Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Saccage - Vorace - French Canadian Crust/Grind

Saccage have been about since 2007 and are following up "Death Crust Satanique" from 2012 with this years "Vorace". The album itself is still yet to become available in physical form, but you can get a free download of it from their Bandcamp page, and it is well worth getting.

Very much in the same ballpark as the likes of Toxic Holocaust and Fukpig, these guys blend your regular d-beat, crusty-as-anything grind with death growls, black metal rasps and a shitload of riffage. The vocals though tend to vary a lot more track-to-track than you would get with the likes of Fukpig. It does have the harsh rasping you would expect from grind, but that sprinkling of chanting on "Musique Malsaine Pour Monde A Problemes" (which according to Google translates as 'Unhealthy Music For A World Problems', which probably isn't too far off) gives Saccage something else, as well as the growls and shrieks to be found throughout the release.

It is only a four track release, hence this blog being maybe not as long as they usually are, but it is completely free to download from their Bandcamp page and I really enjoy it.

Definitely one to check out, and if you do fancy a bit of a speculative spend, give "Death Crust Satanique" a go too.

You know the drill for the rest of this. Follow me on Twitter with @bigmetalbastard

And click on www.londonwebmaps.co.uk - the site I work on for my job.

More blog stuff coming soon, not sure what it'll be looking at but there are some cracking releases I've got hold of recently. Keep your eyes peeled!

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Evilheart - Selective Extermination

I stumbled across these guys completely by chance this morning, but that was a very happy stumble to make. Evilheart have been running since 1999 and have released one demo and two full length albums during that time. Their third, "Quinquaginta" is due for release soon (unfortunately I can't find a release date, but they're putting samplers on Youtube so it must be close, right?) and the band have recently played as support to Hypocrisy and Necropsy on a date in Sonora, Mexico.

With a more death metal sound on Quinquaginta than on their previous "Dark In Glory" album, Evilheart have certainly changed significantly, with everything from production to vocal style having come on in leaps and bounds. That's not to say that Dark In Glory isn't a great album, but Quinquaginta promises to be even better. Their video for 'Selective Extermination' which has been released on Youtube recently shows that, and now has hints of Dying Fetus, Nile etc. without being any sort of a rip off. evilheart certainly have their own sound, and I think it could well propel them to the next level.

Check out the video for 'Selective Extermination' from their forthcoming 'Quinquaginta' album here :

Also, be sure to give them a like on their Facebook page

Whilst you're at it, follow me on Twitter 

And please check out the website that I work on for my day job - www.londonwebmaps.co.uk

Monday, 12 May 2014

Seprevation - Consumed - Debut Album 2014

Seprevation's debut album is one that I had been waiting to hear for a long time. Having found their music a little while before seeing them at the Unicorn in Camden with Flayed Disciple and Wretched Soul, they were a band that instantly grabbed my interest, you could tell there was going to be something big from them. They commanded the Unicorn that night with the presence of a far more experienced group, and with their first full length album 'Consumed', the follow up to the crushing 'Ritual Abuse' EP, Seprevation have their chance to step up and attain the status that they richly deserve.

The album starts off actually pretty quietly, with a reasonably long intro to the opening track 'Divine Devastation' which I found quite surprising, I guess that from previous stuff from the band it's been a more visceral, in-at-the-deep-end kind of thing, but having the intro there to bring the album in really works well, sort of as an extra-suspense builder in the long wait it has been for a full album from these Bristolians. At just over one minute in though, they can't hold it back any longer. Like a dam breaking and flood water coming bursting through, the quiet gives way to that brutality that we know Seprevation for. It's a blistering start to the album that does not let up, Lluc's vocals were incredible the first time I saw them, but he's become something of a beast.

As something of a grind fan, I tend to be drawn to shorter songs on albums, they tend to be either slow and filler-y, or a short, sharp blast to the face. 'Ascension of Agony' comes in at one minute and fifty-two seconds of absolute rip-your-face-off blasting death metal. The album as a whole does carry a feel of a Morbid Angel/Deicide style of things, but this is track is something else. Trying to find the words to do it justice is a bit difficult to be honest, perhaps it's something that needs to be heard to really show you what I mean, and by the time you get to 'Sarcophagal Chamber' you know that this album is an incredibly strong debut from Bristol's finest.

Also worth listening out for is the album version of 'Sea Of Thoughts'. This version seems to have divided opinion a little bit, but honestly, maybe it's just the flow of the whole of 'Consumed' as an album together, but I honestly think I prefer this version to the previous version that was on 'Ritual Abuse'. It'll be interesting to see which version comes out when they play live, but either one will suit me fine.

'Consumed' is one album you definitely need to get hold of in 2014, you can find Seprevations merch and get a copy of the album at their Bigcartel page here: http://www.seprevation.bigcartel.com/

And you can catch them on tour in May with Bonded By Blood and Flayed Disciple!

Give me a follow on Twitter too, www.twitter.com/bigmetalbastard

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Out Of The Ashes 2014 Preview - Aeris

I'm a huge fan of festivals, and, with ticket prices rising for Bloodstock and the like, cheaper, smaller festivals are more than welcome. Beermageddon is a fantastic one that I've done for the last couple of years and will be returning to this year, and Out Of The Ashes is another of those.

I went last year for the first time, a long, long trek from London up to just outside of Liverpool. On the site of Vauxhall Motors Football Club in Ellesmere Port, Out Of The Ashes gives you 3 stages, more bands than some of the larger festivals can put on, and a truly great weekend for £18.

This is the first in a series of blogs I'll be doing in the runup to Out Of The Ashes Festival 2014, which is in July this year.

Aeris are a 4 piece metalcore outfit from Crewe in the North West of England, and their EP 'Become My Breather' was released only a few days ago, according to their Bandcamp page (link at the end of this post). Honestly, metalcore isn't my thing generally, but having downloaded the EP and put it on, by track four 'Revelations' this band had really grown on me. Maybe there's something about the rawness of vocalist Tom's vocals that does enough to put them apart from so many other bands that attempt to do the same thing. Aeris have found a wonderful blend of powerful, heavy, crushing tracks interspersed with really rather serene moments throughout the album, with a vocal line that at this moment I can only really compare with Bloodsimple, that is perfectly suited to providing a massive onslaught of harsh, pissed off, screaming over the top of the heavy parts, or as a heavy, loud contrast to those more peaceful moments in the EP. Aeris are a young band that will definitely be going places soon, they're certainly worth checking out live if the EP is anything to go by. I'll be doing my best to see them at Out Of The Ashes 2014, if you're from the North West though, you may well find that you get the chance to see them before then.

You can download Aeris's EP for free from here : http://aerismusic.bandcamp.com/releases
Give them a 'like' on Facebook at : https://www.facebook.com/AerisOFFICIAL

And come over and follow me on twitter : www.twitter.com/bigmetalbastard

Christ, just as I was about to clock 'publish', the track 'Portugal' has just come on on my media player. Go and download this bands EP, if you're into your metalcore, you'll dig it.

Oh, also, as a footnote, please check out the website I work on for my day job: www.londonwebmaps.co.uk and follow me on my work Twitter www.twitter.com/londonwebmaps.

Friday, 18 April 2014

Kraptor - Night Of The Living Dead

South America seems to be getting a bit of a reputation of being a hotbed of completely insane thrash metal fans. Whilst it may not be the first place you think of when it comes to metal, you only have to hear Iron Maiden's Live in Rio set, or see the reception Kreator get out there to see that actually, yeah, those guys love their metal. And they LOVE their thrash.

Venezuela, going through a bit of a rough time at the moment politically, and known for Angel Falls, has also produced a monolith of a thrash band in the shape of Kraptor. Their album 'Night of the Living Dead' is a free download at the moment, which is how yours truly came across them, but I haven't looked back since. This is hard thrash, crunching bass lines, ripping solos and really, truly angry vocals from the South American outfit. Definitely check out 'Murder King', it has everything a great thrash track should have in it, and christ, you can't help but imagine how it would sound to see it live. Having never been (as far as I can tell) to Europe to play, the album was put out in Europe by a Greek label named Chainsaw Distro, and they continue to tour with upcoming dates in Chile, Ecuador, Peru and Colombia. It can only be a matter of time before the Kraptor guys are playing live shows in the UK. I'll be there.

You can download Kraptor's album 'Night of the Living Dead' along with 'Fucking Liar' here: http://www.kraptorband.com/music.html

And follow them on Twitter here : https://twitter.com/kraptorband

And I'm on twitter at www.twitter.com/bigmetalbastard

Also, as a quick footnote, I'm currently working on a website listing over 300 free things to see and do in London, England. This is what I do as my day job, with music on the side. Please check it out and tweet me what you think of it. www.londonwebmaps.co.uk

Check back soon for more from Big Metal Bastard!

Monday, 7 April 2014

Gig Review! Gorgoroth, Vital Remains, Ageless Oblivion and Ethereal - The Garage, London - 6/04/2014

This was my first trip to the Garage in a long time, having last been there for Obituary and Macabre in December 2012. It has stuck in my memory as one of the warmest venues I've ever been to. I mean it gets ludicrously hot in that place. But here I was again, this time for the mighty Gorgoroth.

Doors opened at 7, but having been in the pub around the corner and slightly lost track of time, I didn't get there until 7.20-ish, one song into Ethereal's set. I have never regretted being 5 minutes late more. Ethereal are absolutely incredible. Possibly the best opening act I have ever seen, and I do not say that lightly, they are the raw black metal powerhouse that Gorgoroth could have been shown up by. The energy, the darkness and the visceral power of the whole band, not least the near-perfect blackened shrieking vocals, really tied the set together perfectly. A real discovery for me personally, I'll be seeing them again on the 19th at the Unicorn in London, and I'd encourage anyone and everyone who can to go along and check them out.

Next up were Ageless Oblivion. I personally don't like to review bands that I don't like so just a quick word on these guys. Just because it's not my thing doesn't mean that someone else would have been as enthusiastic about them as I am about Ethereal. They didn't do anything for me musically, but they had excellent stage presence and they were clearly going down well with some of the crowd.

Third up, a band that I had heard of for years, but had never seen or even listened to : Vital Remains. Absolutely unbelievable. I knew there was some connection with Glenn Benton and that Corpsegrinder wears Vital Remains shirts pretty much every time I see Cannibal Corpse, but these guys take all the best elements of Deicide and Cannibal Corpse, and turn it up to maximum. I don't know how some of those growl/shreiks could even be made to be so high pitched by human lungs, but they managed it, and mixed with the most gutteral, bowel-rupturing death-gurgles you have ever heard, Vital Remains absolutely blew me away. I can't believe I hadn't heard them or seen them before, but I'll definitely be seeing them again. Incredible stuff from an amazing band. AND for them to be doing shirts for £15!? Excellent, so I bagged myself a t-shirt. Vital Remains tore the place to pieces.

Headlining were Gorgoroth, who I hadn't seen since Bloodstock in 2010, who then had Pest on vocals and were very much there to play a bunch of songs and clear off. I guess it's just the black metal way sometimes to have pretty limited interaction with the audience. This time, Hoest of Taake was guest vocalist, and he absolutely slayed it. Taake are due to play the same venue in May at Incineration Festival alongside Anaal Nathrakh, Carach Angren, Eastern Front and Nargaroth amongst others, and the Garage was given a taster of how intense that night is going to be. Gorgoroth came out and smashed it, with enormous nails dangling from a heavily corpsepainted lineup of musicians peering through the fog of sweat and dry ice. Incipit Satan, Destroyer and Krig bring the Garage to its knees. Again little interaction with the crowd, which might just be a personal thing, but I quite enjoy at least a little acknowledgement from a band I've seen, but let that take nothing away from the intensity of Gorgoroth, proving that Gaahl or no Gaahl, they are still monoliths of black metal.

Finally, please go and check out Aeon Promotions. They were the guys who put this night on and who are doing Incineration Fest too. They know how to put on an absolute beast of a night.

Find me on Twitter : @bigmetalbastard

Monday, 24 March 2014

Bloodstock Festival Preview - Bloodshot Dawn and Morgue Orgy!

Bloodstock is pretty much undisputedly the leading metal festival in the UK, and it's pretty safe to say that it has now held that position for a few years. Growing year on year without resorting to filling the lineup with pop in the way Download have done.

This year the lineup is strong across the board, the headliners of Down, Emperor and Megadeth are going to kick ass, and bands like Amon Amarth, Dimmu Borgir and Obituary never fail to bring the house down, but lower down the bill are some real hidden gems. Bloodstock has fantastic support for the underground, both global and within the UK. Last year I saw Scarab, who came all the way over from Egypt to play their crushing brand of death metal, and they rank as probably one of the best bands I've ever seen without having known who they were beforehand. Hopefully you'll find something similar here with these two fantastic, crushing British acts.

Bloodshot Dawn have deservedly been afforded a main stage slot for this year, as things stand it looks like they'll be opening the main stage on the Friday, but more bands are yet to be confirmed so that may change. Either way, the main stage is exactly what Bloodshot Dawn deserve. I've been a fan of them for a few years now, since they handed me a copy of their Slaves To The Lie EP in a McDonalds in Camden in London. They were supporting Cerebral Bore that night at the Purple Turtle and they absolutely fucking slayed. I listened to the EP when I got home and I've been a fan ever since. This is real, chunky, bang your head off extreme metal. Bloodshot Dawn are one of the very best in upcoming British metal and if you're going to be at Bloodstock, absolutely check them out on the main stage on the Friday. If you're not going, check them out right here : http://bloodshotdawn.bandcamp.com/album/bloodshot-dawn

Morgue Orgy are another lot that are finally getting the recognition they deserve, even getting a mention on Pointless. I saw this lot at Beermageddon 2013, and they gave festival goers free CD's for elbow dropping one of their earlier releases. Naturally I obliged and the 4 hour journey home became a much more pleasant experience. Not their first time at Bloodstock, having played in 2010, they will be tearing up the Sophie Lancaster Stage on the Saturday in 2014, bringing their brand of British melodic death metal to Catton Hall. The future is bright for Morgue Orgy, who are certainly gathering momentum across the UK. Check them out online here, and download their album "The Last Man On Earth" for free!

As ever with these bands, if you find something you like please do consider buying CD's, merch and all the rest. More importantly, show up and support your local scene!

Big Metal Bastard will be back with more previews, album and EP reviews, gig reviews and all sorts of other stuff coming up.

Follow me on Twitter using @bigmetalbastard

If you want me to feature your band, give me a shout on twitter or by firing an email off to bigmetalbastard@outlook.com and I'll give your stuff a listen!


Hey guys and girls,

I know I've been away from this blog for quite a while now, having not done anything new for over a year for unfortunate reasons, but now I'm back and ready to get back to digging out the very best in underground and overground metal from all over the world.

Bands that have messaged me that I haven't managed to get back to yet, I will do, fear not! any bands that have stuff that they'd like me to have a look at and maybe write up, get in touch!

Fresh stuff coming soon.

@bigmetalbastard on Twitter, tweet me up!