Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Cuntaminated - Aborted Noise

Self Released 2011

1.Cot Death Carnage 2.Aggravated Homicide 3.Bete Noire

We are greeted by a really creepy intro which slowly builds a menacing atmosphere, before all hell breaks loose as ‘Cot Death Carnage’ opens up, blast beats and furious guitars raging. There is a real groove to the bands brand of death/grind, which definitely adds something extra rather than opting for an all out frenzied blasting approach. Vocally it is as you would expect; ultra-guttural lead vocals with shouted and screamed vocals used as back up. There’s a really natural, organic production on offer which lends itself perfectly to the faster grind orientated sections.  ‘Aggravated Homicide’ begins in similar fashion to the opener, a storm of blast beats, frenzied guitars and excellent dual vocals which bounce off each other brilliantly, singing and shouting in an almost chorus like fashion. The pace is slowed slightly into more ‘mid’paced’ territory which again allows the groove orientated riffs to breathe life into the song and add an extra dimension to the bands sonic onslaught.
Closing the e.p. is ‘BĂȘte Noire’ which is another furious slab of punky death/grind; feeling looser than the two previous tracks, bordering on ‘out of control’ but the structure of the song never gets lost in the chaos. It’s a great way to end this all too short e.p.  All three tracks clock in at 8 minutes which is fair enough, but when there are only three tracks on offer feels far too short and over far too quickly. Would have been nice to hear another three or four tracks as Cuntanimated are really easy (and a pleasure) to listen to, so you certainly wouldn’t mind sitting through fifteen or so minutes of this! It’s nothing new and isn’t going to set the death/grind scene on fire, but it’s a well-played slab of meaty “in for the kill” death/grind from a promising young band which show much potential…..a few more tracks next time lads 'cos this is good stuff! Recommended.

7 out of 10

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Eye Of Solitude - Eye Of Solitude

Self Released 2011

1.Suffocating Silence 2.Die Alone 3.Death Said: Bring A Friend

Describing themselves as ‘Evil Doom Death Metal’ is quite an apt description and is very apparent as ‘Suffocating Silence’ comes bellowing forth in a cascade of ultra-guttural vocals and extrememly heavy mournful and melancholic music. The atmosphere from the outset is utterly haunting. Even when the track breaks out into a melodic acoustic guitar and keyboard section, the sense of grief is retained perfectly before the heavy death/doom metal sound bursts out once again. Although there is a massive death metal laced doom influence of show, when the band switch into a more 'straight ahead' death metal approach, they incorporate fast tremolo picked guitars which are accompanied by really fast kick drums. When this combination is used the song takes on an almost Swedish Black/Death metal sound. These faster played sections don’t last long however, the dirge laden doom approach favoured, the atmosphere swirling back and forth, haunting and compelling.  ‘Die Alone’ is the perfect soundtrack to an extremely lonely, dark and miserable death, Daniel’s vocals are some of the best death metal vocals I’ve heard in a very long time, brutal, ultra guttural yet utterly mournful. There are even parts where you can understand what is being said! The song breaks out into a faster section, and we’re even treated some blast beats and really fast guitar work, again a heavy Swedish blackened death metal approach being undertaken which is a stark comparison to the doom laden sections but it works very well indeed. The song never loses its atmosphere in these faster sections and the change to the slower doomier style is instant but again, works extremely well. There’s a hint of ‘slower Nile’ to the band’s sound, grandiose a fitting description.
‘Death Said: Bring A Friend’ is slightly different as it opens up, much more melody injected into the sound, acoustic guitars leading the song with Daniels vocals acting as a great accompaniment. The track then takes on the now familiar heavy doom/death stance, however, guitars solos are introduced and retain the sense of melody seen earlier. Faster sections are also re-introduced which begin to build the track up to an unbelievably atmospheric finale before fading out mournfully. Everything E.O.S has to offer is compelling, the atmosphere created is unbelievably captivating, utterly mournful and grief stricken. All three tracks on this e.p are some of the best doom/death metal I’ve heard in for a very long time. The band has crafted themselves a very unique identity in their chosen genre and stand head and shoulders above those around them. Yet another shining example of what the UK extreme metal underground has to offer, E.O.S are more than capable of matching, if not bettering anything else out there in the Doom/Death world. Atmospheric, mournful, grief stricken and extremely highly recommended!

9 out of 10

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Aghast - Live Dangerously

Self Release 2012

1.Look Alive 2.We Fear Silence 3.Drop Dead Famous

There’s no holding back as ‘Look Alive’ blasts open in an orgy of blast beats, precise extreme guitars and spiteful and angry vocals. Aghast are angry and they’re going to tell you all about it. Switching effortlessly from melodic death metal into grindcore in an instant, there's nothing timid here, no 'playing it safe' for the sake of it. It sounds great, the bands technical ability second to none, and all obviously accomplished musicians. The precision on which the songs are crafted is what really stands out here, flawless in execution. The band are at their best when they rage into the grind sections, furious blast beats belting from the speakers. ‘We Fear Silence’ sees the pace being dropped slightly with the odd blast section being thrown in now and again for good measure. This second track ends on an extremely brutal note, raging blast beats, brutal dual vocals and pummelling double kick drums really smash the listener into the middle of next week. Vocally, James’ voice tends to be very angry, but also remarkably intelligible in extreme metal terms, leaning heavily towards a more shouted or screamed stance. However, when mixed with the guttural voice, they take on a life of their, as brutal as you’re likely to hear.
‘Drop Dead Famous’ is another beast of a track, the production really punches through, with the drums adding real power to the overall sound. The three tracks on ‘Live Dangerously’ cannot be faulted at all, the production is crystal clear, whilst remaining heavy and overwhelmingly brutal. When the kick drums go into hyper speed the power they deliver is remarkable. The shift from the more groove orientated slower sections, through to mid-paced death metal sections and then into the crazed grind sections (Lock Up springs to mind in these faster sections) is jaw dropping. Aghast are something very special indeed, their technical proficiency first rate with a good ear for writing catchy, memorable extreme metal. If you haven’t heard this e.p you should really get it on your “to buy” cd list, it’s a remarkable e.p. (the artwork and packaging alone make it money well spent!) It’s just a shame there’s only three tracks because I could sit and listen to them all day, it really is that good. Very highly recommended

9 out of 10

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Cachexic - The Grotesque Has Found A New Home

Self Released 2012

1.A Tortorous War Of Nerves 2.Horror Trail
3.Psychological Scars Last For Life 4.Succumbing To Diseases
5.Raping The Earth

The first thing that hits you in the face is the production, bass heavy and powerful as fuck! No holding back here, straight from the opening notes Cachexic have one thing on their mind….to pummel you into submission. Opening up with ‘A Torturous War of Nerves’  there is a very thrashy sound to their music, sitting in the death/thrash genre quite comfortably. When the track slows down there’s a real groove to the band’s sound although they do sound gruesome here, reminiscent of Autopsy in places, dragging you down into a filth ridden mire. This opening track ends extremely slowly and this is when the band is at their best, crawling and dragging the song to its grime filled and rotten conclusion. ‘Horror Trail’ opens up with a blistering pace, opting for a more defined Death metal sound. The pace is then dropped into more mid-paced territory and being brutally honest, the track passes by without any great innovation, nothing that really grabs your attention unfortunately.
‘Psychological Scars Last For Life’ is a confused song, it doesn’t really know what genre to sit in, changing from a very thrash orientated approached, especially the vocals which become almost shouted, to a very heavy and extreme form of death metal, the dual vocals a real highlight here. ‘Succumbing To Diseases’ sees the band adopting an altogether different approach, taking on a ‘Grindcore’ sound which, is very different from the previous tracks and is probably the best track so far, raging blast beats and mixed with punkier riffing which is quite a standard grind recipe, but works well here. Bonus track ‘Raping The Earth’ again adopts a punk ethic, raging along nicely with Mark’s vocals especially scathing and spitting out venom. A good short, sharp way to end this, their fourth e.p.
Summing up, ‘The Grotesque Has Found A New Home’ is a strange beast. All very well played, however the band seem to be confused as to which genre to sit in. Instead of mixing influences, each track appears to point in a different direction to the others. One song sounding thrash orientated, the next taking on the heavier death metal approach with the next sounding very Grindcore and then ending with some punk sounding songs. Mixing all of these influences into every song would have surely given the tracks a more coherent and connected sound. A worthy effort, but maybe Cachexic need to decide what brand of extreme metal they want to adopt because I’m sure that if they put their minds to it and have a mix of all their influences in every track they will be more than capable of producing a top notch e.p!

6.5 out of 10

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Putrefy - Interview

With PUTREFY about to celebrate their 20th anniversary, UKEM decided it was time to delve into the gore-soaked world of the Irish veterans.....

For those unfamiliar with the band, who are the members and what is their role?
The current line up consists of Connor on guitar/vocals,Aaron on guitar,myself on drums and yesterday we announced our new bass player Matthew,which i,ll add is a great addition to the band already,very skillful player and nice lad.

You’ve had cd’s released through Metal Age and Grindethics, how did those deals come about?
The Grindethic releases came about as we knew Rushy and Tom Bradfield,Rushy was in contact in 2002 or 2003 and liked the "Lust so Vile" material (we detest it now) and wanted to release it and a few years later we let him hear some demo tracks we had of new material after the debut album (released on Redrum Records in the u.s.a.,owned by Will Rahmer of MORTICIAN),and Rushy and Tom wanted to release the demo tracks on a split cd in 2007,so fast forward to 2008 when we played Caos Emergente open air fest in Portugal and met the Metal Age guys as they had a stall there,we played the fest and they wanted to sign us after we got home,unfortunately it didnt last long due to lack of effort to promote the band but they was nice people.

Were the band happy with those releases, or anything you’d do differently?
Well for me the real Putrefy will be heard on the forthcoming album where its all about the music,no gimmicks,no trend following,no trying to shock people anymore,we,ve well grown outta that stuff and some things in the past is regrettable with topics lyricially but every band was being extreme so we followed suit at the time,but looking back i would of done some things much differently,the songs on the debut album are ok but badly executed,the split is ok but could of been better,the last album has its moments,in the last couple years the band has improved very much as players,we will be re-recording some old tracks when we record the forthcoming album,give them the production they need and re-written,better vocals,tighter,at the time we was happy with the past releases but looking back they could of been better but every musician says that,people still like them so cant complain so much.
You’ve recently recorded a new Promo CD, how did the recording go and what has the reaction been like to it?
That recording went alright,a friend of mine since my teens recorded it at his new home studio,we had some wee problems here and there but we got there in the end,we,ll be recording the next album with him,great set up,the reaction has been good so far but the promo was mainly done for a new label and we,re still looking for a new label home,so if any labels are reading this and interested in a band celebrating 20 years in the scene this year get in touch,the promo tracks are just a hint of whats on the next album,the other new tracks thats unheard smoke them ones on the promo but at the time of the recording we was still writing them,but everyone will hear them on the next record.

Are there any new releases on the horizon?
Just the album for now,its gonna be called "Knelt before the Sarcophagus of Humanity",but we,re open to any offers of split cds,mcds,but something i hope to do is to release the 1993 demo,1995 split cd tracks and some unreleased stuff on a discography cd at some point.

Musically, who influences you, if anyone at all?
90,s death metal has always infuenced this band,like Suffocation,C,Corpse (not that new muck),Pyrexia,Internal Bleeding,Dying Fetus,Mortician,Morbid Angel,just heavy brutal catchy death metal,nothing technical,straight to the point music,the new album is total old school 90,s american death metal in influence.

What themes and topics do your lyrics deal with?
In the old days and up to a couple years ago it was tongue in cheek humour and topics that would cause offense and piss people off,but we got bored of that and being honest its childish now,nowadays its more horror influenced,not about girls getting cut up,people getting ripped apart,that stuff was left behind a few years ago and the best thing we did,but yeah its more horror influenced now rather than gore which ran its course in this band.

Composing songs can often be a frustrating process, how do you guys go about it?
Connor and Aaron will have a few riffs and i,ll get onto sorting some beats and will arrange the structure and we,ll go from there,always been that way,nowadays Connor will record new riffs on his iphone and email them and i,ll try a few ideas on my electric drumkit (best purchase ever) and have a bash at them at rehearsal,Aaron and Connor also meet through the week and have a jamming session and put their heads together and write some stuff,Connor writes the majority of the riffs but Aaron has provided a good chink of the stuff for the new album,its all good.
Putrefy - Smashed Down With Iron

Is gigging important to the band and what can we expect for a live Putrefy performance?
Yep its very important and anyone seeing us will associate it to getting a vicious beating sonicially,all i can say is expect a intense brutal show that,ll pulverize brains into sludge,but the band always seek new opportunities on the live front,unfortunately in northern ireland and ireland as a whole theres a small scene,lack of venues,we,re located in the wrong country but that cant be helped,if we lived in mainland uk or Europe we,d be gigging regular but we live here,but we do try to find gigs,so any promoters out there,please get in contact for bookings,we wont disappoint.

Plans for the future?
Firstly its to get the album recorded and hopefully find a new label,then we,ll see about gigs local,and elsewhere

What merch do you currently have available and where can we get it?
Merch wise we got some cds left,some shirts,hats and i got some limited copies of the 1993 demo still available,these include the 1995 split mcd tracks as well,and can be got from myself,merch can be got from the band myspace at but please send a message beforehand to check for availability,after the new album is done we,ll have new products.

Any final words?
Many thanks for the interview chris,thanks to anyone who supports the band and keep an eye on the band facebook and myspace for news,new merch,gigs,support death metal.