Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Dashwood - S/T (2013)

You know how every so often, you come across a band that properly blow you away, and you're kicking yourself for not discovering them sooner? Imagine that happening, and really enjoying their stuff, and then just as you are about to do a belated review of their most recent release, you're given the chance to review their next one.
That's exactly what's happened to me with UK HC crew Dashwood.

What you have here on their new self-titled EP is five tracks of in-your-face hardcore.
No macho bullshit, crossover or anything like that, just good old style hardcore, with a feel of misanthropy running throughout.

When they slow down for the mosh parts, it's tight, get you moving stuff, with a great rhythm section locking together (if you need any further clues as to how well they execute this, the EP contains a flawless cover of SSD's Police Beat), but when they play fast...fucking hell, they career along at a breakneck speed with just as much ease, presenting plenty of bite to put them up amongst their peers in the UK hardcore scene which (for those of you visiting our site solely on metal content) is thriving and deserves your attention.

All in all, a tough, tight, solid EP that I can see myself coming back to again and again.

Coming soon, but for now you can check out their bandcamp page for said SSD cover and you can snag a digital download of their My Disobedience which pulled me in, and their debut EP Hurt/Heal for free there too.


Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Opium Lord - The Calendrical Cycle - Prologue:The Healer

Smashing the death decks this week, is the ornately titled The Calendrical Cycle - Prologue:The Healer EP from Opium Lord.

With an undoubted underground pedigree, this debut from the Black Country four peice who are turning heads already is an absolute belter; a mix of sounds and influences that makes them pretty hard to pigeonhole.
I keep getting bandnames on the tip of my tongue as I type this listening to the EP, "kind of like...." and then that little touchstone is gone and they are making me think of someone else, all the while forging their own sound.

Out via Thirty Days of Night in February, The EP contains two tracks, Heroin Swirl and  Street Labs, the former starting off slowly, with harsh vocals over the black morass of sound churning beneath, with a creeping, creepy middle section, that gives way to a bass heavy march with cymbals crashing all around, and a squeal of feedback as a palate cleanser before seguing into the second track, Street Labs, whirling headfirst at you with some nice post-metal touches and fierce dynamics to it.
Of course, it's as slow and heavy as you might expect, slightly psychedelic in some places, akin to the last Ilsa release.
It's up now for pre-order at £2.99 which is a steal.
Get on it.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Dark Newthrone

Darkthrone and Peaceville are teasing us with the new track Leave No Cross Unturned...

Even when they are surprising you, it's no surprise.
Hardest yet...belter.
Two Minutes and Fifty Two seconds in, all posers are crushed.
Can not wait for the full album.

O, to be in Baltimore.

This weekend, it's the 9th anniversary bash for our friends over at a389 Records, one of the most solid, hard working and inspirational underground labels out there.
Get over and have a fucking blast.
Look at that lineup!!

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Corrupt Moral Altar - Luciferian Deathcult

The first release on new label Baitin' The Trap Records is the Luciferian Deathcult EP from Corrupt Moral Altar.
As soon as you put it on, you are greeted with the words "I wanna get pissed for a reasonable price" and the band then force you head first into the track Play Stupid Games and Win Stupid Prizes.
It's an absolute maelstrom of a track, bringing sludge and grind up against each other to great effect.
Politics is a Bargain Between Beggars reminds me of mid nineties Napalm Death at times, maybe Napalm Death covering Black Flag, Adam's basslines easily as grinding as anything Shane Embury has laid down.
An absolutely searing vocal performance from vocalist Chris, bringing to mind the great Kev Sharp, contrasts with the doomy choir effect at the start of Power Whore, and I must bring attention to the drumming from Tom throughout the release, absolutely bang on which kind of balances out the whole sludge thing giving even the slower parts of the tracks a grind/core feel (Yes, I mean grind/core not grindcore).
The band describe the EP as being about "modern life, alcohol-fuelled regret, desperation and denial against a backdrop of a flawed and hopeless society" and that feeling of desperation really comes across when they intone "...you're slaves, don't you know?..." on Flattening the Cultural Pyramid, which is the standout track for me. Absolutely fucking crushing, John's riffs sounding absolutely huge at the end.
The EP ends with You Don't Have To Go To Clown College, which has a - dare I say it - bit of a groove to it, but will still melt your face off.
And then that's it, they're out, and they've taken all your cider with them.

The EP comes out on Feb 18th on Baitin' the Trap.


Iron Witch - Hangover Suicide

Released next month, Iron Witch's new 7" Hangover Suicide (Endtyme Records) sees the five piece back in the studio after treading the boards pretty much everywhere and nailing their sound.

In the two tracks on offer, you can get a real feel for how hard they've been working, rising far above all the NOLA-wannabees out there into a really filthy, whirling sludge machine.
Starting off with Death was the Colour and it's trademark IW riff, the tide sucks you in before, at about two and a half minutes, another crushing riff takes over (at this point, check out Will's drumming!).
There's a definite Black Flag feel about the music here, and working with Bri Doom at the legendary 1 in 12 studios has helped bring the band into a more in-your-face sound than ever before.

The second track, Hangover Suicide, is a pummelling beast of a track, the rhythm section of Rick and Will clicking together with Dan and Sam's guitar work painting a very bleak picture indeed; especially around halfway through where there is a Vitus-style crunch riff on the go.
Hovering over the lot and weaving his way through the destruction, Chris's harsh vocals probably benefit most to these ears from working with Bri Doom, they sound so clear, in a Dixie Dave Collins type way.

The single is available on 7” vinyl(limited to 350 copies) which are hand-numbered, with an A3 poster designed by the band,a digital download card (with an unreleased bonus track entitled ‘The Last of Nothing’) and a sticker.
Don't hang about.

Also, Iron Witch play the WPC Winter Warmer Show in Brixton on the 3rd of February, which will unfortunately be their last appearance with guitarists Sam and Dan; however, I hear they have practised with new members so hopefully the juggernaut ain't gonna stop anytime soon!

Iron Witch:

Endtyme Records:

Sunday, 6 January 2013

February Hexes

UK Druids Black Magician are embarking on a series of dates throughout February (including one at Belfast's Voodoo, which we visited last year and is a cracking, hospitable place) and Fibbers where we went a few years ago, so if you want to be able to tell your grandchildren that you were there at the start, now is your chance.

7th - Manchester (TBA)
8th - Liverpool (The Pilgrim)
9th - Edinburgh (Banshee Labyrinth)
10th - Bradford (Black Swan)
15th - Belfast (Voodoo)
16th - Dublin (Fibber Magees)

Home Town, Great Line Up, Good Cause.

Yeah this is coming up, great line up and it's for a good cause, the PDSA.
Look out for an interview with local madmen Dr Aids coming soon, if it's printable!!

From the official event's FB page:

Dr AIDS (Back to play Liverpool for the first time in over 6 months)

SWINELORD (Crust, D-Beat from Machestaaarrr)


BATTERY HUMANS (Crust, Hardcore from the North East)

STUCK IN A RUT (In your fucking face UKHC)

CRASH COURSE (Punk rock covers band from Bolton)


THOUGHT REFORM (Boss grind from Preston!!)

WHAT LIES WITHIN (Young lads making a wave in the 'Pool & family too!!)

NEOD (Local lads opening the show Brickcore!)


Wednesday, 2 January 2013

New Withdrawal track online

Canadian metallic hardcore ragers WITHDRAWAL, whose Faith, Flesh and Blood gets a lot of play at Claw Towers, have posted a new track off their forthcoming split 7" with YOUNG AND IN THE WAY on a389 in March.
You can hear the new track at this location.
Withdrawal are also touring the East Coast of the USA on the following dates (presented in US Format for those who can attend!):
01/11/2013 Winnipeg,MB @ The Frame Art Gallery
01/17/2013 Baltimore, MD @ Ottobar
01/19/2013 Brooklyn, NY @ The Acheron
01/20/2013 Amityville, NY@ The Spotlight
01/21/2013 Monteclair, NJ @ The Meatlocker
01/22/2013 Philadelphia, PA @ TBA

Tuesday, 1 January 2013


As usual, no numbered lists at the end of the year, as I'd sooner just point you all in the direction of some stuff I've enjoyed this past year.
  • Ilsa - Intoxicantations
  • Limb - Demo 
  • Ravens Creed - The Power
  • Deviated Instinct - Liberty Crawls to the Sanctuary of Slaves 
  • Mage - Black Sands
  • Headless Kross - Demises
  • Black Magician - Nature is the Devil's Church
  • Iron Witch - Post Vegas Blues
  • Studfaust - Half Human Half Dynamite
  • UFO - Seven Deadly
  • Arkham Witch - Legions of the Deep
  • Saint Vitus - Lilie: F-65
  • Tree of Sores - A Cry of Despair
  • Witchcraft - Legend
Thanks to everyone I've spoken to and who have helped us out this year, all the labels, bands, PR companies and blogs..looks like 2013 is shaping up to be a good one; fingers crossed!