Swedish death crew Wombbath return from the dead, deliver devastating ‘Downfall Rising’

WombbathA weird thing happens when you get older. You start to meet people or work with people or whatever, and you realize that the era in which you went to college, started your first job, and made your first horrible decisions, these people were just being born. It’s mind-blowing, yet it’s just a natural part of the passage of time. New people come in to exist alongside and eventually replace the old guard.

I also got to thinking about that whole thing when tackling “Downfall Rising,” the first full-length from Swedish death crew Wombbath since 1993. Think of all the things that took place just in metal since that time. The rise of death metal to major-label status. The burning down of the second wave of black metal. The absolute scourge on humanity that was nu metal. The weird twists and eventual returns to glory for metal legends Iron Maiden and Judas Priest. New generations were born and died since the time Wombbath delivered “Internal Caustic Torments,” and a lot has changed within Wombbath’s ranks itself, as one might assume with that much time passed between albums.

Wombbath coverThe 2015 version of Wombbath claims but one original member, that being guitarist Håkan Stuvemark, who has been at it from the start and saw the name on to this point. There have been a lot of members go in and out the doors, but the ones we have for this brutal second record are bassist/vocalist Jonny Pettersson, guitarist Al Riglin, and drummer Henrik Åberg, who make for quite the force. The band remains in the same vein they always have, meting out furious, melody-twinged death metal in the same vein as Bolt Thrower and Entombed (among others), and this album never fails to scratch that itch. Over the course of eight tracks and about 32 minutes, the band reclaims their glory and delivers hearty, tried-and-true death that’ll make you envision clouds of smoke and dust on an old battlefield.

“Intro” gets things off to a proper start, with eerie sounds swirling and the cries of millions of souls being extinguished being smeared in front of you. Then it’s onto “Under Apokalypsens Svarta Vingar,” a grimy, stampeding song that goes right for the throat and refuses to let go. The vocals are properly gruff, and the pace causes pain and misery. There’s a nice, crunchy chorus that will get etched in your head, and the band spends the bulk of this violently announcing their return. “Underneath the Rotten Soil” lights up right away, with the growls belchy and a little slower, and the riffs later helping this thing blow open and flatten its enemies. The last bits delve into doomy waters, with the guitars channeling the hopeless fog. “I Am the Abyss” has a stirring orchestral synth opening, leading into unforgiving mauling, with Pettersson howling, “I have reached the end of the line.” The track swelters and burns from there, taking you into battle-tested guitars and a smothering, hammering finish.

“Fall of the Weak” is the longest track of the bunch at 6:44, starting with static spitting, clean guitars trickling, and the track crumbling into doomy power that wields a thick sword. The growls are throttling and powerful, while the guitars conjure great glory and fire, leading to a scathing final march that dissolves into killer chugs. “Putrid and Bound (By the Seed of Satan)” has guitars swirling, an uneasy sense of things surrounding you, and later some work that pokes at classic death metal and thrash from the era they helped create. Later, the drums erupt, with sludge pouring in and creating nothing but havoc. “Paid in Blood” is the fastest thing on the record, just ripping by and doing as much damage as it can along the way. The vocals are savage and shrieky, while the music feels like it’s pouring tons and tons of cement as recklessly as possible. Closer “Abandonment Furthermore” is the shortest cut at 2:16, and it’s also the weirdest. Synth strings create mystery, while that element sits behind all the heaviness here. In fact, it gives the song a goth feel, as it trucks along, burning out in a haze of smoke.

Wombbath may have had their journey cut short a long time ago, but the passage of time has only caused their fires to burn more dangerously. “Downfall Rising” sounds fresh, relevant, and if we’re being honest, totally needed here in 2015 when much of death is losing its luster. These guys are driven to clobber, and hopefully we won’t have to wait as long for record three. If we do, hell, a lot of people in their audience might be dead!

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/Wombbath

To buy the album, go here: http://www.darkdescentrecords.com/store/

For more on the label, go here: http://www.darkdescentrecords.com/

Clay Davis unleash grindcore and powerviolence in 11 killer minutes on demolishing ‘B.C.G.C.’

Clay DavisIn the old Robocop movies, the Mediabreak spots used to promise, “You give us three minutes, and we’ll give you the world.” It’s a smart suggestion knowing that people’s time is precious and that they want to get a full serving of everything they need to know in as little time as possible. Especially about the Robocop. I can’t stress that enough.

That idea doesn’t always transfer to metal, though. Typically you’re in for a good 45-minute, one-hour trip that takes ups and downs and devastates you with a nice, generous helping of sound. Not all bands operate that way. Take Nails, for example. They have two full-length efforts to their name, combining for about 22 minutes of music total. Hell, Gridlink, who just wrapped up their savage run, also had a knack for short records over in as much time as it might take you to shower. Um, depending on your showering habits. Well, out of that line of thinking comes new grind duo Clay Davis (naturally a reference to the corrupt state senator on “The Wire”) with their tremendous, ridiculously compact full-length “B.C.G.C.” that blasts you with 10 tracks that last about 11 minutes combined. You don’t have time for that? Who are you, the president?

Clay Davis coverClay Davis, who are comprised of bassist/vocalist Thor and drummer/vocalist Mike, play a smothering brand of grindcore and powerviolence, and as indicated, they don’t waste their time trying to be pretty or weave long epics in order to get their point across. You get bludgeoned about the head and torso with these tracks, as they try to do whatever they can to draw your blood. Grimoire is releasing “B.C.G.C” digitally and on cassette, while the vinyl (a 7-inch, seriously!) will be drummed up by Fake Crab Records. Either way you go, be prepared to get mauled in a stupidly short amount of time.

Much of this record flows into each other, making it feel like one large whole, so that can help the track count blow by before you realize it. “No Crew” starts off blistering and punishing, with Mike and Thor trading off vocal duties and mixing deep growls with wild shrieks. That’s a commonality about this whole album. That spills into “Vacant Block” and its wild feedback whir, sludgy pounding, and authoritative vocals that totally command. “Hooker Money” has an old hardcore feel to it, especially with the vocal barks, while it also digs deep into thrash, heading right into “Poser Disposer” that actually simmers more into doom pools. Of course it eventually rips open, with the vocals menacing and the pace flattening. “Hollow Chest, Empty Nest” blasts by in no time at all, with wild howls and terrifying violence.

“Roach” changes things up a bit as it crawls by slowly at first, letting them stretch out and choose their shots. It’s 56 seconds of barbarian shit, dealing massive punishment and just about humiliating you. “Hit With a Brick” is aptly titled, as that’s what you’ll think happened to you once it’s over. It’s muddy and heavy, with death growls bubbling, the song later erupting, and yelling and shrieking blending together. “Six Stitches” has deep, belchy vocals, making it sound like blood and mucus are being gurgled, while the band hammers ahead with pure brutality. “Trench Mouth” is fast and fiery, feeling like the music is going off the rails and out of control toward the next unfortunate target. Finally, we get to the “epic” of the bunch, the 2:30-closer “Construct of Ruin,” which is thrashy and shifty. The aura here is grim, with the music going the calculated, clubbing route and the back end getting a noise-glazed finish that will have the room spinning on you, as every muscle in your body challenged.

If you don’t have time to take in Clay Davis’ “B.C.G.C.,” then seriously, consider taking some vacation days. Clearly you need to breathe a little more. This record smashes and smothers over its 11 minutes, and it’s a nice portrait of grind that doesn’t take itself crazy seriously and just delivers what it needs without the unneeded bells and whistles. This is perfectly dosed grind, and it’ll tear off your head.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/ClayDavisGrindAssault

To buy the album, go here: https://grimoirerecords.bandcamp.com/album/b-c-g-c

Or here: http://fakecrab.storenvy.com/

For more on the label, go here: https://www.facebook.com/GrimoireRecords

And here: http://fakecrab.sexy/

PICK OF THE WEEK: Hell returns as Gnaw Their Tongues deliver scary ‘Abyss of Longing Throats’

Gnaw Their TonguesI’m not asking you to understand what we’re talking about today. We’re going throat deep into a cesspool of depravity, torture, and psychological torment. We’re not talking metal so much today as we are discussing complete physical and mental destruction. Riffs won’t be here, nor will power and glory. But blood and pain definitely will be present.

It’s been three years since we got a new full-length from Dutch abomination Gnaw Their Tongues, the work of artist Mories, who also has a host of other projects swirling out there in the worst sections of hell. But it is here, with Gnaw Their Tongues, that he gained his notoriety, terrifying unsuspecting audiences and causing faces to go deathly white over his monstrous black metal/noise/industrial creations. You want to air-guitar some shit in your car? This is the wrong place. You want something to make you feel alive inside? Again, you’ve guessed wrong. But if you want to wallow in filth, confront the most perverse thoughts and feelings that ever have crossed your mind, and yes, feel a great deal of pain, you’ll get all of that on Gnaw Their Tongues’ eighth full-length “Abyss of Longing Throats.”

Gnaw Their Tongues coverThis is one of those projects where it’s nearly impossible to keep up with the immense body of work. A flurry of splits, a ton of EPs, a recent comprehensive collection, and seven other full records, the last being 2012’s “Eschatological Scatology,” make up Mories’ work here under this banner, and recently he’s even taken Gnaw Their Tongues from a studio-only project to live performances. As time has gone on, this project has only grown more savage and deranged. You have to be the right type of person to wrap your head around this, and you have to be prepared to be terrified and baffled. Over the course of seven tracks, Mories digs out the worst, most profane of humankind and spreads all over his work, lets it rot in the sun to stink, and forces you to confront what’s left.

“Lick the Poison From the Cave Walls” can be a wake-up call from title alone for anyone who stumbles upon this record without prior experience, and it is built with a noise haze, riveting beats and banging, and menacing howls that haunt. Twisted wails turn into whispers, while bells chime and suffocating sounds swamp. Synth hisses lead to a funereal ending, and that spills into “Through Flesh” and its terrifying growls and fierce strings. The growls crawl and gurgle, with orchestral sheets pelting and thick sounds bubbling to the surface. The title cut blows open immediately, smashing and horrifying the senses but then blending into murky and dark melodies. The track halts, switching tempos and leading into a passage where a female voice calls out Bible passages, and from there the blood flows again and delivers solemn madness. “From the Black Mouth of Spite” has noise spitting, doomy fog arriving, pained cries, and the feeling like what you’re hearing is emanating from puddles in a torture basement. Weird singing sprawls over the calmer portions of the song, while the final moments are dramatic and grind to an abrupt halt.

“The Holy Body” has sore moans that lead into slow-driving menace, with a dark, moody section arising and the vocals absolutely wrenching. The sounds simmer and burn, while the ghostly expressions that float over fade into bizarre fogs. “And They Will Be Cast Out Into Utter Darkness” buzzes and whirs from the start, making you feel a relentless vertigo that has you trying, and failing, to steady yourself against the wall. Noise wafts and gets ripped apart, while maniacal vocals drive you right to the heart of a vortex. Closer “Up Into the Heavens Down Into the Circles Of…” ends this morose document with keys dripping like spit and blood and vocals that sound painful to emit. Parts of this gets washed out, like a dream you’re watching through glazed eyes, and when the elegant synth breezes in, it’s a mere blip of calm before hell bursts through the Earth’s crust again and sucks you into its tornadic fury, never to be heard from again.

Gnaw Their Tongues likely never will leave the dark, terrible corner it inhabits simply because full-spread acceptance seems like such an absurd thought. Yet, the way society has devolved and the way humankind disregards each other, perhaps something like “Abyss of Longing Throats” should be something we should confront. Our world is as ugly and sickening as these songs, and maybe we’d be better off staring that in the bloody face now and again.

For more on the band, go here: http://www.devotionalhymns.com/gnawtheirtongues/

To buy the album, go here: http://www.crucialblastshop.net/

For more on the label, go here: http://www.crucialblast.net/

Germanic metal force Kalmen pack cosmic atmosphere, chilly dreams into debut ‘Course Hex’

KalmenI was out walking in the sun the other day, amid temperatures that were just about perfect, when it dawned on me that these days are numbered for the year 2015. It will only be a couple of months until the chill returns to the air and days of damp coldness return to our region to choke out all of the fun, warm days.

It was with that thought in mind that I dissolved into “Course Hex,” the debut full-length from German force Kalmen that just recently dropped into our hands. Talk about a cold, dreary, overcast album, the perfect kind of thing that could soundtrack walks through piles of damp leaves as cold winds cause your lungs to choke. The band’s hefty mix of doom, post-metal, black metal, and heavy drapes of darkness combine to make something heavy and imposing. Yet, along with all of this, comes a pretty rich atmosphere. The cold autumn is not to be feared, after all, and some of the cloud formations and sky colors of that time of year can be breath-taking, which this music made me remember. Weird to say here at the beginning of August.

Kalmen coverThis band formed out of the scrapes of Down in Shades, and its ranks boast bassist/vocalist Marc, guitarist/vocalist Thomas Schmidt, guitarist Jana, and drummer Orpheus. Kalmen have been together about six years now and initially offered an introductory demo way back in 2011. Not sure what’s gone on in the interim, but the band grouped together to create the stunning “Course Hex,” a six-track, nearly 44-minute debut that’s hefty, adventurous, and cold. In fact, the record’s so impressive it caught the ears of the esteemed Van Records, who are releasing the album to the masses.

“Sol Devina” begins the record mystically, with a gazey pocket of sound that eventually breaks open and unleashes the elements. Vocals are initially howled, later turning into grisly growls, while the melodies surge until they meet a blast of savagery. That hellish strikes eventually subside, leading the song back to the front again. “Gizeh” has a burly opening, with colors infused into the song and scary growls firing hard. The song then hits a calculated pace, as the band takes its time stretching muscles, with the mood growing darker and murkier. Doomy moments land, with the vocals smearing and the song coming to a shadowy conclusion. “My Soul Is Black” starts to bubble to the surface, trudging hard with the vocals delivering force. Dark riffs roll underneath the thing, landing in muddy, sticky terrain, before the track spirals off into the cosmos.

“Katharseas” is quite the journey, as it begins mesmerizing and causing you to do the thousand-yard stare, before they bring you back to reality with menacing shouts, agitated playing, and a heaping dose of fury. The playing feels fluid, with the guitar work extending and covering great amounts of ground, traversing where they please, with the final minutes landing bruising death blows. “Naitrider” is the longest cut at 11:29, and it’s a massive one, starting with black metal-style guitars pouring down, leading into murky, choppy seas, and letting guttural cries be unleashed. The song gets hypnotic and infectious, with the noise dashing you, cosmic hiss stabbing, and the pace stomping through the mud. At times, my head was swimming listening to this thing as I got caught up in the massive crushing, spellbinding melodies, and spacey finish. Closer “- -“ is a brief instrumental epilogue full of cold, trickling melodies, making it feel like you’re sinking to the bottom of the dark sea, never to rise again.

Kalmen’s debut is a strong one, and considering this style of music goes down pretty easily with me, I’ll be sure to follow their path wherever it takes them. “Course Hex” is an impressive, atmospheric record that has plenty of substance, energy, and imagination, and it’s something that’s going to stick with me long after summer passes and I’m drowning in layers trying to fight off the chill.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/Kalmen.doom

To buy the album and more on the label, go here: http://www.van-records.de/

Surprise! Krallice return out of the blue with a further evolved sound on staggering ‘Ygg huur’

KralliceSo, were you like me last Thursday, getting to work or waking up or whatever and discovering that Krallice has gifted the earth with a new album? Holy shit, what?! Considering the amount of news I receive all the damn time from publicists, labels, and people I know who are in bands or are promoters, this knocked me on my ass. There are not enough surprises these days in metal or anywhere, but this definitely hit like a comet striking an ocean. Pick an ocean. It was like that.

Yeah, it was true. Krallice’s fifth record “Ygg huur” struck the planet, and just like this band is wont to do, it opened up yet more new cosmic layers in the group’s style. These guys long have been enveloped in the black metal area, which certainly fits, but as time has gone on and the band has morphed into an even weirder thing, so has their sound followed suit. You can call it prog, avant-garde, whatever you want, but on this new record, Krallice are a massive as ever before yet also are a lean, mean fighting machine. This is their most compact release to date, clocking in at almost 36 minutes, which might feel like an EP for people who have followed the band from their 2008 self-titled debut. But this shorter style fits them perfectly as they maintain the weird, progressive path they’ve been on, but they do it in a more succinct, more in-your-face manner. By the way, you can have this now digitally from the band’s Bandcamp site, or by CD that should ship in September. But if you want to wait for the vinyl, Gilead Media has you covered coming this autumn (link below to all of these, but keep checking back with the Eroding Winds site for the vinyl).

Krallice coverMost of us know the responsible parties by now, but for any newcomers, let’s just rattle off the lineup. On bass an vocals is Nicholas McMaster, on guitars and vocals is Mick Barr, on guitars is Colin Martson (who also is producer to the underground stars), and on drums is Lev Weinstein. Each guy has an impressive resume in his own right with other bands and duties, but it all really comes down to Krallice, one of the most unique and influential black metal bands not only in the U.S. but across the world. This band is a special, once-in-a-movement group that has created new standards and proved that black metal, and metal in general, can be as daring, bizarre, and rubbery as it wants to be, and if you have a problem with that, isn’t that just your fucking issue?

“Idols” kicks off the record, the briefest cut on here at 3:08 and one of the shorter songs in their catalog. It’s a frenzy from the start, with riffs simmering and then boiling over, wild howls running rampant, melodies flexing their strangely developed muscles, and a noisy back end getting you nice and dizzy. “Wastes of Ocean” begins a run of four songs that all clock in at exactly 6:41 (those crafty bastards!). There is a mesmerizing opening that gets you thinking they’re headed one way, meaning you won’t be expecting the ignition. The band chugs hard and totally mauls, with the vocals sounding particularly unhinged, the melodies combusting, and manic energy filling the air. The song hits a meaty breakdown later, with spacey winds blowing through, every element whirring together like an engine, and cartoon-like speed and ferocity making it seem like a Tom & Jerry episode where everyone dies at the end. “Over Spirit” crushes everything in its wake, with the guitars exploring the outer edges, tricky, off-the-wall playing arriving, and things going in all kinds of directions. Give up trying to predict its path and just go with it into the plastering nightmares, through the melodic vitriol, through the ever-changing landscape, into the bass spitting fire at the track’s end.

“Tyranny of Thought” is massively, impossibly heavy at the start, with crazed vocals zapping over the scene and the band speeding up and heading into full demolition mode. The bass throbs, the guitars rise, and every few sequences or so, the track reinvents itself and adds new layers while shedding others. The final minutes of the song are absolutely quaking, with the band thrashing away like mad scientists, the vocals lashing out, and everything coming to a violent end. “Bitter Meditation” smears and starts reverberating similar to a Portal song, creeping and crawling like an uncaged alien. The song hammers and convulses, with the vocals mangling, the pace throbbing away, and later a cataclysmic shift arriving that immediately goes in the opposite direction. The final moments boil viciously with a noise haze hanging in the air. Closer “Engram” rollicks forward dangerously, with clouds building and the vocals tearing out of the void. The band trudges and stymies at the same time, delivering both physical and mental beatings, while the guitars start to char with the bass taking its shots at you. More damage arrives as the song winds down, with the vocals sounding grim, weird passages taking over, and the band smothering you at the finish. What a fantastic, bewildering ride.

Krallice’s greatness has been on display for nearly a decade now, and each time they report back with a new album, it’s cause for celebration, dissection, discussion, etc. “Ygg huur” is very much like that, a challenging, disruptive, nerve-wracking, devastating record that establishes new rules once again. Bands are going to be trying to keep pace with Krallice for as long as they exist, and their surprise new record crushes us not only because it suddenly exists, but because it’s so damn great.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/krallice

To buy the album digitally or on CD, go here: https://krallice.bandcamp.com/album/ygg-huur

To buy the vinyl version this fall, go here: www.erodingwinds.com

Majestic Downfall’s mournful, dark doom cascades, punishes on excellent new ‘…When Dead’

Majestic DownfallThere are many benefits to indulging in doom. First, it’s one of the finest forms of heavy metal, and considering the roots of the stuff, the actual seeds that got everything started. Second, it’s the one sub-genre of metal that truly understands your darkest, most deep-rooted sorrows and frustrations and actually spreads them out in front of you to confront. That’s a good thing, by the way.

Registering on the darker spectrum of doom come Mexican maulers Majestic Downfall, a band that’s gotten a hell of a lot done considering they won’t even reach their 10th anniversary until next year. Taking on their death-informed, black metal-tinged doom is akin to seeing everything that’s ever upset you or haunted you spilled into music form. They don’t fear putting forth everything that gets in the way of their happiness, and over four full-length efforts now, they managed to get a stranglehold on presenting the stuff and dragging you deep down below with them. Their latest opus, “…When Dead,” is more of the good stuff, with dark, treacherous epics built into the framework and a presentation that will bring out of you the mournful, sorrowful things you often choose to keep bottled.

ASH128CD_SOFTPACK.inddMajestic Downfall is the brainchild of Jacobo Córdova, who you likely know well as guitarist Mr. Jacko from Zombiefication and who has poured himself into all four of this band’s record with vocals, bass, keyboards, guitars, drums, compositions, concepts, you name it. However, when the band plays live, they expand to a larger set. Ever since their debut in 2006, Majestic Downfall have been making gut-wrenching, heavy doom that gets inside you and infects. After a demo and split, the band released their first full-length “Temple of Guilt” in 2009, pretty much following an every-two-years release pattern with “The Blood Dance” arriving in 2011, and “Three” surfacing in 2013. Now, two years later, we get “…When Dead,” itself a cataclysmic, emotionally powerful record that requires your patience for its 53 minutes but rewards you with a damn well-played, nicely executed record that seems to be flying under the radar this year when it comes to doom releases.

The record begins with the instrumental title cut, a song that chugs but also feels drizzling, with dark melodies arriving and textured guitars setting the scene and leading you into gargantuan 16:01-long “Escape My Thought.” The track starts smashing from the start, with punishing guitar work, gruff growls taunting you, and lurching playing ensuring you’re dragged along with them, whether you accept the journey or not. Deep gurgling howls are emitted, as the song appears to hit its emotional apex, and as things begin to slither again, the tones get even murkier. Some quiet arrives, allowing a brief reprieve, and then everything bursts anew, even speeding up a bit, with the final vocals and guitar playing smearing the heart. “The Brick, the Concrete” starts its 11:43 run muddy and crushing, with the hammer being laid down with severe force before returning to swampy crawling again. From there, the pace goes back and forth from violent to drubbing, giving you time to breath before launching into another assault, and by the time Córdova howls, “My life in pieces!” you’ll be wondering if you have a few more cracks than you first realized. Heavy stuff.

“Doors” has a different feel at the start, leaning a little into deathrock with its liquefied guitars, moody melodies, and hushed singing. The track then hits heavy waters, with the devastation injected into the mix and weird, swirling parts keeping your head spinning. The song then takes on some post-punk bends, with whispers wafting in, before everything goes into total mourning. The band mashes you, making you feel every blow, before the final moments return to guttural savagery. Closer “The Rain of the Dead” sends chills up your spine right away, like you’re being drenched in a late-autumn downpour with not enough layers to protect you. The vocals gurgle beneath the surface before the thing is torn apart and the band begins to thrash you as powerfully as anytime in their entire catalog. Things really turn raucous, which is surely going to sound even more impactful live, before the back end sifts back into darkness, hazy, weeping keyboards, and one final surge of decimation to put the perfect bloody end on this emotionally challenging listen.

Majestic Downfall not only have been consistent in their output, they’ve pretty much kept the dial right at psychologically agitating. “…When Dead” certainly doesn’t have even a glimmer of hope, as the worst, most desolate feelings are driven to the surface. Not every day is a good one, nor should they be, and not every emotion you feel will uplift you. Majestic Downfall known that all too well, and they have five crushing songs here to prove to you that they understand darkness as well as anyone.

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/majestic.downfall

To buy the album, go here: http://pulverised.bigcartel.com/

For more on the label, go here: http://www.pulverised.net/

Brooklyn’s Throaat kick out raw thash, classic black metal on destructive EP ‘Black Speed’

ThroaatI need a jolt. Do you need a jolt? I’m actually guessing I’ll need one as this is going to be running Monday, and typically a few hours into the day I’m I need of something to get me going and make the rest of the week worth seeing through until the end.

Some proper voltage arrives this week via Brooklyn trio Throaat, who have been pretty damn active this year with two EPs and a 7-inch release. Their latest EP, the fiery “Black Speed,” now is dropping in our laps thanks to Invictus Productions (who are on quite the roll themselves this year), and the five songs that greet you are heavy, relentless, and pretty damn fun. No way you can feel anything other than purely energized by these guys, and the band—vocalist/drummer/keyboardist Impurifier, guitarist Destroyer (also of Natur), and bassist Grave Rat—immerse themselves in NWOBHM, first-wave black metal, punk, and all things hellish. If your record collection ends somewhere around 1985 but you want to get a taste of something current that will get you nice and rowdy, Throaat should do the trick.

Throaat coverThe EP kicks off with “The Tortures,” with guitars rambling heavily through an early ’80s time warp, gruff vocals rattling your skeleton, and soloing that blazes viciously. The band changes things up a little in the middle, even teasing with a touch of prog and classic metal charging, before the sound rounds back to the front again and leaves a scorching taste in your mouth. “Coven” is riff heavy and lambasting, trudging massively, hitting upon a brief mystical spell, and eventually speeding up again. Synth bleeds into the picture, with strong, fluid playing alongside it, and vocals that sound like they’re doing a number on Impurifier’s throat.

“Explodes” has a mid-tempo pace that’s heavy and bruising, toughening up moments into the song and letting strong guitars soar overhead. The track delves nicely into classic thrash terrain, kicking up dust and bloodying noses, while a black metal-style assault rips out, with Impurifier howling, “Only in hell do I live again,” as a strong solo and mangling playing taking the song to its final destination. “Rampage” begins with thick bass driving and setting the tone before the rest of the band starts blistering with speed and fury. The growls are harsh, there is more great guitar playing to keep your inner fires burning, and the end smears and hammers at you, leaving you a big black oil streak. The closer is as fitting as they come, a faithful yet roughed-up version of Venom classic “In a League With Satan,” where they wear their influences on their sleeves. Great finish to a blast of an EP.

There you go, short and sweet on this new Throaat offering, which arrives, kicks all the asses, and then leaves with everything choking in their wake. “Black Speed” is one hell of a fun listen, something that can have your blood racing in no time at all. Who needs a caffeine jolt or one of those sure-to-be-deadly energy shots when you can get just what you need from Throaat’s metallic fire?

For more on the band, go here: https://www.facebook.com/Throaat

To buy the album, go here: http://www.invictusproductions.net/shop/

For more on the label, go here: http://invictusproductions.net/