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Unsane
Wreck

I'll not beat around the bush here. I've got '90s rock in my veins. It's where I'm from. Phil was trying to argue that there wasn't time to review the new Unsane album, but I couldn't be having that, see. I saw Unsane live last year and they're still every bit as pummelling as they ever ...view item »

Nails
Abandon All Life

This record clocks out after a breathless seventeen minutes, not a single one of them spent idling about. A perfect balance is here struck between the sort of shrieking, close-to-the-brink manic energy of the aforementioned likes of Narcosis (‘Tyrant’, ‘No Surrender’), and an immense capacity for variety in the songcraft....view item »

Cradle Of Filth
Total Fucking Darkness

Cradle Of Filth! I’ve got to say, I really appreciate a band having the self-awareness to name an album Total Fucking Darkness: it’s a title that doesn’t mess around, or pretend to be about anything other than what it is. Excellent. This double LP is actually a reissue of an early (1992) demo, bolstere...view item »

Broken Bone
Willowbrook EP

Broken Bone are Yorkshire duo Daz Quayle and Tony 'Bone' Snowden. Most of you will know Daz already as one half of Scarletron, IL.EK.TRO and owner of scsi-av (no?). Tony has certainly paid his dues to the industry too, performing in noise bands, Crumbling Spine and Yorkshire Bone; laden with distorted drum machines, guitar and effects wi...view item »

Martyrdod
Elddop

Sweden’s d-beat crust gods, MARTYRDÖD, return with their second full-length for Southern Lord. Once again they entered the infamous Studio Fredman (At The Gates, Amon Amarth, Opeth) to record their new full-length, entitled Elddop, the crushing follow-up to 2012’s Paranoia LP. ...view item »

AnD / WHOK
Valved remixes EP

An EP of raw and abrasive industrial techno to pummel both mind and body with here. This is the first remix 12” on Trensmat, a by-product of the label’s continued incursions into techno territory. On the first side you get AnD remixing Valved’s ‘Tipping Point’, which strips the original (all of which are available a...view item »

Divorce
Divorce (Album)

Glasgow mentalists Divorce have been doing the rounds for a bit now, teasing us with all manner of juicy singles full of scratchy, unhinged psychopunk clatterings, but only now have they finally got round to dropping a full album of their anarchic disc-sander-to-the-face rantings. It’s f...view item »

ZATH
Black Goat Razor / Pain Reaper

ZATH (pronounced ‘ZOTH’) is made of three men - Zack Weil, Seth Sher and Dan Browning, all of whom have an existence outside of the howling maw of rage / despair that is ZATH. In fact, they’re all pretty busy m...view item »

Woods of Ypres
Pursuit of the Sun & Allure of the Earth

By the time their second LP, Pursuit of the Sun & Allure of the Earth came out Woods of Ypres were regarded as being in transition. Elements of gothic rock were leeching into their otherwise black metal sound. The band were defined by vocalist David Gold’s disconsolate delivery and stark lyrics. Gold sadly die...view item »

Boris
Noise

I don't know what's happened to Boris. I was never a big fan anyway but 'Pink' really had a startling power that pricked my ears up. It's all been a bit downhill from there, however. They've transformed into this kind of "alternative" stadium band, retaining their dynamic structures and eclectic nature but...I dunno. It's all a little over-worth...view item »

SEIROM
And The Light Will Swallow Everything

SEIROM is M.C. De Jong. And The Light Will Swallow Everything marks a departure from De Jong’s usual desolate and bleak work, this time he has created something that is bright and glorious, 4AD-ish and cinematic by using elements of shoegaze, post-rock and black metal. And The Light Will Sw...view item »

God Macabre
The Winterlong

The Winterlong is a reissue of the Swedish death metal trio God Macabre's classic from 1993. This expanded reissue features a previously unheard bonus track. Drummer Niklas Nilsson left the band before the album was recorded but was recruited as a session musician. The Winterlong is available ...view item »

Amebix
Sonic Mass

Silent since the late 80s, Amebix, a duo of the reclusive swordsmith Rob Miller and his brother Stig have had their lineup augmented with the addition of  drummer Roy Mayorga (Soulfly, Stone Sour). Sonic Mass is their first album in over 20 years and their third in total. This reissue is av...view item »

Satan's Satyrs
Die Screaming

In the world of Satan's Satyrs, the riff is king. They don't even give us a whiff of vocals until we've banged our heads through a five-minute barrage of non-stop pummelling riffage. Their singer has a weird voice, thin, trebly and sneering, which works oddly well against the backdrop of thick, chunky testosterock.   ...view item »

Mamiffer & Circle
Enharmonic Intervals (For Paschen Organ)

Circle team up with Mamiffer (featuring Isis man Aaron Turner) for this slow and serious voyage of dread-drones and chilly textures. Over the course of three sides, we get a lengthy opener of chilly dark ambience with intermittent drumbeats and melodic twangs and scrapes (viola by ...view item »

Christopher Lee
Charlemagne: The Omens of Death

Available as either double orange vinyl or CD. Christopher Lee’s first outing into heavy metal by singing on a Rhapsody track and then narrating for Manowar. After releasing Charlemagne: By the Sword and the Cross in 2010 he was awarded the “Spirit of Hammer” award by ...view item »

Yvette
Process

Here's an admirably nasty-sounding album from duo Yvette, who mix the whole drums-and-guitar thing with some minimal electronic noise for a wrenchingly visceral explosion of post-punk with guitars that buzz and screech like exposed nerves, relentless repetitive rhythms and blasts of raw electronic noise. Second track 'Cuts Me In Half', f...view item »

The Oath
The Oath

The Oath are a trans-European rock and heavy metal band. Their members hail from Sweden, Germany, France and England. Their label, Rise Above, expect great things from the band and if the underground buzz is to be believed, they have every right to. Their eponymous debut is available on vinyl and CD....view item »

Limb
Limb

Well, I tried Googling these guys’ music, but all I found was Youtube videos of medical professionals. So I am left no choice but to go out on a limb here and say that their self-titled album will an album filled with Limb’s half-sludge-and-half-minimal-bleakness sound that we’ve come to appreciate....view item »

ASG
Win Us Over

ASG are a rock four-piece from North Carolina. The band have acquired cult status over the years through their songs appearing skateboarding, snowboarding and surfing videos. Their classic album, Win Us Over was originally released in 2008 and is reissued on vinyl, with download code. The album plays at 45rpm, for ...view item »

The Shrine
Bless Off

Got the new LP by hairy skate punks The Shrine. The inner sleeve has a collage of photos of the band ripping up some skateparks, posing with an American flag and machete, letting off a fire extinguisher, bleeding profusely, eating pizza and standing in front of things, interspersed with scantily clad skate betties as if to cement their skate-dri...view item »

Black Spiders
This Savage Land

Although this album is not quite as strong as the debut, it rocks the same way and has some awesome songs. This is a heavier, faster, darker album than the last. The band sticks to its good fun Rock and Roll tone and attitude, but lyrically, the songs are darker and more aggressive than most of what was on the debut and is overall more metal. Th...view item »

GRMMSK
(The End) Prophecies

The icy wastes of Finland make for some haunting nightmares and GRMMSK captures the fear perfectly on his 2012 album (The End) Prophecies from Libertatia Overseas Trading. Remastered for extra volume and depth, and featuring reggae vocals to ‘signify cosmic dread’ apparently. Available on CD....view item »

Shampoo Boy
Nebel / Nadel

I'll try to make this short. I have over 10,000 LP's, am 64, retired, owned a record store while going to college in the 60's. While working from 1975 to 2010 might have purchased maybe only 500 LP's. So it's only the last 4 years that I started getting back into the VINYL scene. Southern Records in London has a series called ...view item »

Kuolemanlaakso
Tulijoutsen

Finnish avant-garde at its finest, Kuolemanlaakso really can’t be arsed with any kind of boundaries. Between death metal and some kind of progressive acoustic folk, Tulijoutsen is all over the place without losing your attention. Impressive piece of Finnish craftsmanship, oozing with direct consequences of living ...view item »

Current 93
I Am The Last Of All The Field That Fell: Å Channel

I've got a challenge on my hands here. About half an hour to write about the new Current 93 album, which is nearly 70 minutes long. Of course you can look to the press release if you want to know who's on it, which is basically everybody from Nick Cave to John Zorn, as usual. A curs...view item »

Laibach
Spectre

Those wacky industrial avant-goths Laibach are, erm, back. When Phil handed me this CD he said "There's a new Laibach album, it's very funny." I wasn't sure what he meant. Now I'm listening to it and I know what he meant. Opener 'The Whistleblowers' opens with some whistling but then there's some big Slavonic-sounding gang vocals and uplifting s...view item »

Nothing
Guilty Of Everything

Guilty Of Everything is the debut album by Nothing. despite being signed to metal label, Relapse Records, Nothing take their cues from shoegazing maestros My Bloody Valentine and the arena alt. rock of Smashing Pumpkins. The heavy swathes of guitars, introspective, dark lyrics are offse...view item »

Polar
Shadowed By Vultures

Pop on your boots and get ready for some stomping with Polar. Shadowed By Vultures is the guilfordian groups second full length. Taking stock from the last few decades of melodic metal and hardcore, this one is full of heavy vocals, chugged and mathily riffing guitars and brutal bass and drums. Think More...view item »

Sutcliffe Jugend
Pursuit of Pleasure

Here's my last review before the weekend! It's this limited edition LP from Sutcliffe Jugend which is beautifully presented in a gatefold sleeve on splattery red vinyl with an poster and everything. The sleeve, poster (of Peter Sutcliffe's victims...pretty macabre) and vinyl itself are all individually numbered. That must've taken ages! ...view item »

Malkuth
Hathir Sakta

Malkuth launch a treble-heavy experimental black metal assault on your ears with their album Hathir Sakta. The New York trio comprise two untamed guitarists and an equally wild drummer who are let loose on the world - there’s no bass to hold things together. Hathir Sakta is available on vinyl LP....view item »

Sunn O))) & Ulver
Terrestrials

I'm coming to the home stretch of this week's review marathon and running out of time so I have to make the frankly jarring aesthetic leap from the earnest '80s tweepop of Helen and the Horns straight over to this slow-burning slab of theatrical dirgery from Sunn O))) and Ulver. Thankfully this is one of the records where you already know what i...view item »

The Body
Christs, Redeemers

The Body's Christs, Redeemers sounds like an apocalypse of biblical proportions. The soundtrack to the end of the world. It's slow, sludgy and all of the instruments sound like they're exploding. The vocals range from a choir of angelic female vocals to inhuman squarks and squeals from the frontman. It's definitely an experience. While the album...view item »

Windhand
Soma

Windhand are the oppressive force that drew you to explore the darkest corner of metal music. Soma is the ultimate album to reflect upon one's self and journey while under the spell of Dorthia Cottrell's bewitching vocals, Ascechiah Bogdan and Garrett Morris's trance inducing riff work, Parker Chandler's mind shattering bass grooves and Ryan Wol...view item »

Oozing Wound
Retrash

I made a decision to review something that wasn’t sound art because I just did several sound art records in a row and it was starting to interfere with my chi. The record I was most confident wouldn’t be sound art turned out to be this debut mini-album from Oozing Wound. This lot are peddling some of the most filthy thrash metal you&...view item »

Church of Misery
Thy Kingdom Scum

Disco doom metallers Church of Misery are partial to heavy riffage and serial killers, having named nearly all of their songs after them. Thy Kingdom Scum continues their ascent to excellent surprise grooves and crushing evil. The band to listen to when all the serious doom bands start to bum yo...view item »

zydol
Triumph of the Will

60 minutes of noisy, distorted, lo-fi, naïve Musique concrète/ tape music. Black sonics from the void > An obsession with the fragility of existence. B-side is the A-side in reverse. Edition of 23 copies. Tracks: A: Is There a He...view item »

Ramesses
Misanthropic Alchemy

Ramesses' 1st full length expands the occult doom of their earlier EP's to include more dynamics and textures without sacrificing any grit. This is a great Heavy Doom Album, full of evil menacing guitar riffs and fantastic death like vocals mixed in with some clean as well. I really loved Electric Wizards early work with the original members who...view item »

Nadja + Vampillia
The Perfect World

Here’s a rather special addition to Aidan “Nadja” Baker’s already intimidating canon - a collaboration with Osaka’s progressive neoclassicists Vampillia which straddles their two worlds of minimal doom rock and orchestral grandeur. Opener ‘Aurora&rsqu...view item »

Butthole Surfers
Psychic...Powerless... Another Man's Sac

From 1982 to the present, the Butthole Surfers have gone through many changes in their musical style. "Brown Reason to Live" and "Live PCPPEP" are both amazing albums, but if you want to hear what the Butthole Surfers were really all about, get "Psychic... Powerless... Another Man's Sac." On this album, the Surfers spew up 11 catchy and quirky s...view item »

A Storm Of Light
Nations To Flames

Cruel sonic doomers A Storm of Light continue to drop their music from great heights onto the unsuspecting mass of people underfoot. Nations To Flames has a couple of most metal features on it, with Neurosis' Josh Graha and Kim Thayil from Soundgarden. A no...view item »

Ashes Of Ares
Ashes Of Ares

After leaving Iced Earth for the second time, Matt Barlow shows us that his voice is as unfaltering as ever with is new project Ashes of Ares. It is indeed a power metal album at heart, so expect powerful vocals, pummeling riffs, and thrashing drums throughout. With the help of Freddie Vidales (also formerly of Iced Earth) and Van Williams (Ex-N...view item »

Age Of Taurus
Desperate Souls Of Tortured Times

I’ve been well out of the UK underground metal scene for quite a few years now so this is a real blast from the past for me, Age Of Taurus have been gigging the underground scene since 2009 when vocalist/guitarist Toby Wright formed the band over a love of classic doom metal bands like Candlemass and Trouble, ‘Desperate Souls Of Tort...view item »

Debt of Nature
Order : Spoil the Entire State

I worried last week that it’s very possible subconsciously I have something against Brad Laner. I never seem to rate his music, in whichever format it takes, he must keep catching me on an off day as its nothing personal. In recent weeks we’ve had to deal with a reissue of his school band Earth ...view item »

Sunwolf
Midnight Moon

Sunwolf are a Leeds duo (says the press release) containing Matthew Carrington, Dominic Deane and James Clifford (says the album sleeve), and they’ve made this LP utilising the recording prowess of Ross Halden, with Hookworms’ MJ capturing the weird backwards loopery of closer ‘Glacier Ri...view item »

Black Pus
All My Relations

Here’s the latest CD from Black Pus, aka Brian Chippendale of Lightning Bolt and Mindflayer notoriety, who here blasts out a chaotic collection of upbeat lo-fi noise-pop with bass distorted into a big farty rumble, hollered vocals low in the mix and process...view item »

Black Sabbath
13

It's dark, heavy tone and masterful songwriting makes this album a standout amongst Black Sabbath's discography. It's a long album yet it keeps you interested, so it feels like the appropriate length. There are several small issues with this album, though. I can't say Rick Rubin did a spectacular job producing the album. While I don't mind the l...view item »

ASG
Blood Drive

The album didn't quite be what I expected from something considered to be 'stoner rock', but indeed it's got its good stoner moments. Some of the songs are very much progressive rock (close to what the Von Herzen Brothers would do in Finland), and some are similar to that, but with a very stoner-like sound to them. Then some of the tracks are al...view item »

Napalm Death
Leaders Not Followers

Red 10“ vinyl, limited to 1000 copies, released on Secret Records for record store day 2013. Originally released in 1999 this 10” Napalm Death provide 6 covers of punk and metal bands that have been their major influences. Including the blistering cover of "Nazi Punks Fuck Off" by Dead Kennedys and "...view item »

Melvins
Everybody Loves Sausages

You always know what to expect with the Melvins, if that thing is something totally bloody weird and obnoxious and surprising. This time around, just like last time around, they’re doing something a bit different. This time, though, that something is playing other people’s songs with their famous ...view item »

Cut Yourself In Half
Mekkanizm

Heavy- guttural- apocalyptic sounds mixed with some awesome melodies. What a truly great album. Say goodbye to the world being the highlight single track, yet all the other tracks provide enough mayhem and chaos for you to sink your teeth into again and again...view item »

Barberos / Dispo
You Vs Us/Us Vs You

Another split release from Payper Tiger, this time via the grey streets of Liverpool and the sunny climes of Italy with Barberos alongside electro-math wizards Dispo. It brings together a range of influences including Battles, The Mars Volta, Kraftwerk and ...view item »

Godflesh
Godflesh / Selfless / Us and Them

This boxset contains two of Godflesh's best albums (self-titled and 'Us And Them') along with their worst album (Selfless). The self-titled album especially is one of my all-time favourite albums, something of a life-changing experience, with its leviathan like riffs and stark, mechanical beats and Justin K. Broadrick's impenetrable vocals. Note...view item »

Roseanne Barrr
Repulsion

Not to be confused with prime-time-sitcom-legend-cum-political-oddball Roseanne Barr, Roseanne Barrr are a boy-girl bass-and-drums duo of DIY queer punkers from London who I’m mostly aware of through their affiliation with Leeds anarcho-banshees Etai Keshiki. Their sound is a throbbing,...view item »

Savage Pencil
Trip or Squeek's Big Amplifier

I’ve been a big fan of Savage Pencil (or Sav X) for years now. Ever since I clocked those early Blast First record sleeves I’ve been hooked! He’s done artwork for Sonic Youth, Big B...view item »

Laibach
Nova Akropola

Nothing like a little bit of horrifying industrial bloodshed to get you out of bed in the morning. On 'Nova Akropola', Laibach's unsettling sound recalls eerie, long forgotten film scores and ferocious power electronics driven with inflamed percussion, along with completely vulnerable vocals that range from opera to death metal growls. All the w...view item »

Various
Phrenology

The Runnningonair label serves up a nice little comp CD which was released for a show they’ve done/ are doing. I can’t possibly tell you which! It is/was available at the show and a few have been made for mail order from selected outlets. Each of the artists playing the show contributed a ...view item »

Cut Hands
Black Mamba (The Album)

Professional grimacing noisy bastard "Lovely" Bill Bennett (as me girlfriend likes to call him after he cadged a ciggie off her at Supersonic) brings forth the percussive terror once more on his second Cut Hands long player. This stuff is so portentous a...view item »

The Secret
Agnus Dei

Vicious, unrelenting, and cathartic. The sonic equivalent of snorting a line of gunpowder and then flying a tank into the Vatican....view item »

Yoga
Skinwalker

It opens at night, in a graveyard presumably, the bone-rattling groans of the undead drifting in from every side over what might be a distant organ drone. Over the moans of the dying someone frantically tries to tune a radio, hoping against hope there are more survivors elsew...view item »

Ufomammut
ORO – Opus Alter

As its title suggests, "Oro: Opus Alter" is the second installment of a major work that began with "Oro: Opus Primum" and which revolves around the transformation of gold (itself a metaphor) into something much greater and which could be used for both tremendous good or unspeakable evil. If the music has direction and focus, they tend to come mo...view item »

Eagle Twin
The Feather Tipped The Serpent's Scale

Salt Lake City doom duo Eagle Twin's first album, The Unkindness of Crows, was apparently inspired by Ted Hughes’ poem Crow. At the end of the album crows fly into the sun, burn, and fall back to the Earth as snakes. That's some pretty metal imagery right there! Fittingly, the Feather Tipped The Serpent's Scale picks up the story there, and ex...view item »

Altar Of Flies / Mirrors Are Black
Split

French label Tamed Records are only in their infancy but they have impressed us weirdo snobs at Normans so far with those two bong-tastic 'Chaudelande' LPs from Gnod and a spook...view item »

Melvins
Freak Puke

This Melvins album isn’t really a Melvins album. Only it is. It’s not business as usual, though, as this time around they’re stripped down to a three-piece with Buzzo and Crover joined by ...view item »

Divorce / Jailhouse Fuck
Split

We're all pretty fond of Divorce and their unhinged bombastic Arab on Radar-ish scuzzy noise-punk stylings so I've bunged their side of this split ...view item »

Pelican
Ataraxia / Taraxis

Pelican is a post-metal band in the vein of Isis and Scale the Summit that holds down its airy atmosphere with some sludgy guitars in this short four-track EP. The big meaty growling of the guitars is lent memorable varying rhythms and though you might not be compelled to perk up your ears through every second of each song, every progression amb...view item »

Throbbing Gristle
Throbbing Gristle's Greatest Hits

To my ears this is one of the finest greatest hits compilations ever. I used to carry my CD copy around in my pocket for ages and pull it out at various friends houses when we wanted something to listen to. It since went AWOL, never to be returned. For any TG newcomers this is probably the...view item »

Goatspeed
Zen And The Art Of War

In Leeds we know how to make proper RAWK! Goatspeed are a fine example of the city unrelenting lust for balls out rockin' riffs. On this self-released 7” they hit us with four meaty slabs of blistering northern rock action and further bless us with an additional download code with b...view item »

Dillinger Escape Plan
Dillinger Escape Plan

I don't know if "Dillinger Escape Plan" is the best place to start, but if you haven't had the pleasure of listening to Dillinger Escape Plan before, whenever you get the chance to: Do it! You will find one of the most talented bands around playing some of the hardest, heaviest, and technically chaotic music ever. Fans of non-commercial hardcore...view item »

Loincloth
Iron Balls Of Steel

Following the demise of Confessor comes forth Loincloth. Insane technical rhythms that will drive you out of your mind. Instrumental heaviness of short songs. If you dig Confessor, Gore or even The Melvins, you must pick this up. The perfect soundtrack for cold and dark winter mornings. I cannot believe that I missed this little gem of a 90’s ban...view item »

Our Love Will Destroy The World
Blue Eyes Are My Reward

Hey, I've got blue eyes which makes me the perfect guy to review this. What they're my reward for though, I have absolutely no idea. Maybe for the torrent of Digestives I demolished at lunchtime? You might know Campbell Kneale from his fine Birchville Cat Motel project, or even the split single he did with Neil Campbell that time (aw, those guys...view item »

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