Album Review – Póstuma / Moralis EP (2020)

Uniting the aggressiveness of Death Metal with the beauty of poetry, this promising Brazilian outfit is ready to conquer the world of heavy music with their thrilling debut EP.

Formed in 2017 in the city of Americana, a municipality located in the Brazilian state of São Paulo, aiming at uniting the aggressiveness of Death Metal with the beauty of poetry, the up-and-coming Melodic Death Metal outfit Póstuma (the Portuguese word for “posthumous”) have just released their debut EP entitled Moralis, presenting Greek mythology and philosophy as the album’s main themes together with a questioning about honor, virtue and perhaps an ode to art and tragedy, something that has been in search of balance since the beginning of times. Recorded, mixed and mastered at Estúdio Fuzza by Ricardo Biancarelli, Moralis is recommended for fans of the aggression blasted by bands such as At The Gates, Arch Enemy, Hipocrisy and In Flames, among several others, with its lyrics exalting the pursuit of knowledge and existentialism combined with Death and Thrash Metal influences, as well as writers and philosophers, resulting in a strong and deep sound carefully crafted by frontwoman Bia da Aldea, guitarists Júlio Alves and Rodrigo Batista, bassist Diego “Bob” Carmelo and drummer Murilo Pasqualino.

Filling every single space in the air with violence and harmony, the band kicks off the EP with the Arch Enemy-inspired Prometheus, where Bia showcases all her vocal potency right from the beginning as the amazing growler she is, while Murilo sounds like a stone crusher on drums. This is what I call a fantastic  welcome card by Póstuma, followed by Minerva, where its poetically acid lyrics are roared by Bia (“Crushing an empire, just for desire / All life drained away / We just learn with pain / They make us discuss, we are numb / They manage our hate / Become misery slaves / So certain they beg for chaos / So modest they beg for chaos”) while the music sounds even more impactful than the opening tune due to the brutality blasted by her bandmates, with Júlio and Rodrigo firing venomous riffs from their guitars and, therefore, adding hints of Thrash and Black Metal to their already powerful sound. And Júlio and Rodrigo, supported by the insane bass punches by Diego, keep piercing our heads with their ass-kicking riffage and solos in the also demented Redemption, with Bia’s screams reaching a whole new level of insanity, whereas in the closing song Gaya the band’s guitar duo proves they’re never tired of slashing and shredding their stringed weapons, and together with Diego and Murilo they generate a massive and very melodic wall of sounds perfect for banging our heads in the name of classic and modern Death Metal.

Hopefully this never-ending coronavirus pandemic will not have a negative impact on the band’s plans for the future, especially because they had just released their fulminating debut EP when all this madness started, which means it’s up to us fans of heavy music to show Póstuma our support and encourage them to keep moving forward no matter what. Hence, I want to please ask you all to follow the band on Facebook and on Instagram, to stream Moralis in its entirety on YouTube and on Spotify, and above all that, to purchase a copy of the EP from their BandCamp page. As a matter of fact, why don’t you visit their BandCamp page and take a look at the lyrics for each one of the four songs of the EP? You’ll see the band is not kidding when they say they want to unite the beauty of poetry with metal music, and when you hit play on any of the songs simply close your eyes and let their amazing Melodic Death Metal flow through your mind and your soul.

Best moments of the album: Prometheus and Minerva.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2020 Independent

Track listing
1. Prometheus 3:58
2. Minerva 4:42
3. Redemption 4:02
4. Gaya 4:25

Band members
Bia da Aldea – vocal
Júlio Alves – guitar
Rodrigo Batista – guitar
Diego “Bob” Carmelo – bass
Murilo Pasqualino – drums

Metal Chick of the Month – Diva Satanica

Kill’em all, Diva Satanica!

My dear metalheads, how about we celebrate SEVEN FUCKIN’ YEARS of The Headbanging Moose in great fashion with one of the most charismatic, hardworking and talented growlers of the current metal scene? Not only she will haunt your soul with her wicked screams and roars, but she’s also a stunning alternative model and a collaborator of one of the best metal magazines in her home country. I’m talking about the venomous she-wolf Rocío Vázquez, better known by her incendiary moniker Diva Satanica, the frontwoman for Spanish Melodic Death Metal band Bloodhunter and more recently for the international all-female Thrash Metal horde Nervosa, kicking some serious ass with her onstage performance and her beyond potent vocals wherever she goes. Are you ready to have Diva Satanica screaming like a beast right in your face on our humble tribute to such amazing exponent of the Spanish Extreme Metal scene?

Born on June 25, 1988 in La Coruña, Galícia, in the North-West of Spain, known as “the land of witches”, but currently residing in Madrid, the capital city of Spain, Diva Satanica is a lover of all kinds of music, but of course she nurtures a special, deep passion for Rock N’ Roll and almost all subgenres of Heavy Metal, especially the ones that suit her needs of talking about feelings. As mentioned by our unstoppable diva in one of her interviews, no one in her family enjoys metal music and in the beginning it was really hard for her to find friends with the same taste in music, but she managed to find her place in society as we can all witness now. In addition, although she said she was terrified the first time she listened to a Death Metal band, due to the fact she didn’t feel comfortable with melodic singing she decided to give growling a try, and well, we must all agree it was the best decision in her life, offering us all fans of heavy music the furious and thrilling creations brought forth by our diva together with her henchmen from Bloodhunter.

In regards to Bloodhunter, the band started about a year before Diva Satanica joined them, more specifically in 2008 in La Coruña (but also currently based in Madrid), by the hands of sole founding member, guitarist and main songwriter Dani Arcos, also known as Fenris, to develop some demos that didn’t fit at his other bands at that time, even with a melodic singer in the beginning. It was after several changes in their lineup and concept when Diva Satanica finally joined the band, currently comprised of our metal lady and Fenris, of course, together with guitarist G. Starless, bassist Daniel Luces and drummer Marcelo Aires. However, she only started singing (and growling) for the band in 2012, after writing the lyrics for a few of their songs and joining their rehearsals, and according to Diva Satanica her bandmates had to be very patient with her in the beginning as she used to sing looking to the wall instead of looking to the band, but from that moment on things started to happen for them, culminating with the release of their debut demo The First Insurrection, in 2013.

It was just a matter of time until the release of their debut full-length opus, self-titled Bloodhunter, which came to light in 2014 and quickly made a huge impact on the local Spanish scene, gathering the attention of fans and critics not only in Spain but anywhere else in the world where high-quality Melodic Death Metal is appreciated. A couple of years later, in 2017, the band released their sophomore effort, titled The End of Faith, showcasing a huge evolution in terms of sound quality, creativity, violence and, above all, in Diva Satanica’s guttural vocals, presenting a much more demonic, piercing and thrilling side of our devilish banshee. Apart from their two studio albums, Bloodhunter also released a couple of singles through the years, those being Ages of Darkness, in 2014, which was featured on a compilation called Oráculo Magazine: From the Shadows Vol.I, and a very entertaining cover version for Helloween’s all-time classic I Want Out, in 2018, where Diva Satanica shares the vocal duties with Spanish vocalist and guitarist Leo Jiménez, known for his solo band and other projects such as Stravaganzza and Saratoga. In addition to that, Bloodhunter also offered us fans a few more amazing cover songs, with their version for Arch Enemy’s hit Bury Me an Angel, featured on a compilation called Hardcore Hits Cancer Vol. III in 2018, Death’s Crystal Mountain, and more recently their rendition for Cradle of Filth’s demolishing tune Gilded Cunt, showing all of our diva’s versatility and range as the fantastic Extreme Metal singer she is.

Apart from those albums, singles and cover songs, you can also have a blast with Diva Satanica and the boys in their excellent 2020 live album Live in Madrid, containing six amazing live versions recorded on March 19, 2019 at the now (unfortunately) defunct We Rock in Madrid, including Dying Sun, All These Souls Shall Serve… Forever!, and Bring me Horror. Furthermore, you can find other non-official live footage from Bloodhunter on YouTube, such as for example Ancestors Ov All Gods also live at We Rock, but in 2015, The Bloody Throne live at Mangualde Hard Metal Fest 2017, and Eyes Wide Open live at Le Club in La Coruña in 2018, among many, many others. However, if you prefer watching official videos with all the usual production, special effects and other shenanigans, you can bang your head to the songs All These Souls Shall Serve… Forever!, Dying Sun, Embrace the Dark Light and Let the Storm Come.

As we don’t have anything official yet with Diva Satanica fronting the thrashing girls from Nervosa except for a live chat done in June 2020 with the “four horsewomen”, Brazilian guitarist and founder Prika Amaral, Italian bassist Mia Wallace (The true Endless, Triumph of Death, Niryth, Abbath), Greek drummer Eleni Nota (Lightfold, Mask of Prospero, Simplefast) and of course our beloved Diva Satanica, let’s talk a little about her previous bands, projects and special appearances in an array of bands from the most diverse styles, starting with a band she fronted from 2015 until 2019, Spanish Progressive/Melodic Death Metal/Metalcore band Outreach. Despite her short stint with Outreach, she recorded with the band the full-length Ephemeral Existence and the single Insane Mind, both in 2019, showcasing all her range and potency throughout the entire album (which I highly recommended you take a listen at).

You’ll also be able to enjoy her she-wolf roars in the songs Nothing to Believe, from the 2018 album Misanthropy, by El Salvadorian Thrash/Death Metal band Apes of God; Mutiladora Genital, from Spanish Death Metal masters Aposento’s 2014 self-titled album; Darkness Within, from the 2018 album Purgatory, by Spanish Melodic Death Metal band Suru; doing additional vocals in the entire album Mesías, released in 2019 by Spanish Heavy Metal band Leo Jiménez; impersonating the one and only Baphomet in the 2019 album El Secreto de los Templarios, by Spanish Heavy Metal/Hard Rock band Legado de una Tragedia, together with soprano Nancy Catalina and Sara Grün from Hiranya (and you can enjoy this nice making of with an explanation as to why those three vocalists were chosen for the part); and last but not least, doing additional and choir vocals in the songs La Cantiga de las Brujas (check also this amazing live version of the same song) and El Séptimo Sello, from the 2019 album Ira Dei, by Spanish Celtic/Folk Metal institution Mägo de Oz.

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Such multi-talented metal diva would obviously have tons of distinguished influences in her style and career, and despite the fact that her moniker was clearly inspired by one of the best Arch Enemy songs of all time, Diva Satanica, and that most fans tried to label them as the Spanish version of Arch Enemy in the beginning, the members of Bloodhunter have many different influences in their musical careers, from Judas Priest to Behemoth and Death. When asked about her own personal favorites, Diva Satanica mentioned bands and artists the likes of Astarte, Eths, In This Moment, Skullfist, Behemoth, Axewound, Rotting Christ, Nightrage, Firewind and Lana del Rey, showing she enjoys any type of music, not only rock and metal, but also saying that it’s in Extreme Metal where she found her identity when singing. If you know Spanish and want to spend some time with Diva Satanica and her collection of metal and non-metal albums, you should definitely watch this video on YouTube, where she presents some of her favorite albums from bands and artists like Jimi Hendrix, Ramones, Bon Jovi, Guns N’ Roses, Skid Row, Alice In Chains, Firewind, Rotting Chirst, The Agonist and Eths. Regarding French metalcore band Eths, she mentioned in one of her interviews that the amazing Candice Clot, former frontwoman for what’s in my opinion one of the most underrated metal bands of all time, was essential in her decision to become an extreme music vocalist. In addition, you can enjoy Diva Satanica paying her own personal tribute to some of her biggest idols on her own YouTube channel, including her vocal performances of Septicflesh’s Prototype, Holy Moses’ Triggered, Behemoth’s Ov Fire And The Void, and a very unique version for Slayer’s darkest hit Raining Blood together with Spanish rock and metal cover band Femme Fractal.

As we’re talking about women in rock and metal, Diva Satanica complemented her thoughts by saying that apart from Candice Clot (and Diva Satanica even said that when Candice left Eths she was offered to audition, but she had to refuse it as she was barely 20 years old and had no means to travel nor the equipment to record with), she also loves the music by In This Moment, Jinjer and a Spanish underground band named Bones of Minerva, which I highly recommend you go check their music on their BandCamp page. In addition, she mentioned in one of her interviews that the song The Queen Beast is dedicated to Maria “Tristessa” Kolokouri from Greek Black Metal horde Astarte, one of her main influences and a good friend that sadly passed away in 2014 due to complications from leukemia, saying she was the first woman to create the first Black Metal band formed only by women, and we can easily see that beautiful tribute Diva Satanica paid to Tristessa in the song’s amazing lyrics (“Feel her wrath / She’s watching from the stars / Abstraction of life / The air, the nature, the skies are now her reign / The shades in darkened silverlights / The black flame burns! / The highest priestess arise”).

If you think it was easy for Diva Satanica to reach her current vocal style and growth as an Extreme Metal vocalist, she said her path so far has demanded (and will always demand) from her a lot of hard work, discipline and trial and error, acknowledging that she couldn’t sing properly on the band’s first album as she didn’t know exactly what she was doing nor she could sustain her vocals for long periods of time. It was only after watching several tutorials on YouTube , after consulting with different extreme music singers and after studying in detail the performances of all vocalists of the concerts she attended that she properly began shaping her voice, spending about two years improving her technique, even taking melodic singing classes at a given point in her life, and applying necessary warmup and diaphragm strengthening exercises to improve her performance. Then she said that because she started her “Extreme Vocal Lessons” to help other growlers to improve their vocals in the early stages of their careers, she ended up discovering different vocal types and ranges that she considered great choices to incorporate to her own style. If you want to take a peak at some of her videos where she gives important tips for growlers like her, you can watch this tutorial (also in Spanish) where she teaches how to do guttural and screaming vocals, and also this short lesson where she explains the difference between growls and screams versus grunts, pig squeals, shrieks and other vocalizations. One thing that is quite annoying to Diva Satanica is when people use gender to justify why women can’t growl, with her solution to that simply being inviting those people to watch Bloodhunter live, which in my opinion is indeed an amazing experience for the non-believers who will undoubtedly be stunned by her vicious roars.

When asked about the current metal scene in Galicia, where she comes from, and if her music and Death Metal are well-received by the people from that region in Northwest Spain, she said that although they’re a small community there are different styles that people tend to listen to the most from time to time. Around a decade ago, the Gothic scene was the most prevalent, switching to Alternative Metal and Metalcore in recent years. She also mentioned the importance of their own summer festival, Resurrection Fest, which started years ago as a small act but that it’s now one of the most important festival in Europe, proving the scene in Galicia is in excellent shape. As you might have noticed already, Diva Satanica loves performing on stage, and among her favorite songs to play live she mentioned some of her band’s most violent creations such as Let the Storm Come, Possessed by Myself and of course The Queen Beast, as already mentioned, as this song has a strong meaning for her and helps her add an extra amount of emotional feeling to her singing.

Not only an accomplished vocalist, Diva Satanica has also done some modeling in the past and contributed as a writer and journalist to a couple of magazines, including La Heavy, one of the biggest rock and metal publication in Spain, managed by the website Mariskal Rock. She said she started her modeling career a few years ago, but as she discovered a lot of people are interested in many different things other than art, she gave up and decided to focus on the metal scene, starting with a Greek webzine named Subexistance Music Production and then moving on to La Heavy. Apart from that, she’s also working towards a Degree as a Doctor in Nursery, and was a participant in the Spanish TV program La Voz (the Spanish version of The Voice) in 2017, surprising the coaches by screaming and growling instead of only doing clean vocals, being the first contestant to perform this type of singing. The international artist Juanes chose her to be part of his team, where she performed songs like Eurythmics’ Sweet Dreams, Survivor’s Eye of the Tiger and Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance. There’s even an interview she gave to a guy named Juan Destroyer on Mariskal Rock TV where she talks about her participation on the show, and how she inspired Juanes to get back on doing a heavier kind of rock. Moreover, she always mentions that being on La Voz was one of the best experiences of her life without any doubt, saying that as she was the first even participant to do guttural, she got a lot of recognition from fans and bands from all over the world, with icons such as  Michael Amott of Arch Enemy or Christos Antoniou of Septicflesh congratulating her for her amazing performance on the show.

Our dauntless diva also mentioned that there’s still a long road ahead of all musicians that dedicate their careers to more extreme styles of rock and metal, as there’s still a lot of prejudice everywhere (saying that even today in Madrid she has to cover her tattoos depending on the situation), but that it’s up to the musicians themselves to make their style more accepted by society, and that the more musicians bring their experience to light and defend their identity, the more the road will open up. As you can see, Diva Satanica is not only extremely talented and focused on her career, but she also has a strong opinion about the current state of the metal scene and about what any person needs to do to thrive in the music industry. Hence, you can check some extra interviews with this amazing Spanish she-wolf on YouTube, such as this one where she shares the latest update on both Bloodhunter and Nervosa, the current coronavirus pandemic situation and more, or this one to a show called “That Metal Interview with James”, recorded in June 2020, where she speaks of how she met Prika Amaral of Nervosa and how she was approached to join the Brazilian death metallers, about her experience being on the TV show La Voz, and about the future plans of both Bloodhunter and Nervosa regarding their musical direction for their next records. You’ll notice from all those interviews and from her music that Rocío Vázquez is more than just another vocalist; she’s a very humble and gentle human being, a hardworking musician, and a fulminating growler. Having said that, all that’s left to say is… ALL HAIL THE ONE AND ONLY DIVA SATANICA!

Diva Satanica’s Official Facebook page
Diva Satanica’s Official Instagram
Diva Satanica’s Official Twitter
Diva Satanica’s Official YouTube channel
Bloodhunter’s Official Facebook page
Bloodhunter’s Official Instagram
Bloodhunter’s Official Twitter
Bloodhunter’s Official YouTube channel
Bloodhunter’s Official BandCamp
Nervosa’s Official Facebook page
Nervosa’s Official Instagram
Nervosa’s Official Twitter
Nervosa’s Official YouTube channel

“Sometimes it’s not easy, sometimes you feel scared and things don’t go as you planned before, but you must keep on fighting to discover what you want in your life and who you are.” – Diva Satanica

Album Review – Vaginal Anomalies / Violent Devotion to Kill (2020)

Get ready for a feast of gore, heaviness and perversity in the form of Brutal Death Metal, courtesy of two demented Mexican metallers armed with their new full-length album.

What began as a one-man pathological project formed by vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Pozolegrind (whose real name is Erick Alejandro Navarro Jimenez) back in 2014 in Poncitlán, a town and municipality in Jalisco, in central-western Mexico, has evolved into a beastly duo through the years, taking no prisoners in their quest for heaviness, blood and perversity. I’m talking about the infernal Brutal Death Metal/Deathslam two-headed monster curiously named Vaginal Anomalies, and even if you think the name of the band is too dark and gory for your standards, you should definitely take a listen at the infuriated fusion of Grindcore and Death Metal found in their first full-length opus, titled Violent Devotion to Kill, where Pozolegrind together with vocalist Cheve (also known as Alejandro Magallon) distill their most venomous sounds in the form of nine putrid and acid compositions, plus three amazing live bonus tracks.

A classic Mexican-inspired intro invites the listener to the blood-soaked world of Vaginal Anomalies, before exploding into a visceral and barbaric Death Metal feast led by the inhumane gnarls by Cheve in The Embalming Process in Decomposition Bodies, and Cheve’s growling gets even more demonic in Ditch Full of Dismembered Corpses, while Pozolegrind extracts sheer savagery from his riffage and beats. I must say this is a bestial way to break your neck headbanging to their vicious extreme music, whereas in Poncigrind we face less than two minutes of disturbing screeches and heavy-as-hell guitars that will penetrate deep inside your psyche before the demented tune Improper Desires to Fornicate Satan comes crushing our skulls mercilessly, with Pozolegrind maintaining the atmosphere as heavy and obscure as possible, therefore offering Cheve all he needs to basically vomit the song’s lyrics. And let’s keep banging our heads to the duo’s sick and brutal Death Metal in God Advise Me to Torture and Kill, where Cheve and Pozolegrind sound even more insane than before, in special Cheve who simply barks, snarls and roars like a demonic entity.

Perhaps inspired by one of the most iconic scenes from Breaking Bad, the duo fires another slamming and absolute raw creation titled Addicts to Disolve Torsos in a Bathub, where the guitars by Pozolegrind are just as hellish as Cheve’s deep guttural barks, while an ethereal start quickly turns into a visceral display of Brutal Death Metal entitled The Vulgar Pedophile Incitement of the Priest, featuring vocalist Alex Gama From Mexican Brutal Death Metal band Hallux Valgus, with both vocals being a lesson in bestiality and dementia. There’s no time to breathe as those Mexicans keep hammering our heads with their vicious sonic attack in Whore Maniac, offering more of their trademark riffs and otherworldly growling, and last but not least, they bring forth another shot of cinematic and traditional Mexican sounds in the title-track Violent Devotion to Kill, morphing into a slamming extravaganza led by the smashing drums by Pozolegrind while Cheve snarls in a true grim mode. Not only that, Vaginal Anomalies also offer their fans as bonus tracks the songs Internal Examination, Pelvic Infection and Placenta Abnormalities live at Mexxxicore Death Fest Open Air in 2019 in Poncitlán, providing us all a sonic carnage showcasing all their talent and fury on stage.

I guess I don’t need to say the music by Vaginal Anomalies is not recommended at all for the lighthearted, right? However, if their savagery and gruesome lyrics (and name) don’t make you vomit, you’re more than welcome to pay them a visit on Facebook and to grab your copy of their infernal album sooner than later from the Necromance Records’ BandCamp page or webstore, as well as from the Base Record Production’s BandCamp page. This is crude, primeval and extremely brutal Death Metal infused with Goregrind elements, with no shenanigans nor any artificial elements, with Vaginal Anomalies clearly wanting to send us all fans of heavy music a clear message that their home country and of course the rest of the world are not a place for love, peace and butterflies, but for sheer violence viciously turned into the ruthless Death Metal played by those two depraved Mexican metallers.

Best moments of the album: Ditch Full of Dismembered Corpses, Improper Desires to Fornicate Satan and The Vulgar Pedophile Incitement of the Priest.

Worst moments of the album: Whore Maniac.

Released in 2020 Necromance Records/Base Record Production

Track listing
1. The Embalming Process in Decomposition Bodies 3:32
2. Ditch Full of Dismembered Corpses 2:19
3. Poncigrind 1:42
4. Improper Desires to Fornicate Satan 2:25
5. God Advise Me to Torture and Kill 2:33
6. Addicts to Disolve Torsos in a Bathub 2:04
7. The Vulgar Pedophile Incitement of the Priest 2:24
8. Whore Maniac 2:13
9. Violent Devotion to Kill 3:40

Bonus tracks
10. Internal Examination (Live) 2:31
11. Pelvic Infection (Live) 1:42
12. Placenta Abnormalities (Live) 1:36

Band members
Cheve – vocals
Pozolegrind – guitars, bass, drum programming, vocals

Guest musician
Alex Gama – vocals on “The Vulgar Pedophile Incitement of the Priest”

Album Review – Eight Lives Down / Humans (2020)

Four distinct musicians from four different countries united in the name of metal, bringing to us all a truly unique sound, unmistakably heavy and angry, yet refreshingly different and unpredictable.

Originally founded by Greek-Kiwi vocalist and lyricist Aliki Katriou in 2016 together with British guitarist James Scott (replaced by French guitarist Paul Allain in 2017), bassist Marcin Orczyk from Poland, and Brazilian drummer Rodrigo Moraes Cruz, London, UK-based Extreme Metal act Eight Lives Down has its roots in Groove and Thrash Metal, but constantly branches out stylistically incorporating influences from Progressive, Death and Black Metal, as well as various other musical genres such as Punk Rock, Blues, and traditional folk music, while vocals range from low growls and high screams to clean and even operatic phrases, creating a truly unique sound, unmistakably heavy and angry, yet refreshingly different and unpredictable. Now in 2020 the quartet is ready to invade our senses with their debut full-length opus, entitled Humans, showcasing all their versatility, dynamism, creativity and rage, all enhanced by the album’s top-notch mixing and mastering done by Dan Baune at Noise Foundry Productions, while embraced by a modern, stylish artwork by Dylan Sutton.

The blazing guitar riffs by Paul kick off the sick and groovy Opening Shots, bringing forward a fusion of Melodic Death Metal with more modern and alternative styles, with Aliki growling like a true she-demon for our total delight, followed by Misguided, where the metallic bass jabs by Marcin will hit you in the face while Aliki blasts her wicked mix of clean vocals and harsh gnarls, leaning towards contemporary Thrash and Groove Metal while Rodrigo dictates the pace with his classy beats. Then the mesmerizing vocalizations by Aliki accompanied by tribalistic sounds and tones ignite the heavy and experimental Angela, with Paul, Marcin and Rodrigo bringing sheer progressiveness to the music with their refined techniques, whereas From The Cradle is a lot more introspective, grim and atmospheric than its predecessors, starting in a semi-acoustic manner while Aliki declaims the song’s dark lyrics, sounding at the same time like a 90’s Groove and Funk Metal tune and a modern-day thrashing tune, something a wicked band like Faith No More would definitely do.

More of their rumbling sounds permeate the air in the also heavy and furious Sacrifice, a lecture in Groove Metal by Eight Lives Down where Aliki’s roars get deeper and more enraged while Rodrigo sounds pulverizing on drums, supported by Marcin’s menacing bass; and in Organize Your Mind the quartet offers us all a hybrid of the rebelliousness of Alternative Metal with the intricacy of Progressive Metal, with Paul being on absolute fire with his demented riffage, while also presenting interesting atmospheric passages and endless heaviness. After that it’s time to break our necks headbanging together with Aliki and the boys in Colder, adding hints of Heavy Rock to their already crushing sonority while Paul and Marcin have a fun duel with their strident riffs and solos and low-tuned bass punches, respectively. Lastly, you better get ready for nine minutes of introspection, groove and heaviness in the form of Why, starting in a serene way with Aliki declaiming the song’s cryptic words, evolving into a thunderous metal feast led by Rodrigo’s visceral beats, not to mention the incendiary solos by Paul as the icing on the cake.

This precious gem of Extreme and Experimental Metal can be enjoyed in its entirety on YouTube, but of course in order to show your support to Aliki and her loyal henchmen you should definitely buy a copy of Humans from their own BandCamp page, from their webstore or from Amazon, as well as follow the band on Facebook and on Instagram for news, tour dates and other nice-to-know details about such up-and-coming metal band, and subscribe to their YouTube channel for more of their idiosyncratic creations. It will certainly be more than just interesting to see what the future holds for Eight Lives Down with their upcoming releases, if they’ll keep experimenting like crazy or if they’ll set a defined shape and style for their music. Until then, while we wait for the creative mind of Aliki to provide us more insanity in the form of music, we can keep banging our heads nonstop to Humans, by far one of the best alternative albums of the year.

Best moments of the album: Opening Shots and Sacrifice.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2020 Cult Of Parthenope

Track listing
1. Opening Shots 3:50
2. Misguided 4:01
3. Angela 3:56
4. From The Cradle 7:40
5. Sacrifice 3:52
6. Organize Your Mind 4:21
7. Colder 4:20
8. Why 9:02

Band members
Aliki Katriou – vocals
Paul Allain – guitar
Marcin Orczyk – bass
Rodrigo Moraes Cruz – drums

Album Review – Ragehammer / Into Certain Death (2020)

It’s time to head into certain death to the sound of the new album by this insane Polish brigade, offering us all ten slabs of sincere and brutal Blackened Thrash Metal violence.

Kraków, Poland’s own Black/Thrash Metal institution Ragehammer is finally back to the battlefront after four years of studio inactivity (since the release of their 2016 opus The Hammer Doctrine) and a year-long live hiatus with the same lineup comprised of The Hellstörm on vocals, Bestial Avenger on the guitars, Corpsebutcher on bass and Mortar on drums to once again spit with scorn at the trend-ridden scene, where aesthetics took over the ethics, armed with their sophomore full-length album entitled Into Certain Death. Recorded, mixed and mastered by Mikołaj Żentara at No Solace, featuring an enraged artwork by Devinez, and consisting of ten slabs of sonic violence with variable pain levels in the characteristic of sincere and brutal Blackened Thrash Metal style which continues the path Ragehammer chose when starting almost 10 years ago, Into Certain Death will offer the listener exactly what the band has always promised to provide in their rebellious career, a raw, warlike fusion of Black and Thrash Metal without compromises, unnecessary distance or mercy, and of course a very good reason for getting drunk and raising our horns in the name of evil.

Metal troopers are marching to the beats by Mortar in the uprising intro Beneath the Red Suns, suddenly exploding into a lesson in Blackened Thrash Metal titled We Are the Hammer, with Bestial Avenger extracting endless savagery and electricity form his stringed weapon, therefore providing The Hellstörm exactly what he needs to shine with his raspy, berserk growls. Moreover, when they speed things up it’s time to simply crush your skull into the pit, and there’s no sign of those four horseman slowing their music down as they blast a furious hybrid of Black, Death and Thrash Metal titled Jesus Goat, with Corpsebutcher and Mortar being thunderous with their respective bass punches and blast beats. In Peace let’s say the name of the song doesn’t match with its infuriated rhythm, with the band bringing forward a potent display of extreme music led by Bestial Avenger’s razor-edged riffage while The Hellstörm vociferates rabidly from start to finish in great blackened, thrashing fashion, whereas the band’s frontman roars viciously in his mother tongue in the sick Black and Thrash Metal extravaganza titled Na Pewną Śmierć, which is Polish for the album’s title “into certain death”, tailored for admirers of the heaviest side of thrash, with Mortar sounding utterly demented behind his drum set.

In the fulminating 616. TerrorKorps the band drinks from the same wicked fountain as thrashing masters Exodus and Slayer, but of course with the band’s own Polish twist, while the stringed duo Bestial Avenger and Corpsebutcher will at the same time pierce your ears and smash your head with their extreme aggression and speed. It’s clear that slamming is their business, and business is good, as in the high-octane Fear Toxin we’re treated to more of the infernal screams by The Hellstörm and the unstoppable drums by Mortar in what’s perhaps the song with the most Black Metal riffs of all, while tribal beats and a hellish atmosphere are offered to the listener in Omega Red, sounding darker and more introspective than its predecessors, and showcasing another brutal job done by Bestial Avenger armed with his devilish guitar. Ragehammer keep distilling their demonic hybrid of extreme styles in the fast and furious Dragon City, where the rebellious gnarls by The Hellstörm are effectively supported by his bandmates’ backing vocals while Mortar doesn’t stop hammering his drums not even for a single second. And finally, a Stygian, somber intro darkly evolves into a massive wall of sounds in the imposing 8-minute aria titled Prophet of Genocide Part II (Mother Winter Eternal), the sequel to “Prophet of Genocide” from their 2012 demo War Hawks, with The Hellstörm investing into more anguished vocal lines while its second half presents Ragehammer’s usual sonic devastation.

I bet you can’t wait to join Ragehammer and head into certain death to the sound of their warlike metal music, and in order to do so simply pay the guys a visit on Facebook and (soon) purchase a copy of their breathtaking new album from the Pagan Records’ BandCamp or webstore in CD or LP format. The Hellstörm, Bestial Avenger, Corpsebutcher and Mortar nailed it once again with Into Certain Death, elevating their status in their homeland (and anywhere else in the world where ass-kicking extreme music is appreciated) from just a promise to one of the best and most entertaining acts of the underground scene, beautifully translating into their wicked creations exactly what Blackened Thrash Metal is all about.

Best moments of the album: We Are the Hammer, Jesus Goat and 616. TerrorKorps.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2020 Pagan Records

Track listing
1. Beneath the Red Suns 1:45
2. We Are the Hammer 3:58
3. Jesus Goat 3:29
4. Peace 4:25
5. Na Pewną Śmierć 4:28
6. 616. TerrorKorps 4:00
7. Fear Toxin 4:38
8. Omega Red 5:46
9. Dragon City 4:47
10. Prophet of Genocide Part II (Mother Winter Eternal) 8:54

Band members
The Hellstörm – vocals
Bestial Avenger – guitars
Corpsebutcher – bass
Mortar – drums

Album Review – Silent Obsession / Lost EP (2020)

Bang your heads to this venomous fusion of Technical, Progressive and Brutal Death Metal made in Algeria.

Inspired by renowned bands such as Decapitated and Morbid Angel, among other modern metal acts, Algiers, Algeria-based Death Metal unity Silent Obsession is eager to spread their fusion of Technical and Brutal Death Metal with more contemporary styles such as Groove Metal to all four corners of the earth, sending a bold message that Algerian metal can be as vibrant, demolishing and entertaining as any of their North American or European friends. Originally conceived as a solo project by guitarist Max Marginal in 2017 aiming at exploring humanity’s dark side, Silent Obsession evolved to a full-bodied band in the next couple of years until reaching their current lineup comprised of the aforementioned Max Marginal on the guitar, Danny on vocals and guitar, Manil on bass and Ben Der on drums, strengthening their sound and creativity and, consequently, culminating with the release now in 2020 of their debut EP entitled Lost, bringing to our avid ears 12 minutes of top-of-the-line extreme music made in the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria.

The blazing guitars by Danny and Max set the tone in the violent EP intro, already showcasing all their skills while Ben Der crushes his drums manically and also presenting elements from Thrash and Black Metal, with Danny’s vicious roars adding a touch of malignancy to the overall result. Then bringing tons of progressiveness and rage together with their core sonority the quartet fires Paranoia Activity, where Manil’s bass punches will hit you hard in the face and with Danny growling more deeply and demonically than before in a technical display of Death Metal infused with Groove Metal nuances, all spiced up by some sick guitar solos, whereas D.E.A.D. sounds even more violent and devastating, with Manil and Ben Der generating an earthquake with their sonic weapons while Danny and Max keep extracting sheer dementia form their guitars, not to mention how rabid and insane Danny’s roars sound. In other words, this is an absolutely perfect Progressive Death Metal tune for smashing your spinal cord into the circle pit. Lastly, in Destruction of the Spirit the band once again blends their core Death Metal with other extreme styles such as Thrash Metal and even Progressive Groove Metal, with their riffs and solos being utterly fantastic, accompanied by the always infernal drums by Ben Der.

Just like their friends from Lelahell, Litham and Hellium, among several other excellent bands, Silent Obsession are determined to carry the flag of Algerian Death Metal wherever they go, and their debut effort Lost is indeed a great example of what they are capable of offering to demanding metalheads always searching for heavy, violent and fast music. Hence, don’t forget to give the EP a listen on Spotify, on YouTube and on Deezer, to follow Silent Obsession on their official Facebook page for news, tour dates and other nice-to-know details about the band, and to purchase a copy of Lost from Apple Music. Max and his loyal henchmen are eager to know what you think of their debut installment, especially if you’re a diehard fan of underground Death Metal, showing you once again that not only high-quality metal music can be found anywhere in the world, but also if Death Metal is your cup of tea, you should definitely take a musical trip to “Al Jaza’ir”.

Best moments of the album: D.E.A.D.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2020 Independent

Track listing
1. Intro 2:34
2. Paranoia Activity 4:32
3. D.E.A.D. 3:11
4. Destruction of the Spirit 2:22

Band members
Danny – vocals, guitars
Max Marginal – guitars
Manil – bass
Ben Der – drums

Album Review – Calarook / Surrender Or Die (2020)

On a quest for booze we go together with those unstoppable Swiss pirates and their debut full-length album.

On a quest for booze we go! That’s what frontman Philipp Wyssen, guitarist Nico Wiget, bassist Flavio Pompeo, drummer Yves Locher and violinist Lukas Mischler, collectively known as the unrelenting Winterthur, Switzerland-based Pirate Metal crew Calarook, promise to deliver in their debut full-length album Surrender Or Die, mixing rabid Melodic Death Metal with Folk Metal parts and sometimes a pinch of wonderful nonsense, therefore inviting us all to celebrate, mosh and headbang like there’s no tomorrow. Calarook have been on a roll since the band’s inception in 2014 (under the name Calico), firing an endlessly captivating seafaring sound that leaves no one standing still or even sober, starting with their 2017 EP Calico, but it’s now with Surrender Or Die that the quintet is ready to take us all on a full-bodied adventure across the seven seas, offering our avid ears over 69 minutes of first-class metal music while at the same time being always ready for more booze, pillaging and partying in the name of heavy music.

The tolling bells in the epic intro 47°30’18”N 8°51’52”E warn us all their festivities are about to start in A Cursed Ship’s Tale, sounding furious and imposing thanks to the crushing beats by Yves and the guttural roars by Philipp, while Lukas brings his share of lunacy with his whimsical violin, flowing smoothly until its climatic finale. They offer more of their visceral fusion of Melodic Death Metal with classic Death Metal and pirate music in Quest For Booze, an ode to all alcoholic beverages where Nico is unstoppable with his riffage accompanied by the rumbling bass by Flavio and the once again magical violin by Lukas, whereas it’s time to break your necks headbanging to the sound of Into The Storm, with Yves pounding his drums like a cannon from a pirate ship while Philipp continues to blast his inebriate, unfriendly growls. In the title-track Surrender Or Die the “captain” vociferates the song’s sailing lyrics rabidly (“We change the course / To pursue the prey / The distance gets smaller / The target turns away / But we can catch up / Prepared to fight / The cannons are loaded / Everyone is quiet”) while his bandmates generate a strong ambience with their respective instruments, inspiring us all to fight side by side with the band; and Flavio and his metallic bass ignite the rhythmic, dancing tune curiously titled Invisible Pineapples, showcasing an amazing job done by Nico with his slashing riffs. Put differently, simply  grab your beer and your sword and get ready to rock together with those metal pirates.

And those buccaneers keep delivering heaviness, speed and harmony in the excellent Kraken’s Chest, the epitome of Pirate Metal overflowing electricity and fury, also presenting an interesting paradox between Lukas’ classy violin and Yves’ thunderous beats, before it’s time to slam into the circle pit to the fun Paul The Parrot. Let’s all be honest, no one can stand still to a metal song about a parrot, with Nico and Yves making sure the rhythm remains as vibrant as possible in a great display of modern-day Melodic Death Metal, while Jack Rackham is another song exhibiting a pleasant speed and pace, with the violin by Lukas adding tons of finesse to the overall result while his bandmates continue to invite us all to prance around the fire pit. Kicking Flamingos is what I call a weird name for a song, but they’re pirates which means all makes sense; however, musically speaking it’s not on par with the rest of the album, sounding a bit generic despite Flavio’s great performance on bass. Fortunately, Calarook get back on track with their trademark Pirate Metal in Davy Jones’ Locker, a lot more introspective than its predecessors while Nico dictates the pace with his classic riffs, accompanied by Philipp’s deep growling.

In Tentacle Explosion we have less than three minutes of hammering Melodic Death Metal infused with the stylish violin by Lukas, resulting in a great option for their live performances which will certainly inspire us all to raise our horns and grab a pint in the name of metal music; and their loyalty to drinking and piracy goes on in Loyal To None But Rum, where all Calarook are telling us is to simply get drunk and slam into the circle pit to the sound of their thrilling music. Then venturing through more traditional lands, they fire their most Heavy Metal of all songs, The Legend Of Liquor Island, bringing forward a galloping rhythm led by Yves and his old school beats while Philipp keeps roaring and growling like a true pirate, whereas in The Feast Of Emerald Meadows the band fills our ears with a more vicious and violent sonority while Nico’s riffs walk hand in hand with Lukas’ violin. Hence, it will certainly urge you to sing its chorus along with Calarook while crushing your skull into the mosh pit once again, and closing this 69-minute pirate quest the band fires the classic The Undying Sailor, where despite the great job done by Yves and Lukas with their beats and violin, the final result is a bit messy, not to mention the song goes on for way too long.

If you’re ready to set sail together with the drunk and talented Swiss pirates of Calarook and support them in their epic adventures, you can follow the band on Facebook and on Instagram, subscribe to their YouTube channel for their fun and fresh official videos, stream more of their rebellious music on Spotify, and obviously purchase a copy of Surrender Or Die from the band’s own webstore (and soon enough from several other locations). In a world where people have the attention span of a goldfish, we must admit releasing a 69-minute album is a beyond bold move by Calarook, but yet again, as already mentioned they are not just musicians, but metal pirates, and as the great privateers they are they know exactly what they are doing by releasing such imposing and epic album. Or do you think only 20 or 30 minutes of music would be enough for all the action you can have together with Calarook on board of their ship in their quest for metal, rum, flamingos, parrots and pineapples?

Best moments of the album: Quest For Booze, Invisible Pineapples, Kraken’s Chest and The Feast Of Emerald Meadows.

Worst moments of the album: Kicking Flamingos and The Undying Sailor.

Released in 2020 Independent

Track listing
1. 47°30’18”N 8°51’52”E 2:02
2. A Cursed Ship’s Tale 4:33
3. Quest For Booze 5:36
4. Into The Storm 7:05
5. Surrender Or Die 4:27
6. Invisible Pineapples 5:09
7. Kraken’s Chest 5:46
8. Paul The Parrot 3:36
9. Jack Rackham 3:22
10. Kicking Flamingos 3:33
11. Davy Jones’ Locker 3:47
12. Tentacle Explosion 2:34
13. Loyal To None But Rum 4:38
14. The Legend Of Liquor Island 3:03
15. The Feast Of Emerald Meadows 4:34
16. The Undying Sailor 5:37

Band members
Philipp Wyssen – vocals
Nico Wiget – guitar
Flavio Pompeo – bass
Yves Locher – drums
Lukas Mischler – violin

Album Review – Abatuar / Mortandad (2020)

Beware this unstoppable Panamanian beast and his brand new destructive installment, continuing on the legacy of the ultra-conservative declaration of Death Metal and Grindcore.

Active since 2013 and following the previous album Perversiones de Muerte Putrefacta, the side project of the sick mind from vocalist and drummer Cadaver, the Panamanian Black/Death Metal entity known as Abatuar,  has just unleashed upon us all feeble-minded bastards a new destructive installment entitled Mortandad, continuing on the legacy of the ultra-conservative declaration of Death Metal and Grindcore with clear influences of old school bands such as Napalm Death, Repulsion, Blood and mixing these with the regimental militancy of Proclamation and Black Witchery. Recorded at the rehearsal room Plug & Play (while the vocals were recorded in 2018 at Sendero el Pianista, a trail located in the city of Boquete, Panama), mastered by M. Dahmen at Liquid Aether Audio in Germany in 2018, featuring a demonic artwork by Indonesian artist Bayu Putrasangfajar, and also featuring guest guitarist Yigo Manzo (Merciless Death, Atrofia) and bassist and guitarist Anibal Sucre (Enslaver, Hatross), Mortandad is filled not only with the purity of the genres perhaps due to the isolation of the Panamanian scene where they are from, but also soaked with the Central American brutality which they draw their lyrical influences from.

The razor-edge guitars by Yigo ignite the sulfurous Death and Black Metal feast titled Ritual Nigromante Por Medio De Profanación De Cámaras Funerarias, while Cadaver basically regurgitates the song’s dark lyrics and smashes his drums manically, followed by La Muerte Ha Llegado, Todos Lo Pueden Ver, Atare Tus Manos Hasta Que No Puedas Defenderte, another bestial, old school display of Death Metal infused with Grindcore elements where Cadaver sounds utterly demented and enraged on vocals, and Sanguinaria Ejecución De Individuos Despreciables, a venomous headbanging tune where Cadaver’s insane blast beats are nicely complemented by the scorching riffs by Yigo. Then the rumbling bass by Anibal together with the vile drums by Cadaver will make your head tremble in the ode to primeval Black and Death Metal beautifully entitled Perversa Psicopatía De Infantes Homicidas Que Juegan Con Sangre Y Vísceras, with its second half inspiring you to break your neck headbanging like a maniac; whereas in Solo Los Que Han Matado Entenderán Esta Sensación, No Puedo Esperar A Estrangular De Nuevo the trio needs less than two minutes to decimate everything and everyone that crosses their path, showcasing demented drums accompanied by a crisp guitar solo by Anibal.

Rameras Desfiguradas Y Enterradas Vivas En Antro De Tortura Y Depravación Demoniaca is one more short and vile explosion of extreme music made in Panama, with Cadaver’s deep guttural gnarls adding an extra dosage of malignancy to the music, being therefore highly recommended for fans of the early days of Mayhem and Marduk. After such infernal tune it’s time for Trastorno Esquizoide De Trisomía Sexual XYY Con Impulsos Asesinos Y Necrofílicos, drawing inspiration from the sexual bestiality usually found in Goregrind while the guitars by Yigo couldn’t have sounded dirtier nor rawer, followed by Estrangulamiento De Prostitutas Callejeras Como Medio De Liberación De La Ira Y Lujuria, where a demolishing start to the sound of the sick beats by Cadaver and the thunderous bass by Anibal morphs into a gory and evil Death Metal extravaganza that will smash your skull mercilessly. And there’s not a single second to breathe as Cadaver and his henchmen explode our ears once again with Exterminio Humano Por Hambruna E Inanición Sistemática En Regiones Sublevadas, overflowing depravity, obscurity and blasphemy in the form of ass-kicking Death Metal. Lastly, an ominous, cinematic and cannibalistic intro suddenly explodes into a putrid onrush of Death Metal titled Rituales Necrófagos En La Selva Maldita, led by Cadaver’s gruesome vociferations. All I have to say is that this is what I call a spine-chilling ending to a metal album.

The distinguished, demonic and violent fusion of Black and Death Metal with Grindcore crafted by Cadaver in Mortandad can be experienced in its entirety on YouTube and on Spotify, and you can also follow the multi-talented Cadaver and his Abatuar on Facebook, but of course in order to properly show your support to evil music made in Panama you should purchase a copy of the album from the Dunkelheit Produktionen’s BandCamp page or webstore, from Ván Records, from Apple Music, from Amazon or from Discogs. In addition, why don’t you try translating the names of the songs (and their respective lyrics) and see what Cadaver has to say in Mortandad, which by the way is the Spanish word for “mortality”? I bet not only you’ll feel even more intimidated by his scorching metal music, but you’ll also see the decaying world we live in is nothing but a big, infernal and gruesome slaughterhouse.

Best moments of the album: La Muerte Ha Llegado, Todos Lo Pueden Ver, Atare Tus Manos Hasta Que No Puedas Defenderte, Perversa Psicopatía De Infantes Homicidas Que Juegan Con Sangre Y Vísceras and Estrangulamiento De Prostitutas Callejeras Como Medio De Liberación De La Ira Y Lujuria.

Worst moments of the album: Sanguinaria Ejecución De Individuos Despreciables.

Released in 2020 Dunkelheit Produktionen

Track listing
1. Ritual Nigromante Por Medio De Profanación De Cámaras Funerarias 2:58
2. La Muerte Ha Llegado, Todos Lo Pueden Ver, Atare Tus Manos Hasta Que No Puedas Defenderte 2:06
3. Sanguinaria Ejecución De Individuos Despreciables 2:07
4. Perversa Psicopatía De Infantes Homicidas Que Juegan Con Sangre Y Vísceras 4:15
5. Solo Los Que Han Matado Entenderán Esta Sensación, No Puedo Esperar A Estrangular De Nuevo 1:49
6. Rameras Desfiguradas Y Enterradas Vivas En Antro De Tortura Y Depravación Demoniaca 1:32
7. Trastorno Esquizoide De Trisomía Sexual XYY Con Impulsos Asesinos Y Necrofílicos 2:54
8. Estrangulamiento De Prostitutas Callejeras Como Medio De Liberación De La Ira Y Lujuria 2:40
9. Exterminio Humano Por Hambruna E Inanición Sistemática En Regiones Sublevadas 3:52
10. Rituales Necrófagos En La Selva Maldita 4:25

Band members
Cadaver – vocals, drums

Guest musicians
Yigo Manzo – guitars (session)
Anibal Sucre – bass, lead guitars (session)

Album Review – Chancroid / Bestial Perverse Of The Anomalies Psychoneurotic (2020)

An up-and-coming Indonesian Brutal Death Metal trio is ready to kill with their debut opus, offering us all an onrush of psychological depravity, gore and terror.

Formed in 2011 in Bekasi, a city in West Java, Indonesia, located on the eastern border of Jakarta, where the underground music scene teems with sounds of insane brutality and extremity past the point of reason, an unrelenting unity that goes by the name of Chancroid plays a furious blend of Brutal Death Metal and Deathslam that stands out for its blood curdling bludgeoning, even amongst those rabid, gore hungry hordes. Formed of vocalist Wira (Infinite Torture, Vomit Larynx, Hypocrisis), guitarist and bassist Hendri (Gyarotium, Hujjat) and drummer Arief (Digging Up, Opium), Chancroid are ready to please all lovers of the gore and endless brutality by bands such as Devourment, Skinless and Disgorge, among others, with their debut full-length release beautifully titled Bestial Perverse Of The Anomalies Psychoneurotic, an avalanche of psychological depravity, gore and terror, all embraced by the vile cover art and layout by Indonesian artist Aghy Purakusuma.

Like a good slasher flick the album starts with a phantasmagorical Intro, dragging the listener to the violent and gory world ruled by Chancroid with Coitus Deification Terminology showcasing straightforward lyrics vomited by Wira (“Bestiality ordered sacrilege committing / Deified sinners, morals depravity / Divine excoriated / Scriptures mockery / The terminology of new order”), sounding raw and visceral from the very first second with Arief hammering his drums manically, and even more infernal the band offers us all the putrid Maximum High Tension Penetrating, a pure, unfiltered Brutal Death Metal tune where Hendri fires some Cannibal Corpse/Aborted-inspired riffs accompanied by the always inhumane gnarls by Wira. And in Xyy, another blast of undisputed violence and dementia by Chancroid, it becomes very clear that although they might be only three guys, they surely know how to make a lot of noise, with Arief once again going berserk and furious behind his drum kit.

Hebephrenia is a cryptic instrumental interlude once again highly inspired by the greatest classics of the horror cinema, filling our ears with its darkly beautiful sounds and tones before the band attacks our senses once again in Bestial Perverse of the Anomalies Psychoneurotic, bringing forward another round of bestiality in the form of wicked lyrics (“From the chamber of atrocity / Brutal heavy killing machine / Inhuman deviations / Consists of lust and voracious / The anomaly / Stench of blood / Arousal concordance / Amalgamated / Bestial creature / Bestial perverse of the anomalies psychoneurotic”), hellish blast beats and scorching riffs. Chancroid continue their path of sheer devastation and savagery in Sadomasochist, where Hendri lives up to the legacy of classic shredding beasts while Wira doesn’t stop vociferating rabidly in this ode to Death Metal, and there’s no time to breathe as the trio continues to smash our cranial skulls in Abysmal Tranquility, where Hendri and Arief make a dynamic duo from hell with their classic riffs and beats, respectively. In Distortion Cognitive of Malicious they need less than three minutes to pulverize everything and everyone that crosses their path in a lecture in Brutal Slamming Death Metal spearheaded by the vicious drumming by Arief, and how about ending the album with more bestiality, blood and violence? That’s exactly what they offer us all in Haemophilus Ducreyi Inoculated, with Wira sounding truly demonic and enraged on vocals.

If you have never, ever in your life had any type of contact with a metal band from Indonesia, let’s say Chancroid might be one of the best options for you to start on the underground Indonesian scene, as not only they play high-end Death Metal, but their compositions are also very cohesive, entertaining and, above all that, very professional for a band that has just released their first album. Hence, let’s support this hellish Indonesian trio by following them on Facebook and on Instagram, and by purchasing a copy of the fulminating Bestial Perverse Of The Anomalies Psychoneurotic from their own BandCamp page, from Apple Music or from Amazon. Wira, Hendri and Arief are more than ready to kill with their debut effort in the name of Death Metal, warning us all that this is only the first chapter in their history of underground brutality.

Best moments of the album: Maximum High Tension Penetrating, Bestial Perverse of the Anomalies Psychoneurotic and Distortion Cognitive of Malicious.

Worst moments of the album: Haemophilus Ducreyi Inoculated.

Released in 2020 Brute! Productions

Track listing
1. Intro 1:55
2. Coitus Deification Terminology 2:41
3. Maximum High Tension Penetrating 2:44
4. Xyy 3:11
5. Hebephrenia (Instrumental) 3:16
6. Bestial Perverse of the Anomalies Psychoneurotic 4:26
7. Sadomasochist 3:27
8. Abysmal Tranquility 3:07
9. Distortion Cognitive of Malicious 2:47
10. Haemophilus Ducreyi Inoculated 3:01

Band members
Wira – vocals
Hendri – guitars, bass
Arief – drums

Album Review – Intercepting Pattern / The Encounter (2020)

A free-flowing 30-minute long composition ebbing and flowing between heavy syncopated grooves, Jazz fusion flourishes, ethereal synth-layered passages and cybernetic Death Metal.

Formed in 2016 in the city of Berlin, Germany, a distinguished Progressive Metal unity known as Intercepting Pattern is comprised of vocalist Daniel Sander, guitarist and keyboardist Marte Auer, bassist Clemens Engert and drummer Lille Gruber, all seasoned musicians known for their time in projects such as Defeated Sanity, Infecting the Swarm and Cerebric Turmoil. Produced, mixed & mastered by Tom ‘Fountainhead’ Geldschläger at FountainheadHQ and featuring a stunning artwork by Niklas Sundin (Mitochondrial Sun, Dark Tranquillity), Intercepting Pattern’s debut effort, entitled The Encounter, was created and designed as one free-flowing 30-minute long genre-bending composition, ebbing and flowing between heavy syncopated grooves, Jazz fusion flourishes, ethereal synth-layered passages and cybernetic Death Metal with seamless ease, appealing to fans of groups such as Meshuggah, Cynic and Panzerballett, among others. For release purposes, The Encounter is split into 10 “song” sections, although it is strongly suggested to listen to it in one session as it was intended when being created.

Clearly inspired by classic TV shows and movies that dealt with alien forms of life, the opening track Extragalactic Radio presents Lille and Clemens bringing endless groove and intricacy to the music with their beats and bass punches while Marte adds a touch of finesse to the overall result with his riffs and solos, flowing into the Progressive Death Metal feast titled Signal-to-Noise, where Daniel fires anguished, raspy roars accompanied by the always blazing guitars by Marte, resulting in an excellent option for breaking your neck headbanging. And their mysterious, otherworldly story goes on in Interlude I, an atmospheric and futuristic creation by Intercepting Pattern that will certainly send shivers down your spine before Eigenlicht offers us all Jazz and Blues united with the band’s hybrid of Progressive and Groove Metal, or in other words, a complex and extremely enjoyable tune where Marte and Lille are in absolute sync with their incendiary riffs and beats, whereas Hypnagogia is another wicked instrumental creation by the quartet with Clemens’ bass jabs making your head tremble in awe, all spiced up by background voices and ethereal keys, and running smoothly until its whimsical conclusion.

Interlude II is a cinematic bridge created to keep the listener hypnotized and eager for what’s next, as Daniel returns in full force with his rabid growls in Rebiogenesis, with the band’s razor-edged guitars and rumbling bass together with the sick drums by Lille generating a multi-layered wall of sounds for our total delectation. Then featuring guest Jimmy Pitts (Eternity’s End, Eynomia, NorthTale, NYN, The Fractured Dimension) on keyboards we have Fuga Finalis, an explosion of Progressive Groove Metal infused with Jazz and other idiosyncratic sounds and tones. Not only that, can you feel the anger bursting from Daniel’s roars? It’s sick and amazing at the same time, of course. And the music makes an instant bridge with the also demented and progressive Asmodeus, sounding as bold and weird as possible while led by the jamming beats by Lille, being therefore highly recommended for musicians who love the fusion of metal and Jazz, before the outro Epilogue ends the album in a cryptic and again atmospheric manner, with its instrumental pieces exhaling melancholy and heaviness until all is said and done.

“Having played in various metal bands before, we were kind of drawn to modern jazz and fusion records at the time and wanted to challenge ourselves with a more complex and improvisational approach to music. Of course, being the metal kids that we are, we couldn’t totally hide from our roots, but overall we tried to emphasize extended harmonic concepts and recurring rhythmic motives common to a Jazz/Fusion context”, commented the band about their newborn spawn, and after listening to the album in its entirety it’s easy to understand exactly what they wanted to accomplish in The Encounter. Needless to say, they more than succeeded in their quest, and if you want to give Intercepting Pattern a try you can grab your copy of The Encounter from the Rising Nemesis Records’ BandCamp page, and soon also from the Rising Nemesis Records’ Big Cartel and from IndieMerchstore. You can also get to know more about the band by following them on Facebook, showing your appreciation for their wicked hybrid of Heavy Metal and Jazz, and inspiring them to keep exploring the outer space and alien life with their refined music for many years to come.

Best moments of the album: Signal-to-Noise, Rebiogenesis and Fuga Finalis.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2020 Rising Nemesis Records

Track listing
1. Extragalactic Radio 3:26
2. Signal-to-Noise 1:56
3. Interlude I 1:38
4. Eigenlicht 3:07
5. Hypnagogia 3:56
6. Interlude II 1:46
7. Rebiogenesis 4:48
8. Fuga Finalis 2:34
9. Asmodeus 4:35
10. Epilogue 2:15

Band members
Daniel Sander – vocals
Marte Auer – guitars, synths
Clemens Engert – bass
Lille Gruber – drums

Guest musician
Jimmy Pitts – guest keyboards solo on “Fuga Finalis”