tiistai 30. joulukuuta 2014

Neglected Fields - Sansara demo 1996

Neglected Fields - Sansara demo I 1996
1) Sphere's Rhapsody
2) Eschatological
3) Sansara
4) Living Structures

Mediafire / RGhost

Looks this is going to be the last post for this year, thanks to all supporters and contributors and let us keep reaping the tombs next year as well. Today's offering is again by Henri and it is the first demo of the Latvian Neglected Fields who played progressive and technical death metal. No, I don't think they sound like Opeth. Or do they? I'm by no means an expert here. Cover scans are included and these are unusually colourful, which is kind of neat for change. Festive and all that.

This is not the sort of music I am personally very familiar with, nor do I really much care for technical sort of metal in general, but this is staying within fairly reasonable bounds instead of full-blown instrumenstrual orgy and I kind of like their Orientally flavoured esoteric concept, at least in small doses such as the rather standard seventeen minutes this demo runs for. I haven't heard any of their three albums, or any other later output either but as these tracks seem to reappear on the debut I'd assume at least that one is in similar vein to this tape. Progressively technical but still rather agreeable "death" metal, not at all brutal despite the vocalist exclusively utilizing his grunts yet quite interesting and not too fluffy. I'm not sure if I could really stomach a full album of this stuff but a little snack is fine occasionally. Hear for yourself and next year I promise to post more moist, rotten filth scraped off the sacrophagi long forgotten in the dreariest catacombs.

keskiviikko 24. joulukuuta 2014

Funereus - Demo 1992

Funereus - Demo 1992
1) Ascension of the Infernal Sephiroth
2) Into the Autumn Shade

Zippyshare / Mega

It's xmas eve and time to end my little advent Coven folly, (almost) daily posting feels too much like work. And what better way to do so than with some funeral death/doom? Recently comrade Cyclades approached me with some contributions and this is the first of them, the 1992 demo by Funereus from New Jersey USA. Funereus is kind of a pre-Evoken but about that more little later. There's no cover unfortunately, I found a semi-decent one online but wouldn't mind a full scan. As a side note, Cyclades believes this demo was spread more by Nick Orlando (who continued on with Evoken and Funebrarum which would explain why a track from this demo ended up as a bonus track on "Quietus" re-release with Peaceville), much of it via tape trading.

So you noticed I said kind of pre-Evoken? Well, here's some background, I quote more or less directly what Cyclades wrote me. Rob Robichaud and Phil Wilson originally came from an oddly named band called Cartilage Ripper that was around circa 1988 to 1990 and apparently played insane death/grind like Nuclear Death and Prophecy of Doom. Nick Orlando came from the group Putrifact, which at other times also included Craig Pillard from Incantation. He formed the band along with Robichaud, trying out a bunch of local musicians, including guys who shortly afterward went on to be in other local groups like Deteriorot and Ceremonium. After a while they recruited drummer Vince Verkay, from a band called Body of Christ, which included Bill Venner who would form Disma many years later. They recorded a bunch of stuff in the spring/summer of '92, spread the recordings and went into a studio that autumn to record tracks for an EP. However it didn't go too well because the studio guys had no idea how to record something so extreme (typical story from back then!) and they basically got disgusted and took a break. Wilson left, and then they reformed as just a trio under the name of Asmodeus with new material, and recorded something around the spring of '93. This was the real "pre-Evoken", as much of the early Evoken stuff is said to originate from this period, whereas Funereus was really an earlier and quite different sounding group. Then, Robichaud left and the band almost broke up for good, but they managed to continue on, eventually became Evoken, and the rest is history as they say!

Ok, that was a lot of names dropped, I guess it's best to say something about the music too, it's funereal death/doom metal, but much more malevolent and severe than many of the contemporaries were or Evoken would later become. There's significantly more death here, that's partially why and closest comparisons would be dISEMBOWELMENT, Lord of Putrefaction and I do hear some Thergothon in places too, but this is more intense than atmospheric and laid back. Ugh, I'm just dropping more names here, better stop and let you listen for yourselves. I'll post another Funereus recording (yes there are more than this) later, with a few more background notes. For now, enjoy some terrifying vintage death/doom.

tiistai 23. joulukuuta 2014

Waging the War (2001)

Various Artists - Waging the War compilation CD (2001)
1) Antaeus - Inner War
2) Negură Bunget - Immortality's Elegy: the Vampirism
3) Horna - Synkän muiston äärellä
4) Skjull - The Wanderer
5) Ragnarok - Certain Death
6) Frozen Shadows - Of Pain and Insufferable Torment
7) Lord Belial - Come to the Sabbath
8) Esker - Du Nord
9) Garwall - Par delà le bien et le mal
10) Thy Primordial - The Heresy of an Age of Reason
11) NostraDrama - L'hymne nocturne
12) Celestia - Darkness Enfolds the Sky
13) The Burning - Darkness Soon Will Be (rehearsal)
14) Veneficium - The Awakening
15) Azaghal - Ihmisviha
16) Demon Realm - Eternities Unbound Forevermore
17) Winter of the Black Skies - Rider of the Night

Rusfolder / Mediafire

Traditionally the pre-xmas season is aflush with compilations (though usually of the "best of" -variety) and I thought it'd be a good opportunity for the Coven to participate in this practice. Today we have a Canadian (from Québec to be more precise!) black metal compilation CD that I ripped and scanned some months ago. I don't really remember anymore if I had a real reason to do so, but since I have it I decided to share it. Sorry if I was supposed to post this earlier or if someone elsewhere requested it and I forgot. This compilation was the second release on Sepuchral Productions (which was founded by Frozen Shadows vocalist Myrkhaal). The label reactivated a couple of years ago, still concentrating on local black metal, but they do not sell this compilation anymore.

Seven out of seventeen participants hail from Québec so there is a good amount of local colour here which pleases me. Some of the bands are also a bit on the obscure side which is even better. Frozen Shadows is naturally included and I suppose many of the bands here were associates of Myrkhaal back then, the roster is international but with a slight emphasis on a few countries. Seven tracks were recorded exclusively for the compilation but I think (didn't check all of them) most if not all have since reappeared somewhere. Note that I've fixed some typos and inconsistencies on the tracklisting, most notably Azaghal's track "Ihmisviha" is spelled on the booklet and back cover completely wrong as "Immisvitta" - he probably misread Narqath's handwriting? Everyone plays black metal, ranging from the aggressive start of Antaeus to Thy Primordial's fast and melodic black to the more atmospheric approach of Negură Bunget but pretty much all have certain rawness and speed to them so the variation is slighter than usual. This is of course intentional, as the cover states "...this is not the place you will find cute and fashionable black metal". Might be a pro or a con, depending on your tastes, I don't mind the homogeneousness but admittedly a few more midpaced or slow tracks would've spiced things up.

maanantai 22. joulukuuta 2014

Kalevalanmiekka - Demo 2001

Kalevalanmiekka - Demo I 2001
1) Maailman muodostuminen
2) Tulen synty
3) Kuun ja Auringon taunto

Yandex / RGhost

I decided to continue on a somewhat similar vein as the previous post, this is Finnish stuff though and based on Kalevala myths (which should be obvious looking at the name) and again I know very little of this project, brother Grev dubbed it in a time-honoured fashion as a filler on a tape and he had gotten it himself from master Shatraug back in the day, again I presume to fill up a cassette. I wouldn't be too surprised to find out it was his project, or one of the Lpr comrades. No cover for this one, if one exists I'd appreciate getting a scan and any information in general is welcome.

To the music. The dub unfortunately had a pretty poor sound, mostly since it was very low and a bit one-sided but it's audible when you crank the volume up. At least it's lofi enough if you're into that kind of thing. Music is ambient/ds, quite simple and rather relaxing sounds, some samples of nature sounds and spoken words taken from Kalevala. Or so I think, at least the form is similar. The voice is kind of distant and hard to make out on the first track while much more discernible on the second track, fitting to the nature of fire as is the more active music. I'm not sure if "taunto" on the third track is a typo or supposedly a more archaic form of "taonta" but I decided to keep it written as I got it. This track is somewhat similar to the second one and again that would seem to fit the theme. The whole thing seems a bit short at less than ten minutes and leaves me wondering if more was made later. I suppose this fits under the dungeon synth tag moderately well and the usual people will want to take a listen.

sunnuntai 21. joulukuuta 2014

Vindalv - Æptir Pushende Ar demo 1999

Vindalv - Æptir Pushende Ar demo 1999
1) Rampn Skria
2) Hwar Kampin Sta
3) Swærþ Stimma
4) Loki
5) Forfæþernes Bloþ

Zippyshare / Yandex

Time to chill a bit again, is it not? I was originally going to post the Jääportit '99 tape master Sorvali kindly sent me, but seeing that they've quite recently digitally re-released it here, I decided against it and instead present you with this recording by Vindalv, a project of which I know only that it's Swedish, this is demo 1999 and they/he played apparently Norse-themed dungeon synth. That's judging from the titles which appear to be written in some of archaic Swedish. Cover scans were included, thanks again to Henri for them, the rip and info on origin!

This is a quite long demo, slightly over half an hour and with the first track being a shorter piece to lead us into Vindalv's world we're left with four long songs, all fully instrumental and from the slightly more active end of dungeon synth spectrum. Some percussion is employed and cheesy samples and such are (thankfully) absent. I detect some familiar sounding bits on the second track, pretty certain these are "borrowed" from some classical composer. The sound is quite nostalgic and varies between more medieval moods and neoclassical, darkwavey approach. In that way it's closer to Die Verbannten Kinder Evas than Mortiis. Somewhere between DVKE and Gothmog might not be utterly wrong comparison, just a bit off. I was actually quite excited to get this and still enjoy it, though I admit it might more effective were it a wee bit shorter. Recommended listening for other dungeon synth, medieval darkwave and Scandiambient aficionados.

Neohellist: True Black Metal Compilation (2000)

Various Artists - Neohellist: True Black Metal Compilation tape (2000)
1) Crusade - Camella's Glare Upon Candleflames
2) Impiety - Sodomythical Frostgoats
3) Santhet - The True Witcraft
4) Cryogenic - Fimbulwinter
5) Armageddon Holocaust - The Seven Churches of Apokalypse
6) Unseen Darkness - Glorifications on My Sign Existance
7) Autumn Verses - The October Land
8) Perish - Burning Soul With a Winter Shadow
9) Vaakevandring - Some Day
10) Borgomil - Inferno Resonance
11) Behemoth - Satan's Sword (I Have Become)
12) Neurotic of Gods - Terbuai Mimpi Di Laut Duka
13) Kekal - Embrace the Dead
14) Mortality - Abandonment Unto Our Lady the Infinite
15) Gorbalrog - Sternengriff
16) Mystical - Evil Spells
17) Moonsorrow - Luopion veri
18) Hellgods - Ahl Sohn Bar
19) Maelstrom - The Darkest Winter

Depositfiles / Mega

This is the last of the compilation tapes Henri Sorvali sent me amongst the legion of other rips, well that's not entirely accurate as he sent also two of the Beverina compilations (#2 and #3) which I'd already ripped and posted. I'll still need to compare the quality of our rips to see if I'll replace mine with his rips. But back to today's item, this is a "true black metal" compilation made by Extreme Souls Production from Indonesia. I find it hard to take them and their "true" and "pure" black metal seriously when they start their thanks list hailing "GOD" but perhaps I'm missing something here. Let's not tarry on the label's possible poser status, it should not affect the content of the compilation nor is it the bands' fault.

A good thing about this compilation is that it has a large selection of Indonesian bands which I'm not very well familiar with, making it more interesting than a standard selection of Nordic bands with a token local band tossed in seen too often. The first band Crusade starts with a rather COF-esque track of quasi-symphonic black metal which isn't terrible but not very interesting either. Fortunately the next two bands keep it more real and especially another local Santhet manages to sound quite raw. The compilation goes on alternating between differing takes on black(-ened) metal and manages to maintain a somewhat uniform sound volume- and qualitywise while having enough variation to not get too dull. No major lapses, except maybe Borgomil who sound like their track was recorded in a can, not that it would be an issue. The covers have some errors, Hellgods is spelled "Hell Gods" and Moonsorrow is listed with wrong track. Overall better than average compilation tape, unless you for some reason hate Indonesian bands, and recommendable.

perjantai 19. joulukuuta 2014

Serpent Lore - Brandishing Damnation Sword demo 1998

Serpent Lore - Brandishing Damnation Sword demo 1998
1) Grimstone Craved
2) The Night Neverending
3) Sears Within the Soul
4) The Freezing Moon (A Tribute to the True Mayhem)

Yandex / 4shared

Another black metal demo from Portugal is upon the alter today, also supplied by master Sorvali, this is Serpent Lore and their '98 tape which also seems to be their only release. Several band members have since continued with a number of black metal bands, all firmly in the never-heard department for me. Ripped from an original tape with cover scans included.

A bit longer songs again this time, though no quarter hour mammoths here, the Mayhem tribute (=cover) has the longest running time of the lot at six minutes. Good enough sounding demo, quite balanced. First thing I noticed on the first track was the pretty traditional heavy metal riffs. Then there are synths. And solos. And more heavy metal. Not very kvlt and grim sort of black metal here, but that's okay you know, better they have more of that Mediterranean touch to proceedings than trying to sound northern, frozen, cold and fake. At times they do stray a bit more into power metallish territory than would be necessary but in general it stays closer to Mortuary Drape than Stratovarius so I am condoning this. The songs aren't exactly catchy, close to that but slightly staying out of grasp, just a bit, fingertips graze but cannot quite reach them. I need sleep, you might want to take a listen to this. Oh yeah, the Mayhem cover is clearly based more on the DMDS-version than the older which would more accurately be called "The Freezing Moon" but I'm completely fine with that as DMDS > anything else by Mayhem. Form small groups and discuss.

torstai 18. joulukuuta 2014

Amorak - ...In the Dark Northern Moonlight demo 1997

Amorak - ...In the Dark Northern Moonlight demo I 1997
1) Invoking an Evening Storm
2) Across the Elysian Fields
3) Amorak
4) Timeless Secrets Beyond the Ancient Flame
5) Behold Seth's Dream
6) Relieved Under Sorrow (Drowned in Waters)

RGhost / Mediafire

Enough of Teutonia for now, we return later but for now let's travel south to Lusitania and some more of Henri's contributions again, this is the first demo of the black metal band Amorak. Thanks again for the contributions! Amorak released two tapes before disbanding, according to M.A. and looks like this one was released with both coloured and black/white/grey glossy (judging from the readability) covers as the scans I've here are of the latter variety.

Intro, outro and four tracks which are on the shorter side for change and mostly the music is quite fast paced too. Quite clear demo sound with very distinct drums this time. Vocals are quite typical raspy black metal croaks and barks that occasionally change to high shrieks. There are some good moments and promising moments like the last proper track's beginning, but generally I seem to have a hard time saying anything really interesting about this. Quite average black metal demo at the end of the day, perhaps my opinion might change after repeat listens or returning to it another time. Worth giving it a listen or two despite my current lack of enthusiasm.

Myrkwid - Myrkwid's kjempe demo 1997

Myrkwid - Myrkwid's kjempe demo II 1997
1) Hymn og kjempe
2) Han mester
3) The Eternal Questioner

Rusfolder / Depositfiles

Mythic black metal saga of Myrkwid continues, this is the second demo sent, with cover scans, by the same person as the first one. Thanks for the donations to the Coven! I suppose I babbled enough about the band in the previous post so let's just move to the business here, though I must mention I was first at loss whether this demo should be called just "Kjempe" or as seen above "Myrkwid's kjempe". I went with the latter as it so consistently appears on the cover. Kjempe, by the way, means either a giant/titan or a fight, struggle, depending on the etymology. I suppose he's going with the second meaning here.

Three songs only this time, still it's over twenty minutes on material and once again Malthökk separates men from the boys right at start and puts the longest song first, almost ten minute "Hymn og kjempe" which continues on similar vein as the first demo. Sounds a bit more focused though. This might be an illusion created by my tired mind, though, it's not been that long from the debut. Someone commented that this is a German band that sounds like a Polish one and that's pretty well said, this is true to the "proper" tracks here. The middle song "Han mester" is an interlude-like thing with what appears to be a recording of uncle Aleister mixed with mostly acoustic music. It feels a bit long to be honest. Overall, if you liked the previous demo I suppose you'll enjoy this as well.

tiistai 16. joulukuuta 2014

Myrkwid - Dverg demo 1997

Myrkwid - Dverg demo I 1997
1) Hulemdverg
2) Nornesmal
3) Sang han Asen
4) Asgart
5) Yggdrasil

Mega / Zippyshare

Back to contributions but let's stay in Germania for a bit longer. I was recently sent some demos by the quite profilic one-man band Myrkwid, still active to this day with three albums and around ten other releases under his belt. Well, comparatively profilic, he's taken it easy after the years when he put out eight releases in three years plus whatever various other projects did. Malthökk, that's the fellow behind Myrkwid, runs(/ran?) also a label Dunkelwald Productions and the Darkwood Studio. This is the first demo, released in 1997 and I was sent a cover scan along with the rip. Name of the game is mythic metal, that's what the covers say, influenced by Norse mythology as the song titles imply.

I find myself once again wondering about the track order of a demo, they're arranged here starting with the longest (8:53) and ending with the shortest one (3:25). It seems quite unintuitive to me, but perhaps he feared the listeners will start to become less able to focus by the end of the demo? Though I think for that sort of issue other kinds of solutions would be better. Some of the tracks even sound like they've been shorted a bit with awkward fades/cuts. Whatever the reason, the first track is fast paced for much of its duration, guitar sound is the most dominating element here, harsh vocals on the second front seat and drums participating in the conversation from the backseat. Not from the trunk mind you, they're not that muffled and buried. I can't quite make up my mind if he's using drum machine, like many of the one-man bands tend to do, or actually playing them. They do sound kind of sloppy at times which might indicate the fabled human touch. Despite the ample rawness this is rather melodic and quite atmospheric stuff and slows down periodically, sometimes in effective manner, occasionally coming stumbling like on the second track. Though the fastest bits of that one suffer from it as well. The vocal is a raw, grating scream and works well enough even without much variation. Overall this is kind of charming but lasts a bit longer than necessary, changing the tracklisting might help or just cutting off some excess fat from some of the songs. I haven't heard his albums, just demos so I'm not going to go making comparisons to them. Recommended for people who, like me, enjoy vintage German demos and unpolished, unsophisticated black (/viking) metal.

maanantai 15. joulukuuta 2014

Mayhemic Truth - Promotape '94

Mayhemic Truth - Promotape '94
1) And Only the Flames Remember to Long Forgotten Cries
2) God in Ruins (Your Blood Is Like an Ocean)
3) Our Gatebend Is an Rainbow
4) The Child of Mayhem

Mediafire / 4shared

German black metal and one of my favourite bands from that country, Mayhemic Truth which morphed into / reformed as the just as excellent and recommendable Morrigan after splitting up around 2000. Early material of the band is pretty crude and not really that good but this is when it got to more my liking, epic and atmospheric black metal with a crisp and quite raw sound. Ripped from my supposedly original tape, scan enclosed.

All of the four tracks appear also on the R.I.P. album's various versions, first released unofficially by Sombre recs back in '99, some with slightly changed titles but the sound is very similar, raw and crispy with kinda thin guitars and all. Not sure if the content there is from same sessions as this promo, the cover here gives no recording information whatever the case may be and I don't really have time for quick further research now. I recommend you get R.I.P. if you don't have it yet if you like Mayhemic Truth and/or Morrigan. A few more words about the music here, yes it is very Bathory-influenced like most of their stuff, kind of combination of the epic and raw, thrashier bits, later of which gets a more pronounced role with the '96 demo and afterwards. Or might be more appropriate to say from that point on the tracks are more clearly divided into the slower, atmospheric bits and quick, short and thrashy numbers. But enough for now, recommended and mandatory listening even if not as great as following material.

sunnuntai 14. joulukuuta 2014

Tem Ohp Ab - Rehearsal Track 1995

Tem Ohp Ab - Rehearsal Track 1995
1) Swastika's Occult Origin

Yandex / RGhost

A quickie for tonight. Burn the Crucifix was an Italian black metal band that recorded (at least) two demos and then, I quote Metal Archives, "Anaboth changed the band's name to Tem Ohp Ab and was the only member remaining. One track is known to exist that was spread via tape trading". This is that track. I think he quit the band/project soon afterwards, possibly due there already being an Italian noise/something act Tem Oph Ab which was getting known better. Whatever the case, I got this track from, you guessed it, tape trading and there's no cover or much anything else to go by so I slapped a BtC picture to decorate the post. Hopefully that's the right guy!

UPDATE ! : Sister Borderline dug up an interview (in Polish) with Tem Ohp Ab and a flyer with a proper image! Though looks like they changed the spelling to "Oph" at some point too, just to complicate stuff I bet! Anyways, I now really want to hear the releases mentioned in there, namely the demo of same name as this track and an EP "In Search of North's Spirit" which is a title I'm certain I've seen before! Traderlist, most likely.

The track itself is raw and slightly repetitive slab of black metal. Rehearsal sound so rawness is pretty much given. Drums are almost lost in the grating sawing of the guitar, vocals are very audible and not bad at all. I wouldn't mind hearing more of this, but there probably isn't anything. Oh, despite the word "Swastika" on the title I don't think this is nsbm. If Burn the Crucifix demos sound anything similar I'd love to hear them so get in touch if you have 'em. Recommended for people into obscure and raw black metal.

lauantai 13. joulukuuta 2014

Medieval Tortures #3

Medieval Tortures 'zine, issue III (October 1999)
Blessed In Sin
WAR 88
The Soil Bleeds Black
Dissimulation (old interview, '95)
Armageddon Holocaust
As Vampiric Shades And Belial Winds
Holy Inquisition & The Malleus Maleficarum (Part III)
The Occult Nazism (Part III)
Pan the Great God of the Woods
Anti-Baltak article
The Necronomicon
+ prologue, reviews, WAR 88, Arkham, Armageddon Holocaust bios


Here is the third part of Medieval Tortures, also sent by Kurgan. Thank you! See part II here for further background information, as these were released simultaneously most of what I wrote applies here as well. Different bands featured here, obviously, and it's 72 pages. The look is identical to issue II, obviously, and the up- and downsides same. I must mention I'm really growing weary with the editor's rants here (and the previous issue), he keeps launching into them in the middle of answers and sometimes most of a long seeming reply is actually him going on about the glory of ancient Hellas and how they were responsible for all civilization anywhere ever since 100 000 years ago. Amusingly enough he does zip it for the interview with Proscriptor. Well, not only there, but it's a glaring change from the previous two interviews where he would butt in on almost every reply.

If you can bear with Luczebeus, some of the interviews are a really good read, others because they're interesting (like Blackdeath) and some just for entertainment value (like Dissimulation, gotta love his listing of things he hates: "...crosses, cemataries, I hate "Mortification", I hate Negrous, Russians, Jews, Asiates, Cats, Women and God..." anti-feline black metal! I also like to imagine him shouting all his replies). There are only two pages of reviews, which is a bit of a bummer. Only one guest interview this time, Armageddon Holocaust by someone called Infernal. As with the previous issue, approach with caution. Oh yeah and I would like to see part I too so get in touch if you have scans of it!

perjantai 12. joulukuuta 2014

Incubus Succubus - Corn King cassEP 1994

Incubus Succubus - Corn King cassette EP 1994
1) Welcome to the Underworld
2) Prince of Shadows
3) Corn King
4) Witchunt (Fly Sister, Fly)
5) Dance (In the Fire of Love)


More 'different' stuff follows and now I'm quite pissed, I thought I had already posted this last night before leaving for work but something went wrong and all I found was just a title and nothing else in unfinished texts. Great.

I'm not going to bother with all the crap I typed for a second time, you can find the bio for Incubus Succubus, later spelled Inkubus Sukkubus on their website. Cassette EP, two songs appear on "Heartbeat of the Earth" album (UPDATE: actually all of them do but some were retitled and all are quite different versions), pagan/gothic rock with female main vocals, male backing. Mostly pretty catchy tunes, an old guilty pleasure of mine. Ripped from a dub I got tapetrading in the 90's. That is all.

torstai 11. joulukuuta 2014

Milkweed - Ubi Bene Ibi Patria demo 1998

Milkweed - Ubi Bene Ibi Patria demo III 1998
1) Every Devil Off the Bridge
2) Secluded Life
3) Heads or Tails

RGhost / Mediafire

And now something different for change. Well, not so radically different, it's still metal, Finnish and a contribution by Henri Sorvali so that's already three things in common with quite a few recent posts. However this is thrash which I don't post too often. Or death/thrash/alternative/crossover/something suchlike, this is not my area of expertise, it's actually a few steps away from my comfort zone. Third demo by this Helsinki band, whatever their genre be, and cover (which is kind of misleading, would fit better something Arska played in) scans as usual included, ripped from an original tape after all.

Now that we've established this lies somewhere in my discomfort zone, what is it like? The sound of the demo is fair enough, music is annoyingly modern-sounding (well, for 90's) chuggy sort of blending of thrash, death (really just for the rougher vocals), alternative and stuff. Think Suicidal Tendencies etc. kinda thrash, not old Sodom sort. And Rage Against the Machine, new Sepultura, Waltari and generally stuff where you jump around a lot. Yeah, I don't like this and am running out of patience trying to come up with something sensible to write. Feel free to check 'em out if you got curious or are into things I haphazardly name-bombed there. I'm done.

keskiviikko 10. joulukuuta 2014

Septimus - The Sign of the Horns demo 1992

Septimus - The Sign of the Horns demo I 1992
1) Furies from Hell
2) Antichrist
3) The Sign of the Horns

4shared / Depositfiles

Ok, here's the requested item I mentioned and it is a repost from the sadly deceased (or at least very dormant) Lockjaw blog, posted there originally by Drowned. So credits of the rip belong to him. The original rip was very quiet though and as I'm getting old, deaf and cranky I adjusted the sound level up a little bit. No covers, unfortunately. Please get in touch if you have 'em!

Let's get to the band and music, finally, this is the only demo I'm aware of by Swedish black metal band Septimus, Drowned mentioned the band would feature a member from Pagan Rites but this seems to be a mix-up if Metal Archives data is correct: Patrik "Onkel" Andersson played in the band and was a member of Autopsy Torment which people incorrectly consider as pre-Pagan Rites. As if someone cared. Well, another interesting thing is that this is supposed to be a '92 demo, recorded in September 1992 to be more accurate and according to, again, M.A. info the band changed name to Seventh Sight in 1991 and turned death metal. That has to be a mistake, either they got the year wrong or what seems more likely to me the same guys started another band, Seventh Sight, to play death metal and eventually abandoned Septimus in favour of it, or, bear with me a moment longer, Septimus was just a one-off side project of the Seventh Sight guys. If you have actual facts, feel free to share! Oh, and to complicate stuff further, the members were also active with a grindcore band and another death metal band, plus the very obscure and interesting Angel Goat. Drop me a line if you know more of that one!

I still haven't said anything about the music except it's black metal. Drowned compared this to old Bathory, but I don't really see such a glaringly clear influence and similarity. Well, no more than on just about every Scandinavian second wave band. I'm actually more reminded of old Darkthrone (Ablaze...) and old Carpathian Forest. Which were influenced by Bathory, yes, yes I know! A little muffled, kind a warm but obscure sound on the recording. Excellent use of keyboards to add atmosphere on the second track and a pleasantly old fashioned feel to everything. I wasn't first that impressed but it's grown definitely on me after a few repeat, more attentive listens. Shame they didn't continue on this path. Recommended!

Enchanted - Breed My Sorrows demo 1995 ('97 version)

Enchanted - Breed My Sorrows demo 1995 (Vox Mortiis Records 1997 version)
1) Breed My Sorrows
2) Starfall
3) Carven Dreams
4) The Words of an Ember

Mediafire (full scans) / Yandex (only cover image)

Let's stay in Norway for another post and another contribution, this one was sent by Chris already months back so about time I post it! Thanks for the rip and (massive!) scans to him. Enchanted were a Norwegian band formed in 1992 with a quite scarce discography, besides this demo originally released in 1995 they recorded an official rehearsal tape in '94, with two songs that appear on this demo too and an EP in 1998 with two new songs. These give a grand total of six songs in as many years, they apparently split up after the EP was released. Not a whole lot. Anyways, you see them labeled as black metal in Metal Archives and actually in the mp3's here as I forgot to change 'em but do not let that fool you. The vocalist has a screamy voice, yes, but musically this is much closer to melodeath of Swedish school and obviously their lyrics aren't black metal. Let's go with dark metal for this one again, shall we?

They took over two months to complete the recording and mixing process so the sound better be good after that much time used on a demo recording! And it is, clear and quite powerful even. The low end is over represented but I suspect this would really be Chris's doing, I'm quite sure it wasn't this bassy on the dub I have. As I've already mentioned, this is very melodic, at times almost slipping to flowery power metal stuff but narrowly avoids the full tumble. It's well enough performed and all, but this isn't really my favoured poison. Recommended if you enjoy either nwosdm, melodeath in general or melodic dark metal. Oh, I should probably mention, even if it is written next to the links, that the Mediafire download is the full package with the enormous scans (7-zip packed) while Yandex is without the big scans (Winrar). Pick whichever options suits you better. Next post will be a request and I'll try to get to sometime in the evening! Maybe.

maanantai 8. joulukuuta 2014

Limbonic Art - Promotion Tape 1996

Limbonic Art - Promotion Tape 1996
1) Beyond the Candles Burning
2) Moon in the Scorpio
3) In Mourning Mystique

Zippyshare / Rusfolder

Back to black metal and this is again from the loot master Sorvali shared with the Coven. Thanks to him and the Norwegians Limbonic Art are probably known to most of the readers already. This item is the N.A.P. promo from '96, recorded in April on a home studio recorder which results in, I quote, "rather poor and chaotic soundquality" as the cover kindly warns the listener. Well, I think that's horse manure, it's ok demo sound and I like to hear these tracks in a more raw and rough form. Kyrck Productions & Armour of Greece has released this also as part of a compilation but I think that was only on limited vinyl? But you might want to pick that up if you have a vinyl player.

Limbonic Art's tracks tend to be quite long and epic which is the case here as well, the first one still fits within the more standard guidelines (partly as it lacks the extended intro elements present on the album version) but "Moon in the Scorpio" and "In Mourning Mystique" both stretch to their album lenghts of 8+ and 14+ minutes. Fortunately they don't overstay their welcome and after a scientific research (listened to album versions, then these) it seems like these work for me better presently, after all the album has a kind of thin sound and of the three songs two made me wonder how much longer they will still go on. None of these demo versions had the same effect. But enough of my meandering babble, if you like symphonic black metal but dislike the polished, overproduced shallow drivel often associated with the genre this might be for you. Or are a fan of Limbonic Art. Or of Ecclesia Satani? Recommended.

sunnuntai 7. joulukuuta 2014

Medieval Tortures #2

Medieval Tortures 'zine, issue II (October 1999)
Negură Bunget
Nåstrond (old interview, '94)
Funebre Inferi
Beneath the Dying Moon
Holy Inquisition & The Malleus Maleficarum (Part II)
The Hellenic Peninsula of Emos, Today "Balkans" and Romania
The Occult Nazism (Part II)
Vlad Tepes Dracula the Hero of Wallachia (1431-1476)
Woodfordian Satyrs
 + Prologue, reviews, bios of Bloodstorm and Peoples League/Golden Dawn


Today's post is a 'zine sent by comrade Kurgan, thank you for the contribution, and scanned by me, the second issue or part of Medieval Tortures 'zine made by Luczebeus (whom you might remember from Funebre Inferi and Hieronym Inferiorum) as a continuation of his Daemonocult Cemetary of Middle Age 'zine (which I would really like to see) 5 years later and much has changed since then. The long time it took to complete his work resulted in the rather unusual decision to post three issues, or in a sense parts, simultaneously in 1999, all featuring the same prologue and judging from II & III consisting of 70-ish A4 pages.

By this time L had gone from the good old demonomaniac days into full on Hellenic NS mode which is extremely evident in the articles and interviews as he tends to burst into sometimes very lenghty rants in the middle of interviews (see Negură Bunget for a good example). As you see above, his own band is featured too, it's Jarl von Hagall conducting the interview but several of the questions look very similar to what Luczebeus asks himself from most interviewees. The interview takes seven (very) full pages with one of the replies going for over a page so this time one can't complain about too short answers! Fortunately his English has improved but it is still quite exhausting reading as already mentioned he tends to rant a fair bit. There are two other interviews made by guests here, Carnage by Para Bellum and Beneath the Dying Moon by Serpent King, the first one again has several questions familiar from Luczebeus's interviews, perhaps he gave guidelines to what ask. There is quite a lot of nsbm content and other stuff that might offend PC-sensibilities within so consider yourself warned if that sort of material and symbols get to you. Interesting selection of underground bands, better than average work on the articles and pleasantly simple old fashioned layout, but quite tiresome to wade through. Recommended in reasonable doses, even if you don't agree with the editor's ideological choices.

lauantai 6. joulukuuta 2014

Thousand Lakes Compilation Tape #1 (1995)

Various Artists - Thousand Lakes Compilation Tape #1 (1995)
1) Thy Serpent - The Forest of Blåkulla
2) Wanderer - Surrounded by These Firs
3) Azazel - The Glow of the Golden Fullmoon
4) Perkele - Summernight
5) Diaboli - Mesmerized by Darkness
6) Darkstyle - The Castle of Sorrow
7) Nidhoggr - Thou Shalt Burn at Our Stakes
8) Morningstar - The Eyes of Lamia
9) Nattvindens Gråt - A Lonely October Night
10) Throes of Dawn - Pakkasherra
11) Darkwoods My Betrothed - One Son of the Northstar
12) I Flow In Depths - So Free Are the Wolves (When the Storms Are Coming)
13) Crimson Midwinter - Across the Purple Vision
14) Wintermoon - Night So Cryptic Is All Mine
15) Barathrum - Beltane
16) Voices of Winds - Voices of Winds

Depositfiles / Mediafire

Today is the Finnish independence day and I thought this would be a fitting time to post an all Finnish compilation tape which is another result of my conspiracy with comrade passetiermes, from the selection of tapes he let me borrow in order to rip and scan them. Thanks again! Ok, let's get one thing out of the way immediately: I cheated. How, you ask? Well, I had to rip Nattvindens Gråt track from the CD and re-rip my dub of Voices of Winds tape to have that track complete as somehow the cassette was too short, missing the NG track completely and over half of the VoW song. Apparently it had been dubbed on a 80 minute tape (which I didn't know existed) which is a really bizarre screw up! I found it preferable to have the intended content complete as I had the missing stuff at hand.

As for the content, the selection very well represents the Finnish black and dark metal scene of its day. Obviously one could argue that this and that artist should be featured instead of some present here but such is the nature of compilations. I intended to get a copy of this back in the day but did not, can't remember why. I suppose it was a good thing since none of the material is unreleased so I guess I would've been dissappointed. Wait, that's wrong, Barathrum's contribution was unreleased. So much for that. Even though the material does range from raw, true black metal to atmospheric forest dark metal to Nattvindens Gråt's doom everything fits quite nicely together and nothing really sorely stands out of place as radically different, in out-of-place way. Personal top 3 here is Nidhoggr, Diaboli and Darkstyle. Which are all lumped together! It's a good compilation if you somehow aren't familiar with some of the bands here, or want a mixtape of Finnish 90's stuff for drinking or whatever.

perjantai 5. joulukuuta 2014

Anal Jesus - Sado-Ritual rehearsal/demo '93

Anal Jesus - Sado-Ritual rehearsal/demo I 1993
1) Sado-Ritual (Intro)
2) Perkele!
3) Elämäni savotta
4) Tabu
5) Musta risti
6) Amrus atsum (outro)

RGhost / Yandex

We again interrupt the regular programming for the benefit of Anal Jesus, I found and ripped the first rehearsal demo mentioned in the previous episode. Now this is important: if you for various reasons haven't yet heard the Santa Goat rehearsal, download and listen to this first!!!

It is very regrettable I posted this material (once again) in wrong order as the third demo is clearly superior in almost all aspects to this debut recording and it would probably have been best to listen to these in correct order. Well, I don't have the second one so it would have not been possible to do it all the way but I suppose you got my point. Ripped from a dub someone sent me long ago, details obscured by time and dust but it seems to me the outro might cut a bit. Not such a loss to be honest as it's a simple and a bit annoying affair of Honkonen whispering/panting something obscure/-scene to one's left ear. Still no cover or other pictures.

Ok, a few words about the content, I suppose I already made it clear I prefer the tape III to this one as the sound is vastly superior as is the performance in general but this is not without merits. After all, three of the epics here were re-recorded. That leaves the only "new" pieces of music here to be the intro, the outro I already dismissed and the instrumental "Tabu" which further stresses the point that it would be good to listen to things in proper chronological order. The intro is actually the longest track on the tape and it's masterfully compiled from three different parts. Or not. Amusing enough, I suppose. The sound is not as crazy awesome as on SG, this is a slightly more subdued one which sort of reminds me of demo and rehearsal ImpNaz, maybe Beherit a little. Naturally Morningstar too. It's quite good despite my whining. Listening to these versions of the already familiar tracks I can't help thinking it'd be awesome to hear some of them re-recorded. I definitely need to get the second tape from Grev, recommended and if possible listen to this first, then the third one!

torstai 4. joulukuuta 2014

Pilgrim - Minimal Brain Dysfunction demo 1994

Pilgrim - Minimal Brain Dysfunction demo 1994
1) Pain
2) Nameless Child
3) Lost Life

4shared / Mediafire

Back to Finland but still more death metal and another mysterious contribution, this one by master Sorvali who recalls buying this demo from Black & White in Helsinki circa '94 - '95. The cover lists the band members by first names, the contact (and probably drummer/vocalist) Jussi Tuomela from Turku and recording place Riverside Studio but no recording or release year. Anyone know this band and/or demo, please verify the year! These kind of mysteries drive men to gibbering madness.
UPDATE: Master Turo, the man (well, back then a lad of seventeen summers) responsible for the cover drawing dates the demo to '94 which matches my educated guess so we're going with that. Thanks again for the info!

The music presented on these three tracks is death metal, mostly midpaced with a good and clear sound though the vocalists growls are rather dominant. The song titles look quite death/doomy, don't they? I wouldn't go as far as call this death/doom, it's simply death metal. I'm a little hard pressed to drop names right now, death metal after all isn't my forte, but this sounds quite good, not that heavy or dark but more groovy if you know what I mean? It's actually quite thrashy at times... well I like it better than Deceiver and let's leave it at that. You're probably intrigued by this anyway and download it no matter what I say about the music. The cover looks kind of neat too, doesn't it?

keskiviikko 3. joulukuuta 2014

Nightside - Oneiric Reign demo 1998

Nightside (ita) - Oneiric Reign demo II 1998
1) Sorrow of Remembrances
2) Nocturnal Vision
3) Comet
4) Obliteration of Conscious Ego
5) Destiny
6) Black Tears (Edge of Sanity cover)

Depositfiles / Mediafire (smaller download without scans)

Still in the realms of death, we will now stray a bit from the path of true death with this contribution by Chris, thanks for the rip and (huge!) cover scan. It's not that long a way from Switzerland to Italy but this second demo, third tape by the Italians Nightside (not likely to be mixed with the Finns featured on the blog earlier) is from entirely different continent compared to Coffin's content in the previous post. Somewhat technical and melodic death metal and now that I think about it my "different continent" wording is really off since this is obviously inspired by the Swedish bands who played this style, especially later At the Gates who they covered on their '96 demo.

Five songs of their own here, one of which ("Destiny") is labeled as a bonus track and a cover of Edge of Sanity which I've never really listened to much so no comment about that band's potential influence to their songwriting and sound. Melodic death metal was for me something mostly other people listened to in the 90's so I'm not an authority with all the nuances and probably miss a ton of name dropping chances here, I'll just say if someone had told me this was a Swedish band while playing a track I'd probably believed them. It's not bad, I suppose, their skills seem adequate to task at hand, the songs have some variation to them and the sound quality is suitable for a demo. I think the bonus track sounds a little different, so it seems safe to deduce it was recorded in a later session. Since they practically have to be mentioned when discussing this sort of stuff I'll just say In Flames (earlier, not nowadays!) and Dark Tranquillity here to get done with that and recommend people into bands mentioned so far (well, maybe not fans of Coffin) and similar music to give this a go.

UPDATE: Added a Mediafire link without the enormous cover scans for peasants with sluggish internet.

tiistai 2. joulukuuta 2014

Coffin - Ritual Rehearsals tape 1991

Coffin - Ritual Rehearsals rehearsal tape 10th February 1991
1) Nocturnal Obsequies
2) Dark Carnival
3) Bells of Doom (Therion cover)

Mediafire / Rusfolder

After a quick trip to the dungeon we return to worship death and obscurity by this Coffin here and it is again a somewhat mysterious item. Ripped from a dub I got from brother Grev (thank you) it was marked on his list as a sideproject of master Sova (Barathrum) but I disagree, it would seem more likely to be the Swiss death metal band's recording. Having not actually heard them it's a little hard to be certain but I'm pretty sure this isn't Sova. Anyone with further info please get in touch, as always! No covers, would appreciate them too if they exist. Slapped the Swiss band's logo there for now.

What is this like? Two original tracks and an old Therion cover from "Paroxysmal Holocaust" demo with a bit murky, heavy rehearsal sound. Not the cleanest for sure but you can tell instruments apart and hear riffs and whatnot. Sounds old schoolish and kinda Swedish? Swiss Coffin is supposed to be death/doom but these two tracks here move along on a reasonably brisk pace even though slower, heavier parts are found. It would really help my comparisons if I had actually heard the damn band I presume this is. There are interesting interludes between the songs and in general everything is pretty cool, I just wish I had more info on this damned thing! Recommended for people into old fashioned and murky death metal, crazed necromancers and collectors of rehearsal recordings.

maanantai 1. joulukuuta 2014

Grim - The Domains of Spirits 7"EP 1997

Grim (swe) - The Domains of Spirits 7"EP 1997
1) The Domains of Spirits
2) Bergatrollets sista färd


I was supposed to post this one yesterday but then I didn't, too bad. Well anyways, here's another thing Eugene from the Russian dungeon synth VK page sent me, the second release by the Swedish dungeon synth project Grim.  Remember the demo I uploaded a few years ago? This 7"EP was released by Profane Elite Productions from Peru in association with Dungeon and Dragons Productions of Sweden which basically means the band itself. A contributor from Peru had sent this rip and scans of the item to Eugene, thanks to both of them! Too bad it's low bitrate (128 kbps) but at least decent quality. Bit low on the volume, though I suspect so was the EP itself.

The two songs here are shorter (format obviously ensures this) than the three on the '95 demo which in retrospect went on a bit longer than necessary, especially the second track. The biosheet included with the other goodies here admits the tape "did not turned out very good" and it's very useful in general as apparently there was also a short lived band in the similar vein called Dungeon which released a promo tape before disbanding, I would be very interested in hearing that one! Anyways, after Dungeon's demise Grim was continued and this EP appears to be the only result. And I seem to have a really hard time getting to the music here, have you noticed? Ok, I'll skip discussing the change in the look from a corpsepainted black metal warrior to full-Mortiis seen above and say this is less monotonous and repetitive compared to the demo material. Cheap and cheesy synth sounds that are almost haphazardly wandering, colliding with each other and accompanied by choirs produced both, as far as I can tell, synth and human throat which also alternate and mix. Some of the most obnoxious wind sounds I've heard overtake everything else until louder keys take the stage in the midpart of the song. It is like you were buffeted by capricious winds across odd, otherworldly landscapes you can only barely perceive or comprehend. The second song features a lot of the same elements but is different, more purposeful journey with a goal in sight, focused despite the strangeness. The percussion elements certainly help with that. It seems to end rather abruptly, I wonder if it was even intentional? As before, this is quite peculiar stuff. Instrumental despite including what would seem to be lyrics for the title track. Recommended for people into this sort of stuff, but be sure to crank up the volume.