Album Review – HerezA / Death Metal Drunks (2019)

Join this horde of ruthless headbanging bastards in their quest for metal and booze, armed to the teeth with their brand new opus of straightforward Death N’ Roll.

Vodka, whiskey, gin, rakija, black tooth grin, tequila, Jägermeister and Jack Daniel’s, all mixed with humongous dosages of rebelliousness, depravity and violence. That’s the extremely combustible recipe found in Death Metal Drunks, the brand new album by Croatian/German Punk/Death Metal horde HerezA and a fantastic follow-up to their 2017 release I Become Death. As the band itself likes to say, there’s no “pre”, no “post”, no “tech”, no “prog” and not even any “swe” references or connotations in their new opus, but a straightforward Death N’ Roll attack highly recommended for fans of the demolishing music played by iconic acts like Cannibal Corpse, Napalm Death, The Exploited, Carcass, Kreator, Motörhead and several other relentless rock and metal entities.

Formed in 2014 in Beli Manastir, Croatia, but currently located in the beautiful Stuttgart, capital of southwest Germany’s Baden-Württemberg state, what used to be a duo comprised of vocalist Ivan Kovačević and guitarist Slobodan Stupar is now a full-bodied squad with the additions of bassit Holger and drummer Thomas Polder, which translates into not only a more dynamic musicality but also makes it possible for HerezA to tour a lot more, spreading their nihilistic, inebriate and boisterous creations to the four corners of our decaying world. Produced by Slobodan himself, recorded, mixed and mastered by Mario Marković, and featuring an absolutely superb cover art by Croatian artist Andrej Bartulović (All Things Rotten), perfectly representing what HerezA are all about, Death Metal Drunks is one of those albums that will put a huge smile on your face every single time you listen to it, inspiring you to join other metalheads into the sickest circle pits you can think of.

Wicked distortions and a menacing aura suddenly explode into sheer violence in the form of music in Back From The Grave, where Ivan’s roars sound even more enraged than in their previous album, while guest vocalist Adrie Kloosterwaard (Sinister) delivers deep, guttural Cannibal Corpse-inspired lines to make things even more brutal. Then Slobodan shows no mercy for our necks with his incendiary riffs in Genocid, where Thomas keeps hammering his drums frantically, therefore being recommended for fans of a thrashier and more hardcore version or our good old Death Metal; whereas Kopam Oči, Režem Jezik, Prste, Nos I Uši (“I dig my eyes, I cut my tongue, my fingers, my nose and my ears” from Croatian), featuring guest vocals by Igor Buljin (Gorthaur’s Wrath), follows a similar pattern as most songs in I Become Death, or in other words, it’s  an onrush of vicious sounds that will inspire you to slam into the pit like a maniac while Slobodan and Holger don’t stop slashing their stringed weapons mercilessly.

Blazing guitars and punk-infused drums dictate the rhythm in the boozy metal hymn Death Metal Drunks, by far my favorite song of the album showcasing utterly entertaining lyrics vociferated by Ivan (“We are back once again / To show you how it’s done / Pedal to the metal, full speed ahead / Breaks are for the weak / Head through the wall, we don’t care at all / Heading for selfdestruction / Give us booze, give us beer / We are ready for execution”), followed by Rak n’Roll, bringing forward less than two minutes of total sonic anarchy as if the Exploited and Napalm Death had a son (and if that son was trained by Cannibal Corpse), with highlights to Thomas’ crushing performance on drums. Horses bring the noise in Dullahan, a thunderous tune infused with badass Rock N’ Roll elements the likes of Motörhead, also presenting a great job done by Slobodan with his scorching riffs and featuring the third guest vocalist of the album, Aleister Kainulainen (King Satan), to give the whole song and extra kick. And if you think HerezA will slow down at any given point you’re absolutely wrong, as Do Kosti Bez Milosti (“to the bone without mercy”) is another overdose of violence, insanity and rage sung in their mother tongue Croatian, with Ivan’s demented growls and Thomas’ nonstop beats inspiring the listener to violently crack their spinal cords in half.

Beneath The Wheels Of Death is hell on wheels once again led by the berserk grunts by Ivan while Slobodan delivers spot-on riffs and solos, and there’s no time to breathe at all as after a weird semi-acoustic intro the quartet blasts their own version of what can be called “Country Metal” in Necrobitch, Cowgirl From The Morgue, with its lyrics seeming like they were taken from a Steel Panther song but embraced by the heaviness and speed of Punk Rock. In addition to that, pay good attention to how Holger’s groovy and rumbling bass lines add a lot of electricity to the overall result. In Stupid Spoiled Whore the quartet once again brings to our ears very “classy” lyrics (“Spoiled, rich, little girl / You have everything in the world / Mommy and daddy love you so / They can’t see you’re just a / Piece of shit / You make me sick / An ugly boar / Stupid spoiled whore / Shit for brains / You leave stains / Everywhere you go / You’re stupid spoiled whore”), with the music being a feast of raw, razor-edged noises and tones that couldn’t sound more violent. And lastly, Monstrum is a beyond thrilling and deranged way to close such excellent album of extreme music where Thomas steals the spotlight with his frantic drumming while Ivan, Slobodan and Holger fill out every empty space with their respective growls, riffs and bass punches.

After all is said and done, I have only one very simple question to you, and I’m pretty sure your answer will be positive. Do you consider yourself a Death Metal drunk? Well, if you’re reading this review to the very end I believe you are, which means you’re more than ready to join HerezA in their quest for metal and booze by following them on Facebook, and especially by purchasing your copy of Death Metal Drunks (available for a full listen on Spotify and on YouTube) from the Godz ov War Productions’ BandCamp or webstore, as well as from Apple Music and Discogs. And after putting your hands on the album and hitting play, you know what to do. It’s booze, slamming, more booze, headbanging while slamming, an extra dose of booze, and so on.

Best moments of the album: Kopam Oči, Režem Jezik, Prste, Nos I Uši, Death Metal Drunks and Do Kosti Bez Milosti.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2019 Godz ov War Productions

Track listing
1. Back From The Grave (feat. Adrie Kloosterwaard) 2:56
2. Genocid 1:58
3. Kopam Oči, Režem Jezik, Prste, Nos I Uši (feat. Igor Buljin) 2:53
4. Death Metal Drunks 3:10
5. Rak n’Roll 1:34
6. Dullahan (feat. Aleister Kainulainen) 2:42
7. Do Kosti Bez Milosti 3:15
8. Beneath The Wheels Of Death 2:10
9. Necrobitch, Cowgirl From The Morgue 3:23
10. Stupid Spoiled Whore 2:35
11. Monstrum 1:38

Band members
Ivan Kovacevic – vocals
Slobodan Stupar – guitar, vocals
Holger – bass
Thomas Polder – drums

Guest musicians
Adrie Kloosterwaard – vocals on “Back From the Grave”
Igor Buljin – vocals on “Kopam Oči, Režem Jezik, Prste, Nos I Uši”
Aleister Kainulainen – vocal on “Dullahan”

Album Review – Sinatras / Drowned (2017)

A concentrate of Hardcore, Thrash and Death Metal mixed with an old school Rock N’ Roll attitude, courtesy of five talented and restless Italian musicians eager to bring more fun to the world through their creations.

Rating4

coverFrank Sinatra, born in Hoboken, New Jersey on December 12, 1915, was an American singer, actor and producer who was one of the most popular and influential musical artists of the 20th century. Death N’ Roll quintet Sinatras, born in 2014 in Vicenza, a city in northeastern Italy in the Veneto region, from an idea of Emanuele Zilio (now known as Lele Sinatra), guitar player for 20 years in Italian Metal/Hardcore band Strange Corner, and featuring expert musicians with different musical roots from Rock N’ Roll to Progressive Death Metal, bringing forth a classic but yet personal musicality tailored for fans of Carcass, Entombed, Pantera and Hatebreed, among others. What do these two entities have in common? Well, apart from carrying the same “family name”, let’s say that they can quickly put you to dance to the sound their high-end electrified compositions.

In less than five months after the project’s inception, thanks to the experience both live on stage and during studio sessions, Sinatras were able to write and record their first demo, called Six Sexy Songs, opening several doors for the band and inspiring them to release now in 2017 their debut full-length album, titled Drowned, a concentrate of Hardcore, Thrash and Death Metal mixed with an old school Rock N’ Roll attitude, featuring a simple and effective artwork by Mirko Marchesini (aka Minkio Sinatra) and eleven impactful songs with catchy choruses and immediate appeal. So start spreading the news, as Sinatras are ready to be the “number one, head of the list, cream of the crop at the top of the heap” in the world of heavy music.

In the opening track, Drowned, the band already blasts a frantic fusion of Thrash and Death Metal with the rebellious Rock N’ Roll played by Motörhead, with frontman Fla Sinatra playing really well the part of the demented vocalist with both his sick growls and clean vocals while Lele and Minkio make a great guitar duo with their roaring riffs. Leaning towards modern Thrash Metal, we have 24/7, a song about anger (“The value of our life is decreasing / and the stupidity grows faster / we are angry 24/7. / THEM! who? THEM! convicted in a false heaven”) perfect for their live performances, with highlights to the tempo changes effectively led by drummer Pisto Sinatra; followed by Cockroach, a badass song with Fla sounding extremely vile on vocals, maintaining their musicality at a high level of aggressiveness. Once again we face great guitar lines a la Pantera by Lele and Minkio, including a fiery solo to add more feeling to the overall result.

Something to Hate, one of the heaviest of all tracks, bursts violence through the deep growls by Fla and the song’s cutting guitar riffs and solos, with its drums played frantically as the music demands, whereas Flow, one of the best tracks in Drowned, brings forward an amazing blend of Southern Rock and Thrash Metal, sounding like a hybrid of Pantera, Chrome Division and Volbeat with a thrilling rhythm and catchy-as-hell vocal lines, not to mention the hints of progressiveness that end up enhancing the song’s punch even more. You Spin Me Round (Like a Record), an awesome version to the cult hit from the 80’s by Dead or Alive, delivers harsh growls and fast beats that will certainly please even fans of the original version, and in Los 43, a solid Rock N’ Roll composition with a catchy vibe and a good performance by all band members, Sinatras provide us what’s perhaps the harshest lyrics of the whole album (“Chaos, new world order / Despise, in your disorder / Homicide, deicide, burned gasoline, / Thrown in a pit as an animal / Death, is what you search Tears, are what you get / Genocide, misery, pain and slavery left to rot in their own reality”).

sinatras-2017Miss Anthropy is the closest the band gets to modern American metal music, being fast and furious with Pisto crushing his drums and also less harmonious than the rest of the album with some moments being pure Death Metal. It falls flat after a while, though, but nothing to worry about. On the other hand, Back in Frank is in my opinion the most complete and exciting of all songs, a perfect combination of Thrash Metal and Rock N’ Roll that also brings elements from Death Metal and Southern Rock, with both Lele and Minkio firing sharper-than-a-blade riffs while Fla delivers his strongest vocals overall. If you don’t get pumped up by this insane tune, you should definitely go see a doctor. Anyway, in Blind Fury, the name of the song summarizes its rhythm and approach, being an infuriated, modernized version of Death Metal with technical guitar lines, fast-paced beats and in special the metallic punches by bassist Lispio Sinatra, before Spiral Hell nicely concludes this fun and very cohesive album by Sinatras, with the whole band delivering more deranged music to the listener. Its heavy and melodic lines are boosted by the song’s potent vocals and backing vocals (as well as its excellent guitar solo), turning it into a nonstop tune for slamming into the pit with the band.

Are you ready to “start spreading the news” with this lunatic metal act from Italy? You can do that by visiting their Facebook page, YouTube channel and ReverbNation to know more about the band, and purchase Drowned at their BandCamp page, at the logic(il)logic Records webstore, on Amazon, at CD Baby, at Discogs, and several other locations. In summary, Drowned offers to you the most electrifying elements of old school and modern metal music, courtesy of five talented and restless Italian musicians eager to bring more fun to the world through their creations.

Best moments of the album: Drowned, Flow and Back in Frank.

Worst moments of the album: Miss Anthropy.

Released in 2017 logic(il)logic Records

Track listing
1. Drowned 5:52
2. 24/7 4:34
3. Cockroach 4:16
4. Something to Hate 4:48
5. Flow 3:31
6. You Spin Me Round (Like a Record) (Dear or Alive cover) 3:17
7. Los 43 4:18
8. Miss Anthropy 4:09
9. Back in Frank 4:19
10. Blind Fury 2:25
11. Spiral Hell 4:23

Band members
Fla Sinatra – vocals
Lele Sinatra – guitars
Minkio Sinatra – guitars
Lispio Sinatra – bass
Pisto Sinatra – drums

Album Review – Big Guns / Six Shooter EP (2016)

After the six shots of visceral Death N’ Roll fired by these dynamic duo of Russian outlaws, you’ll be pretty much dead.

Rating5

coverSome people might agree that whenever you face a really big trouble, all you need is a really big gun to solve that once and for all. With that insurgent idea in mind, two experienced Russian metallers from Moscow teamed up earlier this year to fight stagnancy in music and decided to shoot some traditional Rock N’ Roll music spiced up by the brutality of Death Metal, giving birth to the quick-draw, high-speed Death N’ Roll project Big Guns and releasing their debut EP entitled Six Shooter for the delight of all headbanging gunslingers all around the world.

Big Guns are comprised of multi-instrumentalists Postie (Conflict) on guitars, bass, drum programming, backing vocals and mixing, and Vaarwel (Frozen Ocean, Goatpsalm, Smothered Bowels) on vocals, lyrics and mastering, and based on the music found in Six Shooter, featuring a gory Wild West-inspired cover art by Anton Baskin (Contrast Arts), the synergy between these two outlaws of heavy music is beyond amazing. Postie and Vaarwel fire together six short, violent tunes perfect for getting piss drunk at an old saloon and have a pistol duel with that gunman that wants to steal your sexy lady from your arms.

Although Postie and Vaarwel have only six bullets locked and loaded in their first stint as Big Guns, the final result is truly devastating. Hard as Tin brings forward a minute and a half of madness, with the blast beats blending Death and Thrash Metal by Postie together with the deep guttural by Vaarwel turning this demolishing tune into the epitome of badassness. In Nightmares of Tomorrow, a pub-fighting Rock N’ Roll tune the likes of Chrome Division tailored for drinking a beer or slamming into the pit, simply enjoy its gentle lyrics (“I sang about entrails and gore / I extolled splattered women / I praised mutilation and deeply adored / Dead bodies choking on semen / Hate! Exsanguinate! / Hate! Eviscerate!”) while bass and drums burst sheer electricity into your ears. And in the metallic Natural Attraction, another brutal Rock N’ Roll creation by this explosive Russian duo, Vaarwel sounds like if the Devil went full Western.

big-gunsOur Moscow outlaws add a lot of gunpowder to their instruments and fire a high-octane tune perfect for some sick mosh pits titled Grammar Guerillas, with highlights to the amazing riffs by Postie and its berserk rhythm; whereas in Pearl Jammed an eerie love story is narrated in a very obscure way (“I met her at the Bon Jovi gig, she was pretty delightful / Long leather boots, violet wig, talking so happily sprightful / Word by word we felt this, chemistry burst like a blast / Pelvis dreamt of pelvis, lust language was unsurpassed”), leaning towards sheer Death Metal with hints of Sludge and Doom Metal just to make things more tasteful. Their last shot of aggressiveness, Dragon Hedge, gets back to their Death N’ Roll core essence, offering the listener deep, enraged growls enhanced by sharp guitar lines and heavy beats. When it’s over, I’m sure you’ll be eager for more of Big Guns’ immoral fusion of Death Metal and Rock N’ Roll.

Are you ready to face the most wanted duo of Russian bandits in the world of heavy music? If you have the guts to challenge them for a duel, all you have to do is visit their Facebook page and purchase Six Shooter through their BandCamp page. Six Shooter might be extremely short in duration, but that doesn’t mean this cool EP doesn’t have the devastating effect of a bazooka, all thanks to the intensity and dexterity of two musicians that have an insane amount of lead and gunpowder flowing inside their veins.

Best moments of the album: Nightmares of Tomorrow and Grammar Guerillas.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2016 Independent

Track listing
1. Hard as Tin 1:37
2. Nightmares of Tomorrow 1:55
3. Natural Attraction 1:43
4. Grammar Guerillas 1:48
5. Pearl Jammed 2:10
6. Dragon Hedge 1:53

Band members
Vaarwel – vocals
Postie – guitars, bass, drum programming, backing vocals