord has started to expand its band roster with ‘different’ bands, they have manage to uncover some very impressive bands in all kinds of different genres.
Masakari, the latest addition to Southern Lord, plays a style of Crust that we can completely identify with and truly enjoy. The band starts off very aggressively with the first track and sets the tone to a very powerful release that relies more on crushing riffing, blistering drumming, and aggressive southing, this album never gets dull or draws like the majority of Crust/Hardcore releases these days.