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Tag Archives: Death Metal

Heaven’s Scum – Beyond Human Footsteps

Heaven's Scum - Beyond Human Footsteps
It’s been almost three years since the local Heaven’s Scum released their debut It All Ends In Pain, a record that had its fair share of flaws but essentially was a solid album. The quartet has been quite active in the meantime, playing gigs and writing new material, which they’ve recorded and decided to fund via crowdfunding, a concept that no longer needs an introduction these days. The result is called Beyond Human Footsteps and I’ve had the privilege of getting early access to it in order to write down my thoughts.

Back in 2014, when I reviewed the debut album, one of my major gripes was that the different musical styles didn’t always blend together very harmonically, thus taking the listener out of the experience. I am happy to report that the guys have gotten rid of any unnecessary fluff and that the new and improved sound is a lot more concise, settling in in the modern death metal genre.

Another aspect that was slightly lacking in quality on the predecessor has also been improved: the production. While the general approach of the instruments remaining as natural as possible is still the same, the methods of doing so have become drastically better and they make the eleven songs sound extremely crisp. The songwriting itself has also, I feel, seen improvement and everything comes across as much more mature and well thought out. A good example of this can be heard on the song They All Died, a mostly instrumental song which finishes in an epic interplay of groove, intricate guitar parts and just a well built atmosphere.

The selling point last time was hands down the diversity of the vocals and I’m happy to report that they are still just as strong and impressive during the fifty-three minutes of Beyond Human Footsteps. The improved production quality also contributes to them hitting harder than previously and better displaying the frontman’s vocal prowess. Lyrically, there are a couple songs that stood out to me for different reasons: Bow Down To The Crown, since it has this catchy growl-along chorus that could become the band’s anthem and the truly disturbing The Dead Don’t Judge. I’ll let you discover for yourself why that is the case.

All in all, Heaven’s Scum have without a doubt managed to take a huge leap in the right direction and know exactly how to construct a highly enjoyable listening experience. I, for one, am very much looking forward to what the future holds in store for these guys and I hope that the people will enjoy Beyond Human Footsteps, when it’s being released on March 18th, as much as I did. There will be a release show at Kulturfabrik on said date to celebrate in style, so be sure to bring your dancing shoes. In the meantime, be sure to head over to the band’s Facebook page for more information!

DarkRise – Fear, Hate & Corruption

My musical journey has been a long one and I’ve undergone quite a few changes of taste but I believe that I found my “calling” in the form of post-hardcore. Despite that, I love going back to my previous loves every now and then. Today is one of those days. DarkRise is a fairly unknown Swiss death metal band that is about to release a new album entitled Fear, Hate & Corruption, which I’ve been jamming on repeat for a couple of weeks now…so logically I want to share my impressions.

At first glance the quintet plays fairly “classic” death metal, but the more time you invest in listening to them, the more you are confronted with technical aspects and the ever-so-present groove that flow through the ten songs. Don’t get me wrong: there are far too many blast beats and double bass assaults to even start counting them, but at no point does it devolve into mindless hammering. Ferocious fast-paced riffs go hand in hand with intricate solos and playful licks, giving your ears plenty of opportunities to discover the record a bit further on every playthrough.

The vocalist delivers a fairly diverse performance, covering all the different styles that are generally present in the genre, without any problems. In terms of lyrics, I’ll let you take a wild guess by looking at the title of the album…nothing new, but it doesn’t bother me personally.

To be honest, I wasn’t too convinced by the sound of FH&C, but at the time of writing this, I wonder what kind of substances I must have been on…because everything is exactly how it’s supposed to be: the guitars spit fire, the bass is earth-shattering, the drums make your bladder lose water and the vocals will block the wind to your lungs. Add in a healthy dose of lo-…hate, I mean, and in unison they form Captain Headbang!

All in all, DarkRise certainly don’t reinvent the wheel at any point during these forty-six minutes…but they do deliver a record worthy of your attention! So be sure to listen to the song below and do the usual social media routine on their Facebook page! Fear, Hate & Corruption is out on March 19th!

Reject The Sickness – Chains Of Solitude


After several weeks of quieter tunes, I think it would be a good idea to crank things up a bit again? What do you think? Well, what better way to do so than with some fresh technical death metal from Belgium? But don’t roll your eyes in case you expect yet another bog standard metal act: Reject The Sickness add a few tasty flavors to the genre on their new record Chains Of Solitude! Read on to find out more!

The quintet has a fairly modern sound and also draws influences from modern metal acts, which can clearly be heard from the start. While the song structures are reminiscent of the classic bands everyone knows and loves, you will periodically find the occasional metalcore breakdown and chugging riffs along the way. Melody is also a big factor for the guys, since it is omnipresent, mainly in the guitar department, throughout the eleven tracks.

The groove is also strong with these musicians, and provides quite a few memorable headbang passages during the forty minutes, but the majority of the songs are filled with barrages of blast beats and crazy double bass work.

The vocals are mostly comprised of guttural growls, interspersed with maniacal screeches and topped off with fierce screams. Occasionally, however, the singer dives into a sort of clean vocals that gave me a very Gojira-esque vibe, which at times did feel a bit out of context, but didn’t throw me off too much.

All in all, Reject The Sickness is one of those bands that I’d like to write more about but feel unable to be descriptive or convincing enough…so I simply end this with: listen to Chains Of Solitude. It’s a solid record and it might tickle you in just the right spot. Song below and info on Facebook as usual. Take care until next week!

Epsilon – Zu Richten


Since it’s been rather quiet in the post-hardcore realm lately, safe for a few gems, I’ve had to enlarge my scope and delve into other genres…truth be told I couldn’t be happier. Especially since I’ve been treated to some true quality material, most of which was in the death metal direction. Today marks yet another entry of said style: Epsilon‘s Zu Richten, which was released last Friday!

The Austrians take a very old school approach and definitely like it raw and brutal, since there is little to no high tech bullshit involved and, at least that’s what it sounds like to my ears, every instrument is recorded as is. No triggers, no digital alteration, no nothing. Just pure, honest, mayhem…just like it should be!

The forty-six minutes are mostly a series of balls to the wall blast-beats and double bass rampage, combined with fast-paced, technical guitar play and a very distinct and clearly audible bass sound…a true delight to my ears! Obviously, and thankfully, there is also variation in the form of slower and groovier parts, that truly drive home the ever-present feeling of heaviness.

The thing that stands out to me, however, about the quintet is that throughout the eleven songs, they have six which are sung in German, complete with the typically Austrian rolled R. And to be honest…those are truly the ones that stand out, not only because of the language but also because they have the best songwriting and variety. Especially the seven-minute piece Die Schuld des Lebens is a ride to hell and along with the song Nutzmensch Agonie definitely among the masterpieces on here.

All in all, there is no doubt to me that Epsilon have managed to write a record that knows how to convince genre fans of their prowess and I’m quite certain that Zu Richten will not leave the playlists of many of their listeners. So be sure to listen to the song below and head over to their Facebook page for more information!

No Return – Fearless Walk To Rise


I’m going to be honest here…even though No Return are a fairly well-established death metal band that has been around for twenty-six years, I have never heard of them before. Which is why I won’t be able to tell you how well their new record Fearless Walk To Rise fares against their previous releases, but what I can tell you is: boy, does it rock!

The quintet plays death metal that definitely has old school roots, but doesn’t shy away from throwing in more modern, melodic, elements, which prevents the ten songs from ever sounding stale. The interplay between brutal riffs and devastating blast beats lends the tracks a lot of tempo and ferocity. On the other hand, you have groove-laden and truly melodic parts that infuse variety in just the right spots.

I get a certain Scandinavian metal feel from the music the Frenchmen play, mainly due to the fact that the song structures resemble those of the aforementioned genre and I personally don’t mind at all, because they absolutely nail it. The sheer mass of crazy-fast solos and technical goodness that is buried in these forty-seven minutes will certainly be appealing to returning listeners.

The only aspect that might be a bit difficult for some to get into, are the occasional clean vocals, or shouts rather, that are thrown in…especially because the French accent, that I personally adore so much, is hard to ignore in these passages. If you can overlook that small fact, the singer’s performance is top notch and he definitely delivers on the whole line.

All in all, as a first-time-listener, I can honestly say that Fearless Walk To Rise is a very solid death metal record, for fans of the genre as well as newcomers. I strongly urge you to give the song below a listen and visit the band’s Facebook page if you like what you hear, for more info on where to get the album once it’s released on March 30th!

Pandemia – At The Gates Of Nihilism


When I put on today’s record, I felt like it had been a decade since I listened to a death metal album, then I realized that it’s already 2015 and my feeling is actually confirmed: it’s been a long time. My roots were in thrash and death metal before I started venturing into other genres and eventually discovering the genres I enjoy the most these days. However, Pandemia managed to make me miss those olden days with their new album At The Gates Of Nihilism!

Interestingly enough, the Czechs are celebrating their twentieth band anniversary this year, so it kind of feels like full circle…but I digress. This long-time experience means that they have got this traditional genre down to a t: the guitars sound so menacing that at times you might start to worry about your health, the drums are an inferno of blast beats and double bass attacks, and the vocals tear everything to shreds that is in their way.

The quartet doesn’t stop there though, instead they blend the brutality with bite-sized pieces of groove and melody, which adds a ton of depth to the eleven, twelve if you count the Loudblast cover bonus track, songs. Combined with the crazy solos that are thrown in the mix and, most of all, the truly catchy songwriting, this creates a sound spectrum that managed to grip me from the get-go.

During the forty-one minutes, the vocalist delivers a stunning performance that is mostly kept in the growl range, but also features, what I like to call, “insanity screams”. You know, those screams that would make you feel concerned about a person’s mental well-being if you heard them outside of a musical environment. Good stuff!

All in all, Pandemia made a genre that I had mostly written off, in terms of personal taste, really relevant to me again. While I definitely won’t go out and buy twenty death metal records at once, I feel like it won’t hurt to give some albums in the genre a chance in the near future. So, do yourself a favor and give At The Gates Of Nihilism a spin when it’s released, on February 23rd! Until then, visit the band’s Facebook page and listen to the song below!

Dreadnought – Vanitas


I usually don’t write reviews of singles, but I’ll make an exception in the case of the local melodic death metal powerhouse Dreadnought. Part of the incestuous trio of bands from the Bricherhaff, they recently released the two-track single Vanitas.

As is tradition for these three bands, everything on here is self-recorded, self-produced and self-released. The eponymous opening track is easily my favorite track by the band so far, since it is so beautifully melodic and yet heavy enough to rock your socks off. The second track, Old City, is a bit more straight-forward but just as gripping.

The song structures in general have improved a lot since Demon, and the instrumentation is a lot clearer and poignant. And, as you might guess if you’ve read the last review that featured the same singer, the purely evil vocals of local growl virtuoso Boerdi are just the icing on the cake of these eleven minutes.

I know this is a very short review, but it’s easier for you to listen to it below and/or download it for free. I, for one, am very much looking forward to the next EP or full length by Dreadnought, and so should you! As usual, more information can be found on the band’s Facebook page!

Teitanblood – Death

Greetings, El Gore readers! Last time I wrote for these guys I reviewed Eyehategod’s In the Name of Suffering. Well, perhaps it’s the aficionado of awful in me, but now I bring you yet another taste of a truly dark, evil, raw pool of vermin and filth. Namely, the latest piece of work from what I consider to be one of the best, if not the best contribution that Spain has to offer when it comes to extreme music: Teitanblood. And the album? Death.

I’m most likely showing my colours by reviewing and promoting a band that’s so near home, but I honestly think that this band touches and creates in a very unique manner the most morbid and down tuned Black/Death Metal primitivism with brush-strokes of Doom that I’ve had the chance of running into in the past years.

The first time I heard of them was with their previous album, Seven Chalices. Just when I listened to the beginning, with Whore Mass and how it prepared the ground for Domains of Darkness and Ancient Evil, I knew I’d be coming back to this dense, raw, sinister, eerie, chaotic cloud of filthy, distorted, infectiously catchy riffs somewhat regularly. Hence, I discovered Death.

One could say that after looking at Teitanblood’s works, the most prominent influences on display are those derived from the bands that established the foundations for Death and Black Metal, whilst still developing their own character in this border between the two genres. There are some parts whose influences are incredibly evident, but then, if you try to strictly compare Teitanblood with that influence, or compare those influences among themselves, you can make out Teitanblood’s own sound and structures. Regardless of that, I think that the filthy aura of sheer aggression and cruel darkness that this album irradiates, with its guitars, drums and the most evil vocals I’ve heard, is unquestionable.

And the evolution that these guys have had over the years is also worth mentioning: each release is a more evolved version of the previous one in all aspects, while still keeping the essence that makes Teitanblood its own band. Exuding an old ancient evil feeling that comes across in everything they’ve done.

“It’s the point where Death Metal and Black Metal are not differenced” – Nsk (Guitars, Bass & Vocals.)



This review was written by our freelancer Victor!

Kraton – World Eater


September is going to be an interesting month for the Luxembourgish metal scene since there will finally be two new long-awaited releases. The first one being Kraton‘s second demo World Eater! After their first demo Ker, which was released in late 2011, the band has focussed on playing shows and writing new material. Let me just say upfront: the wait was worth the while!

For those that don’t know what the quintet does, allow me to quote the band “our music is a blend of Death, Doom and Black Metal and everything else that fits our idea of creating a dark, gritty and organic sound”. In many cases when a band writes something like that, and you listen to their stuff…it sounds nothing like the description. Such is not the case with Kraton, since their music does indeed cover the above-mentioned elements in a very refreshing manner.

The one thing that I had a hard time believing, but which is indeed true, is that the five songs have been recorded in a DIY live setup with all instruments being played simultaneously and the vocals recorded on top at a later point. My disbelief is easily explained: it sounds mindbogglingly amazing. Every single instrument can easily be distinguished in the mayhem that is World Eater, and sounds better than some professionally produced studio recording that I’ve come across. A special, albeit slightly sexist, mention to their female drummer who puts many of her male compatriots to shame with her precise play.

Obviously I can’t finish this review without losing a few words about the, in my opinion, driving force behind Kraton: Boerdi, the voice of Luxembourg. My partner in crime, Luc, praised his vocal work before and I can’t do anything else but add another layer of applause on top of it. The guy’s timbre is impossible to mistake and his vocal range is nothing short of incredible, which he proves gloriously during these twenty-three minutes. On top of that, you should have no problems figuring out the lyrics after, at the latest, the second listen-through since his perfectly articulated growls and screams are a blessing to the death metal community.

To sum things up, I’d claim that this record is not to be missed by death/black/doom metal fans or metal fans in general. Pay the band a visit on their Facebook page and get your first impressions from the song below. If you want to hear (and get your hands on) the new demo, you should go to Café All In in Luxembourg-City this Friday, where the band is hosting a listening/release party. See you there!

Desdemonia – Existence


There is one Luxembourgish band that probably everyone from the metal scene of the country has heard about and has most likely also seen live at some point. I’m of course talking about the death metal legends Desdemonia. This quartet has probably been the pioneer of heavy music in our little country and has celebrated its fifteen year anniversary at the beginning of 2012. In late 2010 the band released their long-awaited album Existence which stays true to their in-your-face sound.

The first song starts off with a rather melodic part which quickly turns into a neck-breaking riff fest coupled with the ever-so powerful vocals and annihilating drums. And let me tell you right off the bat: this is something that will be the case for the remainder of this forty-eight minute record. But let’s go a bit further into detail, shall we?

The guitar parts have a real evil feel to them and, especially at a show, you just can’t resist banging your head like a madman. Yet they have melodic interludes to build up atmosphere and show that the guitarists can do more than just play simple riffs. The bass guitar is also nicely audible throughout the whole ten songs which, as you know by now, is always a plus for me. One thing that I found interesting in the guitar department is that the main riff from the first song comes back in one of the later songs in a slightly different variant.

The drums range from barrages of double bass attacks and blast beats to groovy parts where the already strained neck gets its last dose. Production wise they’re just how I like them: clean and powerful but with a nice natural sound to them.

However, the most notable thing in my opinion are the vocals: the two Dosser brothers, who also take care of bass and guitar duty, alternate between low growls and screams. It’s this little “gimmick” that simply gives this album such a nice dynamic. I’d say that the perfect song to showcase this is the second track called Overload.

In conclusion I can only strongly recommend that you give this record a chance if you are even remotely into death metal. In the worst case scenario you’ve supported a starving (wink wink) Luxembourgish act and in the ideal case scenario this record will not leave your playlist for quite some time. I, for one, was happy to re-listen to this record after almost 2 years and re-discover why I liked it so much back then.

Check out the band’s Facebook page and visit their official website if you want to buy the record. A little appetizer can be found below.