Anticipated 2016 Releases

Here’s a list of upcoming releases for 2016 that I’m looking forward to hearing.  I’ll be updating this list periodically.

Abhomine – Larvae Offal Swine LP [New Pete Helmkamp project]
Absu – Apsu LP [The conclusion to the band’s latest trilogy of albums]
AHNA – Crimson Dawn LP [They get better with every release.]
Blood Incantation – Starspawn LP [Heard some of this right from the label, this will a monument of technical death metal]
Bloody Master/Sempiternal Dusk – Split LP [Pacific northwest death doom]
The Body – No One Deserves Happiness LP [Portland sludge that’s always pushing forward]
The Body & Full of Hell – One Day You Will Ache Like I Ache [The Body make great collab albums!]
Bone Sickness – Debut LP [Repulsion meets Autopsy from Washington State.]
Deceased – Ghostly White LP [It’s Deceased. Enough said.]
Destroyer 666 – Wildfire LP [New songs sound way better than the last LP already]
Funebrarum – Exhumation of the Ancient mLP [US Death metal with a new line up]
Gadget – The Great Destroyer LP [First LP in 10 years, Nasum style grind]
Gorguts – Pleiades’ Dust EP [A single song from the masters of technical death metal.]
Grave Miasma – Endless Pilgrimage mLP [Dark UK death metal]
Incantation – 10th LP [Favourite death metal band re-signs to Relapse, no question this will be heavy.]
Interment – Scent of the Buried LP [Swedish death metal boasting a huge low end]
Inverloch – Distance | Collapsed LP [diSEMBOWELMENT reborn.]
Knelt Rote – 4th LP [“Trespass” was incredible, high hopes for this black/grind fusion.]
Lantern – 2nd LP [Heard some directly from the label, heavy stuff.]
Massgrave – The Absuridty of Humanity LP [Canada’s crust/grind masters 3rd full length]
Neurosis – 11th Album [Do I need to say anything?]
Paroxsihzem – Abyss of Excruciating Vexes mLP [Preview track sounds like their most vicious work to date]
Putrescence – Voiding Upon the Pulverized LP [Heard a pre-mix, Canada’s goregrind/death metal masters will go out on top.]
Ritual Chamber – Obscurations (To Feast On The Seraphim) LP [Cavernous death metal]
Ritual Necromancy – 2nd LP [Buzzsaw tones, Incantation riffs, gotta hear this.]
Rude – 2nd LP [OSDM worship from the Bay Area.]
Rotten Sound – Abuse to Suffer LP [Finnish grind masters, first album in 5 years.]
Sect Pig – Crooked Backs EP [Abstract black metal]
Sect Pig – Praying Prey EP [Unable to pull away]
Veneficium – Demo [New Zealand band with members of prominent bands out there]
Venomous Concept – Kick Me Silly LP [Hardcore punk supergroup.]
Wake – Sowing the Seeds of a Worthless Tomorrow LP [Deathspell Omega meets Nasum. Sounds amazing.]
Weregoat – 2nd LP [Bestial metal from Portland, always delivers.]

Begrime Exemious – The Enslavement Conquest


The third Begrime Exemious album, “The Enslavement Conquest,” will be released this March on CD/LP/digital on Dark Descent Records. It features 9 brand new songs of savage thrashing death metal in addition to an Incantation cover. Listen to “Noose for a Monarch,” which is streaming online courtesy of Decibel Magazine. 

Begrime Exemious - The Enslavement Conquest

Track List:
1. Cradled in Our Hands
2. Overpowered (Under Siege)
3. Transcendence
4. Rat Amongst the Herd
5. Conscription Woes
6. Subconscious Nemesis
7. Noose for a Monarch
8. Impending Diabolical Conquest (Incantation cover)
9. Crusade Towards Self Devolution
10. When the Vultures Leave

D. Orthner – Vocals, Guitar
F. Thibaudeau – Guitar, Vocals
A. Rintoul – Bass
L. Norland – Drums

“The Enslavement Conquest” was recorded in the first half of 2015 by Lee Norland, mixed by Derek Orthner, mastered by Dan Lowndes at Resonance Sound Studio (UK), with artwork by Mark Riddick.

I’ve never been more proud of anything I’ve ever done, musically or otherwise. This is the first album we’ve done with myself handling lead vocals and penning all the lyrics. I was also responsible for all the mixing and the layouts for the CD/LP. The LP will be available in both black and gold wax. Shows in west Canada and a tour of the west coast US will be executed throughout 2016 in support of “The Enslavement Conquest.”

Cemetery Filth / Ectovoid / Sabbatory / Trenchrot – 4 Doors to Death

Genre: Death Metal | Label: Unspeakable Axe Records
Location: Various| Listen: Bandcamp

Unspeakable Axe Records has been making quite a splash in the metal underground over the past few years. The Dark Descent sub-label has been releasing quality death and thrash metal in the old school vein since their inception. Their latest release, “4 Doors to Death,” features four ripping death metal bands across ten tracks that comes together as the first worthwhile release I’ve heard this year.

4 doors front

The first three tracks are by Cemetery Filth, who have recently emerged out of Tennessee. Their songs are full of furious death/thrash riffs that stem out of the Morbid Angel school. I wasn’t really aware of these guys until this split was announced, and they only had a lone demo prior to this release. Needless to say, what these guys are doing is pretty exciting. The riffs are drenched in evil, and are sure to satisfy any old school death metal fan. Even the production sounds like Mike Browning era Morbid Angel. This is old school death metal to the bone, and Cemetery Filth will hopefully put out a full length if these songs are any indication of what to expect in the future.

4 doors cemetery filth

Coming next is Ectovoid, a dark death metal band from Alabama. They’ve put out a couple of albums, and much like Cemetery Filth, I was inclined to check some of their material out in anticipation of this split. The two tracks they present on the split are very dark, which becomes apparent within seconds. The first track will satisfy Incantation/Disciples of Mockery fans with it’s contrast of blasts and churning death/doom sections. Ectovoid’s second offering switching gears to a looser Autopsy feel, complete with infectiously evil melodies. These are probably the “rawest” sounding songs on the split, but by no means is that a negative. It fits the cavernous style these guys are going on, and helps muster up a suffocating atmosphere.

4 doors ectovoid

The main reason I was anticipating “4 Doors to Death” has to do with the next two bands. Sabbatory’s debut album was one of my favourites of 2014, as it was morbid journey of twisted riffs in the vein of Morgoth. These Canadians from Winnipeg return with a new track and a cover. The band hits full throttle with their first track, displaying more and more ferocity as the song goes on. Sabbatory’s riffs morph by way of rhythmic variety (punk beats, blasts, pummeling double kick work, etc), and are successful due to tight interplay between the drums and guitar picking.  The vocals sound more like Martin van Drunen than ever, and Asphyx/Pestilence also appear to have their influence in the riffs. Their Mortuary Drape cover is savage, and if you weren’t aware that it was a cover, you’d think this was one of their own songs. These are probably the best sounding tracks on the split, and the sheer energy of the performances makes it the highlight for me.

4 doors sabbatory

The final three songs belong to Philadelphia’s Trenchrot. Trenchrot obviously worship Bolt Thrower and various other death metal classics, and their 2014 album was another favourite from that year. Here we get more of the same, starting off with a slow riff that builds up into a warlike blitzkrieg of death metal. Plenty of midpaced grooves with double kick work break up the songs, and this is definitely where the Bolt Thrower influence is apparent. My only complaint about Trenchrot’s recording is that the kick drum sounds odd. On previous recordings, the drums have always been really loud, but here it just sounds overly compressed. That aside, these are some seriously solid slabs of death metal, complete with some top notch lead guitar and a Death cover to boot.

4 doors trenchrot

Label head Eric Musall really did a wonderful job putting together this split. Anyone who’s ever been involved in a split can tell you the potential for headaches in regards to coordinating more than one band for a release, and in this case, we have four bands that all managed to put forth quality material. If that doesn’t earn him any credit, you have to give it up to him for contributing artwork (the Sabbatory one in particular is incredible), layouts, and even some audio engineering. “4 Doors to Death” is home run, and it’s great to see a project of this scope come out so well.


Top Releases of 2015

Reminiscing and reflecting on events of the last year is always a common theme once December rolls around. In regards to music, there’s been plenty of great releases that I’ve come across from a variety of genres. Although mostly death metal, there have been some solid albums outside that style that have given me much enjoyment. So here is my list of my favourite 2015 releases, categorized by release type, and sorted alphabetically. Streaming links have been included.

Abyss – Heretical Anatomy [Death metal from Toronto, ON. 20 Buck Spin. Bandcamp]
In 20 minutes, these Canucks crank out some serious Swedish-style death metal with a clear crust foundation that sounds somewhere between Entombed and Repulsion.

Adversarial – Death, Endless Nothing and the Black Knife of Nihilism [Death metal from Toronto, ON. Dark Descent Records. Bandcamp]
Sophomore full length that sucks you into a pit of razors and reduces you to black bile. Album of the year.

Ares Kingdom – The Unburiable Dead [Death/thrash from Kansas City, MO. Nuclear War Now! Productions. Bandcamp]
Third full length effort by legendary midwest death thrashers. Epic songwriting and pounding riffs.

The Body & Thou – Release from Love / You, Whom I Always Have Hated [Sludge from Portland, OR & Baton Rouge, LA. Thrill Jockey Records. Bandcamp]
Neurosis inspired sludge by two bands coming together to create a really heavy record.

Cannibal Ox – Blade of the Ronin [Hip Hop from Brooklyn, NY. iHipHop Distribution. Soundcloud]
My only hip-hop choice that I was really into this year, Can Ox return with their follow up to 2001’s “Cold Vein.”

Cruciamentum – Charnel Passages [Death metal from England. Profound Lore Records. Stream]
Incantation inspired death metal that sounds cavernous but was recorded by extremely competent hands. Perfect balance of tones.

Crypt Sermon – Out of the Garden [Doom metal from Philadelphia, PA. Dark Descent Records. Bandcamp]
Members of Trenchrot/Unrest playing heavy doom metal with a good dose of Dio/Tony Martin era Sabbath. Big hooks ahead.

G.O.D. – Body Horror [Goregrind from Peterborough, ON. Blastasfuk Grindcore. Bandcamp]
Taking influence from the best old school death metal, grindcore, and crust bands, these gore-mongers really grind hard.

Goatsnake – Black Age Blues [Stoner doom metal from Los Angeles, CA. Southern Lord Records. Bandcamp]
Goatsnake’s comeback album proves to be more upbeat than some of their previous material but it’s very infectious with it’s blues driven riffage.

Grave Ritual – Morbid Throne [Death metal from New Orleans, LA. Dark Descent Records. Bandcamp]
Fat-free death metal that gets down to business with sinfully catchy riffs. This follow up LP is a set up from their already excellent debut.

Gruesome – Savage Land [Death metal from California/Florida. Relapse Records. Bandcamp]
Fans of late 80’s/early 90’s Death have to hear this record. Matt Harvey of Exhumed and friends pay tribute to the founding death metal act.

Hooded Menace – Darkness Drips Forth [Death metal from Finland. Relapse Records. Bandcamp]
This band never seems to let up on putting out quality death doom. I don’t think they’ll ever top the debut, but their approach of combining Candlemass melodies over heavy death/doom proves golden.

Horrendous – Anareta [Death metal from Philadelphia, PA/Columbia, SC. Dark Descent Records. Bandcamp]
Following up their highly acclaimed sophomore album from last year, Horrendous unleashes another slab of death metal that utilizes a lot of melody (reminding me of “Testimony of the Ancients”). I didn’t like the last one that much, but this one is definitely more on point. A+ production as well.

Iskra – Ruins [Black metal from Victoria, BC. Black Raven Records. Bandcamp]
The third LP from this modern classic Canadian band is some of their best work. They’ve pretty much crossed over to a full on Scandi-black metal sound, and I’m a fan.

Napalm Death – Apex Predator – Easy Meat [Grindcore from England. Century Media. Youtube]
Some of the most dynamic Napalm Death in years, these grindcore legends keep it fresh by injecting a lot of dirge driven desolation into their 15th full length.

Perdition Temple – The Tempter’s Victorious [Death metal from Tampa, FL. Hells Headbangers Records. Bandcamp]
The best thing that Gene Palubicki has done since Angelcorpse’s “The Inexorable.” Having a full line up really helped this record stand out among the crap he’s released in the last 10 years.

Pissgrave – Suicide Euphoria [Death metal from Philadelphia, PA. Profound Lore Records. Bandcamp]
The artwork sums this record up well – fucking disgusting. Real blasty and filthy death metal with Deicide-esque vocals.

Revenge – Behold.Total.Rejection [Black metal from Edmonton, AB. Season of Mist. Soundcloud]
Edmonton’s own Revenge has certainly made themselves a cult classic, and their fifth album continues down the savage path of war metal that was first traveled under the Conqueror banner.

Rhythm of Cruelty – Saturated [Post-Punk/Industrial from Edmonton, AB. Mass Media Records. Bandcamp]
After releasing their excellent debut “Dysphoria” last year, these dirge-y post-punkers have pushed their music to even more mature territories. Absolutely love it.

Scaphe – Long Way Down [Hardcore/Alt Rock from Minneapolis, MN. Insides Music. Bandcamp]
Taking influence from a variety of bands, such as Dinosaur Jr. and their local legends Husker Du, Scaphe’s sophomore record is a dynamic journey of sonic brilliance.

Shroud of the Heretic – Unorthodox Equilibrium [Death metal from Portland, OR. Iron Bonehead Productions. Bandcamp]
Four tracks of creepy death metal from the Pacific Northwest. They conjure up a similar feel to Deathspell Omega but with a more death metal aesthetic.

Suffering Mind – Wastefarm [Grindcore from Poland. 365 Thrashcore. Bandcamp]
Suffering Mind just doesn’t stop putting out quality grindcore. These Polish grinders have a frantic pace to their music that outdoes most of their peers.

Unrest – Grindcore [Grindcore from Philadelphia, PA. Unspeakable Axe Records. Bandcamp]
A project of Trenchrot/Crypt Sermon members that took its time to see the light of day. Fans of Nasum will love this record for it’s varied approach and big hooks.

Vastum – Hole Below [Death metal from San Francisco, CA. 20 Buck Spin. Bandcamp]
Bay area death metallers Vastum have returned with their third full length of suffocating death metal. They have yet to disappoint.

Weed – Running Back [Alt rock/grunge from Vancouver, BC. Lefse Records. Bandcamp]
This Vancouver based/Wisconsin born band bangs out some grungy tunes in the vein of Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr. This is a really chill record and it has a lot of replay value.

The Weir – Calmness of Resolve [Sludge/doom metal from Calgary, AB. Bandcamp]
Taking the Neurosis/Isis sound, The Weir produces some earth trembling heaviness drenched in melancholy.

AHNA – Perpetual Warfare [Death metal/crust from Vancouver, BC. Choking Hazard/Neanderthal Stench. Bandcamp]
The stench of death that AHNA has unleashed on this mLP is unreal. Crusty Bolt Thrower worship that has it’s own unique voice. My favourite short release of the year.

Autopsy – Skull Grinder [Death metal from Oakland, CA. Peaceville. Youtube]
Death metal legends Autopsy have been going strong since reforming. 2015 sees their new mLP spill forth filth and doom, just as you’d expect from Autopsy.

Besieged – s/t 7” [Death/thrash from Winnipeg, MB. Unspeakable Axe Records. Bandcamp]
After forging a relationship with Unspeakable Axe records to properly release the “Victims Beyond All Help” album, the altar of Sepultura is further worshiped with two new tracks from these Winnipeg death thrashers.

Blood Incantation – Interdimensional Extinction [Death metal from Colorado. Dark Descent Records. Bandcamp]
Proper technical death metal should have hooks, and Blood Incantation do that just right with their sci-fi themed death metal. Fans of Demilich and Timeghoul have to hear this.

Languid – 4 Tracks Live [D-beat from Edmonton, AB. Self Released. Bandcamp]
I recorded this demo, so I’m totally bias, but I love how it turned out despite the fact that it was done in just a matter of days from recording to mastering. Fans of Green Beret, Warcry, and Discharge in general should take note of these Edmonton crusties.

Messiahlator – Demo 2015 [Death metal/Crust from Edmonton, AB. Self Released. Bandcamp]
Another demo I’m totally biased about as I handled all the audio work for it, but again I’m very pleased with the final results. Perfect combination of Swedish death metal and crust with a pinch of sludge. Certainly some of the finest in Edmonton.

Spectral Voice – Necrotic Doom [Death/doom metal from Colorado. Self released. Bandcamp]
Members of Blood Incantation also play in a death/doom band that will satisfy anyone who’s into stuff like diSEMBOWELMENT or Winter.

Trenchgrinder – Demo 2015 [Death metal from Brooklyn, NY. Self released. Bandcamp]
Savage Bolt Thrower worship out of NYC, Trenchgrinder returns with a second demo that’ll convince you to drive a tank into your neighbour’s house.

Witchrist – Vritra [Death metal from New Zealand. Iron Bonehead Productions. Bandcamp]
Easily their best material since “Beheaded Ouroboros,” these Kiwis churned out a cross between Pestilence and Bolt Thrower to make a solid three track EP.

Black Witchery/Revenge – Holocaustic Death March to Humanity’s Doom [Black metal from Florida/Edmonton, AB. Nuclear War Now! Productions. Bandcamp]
This is like the sequel to the Black Witchery/Conqueror split, with years of experience behind it. Savage war metal pairing, and was a great way to get hyped for the new Revenge LP.

Blood Incantation/Spectral Voice 7″ [Death metal from Colorado. Bleak Environment/Woodsmoke. BI side, SV side]
These two bands made the list already with their EP/demos, so of course this split 7″ is also fantastic.

Vassafor/Temple Nightside – Call of the Maelstrom [Black/death metal from New Zealand/Australia. Iron Bonehead Productions. Bandcamp]
A pairing of oceanic black/death metal, and likely the best material from both bands.

Witchrist/Antediluvian 7″ [Death metal from New Zealand/Edmonton, AB. Martyrdoom Productions. A side]
This split was planned years ago, as the Antediluvian side was recorded at the time of the “Revelations in Excrement” EP, but the Witchrist side was only recorded recently alongside the aforementioned “Vritra” EP.

Noothgrush – Entropy

Genre: Sludge | Label: Fuck Yoga Records
Location: Oakland, CA, USA| Listen: Bandcamp

In regards to sludge, there are three bands I consider to be essential to the genre: Eyehategod, Grief, and Noothgrush. Noothgrush never released as much material as the other two bands, but they’ve certainly left their mark on the genre. While Eyehategod incorporates more punkier grooves in their music, and Grief is usually set on slow crawls, Noothgrush straddles that middle line between the two approaches.

noothgrush entropy front

Having reformed in 2011 after a ten year hiatus, Noothgrush haven’t wasted any time putting out new releases. There’s been a few releases of old material, and there’s been some new material: the split 12″ with Coffins, and this 7″. The band looks a little different now, with Dino Sommese (former Dystopia drummer) taking over the vocal department. That being said, Noothgrush sound like they haven’t missed a beat, and “Entropy” certainly doesn’t sound like the band was broken up for ten years.

“Entropy” consists of two tracks – the A-side title-track, and an old song re-recorded for the B-side. Both are solid slabs of sludge. The A-side embodies the main qualities that made Noothgrush so amazing in their initial existence: big riffs that groove along to pounding drums, with savagely screamed vocals that can tear through flesh. As the song grooves along, it breaks down into an even slower part, increasing the magnitude of heaviness put forth. The outro of this track is cool too, it has a nice melody that leaves a feeling of desolation.

The B-side, as I mentioned, is an old song that was re-recorded for this 7″. “Life Shatters into Pieces of Anguish” was originally on the band’s 1994 demo, and appears here with a twist: Dino sings on this song. His singing voice sounds kind of like Ozzy but less nasally, which is fitting for a sludge/doom metal band. The feeling of agony is really displayed well thanks to the vocal performance. Again, this song has a fantastic break about 3/4 of the way through, entering devastating realms of slow riffage.

noothgrush entropy back

This is a really solid 7″, and both songs benefit from thick guitar/bass tones and a pounding drum sound. I’m glad Noothgrush decided to record some new material, even if it’s only been a handful of songs. Based on that, I’m sure a full length would be welcomed, but if they choose just to release smaller releases, I won’t complain. Thankfully, the price of this EP is very affordable, and anyone who digs Noothgrush should get their hands on it.


Napalm Death – Apex Predator – Easy Meat

Genre: Grindcore | Label: Century Media
Location: Birmingham, England| Listen: Youtube

Earlier this year, grindcore legends Napalm Death released their 15th studio album, “Apex Predator – Easy Meat.” Napalm Death have, in my opinion, always managed to put out awesome records, despite their flirtations with other genres and musical approaches. This new full length continues their current trend of infusing different influences into their grinding groundwork they first laid down back in 1987 with “Scum.”

While their 2012 album, “Utilitarian,” took a large influence from Canadian sci-fi thrashers Voivod, “Apex Predator – Easy Meat” differentiates itself by utilizing a lot of post-punk/dirge-driven parts. The obvious influence here would be the mighty Swans. Napalm Death’s infatuation with Swans goes back to the beginning of the band, and almost every album has had a song that has a clear no-wave approach. This new record has taken that approach to more than just one track, and Napalm Death proudly displays that influence right away with the opening title track. These gloomy dirges poke their head up throughout the record. “Dear Scum Landlord” even opens with the lyric “big strong boss,” which is the title of a track on the debut Swans record. No surprise that the last track of the album, “Adversarial / Copulating Snakes” fits this description as well (and is a very well done closing track too). Musical allusions aside, the tracks that display this influence are strong songs, and are the main reason why this album ends up being one of Napalm Death’s most dynamic records.

napalm death apex front

Of course, there are plenty of grinding songs on this record as well. After the intro, Napalm Death wastes no time doing what they do best – playing high speed riffs against lightning fast drums in a punk structure. Tracks like “Cesspits” show the band at full grinding speed. Granted, Napalm Death doesn’t write the same kind of grindcore that they did back in the late 80’s. There’s definitely some maturation in their approach to grind, which perhaps are learned from their death metal and groove eras in the 90s, as heard in “Timeless Flogging”. The most notable thing in that regard would be their usage of hooks. The chorus of “Smash a Single Digit” won’t take long to get stuck in your head. Shane Embury and Mitch Harris are both competent songwriters, and as the song lengths suggest, they get right to the point.

Lyrically, “Apex Predatory – Easy Meat” has a lot of what you’d expect from a grindcore band that’s been singing about socio-political themes throughout their career. Younger folks will probably find something to latch onto with songs about breaking oppression, while older headbangers might relate to a song like “How The Years Condemn” in regards to its themes of age and trying not to break down over time.

One thing I did not like about this record is the artwork and layout. It’s honestly an eyesore. The cover art is the least guilty of this, but the artwork within just seems really lame and to me feels like an overall lazy presentation. I expected a lot more considering how well the presentation of “Utilitarian” turned out, thankfully this doesn’t take away from how good the music is.

napalm death apex back

The production of this record is in line with what Napalm’s been doing the last 15 years. Handled by Russ Russell, this guy’s recorded every Napalm Death album since “Enemy of the Music Business” in addition to related projects. The sound is modern, but it’s not in modern production hell. Fans of old Napalm Death may not like how this record sounds, as it is a pretty clean recording, but at least it’s not riddled with clicky triggers everywhere.

It’s truly impressive that Napalm Death have put out so many quality records over their long career, and have managed to stay fresh while doing so. “Apex Predator – Easy Meat” stands up well against their discography. As I mentioned before, fans of exclusively old Napalm Death probably won’t find much here, but anyone who’s enjoyed recent material, or likes when the band does creepy dirge-driven songs, will get something out of this record.


Blood Incantation – Interdimensional Extinction

Genre: Death Metal | Label: Dark Descent Records
Location: Boulder, CO, USA | Listen: Bandcamp

Technical death metal is a genre that’s very hit or miss, with many bands missing the mark by a long shot. When I was a teenager, I became quite obsessed with the style, as the level of musicianship is a step above what most people can play. However, I found that the more bands I checked out, the more they just blended together into a mess of technical wankery in which nothing really stood out. The riff was lost, and eventually, so was my interest in this style of death metal.

Colorado’s Blood Incantation, however, have proved to me that quality technical death metal still exists. After releasing a trio of demos, these Rocky Mountain dwellers have teamed up with Dark Descent Records (who are also located in Colorado) for their debut EP. “Interdimensional Extinction” combines dazzling fretwork and science fiction themes into an old school death metal framework to create four memorable songs.

blood incantation ie front

As stated, my biggest problem with a lot of technical death metal is that it just becomes an unmemorable mess. Blood Incantation, although technically proficient, do not sacrifice riffs to display their skill. Rather, their musical prowess enhances the riffs to give them that extra flair that’ll keep them in your mind. Listen to that death/thrash riff that comes up halfway through “Obfuscating the Linear Threshold” and you’ll see what I mean. These riffs induce some serious neck snapping, and that’s what death metal should be all about.

Blood Incantation’s songs are full of dynamics that are well arranged, giving each song it’s own identity. The opening track, “The Vth Tablet (Of Enûma Eliš),” has a break into a sweeping guitar lead, which is obviously dangerous territory where many bands would fall into a endless string of uninspired notes. However, these guys manage to make the lead guitars catchy, and that particular sweep will be stuck in your head for days. The second track features some death/doom breaks that balance out the speedier parts of the song. Catch and release songwriting is utilized very well on this EP.

“Hovering Lifeless” is perhaps the most standout track on this release. The intro is open and eerie, and allows the fretless bass to really shine. On that note, Damon Good (aka the Great Righteous Destroyer of StarGazer and several other quality Australian bands) fills in as a session member, and does a fantastic job doing so.

blood incantation ie back

The EP ends off with its longest track, “Subterranean Aeon,” which again sees the band twisting their fingers around and turning the tempos on a dime without it feeling awkward. The outro utilizes some melodic playing on the fretless bass, and wraps up this 18 minute slab of music very nicely.

I really wish this EP was longer, as it seems to whiz by before you know it. It demands further listening, not because it’s difficult to comprehend, but because it’s just that addicting to listen to. That being said, it is understood that Blood Incantation has a full length in the works, which should be on everyone’s radar after listening to “Interdimensional Extinction.” Damian Herring (of Horrendous) once again did a wonderful job of making this release fulfill its potential in the production department. Blood Incantation has a very promising future, and anyone who enjoys classic technical death metal like Gorguts, Demilich, and Timeghoul should give this a listen if they haven’t already.


Chronobot / Hemptress – Split LP

About a year ago, I mixed 3 songs for Saskatchewan based stoner/doom band Chronobot. The tracks have finally been released as a split LP with Kamloops stoner band Hemptress. Both bands are wonderful, and I’m very happy with how the Chronobot side came out! Check the links below for listening and purchasing:

Listen to the Chronobot side.
Listen to the Hemptress side.
Purchase the LP from Sunmask.