REVIEWS BY MIKE ABOMINATOR
(GRAVEHILL & METAL MANIACS)
WATER TORTURE "SELF TITLED".
Here we have band with no guitars. Just bass, drums, vox and effects. I do miss that chainsaw sound of a good guitar with these guys. But it is still good here. It is power violence fury that reminds me of old Man is the Bastard. Maybe even a little bit of Crossed Out and a little bit of Spazz at times. It's fucking heavy regardless. I prefer this stuff more straight forward like Hoglust and Inerds. But this is still good. The song "Enslaved" is pretty impressive, even though it has the standard start/stop-slow/fast dynamics that a million other power violence songs have, it is damn good. But I do find myself wishing there was a guitar running over the top of this noise. It would make it that much better. This would be a must for fans of MITB. I could do without some of the electronics. Reminds me too much of GASP (puke!) hahaha. This is a solid release though. Good stuff!
SA SANCTUARY "ABANDON IN PLACE". BUTCHERED RECORDS.
This one goes all the way back to 2001. Not usually my cup of blood, but it is cool. It's thrashy/traditional heavy metal. Reminds me of Nevermore. These guys might not be the total rippers that Nevermore are but they can also play the fuck out of their instruments. It might also be a little more straight forward. For the time, back in 2001, this was rare. There was so much "nu metal" going around, this must have been a great thing to hear to some ears back then. They were called Sanctuary, but added the SA for San Antonio (where they are from) because of the confusion with the original Sanctuary (ironic since they are influenced by Nevermore! haha) But this is mostly mid paced, thrashy stuff going on. There are some acoustic passages and some cool riffs thrown in here. There are 10 songs on here. There might be some stuff that sounds like Pantera to some, I don't know, I'm kind of out of touch with this kind of stuff. But it has a modern American heavy metal sound for that time of 2001. I remember quite a few bands sounding like this back then in the underground. It's better than the other stuff that people THOUGHT was metal back then!
HOGLUST "SUPPORT HATE" EP.
Crushing and brutal power violence here. This band attacks! They knock down the door and kick your whole family's asses! Killer dual vox. One guy sounds like he listens to Infest all day and power lifts while pounding red bulls. The young lady sounds like she is going to cut her boyfriends dick off and shove it in his mouth. They are both PISSED so watch the fuck out. The music is totally punnishing, heavy, and destroys. The fast as fuck vocal trade offs on "Relentless Voices" is pretty impressive. Another band that would fit on one of those classic bills. These fuckers might just steal the show too. Or destroy the place at the very least. The pace on here is usually fast and ripping. Even when Hoglust slows it down, they are pissed the fuck off and it seems that they will explode with speedy blasts at any time. Pretty godamn brutal stuff. Bad assery of power violence mayhem that any fan of full on aggressive and fast music will love.
INERDS "CHOICE CUTS". (These tracks are from a split release with the band Coworkers.)
Ugly and raw raging death punk is what we have here. Right up my bloody alley. The vocals are fucking pissed off. It sounds like there are 2 singers, and one is fucking pissed and the other is fucking livid. Pounding d-beats lead the charge for the most part, but the band can get slow and heavy, as well as faster banging with the best of them. Some nice sludge parts mix well with some blasting grindcore at times. Like Bestower, Inerds have a big power violence influence as well. I'm not very familiar with either band, but I hear that they share members. All 6 songs on this release are killer, but I think I like the closer "Humans Being" the most. It blends all of the styles and elements, as far as speeds go, very well. Like most of the stuff in this genre, the songs are short and to the point. But that is fine, it just ends so quickly. One of the dudes in Agoraphobic Nosebleed runs this Grindcore Karaoke label that I will have to keep my eyes and ears on. Killer stuff!
COMBAT NOISE "FRONTLINE OFFENSIVE FORCE". SEVARED/BUTCHERED/OLD CEMETERY RECORDS.
Wow! A death metal/grind band from Cuba?!?!?!?! CRAZY! It HAS to be very difficult to pull this off down there. Immediatley have so much respect for bands and artists that do this from countries like that. You would have to ride under the radar in a sense. They have even been around since 1996! Anyways, these guys remind me of Deicide a little bit. They have that brutal Florida death metal sound of the era of the mid 90s with Brutallity and Monstrosity also coming to mind. These guys can play very well too. Some cool riffs and solos going on. The pace is all over with ripping grind parts and mid paced banging. There are some slower parts with guitar solos running over the top of them. This stuff attacks and punches you in the face. This usually isn't what I listen to as far as death metal, but these guys have conviction and heart behind this death noise. You also have to have balls to play music like this in Cuba. The lyrical concepts and song themes are all about war, and there are some cool lyrics going on. If you like that Floridian style of death metal, you will like Combat Noise. This is played very well and I would like to hear what this band can get going in the future.
INERDS "STONEWALL" EP.
More punked out and grinding punk/power violence shit from these Buffalo, NY maniacs. There is a good range of paces that are all over the place. I think this release is even MORE power violence influenced than the "Choice Cuts" release. But if you were a fan of that one, you will love this. Once again, all of the 6 songs are strong ragers, but the highlights for me are the doom dirge of the closer "Bloody Knees", the 10 seconds of "Inerds", and the opener "She Beast". I'm not familiar with most of the NEW power violence stuff, but being around during the original days, I can see Inerds playing some of those legendary shows of yore.
RITUAL QUARANTINE DEMO
This is a 3 song demo that is also a collectable, limited edition small format CD that is like 4 inches big. Pretty cool shit! It's also a short fucker at 3 songs. This band is from Buffalo and has a death metal/hard core thing going form them. It is NOT that awful metal core shit that is so popular. This is good stuff. There are a couple of "break downs" on the songs, but all in all it is good stuff. The dual high/low vox are cool. There are total death influences, as well as some punk rock type stuff on the 2nd song (or first song break, not sure, I don't have much info on the insert.) It has some good skank/d-beat stuff and some faster ripping stuff. I can't really think of a comparrison, but fans of crossover or the crust punk stuff will for sure dig it. This was so limited, not sure if it is available anymore, but keep an eye and ear out for this band!
GRAVE DESCENT 2011 DEMO
Here is some old timers from the Buffalo, New York death metal scene getting together and slaying forth that familiar east coast style of death terror. A lot of those bands in the areas of Buffalo, New York City, New Jersey, Long Island and the other areas close by had this sound made famous by the likes of Cannibal Corpse and Suffocation. Jack Owen plays guitar on this recording. Also, Rich and Dennis from Tirant Sin, and Mike from Leviathan are also in this band. Tirant Sin and Leviathan are old school bands that had members of Cannibal Corpse and Malevolent Creation, among others, in them. Anyways, Grave Descent has that crushing and brutal style of the older Cannibal Corpse stuff. This is very well played and delivered with deadly precision. Any fan of that style of death metal that is catchy and heavy will like this band. There are 5 songs on here. "Feast of the Dammed" being a highlight for me. It has a total ripping pace that shreds all in sight. There is some killer death metal going on here! If you like that East Coast/American style, you will want to get this now! TOP NOTCH death metal. I think these guys will be signed soon! If they aren't, well labels, WHAT THE FUCK IS TAKING YOU SO LONG?!
BESTOWER SELF TITLED.
Short songs, straight to the point punked out grind/hard core madness here by Buffalo, NY's Bestower. Lots of killer d-beats and angry screamed/shouted growls for any fan of grinding REAL hard core. The guitars are heavy as well. The band is loose and raw, yet the music is tight as fuck, if that makes any sense. The way they deliver the songs, in such a controlled AND chaotic way really stands out. There is a power violence influence through out this release as well, especially when the band slows it down a bit on a song like "The Question Nobody's Asking". Then there is an all out assault of fast, ripping stuff like the next song "Because That's How They Want It". The variation between the slower chugs and prods and the fast, relentless stuff reminds me of the classic power violence sound. Th vocals fit everything just perfect, as the singer sounds pissed off and tortured with life. THAT is how the vocals SHOULD sound with this stuff. We are all soldiers of death noise and Bestower are one of the new recruits working their way up the battle ladder. This is a kick fucking ass release!
CHECK OUT MIKE'S WORK IN THE ALMIGHTY GRAVEHILL