perjantai 24. heinäkuuta 2015

Noitavalkea - Demo 99

Noitavalkea - Demo I 1999
1) Noitain sapatti
2) Ensimmäinen tuleminen
3) Infernal Legions

Zippyshare / Yandex

For your Friday night's pleasure (or not), Velkaarn and Grev present Noitavalkea from Finland with their only demo titled simply "Demo 99" and this was a request. It is also another link in a mini-series of Stålhammar and affiliated releases we had going around the end of last year, this tape was sth-026 and despite being based in Siuntio, where I assume Riena whose gig this mainly was lived, I count it firmly among the cold HVNK kvlts. Easy when it was recorded in Hellkult Studio, produced and mixed by Narqath who also wrote the lyrics and had Kalma (Oath, formerly of Azaghal and a ton of related projects) on sessions drums. Brother Grev also provided a cover scan, thanks as always!

Looking at the seven minute playtime of this three song demo it'd be easy to assume they go for punkier sort of black metal or even grind, but the first track is just an intro really and the two others fast and slightly chaotic black metal. Not too far from old Azaghal to be honest. Raw, but that's given and the sound is still decent enough to distinguish things from other things instead of wall of noise or so. As often happens these days, this sounds better now than on the initial listen. Though the third track is pretty awful, did it stick out this badly when I last listened to this? And who do I think can answer that? But the intro and second track are pretty good so that puts this in the fabled okayish category of stuff. Naturally you want to check this out if you have an obsession with the old HVNK stuff, collect Finnish demo recordings or really, really like your black metal fast, raw and somewhat generic.

keskiviikko 22. heinäkuuta 2015

Infernal Destruction - Death, Violence, Satanism demo 1996

Infernal Destruction - Death, Violence, Satanism demo 1996
1) Satan's Anarchy
2) Song of Satan
3) End of God
4) Christ Is Drunk

Mega / Sendspace

It's been a bit quiet at the Coven this month as I have been preoccupied with other things. But to show we're not completely on a summer vacation here's a curious contribution sent by master Mihkel Kleis (you might remember him from the Messier items of the other year) a little while ago. And this should be pretty obscure again, a demo tape by Tartu's short-lived (1996-97) Infernal Destruction. He found the tape in a thift store among a pile of other demos and got curious, to our benefit. Scans of the covers are included and the rip quality is very good.

The music here sounds... unique. It's black metal, sure, but more like old Venom, first album Bathory and such rather than the peers of their era, Scandinavian or Estonian. The extremely lo-fi but clear and crispy "production" brings also to my mind some German stuff like Siren or Sacrifice Slaughtered Jesus. But this has more punky vibe to it and once again the enthusiasm level is much higher than skills. The guitar distortion is raw and strange, drums extremely bizarre and stripped down, but definitely played by human hand. Vocals are as crude as the rest. There is certain attractiveness to their cooking that really even should not be there but just happens. I should probably drop Sacrilegeous here also as a reference, though these are younger, eager men fumbling about. Fascinating.

Mihkel managed to get in touch with Sven Reimaa who was credited on the covers by his full name and got further information that enabled him to reach Satanizer who apparently still is active, not with metal though. He had played in a few other bands between 1997 and 2002. Apparently this was recorded in an apartment with a dictaphone, considering that the sound is quite good! Mihkel wanted to know what kind of equipment they used for recording and here's what Satanizer told (in rough translation): "...It is possible that at that moment I didn't have proper guitar amp and instead I played directly through home stereo and for distortion there was an old soviet tape recorder where turning up the recording volume caused the effect of overamplification. But maybe I already had Peavey 10w trans amp and DOS FX58 Metal Maniac pedal. The "drum set" was nothing but two so called pioneer drums made of saheet metal and pot lids for cymbals" - which does explain a lot! Gotta love their ingenuity. He also asked how many copies were made, after all the demo had full lyrics on sleeve and was dubbed on exact length tape, instead of standard TDK, Maxell or whatever. Satanizer replied there were about 20 copies made and mostly spread among friends, never really advertised or distributed. It was played once in radio though - in Raadio 2 metal show "Metallion" hosted by Enrico Kaljurand with whom our contributor used to trade with. So there, this is obviously for people into rarities, lo-fi enthusiasts, collectors of Baltic obscura and maybe even for people into punk. Thanks again to Mihkel for both the contribution and the detective work!

torstai 16. heinäkuuta 2015

The Mystickal East - Herbz Niszra Nisa-Inranna II demo 1996

The Mystickal East - Herbz Niszra Nisa-Inranna II demo II 1996
1) The Arrival of Niszra's Hearse (Intro) / Crystal Jewel Zhevana
2) Blissful Void to Janna
3) Sharna Naruntila
4) Enigmaxur's New Hell
5) Eht Herbz, Way Down to the East
6) Rejoice in the Light... Sadness and Despair

RGhost / Yandex

The people voted for the Orient this time so let's do another contribution, this is The Mystickal East I was already referring to in this post and their 1996 demo "Herbz Niszra Nisa-Inranna II" which also might be the only release too. Me and my contributor have no more information on this project than Floral of Forever so anything you can tell is welcome. We suspect these projects might be by same people as there are similarities in sound. No cover obviously either so any image you can provide is welcomed. UPDATE: I was informed that both of FoF and TME are projects by the same person MD Aslan and hail from Brunei, not Malaysia! Aslan's other bands include(d) Rust Sakaraz, Noiratasya and Shadowmirth. Active fellow! UPDATE II: This interview and other sources indicate the name is spelled with a "k" so I've reuploaded it, corrected. I bet the song titles aren't correct either but those can't be verified without the covers.

The rip is slightly poorer quality than FoF, mainly notable on the first track where the sound fails a bit but gets better eventually. Musically this is most similar to the darkwavey parts of the FoF demo (tracks 3 and 4) though a metal influence feels more prominent here, the first track proper could almost be tagged black metal with the harsh voice and percussion. An intro starts the demo in a rather peaceful tone, it has a very nostalgic dungeon synthic feel to it. I should've really separated it from the main track now that I think of it again. Dammit. The tape fail I was referring to manifests in slightly muffled and wonky sound that suddenly gets better and clearer, as if someone had been dubbing this from behind a closed door and then finally gets the bright idea to open the door and enter the room. "Crystal Jewel Zhevana" part of the track is practically black metal, more Summoning that darkwave. Three shorter tracks follow, first more like an interlude and second a short instrumental and quite metal with the percussion. The melody there sounds annoyingly familiar but can't quite put my finger on it. Third one is gloomy, dramatic and more ambientish/dungeon synth, unfortunately a bit messy sounding too, most notably when the vocals are present. The fifth song continues similar to the fourth but is much longer and has more variation with percussion and tempo changes added. It changes more metalesque somewhere before half way. Last track is the longest of the lot and similarily slower tempo but more metal. This is pretty hard to put into a single, simple category. Recommended for people into mixtures of ambient, wave, ds and synth-black metal, collectors of Eastern demonology and the generally curious.

tiistai 14. heinäkuuta 2015

Lullacry - Weeper´s Aeon demo '98

Lullacry - Weeper´s Aeon demo I 1998
1) Whisper in the Chaos
2) Weeper´s Aeon
3) The Autumn
4) I Will Make My Paradise


Today's post is yet another thing from master Sorvali's hoard he sent me last year, thanks as usual and yes, it might seem a neverending trove but we are nearing the bottom of that vault. This is also probably an unexpected name to pop up as Lullacry got pretty well-known in the mainstream media as well before calling it quits last year (2014). Some folks may remember Coarse from which Lullacry evolved, they initially played death metal that got more and more melodic over time and actually some of the material from the later demos was re-recorded for the Lullacry debut album. The switch to female vocals from male grunts (though I haven't heard the late Coarse demos so I'm not sure if they were death metal vox or clean ones or a mix then) was a large enough change to warrant a new name. A reasonable move in my opinion. Full cover scans included.

I was slightly surprised to notice they never re-released the demo material as bands have been doing for a while now, to be honest I was under the impression the "Legacy: 1998-2014" compilation would have it but nope, that's not the case. Three of the songs here were used on the debut album, the title track seems to be exclusive to this release. I've never actively followed Lullacry so I can't honestly make very good comparisons between the demo and later album material, despite having seen them live several times (drunk, naturally) and having been subjected to quite a bit of second hand listening (plenty of that drunk as well). However, I can say the material here is still clearly metal (I am under the impression they went basically hard rock at some point), with some traces of the melodeath past, heavy metal and a gothic overall feel. To which Tanya's (aka Whisper Lilith of Soulgrind and formerly Gloomy Grim) vocals admittedly contribute a lot. The riffing brings to mind stuff like later Sentenced and at times Amorphis, to do extremely easy and lazy name drops here. And yup, Lullacry was more or less part of the same bunch of bands as Tanya's other bands and this demo was actually recorded at Lord Heikkinen's studio. And someone called Ville Valo offered some vocal assistance. Kind of easy listening, casual, fit-for-radio-play material, not very exciting in my opinion but not too bad or annoying either. Makes me a bit curious to try again some of their albums.

What would you like next? The options this time are:
More death metal! - 0
Even more gothic metal!! - 1
Lo-fi German demo racket!!! - 1
Curiosities of the Orient!!!! - 3 - WIN
Greek stuff!!!!! - 1
Leave a comment and exert your will to shape the future to your liking!

maanantai 13. heinäkuuta 2015

'. . . [l]ight am I' . . . - '. . . [l]ight am I' . . . demo 2006

'. . . [l]ight am I' . . . - '. . . [l]ight am I' . . . demo 2006
1) '. . . [l]ight am I' . . . I
2) '. . . [l]ight am I' . . . II
3) '. . . [l]ight am I' . . . III
4) '. . . [l]ight am I' . . . IV
5) '. . . [l]ight am I' . . . V
6) '. . . [l]ight am I' . . . VI

Mediafire / Rusfolder

I was quite busy last week so there was a bit of a longer than intended pause in posting. So let's resume with another reader contribution, this one sent by Ryan, thank you, and it's a bit unusual not only due the odd band name but the fact it's a relatively "new" release. This is '. . . [l]ight am I' . . . (yes, seriously) from Canada with his 2006 self-titled debut demo. Which had no tracklisting either. Really, is it so hard to come up with some sort of titles for releases and songs, this is getting old and it does not add any mystique to anything what so ever!?! /rant. Now that I've got that out of my system, back to the item. No cover scans and the only cover image found besides the one I was sent is a really, really tiny one on Metal Archives. And the one sent is just the same enlarged. Scans would be nice if you happen to be one of the 50 who actually has a copy.

The demo has a running time of over 42 minutes, well enough for a long play album, most of which is taken by the last ambient track (23 mins) while the others are more conservative length. Sound quality is good and music quite raw and somewhat primitive black metal, with machine-like percussion, vocals that sound something like a cross between Abbath and Akhenaten and riffs that give me flashbacks of various 90's releases and bands. Despite my initial skepticism it's not bad after all and the songs have variation despite the universally raw and stripped down execution. The last song which is dark ambient is way too long though, or at least the part where nothing happens overstays its welcome. Check this out if you're interested to hear what else comes from Canada these days ten years ago besides the artsier Quebecish stuff.

keskiviikko 8. heinäkuuta 2015

Demoniac - Satanas 666 reh. 11-93 (audio only)

Demoniac - Satanas 666 rehearsal tape November 1993
1) Intro: Satanas 666
2) Intro: Sleepwalker
3) Brain, Entrails, Cannibal People
4) Cadaverous Mutilation
5) Carrie White
6) Cold Wind of Death
7) Drumsolo
8) Corpse Immunity
9) Dark Paradise
10) Rest in Peace
11) Skulls
12) Unability (to Live)
13) Guitarsolo
14) Return of the Satans Night
15) Sacrification
16) Symphonaire Et Servum

Yandex / Mega

More metal of death and about time I posted another of brother Baldemar's generous contributions, this is Germany's Demoniac which at this point was still really a death metal band with hints of black metal creeping into their sound. You might know Demoniac evolved later to Moonblood (not sure if a Moon Stone was involved), after turning to black/death metal from the more doom-speeded death metal their first form Purulent Obduction used to play. This recording was originally released as a VHS and was recorded live at their rehearsal room. This is (obviously) just the audio part of the experience, I'm afraid. It's also part a "live" album and part a compilation as they play a selection of old Purulent Obduction tunes as well as Demoniac songs. Quite a few of them, actually. At least tracks 3, 5, 8 and 11 as far as I know. No cover so I used the M.A. image of the video cassette there, even if it is a bit misleading.

There is a lot of stuff here, though "proper" tracks number 12. It's still almost an hour of music (!). I edited Baldemar's rip slightly to fix the tracklisting and separated the drum and guitar solos to their own tracks, like listed on the ever-reliable Metal Archives./sarcasm You don't see very many releases with two intros that follow each other, do you? The first one is pretty unnecessary piece but the second one is enjoyable, being the theme from the '92 movie "Sleepwalkers" (based on Stephen King's novel). I don't think I've actually ever watched that one... or have I? But to the point, the sound is pretty good whether you consider it a live recording or a rehearsal recording and the musicianship decent enough, the little occasional lapses just adding to the charm and "immediateness" of the recording. Not very impressed by the first proper song, but the next one's ponderous doomy pace is much more appealing. Nice how he introduces all the tracks, by the way. Very convenient. "Carrie White" has similar pace and since this is a Purulent Obduction song it makes me think I should try to find those demos, I dig this better than the faster numbers. Or fast parts, like on the next track lifted from the "Black Prophets" demo - the slow parts are heavier and much better than the messy fast bits. As a note, for some reason the title "Corpse Immunity" amuses me far more than it should. Does it imply the immune one is incorporeal, there for "immune" to corpse/having one? A more relevant note is that the sound fails a bit during this number, sort of fading out and back in, relatively briefly though. "Dark Paradise" has a fast part I actually do enjoy, with screaming vocals taking spotlight from the more growling main voice. But enough track-by-track nonsense, this release is way too long for such and you're downloading it no matter what I say if you're into Demoniac/Moonblood. Recommended also if you like (somewhat lo-fi) metal of death in general. Or just really love quantity?

maanantai 6. heinäkuuta 2015

Demise - Festation demo 1992

Demise (nz) - Festation demo I 1992
1) Crushed Beneath
2) Suffer All
3) Festation
4) Lay in Waste
5) Flight of Demons

RGhost / Sendspace

Let's do some death metal for change, this is Demise of New Zealand, whom some might remember from this post. Master Chris Rigby of Subcide Webzine and formerly of Convulsion, Meatyard, Chapel of Gristle (sorry, the Coven does not have anything from that one. Yet.) and presently Dying of the Light and The Skull sent me his rip of the first Demise demo the other week and I said I'd be posting it soon. Well, this is comparatively soon! Thanks again for the contribution and the psychedelic cover which is about twenty to thirty times cooler than the second demo's cover was.

Compared to the self-titled second tape, we have the same amount of tracks but they're much shorter and there are no intros or other additional special effects present. Song writing is also somewhat simpler and more direct, as expected of a debut cassette. Overall the rip sounds clearer and better than the one for demo II even with the slight sound fail on the first track. Old schoolish death metal is the name of the game and I find myself enjoying this one slightly more of the two tapes, simply due the superior sound. And the awesome cover.

lauantai 4. heinäkuuta 2015

Acirema - Unpatriotic Banners demo 1999

Acirema - Unpatriotic Banners demo 1999
1) America's Last Breath
2) Acireman National Anthem
3) Vinlandia Lost (Pagan Dream Gone)
4) Battle Hymn of the Apocalypse
5) The Aryan Hunter's Dream

Mediafire / Zippyshare

Today, the 4th of July, is the US Independence Day as most people would already know. To commemorate the event I decided to post this contribution which I found perversely fitting. It's Acirema, a project by Pantheon's Rubeus XIII, again, and the second demo released in '99. Thanks to the sender! No covers, unfortunately, so we make do with Metal Archives stock again. I just had to post the promo pic up there instead of the rather poor image of the tape someone picked up from eBay which you may see below. Oh, and if you somehow missed it by the picture and song titles it's NS-stuff.

The sound quality is not much to write home about and there is a considerable amount off hiss present to boot. "Considerable" as in "China has a considerably large population" or another similar example. It's still listenable enough. The five tracks are all variations of the same theme, it's guitar-based neofolk with some ambient overtones/moments and Rubeus' voice which is mostly sort of chanting or spoken word rather than singing. Once again the parts where he shuts up tend to be better as he doesn't sound very convincing much of the time. Some pretty lazy Sieg Heils there. Without going much deeper this time (there's beer to be drunk) I'll just say I'm not very impressed with this one, though some of the instrumental parts are quite nice. Judge for yourself.

perjantai 3. heinäkuuta 2015

Finntroll - Rivfader promo 1998

Finntroll - Rivfader promo 1998
1) Intro (Hoterop)
2) Vätteanda
3) Rivfader (Pt. 1)
4) Den svarta älgens blot
5) Midnattens vidunder
6) Outro (Stigen)

Zippyshare / Depositfiles

I decided to post another of Henri's sendings that kinda fits a Friday night, this is by now (in)famous Finntroll and their '98 tape "Rivfader" which you may note I have here labeled as promo. This is because the covers mention the first demo coming soon so I presume this was considered a promo tape at the time of release. It ended up being their only cassette after all since Spinefarm signed them right after this was released. Or soon after, I can't remember. Thanks to Henu for the rip and cover scan!

I suppose almost everyone, well at least everyone Finnish and familiar with Finnish metal, has some sort of idea and/or opinion of Finntroll and their music but on this demo they (the late Somnium and Herra Sysi as duo) perform music that might be best called pagan black metal with folk touches, the infamous humppa-parts are really present mostly on the title track (pt. 1) and the outro while the rest is pretty typical pagan/forest/folky black metal and at times actually quite grim. I think originally the more noticeable gimmick was the all-Swedish lyrics rather than the humppa-thing (which did attract attention too, for sure). So even if you are allergic to their later antics and popularity you might want check out this demo. Unless you hate this sort of metal in general with passion in which case I guess you need to wait for the next post. Others may party on in the woods with drunken trolls, spirits and if in Finland, mosquitoes. Me, I'm off to work.