Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Fed To The Boars - Family Of Swine

Self Released 2014
1.Family Of Swine 2.Meat 3.Snuffed Out
There seems to have been a real resurgence within the UK underground of punishing old school death metal bands and another such like are Newcastle’s ‘Fed To The Boars’. Their three track e.p. ‘Family Of Swine’ pays homage to the early 90’s when death metal really was death metal, sounding raw, unpolished and nasty. Title track and opener ‘Family Of Swine’ reeks of early Swedish death metal worship, the guitar tone, the reverb heavy vocals and the way the song is delivered. From start to finish it’s utterly punishing, amazingly nasty and ultimately a savage slab of heavy death metal. ‘Meat’ follows on and if anything, sounds even more devastating as the song is only 1:30 in length so the pace it upped to the max to really add to the brutally savage appeal. ‘Snuffed Out’ closes this short e.p, with the pace dropping off slightly, an injection of groove added into the guitars which really gets the head nodding. As ever, the vocals are a real stand out, being brutally guttural and suiting the old school atmosphere perfectly. Hints of very old Dismember began to creep into this closing track, which is probably a good comparison for the whole e.p as is Séance, Nihilist and Grave.  
The band only came together last year, so to produce such a stand out piece of death metal is an amazing feat and is testament to the bands ability to capture “that old school sound” amazingly well. Three tracks of filthy, putrid old school death metal with a production and delivery that will have many a fan grinning widely, FTTB are proving to be extremely good at what they’re doing and this release comes highly recommended. Surely these guys have a nastily bright future ahead of them, here’s looking forward to the next release!
8 Out of 10
Band Page: Here

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Orange Goblin - Back from the Abyss

Candlelight Records 2014
1.Sabbath Hex 2.Übermensch 3.The Devil's Whip 4.Demon Blues
5.Heavy Lies the Crown 6. Into the Arms of Morpheus 7.Mythical Knives
8.Bloodzilla 9. The Abyss 10.Titan 11.Blood of Them 12. The Shadow over Innsmouth
Good old Orange Goblin. They are as reliable as a sledge hammer. Year after year, they put out quality releases using their experience to build a better record. Time spent touring, travelling and working hard are evident. Each song has their signature sound. “Back from the Abyss” is their eighth full length studio album and they show no sign of stopping. Clocking in at just under an hour, this is not too long and not too short for the twelve song affair. Smooth guitar tones, clear vocals, distinctive drums and thrusting bass tones are easy on the ear. Everything is played with solid conviction with a positive attitude. The first three songs; “Sabbath Hex”, “Ubermensch” and “The Devil's Whip” set the tone for the album. Comparisons to Motorhead, Metallica and Thin Lizzy harmonies can be found everywhere.
The band has not been afraid to experiment. Quiet parts to songs and passages that wouldn’t go amiss in a B.B. King set have given them a new string to their bow. The running order of the songs also gives this album a high ‘I want to play this again’ appeal. Saying that, pick any song on the album and it will stand up on its own. For example, “Bloodzilla” and the epic “Blood Of Them” are placed strategically to give a mid-way boost and final cool down respectively to this record. This seems to be a recurring theme to the album with the diversity of good song writing. You can tell the band take pleasure in their work and have crafted it over many years. Newcomers and long standing fans will not be disappointed. Their songs are commercial, but not so commercial it becomes main stream. They’ve managed to capture the right mix of Heavy Metal, Blues and Rock influences.
8 Out Of 10
Band Page: Here
Buy It: Here

Monday, 17 November 2014

The King Is Blind - The Deficiencies Of Man

Mordgrimm 2014
1.A Thousand Burning Temples 2. Of Osiris & Execration 3. Thorns That Pierce The Skull
4. Revelation, Apocalypse
The King Is Blind are relative newcomers to the scene but its ranks feature ex-members of Cradle of Filth and Extreme Noise Terror so anticipation is high to say the least. The band describes themselves as ‘Monolithic Metal’ and as ‘A Thousand Burning Temples’ spews out with pure hatred, venom and spite it is more than clear that this description is extremely apt. Snarled rasping vocals cut the speakers through like razor-wire through flesh. Musically this opening track has much to offer, flitting from old school influenced death metal through to melodic black metal seamlessly and with utter conviction leaving the listener in no doubt whatsoever as to the bands musical intentions. Strangely ‘Of Osiris And Execration’ takes you by surprise, the tempo and style dropped to a more rock inspired groovy doom metal feel, which at a first listen doesn’t quite sound in fitting with the opening track, but then as the song progresses it all seems to fit into place perfectly and you find yourself being dragged into the bands horrid despair. The track becomes strained and tortured, distorted menacingly into a musical nightmare, albeit a very good one!
‘Thorns That Pierce The Skull’ is a different beast altogether, blasting open in almost black metal fashion and continuing that theme throughout much of the song. The dual vocal delivery really stands out here, again spitting out pure hell and delivered with pure menace and they are the perfect accompaniment to the music. Final song ‘Revelation, Apocalypse’ slows proceedings down once again, although this time the song is more twisted and distorted, building the tempo up slowly to end on a real high. There is no doubt that TKIB have produced an absolute monster of an e.p and their experience from previous acts really shines through in their song-writing ability. For such a short release there really is a lot on offer and this should see the band pushed to the top of the UK underground as one of the bands to keep an eye on, such is the quality on display. Highly recommended blackened death metal with doom influences, this is the soundtrack to accompany your worst night terror!
8.5 Out Of 10
Band Page: Here
Buy It: Here

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Subservience - Upheaval

Self Released 2014
1.Upheaval 2.Inhuman Savagery 3.Slither 4.Divine Malevolence
If you prefer your death metal will a little less pace and a bit more old school influenced groove then Subservience might just be for you. Their new four track e.p  is packed full of bludgeoning death metal that opts to take things at a steady pace, rather than going for all our blast, which is where the bands ability to write some great death metal really stands out. Opener ‘Upheaval’ really sets a menacing tone, the songs bloody carcass remaining slow to mid-paced, but more importantly heavy! Faster blast beats flirt with the song occasionally adding variation, but the songs strength definitely lies in its ability to actually be a song, and not a blur of overly fast and technical nonsense. ‘Inhuman Savagery’ follows on in similar fashion, pounding and pummelling the listener into submission. Again, faster sections are incorporated, but their use is kept to a minimum which works in the bands favour. ‘Slither’ is another monstrous slab of quality death metal and comparisons could probably be made to Cannibal Corpse when they drop the pace and inject a slice of groove. There are also similarities to fellow UK death metal quartet Masochist.  
‘Divine Malevolence’ closes proceedings in suitably brutal fashion, albeit with slightly more melody added to the guitars but it’s the perfect way to end things. It actually sounds like a song that was written specifically to end this release, with its epic feel and crawling nastiness, great stuff! It’s refreshing to listen to death metal that isn’t just about speed and technical ability and more about producing some really solid, pounding songs that are old school in essence but with a modern day edge. Subservience has managed this and some! Praise also has to be given for the effort the band put into the actual physical release, from the superb cover art through to the nicely presented digi-packs. It shows a band really wanting to make their mark and be remembered, which they definitely do.  Upheaval is tight, brutal, pounding and showcases the band at their very best – this comes well recommended!
8 Out Of 10
Band Page: Here
Buy It: Here

Monday, 3 November 2014

Horrified Interview

Horrified are a relatively young old school influenced death metal band hailing from the North East of England. Their rise from demo band to fully label signed band was been rapid to say the least, so UKEM decided to quiz Guitarist / Vocalist Dan Alderson and get a brief insight into the band!

For those unfamiliar with the band, please give us a brief history of the band and its members?
Horrified started as a studio project, which began with the recording of a three track demo which was released in 2013. It evolved into a full band with the current line up we have now, which consists of:
Matthew Henderson  - Drums (Plague Rider, Live Burial)
Ross Oliver - Guitars (Risen Prophecy, Vacivus) 
Dan Hughes - (Winds of Genoicde, Prolefeed, Rotting Bull)
Dan Alderson - Guitars , Vocals (Starborn)

Who came up with the band name and what is the influence behind choosing such a moniker?
I came up with the name as it sounded in-line with our initial influences and our lyrical concepts.
You guys have just released your debut album via Memento Mori, how did the deal come about and how are you finding working with such a great label?
I had Raul, the label owner on Facebook for a while. I contacted him showing some pre production of the album and the rest is history. I'm honoured to be apart of the label, I never expected to even get signed at all or for the album to make the impression it has on the underground death metal community, its humbling really.

Musically, who influences you, if anyone at all? 
All forms of good metal, my biggest influences range from Edge of Sanity and Dan Swano, Dissection, Dismember, Carcass, Horrendous, Morbid Angel, Garden of Shadows, Emperor, Sacramentum etc etc. I'm just as influenced by melodic metal as well, bands like Anubis Gate and Pagan's Mind are just as big of influence on me currently.

What themes and topics do your lyrics deal with?
Conceptual surrealist horror stories and mental health issues.
Composing songs can often be a frustrating process, how do you go about it?
Usually just jamming riffs and ideas, then tabbing them up in Guitar Pro so I can jam along to midi files and tab up harmony and drum ideas and, lock in the overall arrangement of a song to.

What could we expect from one of your live performances?
High energy and frantic intensity to represent the feeling of sheer fear and anxiety expressed in our music and vocal approach. 

Plans for the future?
I'm currently writing material for the next album and I'm very pleased with the progression so far, I've have taken influence from melodic styles of black and death metal and infused them into our original sound, Where going for a more dynamic and hopefully more original sounding album next time. We will be starting to record this towards the end of the year and will slowly work on it throughout 2015. We plan to gig every so often when its worth for us to play a show also.

What merch do you currently have available and where can we get it?
Currently just name your price download from our bandcamp, however we will be stocking hard copies of our album soon, once I have received our copies from Memento Mori, we may do shirts in the future. 

Any final words?
Thanks for the interview and keep up the good work with UKEM Chris!

Band Page: Here