The sneaky bastards. “Having released 10 albums since their debut in 2008, it’s hard to believe that ‘Crystal Bullets b/w King Tears’ is the first ever 12” single” from White Denim, so sayeth their Bandcamp page. But in a delightfully devilish move from the band, it’s actually their first ever secret vinyl-only album. And it’s friggin’ great! Maybe even the best thing they’ve done since “Performance”! It finally seems like the current lineup of the band is gelling as well in the studio as when I’ve seen them live, and there’s enough space in here to give each member room to shine. There’s a sly nod to Bernard Purdie in the shuffling rhythm of the track “Crystal Bullets”, which just sits so deliciously inside the lush and luxuriant sound they’ve been adopting lately. It’s subtle, sleek and sexy, but above all, it’s MEMORABLE. The rushed feeling I got from their previous two records isn’t anywhere to be found here, every track has been gloriously crafted into a swirling, jubliant vessel. On the whole, the album is quite a mellow affair, even the parts where they bring the energy up have a light and breezy quality to them. Unfortunately, unless you grab the vinyl, you’ll only be able to stream the title track(s) through their Bandcamp page. I’m well aware that White Denim reviews make up about 40% of my contributions to this site, but if they continue to put out such great material on a regular basis as they have been doing for the last few years, don’t expect me to change any time soon.
Rapacious cybernetic Crustcore from the States – jackboots to the leisure hive’s protective cells! Droid tyrants thrown into the magma furnaces! Post-human cybernetically enhanced master Crust, a variety of drum patterns including D Beats and Blasts with a lot of dynamic thrashing shifts and brutal blunt force starts and stops accenting ravening opaque Guitars underpinned with lithe Bass, ravaging noizy rocking Guitar sound with whiplashing melodious and odious lead parts, throaty scream/low vocal from a future hellscape. Perfectly loud, rugged production. Reminds me a lot of World Burns To Death and Severed Head of State. I couldn’t help but envision 90’s Terminator comic 2-page spreads whilst this demo plays, a voight-kampff response to the eye-bleeding stimuli of that fantastic cover illustration. Fukken ruthless.
Review c/o Nic Brown
Anyone (un)fortunate enough to have their cranium cratered by the weaponised infra-dub of ‘Black Creek’ will attest to Andrew Nolan’s uncanny symbiosis with the seismic and on ‘Lonely Water’, released a mere 6 months after the aforementioned mindfuck, he heads even deeper into the dreadzone, decanting the viscous elixir of Princes Jammy and Far-I and lacing it with strychnine. Informed by the terrors lurking unseen beneath English folklore’s green and pleasant veneer (there are tracks here entitled ‘Jenny Greenteeth’ and ‘Peg O’Nell’), this is industrial dub slowed to an agonising trudge, beats impacting like sandbags dropped from a skyscraper, the bass a molasses-thick goo that clogs the interstice between brain and skull, sending rational thought into a perilous tailspin (not convinced that sample-sourcing for ‘The Calls’ involved siting a contact mic in the larynx of a dying walrus? You will be). Fans of JK Flesh, Fatwires and The Bug, don your waders. The kraken wakes.
Review by Nic Brown
Thriving despite the suppressive efforts of Putin’s thuggish culture police, the Russian metal underground continues to throw up gems at an astonishing rate of knots; a case in point, THIS firestorm of fulminating fury from Muscovite malcontents Disillumination. Vicious as a backstreet machete fight, ‘Во Тьму Предвечного Слова’ is blackened death metal at its most hateful and deranged, a glowering inferno of razor wire riffola and acid-gargling vocal apoplexy that devours everything in its path like a swarm of cyborg locusts. At their default tempo (terrifying<), this heathen horde is controlled chaos incarnate, rampaging into oblivion amidst a welter of spine-splintering blast and d-beats, but ironically, it’s when Disillumination decelerate, locking into a monstrous, mid-paced psychedelic groove more pulverising than the heaviest sludge that this antitank missile of a record reaches maximum potency. From Russia with hate. Lights out.
BLACKPHONE666 has been operating for years now carving a high-def niche with tactile Harsh Noise damage inflected with Dub siren low end abandon. Here, he masterfully applies Speedcore/Hardcore blast and power to his extant Harsh Noise Bass distortion paradigm to incendiary result – <666PROTECT> required for survival! Round after round after hollow-point // Gabber kick rounds! Corrodent, irritant, a dangerous electronics substance capable of melting extremities when mishandled, fumes like hard ethanol or solvents – ignorant Speedcore hammer kicks sampling with little relent, insensible sequencer melodies swimming in brutal effects are established and punctuated with distorted P.E. vocal hallucinatory terror and blasts of Harsh as Fukk tonal distortion, overdriven system mangling production, reverence to old terror Dutch Hardcore abound. Overwhelming psychotomimetic Electronics power! The cassette features an exclusive and endurance testing HNW Speedcore amalgam of dangerous intensity and fearsome unapproachability. Hype as fuck.
Monomaniacal deathly Goregrinding spew from the US and Canada. Raw Grindcore slaughter captured in rehearsal room heat and haze with absolutely moronic Crust chord shift crush and deadly mondo-riff mangling, festering and grinding pugnaciously atop furiously groovy blasting trashcan snare mastery hurtling along with thrashing super blasts, super low low pitched Gore vocal, merciless US Grind channeling the fucking gods of Blast! Perfect boombox demo sound, too. Could have come out on a split 7″ with Violent Gorge in 2008. Yet ANOTHER excellent project featuring Isaac Horne. Crucial!
Super powered hardcore from Perth, Australia. Sick blast parts, heavy reverby breakdowns & big loud megaphone dog bark vocals disembowel these 6 tracks. Massive Crossed Out energy without actually sounding like Crossed Out is a huge plus. I did get Suffer vibes (early 2000’s Myspace-era Aussie legends) & waddya know, after some research I found out one of the ding dongs from Suffer is a member. Cool!
If you listen to enough of this music you’ll start to notice certain things that give away what corner of the globe a band is from. There is totally an “Australian sound” when it comes to bands who play weird extreme stuff & these chaps definitely have it. It’s a welcome addition & if they keep up the intensity that’s on this demo I can 100% see this unit reaching Extortion-levels of greatness. Supreme demo. Really big sound & VERY intense. A+. Can’t wait to see where this band goes from here. Hopefully not to the slammer.
Review by Nic Brown –
Following drummer Mars Sekhmet’s abrupt relocation to Austria almost eight years ago, the prospects of a third Antediluvian album seemed slim, but like a bat-winged demon descending from the firmament, Canada’s premier aural terror squadron have finally returned to unleash their latest monstrosity, an ungodly cataract of sonic intimidation tastefully themed around the sundry incarnations of sexual blasphemy. Way weirder and more inscrutable than the dissonant death dealers to whom they’re frequently compared (Portal; Teitanblood; Altarage), Antediluvian stretch their claustrophobic cacophony almost to breaking point here, rampaging down rabbit holes of abrasive blackened murk for a full sanity-threatening hour. Track titles such as ‘Sadomaniacal Katabasis (Last Fuck Of The Dying)’ and ‘Winged Ascent Unto The Twelve Runed Solar Anus’ drop clues as to just how unhinged the prurient depths of this mind-mangling racket are, but really, there’s no substitute for total immersion. Almost impossible to describe without using phrases like ‘ritual slaughter with power tools’, ‘The Divine Punishment’ is death metal taken to staggering extremes of abhorrent excess. Trust me, you’ll love it.
7 rooms of vapourous atmosphere and starport incidentals from Argentina’s GENDEMA 未来. Drum and Bass breaks, simplistic and hypnotising melodies arranged in loops over rounded Bass lines, a juxtaposition of speed and intensity with a deft calm and mindless relaxation Muzak vibe – recalls an installation in the WipeOut or even F-Zero series (less the Guitar shredding), the soundtrack to futuristic race tracks rendered in blocky pre-vis retro futurist graphics. Spacious and enveloping, low tech/lo-fi, mysterious and effervescent. Wavy!