September 30, 2013

Underground Metal Fest @Club Fabrica - A Gonzo Report better than Chester´s take on Rockstadt

I may have been lacking in activity here on Tzeeeac, yet bear in mind that ´there is no rest for the wicked´, as last Friday I attended an awesome show courtesy of some local bands that keep the spirit of metal strong. 

After meeting with some friends who had arrived from my hometown for the evening (actually, after waiting for them for about forty minutes, apparently they got lost in the ´Gara De Nord´ train station, place is fucking huge) we slowly headed towards the fest location (Club Fabrica, a metal joint), a trip which normally would have lasted about half an hour. 

However, our thirst was in need to be quenched, so midway through our city hike we stopped in a dark alleyway to work out directions towards where exactly we were going and to drink a shitload of beers bought from a local freelance goods dealer; that is until the local police discovered us and we had to take off with the quickest of feet, lest I was going to kill them all. 

After another fifteen minutes or so we arrived at our desired destination and noticed the place was half-empty, although two bands had already taken their fair share of time on stage (Arkham and Distorsion, maybe I´ll see them on some other occasion). One of us followed in after being subjected to a careful search from the bouncers, with conversations of the likes: 

´What you got there, pretty boy?´ 
´Umm, a bag…´ 
´And what might there be in that bag, huh?´ 
´Umm, another bag…´ 
´And in that one?´ 
´Booze and dope, of course!´

Finally, we were all granted passage. We headed to the stage where the lads (and ladies) from New Age were performing sound checks. We greeted the frontman, the mighty Haos Abbath whom we knew personally, then proceeded to the VIP area where quality romanian cognac and vodka (Milcov and Săniuța) were handed to us for free, along with a complementary/optional lap dance for each of us from the club´s entertainers. We all opted for it, of course.
New Age (Heavy/Thrash)

Shortly after New Age started playing I remember complaining a lot about the bad sound. We were in front of the stage and vocals and bass were barely audible, technical flaw that was somehow fixed for the following bands. The energy coming from both the band and crowd was uplifting and there were a lot of viking chants in which everyone yelled from the top of their lungs ´Țâțeee, țâțeee!´ (romanian word for breasts) while mosh pits were slowly starting to develop. 

Followers Kamen (artists formerly known as Neisseria) grabbed everyone´s attention with their unique brand of thrash metal of which I was already aware, but I felt I needed to hear more of. Heads started banging, mosh pits started forming again and a couple of beers later their show was already over. Godt gået, lads!
Kamen (Thrash)

Next up were the guys from Negative Core Project (female stockings and all) and the night was closed by a local Pantera tribute band called Domination. Needless to say that in these two shows everything went batshit crazy, beers were thrown around, mosh pits grew increasingly bigger and dangerous, threatening to swallow the whole crowd, all the ladies had their bras removed and threw them towards the male metalheads and lastly, I had a giant trekking boot stepping on half of my face while the owner of the boot was flying around at crowd head level (imagine a stage dive gone bad).
Negative Core Project (Groove/Deathcore)
After all was said and done (well, mostly screamed and done), myself and the buddies that accompanied me headed out of the venue and into the limo that was waiting to take us home. I yelled at the driver ´Towards the Pui de Urs Hotel in Grozăvești County!´ while at the same time refusing the favors of the in-car entertainers deemed at our disposal. My body was already too aching and sore to do anything else. 

We arrived ten minutes later at our penthouse, I tipped the limo driver with a hundred ron bill (roughly thirty bucks ) and then all of us went to sleep, perfect closer for a night we would all remember, skipping either showers/meals. Because a true metalhead never washes after a live performance! (unless one wishes to rediscover his lost Metallica t-shirt).

P.S: Some events in this story may have been fictionalized in order to increase the artistic value of the article. The club location was already known to me and surprisingly, the bit with the trekking shoe is entirely true; luckily for me there was no physical damage suffered in the process.

And now some useful links for you to follow (pics + facebook band pages):

Negative Core Project

September 29, 2013

ROCKSTADT EXTREME FEST 2013: A Gonzo Report - Day 1

[Gherasim: If 12 hours of sleep don't fix it, nothing will. I woke up next to a Chester dressed in his now famous dollar print pyjamas. Still tucked under the blankets, we do some F5 and shitposting on various forums. This basic need fulfilled, we decide to get out of the room, in search of a local food store. After a hour, we return with water, coke zero, rye bread and a piece of ham. On the first floor of the boarding house we stumble upon a nice old man, who's taking care of the kitchen. It's a little too late to order a breakfast, but he agrees to help us with those instant ramen soups Chester brought from home. The old man sports a cowboy hat and a grizzled moustache. We're not sure where we've seen him before.]

The weather isn't very good - rain is announced later in the day. I'm off to meet a girl friend in Braşov, 15 minutes away from Râşnov, while Gherasim catches up on some writing. I catch a ride with some nice locals and after less than half an hour I'm in a rain-soaked Braşov, safely tucked away in a vintage-looking cafe, drinking cappuccinos and catching up with my friend. We spend two lovely hours together, after which we say goodbye in the hallway of the Braşov County Library, with the promise of seeing each other again in a month's time. 

Braşov - Council Square

There is no rest for the wicked, though. Jonathan lets me know he has arrived in Râşnov, so I head back there, after eating a huge grilled chicken sandwich and having the first beer of the day. I have no idea what G. has been doing while I was gone (probably jumping on the bed and blasting Pink Floyd), but we get dressed and head over to the festival site. 

[G: I must admit I sort of missed this festival feeling. I joined Chester on this trip with low expectations - metal of any kind is not my cup of tea anymore. Someone might link my presence here to a quarter-life crisis, but the truth is that I'm not getting that nostalgia vibe. I'm not feeling any younger or connected to my former teenager self. Nevertheless, the place is nice and I'm glad we're here at last. The sun is shining and all the people around seem to enjoy themselves. As Chester pointed out in the previous entry, the fest is smoothly run, and there's really nothing to nitpick on.]

The second band of the day, Code Red, is already hard at work on the stage. Somewhere nearby, we see Jonathan. Friendly greetings abound and we scoot over to a table, for some beers and talking inner TZEEEAC business. 

"Bă pulă..."

While we're sitting there and drinking, Romania's only viking-folk metal band, Bucovina, assaults the stage. I'm very familiar with Crivăţ, Luparu et al.'s music and I recognize many of the songs. Pretty serviceable folk metal about forests and the brave Romanian people who are fearless warriors. I wish they'd come up with some new material, though. It's getting pretty tiresome to hear the same songs over and over again, and I haven't even seen these guys for a few years. WELCOME TO ROMANIA HELL!

[G: When they started playing "Straja", sudden realization beamed on Jonathan's face: "Oooh, these guys. I hate them."]


The clouds gather over the festival site just in time for Carach Angren's performance. I take off my warm clothes and remain in just my t-shirt. You see, if there's anything watching countless Bear Grylls survival shows has taught me, is that wet clothes are a pain in the ass and lead to hypothermia. So I leave my stuff hanging on the umbrellas above the tables and we go near the stage, just as three specters take their places behind their instruments. The rain begins pouring after the first chord is struck and the mood is set for Carach Angren's gothic romantic stories of war, love and suicide. While I'm soaking wet, I can totally appreciate their theatrical performance and synth-laden black metal. Not to mention the excellent use of corpsepaint. No doubt about it, this was one of the most atmospheric performances of the entire festival, thanks in part to the gloomy weather.

[G: Thanks to Chester's quick reflexes, I escaped from the middle of a wall of death a few seconds before the clash. I didn't know they can do this on black metal. But it seems that at Rockstadt everything is possible.]

Carach Angren

With hypothermia close to onset, we move away from the stage and go back under the tents to dry off with beer, hot dogs and mititei. While we're gorging on meats, Last Hope take the stage and they unleash a brutal show of thugged-out hardcore, complete with baseball hats and tons of Varsity font. The response they get from the crowd is impressive and you can tell these dudes have been in the scene for a long time. Bulgaria hardcore, yo!

Last Hope

[G: My balls are frozen, but the audience enters a death metal party fever as Decapitated show up on the stage. I don't want to know how much alcohol pulses in the veins of the scantily clad chicks around us. Chester is tipsy enough: he's started pushing people into the moshpits that constantly pop up near us. When Decapitated announces the last piece of their set, he makes an OMG face, dashes through the rows of gone nuts metalheads and finally disappears in the middle of the hugest moshpit I've ever seen to date. Cya later shitlords, indeed.]

It's gotten cold as fuck as outside, but nobody cares: fucking Napalm Death have taken over the stage! I can't even remember anything from their show, except that it was wild: everyone was moshing like crazy and the Brits teared shit up, pure and simple. As they went back and forth across their discography, they upped the intensity more and more and destroyed everything in sight. The crowd was fucking wild and I fell in the mud several times, only to be picked by 20 people a moment later and thrown right back in the mosh pit. INSANE!!! It was my first time seeing this band and I'm really glad I did - they are truly a force to be reckoned with and living grindcore legends. Props to you, chaps!

Napalm Death

Sometime during the hostilities, Gherasim has left, so Jonathan and I drink one more beer (I don't even know how many I've had anymore...) before the main event of the evening. The anticipation is almost palpable and the excitement grows large, but finally it happens: Gojira are on stage! What followed was an outstanding performance and a lesson in the mastery of progressive metal. The guys were in top shape, they were very grateful for being in Romania for the first time and they delivered in spades. My only gripe is that there weren't too many songs from their latest album, but hey... it was an amazing show nonetheless and everything sounded great. They were the final ingredient that turned that Friday into a memorable evening. 


By the end of the show, both Jonathan and I are exhausted, disoriented and fucked up. It's dark and quiet outside and everyone is walking around like zombies, in search of a place to lie down for the night. I say goodbye to Jonathan and he crawls inside his car to sleep, while I trek back to the hotel through the woods, barely keeping myself up on my feet. I take a quick shower and once again I collapse in bed. Today was a good day.

                                       PHOTO GALLERY (Alex Csiki – Art Photo Studio):

False Reality
Code Red
Carach Angren
Last Hope
Napalm Death

In the Guise of Men - Ink EP (2013)

This EP, whether the band knows it or not, is a small premiere. It's the first physical CD we've ever gotten in the mail for review. We received an email from Krys who's the vocalist (I think) of this band and he was like "dude gimme your address I wanna send you my band's CD". I asked him if he was sure he wanted to spend money on postage, because we'd be just as happy with a download link. "No man, I gotta send you this promo pack, give me your address, do it, do it now!" And I did. A brisk two weeks or so later, a package all the way from Paris made its way to my local post office, from where it ended up on my desk, where I tore it apart to reveal a neatly packaged CD and a nicely decorated, but rather sparse info sheet. 

Now, I'm not into collecting CDs. The last CD's I had were some Negură Bunget albums, but I gave them to some girl because honestly CDs are a pain in the ass. I'm never, ever, ever, EVER going to think to myself "hey, I feel like listening to this band, let me PUT THE CD IN MY COMPUTER'S DVD TRAY THEN WAIT FOR IT TO SPIN FOR A WHILE THEN PLAY IT IN WINDOWS MEDIA PLAYER." Too much work. The artwork argument doesn't hold up with me either, because CD artwork is just too damn small. If you like artwork, then splurge on the vinyl disc so you can admire the artwork on a huge canvas. All in all, I'd rather just buy digital copies of music or support the band by going to a show or buying a shirt.

So after importing a CD through iTunes for the first time in my life, I was finally able to put a sound to the In the Guise of Men name. Man, this is really hard to describe and I'm gonna do a really bad job at it. It's a really diverse mixture and I can hear a TON of stuff battling for attention: percussive djenty guitar riffs, slight progressive touches, distorted telephone vocals, clean vocals sung in an alternative metal style, rumbling bass lines, aggressive parts, uplifting choruses, weird electronic bits - I mean holy shit, that's a lot of things to go through in just six songs clocking in at 27 minutes!

In the Guise of Men manage to somehow pull it off nicely, though. The band is able to intelligently mix together all of these seemingly different elements into one single coherent, catchy package. Ink can feel pretty schizoid at times, moving swiftly between moods, but I think this works in its favor and makes for an engaging and dynamic listening experience. I'd love to see these guys perform live, because I'm convinced their music truly blossoms in a live setting. The somewhat muddy production on CD doesn't really do it justice. 

Anyway, I'm getting the irking feeling that I'm rambling aimlessly, so I'll put an end to it. Thanks for sending us your CD, dudes, and keep up the good work! Hopefully we'll have a beer before your concert in Bucharest soon, right?

September 28, 2013

In Solitude "Sister" (2013)

After two years of touring, the Daniel-proclaimed masters of nowadays heavy metal have released their new album today, and today is also the day it leaked and I got to listen to it... repeteadly. As for background, the ridiculously young Swedes have two more albums under their belt, the pure and innocent "In Solitude" (2008) and the complete masterpiece that is "The World, The Flesh, The Devil" (2011). There's no denying in their talent for writing riffs like no one has ever did before and with a frontman like Pelle Ahman it's bound to be something amazing everytime they release new music.

After hearing the official release of the album's title track on youtube a month ago I was a little confused, the vocals sounded quite different and I did not like the change that much. The riff was extremely interesting but it was no classic In Solitude. Then I heard the 1 minute preview for the single off this LP, "Lavender" and remained moved, marked and impressed. I think I checked about 20 times if the song had leaked anywhere in the past weeks. I did the same for any other songs on the album, and half of them could actually be found on the Internet. There were more build-up expectations for this album more than any other, except for Graveyard "Lights Out".
Pelle Ahman. Role model. Amazing singer.
Look at those legs.
When I finally got to listen to it after a day of school I gotta say, I loved it.. yet it had its ups and downs. But I thoroughly enjoyed it. My gripe is that I was expecting more extremely powerful heavy metal influences like on the previous LPs In Solitude has offered, but this album takes their musical style into another direction, a direction which I absolutely love, but it's still not the classic In Solitude. Non-gay melodic black metal and post-punk influences are clearly heard and it's a very cool thing. The other thing that I did not enjoy was, most surprisingly, "Lavender". The only hook the song has is in the beautiful chorus, but the rest sounds very different and weird.

The rest of the album is beautifully executed and mastered. Perfect riffage and eerie vocals everywhere. Even with the whole style change it's still In Solitude at heart, and it's an extremely interesting change, to say the least, and I love it. Best track is, unquestionably, "Pallid Hands".

9/10 Would Buy On Vinyl.

September 27, 2013

Iron Heel - Book of Grief

There was a time when Electric Wizard was really heavy, people will hate me for this, but the new stuff just doesn’t cut it for me, I’m more of a Dopethrone dude, when I first heard that album, my ears just exploded, and I couldn’t listen to anything for a whole month, it was pure heavy. Since then Electric Wizard have gone their own path, but without a doubt Dopethrone influenced the sound of a lot of bands, one of them is Iron Heel.

Iron Heel is a relatively new band from Vienna, Austria, they play basically a heavy mix of doom, stoner and black metal, but with an accent on the doom. Their first LP ever, Book of Grief, just dropped a couple of weeks ago, self released by the band.

Book of Grief is just 5 songs short, but the amount of distortion and heaviness make it seem like it’s crawling forever, which is not a bad thing, if you love slow distorted songs, you’re gonna love that feeling, somewhat similar to the feeling a Saint Vitus record gives you.

The production is excellent, the guitars sound larger than life, the bass is just so bassy, that it makes your stomach rumble, and the drums destroy your eardrums. Vocals wise, I was really surprised, from the first riff, I was expecting someone to start screaming in my ear, but apparently most of the vocals are clean, expect for two songs, where they sound like someone who’s competing with Mike Williams for who has the most acute throat cancer.

The dynamic of the songs don’t change that much, they are mostly doom, with a stoner tone, playing in a tripplety bluesy feel, but sometimes they hit you in the face like the song Séance which starts out with a fast beat, yet played with a lazy feel, somewhat similar to what Winter used to do, actually some parts of some songs sound close to doom death bands such as Autopsy and Coffins.

All in all this is a great release, something that sounds like Electric Wizards’s Dopethrone, yet it somewhat reminds you of Coffins having intergalactic sex with Eyehategod, has to be pretty damn good, right? Well it is, and it’s even more. Really hope this gets put out on vinyl sometime soon, cuz that’s where this music needs to be, until then, go download it on their bandcamp page, it’s pay what you want, and you know you want to pay.

September 22, 2013

A Storm Of Light - Nations To Flames

A Storm of Light is a band hailing from Brooklyn. I don’t know if they need any introduction, but here’s a short bio for all you noobies: A Storm of Light is a post everything band formed in 2007 by then guitarist for Red Sparrowes and visual artist for the mighty Neurosis, Josh Graham. They feature members of bands like Swans, Tombs, Unsane and Howl

So far they have released 3 LP’s and a bunch of splits, their sound could be described as post metal…and beyond, the first record was pretty much in the vein of Neurosis, but gradualy they seemed to started finding their own sound, the 2011 LP, As the Valley of Death Becomes Us, Our Silver Memories Fade got them closer to that sound, it was a great record, much shorter songs, and much more aggressive, with awesome collaborations from Jarboe and Kim Thayil of Soundgarden.

Nation to Flames is their 4th record, and with this new material, they seem to finally found their thing, much more abrasive, much faster if I can say so, and really short songs, sometimes it seems like a hardcore record, and it’s no surprise Southern Lord is realeasing it.

The sound is similar to their past record, but much more dark and aggressive, with some songs that are faster than their usual stuff, songs like Disintegrate, have a really chaotic and fast beat that destroys everything around.

Beside the fast stuff, the record has a really haunting and claustrophobic atmosphere, it feels like you’re in the middle of a riot, and you’re getting smashed between pigs and protesters. I have to say that it fits perfectly with the whole situation that the world is going through right now.

The drums on this record are just amazing, they are sometimes really technical but without making the songs sound mathy and  incoherent, they actually help the song be really fluid. I love the use of toms for the beats, they just make everything sound huge and the tribal beats give the songs a certain atmosphere and make you feel overwhelmed by everything.

The guitar riffs are really different from their past stuff, they tend to be more in the vein of hardcore punk. Vocal wise the clean vocals used on the past LP’s seemed to be abandoned, and replace by screams. Sometimes Josh Graham’s vocals remind me of Lemmy, just that raspy bad ass voice.

With Nations To Flames, A Storm Of Light have reached a certain level that makes them one of the best post everything act that's still around from the first wave. Be sure to get yourself a copy from Southern Lord and jam this thing till your head explodes, and after that take to the streets and demolish all that stands in your way!

September 21, 2013

YC the Cynic - GNK (2013)

I have something to confess: I fucking love hip-hop. No, you don't get it. I. LOVE. HIP. HOP. Although I'm a baggy-black-jeans-with-a-hoodie-and-a-Led Zeppelin-T-Shirt kind of dude, most of the time I prefer hip-hop over any other type of music because it speaks to me on so many levels.

Albums like GNK remind me why I freaking love this genre so much. It's a concept album dealing with subjects such as God, power, race and society, and while this has been done (badly) multiple times before, only a few of them were so well produced and focused like this gem. As a whole, it's witty, intelligent and surprisingly insightful, despite the fact that YC is only 23 years old; it's a debut LP, yet it feels like the swan song of a dying 57 year old artist who's had a whole life of experimenting with music behind him. I don't know how YC spends his time in-between recording sessions, but I assume he's hitting the NYC library and reading the shit out of whatever the hell serves as the inspiration for his philosophical lyrics. 

Frank Drake has done a wonderful job at providing YCs mellow, yet tongue-twisting delivery and his deep lyrics with the appropriate instrumentals and samples - they're soft, discreet, cerebral and at times what-the-fuck-worthy. Let's take a look at HVNLY, for example; judging by the title, it's obviously about God, religion and stuff, so you'd think a bombastic and heavy beat would do the trick. What did they choose? Trumpets. And a sample from ''Jesus Christ is My Nigga'' as an outro, because why the fuck not. Murphy's Law is another track that contradicts itself by the weird choice of samples -  I never would have imagined that a ''Fuck Niggers/Fuck Bitches/Get Money'' segment would fit so well into a song that deals with, well, Murphy's Laws, fate, and other heavy concepts that I wouldn't dare to delve into because I'm too stupid to exist. Really, man, where do these 20 something modern philosophers come from? It's really depressing when I think about it - they're out there living their lives, hitting the studio, recording songs about Kierkegaard or some shit while I'm sitting at home shoving tacos down my throat and watching shit reality TV.  

OK, shit, I'd better end this review before it gets weird. Sooo, yeah, GNK, great album, one of my favorite albums this year and probably of all time. I can't wait to see what this dude has in mind for his next album.

September 20, 2013

Avenged Sevenfold - Waking the Fallen

It's been ten years since the release of this beast (and just a little less since I got into this band) and I feel it's necessary to bring it up here on Tzeeeac, so the total of 0.0005% maggotheads that don't know what this is about have a chance to redeem themselves and sacrifice a virgin on the altar of A7X.

While I don't care much for their other LP's (maybe just a tiny bit for City of Evil), I can't but only recognize how 'Waking the Fallen' has stood the test of time and became one of the best metal albums to hit the record stores in the last decade.

Rejoice, minions, and may you bang you heads until they compulsively implode!

September 17, 2013

together PANGEA - Snakedog (2013)

The cover reminds me of MGMT's Alien Days.

In the year of 2013 we've seen some bands who've tried to link their music to a certain attitude,which could be associated with Los Angeles,and not entirely coincidentally bikers. The outcome of such attempts was either a love-hate reaction (Arctic Monkeys) or instant hype for the band known as together PANGEA.

Their latest single entitled Snakedog was released in August (the 20th) but leaked earlier intentionally so the hipsters could actually make it skyrocket into some superbly awesome soundtrack to your summer adventures, thing which actually happened. The masterpiece that they managed to create was both unique and in good taste, dotted with aggressive guitar solos. It sounds like the love child of QOTSA and Cage the Elephant, which was forgotten in a garage, found instruments and made this.

Well they must have a reason for doing so right? -It's simple, they used a 4-track tape machine in their early stages (by that I mean one teenager, lead vocalist William Keegan), moving on to encountering more of the band's active members. The good part about these stages was that they could explore and combine the various music styles and elements that they've brought to the table.

As an ending note I would like to rate this release:
9/10  WOW SOHIP.

September 13, 2013

GUEST POST: Hourvari - EP (2011)

(Volo is back with another review for a hardcore band. At this rate, we're gonna have to make him an official TZEEEAC member. God, no... think of all the paperwork!)

I feel like the older I get, the more I tend to listen to faster and more aggressive songs. I don’t really have that patience to sit through a 10+ minute song nowadays, but I have to admit, Hourvari’s EP got me stuck next to the speakers the whole thing through.

Hourvari are a band hailing from France, they are a side project that features members of some pretty cool French bands, including Birds In Row, As We Draw and Puzzle. They play and blend of Post Hardcore, Post Metal and all other sort of post stuff. Unfortunately, this EP is just 2 songs long, which just keeps me wanting more, but as I understand, the band isn’t around, so that sucks.

Music wise, it has your typical song structure for a post metal song, I don’t even know if we can talk about song structures in this kind of music, but you know where I’m going with this. Both songs start really chill and spacy and steadly increase in volume and energy, before going into a wall of sound that’s just ear shattering, and catches you pretty off guard, and yeah the first part is a build up pretty much, but damn, it will catch you off guard, be warned!

The production on these 2 songs reminds me of the early stuff that Birds In Row have put out, like on the Cottbus EP, just an overall heavy drum sound and powerful guitar noise, but also the bass sound is really present there, which I really love when I can distinguish the bass from the other instruments. I wouldn’t be surprised if it were produced by the same guy.

The vocals are really something special on this EP. You would expect from a post metal record to have those barking growly voices, well you’d be surprised to hear that this is not the case. There is a lot of diversity, you have everything from clean singing, to screamos (similar to those in Birds In Row, I think it’s the same guy) and to some extent whispering voices. And the vocals do complement a lot the songs, giving them a lot of emotion and power.

All in all this is an excellent EP, too bad it’s the only one from them, and I don’t really know if they will release something else, though I hope they do. Props to Lost Pilgrims Records for sending this our way! The record comes out on 20th of September on vinyl, of course, but if you can’t wait until then, just go to their bandcamp page and download on a pay what you want basis, but if you like it, do spent a few bucks on it, because it’s totally worth it.

September 12, 2013

Tribulation "The Formulas Of Death" (2013)

I just have a huge huge love for albums that contain cool extreme metal, yet have very chill and artistic artwork, like calm paintings or whatnot. No, Watain, I said "cool" extreme metal (yet the cover for "The Wild Hunt" just might be the greatest one yet this year). This being Tribulation's second album, follow up to the superb "The Horror" LP (2009), it deserved a couple of listenings and a damn fine review, as it features some damn fine tracks. Stacking at about a little over one hour of music, it's a double LP that's sure to take you strange places until you look like that green lady up there.

First of all, even as Tribulation's debut album was quite Entombed and early-Tiamat-inspired, on "Formulas" they have really crafted a sound of their own, and boy is it cool, fresh and extremely original. This album is about 40% instrumental parts, a lot of solos, harmonies and such, all coming together and forming the Tribulation sound, complete with echo-y guitars and Dissection-like breaks between riffs. Yes, the Dissection influences are clear and punctuated here, but the band is really doing a thing on their own.

All in all, a very unique, interesting album that surely packs a punch. The future of swedish death metal is here, and it's name is "The Formulas Of Death".


September 11, 2013

American - Demo 2013

Some days, you just feel like a piece of shit.

Some days, nothing seems to work out for you.

Some days, everything seems pointless.

Some days, you've been sitting around all day, barely doing anything productive at all.

Some days, you think of calling it quits.

Some days, you'd go get some beers, but you just don't want to leave your house.

Some days, you wallow in your own filth.

Some days, you feel disgusted with yourself.

And on rare occasions, a piece of music just happens to drop by, perfectly capturing your shit mood.

This is one of those occasions.



Hardcore / Sludge / Black Metal / Noise.

Buzzing guitars.

Horrible shrieks.


It's the perfect sonic companion for tonight.

Thank you, dudes.

September 8, 2013

ROCKSTADT EXTREME FEST 2013: A Gonzo Report - Day 0

So it began... on the 29th day of the eight month of the 2013th year A.D. before sunrise. I awoke at 4AM, brushed my teeth, got dressed and bolted out the door in a rush to the railway station. The train which was about to take me to Braşov was already waiting for me. A young Japanese woman asks me to help her with her luggage, in near perfect English. I happily oblige, glad to have an opener and already envisioning myself as a caramel-coated Haruki Murakami. Tough luck - instead I fall asleep and wake up three hours later, in Bucharest, where the dark lord of TZEEEAC, Gherasim, is quietly waiting for me on a bench. I have a Cola Zero and we board back on the train, spending the next 3 hours looking at dumb pictures on his iPod Touch. The landscape morphs around us and before long, we've hit our destination: Braşov, one of the most popular tourist destinations in Romania. 

We're connected as shit, so a mere 10 minutes after we hop off the train, in a daze, I get a phone call from CioLAN, a local overlord. We're meeting for food and drinks in a local Irish pub called Deane's. The place looks great, but the music blaring from the speakers is shitty Top 40 Romanian pop-dance, completely ruining the Irish atmosphere. Still, the food is rather good - I got the house hamburger accompanied by fried potato peels and some dips, while Gherasim enjoys a working man's meal of grilled meat and baked potatoes with coleslaw - and the conversation is lively, so I'm happy.

[Gherasim: It's kinda sad to see the pub in this state. You can feel the owner's dream to have a fabulous Irish bar slowly rotting under the siege of atrocious music. There was a power outage at some point and the toilet was in need of repair. When you flushed it (I know, who the hell does that anyway?) all the water in the tank spilled on the floor, prompting you to run like Jesus on the sea of Galilee. Despite all that, the food is really good. And having CioLAN sharing his stories at your table tends to dispel any shortcomings a pub might have.]

CioLAN then takes us to one of his favorite bars, which kinda looked like my aunt's kitchen, where we drink some fine beers - Paulaner Weissbier, Paulaner Dunkel and Hobgoblin - and talk about university woes, having a fish tank and writing shit.

[G: I'm not sure what Chester means by comparing it to his aunt's kitchen. If he's saying that it's a warm, clean and peaceful place, he's spot on. It's called Bierhaus, btw. Make sure you drop by when you're in Braşov and need to spend some quality time in the company of a wide selection of beers.]

As the beer flows, the hours bend and soon it's time for us to head for Râşnov. We say goodbye to our friend with the promise of seeing him again in a few days and we board a small bus full of rowdy metalheads, all eager to spend the next three days eating and rocking. 

[G: 15 minutes and we're in Râşnov. 20 minutes later we're still searching for that boarding house where we booked a room. Taking a few more turns and climbing yet another hill side street, we arrive exhausted at the The Waldburg Boarding House.

Also known as the Fortress
It costs roughly 25 bucks/night for a large two person room. We could have booked something cheaper, but by the time we decided to go on this roadtrip most of the rooms in Râşnov were sold out. Still, it's a pretty good deal, considering we're receiving 4 stars services. There's nothing too good for high class journalism.

Unfortunately, what I thought to be a small post-beer headache turns out to be a fever. I took some pills and now I lie in bed, waiting for it to go away. I fire up the laptop and we watch the beginning of Django, the Franco Nero spaghetti classic. The fever gets worse and I decide to sleep it off, just in case. It's 8 p.m. The night is young. #YOLO]

While Gherasim dozes off, I head to the festival site to get a feel of the day. I know I've already missed two bands or so, but I still want to check out the place. It's... beautiful. 

Gothic are already on stage. I remember seeing them live several years ago, but now they're different. There's a lot more growling in their music mix and one of their guitarists now has long hair and glasses. They played some technically-sound, yet rather bland metal, so I went around to see what else the festival site had to offer. There were caravans with hot dogs, sandwiches, grilled meats, fries and salads. There were 3 or 4 drinking stands offering a wide selection of drinks, including Silva Dark for just 5 RON - shit yeah! There was a stand where a nice lady was selling all sorts of baklavas and Turkish delights. Another stand sold freshly baked kürtős kalács (also known as chimney cakes). An official Rockstadt merchandise stand was up, selling everything from Rockstadt t-shirts to Rockstadt coffee mugs and Rockstadt lighters, in addition to the official band t-shirts. Even the guys from Beauty of Pain had a stand where they were selling a ton of band shirts, patches and boots. In short, there was lots of stuff to blow your money on, as it should be! 

Unfortunately, as much as I would have liked to stay for the rest of the shows, the exhaustion had finally caught up with me. Waking up at 4AM isn't any fun. So, after eating two fucking mititei and having a beer, I decide to turn in early. I had seen Trooper before on several occasions anyway and I promised I'd see Goodbye to Gravity some other time. After a nice trek through the woods, I reached the hotel, had a shower and collapsed in bed. The real fun starts tomorrow!

PHOTO GALLERY (Alex Csiki – Art Photo Studio):

Roadkill Soda
Days of Confusion
Goodbye to Gravity
Negative Core Project