Archive for Self-publishing

Lucifer – Feeding The Machine (demo)

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , on 10th February 2013 by izaforestspirit

Lucifer
Feeding The Machine (demo)
Released: 1st August 2011
Thrash Metal
Self-Released

‘Feeding The Machine’ is the second demo from the Lithuanian thrash metal band Lucifer.

The title track starts off with a slow guitar intro, which gives in to some thrash metal riffage and Toxic Holocaust -style vocals. This particular song is very guitar driven with the riffs and the solos being the main focus whilst the drums maintain a steady pace. Not that it’s a bad thing, in fact it’s pretty much what you would expect from a band of this genre.

Then we come to ‘Killchain’ which skips the slow intro, starting with a full blown assault of mid-paced guitar riffage. There’s also more guitar solos and the vocals are far more prominent on here than they were on the title track. Finally we come to ‘Harmony’ which has a similar slow start and picks up the pace as the song progresses. In a way it feels like a continuation of the title track as the guitar patterns are very similar, although this time the vocals enter the spotlight.

It’s hard to judge a band based on just three songs. All I can say is that this is a very promising thrash metal demo and I can’t wait to see what these guys come up with next.

3.5/5

Iza Raittila

 

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Bonemud – Challenge Accepted [EP]

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , on 30th January 2013 by Pieni

Bonemud
“Challenge Accepted”
Released: 12th December 2012
Rapcore/metal
Self-released

 photo bonemud_zpse7e7b6cb.png

I’m not sure when Bonemud was formed, but I’m guessing it wasn’t that much before the release of their debut album “Tokoloshe”, in November 2010. It seems their line-up wasn’t very stable though – apart from founders guitarist Remi Makulec and singer Scott Allen – until late 2011. In January 2012 the band claimed to be “stronger than ever” with Nick Shaffer on drums and Thom Wood on bass and this “Challenge Accepted” is here to prove so.

I labelled them as “rapcore” because it’s how they’re commonly known as. But then I had to add a broader term – “metal” – because if the first track, “Homiez”, leaves no doubt about its rapcore/nu-metal nature, the other three reveal much more than that.

Right up next comes “Lil’ Whore”, which is a strong I-don’t-want-to-love-you ballad and could have been performed by a modern rock band. I’m not saying this in any derogatory way – by the contrary. It’s a catchy song, with cranking but melodic riffs, and totally different from what you’d expect from a rapcore band. That’s what I meant before – they’re capable of playing all kinds of genres and subgenres of music.

Then “Something I Am” goes back to the nu-metal path, the one that’s closer to the industrial neighbourhood. At least in the first minute and half, before the first chorus, you hear an enhanced electronic structure and heavy beats.

And the best way to describe “U&I” is alternative metal – nothing “core” about it, but too harsh for rock-something.

Not sure if a whole album will work with this formula, consisting in no formula at all and every song pushing into a different direction. But in a 4-track EP you don’t have time to get confused and such a “mess” of elements and subgenres becomes kind of interesting.

4/5

Renata “Pieni” Lino

 

Giants–These Are The Days

Posted in 'Core, CD with tags , , , , on 14th November 2012 by samaxup

Giants
These Are The Days
Released: 17th September
Post-Hardcore/Skater Punk
Self-Released

In the past 3 years since the roots of Essex quintet Giants formed, they’ve amassed a huge following amongst the UK hardcore scene. With huge anthemic tunes such as Another Day, Another Year and Home To Home under their belt, it’s also no wonder why their live set is exploding with energy and crowd song-alongs. They have quickly become one of the hardest working bands in the UK and ‘These Are The Days’ is a well-fitting showcase of what the band have to offer to new fans, and what they have to reward their loyal fans with.

The 7 track mini-album wastes no time in starting. Did It Mean So Much To You gives mere seconds for the listener to prepare themselves for the ride ahead before a genre defining punk-rock riff initiates the album. The bass and guitar tones blend perfectly into a wall of sound that is driven by typical (but fitting) punk drums. Ed Parker and Jack Longman perform their vocals in their standard ‘you shout, I scream’ way but extend into different territory with a swap of tempos between slow choruses and upbeat verses.  A stand out moment in this song is the breakdown. In typical Giants fashion, they reflect the heavy and chuggy guitars with a small lighter fills of guitar which may take away the brutal-ness of the breakdown but instead adds beauty.

One thing Giants can do expertly are catchy ‘two step’ beats and When It Comes Down To It contains perfect examples of this. The structure of the song is made up of 2 choruses which are followed by well driven drum beats, aggressive punk guitars and bouncing basslines.  The vocals also closely compliment this song with catchy choruses and memorable lyrics. I have a feeling that this song will add to the foundations of their live set due to the application of this songs features.

Snakes is a rampage of pure skater aggression. The short anthem explodes with pure angst that is rumoured to be based on scooters in skate parks. For fellow skaters who have experienced the same, this song with be a vent for all the anger and the lyrics speak the minds of all who agree; ‘You’re always getting in the way’.

The lyrics that Giants painted in previous releases always had a way of reaching the hearts of their teenage fans. Won’t Be Told follows suit by expressing that things that teenagers have always wanted: Freedom. Jack Longman’s vocals are heart felt and are greatly accompanied by a flowing lead guitar riff and beefy rhythm and bass guitars. They also leave room for those fans who just want to headbang or run around in circles by keeping the punk influence running throughout the song.

Current fans of Giants are guaranteed to know track 5. Another Day, Another Year was originally released on 2011’s split EP with Evita and is now one of their signature songs that stapled their name onto the UK hardcore scene.  Unlike a lot of Giants’ songs, Another Day, Another Year has a feel good vibe. The pulsating vocals that sing about getting older but still remembering the good times, the sore throat inducing group chants and lead guitar that your ears worship all add up to an anthem that is a clear stand out amongst the rest of the album.

Bottled up is a nice and refreshing instrumental that is a break from all the carnage. The guitar tone is surprisingly beautiful and would fit in amongst bands like Basement. However, the break doesn’t last long as the final track Boneless brings the mini-album to close with a heroic mix group vocals, big choruses and intricate guitar work.

These Are The Days is not just another notch on the bed for Giants like most albums are for bands of their genre, it is the defining moment of their career so far and reflects their best work to date.  The display of Punk influenced hardcore and heart felt lyrics shown by the quintet sets the bar higher for all other aspiring artists that hope to make it big in the modern day music industry. All their hard work and touring has definitely paid off for them.

5/5

Sam Axup

Rumahoy–Yarr Demo

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , , on 27th August 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Rumahoy
Yarr Demo
Released: 15th August
Trve Scottish Pirate Metal/Heritagecore
Self-Released

Rumahoy - Yarr Demo 2012 Cover

Hailing from the apparent ancient fishing village Auchtermuchty (which is shown as being inland on Google Maps), come Scotland’s finest (and probably only) heritagecore outfit Rumahoy. Dubbing themselves as the first and original Scottish pirate metal band, the quartet formed in 2010 and released a song entitled Blackbeard’s Mighty Treasure which when down well in Scotland’s underground metals scene, as I’m told. With very little information about the floating around on the seven seas of the internet, I couldn’t help but think this was some sort of elaborate hoax but the demo was passed onto me by a trusted contact and the demo does indeed contain four genuine, if somewhat, tongue in cheek tracks.

Oceans of Treasures begins with the alluring sound of the tides coming back and forth before a soothing use of acoustic guitars and drums sail onwards before the track takes a turn down the heavier tides of the track. The riffs are genuinely and intelligently performed while the vocals (and lyrics) seem to bring about the tongue-in-cheek sound, mixing cheesily deep clean vocals with screams. The use of folk instrumentation sallies forth a folky and pirate sound, making it almost Celtic.

Digging For Rum rushes in with a strong thrash sound, which is soon found sailing alongside a more folk orientated sound however the clean, deep vocals really do put me off from wanting to listen to this track again. Questing Upon the High Seas makes up for the previous track, to an extent, bring some really epic passages and poignant lyrics though the vocals are pretty much like marmite. The samples (which I’m assuming are taken from different pirate films) really add a unique sound to the song. The keyboards add some truly dark sounding voyages to the song, especially when the harsher vocals make a proper appearance after a sample taken from Pirates of the Caribbean.

The demo ends with the black metalesque piece that is Ahoy, Wenches! To be honest, I expected it sound more folky and like a drinking song but the dark, almost evil screams of the guitars work well. The vocals ring in a similar vein to early 90s Bathory, adding a slight but distinct epic part to the track.

I’m really in two minds about this release; the overall musicianship screams out with a serious metal vibe while the vocals and lyrics make it almost… Like a joke. If you’re not too fussed about lyrics that are bursting with cheese then Yarr Demo is definitely something to get your hands on to place in your treasure trove of metal. The release is enjoyable enough though it is let down in areas by the vocals.

3/5

Nico Davidson

Seven Deadly – The Allegiance EP

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , on 31st July 2012 by izaforestspirit

Seven Deadly
The Allegiance EP
Released: May 2012
Thrash Metal
Self-released

‘The Allegiance’ is the debut EP from the British thrash metal band Seven Deadly. The band consists of former members of Panic Cell and Denounce.

The title track ‘Allegiance’ sets the tone for some good thrash metal complete with fast and furious guitar riffs. Ok, so the vocals are not exactly the greatest, shifting from clean to a more nu-metal/At The Gates, but they seem to suit the overall feel of music. Similar things apply to to ‘End Of All’. Notable exceptions included ‘Blood on your hands’ and ‘From This Darkness’, both of which offer a more melodic touch to the guitars as well as emphasizing the clean vocals.

Overall not a bad effort though the vocals could do with some refining.

3/5

Iza Raittila