Thursday, October 28, 2010

Gig Attack - Brute Fest 17/10/10 Kyra Theatre, Bangalore, India

Brute Fest, a Metal gig featuring some of the city's best Extreme Bands among others, saw Dark Desolation, Anorectal Ulceration, Gorified and Abandoned Agony play some amazing musick to an enthusiastic bunch of Metalheads on Sunday the 17th October, 2010. Here's the lowdown -

Dark Desolation, a relatively new band, brought out their brand of Black Metal to a curious crowd, many of whom had not heard of or seen the band before. They were tight and all the band members essayed their parts effortlessly. The vocalist seemed to have most of the audiences' attention with his slightly raspy and rather unique vocal style.

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One evident aspect of Dark Desolation's music were the subtle elements of Death Metal in their music. Pounding blastbeats along with a thick-as-honey rhythm section, growling vocals and guitar solos were well interspersed with the already flowing Black Metal. The band even went on to cover Napalm Death's 'You Suffer' much to the audience's surprise. A solid performance with a setlist dominated by original compositions. A band to watch out for.

Anorectal Ulceration, the Goregrind enity took to the stage after more than a year and still put up a good show for the Grind freaks to enjoy. A relatively short setlist comprising of some hard-hitting originals and covers of Gut and Rompeprop thrown in got many heads banging and a couple of moshpits as well!

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A superb guitar tone and crazy riffs , complementing basslines and maniacal blastbeats seemed to captivate every Extreme fan in the audience. Vocalist Charlie brought in some extra noise to the already filthy sonic attack in the form of toilet flush vocals, which made Anorectal's show even more intense and enjoyable. A great performance overall!

Grindgore sickos Gorified took to the stage amidst some loud cheering and being the seasoned grinders they are, took off to an explosive start and continued the cranium-hammering assault till the very end of their act. Being a two-piece band hasn't deterred them in delivering a strong show everytime and the experience gained over the years has simply given them an edge.

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An aggressive guitar attack with a murderous tone coupled with some sickass guttural growls and an insanely heavy drumtrack got the audience into a frenzy, ensuring many heads banged and initiating moshpits. An all-original setlist and marvellous execution. These guys can probably never deliver a bad show. Definitely, a force to be reckoned with. Flesh Ripping Sonic Torment anyone?

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Brutal Death Metallers Abandoned Agony were the last band to play for the day and despite that, played flawlessly with the same ferocity they always display. The inclusion of technical elements into their music has seemingly earned them more fans and attention. Well-structured originals with a razor-sharp attack left the Metalheads asking for more. The Jaw-breaking drumming, precise riffs and beastly growls all made up for one hell of an aural concoction!

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With a badass cover of Cannibal Corpse's 'Skull Full of Maggots' and some of their newer songs, the band ended their set amidst loud applause!

Until the next Gig Attack!

Maniac Butcher - Masakr (2010)



Full Length, Negative Existence
2010

It's been quite some time since a review has surfaced from me. I decided for this one to do it completely left field and cover one of my favorite black metal bands of all time, Maniac Butcher. In the swirl of past bands reuniting and putting out new records as of late, the return of the Czech legends Maniac Butcher was swept under the rug. Perhaps if this album would've came out a few years ago it would be received differently as I feel it wasn't great timing. Oddly enough, I happened to find news of this CD just doing a random search online for one of their discs. Their last record was Epitaph released almost 10 years ago. Indeed! 10 years and Maniac Butcher has released the ultra furious and heavy "Masakr" to show the younger bands how black metal is played. This CD is full of energy and Maniac Butcher are kicking ass just as much on this release as they did in 1995 with their debut "Barbarians". The difference on this album is that they stray away from their cryptic, raw production on this record to make way for a more modern-clearer sound. However, even though it is clearer it is not overbearing or over triggered in any way. This may or may not alienate fans of the past CD's but make no mistake, the riffs and vocals on this record accommodate for the polished sound. They are still misanthropic in the Maniac Butcher element. Songs such as "Rozhodnutí..." and the title track "Masakr" are headbangers and don't sound out of place on the "Epitaph" or "Cerná Krev" albums. What I must say is a huge improvement are the vocals and the hatred is felt throughout all 6 tracks on this album. Whatever tribulations hindered Maniac Butcher in their absence, it is truly heard on "Masakr"...and in true Maniac Butcher fashion, the record is a relentless half hour assault with plenty of room for repeating and neck recovery time with all the songs and lyrics sung in their native language. This is their 7th full length record and it has not tarnished their name whatsoever. It fits perfect in their discography and with time may be my favorite Maniac Butcher record. I'm quite sure this album will go overlooked with tons of black metal releases coming out but for fans of the old school who want it raw with a modern edge then get this. It is Maniac Butcher in its purest form and quite a breath of fresh air to hear this style sound genuine with so many new bands trying to reinvent the sound. They haven't missed a beat and have maintained their roots without jeopardizing their feeling of the previous albums. Don't think twice!!!

8/10

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Ceremonial Castings - Salem 1692 (2008)



Full Length,
2008


Ceremonial Castings is quite possibly, one of the most underrated Black Metal bands from the USA, but have never garnered enough recognition. And that is the reason I wrote this review. The review is about their 6th full-length release titled “Salem 1692”. As the name suggests, “Salem 1692” is a concept album about the Salem Witch Trials in Salem, Massachusetts in 1692. Supposedly Nick and Jake Superchi are direct descendents, thus establishing a direct link to this event.

I shall skip the history lesson and go straight to the music. What you will see here is a different ‘Ceremonial Castings’. This album is less chaotic and brings forth a more melodic approach which works brilliantly. From the first track, we are thrust into the world that was in 1692, A world that is alien to us, but a world that is more menacing and evil than we have ever experienced.

The album opens with an atmospheric intro which is a nice keyboard melody and immediately builds into a crescendo of chaotic raw black metal. Jake’s vocals kick off at this point and you cant help but feel a chilling atmosphere of evil around you. This gives way to a brilliant riff which has to be heard to be believed. It will make you stop whatever you are doing and make you listen to this with every ounce of concentration that you possess. Jake has outdone himself with the guitars. He brings forth a nice mix of lightning fast riffs and slow, mournful ones. The riffs are aimed to mesmerize you. It is almost as if you are caught in a spell, where you cant do anything except listen to this album.

The vocals have always been one of the best aspects of Ceremonial Casting’s music. And as usual, it does not disappoint. Jake has a vicious shriek that just grabs you by your throat and He uses some guttural vocals as well, similar to the ones used in the previous releases. Nick uses some clean vocals that imparts a feeling of calm to the listener. Female vocals are used at a few points in the album and the result is simply stunning. She has a beautiful voice and mainly depicts the story from the “witch’s” point of view.

The drumming is also different from the previous releases. Gone are the constant furious blast-beats, to give way to a varied drumming pattern. The best feature of the drumming is that it does not take anything away from the music, but simply enhances it. The blasts still remain, but are used lesser than before giving way to a slower repetitive pattern that does its job of slowing the pace of the music down a notch.

Now to the best aspect of the album – The Keyboards. Nick has done a brilliant job with the keyboards and the synths. The keyboards sound magical and create a perfect atmosphere and depth to the music. It is masterfully done, and I honestly have not heard keys being used so effectively for a long time. It is used in the perfect amount, without sounding cheesy or too pretentious (read : Dimmu Borgir).

The production is perfect. It does not sound overproduced. The sound retains the raw grimness, but every instrument can be heard clearly. Nicely mixed and everything sounds great. Still no bass, but the lack of a bass is not a problem at all. It does not affect the music whatsoever.

In my opinion, this is better than any history lesson. Hardly ever will you hear an album this powerful. It takes you on a journey through time. A time where the farce known as 'religion' dominated the world and poisoned people's minds. This is a release that should not be ignored. Its almost as if you are experiencing it yourself. So, turn on the speakers and listen to this release and find yourself in a world; a cold, evil menacing world. Enjoy the ride. This is not the best in symphonic black metal but is a very good release, all the same. And if you like concept albums, you'll love this one.

8.5/10

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Audio Interview with the legendary Paul Speckmann (Master, Death Strike, Abominator etc.)


Infernal Dominion presents a very special feature for all our readers and it is nothing else than an audio interview done with the great Paul Speckmann from Master. It was quite an honor for me to do it when Paul asked me to and both of us enjoyed doing it a lot! 


Here is Part I of this brutal interview on Blogger Video. I shall be featuring it on my radio show hosted by Brutal Existence Radio, USA the next time.


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Part II


video