new noise from crucial blast...


    Greetings, nightrunners...

    Welcome to the latest list of fringe metal abominations, anti-human art and outré listening experiences that comprise the Crucial Blast new arrivals for this week. And there is a lot for you to check out - over 130 new releases, restocks and hard-to-find out of print titles that I've assembled from across the globe. A bunch of noteworthy new albums from heavyweights like Leviathan, Old Man Gloom and even our own Gnaw Their Tongues are in here, lots of recent horror soundtrack reissues including a few that I've personally been looking forward to for quite some time, and some great stuff from favorite labels like Malignant, Annihilvs, and Cold Spring.

    The featured release is the latest from Boston-area outfit Sewer Goddess, whose latest Painlust has been repeatedly finding its way to the C-Blast office soundsystem over the past week. There were a bunch of amazing new metal albums that came out this week (Leviathan, Sumac, Sannhet) that all floored me in one form or another, but there's something about Painlust that made it the perfect soundtrack to the past few weeks for me here. It features a similar sound as the band's previous releases, but here it's pared down by band leader Kristin Rose to a leaner, more focused sonic attack, maintaining that filthy blackened industrial vibe but adding a heavier amount of Godfleshian heaviness than ever before. While there's definitely a major Godflesh (and Swans) influence, Rose and crew merge that pummeling industrial metal with a thick, cloying atmosphere of rust and rot that transforms this into their own distinct brand of hellish machinefucked heaviosity. For anyone who shares my taste in malevolent industrial metal, this one is highly recommended...

    Also on this week's update is the new Collected Atrocities 2005-2008 2xCD from Gnaw Their Tongues that came out recently from Crucial Blast. It's a collection of rare, out-of-print and unreleased material that was produced by this notorious Dutch black industrial band within the first few years of it's existence. Predating the Epiphanic album, these early works are just as depraved and disgustingly caustic as that album, delivering that unique monstrous hybrid of black metal, death industrial, doom, and noise that Gnaw Their Tongues has become renowned for over the past decade. Pick this up and see where the filth first started to flow; a perfect primer to lead up to their upcoming performances in the USA later this year. Along with the 2xCD and digital album, we also released a new shirt design that's available individually or bundled with the album.

    Lots of black metal of the left-field/progressive persuasion this week, including new releases and new vinyl editions of albums from Alraune, Mysticum, Xothist, Vorde, and Imperial Triumphant; Bethlehem's latest mutant gloomfest Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia, the crazily-packaged In Death 7" from noisy black metallers Ancestors, and the long-awaited new mini-album from the singular post-punk influenced black metal band Ghost Kommando, Abraxas Rising; brutal blackened punk barbarism from Damonenblut and a vinyl version of Hail Spirit Noir's blackprog debut Pneuma, recent split 7"s from Krieg / Ramlord and Vermapyre / Vehrmoedr, the trippy post-punk/black metal/hardcore lunacy of Leather Chalice's Luna, and the deformed sewer deliriums of De Silence Et D'Ombre's Vol. IV - Worship The Hideous.

   Fans of industrial heaviness will want to check out the new 2xLP reissue of the debut release from Author & Punisher, crushing new discs from Auditor and Khost, a massive triple-disc retrospective of Norwegian industrial metallers Red Harvest, restocks of the latest from pioneers Godflesh AND a killer new compilation called Fathers Of Our Flesh that features the likes of Gnaw, Nadja, Author & Punisher, Eagle Twin, Wormed and many more each doing their own unique interpretations of classic Godflesh tracks; and a new cassette version of Pig Heart Transplant's latest album For Mass Consumption...

    On the horror soundtrack front, C-Blast continues to expand it's selection with new and recent releases of the reissue of the score for Argento's Phenomena from Italian spook-prog masters Goblin, Simon Boswell's ornate score to the brutal Soavi slasher Stage Fright, the new One Way Static release of Phillip Glass's haunting Candyman score (on vinyl AND cassette), and reissues of John Cameron's wild and witchy Psychomania score and the Dawn Of The Dead Unreleased Music compilation, both from Trunk; as well as recent reissues of the John Carpenter scores for Prince Of Darkness and Halloween III: season Of The Witch, and most importantly, the new solo album from John Carpenter Lost Themes, a killer full-length of proggy, sinister synthesizer music from the master of cinematic tension and dread. There's also a new repress of Richard Band's Re-Animator OST, and a CD that features the entire soundtrack to the 1968 release of Haxan: Witchcraft Through The Ages, combining William S. Burrough's narrative with a cool experimental jazz score.

    A bunch of extreme electronics and noise releases from Bastard Noise (including their long-delayed collaboration with Kalmex And The Riffmerchants that is probably the weirdest fucking release on this list), Maurizio Bianchi's Amentest 7", the out-of-print Aube CD Howling Obsession [Revised], the punishing HNW of Edwige's Virgin Capricorn LP, a couple of twisted power electronics/industrial tapes on Tested Souls from X Narrative and Exploring Therapeutic Encounter, and a pair of brutal noise/cut-up 7"s from John Wiese, one of 'em a collab with former Fear Of God member Dave Phillips; nerve-shredding power electronics from Streetmeat, Baculum and False Flag, and a flesh-rending 7" of extreme synthesizer violence from Japan's Zaiden.

    Things get extremely ugly with recent vinyl editions of Coffinworm's latest and a new Lp from UK sludge/noise rock heathens Art Of Burning Water; a restock of Fistula's recent filth-feast Vermin Prolificus, and the debut album from pessimistic tarpit thugs Fortress, Unto The Nothing; we've got all of the recent releases from back-in-action noise rock legends Hammerhead, and those currently out-of-print 2xLP reissues of the classic early Melvins albums Eggnog / Lice All and Ozma / Bullhead - quantities are very limited. Restocks of Mournful Congregation's Concrescence Of The Sophia and the slo-mo sludge rock bliss of the Godstopper/Tendril split; newly remastered 2xLP reissues of Isis's Oceanic and Panopticon; more grueling noise rock via Rectal Hygienics' Ultimate Purity, and Moutheater's Passing Key. And more soul-flattening doom from Sea Witch, Pallbearer, Sea Of Bones, and Witch Mountain.

    And so much more, from the vinyl release of the blistering Wolves Of Heaven / Nyodene-D split, the latest double album of jazz-damaged Godfleshian heaviness from Combat Astronomy, and a new album from New York metallic hardcore band Darkside NYC that showcases their vicious mashup of streetwise punk, Celtic Frost-style riffage and extreme noise; to the industrial-tinged doom-jazz of Laube, and the hallucinatory French weirdness of Echancrure's Paysage, Octobre and reissues of French black metal narco-maniacs Diapsiquir; gobs of insane noisecore from Sissy Spacek and Surplus Killing; crazed death metal weirdness from Order From Chaos, Lithotome, and Dimentianon; violent hardcore and power-violence from Chest Pain, Column Of Heaven, Iron Lung, Man Is The Bastard, No Faith, Suppression, Nuklear Blast Suntan, and Una Bestia Incontrolable; mutant grindcore from the likes of Sete Star Sept, Plutocracy, Pryapisme, and the new Psudoku album Planetarisk Sudoku. Hard-to-find releases from death industrial and infernal ambient outfits Elhaz, Hadit and Valefor released on the defunct German label Memento Mori, and lots of great dark ambience and ritualistic resonances from Draugurinn, Solo Andata, Caulbearer and Sky Burial, Sigma Octantis, Emme Ya and Nuit, and Slavic synth primitavists Sorfeum. And plenty of pitch-black electronic / industrial sounds to sink into from Pharmakon, Theologian, Martin Bladh and Sektor 304, Murderous Vision, Sutekh Hexen, Trepaneringsritualen and others, as well as a new fanzine called Forever Doomed from Tenebrous Kate that further explores her interests in occult metal and vintage black magic cinema.

As always, we have a lot for you to check out, much more mutant extreme music and misanthropic art to be found on our shelves and in our bins...keep reading below to check out all of the strange and extreme new music, film, and art that's included in this week's new arrivals list.

Don't forget, you can click on the thumbnail image of the album cover for everything we carry in our shop to pull up a pop-up window showing an actual photograph of the item!


LEGION OF ANDROMEDA   Iron Scorn   LP   (Unholy Anarchy)    19.99

Track Samples:
Sample : Cosmo Hammer
Sample : Transuranic Ejaculation
Sample : Fist Of Hammurabi
Sample : Scourge Of Pestilence


AFTERBIRTH   Foeticidal Embryo Harvestation   CD   (Pathos Productions)    9.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Obstetric Bastardization
Sample : Obliteration of Human Tissue
Sample : Impure Conception

ALDEBARAN   Buried Beneath Aeons   12"   (Parasitic)    14.99


Track Samples:
Sample : Buried Beneath Aeons
Sample : Buried Beneath Aeons
Sample : Buried Beneath Aeons

ALIEN DEVIANT CIRCUS   Ananta - Abhâva   CD   (Necrocosm)    11.99

Track Samples:
Sample : ÿþMaha Pralaya (Pradhvamsa-Abhâva)
Sample : ÿþAp (Nâda)
Sample : ÿþAham Tattva (Kriyâ)

ATHANATOS   Unholy Union   7" VINYL   (Nuclear War Now! Productions)    6.50

BARREN HARVEST   Beautiful Flowers   3 x 7" BOXSET   (Black Horizons)    24.00

BODY, THE + THOU   You, Whom I Have Always Hated   CD   (Thrill Jockey)    14.99

Track Samples:
Sample : The Wheel Weaves as the Wheel Wills
Sample : Lurking Fear
Sample : In Meetings Hearts Beat Closer
Sample : Her Strongholds Unvanquishable

BODY, THE + THOU   You, Whom I Have Always Hated   LP   (Thrill Jockey)    19.99

Track Samples:
Sample : The Wheel Weaves as the Wheel Wills
Sample : Lurking Fear
Sample : In Meetings Hearts Beat Closer
Sample : Her Strongholds Unvanquishable

CHRISTIAN DEATH   Ashes (Ash Grey Vinyl)   LP   (Season Of Mist)    19.99

    Now available on vinyl as a special "30th Anniversary Edition" from Season Of Mist, in gatefold packaging on ash grey vinyl in a limited edition of 500 copies, released as part of their "Masters Of Goth" series - would love to see where that might lead!
    While Christian Death did put out some highly listenable material after the departure of founding member Rozz Williams (at least early on), there's really only three Christian Death albums that you really, really need in your collection: the pioneering and provocative 1982 debut Only Theatre Of Pain, and the two albums with both Williams and Valor Kand that followed, Catastrophe Ballet and Ashes. All of these are key works in the death rock canon, and their combined influence has reached well into the realms of extreme metal, industrial music and beyond; any headbanger who turns their nose up at Christian Death's early works simply based on the band's campy look should consider sitting down and listening to these albums side by side with Celtic Frost's 80s output to see just how far the band's black tendrils extended. There's been a recent resurgence of interest in the early Christian Death material, though, what with this whole death rock revival thing that's been going on for the past few years, and it looks like a whole new generation of listeners has been turning on to the weird, morbid genius of Rozz Williams. Not a moment too soon, I say. We've had the reissue of Only Theatre Of Pain available here for awhile, but up till now never stocked the following two albums, both of which were reissued by Season Of Mist in 2009; featuring booklet materials from the original first edition LP releases on L'Invitation Au Suicide and newly re-mastered, both come with the highest recommendation for anyone obsessed with true death rock and the most macabre fringes of post-punk.
    Originally released in 1985 on French label L'Invitation Au Suicide, Ashes was the final album from the Rozz Williams-fronted lineup of Christian Death, and an end to an era. While I won't completely write off the post-Williams output from Christian Death (the subsequent 1986 album Atrocities is pretty goddamn good), this was the last chapter in what had been a genre-defining run of albums, now iconic entries in the American death rock canon. On their third album, Christian Death were getting even more progressive, evolving into something totally unique within the realm of American post-punk. Williams' vocals are more measured, less overwrought than before, and there's a heavier feel to this material; maybe more so here than with any of the other Christian Death records, you can really pick out the elements of their sound that so enamored Tom Warrior - one listen to the driving, almost metal-tinged power that emanates off of the opening title track, and you can hear echoes of what would later emerge on Celtic Frost's Into The Pandemonium, the end of the song showcasing a ferocity rarely heard in this era of the band. From there, the eerie instrumental "Ashes Part 2" leads into more of Rozz's penchant for experimental soundscapery, and all throughout the album he laces the tracks with peripheral traces of Gregorian chant and ghostly mechanical sounds, squealing violins and nightmarish sound collage, even dreamlike forays into Weimar cabaret on "Lament (Over The Shadows)". The actual songs are some of their best, too. "When I Was Bed" is classic death rock, catchy and propulsive and draped in elegant shadow, and "Face" is the band at their churning best, fusing a smoldering psychedelic quality to the rolling tribal drums and handclaps and cob-webbed post-punk guitars, another all time favorite. Other highlights on the album include the slow brooding atmosphere that wraps around "The Luxury Of Tears", the metallic mausoleum creep of "Before The Rain" that transforms into something surprisingly triumphant, and the bad-dream dread of closer "Of The Wound", the sound of a screaming infant laid over a nightmarish string section and discordant piano, taking the album out into a final sprawl of surrealistic weirdness. A genuine classic of morbid post-punk.
Track Samples:
Sample : The Luxury of Tears
Sample : Face
Sample : Before the Rain [#][*]
Sample : Ashes

CHRISTIAN DEATH   Catastrophe Ballet (Bone White Vinyl)   LP   (Season Of Mist)    19.99

    Now available on vinyl as a special "30th Anniversary Edition" from Season Of Mist, in gatefold packaging on bone white vinyl in a limited edition of 500 copies, released as part of their "Masters Of Goth" series - would love to see where that might lead!
    While Christian Death did put out some highly listenable material after the departure of founding member Rozz Williams (at least early on), there's really only three Christian Death albums that you really, really need in your collection: the pioneering and provocative 1982 debut Only Theatre Of Pain, and the two albums with both Williams and Valor Kand that followed, Catastrophe Ballet and Ashes. All of these are key works in the death rock canon, and their combined influence has reached well into the realms of extreme metal, industrial music and beyond; any headbanger who turns their nose up at Christian Death's early works simply based on the band's campy look should consider sitting down and listening to these albums side by side with Celtic Frost's 80s output to see just how far the band's black tendrils extended. There's been a recent resurgence of interest in the early Christian Death material, though, what with this whole death rock revival thing that's been going on for the past few years, and it looks like a whole new generation of listeners has been turning on to the weird, morbid genius of Rozz Williams. Not a moment too soon, I say. We've had the reissue of Only Theatre Of Pain available here for awhile, but up till now never stocked the following two albums, both of which were reissued by Season Of Mist in 2009; featuring booklet materials from the original first edition LP releases on L'Invitation Au Suicide and newly re-mastered, both come with the highest recommendation for anyone obsessed with true death rock and the most macabre fringes of post-punk.
    Originally released by the French label L'Invitation Au Suicide in 1984, Catastrophe Ballet is an all-time deathrock classic, part of the essential Christian Death canon. It was also the first release to feature new members Valor Kand and Gitane Demone, both of the LA post-punk outfit Pompeii 99; for this new album, Williams and his new lineup shifted away from the creepy, transgressive punk of their debut, into a more expansive and psychedelic sound that was slightly more accessible, but no less twisted. Dedicated to the memory of André Breton and featuring excerpts from Jean Lorrain's classic text of nightmarish decadence, Nightmares Of An Ether Drinker, Ballet saw Williams getting deeper into his obsession with French surrealism and Dadaism, though this did nothing to improve his terminally dour mood. From it's opening salvo of sinister, kitschy haunted house organs that pave the way for the heavy bass-driven post-punk of "Beneath His Widow" (a bonus track that appears here for the first time), to the surrealistic washes of experimental texture and droning instrumentation of "Sleepwalk", the driving, disaffected menace and gloomy elegance of "The Drowning" and "Evening Falls", the pounding tribal rhythms and twitchy, stop-start momentum of "Cervix Couch" smeared in trippy Hammond organ textures, and the ritualistic dreamlike haze of "The Glass House", the band's sound was clearly becoming more sophisticated and experimental. That fey, androgynous howl that Williams belted out on the first record is replaced by a richer, more resonant croon that's frequently been compared to David Bowie, and he was often joined by Gitane Demone's soulful, sometimes bluesy wail, which added a new wrinkle to Christian Death's sound. Many of the songs on Ballet are sublimely catchy, but they also ventured further afield into the kind of creepy experimental soundscape work that Williams would explore with his solo projects later in the decade, tracks like "The Fleeing Somnambulist" blending together looping vocals, vast sprawls of warbling drone and distant industrial rumble, swells of psychedelic electronic noise and random percussion, dreamlike terrain strafed with the dark carnival sounds of what sounds like a steam-powered calliope. This results in one of the more adventurous dark post-punk albums from the era, combining themes of violence and death and eroticism with haunting hooks and an unsettling, though often strikingly beautiful vibe as no one else could. Crucial.
Track Samples:
Sample : The Fleeing Somnambulist
Sample : Cervix Couch
Sample : Awake at the Wall
Sample : Androgynous Noise Hand Permeates

CONVIVIAL HERMIT, THE   Issue One   MAGAZINE   (Convivial Hermit)    4.99

CORRUPTED   Nadie   12"   (Throne)    19.99

CROOKED NECKS   Faded Fluorescence   CASSETTE   (Black Horizons)    7.99

DARVULIA   L'Alliance Des Venins   LP   (Battlesk'rs)    19.99

    Now available on limited edition vinyl with poster and printed inner sleeve, and includes a bonus track called "Le Silence D'Anna" exclusive to this release. Here's my old review of the original CD release:
    If you've been paying attention to the international black metal scene over the past few years, you've no doubt noticed that France has been cultivating an especially fucked-up, furious identity with bands like Deathspell Omega, Blut Aus Nord, Eikenskaden, Mystic Forest, and Diapsiquir all putting their own, unique stamp on ferocious, discordant black metal. Darvulia is another on the list, a two-piece from Toulouse, France that features ex-members of Fornication and Nuit Noire, and whose second full length L'Alliance des Venins summons a strange, hellish swarm of stumbling, droning black metal that nods to both the weirdness of early Ved Buens Ende and Fleurety, and the raw, pitch-black buzzsaw hatred of Vlad Tepes and Mutiilation. A thick swirling black metal blur of bleak, quirky minor-key riffs and depressing droning arpeggios, throaty, growling vocals, chaotic drumming, strange passages where the band suddenly stops and shifts into a waltzing post-rockish dirge with messy drumming and discordant, mathy guitars; weird sloppy punk rock mid-tempo parts, and a general hypnotic murkiness that has a similar diseased, psychedelic vibe as USBM outfits Xasthur and Leviathan. Excellent mystic black metal, with cool almost all-black artwork and interesting imagery.
Track Samples:
Sample :
Sample :

DEAD IN THE MANGER   Cessation   LP   (20 Buck Spin)    16.99

Track Samples:
Sample : DEAD IN THE MANGER-Cessation
Sample : DEAD IN THE MANGER-Cessation
Sample : DEAD IN THE MANGER-Cessation

DEATH IS THE ULTIMATE LUXURY   Death Is The Ultimate Luxury   ART BOOK - SLIM   (Black Horizons)    6.00

DEATHSTENCH   Nekro Blood Ritual   CASSETTE   (Fall Of Nature)    6.50

Track Samples:
Sample : Blood On Black Books
Sample : Nekrobloodritual
Sample : Burning Ov Entrails

DIAGNOSE: LEBENSGEFAHR   Transformalin   CD   (Hidden Marly)    11.99

    The one and only album to date from this diseased industrial project from Silencer's Nattramn was recently reissued by the Japanese label Hidden Marly, with all-new (and much improved) artwork from Nattramn and Romanian artist Costin Chioreanu. This album still sticks out as one of the more unsettling industrial/experimental albums to creep out of the periphery of underground black metal, and is as recommended now as it was back when it came out on Autopsy Kitchen back in 2007. Here's my old review of that original release:
    When Nattramn of Swedish black metallers Silencer ended that project and was purportedly institutionalized in a mental hospital several years ago, he left behind one of the weirdest, most personal expressions of mental anguish to come from the black metal scene, the Death - Pierce me album from 2001, a harrowing combination of shredded, noisy BM and Nattramn's singularly unique vocals that are still some of the most tortured, high pitched vocalizations you'll ever hear, a weeping shriek that disturbs to the core. Silencer's legacy, although obscure, was nonetheless recognized by fans of severe black metal weirdness, and many of us wondered if we'd ever hear another Silencer album. Well, Nattramn ended up leaving the mental institution he was in, and with a back story that alleges that part of his rehabilitation was the creation of a new body of music work, he's back with a completely new project called Diagnose: Lebensgefahr and a debut album Transformalin. You can't call this black metal, that's for sure...there's a black metal influence to Diagnose: Lebensgefahr, but Nattramn's new muse appears to be a wholesale plundering of assorted Industrial, techno, ambient, and other electronic forms, in the process creating a kind of weird black-industrial electro-drone fusion that's tough to compare to anything else. The idea here is that this is an audio portrait of Nattramn's struggle with mental disease, and it certainly transports you through a ever-shifting realm of terminal unease, filled with gritty synthesizer drift and gauzy, old-timey marching songs layered over brutal industrial beats and deranged spoken-word declarations, droning machine noise and grinding loops.
    Diagnose: Lebensgefahr isn't as over the top as Silencer, but there's a similar vibe that things are wrong here, a deeply disturbing atmosphere which makes this album pretty compelling. Parts of Transformalin remind me of both MZ.412 and Godflesh, but much of the album is so wildly abstract that it's more like a damaged version of black ambient than anything, a buzzing electrical presence glowing under yellow sanatorium lights. The third track “Flaggan På Halv Stång I Drömmens Västergård” invokes the icy drift of Lustmord or Troum, and “Tillsammans Men Ensam I Stillhetens Kapell” is a billowy cloud of white hiss and buried half-melodies that remind me of something from Tim Hecker, but darker, bleaker, the stuff of bad dreams, beautiful and threatening. The album's standout might be “The Last Breath Of Tellus”, which opens with a gorgeous wave of angelic voices surging through a veil of fuzz like a blackened Fennesz piece - it's exquisitely beautiful, until a diseased percussive loop enters and turns the track into a throbbing, malevolent techno-industrial jam. The more adventurous explorers out there who delve into the weirdest corners of post-black metal experimentation may well find this to be a fascinating followup to Silencer's suicidal disintegration. Highly recommended.

DODHEIMSGARD   A Umbra Omega   CD   (Peaceville)    16.98

Track Samples:
Sample : God Protocol Axiom
Sample : Architect Of Darkness
Sample : Aphelion Void

DODHEIMSGARD   A Umbra Omega   2 x LP   (Peaceville)    39.99

Track Samples:
Sample : God Protocol Axiom
Sample : Architect Of Darkness
Sample : Aphelion Void

DODHEIMSGARD   Supervillain Outcast   2 x LP   (Peaceville)    39.98

    Finally back in print on vinyl, reissued by Peaceville as a double LP in gatefold packaging. Here's my old review of the album from the original Moonfog release:
    Possibly the avant-black metal album of 2007? After eight long years, Norwegian black metal mutants Dødheimsgard (now referring to themselves as simply "DHG") have risen anew with their fourth album, Supervillain Outcast, and man is this one an awesome, ambitious assault of sleek, futurist blackness. Doesn't come as too much of a shock really, since the band's last album (1999's 666 International) saw them evolving into a digitally-enhanced machine, fusing Dødheimsgard's raw, furious Norwegian black metal with dark industrial and electronica elements. But with Supervillain Outcast , Dødheimsgard have tripped into new obsidian realms, like a black metal warning being beamed back to us from some dystopian, Blade Runner future, and it's a grim, smog-filled vision that I've been blasting nonstop since we got this in. The album begins with "Dushman", a barely one-minute loop of Muslimgauze style Middle Eastern ambience that explodes into the atonal black metal fury of "Vendetta Assassin", which morphs into a brutally catchy machine-groove thrash attack overlapped with awesome synthoid textures and weird insectoid bleeps flaring at the corners of your peripheral vision. "The Snuff That Dreams Are Made Of" is one of my favorite jams on the album, a crushing martial rhythm and precision deathriff onslaught carried on the silicon wings of digitized powerdrill whirrs and synthesized Middle Eastern fanfares. "Foe X Foe" emerges as a mass of bizarre, waltzing rhythm and fractured death metal.
    And things definitely get weirder, more unearthly: "All Is Not Self" sounds like the Psychedelic Furs surrounded by stuttering breakbeats, factory sounds, and choral chanting, while "Secret Identity" is a haunting interlude of clean, harmonized chanting. Songs are tied together with found-sounds and ethno-ambient prettiness. Whiplash breakbeats scuttle beneath syncopated, cybernetically-enhanced Meshuggah-esque grooves. The vocals are handled by newcomer Kvohst (formerly of black metallers Code), and he unleashes an amazing array of voices that move through brutal roars, doo-wop harmonies, creepy understated whispering, clean darkwave-pop croons. And as harsh and CRUSHING and mindbending as Supervillain Outcast is from start to finish, it's equally an amazingly catchy, hooky album, I mean really catchy, I've been blasting this disc in it's entirety all week and still haven't gotten my fill of Dødheimsgard's near-future hallucination. An awesome, trippy, breakbeat-infused black metal/industrial/dance/glitch/tech-metal/gloom-pop epic. Fucking amazing. Definitely in the running for my favorite metal album of the year. The album artwork is awesome too, depicting a manga style cloaked figure sending out hordes of death's-head flies swarming over a murky, polluted city skyline. Highly, HIGHLY recommended.
Track Samples:
Sample : Senseoffender
Sample : Addicted to Perdition [Instrumental]
Sample : Ghostforce Soul Constrictor
Sample : 21st Century Devil
Sample : Vendetta Assassin
Sample : Apocalypticism

DOOMED AND DISGUSTING   Satan's Nightmare   LP   (Nuclear War Now! Productions)    14.99

DREADLORDS   Death Angel   LP   (Not Just Religious Music)    14.99

ELECTRIC FUNERAL   Total Funeral   2 x LP   (Southern Lord)    19.98

EMPTINESS, THE   self-titled   CD   (K35 Incorporated)    11.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Why ?
Sample : Torments
Sample : Prison Without Walls

ESOTERICA   A Home For Rats   CASSETTE   (Fall Of Nature)    6.50

FAITH NO MORE   Superhero   7" VINYL   (Ipecac)    7.50

FÓRN   The Departure Of Consciousness   LP   (Vendetta)    21.00


FRIZZI, FABIO   Zombie Flesh Eaters (Strong Uncut Edition)   LP   (Death Waltz)    29.98

    The very first release from Death Waltz was their reissue of the classic Fabio Frizzi score for Fulci's Zombi 2, kicking off an amazing run of soundtrack releases over the past few years - this killer Lp is finally back in print with an all new package design and retitled under one of the film's more notorious alternate titles, and newly remastered by Frizzi. It's still one of the coolest soundtracks that Death Waltz has unearthed, a bizarro sonic nightmare of tropical delirium, evil electronics and shambling necro-prog that's an essential addition to your library of classic gore-scores.
    Couldn't have picked out a better score for Death Waltz's inaugural release, really. One of my all-time favorite Italian composers from the Golden Age of pastaland splatter, Fabio Frizzi assembled one of the most iconic film scores from this era with his hallucinatory score for Lucio Fulci's 1979 undead splatter classic Zombie Flesh Eaters. The film itself is a classic of Italian horror, in spite of it's obvious cribbing of ideas from George Romero's work; the story is prone to all of the nonsensical plotting and lapses in logic that infect much of Fulci's horror output, but there are images in Zombi 2 that are among some of the most indelible visions of flesh-carnage on record. The infamous "splinter" sequence alone elevated this into some upper echelon of filmic carnography. For the soundtrack to Fulci's blood-splattered tropical nightmare, Frizzi crafted a dreamlike assemblage of island music, primitive droning synthesizers, and eerie Mellotrons floating in a putrescent haze of rot and decay. If you were to stumble across this Lp blindly, hearing Frizzi's opening sequence of Caribbean percussion, steel drums, and sunny island melodies would hardly suggest the imminent descent into Fulci's nightmarish world of black voodoo magic, violent jungle death and shambling rot contained on these reels; the first track on the Zombi 2 soundtrack sounds more like the theme music for a tropical resort commercial, but this strange intro only serves to make the sinister synthscapes, Mellotron-laced prog and glistening early 80's horror ambience that follows all the more haunting. This is some of Frizzi's best known work, a classic spook-prog soundtrack and a solid album of malevolent synthesizer music all on its own, enhanced by collaborator Maurizio Guarini who handled the keyboard work. Some of those traces of tropical music continue to appear throughout the score, subtle percussive elements suggestive of steel drums that are carefully sublimated beneath the sleek synths and propulsive rhythms, and the feverish trancelike sound of tribal drums are a recurring theme, evoking the themes of voodoo magic and undead chaos that creep through Fulci's film. There's also a smattering of wailing atonal acid guitar and some subtle Moroder-esque disco elements, all wrapped in Frizzi's mutant electronic sounds. And then there's that main theme, those muted muffled drum machines thumping beneath the choral voices buried beneath all that murk, the sound ancient and moldering, only to birth that main synth hook that any fan of Italian splatter will instantly recognize. It's right up there with Goblin's output from the same period, eerie and weird and totally unforgettable, the whole soundtrack imbued with a feeling of wrongness that's impossible to shake.
    This new 2015 reissue looks fantastic, totally revamping the packaging, presented in a gatefold jacket that features the original UK quad art created by legendary poster artist Tom Beauvais, a re-designed insert with liner notes from renowned author and musician Steven Thrower (Coil, Psyclobe, Nightmare USA, Eyeball, etc.), star Ian McCulloch, Beauvais, and Frizzi himself.
Track Samples:
Sample : Main Title
Sample : Maggots
Sample : Eyeball
Sample : Virus

FRIZZI, FABIO   A Cat In The Brain   LP   (Mondo)    34.99

FUNERARY CALL / CROWN OF BONE   self-titled   CASSETTE   (Fall Of Nature)    6.50

Track Samples:
Sample : FUNERARY CALL / CROWN OF BONE-self-titled
Sample : FUNERARY CALL / CROWN OF BONE-self-titled
Sample : With Curse

GATES   Moths Have Eaten The Core   LP   (Anti-Matter)    16.99

    Finally have this vinyl reissue of Gates' Moths Have Eaten The Core in stock, on colored vinyl in acasewrapped jacket, with download code, double-sided insert and an 11" by 17" poster, all featuring brand-new artwork.     Here's my old review of the original CDR release:
    This album from the Canadian ambient doom project Gates more or less suffered this fate; we're down to just a couple of copies, and once these sell out, this title will be out of print. When I finally did dig it out and give it a spin recently, I was pretty impressed with the massive rumbling doomscapes that Gates produces, a sprawling, wide-flung abyss of industrial doom drifting through utter blackness. The three songs on Moths Have Eaten The Core are expansive affairs, the first built up with dense layers of hiss and reverb and field recordings, huge glacial doom metal riffs slowly undulating in the depths, super heavy and distorted, while high end guitar notes, gleaming cold and shimmering with more reverb, slowly ascend overhead, and mysterious cracking, crashing, clanking noises sound in the background. It's like Sunn's Black One reshaped into a space rock jam. The second track "Inner Labyrinth" is just as heavy, just as blackened, but instead of a howling abyssal mass of amorphous dronemetal, the sound on this one is much more restrained. The slow, oozing riffs are buried under flattened low end frequencies and waves of amplifier hiss, streaked with droning feedback and speaker crackle. The latter half of the song grows more unstable, blasts of high end synthesizer and buzzing, almost black metallic melodies snaking through the murk. And then the final track "Dust of Absence", a monolithic twenty-plus minute symphony that moves through smoking wastelands of pitch-black amplifier drift into oceanic drones and what sounds like majestic strings and French horns and a whole orchestral percussion section playing in extreme slow motion, a washed-out, blurry symphonic drift buried beneath layers upon layers of hum and roar, lifeless moaning and Lustmordian blackness.
Track Samples:
Sample : Dust of Absence
Sample : Inner Labyrinth
Sample : Outer Labyrinth

GODFLESH   A World Lit Only By Fire   CASSETTE   (Hydra Head)    9.99

Now available on limited edition cassette from Hydra Head.
Throughout 2014, there were numerous long-awaited albums that I was dyin' to hear, long in the works comebacks from longtime favorites like Mysticum and Eyehategod, but more than any of them, I was looking forward to the brand new album from Godflesh. This mucho anticipated comeback from the British industrial metal titans came on the heels of the fantastic Decline & Fall EP from earlier in the year that teased us with a glimpse of the molten fury of the band's reinvigorated sound, but even with that preface, A World Lit Only By Fire still stunned with it's relentless, hammering power. From the opening moments, it's clear that the band is firing on full force, hammering out the sort of punishing mechanized heaviness that their earliest albums were known for. And World has it, a triumphant return after a thirteen year silence, sounding like there's been no downtime at all.
Aglow in apocalyptic ambience and encrusted in corrosion, A World Lit Only By Fire strips away virtually all of the melodic undercurrents that appeared on the last Godflesh album Hymns (and which foresaw the heavily-layered shoegazey sludge that Broadrick would explore in more depth with his Jesu project following Godflesh's demise), going for a more streamlined and skull-crushing assault right off the bat with the syncopated mecha-crush of "New Dark Ages", massive downtuned guitars piling atop the robotic thud of the drum machine, the bass slung like slack power cables across the grimly hypnotic groove. That relentless chug continues through the pissed-off dirgey dissonance of "Deadend" that downshifts into even more bone-rattling slo-mo tempos, and the death-factory pummel of "Shut Me Down" swings a titanic hammer across it's punishing head-nodding groove; the power of this material is consistent throughout the entire album, with shades of the band's haunting post-punk tinged pummel seeping into some of the middle tracks, echoes of Killing Joke and Swans lurking beneath the grinding grooves and malevolent pneumatic rhythms, alongside brief glimpses of redemptive beauty that shimmer out across the occasional melodic riff that emerges out of the machinelike anvil crush. And then there's "Imperator", which would be the heaviest slab of industrial death metal I've heard in eons if it weren't for Broadrick's contrasting stoned-out crooning vocals. This is one lean comeback album, devoid of anything that would detract from the single-minded lethality of Godflesh's renewed vision, and the result is easily the best industrial metal album to arrive in recent memory. Highest recommendation.
Track Samples:
Sample : New Dark Ages
Sample : Forgive Our Fathers
Sample : Carrion

GODFLESH   Decline & Fall   CASSETTE   (Hydra Head)    7.99

Now available on limited edition cassette from Hydra Head.
Though Godflesh were resurrected in 2010 for a run of festival dates (one of which ended up being their crushing performance at the 2012 Maryland Deathfest, still one of the best sets I've ever seen at the festival), it's taken them a few years to get around to actually putting together some new material for us. Released as a taste of what's to come with their impending new album A World Lit Only by Fire coming later this year, Decline & Fall finally brings us the new Godflesh that we've been waiting for, their first batch of original songs in thirteen years. And man, as soon as "Ringer" kicks in, it's like it's been no time at all, the massive propulsive crush of that opening song is classic Godflesh, that monstrous corrosive downtuned riffage and low-frequency blast of the bass, Broadrick's bellicose bellow and off-key singing, the inexorable grind of the drum machine, it's all as skullcrushing as anything the band did before Broadrick abruptly ended Godflesh in the depths of an nervous breakdown over a decade ago.
That molten mechanical metal bulldozes across these four songs, powered by the punishing machinelike pummel of the drum machine, but that's also traced by some subtle electronics that are vaguely similar to the sort of textured noise you'd find with Jesu, some murky washed-out melodic drift lingering beneath the surface of the duo's devastating ultra-dirge. Monstrous rhythms lurch across the blown-out dystopian churn of "Dogbite", its deformed funk hammered into a punishing groove splayed over a brutal hip-hop informed breakbeat; and there's an almost tribal energy to the massive bass-driven thud of "Playing With Fire". But its the title track that really sticks out, more complex and faster than what you might expect from these guys, like a a more frenetic, intricate version of their Streetcleaner-era mecha-metal. The band definitely sounds as heavy as ever, the production is crushing. A killer comeback for sure, any skepticism as to whether Godflesh still possessed the consuming fire of their classic output is extinguished as soon as this roars forth from that first track. Can't wait for the album.
Track Samples:
Sample : Playing With Fire
Sample : Dogbite
Sample : Ringer

GOLDENTHAL, ELLIOT   Pet Sematary   2 x LP   (Mondo)    44.99

Track Samples:
Sample : To The Micmac Grounds
Sample : The Return Game
Sample : The Pet Sematary

HADEWYCH   Nu   CASSETTE   (Black Horizons)    7.99

HALL, NATE   Electric Vacuum Roar   CD   (Heart & Crossbone)    11.98

U.S. Christmas guitarist / singer Nate Hall follows up a pair of killer solo appearances on Neurot with this new two-song dip into the cosmic whirlpool, raining down a pair of fairly epic-length psych jams that shudder with Hall's trademark low-slung riffery and penchant for star-scorching effects splooge. This really hit the spot when I threw it on earlier in the midst of a rather depressing workday; the first track "Dance Of The Prophet" howls across the first half of the disc, sending some languidly lysergic power-blooze noodling soaring through a fog of delay and flange effects, billowing out across waves of rumbling distorted amplifier drone and distant slo-mo drumming, almost sounding in those first few minutes like some classic Acid Mothers style space-psych being played back at quarter speed. Once Hall drifts in with those far-off, incantatory vocals, though, this definitely starts to resemble the sort of Appalachian sludge-psych he's been delivering with his main band for the past decade. It's a different spin on it though, incporpoating subtle bits of electronic glithcery and manipulated guitar sounds to craft something a little more spacey and surreal. The whole thing meanders across the disc, both tracks oozing into long stretches of barely formed bleariness and wailing guitar drone, seeping strange shortwave frequencies and drifting into passages of haunting glacial twang, a kind of slow moving and sun-blasted sinister psychedelia beamed in from some rustic black nebulae mapped out by Manly Wade Wellman, rife with moments of startling stark majesty. And on the second song "Long Howling Decline / People Fall Down", Hall cranks up the amps for an even heavier descent into an acid-fried hypno-rock ritual, the frantic howl of Crazy Horse tumbling in reverse up through an ancient mine shaft, before finally breakign apart into a searing blast of solarized feedback and ghostly feedback drone that transforms into a beautiful elegiac passage that climbs upward across the finale of the album. If you're into the likes of Hall's main band, the country-fried doom n' twang of recent Neurosis, the glacial rural gothic of latter day Earth, and the blown-out saurian country rock of Across Tundras, then this is one you're definitely going to want to pick up.
Track Samples:
Sample : Dance Of The Prophet
Sample : Long Howling Decline / People Fall Down

HANNUM, TERENCE   Spectral Life   LP   (Shelter Press)    23.00

HELEL   The French Industrial Cursed Tape [Unreleased demos from 2006 to 2008]   CASSETTE   (Necrocosm)    7.99

ICECROSS   self-titled   LP   (Vintage / Rockadrome)    26.00

    Finally have this killer early 70's Icelandic band's sole album back in stock, newly reissued on vinyl by Rockadrome sub-label Vintage for the album's fortieth anniversary, with new liner notes and vintage press clippings/band photos and an 11" by 17" poster.
    One thing I don't come across often is creepy, heavy Icelandic psych-rock, so I was instantly curious about the band Icecross when I first heard about them a couple of years ago on some message board conversation about early 70s proto-metal bands. It took forever to finally track their music down as it's gone in and out of print over the years, being released on a number of different labels as well as being bootlegged a couple of times. Eventually I came to what appears to be the most recent version of the self-titled album from this obscure band, a rare Italian (I think?) import of the only record that the sinister Icelandic psych-rockers Icecross ever released during their short career. Several of the songs on Icecross have a definite proto-metal feel, and fans of Captain Beyond, Dust, early Pentagram and Sabbath would probably dig Icecross, but these guys were more of a rollicking psychedelic rock outfit with progressive touches. A really dark one though, much darker than most bands I've heard from this era; the songs are laced with creepy Middle Eastern flavored solos and ominous lurching riffs, and the singer occasionally puts these weird demonic distortion and effects on his voice. The weird occult-themed lyrics and wailing possessed vocals really kick in on the bizarre nightmare psych of "1999", but even the more pastoral, folky songs like "A Sad Mans Story" are seriously dark and gloomy, the moody singing drifting over softly strummed guitars and tinkling piano beneath low, black clouds. The blasphemous psychedelic prog rock of "Jesus Freaks" is probably where Icecross gets most of their notoriety from, with it's evil sounding vibe and the heavy, quasi-Sabbathian crunch; hard to believe that these guys were producing something that heavy and dark this early in the decade. There's a couple of exceptions to all of the doom n' gloom, like the good-time boogie rock of "Wandering Around", but for the most part Icecross's music is at least partially cloaked in shadow, their loose, shambling psychedelia revealing a cloven hoof more than once throughout the album. Who should really be checking Icecross out are fans of all of those newer occult rock revivalists like Witchcraft, Graveyard, and Devil's Blood along with hardcore fans of vintage macabre psych/prog like Coven, Black Widow, and Jacula / Antonius Rex...
Track Samples:
Sample : 1999
Sample : Jesus Freaks
Sample : Nightmare

IMPETUOUS RITUAL   Unholy Congregation of Hypocritical Ambivalence   2 x LP   (Profound Lore)    34.99

    One of 2014's best and most sonically oppressive death metal albums is finally out on vinyl, in gatefold packaging from Profound Lore. Let the murk commence!
    Another killer album of outré death metal from Down Under. Sharing some of the same personnel as Portal and Grave Upheaval, Impetuous Ritual ply an intensely oppressive brand of death metal that was first introduced on their 2009 album Relentless Execution Of Ceremonial Excrescence. Like the other bands in the Brisbane underground, the approach is primal, deformed, and pitch-black, the music formed from waves of putrescent, near indecipherable riffs, unconventional song structures and a churning, subterranean low-end heaviness. Their brand of barbaric death metal might not be quite as abstract as Portal or as noisy and oppressive as Grave Upheaval, but these guys definitely seethe with a similar sonic sickness and hallucinatory vibe that sounds more twisted than ever on their latest album Unholy Congregation of Hypocritical Ambivalence.
    As soon as that first song "Verboten Genesis" pours forth in a volcanic blast of blacknoise guitar chaos, and the monstrous exhalations and pounding war-drums begin to race with ever ascending levels of frantic energy through the band's almost totally inchoate deathstorm, you're left crippled by the sheer barbarism of Impetuous Ritual's sonic attack. Comparisons to the chaotic, angular death metal of Portal are to be expected, but Unholy Congregation offers a swarming horror that is distinctly its own, the sound soaked in a fetid fog of low-end noise that casts an unholy hallucinatory glow across these nine tracks, but also possessed by some intensely eerie melodies that the guitarists strategically place amid their more unformed blasting violence. The guitar solos are insane squalls of tortured squealing shred; the listener will suddenly be able to clutch at a monstrous riff, a massive sludge-splattered hook that will suddenly loom out of the maelstrom, but these moments are surrounded by expanses of sheer chromatic chaos. On tracks like "Despair", the band abruptly shifts out of that blasting black chaos-storm into an expanse of dank, doom-laden atmosphere as everything slips into a slow seething churn, earthquake double bass rumbling beneath the black static swarm of the guitars, the crushing riffage smeared into a droning, dreadful ambience, then shifting into a truly haunting tremolo-picked riff that rises above the amorphous, tectonic roar. The vocals are largely a guttural hiss, suffused into the chaos, but there are some moments of hysteric savagery that sear the deathscape, like the crazed falsetto scream that rips through "Inservitude of Asynchronous Duality". Strange auditory hallucinations form at the edges, like the ritual tolling of bells on "Metastasis" that synchronize with the blast of stentorian riffage, and the surges of sepulchral reverb and streaks of alien ambience that appear in the chasms left as one track collapses into the next, until we're left with the sprawling fifteen minute closer "Blight", a near instrumental epic save for some wordless, chant-like moans and bizarre wailing that drifts lugubriously through the abyss, the music shifting down into a swarming slow-motion crawl that gradually dissolves into a final blast of formless blackened noise at the end. For death metal fans who dug the oppressive nature of Grave Upheaval's suffocating sound but who wished that there was more in the way of tangible riffs, this album's going to be exactly what you're looking for.
Track Samples:
Sample : Verboten Genesis
Sample : Inservitude of Asynchronous Duality
Sample : Blight

JESU   Conqueror   2 x LP   (Hydra Head)    29.99

Now remastered and available on limited edition vinyl.
It's been a long year, laying in wait for Conqueror to finally appear. Yeah, we had the Silver EP come out in March of 2006 as a stop-gap between full lengths, and that was an awesome offering from Justin Broadrick and company that included 'Stars', the uptempo shoegazer anthem that hinted at even even poppier side of Jesu. But a mere half hour of new Jesu just isn't enough, you know? It's impossible for me not to gush when it comes to this band, as Jesu sits without question in my top 5 favorite bands ever, a band that finally fulfilled the dream I had had for over a decade of hearing someone marry the blissed strains of early 90's dreampop to the heaviest possible Metal crunch. When I first heard the streaming samples off of the Heartache EP from 2004, it blew my mind, alternating crushing Godflesh rhythms with blissed out melody. And when the self-titled full length on Hydra Head appeared in 2005, I immediately fell in love with that album's dense layers of melodic noise, lumbering slo-mo beats, and pure metallic massiveness. So Conqueror is finally here, and it's as crushingly heavy as I would have hoped, despite all of the naysayers online that have called the album ""too soft"", or ""too pop"". And it is very ""pop"", impossibly catchy and melodic as a matter of fact, with a bit more variety in that department than with the first full length.
Conqueror picks up where Silver left off, and while there aren't any songs that are as fast as 'Stars', Jesu definitely steps further into the realm of pure British shoegazer rock, and on songs like 'Medicine' and 'Mother Earth' sounding more like an ironclad Ride than the MBV / Codeine-trapped-in-sludge of the self-titled album. These eight songs chug along at a brutal pace over the albums hour long running time, the pulverizing downtuned guitar riffs dipped in sugar and bulldozing through shimmering crystalline keyboard melodies and woozy layers of electronic texture, deep layers that reveal unheard nuances and sounds every time I spin this, Broadrick's soft and patient croon almost devoid of the echo overload that was applied to his vocals on previous releases as he delivers his aching, wistful, yet surprisingly hopeful lyrics. That his singing is so much more unaffected and naked here is indicative of how stripped down and concise this album is, the heaviness transmuted but still utterly flattening, a bittersweet glacial pop metal masterpiece oozing from torn amplifier speakers and sparking laptops.

LEE, THANIEL ION   Selections from the Dark Sketchbook 2012-2014   ART BOOK - SLIM   (Black Horizons)    6.00

LEGION OF ANDROMEDA   Iron Scorn   LP   (Unholy Anarchy)    19.99

Track Samples:
Sample : Cosmo Hammer
Sample : Transuranic Ejaculation
Sample : Fist Of Hammurabi
Sample : Scourge Of Pestilence

LILES, ANDREW   Wanton Wives, Monstrous Maidens And Wicked Witches   LP   (Blackest Rainbow)    27.99

LITHOTOME   self-titled   CD   (Fall Of Nature)    11.99

    Finally have this killer avant death grotesquerie in stock on CD from Australian label Fall Of Nature. These guys have frequently been compared to Portal, but their brand of violently contorted death metal is a lot uglier and more vicious than you might expect. Made up of several veteran members of the Philly black/death scene (singer Neil Jameson is best known for his bands Krieg, Twilight and Hidden, Alex Poole plays in Chaos Moon and Esoterica as well as Krieg, and Dan Martin hails from Vrolok and Vomit Orchestra), Lithotome produce a putrid chaos that seems to draw equally from the fumes of early 90s Finnish death metal and the atonal Gorgutsian horrors of certain strains of contemporary death metal a la Portal, making for a uniquely fetid stew of crushing doom-laden death and churning angularity whose hideousness becomes enhanced by a skillfully applied coating of cracked electronic noise.
    The psychotic atmosphere on the band's debut is established as soon as the opening track unfolds, a churning nebular mass of murky electronics and demonic utterances that swell up over the first few minutes of the album, before blasting into the vortex of the "Comavoid". The discordant violence produced by the swarming guitars is where we hear many of those echoes of both Obscura-era Gorguts and the hallucinatory dissonance of Portal, but when Lithotome suddenly lurch out of their swirling blackened pandemonium into one of the many rampaging thrash parts that litter the album, they distinguish themselves from a lot of the Portal-esque death metal you've probably heard, dousing this and the following tracks in noisy savagery. Jameson's monstrous gasping vocals are smeared across that thrashing atonal death metal, while the drumming lurches and stutters, slipping into furiously off-kilter rhythms blasting beneath the bleary droning riffs. Things slow things down to a deformed doom-laden crawl on tracks like "Indulge The Flesh Of The Earth", veering between that grotesque murky blast and a heaving slow-motion plod before it drops off again into another one of their imposing riffs, and the album is filled with these abrupt descents into crushing, discordant, doom-laden heaviness. There's some odd, almost Slintlike math-rock elements that surfaces on a couple of the tracks, and bizarre passages of free-jazz-like percussive chaos arise alongside liturgical voices and swirling synthesizer drift suddenly emerging out of one of these crawling discordant dirges. Sprawls of cosmic muck and distant Catholic chants bubble to the surface amid their crawling, mathy sludge, punctuated with squalls of garbled electronic noise. In the end though, what I really like about Lithotome's debut is how rooted it is in classic murky death metal, with a host of ravenous riffs that keep this from disappearing into total abstraction, with aspects that occasionally remind me of the spacey, off-kilter death metal of Timeghoul or Demilich. Another new favorite from the weirder fringes of American death metal.
Track Samples:
Sample : Indulge The Flesh Of The Earth
Sample : Comavoid
Sample : ÿþA Halo´s Swarm Of Locusts

LOST TRIBE   Solace   LP   (Mass Media)    21.00

MYSTICUM   In The Streams Of Inferno   LP   (Peaceville)    29.99

    Available again on vinyl with poster, in embossed gatefold packaging.
    A classic industrial black metal album that has been out of print for years, Mysticum's The Streams Of Inferno was one of the very first albums to combine the mechanical coldness of industrial music with blazing Norwegian black metal. Although their debut full-lengther might not be as complex and crazed as Dødheimsgard's 666 International or the experiments with fusing black metal and spastic breakcore that would emerge a few years later, this is still a crushing blast of Satan-worshipping, drug guzzling, narco-worshipping heaviness that has actually aged a bit more gracefully than some of the more techno-influenced BM experiments that followed in their wake. Originally slated to be released on Deathlike Silence, eventually found its way to the American label Full Moon Productions and came out in 1996, delivered a relatively straightforward strain of crushing black metal that was fused to programmed percussion and ultra heavy mechanical grooves, with a couple of detours into experiments with hardcore techno and drum n' bass.
    The monstrous slow-motion drum machines that crawl across the beginning of "Industries Of Inferno" resemble the earth-rending pistons of infernal machinery, draping the album with a heavy cloak of smog-covered dread from the beginning, but Mysticum's electronically-mutated black metal really kicks in to full gear with "The Rest", where sinister tremolo riffing is welded to jackhammer drum machines and sheets of crackling, corrosive electricity. That drum programming gives this album a really cold, robotic feel, and in some places take on the mechanical percussive precision of heavy artillery fire; the vocals are a withered shriek joined by majestic choral synths, and minimal keyboard melodies and smatterings of vintage horror movie samples were worked in for added atmosphere. A lot of this pounding, hypnotic black metal is infused with a diseased "techno"-like propulsion, but the band can also slow down, such as on the syrupy, almost breakbeat-like swing on tracks like "Kingdom Comes" or the murky oil-drum percussion that becomes lost in the blizzard of evil, droning riffs on "Wintermass".
    There are vast rumbling synths and black pulsating electronics that take over tracks like "Crypt Of Fear", and passages of extreme low-frequency drone and minimal crackling noisescapes that open up several tracks, or take over entirely, as on the eerie "In The Last Of The Ruins We Search For A New Planet" which crawls with bits of discordant piano music and fluttering electronics, gothic organs and eerie black cosmic ambience. That noisiness and murkiness in Mysticum's sound prevents this from ever turning too "symphonic", even when the band reveals waves of warped orchestral sound, whole string sections melting over the machinelike blasting and wavering electronic textures. When it closes with the blown-out, chaotic techno/BM terror of "Black Magic Mushrooms", the album's wildest track, things truly reach a psychotic peak, as trippy Hammond-like organs cuirl around the pounding jackhammer rhythms and spastic snares, the closest that Mysticum ever get to actual techno on this album.
    This 2013 reissue of The Streams Of Inferno also includes a number of bonus tracks, as well as a Dvd that features two full live sets from Mysticum circa 1996, one from Asker, Norway, the other in Bradford, UK while the band was touring Europe with Marduk and Gehenna; both of these concert films were shot on VHS by fans of the band, but both the picture quality and the audio are surprisingly good considering the source material, with the former set in Norway being particularly atmospheric, the band playing by candlelight in some small, darkened underground club. Highly recommended.
Track Samples:
Sample : Wintermass
Sample : Eriaminell
Sample : Crypt of Fear
Sample : Black Magic Mushrooms

NEPTUNE TOWERS   Caravans To Empire Algol   LP   (Peaceville)    29.98

    Finally available again on vinyl.
    Want another example of just how closely black metal and experimental electronic music have been aligned since the beginning? Just look to the music of Neptune Towers, the strange all-electronic project that Darkthrone's Fenriz was involved with for a brief time in the 90s; this side-project allowed him to pursue a singularly dark and sinister strain of interstellar ambience that was directly influenced by the young Norwegian's interest in the kosmische music of Klaus Schulze and Tangerine Dream and Kraftwerk's seminal krautrock. As with the bizarre mid-90s albums from Beherit and the sympho-ambient excursions from noth Burzum and Emperor's Ihsahn, whenever any of these corpse-painted teens tried to channel the vast, majestic sound of their Teutonic heroes the result would be a fractured, distinctly darker mutation of this sound, and Neptune Towers was definitely one of the strangest. Fenriz only released two albums of this ominous space music with Neptune Towers, 1994's Caravans To Empire Algol and 1995's Transmissions From Empire Algol, both featuring a dramatic electronic sound that combined those classic cosmic synthesizers with simple sequencer robotic rhythms and hypnotic pulsations, otherworldly ambience and eerie melodies, crafted into epic astral soundscapes. Both of the Moonfog albums have been out of print for years until recently, when Peaceville re-issued them with new artwork and liner notes, full-color slipcases, and in the case of the Transmissions re-issue, never-before-released bonus tracks that were originally supposed to appear on the third Neptune Towers album before Fenriz abandoned the project.
   The debut album from Neptune Towers features just two tracks, the first "Caravans To Empire Algol" sprawling out for nearly twenty five minutes as it passes through a number of different passages. It begins with the slow steady hum of cosmic keys rising into the night sky, clustered notes warbling and warping while celestial feedback streaks and dives across the blackness. After a few minutes, Fenriz starts to develop a simple, pulsating rhythm beneath the howling buzzing drones, a hypnotic throb that fades in and out of view while at the same time these huge swells of distorted low-end heaviness begin to emerge, waves of almost Sunn O)))-like rumble hovering in clouds of electronic whoosh and blasts of murky orchestral sound. By this point, you can really hear how Fenriz goes for a more sinister, oppressive take on analogue space music, the black hole ambience and grinding chordal clusters fused to stentorian rhythms and smears of gothic melody. After about ten minutes or so, a wash of crystalline melodic keys flows in over the eerie phased synthesizers and that throbbing bass arpeggio, briefly transforming the music into something brighter and more heavenly, but then fades soon enough as more chaotic synth noises and more sinister melody lines take over, again guiding us into the consuming maw of the black hole, our eyes slowly burnt out by starlight, our ears filled with the whispers of irradiated seraphim. Towards the end, some sort of Middle Eastern-tinged stringed melody takes over, a motif that continues to writhe and undulate for awhile even as the central arpeggio from the beginning reappears amid a stirring, cinematic finale, a vast grinding doom-laden synthdirge that dominates the final minutes of the track, evoking an apocalyptic, Lovecraftian take on classic Tangerine Dream...
    The other piece "The Arrival At Empire Algol" is shorter at just twelve minutes long, and presents a more desolate synthscape in the wake of the title track. Distant clanging chords echo through the cosmic haze while deep rumbling reverberations ripple across the void, and bits of stray electronic noise soar overhead. Darker and more ambient in tone, this does begin to reveal a host of glimmering keys far off in the background as some of the heavier droning elements begin to fall away, glimpses of celestial light breaking through the blackness for a moment before being swallowed up again by the emptiness of space. Finally about halfway through Fenriz drops in another deep hypnotic bass line that creeps through the remainder of the track, a looping ominous figure that anchors the music even as all manner of frenzied electronics and granular hiss and primitive synth effects swoop and trickle and bubble over the grim gothic astral ambience.
    Both of these Neptune Towers albums ranks as some of the best stuff to ever come out of black metal's ongoing dalliance with electronic music in the early 90s, and now that they've been given the posh reissue treatment are ripe for rediscovery for anyone who digs the void-worshipping electronic music and black-hole ambience of their protégés in Moloch, Northaunt, Raven's Bane, Tomhet, Vinterriket and Atomine Elektrine...
Track Samples:
Sample : Caravans To Empire Algol
Sample : The Arrival At Empire Algol

NOCTURNUS   self-titled   CD   (Moribund)    9.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Possess the Priest
Sample : Mummified

ODOUR SONOUR   Earth Burial   CD   (Exabyss)    8.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Hands That Not Mine ( Dead Hands )
Sample : Aspirating Soul From The Abdominal Cavity
Sample : Algor Mortis

ORTOLANI, RIZ   Cannibal Holocaust   LP   (Mondo)    29.99

   Can you believe that this is the first time that Ortolani's Cannibal Holocaust has ever appeared on vinyl? Considering Ortolani's prestige, I was really surprised to see that. But Mondo's new reissue of Ortolani's classic score is indeed the first time that this haunting work has appeared on wax - it's the same material that appeared on Red Stream's CD release a few years ago, re-mastered by James Plotkin and pressed on 180 gram black vinyl, and housed in a strikingly designed gatefold jacket with a full-color art print. Here's my old review of the score from when we had the CD version in stock:
    Riz Ortolani's legendary score to the 1979 fim Cannibal Holocaust is one of the most renowned of all of the Italian horror soundtracks, the work of a Grammy Award-winning composer setting sound to some of the most depraved visions of violence and degradation and gut-churning horror ever put to film. One of his only forays into the realm of horror, Ortolani's score blended unearthly beauty with sickening electronics for one of the most unsettling scores I've heard, and was an effective accompaniment to Ruggero Deodato's vile visuals found on this pioneering early found-footage nightmare. The utterly gorgeous sound of Ortolani's "Cannibal Holocaust (Main Theme)" that plays out over the film's opening scenes of the vast, verdant Amazon rainforest is about the last thing that you would expect to hear at the onset of an ultra-violent cannibal epic, but the haunting sound of those nostalgic strings and tremulous choir voices are arranged into a theme that's as romantic and achingly pretty as anything I've heard from Morricone, an aural beauty that is completely at odds with the retina-scorching flesh carnage that follows. But from there, Ortolani's score meets those lurid horrors of Cannibal Holocaust with a combination of sickening atonal synthesizers that lurk through pieces like "Adulteress' Punishment", solemn string arrangements, airy acoustic guitars, passages of weird, sickly jazziness, bits of bizarre 70's action-funk, and the horrific mutant disco of "Massacre Of The Troupe" and "Savage Rite" that creates a thoroughly disturbing tension between the horror movie style orchestral strings and the seemingly random blubbering synth-funk. And there's another striking composition titled "Crucified Woman" that accompanied what might be the film's most notorious set-piece, a profoundly mournful piece of music that ranks as one of Ortolani's finest works.
Track Samples:
Sample : Cannibal Holocaust (Main Theme)
Sample : Crucified Woman
Sample : Savage Rite

OWL GLITTERS   Alchemical Tones   CD   (Heart & Crossbone)    11.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Mindfull of Gems
Sample : Khalifa's Visions
Sample : Poets of Shiraz

PECCATUM   Strangling From Within   CD   (Candlelight)    7.99

Track Samples:
Sample : The Song Which No Name Carry
Sample : Speak of the Devil (As the Devil May Care)

PECCATUM   The Moribund People   CD   (The End)    6.50

Track Samples:
Sample : PECCATUM-The Moribund People
Sample : For All Those Who Died
Sample : The Moribund People

PECCATUM   Lost In Reverie   CD   (The End)    7.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Black Star
Sample : Desolate Ever After
Sample : Parasite My Heart
Sample : Stillness

PELICAN   Arktika (ORANGE VINYL)   2 x LP   (Oblique)    26.00

Track Samples:
Sample : Immutable Dusk
Sample : Parasite Colony
Sample : The Creeper

PELICAN   Arktika (CREAM VINYL)   2 x LP   (Oblique)    26.00

Track Samples:
Sample : Immutable Dusk
Sample : Parasite Colony
Sample : The Creeper

PERSONAL BEST   Issue 5   MAGAZINE   (Personal Best)    14.99

PERSPEX FLESH   self-titled   12"   (Static Shock)    17.99

Track Samples:
Sample : Prison Of Glass
Sample : Black Magic
Sample : White Horse

PROVOCATIVE RITUALS   II   ART BOOK - SLIM   (Black Horizons)    14.99

PYRAMIDS   A Northern Meadow   CD   (Profound Lore)    13.98

Track Samples:
Sample : The Earth Melts Into Red Gashes Like the Mouths of Whales
Sample : My Father, Tall As Goliath
Sample : Indigo Birds

PYRAMIDS   A Northern Meadow   LP   (Profound Lore)    34.98

Track Samples:
Sample : The Earth Melts Into Red Gashes Like the Mouths of Whales
Sample : My Father, Tall As Goliath
Sample : Indigo Birds

SLAVES   Issue 2   MAGAZINE A5   (Slaves Fanzine)    7.50

SOLUTIONS   Life Of Joy   12"   (Iron Lung Records)    14.99

STONE WIRED   Umbral Depth Of Shade   CD   (Exabyss)    7.99

Track Samples:
Sample : With The Eyes Of A Blind ( Version )
Sample : Severe The Silence
Sample : Desecration Of A Venerated Object

T.A.Z.   Communique #1 (Fall 2013)   7" VINYL + CDR   (Annihilvs)    8.50

THOABATH   Through Smoke and Feathers   CASSETTE   (Black Horizons)    7.99

THORNS   self-titled   2 x LP   (Peaceville)    37.99

    Finally available again on vinyl, repressed by Peaceville in gatefold packaging.
    First released back in 2001 on Moonfog Productions, the self-titled debut from the Norwegian band Thorns reached a new level in sleek industrialized black metal power, combining bizarre electronic textures and sheets of noise with the pummeling, precise black metal assault of primary member Snorre W. Ruch. Ruch's project had its roots in the nascent Norwegian black metal scene of the late 80s/early 90s alongside the likes of Mayhem, Emperor and Burzum, but the band's activity was cut short when Snorre was imprisoned for his role in the murder of Mayhem guitarist Euronymous. It wouldn't be until the very end of the decade that Snorre would resurface and return to his dormant project, resurrecting it as a fearsome new vision of cold, futuristic black metal, combining blazing Nordic blast with heavy doses of pitch-black abyssal electronica that didn't sound like anything else out there when it came out, the closest possible comparison being the bizarre avant-gardisms of Dødheimsgard's 666 International. This bold, bombastic new industrial black metal sound would first appear on the split LP with Emperor, which is still one of the weirdest albums to come from the Norwegian black metal scene, and was then followed by this, Thorns's self-titled debut, which remains to this day the only official full-length from the band.
    Recorded with the help of members of Satyricon, Mayhem and Dodheimsgard, Thorns is a futuristic, often abstract album unlike anything else in the Norwegian black metal underground. From the album opener "Existence" and onward, Snorre crafts tightly constructed blasts of blackened violence from his arsenal of dissonant guitar riffs, ferocious blastbeats, and the scowling vocal attack of Satyr Wongraven and Bjørn Dencker. Cold, clinical tremolo riffs ripple across the mechanized percussive pummel as the songs surge and spasm, lurching through odd time signature changes and sudden breakdowns into vicious militant martial rhythms, like the fucking ferocious breakdown that rips apart "World Playground Deceit". Other tracks feature pounding sheet-metal / machine shop percussion and swells of sinister orchestral drift injected into the creeping black dirge, at times sounding like some ultra malevolent Wax Trax industrial, the sounds of drills and pneumatic presses operating behind the jagged metallic riffage and pounding percussive stomp. There's some killer mechanized thrash that appears on songs like "Stellar Master Elite" and "Interface to God", while other tracks drift out into fields of minimal dark ambience, distant bathysphere pings and tectonic rumblings like something off of an Inade album, slowly building into another militant metallic kill-groove. There's a warped, seasick quality to a lot of these riffs, bringing a disturbing discordance to Thorns's strange Satanic cyber-symphony, and the surreal feel of the album is further enhanced by blasts of chilling organ and skittering, almost breakbeat-like rhythms, gleaming black electronics and fractured trip-hop like beats, and passages of ominous minor key piano laced with crushing metallic guitars and Snorre's sinister spoken word delivery.
    Can't recommend this one enough to anyone into mechanized black metal. Thorns is still one of the more terrifying industrial black metal albums from that era, as weird and as vicious as what Dodheimsgard were doing around that time. On the CD version of the Peaceville reissue, the original album is also joined by a pair of bonus tracks taken from Thorns's 2000 demo, a longer version of "Existence" followed by a track titled "TSoS" that delivers a killer blast of kosmische-tinged blackness.
Track Samples:
Sample : Existence
Sample : Tsos [*][Demo Version]
Sample : Underneath the Universe, Pt. 2
Sample : Vortex

TRAUMA   After Visiting Hours   CASSETTE   (Fall Of Nature)    6.50

TRTRKMMR   Avec La Souillure Nous Entrons Au Règne De La Terreur   LP   (Iron Lung Records)    15.99

UFOMAMMUT   Ecate   CD   (Neurot)    14.99

Track Samples:
Sample : Somnium
Sample : Revelation
Sample : Chaosecret

UN FESTIN SAGITAL   Deimos   CASSETTE   (Black Horizons)    9.50

UN FESTIN SAGITAL   Etna   CASSETTE   (Black Horizons)    7.99

UNHOLY   The Second Ring Of Power   CD + DVD   (Peaceville)    12.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Covetous Glance
Sample : Dreamside
Sample : Lady Babylon

UNHOLY   Gracefallen   CD   (Peaceville)    12.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Athene Noctua
Sample : Reek of the Night
Sample : ...of Tragedy

UNHOLY   From The Shadows   CD   (Peaceville)    12.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Gray Blow
Sample : Autumn
Sample : The Trip Was Infra Green

UNHOLY   Rapture   CD   (Peaceville)    12.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Into Cold Light
Sample : Petrified Spirits
Sample : Unzeitgeist
Sample : Deluge

VARIOUS ARTISTS   Nekromantik: Original Expanded 1987 Motion Picture Soundtrack (SPECIAL EDITION)   LP + 7"   (One Way Static)    33.00

VARIOUS ARTISTS   Nekromantik: Original Expanded 1987 Motion Picture Soundtrack   CASSETTE   (One Way Static)    9.98

VARIOUS ARTISTS   Frozen In Time II: Music To Accompany The Films Of Ingmar Bergman   3 x CASSETTE   (Black Horizons)    19.99


Track Samples:

WHORID   The Will To Speak Shall Be Severed   CDR   (Annihilvs)    7.50

Track Samples:
Sample : To The Dead Sentence Of Abandonment
Sample : Meek Death
Sample : I Never Loved You; I Suffered You

WILT   From Depths Profound And Inconceivable   CD   (Fall Of Nature)    11.99

Track Samples:
Sample : Les Fleurs Du Mal
Sample : Buried Temples Of Belial
Sample : An Ancient Circle Of Monoliths

WILT   A Daemonic Alteration   CASSETTE   (Fall Of Nature)    6.50

ZORN, JOHN   Simulacrum   CD   (Tzadik)    17.98

Track Samples:
Sample : Snakes and Ladders
Sample : Paradigm Shift
Sample : Marmarath

ZU   Cortar Todo   CD   (Ipecac)    16.99

Track Samples:
Sample : Vantablack Vomitorium
Sample : The Unseen War
Sample : Cortar Todo

ZU + EUGENE S. ROBINSON   The Left Hand Path   LP   (Trost)    24.98


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